Now, on to more important matters. It's a given that any election victory anywhere, which weakens U.S. corporate power is applauded here on the Left Coast. How they perceive an Obama victory as a shot-across-the-bow of Corporate America is beyond me, but they do. If Obama is to survive for more than one term he needs to forge an open and meaningful partnership with America brightest corporate leaders in order to establish this "Change" thing he has been on about.
A prime example of what America needs badly is WALMART. That one company creates more reliable jobs for unskilled workers than any other firm you can name. More than that, WALMART is where the working poor, and the suburban mortgage slaves, flock to shop for the bargains they need to sustain their families. It's no different here, although you wouldn't know if from the vicious campaign waged for years to keep WALMART out of Vancouver. While I'm at it, I might as well throw the NDP controlled civic regime in Burnaby into that hobo stewpot.
Does anyone remember the Great Walmart Debate at City Hall back in June of 2005? The green posturing was ludicrous - especially as WALMART had spent a $$bundle employing a top flight Vancouver architectural firm to design a low signature, sustainable building for its commercial development site in South Vancouver. The haters called the design "Greenwashing". WALMART was taught a humiliating lesson in etiquette by civic politicians - hereabouts kissing on both fleshy cheeks must be followed immediately by tongue work in the groove. Vancouver Councillor Peter Ladner briefly attempted to bring the truth into the open by pointing up COPE ideology, an "undercurrent," lurking beneath council's debate: "About Wal-Mart's labour practices, it's sourcing practices, the satanic nature of giant multinational corporations."
The retort from COPE councilman and ankle-biting lawyer Tim Louis said it all: "The largest contributor to the Bush regime in his re-election campaign was Wal-Mart." Vancouver civic politicians were determined to strike a blow against corporate America and U.S. Republicans, on behalf of Socialists everywhere.
And so remains the reason why WALMART finally has a foot in the door in the "People's Republic" of East Vancouver, as it is sometimes termed. Why must they now refurbish an old building rather than build the "World Class" environmental showpiece they originally envisaged? It's simple enough. The zoning of the COSTCO site on Grandview Highway was upgraded in 2006 before the owners offered the property to WALMART. The new owner does not require Vancouver City Council's blessing or its political lectures in order to trade with the citizens of East Vancouver and Burnaby, who are poised to make the site the most profitable WALMART in B.C. And should WALMART ever offer a similar GREEN project to Vancouver, the company will be torpedoed by the same crowd of Pygmies who ate their emissaries in 2005. The 2008 civic election will change nothing.
An artists rendering of the "super-green" WALMART proposal for South Marine Drive, blown up by COPE saboteurs in 2005.
Tim Louie, one of Vancouver's zaniest Zombie politicians. A stalwart among the WALMART haters, Louie was trained in agitprop and deep cover op's by the Rankin cell of the Loyal Order of Leftist Lawyer's. Somebody send this guy a WALMART gift card for Christmas!
Well here is one more hopeful sign of a turnaround in local thinking... one politically influential group understands the need to welcome business to Vancouver. S.U.C.C.E.S.S., the immigrant services society is sponsoring a WALMART employment workshop in East Vancouver, which will do much to help new immigrants find gainful employment. You can read about the workshop here.