My world is coming apart

Our provincial government introduced a ‘speculation tax’ that was intended to curb offshore investors from buying homes and leaving them empty.  It was perceived that their doing so was driving up the cost of housing for the common man.  And, it undoubtedly was. And it still is, actually, but that’s for later in the blog……

This part is about the unfettered hypocrisy of it all.  Even though I agree with the effort to dissuade foreign ownership that simply leaves housing empty, the truth is we are bludgeoned to believe that we can spend our money where we want.  We are brainwashed to believe we can own something outright.  We are told to believe that racism is bad.  We are told to believe that the free market system works best and we were exhorted to ‘want’ to be a world-class city.  Obviously none of those things are true or what we REALLY want.  As soon as free enterprise is controlled by foreigners, then our non-racist, equal-opportunity plan is chucked in the dumpster.  And just as clearly intervention was required because well, the free market system DOESN’T work very well, does it.?  It needs interfering with.  And we love being world class UNLESS it costs us more.

In other words, we are hypocrites.  We do not believe in what we claim to believe in.

That’s OK.  Who amongst us isn’t a hypocrite in some ways?  I find myself sending money to West Coast legal (imagine me. of my own free will, sending money to lawyers!  I must be mad) to fight Kinder Morgan dumping tar in to the Salish Sea while at the same time cursing Rachel Notley and Alberta for somehow managing to raise the price of gasoline.  I am embarrassed by those conflicting constructs but they are true.

I loathe Donald Trump for just about everything he does but find myself shrugging and wondering what-the-hell the Stormy story is all about.  She’s over 21.  He’s over 21.  It was consensual.  They screwed (sufficient punishment for both of them in my opinion) and she got $130,000.  No victims!

I would NOT screw the Donald for $130,000 but I could force myself to sacrifice an hour or so for Stormy for that kind of fee.  Jus’ sayin’...

What is the story?  That Donald is unfaithful?  PULEEEEEZ.  Melania is wife #3, for God’s sake.  DJT met Melania when he was with wife #2, Marla Maples.  Move along , folks.  Nothing to see there.  Same ol’, same ol’.

The Australian Cricket team is being shamed and ostracized because their bowler was caught using a piece of sticky tape to ‘doctor’ the ball before chucking it.  Are we to believe that the Aussies have never cheated before?  That this minor (compared to doping and ‘fixing’ contests all over the world) is something new?  Bottom line: rubbing sticky tape is a rule broken.  End of story.  Move on.  If you don’t understand that look to Hockey, Basketball and Football – games virtually BUILT around cheating and breaking rules.

I guess what I am saying is that we all seem to believe more and more in the greater Tooth Fairy.  And the Easter Bunny.  And…and, and, and….. and that is a form of collective mental illness.  (This is now a rampant disease called political correctness and fake behavioural expectations and it has ravaged the free thinking of universities to the point that they are a waste of time for a real thinker).  We are living under a veil of innocence and ignorance that we remove and replace with bizarre regularity.

Reality check: professional athletes cheat.  Politicians lie and cheat and steal.  The media distorts the truth.  Much of the justice system is a gang and they abuse power.  Some women sell sex.  Some men buy it.  Not all Muslims are good.  Not all blacks are good.  Not all whites are bad.  The education system dumbs us down.  Capitalism has been corrupted.  The monetary system doesn’t work.  You NEVER own your own home.  Climate change is real, the oceans are dying. A broken clock is right twice a day.  And Justin Trudeau is an imbecile.

And I can continue that list for days and days.

“So, again with the same old question, Dave…..what’s the point?” 

A small glint of hope……the provincial government got plenty of feedback on their speculation tax pretty quickly. I even wrote them the day I learned of it.  Others did, too.  By the gazillion.  AND, GET THIS!!!!

They listened and changed the law to better reflect the reality of it.  It is still hypocritical, of course, but they listened and responded somewhat.  THEY LISTENED AND RESPONDED!

The government listened…

I am reeling…..

 

29 thoughts on “My world is coming apart

    • It’s not complicated. Inflation has always been with us but now it is ‘institutionalized’. Governments WANT inflation. Insurance companies NEED inflation. Even markets like inflation. But, because of inflation, savings accounts are now mostly a waste of time. Put $100,000 in the bank and five years later it is worth approximately 17% less in ‘real’ dollars. Any interest the saver might gain is also lost and taxed. Savers lose. Inflation eats their nest egg.
      But REAL ESTATE is real. Real estate not only keeps up with inflation (overall), it has a speculative element. If some place becomes desirable (zoning, sky train, highway expansion, etc) then the speculator gets an extra bump up. Added bonus: now real estate is ‘international’ currency. Like gold (but more practical) everyone everywhere recognizes GOOD dirt. GOOD real estate is in a safe country that has a stable economy and lots of future potential. It should be in a temperate climate. It should be a modern country. Democracy seemingly is a plus. Get it? Canada sells good dirt. There are way more billionaires in China than there are PEOPLE in all of Canada. Greater Chonquin (a city in China) has as many people in it as we do in Canada. And China is kinda crowded and polluted with a president-for-life. Where would you buy land if you could choose anywhere?
      Here’s the funny part: The Chinese ‘investor’ doesn’t really care about the tax* or even the speculative element. When they buy here, most of them are truly just ‘saving for a rainy day’.
      *the tax means little. Our currency fell in value against the RMB/yuan. Close to 15%. It was a wash mathematically. They may lose on the tax but gain on the currency exchange. No biggy.

