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Rob Ford wins in Toronto, but (many) sort of right-wingers here don’t see him as a model

October 25th, 2010 · 18 Comments

Rob Ford, the un-PC guy from the burbs, is the new mayor of Toronto, in case you didn’t know. Start reading here.

In the meantime, the party that is hoping to shake Vision Vancouver and Gregor Robertson off their perches in Vancouver are looking for who should lead them into battle. They have no one yet, but I don’t hear anyone suggesting a Rob Ford-style candidate is what they want here.

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  • Not Running for Mayor

    I think Vancouver will be in for a very interesting election in 2011. Frances will find a new boy crush, Alex will find inner peace. I still won’t be running for mayor.

  • A couple of friends and I were discussing this exact topic earlier and we couldn’t even come up with a candidate or former mayor/councillor that would compare to Ford. My political memory isn’t as long as others’ on here, so maybe they can help with that.

    Rob Ford is a product of the suburbs and the megacity-fication of Toronto. I would worry about a Ford happening in Vancouver only if we merged with Richmond and Surrey.

  • I’m not really clear on the comparison you’re drawing Brenton. Could you elaborate on the political climate east of Boundary and south of Marine to give some substance to that?

    Last I checked, Kerrisdale while a wonderful community isn’t exactly a fast paced urban metro center.

    Except for the area bounded by Burrard, Broadway, Main and the Burrard Inlet, most of Vancouver is a “suburb” if you are going to draw comparisons to Toronto and the form of cities that were amalgamated in the GTA.

  • rf

    If someone a little rough around the edges were to surge forward and vow to slash to size of the municipal trough I believe Vision might surprised how many people would be all over it.
    City Hall has become this bastion of baby boomers sucking $100,000 salaries out of the system and counting their days until collecting their pension. Sure, I’m generalizing, but with a political mandate, i’m sure that a Ford figure could cut 35% of the costs in this city. The non-union management should take the majority of it right on the chin.

    Seeing non-union management give themselves the exact pay bumps as the union negotiated was one of the most corrupt, conflicted, financially destructive decisions i’ve ever witnessed.

    You could scale back salaries and benefits 25% and they would still look overpaid.

  • Frances Bula

    @Not Running. You never know, it might be a new girl crush. We media types are fairly non-denominational when it comes to being dazzled by new toys.

  • spartikus

    This being Vancouver, we would look to the entertainment industry for a suitable candidate.

    Where’s Brucie?

  • MB

    Now Sparti’s onto something.

    Bruce Wayne for mayor. The breeze flappin’ will go up a couple of notches.

    Or did you mean Bruce Lee?

    Gawd, not Bruce Allen? He’d make the Big Toe’s Ford look like Robin.

  • MB

    @ rf. Yes, let’s start with the most useless and overpaid civic employees, our emergency workers. No? Then maybe you can run for office on a platform naming which library or community centres you’d close to “downsize” those overpaid fat librarians and rec staff. No? Then get elected to gut planning and engineering department personnel, and practice magic thinking to get development applications processed and sewers unclogged.

    Better yet, move the city to the burbs where the budget can be downsized to only a half billion. Let Surrey take over responsibility for the densest CBD west of TO.

  • spartikus

    He’d make the Big Toe’s Ford look like Robin.

    We must outdo Toronto. It’s a competition.

  • Tom

    Nobody needs to worry about Bruce Allen running for mayor, his life and gig are far too juicy to take a leave of absence and take a run at city hall.

    And, the NPA has made it abundantly clear that they’re out to chase down a non-descript mayoral candidate that has no personality whatsoever, along with the prerequisite minority candidates (indo-Canadian, GLTBQ, etc…) to claim they’re inclusive, all so they can fight Vision over the same voters they lost in 2008 and 2002.

    If we had an independent voting system, without slates, you may see a Rob Ford type here, but under the current slate systems, and the NPA trying to outdo Vision for who owns the middle, and who built the most km’s of bike lanes, it just won’t happen folks…..keep sipping those non-fat, eco-friendly soy latte’s and relax.

  • “Michael Geller….says he hopes his party doesn’t choose a candidate like Mr. Ford.

