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Report-back from TPP Town Hall in Toronto.

Here is a report from the demonstration and the consultation TPP Townhall, hosted by Trade Minister Chrystina Freeland in her own riding in Toronto:

It was wonderful. About 300 people in attendance in the Munk Centre. Most of the meeting was comments from the floor. 34 speakers opposed to the TPP, 3 in favor (2 worked for agribusiness, 1 was a TPP ‘independent’ researcher).   Chystina Freeland said was “there to listen”.

There was a huge Trojan horse, the raging grannies, and we brought a big “Hour Glass” just like on the front of the flyer, which we gave out.

The panel included the head of the Auto workers — who was terrific — a lawyer from intellectual rights, who was also really good and someone supporting the TPP, who was so weak. He basically said it’s not a great deal, but better than not being in the TPP. He also said there wold be a very little, small average wage increase with TPP.

One of the audience asked/said, perhaps because the top 1% for get big bucks, so the average might go up. She knew her math.

Almost everyone spoke against the TPP, eloquently. Indigenous people, doctors, environmentalists, culture activists, librarians, etc.

People loved our flyer. The crowd was lively. Here are some of my favorite quotes directed at Freeland (all from different speakers from the floor):

“I don’t trust you. Is Trudeau just a pretty face and a marketing person? Big business runs the country and I’m tired of it!”

“The ‘TPP’ really stands for ‘Treasonous Privatization Plot'”

“In these consultations you are made to feel like a serf pleading to the king”

“The solution to our ‘Plutocrat Problem’ is not the TPP. We need to take our democracy back from the greedy bastards who stole it. The only solution is to tell the Plutocrats enough!”

From a 93 year old sister: “Issue me a ballpark figure. How many round table will you need to scrap the TPP!”

From an Indigenous sister and law student: “The TPP is an act of aggression against Indigenous peoples”

Unifor member: “This is a ‘free’ trade agreement. It’s free for the corporations and free-fall for the Canadian working class”

“If you pass the TPP, I’ll leave the Liberal Party. I worked hard to get the corporate agenda of the Tories gone, and I hope it is.”

“You do not have a mandate to commit treason!!!”

“It is secret, because if American people knew what was in it they would reject it.”

“Unacceptable, unaffordable”

“Is there a maximum wage law?”

“Transfer tactic to corporations”

“Challenges whole concept of being in union.”

It was great to see Freeland take this for 2 hours straight. The only thing that was missing was to turn the meeting into a people’s trial with a vote at the end to impeach Freeland & the Liberals and say no to the TPP. It would have easily carried.