Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Friday, March 28, 2008

The Rantings of an Arrogant and Contemptuous Jerk

Your blood will boil when you read what elitist WSU archictecture prof Ayad Rahmani wrote in an op-ed that appeared in the October 27, 2007 issue of WSU Today. Some quotes:

WSU’s claims to “world-class” status, while true, ultimately ring hollow because the reality finds no match with those statements. World-class ambitions cannot be met with low-class ideas. High-class faculty will refuse to live in scattered and inconsequential buildings. [And after all, it's only the "high-class" faculty that matter in this town. The rest of us are just low-class. Oh my God. -tf]

The new housing stock in Pullman sadly represents the worst of the effects of a market economy; it has neither respect for art or the environment — or for that matter the fact that within a short walk there is an architecture school with graduates who have gone on to change the world. [So what's stopping them for developing houses with respect for "art and the enivonment?"? Oh yeah, money. It's much easier to tell someone else how to spend theirs. - tf]

Rather than taking clues from cities such as Portland and Seattle — whose architects and developers have joined forces to create a denser and more community friendly environment [and that obsession with "density and community friendly environment" has added $200,000 to the average price of a Seattle home - tf] — Pullman developers have made more suburbs. These offensive McMansions, with garages looking onto the streets, use materials and planning that are highly wasteful and unsustainable. [You mean like wood, which is a renewable crop? Concrete? Seems to me there is a virtually infinite supply of sand and gravel. Vinyl, which can be recycled? What's wasteful and unsustainable? - tf]

Rather than building inward and promoting walking and bicycling, these suburbs force those who live in them to use their cars. And rather than building with materials that have a low-carbon footprint and reflect an inventive approach to scarcity, these same suburbs persist with a cookie-cutter mentality. [So why did Pullman just get nationally recognized as a "pedestrian-oriented" city? And where in the hell are we going to build "inward" in Pullman??????? College Hill?? Downtown?? There's no room left but at the periphery of town. But in any case, there is no "suburb" in town that is more than two miles from the WSU campus. What a joke to call that "sprawl." And that "cookie-cutter mentality" is otherwise known as "affordable family housing." How dare you insult my home as "cookie-cutter" when that is all I can afford, you snobby asshole. - tf]

The university also cannot rely on the town to resolve this problem; the town is too bogged down in trying to increase tax revenues to worry about the role of architecture in improving matters. The university must lead the way in not only improving its own grounds but in transforming the town. [Oh sure. The poor townies are so plebeian wanting to pay the bills for parks, police, fire and emergency services, schools, etc., etc. Let the highly-educated solons take over. I have read some elitist and snobby crap before, but this takes the cake. - tf]


Michael said...

I guess high class faculty should have homes like Obama's pastor.

Pete said...

The road that brought that SOB to WSU will take him back.

April E. Coggins said...

For a mere $800,000, the professor can have the rare opportunity to demonstrate his high-class vision for Pullman. He needs to put his money where his mouth is. Or should that be his students mouths?

Pete said...

The road that brought that SOB to WSU will take back.

Bruce Heimbigner said...

If someone wants to avoid sprawl I have a large lot for sale (REALLY) that is close to both WSU and SEL. So where are those offers?

“these suburbs force those who live in them to use their cars. “ They do what? Where does this guy live? Certainly not Pullman, maybe he is talking about Garfield or Palouse. In our tiny town most people live barely a mile to work – there is no reason for anyone to not walk (unless you are disabled). I’ve never once taken the bus and I drive a car to work less than a handful of times per year.

In some ways I agree with the professor, I’m sorry to admit, but our town is ugly -- especially North Grand. And I would add that Pullman has some of the ugliest new homes and not so creative builders/developers (a couple of whom are friends of mine.) They build what sells. Maybe the good professor should spend less time whining and design some really awesome homes businesses for the community and not charge for his work.

Barenjager said...

You're only high class (in his opinion) if you agree with this braying ass.

What would be interesting is to get a copy of the assignment. If there's one hint of political activism, this would be a violation of Washington's ethics laws. Perhaps a call to the auditor's office will bring better results than dealing with the lame duck Provost.

April E. Coggins said...

Sorry, Bruce. I must disagree with your point of view. "They build what sells" Would you expect the developers to build what doesn't sell? Sure the town has it's ugly parts. Every town has them. My store is one of them. But it's all I can afford and sometimes it's a struggle to own it. I can't possibly improve it without a better retail environment. The blatent hostility toward Pullman retailers via WSU is not helping.

Barenjager said...

It isn't WSU that's hostile. A few faculty members who seem to need a cause to latch onto in order to bolster their egos are to blame, not the university. They hate the fact that they've been found lacking by "better" colleges who won't hire them to spew their second rate garbage and they have a hard time admitting it's their own shortcomings which have landed them in a backwater like Pullman. You and I know Pullman isn't a horrible place and that WSU isn't second rate but those causnics don't. They can't come to grips with the reasons they haven't been tapped by Berkley or Princeton so they try to make themselves feel better by spreading their "superior wisdom" among us ignorant hicks.