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Thread: Lorne Gunter: Edmonton didn't need an Expo

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    Default Lorne Gunter: Edmonton didn't need an Expo

    Lorne Gunter, National Post


    ...Read, digest, move on. Nothing else to see here folks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by andy8244 View Post
    Lorne Gunter, National Post


    ...Read, digest, move on. Nothing else to see here folks.
    HarperCorp didn't need a world's fair in Edmonton, and his paid minions are snapping to attention one by one.

    People without wit, integrity, or justification.

    You're right, time to move on.

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    Lorne Gunter - nothing between the ears.

    Another "pothole" man
    The world is full of kings and queens, who blind your eyes then steal your dreams.
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    Can we just close this thread.. its depressing.
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

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    yeah close it because expo 2017 is done for good.
    Edmonton Rocks Rocks Rocks

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    But the best parallel is with the 1982 world's fair in Knoxville, Tenn. It was also an energy-themed fair in a university city of about 1 million. And it was a flop. Knoxville is within six hours drive of 50 million Americans and managed to attract 11 million visitors during its five-month run. Edmonton is within six hours of Montana, population 800,000.

    Because of its perceived out-of-the-way location, Knoxville never attracted all the international pavilions it had planned for and ended up burdening the city with a $46-million debt


    Hmm. Interesting and fair comparison.
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    I worked in Knoxville for 4 months in 2004. That is when I realized that an Expo is a waste of time and money.
    It's not EIA it's YEG

  8. #8

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    Lorne Gunter is right for once.
    The financial payoff versus booster expectations are a lot to chew through.

    But, the heck with the feds and all the negativity. We can still do a lot with this city.
    I've been reading alot of urban planning blogs and really, we're sort of fortunate that we have so much space to play with, to grow and develop and nurture projects the way WE want them.

    Calm down, all is not lost with all these small setbacks.

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    ^you realize that one of the main goals of expo was to get dedicated funding for these "projects" right? you really think we are gonna get any sort of sufficient funding now? the lrt expansion is gonna be what $3.2 Billion, where are we gonna get some that now?

    I dont know about you but i'm tired of all these setbacks.all we get are setbacks, a disproportional amount of setbacks at that.
    be offended! figure out why later...

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by richardW View Post
    ^you realize that one of the main goals of expo was to get dedicated funding for these "projects" right? you really think we are gonna get any sort of sufficient funding now? the lrt expansion is gonna be what $3.2 Billion, where are we gonna get some that now?

    I dont know about you but i'm tired of all these setbacks.all we get are setbacks, a disproportional amount of setbacks at that.
    What, are we a city of beggars?
    No offense, but I still hate the LRT plan so really, if that goes downhill, I really don't care.

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    beggars? its begging to want a fair share of federal dollars that seemingly everyone else(except Winnipeg i guess) but us seems to be able to get? if so then i will beg, don't worry you wont have to put your pride on the line. those of us who want nice things in a timely fashion i am sure dont mind putting our prides away until we get something.

    Quote Originally Posted by armin View Post
    Lorne Gunter is right for once.
    .
    funny how people suddenly become "right" when they happen to support your opinion.
    Last edited by richardW; 04-12-2010 at 10:57 PM.
    be offended! figure out why later...

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    By whining over the loss of a second rate festival?
    I'll be upset if we get dissed over federal arena funding if it comes down to it but not the expo. You have any idea of the potential we have by not using that land for that purpose?

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by richardW View Post
    ^you realize that one of the main goals of expo was to get dedicated funding for these "projects" right? you really think we are gonna get any sort of sufficient funding now? the lrt expansion is gonna be what $3.2 Billion, where are we gonna get some that now?

    I dont know about you but i'm tired of all these setbacks.all we get are setbacks, a disproportional amount of setbacks at that.
    And that's a MAJOR problem with government decision making, expenditures and ever growing debt levels in this country.

    While we all want intelligent capital allocation to projects that create long term benefits with the most bang for the buck to the general public, we instead get taxpayer funds pumped into headline projects where, maybe 30% builds infrastructure or creates those long term benefits, 1/2 goes for the headline event (expo, summit, or whatever) and I wouldn't be surprised if the last 20% is pure waste and over-billing that ends up in promoters pockets.

  14. #14

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    It seems to me that the article posted misses the point just like most of the other ones.

