Confessions of a PowerholicWritten by Tom Morrissey | | firstname.lastname@example.org
A typical chick flick complete with the love interest, rocky middle and wonderful ending, “Confessions of a Shopaholic” is the movie a typical man would not want to be caught renting alone or have in his DVD player. However, it was in mine and I admit it. My excuse is my wife wanted to watch it. What’s yours?
The shopaholic is in debt thousands of dollars, carrying several maxed out credit cards and suffering from a weakness for clothes and accessories. Despite the deep financial hole, character Rebecca Bloomwood still grabs the shovel to dig deeper for a particular green scarf. With friendly mannequins encouraging her excesses that have morphed into needs, she becomes convinced this accessory will change her life, and make her world a better place. The scarf will advance her life, open up doors to incredible opportunities and make her fashionably irresistible. How could one go wrong with mannequins in agreement?
The overpriced piece of material shoves Rebecca further off the financial edge as the need to reel in the thrilling scarf demands the use of all her cash, several different credit cards and a 20 from a complete stranger. The accessory satisfies her need for a moment, but the need for designer tags and great bargains still resides under the surface.
Outside Hollywood, Toledo inspires too many comparisons, a city seen as an accessory to acquire. Toledo plays the role of the green scarf satisfying the urges of power hungry rulers who have cursed Toledoans with their presence ever since they decided to enter the premier political zoo in Northwest Ohio. The desires are never permanently satisfied — the definition of addiction — and the thrill of reaching the mayoral office on the 22nd floor will soon wear off if a powerholic takes the reins. Lack of the thrill serves as the only reason for Mayor Carty Finkbeiner’s infamous and ridiculous display of power by disrespecting the Marines in Jan. 2008.
Can much else besides addiction to power explain why one is willing to spend thousands of dollars of other people’s money to hold a temp job in which one is supposedly responsible for nearly to 300,000 people, with cameras documenting moves, journalists describing mistakes, bloggers ripping policy decisions and recall campaign threats lurking around the corner? Is the forced strip search of a duty bound media and inquisitive electorate really that charming?
Powerholics don’t go into debt in the traditional sense; no maxed out credit cards exist. Rather, the addicts become indebted to specific donors who donated massive sums with expectations that need to be delivered on. In the pursuit of the perfect accessory, indebtedness of policy is a small sacrifice sitting harmlessly on the clearance rack.
Beyond the insanity and indebtedness of certain mayoral candidates, the powerholics spend an immense amount of time and money conspiring to become mayor to the extent of hiring conspiracy managers, also known as campaign managers.
In the midst of the gloom and despair inflicted on the powerholic’s victims, there is hope. The light switch controlling the illumination in the tunnel is still flicked on, but drastic measures must be taken. Immediate exit from the public sector is necessary. Occupying the 22nd floor as mayor of Toledo will not satisfy one’s condition, only exacerbate the issue. The addiction to power, like any other addiction, doesn’t affect just the addicted, thus the need for action.
Stephen Moore’s novelization of the graphic novel “V For Vendetta” depicts a scene in which V, the anarchist — terrorist — is talking to his assistant, Evey Hammond as she recalls a quote her father was fond of. “Artists use lies to tell the truth, while politicians use them to cover things up.”
Politicians like Finkbeiner and Ben Konop are certainly nothing like Ayn Rand and George Orwell — authors who cranked out classic works of fiction for the sole purpose of illuminating the truth. Our political elite crank out lies for the sole purpose of extending their power.
After much contemplation and meditation focused on “Confessions of a Shopaholic,” and seeing a similarity to Toledo, two questions remain: Will Toledo continue to participate in the powerholic’s cover- ups this election season, and where do I turn in my Man Card?
E-mail columnist Tom Morrissey at email@example.com.