World's Best City


by Kamangir

The beautiful city of Vancouver, was rated as the most 'liveable' city on earth followed by two other Australian cities and finally a city in Switzerland. I should be really happy (hippip hurahh!!) I live in the best city of the world!! Actually, I do not question the criteria and standards followed by those who choose the most 'liveable' city on earth, but I wonder if everyone in this city agrees with it. I have met several fellow Iranians here that are really happy about it and do consider the city as the best. There's no doubt, the northern part of the city (North Vancouver) is just amazingly beautiful, a natural beauty that cannot be described. You have a wonderful view of the foggy and during winter, snowy mountains and also the view of the beautiful and peaceful Pacific ocean. This part of the city, is quite, there's no major stress and well, sometimes if you're lucky you may even get to see a black bear or deers around. There's a huge Persian community here and no matter where you go, you'll hear Persian and will encounter Iranians. So far so good, however, one thing that you'll notice in Vancouver, is the visible segregation in areas. in Richmond you will find the asian and Chinese communities, in Surrey you'll see the Indian and Sikh large population and in North Vancouver you'll see us, the Persian. Downtown is the common area for everyone. Having lived in 4 different cities in different countries, I have to admit I had never seen an ethnic segregation so visible anywhere else. This is not a complaint or anything like it, neither is negative, it's just not natural, that's it. The melting pot feature of other North American cities, such as New York, LA, Toronto, Montreal, Chicago, is not to be found in this town. The city, offers a lot to those who like skiing, sailing and overall adventure and nature related activities, however if you're a big fan of museums, cultural activities, etc... you got the wrong town. I guess the very mild and rainy weather has to do a lot with it, last winter for instance, it rained 21 or 22 consecutive days (non-stop!)

On the other hand, there seems to be a big problem with drugs in this city as it's a major entry port from the Far East and the crime rate is high. One other amazing aspect, is the very large population of homeless and drug adicts, specially in downtown, up to the point is worrying the authorities, although because of 2010 Winter Olympic games, chances of a fast track patch solution are high. Again, vancouver is beutiful in nature, peaceful for families with children and a good place for retirement, but if you're still young, energetic, courious, if you enjoy history and traditions, there're better towns for you. Those who rate cities around the world, were and are right on one thing, that they didn't rate countries, but cities, as a city itself may have nothing to do with other areas of the same country. In reality there's nothing like, the best country or city, this is a very personal and individual feeling. It's like being in the best house of the world, a palace, but if isn't yours, if you feel yourself confined to specific areas of it, then maybe you'll be much better in your own little apartment. My favourite city? well, amazingly, Tehran. It's the city in which I wouldn't get bored (or so I believe) you've got beautiful mountains around the city, wonderful skiing areas, two hours from the green region of the Caspian sea. Close to very old Bazars and neighbourhoods as well as green parks in the middle of the city. There're museums, movie theaters, all sort of restaurants, and yes! I'm not forgetting the traffic jams, the polluted air...but again, for 'me' Tehran is a my town, full of cozy places, and above all the place where I really feel at home. You need to feel at home in the best city of the world.



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The most livable city?

by pacific7575 (not verified) on

Mr. kamangir. Your article was really insightful and informative. It generated a hot discussion and I enjoyed reading it. But what struck me most was reading a few of responses by our fellow-countrymen and the amount of hate directed toward the person called "Haji Agha" for being a cartoonist or his broken English. Well, I am neither a cartoonist nor a jobless, but I have a few words for these self-proclaimed successful individuals with high academic standings and flourishing career: language is just a means of communication. Just because the guy is not expressing his ideas in the best possible way does not mean that he does not have a point. Maybe you should concentrate on the content of his messages and not the way he is expressing them.

On the issue of immigration I can say it is just another form of exploitation, It is a way to rob the people of the developing world of their human resources specially the skilled labor force. Majority of skilled workers face problems finding jobs within their specialty. After a while they run into financial problems and start working at so called survival jobs such as pizza delivery, driving cabs or janitorial services.A significant number of them get stuck in these menial jobs forever.

The rest of them need to change career to be able to find work or if they are lucky enough to find jobs relevant to their studies, they work way blow their skill level with little chance of advancement comparing to their Canadian counterparts.

Only a small percentage find jobs with room for growth within their specialty. This group gets excessive media attention just to prove that Canada is the land of opportunities and you can be successful with hard work and perseverance. In other words, it is only immigrants who are to blame for their failure. But on average, based on Statistics Canada it takes 10 to 15 years for immigrants to earn income equal to their Canadian counterparts.