    All these columnists are beating the drum of how the Fed's essentially saved Edmonton from itself by treating us like a child incapable of making it's own decisions.

    There is merit in the argument of Expo being a white elephant, but then again we will never really know now.

    What we do know is that despite the Olympics in Montreal being a so called financial disaster, Calgary was given the chance to do it their way, Expo 67 was a loss but Vancouver was given a do over, Vancouver Olympics, Toronto's Olympic bid, Pan Am games, potentially Quebec City bidding on the winter games and so on are all examples of the Fed's not stepping into to protect cities from poor decisions (hell the G20 is an example of the Feds playing the role of the city) and yet here we apparently are with exactly that being argued about Edmonton and Expo 2017 and on top of that we are supposed to thank them?

    It's probably a money loser, big deal. The money, at the federal level, is going to be spent. The big picture was always about the legacy the fair left behind. The legacy that Montreal X2, Calgary, Vancouver X2 are still enjoying.

    Edmonton set out to play the game by the rules that the Feds and the rest of Canada established and the Fed's changed the rules without telling anyone. THAT is where the story is.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Komrade View Post
    But the best parallel is with the 1982 world's fair in Knoxville, Tenn. It was also an energy-themed fair in a university city of about 1 million. And it was a flop. Knoxville is within six hours drive of 50 million Americans and managed to attract 11 million visitors during its five-month run. Edmonton is within six hours of Montana, population 800,000.


    Because of its perceived out-of-the-way location, Knoxville never attracted all the international pavilions it had planned for and ended up burdening the city with a $46-million debt

    Hmm. Interesting and fair comparison.


    Montana BORDER is at least 7 hours away. Just to clarify... :P

    I was never sold on the expo, maybe because I don't have any faith in this city or province to actually look forward when it comes to addressing energy challenges, sustainability and innovation.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick987 View Post
    There is merit in the argument of Expo being a white elephant, but then again we will never really know now.
    Seriously, you couldn't predict it? The expo website, produced by the supporters, states 2.3 billion cost, and 1.9 million unique visitors. So for every visitor that was scheduled to attend, the cost was $1210 per person

    (Oddly enough, I did look at the names of the advisory committees, and given the stance a few of the individuals have had on other "subsidies" their support seems hypocritical)

    Other websites say 94% of the attendance to Expo 2010 was the country's own citizens, so it would be logical to say that for the 114,000 foreign visitors it might attract, 2.3 billion was a bit aggressive an ask to "get the message out"

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    Default The Thank you letter from EXPO 2017

    Excerpt from the letter of thanks
    Tony Franceschini, EXPO 2017 Bid Committee Chair," ..........
    He acknowledges that EXPO 2017 would have been a great way to celebrate Canada's 150th Anniversary and would have sparked development around the city, helping to make the city an even better place to live, work, invest and play. EXPO 2017 would also have introduced the New West to the world and affirmed Canada's strong northern heritage.

    "EXPO 2017 was about creating opportunities. The opportunity to spark a discussion on energy, sustainability and the future. The opportunity to dream big and share our vision .............

    Interesting new slogan .......... "The New West" ??
    Still waiting for the Arlington site to be reborn .......

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    ^ Jeez, no wonder our Calgarian PM killed Expo!
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeZ View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Rick987 View Post
    There is merit in the argument of Expo being a white elephant, but then again we will never really know now.
    Seriously, you couldn't predict it? The expo website, produced by the supporters, states 2.3 billion cost, and 1.9 million unique visitors. So for every visitor that was scheduled to attend, the cost was $1210 per person

    (Oddly enough, I did look at the names of the advisory committees, and given the stance a few of the individuals have had on other "subsidies" their support seems hypocritical)

    Other websites say 94% of the attendance to Expo 2010 was the country's own citizens, so it would be logical to say that for the 114,000 foreign visitors it might attract, 2.3 billion was a bit aggressive an ask to "get the message out"
    Ok now further break down the cost of expo by the hundreds of thousands that would have used the new Bridge, LRT extensions and University/rossdale infrastructure.

    This is not a simple a+b=c equation.. no matter how much you want it to be.

