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Newsstand: June 25, 2013

Boom! Thunder, where you are this morning? In the news: Ford and Sousa verbally spar, the TSX will get some competition, development costs could spike, and all streaks must come to an end.

newsstand jeremy kai spring 3

The war of words between Mayor Rob Ford and Ontario’s provincial government continued yesterday after a meeting between the mayor and Finance Minister Charles Sousa concerning the government’s announcement of funding cuts to social housing. Sousa told Ford yesterday that a $150-million fund for social housing from the provincial government would be gone by 2016, and Ford responded by saying that the move will result in cuts from the City. “We just have to shut down some programs. I obviously have to go back, without $150-million, go to the housing portfolio,” he said. “It’s going to hurt the most vulnerable people.” Sousa responded that Ford was holding those in social housing “hostage” by his refusal to increase taxes to garner funding.

Toronto is getting a new stock exchange, and the TSX is getting a competitor. The new exchange is being launched by a group that includes the Royal Bank of Canada and five other investment firms, the Globe and Mail reported. It’s being launched to appeal to investors upset with “high-frequency traders” who use ultra-fast computers to exploit quirks of the market. The official announcement of the project is expected today, though it wouldn’t start until late next year.

The City will consider nearly doubling development charges for construction projects. Part of a report set to be released today as part of the agenda for the mayor’s upcoming executive committee meeting, the recommendation is for an across-the-board increase on residential units of different sizes. If adopted, by next July, the charges for building a large apartment with two or more bedrooms would go from $12,412 to $23,036, according to the National Post.

And the Blue Jays’ impressive 11-game winning streak ended last night with a 4–1 loss in Tampa Bay. (Well, technically in St. Petersberg.) The boys of summer have a chance to get a new one going with a game against the Rays tonight.


  • iSkyscraper

    Don’t forget the faked radio show call-ins! See CBC…

    • OgtheDim

      You know I heard that and didn’t think it was much of an issue.

      So a loyalist called in a lot, and faked things.

      Its not like 1010 is somehow more sacrosanct for truthiness then internet message boards.

      • iSkyscraper

        Yes, except for:

        - that radio show is pretty much the only access the public has to Ford, since he will not take questions during the week.

        - the Fords have publicly insisted they don’t screen calls.

        This is all about them lying, again, to create illusions of their greatness. People fall for that stuff, it needs to be called out.

        • OgtheDim

          Do we know that said loyalist (who stopped before he got a job with the mayor) told them he was doing this?

          Sorry, but in the grand scheme of things, this is minor.

          • vampchick21

            Minor, yes. But funny as all hell and just yet another tick in the column of all the stupid little things these two do.

          • Lee Zamparo

            It’s not minor, it’s part of a pattern of laziness of thought and action that have real consequences for the most vulnerable in the city. It’s not an exaggeration to say that some people’s lives will be made much more miserable because of his petulence, and his ham fisted attempt to score political points. Shame on him.

          • winkee

            Not minor at all, this has all the hallmarks of subversive propoganda campaign by a high ranking staffer, this is completely unacceptable. Does anyone else think its more than a coincidence that the Ford’s biggest troll supporter in comment sections also happens to be a guy named “DAVE?”

          • vampchick21

            Yeah, that thought came to me as well.

          • dsmithhfx

            You’d think he’d fish in more amenable waters, all he’s managed to do here is piss everyone off and summon an endless litany of the Fords’ egregious and cringe-worthy stunts, not anything his boss would gain from retelling in earshot of the faithful.

          • vampchick21

            I’ve a feeling that since the exodus of staff from Ford’s office (which was around the same time that particular troll showed up), there isn’t anyone with any real political intelligence running the show. Price isn’t a politician by any means, and if that was him or someone doing it under his direction, they only knew how to do it in a less than successful manner. As in, go classic troll, taunt, insult, use specific talking points poorly, stir folks up, attack and misdirect. Something most internet users these days can see through.

          • dsmithhfx

            Could be.

          • OgtheDim

            Oh please….lets not go all conspiracy theory here.

            My understanding is this was before Dave got hired.

            And, like it or not, it is not hard to find people who think Ford is right.

            And if anybody on here thinks the Ford’s care about what people say on a comment board, well….I got some land in Puslinch that needs a new owner.

          • winkee

            First of all, if it’s not so hard, why did they need to plant David Price 6 times?

            Secondly How am I being conspiratorial for thinking a guy who worked for Rob’s brother at the time, using the alias of “Dave from Scarborough” to plant right wing talking points and slander moderate politicians, is somehow going to stop and clean up his act when he switches offices or not do the same in different mediums? That seems beyond naive and frankly unbelievable when you look at how closely their offices work together and how inseparable the brothers Ford are. These are also the same guys who had fake twitter accounts pushing their message and attacking other candidates during the election, remember @Queensquaykaren?
            At best this a staffer(Doug’s or Rob’s) acting completely unprofessionally and outside their purview for ideological reasons (which the Fords would freakout over if the shoe was on the other foot) or it is indeed a coordinated effort to plant their talking points in the public discourse under the cover of “average Torontoians.” Either way it certainly isn’t a non-issue and CFRB should be facing sanctions if they had anything to do with it.

