Tuesday 28 October 2014

ROB FORD: The stupidest mayor in all of North America (Part 5)  


If you scroll back in my blog to November 2013, you will see four articles I wrote about this incredibly stupid man. I referred to him as Dumbo.  Further, if you go back to May of that year, you will also be able to read about a specific blunder this political twerp did. Since then, much has happened after I published my last article I wrote in November of that year. I have resubmitted this article I had published earlier and later deleted to make some changes and to include an UPDATE

The difference in print size in this article is a mere anomaly in the printing. 

Mayor Rob Ford has withdrawn from the mayoral race and Ford's older brother, Doug Ford has declared that he will run as a mayoralty hopeful in his place. Rob Ford will run for the role of councilman in another riding. They re-registered within an hour of the deadline for filing the necessary documents. Doug Ford subsequently withdrew his candidacy in Ward 2 (where he has served as councilman for the past 4 years) so that he could re-register for the role of mayor and take over Rob Ford’s mantel of mayoralty and thereby extend the legacy of the Ford family. The question on everyone’s mind is—why did Rob Ford withdraw from the race as mayor?   

Ford has been “complaining of abdominal pains’ for the past three months which eventually got worse by September 12 of this year. He was rushed to the hospital for treatment.  On September 17, Dr. Zane Cohen (a renowned colorectal surgeon) at the Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto announced that Rob Ford has a rare malignant pleomorphic liposarcoma tumor in his abdomen and in the middle of his upper buttocks It is a fast growing and an aggressive kind of cancer that develops in connective tissues such as fat cells which Ford has plenty of.  The doctor said that his patient will be subjected to chemo therapy and possibly radiation therapy to get rid of the tumour. If these therapies fail, he will resort to surgery. Sarcoma cancer occurs in only 1 percent of all adults.  It is not clear what triggers this kind of cancer but there is no evidence that obesity or the excessive use of alcohol or drugs triggers the onset of this kind of cancer. In any case, I wish Rob Ford a speedy recovery.

I expect him to win the election as a councilman if for no other reason that an onslaught of sympathetic voters. Rob Ford’s health ailment adds to the list of struggles facing him, whose fall from grace began in May 2013 with the release of a cell phone video that appeared to show him smoking crack cocaine in the company of known criminals.

The Toronto city council largely stripped him of his mayoral powers months later over those and other allegations of bad behavior on his part. I don’t believe for one second that he decided not to run again in the October 27, 2014 election for the mayor’s office because of the tumor in his abdomen.

In fact, he hasn’t said that he won’t run for any office in that election. He announced that he will instead run for the office of city councillor  (alderman)  in  the  North  Etobicoke  riding  in  Toronto  in  which his nephew Mike (a newcomer in politics) had previously submitted his candidacy for that position in that riding. Poor little Mikey. Now he has to settle for a run for the position of a school trustee. If Rob Ford is too sick to run for the office of mayor, is he also too sick to run for the lesser office of city counsellor? He doesn’t think so since he is obviously not too sick to run for office of a city counsellor. He might just win that election with a large contingent of sympathy voters.

In my opinion, here is what I believe is his real reason he abandoned his candidacy for mayor and settled for a lesser position in city politics.

 All through his run for the office of mayor, he had to fight two very powerful former politicians who have their competitive eyes on the mayor’s office for some time. They are John Tory and Olivia Chow.

John Tory has proven ability to bring people together which has been evident throughout his career, including his role as CEO of one of Canada’s largest publishing and broadcasting companies, and as Commissioner and Chairman of the Canadian Football League. His first experience with City Hall dates back to the early 1970′s when he was a member of the City Hall Press Gallery as a reporter, interviewer and newscaster for two local radio stations. He has also served in public office as a Member of the Provincial Legislature, Leader of the Ontario PC Party, and Leader of the Official Opposition at Queen’s Park. 

In 2012, John was appointed by the Ontario Liberal government to chair a special panel that outlined recommendations on revitalizing Ontario Place on Toronto’s waterfront. He was also recently awarded the Order of Ontario for being a “consummate champion for the Greater Toronto Region.” He was also the chief of staff of a former premier of Ontario.

