Rob Ford and Mike Duffy: Where is rock bottom?

Tease the day: Five staffers in one week … a new per diem that should not have been claimed


Devaan Ingraham/CP

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has lost five staffers in a week, and he can’t go a day without an anonymous source leaking something damaging to a local newspaper. Senator Mike Duffy has seen his star fall on Parliament Hill, and he can’t go a day without reporters digging up a new per diem he never should have claimed. Both men have, day after day, sunk deeper into the quagmire.

Yesterday, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne expressed concerns about the situation at Toronto’s city hall. She said the province, “as appropriately, will be involved.” She didn’t elaborate, but even those remarks would have been unthinkable just three weeks ago. Meanwhile, CBC News found an email from Duffy wherein he mused with another Conservative about requesting a cabinet post and other job perks. Any other senator, and any other month, and that story would fade into the background.

Ford and Duffy aren’t saying much, these days. Both have only made basic public statements of late—Ford: “Everything’s fine, and it’s business as usual”; Duffy: “I have a story to tell, and I can explain everything”—and no one believes them anymore. They hold onto their jobs because they can. Senators and Toronto mayors, everyone has learned, are mostly insulated from removal.

Their refusal to budge only gives reporters more time. And you can bet that, before the week is out, both Ford and Duffy will have found a new rock bottom to call their own.

What’s above the fold this morning?

The Globe and Mail leads with Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne’s concerns about events at Toronto’s city hall. The National Post fronts Lebanon President Michel Suleiman’s calls to Hezbollah to pull out of the Syrian conflict. The Toronto Star goes above the fold with Wynne’s concerns, as Ford lost two more staffers. The Ottawa Citizen leads with Senator Mike Duffy’s apparent request for a cabinet posting and more job perks, a story first reported by CBC News. iPolitics fronts Duffy’s political survivabilityCBC.ca leads with Duffy’s apparent requests. CTV News leads with a poll suggesting only 13 per cent of Canadians think Prime Minister Stephen Harper was unaware of the cheque his former chief of staff, Nigel Wright, delivered to Duffy. National Newswatch showcases the same CTV News story.

Stories that will be (mostly) missed

1. Cluster bombs. A government bill that would limit Canada’s use of cluster munitions—per an international treaty banning the weapons—is full of exemptions that defeat its purpose, say critics. 2. Mining. Protesters in Kyrgyzstan called for the nationalization of a mine run by Canadian miners Centerra. The company has suspended operations as the Kyrgyz cabinet debates the situation.
3. Bre-X. The remaining class action suits meant to recover money from the Bre-X scandal—a multi-billion dollar fraud—were settled in an Alberta court in the amount of $5.2 million. 4. U.S. students. While Canadian universities are attracting huge numbers of international students, just over 12,000 are Americans—about 4.5 per cent of total foreign students in 2012.

Filed under:

Rob Ford and Mike Duffy: Where is rock bottom?

  1. While liberalism tries to deal with realitity, and yes sometimes gets things wrong, conservatism makes no such effort. It has to do with the two thinking processes Daniel Kahneman writes about in “Thinking, Fast and Slow”. Reactionary thinking is to protect lots of species from that proverbial tiger, by fleeing. Fighting, if flight is not successful, is less effective. MRI scans show reactive thinkers with an enlarged right amygdala Reactive thinking can’t be reasoned with. It is if the large right of amygdala shrinks conservatives ability to see beyond the obvious. Reasoned thinking is where liberalism is created. I am sure that because of their tendency to use reactive thinking conservatives and psychopaths attract. You can read about psychopaths in “Snakes in Suits, When Psychopaths Go to Work”, and fill out expense forms showing their true selfish nature. I suggest conservatism attracts and empowers psychopaths more than liberalism. The predator among us finds easy prey in conservative organizations, especially with authoratarians in control.

    • Gawker certainly found former reporter John Cook easy prey. So did the ‘crack dealer’ actors who duped the Toronto Star reporters.

      • Toronto Star has never been hit with a libel suit in over 120 years. They are not reporting something that can get them sued.

      • I doubt John Cook or the Star reporters were duped. You on the other hand, being a conservative, are more likely to be manipulated. There is a study that shows you are very likely to agree and disagree on an issue depending on the wording is used about the issue. Conservatives can be shown to think synonyms are opposites.

    • This comment was deleted.

      • I don’t agree. It is not genetic at all. Conservatism is a bad habit. Liberalism is a good habit. If I spend time with conservatives I would tend to use my reactionary thinking processes more often. So much my right amygdala would get larger. There would be increased use of neurons and synapses in that part of my brain. Is that a good thing? That part of our brain is for dealing with the proverbial tiger by fleeing. It is fear that can’t be reasoned with because reason is in another part of the brain. Reason is in the part of the brain that we, as a species, use for confronting the tiger. We don’t confront the tiger as a self reliant individual, that is bad for our species. We confront the tiger as a unit made up of inter-reliant individuals. You can read about this if you Google “Confronting the Tiger” and “small unit cohesion”. The reactive part of our brain conservatives use is older and more selfish. It makes us more like a rat than a human. We have less compassion. It also means conservatives are more easily manipulated. They are easily confused by synonyms in surveys. Conservatives, reactive thinkers, will not support assisted suicide but support it if the wording is changed but means the same thing. That, I contend, makes the habit a bad one.

  2. Duffy and Ford involve two entirely different credibility issues, the latter John Cook, Robyn Dolittle, et al.’s credibility.

  3. Where is rock bottom? I believe they are about to show us.

  4. These guys are like drills, so the concept of hitting rock bottom doesn’t apply.

  5. And the rest of the anti-separatist smug Canadians thought that only Québec was corrupt. Welcome to the nightmare. Enjoy the illusions.

Sign in to comment.