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I thought (and still do) that Criscitello has 2 targets and can't tease them apart, and winds up looking (hilariously) churlish:
1. development/gentrification. his posters point at the symptoms (tech guys) not the disease (capital).
2. bridge and tunnel revellers (who are being attracted by bars opened up TO ATTRACT THEM).
I'm not convinced the brogrammers and the gay bashing douchebros are the same people.
They don't say "techies move in, and price artists out of going to plays and living near a theatre!"
They say "techies move in, and price artists out of going to the bar and living near the bars!"
I just don't see how techies are keeping artists from practicing their craft or selling work. They are just making it more expensive to drink a lot.
To me this seems all about the price of a beer, and culture is only being mentioned because folks who self-describe as artists will intellectualize everything.
No one was paying 1400 a month for a studio apartment 3-4 years ago because we just came out of a recession. Seattle came out ok out of the 2008 crash, except housing was pretty much halted for a few years afterwards as developers didn't want to invest.
Then amazon started hiring like crazy. And a lot of foreign money started buying up the housing stock (I suspect due to Canada shutting down it's investor immigration program). So housing, which went undeveloped for the years following the crash, was squeezed.
Not to mention there's basically no renter's rights in this state/town. So we got a perfect shit storm.
And what's John doing? Trying to make things better? Nope, he's just trying to bash the "new" people to "his" neighborhood (never mind he moved here 2 years ago).
Not to mention his attitude towards women seems very misogynistic.
But hey, I bet it's selling art like crazy. Go capitalism
There are some psychological layers behind his angry tirade that need to be considered.
He just moved from New York. He knows full well how neighborhoods transform constantly and change throughout time, for better or mostly worse.
Greenwich Village may have been a long-time hub of creativity in NYC, but he obviously knows that for the last 30 years it's been a bridge and tunnel nightmare. You might as well be lamenting Pioneer Square.
The creatives moved to SOHO, then to the East Village and Tribeca, then to the LES and Williamsburg, and on and on as they became popular destinations and attracted "new" people.
It's constant change. Maybe get creative.
I don't recall electing this asshole as a spokesman for The Seattle That Was. He's lived here less than five years and is another white guy who went to a private 30K a year art school and he has the balls to be going around pulling up the drawbridge?
Seems like he's making a tidy living and name for himself exploiting a scene he barely knows and tossing around lazy stereotypes at low hanging fruit.
Please, people, don't give this guy any more airtime/credence/notoriety/attention/credibility - he's just using us. I can't believe more people didn't see through him a while back. The Stranger has been heaping its typical childlike awe upon this guy without any due diligence on him (typical of what The Stranger has become). He's a Williamsburg Brooklyn hipster who, after years as a closet case, finally grew a pair and came out. Afraid of his past, he ran to Seattle and has reinvented himself as the spokesman for "old" Capitol Hill. I CALL BULLSHIT on this guy. It's about time someone did.
Now, how about getting The Stranger to do a thoughtful, adult-level, well-written expose on John Criscitello? Yeah, not going to happen. This rag is run by Keck and Savage and they just want the money to keep pouring in from advertisers, so count on more pieces lavishing attention on this fraud.
Sorry to call it out like it really is, but someone had to.
It sucks balls that people are getting priced out, but blaming the newcomers who had no hand in setting up the laws in this state only keeps us separate and puts a huge wedge in change actually happening.
But John doesn't care about this, as he told CHS "I'm a capitalist" and he's doing what capitalists always do, profiting of others problems.
A cultural space that organically developed over many years is being disrupted, with no immediate replacement. It takes time and money to rebuild, and needs to happen organically somewhere else all over again. So, income inequality, and of course, class. Folks with more political/economic power are exercising that power over other folks with less power. The point is this is a really deep issue and needs a deeper solution than just slowing gentrification.
I don't think it's that people don't get that rents are out of control. It's the hypocrisy of someone like this John guy who, to use your analogy, came to the show late and paid $400 to the venue owner to sit next to you, then lays into the next guy who paid $500 like he's the asshole. Then he rallies you and the rest of the crowd to direct all of your anger and hate at the guy who came right after him, not only accusing him of ruining the show, but of beating up other attendees. All the while the venue owner sits back and counts his money and John sells him a glue-soaked doodle.