Olivia Chow is a former Canadian New Democratic Party Member of Parliament (2006-2014) and former city councillor (1991–2005) in Toronto.  As a former city councillor, she is familiar with the goings on in Toronto city politics. Chow first became active in politics working with local NDP MP Dan Heap. With his support, she ran for school board trustee, and won in 1985. Popular on the school board, she was elected to the Metropolitan Toronto Council in 1991 for the Downtown Ward in the riding of Trinity—Spadina. As I see it, she has two things going against her. The first is that when she and her husband, the late Jack Layton were living in Toronto, they chose to live in a financial subsidized building despite the fact that they didn’t qualify because they were not poor people. The second reason is that she abandoned her post as a member of Parliament so that she could be mayor of Toronto. Admittedly, being a mayor of a large city like Toronto is better than being a backbencher in Parliament but dumping the people who voted her into Parliament is a no no. Of the two candidates, I strongly believe that John Tory will be chosen as mayor if we are going to accept the recent polls. If Chow doesn’t get elected as mayor, she will have probably finished her political career.

Nevertheless, with those two contenders in the race for the mayoralty of Toronto, it is very unlikely that Rob Ford could ever win the election for mayor of Toronto again, especially considering the fact that the majority of Toronto voters know him (as do other people around the world) as the city’s buffoon whose addled brain was previously fueled with alcohol and illicit drugs and that many of his companions whom he was in constant touch with were known criminals. As mayor, Rob Ford left a legacy of small and partial achievements which he hopelessly attempted to inflate beyond belief. He also has a record of racist, homophobic and misogynistic rants hanging around his neck like the albatross of Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s Ancient Mariner.

Rob Ford was so desperate in getting financial assistance for his candidacy for mayor; his team began sending unsolicited emails as far away as Vancouver seeking donations. To make matters even appear more weird, his team solicited a donation from a man who once emailed him a message suggesting that he resign from the office of the mayor of Toronto. One person received a request for donations despite the fact that she hasn’t lived in Toronto for the past 10 years.

He was inebriated at work and at various functions, he missed important events and prearranged appointments, he asked his staff to buy his booze and according to his aides and he was also a violent man. As to being a violent man, he would have a hard time denying that he was a violent man considering that millions of people watched him on a video-taped recording shown on TV as he ranted and screamed about how he would like to kill a particular (unknown) person. He also punched his former driver in the face.

He constantly denied that he was an alcoholic and a drug addict. Later when it was obvious that he was addicted to those two substances, he finally confessed to being a drug addict when asked if he had ever purchased illegal drugs in the previous two years. He replied, “Yes, I have. It was a personal mistake.”  However, when he was previously asked by a member of the City council if he had an addiction with alcohol, he replied, “Absolutely not.”

But it was around then when he acknowledged that he was an alcoholic and drug addict that he decided to follow the advice of so many people to seek help by going to rehab for treatment for his alcoholism and drug addiction. As I mentioned earlier, he appears to have won those two battles. But unfortunately for him, he didn’t seek treatment elsewhere for his serious problem of constantly spewing out his bumbling idiotic remarks whenever he opened his mouth.

 When asked by a member of the city council if he had any other problems in his closet to disclose, he replied, “I might have a coat hanger still in my closet.”  I suspect that he has so many skeletons in his crowded closet; it is a small wonder that he can keep his closet door closed.

Here is ample proof that his brain is often not in gear when he puts his mouth in motion. While he was a guest on a television show and he spoke about one of his former female employee’s vagina, he said, “I never said in my life that I wanted to eat her pussy. I’ve got more than enough to eat at home.”

If you read that statement carefully, you will realize that he was telling his interviewer and everyone else watching the TV show about his wife’s availability for oral sex. Sex between partners should always be private—something he was oblivious to. It doesn’t surprise me that he is so gross that he would make such a statement on TV. One can expect such conduct from a slob who was also accused of groping another woman’s buttocks at a party. His closet door opened up wide as his skeletons were parading out of his closet.

He was such an embarrassment to the city and when he offered to walk in the Santa Claus Parade; a 100-year-old tradition, he was asked by the parade organizers to reconsider his offer. The parade was held without his presence.

He was disliked by his staff when he was both a full-fledged and partial mayor. Many quit and those that remained had their salaries increased considerably to keep them on staff.  Those that quit had to leave while doing the ‘walk of shame’ by having them escorted out of the city hall building by city hall security. A number of women claimed that they smoked marijuana with the mayor and he promised them they could have a job which of course they never got.

