Opening Statement



Sunday, 26 May 2013

May Teacher News Digest 4

Rob Ford blog @ CRACKED! My School Edition blog acronym list is @ ACRONYMS Please note: Latest news stories are highlighted in LARGE:

TEACHER + UNION NEWS

Rumour: Has ETFO reached a deal with the MOE? With improved sick day language or terms? Apparently news will be released after the provincial budget passes. Hmmmm. Stay tuned for details ... [Ps. Thanks 4 the tip!]


St. Francis Lieberman "Bridges" students defend their club. Story below.

I'm still unable too confirm the ETFO rumour though have it on better source that there won't be any changes to the long term sick day plan. As announced on April 3, it will be the same as the OSSTF MOU model. No 3rd party arbitrator.

2 year TCDSB Director Bruce Rodrigues leaves to accept CEO position at EQAO. As a good teacher unionist what to say? Can one really blame him for jumping a shipwreck? G'by Bruce! We hardly knew you! Details to follow!

OSSTF York ratify 2 year agreement. I'm not sure what's so good about it but see the terms @ Deal!

TCDSB Catholic School board trustees defeat motion to ban GSA's by 7 to 4. My four part series follows in the blogs below. The Toronto Star reports @ Toronto Star
Blow by blow coverage of the trustee meeting with a video is @ XTRA

A very detailed report from Catholic Life Site News is posted @ LifeSiteNews.com

CITY TV reports @ Video clip

Ouch! Cringe!! Did you know: OECTA local units need to make a decision on which OSSTF MOU clauses they want to "me too" by June 1st? MOE memo has been forwarded to the locals about which are allowed, which aren't. FYI: see my "Comparing the OECTA + OSSTF MOU's" and "OECTA Me To: Between the Devil + The Deep Blue Sea" blogs from earlier this month in the archive below this column. More details to follow ...

Live on 1010 Talk Radio: Ford Bros. blame teachers who leave school early for Rob's dismissal as Don Bosco CSS football coach. BS! After numerous meetings staff, admin and parents asked the school board for a decision a few months ago. His foul bossy disposition and negative comments about the school had been a concern for quite some time. How low can you go?

My ongoing Ford Story coverage continues @ Cracked?


Meet "Unifor": CAW + CEP [media/ paperworkers] 300,000 members plus 800 local unions join together to create a "superunion" to rebuild a strong union movement across Canada. Learn more @ Rabble.ca

People for Education calls for Special Education review + an ombudsman for parents @ Annie Kidder

People for Education survey reveals a growing income gap exists in student access to extracurriculars and field trips @ Frill$?

OSSTF D12 Toronto teachers deal with equity issues everyday in our cities especially challenged school areas @
Disadvantaged

Constitutional experts don't support Federal anti union Bill C-337 @ Won't fly?

A US colleague fed up with educational "reforms" resigns. Different country same BS. We are all teachers. Check out the resignation video she made @ I quit!

OECTA Sudbury units protest cuts. 24 teacher layoffs announced. Hall monitors deemed not necessary by board. Safety first? Read @ Sudbury


Takes self discipline? Do not try at school!?!

How to learn anything! Wow! Sounds great! Ooops! Teacher are supposed to do everything for the kids these days so they "succeed". IE: How did you fail the student? This practical learning model requires task commitment, focus and self discipline. Too bad! Forget It! See @ No to learning!

The bottom line on learning styles: just plain bad classroom theory?!? An interesting challenge of educational platitudes which fly in the face of our daily teaching reality. Hmmm. Take it or leave it @ Big Theories Little Sense?

Public boards express mixed reviews for the MOU "Fair Hire" clause @ Fair Hire?

A student voices concern about being moved with the other Gr.7+8 students into a high school in the Near North board as a cost cutting measure @ Worried

Near North District board has a recommendation to close 5 schools and build 2 new ones @ Open + closed case?

Hockey Canada bans pee wee body checking! Teach them well! Start @ hockey violence

What students think we do during the summer holidays @ Plot their doom?


PARTY POLITICS

Latest Forum Poll: OLP = 38% /PC = 34%  /NDP = 21% /Greens = 6%

Also: 60% feel Doug Ford would not make a good  PC MPP. 48% believe the Ford scandals are hurting Hudaks PC brand. Read more @ Forum

PC Hudak suddenly distances himself from Doug Ford. Ha. He's had nothing but praise for him until now. Rob's an buffoon. Doug has half a brain. He could be a real provincial pain in the butt for the unions and progressive working people. I should think his political downfall would be a score. Negative + not nice, I know. However I think that's pretty much the political reality. Doug could make Mike Harris seem like a good guy. He's got the gift of gab too [ie he thinks before he speaks]. Read all about it @ PC's: Bye! Bye?

Earlier Forum Poll suggests OLP consolidating it's hold on the Toronto 416 ridings even despite gas plant scandal. Results: OLP = 42% /PC = 28% /NDP = 24% /Green = 4%. See @ 416 Poll

Latest IPSO Reid Poll: PC = 34% /OLP = 34% /NDP = 26% Undecided = 13%/ Other = 5% at Dead heat

Last weeks Abacus Leadership Poll: OLP Wynne = 34% /NDP Horwath = 32% PC Hudak = 22%. See full breakdown of numbers @ download

Also check the download to see: 1 in 3 polled don't believe Premier Wynne didn't know about the gas plant scandal. She said she was sorry. Usually works for mayor Ford? Wynne now too?

