Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Why Calgary is not attractive to migrants anymore

According to CBC News, the flow of people from other provinces to Alberta has slowed down considerably. In-fact, a lot of folks have moved back to their respective provinces. In addition to that, numerous families are transplanting themselves in less expensive places like Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

One of the major reasons for this slowdown is the insanely expensive real estate in Calgary (and Alberta as a whole). Here are some of the comments that people have left on a website relating to Alberta's soon to be bust;

"This Province has seen an amazing boom over the years,
but unless you are getting an amazing amount of money,
it is to the point where it's not affordable to live here anymore.
Not everybody is making it rich from the oil industry.
A lot of people are struggling just to make ends meet"

There is no doubt that the cost of living in Calgary has risen quite a bit, for some folks, disproportionately to their income. The city has done it's part to raise municipal taxes to suck out the last hard-earned dollar from the labourer.

Some people have also complained that us westerners - that is, the folks from the Canadian West - have not been very welcoming and friendly, even though we tout our western hospitality. There is a lot of truth to that as well.

A comment from another reader points to the regional animosity between central and western Canadians;

"Alberta has developed a strong hatred to people who
come from other provinces. I think that they prefer
minorities from third world countries that they can
pay only minimum wages and give all the really menial
jobs to. Canadian from other provinces know how much
their labour is worth. Third world labourers don't.
Do I think they are predjudiced? Yes.
Are Alberta companies really cheap? Absolutely!"

Well I'm not sure if hatred is the right word here, but there sure is a lot of resentment from the past when central Canada had all the goodies and provinces like Alberta and Saskatchewan were dirt poor and had slogans like, "The West wants in.."

Since Canada does not have the problem of illegal immigration like the United States, Canadian companies look to these so-called "Third World" countries to provide them with workers in the form of immigrants and refugees. Alberta companies are cheap no doubt, but so are Canadians, who are too selfish to have kids and establish families, and Alberta is the largest offender in this regard, (but that's another topic for a future blog post).

I hope that Calgary does not lose it's status as a city where anything is possible and where folks come to realize their big dreams. And in order for that distinction to be maintained, the large, and ever-increasing divide between the rich and poor will have to be narrowed so all of us, in this Heart of the New West, can live a fulfilling life.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Where's the compassion....?

The media in Calgary has been scuttle butting the story of a recent murder-suicide, where a 34 year old man killed his wife, two young daughters and a female tenant. A public memorial was held today for the whole family including Joshua Lall, the person who took his family's life.

Now there are some folks in this city who can't seem to stomach the idea of "remembering the killer". But let's look at this from a different perspective. These people were victims of the head of the household who was suffering from a mental sickness. What he did was in no way acceptable, but for people to be blatantly antipathetic to Joshua Lall is to be prejudiced and unjust towards a mentally ill person.

We need to respect the families on both sides, that they want to remember and say farewell to their loved ones without focusing on the tragic incident. Folks who are ticked off because they think that a murderer is being celebrated need to just back off and let these people mourn their loss. No one has the right to be judgmental. And if the people who are irritated by this, truly care so much, then they
should volunteer themselves to helping the mentally ill, and I can assure you, there are a lot of people like that in our city.

May the Lall family rest in peace.

image courtesy of CBC news

Sunday, June 8, 2008

The women in Calgary are nuts.....

Yes...indeed they are, specially the younger ones. Why do I say that...? Well read this.

The chicks in Calgary (and Alberta and Canada overall) are complaining that Canadian men do not know how to court them or ask them out for a date. They think that American men are more assertive and confident, not shy about making the first move.

But do Canadian women (specially Calgarian chicks) really appreciate chivalry? The answer to that -- from my experience so far -- is a resounding no.

I have tried meeting women in this city, so have my other buddies, but we can tell that women are intimidated by our confidence and "openness". One has to be a phony to say that they prefer men who come on to them and then shoot down guys who approach them and consider THEM to be worthy of attention!

You'll see women in this city walking around like they are royalty and want guys who they can pu$$y-whip, but when they come across a man who has his sh!t together and is self-assured, they get nervous and will even avoid eye-contact.

A lot of chicks also lack social-skills and the ability to have a decent conversation. The only topic you can talk to them about is what clebrities are doing or what her ex did to her. For the love of Mary, I'm not here for talk therapy!

Try starting a conversation with a woman on the C-Train and you'll understand what I'm talking about. Infact, it's much easier to talk to older women, who are in their 40's and 50's (maybe that's due to the cougar effect)

Regardless, the women in Calgary need to start appreciating the fact that guys here are not going across the border to Montana or Idaho to look for women and still willing to give them a chance. If they miss this opportunity, then this is what their social gatherings will look like....

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Is the job boom in Calgary over..?

It is becoming more and more difficult to get a desirable job in Calgary. Only a couple of years ago, businesses were closing down because they could not find employees and it was almost impossible to hire anyone to for less than $12/hour, but now, it seems like there is a lot more competition in the labour market and that companies have quite a few options when it comes to hiring new people.

The Alberta government encouraged people to move to the province -- most of whom moved to Calgary -- even though there wasn't any cheap accommodation available at the time. A lot of people just got fed up with the situation and left, but those who found a decent job and a place to stay are also facing new problems. Companies which initially hired people with zero skills have more choices now, and folks who for some reason lost their jobs are having a tough time finding new ones.

A big reason for that is the saturation of the labour pool, where more people are competing for the same opportunities. Crazy real estate prices are another reason why companies are relocating to places like Saskatchewan and Winnipeg. It looks like Calgary's reputation of a boom town is not going to last too long.

Saskatoon, here I come..!