Archive for June, 2013

Rob Ford demands higher taxes

Posted on June 28th, 2013 Be the first to comment

Oh, you haven’t heard? Rob Ford not only wants your taxes to be higher, he’s outright demanding it!

Earlier this week the province announced that they would be cutting $50 million per year in transfer payments, which were intended to level the playing field for Toronto which often ends up shouldering more than its fair share of the whole country’s costs.

Seems like Robbie would be happy with that, no? I mean, apparently the city’s running a healthy surplus so it doesn’t seem like it’d missed much. Plus, isn’t this a perfect example of cutting back on waste?

Yes, it is waste according to Ford. That money is, after all, going to people who are just leeches on the system:

“People are not going to live free at Toronto Community Housing. I don’t care if you two years old, 20 years old or 200 years old, you’re not going to live for free”

Oh, except it’s not waste when it’s the Province that cuts support and not him. No, then it’s quite a different thing:

“A cut of $150 million will put a serious strain on our ability to provide these vital services to the most vulnerable residents.”

Additional transfer payment cuts are coming down the pipe in the not-too-distant future, about which the Fords haven’t made a peep.

I think it’s pretty clear what we can glean from this obvious hypocrisy; Rob Ford doesn’t give a fuck about “vital services” (he wouldn’t even bother to get his facts straight on the issue), or supporting the taxpayers, or arguing with the province to reduce taxes if they’re cutting payments, no, Rob Ford wants tax money to stuff the swollen pockets of his own administration. And that money comes from you and me, the taxpayer, and judging by the fact that Fordo was keen to raise property taxes, it would be no problem to raise taxes elsewhere as long they go directly to him to waste.

Spend $400,000 on an information campaign to close King Street to traffic and potentially make life a little nicer for taxpayers? Outrageous! Blow $3,000,000 on information to justify hacking and slashing the city budget (irony aside), to make life a little more miserable for taxpayers? That’s money well spent!

How’s that for gravy?

I’ve already gone into detail about how Ford, despite his many claims, is not interested in creating jobs for Toronto, didn’t seem too bothered at the thought of hefty pay raises to Council, and has at this point wasted and cost taxpayers vast swathes of money, even if you factor in all of the initiatives he’s put forward to reduce taxes, etc.

Oh sure, you can point the fingers at every level of government with this accusation, and you’d be right. But no level of government is as brazenly and openly hypocritical about it — it’s abuse coupled with insult.

Then, just so you don’t forget what outright dicks both brothers are, frère Doug goes and blames provincial leader Kathleen Wynne for the Catholic School Board’s dismissal of Rob from coaching football, insinuating that she went all the way to Etobicoke on some sort of bizarre personal vendetta against them, all the while taking continuous potshots at her.

And if that wasn’t enough, the Fords have their buddy and logistics guy (i.e. personal driver and helper monkey), David Price, calling into radio shows and newspapers, misrepresenting himself and hollering about how beloved both brothers are and how much “Ford Nation” is standing behind them — this while Ford office staff continue to drop like flies. Yet another example of reality (the truth), versus what the Fords say (bullshit).

The rule of thumb with the Fords seems to be basically this: what we say is the exact opposite of what we do, and if you dare point this out, or any of the other facts surrounding our shady dealings, we will attack you with every fiber of our being.

Ford says he wants lower taxes, meaning he demands higher taxes.

Ford says he wants subways subways subways, meaning he doesn’t want mass transit at all.

Ford respects the taxpayer. Yeah, right.

Filed under: B Sides, Patrick Bay

Ford gets away with it. Again. And again. And again.

Posted on June 20th, 2013 Be the first to comment

So now that Ford has survived the final appeal in his conflict of interest case (the Supreme Court didn’t even bother to give any reason), I think it’s worthwhile to count how many times he’s been let off the hook for flagrantly breaking both rules and laws (neither of which, of course, apply to Rob Ford or family):

There was that campaign finance audit, which, just like the conflict of interest case discovered that, yes indeed, Ford had broken the law many times over. But in the end, that was simply dismissed by an “expert committee” (a little cheating is okay). Thus Robbie first learned that the law is for other people.

Then there was the time Ford was caught in the act, reading while driving, and excused by the chief of police as a minor trifling offense (this at the same time as a distracted driving blitz was raking in cash).

You may also recall the time he rudely whisked past open streetcar doors, outright endangering people. That time the TTC refused to follow up, as did the cops.