    “What I don’t want to see is Vancouver follow the lead of others who pick a candidate who can generate a great deal of populist support by railing against bike lanes or the Greenest City or the more sustainable directions this mayor has chosen,” Mr. Geller said.

    Just to clarify. While I don’t want to see a candidate who’s seeking public support by being opposed to bike lanes, I would be pleased to see someone who is opposed to spending $3.2 million on a ‘trial bicycle lane program’ which is anything but.

    Similarly, I don’t want to see a candidate who tries to increase his or her popularity by being opposed to the ‘sustainability goals’ of the city, and efforts to generate economic development through ‘green collar jobs’.

    That being said, I would like to see a candidate who can bring a common sense approach to establishing performance standards and an evaluation framework to assess just how well we are achieving such goals.

    As I mentioned during the CKNW Civic Affairs Panel discussion with Frances and Jim Green this morning, while I don’t like a lot of what Rob Ford appears to be proposing to do, I think a focus on reducing municipal government spending and ensuring better value for money spent is absolutely the right direction to take in Vancouver.

  • dan

    Chris Farley’s older brother right?

  • landlord

    @ Brenton: Looking for “a candidate or former mayor/councillor that would compare to Ford”. Where shall I begin? Think Warnett Kennedy, or maybe Bernice Gerard. Tom Campbell was a couple bottles short of a six-pack.
    Fat old angry white guys have the same rights as anyone else, and that’s not good enough. We should be in total charge, like in the old days.
    The first time Ford touches a union job he’s toast. If you thought Gregor says inappropriate things when he thinks no-one can hear him, just wait for the you-tube debut of Ford on candid cell-phone camera.

  • MB

    @ Sparticus: “We must outdo Toronto. It’s a competition.”

    Perhaps we should be thinking about forming our own nation state.

  • Agustin

    “Rob Ford wins in Toronto, but (many) sort of right-wingers here don’t see him as a model”

    That’s because Rob Ford is more of a populist than a right-winger. He succeeded because there was a “throw the bums out” mindset in Toronto. Such a mindset does not dominate here in Vancouver, so a populist/reactionary candidate would not be terribly successful.

    Ford’s trouble now is that what little substance of a platform he ran on will be very difficult to implement. Furthermore, the populist-right-wing platform is in fact counterproductive to most of its promoters, who are mainly outside the upper class. (E.g., favouring car use over public transit, reducing subsidies for housing, reducing social services, etc.)

    As an aside, I don’t agree with most of his policies, but he does have one I am in favour of: reducing council size from 45 to 23. I just don’t see how a council of 45 people, without a party system, can function very well. I would also support a move to a party system like what Vancouver has. I think it gives council a much better view of the whole city and reduces the adversarial mentality that can arise between ward representatives, to everyone’s detriment.

  • Ron

    The National Post takes a clearly different view than the Toronto Star:

    Monday was a dark day for George Smitherman, who lost badly in his bid to become Toronto mayor. The next day was even darker — for the liberal Toronto Star, which had become an unapologetic pamphleteer for Smitherman in the weeks leading to the election. On Tuesday, it had to sheepishly report how badly its own propaganda had failed.

    Here’s the story of the Toronto Star’s failed campaign against Rob Ford:

    http://www.nationalpost.com/todays-paper/dark+Toronto+Star/3732257/story.html

    http://www.nationalpost.com/opinion/Toronto+angry+white+voters/3732255/story.html

    http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2010/10/26/kelly-mcparland-latte-futures-plummet-as-toronto-contemplates-ford-mayoralty/

  • MB

    Ron, some of us gave up on the National Post years ago for its cavalier and often wilfully ignorant biases on many topics, (politics, climate change, aboriginal issues, law …), and it’s blatant editorial shilling for big industry.

    The Globe & Mail isn’t perfect (what media outlet is?), but at least there is a sense it presents a more finely balanced national view.

  • Oh yes, and not only right wingers. From what I have read so far, it seems like there are very few people who voted for Ford. I really don’t understand how he got so many votes, since most of what I read about him is critical towards his behavior and opinions. Well, I might keep finding the wrong articles, I guess.