The Raton That Roared
After years of peace, Disney and Anaheim are now engaged in a war more brutal than the reviews for Treasure Planet. Last month, the company sued the city to block an affordable housing project slated for construction next to where Disney wants to build a third theme park. This came after Disney's corporate lawyers—just minutes before an Anaheim City Council meeting—coerced Councilwoman Lucille Kring into abstaining from voting on the project due to conflict-of-interest laws (the California Fair Political Practices Commission later told Kring no such conflict exists). Now, a coalition of businesses bankrolled by Disney is trying to place a measure on the February 2008 ballot that would limit development in the area immediately around Disneyland.
Disney officials insist their aggression toward Anaheim is ultimately good for the city, and no one advocates this strategy more than their corporate front rodent, Mickey Mouse. Breaking years of silence and sipping a stiff bourbon at Disneyland's Club 33, the anthropomorphic legend sat down with the Weekly and defended his company's actions.
My question is simple: What's with the war on Anaheim?
The city's getting big-headed. Win a World Series, expand your convention center, finally host a winning hockey team, then all of a sudden you think you're fucking St. Louis. The City Council doesn't know what's good for Anaheim; Ido. They need to get this straight: if it weren't for me, Anaheim would be nothing but Arabs, Klan members and prostitutes.
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Maybe, but why should Anaheim grant you any more favors? Your last major project, Disney's California Adventure, was a disaster initially.
Okay, okay: California Adventure sucks, but so what? Disneyland and the businesses around it that leach off Disneyland bring in more than 50 percent of the city's revenue. Besides, Anaheim should be grateful I even bothered to dump that shit on them. I could've put it in Long Beach.
But don't you think the workers for Disneyland and the many hotels around there deserve to live nearby and in affordable housing?
Fuck Mexicans! I've been nothing but an amigo to them, unlike that sellout Speedy Gonzalez. Don't you remember The Three Amigos?
Donald Duck starred in that film, but I don't see what this issue has to do with Mexicans.
Yeah, but if I hadn't okayed that movie, most Americans would still think Mexico was a land of poverty.
Anyway, I've been nothing but a friend to Mexicans. In 2000, I even allowed workers to wear facial hair after decades of banning 'staches just so Mexicans could become cast members. And how do they repay me? They once put me in a Tijuana Bible butt-fucking Donald!
But American comic-book illustrators drew Tijuana Bibles. . . .
And you know what Mexicans call me in Spanish? El ratn Mickey. Mickey the Rat.
Actually,ratn means "mouse"in Spanish. Rat israta.
[silence] Fuck Mexicans!
Final question: Do you think you'll be successful in placing your initiative on the ballot?
Of course. All Anaheim voters will see when I get folks to sign petitions is the word "Disney." Those dopes probably think they're signing up for annual park-hopper passes. Then we put the Disney name on the ballot again, and we'll win. And if not? I'll sue Anaheim again.
But what exactly do you want? I've heard rumors your company wants to start time-shares, condos, even extend your cruise line out here.
Walt Disney—bless his frozen soul, but he didn't buy up tens of thousand of acres around his park sites like he did in Florida. That was his one great regret. "I don't want the public to see the real world they live in while they're in the park." He forgot to buy up Anaheim. Well, we're going to change that. What I want, I get. Just ask Minnie.
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