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The top 5 moments from Conrad Black's Ford interview

Posted by Chris Bateman / December 10, 2013

toronto rob fordMayor Rob Ford's much anticipated head-to-head with disgraced media baron and convicted felon Conrad Black turned out to be (perhaps not surprisingly) devoid of any truly hard questions. During the show, titled "Conversation with Conrad," Black wasn't particularly interested in picking apart Ford's arsenal of stock responses and was instead content to answer many of his own questions and share a mutual dislike of the Toronto Star (Black used to control Hollinger International, the former owner of the National Post, among many other newspapers).

The funny thing is, despite the friendly atmosphere, Rob Ford always manages to say something controversial, provocative or just downright stupid. As such, the interview did produce several choice moments, especially near the end when Rob Ford accused police of using Sandro Lisi as a "prop" and Daniel Dale of "taking pictures of little kids." Here's a quick breakdown of the key moments.


Ford opened saying he would take a pop blood or urine test to prove he's free of drink and drugs. Moments later, he claimed he has never been drunk at work, though his former staffer Chris Fickel told police he'd seen Ford "intoxicated numerous times including at the office, football practices and events."


Council's decision to strip away many of Rob Ford's powers and hand them to Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly was "completely illegal" in the mayor's opinion, though he has so far declined to take legal action. Ford rounded off by accusing council of excess spending: "Basically, in two weeks, they've gotten back on the gravy train."


While being lobbed softball questions by a sympathetic Black, Ford accused Police Chief Bill Blair of being politically motivated in the ongoing police investigation against him. "If I've done something illegal, I've told the police to arrest me," he said. "I definitely think this is political." Ford then accused police of using Sandro Lisi as a "prop" in their supposed vendetta against him.


Moments later, Ford offered some insight into how the ongoing scandal is impacting his home life. "It's ripping our family apart," he said of the constant media attention. Ford told Black that his kids look out the window and worry that their father is going to get killed. "Keep my family out of it."


Near the end of the interview, Ford accused Toronto Star reporter Daniel Dale of "taking pictures of little kids" during a notorious incident back in May 2012. Dale has denied looking over the mayor's fence (as was claimed at the time) while photographing a parcel of land Ford was planning to buy. "I don't want to say that word, but you start thinking 'What's this guy all about.'"



Pop quiz: Name the number one issue surrounding Rob Ford right now. Yep, it's his weight, of course. The mayor told Conrad Black that he thinks voters will support him more if he loses 60 or 70 pounds in time for the next election.

Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.



Steve / December 10, 2013 at 09:20 am
As I commented in the Morning Brew, maybe somebody should have asked Ford why he preferred being a football coach for kids to his actual Mayoral duties...
SamF replying to a comment from Steve / December 10, 2013 at 09:26 am
ohhh you posted it twice! That must mean its true!!!
AllanG / December 10, 2013 at 09:33 am
If all the scrutiny on Ford is "ripping our family apart," why is he telling other news outlets that he's having the time of his life and loving it?
duder replying to a comment from AllanG / December 10, 2013 at 09:38 am
That's actually an excellent point. The man is so full of shit that he contradicts even his most simple talking points.
Adam H. / December 10, 2013 at 09:43 am
If Ford wants his family kept out of it, why does he keep dragging them into it so he can hide behind them?
HipAnonymous / December 10, 2013 at 09:59 am
If he doesn't like reporters showing up at his house maybe he should start by holding regular press conferences. He cares more about refusing to answer questions than he does about the "welfare" of his kids. If anything they should be afraid that daddy is going to kill himself "in a drunken stupor".

"I definitely think this is political" is a far cry from "I have no one to blame but myself".
RKMK / December 10, 2013 at 10:17 am
Just for the record, if Bill Blair isn't happy with whatever budget the mayor hands down, the chief can go around him to the OCPC over the budget (and/or police contract negotiations.) The mayor isn't his boss, like you see in American cities, and Blair doesn't need to engineer a conspiracy to oust Ford to get his "way."

