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THOUGHTS AS THE WATER GETS HOTTER

The following excerpt from the diary of Governor J. Fife Plushbottom III was delivered to New Times by secret courier:

Dear Diary:
Once again, history proves that I have taken the correct course.
My mother was so cheap. She balked at first when I asked her to lend me the $2 million I needed for my gubernatorial campaign.

"Listen to me," I told her. "Do you want your son to be sent to the same prison with a gross arriviste like Charlie Keating?

"Give me this money now and I can be elected governor. Once I'm up there on the ninth floor, it will change the way my business dealings with the Esplanade project are viewed." I was so right. Now that I'm governor, I have a platform anytime I need it.

So let the feds make all the unpleasant charges they want. All I have to do is tell those dunderheads down at the Arizona Republic that I'm available for an exclusive interview.

They will splash my views across the top of the front page every time.
As the Bard wrote: "Cry `Havoc!' and let slip the dogs of war." Let those guys in Washington file all the suits they want.

I can neutralize them.
All I have to do is keep crying that it's dirty politics. People understand that. Nobody reads past the third paragraph in the story, anyway.

How can the government claim that what I did with the Esplanade was illegal?

All I did was to point out to my fellow board members at Southwest Savings what a wonderful project I had in mind for the corner of 24th Street and Camelback.

I have always had a gift for persuasive talk.
Of course, they agreed to lend my group $30 million to build the project. I convinced them it would turn out to be worth $400 million. Can I help it if business turned bad?

And why does anyone think it so unusual that I didn't put up any of my own money?

I am on firm ground here. I have always been known as a man who does not spend his own money.

Dear Diary, my ace in the hole is that I have such a keen business mind. I got it from my grandfather. I have always said that about myself, and I know that I'm not boasting.

I'll be glad when I'm finally out of that Mercado project. It has been a dog from the start. Dealing with all those labor types. It just proves I was right to have doubts about it.

It was never going to be a world-class project like my Esplanade.
The failure of the Esplanade has only proved to me once again that the lower classes don't know how to appreciate the finer things in life.

You would think they would flock to fill the office space. They just don't understand how important it is to be situated at 24th Street and Camelback.

I hate it when I hear people say the traffic is terrible at that intersection. The traffic isn't my fault. It was there even before I built the project.

I don't like these continued references to the possibility of criminal prosecution. I don't want that thought put into the minds of the government prosecutors.

I look at those pictures of Keating in court, and I don't like what I see. But they could never do that to me. I'm the goddam governor. That's got to count for something.

Suppose they did file a criminal charge? Would I have to resign as governor? By God, I'm making a promise to myself that they will never get me to resign.

They will have to blast me out of this office.
Why should I leave? I have brought all my friends here, and they like it. We all like it. I just love riding up to my office on the top floor in that elevator. I like walking in the building. I like all those people trying to smile at me and say hello.

Besides, if I resign as governor, I'll have to start driving my own car again. Pretty soon, it will be time to get a new one. And then I'd have to go and borrow some more money from that goddam mother of mine.

That's enough for today, Dear Diary. This will be a busy week. I can see that I'd better get out and make some statements on the local radio. I'll beat this thing yet.

The failure of the Esplanade has only proved to me once again that the lower classes don't know how to appreciate the finer things in life.

I look at those pictures of Keating in court, and I don't like what I see. But they could never do that to me. I'm the goddam governor.

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