Just because you are among the few lucky ones who managed to get through the system and become an engineer, a doctor, an entrepreneur or a businessman, etc., you do not set standard for the rest of the society and you are not qualified to look down at them for not being like you. Even your definition of success is questionable and can be debated on many different aspects.

All in all, Vancouver might have fascinating landscape and natural beauty (watch my video about the city at // but it is not much better or worse than any other North American city when it comes to gap between rich and poor and equal opportunities for everyone. An average person who relies on his/her labor or skills to make ends meet and not on some sort of inherited wealth, finds it hard to call it “The Most Livable City”. Cheers.


Boro Baba!

by IRan BAzi (not verified) on

These arguments are so typical Iranian! I've lived out of Iran since I was 10 years old and it has never been easy! Thats the point. It wont be easy EVER! I lived in L.A. Florida been to a bunch of American cities, Toronto and now Vancouver. You should never compare North America to Tehran. Its not the same culture or people and they dont have the same history. Tehran is 1000's of years old! Vancouver a couple of hundred!!! Get it?

As far as Racism goes, here is my rule of thumb. Where there are WHITE people, there will be some level of Racism.Sorry! get used to it. I have to say though that Vancouver and most Canadian cities are far better than any American or European city when it comes to Racism. You mention New York as this paradise of cultural, tolerance and beauty. Have you ever been there? I have friends there and have visited many times. Were you there after 9/11???? At a time when just because of your skin or your name they would yell at you, beat you, call you a sand nigger, take away your job, arrest you etc. Get real! New York is a dark, dirty city with a bunch of intolerant jews running all the businesses! Its not a place for an IRANIAN who is currently the #1 enemy of the US based on AMERICAN Jew washed Media!.

Some of you people sound like you live under a rock clueless on what IRAN has become in the eyes of the public. You brag about your PHD's and act like black people when they win the lottery! Who cares about yor education that you got sucking up to white people and trying to impress them. Education without innovation is USELESS and that the problem with IRan in general. Bunch of book worms pushing there grades for ll the wrong reasons. I have two college degrees and I did my part. Work for a few companies and non of them gave me a reason to stay loyal to my job. I run my own business now, selling stuff online and I have never looked back. No one cares for your education, grades and your spoiled Iranian attitude in North America. Its all about money here and being adaptable.

If you wana be spoiled and have people respect you for your MUSTACHE, Title (Mr. Doctor Mr. Engineer) or how much money your daddy has Robbed then go back to Iran and stay there! Here you have to FIGHT till you die and EARN everything. If we were a good nation of people IRan would have never fallen into the hands of Islamist and Corrupts. You have no Room to judge anyone else!

Ba Sepas!


Re: 2-cents

by Kamangir on

Dear 2-cents

I've stated clearly that I do not question the ranking methods or criteria. I'm sure those who carry out these detailed and well studied studies are professionals. My intent was to express my 'personal' view point and opinion about it, simply underlining that maybe some not mentioned and unknown city could be ones own 'best' city and that chances are that some may disagree with the poll results. Vancouver is a good place to live for almost anyone and I think most people living here do like it the way it is, however, for some others, the city may be missing things valuable to them.  I'm not a big fan of segregation, and I do see it here (although chances are that the this situation is caused by all parties involved and not the majority of white native born here) I've come across many others who would like to be involved in cultural events and the city is not offering much either, unlike LA, Montreal, Toronto or New York (please note that I have spent the last 22 years outside Iran, mostly in Europe, but also in other parts of Eastern Canada) perhaps comparisons aren't a good thing, but those who got us the results we're talking about, are comparing. Vancouver, although beautiful and growing day by day, still misses its own identity and is souless. But I guess this is part of its 'off the beaten track' condition. The poll rated the town as the most 'liveable' which might be true, but is liveable, equivalent to live and alive? The cost of life here is another issue of its own. This is a very expensive city by all means, and those who notice it are the average middle class individuals (like myself for instance) without a very high income. But as a friend of mine once said, we all seem to be looking for peace and peaceful and stress free lives, and besides agreeing with him, I should point out that Vancouver 'does' offer that.




by 12-cents (not verified) on

Mr. (or Mrs. or Miss.) Kamangir,
From your article, I get the impression that you assume these ranking are results of conducting public polls. As far as I am aware, there are groups of experts (e.g., in places like World Bank) who are in charge of producing these rankings and they use dozens of qualitative and quantitative comparative criteria. The basis of comparison is usually New York city. However, I am not sure whether I have misunderstood your article or not?



by zart (not verified) on

As we say in Farsi, "shoma gache zinoo begir, asb-savari pish-kesh".
You have come to Canada to do what?
To lecture the Canadian system as how to run their country?!!
To build a better life?
or perhaps before all that, learning English?!

