Originally Posted by Ligeia
I think when he was voted in, I said on this very forum that he was a know-nothing populist. I just didn't think the failure would be quite this epic on his part, and rather expected the impact on Toronto citizens to be more negative. I'm not a Torontonian but I follow the news and the general read I get is that he was extraordinarily foolhardy and his anti-government, anti-intellectual stance manifested itself as not knowing how to ethically work in a government position.
Has his mayorship resulted in drastically bad policy changes? Or has he just behaved unethically, been a general buffoon, and made an enemy out of city council?
I would say his mayorship, through his attempt at the bluntest means of pushing things through, has spurred on a greater sense of active citizenship, which means just the lightest sense, since people were so inclined to see themselves as mere taxpayers first and foremost. Now people have some idea of how easily they could be manipulated by just being told the bottom line was being served and they would save money as taxpayers. And the idea of looking at what kind of city people want beyond a bare-bones infrastructure means something. There has also been a recognition of the progress of the previous councils, as slow as it might have been, as being relatively substantial. And in preserving that progress against the mayor's wishes, this council might be able to move things forward from less ideologically entrenched positions. My biggest concern is that all of this hullabaloo now will cause trench digging all over again. But as long as there is as much concern over cuts as there is over taxes, I think the way the city works could come out ahead of where it might have been with a slick sleaze bag like Smitherman in office instead of the windbag that didn't have the skill to make sheer bullying align with the populist sentiments he was selling.