Seriously, who the fuck are you? What you haven't learned about Seattle yet is that many of the artists and community builders in this town support (or formerly supported) themselves in tech jobs, including at Amazon. Many of our patrons and friends are in tech, including at Amazon. Technologists and software architects are often crucial collaborators in our multidisciplinary art. many of them created some of our favorite things in this town.
I agree there has been a lot of rapid change lately. I live on the southern edge of Capitol Hill and I see it. I don't love going out on Friday or Saturday any more. I occasionally get frustrated because I remember what it was like 20 years ago and that was fun back then. But you know, there was also a lot of rapid change happening when I was first visiting and moving to Seattle, too -- I miss Belltown, man. That's been ruined for ages. But to simplify it as tech vs artists or tech vs LGBT is reductionist and inaccurate. Companies like Amazon, Microsoft, Boeing, help support us and draw like minded people to us. They are a part of the core of this city and to vilify everyone who works in their industries is not helpful.
Now those bridge and tunnel folks... screw them.
And I want to add, my comment @28 is not meant to discount the very real issue of people being priced out of their homes. I just think that at the core it's not a certain type of WORKER that is the problem.
That's the difference between bros and people who're in the underground. We don't actually want anything from you, bros and yuppies. We want to stay away from you, because we find dealing with the symptoms of your ignorance and stupidity oppressive, and also quite grating. We don't want your attention or need your validation (we've already graduated from high school!), though you seem very hungry for ours. Your bullshit is an unwelcome interruption to our lives. Bros come up to the hill because they're not making enough of a splash in Pioneer Square. They need to create a real culture shock to get that fix of attention to validate their sad, sad egos. For the most part, they're uncivilized assholes who're (unsuccessfully) attempting to cover up their inadequacies with volume and bravado. It's just so goddam annoying. Go home and deal with your shit asshole. Straighten your head out. Grow up. Face your inadequacies instead of trying to pawn them off onto people you perceive as easy victims.
What this comes down to is the artists and other creators of this neighborhood are saying
"Hey, you're stifling the flame of what we've got going here, along with appropriating our home and smashing our way of life. And instead of doing that, why not go to ANY of the other places in the city or world that serve your needs, instead of destroying our one home, because we can't just go ANYWHERE ELSE like you can and find safety, comfort and respect."
And the tech bros and yuppies, like butt-hurt little stomping babies, are saying
"Nothing's changed, it's only more expensive! I'm just as good as you!!!"
But the truth is, you're not. Your existence is valid, but the fact that you're ignorant to what we are EVEN TRYING TO CONVEY TO YOU shows that you aren't cognizant of what you lack. You can't conceive of it. You're too defensive and trying to defend your pathetic ego to see the truth. You don't care about truth, you only care about an emotional sense of superiority and dominance - a particularly broey quality.
Asking why an artist is more interesting or enriching than an ignorant basic bitch is like asking why the world is more interesting with art, music, literature, philosophers, poets, film.... I mean duh.
Or @31, who apparently believes that being shoved into a locker one too many times as a kid gives them the holier-than-thou right to discriminate and exclude people they don't like from a neighborhood.
But wow. John totally astonished! His incredible misogyny, blatant racism, and desire to create an us-versus-them dynamic was appalling. John claims he's "holding up a mirror" to the "rich tech kids" and that they don't like what they see. Well, John, they're holding up a mirror to you too. It's basic psychology. And *you* don't like what *you* see.
The talks up at the farm this year were sensitive, nuanced, and delightful. All except for John's. John isn't interested in a solution, he just wants to spread his hatred around. Maybe he should follow the model of the lecturer before him, take some psychedelics, do some meditation, and get to the bottom of what his anger is really about.
He's like some bizzarro Donald Trump of Capitol Hill, where the Mexican rapists are Amazonian gay bashers.
I don't care what his motives are. I just think he's perpetuating the problem by creating a single scapegoat, not shining a light on anything that might help.
It's great that Capitol Hill has found its George Wallace to stir up hatred of the filthy horde of cultural barbarians in order to distract people from the problem of paying off their MFA degrees with their part time jobs at Whole Foods.
Oh yeah. Hey Artists and creative types and other hipsters...there are plenty of places in Seattle to find decent rents but that would actually require you to live near brown people.