Rob Ford Watch


Cops Have Crack Video: Our Mayor is a Liar (And possibly a Drug Mule)

The Comment From Rinse about Rob Ford's Crack UseThe staff at TorontoMike.com are busy going through the newly released court documents that show the alleged Ford crack video was the target of a police investigation that led to dozens of arrests.

There are lots of fascinating nuggets in this document, all painting the mayor as a guy with lots to hide, but commenter markosaar just asked the obvious question in the most recent Open Mike. Is Rob Ford, mayor of Toronto, a drug mule?

@siomo
Jacobsen says Lisi was seen putting dry-cleaning from shop tied to drug arrest into Ford's car, white bags too #TOPoli

@goldsbie
Police watched Ford and Lisi meet over 100 times: http://bit.ly/Hu9TS6

@goldsbie
"On many occasions they followed him to meetings with Ford in parks. Detectives searched the area after and found empty vodka bottles."

"After Ford and Lisi met in person, detectives noticed a pattern. Later in the day, Ford, on his drive home, stopped in at the Esso at Edenbridge Rd. and Scarlett Rd., just a few doors east of the Ford home. While Ford was in the Esso station, which houses his favourite Tim Horton’s, Lisi would drive up in his Range Rover and place a package into Ford’s Escalade, then drive off."

It's okay, Ford's just a mule.

There's so much here I need a little time to digest it and I'd like to hear what Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair says at 11:30, but it's fascinating to see a video that Rob Ford says doesn't exist spark such an investigation and it's difficult to fathom why Ford would meet so often with a drug dealer in such discreet and skeezy ways.

I've known for some time that our mayor is a liar but I didn't realize he was also a drug mule.

Update: Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair says they have the video of Rob Ford smoking crack. Holy shit.

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For Dave Price, One of the Daves I Know

For Dave PriceDave Price is Rob Ford's Director of Logistics and Operations. Back in April, when we thought he was Robbie's old football coach, I didn't like the optics. We taxpayers were paying Price's salary to do who knows what and it reeked of payback. We have since learned from the Globe and Mail that Price is in fact Doug Ford's old hash dealing partner in crime. Like Dougie said, "You can't teach loyalty".

Recently, Dave Price was revealed to be a frequent caller into Rob and Doug's radio show on 1010. Dave would pretend to be a wide assortment of Toronto Dave's, raving about the Mayor and trashing his rivals. Somehow, Rob and Doug were never able to recognize his voice.

Don Peat, on the other hand, recognized Dave Price's voice when he called the Toronto Sun to complain about their headline for this story. Price has since been suspended for a week without pay.

This song is for Dave Price, a.k.a. Dave from Scarborough, Dave from Etobicoke, Dave from North York, etc.


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Windsor Road House From Rob Ford Photo Linked to Rinse's Comment

The Comment From Rinse about Rob Ford's Crack UseAs we've discussed, this comment left by Rinse on March 26 included details about Rob Ford's use of crack cocaine:

Here's the thing: Rob Ford DOES use crack cocaine. A friend of mine, her mother is a serious drug addict. Rob Ford regularly goes over to her house to smoke crack.

The problem is this: The daughter wants to expose Rob Ford's drug abuse, but her oldschool Italian grandmother won't allow her to "bring shame" upon the family, long story short. So basically the daughter has become complicit with the entire thing instead of doing the right thing. Shame on you Jasmin.

According to this Globe and Mail article, information about the house Rob Ford was photographed in front of with Anthony Smith gives credence to Rinse's comments.

The house on Windsor Road is officially owned by an elderly couple. The neighbours believe the husband died in the past few years and say that the primary residents of the home are the grownup children, believed to be in their 40s.

A Redditor did a little digging and discovered the following:

15 Windsor Rd is listed to "E Basso" in the phonebook. I found an obituary that says "Elio Basso" passed away on November 6, 2009, with funeral service at a chapel at Rexdale & Kipling. The obituary lists Jasmine as his granddaughter. "Jasmin" is the name mentioned at torontomike.com/2013/03/the_problem_with_rob_ford_and.html#comment-234172

Here's the Canada411 listing for E Basso at 15 Windsor Road, and here's the obituary for Elio Basso that mentions Jasmine.

Holy shit. Rinse wasn't kidding.

Update: The Star story confirming the details is here.

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Calling Bullshit on the Ford's "$1 Billion" Claim

Both Rob and Doug Ford lie frequently, but they've been dropping one lie lately that really irks me. They keep claiming they've saved Toronto taxpayers "over a billion dollars".

