Feb 132018
 

The G7 Summit is in Charlevoix, Quebec, June 8-9, 2018.  https://g7.gc.ca/en/

Canada tops the list with the Toronto G20 Summit, 2010.  Canadians coughed up

  • $1.1 billion dollars to pay for happenings in Toronto and Huntsville, June 25 to 27.
    Canadians are so hospitable.   Do you know how much each one of us contributed?   And we’ve invited them back!
  • 19,000 police were in Toronto   (National Post report)
  • 10,000 protesters
  • 1,000 arrests, the largest mass arrests in Canadian history

 

Please, if you find any errors in this posting, let me know via the “Comment” space at the bottom.   Thank-you.  /S

 

WHY the relentless protests?   . . .  I looked for a quote that encapsulates why people were willing to spend time and sometimes money (transportation, accommodations)  to join different protests.  What made them give up a day, or more, to attend an event that would have unknown outcomes?  I started with protests at the Summits.   Then added some other major protests, creating a list.  See Bold text; the voicing of  the disquiet, although the events are different, is similar.   The grievances are largely the same.

Why aren’t they heard and acted upon?  To me they make sense, they are understandable.  Our leaders should want to find effective solutions.:   (The list is not intended to be “scientific”, nor is it representative inasmuch I didn’t look for quotes from the powers-that-be, to explain why they attended a Summit, for example.

  1.  Seattle 1999 WTO   (World Trade Organization)

Conservative estimate:  40,000 protesters in Seattle  (does not include simultaneous protests in New York, Washington, and other centres)

While the media concentrated on Seattle’s riots, the tear gas and the looting, the demands on the streets of Seattle were not for an end to world trade but for a fairer and more democratic system.

. . .   More than 500 people were jailed on Wednesday.  (Seattle).  

– – – – – – – – – – – – –

Regarding lawsuits against the City:

“The key point, the lesson learned, is you cannot arrest peaceful protesters here in Seattle or anywhere else in the country,” said Kenneth Hankin, a Boeing worker and lead plaintiff in the lawsuit.

The trial stemmed from the arrest of Hankin and the other protesters at a downtown park Dec. 1, 1999, where they were sitting and singing patriotic anthems.

More below on The Battle in Seattle.

2.   Montebello 2007  North American Leaders’ Summit  (SPP)

Maude Barlow of the Council of Canadians said people shouldn’t be fooled about who really sets the agenda at these summits: the 30 business leaders who sit on the North American Competitiveness Council.

The group comprises leaders from 10 companies in each country and includes corporations like Wal-Mart, General Electric and weapons-maker Lockheed Martin. They advise the three national governments on facilitating trade.

Barlow called for a moratorium on the “profoundly anti-democratic” Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP) until the citizens of all three countries are consulted and their elected representatives are given oversight over the business-driven initiative.

Flanked by U.S and Mexican opponents of the scheme and Canadian labour activists, Barlow told a news conference Monday that big business is trying to create a competitive North American trade bloc.

“And for this they need regulatory, resource, labour and environmental convergence to the lowest common standards,” she said, predicting that it will ultimately include a common passport, common currency and free trade in resources, including oil, gas and water.

“This is not about security for people, social security, security for the poor, environmental security or job security. This is about security for the big corporations for North America.”   . . .

A group of powerful business executives has been invited to make a closed-door presentation Tuesday at the summit on changes they believe the continent needs. No such invitation was extended to scientists, environmentalists, or other social activists.

There’s more on Montebello below – – the police who were disguised and deployed for the purpose of turning the protest violent.

3.  London G20 Summit,  April 2009

disquiet over economic policy, anger at the banking system and bankers’ remuneration and bonuses, the continued war on terror and concerns over climate change.

Although the majority of the protests and protesters were peaceful, the threat of violence and criminal damage were used by police as a reason to detain, or “kettle“, protesters as part of Operation Glencoe.

. . .   there were large protests and small ones, different groups, different locations in London.

the peaceful “March for Jobs, Justice and Climate” . . .  organised by Put People First, a civil-society coalition  – –   35,000 marchers

4.  Pittsburgh G20, Apr 2010:

The mood of the action tended to be uncompromisingly critical of the G20, of big corporations, and of capitalism as such. “We’re rallying here just a few miles from where the corporate robber barons have settled down to divide up the planet, that group of bankers, financiers and political leaders who have wreaked havoc upon our world,” proclaimed one of the speakers, urging listeners to “fight for another world, put people before profits.”  The crowd roared with approval, and others spoke in a similar vein, but the assembly was completely free from violence and arrests. 

