The new Rob Ford video everyone is talking about

Update: The mayor admits to drinking again

It’s been a while since the last embarrassing video of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, but the mayor is back in the spotlight again thanks to a YouTube video that was posted on Tuesday.

In the video, Ford appears to be standing in a fast-food restaurant and speaking in a fake Jamaican or Caribbean accent.

“For five months… you’re trying to tell me…you’re counter-surveilling me… He’s hiding here, I’m hiding here,” Ford says in the video.

Ford mumbles, swears and is incoherent at times, but does mention “Jane and Finch,” a neighbourhood in northwest Toronto and “Malvern,” a neighbourhood in the east part of the city.

At one point, Ford interacts with a man in the restaurant, who tells the mayor, “we got the best mayor in the world right here. This guy deserves to be even better than Prime Minister Harper.”

On Instagram, user Herman Atwal posted a photo of himself with Ford with the hashtag steakqueen early Tuesday morning, referring to a restaurant Ford has been known to frequent. Ford appears to be wearing the same clothes in the video and in the Instagram photo.

Speaking to reporters Tuesday afternoon, Ford admitted that the video was shot the previous night and that he was drinking.

“I was with some friends and what I do in my personal life and with my friends, this really has nothing to do with you guys. It’s my own time,” Ford told reporters.

This latest video raises questions about the mayor’s commitment to sobriety, after he apologized repeatedly for his bad behaviour, admitted to smoking crack and blamed his crack smoking on a “drunken stupor.” Ford has said he doesn’t have a drinking problem, that he has stopped drinking and that he doesn’t need a break from his duties as mayor to seek treatment.

Earlier in the day, the mayor’s brother, city Councillor Doug Ford, said that he spoke to his brother Monday night, so the video couldn’t have been shot then. He also said that his brother weighed more in the video, indicating that it was shot at an earlier date.

This isn’t the first time Ford has made news at the Steak Queen. When Toronto police were surveilling Ford and his associate, Alexander Lisi, they followed the pair and a third man to the Steak Queen in August. “All three appeared to be under the influence of alcohol and/or drug[s] but not to the state of impairment,” reported a plainclothes officer who watched Ford on Aug. 21. “Mayor Ford appeared dishevelled with a large sweat stain circling his stomach, sweating profusely from his forehead, his eyes were squinting as he walked, his suit jacket was wrinkled and he wore it without a tie. He was observed leaving with what appeared to be three Styrofoam food containers in bags.”

_

Late Tuesday night, the Canadian Press moved this story on the words spoken in Ford’s video:

TORONTO – The words are slurred and drawled, trailing off haphazardly into the middle of a barely coherent tirade.

But the Jamaican swear words peppering the latest controversial video of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford would pack a much more definite punch if uttered in everyday conversation.

Jamaican Canadians familiar with the patois spoken on their native island say the words “bumbaclot” and “rassclot” have the potential to be extremely offensive when used in the right context.

They said the latest Ford video, which depicts the scandal-plagued mayor hurling the expletives, may well be one of those situations.

It’s difficult to pin down specifics in the video, which was taken late Monday night in a northwest Toronto restaurant.

Ford, who admitted he had been drinking the night the video was shot, references both Toronto’s police chief and unspecific surveillance efforts as part of a minute-long rant. Jamaican obscenities feature in the video more than once, though never in direct reference to a clear subject.

NOTE TO READERS: The following discusses Jamaican swear words and references English equivalents.

Those words, however, are offensive in the vast majority of situations in which they’re commonly used, experts said.

Bob Arthurs, a retired school teacher and current president of the Jamaican Canadian Association Alberta, said “bumbaclot” and “rassclot” have become common slang in Jamaica’s poorer communities.

They are essentially synonyms that equate to hurling a particularly vehement f-bomb, he added.

“If you met someone on the street you didn’t know and you said, ‘you’re a bumbaclot,’ that could be a very trying situation for you,” Arthurs said in a telephone interview from Calgary.

Both words have their origins in African languages imported from eras when Jamaica was a hotbed of slavery, said York University Jamaican Creole professor Clive Forrester.