You talk as if Canada owes you something. As if you are a world-class expert that needs special attention.
Are you a former stateman or a country president?
Are you an economist?
How much do you understand about teax system?
Are you a political expert?

Who exactly is this firey character, unable to write a simple English text after 11 years of living here?!
God bless you. Go get a life somewhere.


I like to send this letter to canadian paper

by hajiagha on


.ولخرحی های دولت کا نادا از حیب ملت....4 بلیون دلار هزینه تا سیسات المپیک زمستانیدر ونکور فقط برای 15روزبازیها ی المپیک و بعد از آن هزینه سر سام آور نگهداری آنان....از حیب ملت و قشر کم در آمد....در حالی که به اختصاص دادن مبلغ 100 میلیون دلار مشگل بی خانمانان درکانادا حل خواهد شد....تنها دولت ایران حکومت نا لا یق و بدی نیست با ید سری به کانادا بزنید....لطفا متن این نامه را با م ترحمه درست انگلیسی نما ئید



by hajiagha on


I am positive to some of this comment here but for all of them yes capitalism is one of the biggest are problems in Canada , i thinks in Canada are government do not care about human right so much what they care to became in power and to run this expensive political machine they are passing more and more law to take more and more money....look how large in Canada fresh water, good land for farming , wood, gold oil.....and what the Canadian government do just collect more and more TAX from us....I am so happy if they helping me to have small land and I get in farming.....much better to stay on welfare ....system in Canada is rung and full of the bureaucracy, they are spending over $40.000 on one homeless a years or guy on drugs...reported by government and my question if this guy received %40.000 for years why he is homeless? is stupid corruption like what the Canadian do in Afghanistan and Afghan they did not build any school or hospital and any thinks 4 billion dollars we don't know where get in Afghanistan....


Socialism breeds criminals

by Mehdi on

When a government systematically takes money away from producing members of its society and gives it to the non-producing members, it promotes criminality and laziness. Eventually such a system will collapse because more and more people are discouraged to work and encouraged to be idle. Capitalism is suffering from the same flaw - it promotes laziness by telling the capitalist that now he doesn't need to work and contribute - he can be lazy. What is a criminal but someone who takes something in exchange for nothing? I am afraid the most decent desires of mankind in helping people in need turns into a vehicle for destruction of the moral fabric of that society. Help the needy all you can but get the needy to do something in exchange so that he doesn't become degraded by feeling that he is unable to contribute, by feeling that he is less than you (since obviously you have the power to support him and he can't even support himself). Even when you do everything for a child and don't let him do something in return (even if it is a only nice smile or a little dance) the child gets upset, throws tantrums and gets sick.


Dear Folks Please note

by Kamangir on

Dear Folks

Please note that Canada itself has acknowledged that not accepting foreign academic titles, is not fair (although I wonder if it has anything to do with the fact the western provinces are in desperate need of skilled labour) but at least, this is an acknowledgment, that the current system is forcing many well educated and experienced and highly qualified new comers, outside the job morket. But I agree with those who point out the success and not the failures of Iranians and other foreigners here. The whole point was, Vancouver as the 'best' city on earth or the most 'liveable' one, to which I personally don't agree, as it's a very expensive city and as I mentioned earlier, a very segregated one too. However, in Canada itself mainly because of its very mild temperatures, Vancouver still remains a very good place to live in (despite the fact, segregation could be considered as one of the many faces of racism)  Having lived many years in Europe and having spoken to many other Iranians that came here from Europe, I can tell you, that Canada does offer everyone the 'possibility'. Although everything seems much easier if you're young and single, as you can try to study and get good skills.  Again, my point had to do with this specific city rather than the entire country. I would like to make a final point: Most foreigners coming here, are here to improve their lives, getting here, isn't that easy nowadays and once here, those happy newcomers may 'only' see the good and positive things of their new country, mainly because they are leaving their old life behind and therefore, some may fall into the trap of only seeing the surface (the American dream style) I've friends with this attitude of (this is the BEST place on earth)  Most people noticing the wrong things of the current state of affairs in Canada or the US are in fact, native born citizens of it, the rest of 'immigrants' here tend to be too busy improving their lives, so as to notice the negative sides of the life surrounding them. Sometimes you encounter Iranians, Pakistanis, Iraqis and Vietnamise, etc.. that are much more "royalist" than the king.  Finally, there's a very small 'middle-class' in Vancouver, and this middle-class again is to busy trying to get where the upper-class is. This simply creates a hard working and money making middle-class, with no time for culture, social life, etc... this is 'perhaps' the problem, with this city.



by vancouver-man (not verified) on

Open your eyes. What lie? I have given you the URL of my friend's company. he is from Bangeladesh, world poorest country. He is as dark as chocolate. But he has useful skills.
How would you expect me to find a job for you, while you can not even write proper English? Can you design Fiber Optic Networks? Do you know anything about Low power lasers? These are things I work with.