The party polls having been steady with occasional swings later falling back into line. How reliable are pre-election polls? As we get closer to an election the numbers might better reflect the voters more considered response based upon their impression of the leaders party campaign. Hudak looks like a definite PC liability once he has to take his show on the road. Wynne has been solidifying her popular base. Andrea is pretty much in a holding pattern. However there hasn't been a significant bump for the party or her, despite the much touted budget concessions. The situation basically remains quite tense but time might be on Wynnes side with a summer pause pending. Soon they will all be hitting the party BBQ circuit. Zzzzzz. Most folk will show little interest in politics until next fall. That doesn't mean nothing will be quietly going on in the meantime though ...


New Star Dispatch E-Book on Kathleen Wynne

You can download an E-Read on Wynnes first 100 days by writer Jim Coyle. I've found these Toronto Star dispatches hit and miss, not particularly in depth for the hardcore news junkie but they kind of touch on everything to provide an interesting general overview if you are fairly new to the joys of political punditry. They are a good pick up and put down subway or Go Train read too. $2.99 provides a cheap read on your Ipad or computer screen. You decide. See the link and an excerpt @ 100 Days

NDP Horwath claims party support is a one off deal. All future support will be decided on a case by case basis. Read @ Coalition?

PC MPP Randy Hillier lambasts OLP/ NDP budget alliance, claiming it hurts the "little guy" @ What about the little girls?

When will we actually see the new budget items rolled out + finally put in place? Read @ Don't hold your breath!

Toronto Star editorial tells the OLP why it's time for an increase in the minimum wage! Hope Andrea reads that! See @ Minimum

Women's Issues Minister Laurel Broten to create new rules requiring corporations to set targets for women in senior management roles. Laurel has always excelled in this portfolio provincially and at the local level since before she entered politics. Read @ Womens issues

Canada's Top 10 CEO's earn $12 to 49,000,000 million a year. Ontario minimum wage is $10 an hour @ Class warfare?

Rabble.ca provides a detailed report on the PC's Right to Work plans. Asks an interesting question: Are the OLP any better? Read @ RTW4Less?

Exploiting resentment: Why do non unionized workers support policies to weaken labour rights @ Nefarious

Watch the TVO Agenda debate: how does scandal affect voters? See @ TVO Episode

How Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is a big gift that keeps on giving for Ontario's political progressives in the other parties at all levels of government @ Yeah Ford!

Mayor Rob Fords polling numbers hold steady despite crack allegations + denials among Torontonians. Wow! Olivia Chow could still beat him though @ Holding steady!

There's a move afoot to draft John Tory to run for Toronto mayor again @ John Tory

Will Premier Wynne intervene with Toronto city council should the city become unable to function during the ongoing Ford scandals? Alas. She could dissolve council and call for a municipal election, but then the province would be responsible for running the city until the election is over. CTV news reports on the situation @ Wynne

IN OTHER NEWS

Check out the nuclear hotspots around Lake Ontario where much of our drinking water comes from @ Leaks or Spills?

Now we Canucks are world class capitalist imperialist pigs too! Kyrgyzstan declares state of emergency as angry workers storm a Canadian owned gold mine @ Harpers Canada

Chinese "Tiger Moms" equate their childs success to their own self worth @ Schooling


Back in the USSR 2013 #1: Soyuz 36

See the Russian Soyuz roll out for the next crew launch to the ISS [International Space Station.] Tres cool @ Space

NASA TV provides online educational programing. On Tuesday it provided live coverage of the Soyuz space launch + the crew arriving and docking up at the ISS. Amazing! Frequent reruns scheduled. A highly recommended teacher resource! Find @ NASA TV

Life On Mars?!? Japanese conspiratorial theorists claim NASA Mars Rover photos show a lizard hiding between the rocks on the planets freezing toxic surface. One hopes they don't plan to attack and takeover Planet Earth, make us all crawl around on the ground and eat flies etc etc etc. Nope. No way. I don't like it! Learn more @ Leaping Lizards!!!
Leaping Lizards! Is there life on Mars?!?

NASA artifacts are being made available for schools + institutions. See the prescreening of the objects + request procedures. I want a moon rock!!! Hmmm. See @ NASA Artifacts

Calling all space cadets: Applications being accepted for a NASA internship! Details @ Far out!

Another asteroid fly by on Friday May 31! It missed Planet Earth by about 5 million miles at 5:30 pm. Whew! This one was pulling a lost moon behind it. Could've created a real mess if it hit us. Game over! Watch @ More asteroids!

The End is nigh?! Extreme weather prediction for across Canada in coming years. Fix your storm pipes + get more home insurance? @ Insurance Bureau of Canada

Ziggy Stardust + the Lizards from Mars?!? NASA isn't buying hte Lizard. The Mars Rover won't be making a U-turn to go back to see @ Lizards from Mars!?

KULTURE KULT INK

Poll: Do you think Rob Ford smoked crack? Vote @ Crack?

Fisherman in Belarus is attacked + killed by beaver when he tried to take their photo together. Beavers are everywhere, threatening to overtake the country! Sportsmen show little interest in hunting them because they are so easy to find [ie by their dams]. The situation continues to escalate @ Killer Beavers!

Toronto Life: Amazing photos of flooded Don Valley Parkway @ Submerged!

Check out these extreme cosmetic techniques from South Korea to create a "baby face" and so on @ Baby Face

Some alt versions of the Canadian flag @ Oooooh Canada!


Back in the USSR 2013 #2 Pussy Riot!

Sir Paul McCartney [former bass guitarist for sixties pop sensation Ringo Starr + the Beatles ... ] writes letter requesting the Russian courts free Pussy Riot punk rockers imprisoned for protest in Moscow Cathedral @ Free Pussy Riot

Ready aye ready? New York State declares war with the province of Ontario over the Peace Bridge between Canada + the USA!! Fight! Fight! Fight! Ontario + New York State are having a fight! Check this out @ War on Peace!

