After all these months, Toronto’s Peter Griffin-esque mayor (and now Marion Barry-esque, minus the Master’s in chemistry and an enviable civil rights record) Rob Ford had no choice but to finally ‘fess up and admit that yes, he did smoke crack. The Toronto Star, who along with the New York gossip site Gawker broke the story, have faced months of accusations from the mayor’s base — often referred to as “Ford Nation” — of fabricating the whole thing in some kind of anti-Ford lefty vendetta, and not the logical conclusion of a lifetime of living off Daddy’s reflected sunlight and label printing company, substance abuse, general buffoonery, and an entourage of pals who still live with their parents and have rap sheets as long as your arm.
I myself tend to the view that as long as no harm directly comes to anyone else, drugs should be treated as a health rather than a criminal issue. My beef with the mayor is the lying to the public — apparently “respect for taxpayers” and “telling the truth to the taxpayers are two markedly different things — and the criminality. He’s got associations with Toronto’s criminal element that run pretty deep, and now Doug Ford (the mayor’s brother, a city councillor, and someone who operates under the delusion that he’s Toronto’s co-mayor) has pretty much declared war on the chief of police for doing his job.
I’m too busy celebrating my birthday in San Francisco as I write this — by the bye, Mayor Ford, this is an amazing birthday present, thanks! — so I’ll leave it to fellow Toronto-based programmer Reg Braithwaite to say what’s on my mind:
Ford Nation are the Ontario equivalent of the Tea Party. Peel back the veneer, and you find someone who truly, deeply feels that “Toronto The Good” doesn’t work. Who feels that it works for someone else. For downtowners, or liberals, or cyclists, or unionized employees, or something else.
Ford Nation thinks Toronto is all about “someone else,” not about them. To Ford Nation, Toronto looks down upon the suburbs and taxpayers, and Ford Nation is angry about that. So Ford Nation elects a man who has but one job to do: Troll Toronto. Disrupt. Delay. Distract.
The primary characteristic of being trolled is when you are trying to achieve something positive, but can’t make any headway because the other party’s agenda is to disrupt and hijack the conversation.
To Ford Nation, nothing getting done is a job well done. Rob Ford wasn’t elected to win respect for taxpayers, Rob Ford was elected to show Ford Nation’s disrespect for City Hall.
And so, all this debate about him smoking crack is irrelevant. Suggestions of rehab are a complete side-show. Rob Ford doesn’t need to go to rehab to get elected. He simply needs to do the job he was hired to do:
Disrupt Toronto, Delay Toronto, and Distract Toronto. All so that the people angry with Toronto can sit back and enjoy a good trolling. And when you make the mistake of trying to reason with them, you’re playing into their hands.
Don’t do that, Toronto. Don’t feed the trolls.
Be sure to read Reg’s full article in the Huffington Post.