Thursday, 5 December 2013

Rob Ford: Smoke on, dude!

Anderson Cooper was incredulous.
"I'm obsessed with this story," he admitted in the promo for AC 360.
He was, of course, talking about Rob Ford who is referred to in the U.S. media as Toronto's "crack smoking" mayor.
In Canada, we had hoped that Rob Ford's story would end with his bulldozing of an elderly city councillor, but Americans knew better. Americans knew that this story not only had legs, but it had tentacles.
There's an upside to all of this. The Toronto Star's Robyn Doolittle has become a media darling at CNN. I'm sure she's already received an offer to work in Atlanta. Why not? She is the body double of Erin Burnett, she with the flowing locks and Bambi eyes. A few weeks ago, Robyn had her first star turn, in two segments on CNN and she changed her hair twice.
Then there are all those Liberals who are getting a second life in the media thanks to those Conservative stalwarts in Ford Nation and in the Senate.
PM-for-a-day Paul Martin's top hench, Scott Reid has become a talking head at CTV, a replacement for the tiny perfect Tom Clark. He might not have been able to get Martin elected Prime Minister, but Scott has taken to the medium like a snake to sunshine. Scott's obviously been practising his best Josh Elliott; he has mastered the staccato jock-turned-newscaster patter that guarantees to get 15 minutes worth of information into 30 seconds.
And over at CP 24, there is Stephen LeDrew, long-time Liberal spear carrier, former President of the Liberal Party of Canada, now filling his own small corner on the little network that could. His delivery is a cross between Larry King and Sally Jesse Raphael. Love the glasses, Steve!
Too bad Rob Ford couldn't save the print industry. Yesterday, there was yet another wave of layoffs by the Peladeaus who tossed a horde of conservative journalists into the freelance market.
A lot of them are hoping to put out their shingles as freelancers and consultants.
Good luck with that, kids. The only growth market in freelance is writing for the web at six dollars for a 2,000 word article.
Perhaps these poor souls could go into politics to replace all the flaks who have taken media jobs.
Journalists can't get jobs, you know, in journalism anymore.
It almost seems like you have to show your Party card to get a gig.
Anyway, soldier on Rob and Doug.
Your 15 minutes has been renewed for two seasons.
Congrats! Smoke on.

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