[Vito Marzullo raw #14]

Raw tape #14 for Vito Marzullo documentary. Color bars only for visual, but contains interesting audio of Marzullo commenting on the spoils system and patronage in his political dealings.

00:00Copy video clip URL No audio.

00:52Copy video clip URL Audio begins to find Marzullo, presumably in his ward office, speaking with a woman who is a teacher during the summer months, and he promises to give someone a letter for her.

02:10Copy video clip URL Marzullo briefs his new 40th precinct captain on his duties, simultaneously cursing his other precinct captains for allowing too many Republican votes to be cast in the last primary election. “We’ll change that,” says his new recruit, who interestingly lives outside of the precinct appointed to him. Audio cuts out briefly at 04:00. Marzullo advises the man to “entrench himself” in his precinct.

05:49Copy video clip URL A man introduces a woman to Marzullo, saying that she has been accosted and robbed at her work. He wants Marzullo to help her transfer to an office in a different district. The alderman asks them to visit him at City Hall the next day.

07:40Copy video clip URL Marzullo’s next visitors are two men seeking promotions or jobs through Marzullo’s patronage system. Marzullo says that since the job market is tight, he can’t help, but that “if things loosen up I’d be glad to.” “It all depends who the jobs belong to. That’s the thing you folks don’t realize,” Marzullo says to the men, lecturing them on how he will only recommend qualified workers for jobs. “I’ve been here for 18 years. I should be able to do something,” the first man says. “I can’t manufacture jobs. I can’t run these departments… There’s a limit of how far they can go,” Marzullo responds, and the two men leave.

12:30Copy video clip URL Yet another man comes to see Marzullo about a job, but says with a laugh that, “I know you must not have none because you ain’t notified me.” Marzullo replies, “[If] I’m gonna keep on promising people today and tomorrow and next week and next month, I’ll only be lying to them. I can only depend if something open comes up but I don’t have an employment office here.” He dismisses him just as he dismissed the last two job-seekers.

13:38Copy video clip URL “They think I manufacture these goddamn jobs,” Marzullo says after the man leaves. Weinberg pipes in, saying, “People think that anything you want, you can get… Not true, though,” but he then asks, “You do get hundreds of people jobs over the course of a year though, right?” Marzullo reponds, “Yeah, but there’s a limit to everything. People don’t know when the hell is the limit. They think you have an employment office.” A very revealing conversation ensues about Marzullo’s views on patronage and how he uses the spoils system.

16:22Copy video clip URL Weinberg asks Marzullo if the amount of power he wields has changed. Marzullo replies, “I don’t have any more or no less power than I ever had. I get my share and a little more than my share, but you can’t manufacture and you can’t go throwing your weight around like you’re somebody.” He goes on to criticize the “crackpot noisemakers” and “intellectuals” who call patronage and crony-ism a crime, but he sees it as a beneficial system.

19:10Copy video clip URL Taking a tangent, Marzullo recounts a story in which he spoke to a class of journalism students at Northwestern University to rave reviews, and takes a jab at a fellow alderman who spoke there and wasn’t so well-received. He accuses other politicians of bullying and lying. Weinberg asks another question, but the tape cuts out before Marzullo gives a full answer.



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