A no messing around guide to the coolest things to eat, drink and do in Vancouver and beyond. Community. Not clickbait.

On Fearing For Nelson And The Political Death Of Liberal Pop Culture


by Sean Orr | Planned obsolescence: Wendy Pedersen: All SROs could be lost in the first 10 years of Vision Vancouver’s DTES housing plan. Best comment: “If Christy Clark is reading this article, she is probably laughing and taking note that leaving welfare rates frozen and DTES residents under-housed is not going to be an election issue.”

How the worst overdose epidemic in Vancouver’s history left the Downtown Eastside to fend for itself. I’ve been writing about this shit for over a decade now. It’s exhausting. I’ve always held out hope that the government could tinker its way to a solution…that non-profits could sway the course of public opinion…that by dissecting the free market-driven corporate media on the daily…that by exposing the Randian notion that drug addicts chose this way of life and the state has no business helping them I was somehow contributing to a sort of war on attrition that would bring about necessary policy.

But maybe I’m delusional and just adding to the problem. Maybe I belong to the type of liberal pop culture that has officially outlived its usefulness in politics.

Maybe it’s middle-class guilt. Maybe I’m just trying to rectify the juxtaposition of living in a condo that abuts the DTES. But as long as the trickle downers tell us we are supposed to be selfish, nothing will change: How baby boomers became the most selfish generation.

But hey, I pay below market rent so that makes the whole building social housing, right? City’s 2017 budget failed on affordable and social housing.

Through a sleight-of-hand, the Vision-led council has redefined “social housing” in the most bizarre way: They ask a developer to build, say, 100 apartments. If 30% of the units are slightly below market rents, the city actually counts those 30 units as social housing. Then it gets really illogical: they also count the remaining 70 units as social housing even if they charge market rents

While we gawk at the horror of Duterte “slaughtering us like animals in the Philippines, it took overflowing morgues here for us to do anything about it. And still nobody is blaming Big Pharma.

And while we continue to make people like the Sihotas rich by giving them welfare dollars, we also make the likes of Pattison richer by donating canned food that nobody wants: For the love of God, stop donating canned goods to the food bank. Fine, I’ll take my silkworm pupa and marinated baby octopus elsewhere.

We still think making it illegal to sleep on the street is a solution: Kelowna bylaw makes sleeping in the street overnight illegal. ‘Whose sleeps’? ‘Our sleeps!’

I know what will solve inequality! Subsidies for global capital! Canada Establishing Federal Agency to Simplify Foreign Investment. “The agency will provide ‘single-window’ client support”. I wonder if that single window resembles McDonalds’ new holiday cups:

Related: Nearly half of B.C.’s most expensive homes secretly owned, raising fears of money laundering.

I guess I could always be a stooge for capital and join the managerial reich: 50 high-paying jobs in B.C.. I mean, just look at the guy in that article! Reading the newspaper (how old fashioned) while drinking a glass of wine! Yes, please!

Either that or move to Nelson: With Flood of Urbanites, a Canadian Hippie Haven Tries to Keep Its Mellow. RIP Nelson.

From the CBC: Canada doesn’t deserve a black woman on its money. “What black people in Canada need is institutional change, not tokenism in the form of a picture on money.”

Meanwhile, Police diversity fails to keep pace with Canadian populations. Not surprisingly, Vancouver is one of the worst cities for this.

Related event of the day: Counter the Alt-Right. Since I look a bit like a red neck these days, I’m going undercover. Which is a bad idea because I’m impressionable when I drink and I’ll probably start agreeing with them.

No fun city: Don’t ride on the outside of the SkyTrain, Translink pleads. Jeez, lighten up a little.

Remembering the West Coast snowstorm of ’96. I was 18 so I don’t remember anything.

Bonus: This AI’s attempt to write a Christmas carol is absolutely bone-chilling.

Why the fuck is there music coming from the hall? Who is out there, and what are they doing? Why will “you” always be here, singer? These are not lyrics, they are the moans of the damned, trapped between this world and something beyond it, just conscious enough to know they are not at rest.

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.