Wall Street Journal and Abouhalkah’s Achy Breaky Heart

We all thought it was going to be huge. A couple Wall Street Journal writers came into town to learn about the battle between the City Council and the Mayor’s wife, and the political insiders got the vapors. What will they say about us? Did they read the Christmas letter? How bad will it be? What will a real journalist do with a story that the Star has done its sensational best with? Can they out-sensationalize the Star?

And when it came out, it turned out that article was crushingly even-handed. No bombshells. No excruciating recaps of how we all suffered so terribly when he accepted then returned a car. No dramatic retelling of how awful it was that one out of dozens of his appointments turned out to be a kook. No hand-wringing or outrage, OUTRAGE, that he does some of his work at home now. In short, the article made all the hullabaloo that occupies the Star seem kind of silly.

Humorously, Yael Abouhalkah sniffs that the non-sensational approach was a “Valentine” to Mark and Gloria. That is funny on so many levels that I have to admire his complete lack of circumspection.

On one level, it’s a case of “it takes one to know one”. As a Funkhouser supporter, I would never deny that his Mayoral campaign benefited from regular “Valentines” from Abouhalkah. It was almost embarrassing to read Abouhalkah’s man-crush missives about Mark. For him to complain now about the Wall Street Journal writing a reasonable piece about the Mayor sounds like a failed suitor questioning what he ever saw in his unrequited love.

Second, Abouhalkah’s complaint shows that he is dangerously bipolar on the topic of our Mayor. Having withdrawn the Star’s endorsement, like a spiteful teenager ripping love-lorn pages out of her diary, Abouhalkah is now seething with resentment that when real journalists come to town, they don’t see the same poopyhead that he sees. He grouses that the article fails to list every single one of what Abouhalkah sees as failures of the Funkhouser’s administration. Rational people would question whether that was the actual assignment of real journalists, but such a thought apparently never crosses Abouhalkah’s fevered mind.

The saddest and most embarrassing moment, though, lies in this tear-stained, ungrammatical gem:

Instead, the story gives all kinds of credit to Squitiro for how she ran his campaign in 2007, seemingly without any help from professionals (untrue) or anyone else (think The Star’s endorsement — since retracted — didn’t help the mayor in the Southwest corridor with his narrow margin over Alvin Brooks?)

Good God, man, get a grip on yourself!! Yes, we all know you were important, and that it hurts to see your former love smile at his wife. But, really, get a shred of dignity!

Abouhalkah had such grand dreams of what life with Mark would be, and it’s sad to see him bitter now that they’ve been dashed. But it’s getting ridiculous. Better journalists than him came to town, spent plenty of time with both sides of the controversy, and wrote an objective piece that made Mark look better than the Council on this petty issue.

Pull yourself together, Yael. Get a box of tissues, take a walk on the beach, crank Human League’s “Don’t You Want Me” or Ben Folds Five’s “Song for the Dumped“, and wipe your nose.

Funkhouser wasn’t perfect to begin with, and he’s not a monster now. Most of us knew that. The Wall Street Journal, as you point out, didn’t tell us anything we didn’t already know.

But your reaction to it sure exposed you.

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