Poopdawg / December 10, 2013 at 10:26 am
This man-child is an insufferable piece of shit.
MilaCam / December 10, 2013 at 10:43 am
I used to hate Rob Ford. Then I saw how all the councilors publicly humiliating him with their ridiculous interrogation. My first thought was did you really have to spend time that I have paid for asking these ridiculous question? They are all crooks... get rid of all of them.
RKMK replying to a comment from MilaCam / December 10, 2013 at 10:54 am
"Publicly humiliating him" how? By holding him to public account, as a chief magistrate and public figure?
MER1978 replying to a comment from MilaCam / December 10, 2013 at 10:57 am
Ah yes it's council's fault that Rob Ford hasn't fully explained any of his inappropriate actions causing non stop international media scrutiny... thanks for coming out Fraud Nation.
Toni / December 10, 2013 at 11:16 am
Nathan Phillips is getting $50-million restoration!!!
Yeah City HALL.
JAMES881 / December 10, 2013 at 11:19 am
I sincerely hope the constant deplorable behavior by Mr. Ford translates into people voting against him in the next elections. The amount of apathetic non-voters in the last elections was too damn high!
Shirley / December 10, 2013 at 11:44 am

AllanG-The extra media attention is ripping his family apart; being on the job is fun for him.

duder-Why don't you try leading for a change, instead of following.

AdamH-He doesn't, the media does.

HipAnonymous-He doesn't need to answer questions around what people THINK is going on.

RKMK-There was no conspiracy by the police. This was just the first time a Toronto politcian was targetted in this manner (by the media and City Council). The end result was getting a lot of bad guys off of our streets. The media went to court to have those tapes (audio/video) released, that showed the Mayor doing things you saw.

Poopdawg-Then ignore him.

MilaCam-The "proof is in the pudding", isn't it?

MER1978-City Council is responsible for their behavior and bad decisions, and Rob is responsible for his. Rob HAS taken responsibility for his, City Council has not.
paulg / December 10, 2013 at 11:55 am
That was one of the worst interviews I have ever seen. Ford has betrayed the trust of the people, and spews a steady stream of lies, including his "billion dollar savings", which is nonsensical. I thought Black would at least ask a few challenging questions, but instead we just saw him tell Ford that there was a conspiracy against him by the star. I am dumbfounded by the people of Toronto who continue to accept the nonsense coming out of Ford's mouth, and look the other way at his obvious lies. I'm not a Conrad Black fan, but the man isn't stupid, so I was very surprised that he was willing to accept Ford's "savings" claims. We aren't just talking about creative accounting here, it's an outright lie. He is saying things with logic like this: "i gave you two oranges, and didn't spend two apples, and made you give me a pumpkin, but didn't tax you for the pumpkin, so I saved the people five bananas".
duder replying to a comment from Shirley / December 10, 2013 at 11:57 am
"Why don't you try leading for a change" - what the hell does that mean, Shirley? You have no idea what I do for a living. And what on earth does that have to do with Rob Ford?

There's really no point arguing with you here; I really only respond because I can't help it. The only question I would ask you is this: is there not ANYONE else out there who would be better suited to the job? Why continue to defend someone who is so obviously ill-suited to being Mayor, instead of rallying around someone who might be a better champion of the conservative cause? Because we both know that Rob is the one who is doing the most damage to the small-government agenda, not the "Lefties" or some mysterious cabal of police, gangs and liberals.
Gnarlk / December 10, 2013 at 12:23 pm
shirley-fuck off
Political? / December 10, 2013 at 12:26 pm
It's political? Um yeah man, because you're the crack smoking drunken stupor mayor of Toronto. I believe that's a political position? What a dumbass. Looks like the red face must be from all the successful work at the gym. Gym work isn't that effective for coke bloat sir.
Bennett / December 10, 2013 at 12:27 pm
Black interviewing Ford: two self-made men of integrity at the height of their game.
RKMK replying to a comment from Shirley / December 10, 2013 at 12:33 pm
Shirley - read for comprehension, dear.
Gnarlk / December 10, 2013 at 12:34 pm
Shirl, oh Shirl
You make me want to Hurl
You wish Ford would kill that Polack
So you could be his girl
Yep / December 10, 2013 at 12:37 pm
Always a laugh a minute when Shirley shows up to comment.
Steve replying to a comment from Yep / December 10, 2013 at 12:51 pm
You learn to predict it when you realise it's in the commercial breaks of the soaps.
Hipster censorship / December 10, 2013 at 12:52 pm
Huevos Rancheros are the two words permitted for high hipster usage today
Moran b eeghuzzar / December 10, 2013 at 01:39 pm
Allegations of pedophilia without proof publicly broadcast is what gets Shirley excited. She gets wet over irresponsible PFFs*.