His faint hope for re-election to the post of mayor was doomed from the beginning because of him not being able to exercise common sense. Further, he was repeatedly absent from city council meetings so that he could coach football at a school that eventually wised up to his antics and insulting commentary about the school’s students resulting in the school telling him to get lost.

This man is incredibly stupid and a liar but he does have political savvy. He knows that he would never get elected as mayor of Toronto again while carrying that much baggage with him so rather than lose the election to be the mayor; he chose instead to re-register as a councilman for the North Etobicoke riding.

Now there is a chance he may win in that riding since he had served the people of that ward as their councilman for two decades in the past.

Ford was dying of political thirst so he wisely decided that if he couldn’t drink Champaign in the mayor’s office to quest his thirst then he would have to settle for a glass of water in the office of the councilman’s riding office. As I implied earlier, he will no doubt get to drink his glass of water.

Ward 2 in North Etobicoke has extremely poor people living in it in which 21 percent of residents have incomes lower than $20,000. The poorer segments of North Etobicoke are new immigrants of which a large number of the younger immigrants are criminals. Nearly one in four households are led by a single parent, and 63 percent of the marijuana-grow operations and 53 percent of the homicides in the years 2005-2007 occurred in this sector of the city However; 11 percent do earn more than $200,000 a year. Since Rob Ford’s parents were rich, (they were millionaires), their home is in the more affluent area of South Etobicoke as is Rob Ford’s own home nearby.

Despite that difference in the standard of living between those living in North Etobicoke and him living in South Etobicoke, he was for some time, very popular in North Etobicoke. However, it would appear that Rob Ford’s approval rating in his old political turf of North Etobicoke has been eroding ever since he admitted smoking crack cocaine and he was known to have been hobnobbing with criminals living in that riding. He had to be well aware of his recent dismal approval ratings in his old turf when he decided to forego his run for mayor since he had hoped to garner a great number of the votes from that ward in his favor as mayor—votes that had subsequently withered on the vine.

Quite frankly, had he remained in the race for the position of mayor, his past would have ruined whatever hopes that he had of winning that race; especially while trying to beat the likes of John Tory who has no known or hidden demons to crush him at the polling stations. It follows that Rob Ford still wants to be a politician so rather than totally abandoning his political ambitions; he decided that at least he could be a councilman at Toronto’s City Council even if he had to boot his nephew out of the ward he was running in. That despicable act was another flaw of his many flaws in his character.

Now the voters in Ward 2 (the one that Rob Ford’s nephew was previously running in) are probably thinking, “Why do we have to have this goofy Rob Ford running again for councilman in our ward?” He previously served as their councilman for 10 years before being elected as Toronto’s mayor. There are others in the running for councilpersons in Ward 2 but they are newcomers in municipal politics. I am sure each of them would do a fine job if elected and they certainly aren’t carrying embarrassing baggage such as the kind that Rob Ford is carrying into the election. 

Ward 2 was the ward I lived in when I lived in Toronto back in the 1970s and 1980s when a certain councilman was running for re-election, I learned that he was going to desert his post halfway through his term to run in an upcoming provincial election. During his re-election campaign, I followed him to every town meeting he called and asked him why he was going to desert us in mid-term. What did him in was his only repetitive reply, “I can run in any election I choose.” He lost the election and never ran again. I am no longer living in that ward anymore. I live next to it so I won’t be following Rob Ford around. Besides, it really isn’t necessary. Surely all persons of voting age in Ward 2 have seen reports of him on TV, heard about his antics on the radio and read about his outrageous behavior in the newspapers.

Rob Ford  was finally convinced that he needed treatment to battle his alcoholism and drug addiction. As I said earlier, it seems apparent that he won those two battles.

As Toronto’s mayor, Rob Ford left a legacy of small and partial achievements which he hopelessly attempted to inflate beyond belief. He also left a record of racist, homophobic and misogynistic rants hanging following him around wherever he is. I think it is safe to say that his role as the mayor of Canada’s largest city was a dismal failure, especially considering the fact that his role near the end of his mayoralty career and his authority as such were each emasculated significantly by the City Council with him ending up merely as a figurehead. Even the premier of Ontario and the prime minister of Canada wanted nothing to do with him. The man who was appointed to take over Ford’s major duties was the deputy mayor and he has done a fine job as acting mayor running the day-to day operation of a large city until the election of a new mayor takes office after the upcoming election.  I am surprised he didn’t choose to run for the position as Mayor. He certainly is qualified to do so.

