Occupy Vancouver fatality still won't move Mayor into action

Post by Daniel Fontaine in

52 comments

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The illegal tents at Occupy Vancouver will be there long after the election

It's Sunday morning and I find myself at a loss for words. After weeks of tweets, blog posts and media appearances pleading with Mayor Gregor Robertson to do something about the illegal Occupy Vancouver tent city, I am reading about the death of a young woman named Ashley. Her deceased body was found yesterday afternoon in one of those illegal Occupy Vancouver tents.

When I turned on the radio this morning, I must admit I was a bit confused. A number of media outlets are reporting Robertson had ordered the immediate shutdown of Occupy Vancouver. However, when I listened to the Mayor actually speak, the words coming out of his mouth today sound eerily similar to those he uttered last week: "We don't want to set a deadline..." and, "We want this all to end peacefully..." and, "I am sympathetic to the cause."

Dither, dither, dither.

Despite the fact we've had one nearly fatal overdose and now one death, Robertson clearly remains politically paralyzed regarding what to do with the encampment. He told CKNW he is now looking into what options the city has at its disposal to shut this thing down.

Really, Mr. Mayor? You've already had both a public and in-camera briefing on what options are before you. You've had over 5 weeks to get yourself briefed. The only thing you're missing now is the political will to make something happen.

I didn't know Ashley, but I likely walked by her tent a few days ago when I visited the encampment for the third time. There was no need for this young woman to die in a tent on the Art Gallery front lawn. But now we are forced to talk about her in the past tense. THIS TENT ENCAMPMENT HAS TO END NOW.

Is it just me, or does anyone else find it ironic that the Mayor continues to say he wants to end this encampment peacefully? We've now had one death and one near-death in less than a few days. Regardless of the how the tents eventually come down, they will never have come down peacefully thanks to these incidents.

What follows are a few random thoughts and questions I'd like you all to ponder as the Mayor and city officials continue to mull what's next for Occupy Vancouver:

  1. In the days leading up to the October 15th start date for the encampment, I tweeted out several times asking what the plan was from the city to prevent the squat. There was radio silence from 12th and Cambie. The first time the Mayor spoke about the encampment was several days after it started. That's when he said it could remain "indefinitely" as long as it was "peaceful".
  2. The city initially reported the illegal encampment had cost taxpayers over $500,000 after one week. The Mayor said the city had managed to contain those costs to about $1,000 per day. Does anyone believe that to be the case after what we have witnessed over the last week? How many city staff at the encampment on a Saturday were getting paid overtime?
  3. It took the Fire Chief to finally make the first move to shut this site down after both the Police Chief and Mayor appeared unwilling to do anything. But without any political backing, the Fire Chief had to move cautiously. His order to comply with fire regulations was ignored after the emerging Occupy "government" stated they didn't recognize his legal authority over them.
  4. Had Robertson actually visited the squat prior to last evening? His staff insist he made "several" appearances, but there are no photos or evidence to confirm this claim. In fact, when I asked Occupy protesters to confirm if they had ever seen His Worship...they all responded and said he was a no-show. So who is telling the truth?
  5. How long is the Mayor prepared to allow the illegal tents to remain and what is his plan to remove them? He says he wants a peaceful ending to all of this...but what if that's not possible? How many other individuals could die before this is all over?
  6. Why is the Mayor continuing to provide free water, electricity, garbage pickup, recycling, 24/7 fire and security services? When will he follow Victoria's lead and cut off the free services as phase one in the shut down process?
  7. Why has the Mayor not requested staff begin the process to file an court injunction? He's had over three weeks to do so, but has dithered.
  8. What role is the backroom deal between COPE and his party playing in all of this? Has COPE told them they will tear up the political agreement if he moves in on the encampment before the election? Why is he not making a copy of this agreement available to the public to see?
  9. When will the Mayor re-convene council for an emergency meeting – (whether in-camera or not) to get authority to take action?
  10. Finally, we know city officials "tagged" tents for removal the day before. Was Ashley's tent one of the tents that was supposed to be removed, and if so is the City of Vancouver liable as a result?

I have so many other questions swirling in my head but I somehow think they will fall on deaf ears. But for the sake of the young people living under the rule of the new provisional Occupy government, let's hope something is done BEFORE the election to put an end to this madness. The Mayor has pandered long enough to a group of his supporters who have clearly lost control of the situation at the Art Gallery.

