Friday, March 4, 2011

Easy Does It

It would appear that some of my previous posts have raised the hackles of some Lt. Colonel in the Ford Nation armed forces. Well, tough. I think the second you run for public office, you open yourself to all manner of criticism, lampooning, etc. So I don't ever feel bad for criticising a politician.

You might say his weight has nothing to do with his official position and is therefore not fair game. Au contraire, I retort. I think Ford's weight problem has everything to do with the political woes of this city. Because first of all, he is not simply a bit chubby. We're not talking about someone who could stand to get a bit more exercise but is otherwise healthy. We're talking about someone who is probably morbidly obese or super obese* (worst. superpower. ever.). The health problems that come with that are a serious concern in a civic leader. For example, what if he dies in office? That would be chaos for the city.

But that is really just the obvious problem. The bigger problem is what his weight problem represents -- that is, his lack of self control. While it's possible that there are some genetic factors here, his machiavellian brother has half the same genes and isn't morbidly obese. What is more likely is that diet and exercise are the culprits here. But controlling his diet and exercise is not really his style. And that kind of behaviour spills over into council, for example, when a vote doesn't go his way. And of course this lack of maturity is why so many people love him so much.

Self control is hard, but the new mayor peddles easy answers, such as "Toronto has a spending problem, not a revenue problem." This sounds really good because the problem is easy to fix and falls on someone else – someone else is wasting my money. And then, lo and behold, when it turns out Toronto does have a revenue problem, it's someone else's problem again. And when that someone gives him the same hard line he's been running all around the city, he throws a temper tantrum and threatens to begin a war by inventing a sovereign nation.

Because that's the easy answer. But it's an easy answer that is unlikely to accomplish anything but short-term self satisfaction. This city needs a leader who is interested in more than instant gratification. Great things require hard work.

The mayor's weight problem is just symptom of the mayor's lack of self control. And the mayor is a symptom of voters'.

* According to this extremely unscientific source, Don Cherry is 5'11" tall and Rob Ford is a bit taller than Don Cherry in the photos from the infamous inauguration, so if we give him 6'1" and take a wild guess at his weight being 300lbs, we get a body mass index of 39.6.

No comments: