Guilty! That’s was what Justice Bruce Thomas declared against Mayor Joe Fontana in a 19-page report.
Finally there is a semblance of justice in London Ontario. Given the Liberals recent scandal, this verdict is a real reprieve from incredulity and a real-life example of the otherwise empty platitude that “no one is above the law”; not even Teflon Joe ‘Kingpin’ Fontana can claim immunity anymore – I facetiously refer to him with this appellation because he reminds me of a low-level hoodlum who’s graduated to a position of importance in a B-grade movie.
Mr. Fontana’s 8 ‘merry’ councillors should also be quaking in their political boots. They seem to have taken the trial fan-fare ‘lightly’, even smugly, as I’ve observed. And I consider it an affront to Londoners that this “gang of 8” willfully aligns themselves with Joe the Foe, whose shady and unscrupulous reputation has been proven in a court of law and order.
Before and during the trial the hateful 8 touted him as a being ‘squeaky clean’ but I knew the RCMP wouldn’t waste its time on unfounded evidence. I and many other Londoners knew it had to be legit. Joe also knew it was legit but his lack of integrity and arrogance made him choose to say otherwise.
Councillor Matt Brown astutely echoed this sentiment to AM980: “Londoners are sick of this black eye. Joe has put his personal interests above the well being of this community for far too long. I’m sick of it, Londoners are sick of it, it’s time for him now, today, to do the right thing and resign.”
What really grinds my gears is that Two-faced Fontana collected his pay from taxpayers throughout the entire episode instead of humbly taking leave. I thought to myself, “what unmitigated gall and temerity Mr. Fontana has to drag us Londoners through his mud.” I mean, it is His mess, right?! It’s his uncouth, ignoble and dishonourable attitude which has led to this behavior…
Couple this disgrace with the recent Billy-T’s scandal where he displayed a flagrant disregard for city legislation when he met with his gang, charging us $97,000 for it, and you can understand the disgust that the good citizens of London have.
Remorse? Repentance? No. Only recalcitrance from our infamous leader…
But it doesn’t matter, because the truth has prevailed, to use an old cliché, and he’s not walking away from this one.
As a voter, citizen and candidate for city council, I’m relieved that justice was served and saddened that the city had to endure the likes of Mr. Fontana.
Councillor Stephen Orser, a proud member of the Fontana 8 and my ward’s incumbent, always trailed behind the mayor like a puppy looking for his next treat.
Then Orser came out with this ludicrous statement: “I’m glad I fought for the Mayor to have a fair trial. Justice has spoken. The honourable thing now to do now is resign.”
Really? I thought it was Mr. Gord Cudmore who “fought for the Mayor to have a fair trial” – after all, he is Fontana’s lawyer. Perhaps Mr. Orser is a legal genius who was running things behind the scenes and I’m simply not aware…who knows what goes on his world…
I guess now that there’s no going back, Mr. Orser calls for Fontana’s resignation. But it’s too little too late, and just really disingenuous. Orser supported Fontana ad nauseum despite evidence that would immediately raise serious ethical questions.
Guilt by association is Mr. Orser’s claim to infamy here. Londoners have integrity and eschew this type of behavior and the ways people try to cover it up.
I am certainly not jealous of those close to Fontana; absorbing the kind of collateral political damage that is coming their way will require monumental strength.
Like Fontana, Orser is in this for himself, not Ward 4 and its amazing potential.
This guilty verdict, I believe, has shifted the electoral momentum in this city. Voters can now move forward and know that politicians need beware and always keep it real.
Any post that presents me with an opportunity to end by quoting my mother is an opportunity I always take advantage of. So my mother used to always say: “If you do wrong, you will eventually get caught”. Not necessarily eloquent, but direct, real and as we see from today’s verdict, most definitely true.
Have a great weekend!