          • OgtheDim

            Is there a “they” to plant this? Sorry, I don’t see it.

            You know, there are knuckleheads who do things like this on their own all the time.

            One other one is called Rob

            Another one I know who does rogue knucklehead things is called Og the Dim. I don’t always ask before I do.

            And, really, you think they need somebody to plant right wing talking points in their echo chamber?

            Regardless…..people…….its the Rob and Doug show. Are we really taking who gets on the phone in with them seriously?!?

            Like really?

          • dsmithhfx

            Rob has to fight dirty because he’s fighting socialists!

          • winkee

            You’re kidding right?

            Oh so he’s just a lifelong family friend that now works for Rob who just calls into their propaganda show of his own accord with absolutely no agenda of his own or in support of the Ford’s?

            The “THEY” is plain as day, he works for them and was clearly connected to them before this. The Ford’s have been waging a dirty propaganda campaign for upwards of 3 years, with the radio show being the pillar supporting their entire Ford Nation agenda. This is a clear tactic that was used by the GOP and copied by both Hudak and Harper, inserting their talking points at every chance and overwhelming the public discourse so only their perspective overwhelms the available airtime.

            Why would David Price call in saying exactly what the Ford’s are pushing at least 6 times? Why would they use social media to plant fake users? Why would they use a weekly show to push obvious lies and misinformation? What would they have to gain?

            You are either completely naive or you really don’t understand how the right has operated in North America for the last 30 years. This is absolute textbook and they got caught red-handed and you’re going to act like it’s no big deal and I’m crazy for thinking they would even try to wage an obvious PR campaign.

          • OgtheDim

            No I’m not kidding. You forget that this is the land of the alpha males we are discussing.

            As for him saying what the Ford’s are pushing, he’s talking with them all the time. Of course he knows what they think.




            Oh, and BTW, as a right of centre person, (more a John Tory type) I can tell you the idea that this is how all right of centre people operated for the last 30 year is

            a) incorrect

            b) just as boorish and trolling as the con-bots

          • winkee

            I posted before, it may have gotten lost or not cleared the moderator, but you are completely underestimating these guys. They are alpha males granted (like that isn’t politically effective?), but they are not stupid. These are highly connected, wealthy men with a family history of political power and connections and Rob is the mayor of the biggest city in Canada for crying out loud. These guys, along with their cronies Hudak, Harper and Flaherty openly guffaw at the success of their almost “right wing hat-trick” which clearly did not happen spontaneously or by accident.

            You completely ignored what I said to mold it to your point. I did not say centre-right, I said Right wing, specifically the GOP and specifically Harper and Hudak. The unite the right movement and Harper’s campaign clearly used Republican tactics that were brought to Canada, Hudak clearly emulates the right to work propaganda efforts and other right wing populist dialogues and the Fords are trying to control the message just the same way the operatives for the GOP have since Reagan.

            How has anything I’ve said been boorish or trolling? Just because you don’t like what I say and believe this is just a bunch of idiot good-old boys taking the piss with us while they walk all over the three levels of government does not mean you are right or that what I am saying is illegitimate. How do you think they created Ford nation? How do you think they changed the channel from good public policy to populist reactionary slogans? Have you not even noticed their political ambitions and the methods they are using to achieve them?

          • vampchick21

            I think by ‘right’, winkee is not meaning right of centre, but far right. Subtle difference. Or not so subtle difference. :)

        • Lee Zamparo

          ^ this. If Ford would make himself available to media questions, so that he could be exposed for the incompetent administrator and weak leader that he is, it would be mostly harmless. But since this has become the only time he takes any questions from the public, I don’t see how it’s different from breaching election laws by campaigning 24/7.

          This bozo already campaigns instead of governing, so it’s kind of a big deal that it is allowed to continue. He has himself said that he intends to offset the announced provincial cuts to the pooling fund allocated for Toronto with municipal tax cuts and slashing program funding to hostels and TCHC. I don’t know how to qualify how staggeringly stupid this is without typing in all caps and swearing, so I will just say that this man is totally unqualified for his job

    • bobloblawbloblawblah

      I hadn’t heard about this. I just went over to CBC and read the story. It doesn’t surprise me that David Price was calling in numerous times. I’m sure Rob and Doug were fine with it. I’d wager that Twohey is the one who put a stop to it — he always seemed like the one with brains in the Mayor’s office.