In my minds eye I am all ready lying on a beach this summer, somewhere down in the Caribbean. Of course I will need some beach books. I like historical non fiction and a trash escapist read. So far I've all ready bought and set aside one, Dead Island: The Book, by Mark Morris about a zombie outbreak at a tropical resort. I will probably need 2 more. Tastes vary. How about you? Here's a list of 118 Desert Island [as opposed to Dead Island ... ] books for your perusal. Hope this helps @ Desert Isle Books!

Smells like teen spirit: What are the favourite tunes of Frances Bean, 21 year old daughter of suicidal grunge rocker Kurt Cobain [Nirvana]? Here we are now, entertain us @ "About a Girl"


No Kobain 4 you, Kurt, Courtney or Frances notwithstanding? Otherwise in this weeks tuneage + visuals department, here's the kool "Memorium" video by Midnight Juggernaut. It traces the evolution of computer graphics while the song plays @ CGI

Or you can end May on a high musical note by learning some "Gravy Train Music", a new genre featuring songs about Rob Ford @ Sing!

COMMENT BELOW:

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Toronto Catholic School GSA Vote: Trustee Statements

My updated May All Affiliate Teacher News Link Blog # 4 continues beneath this one.

Here are brief summaries from my notes of each TCDSB trustees statement, as I understood them, prior to the 7 to 4 vote not to ban the GSA clubs at Thursday nights TCDSB Board of Trustees meeting. They are presented in the order by which the trustees spoke.


Trustee Tanuan: Lots on his desk with the motion!

Trustee Tanuan [Mover]: Respecting Differences will help every student who is being bullied. The OLP rushed Bill 13 through knowing it violates the Constitution under the BNA act. The BNA act protects Catholic denominational rights. Nether the MOE nor the board has anything in place for the GSA's. The TCDSB can be a leader in implementing Respecting Differences instead of the GSA's. Let the Constitutional decide whether we have the right if we are challenged.

Trustee Del Grande [Seconder]: Ditto. GSA's are not lawful. Let's implement Respecting Differences instead. Notes there isn't any clergy here, but I'm not sure why. [?]. I asked around. Nobody seemed to think they come to the trustee meetings. Maybe that was his point? They're not Catholic enough?


Trustee Del Grande seconder: A question of BNA rights?

Student Trustee Walker: Notes there are students outside crying because of all the hateful things being said by both sides. 90% of our students are concerned about their peers feeling safe at school. Bullying can't be generalized. He has sat on a GSA unlike most everybody else here. They are a way to deal with the specific bullying against LBGTQ. They suffer from a particularly bad stigma. The GSA's are not about homosexual acts. Chastity is taught. They are about everybody feeling safe. He's against the GSA ban.

Trustee Piccininni: We are on the wrong side of history with the GSA ban. We can't throw a 2000 year old Bible at the problem as the solution. This is not 1915. We are not sitting around drinking lemonade anymore. He never would've thought we'd end smoking in public but we did. He remembers people going to Yonge St. to throw eggs at the gays on Halloween night. He thought it was funny then. He doesn't anymore. He is proud of the student presenters who came here tonight. The LBGTQ have rights. He intends to protect them. He will not support the ban.


Judas: The Biblical Kiss

Note: Puccininni was often almost drowned out by shouts of "Judas". One heckler would not stop. Chair Andrachuk silenced him down to a mutter by saying, "Only God will stand in judgement sir, not you."


Trustee Andrachuk: Only God will stand in judgement sir, not you!

Trustee Rizzo: She was proud of the students who came tonight to present. She doesn't respond well to threats. She will protect the students. There are many different types of Catholics today. There is room in the Catholic church for everybody. We are diverse but we are one community. It is the holy spirit which guides our students day to day living reality. She wants whats best for the students. She will not support the ban.

Trustee Davis: These students are todays young Catholics. We should be proud of them whether we agree with them or not. Our faith is at the core of the discussion. The discussion is not externally driven. Nobody has to join the the GSA clubs. The name itself does not oppose our faith. Let's support our students so everybody feels safe at school. She will not support the motion.


How can we best serve our young people today?

Trustee Crawford: She appreciated tonights discussion. She learnt a lot. It distresses her to see our community so divided. Either way the vote goes tonight, we lose. She is concerned about external factors. The board is providing it's own resources on line. It wants to encourage critical thinking. We teach and model the faith. Now is not the time for a constitutional challenge. The motion asks us to break the law. Chaos will result. She will not support the motion.

Trustee Kennedy: As a nurse she knows bullying is wrong. Still, GSA's are not acceptable to our Catholic values. The Ontario Bishops approved Respecting Differences so we should use it to protect our faith and morals. If students don't like that then they don't have to come to a Catholic school. We have the constitutional right and authority to adjust the GSA's through a Catholic lens as our parents have requested tonight. We have the right, let's use it. She will support the ban.

Trustee Jacovcic: He supports equity initiatives that will help the most vulnerable. Do GSA's threaten our Catholicity? No. He wonders how Respecting Differences has been utilized so far in our TCDSB schools? Human rights are more important than denominational rights here. He is concerned about the welfare of our students. He will not support the motion.

Trustee Buttoni: Inclusiveness means promoting not labelling students. We should not differentiate differences. Respecting Difference clubs are open to everybody. No one is excluded. The times have changed but not the universal law of God. She will support the ban.


