On Governing Spinelessly and Having Trouble Finding Vancouver’s Awesome

Tea & Two Slices is a long-running local news round-up by NEEDS frontman and veteran dishwasher Sean Orr, who lives and works in Gastown, deeply aware of his privilege.

In light of the ongoing evictions at Oppenheimer Park (where even the United Nations has been sounding the alarm) and editorial after editorial detailing “how bad” it is right now on the Downtown Eastside, what would possess Vancouver is Awesome founder Bob Kronbauer to do a wannabe Vice-style investigation on…illegal cigarettes? We bought illegal cigarettes in the Downtown Eastside so you don’t have to. Ugh. I read the tedious screed so you don’t have to, including the part where he implores his readers to avoid the neighbourhood…

“It’s an absolute gong show in the Downtown Eastside right now. So much so that the VPD is now concerned for the safety of cops working in the neighbourhood. I wouldn’t advise anybody to go there for any reason whatsoever, never mind to buy illegal cigarettes.”

The privilege and tone deaf ignorance inherent in this kind of “reporting” is reminiscent of Vancity Buzz, circa 2007. Instead of tackling any of the myriad issues facing the DTES, this entitled narc goes and tells on a senior citizen. Seriously, what the actual fuck, Bob? Is this because your car got broken into and someone stole your fancy fishing boots?

Related: B.C. legislative committee makes no recommendation to increase welfare rates. Oh, for fuck’s sake, Carole James. We have a budget surplus. How can we end homelessness if welfare is too low for people to pay rent and eat?

In the face of all this, why are we forgiving multimillion-dollar loans to the third richest man in Canada? Why are we copying American-style stock buybacks? Why are we treating the SNC-Lavalin Scandal as an aberration?

Why are we still giving developers carte blanche for rezoning but demonizing those critical of market solutions to the housing crisis as “CAVE people“?

And why are we copying ICE-style raids against our workers while the rich go unscathed for exploiting the labour of our most vulnerable people?

And why are breaking promises to taxi drivers and undermining public transit to appease corporate elites? No fleet-size limits or price surge restrictions for ride-hailing companies in B.C.. Enjoy your 2am pouring rain price surge, tech bros. I’ll be hailing a cab.

Why did we buy a pipeline? Trans Mountain announces ‘immediate return to work’ in Burnaby. Just days after a pipeline rupture sent 40,000 litres of oil into an Alberta creek? While Kinder Morgan cashes out (again)?

Ok, enough with the rhetorical questions, Sean. Here is some good news: Cancer be damned. Hollywood Bowl fave Bramwell Tovey reclaims the stage. Nice:

Music director of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra for 18 years, Tovey on Saturday retweeted a response to someone dissing Canada’s health care system. Tovey, 66, said he went from “emergency to diagnosis all in one day. Biopsy immediately — op June 10, chemo protocol June 17 and tonight I’m conducting the LAPhil@HollywoodBowl total cost so far? $0.”

Cool idea: Fraser River sea bus proposed to hook into TransLink system.

Bonus: Laziness Does Not Exist.

There are 2 comments

  1. Thanks for calling Bob out on his bs. His snobby elitism totally rendered his article moot for me. I have no sympathy for anyone who shames the DTES

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