What can you do in America? Building a life on drawing cartoons?!
Go get some useful solid university education. You are still quite young. One day you turn your head and you see you are 50 and still complaining. The place (Canada) is literally saturated with successful Iranian in all walks of life. Canadinan universities are full of Iranian academics. Canadian companies are full of very successful Iranians. There are numerous successful business owners all around the place. Are you blind?!

You have no skills (forget about cartoons), no manners, no etiquette, and no command of English, and you ask a stranger to find you a job?



by hajiagha on

نگاه کن ما چقدر زمین حالی داریم و در عوض چقدر قیمت مسکن گران است....اگر همه بروند PHD بگیرند کی میرود آشپز بشه و یا کارگر ی کنه....مملکت رو دست های توا نا اینها می چرخه.....کانا دا سرزمین زیبا و خو بیه....ونکور شهر قشنگیه.....اما برای پول دارها ساخته شده....نه همه مردم....Canada belong to every one and we should send this messages out to are government enough is enough stop supporting rich people. we need housing, we need better medical care, we need to stop the crimes, drugs , hashish we need free and low cost college and university, we need honest government not full of the coraption....


here what I thinks about canada

by hajiagha on

این همه دروغ گفتی دما غت بزرگ نشد اگر راست میگی به من ای مال بزن من درویکتوریآ هستم ودنبال کار تمام وقت می گردم م هم مکآن احاره ی آپار تمان ......خالی بندی نکن و بگو تو دفتر امگریشن های خصو صی برای این کانا دا ئی ها ی خالی بند کار می کنی.....من یک فیلم کوتاه دارم از بد بخت های ونکور و ویکتو ریا اما انها فیلم من رو سانسورش کردند......انقدر وطن فروشی نکنید.....خر حمالی اینها تا خودشان راحت زند گی کنند.......صد ها هزار نفر از کانادا به آمریکا برآی زندگی کردن میروند چون آزاد تر هستندو ارزون تر برای زندگی.....ما بیشتر از هر کشور دیگری قانون داریم....ان هم فقط برای گرفتن پول بیشتر از ما right to tell your openinon and I am right too after 11 years in canada as canadian citizen


Who is lying?

by Vancouver-man (not verified) on

I am Iranian. My name is Mohammad. I have not changed it to Mo or Mike. I hold a PhD. I came here with about $500 in my pocket and a suitcase about 11 years ago. You seem to have a car. I never had a car during 6 years of my studies. For a while, I could not even afford bus ticket. You seem to have a LOT of free time. I never had this much free time.
I have worked as an Engineering professor in UBC, among a lot of white people. Just last week, I was selected among a pool of 30+ white Canadians for a top job in private sector. In my new work, all my co-workers are white. During interview, they offered my a coffee and I told them I am Muslim and fasting and therefore I am unable to drink. They did not mind.

White Canadian girls have often favoured me over white men.

My Bangladeshi friend is co-founder of one of Vancouver's fastest growing technology companies ( You see racism only as much as you choose to see.
Do something useful with your time. Drawing cartoons, in the age of airplanes, nanotechnology, laser, and computers does not get you anywhere.
Life is hard. It is deliberately desgined to be hard. How else we are supposed to develop character?
Good luck


Haji man meekham zanet

by Anonymous343434343 (not verified) on

Haji man meekham zanet besham baba tahvil begir. Be khoda ham khoshgelam ham ingilisim khube. to be man fosh yad midi manam behet adabeeaat!