How can the school board implement a good equity program to help the LGTBQ?

Trustee Poplawski: In her ward, Cardinal Carter CSS has established a successful Dialogue club. Will the other new clubs now be banned too? The motion refers to GSA's or "similar" clubs. Are only GSA's being singled out? She's considering a friendly amendment to strike the word "similar" from the motion to allow the other clubs to continue. She asks TCDSB Director Bruce Rodrigues if the amendment would help with the implementation of the school board program.

Note: Trustee Tanuan says these other clubs don't need to be dismantled. He would agree to the amendment.

Note: Director Rodrigues responds that Respecting Differences has not been implemented. There is a review coming but he has not received it yet. The amended motion would not help as an implementation guide.

Note: Trustee Poplawski withdraws her friendly amendment. She will not support the ban.

Trustee Tanuan  [the mover] is offered the last word. He says Bill 13 violates our Catholic values and rights. The MOE is trying to micromanage our schools.  Respecting Differences is our Catholic alternative to the GSA's. We are protected by our constitutional Rights in the BNA. He encourages everyone to support  his motion.


Hellbound: Catholic schools + the GSA's? The trustees thought not.

The vote is called at 10:55pm. The motion fails by a vote of 7 to 4.

Read my complete TCDSB GSA vote report below:

Part 1: Toronto Catholic School GSA Ban Primer @ Pt 1 Primer
Part 2: Vote Results @ Pt 2 Ban Defeated
Part 3: Deputations @ Pt 3 Pro + Cons

COMMENTS
 

Friday, 24 May 2013

Toronto Catholic School GSA Vote: Deputations!

For the latest teacher news links visit my May Teacher News Digest 3 HERE!

I will briefly summarize the different deputations that were made last night, pro and con, for your erudition. I regret if I oversimplify or accidentally misrepresent a presentation as I try to provide a brief sense of the sentiments and arguments expressed. I've decided not to identify the speakers except for those representing our local Catholic teachers unit; OECTA TSU. I will also name the clubs and school's name.


Please note: The motion was defeated 7-4,  not 11-4. My mistake!

I am beginning with the student, parent and community group presentations. The trustees to follow in my next blog:

Francis Lieberman CSS students: Perky, respectful Catholic students in proper uniform speak in favour of the 2 clubs at their school: Respecting Differences + Bridges. Their emphasis is on equality, promoting compassion, + respecting differences issues. The clubs are not political or sexual. They promote chastity for both straight and gay students. The student led the assembly in prayer. Response: Some quiet sneering and derision but mostly polite.

Mary Ward CSS students: Deportment the same as the Lieberman presenters. The positive impact of GSA's in promoting the Gospel value of "Love one another" is stressed. Acceptance and inclusivity is a way to lessen homophobia. There are groups for the other types of bullying too. An argument was presented that the 1867 BNA act had been essential to protect Catholics who were being discriminated against, so we should be able to empathize with the LGBQT. Positive imaging was addressed. Response: same.


OECTA TSU 1st VP Dave Szollosy: Catholic social justice teachings towards the marginalized is emphasized. What is important is the clubs purpose, not their names.  The boards equity policies were discussed. Sensitivity is necessary to provide an accommodating safe learning environment for all. The emphasis should be on the common values that unite us all within the Catholic community. Response: Mixed applause. I was told to pray for Dave by a member supporting the ban.

OECTA TSU Human Rights Committee's Michel Blais: The committee does not support the ban. Harassment and bullying, marginalization and exclusion, embracing the most vulnerable, supporting and empowering our students and self definition were all addressed. Catholics have been a minority group. Generic clubs could put our LGBQT students in the same position.  It was noted that the United Nations has recognized that homosexuality is not a sickness since 1990. Response: Mostly quiet. Applause from the back rows.

A single parent: GSA's are based upon homosexual ideology. They bring sexual experimentation into our schools. They encourage boys to kiss each other and promote the sexualization of students. No student should be discriminated against but the GSA's are unacceptable and unnecessary. The Catholic church is open to everyone including gays but not homosexual behaviour. Response: Applause and upset student chatter.


A parent: GSA's violate our denominational rights. We need to defend the rights of our children and those of the church. Lukes Gospel is quoted. If you are not with us you are against us. There is no room for dissent. We are of one mind and heart in Christ. Response: Applause, more confusion.

Rogers Broadcaster: states he was fired as an on air announcer for defending marriage. The purpose of GSA's is to promote homosexuality contrary to the clear teachings of the Catholic church. We are not casting stones but only trying to live our faith + teach our children accordingly. We will stand up for protecting gays but we will not promote their lifestyle. We shall be victorious through Jesus Christ. Response: Much applause and cheering.

A retired teacher: Trustee Tanuan has been bullied in the media over tabling tonights motion by another trustee. He has a right to table the motion to protect Catholic education. Our board lacks leadership. Respecting Differences still has not been implemented whereas we could be leaders in doing so, rather than supporting GSA's. Concern was expressed that fat and skinny students are the most bullied. If the board goes the GSA route it leaves the staff without any support. Response: Applause and cheering.


CORE: Emphasized their belief in Bill 13. A court challenge for replacing GSA's with Respecting Difference Clubs would legally fall short. Acceptance, conflict resolution, wellbeing, respect and safety are stressed. Response: Clapping from the back rows.