“Bumbo,” meaning vagina in some languages, was combined with the word “klaat” or cloth, he said, adding the final result would literally translate to calling someone a sanitary napkin.

As it was adopted into Jamaican dialect, however, the word took on other connotations and even had serious ramifications for those who used it, he said.

“This is simply a straight up curse word,” Forrester wrote in an email. “Not suitable for use in polite company or in the presence of children, and performers have been fined in the past for using the word on stage.”

Junior Ford, owner of a business in Toronto’s Jamaican community, said direct English equivalents for the words are difficult to pin down.

Apart from being a run-of-the-mill swear word, he said “bumbaclot” and “rassclot” are sometimes used as low-level threats when people are spoiling for a fight.

“It is aggressive. Sometimes you’re saying ‘F off’” or ‘F you.’ It’s almost the same thing,” he said.

Both Forrester and Arthurs said more positive interpretations of the words do exist, adding context is everything.

Arthurs said either term becomes socially acceptable when used as an exclamation of surprise rather than as a description of an event or person.

“You see a nice girl, you could use that phrase as well. You suddenly found out you won the lottery you could use that very same phrase and exclaim,” Arthurs said.

Rob Ford’s uses of the slang, which came under fire from Toronto city council members on Tuesday, do not appear to fall into this category.

Arthurs interpreted Ford’s statements to pertain to an unknown situation, while Forrester suggested proper context is impossible to pin down without knowing who the mayor was speaking to.

But Coun. Michael Thompson, the city’s only black councillor, did not mince his words when he described the mayor’s interpretation of “supposedly being Jamaican” as offensive.

He called it another unfortunate situation in the “unravelling of Rob Ford,” saying many fellow councillors were skeptical of Ford’s claims of sobriety.

“We’ve been fairly silent in just waiting for the next thing to occur,” Thompson said. “I think we all had sort of concluded it was only a matter of time.”

When questioned about the video on Tuesday, Ford defended his right to drink on his own time and said he did not think the language he used was offensive or discriminatory.

“It’s how I speak with some of my friends,” he said.

After viewing the video multiple times, Arthurs said that last claim, at least, rings true.

“It wasn’t too bad at all,” he said of the mayor’s attempt at Patois. “Obviously he’s got Jamaican friends and he’s been around Jamaicans quite a bit, because that’s exactly how Jamaicans on the street would describe the situation.”




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The new Rob Ford video everyone is talking about

  1. Remember, he can’t be criticized, because then he’ll just end up being re-elected–as mayor of Canada’s largest city!

    • Election is far away – he will goof again and again.
      New contenders will appear, and wash away the Ford Dynasty.
      Quack, quack.

      • Did you skip your kindergarten class today?

  2. Add to the list of offensive behaviour: being intoxicated in a public place, an offence normally dealt with by arrest and incarceration until the idiot sobers up enough that he is not a danger to himself. He is so out of it he is incoherent and rambling. This is more than the effects of alcohol. Rob Ford continues to humiliate himself and the people of Toronto. What will it take to fire this bumbaclot?

    • proof of a crime, or an election loss… whatever comes first.

      • Proof of a crime likely won’t be enough. He’ll need to get convicted, and even then…

        • sadly I agree..

    • He hardly looked to be a danger to anyone, or even “intoxicated”. You think the cops should be rounding up everybody who has a few beers at every Leafs game like they’re some kind of criminal? The only people who see any problem here are the same people who hated Rob Ford from day 1, just because he’s fat. It’s really pretty pathetic.

      • Rick, whether you are being devil’s advocate, or whether your reply is sincere, in either case you are part of the problem.

        • LOL Really? I’m part of the problem? Because I don’t see anything wrong with a guy going for dinner and a few beers after work?

          Rob Ford might not be the greatest ambassador Toronto’s ever had. But all of you loons who want to throw him in jail for having a few drinks aren’t exactly making your city look particularly welcoming to anybody who might want to enjoy themselves while they’re there.

          Toronto is now hands down the most uptight, least fun city in Canada. Enjoy your city, just not too much!

          • Have you been drinking?

          • If he has been, arrest him now!