Vancouver sucks. It is rainy all the time. And it's expensive. What kind of criteria are these people using. GEEZ


The best place on earth!

by Sophie on

I agree with Alborzi. It's all about expectations. If you don't expect magic and are hard working, you will be fine. It's also about life style: for some Vancouver is boring as it doesn’t have NY nights but I love it here as it offers quite a variety of outdoors and beauty of the nature. Of course it gets scary when you don't have a job and have a pride of making your own living. But right now Vancouver has the lowest rate of unemployment from 1974 (3.7%). With a job you can enjoy the life easily with all the beaches, mountains and woods around and friendly people. It’s not a place for lazy a&% or those who want to make a lot of money like they do in Iran. Lots of rules prevent that! It’s a system you need to learn and respect. I love it here and feel right at home!


search on Google homeless in Canada

by hajiagha on

If you not believe me please type in Google and search for homeless in Canada........this is reported not from me from Canadian human right

they are complaining about Canada large gap between poor and rich



you welcome to work like slaves and pay TAX

by hajiagha on

I live in Vancouver Island where almost %99 of population are white and older Canadian all of them living in large home . with 2 or 3 car, boat , camper....and absolutely free money , grant from government ....yes if you enough stupid to close your eyes and you like to works like slaves you right ....ask for your right to we bring justice, human right, and equality in Canada, remembers the chinese Canadian was did not have right to go in college and in school in 1960 in Canada or women did not have right to day we have more freedom as 1960 in Canada and we need to talk and ask for justice to end this slavery in Canada, why they are working in better job and receiving grant and care from government not all of them but if they want help always in corner for Canadian born in Canada not for immigrant or refugee please go and study more about Canada and do not advertise your business here as immigration office


read and carefully about Canadian human right

by hajiagha on

I saw report from Tv an Iranian pay high as $20.000 a month for rent shop in Vancouver, how much he can make to pay after TAX $20.000

I was living in north Vancouver and in others location of the Vancouver many are Iranian are struggling with own life they can not land a job they like , why you guys like to, lies about own life to the others Iranian. be honest . Vancouver is best city for drugs dealers or who have job in government or million dollars money others is so expensive place for living, look this way , why only immigrant should go head and buy this expensive small apartment when Canadian are living in large home and land and they never pay for all this, why they are having right to work in government with high pay and Immigrant should work in labour market for low pay and no right to have any things more. why native Canadian are comet suicide in Canada if Canada is a right place? why we have mass of the homeless in Vancouver, are you ever have chance to visit from los angeles one of the most expensive city in USA , los angeles is much much better then Vancouver for living . why UN report Canada or Vancouver as best place and they lies because they need more and more stupid people like me to land here to work like slaves to run this country pay Tax with no right, I know you have immigrant office and you just land in Iranian to advertise here to brainwash the more Iranian bring money in Canada to became homeless, there is no support from Canadian government after immigrant are landing here absolutely no support please do not land here I did mistake and I can not back in Iran because of my politicians and human right support


The problem is expectations

by Alborzi (not verified) on

Back when I was in Iran (1972), this girl came to Tehran
to take konkur classes. Anyway I used to talk to her at nights,
she really had unreal expectations. When I was in Iran last summer, most of them did not understand in realistic way,
how a US worker is. They are much more leisurely in Iran and relations are much deeper and Haji's complaints is just typical of an unrealistic expectation.


Haji, your English is improving

by farrad02 on

Keep writing. Practice makes perfect! Never mind our nerves!



by bang (not verified) on

Have you ever thought what is the difference between you and other Iranian who have come to canada and have become successful.
There should be reasons for your situation, most of them inside yourself.
Most of the world most famous artists lived and died in poverty. Who are you, when compared to them?
You always introduce yourself as "Iranian Artist". You are misled. The likes of Zavieh, Farshchian, Arabzadeh, Shajarian, Rohani, and Maroofi are artists. GIVE ME A BREAK.


This is not a prison

by Kamangir on

Please fix Iran first and then other nations. I agree with some of your points, but this is not a prison, nobody brought you by force. You can leave.



by stupid canada (not verified) on

are you have immigration office in Vancouver and looking for more victims if you right go to


canada sucks is so expensive

by suck s canada (not verified) on

fuck this city stupid I live in Canada over 11 years want bring more labors here to pay TAX to run the Canada and live in most expensive country ever ....with mass of the poor and homeless drugs gangs and crime ...I be homeless in Vancouver......stupid like you bran wash buy the Canadian, stolen native land free and sale this land so expensive to the new comers? to collect more and more TAX
1 of the 3 Canadian are living so poor asking for help from welfare
1 of the 8 Canadian women are having cancer, not working and on welfare
%70 of the population of Canada over 40 years old
no growing population at all
10.000 and more homeless on are street
you stupid pay but government of Canada or immigration office for this stupid report ...
racism country with so many young girls homeless sale sex on street missing women...not safe place for children, should talk about this also
looking to bring more people here to became victims like me