Now I am going to finish this article with my commentary of another of the candidates for the position of mayor of Toronto. I am speaking of Rob Ford’s older brother, Doug Ford who is currently a city councillor in Toronto running for the role of the mayor of Toronto. 

What can I say in one word that correctly describes this man?  The word is “bully” A retired RCMP police officer who lives in the area where the Fords live said that he voted for Rob Ford in 2010. But Doug Ford, running for mayor? “I think part of Rob’s problems had something to do with Doug always hovering over his shoulder and I think both of them were bullies, but Doug is the bigger bully.” 
The question now is whether Doug Ford will be able to rally the forces of Ford Nation, stay ahead of Olivia Chow and surpass John Tory for the post of mayor of Toronto. I don’t see how he could especially since no one likes bullies. The problem facing his political ambitions, however, is this: Doug Ford isn’t in a position to lose any votes right now. Much has been made of Rob Ford having previously moved into second place in recent polls, behind Tory but ahead of Chow. This was not a sign of strength for the Ford campaign. Tory, meanwhile, has been gradually building support. The last poll had him ahead of Rob Ford by 12 percentage points. Further, he had chosen on a number of occasions, to avoid attending candidate debates. For this reason, not every voter has some inkling as to where he stands on some important issues. Further, he certainly doesn’t have the impressive background in politics that John Tory has.

There is going to be a wide gap between him and John Tory to close in the time that is still remaining to solicit votes. Doug Ford may get sympathy votes because of the medical tragedy hitting Rob Ford, but given how polarized the city has become, and how personally offensive Doug Ford is. It’s hard to imagine he can even hold onto his brother’s supporting voters. At best, he can only hope for second place when the votes are tallied. He will have to campaign extremely hard if he wants to even retain the affection of the a sizeable minority of Torontonians who continue to have for his younger brother.

He has said repeatedly, that he was sick of municipal politics and he launched heated personal attacks at fellow councillors (many of the same people he’d be working with, should he and they win this upcoming election). He also said to the media last year, that when his term of office ended, “I’ll be running away from [city hall].” He’d mused about settling in Chicago, where he has a home and the family business has operations.

Now he’s running for mayor. What changed his mind? Is it the desire for power? He had none to speak of as a city counsellor but as a mayor—well that is a horse of a different colour.

The voters can be expected to elect Rob Ford as Ward 2 councillor again, and if he’s able to overcome his health challenges, that may be a blessing for him. He at least always seemed to love that job in the past. Doug Ford on the other hand isn’t as likable as his younger brother, Rob, whom most of the city doesn’t like in any case and it’s far from clear that Doug Ford even really likes Toronto since he stated earlier that he would prefer to live in Chicago.  Had Rob Ford continued to run for mayor and had lost; he would have been crushed at the loss. If Doug loses, will he even care? 

Can the rookie city councillor, burdened by his own distinct political baggage, inspire the same inscrutable devotion among some part of the Toronto electorate as his brother did? Will a tide of sympathy for his ailing brother lift Doug Ford to victory as Toronto’s new mayor? If he is elected as the new mayor of Toronto, all I can says is that those voters who voted him into the office of Toronto’s mayor deserve what they get just as those who voted Rob Ford into the same office deserved what they got.

UPDATE:  In the Toronto election of October 27, 2014 Rob Ford was elected as a city counsellor for Etobicoke North, the same place in which he hung out with his criminal friends. I sincerely hope that the decent folks in that ward are served well by a reformed politician. His brother Doug lost his race for Mayor. 

UPDATE:  March 23, 2016

I learned after this article was written that Bob Ford, a married father of two young children was suffering from a rare abdominal cancer. I decided that it would be wrong on my part to insult the man any further since he was facing far greater problems. Meanwhile he ran for the position of City Counsellor representing the district where he and his family live.

On March 22, 2016, Bob Ford died after 18 months of treatment for the rare and aggressive cancer that was first diagnosed in 2014. Bob Ford would have turned 47 on May 28, 2016. 

If is indeed sad that if it wasn`t for the fact that this unfortunate man had been addicted to drugs and hung out with known criminals, he would have been a great mayor because he really cared for the people he served before his addiction began.                                                                                                                          


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