          • No problems with Rob Ford driving around Etobicoke while he is intoxicated? Assuming you are not from Toronto, the distance from his home to the restaurant is significant. I live about half way between the two. Tough on crime indeed…

          • And he’s not having a drink or two, which would not be a problem. The guy is getting hammered to the point where he can’t talk or stand, and the driving a car for a 15-20 minute ride. Much like Rob, you are deep in denial Rick. This guy is a menace, and should not be behind a wheel, never mind running Toronto.

          • If Rob Ford is driving drunk then shame on the police force in Toronto for not picking him up. Everyone and their dog knows they have had him under surveillance FOREVER.

          • I don’t think he is under surveillance 24/7. Nor should he be, despite the admission of drunk driving.

          • Good. You drive him around since he needs an old lady like you to look after him!

          • Come now Rick, you know Rob Ford is not just having a beer or two. He likely cannot stop at two. He is hurting himself and his family with this awful addiction and if you want him to succeed in life, you want him to beat it. This is past partisan politics, it is the destruction of a man and a family.

          • So everyone who gets drunk destroys their family? That’s absurd.

          • Surely you can differentiate between “everyone who gets drunk” and those whose addictions to alcohol and drugs have reached the point where it affects their ability to do their jobs and care for their families in a satisfactory way. Do you honestly believe Rob Ford’s family is not being negatively affected by his addictions?

          • Yes. Just because somebody does drugs or alcohol (same thing) does not mean that they are addicted, and just because they use d n’ a does not mean that harm is caused to either themselves or their family. My relatives are more pleasant when drunk or stoned.

          • I did not differentiate between drugs or alcohol as I do not see a difference.
            I also don’t see an issue with people over imbibing as long as their over-imbibing doesn’t start interfering with their lives. When it makes it difficult for them to do their jobs or starts to embarrass their families, then perhaps they need to make a choice not to over-imbibe. If they cannot stop over-imbibing, they might have a problem with addiction. In that case, they need to seek out help. Rob Ford appears to be a poster child for addiction because it is causing problems and he doesn’t seem to be able to stop using alcohol and drugs.

          • Agree, People would be better to just shut up, than saying any stupid things

          • It’s not the “few beers”, it’s the drunken stupors that are a problem. Ford seems to be a binge-drinker – they usually don’t stop at “a few” drinks.

          • “Binge drinkers” are most Canadians, and almost all Canadians between 18-50

          • You really think most Canadians fall into this category?

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Binge_drinking
            I know Wikipedia isn’t always accurate, but the definition here is pretty close to most peoples’ definition of binge drinking.

          • Yes. Most aged 18-35, anyways. When did getting drunk become a crime?

          • Yes, many people get drunk on an occasional basis. Most people also seem to be able to restrict those times to weekends or holidays so that it doesn’t interfere with their jobs. Binge drinkers however usually can’t. There is ample anecdotal evidence that Ford falls into the category of those who can’t. The day after this latest episode for example, he showed up at City Hall around 2:00pm & left shortly after 4:00 – where was he the rest of the day? My money is that he was sleeping off the previous night. This is a man who is constantly yammering on about giving “good value” for the taxpayers. Well, how much value are the taxpayers of Toronto getting when he’s too hung over to do his job?

          • Rick, this is the result of much more than ‘a few beers’, and he’s ALREADY ADMITTED to doing lots of stupid stuff in drunken stupors. Can you understand what he’s saying? Are you like that after ‘a few beers’, Rick? Maybe in real life you’re actually a comedian and just trying to get laughs by posting the complete opposite of the truth. In that case, hahaha Rick, you got your laughs.

        • Alcoholism is a disease and whether you like posters like Rick Omen (who stir the pot) or not, you cannot believe that they contribute to Rob Ford’s struggle with his own personal demon of substance addiction. No one is part of Rob Ford’s problem but Rob Ford and only Rob Ford can stop the problem. He will either chose to keep sober or it will probably kill him in the end.

          • Rick Omen’s comments are like Doug Ford’s *guarantee* that came earlier in the day. Doug guaranteed that the video was not taken last night. An opinion that is based on nothing but partisan rhetoric. Rick – the 1970′s called – they are so with you on your tough on crime approach to drunk driving. When this double hurts or kills someone “while having fun”, you remember where you stood Rick “tough on crime” Omen.

