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Rob Ford's Toronto

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I got there after Ford arrived and when I heard he just walked through the media without a word, I knew we were in for more of the same. Not unexpected at all, of course.

We listened to the speech out on the second floor to much laughter at certain times. Did you guys see the 2 guys with cutouts of Ford that were larger than life and said "Thug Nation"? I think they were told to leave but the media was around them for the time they were there.

Also, I haven't watched the speech yet. I saw Daniel Dale's twitter feed and he said he asked about the homophobia etc. and was told if he said anything more he'd be removed. Were you guys able to hear that? I'm so glad he did but wish others would have, too. That campaign speech was absolute garbage and is not allowed at City Hall.

Singing Jimmy was going from group to group while we were there. At one point one tv station interviewed him and asked him to sing so he sang "for he's a jolly good fellow". Later, he gave a very passionate speech about Ford and was sobbing. Very odd people, this Ford Nayshun. The guy in the "Born straight and proud" t-shirt was also there and he had a second t-shirt with I love Rob Ford on the front and "Toronto's elected mayor" on the back. Now that I think of it, he's proud of not being gay but loves another man. Hmmmm...

There was a woman on a scooter who was horrified with the sit in and when she tried to back up to leave she almost ran over one of the sitters. When told to be careful, she said he shouldn't be there. Ford nation, everyone!

That was me. Her hove-a-round was having a hard enough time getting her around, backing up onto my foot just about stalled it. ;^)
 
Ford nation, folks (regarding today's address by Ford to the media):

Why is CP24 saying you can see Rob Ford's FULL ADDRESS ON LINE ??? Are MEDIA going to camp in front of his house ? Why are they not putting the other's address on line ? CP24 are dogs, I can't express how I really feel, I HATE CP24 REPORTES ON AIR AND ON THE GROUND

Poe's law; that's all I can really say about that.
 
It's been a few hours, and I'm still trying to wrap my head around the living, breathing embodiments of Ford Nation that I witnessed today... and still shaking my head at how quickly RoFo started into the campaign rhetoric.


I'm going to do my best to pop in as often as I can for additional support.
 
Great read from Royson James that sums up a reaction that many felt today. It was just more enabling of Ford by people/organizations taking the high road with this jerkoff.

http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/201...tml?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

Media in this town are a gutless lot: the scribe on the beat, the editor, the news director.

And Rob Ford brings out the worst in us.

How else to explain Monday’s malodorous decision that saw the mayor allow only a hand-picked list of reporters to his first news conference since entering rehab for alcohol and drug abuse.

Instead of refusing to be part of the odious infomercial (Ford did not take questions following his confession-cum-campaign-speech), the chosen reporters dutifully filed into the mayor’s office — some of them tweeting out excuses for the mayor’s mean-spirited censure.

In a contemptible scene outside the mayor’s office 30 minutes before the staged event, Ford’s bouncer-driver read off the list of reporters Ford picked for his redemption newser.
So much for returning from rehab a changed man. What we got is the same menacing magistrate. What it felt like was something from a fascist state.
In: Liz Church from the Globe and Mail. In: Daniel Dale, Toronto Star. In: Don Peat, Toronto Sun. And others, about 20 in all.
Out: Now Magazine. The Canadian Press. The Mirror newspapers, read by hundreds of thousands each week. And numerous reporters, aghast at the exclusion.

In barring the Metroland newspapers, Ford banned David Nickle, the president of the city hall press gallery.

So, did his colleagues rally around him and refuse to enter the news conference without the resident leader, a journalist who has occupied a rented city hall office since 1998? (Dale tried to mount a boycott of the event but his efforts crash-landed at home and found few takers in newsrooms around town.)

The Star’s managing editor, Jane Davenport, explains this paper’s position thus: “We considered participating in a boycott. But we felt in view of our aggressive coverage of the mayor in recent months, it would have been an inappropriate and untrue sign of bias towards Rob Ford to lead one.”

I didn’t call the other media that attended. Imagine the earnest excuses they’d offer — some of them genuine, all changing nothing about Monday. I reject my paper’s explanation; I would reject other media’s as well.

