•   
  •   
  •   

Canada Thomas Walkom: Doug Ford’s media bus controversy is much ado about very little

01:30  10 april  2018
01:30  10 april  2018 Source:   thestar.com

Doug Ford declines to participate in Black Community Provincial Leaders Debate

  Doug Ford declines to participate in Black Community Provincial Leaders Debate Doug Ford will not be participating in a provincial leaders' debate organized by the Black community scheduled for April 11. Ontario PC Leader Doug Ford will not be participating in a provincial leaders' debate organized by the black community scheduled for April 11, CBC Toronto has learned. In a statement to CBC Toronto, Ford's campaign says the Ontario Progressive Conservative leader will be in Northern Ontario on the date of the Black Community Provincial Leaders Debate. "Doug Ford has been meeting with Ontarians of every background and listening to their concerns," the statement reads.

Thomas Walkom : Doug Ford ’ s media bus controversy is much ado about very little Critics are ripping into Ontario Progressive Conservative leader Doug Ford ’ s

Critics are ripping into Ontario Progressive Conservative leader Doug Ford ’ s decision to campaign during the upcoming provincial election without a media bus in tow. Thomas Walkom appears Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Read more about

Editor’s note: The opinions in this article are the author’s, as published by our content partner, and do not necessarily represent the views of MSN or Microsoft.


Keeping the Queen’s Park press gallery at a distance won’t eliminate Ford’s gaffe potential. But it may minimize it, writes Thomas Walkom.© Chris Young Keeping the Queen’s Park press gallery at a distance won’t eliminate Ford’s gaffe potential. But it may minimize it, writes Thomas Walkom.

Critics are ripping into Ontario Progressive Conservative leader Doug Ford’s decision to campaign during the upcoming provincial election without a media bus in tow.

Liberal Premier Kathleen Wynne accuses Ford of trying to avoid media scrutiny. Ontario New Democratic Party leader Andrea Horwath says she’s shocked at a decision that “flies in the face of transparency.” They should relax.

Doug Ford insists he is no Donald Trump

  Doug Ford insists he is no Donald Trump Doug Ford insists he is no Donald TrumpThe rookie Progressive Conservative leader told Toronto Life in November 2016 that he would have cast a ballot for the mercurial New York businessman — “not a doubt in my mind” — but he bristled Friday at being compared to Trump.

Opinion | Thomas Walkom : Doug Ford ’ s media bus controversy is much ado about very little . “We’re always concerned when there are people in the public eye making any sort of Islamophobic innuendo,” Rabia Kheder, executive director of the Muslim Council of Peel, said Monday

Opinion | Thomas Walkom : Doug Ford ’ s media bus controversy is much ado about very little . The MPP had announced Saturday he would not seek re-election in the June 7 vote due to his need for eye surgery.

Yes, Ford is trying to avoid press scrutiny that he doesn’t want. That’s what politicians do.

And he reckons – perhaps correctly – that if he can discourage reporters from traveling with him in the lead-up to the June 7 election, he will be able to achieve that aim.

Politicians and political reporters have a strange, symbiotic relationship. More often than not, they are at odds with one another. But at the same time, each side needs the other. Politicians who are unable to express themselves through one medium or another effectively don’t exist.

The rise of social media hasn’t changed that basic relationship. It has merely made it more complicated. The idea of Donald Trump without Twitter is inconceivable. But so is the idea of Trump without Fox News (which is where he gets all of his information) and the New York Times (which he loves to rant against).

Doug Ford resists pressure to remove Tanya Granic Allen from Mississauga nomination fight

  Doug Ford resists pressure to remove Tanya Granic Allen from Mississauga nomination fight Doug Ford resists pressure to remove Tanya Granic Allen from Mississauga nomination fightThe comments, first revealed in the Star, compared women in burkas to “bank robbers” and “ninjas” and questioned gay marriage, now legal in Ontario.

There’s a canny logic behind Doug Ford ’ s often outrageous campaign behaviour. But he knows full well that such a move would cost more in severance pay than it saved. In one way, Ontario PC leader Doug Ford is like U.S. President Donald Trump, writes Thomas Walkom .

Ford caused controversy after revealing that his brother Rob would be served a subpoena if Rob's friend and driver Alexander Lisi went to court over " Doug Ford ' s .3B Hamilton campaign promise means more wild times for LRT: mayor". Wikimedia Commons has media related to Doug Ford .

Nothing expresses the symbiotic relationship between press and politicians better than the campaign bus. It is organized and run by a political party but paid for by the media. Typically, the parties charge between $6,000 and $8,000 for a seat on the bus. But the reporters, whose employers pay for this privilege, get absolutely no control over where the bus goes or how long it stays at any stop.

What they do get are drinks (usually soft) and snacks. They are trundled in to hear the politician make announcements and the occasional speech. Then they are trundled out again.

