Musician Geoff Berner says Olympic protesters feel that the poor are subsidizing fun for the wealthy

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      Vancouver-born-and-raised musician Geoff Berner was decked out in traditional long black coat as the rally protesting the 2010 Olympics wound along West Georgia and past the larger hotels in town.

      His accordion was missing, but he more than made up for it by giving his view on the Games in no uncertain terms.

      "Well, I think they are actually here for the reasons that they are shouting," Berner said as chants of "Homes not Games" rang out.

      "I think they really think that...the poor people are paying for the rich people to play around," he added.

      Shortly after hearing from Berner, the Straight saw anti-2010 protester Chris Shaw at the Vancouver Public Library plaza, who commented on the "soft policing" so far.

      However, he confirmed to the Straight that the Integrated Security Unit had paid a visit at street level as he marched in East Vancouver to block the torch rally earlier today. Shaw said he has not yet had to administer any kind of first aid or medical help.




      Feb 12, 2010 at 5:26pm

      The poor are paying for the rich? Good lord. Many, many of us would like to see our gravest social issues addressed, and we are frustrated as hell with the indifference of the large segment of our population that voted in our current governments. The problem is that the advocates that get quoted are crackpots like this guy. There are all kinds of good arguments for your cause, but saying the poor subsidize the rich is nothing less than idiotic. It makes it very, very easy for most people to dismiss you outright.

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      Feb 12, 2010 at 7:02pm

      As an accountant, you may help wealthy people avoid paying their due share of taxes, while working class people don't enjoy the benefit of tax loopholes put in to reward the rich. The poorer members of society generally work hard and struggle to survive and pay their taxes - taxes which will be considerably heftier for a long time to come in order to pay off the massive public debt engendered by this 2010 Olympics fun for the wealthy to enjoy. The wealthy either inherit wealth, or earn it, or gain it through skillful investing, or steal it, and often participate in leisure, travel, recreation, arts and spectator sports for their amusement. This is fine as long as they bear the full burden of the cost. But there shouldn't be any public investments to subsidize the wealthy to enhance their discretionary activities when the lower classes are struggling to meet basic needs like housing, nutrition, fitness, access to parks, education, training and health care.

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      Feb 13, 2010 at 9:55pm

      Accountant, It's not hard to find examples of the poor subsidizing the rich. Take most of the clothes that you wear, mostly made by fantastically poor people just so you can try to look good.

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      Dewey Oxberger

      Feb 16, 2010 at 3:47pm

      The Olympic is basically a sports day for the G8, and only the richest countries can produce athletes of the caliber required to compete in these so called amateur status sporting events. They have evolved into political events and as such are susceptible to the nuances of politics.

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