The entire Ford saga is an indictment of the majority of our media. For example, how many media arrows has the Star endured over Ford — only to be proven correct time and time again? The impact is prior restraint, a form of self-censure media engage in, often unnecessarily. In general, the media has been too deferential, until the evidence is beyond overwhelming.
What we have representing the once noble profession are many “content providers” and few journalists. Too many care not a whit about principle, journalistic ethics; some prominently play propagandist and mayor cheerleader.

Makes you sick — especially at a time when the industry is buffeted on all sides, jobs disappearing like the dodo bird, reporters more willing to blur lines of impartiality, shilling for one political side or the other.

I’ve been a member of the city hall press gallery since the late 1980s. The measure of a great society is its willingness to tolerate the strong opinions of the press. I’ve butted heads with mayors like Art Eggleton, Barbara Hall, Mel Lastman and David Miller. None of them sought to bar reporters from a news conferences. None went on the offensive, daily, pointedly, to identify specific journalists or media outlets and accuse same of printing or airing falsehoods, knowing full well that every word written was correct and every denial from the mayor an utter fabrication.
The city hall press corps knows this. But they conveniently sweep it aside. The excuse? Their news directors or editors want the item covered so they have to go, the beat reporters say. Nonsense.
Grow some spine, cowards.

Even the city’s communication department did not stand by and watch Monday’s abomination in silence. “From a city point of view, this is not reflective of the approach … we have and value with members of the media, particularly our colleagues in the city hall press gallery,” a spokesperson said.
Early in his term, Ford left some media off the list of those getting official news releases from the mayor’s office. Some on the list wouldn’t sign a letter voicing the gallery’s contempt for this suppression.

Monday, Ford went further and barred certain media from an important news conference.

Tomorrow? What if he decides no black reporters will be allowed at the next news conference? Or no women? Would the content providers merrily go without a sign of protest? Would they not challenge their editors or news directors?

And if their editors forced them to go to that news conference, would they not do something to register their disgust — stand in front of the television cameras to interrupt the live images; or unplug the digital recorders of the radio guys; shout out questions, as Daniel Dale did Monday, to register a signal that this is not business as usual; anything to show outrage?

I can’t say for certain they would. And that is most painful.

We have fallen a long way as journalists and it is shameful.
 
That is one hot-blooded, angry article from Royson James. It makes me wonder what agreements are in place for Wednesday's round of interviews between Ford and the local press. Will Doug be part of the gabfest, giving the stink-eye from just outside the frame? Will there be a pre-selected list of questions? Will other questions be tolerated? Are there any topics, if raised, that will blacklist a reporter from further coverage?
 
That is one hot-blooded, angry article from Royson James. It makes me wonder what agreements are in place for Wednesday's round of interviews between Ford and the local press. Will Doug be part of the gabfest, giving the stink-eye from just outside the frame? Will there be a pre-selected list of questions? Will other questions be tolerated? Are there any topics, if raised, that will blacklist a reporter from further coverage?

A little birdie told me today that in all cases, don't expect any gotcha questions, they won't be answered anyway, so look for a few questions that seem fairly innocuous, on face, to get him to say some something that can be used later... But mostly softballs to loosen him up.
Frustrating as hell, but media are in the long game here.
 
That is one hot-blooded, angry article from Royson James. It makes me wonder what agreements are in place for Wednesday's round of interviews between Ford and the local press. Will Doug be part of the gabfest, giving the stink-eye from just outside the frame? Will there be a pre-selected list of questions? Will other questions be tolerated? Are there any topics, if raised, that will blacklist a reporter from further coverage?

Maybe those interviews are why some outlets didn't want to rock the boat -- they wouldn't want to jeopardize their exclusive.

Hopefully someone asks some real questions. Even if he storms out of the interview, that would be answer enough.
 
Warmington is taking shots at Dale again on twitter. Too much to copy/paste on my iPad but he just gets more disgusting every day.

Edit: now the worm says he was being sincere. Dale believes him. I am skeptical.
 