Prior to that, Ford walked out of a domestic assault charge when it was decided that his wife just couldn’t be trusted to tell the truth.

That last one is quite ironic, considering how openly and loudly lied to the whole city about his DUI/drug charges in Florida.

Of course, there is that drunken rage incident at the Air Canada Centre, over which I don’t think charges were ever laid (Rob was just ejected).

There are lots of things Rob Ford does that, though technically illegal, would be more than sufficient grounds to get you fired from any private organization or business. Name your fault: incompetence, open deceit, criminality, etc. All of these are not only easily proven but, in some cases, actually admitted to by the fat man himself.

But why should any of that matter?

Filed under: B Sides, Patrick Bay

Ford office to taxpayer: we find your stain remover provocative.

Posted on June 18th, 2013 2 Comments

Our friend Michael sent a tongue-in-cheek email to the office of the mayor with a money saving suggestion (lot cheaper than security) — use cleaner for your shirts instead of hiring goons to tackle yoga instructors.

In any event, the response didn’t reflect nearly as much jolliness as you’d think the Fords’ office would engender. I know, Stain Away is primarily known as a denture cleaner, but the strange connotation that that conjures up was never addressed in the follow-up email.

Here’s Michael to explain:

This is a response I just received from Sheila in Mayor Blob’s office where she states that my recommendation that Blob buy some Stain Away, rather than hire security because his shirt got splashed during a slushie fly by, is a veiled threat against Mayor Blob.

“Mr. Irvine
Mayor Rob Ford has repeatedly said it is not his intention at this time to hire personal security.

Are you suggesting that the Mayor will be attacked again (stain away reference)? Do you think it is appropriate that people are physically attacked?

Are you condoning violence against public figures or members of the government. More importantly is it your intent with this email to make a veiled threat against the Mayor or inciting violence against the Mayor?

Most reasonable people know that violence is not appropriate, and that it is illegal.”

Director of Policy
Office of the Mayor

Best as we can figure, that’s Sheila Paxton, listed on the Ford office roster as “Senior Policy Advisor”. Seems like an ill-advised way to go about crafting a response.

Filed under: Dispatches, Patrick Bay

FloorPig is back!

Posted on June 18th, 2013 Be the first to comment


Sarah and I have put some love and care into our little mobile game and we’ve now released the first full version!

This edition of our seemingly simple tile-based puzzle game includes 16 tricky levels, and a bunch of fixes and enhancements we won’t bore you with.

Did I mention it’s free?

Try it out now:

P.S. If you don’t have an Android device, the web and iOS versions are almost ready. Hang in there!

Filed under: Dispatches, Patrick Bay, Pictures

Mr. Ruby goes to the Supreme Court, part 2

Posted on June 18th, 2013 Be the first to comment

You may remember a couple of months ago that Clayton Ruby, the lawyer who took Rob Ford to court on conflict of interest charges (and won), was planning to take the subsequent appeal (which allowed Ford to walk away on a technicality), to the Supreme Court.

Well, on Thursday he’s to learn if his appeal will be heard. He’s not optimistic, but others are more so.

The question Ruby is seeking to answer is a simple one: what’s the purpose of having things like conflict of interest laws when no public official can so much as be looked at funny when they break them? At least that’s the gist of it.

Of course the thing has to do with Rob Ford who has subsequently demonstrated exactly why the public needs to be able to throw out criminal politicians. And even if, perish the thought, you actually support Rob Ford, then at least it’s worthwhile to consider this for someone you don’t care for much — someone like Miller, maybe?

Most troubling about this, however, is the tiny fact that the Supreme Court only heard 12% of appeals last year (while typically hearing an average of 60%). This, it’s said, because the courts only choose cases of “public importance”, and I guess last year must not have been really very worthy, certainly nothing the public would care about.

Filed under: Dispatches, Patrick Bay

Did it just get ornery in here? (part II)

Posted on June 14th, 2013 Be the first to comment

Filed under: Patrick Bay, Videos

Did it just get ornery in here?

Posted on June 14th, 2013 Be the first to comment

Robbie’s having a rough day. Maybe it has something to do with that pesky crack tape that just won’t seem to go away. Maybe it’s because he just can’t make any friends.

“I don’t care if you’re 2 years old, 20 years old or 200 years old, you’re not going to live for free,” Ford said. Of TCHC chief executive Gene Jones, he said, “Obviously he has fixed the problem. Is it perfect? No.” Turning to a left-leaning critic, he yelled, “You! You’re the problem!”

