Sunday, March 27, 2011

An alternative view of Vancouver

From Rail for the Valley:
". . . You don't meet people of substance here. You meet flakes. The press is dominated by yellow journalism. Rarely if ever have I read a real piece of investigative journalism. You do not meet people who form their opinions based upon facts.
"When you encounter Vancouverites and engage them in the discussion of social issues the argument usually become circular and they end of talking only about themselves. There is a kind of deep insecurity that comes from profound feeling of self loathing that is hard wired into the political culture here. Narcissism is the dominate religion and worshipping at the Temple of Mammon – real estate speculation is the Holy Grail.

"People here (generally speaking of course) are stuck up, materialistic yuppies. The downtown scene used to have decent variety, now it's full of "cookie-cutter" clubs and bars that cater to Armani clones. . ."
A little too harsh on Vancouver citizens. Correct though regarding journalism, press and broadcast. In television, standards have fallen so low now that a 60 minute newshour is reduced to about 35 minutes when you take out the ads, teasers and repetitions. Remove sports, weather and fluff and you are under 10 minutes and part of that is dedicated to infomercials posing as news: stealth advertising.

There is a reason why those cookie-cutter clubs and bars catering to Armani clones spread through the city. Whether for investors or clients, they are dependents of British Columbia's largest untaxed industry: the drug trade. Watch for the group of roided-up young males sitting backs to the wall with eyes on the front door.
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6 comments:

  1. Pretty accurate description of vancouver these days as far as I'm concerned...

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  2. Interesting observations about some of the Vancouver crowd.

    Unfortunately, the drug crime world is alive and well throughout BC it seems. We sometimes wonder how much of the economy is fuelled by it.

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  3. There was a series on the Tyee by Berelowitz and Hern on the future of Vancouver. I feel both of them were missing some points and both of them perpetuate to some degree what Rail for the Valley discusses...some comments I made at that time sort of speak to the above topic.....particularly the part about the people you would wish to meet on the street....

    Feb 15, 2011
    urban utopia
    Road Lice is absolutely correct.....the people being attracted to this city because of events like the Olympics are not adding value by doing meaningful work (be it industrial or cultural)....nor do they have any idea what a rainforest even is. They do not share our respect for the luxury of stepping into wilderness only minutes from the downtown core...they cut the trees down in front of their new homes...they build concrete highrises that attract more of the same genre. By whom are they courted? What chance do we have of saving our lakes and rivers when such a large percentage of the "new" population is not aware? Urbanist shmurbanist....Vancouver's location is special. Why the push to make it like every other big city? In short, we WERE out in front, we DID live up to the hype and myths...obviously we are not staring at our navels because we can see those pictures of the mountains and water fading....that is what requires the self-examination i.e. how did we let this happen? Is it a Canadian thing to be afraid of "progress"? Maybe not everywhere, but in Vancouver, you bet...and proud of it! The types of people that you wish to run into on the street got here because of that "utopia in the rainforest", not because of convention centres and Olympics. Why the rush to follow a regimented plan by "investors"? Because looking at mountains and water doesn't generate short term income...they would have to do real work that adds value, thats why.

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  4. Per previous post, I see I had another comment on that same Tyee article....being from Vancouver it kind of explains why I agree with Norm that Rail for the Valley was a little too harsh...we aren't all like that....or, maybe I should say we weren't always like that...

    "Inlux of foreign investors
    I am with Fiat lux....What benefits does Vancouver, or any other place on Earth, get from the influx of the often ill gotten monies of "foreign investors" ?

    I was born and raised in East Van, but at that time no one was "giddy with the seemingly endless profit-generating capacity of the city"....most got up, went to work, fixed broken things, welded stuff together, milled logs, sewed fabrics, grew food etc. etc. Unless people actually add value to something in the course of their days work none of the things you speak of can sustain themselves. Attracting "investors" makes for great streetside coffee shop photo ops, but does nothing to make the small theatres affordable. We used to have fun, and be able to quite easily afford it....so how did that change? Was it the influx of investors? Was it Expo? Value is not added by people who just shuffle dollar notes from place to place and call it work."

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  5. When I played rugby in East Vancouver in the 70's, we always had our coolers for beer 4 sale. the neighbours always came, bought beer and supported the club by bringing snacks, etc. for everyone to enjoy.

    The rugby wasn't stellar, but the food, drink and camaraderie was!

    Not no more, lest we ofend some higher purpose person, by having a cool one or cheering too loud.

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  6. Do we still have the no-fun city, despite the street scapes of the 2010 Olympics? I suspect the view depends on where you stand. My youthful offspring experience the city differently than I. They see summer nights of fireworks as a fun blast, I see it as a crowded bore with obnoxious drunks.

    I admire the seawall walkways and enjoy children chasing seagulls at Granville Island as the ocean scenes change continually. My son-in-law loves to ride his bike through mountain trails that are barely there and my grandkids appreciate the farm animals and birds at Maplewood Farm.

    In other words, don't we make the city what it is for each of us? Years ago, my kids explained what life was like in a big city high school of 2,000+. There was a community for everybody and everything; you made a choice and followed the direction that appealed.

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