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So on Wednesday, these exclusive interviews will be about "How Rob Spent His Summer Vacation" and "5 New Weight-Loss Tips from Mayor Ford"???

Won't somebody please pull the brakes on this crazy-train?
 
A little birdie told me today that in all cases, don't expect any gotcha questions, they won't be answered anyway, so look for a few questions that seem fairly innocuous, on face, to get him to say some something that can be used later... But mostly softballs to loosen him up.
Frustrating as hell, but media are in the long game here.

The long game? Time's starting to run short if you want to be the one to land some sort of kill shot on this guy.
I agree with about everything James said. Agreeing to a one-on-one when you know that you were hand-picked, knowing how he schooled everyone in the last round (except MATT LAUER!!) makes you complicit in all this.

I don't know what birdie would know what ALL the various media outlets would be up to. We haven't even heard who has the interviews, AFAIK, firstly. And, as bad as today was, it would be well beyond the pale if it turned out they pre-agreed not to ask certain questions in order to get it. And, more to the point, I suspect that fact would be very quickly reported by orgs that didn't get interviews, like the Star and Globe.

It does seem impossible to knock Ford off his talking points because he is just so bullheaded and dim but surely Proskow or Peat or one of those people knows the questions to ask. You already know what he's going to say to the boiler plate stuff anyway. I confess, I keep saying I'm not going to watch next time, but I always do. Firstly because, hey, stop watching news conferences and you might miss the mayor admitting he smoked crack or talking about his wife's vagina. Secondly, I just find the man utterly fascinating. I keep thinking that next time I'll finally understand what goes on his brain. He could have ended today's speech halfway through and a lot of us would be saying he's full of it, but it still would have been contrite. But he HAD to campaign. Just had to. Couldn't help himself. Couldn't leave the podium without talking about the subway he built and the gravy train he stopped. There's never been any one quite like this guy, man.
 
Our Aussie cousins seem to be following Hizzoner closely. It's already July 1st down under, and RoFo's all over the papers:

Commercial-free "Auntie" (aka ABC): Disgraced Toronto mayor Rob Ford exits rehab, says he was in 'complete denial' about substance abuse

Rupert Murdoch's attempt at respectability (aka The Australian): Drug-using Toronto mayor Rob Ford says he’s now clean

Fairfax Media, formerly 25% owned by Conrad Black, teed-up yesterday already (Sydney Morning Herald): Toronto mayor Rob Ford set to return to work after rehab

(For those with prurient interests, expat Aussie-for-Hire Rolf Harris has been convicted for 12 counts of indecent assault, including an on-air incident with a news presenter. This guy is a hands-on operator. "Tie me Kangaroo down sport! I just cracked a fat!")

Wonder if Aussie media coverage has seen fit to invoke memories of Pauline Hanson's One Nation...
 
It does seem impossible to knock Ford off his talking points because he is just so bullheaded and dim but surely Proskow or Peat or one of those people knows the questions to ask. You already know what he's going to say to the boiler plate stuff anyway. I confess, I keep saying I'm not going to watch next time, but I always do. Firstly because, hey, stop watching news conferences and you might miss the mayor admitting he smoked crack or talking about his wife's vagina. Secondly, I just find the man utterly fascinating. I keep thinking that next time I'll finally understand what goes on his brain. He could have ended today's speech halfway through and a lot of us would be saying he's full of it, but it still would have been contrite. But he HAD to campaign. Just had to. Couldn't help himself. Couldn't leave the podium without talking about the subway he built and the gravy train he stopped. There's never been any one quite like this guy, man.

I came to the firm conclusion today that Rob Ford and his bro are delusional. I mean bona fide delusional.
 
Not sure if it was mentioned earlier, but did anyone see the face rub and pushback the security guard did on the pro Ford supporter on Ford's initial run into his office? Cp24 was showing it, but not mentioning it.

I think it was the pro ford guy camped out at city hall too. Old guy in something like a scout outfit with red beret.

from the Globe's website:
ford30to1.JPG
 
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