You just can't keep Rob Ford out of the news. This past week alone, he's been the answer to a Jeopardy! question, a punchline on the late night shows, and - oh, yes - the star of a brand new video!
You grow even fonder of your city when you've travelled abroad, I remember returning from a trip overseas and almost kissing the ground when I landed ...
Relieved of most of his civic responsibilities, Rob Ford is occupying his time by campaigning for re-election and torturing the premier. He's got her over a barrel, and he knows it. Premier Wynne, on the other hand, has nothing to gain in this dispute. She'd love to dodge it, but Ford won't let her. She can't be seen to reinforce Ford's misbehaviour by ignoring it and meeting with him. But, she can't stand up and publicly disenfranchise a democratically elected civic leader, especially one whose electoral mandate dwarfs hers 15 times over.
How could we help him feel better about himself so he does a better job for our city? As hard as it may be for some of us to swallow, we could try to lose the blame and the judgement and throw him some slack. Why? When people treat us well, the better we feel, and the better we feel, the better we behave.
The youngest contestant from season three of Top Chef Canada, Rory has a passion for butchery and charcuterie (and loves nothing more than to escape from the city to hunt, fish and forage for Canadian delicacies). Currently Rory wows the patrons of the Royal Canadian Yacht Club and this month he is curating the January edition of the Chef's Box.
For most of us, the idea of a two-hour commute, twice daily, is nuts. But both Rodgers and Samuell have their reasons for taking on that heroic morning haul: They love where they work and they love where they play.
I honestly can't think of a major religion that forbids men from meeting in public with a group of women. And honestly, if this restriction existed, how would you even function in the world? Regardless of whether the student's request is legitimate, let's talk about the fact that certain people quite high up in the university's food chain were willing to grant the accommodation that the student was seeking. A secular university -- I seriously cannot stress that point enough -- was more than willing to make an exception based on a religious belief that women were ultimately so different from men that the two genders could not interact in public.
As winter came roaring into Toronto over the past few weeks, many Torontonians -- close to 228,000 to be more exact -- were left in the dark and without power for up to a week as a result of the freezing rain that blanketed the city. In total, the damage and cleanup is estimated to cost the city $106 million. It has been a punishing start to what could be a very long, bitter winter.
I have followed Ford for over 13 years, especially when he was an obscure Etobicoke councilman. The guy has a big heart. He cares about his constituents. So when the ice storm struck, Ford naturally helped out on a daily basis. I predict that the 2014 Toronto Mayoral campaign is over. Ford is unstoppable.
ntario Premier Kathleen Wynne published an op-ed in the Toronto Star yesterday titled "What the government -- and its critics -- can learn from the ice storm." It fails miserably as a thoughtful after-action lessons-learned contribution, but is reasonably passable as a partisan campaign ad. But, governments and their critics, including Premier Wynne, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford and their respective supporters, detractors and civil servants, can and should learn a lot from the recent ice storm that hobbled North America's fourth largest city. I fear they may not.
This being a Municipal Election year in Toronto, and the day before nominations officially open, I found numerous potential Mayoral and Council Candidates doing the rounds inside the Rotunda of Toronto City Hall. Among City Council Wannabes wandering the Rotunda was one Al Gore, declared Mayoral Candidate. Oh really? "Al Gore"?
With Toronto's ice storm now past, the city is turning its attention to cleaning up fallen branches and taking care of damaged trees -- a process that we're told will cost $75-million. About $25-million of that money will be spent on picking up the debris, with the rest going to tending to the injured tree canopy. Despite the extensive damage, though, Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly's musings about calling in the army to help wrestle errant branches into submission seems an overreaction. Perhaps the more relevant musing at this point is: Why is it so onerous for Toronto residents to maintain, prune, or -- God forbid -- remove trees in their own yards?
Rob Ford smoked crack. So what? Oh, and he plans to run for a second term as Mayor of the Greater Toronto Area in the Fall 2014 election. Really? Here is a prescription for six actions that would be good for Toronto in 2014, even if by default they result in four more years of Mayor Rob Ford.
I believe Mayor Rob Ford will be re-elected. Some of you Ford haters, critics and doubters may question my position. Unlike these robo-calling pollsters, my associates and I have actually gone out into the field, into the darkest, deepest Ford Nation. We have talked to real people about Ford. The support is still strong. Still pollsters and old media types cannot believe why Ford Nation is sticking with Ford. So they have come up with another cockamamie theory: Ford supporters support Ford's fiscal agenda, but not Ford the man himself. Excuse me while I go all Marshall McLuhan.Ford is both the message and the medium.
Now that 2014 is here, let's take a look at my top five predictions for what will happen in the Toronto housing market in 2014.
One of the corollaries of our governing WASP culture is a loathing of animal appetites, an emphasis on self-control at the expense of, well, everything. Which is why it's great to see Rob Ford pour beer, crack cocaine and oral sex all over this carefully built myth of false gentility that means "Canada" to the outside world.