What irritates me about the aborted effort to scale back the taxpayer subsidy for the Washington Nationals, aside from D.C. Council Chairman Linda Cropp's quick surrender, is the way Mayor Anthony Williams and other supporters of the stadium plan reacted to the critics' objections. They acted as if the city were reneging on a done deal, as if the council's only function was to automatically approve whatever package Williams negotiated with Major League Baseball. "I am deeply troubled about what's happened," Williams said after Cropp introduced an amendment requiring partially private financing. "We have not lived up to our commitments." Given that a mayor is in no position to make commitments on matters that require legislative approval, that sounds an awful lot like a royal we.