There does not seem to be an exaggeration too big for Councillor Doug Ford to make, an invention too outlandish, a claim too bogus. He seems entirely comfortable wearing any of those suits. There’s heightened rhetoric and then there’s Councillor Doug Ford.
As the island airport issue once more pushed its way to the front of the municipal discussion this week, the councillor stood head-and-shoulders above anyone else when it came to outright mendacity. No small feat, given there are masters of that particular trait at play in the debate. But Councillor Ford took it to an entirely different level.
“If we didn’t have Bob Deluce [president of Porter],” the councillor claimed, “there’d be a cornfield out at the airport right now.”
Yes, before Porter Airlines, the islands were little more than an empty wasteland of agriculture. As if that would be a bad thing if it was true. However, it isn’t. Unless of course we go back to a pre-European settlement era when First Nations people grew their maize. But I’m not even sure that’s true.
There was a-plenty going on over at the spot the airport now occupies on the island. Scan through the photos from the City of Toronto Archives that Jude MacDonald pointed me in the direction of. Ballparks. General stores. Summer cottages. Diving horses. This particular batch of pictures ranging in dates from the late 19th-century to 1944.
It’s not the overwhelming degree of ignorance that has become so grating, it’s the boastful, barker manner in which Councillor Ford so confidently displays it. There’s a shocking degree of pathology at work. It would be funny in its cartoonish quality if it wasn’t so disruptive to the political discourse.
We are headed for yet another knock `em down-drag `em out tussle over the fate of Porter Airlines and, perhaps, the airport itself. The rhetoric white hot. Councillor Ford has already taken it to another level. His Forghorn Leghorn act skewing the debate into ridiculous territory. Any councillor and other decision maker siding with him needs to do so carefully, in case the dirt of pure hucksterism rubs off onto them.
— I sayly submitted by Cityslikr
I agree that Doug Ford’s comments about corn fields etc are nonsense, as well as the comment that Porter ‘saved’ the island in any way. However in fairness I should note that the historical photos you link to are not current or former lands assigned to the airport.
I strongly oppose extending the airport runways, but the accuracy of the comment relating to cottages etc takes away some of the credibility of the article imho.
We here at All Fired Up in the Big Smoke were getting at the intent of the councillor’s cornfield statement which, to our minds, suggested that the islands were some sort of blank slate, waiting to be turned into something useful.
For what it’s worth, Sarah Gibson in her book More Than An Island suggested there was plenty going on at the site of the first island airport. The construction of the airport meant the demolition of the baseball stadium, fifty-four cottages, the amusement park attractions and the regatta course. The remaining cottages and cottagers were moved to today’s Algonquin Island (then named Sunfish Island).
Fair enough, I can certainly accept that. The photos I found to be misleading, but in context of the quote you have provided it makes more sense. Thanks 🙂
I was sure you were headed in a different direction recently when you confessed all your constant belittling of anybody with the Ford name was getting a little tiresome.
It’s obvious Doug Ford didn’t major in English Language or Literature. He uses words that are hoakey. Corny, you might say. That’s old news.
He’s expressing that, in his mind, an opportunity has arisen that will ensure continued employment for a lot of Canadians. He reckons jets coming to Billy Bishop Airport will be an improvement for Toronto. In a recent poll 49% of those polled agree with him.
He’s not saying one thing and doing another. He would likely believe he is sticking to his principles. That’s more than a good few charlatans on the Circus have done.
Look at how so many of the clowns reversed their voting position on the property tax assessment issue at their last blow-fest. That was an insulting display of a sense of entitlement, and for those that switched their vote a greater display of ignorance than your petty example above.
I would submit that it’s not the style of verbiage Tweedle-Doug uses–corny or not–that was the point of this post. Rather, it’s the bald-faced lies being presented as incontrovertible facts that are beyond the pale. I don’t really think it would much matter if these sound bites were uttered in Pig Latin, they’d still amount a giant steaming pile of horse pucky.
That, I believe, is the real issue here.
Deluce and the FoBros may think they can leverage this into an election issue. Someone’s miscalculated, badly.
Think, if Miller didn’t cancel the bridge, then Deluce would not have had the extra $20 million seed money to build Porter. Oh, the crazy turn of politics.
PS: Flew Porter this past week. Totally mellow experience as opposed to the cattle call that is Pearson.
Yet there is no bridge, the Fords and their ilk are tunneling under the lake. Deluce agreed to not use jets to get the business until…
Building the tunnel is a bad idea, stopping the bridge was a bad idea. Stopping the bridge was to save a few union ferry jobs, poor decision.
Everyone who wants to turn the island airport back into a park needs to realize the noise level required to break up the highly compact and strong runway concrete.