Based upon what I'm hearing from Robertson this morning, I suspect those illegal tents will be there not only until the election, but for weeks after that. The reality is the secret political agreement he signed with COPE has simply paralyzed him – at least until 8 pm on November 19th.

My heart goes out to the family and friends of Ashley. I hope she is the last victim of this Occupy Vancouver encampment. May her soul rest in peace.

- Post by Daniel. You can follow us on on Twitter @CityCaucus or you can "like" us on Facebook at facebook.com/citycaucus.

 

52 Comments

Gregor's Squat.

Mayor Moonbeam's decisive actions to end the illegal squat by scofflaws are a dollar & a dead girl late.

This is what you get when you give some group special attention . . . they start to believe they are special, they are above the law, they can do whatever they want.

It starts by letting the bicycle jihadis ruin the commute on the last Friday of every month for good taxpaying citizens - even being so stupid as to provide a police escort for the scofflaws.

It continues with an ineffective police response to to Gregor's Riot, months to law charges, nobody even yet in court.

It ends up with the Entitlement to Free Everything & Life is so Unfair Mob building a filthy squat on public lands, without permits, violating multiple city laws and refusing to move.

Bring in some City Works trucks, hook up 3 inch hoses to some hydrants and flood them out. Then bring in the garbage trucks and clean up all the soiled tentage and garbage.

What about the other 125 over dose deaths that have happened in Vancouver in the last year? Why don't you report about them?

This would be funny is it wasn't so sad a comment on the ability of a mayor to actually do what he is payed to do. This is public land. Get the riot squad out and some city garbage trucks. Sorry all you greenies out there. That's what they are, "Garbage Trucks" not "landfill trucks". I own a house. If I put a tent up in my front yard, the front yard that I own, within days the Bylaw enforcement people will be around giving me a very short time to take it down. Tell moonbeam to leave the happy juce alone, get off his rectum and do what he has been elected to do. And that is run the city in a lawfull way. And no, I am not one of the 1%. But I worked all my life to have what I have now. Like most of the the other people in the country do. And this comes from a guy that has voted NDP all his life.

Rod,

Booooring. This is exciting and makes the mayor look really bad therefore it's front page news, don't you know?

The other 125 are just as sad.

And given the chaos of the DTES, the lack of political will to change anything there and the entrenched interests making the area a "one industry" neighbourhood, those numbers likely to continue, InSite or no InSite.

Sure, let's keep the DTEs exclusivley for the poor, the mentally ill and the addicted.

Makes it easier so much easier for the drug pushers to find them.

"Gregor's Squat"

I like that, the local media should use it to describe the mess at the Art Gallery.

Has there been any causal link established between the existence of the tent encampment and the very sad death of one more apparent drug user?

It appears that Occupy Vancouver has been hijacked by those whose issues are different than those which sparked the worldwide protest.
That said, I am very disappointed with the reactions of the two main civic parties to Occupy Vancouver. Early on there was an opportunity for positive engagement with a segment of the population - particularly youth - which generally does not engage in civic electoral processes. Instead the mayoral candidates have chosen to focus on OV just as a problem to be terminated on some timeframe. By so doing they have reinforced the prevailing alienation of those who initially organized the protest.
I am even more repelled by City Caucus exploiting today's tragedy for political campaign purposes. Noone could possibly know if the death would not have occurred if the encampment had been shut down earlier. It certainly would have been less of a media sensation if, as as happened all too often, the death occurred someplace else.

I am appalled by all of this.
As someone who has had to go to way too many funerals -due to substance use (illegal and legal)I have become very,very tired of the apparent normalization of drugs in Vancouver.

One blog comment I read was 'there's ONLY been one overdose and one death at Occupy Vancouver'.

Is this where we have made it to?

Only 1.

What a sad,sad comment.


A note to any commentators:
Please do not tell me that I don't understand the over- all issue.

I've lived the over- all issue.

Very sad when someone loses their life.


@boohoo
I realize you are one the mayor's biggest boosters here, but fact is you and he will both have to confront that his inaction led to this tragedy. By being too timid to deal with Occupy Vancouver firmly, the mayor set the stage for drug abusers to takeover whatever message OV had in the beginning. Its not like there was no warning, as there was already one overdose on the site.

I suspect Robertson was afraid to alienate COPE supporters by being firm, instead he kept issuing wishy washy statements. It is the same pattern we saw with the Stanley Cup Riot where he had his head in the sand as to possible eventualities.

When the going gets tough. Gregor doesn't get going.

As a matter of fact he heads for the hills.

