Tammany political boss William Marcy Tweed is portrayed as a bullying schoolteacher giving New York City comptroller Richard B. Connolly a lesson in arithmetic. A teary-eyed Connolly stands on a stool writing wildly inaccurate equations on a blackboard. For instance, "$147 x 2 equals $1380948"). Connolly protests to his teacher, "These figures wont suit my Father the public," but Tweed responds, "Never mind the public Mind me I will make a rich man of you 12 years ago I was poor, now I am rich by this new arithmetic." Behind the board are two padlocked ledgers-- "City Debt 1871 125,000,000" and "City Debt 1869 30,000,000." Exaggerated bills for the building of the county courthouse are posted on the wall. The building's final cost was $12 million, of which two-thirds was fraudulent. In less than three years Tweed's "ring" of corrupt officials managed to rob the city's treasury of $30 million.