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  1. Was the speculation tax for everyone or just foreigners?

    In Australia, Australian tax payers get many tax advantages to invest in property – negative gearing and capital gains tax discounts. It is grossly unfair and drives up the price of property for young people. We also have foreign investors speculating in the property market. I haven’t seen the numbers, but I suspect that the tax incentives for Australian tax payers have a much bigger impact on prices than foreign speculation. Guess which one our government has decided to address? Might have something to do with many politicians having multiple investment properties. Maybe… But the government says, it is a supply issue, ie. not enough sellers, property shortage, so they can blame it on another level of government. Those pesky state governments and local councils should have less regulation, expedite property development, free up our best agricultural land for housing, etc. The spin is incredible.

    When governments want to change policy here, they put forward the most draconian option first and when everyone complains, they soften it up a bit. Voila. It’s called listening to the electorate. 🙂 I am so cynical.

    My true love won’t buy an investment property on principle. God, it is hard to live with such a principled man sometimes! I am an ashamed hypocrite. I don’t want to live with my kids for the rest of our lives.

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    • Actually, I am jesting…somewhat…….there are more MILLIONAIRES in China than there are people in Canada and, I seem to recall that there are more BILLIONAIRES when you use RMB as the currency. Yuan.

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  2. Good rant! I don’t think I’d ‘do’ the Donald for 130 grand either, but then I don’t ‘need’ 130k right now. Stormy, on the other hand….well, I might embarrass myself. I’ve sometimes wondered if I’d behave like tRump if I had the money he purports to have. I hope not, but fortunately (for society) I’ll never be put to the test. But it wasn’t for his (alleged) wealth he probably wouldn’t have got to first base with any of them – like me. So rather than feel inadequate I just thank the lucky stars I’m just a normal depraved man.
    Regarding the free market system: I was all in favour of it when I sold my 20K home on 5 acres (in Surrey – not some OTG forlorn location) for 8 times that much 8 years later. Now, I’m not so sure. I finally realized my worrying about ocean acidification, climate change and WWIII was doing nothing to solve the problem and was only impacting my health. So I stopped worrying!
    Cheer up, things could be worse! So I cheered up and sure enough, things got worse!

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    • I have often said, “It’s a good thing God didn’t make me rich or handsome! I could have become even MORE obnoxious.”
      Sal says, “Not possible.”
      She’s being supportive, right?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hey ! Thats MY line!
        I also add, ” The only thing different between being poor and obnoxious and rich and obnoxious is…..
        People tolerate you if you’re rich.”
        Donald Trump is living proof.

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  3. ‘’They listened and they responded.” That is what happens when a party in power shares some of your political ideology. The party in power acts in your political interests. Just as Crusty Clark Preimer acted for her constituents. Her political donators. A common definition for politics is: who gets what and why. We all are entitled to a fair minded government working for all but sadly all interests are seldom taken into consideration.

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    • Not so. Not entirely so, anyway. I had no interest in whether or not anyone paid a speculative tax. I am not into spec property. No one I know is. It was simply that (as I wrote) it was all so hypocritical and, further, it seemed to hurt ‘cottage owners’. I am NOT a cottage owner, either. So, I wrote from an ‘ethical’ interest. I think that’s different. Of course, I wouldn’t propose an ethical argument to the Liberals. That would be like speaking Greek to them.

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      • My comment was intended as generically addressing how some voters attempt to inoculate themselves by voting their self interest. Was not suggesting that you had an iron in the fire.

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      • Thank you. I DO vote my self interest, of course. But it is not quite right (to me) to say that voting against Kinder Morgan is in MY self interest. Or spec tax. It is really in ALL OF OUR self interest. Still, a welder on the pipeline might say I was voting in MY self interest and not HERS. So, it’s hard to say….

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  4. ‘’i am my brother’s keeper.” Sometimes it is necessary defend some one’s interest against himself. Policies have intended and unintended consequences. Increasing unemployment for pipeline workers might be collateral damage that some might accept but the person on the sharp end of the unemployment stick is angry.

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  5. on another topic, can I have a straw poll on how your readers like the new CBC news feed, or am I an outlier still using that service??