I'll let Matt Elliott take it from here. He's decided to challenge the Ford's on their fiscal record while others pursue Rob's lie about the existence of a recording showing him smoking crack, calling Justin Trudeau a "fag" and Don Bosco students "just fucking minorities".

False. Absolutely, definitively false. I’ve turned this number over in my head again and again and I can’t find any fair accounting of the city’s finances that supports the Fords as saving anywhere near a billion dollars. When Mayor Rob Ford took office, the gross operating budget was $9.214 billion. This year, it’s $9.405 billion. That represents an increase of about $200 million, not a decrease of a billion dollars.

The net operating budget - the part of the budget you pay with your property taxes - increased from $3.534 billion to $3.713 billion. Also not a reduction of a billion dollars.

No math supports anything close to the $1 billion dollar claim and I'm sick of hearing Rob and Doug drop this figure like it's fact. It's yet another bald-faced lie but this one can't be blamed on a massive media conspiracy.

By now it's clear, however, that Ford Nation has no interest in facts.

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Ford Brothers Blame Media, Channel Sarah Palin

Ford Brothers Blame Media, Channel Sarah PalinNow that Rob Ford and Doug Ford are both mired in controversy, most of it the result of solid investigative reporting by trustworthy journalists working for award-winning publications, it's clear their attack plan is to blame the media.

Rob Ford has twice dismissed the very serious crack smoking allegations against him as Toronto Star attacks. He essentially wants you to believe Kevin Donovan and Robyn Doolittle risked their entire careers to make this up in an effort to bring the mayor down. Even if you dismiss the fact that Gawker broke the story, this notion is absurd.

Now Doug is making the media rounds after the Globe published an investigation that was 18-months in the making. Doug Ford, it has been revealed, was a drug dealer, and Rob Ford's new top secret Directory of Operations and Logistics was his right-hand man. I've seen Doug on CBC and heard him on the radio and it's crystal clear he's taking a page out of someone's "how to rally your tea party base" handbook.

palin

The gotcha liberal media is at it again, right Rob and Doug? I'd love to see a little humility and accountability from our mayor and his councillor brother, but instead they seem hell bent on blaming the media for all their many follies.

They've got a show on 1010 that airs at 1pm. It's really more of a 2-hour ad for their agenda, and today, if you bother to tune in, you'll just hear 2-hours of denial and media blame.

Sigh.

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Rob Ford Has Fired His Chief of Staff

Rob Ford Has Fired His Chief of StaffToronto Mayor Rob Ford has fired his chief of staff, Mark Towhey. No reason has been given. He was relieved of his duties and escorted from the premises by security this afternoon.

Meanwhile, it's been an entire week since three reporters from two different publications revealed what they witnessed in a video that allegedly shows Rob Ford smoking crack, calling Justin Trudeau a "fag" and the students at Don Bosco "just fucking minorities". It's been a whole week, and our mayor has said almost nothing. He hasn't admitted he has a problem nor strongly denied the allegations. I'm convinced his strategy is to avoid the issue in the hopes it will simply blow over.

Has Mark Towhey been fired because he disagreed with this awful strategy? Has Mark Towhey been fired because of this crack controversy?

With Rob Ford still in office, we have many questions but few answers.

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The Comment From Rinse about Rob Ford's Crack Use

The Comment From Rinse about Rob Ford's Crack UseOver the past few days there's been tons of traffic from Gawker, Reddit, Twitter and elsewhere to this comment left by Rinse on March 26. Here's everything I know about it...

First, here's what Rinse wrote at 9:09pm that March 26 night in response to allegations Rob Ford has battled alcohol abuse:

Here's the thing: Rob Ford DOES use crack cocaine. A friend of mine, her mother is a serious drug addict. Rob Ford regularly goes over to her house to smoke crack.

The problem is this: The daughter wants to expose Rob Ford's drug abuse, but her oldschool Italian grandmother won't allow her to "bring shame" upon the family, long story short. So basically the daughter has become complicit with the entire thing instead of doing the right thing. Shame on you Jasmin.

Rinse commented from an IP address that has never commented on TorontoMike.com before or since. The IP address belongs to a Toronto Rogers customer.

Rinse left his/her email address as rinse@rinseout.com. I've written this address and it bounced back as invalid.

I have no idea who Rinse is and cannot comment on his/her integrity. When the comment showed up on March 26, I completely dismissed it and gave it little thought. Once Gawker broke the story about Rob Ford being caught on tape smoking crack, it suddenly seemed far more plausible.