"I realize you are one the mayor's biggest boosters here,"

Clearly you've never read, or at least understood anything I write.

"but fact is you and he will both have to confront that his inaction led to this tragedy."

My point is we see 'tragedy' every day, but this gets press. Why is that? Why don't the hundred so odd deaths from OD's get this press? What about the hundreds/thousands of 100% preventable deaths we see on our roads every year?

I'm simply pointing out this post and all those who decry the mayor are flush with hypocrisy. Is this tragic? Of course, whenever someone dies like this it is. But a little perspective would be nice.

City staff claim that Robertson made several appearances at the squat.

These are the same staff which form part of the ballooning communications department. The same department that's supposed to be working for the citizens of Vancouver. The illustrious department which actually does nothing but block access to trouble for Gregor, while ready to pounce on calling a taxi to get Robertson to smear his face in front of reporters when he can steal 15 seconds of fame when things are looking good.

So, the truth is that he was actually there! He was even there on Halloween wearing a Penny Ballem costume. It's the ugly face he puts on every time there's bad news.

Slight aside--just had someone from the NPA come to my house while I was working outside.

'Hi, I'm xxx, I'm out canvassing for Suzanne Anton and NPA.

'ok'

'Are you going to be voting?'

'Yes, but I'm not sure for who'

'Are you voting for the other guys?'

Now, right here, in that moment, in my head I completely shut her off. This is exactly what's wrong with politics in Vancouver. What utter horseshit to be coming from a representative of a political party.

'I don't believe in the us vs them thing so I won't be voting for any one party'

'Ok, bye.'

Yeah, see ya.

Don't kid yourself.
The DTES is being broken up.

People are being sent all over the City and Province.
The DTES buildings are being sold rapidly.

People in them aren't getting real help now.

AND

The problem is: People are moved elsewhere.
Are they getting the help they need?
Mental health and addiction help.

And I'm not talking about warehousing help.
I'm talking about real help.

How long does it take to get someone rehab?

Does rehab exist?

maybe it's because you were wearing a Vision t-shirt and had a nude sculpture of Gregor in your foyer?

Boohoo, I went in to my office the other day and right in front of the door were 2 people with binders that had Vision written on it. I can assure you, the conversation I had with them was absolutely no different than the one you had with the representative from the NPA. In fact, they did not want to hear a thing I said. All they wanted to do was 'enlighten me'.

Bob Mackin reports the following on his blog:

"During the scrum, I asked the Mayor if he would walk down the sidewalk, turn the corner to the tent village and meet the residents. I also asked him if he had been there yet.

He didn’t answer the first part of my question, but said: “I've been on this site many times over the last couple of weeks... every day over the last several weeks.”

“I have not seen him once,” said Chris Shaw, a volunteer medic and well-known anti-Olympic activist and author. “The Mayor is playing politics with a tragic incident, if it happened two blocks away he would not have cared.”

“I've never seen him down here,” said Eric Hamilton-Smith. “I'm down here a lot, most of the time I'm usually in the tent getting some work done. I can't speak to the fact that he says he's been here. I don't want to call him a liar, but I've never seen him personally.”

I’m hoping the Office of the Mayor will disclose the days and times of the Mayor’s Occupy Vancouver visits. There is no reason to keep such visits secret. If I’m forced to file a Freedom of Information, it could be a long wait.

Anton visited the camp on Oct. 31. She returned there on Nov. 6 to pay condolences to Gough."

Well, it's sad when anyone dies, anywhere at any time. It has nothing to do with the Occupy movement. The Occupy movement is a worldwide phenomenon, not a Vancouver issue. Some of you seem to be completely oblivious to that fact.

This speaks to the sickening issue of excessive drug use in Vancouver and nothing else. Drug users will continue to die on the streets of Vancouver every day.

Vancouver has such a lesson coming.

Julia,

Yeah, I know. That's my point.

Julia:

I've been hit by the 'Vision' profilers twice now.

On Friday at Georgia and Granville and today as I was walking down West 4th - they were hanging out in front of the McDonalds.

My response - Yes I am voting in this election and Vision is not who I am voting for.

There were two - a young girl and guy. After my statement she comes shooting over to his side and asks "What did she say?"