          • This comment was deleted.

          • From now on he can be referred to as a ‘double’. Works for me. :-)

          • Exactly what harm did Ford’s drug use do?

          • Maybe you would like to be his wife or children and then answer that question.

          • Can you please tell me what harm Rob Ford’s drinking did to them?

          • Is this a trick question? Have you been living under a rock?

          • Did he beat them or something? I’m asking.

          • Andale, how would you like it if YOUR dad talked about going down on your mom (oral sex) in front of the press? How would you fee if YOUR dad was the joke on late night television? Do you think it is awesome when your dad isn’t famous because he is a hero but rather infamous because he is known for smoking crack and getting drunk?
            Then there is what we know about children of alcoholics. They live with consistent instability. They never know how those who are supposed to be protecting them are going to react because drunk people are not predictable. Children need structure and predictability in their lives. Drunks cannot provide structure or predictability. I am not sure if you are an adult but I do not believe you would leave an inebriated person to look after your children, would you?

          • We are not discussing those who “choose to drink frequently” and moderately. We are discussing the Rob Fords of the world who apparently drink frequently and heavily and get inebriated often. They get liver cirrhosis and host of other conditions. They also have children who are fearful and insecure because they live in homes that are unstable because believe it or not, drunks are not always fun.

          • This man is not going to live long enough to worry about cirrhosis of the liver, trust me.

          • Wait a minute…..I thought you said you were in favor of Rob Foird’s lifestyle choices and now you are saying he won’t live long enough to get cirrhosis….maybe I don’t want to know what you mean by that.

        • Is this how you justify yourself, by blaming the others that happen to not agree with you

      • He doesn’t look intoxicated to you? Just exactly what kind of state must someone be in before you think they are drunk?

      • Uh, no Rick. I’ve had a problem w/ Rob Ford since before Day 1 – when he was still a city councillor. And not because of his weight – the local reports in the local Etobicoke newspaper rarely printed photographs. By the time I did see a photo of him, I’d already figured out he was a blowhard who was completely unsuited for political office. Nothing that has followed has given me any reason to change my opinion,.

      • He hardly looked to be a danger to anyone, or even “intoxicated”. You think the cops should be rounding up everybody who has a puff from a joint passed around at a dinner party like they’re some kind of criminal? The only people who see any problem here are the same people who hated Justin Trudeau from day 1, just because he’s Pierre Trudeau’s son and leader of the Liberal party. It’s really pretty pathetic.

        • Great comment.

      • The only people who see any problem here are the same people who hated Rob Ford from day 1

        That he shouldn’t be ARRESTED for these antics is one thing, but you really see no problem here?

        Let’s even set aside the fact that he GUARANTEED the citizenry back in November that he’d stopped drinking. What CEO on the planet could get away with being videotaped making drunken, offensive remarks in the middle of a restaurant, then show up at work at 2:30pm the next day, and leave at 4:15?

        I’m at a similar point to where I was when Charlie Sheen started going crazy. It’s long past being funny now. Somebody needs to help this guy.

        • Help him what? Be a successful high payed Mayor who is loved by a million people and has fun?

          • That he’s a “successful” mayor is a HIGHLY dubious argument. His greatest “successes” are on files where he either stayed out of the way (to his credit, the few times he was able to do so), and files on which all of his major rivals for mayor, and virtually every member of Council, wanted to do exactly what he wanted to do. It’s not hard to lead people to where they’ve already collectively decided to go.

            That the salary of the mayor is high is irrelevant to one of the heirs to a multi-million dollar business who was born with a silver spoon in his mouth.

            That many people “love” him is as relevant as the fact that many (more) people love Charlie Sheen.

            That the mayor has fun cannot be disputed. I’d argue that ANYONE would have fun if they were a wealthy celebrity who’s job enabled them to get caught smoking crack and lying about it, get drunk in public, make an a** of themselves in public while drunk, and then saunter in to work the next day at 2:30pm, and leave for the day at 4:15, with no real risk of getting fired for any of it.

