West Wing Wednesday Night #17

Written by  //  August 12, 2009  //  Alexandra T. Greenhill, West Wing (WWWN)  //  No comments

I shall use that power next week Wednesday, enabled by the Truly Magnificent Gavel, to convene us for another informal evening of Idea Exploration and Opinion Transformation (not sure Hogwarts has a class like that, but they should!). Or as a haiku goes:

Together
To gather and enjoy
Spirits we love

And I must thank Rick Peterson for the inspiration to quote poetry as he recently mentioned Vancouver’s second Poet Laureate, Brad Cran in place through a partnership of the City of Vancouver, Vancouver Public Library and the Vancouver International Writers & Readers Festival. And – à propos – our VPL is apparently under threat – so tell government to stop the cuts into this important community building element, especially popular in times of recession! See on what you can do to express your opinion. Same threats go for the literacy coordinators – see

But on to great topics we just have to delve into and there has been one that has been patiently waiting for some critical people to return from holidays – and that is transportation, including:

– Transit Line to open Aug 17th – 3 weeks early??!?? Hmmm…

– The price of oil – divided opinions on its future

– Rapid rail (Van to Seattle, Calgary to Edmonton, Quebec to Ontario) – why is that NOT happening?

– BC’s plans for BC Ferries and Translink (and that ridiculous sale of the brand new but unusable fast ferries at under 5% of their cost!!! )

– Burrard bridge bike lane (see excellent blog by another friend of wed salon west – David Eaves -), etc.

Another patiently waiting related topic has been alternative energy – and the recent ruling by the BC Utilities Commission () has had earthquake like impact – where to now people ask? Maybe we’ll be stuck with painting our roofs white (NYT article) – which may not yield much in cloud-city Vancouver…

And let us review where copyright’s future has landed over the last year, especially as Vancouver is quite in the middle of it:

National copyright talks kick off in Vancouver last month

– Richmond’s Gary Fung has a for-profit website, isoHunt that provides a piece of software known as a “torrent” that makes it easy for computer users to share large files over the Internet. Fung’s website, has become one the world’s largest torrent search engines, attracting 100 million unique visits a year.– and he seems on a crusade to defend the future – see

– Last week, Boston University student Joel Tenenbaum admitted in court that he illegally downloaded and distributed 30 songs. He has been ordered to pay $US 675,000 to four record labels for breaking copyright laws

Of course, we may want to comment on the tax harmonization announcement, the possibility of a fall federal election, the AFN leadership change and current events overseas (the exception being the Sarkozy fainting – it’s gotten way more attention that it really deserves).

We look forward to welcoming you back and seeing the new comers. Come to think, discuss, be inspired, and exchange ideas and insights, all you of interested, interesting, informed and informative folks in town.

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