Thursday, April 24, 2008

boiler plate

Jari sent me the e-mail below, as well as the picture above - which I photoshopped a bit more. I'm pretty busy, and you already know that the BoC dropped the prime again, and that they are saying that we will have a downturn that will last exactly two years, and blahbitty-blah-blah, so I will ask you to consider this a guest post.

Thanks Jari
This is only vaguely related to Real Estate, but I wanted to share this with you anyway.

I have to drive daily on the streets of Vancouver, and nothing pisses me nowadays more, than seeing all these vehicles with the Olympic licence plates. To me, the plate is symbol of greed, arrogance and ignorance: the real estate is more unaffordable than ever, there are more and more homeless on the streets and the city and the streets are becoming more and more congested and overcrowded. And the politicians’ solution to these problems is to issue this pretentious new provincial slogan and the licence plate to go with it!

I think that we really need a new licence plate, that reflects better the feelings of most people when they are driving on the streets of the city. Attached is a template that may be quite accurate. I believe, that this also represents more precicely the actual future of Vancouver.

I would love to see people typing their licence plate number on this kind of template, printing it and displaying in it in their vehicle. There are already 80000 Olympic licence plates on the roads. I believe this kind of new plate would balance things a little bit.

Feel free to publish this on your blog, if you find this suitable.

Best regards,


Here is Jari's template if you want to make your own.


Will said...

Weak. Mother Theresa is quoted as once saying she would never attend an anti-war rally but would a pro-peace rally. Whether she indeed said that or not the point is that complaining about something does no good and that energy is better spent trying to find a positive solution.

Photoshopping up a plate to be against what a great number of people are looking forward to and will enjoy is the wrong way to go about improving the very real negatives that affect this city.

Homelessness here is abysmal. As is the state of affordable housing and the pushing out of many who may even have born here, and have steady and valued (if not lucrative) jobs such as teachers, police, fire, nurses, and the numerous clerks who support so many higher ups.

There are other problems as well such as crime, a culture of apathy amongst the voters, and empty political discourse.

So let me turn this around: What are the solutions? The Olympics are a great event to be hosting, the city is flush with investment, and people want to live here (even those who complain and keep threatening to leave). Let's not bash the Olympics or license plates. What would you do differently with the opportunity we have been given?

BTW: The Millennium Water project will have a very large amount of subsidised housing, a new school, a community centre, and lots of green space. This is a seriously good project that is reinventing a huge amount of land and all for the better, even if you hate the fact that entry to buy is near half a million dollars. Maybe instead of buying you could get on the list for the subsidised housing?

Mathematical said...

Well, my two cents is if you own multiple properties the Olympics where the best thing you can ask for. It you didn't own any property the Olympics where the worst thing you can ask for.

The cost of living has gone up so has the cost of ownership, homeless people, crime and congestion. If your properties doubled in value you would turn a blind eye to the mess.

I believe the original idea of the Olympics is gone. The Olympics these days are 100% all about making money period. They could care less about the citizens in the cities they operator in.

Anonymous said...

You're gonna start with Mother Theresa and then take a shot like that at the end? Super weak.
Lemme guess, you bought your house five years ago and just got the plate.

solipsist said...

Don't get me going on Mother Theresa.

I voted against the Olympics, and I voted against borrowing 100s of millions of dollars for un-necessary infrastructure. I doubt that many Cambie St. merchants have a plate.

Will, I have aways seen you as being fairly level-headed, but I fear that someone slipped something into your Pink Lady. You would never get me to live in any condo - let alone one called Millenium Wasted.

Don't worry, your plate will only cost you extra money until 2012. It reminds me of one of those "I'm with Stupid ->" t-shirts.

Anonymous said...

The plate is a huge pick with me...can you say "extra tax"??

I cannot even imagine why ANYone would buck up. Olympic legacies speak for themselves with the area residents carrying the tax burden for years.

Best place on Earth truly does ignore the existence of any of the problems in this city. And I see those with the plates as huge ignoramuses.

That being said, I do see what Will is saying about doing positive work. Whatever that could be.

PS: Wouldn't catch me dead in one of these scam condos either though.

solipsist said...

If the number of plates on the road is 80k, that is $6.4 M that people have ponied up. Per year.

My other car is a 1973 Datsun 510.

patriotz said...

Maybe instead of buying you could get on the list for the subsidised housing?

You mean Craigslist?

The idiots who are buying today are providing a far greater subsidy for rental housing than any level of government. Think about it - what is the difference between the total rental returns and the ownership costs (either cash or opportunity cost) of RE in Vancouver today? The mind boggles.

The very same people who would be up in arms if the government bought housing and rented it out at half their borrowing costs, are doing it themselves!

Just as the people who bought 360 Networks shares are subsidizing our cheap long distance calls.

Inflated asset prices -> oversupply -> lower rents.

It happened in dot-com, it's happening in US bubble land, and it's coming soon to "the best place on earth".

solipsist said...

Touche patriotz.

Craigslist, snigger.

Larry said...

Get your voting paddles out. Another condo project that will get scores of 10.

Have fun with this one.

patriotz said...

Just for fun, this is the very first entry on Craigslist:

$1750 / 3br - Beautiful 3 Bdrm Coach House

Now this place would go for at least 600K, I'm sure.

Carrying costs are at least 8% PA, that's 48K a year or 4K a month.

No bubble here!

Anonymous said...

nice post on the coach house.
beautiful manicured lawn.

as an aside, i wanted to make posters with the slogan, "the best place on earth to get shot" and have an image of a chalk outline.

i still may do this.


Tony Danza said...

My crystal ball says "will" will be one of the multitude weeping and gnashing his teeth when Vancouver homemoaners pay for the Olympics with massive property tax increases in the midst of one of the largest housing crashes in this city's history!

Strataman said...

will said; "The Olympics are a great event to be hosting, the city is flush with investment," Will; to be really honest you can not say that even in jest. This city is flush with speculation not investment. 90 % or more of the money coming into Vancouver is to make a quick buck and adds absolutely nothing to the productivity of the population. Investment is when COMPANIES bring funds in and open head offices and create long term jobs, when you can honestly say LOOK this company has established here and pays well above average income aand employes 2000 plus highly educated PRODUCERS. Construction and real estate are non-productive short term occupations that DETRACT from a balanced productive economy. The Olympics is a two week party for the 5% of well off flippers that will benefit by further increasing the cost of living for hard working productive members of society. Donot say it brings anything to Vancouuver unless you will telll me EVERYONE of the workers (on the Olympics) will continue to have employement at exactly the same rate of pay well after the Olympics is over.If you can not say that will happen every one of those jobs is a net LOSS for the area. This city has changed very much for the worst in the last 5 years.