He allegedly paid some schmuck named Justin Lamar Sternad to run against Rivera's opponent — Joe Garcia — in the Democratic primary. Rivera bankrolled the bogus candidate via Republican political operative Ana Alliegro, another gift to journalists everywhere. She once compared her pistol to her husband's genitals during a fight with the poor guy. "If you think your [penis] is powerful, this is mine," a naked Alliegro told her hubby, according to a police report. When her husband tried to ignore her by going to make coffee — who does that? — Alliegro fired the gun into the ceiling. "You see. It's loaded," she said. "This is business."

And it was, at least until Rivera blew the election, Sternad spilled the beans, and the feds came looking for Alliegro. She disappeared, but we can only assume she is out there somewhere, comparing her gun to a schlong and plotting a comeback.

If Alliegro's bizarre antics sound familiar, it's probably because they resemble the sordid case of Broward County School Board member Jennifer Gottlieb. According to an investigation released this year, the local judge's wife carried on multiple affairs with bankers involved in deals with the school board. She allegedly provided them with inside information in return for trysts at fancy hotels.

Mark Andresen
Mark Andresen

Like Rivera and Alliegro, Gottlieb seems sure to escape punishment. But she wasn't even the worst school board member. That title probably goes to Beverly Gallagher, who's now in a halfway house after pleading guilty to accepting payoffs from undercover FBI agents posing as businessmen seeking school construction contracts. Or maybe it goes to another former school board member, Stephanie Kraft. She's awaiting trial on charges of accepting cash in return for helping developers avoid $500,000 in fees.

Then there's North Miami Beach Mayor Andre Pierre. He earned his hellish Christmas with the Kardashians by wasting $4,000 on city badges for his buddies, driving a $100,000 Porsche that he never reported as a gift, steering city money to criminals, allegedly accepting bribes from a nephew who is now awaiting trial for corruption, and giving his soccer team thousands of dollars of free hours at a city field.

Across the bay in bourgie Bal Harbour, meanwhile, top cop Thomas Hunker ran things more like a Congolese war lord than a police chief. According to federal investigators, Hunker's much-touted money-laundering sting squad helped drug lords launder more cash than it actually seized. And the $30 million that the department did rake in was promptly blown on iPads, first-class flights, luxury car rentals, appliances, and golf outings. To top it all off, Hunker's men made no significant arrests. Instead, they spent most of their time hosting massive barbecues for the men in blue.

Yet no shady cop or bad politician could begin to approach the amount of damage inflicted on a city's collective pocketbook and psyche like Jeffrey Loria. If anyone meets the Mayan prophecy for a failed leader, it's the Marlins' thief-in-chief.

This was the year taxpayers handed Loria a brand-new $500 million stadium ($2.4 billion with interest!) and told him to make us proud. Things started well enough, as Loria — an avid art collector — assembled a gallery of halfway respectable ballplayers including Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle, and Heath Bell.

But under the drunken, profane curatorship of Ozzie Guillen, that gallery quickly became a freak show. Third baseman Hanley Ramirez turned into Hitless Ramirez. Guillen, after praising Fidel Castro, benched Bell. And the Marlins actually ended up worse than they finished last season. Loria apparently took it as a sign that all bets — including promises to invest in the team — were off. He fired Guillen and last month sold the team's seven best players. It was a new low for Loria and his son-in-law, team prez David Sampson, who were caught lying about the team's profits while wrangling a new stadium. A recent poll showed them barely beating Castro in local popularity.

"Those two slimeballs are getting away with multimillions of dollars of the people's money," one commenter wrote regarding a New Times article about the stadium swindle. "Hell is not hot enough for Loria."

At least with Armageddon's arrival, it seemed, we'd all get to sit next to him in Hades and watch him sweat.

However, if you're still reading this, it's safe to say the flames of everlasting hellfire have yet to sear the soles of your feet. The walls of your condo have not crumbled. Legions of bodies fueled by bath salts to rise from the dead are not, we assume, scratching at your screened patio door. (If they are, a word of advice: Roll this issue of New Times as tightly as possible and aim for the eyeballs.)

In other words, December 21 came and went, and you're all right. So what in hell happened? The signs were all there, weren't they?

Turns out all of that Mayan doomsday stuff was total bullshit. (Consider our ancient Quechua translator fired.) Earlier this year, news that archaeologists had made an important find on the Yucatán Peninsula really did rock the world like a lost chapter from Revelations. They did in fact find cryptic murals and a calendar that ended December 21, 2012.

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My Voice Nation Help

That whoel Mayan thing is pretty funyn when you think about it.