Streetcar named Rob Ford’s first quarter .. and its impact beyond Toronto

Mar 7th, 2011 | By | Category: In Brief

One of the assorted enthusiasms of new Toronto Mayor Rob Ford (l) and his City Councillor brother Doug (r) is to bring an NFL team to Canada’s current most populous city region. As Doug has explained: “To get a Super Bowl, it would be worldwide publicity for Toronto and the tourism would be phenomenal.”

[UPDATE:  For the ALLEGED ROB FORD CRACK SMOKING SCANDAL, late May 2013, see “Streetcar Named Rob Ford lives on .. remember when his worship said he ‘no longer uses marijuana’ in 2010 ????.” ] At long last, the several hands who have been working since late December on what has now become our first quarterly report on the Ford Nation local government regime in Canada’s current most populous metropolis have completed their assignment.

Some may be interested because they are among the (approximately) 2.7 million people who live within the current boundaries of the City of Toronto (or the 5.6 million who live in the city and its surrounding region).

Others may be a little less intrigued, because they live elsewhere in Ontario, and have heard that the new Toronto mayor has just “threatened to unleash ‘Ford Nation’ on Premier Dalton McGuinty should the province refuse the city’s request for more money,” and that, whatever else, “Ford Nation is very real and about to change the political landscape of Ontario.”

Others again may be still more vaguely concerned, because they live in the rest of Canada and have heard that Mayor Ford (and or especially his former chief of staff Nick Kouvalis) is paving the way for a Harper Conservative majority government in Ottawa — whenever the next federal election takes place (May 2 or 9, 2011, or some other time, etc).

We would just forewarn all non-Toronto readers (city or region) on two fronts. First, as  Martin Regg Cohn wisely observed yesterday in the Toronto Star, Mayor Ford might actually be doing Ontario Liberal Premier Dalton McGuinty a favour by threatening to unleash the Ford Nation upon him: “at election time, making an enemy of a Toronto mayor isn’t necessarily a negative in the rest of Ontario.”

Second, according to the latest March 1 update of the relevant Globe and Mail online opinion poll, only 30% of 18,267 respondents answered Yes to the question “Are the Harper Conservatives in reach of a majority after establishing inroads in the Toronto area?”

Downtown Toronto at night : the part of the city Mayor Ford doesn’t really like.

(Which means that a quite large 70% answered No! Although in a universe where the Harper Conservatives are apparently scheming to win a majority of seats in Parliament with as little as 37% of the cross-Canada popular vote, these numbers may not look as bad as they do in the abstract, on the assumption that we still live in an actual democracy in Canada today.)

If you remain un-dissuaded by these forewarnings, you can consult our rather detailed report, “Sunday 6 March 2011 : ‘Ford inspires Tea Party North’ (????),” by clicking on the “Streetcar named Rob Ford” heading on the bar at the top of this page. Or, if stretching your mouse all that way just seems a bit too much like work (especially in the Canadian wilderness in March), you can just CLICK HERE!

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