In Ontario, things get more Trumpian by the day. Martin Regg Cohn writes:
Loyalty to the leader is paramount.
Fidelity to law enforcement comes second.
Sound familiar? Just ask our American friends, who have been wrestling with the spectre of obstruction of justice ever since Donald Trump won the presidency — and trampled on the FBI by firing its director, James Comey.
Now, Ontarians are facing their own moment of truth as the layers of deception are peeled back from the premier’s alleged secret meddling over the next OPP chief. Doug Ford’s loyal chief.
The allegations from interim Ontario Provincial Police commissioner Brad Blair about who will succeed him as the province’s top cop amount to a political earthquake. Blair and many in the OPP are up in arms because they believe the fix was in for a hostile takeover of the very police force that polices our politicians in power.
Ron Taverner, a personal pal of the premier, didn’t meet the original qualifications for the job — until a hand-picked hiring committee downgraded the job qualifications, two days after the competition opened. Unless the public can make the premier understand that he has crossed a line, Taverner will take over as OPP chief Monday.
Doug Ford doesn't know much. And he doesn't learn much -- ever since he dropped out of Humber College after attending for two months. He shambles from one outrage to another. And the rule of law means nothing to him:
Are Ontarians to be governed by the rule of law, or by the misrule of a miscreant who bends the rules and rewrites our laws? Shall our premier indulge his personal peccadilloes — in a customized camper paid for “off the books” to deceive taxpayers and lawmakers — and then cover his tracks?
Consider the devastating allegations in the OPP commissioner’s detailed submission — on official letterhead — to the independent Ombudsman’s Office this week seeking a formal investigation:
The hiring process “remains enveloped in questions of political interference,” Blair wrote. “To have this new command assumed without addressing this matter will cause dysfunction in the service.”
His appeal followed a public protest from a previous OPP chief, Chris Lewis, over the rigged hiring process that has discredited a police force that requires public legitimacy to do its job:
“The fix was in,” Lewis complained publicly, referring to the Ford-Taverner tag team. “There’s old relationships there, we all know it, and I think it was a travesty that this occurred.”
And Ford calls this "the people's government?
Image: The Globe and Mail