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    • CBC News Feed.
      Another drain on the CBC’s endlessly shrinking budget.
      Just do Radio .
      Get rid of the CBC French only station in BC.(and most of the other anglo provinces?) Millions wasted on what Stats Can says are maybe 4000 French language only people here in Columbia Brittanique..
      CBC TV produces “News”?
      I’ve seen their Social Justice bias has gutted viewership ever downward.
      Peter Masbridge retires and the gutless milksops in charge of CBC cant make a decision so they replace him with two visible minority men and a woman…..pathetic pandering to the aggreived social warriors doesnt even begin to describe whats going on.
      Useless, bloated public sector workers so self absorbed in meetings and navel picking they wont even understand why their jobs( but not their generous pensions) are gone until it happens.
      Their decreasing budget means very little “reporting by reporters” and usually a camera feed or phone video supplied by “Joe Public”
      The most annoying part is the 6pm “News” interviews about social justice non events( a trangendered toilet was defaced with graffitti in a Park! Live at 6pm!) that go on and on and on mindlessly while serious, world events in the outside real world get a one line mention, if at all.
      Oh. And the 6pm evening news on Sat and Sun? Gone.
      Replaced with such venerable Canadian content as rerun Hollywood movies.
      CBC affectionately called “The Corpse” years ago was incorrect.
      It should be called “The Zombie” because it doesnt know its dead yet all while sucking the life out of taxpayers.

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  6. Kicking the grandmother CBC is a bit myopic. In many places in this vast country the CBC is the only radio signal on the dial. Anywhere in a metro area listeners have choice. North Bend, BC, it’s the CBC or nothing. In the UK people love the public broadcast, the BBC.

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  7. I like CBC Radio.
    CBC TV.
    A hollowed out shell of it’s former self.
    Lloyd Robertson must have to eat Tums by the bucket load to keep the bile down.
    Hijacked by the “socially aware” parasites that seem to demand everything for free while paying as little as possible.
    The demise of CBC TV is inevitable.
    Just take it out behind the barn and put it out of its misery.

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    • I agree with you. CBC radio is excellent. CBC television has been gutted and CTV and Global report many stories from American networks but little Canadian news. . PBS does a decent job on American news but Canadian stories are lacking unless it was the dirt on the Ford brothers. I agree that there is some virtue in a broad criticism on the Canadian television wasteland, in that most of Canada’s tv content is generated off shore. The French CBC in Quebec plays a vital role. CBC TV presented the recent Olympic Games and carries hockey games to many communities.

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      • I totally agree that the French CBC in Quebec is invaluable.
        Keep it. Its worth every penny.
        But when I walked through CBC Vancouver a few years ago to look at a repair job I was amazed at the amount of french spoken.
        More than 50% of the staff were talking french in the halls, lunchrooms etc.
        I ask a friend who works for CBc in Ottawa,”What gives?”
        Apparently all the CBC jobs in Quebec are essentially filled and unless you know someone…..good luck.
        However if you( as a french speaking Quebecer with a jurnalism degree) apply to work at another French speaking CBC station you have a good chance of getting hired..
        The job I was quoting on in Vancouver ?
        The revamping of the CBC building. Budgets were tight but they spent TWICE as much money on the CBC Vancouver French studio( for aprox 4000 french speaking only viewers across the province)than the English studio.
        Petty arguement? Maybe.
        But I’m waiting for the lawsuits.
        What lawsuits you ask?
        Why where oh where is the CBC Chinese language studio? The CBC Punjabi language studio?
        Because their populations certainly dwarf the french only populations in BC by a longshot…….. on and on and on we go into politically correct bankruptcy.

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      • PC or not, any language other than the official ones should be funded privately. And, frankly, I’d pay a direct CBC tax to ensure its survival IF it was half good. But it is not. It is a poor service. The content is boring, stupid and just plain bad. I likely could not program a whole day but I could do a few hours easily enough that would blow most of the CBC off the air. As it happens, Terry O’Reilly, Randy Bachman…..keep them. Maybe a couple more….Solomon….ditch ‘Q’. Ditch the myriad book shows – keep one. Honestly, the local shows are painful. C ‘mon

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  8. Totally agree. Bilingualism is a Charter Right. The first CBC-FM station in the Okanagan was from the French network and that ruffled some feathers. In the mists of time my grandmother objected to bilingual corn flake boxes. To this day, I can not get my head around her objections. Around here the radio dial widely represents many diverse views and broadcasts in many languages. And space exists for many more voices.

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  9. ‘’…we can spend our money where we want…” possibly true to a limited extent before bots targeted us in an effort to get us to spend money on bot supported enterprises. The bots have been persuasive to the point that folks vote against their self interest. Answer me this, why would a critically ill American with only Obama health care. want his health care repealed?

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