This isn’t going well for the mayor. Setting aside (as we do here at TD&F) the merits of the arguments being fired back and forth by Toronto Mayor Rob Ford and the Toronto Star in their ongoing dispute, I say Ford’s coming out on the losing end of this thing, for a couple of reasons. First and foremost, the move by the Star to ask for the city’s Integrity Commissioner to weigh in on the treatment of the Star by the Mayor’s office (not to mention a front-page column by Torstar chair John Honderich ) has given fresh legs to exactly the thing that has Ford so steamed to begin with: the Star story dating back to 2010 which claimed he was dismissed from coaching a Toronto football team after getting into a set-to with one of the players. Most of us have forgotten all about it, but by keeping the feud going and saying only a front-page apology will put it to rest, Ford is simply helping to keep the offending item in play. Second, the issue which is actually at hand – namely Ford’s edict that the Toronto Star not receive any news releases, media advisories or any other material disseminated to all the other media outlets – makes him look heavy-handed and lacking in respect for the role of the media in reporting on his municipal government. It is entirely Ford’s prerogative – as even the Star itself acknowledges – never to grant its reporters or columnists an interview, but refusing to even email official communiqués to one of the country’s oldest and most prominent newspapers is simply bad optics all the way around.