It’s a shame this episode had to break the season’s trend of downplaying political events and topical humor, because the Cartman/Heidi romance took a pretty great turn this week. This episode showed us Cartman at his most evil and manipulative. It brought to mind the classic episode “Scott Tenorman Must Die” in many ways. Though what set this storyline apart is that Cartman wasn’t enacting some elaborate, focused plan of vengeance. He doesn’t seem to have any endgame in mind with Heidi. When he’s with her, he’s miserable. When he’s free of her, he’s miserable. There’s something even scarier about the prospect a 10-year-old Machiavelli who abuses and schemes because it’s in his DNA, not because he has an actual goal in mind.
This is the purest distillation of the stadium scam—lawmakers falling all over themselves to justify spending tens of millions on a ballpark that will be open one month a year, just to draw a team from 35 miles away (the Brewers currently train in Phoenix). And we wouldn’t know about of it—the outlandish claims, the realistic study that got buried because it didn’t return the desired conclusion—if not for a public records request by the Arizona Republic. This stuff is not debated in the open, because sunlight has a way of showing the greed and the stupidity and, in this case, some downright malice from developers and local officials attempting to mislead the public, whose money they’re trying to give away.