導賞員林思妤 Note by Docent, Wiz Lin
A Hangzhou university teacher discussed house prices in Mainland China with me. She said the top price in 2008 was 800 thousand dollars per pyeong (lake view). I was a little surprised! I thought house prices in Mainland should not be that high. She had many classmates working in Hong Kong but living in Shenzhen because house prices are too high in Hong Kong. She said the Hangzhou local government had tried to restrict property speculation but because it needs to sustain the health insurance benefits (Government pays medical expenses under $2000, people just need to pay 16% if the fee is more than $2000), the local government needs to make money by selling land and keeping the prices high, resulting in this vicious cycle.
An old man saw the statement “Not eating or drinking for 10 years can buy one pyeong of flat.” Then he used Taiwanese to tell me, “One also needs to earn that much ah.”
Taiwanese audience did not talk too much during the guided tour. (Are they shy?) However, they are very willing to write on paper bricks. I think it is also good!
A lady discussed the work with her mother and said the answers on the paper bricks were all complaints by the young people. She felt that young people should be hard working and should do several jobs. Why did they always like to blame the society? I am very happy that this lady might not have any worry about not being able to afford to buy a house, but I am also very sad that she always takes the side of the employers (my ex- boss used to say similar things ). After watching the show, she did not change her mind. I was a little upset.
A viewer saw the statement “not eating or drinking for ten years can buy one pyeong of flat.” Then he said, “I prefer sleeping in my mum’s washroom.”
A viewer said that some in the audience said these things because they loved to complain and their answers were “within the system”. He was very proud and told his friend, “I can use one sentence to defeat all of them!” Then he posted, “Did you make any effort?”
After reading all responses on the wall, an elderly said he was so lucky that he lived in the era when he did not need to worry about housing!
One reviewer shared with me that her son studied in US. He worked in a bank after coming back to Taiwan. The first job was as a manager. The monthly income of her son and daughter-in-law taken together was more than two hundred thousand dollars. However, for the down payment they still had to rely on Mom and Dad, otherwise it was completely unaffordable!
Another viewer said the theme of the exhibition was very good! It was because it is close to life and the related problems urgently require the Government’s attention.
After listening to the introduction of the show, a viewer thought the society was worse than before. He said he had travelled to Hong Kong. The tour guide joked that there was not much difference between the house prices in Hong Kong and Taiwan, it was only the difference between one pyeong and one foot.
Those born around 1950 did not feel much concern about this issue because they had experienced economic and knowledge growth of the society. Although they were not rich, they could afford to buy houses. They said they could still work and wanted to save more money for their children. “If we do not, our children will remain really poor!” They do not know each other but they have the same views.