With so many new eyeballs suddenly reading Rinse's comment, I felt I should share everything I know about it so there's no confusion.

Rinse, if you're out there and want to elaborate, please contact me.

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Video of Rob Ford Smoking Crack Cocaine

Video of Rob Ford Smoking Crack Cocaine: GawkerThis entry will contain no editorializing. I'm merely going to report facts.

Gawker just wrote about a video of Rob Ford smoking crack cocaine. John Cook, the author, has seen the video, supposedly taken within the past six months.

Here is what the video shows: Rob Ford, the mayor of Toronto, is the only person visible in the frame. Prior to the trip, I spent a lot of time looking at photographs of Rob Ford. The man in the video is Rob Ford. It is well-lit, clear. Ford is seated, in a room in a house. In one hand is a a clear, glass pipe. The kind with a big globe and two glass cylinders sticking out of it. In the other hand is a lighter. A slurred voice off-camera is ranting about Canadian politics in what sounds like an attempt to goad Ford. "Pierre Trudeau was a faggot!" is the one phrase the lodges in my mind. Ford, pipe in one hand and lighter in the other, is laughing, and mildly protesting at the sacrilege. He seems to keep trying to light the pipe, but keeps stopping to laugh. He is red-faced and sweaty, heaving with each breath. Finally, he finds his moment and lights up. He inhales.

You may recall the recent controversy when Sarah Thompson described Rob Ford's behaviour as that of a man on cocaine and the even more recent allegations that Rob Ford has a substance abuse problem.

ford

The photo above from the Gawker story "shows Ford hanging out with a number of people. The gentleman standing to his right, flipping the camera the bird, is Anthony Smith. Smith, a 21-year-old college student, was killed two months ago outside a Toronto nightclub in a gangland-style shooting".

Update: The Toronto Star's Robyn Doolittle and Kevin Donovan have also seen the video and believe it to be Toronto Mayor Rob Ford. They have many more details here.

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Director of Operations, Logistics and Gravy?

Director of Operations, Logistics and Gravy?You've likely heard the news that Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has hired his old football coach as Director of Operations and Logistics.

Dave Price was Ford’s high school football coach back when he was a student at Scarlett Heights. Now, Dave Price is Director of Operations and Logistics, and Toronto taxpayers are paying his 6-figure salary. Trust me, titles like that don't come without a 6-figure cost.

You're likely wondering what the Director of Operations and Logistics is responsible for at City Hall.... Ford won't say. His staffers won't say, either.

Sounds like respect for the taxpayer to me!

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The Problem With Rob Ford and His Camp: Kevin Donovan Speaks

The Problem With Rob Ford and His Camp: Kevin Donovan SpeaksKevin Donovan is an investigative reporter at the Toronto Star. He has won three Canadian Association of Journalists Awards, one Michener Award and three National Newspaper Awards and you might know him as the guy who broke the ORNGE story.

Kevin Donovan co-wrote the Star story that Rob Ford was asked to leave a gala event celebrating the Canadian armed forces last month, because organizers were concerned he was impaired.

It’s an open secret at city hall that the mayor has battled alcohol abuse. Those closest to him are concerned for his health and the impact it has on his job as mayor of Canada’s largest city. Current and former staff have told the Star of repeated attempts to persuade the mayor to get help for more than two years and as recently as November. All attempts have been rebuffed.

Kevin Donovan appeared on Humble and Fred's podcast this morning. Listen to what he had to say and then meet me after the jump.

In response to this story, Rob Ford has called it "an outright lie". His brother and unofficial spokesperson, Doug Ford, has also denied the allegations. Doug and Rob both believe the Toronto Star is out to get them and anything the Star writes that puts Rob Ford in a negative light is a lie.

Make no mistake, I don't take delight in the fact our mayor has a substance abuse problem. I sincerely hope he gets help, and my issues have always been with his flawed logic and regressive approach to city planning. He's a leader who won't raise a flag for the Pride Parade, but won't miss a photo opportunity with the pandas. He's a leader who will scream "subways, subways, subways" but won't tell you how we'll pay for the subways. And when an investigative journalist presents overwhelming evidence about our mayor being asked to leave a gala event, even confirming it with councillor Paul Ainslie, chair of the government management committee and a strong ally of Ford, Rob Ford, his brother and his camp stick with plan A: deny, deny, deny.

In this instance, it's a true shame. Rob Ford needs help, and step one is acknowledging he has a problem. Until Rob Ford accomplishes that, my fear is this will only get worse.

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