, 06.29.2018 07:33 AM

An open letter to new Ontario PC MPPs, ministers and staffers

Dear folks:

Welcome to the big leagues. You’ve worked hard to get to today, so enjoy every minute. It’s all downhill from here, believe me.

Five tips, gratis.

One, you have been given an incredible opportunity, one that few aspiring political types ever, ever achieve. Treat it like a privilege, not a right. The people put you there, and the people can take you out. You work for them, like Premier Ford said, over and over.  He was right.

Two, don’t lose touch with the aforementioned people, the ones North of Bloor Street. That’s what your predecessor did – she only listened to people who agreed with her, and she only hired those who told her what she wanted to hear. Remember what Mr. Ford said: your mandate is about the people, not government.

Three, zip your lip, and always be humble. Or, as Chrétien used to say to us: when you are losing, say little. And when you are ahead – like you guys presently are – say even less. That means: no bragging. No hubris. No arrogance. When I was a Chief of Staff, I kept out of bars, I didn’t hang out with journalists anymore, and I reminded myself daily that I was always one headline away from the end.  You should do likewise.

Four, let me tell you what was on Premier Ford’s business card: his name and his contact information. And here’s what wasn’t on his business card: his party affiliation. One of the reasons I became friends with Doug Ford is that he seeks friends everywhere – Liberals, New Democrats, people of colour, people of all faiths. He reaches out. You should, too.

Fifth and final piece of advice: it’s going to get bumpy. You have a clear mandate to do some things, including cuts. So do them. Kathleen Wynne oversaw a reckless, irresponsible government, one that was completely out of touch with the people. Always heed, then, the people.  They expect you to do what you said you were going to do.  So do it.

The people put you there, as noted. And, if you’re not careful, they’ll put you right out again.

Now, enjoy today. The work begins tomorrow, and you are incredibly privileged to have been chosen to do it.



  1. Roy Murray says:

    The only thing I would add is, keep your hand out of the till and along those lines, taxpayers’ money shouldn’t be used as your own personal re-election fund.

  2. Paul I says:

    Excellent advice for all levels, always, all Parties, all roles.

  3. Ron Benn says:

    Excellent advice, Warren. It should be a must read for every elected official, every day.

  4. doconnor says:

    I don’t think Doug Ford doesn’t have his party affiliation on his card because he is humble.

  5. Matt says:

    Someone I know (and you know too) has been at the swearing in.

    He tweeted someone in an office was blasting “Ding dong the Witch is Dead” from the Wizard of Oz through an open window.

    But I don’t know if he’s serious or not.

  6. Lorne Warawa says:

    You mean, he sought friends that where White.
    It was clear from the people around him just who he was ‘reaching out to’.

  7. Matt says:

    Ford cabinet is 21 people, 14 men 7 women. The big ministries:

    Christine Elliott — Minister of health and long-term care and deputy premier
    Caroline Mulroney — Attorney general and minister responsible for Francophone affairs
    Monte McNaughton — Minister of infrastructure
    Lisa MacLeod — Minister of children, community and social services and minister responsible for women’s issues
    Lisa Thompson — Minister of education
    Victor Fedeli — Minister of finance and Chair of cabinet
    Rod Phillips — Minister of the environment, conservation and parks
    Jim Wilson — Minister of economic development, job creation and trade
    John Yakabuski — Minister of transportation
    Peter Bethlenfalvy — President of the Treasury Board
    Laurie Scott — Minister of labour
    Steve Clark — Minister of municipal affairs and housing

  8. p bre says:

    no bragging. No hubris. No arrogance – bingo ..he should name an aid or someone to track exactly this stuff and snuff it out ..Confidence is one thing but when the politicians come across as knowing better than us pions its insulting

    The other thing they should is stop naming things after well paid political types and using the word “we” as in the party they represent in funding announcements – it should be “you” provided the funding for this park, school, bike rack or whatever

    Also drop word “free” from many announcements – should read your tax dollars make us able to provide
    service XXX to Group YYY at no cost to them…

  9. Robert White says:

    Stay the fuck away from my Anti-Social Assistance, motherfuckers, and if _anyone_ fucks with my monthly cheque there will be Hell to pay as I don’t fuck around anymore, Premier Ford.

    I endured enough Mike Harrisment on the last run, mofos.
    If any Janet Ecker motherfuckers want to play I’m game for the end game which is Zero Sum!

    Fuck the Government of Ontario.


    • doconnor says:

      They promised to make cuts without laying off public sector workers, so they have to focus on social assistance and those not-for-profits that help the most vulnerable.

      Don’t worry that it will be zero sum. It’ll end up costing way more in health care and policing.

      • Robert White says:

        You are right about the cost of policing demonstrations in Ottawa, Toronto, & Montreal. Activist demonstrations consistently destroy policing/municipal budgeting to the tune of millions each year. The municipal police in Ottawa are constantly asking the federal government to top up their allowances due to extra costs incurred for crowd control.

        P.S. Zero Sum is Game Theory. Zero Sum is the end game in Game Theory.


  10. Paul Knox says:

    I’d add:

    The people means all the people. Most of them didn’t vote CPC. Your leader, so far, is a polarizing figure. There’s still a lot of opposition. Wedge issues, small-town politics, pettiness are not what Ontario needs now.

  11. Ronald O'Dowd says:


    Is Ford capable of being a true rassembleur?

    If that’s his instinct going forward, he will increase his party’s vote next time.

  12. Fran says:

    Great advice. Let’s hope they heed it.

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