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On Extreme Heat Waves, the Multi-House Owner Equation, and Pride Riots

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

Live Q&A on Tuesday: Talking B.C. housing affordability with Eby, Rennie, Joy MacPhail [sic] and Christmas. Asking Rennie to talk about housing affordability when he is almost single handedly responsible for promoting the commodification of housing in the city is a bigger slap in the face than Will Smith on Chris Rock at the Oscars. This guy is the poster child of unaffordability.

Meanwhile, Eby has gone full supply mode, and Joy MacPhail probably owns a home or two (just like 93% of current sitting MLAs). No representation from renters. No experts on housing like Andy Yan, Ian Young, Stephen Punawasi, the CCPA, or VTU. Crudely put, it’s a circle jerk of propertied elites hell-bent on maintaining the status quo. How much do you think these panellists actually want home prices to go down?

With allowable rent increases tied to inflation, B.C. tenants fear big spike in 2023. Here’s a bold idea: let’s roll back the rents. We can enlist that Walmart happy face guy – I hear he’s out of work.


So, let’s do the math on that: there are over 375,000 homes that could be available for families… Tell me again about lack of supply?

[Edit]: The above numbers are from 2018, before the empty homes tax. But, even with its implementation, the number of all housing belonging to multi-house owners is still around 30%.

So while these fuckers are lamenting their investment amid soaring inflation caused in part by the government printing money, every time they issue a mortgage people are actually starving: How the slow-burning housing crisis is driving hunger in Canada. Seriously, at this point we should be talking about appropriating second, third, and fourth homes of people. It’s full-on class war and the poor are losing…badly.

Then there’s the special seething scorn of Kitsilano’s NIMBYs (which rivals the world in its unbridled enthusiasm for poor bashing): Kitsilano resident group rejects proposed social housing building, calls for better model.

This is worse than feudalism: Ridiculous rentals: Pay $1,200 a month plus you get to work as a housekeeper. The only downside is that you have to swear an oath of fealty to the manor lord every Sabbath by getting down on all fours, wrapping a piece of green velvet around your wrists, and repeating “May my service always please, and may my sight grow dark if it does not. As the tides to the moon, my will to yours, my liege”.

Ridiculous rentals: $600 to share a one-bedroom basement with two other people. The child version of me is like, cool! Sleepover every day! No girls allowed!

Do you like camping? How would you like to camp forever? Vancouver rentals: Parked travel trailer without plumbing offered for $650/month. Okay, but I’m lighting a fire in the driveway every night, playing “fire in the hole”, and making massive Wizard Sleeves with PBR cans.

This tiny Vancouver rental offers taste of urban homesteader life for under $500 a month. You must make your own soap from the fat collected from the roaming Dunbar elk that you slaughter for your provisions. There is no fridge so everything must be salted and dried. Sorry, no antibiotics in this household!

The hits keep coming: Ridiculous rentals: “Intriguing” Surrey condo listing is a wild journey. Wait, what are Pot Parties and why am I not being invited to them?

B.C. family says homebuyer evicted them to raise rent 70%. This is super illegal but there’s like two people responsible for monitoring this shit in all of BC, so landlords are just like, “Fuck it; roll the dice; maybe you’ll be smart enough to go the media and maybe you won’t”.

I can’t believe the people who got us into this mess are still a party. And no, a name change isn’t going to wash the blood off your hands, Mr. Falcon: BC Liberal Government Roasted in Money Laundering Report.

The BC Government put out their Extreme Heat Preparedness Guide and it’s a joke. It basically says “be prepared to leave your home” – which, of course, thousands of people with disabilities simply can’t do. They won’t make transit free, they won’t give free air conditioners to the elderly (citing climate change, which is oddly ecofascist and eugenecist), and they won’t make landlords responsible for maximum heat like they do with minimum heat. Also: when are we going to start calling poverty a comorbidity/pre-existing condition in this province?

So, while food prices and the cost-of-living are soaring across Canada, hundreds are dying from climate related events. And, landlords being landlords, the Right wants to talk about anything other than these criminal levels of inequality: Most survey respondents don’t feel safe at night in downtown Victoria. (The survey was done by the VicPD The survey was done by the VicPD The survey was done by the VicPD The survey was done by the VicPD).

You want to talk about safety? Let’s talk about this: Drag show cancelled after Victoria café receives threatening calls. As if the service industry didn’t have enough bullshit to deal with over the last two years! This is not an anomaly. Canada is a thoroughly hateful place. We’ve swept this rising extremism under the rug for too long. If Pride started out as a riot, the maybe it’s time to return to those roots.

There’s still some good in the world, and it’s in the streets: Vancouver street artists craft mural for Chinatown business that challenged graffiti taggers.

Bonus: New downtown Vancouver park gets First Nations “Rainbow” park name.

On Ken Sim’s So-Called “Swagger” and ABC’S Class War

Sean Orr is back from his hiatus with a rundown of the local headlines that have been running on a ticker tape through his mind over the past six months...

On Post-Election Recuperation, Platform Paradoxes and Refund Communities

In his latest read of the local news headlines, Sean Orr finds irony in "safety, affordability, and sustainability", and shouts out a bunch of amazing local organizations working on the frontlines.

On Running for City Council, Playing Whack-a-Mole with Homelessness, and the Public Washroom Deficit

In his latest read of the local news headlines, Sean Orr finds a park ranger with a grudge, a gross misuse of air quotes and Tripadvisor slander.

On Living in a City Preoccupied with Street Cleaning, Chandeliers, and Campaigns Against the Homeless

In his latest read of the local news headlines, Sean Orr hones in on the recent Langley shootings, and the ongoing criminalizing and dehumanizing of the homeless population.