PFLAG [Parents + Friends of Lesbians + Gays]: Presenter noted she is a product of the Catholic school system as a student and is now a Catholic teacher. She has a lesbian daughter whom she is proud of. Homophobia is rampant at school and throughout society.  All children should be a part of a GSA. GSA's promote acceptance. Opponents have nothing to fear, there is no political agenda. Catholic values of the mystical body of Christ and the Catholic sacraments  are addressed. The issue should not be reduced to a political bone of contention. Response: Speaker was shouted down by catcalls, booing, and name calling. She cut her presentation short but was called back by the chair to finish. A shouting match ensued in the visitors gallery about how much time she had left, drowning out the rest of her presentation.

NOTE: Chair explains teachers should not be addressing the trustees meeting but she will allow it this time. The comments are to be duly recorded in the minutes.

Couples for Christ: Many student's families are visual minorities from countries were Catholic values strongly teach homosexuality is unacceptable. The Ontario Catholic Bishops have spoken. We are to implement Respecting Differences clubs. GSA's undermine family values. We need to preserve our distinct values. The anti homophobia posters put up at school by the Bishop Morocco CSS student Rainbow club are bad and should not be allowed in a Catholic school. The school board has the right to adjust Bill 13's implementation in our schools to respect Catholic religious values. Response: Lots of applause + crying students.


Independent group delegate speaker: He came from India excited that our democracy supports Catholic schools. Our schools should teach traditional Catholic values, they should not be hubs for student indoctrination by Bill 13. Respecting Differences encourages equality for all.  Christianity has always been opposed to homosexuality even if it is popular with the mainstream. Biblical references to sinners having millstones put around their neck and being thrown into the sea are strongly stated. Response: Much cheering and applause. Crying students + shouting can be heard outside the auditorium.

One with God Community: We share a common Catholic way of life. Would God approve of GSA's? Procreation is for men and women only. Homosexuals must remain celibate. GSA's do not address bullying rather they promote homosexuality when our students are searching for their identity. Reference is made to public school boards, in the US and Quebec I believe, where 14 year old girls are allegedly being told to kiss each other and the boys are given condoms and told girls are sluts. Do we want our Catholic schools to be like that? Response: Much cheering and applause. Much crying outside the auditorium.


PAFE [Parents as First Educators]:  Catholic schools must teach our children to love Christ. Our teachings are Catholic. The government is violating our rights. The 2011 Osborne opinion on equity and our denominational rights showed they can't be overrode. Trustees have the right to choose Respecting Differences clubs over GSA's as our constitutional right. Offence is taken to a Lieberman Bridges club poster display apparently promoting bisexuality and gay families being displayed in the school and not taken down. We will remember how the trustees voted tonight during the next election. Response: Shock and applause. Lots of student crying outside the auditorium.

COMMENT: I don't care if one is pro or con, it is absolutely wrong to make the students cry!!! Always!!! Last night they presented themselves quite finely with excellent deportment. It took courage + principle to enter the lion's pit. Bravo!

As for the adults behaviour? No.Two thumbs down! The students had every right to be there, so of course, all present should show them proper respect, even though the offence given might've been unintentional. This is about the students, not us. If they don't come first then God help us all. Actions speak louder than words!



NEXT: The Trustee's Statements!

COMMENT: 

Toronto Catholic School GSA Ban Defeated!

The TCDSB board of trustees voted 7 to 4 against a proposed GSA ban after much angst and heated debate among the community members in attendance to make their deputations, both pro and con. The low point of the evening was when the student presenters from the various school GSA's started to cry over some of the accusations being made. It was not an evening for the young or faint of heart.


Trustees voting for the motion to ban the Bill 13 mandated GSA's were trustees Tanuan [mover]  Delgrande [seconder], Pottoni and Kennedy. I'd estimate about two thirds of the visitor gallery were supporters of the motion and one third against, from the amount of clapping, yelling and jeering going on. Nasty, very nasty.  

I made sure to sit at both sides of the divided board room to see and hear first hand what was going on. I took copious notes. I will try to make some sense of them later when I write my full report. It was a long gruelling evening. I'm home and it's midnight. Off to bed. More later ......

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Has Rob Ford Finally Cracked?

Chronology: Latest news update links usually added towards bottom of blog

Kulture Kult Ink presents :

Why a School Edition blog on Mayor Ford? Recently I have included his continually unravelling story under the Union News, Party Politics, In Other News + even the Kulture Kult Ink sections of my teacher news digests. It's now time to move the latest scandal, the Rob Ford crackhead allegations here to a separate blog.


Rob Ford! He`s the man!

True, the Rob Ford story since he was elected Mayor 3 years ago could fit under my regular news digest subtitles. It's a municipal story, with Queens Park implications. He is certainly a pinko + left wing hating meanie more so than most we have suffered within the Tory blue Ontario mindset. He certainly loves to kick union butt. He's a big favourite on the front pages of the neo right wing Toronto Sun. He is also an embarrassment to our fair city, and a big joke around the world as his antics continue to go viral.


Ha ha! Pinkos ...... get it ..... ? .... ha .... ha ..... er ....

Rob Ford blames his latest scandal on a conspiracy against him as Mayor. Ho hum! This time he blames the Toronto Star, Canada's largest circulation daily newspaper, for all appearances, a liberal one at that. Liberal? Doubtful! No matter. Recall his inauguration? Hockey commentator + loud mouth buddy boy Don Cherry showed up in a joke "pinko" jacket making cracks throughout the ceremony taunting Fords political opposition to the max while the big boy laughed! It's unclear to me who viscerally hates who the most: Ford or the  left? It's a which came first enigma; the chicken or the egg.

My blog is leftie, so to speak. I admit I have often gladly revelled in his misery. Here is the man who stripped our city worker contracts, privatized many of our services, and has made numerous hurtful demeaning racist + sexist jokes while in office. He's seemingly broken every rule at city hall at least once, including our City Hall Ethics code, which Ford claimed he hadn't even read.