Okay, I may have referenced Vision as the Vision village idiots....

as soon as i saw the guy on the news last night ask the mayor if "insite can come onsite" ....that was it for me shut em down,,,,,the occupy movements in many city's are informative with job seminars / resume / training ideas etc,...ours is clearly become a large amount of people who are not interested in work or the occupy movement for what it was originally meant....ours is seemingly a contrarian group of people, many addicted to drugs ...condensed on the promenade of the art gallery.... its time to "safely and peacfully shut em down," ...which is what the mayor is starting...It would not have been right to do this weeks ago, but the demographics and actions taking place down there do not exemplify the movement....enough is enough.

Robertson does not want to be Mayor so why vote for him. The current fiasco at VAG shows the Mayor has no plan in place to deal with the situation or if there is a plan, he is ignorant of it. Sound familiar? He was ignorant of the policing plans to deal with the Stanley Cup play off crowds despite being briefed as Chair of the VPD Board. He was ignorant of the number of place deployed to deal the 'Robertson's Riot". He is immensely incapable of dealing with conflicting viewpoints (i.e. F***ing NPA hacks) and witness as well the clueless deer in the headlights look when interviewed last night at the VAG squat. In the Furlong-Keefe report, he suggests the mayor as chair of the VDP Board is not good governance. I'd love to go to work and pick and choose what duties perform. If he doesn't want the job of Mayor and ALL the duties that entails, he should be applying for another job and we certainly should not hire a candidate that wants to do a fraction of the job. And yes, I was hit up by the Vision kids on west 4th. Right outside Bimini's Beer Store about 10 minutes before the Canuck-Hawks game. Such a basic lesson VV has not learned....don't mess with beer and hockey.

The phone rings - "Yes Mr Mayor, it's your exorbitantly overpaid, over budget, over staffed communications department." "Sir, we're calling because Penny wants you down on Georgia St, ASAP".

It takes a tragedy for Robertson to "flip" on the tent city. "They can stay indefinitely...." Now, that someone loses their life, Robertson directs the City Manager to act.

Robertson wants to end street homelessness, but pitching tents on city streets is okay,... until someone dies then he'll take a stand. (Photo op)

Wow Max, swish!! You really got them there, Vision village idiots. There is know way that standard would apply to the great list of candidates the NPA has fielded.
You da man/woman Max!

Sorry, but the disdain borders on just farcical BS.

The occupiers have a bad attitude and no skills which equals no jobs. What do they expect.

The drug addicts have taken over the Courthouse/Art Museum site. There could well be more deaths before the site is cleared. No wonder they are homeless. Drug addicts are not employable and therefor they are homeless. Their problems are self inflicted, so why should our tax dollars go to support their addictions? I see no problem with these addicts overdosing and dropping like flies.

As much as I dislike Gregor and the way our city has been taken over by special interests, I think correlating this overdose with the current tent city is pushing it. This overdose didn't happen because of the tent city, it just happened in it.

It's worth mentioning that Kalle Lasn, one of the founders of OWS, has publically stated that Occupy Vancouver no longer represents the goals of the worldwide movement.

"While the raw passion for protest and changing society may be there, the ill-defined messages being conveyed by most Occupy organizers these days will cause the movement to eventually “fizzle out,” says Kalle Lasn, whose magazine, Adbusters, sparked the birth of the first demonstrations in New York in mid-October.


The Occupy movement to a large degree has been taken over by “the loony left,” said Lasn, whom he describes as “visitors” to the movement who have clouded its original messages with unfocused, left-leaning rhetoric.


“I see some organizers being interviewed on TV and I just cringe” said Lasn, who estimates there are around 100,000 occupiers that have set up encampments around the world. “The difference is...most now will say, ‘We want to overthrow capitalism’ or, ‘Tax the rich!’ But if you talk to the intellectuals in the movement, they will say it’s to see a deep changing of capitalism.”


bobh, you are a complete idiot and have no understanding of the complexities of society or humanity.

First off, correlating the unfortunate death of that girl with the protest is nonsense. There are a myriad deaths every month due to substance abuse. What happened at the camp is simply a mirror of the community. If anything you could argue that this camp my be preventing poor health outcomes because at least these people are sheltered and to a degree of supportive compatriots.

Further bobh, to demonstrate that you're an utter dimwit through your amazing insight of mental health conditions a significant proportion of individuals who have addiction issue's are people who started out suffering from mental health issue's and were not able to get proper help, leading them to homelessness and self medication (self medicating negates hunger pain, enhances cold tolerance, and helps to negate the voices).

So you in your self made man f#@ked up mentality believe that it is best just to allow them to OD! You quickly forget that these citizens are peoples sons, daughter, brothers and sisters - it could be any one of our kids and there is nothing we can do as parents to stop the onset of mental illness - but your solution of allowing them to simply OD is what you would have us do to our children.