            Justin Beiber is a successful, high-paid singer who’s loved by millions of people and has a lot of fun. That doesn’t mean he’s not in serious need of an intervention.

          • He’s just livin’ his life, man. Its a free society. Just because you don’t like what he does gives you no right to infringe on his liberties.

          • Hey man, I don’t want to harsh the dude’s mellow. If hanging out with gangsters, getting drunk and making a spectacle of himself in public, and showing up to work for 2 or 3 hours a day is his bag, that’s cool. I’m not some fascist. I have no interest in curtailing the Mayor’s freedom. It’s not up to me to get all parental and expect the mayor to “obey the law”, or “act like an adult”, or “keep his dignity”. I’m not Hitler. Until he dies, kills some one, or gets convicted of a crime, by all means he should let his freak flag fly.

            Frankly, I’m finding the fact that no one outside of Toronto can figure out how he still has his job highly amusing. It’s actually pretty cool. It’s like living in Springfield with Mayor Quimby, except we get a subway to nowhere instead of a monorail that circles the city.

    • Jesus moments just aint what they used to be

      • Good one. That “come to Jesus” comment was the 1st thing I thought of when I heard about this.

        • It was a “come to Purple Jesus” moment

    • Do you actually think that its a crime to be good natured, friendly drunk?

      • Only Ford haters do.

      • Do you actually consider the videos we’ve seen so far to be examples of “good-natured” and “friendly”?

  3. His going into faux Jamaican reminds me of certain of Obama’s speeches when he went into street slang/drawl to suit his particular audience. Pathetically fake. At least Rob Ford has the excuse of having the disease of alcoholism.
    Obama? It’s innate. He’s the greatest poseur of our times.

    • Yes, because if there’s a lesson at the core of this disgrace, it’s that Obama something something something…

      • Ahh yes, publishing this video is part of a high minded “lesson” the media is teaching, not some gleeful, self-indulgent frolicking in the misery of a political foe. Got it.
        I’m also well aware of the totalitarian tendencies of leftists here who lash out at those who do not stay on message.
        It seems the common theme to those who comment in opposition to my comments is: “you shouldn’t say that” “You should say what we are saying”.
        Well, I happened to find a stark parallel between the phoniness in the faux Jamaican, and Obama’s occasional creepy “street talk”. Rules of staying on message by the leftist comment police notwithstanding.

    • Hey look! Biff is trying to distract us again!

  4. I can’t figure out what a guy with “plenty to eat at home” is doing hanging around restaurants in the first place?

    • Take out can be tempting

      • Lots of services will deliver right to your office…

    • Is this suppose to be funny?

      • He sounds like broken record,

        • Subways, subways, subways.

          Excuse me now, I have to go return phone calls.

  5. Ah, Rob Ford. Oh well, it is up to the people of Toronto to do something about him. None of my business.

  6. At least we’re getting an authentic representation of Toronto.

  7. I actually don’t have a problem with a guy having a few beers and letting a little loose. I don’t even think it’s anyone’s place to tell someone who engages in obvious problem drinking that they have to get help if they don’t want it. The problem, of course, is that we have the public face of a major city who is a drug user and an apparent alcoholic. Even a high functioning alcoholic isn’t a good representative of the City – particularly when his behaviour has become an international spectacle and he continues to lie and decieve about not only what he’s done in the past, but also his efforts to improve in the future.Mayor Ford’s willingness to go into the darker corners and ignored places of Toronto (for which he seems to pat himself on the back in this video) is actually laudable (though his criminal associations are not). Even if you don’t believe his policies and convictions actually help the people who support them there’s probably something to be said for making them feel represented and listened to. At this point, though, he’s making his whole city look foolish. Anyone with even the slightest regard for his City’s image would have resigned long ago.

  8. It’s amazing that the guy still has a following. I guess some folks will vote for a guy that makes them look good, by comparison.