    My friend just located from Vancouver... He fully understands why Edmonton could have used Expo and he has lived her for all of 3 months.
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
    He fully understands why Edmonton could have used Expo and he has lived her for all of 3 months.
    Now could Edmonton have used "Expo", or could it have used "2.3 billion dollars"? I suspect its the latter.

    I fully understand what the Feds did. Much like a parent that tells their child to go pick out a toy, and the child comes back with a Ferrari, we got told, no, your too greedy, you get nothing. The Rossdale site is an example of how far the committee thought they could push it, they failed.

    In the paper we are told by the city bureaucrats that we can't afford 800 million in LRT expansion without further user fees and taxes, and even then we won't be able to afford other capital projects? Clearly we were only interested in Expo to be our welfare handout to buy things we should already be able to afford, but can't.

    You can lament the loss of expo, but wherever this council thought they were getting their contribution to the Expo bill, is presumably still available to us, the feds and the province don't really care what we do with it, so if you think a new bridge is what you want, convince council to spend the "surplus" funds there. Maybe its a new arena you want , maybe its the expansion of 75th street Bill Smith wanted years ago the funds should goto? We've got a huge backlist of projects we can't afford, council won't have much trouble in picking a few.

  21. #21

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    ^ You don't get it.. Expo is more than dollars and infrastructure. Does it play a part? SURE DOES.

    The feds asked cities to bid. This isn't some parent child analogy. This is high level politics. A level at where, ewhen one is asked to bid on a project, it is expected that it will be supported.

    You equate hosting such an event as "wellfare" Well my friend this "wellfare" pool has been used my every other major city in Canada to push it's advancement onto the world stage... We deserve the same access to the same pie. With the obscene amount of money that Alberta makes in transfer payments, largely of the sweat of Edmonton and Area, some reinvestment as opposed to "wellfare" is long over due.
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  22. #22

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    High level politics? Ok, now thats just hilarious.

    It isn't, and don't be a revisionist to history. Yes, the feds asked cities to prepare a proposal, no there wasn't ever any guarantee that they would support it. Put something together and we'll see was the call. The organizing committe asked for too much, plain and simple. I'm sure there was a lot of head scratching when the proposal came in like:

    "why are we building a bridge miles away from the expo site that won't contribute to the traffic flow to the site"

    and

    "why is the lrt expansion part of the tab, when there aren't any hotels in the direction they want to build the line?"

    You've missed the point, those that came up with the scheme, counted on a blank cheque, they counted wrong. Thats very simple math. Cost benefit analysis, those in charge of the bid failed, they made he the cost outweighed the benefit. You can blame the feds, but in reality, the buck stops here.

    Question one should have been, "Yes, we'd like to put in a bid, how much would you be willing to fund Mr. Harper", and adapted our presentation to suit.

    As i said earlier, should you want to build some glorious monument of vision to the idea of an Expo....ask the provincial government to put in the 1/3 they were going to put in to build some buildings for the university. Edmonton's 1/3 of the share should build the bridge, or the lrt expansion.

  23. #23

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    ^ Your right...

    Your logic is just to perfect to argue with.

    How silly of me to try.
    Last edited by edmonton daily photo; 09-12-2010 at 09:38 AM.
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  24. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeZ View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
    He fully understands why Edmonton could have used Expo and he has lived her for all of 3 months.
    Now could Edmonton have used "Expo", or could it have used "2.3 billion dollars"? I suspect its the latter.

    I fully understand what the Feds did. Much like a parent that tells their child to go pick out a toy, and the child comes back with a Ferrari, we got told, no, your too greedy, you get nothing. The Rossdale site is an example of how far the committee thought they could push it, they failed.
    The child comes back with a Ferrari? Why the extreme example? The feds asked Canadian cities to prepare Expo bids and Edmonton did exactly that. Can you explain the perception you seem to have that the numbers were out of whack proportional to a $20 offer and a $200k request?
    "A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines." - Frank Lloyd Wright

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    "High Level" the new trip phrase that I am really well on my way to hating
    "We need a high level communication about....... "
    "Who in a high level position can we contact to ....."
    "This is strictly high level so we needn't involve ......"

    In other words "I am such a pretentious, influence peddling, name dropping, self important barstard that I only speak in high levelese .... ! "
    Still waiting for the Arlington site to be reborn .......

