Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Why Rudy Giuliani Is Unfit to Be President

Rudolph Giuliani was, in most respects, the best New York City mayor since perhaps Fiorello LaGuardia. Like his fellow Italian-American, Giuliani thought he knew what was best for the city and worked relentlessly to implement his plans and policies. And who can forget the sight of Giuliani striding fearlessly toward the burning World Trade Center towers on 9/11, as well as his decisive leadership in the following days and weeks?

All good, as they say, but Giuliani (at left in photo with the fella he'd like to succeed) has a flaw that would make him a disaster as president.
He's an asshole.
That is the underlying theme of "Giuliani Time," a brutal new documentary by Kevin Keating that reveals America's Mayor to be an intemperate and intolerant twit prone to bouts of anger when he doesn't get his way.

Stephan Metcalf shares an especially pungent scene from the movie in a Slate commentary:
In the middle of Giuliani Time, a man who sounds African-American and slightly unhinged calls in to the mayor's weekly radio broadcast. "Hello, Mr. Mayor," he says, wheezingly, "I think you're the worst mayor this city has ever known. You're the biggest criminal in this city." Giuliani rears back, his face breaks into a rictus-grin, and he whinnies like a pony in heat. "Hey, John," he says gleefully. "What kind of hole are you in there? It sounds like you're in a little hole. Jooohn? Are you OK? You're breathing funny." The man replies, "No, I'm not, sir, I'm sick. And you cut me off of my food stamps and Medicaid several times, too. I guess you don't give a damn about that, do you?" The mayor continues to smile joyfully. "There's something really wrong with you, John. I mean, there really is. I can hear it in your voice. Now why don't you stay on the line, we'll take your name and your number, and we'll send you psychiatric help, because (laughing) you seriously need it." John Hynes, it turns out, is a white man from Queens, who worked for 25 years until he started degenerating from Parkinson's disease.
Click here to download the trailer for "Giuliani Time."

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