    • Both he and his supporters have worked very hard to build up his populist image. Large numbers of people who support him have zero comprehension on how government actually works, and as such opt to put faith in the populist myth that Ford is shrouded with. This is a direct effect of the polarization of the politics of our times, and a fractured media that is jumping at every chance to cash in (for the sake of survival). Those who are 100% behind him are angry at many things, and have been convinced everyone else is simply “the enemy”. That’s what it has been dumbed down to.

      The guy is a total train wreck, has pretty much always been so, but had managed to hide his true self for as much as he can. The videos – the stories – they show what he is in real life – a troubled dillusional man with extreme myopic views who really needs help, but his power and sense of entitlement prevent him from doing so. All his life, he’s had guys like Rick Omen downplaying his problems, with a classic good old boy approach: Robbie is fine – he just needs to blow off some steam, etc.

      Mercifully, one hopes this will be the final nail in his political coffin. You can’t trust a compulsive liar with alcohol/substance abuse issues. If he wants to live in the fantasy world where his “weight” is his biggest problem, he should be doing so as a private citizen.

      Having the cost jester sit on the throne can and is amusing, but in the long run, it bites you in the ass. So sad to see that in this day and age, how far wealth and power can take you.

    • The media and chattering classes are obsessed with outward appearance, and more to the point, with “scandal”. Average people care far less about these things. I suspect the continuing supporters care much more about the policies that immediately affect their lives, than what Jon Stewart jokes about on the Daily show.
      I have no doubt that many commenters here would prefer a well spoken, articulate straight laced guy but who has disastrous policies, over Ford.
      As between the two, its not the Ford supporters who are pitiful.

      • Right – because the choice is limited to a walking disaster of a drug-addicted mayor with “good” policies and someone who has their sh*t together but only “disastrous” policies.

        If only there was some other alternative to this bullsh*t dichotomy, but you “average” people insist that there is not.

        • Look at yourself “drug addicted mayor”. WTF? Blabbing away whatever

  9. Ahaha love the judgmental comments below. It’s like the wailing “Oh but what about the CHILDREN?!” brigade. I don’t think it’s smart for Rob Ford to keep doing this stuff in public and it looks like he’s got a problem, but there are FAR worse things going on in politics worldwide. Things that make Rob Ford’s shenanigans look like a child’s birthday party in comparison. And as long as people are focusing on this story, they’re not focusing on the real evil stuff that’s going on.

    • We can focus on all of it, Ford is only a small part to be sure, but still a part of the total malaise.

      Toronto should remove the creature, by all legal and ethical means. People like him should not be allowed in a position like he now enjoys.

  10. Since when is getting drunk a crime? I like people better after they, or I , have had a few drinks and are relaxing. This whole this is just inhumane. Leave Rob Ford alone.

    • People are nasty, especially when hiding behind their screens

  11. Rob Ford owes no one, so what he does on his own time, I don’t care. Respect his PRIVACY, please, for his family’s sake. In other words MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS,
    people

    • Would you want him as a school bus driver?

      Managing a city like Toronto is more that just pretending you are useful, it’s a position that reflects on a whole city. Toronto isn’t a city of fat alcoholic substance abusers, but allowing this creature to continue his antics make the world think they must be.

    • You’re not concerned that his “own time” keeps expanding and expanding?

      I don’t know how many CEOs could survive getting videotaped making drunken offensive remarks in the middle of a restaurant in a fake Jamaican patois if they followed that night up by sauntering in to the office at 2:30pm the next day, only to leave at 4:15.

  12. The mayor’s only stance is lowering the taxes. A fat derelict, who uses fact and fiction interchangeably, who’s vocabulary includes quotes from public toilets, might want to have a few more positive traits.

    I agree that we should insist on value for what we pay, and a mayor should do just that, but to lower taxes, just to be seen to lower taxes, to appease some segment of the population who sees this as somehow the only concern on the planet is a little shortsighted.

    It also seems a little shortsighted that these people don’t mind we all pay taxes for what they want, but scream their heads off when they are obliged to support someone else’s endeavors.

  13. Rob Ford you bad to bomboclaat . He is just expressing his self like a true Tamaican street thug. Al he need in his hand is a nice blunt and a red stripe beer>>LOL That is a very funny tape< I also think he needs Betty Ford treatment center .

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