  26. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by JOA View Post
    Can you explain the perception you seem to have that the numbers were out of whack proportional to a $20 offer and a $200k request?
    Very simply, the feds said "too much", and there was clearly excess spending in our bid unrelated to the theme or the goal of the expo. We had no alternates, no optional aspects they could debate on, and we did nothing to say we were flexible in the presentation. Just an outright demand for one number.

    You can blame the feds all you want, but any failure has multiple facets, one of which was our commitee's failure to anticipate there was not an open chequebook.

  27. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeZ View Post
    You can blame the feds all you want, but any failure has multiple facets, one of which was our commitee's failure to anticipate there was not an open chequebook.
    That doesn't make any sense.

    Why is it the commitee's failure? If there are strings or limitations attached to the fed's offer then the fed's need to make it clear at the outset.

  28. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick987 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by MikeZ View Post
    You can blame the feds all you want, but any failure has multiple facets, one of which was our commitee's failure to anticipate there was not an open chequebook.
    That doesn't make any sense.

    Why is it the commitee's failure? If there are strings or limitations attached to the fed's offer then the fed's need to make it clear at the outset.
    Yes an no. A child goes into a toy store. The parents says you can have 1 toy. The child goes in and tries to get a brand new game system. The parents say sorry thats too much.

    Now what a good parent (feds) could have done is said, 'thats too expensive, but here is something smaller (lrt)'. Instead they are trying to teach us some sort of lesson by saying we get nothing.

    I say if Edmonton can swing this loss of an Expo for projects that we tried to fast track with Expo (LRT) we came out on top.
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    Sorry, I'm totally unconvinced.

    Looks like the Portrait Gallery all over, just on a bigger scale: Call for bids, when Calgary utterly fails to meet even minimum criteria - find an excuse to make sure no one else gets it.

    Where's the Rhinoceros Party when you really need it?
    ... gobsmacked

  30. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeZ View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JOA View Post
    Can you explain the perception you seem to have that the numbers were out of whack proportional to a $20 offer and a $200k request?
    Very simply, the feds said "too much", and there was clearly excess spending in our bid unrelated to the theme or the goal of the expo. We had no alternates, no optional aspects they could debate on, and we did nothing to say we were flexible in the presentation. Just an outright demand for one number.

    You can blame the feds all you want, but any failure has multiple facets, one of which was our commitee's failure to anticipate there was not an open chequebook.
    So "too much" equates to a magnitude of 10,000, then?

    I don't think anyone was anticipating an open chequebook, per se - it's not like the feds were asked to bankroll the entire LRT expansion, for instance. A bid isn't supposed to be a presentation of multiple options, that's what stakeholder consultations are for. What "excess spending", as you put it, was unrelated to the theme or goal of the expo?
    "A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines." - Frank Lloyd Wright

  31. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by Komrade View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Rick987 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by MikeZ View Post
    You can blame the feds all you want, but any failure has multiple facets, one of which was our commitee's failure to anticipate there was not an open chequebook.
    That doesn't make any sense.

    Why is it the commitee's failure? If there are strings or limitations attached to the fed's offer then the fed's need to make it clear at the outset.
    Yes an no. A child goes into a toy store. The parents says you can have 1 toy. The child goes in and tries to get a brand new game system. The parents say sorry thats too much.
    You forgot the part where the parents buy that system for another child (e.g. 2015 Pan Am games).
    "A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines." - Frank Lloyd Wright

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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeZ View Post
    Very simply, the feds said "too much", and there was clearly excess spending in our bid unrelated to the theme or the goal of the expo.
    Actually, what the feds said "too much" to was something they made up all on their own (overstated and overinflated security requirements) with costs of their own guestimating (what was it again, $1B?) that was not part of Edmonton's bid at all.
    Strathcona City Separatist

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    ^CTV got hold of a memo that the Fed portion of security costs was $8 million.

    Saying security could cost a $billion is in the magnitude of, "I did my homework but I can't turn it in because the dog ate it. Ya, that's it, the dog ate it."

    Ladies and gentlemen, this is the logic of the Prime Minister of Canada.

    Embarassing.
    ... gobsmacked

  34. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by JOA View Post
    You forgot the part where the parents buy that system for another child (e.g. 2015 Pan Am games).
    Fair enough
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    What a sad sad joke!
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  36. #36

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    "Because of its perceived out-of-the-way location,"
    I think Gunter got it right.
    We have to start thinking of Who we are and stop fooling around with Who we think we are.