We cringe at the sometimes inarticulate comments made by those at the OV movement that appear to lack a depth in dealing with the complexities of our social economic system, but bobh your insights are far more troubling and exemplify that other side of the political spectrum is in itself representative of frightening modus of thought. . . . . way to represent.

Excellent comment, Toowoozy.

Just as a side note: TIDES 'donates' to Adbusters.

@Max No surprise that Tides would donate to a fringe outfit like Adbusters and that certainly explains why Gregor is afraid to step on the Occutards toes. Just follow the money..

And TooWoozy- suck it up Canada is moving to the Right and soon your bleeding heart rants will be irrelevant to all but the most hardcore poverty pimps.

Ah brilliant, I guess it's just nice just try and dream that you could live up to your moniker. Keep dreaming.

Hmmm, Canada moving right. I have my great doubts on that. I see the electorate, and especially the future young voter as a majority centre left; as was demonstrated in the last federal election (60% voting for left of centre parties). The majority of the population is made up of moderates with a propensity of leaning left as it pertains ideology. So it will be a long time before I have to suck anything up.

But the reality is I am not bound by dogma. My leanings are toward solid progressive policies that puts people first and that recognizes the imbalance in power that resides in North America. So I don't care which side of the balance sheet you come from, as long as you present good policy.

This was just published at The Dependent Magazine:

"According to a key Occupy organizer, protesters are in negotiations with the City to move to a warehouse following the shut down order issued by Mayor Gregor Robertson.

James “Facilitator,” (who would not give his last name) has been with the movement since its inception. He was responsible for negotiating free power from the City during Occupy’s first weekend, and said he’s been having back-channel negotiations with the City’s deputy managers throughout the occupation.

“The vehicle is not us being here, it’s the vehicle of awareness,” James said. “I’ve put it forth to the City that, if they can find us a spot, like an empty warehouse or something where we can put everything like the press committee and even the food we can still feed people if we need to, but move the vehicle away from here.”

Councillor Andrea Reimer confirmed negotiations have been going on since day one of the protest, and that moving the camp indoors is currently on the table.

“We’ve been talking with people from the movement since day one, the Deputy City Manager has been the lead on it,” Reimer said. According to Reimer, Deputy City Manager Sadhu Johnston has been in talks with James and other organizers from the movement to find a place that is “more suitable” for its needs.

“[The Art Gallery grounds] is not an ideal space,” Reimer said. “If they had somewhere with concrete, that drained a little better, that would be a better space for such a thing. I know that that discussion has been going on. Facilitating the movement itself would probably best be done from an indoor space where they could have things like offices.”

James said negotiations are taking place around finding a space where the movement’s committees can continue to meet and move forward on their agendas, and potentially become a political entity themselves.

“One thing this could morph into is a political possibility. We have one candidate in this election, and we could have had more if we’d been on the ball about it… we can get involved in the community in multiple parallels and be active, and actually make a difference,” James said."

http://thedependent.ca/featured/occupy-to-move-indoors/

Gawd, Occupy the Warehouse! Too funny, and no surprise Reimer is Vision's talking head on this farce.

Holy crap,I guess there is no cure for stupid!!!!

What I find amazing, these Occupy folks think they are the only group in the city offering food services (or at least that is the way they came across and yes, I have listened to their general assembly)

Perhaps someone needs to take them on a detailed tour of the DTES and introduce them to the groups tripping over themselves to feed, cloth, provide medical etc in order to maintain the government funding. Also enlighten them as to how many dollars the taxpayers 'donate' to the DTES on a dialy basis. Right now, they don't seem to have a clue.

I listed to the GA last night and the speaker said they were a group of people that were politically motivated, worked in the services, or had 'led sheltered lives'.

At one point there was discussion about 'public servants' and their ability to interfere with the public and how they - OV- were offering up 4 demands to the city to have this stop. A woman pipes up and states she is a school teacher in the public system and had an issue with their description of 'public servant' as she felt she did not fall into their definition. Meaning she was not happy with the letter they were going to issue out.

(Wondering what CUPE thinks of this as they donated $5,000 to this 'movement')

The method they have put into place in order to come to a group 'consensus' on anything is slow and tedious. No wonder after 20+ days they haven't figured out what their actual demands are.