      Now, though? This strange man who posed as “Dave from Scarborough” is on the payroll at city hall as “logistics director” an ill defined role if ever there was one. Did someone say gravy?

    • treptower

      It’s no wonder that nothing is ever accomplished in this shithole when every conversation is focused on Rob and Doug.

      • iSkyscraper

        Yeah, I wonder whose fault that is. Because, you know, if John Tory or Doug Holyday was mayor I’m sure every media source would be stuffed with their crazy behavior, unprofessional conduct, running from the media, court cases, etc.

        • treptower

          Yes, it’s far more important to discuss who said what on some call-in show that nobody listens to than to tackle any real problems. Never mind today’s power failures due to 3rd world electrical infrastructure, the crumbling Gardiner $600 million fiasco, never ending fucked up transit file, $751 million TCHC deficit, $300 million parks deficit, $3 billion TDSB repair backlog, the hundreds of poorly-constructed investorboxes going up on the cusp of a declining market…

          Let’s discuss who said what on talk radio!

          • Testu

            Those issues are being discussed too, in many of the same comments systems by a lot of the same people here.

            And absolutely none of it will make one iota of difference in what is actually done on those issues. Discussion (as Torontonians are well aware) doesn’t accomplish a damn thing, those issues have been discussed, debated, and studied to death by actual stake holders and nothing has been done.

            Our discussion of a hilarious (if expected) bit of Ford related trivia is not going to prevent city council from moving forward on a plan for anything on their adgenda. The general uselessness and lack of direction of our councillors will do that on its own.

          • treptower

            I’d believe you only a quick scan of the last few pages of articles reveals that anything Rob and Doug garners 30-50+ comments whereas any other issue gets 0-5.

            Even if Toronto’s famed uselessness on transit or bike infrastructure attracts any attention, it usually devolves into a Ford debate within the first 2 or 3 comments.

            Which brings me back to my original point, is it any wonder why nothing is ever accomplished in this shithole?

          • Testu

            Have you looked at any of those comments? People were getting trolled repeatedly by the same three guys posting the same things over and over again about the Fords, almost immediately degenerating into sniping insults at each other. There wasn’t more discussion, just a lot more noise.

            As for why nothing gets done, you’re going to love this, it involves Ford too. The ward councillors are all terrified of not getting re-elected, none of them want to be remembered as the ones that proposed a new tax or major service cuts to fund the work that needs to be done (on any of the issues you mentioned). So without someone leading the pack and building consensus within council (say for example the goddamn mayor*) no one else will stick their neck out to do what needs to be done.

            That why we had that farce of a debate about revenue tools for transit and why absolutely everything that isn’t a wordy proposal for “recognizing” this or supporting that, gets referred back for another study, report, or debate.

            *the mayor isn’t helping this any by refusing to support anything but cutting taxes and services. The city residents won’t put up with the service cuts needed (as we saw in 2010) and he refuses to support any increase or even continuation of taxes.

          • OgtheDim

            If you think this is a shithole.

            Efin move.

            Seriously, get a grip.

            You want a serious discussion of issues?

            Then don’t lace the conversation in troll bait.

          • torontothegreat

            My favourite part of this whole diatribe of yours, is your clear lack a logic.

            I’m fairly certain a new fallacy needs to be wikipedia’d because of this…

          • dsmithhfx

            Accomplished? How many subways have you built today?

          • vampchick21

            Did it ever occur to you that the reason that the Ford debate arises no matter what the subject is due to the fact that Ford and co are the REASON nothing gets accomplished?

          • vampchick21

            Dude. Its a comment section on a blog. If you want to talk about that stuff then post your thoughts on it without being a jerk.

          • torontothegreat

            ” Never mind today’s power failures due to 3rd world electrical infrastructure”

            Shhh… The adults are talking…

          • winkee

            Who’s in charge of that? Said guy and his merry band of anti-government hitmen who are changing the channel to his message and ignoring the massive problems our city faces. That’s why this is important. No one is saying talk about this to the exclusion of everything else, but it is a pretty important indication of the dishonest dirty tricks Ford Nation and the new right in Canada uses to get their way or at least turn everyone so cynical they stop paying attention.

  • istoronto

    Something tells me that Ford and Hudak are having a discussion about how to play Sousa’s percieved attack on the city. I’m guessing it we’ll be hearing a lot about gas plants.

  • istoronto

    Why would Mr. Price lie about where he was calling from unless he was concerned or warned that he might be identified by screeners? That he and the Fords can so easily lie about the little stuff, makes me wonder how big their lies are about the serious issues?

    • vampchick21

      Because they wanted to make it seem like it was different callers supporting the Ford Nation agenda. The same reason a troll on the internet creates sock puppet accounts – to make it look like others agree with them.

    • dsmithhfx

      Another way of looking at it is they knew it was him, someone they knew wouldn’t ambush or go off script.