    We have a lovely city, great infra structure, good buildings, high employment but we are not a destination for any of a myriad of reasons.

    These people at City hall are determined to spend us into a black hole with an assortment of projects that neither reflect who we are for the purposes of attracting business here or what we are for the purposes of attracting foriegn investment.
    To them, it's an oppotunity to showcase a city without any particular attributes.
    (Justify their existences)

    Wait ,before you jump all over my statement , we have great parks great river valley, great roads and a very small industrial district producing basically only what local markets require and little or nothing of exportable value.

    Want to start changing this image?
    I'm in!
    "Most people do not listen with the intent to understand;they listen with the intent to reply.

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    ^ I don't understand your post at all. You don't think we should promote ourselves to be more than we are, but you want us to be more than we are so we can promote ourselves? I'm confused.
    Strathcona City Separatist

  38. #38

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    ^ x2
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  39. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by RTA View Post
    ^ I don't understand your post at all. You don't think we should promote ourselves to be more than we are, but you want us to be more than we are so we can promote ourselves? I'm confused.
    Sleep on it.

    Watch this then and it might get you started on what I was proposing.
    http://wimp.com/wealthiestvillage/
    Last edited by Old Dawg; 14-12-2010 at 09:40 PM.
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  40. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Dawg View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by RTA View Post
    ^ I don't understand your post at all. You don't think we should promote ourselves to be more than we are, but you want us to be more than we are so we can promote ourselves? I'm confused.
    Sleep on it.

    Watch this then and it might get you started on what I was proposing.
    http://wimp.com/wealthiestvillage/
    Or, you could continue to articulate what you're proposing, because I too see little connection between this linked video and your nebulous proposition.
    I think of art, at its most significant, as a Distant Early Warning system that can always be relied on to tell the old culture what is beginning to happen to it. —Marshall McLuhan

  41. #41

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    [QUOTE=
    Or, you could continue to articulate what you're proposing, because I too see little connection between this linked video and your nebulous proposition.[/QUOTE]

    Well, in that case, I have undoubtedly attempted to articulate to the wrong audience.
    I was hoping for someone with some world experience and street smarts.
    It seems instead I have attracted a couple of the "status quo" city critics.

    Everything must be just fine then, right?

    Tell me you can't see where Edmonton might be better off financially and spiritually if we were to collectively support conversion of our raw materials here into exportable products.
    At present, a huge proportion of the employment here is funded by taxes to support three levels of government who collectively, put nothing toward the GDP and simply burden the people who do.
    "Most people do not listen with the intent to understand;they listen with the intent to reply.

  42. #42

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    [QUOTE=Old Dawg;338426]
    Quote Originally Posted by
    Or, you could continue to articulate what you're proposing, because I too see little connection between this linked video and your nebulous proposition.[/QUOTE

    Well, in that case, I have undoubtedly attempted to articulate to the wrong audience.
    I was hoping for someone with some world experience and street smarts.
    It seems instead I have attracted a couple of the "status quo" city critics.

    Everything must be just fine then, right?

    Tell me you can't see where Edmonton might be better off financially and spiritually if we were to collectively support conversion of our raw materials here into exportable products.
    At present, a huge proportion of the employment here is funded by taxes to support three levels of government who collectively, put nothing toward the GDP and simply burden the people who do.
    Thankyou for articulating your point. It was possible to do this in only one post!
    I think of art, at its most significant, as a Distant Early Warning system that can always be relied on to tell the old culture what is beginning to happen to it. —Marshall McLuhan

  43. #43

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    QUOTE]

    Thankyou for articulating your point. It was possible to do this in only one post![/QUOTE]

    We all figured that none of you would get it here!
    "Most people do not listen with the intent to understand;they listen with the intent to reply.

  44. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Dawg View Post
    QUOTE]

    Thankyou for articulating your point. It was possible to do this in only one post!
    We all figured that none of you would get it here! [/QUOTE]

    Yes, we figured you would get around to making a point.
    <- see? It's a Ninja Smilie!
    I think of art, at its most significant, as a Distant Early Warning system that can always be relied on to tell the old culture what is beginning to happen to it. —Marshall McLuhan

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