Friday, September 14, 2012

You know you are boned when

You can tell when you aren't doing well as an elected official when nobody will defend you anymore.  Rob Ford is the mayor of Toronto and I have complained about him over and over and finally it is looking like he might actually get the boot.  It turns out that he was involved in a conflict of interest, which is obviously bad, but he was also unaware that he was in a conflict of interest because he didn't know the basic rules under which the mayor has to operate.  Not his finest hour.

Lately though Ford has been involved in another snafu because he took off in the middle of a council meeting for five hours to coach football.  It has come out since that not only does he blow off city business for football but he also allegedly gets his city staff to work on his football project too - for a guy who campaigned on 'stop the gravy train' and 'cut the fat' it looks pretty bad to be using city resources for outside work.

Here's the rub:  I went to a few different newspapers to see what people thought of Ford.  It is nearly always true that when you open up news articles to comments from the public you get a broad spectrum of responses, universally including extremist views from both left and ring wing types.  You can, to some extent, gauge public opinion based on how many comments you get and what they say.  It is critical to check sites that lean both ways and what I found is that in the right wing rag The Toronto Sun Ford had a few defenders but not many; when more than half the commenters are against you on your home turf you gotta be worried.  The kicker though was that the relatively centrist newpaper the Globe and Mail had zero people defending the embattled mayor.  50 comments in and not a single pro-Ford comment to be seen.

You can get positive comments on absolutely any ludicrous thing you do.  No matter how awful your belief or how reprehensible your actions there are always some yahoos that will support you.  Apparently Ford managed to break this norm.  Not a good sign for reelection when you can't even find an internet troll to defend you just to piss people off.

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