Filed under: Dispatches, Patrick Bay


Posted on June 13th, 2013 Be the first to comment


Filed under: Patrick Bay, Pictures

Oh no he di’nt! Robbie wants new property taxes?!

Posted on June 11th, 2013 Be the first to comment

Oh yes he did.

The fact is, this [proposed casino] is a huge opportunity for Toronto and for Ontario. The private sector is ready to invest $2-3 Billion or more in a Toronto project that will generate hundreds of millions of dollars on an ongoing basis for local and provincial government. For a project this size, Toronto should share equally in that revenue with the province. This would provide Toronto with up to $150 million in annual revenue.New property taxes and potential lease income would add to that.

Wasn’t he against more taxes?


Filed under: Dispatches, Patrick Bay

Ford’s casino bid cost taxpayers $370 thousand (and counting)

Posted on June 11th, 2013 Be the first to comment

The Toronto Sun recently asked what councillors, and anyone opposed to a Toronto casino, have against jobs?

That’s “10,000” casino jobs as promised by Rob and Doug Ford, the same jobs that Rob outwardly rejected because Kathleen Wynne wasn’t prepared to bend to his irrational and completely made-up demands:

“If the province won’t agree (to) that $100 million, then folks, the deal is dead. We are not going to carry on the casino debate.”

The Sun, of course, conveniently left that fact out and instead (just like their heroes Rob and Doug), pointed fingers at everything and everyone else. Had they included the most vocal and blusterous opponents of the casino — the Fords themselves — the following line would’ve taken on a whole different tone:

A really clever Toronto councillor would have cast aside their own prejudices for a moment and considered the wider public benefit.

It’s not fair to say that the Fords were solely against their pet project — the vote was 40 to 4 — so clearly other councillors were involved. And the numbers indicate that those councillors weren’t just the “lefties” that the ignorant Sun writers keep bashing.

In fact, at least one of those “lefty” councillors wanted to know how much Ford’s hare-brained casino idea was going to cost Toronto, something the Fords never bothered to question in their quest against “gravy” — just like the $3 million KPMG report Ford indiscriminately sole-sourced to simultaneously ignore the wishes of taxpayers in order to “save” money for the city.

In the end, councillor Mary Fragedakis got her answer: $370 thousand

The Sun (and others), were quick to distance Ford from this jaw-dropping waste, even though this was his and his brother’s baby from day one, and is yet another example of how Rob Ford is wasting millions of taxpayer money, not saving it.

The story was framed as “the casino debate that cost taxpayers $370,000”, even though the debate was just part of regular City Hall business. It was all the research that went into the casino idea that cost nearly half a million dollars, and that came at the direct behest of the Ford brothers. In other words, Rob and Doug Ford cost the city $370 grand.

This came at the same time that Ford attempted to explain his boasts of saving the city $1 billion dollars, which sounded like a fabrication while Ford refused to elaborate on it, and is now seemingly more so:

Councillor Gord Perks dismissed the mayor’s math.

“The mayor doesn’t seem to understand the difference between addition and subtraction or between addition and multiplication,” Perks told the Toronto Sun. “This is a completely bogus claim.”

Perks argued Ford was counting some things twice — like the cut to the car tax and then the cut to spending.

“They seem to have forgotten the millions of dollars they’ve spent in consultants, the millions of dollars they’ve spent paying staff to go away, the tens of millions of dollars in cancellation of Transit City,” he said.

“Over 10 years they’re adding $400 million in transportation projects — that actually costs money, it doesn’t save money.”

The vocal Ford critic stressed residents are paying more tax under Mayor Ford than under his predecessor.

“The basic thing is a Torontonian pays more tax today than when David Miller was mayor,” Perks said.

As an interesting and informative aside, the brain farts on Ford’s former (?) cheer leading squad, the Toronto Taxpayers Coalition, pegged the potential benefits of a casino at $400 million. These same pinheads, led by a loser with absolutely no experience in either government or finance and who couldn’t hack it in the tech field, are constantly propped up by the same media seeking to explain their ever-growing canopy of misinformation and bizarre justifications.

Now that this ongoing waste is out in the open and really nothing has changed, including Ford’s fantasy math, and both he and his brother are vowing to renew the debate (with Woodbine Casino), potentially wasting another half million, it’s looking like the brothers Ford are already gearing up for the next round of the finger pointing game.

Filed under: Dispatches, Patrick Bay