Top cop continues five-year flop
Lame duck police Chief Julian Fantino isn't going quietly. A steady source of Upfront items, he's ending the year the way he started, making an ass of himself. The force was lucky to escape forking out crateloads of cash in a lawsuit launched by lesbians after the outrageous Pussy Palace raid in September 2000. But the big-mouthed chief may blow the settlement deal, showing again how little regard he has for the taxpayer. Despite a horrendous run as the city's top cop, the connected flat-foot will re-emerge in a position of power after he gets the boot in March.
Don't let the door hit you in the ass
Upfront sadly bids farewell to an amazing team of incompetents who have kept these pages filled with magnificent misdeeds, bald-faced bumbling and political pratfalls. And despite amazing skill at staving off the end of their public lives, it's all over, baby. We'll have to look harder for items, but it's bye-bye to Dennis Mills, Norm Gardner, Tom Jakobek and Wanda Liczyk. We're finally rid of them all, and the city's better for it.
T.O. Liberals' vanishing act
We only see the local federal Liberals when they need our vote. Toronto's invisible Grit caucus has again proved better at getting elected than at serving our cash-strapped city. After successfully whipping up an anti-Conservative backlash and conning us into disastrous "strategic voting," the massive caucus is again doing nothing for the city it over-represents. Hey, guys, there may be another vote soon, and this time we're kicking you out.
Maple Leaf monopoly
Exploiting backroom deals, timid politicians, rivalries between billionaires and a well-massaged sense of helplessness, Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment has successfully smashed the tradition it claims to protect. Convincing everyone there was no other choice, MLSE brilliantly stickhandled a plan that will destroy hockey shrine Maple Leaf Gardens and see it reborn as a grocery store. There were ways to keep the ice, but they would have led to competition - not for the ludicrously loved Leafs, but for the American Hockey League franchise MLSE has slipped into the city. Shameful.
Pathetic Port Authority
Get the wooden stake, the silver bullet - whatever it takes - but please, somebody kill Toronto's pathetic Port Authority. This non-elected bureaucratic black hole that nobody wants is attacking the struggling Toronto waterfront like a rampaging Godzilla. From its absurd commitment to the Island Airport bridge to its complete fumbling of the high-speed Rochester ferry and inability to build a terminal for it, these horrible hacks have to go. What is Paul Martin waiting for?