Two people vote to block an 'idea' and it goes back to square one. You have groups there with their own agenda, all wanting a piece of the 'occupy pie' and no real clear thought process. If left alone, they would be there till next year at this time still tying to figure out what the first 15 demands were let alone 50.

Some years back I had to sit through a day where parents were determined to have their children come to a consensus about something.
It just didn't work and the kids worked out their own arrangement.
They decided it was way more fun to go play on the swings.

The parents then had an argument about this and it was way,way more hostile that the children had been.

The word consensus makes me groan.

And this up on twitter:

OccupyVancouver:

Gail Davidson says a court injunction is better for #OccupyVancouver than other things the city might try 4 eviction. Says we can win case


*****

Now, this makes me wonder if it has to do with not being served with by-law notices right from the get go.

You hit the nail on the head. The fact the city ignored all their by-laws for the last 3 weeks means they will lose the injunction.

The judge will send them packing and will argue they need to do more on the ground first before coming to the courts.

What I find very interesting, Max.
I was on Fraser street this weekend and many people I talked to didn't even know there was a problem happening downtown.

Many of them don't have English as their first language and they tend to not watch the news because of this.

Media manipulation?

Media manipulation? I don't get what you're getting at. If I didn't follow these blogs etc, I would never have known about this. It hasn't impacted me one iota. I would imagine it's the same for the vast majority of people in Metro Vancouver.

Ashlie Gough's step dad was on Global tonight.

He stated that he blames Occupy Vancouver for her death and feels that had it been shut down earlier, she would still be here.

FYI - he is a street care social worker -said she was not homeless, that she came here with friends for the weekend.

He also stated that he felt the 'wrong element' had set in at the camp.

Victoria faces the same issue - with the change in the demographic at the camp.

Sorry I wasn't clearer Boohoo.

I found it interesting that most people were unaware about OV.

The media is doing a VERY good job pumping out stories about it (and the amount of air time,print time is going up).
Nothing like a good controversy to get more viewers,readers,etc.
Also to get more people heading downtown to see what's happening.

Boy, that reminds me of something that took place in June.

I see a large group stormed a church last night.

So are you criticizing that? Or do you think the media pumping it up is good?

In the grand scheme of things that impact people in Metro Vancouver, OV is a tiny tiny blip. Why it's getting so much press is beyond me.

I do not like how antagonistic this has become.

Right from Day 1, I've said people have the right to protest.

They do not have the right to take over and create tent cities.
Or to threaten people who disagree with them.

Media is making it worse.

"I do not like how antagonistic this has become."

Of course. Instead of finding common ground on which to base a discussion or at least an understanding we pit each other off one another. The media, including this and other blogs is quite guilty of that. Of course, we read this and no one is forcing our hand so...

We read the list of demands and mock them, mock the authors, call them hypocrites, point out the craziest of them. But I bet there are a dozen things on that list we all agree are a good idea. So why not talk about that? I guess it's not sexy to agree.

This whole OV thing is so blown out of proportion is comical. Yet this blog, FB, the news, everyone--it's all people want to complain about. The mayor did this or that, the police did this or that, the protestors did this or that, but no one wants to actually address the issues raised because they aren't raised how we want them to be raised. How we feel comfortable having them raised. Kinda childish don't you think?

BH – I think that is the reason the protest has failed when most would have liked to see it succeed. They couldn’t provide a coherent list of concerns for public consumption. Like it or not, they need public support in order for the protest to have any lasting effect. So when your list includes, for examples drug demands, you are going to lose a certain segment of your support. Most successful social change comes from a clear, straight forward message delivered repeatedly so the masses can “get it”. Mixed or multiple messages rarely if ever works.

To start the ball rolling:

A point I agree with is our economic system needs change. I don’t have a problem rewarding people who take chances and really benefit society. However, as an example, people getting rich off synthetic trading instruments is dumb. Nothing of true value is created and no risk is really taken by the person getting rich – the Investment Bankers (at corporate level) often try to sell on both sides of the trade to eliminate their risk as they have the horsepower ($ into the system) to be able to do that. Not to mention the recent trouble in the US – in this instance people sold toxic assets to collect personal bonuses and ignored the risk of putting those assets on the balance sheets of their firms. Traders at Leman Brother figured out how well that worked.

Here is a small musical interlude to brighten up a dreary day.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g0Ciz8xnJMc

"suck it up Canada is moving to the Right"


There's not a popular sentiment in vogue these days that could be more wrong. The entire history of Canada reads like a long slow shift to the Left.

Kinda crazy... Sad world we live in ;)

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