For three years I have wondered how long his bullying arrogance and foul deceits could continue unabated. We saw him elected Mayor with an intensely mindless " No Gravy Train" mantra. We have watched as he then senselessly destroyed years of careful city + community planning, study and work intended to move our city into the 21st century as a world class city.


In the end, and I hope it comes soon ... hope springs eternal  .... we can now only watch as Mayor Rob Ford becomes his own worst enemy. With scandal after scandal his incredulous unwavering popularity is unravelling. Ford can blame his downfall on his leftie opponents, but in reality none of us could do as much damage to his reputation as he is doing now himself, as he most unfortunately drags our city down with him.

Ford has pleaded innocent before. He has then been caught red handed, apologized + continued on his merry way, business as usual. Other times he has against all odds wiggled his way out of a tight situation on a technicality or some ridiculous good old boy excuse. One hopes we are seeing the final curtain fall on this sad story. Maybe, maybe not.


At any rate I will now be posting the news of Rob Fords latest crack scandal here so it doesn't waste concern in my news blog digests alongside our other more worthy teacher and union matters. OK, I admit, it's morbidly fascinating to watch. Perhaps you might also consider the blog a tribute to his sheer madness as well as that of those whom he constantly fools, scandal after scandal after scandal. God help us all! Seems nobody else will .....

IN THE NEWS

Latest links in large!


Cracked or cooked ....

The CBC provides us with a Rob Ford time line to help follow the story. My links begin with the allegation and continue down the page. See the time line @ His Story!

Rob Ford: Crackhead? The Toronto Star allegations @ Cocaine?

Lawyers discuss differences in Canadian + US libel law. US news can make bold accusations, while the Canadian news must tread more lightly. See the video @ libel law video

Could the video be faked? Apparently not @ Cell phone video

Six figure fundraisers start on line in race to buy + release the cellphone video of Rob Ford allegedly smoking crack while uttering homophobic obscenities and racial slurs @ on line

Huffington Blogger questions the morality of contributing to the fund @ $$$$$?????

A description of what can be seen in the video, with a transcript of Rob's comments. If I was rich I think I'd buy it as a public service. Enough is enough. Donate @ Donations


Updated media still shot: Only 1 face blotted out!

Surprise! Ford denies allegations!Claims the Toronto Star is out to get him. Police will investigate the allegations. Other community leaders comment @ Pipe dreams?

A Toronto Star column rebutting Ford's Toronto Star allegations. Hmmm. Read @ DiManno

The Toronto Star insists Mayor Rob Ford should resign for his own good and that of the city @ Toodle loo?

Right winger columnist Margaret Wente at Toronto's "national" newspaper, the Globe + Mail says Ford has got to go @ Toodle too!

The Toronto Sun is miffed Ford remains silent + evasive on the issue @ Toodle three?

This National Post article lists the reasons why the allegations might be fake @ Fake?


Rob Ford laying low, misses his regular radio talk show @ MIA

Some Ford funnies to lighten the load @ Cracked

Macleans article on the Ford Zone notes the confusion and ridicule over the mayors antics, here in Toronto, and indeed in international news, as the stories go viral. Ford always denies everything. It`s always just lefties who are out to get him. When he is finally caught red handed doing something wrong he sheepishly admits it`s true after all. He says he`s sorry, then continues business as usual. Truth is he`s basically given up on governance and the city is floundering. A very interesting read: The Ford Zone!


Hmmmmmmm. So which isn`t it this time Rob .... booze .... drugs .... both?

Ford allegations embarass Toronto as the story makes headlines + the talk show ciruit stateside. It's tarnishing the cities claim of being a world class city @ Mr. International News

Here's a mouldie Oldie: Rob Ford wife beater? It remains a particularly disturbing incident even though the charges were dropped. As the article notes Fords Follies date way back even before this domestic violence 2008 allegation. The part about his sister's druggie death is odd too, especially considering the most current stories about Rob smoking crack. Some charges stick. Some don't. See @ domestic assault +threat?

Rob Ford was arrested + charged with DUI [Driving Under the Influence] back in Florida in 1999 after drinking a "couple of litres" of wine with his wife. He refused a breath test claiming he wasn't drunk. Police searched him and found marijuana in his back pocket. Although the story came out during his mayoral election campaign, he still won by a landslide. Go figure. Read @ Little ol' wine drinker + driver Rob!

Vice.com Toronto declared him the greatest mayor of all time. They thought he was finally going to get fired for the Don Bosco football donation scandal. Think again! Careful if you are offended by salty language + references, this article is very ... er ... Fordian @ Vice's Greatest Mayor


Mayor Rob Fords Toronto that is .....

A must read: Huffington Post Canada tells the "Rob Ford Story" with videos, photos, a time line and commentary! Soon to be a "made for t.v." movie?!? Read first @ The Rob Ford Story

Now the TCDSB has kicked Ford out as Don Bosco Secondary School's "football coach" for being a poor role model. The decision has been pending for sometime and is probably not related to the recent scandal. The parents, teachers and school admin petitioned for him to be removed and have been patiently waiting for the TCDSB to take action. Bosco will be the second school Ford has been forced to leave. He is now shopping around again offering other TCDSB schools $10,000 to let him be their football coach. Money talks! Wow! See @ Heave Ho!

