A Mess Of Our Own Making

May 29, 2013


Holy hell, Toronto. Go away for 10 days and it’s like returning to the set of Kelsey Grammer’s Boss. Fuck.

The crack video story broke the day before I left and blossomed into a full blown tale of intrigue of drug dealing, murder, mass staff resignations and one dramatic haircut, all before my return. That’s some serious narrative escalation. Highly improbable even coming from such a highly improbable administration.

At this juncture nothing should surprise us yet it continues to do just that.

A few scandals back, I honestly can’t remember which one, I became convinced that Mayor Ford’s political demise would be a quiet one. insurmountableodds(And take this with a full grain of salt, coming as it does from someone who refused to accept the possibility of Rob Ford victory as late as October of 2010.) Supporters keep touting, even as recently as today, how the mayor’s approval numbers barely nudge much regardless of the shit he gets accused, convicted and acquitted of. But it seemed to me that an appearance of a reasonable right-of-centre candidate would immediately deflate those numbers to non-recoverable levels. Only some mad scrabble on the left from a host of candidates could possibly reconfigure the race into a winnable one for Mayor Ford.

In my mind, despite his apparent stubbornness, the mayor would recognize the almost hopeless chances he had at securing re-election in 2014 and fold up his campaign tent early, citing health or family concerns. No fuss, no bother. With a whimper not a bang.

If this continues along its current trajectory, however, we’re looking at some Cody Jarrett White Heat/DePalma Scarface flameout. Look at me, ma! On top of the world!! dyepackThe mayor’s exit even more spectacularly implausible than his entrance. They said it couldn’t be done, but he did it.

As appealing as that might be to the writer in me – you don’t have to do anything more than transcribe, really – the fallout from such a dizzying end would have negative repercussions far beyond just the mayor’s office. It already has, with questions about the proper functioning of the city coming from Queen’s Park and investors. “People are literally re-examining their stability projections of Toronto,” tweets James Aldersley. “Let that sink in.” (h/t to Edward Keenan for pointing that one out in his article today in The Grid.)

A quiet renunciation of our 2010 mayoral choice might bestow upon us as a city a certain air of somber reflection. Yup. We made a bad decision. Who hasn’t? Time to turn the page on that sorry chapter.

The way this is going, though, we all end up with egg on our faces, a little bit of the Ford on our collective sleeves. A mad experiment in self-loathing that blew up in our hands like a concealed red ink dye pack in a bag full of stolen cash. That kind of stain takes a long time to wipe clean.

dirtily submitted by Cityslikr