Anatomy of an Election – What Happens in the Back Rooms – and Trolls

Elections are won or lost in the back rooms. In 1985, I chaired Mel Lastman’s re-election campaign. Thirty years ago! I was only ten years old. Wow! I was a novice back then but oh did I learn fast. Federal, provincial, municipal – it isn’t much different today. The game is the same – it is only the players who change.

The madness, the hype, the BS, the back stabbing – that is endemic in the back rooms. But it is also a part of the media game. A good example is the continued witch hunt by the media not only on Rob Ford but on Israel. It is beyond the pale. Who would have ever believed that even in a “free and open society” some media outlets would have no restrictions on who they harass and what information they choose not to disclose? And in the case of the Toronto Star, I’d love to ask the Jewish members of Torstar’s Board what makes them look the other way when Haroon Sidiqqui does his usual big bad Israel routine. I am still waiting to hear him condemn the Hamassie cowards now that the documented pictures of their weapons and rockets stored behind the skirts of women and children in Gaza have been released. It is probably going to be a long wait.

But this blog is about back room boys… and some trolls. Once upon a time the back room was always males. Today there is the occasional female but they just don’t have the same clout…or the same ruthlessness. Researchers for any candidate have to get the “goods” on the others. And then the back room boys decide what will be most effective. They also decide policy, presentation, media focus and getting the money to pay for all of it.

I was a volunteer for Michael Ceci, the provincial Conservative candidate in Willowdale. Michael is a terrific young man. He lost. And the reason he lost was because of the boys in Hudak’s back room. The perceived corruption of the McGuinty/McWynne Liberals along with the documented billion dollars blown by them should have been enough. But not for the back room boys – they blew it!

After the fact that they blamed Hudak for the “BRILLIANT 100,000 JOBS” P/R exercise that lost him the election. But it wasn’t him. It was them. They made wrong choices, they picked wimpy issues, and they didn’t have the guts to drop all the platitudes and just GO FOR IT! There were some old names that I once knew in Hudak’s back room. They are even older than me, and that makes them pretty old. Once upon a time I could have asked why Hudak’s wife, once the skilled right hand of Mike Harris (I liked Mike Harris, just so you know, and I thought he was a good Premier) could have let the boys get away with it. But I am out of the loop so I’ll never know.


Next on this agenda is the Mayor’s race. Wow! ABC Anybody But Chow. Once upon a time I watched St. Jack Layton and his hand-in-out dealings with developers and Co-Op housing . Chow was still his girlfriend – and the holier than thou aura she, and her backroom boys are trying to cover her with today would be quite funny – if it wasn’t so scary. Could anyone really buy into it? Her backroom boys include Daisy Consulting (Liberal Warren Kinsella) and CUPE – and the one and only NDPer Sid Ryan who, in 2009, supported a proposal to ban Israeli academics from teaching in Ontario universities. ABC!!!!

Chow has commented in Hong Kong newspapers trying to get non-resident Toronto landlords to give her their proxy/vote so she can be Toronto’s mayor.

This is my latest posted comment about her – it says it all. Don’t forget to vote! ABC!!!

“Chow is blasting John Tory’s “sex quip?” Oh, how quaint. And was her attitude the same towards St. Jack’s wife when she was quipping with him? Don’t you love her hypocrisy – her holier than thou selfie – her “I’m so pure and honest” demeanor? Imagine her as our Mayor – help!”

A bit early for the federal election – other than to remind all of you that Israel, and the Jewish community in Canada, have never had a Prime Minister like Stephen Harper who isn’t afraid to stand up next to us. He is for me. And Justin baby? Below is my latest posted comment. I think it says it all.

“Help! This guy, Trudeau Jr. and his brother are two peas from the same fallafel – but have patience – you can fool some of the people some of the time until they start reading all your wonderful comments, especially this one – “honour killings shouldn’t be called barbaric”. Nice,eh? Unless you are a woman. Soon the voters will learn all about Junior’s choices of friends and advisors – and his brother Sasha’s movie buddies”.

Now about the Toronto Sun. First, kudos to Sue-Ann Levy, a great writer and researcher – she does her homework and doesn’t live on the BS. And Lorrie Goldstein, with whom I have had many disagreements and I guarantee will have many more. But he is also a great writer and finds the focus on issues that make his columns worth following.

But the trolls that the Sun posts to its site are sickos. And I wonder why they allow it. Well, let’s see. Karl Peladeau, who owns the Sun, is a Quebecer who touted separation in his first public comments after his election which many say caused Pauline Marois to lose. I can find no record of his ever being supportive or even neutral about Israel and the Jewish community here in Canada. I mean, we are still one country – but maybe Peladeau will decide to take his marbles to Scotland if they are stupid enough to leave Great Britain.

There are 4 regular trolls. They never have the facts – they always allege absolute lies about me – and because they use phony user names, they can’t be sued. Only the publication in which they are posted can be sued. And the Sun has been good and not so good – certainly they have reacted to the most outrageous comments of the weirdos. But it is an interesting situation – trolls with phony names posting absolute garbage. Sometimes they even use obscenities which are supposed to be a no-no. Here is an example that was in the Sun – I think it is still there:

TROLL. Oh, and F_ck Off ! 

Now I could give you lots more examples but can there be any doubt about what Reverend Ken is saying? This kind of language is supposed to be unacceptable. But, with back room boys everywhere, who knows who makes the newspaper’s decisions about deleting or not deleting?

I will be following this up in the coming months – have some more research to do – so stay tuned.

Despite them, I am proud to say that I now have 21,507 upvotes/followers on my comments. 10,000 have clicked on in the last 4 months. Modesty prevents me from telling you it must be my outstanding writing skills – along with my infamy that no doubt plays a part.

Do not forget to vote on Oct 27. This is our city. Toronto is the best! Let us keep it that way!