Mayor Ford is still on the run ... well more like the waddle ... refusing to speak to a very concerned city about the latest allegations for nearly a week now. His angy brother Doug gives a press conference telling the media to stop harassing him. Bizarre! See the video @ Doug Ford speaks

The sound of silence @ CP24

Finally, Rob denies all? Why so long? He's denied things in the past, then got caught red handed afterwards. It stretches the imagination. Watch the video @ Denial video

Ford unexpectedly fires his long time aide + Chief of Staff as the crack scandal seems to be blowing sky high + out of control. Who will anchor the big boy back to reality now that he is gone? Does this sound like a man on crack? Read @ Mark Towhey

The Toronto Sun reports it was because he told him to go to rehab! Boy, in the Sun?!? The right must figure he's finally become too much of a liability, popular or not! Would you invite this man in for pretzels and beer?. Actually I know somebody who did! Later! For now read @ Rehab


How about this time ...? Well, you'll need to catch him red handed first!

What is Fords press strategy? Does he have one? See @ in the news

Read about the Rob Ford and Mike Harris connection @ 905

See the Harper Fordfest connection @ R is 4 Right


Ford 80's: Rob in Gr.11 sporting a "shag"; a very popular haircut in some circles!

Usually staid Globe + Mail prints an "Investigative" report on the Ford Families drug history @  Back in the day?

Party dudes? Photos of the Ford gang in the 1980's @ Pix!


Doug in Gr.11: Is that a "Thor" or a "Hercules" shag haircut? Inquiring minds want to know!

Is big brother Doug the "head" of the Ford household? He responds to news reports he was a hashish dealer in the 1980's @ Pretty hopped up!

Why did the Globe + Mail choose to publish the "Ford Family Story"? Editorial explains, and notes they are the most powerful family in Toronto @ Ford Family

Media angles: Why is the usually staid Canadian press running with these tabloid stories unlike in years past? There's a lot of players involved in the Ford news game. IMHO the Fords just can't stop being buffoons. However it's happening at a number of other levels too. Consider this one Gawker, Star + Globe

Will Doug sue the Globe + Mail @ Defamation?

Doug Ford immediately hits the Toronto TV news circuit. Its a pretty well scripted response. Lots of weasel words, just plain folk references + red  herrings if you listen and watch carefully. He's a natural. Doug Ford can be a much more scary neo con than Doug. He has a brain, so to speak. One of his first initiatives on city council was to try to sell off a long planned harbour lands community project to developers who promised to throw in a big Ferris wheel. Lotsa folks were pretty excited and impressed!  Dougs definately got potential. He's made his provincial political aspirations clear too. Tim Hudak is hoping he can help the PC's break into the Toronto 416 ridings.


Doug + Rob: More balls than brains? The Team Ford Radio Show!

Global TV's one on one interview with Doug is @ Doug goes on the offensive

Dougs CP24 interview with host Steven LeDrew is divided into two parts @ One and Two

Doug Ford insists the news allegations [or should we say leaks?] are a part of a political attack against him + his brother. Quite possibly. That doesn't mean they aren't true though. One hardly seems to need to to make up stories about these 2. Plus they are hardly strangers to making political attacks themselves. What comes around goes around? It's called karma ... Doug's @ Sun News

Moody's to the rescue? Toronto keeps its Aa1 Financial rating. Budget is on track. Hmm @ Aa1

Ford video hawkers suddenly missing. The plot thickens @ MIA

How are the brothers Ford Nation supporters responding @ keepin' the faith?

Mick Jagger can't resist a Ford crack or two during the Rolling Stones Saturday night show in Toronto @ Tumbling Dice?



NEWS FLASH: Ford Bros live on 1010 Talk radio 1-3pm Sunday. First hour was basically a good old boy show, Rob calling the media "maggots" + named the city councillors who voted against a Toronto casino. The bros boasted at length about their accomplishments. Rob did not address the crack allegations in any detail. Doug promised fireworks after Rob left at 2pm. There were 3 live phone calls for Rob in the last 5 minutes all from angry outraged backers. Afterwards a retired drug cop called up to say he'd never heard of Doug during the 1980's.

Rob Ford call the media "maggots on his talk radio show. A good idea? Whew! He's going to need a new Chief of Staff + close personal adviser el pronto 4 sure @ Maggots?

Then again, Sun article claims Ford doesn't heed his advisers anyway. This may well be his Achilles heel. Numerous recent incidents are noted @ Just Rob!

Doug Ford denies dealing drugs. Rob claims video doesn't exist. Wonder if he bought it himself?!? It seller seems to have gone missing all of a sudden. The media is digging into this now. Meantime he's a brief overview of the show @ The Rob + Doug Show


Doug Ford seems ambivalent about the Toronto Sun coverage but ..... has he read it lately?

Police homicide officers investigation allegedly swirls over the mysteriously disappearing Ford crack video. The original owner dead. Another fellow in photo shot down. Ford seems increasingly confident + belligerent that the video doesn't exist. Read @ Too Far Fetched?

Warren Kinsella asks: Why is the Ford crack video a part of a police investigation involving homicide officers? What to do? See @ Homicide?!

More questions as the plot thickens @ Kinsella

[One wonders: Is Warren just an interested by-stander? Shhhh ... ]

Incomplete denials + lotsa Ford huffing and puffing: How did the crack video go poof? Also vote in the poll! Did Rob Ford smoke crack??? Read + vote @ Vote!


Google Trends tracks the widespread world interest in the Rob Ford story by how many times his name is being searched. So far he's beat Obama, Harper + Lady Gaga @ World Renowned!

Rob Fords polling numbers hold steady among Torontonians despite scandals. Olivia Chow could still kick his butt in an election though @ Popularity holds!