* Pink Fat Fucks
Moran b eeghuzzar / December 10, 2013 at 01:41 pm
Has the PFF Ford been served with his defamation notice yet, Shirley? (Shurely he has!)
Rick / December 10, 2013 at 01:50 pm
Charles Manson also has supporters.
HipAnonymous replying to a comment from Shirley / December 10, 2013 at 02:02 pm
"He doesn't need to answer questions around what people THINK is going on." Actually he does. If only to set the record straight so we can move on to more important things.

Also, he's an elected official who needs to justify his actions or inactions. This doesn't just apply to his drug use and susceptibility to blackmail. It also applies to his policy ideas and voting record. The guy is a coward.
Jeb / December 10, 2013 at 02:38 pm
So if y'all ain't votin for Ford. Who are you voting for then?
McRib / December 10, 2013 at 02:39 pm
clearly the close-ups of his baked bean teeth was the highlight.
Abe / December 10, 2013 at 02:46 pm
His family worried he's going to be killed by:
A) a cameraman
B) a lady in a viking costume
C) the violent gang members he's associated himself with before his mayorship began
D) none of the above; he's paranoid...from the drugs
jen replying to a comment from Abe / December 10, 2013 at 03:00 pm
E)The Escalade. In a ditch. With an empty vodka bottle.
MilaCam replying to a comment from RKMK / December 10, 2013 at 04:19 pm
It is obvious that he's incompetent. I don't need a council meeting to affirm this, these meetings cost tax-dollars. Minnan-Wong is an opportunist. In fact all the councilors who kept questioning him about his private life in detail are opportunists. We get the point! If more councilors asked questions like Councilor Matlow ( He would have been gone a long time ago. But honestly none of them know what they are doing period.
RKMK replying to a comment from MilaCam / December 10, 2013 at 04:54 pm
Councillors were facing pressure from their own constituents to hold Ford to account and deal with situation - if not able to strip him of his office, refer the situation to the Integrity Commissioner and limit the amount of damage he can do for the rest of his term by removing the power Council bestows of him. And to take those steps, responsibly, its requires documentation as to exactly why those steps are being taken and also inquiries about potential effects and repercussions those decisions could have in the future.

I'm sorry you find the process of democracy wasteful, but this is how it works, and I personally prefer it to despotism.

jon jacob replying to a comment from Abe / December 10, 2013 at 06:21 pm
Stop right there, Abe.

I put up with a lot of lies and bullshit with this Rob Ford story, but you have crossed a line.

Zena Warrior Princess was –never– a Viking.
daRocha replying to a comment from Poopdawg / December 10, 2013 at 07:44 pm
Simple, truthful, accurate and to the point. 'nough said.
daRocha replying to a comment from JAMES881 / December 10, 2013 at 07:48 pm
I don't think apathetic non-voters was the problem. The major problem is the unbelievable number of uninformed, disenfranchised, people voting against their own interests, without even realizing it, because they believe every piece of shit spewing out of this crack head's mouth. Not to mention all the crack head Fraud Nationalists!
daRocha replying to a comment from Shirley / December 10, 2013 at 07:56 pm
"Shirley" you can't possibly be that much of an asshole, can you?
Dave / December 10, 2013 at 10:55 pm
Ford likes little kids.
Moneesha replying to a comment from Gnarlk / December 10, 2013 at 11:18 pm
Oooh, Gnark is so tough!! On the internet. Such a nasty bad keyboard warrior. AHAHAHAHAAAAAA!!!!!! I bet if you met this Shirley idiot in real life and she was some 300 pound roller derby queen you'd run away leaving a brown slippery trail behind you.
Shirley / December 11, 2013 at 01:59 am
Moneesha-Look whose talking! "Pot meet kettle." I noticed everybody left after you showed up.

duder-Who said or implied anything about the line of work you do? I was talking about taking the lead in this thread,

daRocha-No, but I CAN be bitchy. Want to see?

RKMK-So that's what you call democracy? Interesting. City council takes a vote that affects the entire city, but is only advantageous to the left. That's not democracy. See I do read and understand. So sorry you don't like my responses.

HipAnonymous-Well that's all there is kiddo. "There ain't no more". Guess you'll just have to live with it for now.