Sometimes they are allowed to ask questions. But sometimes the politicians’ handlers prefer to keep their principal encased in bubble wrap.

To be a reporter on the campaign bus is like a cross between attending summer camp and being held hostage.

You hear the same speech over and over again. You attend predictably hokey photo opportunities where the politician poses with people wearing hard hats (to emphasize infrastructure) or people wearing lab coats (to emphasize innovation).

Reporter Robyn Doolittle Unimpressed That Rob Ford Movie Cast Dude As Main Journalist

  Reporter Robyn Doolittle Unimpressed That Rob Ford Movie Cast Dude As Main Journalist A new movie will follow a young, male reporter as he desperately chases an exclusive story about former Toronto mayor Rob Ford. And the woman who actually helped break the news of Ford's drug use isn't too impressed.The casting decision for "Run This Town" was met with sarcasm by former Toronto Star reporter Robyn Doolittle. She wrote several in-depth stories on Ford, and later authored a book about him called "Crazy Town." © Provided by AOL Inc. "I'm glad they're rewriting the fact that it was a female reporter who investigated Rob Ford," she wrote on Twitter on Monday.

Doug Ford is no Donald Trump. He is a much more standard politician. Many voters know little more about him than that. I expect he will do the usual political calculation to find out. Thomas Walkom appears Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

So does Ford ’ s failure to produce a full-scale platform matter? My guess is: Not much . The very fact that he’s done anything should be enough to satisfy wavering Tory voters. It will be defined by Doug Ford . Thomas Walkom is a Toronto-based columnist covering politics.

You rarely see a politician talking unscripted to a normal human being.

Yet in spite of the handlers’ best efforts, sometimes journalism does break out.

The politician may say something untoward that the press is able to pounce on. Or, when asked to respond to a real event that happened outside the bus, the politician may inadvertently say something newsworthy.

Still, the tradition of the press bus has generally satisfied both sides. The politicians are able to keep pesky reporters in one place and under control. The media companies, although they invariably talk of pioneering new and more relevant ways to cover elections, are reluctant to give up the traditional focus on party leaders.

Ford’s decision to eschew the campaign press bus has thrown this comfortable consensus into confusion. My guess is that he has two motives.

The first is a desire to minimize gaffes. Ford prides himself on being plainspoken. But sometimes, when speech is too plain, it risks giving offence. Trump can get away with being offensive and a bully. I’m not sure Ford can.

Keeping the Queen’s Park press gallery at a distance won’t eliminate Ford’s gaffe potential. But it may minimize it.

Doug Ford says he’ll fire Hydro One’s CEO if he wins election

  Doug Ford says he’ll fire Hydro One’s CEO if he wins election Doug Ford says he’ll find a way to fire Hydro One’s “six million dollar man” Mayo Schmidt along with the former Crown corporation’s board if elected Progressive Conservative premier on June 7.Doug Ford says he’ll find a way to fire Hydro One’s “six million dollar man” Mayo Schmidt along with the former Crown corporation’s board if elected Progressive Conservative premier on June 7, even though the company is no longer controlled by the province.

Doug Ford , Ontario’ s new Progressive Conservative leader, is very much a homegrown phenomenon. If he and his party win the June provincial election, it will be for homegrown reasons. Quite the reverse, writes Thomas Walkom .

Premier Doug Ford is declaring war on the poor. This is not a new idea. The last Ontario premier to explicitly take this tack was Mike Harris. Thomas Walkom is a Toronto-based columnist covering politics. Follow him on Twitter: @tomwalkom. Read more about

The second motive is a desire to bypass media that Ford deems hostile. This is easier said than done.

I suspect that only those who are already die-hard Ford supporters will have the energy to sit through innumerable YouTube videos of their man speaking. Most Ontarians will continue to get their impression of Ford from mediated accounts – either traditional or social.

As for the now-cancelled Tory campaign bus, there is an alternative. The major media companies with reporters at Queen’s Park could combine forces to rent their own bus to tail Ford.

It would probably be cheaper than relying on the political parties to provide this potentially useful service.

Thomas Walkom appears Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Wynne defends comparing Ford to Trump, says it's not a campaign strategy .
Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne is defending her comparison of Ontario Progressive Leader Doug Ford to U.S. President Donald Trump this week, saying she doesn't think her remarks will undermine the province's trade relationship with the U.S. in any way. Wynne said comparing Ford to Trump is not a campaign strategy as Ontario heads to the polls on June 7th. She said she has been to the U.S. several times and has worked hard to secure trading deals for Ontario."I've been very, very careful," Wynne told CBC's Metro Morning on Thursday."I don't know what Donald Trump's reaction would or wouldn't be.

—   Share news in the SOC. Networks

Topical videos:

This is interesting!