fear & loathing in Lotusland

Month: August, 2013

A Night on the Town

by Zbigniew


by Zbigniew


Stanley Park

In 1884, the Dominion of Canada obtained all of Britain’s War Office lands, including “… the whole of that part of Coal Harbour peninsula known as the Government Reserve.” Immediately, the Canadian Pacific Railway sought ownership of the southern half, including Brockton Point, but the request was rejected. In order to limit the supply of land destined to go to market in the soon-to-be Terminal City and, in so doing, bolster the value of its own holdings, the CPR prodded its stooge on the newly inaugurated Vancouver City Council, Alderman & CPR land commissioner L. A. Hamilton, to motion for the creation of a park: so carried.


Devonian Harbour Park (Georgia Street at Stanley Park entrance)

“Angry citizens protested high-rise development just metres from Stanley Park’s entrance in the late 1960s. Activists set up a tent city lasting nine months, planting an ‘All Seasons Park’ until city council and the developers backed down. Today, strollers enjoy four hectares of rose gardens, ponds, a stone bridge, plazas and footpaths, funded in part by the Calgary-based (sic) Devonian Group of Charitable Foundations.”

The Greater Vancouver Book, “The Parks of Vancouver”, Kerry McPhedran


Pinnacle ParkPinnacle Park



A Pattern to Others

by Zbigniew


“I shall begin with our ancestors: it is both just and proper that they should have the honour of the first mention on an occasion like the present. They dwelt in the country without break in the succession from generation to generation, and handed it down free to the present time by their valour. And if our more remote ancestors deserve praise, much more do our own fathers, who added to their inheritance the empire which we now possess, and spared no pains to be able to leave their acquisitions to us of the present generation.

“Our constitution does not copy the laws of neighbouring states; we are rather a pattern to others than imitators ourselves. Its administration favours the many instead of the few; this is why it is called a democracy. If we look to the laws, they afford equal justice to all in their private differences; if no social standing, advancement in public life falls to reputation for capacity, class considerations not being allowed to interfere with merit; nor again does poverty bar the way, if a man is able to serve the state, he is not hindered by the obscurity of his condition. The freedom which we enjoy in our government extends also to our ordinary life. There, far from exercising a jealous surveillance over each other, we do not feel called upon to be angry with our neighbour for doing what he likes, or even to indulge in those injurious looks which cannot fail to be offensive, although they inflict no positive penalty. But all this ease in our private relations does not make us lawless as citizens. Against this fear is our chief safeguard, teaching us to obey the magistrates and the laws, particularly such as regard the protection of the injured, whether they are actually on the statute book, or belong to that code which, although unwritten, yet cannot be broken without acknowledged disgrace.

“Further, we provide plenty of means for the mind to refresh itself from business. We celebrate games and sacrifices all the year round, and the elegance of our private establishments forms a daily source of pleasure and helps to banish the spleen; while the magnitude of our city draws the produce of the world into our harbour ….

“Nor are these the only points in which our city is worthy of admiration. We cultivate refinement without extravagance and knowledge without effeminacy; wealth we employ more for use than for show, and place the real disgrace of poverty not in owning to the fact but in declining the struggle against it. Our public men have, besides politics, their private affairs to attend to, and our ordinary citizens, though occupied with the pursuits of industry, are still fair judges of public matters; for, unlike any other nation, regarding him who takes no part in these duties not as unambitious but as useless ….”

Thucydides, excerpts from Pericles’ Funeral Oration


” … development in Vancouver is a self-reinforcing power structure in our civic system from which the majority of citizens are shut out or kept on the fringes, while the real discussions and decisions are made behind closed doors.”


Seen in Passing: Main & Georgia

by Zbigniew

A Good Investment