Gnark-Damn that's got to hurt when people on the left are burning you too.
Me replying to a comment from Shirley / December 11, 2013 at 09:10 am
I don't think Moneesha meant to insult YOU, I suspect she meant that Gnark is basically a coward and used the example if you were a tougher person than he/she. (Which probably wouldn't take much, one suspe cts Richard Simmons is scarier than poor Gnark.)
RKMK replying to a comment from Shirley / December 11, 2013 at 09:44 am
No, Shirley. It was advantageous to the *city.* The only person it wasn't advantageous to was the alcoholic, drunk driving, staff-abusing pathological liar with known criminal associations.
RamR / December 11, 2013 at 09:50 am
Shirley, what ever happened to right and wrong? Why all this mention of left and right? When people take sides along party lines they become blinded by reality. It should not take being a lefty pinko to see that Rob Ford is not only incompetent as mayor but also a danger to himself and Toronto as a whole. It baffles me that some people can be so blind!
Gnarlk replying to a comment from Moneesha / December 11, 2013 at 10:52 am
i picture shirley as more of a withered husk of a woman, a la Christie Blatchford. Reeking of cigarette smoke with a face not unlike the death mask of some ancient nomad. it does kind of haunt my dreams somewhat.
Shirley / December 11, 2013 at 10:55 am
Me-Oh really? When someone calls me an idiot, I take that as a sign of aggression. Two negatives in this case don't equal a positive.

RKMK-No RKMK, it was advantageous to the LEFT only.

RamR-The left went out of it's way to ignore drugs (addiction, distribution, no prison sentences etc.). This is a problem of their own making. They wanted Toronto to be a pro-drug city? Well now they got one. Why do you think the left politicians have been advocating for the decriminalization of pot? Except, for the last year, gangs have had free rein to do as they please. The only way the issue could have been dealt with is if the province had supplied the funding. Until last year, the province (the Liberals) were mum. There was someone on this blog asking about karma. Just want to say "karma is a bitch", and "what goes around DOES come around".
Shirley / December 11, 2013 at 10:58 am
Gnark-Hey skidmark!
Gnarlk replying to a comment from Shirley / December 11, 2013 at 11:09 am
Hey Shirl, you didn't answer me as to what you and a tampon have in common. Not one little guess?
Gnarlk replying to a comment from Shirley / December 11, 2013 at 11:15 am
How's 10th grade treating you Shril?
Shirley / December 11, 2013 at 11:18 am
RamR-Based on the history (last 10 years) at city council, Rob is the lesser of the evils. If I'm forced to choose between the evils on the left (SSDD), which put TCHC in ruins; allowed crime to run rampid; spent our money on crap; and drove up the cost of housing (the higher the cost, the higher your taxes) or Rob, I'm definitely going to choose Rob. He's not perfect but his policies are solid.
Gnarlk / December 11, 2013 at 11:25 am
Yeah, he's a real solid alright...
Gnark's Mom replying to a comment from Gnarlk / December 11, 2013 at 11:31 am
How's 5th grade treating you Gnark?
Gnarlk replying to a comment from Gnark's Mom / December 11, 2013 at 11:37 am
Nice try Shrilley, if you were really my mom you would have remembered that there's a letter L in my name.
Gnark's Mom replying to a comment from Gnarlk / December 11, 2013 at 11:45 am
You added that. remember? No maybe you don't, you were pretty fucking stoned that day.
Gnarlk replying to a comment from Gnark's Mom / December 11, 2013 at 11:50 am
okay i'll humour you "mom". i know it's been tough for you since dad left you for a liberal, but could you at least keep the volume down when you're masturbating to rob ford press conferences.
Gnark's Mom replying to a comment from Gnarlk / December 11, 2013 at 12:14 pm
Who is Rob Ford?
RamR / December 11, 2013 at 03:21 pm
Nice try Shirley. Either you are deliberately being provocative or you are legitimately blind to the real character of this man. It does not take a liberal to see that he is deceitful (if not an outright liar), a very poor example of and for Toronto and Canada, prejudiced, not very smart and an all-around negative force in the city and country. Even if double the number of negative things you accuse the "left" of being responsible for the "left" would still be a better choice.

One other thing, I wonder how many Ford supporters say the same things as you but then when presented with a viable conservative candidate will still turn out for Ford. I suspect we will test this out in the next election because there are bound to be at least one or two options (aside from the circus act) available to the conservative minded. / January 11, 2014 at 08:28 pm
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