Monday, July 2, 2007

Translink Beholden to Big Biz?

International News is a small mom-&-pop shop on West 10th Avenue. It sells newspapers, magazines and lottery tickets and rents out videos. The husband and wife who have been operating the shop for about 10 years now work about 12 or more hours a day, 9 days a week.

Late this afternoon, we went in to buy a monthly bus pass. We were told by the owner that she wasn't allowed to sell bus passes - even though she has asked Translink repeatedly if she could do so - because Safeway is one block away and that would affect Safeway's business!

Safeway is an enormous multi-national corporation. They can't handle the competition in selling bus passes from a little news stand operation?

At the corner of 10th & Sasamat, which is half-way between International News and Safeway, there are 4 banks, one on each corner. In total, there are 7 banks within a block and a half. There are 3 bakeries and about 10 coffee shops, all competing with one another.

Of course, what would TRANSCLUNK know about competition? Or serving the community? Or supporting working men & women?

The Legal, Immoral Drug Pushers

At last...someone in American government has proposed legislation that would force Big Phrama to report the gifts and enticements it offers daily to doctors.

Let's call these doctors and psychiatrists what they are - pushers.

Let's rein them in.

Please Stay Out!

Buongiorno Venezia reports this morning the unique tourism problems of Venice:

NEWS. During a conference which took place last week at Lake Garda, Mayor Cacciari made some remarkable suggestions about his city. "Please say thatVenice smells, that merchants are expensive; please do adverse publicity. In Venice, we have to thin crowds, not attract them. The tourists who arrive everyyear already number 20,000,000, and we are preparing for the Chinese touristboom, which is a frightening prospect. In China, new tourist agencies have been opened by the dozen, and everyone includes tours to Venice. The municipalitydoesn't get any benefit from this surge, and there are absurd costs for controlling trash and providing transportation. Tourism, beyond certain levels,becomes dangerous." It was a very clear speech, leaving no doubt about the municipality's dilemma.

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You thought Vancouver real estate was expensive?

The highest price residential listing in America is a little place in Aspen, Colorado, built for and currently owned, of course, by a Saudi Prince.

Take a browse...