Two more key Ford staffers, his communications director and press secretary resign! Mayor claims they had better job offers. I bet! Co-incidental or what eh? Read more @ Bye Rob!


Spokesman Christopoulus: Yeah ... um ... I got a better job. That's why I'm leaving!

Mayor Ford hires his former Bosco football coaching assistant and other football players to work in his office @ Go team go!

Coffees on! Rob's newbie press team has a lot on the plate during their first day on the job @ Good overview

Toronto Star reviews Mondays resignations. A video of Robs incredulous response + press apology is also included @ Overview

Videos of Robs media "apology", comments on the staff resignations + what his staff knew about the video @ See 4 yourself


What to do next?!?

Toronto Star reports there may be 3 copies of the video. A Ford aide + former coaching buddy David Price had info on the video. Said he thought he might know where it was. Chief of Staff Towhey, since then dismissed contacted police. Didn't want anyone to get killed. Police interviewed both. More @ News crack!

Homicide detectives interviewed @ Shooting

2 men shown in still shot from alleged Ford crack video identified. One dead, one wounded in shoot out two months ago in downtown Toronto night club district. Report + photo @ Hmmm!

Gawker donations reach $200,000 for the Ford crack video but where is it? See @ MIA!

National Post questions if the PC's would be wise running Doug Ford as a candidate in the next provincial election. He had been their great hope of a Tory 416 breakthrough. Now? Read @ Doug Ford PC?


Ford Bros: Tweedle Dumb + Tweedle Dee

Premier Wynne muses about Rob Ford and life in the public eye @ Raw video

A day in the life: How Rob Ford spent his 44th birthday @ More woe!

Office tip: Fords staff knew about the video. Now Deputy Mayor is suggesting it might be a fake. Rob says it doesn't exist. Much confusion persists @ Is there or isn't there?!?

Worth repeating: Could the Iphone video be faked? Apparently not @ Cell phone video

Could the Iphone video be faked? Apparently yes @ Fakin it !

Rob Fords "Pity Party" about people always unfairly picking on him is a textbook case of bad crisis management. Read more @ Pity Party

Wrestlers crack jokes about Rob Ford @ Plausible Deniability?

Staunch Ford boosters at Toronto Sun turned down the crack tape. Would take it in a minute if they could get it now! The media builds them up. The media knocks them down. The difference here is that the Ford Bros were once the Ontario right wings great hope for a popular peoples choice breakthrough, at least with Doug if Rob couldn't hold it together. Now? Read @ Turnabout


Citizen Party: Happy B'day Mayor Ford! Please resign!

A good recap of the Rob Ford crack crisis to date is @ Cracking up?

Crackgate?!? Emails, telephone records from Fords fired + resigned office staff allegedly ordered destroyed!! The Toronto Star investigates @ Crackgate

Is Toronto suffering from Ford Fatigue in dealing with important municipal issues while Mayor Ford continues to dodge his personal ones? Read @ Ford Fatigue

Mayors announcement on Toronto flash floods drowned out by questions about the crack scandal. Rob dodges out. Deputy mayor and a city councillors have a few things to say about Rob though @ Flash Flood

Mayor Ford allegedly spills beans to his staff on where the video recording is! Read @ What video?!?

Ford policy adviser resigns + a personal assistant leaves Mayor Rob Ford's office. That's 5 in the last 2 1/2 weeks. The office was understaffed to start with, as a part of Rob's cost cutting measures. Now it's key staff that's leaving. One wonders how the mayor's office will be able to carry on city business let alone assist the mayor as he's embroiled in scandal after scandal. It's also interesting to note the Ford brothers strategy. When something is going down in the office, Doug comes out to make an announcement about something or other to divert the medias attention from Rob. They remain virtually camped outside the office. More to follow!


Toronto burns while the mayor fiddles about!

Premier Wynne twitters that she is watching the situation carefully. Will the province intervene? Could it dissolve council + call a municipal election?

Doug Ford tells her to mind her own scandals @ Toronto Sun

New Forum Provincial Poll: 60% feel Doug Ford would not make a good candidate for Provincial Conservative [PC] MPP. 48% believe the Ford scandals are hurting party leader Tim Hudaks PC brand. Read more @ Forum

PC party Tim Hudak leader distances himself from Doug Ford. He's no longer lauding him as a conservative candidate in the next provincial election @ PC's: Bye! Bye!

Here's the latest Toronto street graffiti, spotted on a wall in Kennsington market @ Mr. Crackhead Pipe?

The Crack-o-meter measures how high the odds are that Rob Ford will crack + lose his cool. Also included is the "Slurpy" story. Ford fans planned to try to disseminate a fake Ford crack video with a look-a-like named "Slurpy". It was supposed to discredit allegations a real video exists. Unfortunately, "Slurpy" had second thoughts of getting involved in the imbroglio. I kid you not. See both stories + more @ Toronto Life


Who is the real "Slurpy". Where is he? More news coverage about the Rob Ford Doppelganger @ "Slurpy"

A very strange visit to apt.1703 - 320 Dixon Ave. where the crack video is/ was allegedly stashed. Drug dealers apparently angry about all the attention + publicity. The video will never surface. The reporters visit was recorded + can be seen @ Apt 1703

Rob ends May claiming everything is fine. Whew! Could've fooled me! Imagine that! Read @ Jus' dandy!

We can end May on a fun note by learning some "Gravy Train Music", a new genre featuring songs about Rob Ford @ Sing!

This Rob Ford blog continues on June 1st. See you there!

STAY TUNED ...

This blog is brought to you by Kulture Kult Ink: A division of my David Chiarelli: School Edition Blog.

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