  5 to 8 thousand protesters                   190 arrests            More below

5.  Toronto G20 Sept 2010:

if G20 governments could spend billions of dollars to rescue banks in trouble, why not find money to help unemployed workers for the environment and for social causes.” . . .  “It wasn’t the workers of the world that caused the financial crisis. We don’t want to see a transfer of wealth from the public sector to the private sector.”[30]

Cost to Canadian tax-payers, the ones who don’t offshore their money to avoid taxation:

– $1.1 billion dollars to pay for the 3-day event.

– 19,000 police in Toronto  (National Post link below)

– 10,000 protesters

– 1,000 arrests, the largest mass arrests in Canadian history

6.  Occupy Wall Street, New York City, mid-Sept 2011 (the first one)
received global attention and spawned a surge in the movement against economic inequality worldwide.[7]Wikipedia
Caused by: Wealth inequality, political corruption, corporate influence of government, inter alia
“We are the 99%”
 

7.  March Against Monsanto,  2013 (the first one)

Monsanto is one of a few corporate flash-points;  they embody many of the issues.   MAM was started in 2013 by young mothers who want to be able to feed nutritious, not contaminated with chemicals, food to their families.  Dads want the same, but it was the women who got things rolling.   The poisoning of food and water supplies, corruption of governments (regulatory functions),  corruption of universities, liars – – Monsanto is a well-known member of the corporatocracy.

(Alas! not updated since 2015)  List of March Against Monsanto (MAM), No to GMO, & GE Free Groups, emphasis on Canada

I haven’t listed the other MAMs, except for the upcoming one in May, 2018.

8.  Peoples Climate March, New York Sept 2014  (the first one)

 a massive demonstration that carries on.

There is no Planet B

Great to see ppl take to the streets & combat climate change, protect the next generation & fight for jobs & economic justice.

 . . .  the mood of the marchers was anything but somber. It was a racially diverse crowd with marchers of all ages. There were women with flowers in their hair. A man dressed in Uncle Sam overalls. There were little girls in strawberry sundresses and boys in baseball caps astride their fathers’ shoulders.

There were babies in strollers, like the boy who’d traveled with his family from Nashville and was now rolling down Pennsylvania Avenue carrying a sign that read, “Less pollution, more solutions.” There were elderly folks, too, such as 91-year-old Dorothy Peterson, who had traveled from Pittsburgh. She had a sun hat that resembled the earth and carried a sign in her wheelchair that read, “Mother Earth is older than me. Respect your elders.”

“It’s beautiful,” said Allison Dale, a geologist from Conshohocken, Pa. “It’s so well organized and everyone is really friendly and in a really good mood.”

The protest itself smelled of sweat, sunscreen and the occasional whiff of incense. It sounded like a drum circle — a never-ending drum circle. The cacophony included banjos and boomboxes and at least one kazoo, tambourines and ukuleles and, yes, cowbell. Lots of cowbell. At one point, a full-on brass band — tubas, trombones, trumpets — waltzed by in full swing in front of the White House, while a man on stilts danced amid the musicians.

There were chants, of course:

“Shame, shame, shame!”

“Hey hey, ho ho, Scott Pruitt has got to go!”

“Resistance is here to stay, welcome (Trump) to your 100th day.”

But none more ubiquitous than, “The oceans are rising and so are we!

The climate event differs from last week’s March for Science in its focus and also its participants — only 1 out of 8 contingents of Saturday’s protest featured scientific researchers. . . .

Women’s March Jan 2017   (the first one)

was a worldwide protest on January 21, 2017, to advocate legislation and policies regarding human rights and other issues, including women’s rights, immigration reform, healthcare reform, reproductive rights, the natural environment, LGBTQ rights, racial equality, freedom of religion,[17] and workers’ rights. Most of the rallies were aimed at Donald Trump, immediately following his inauguration as President of the United States, largely due to statements that he had made and positions that he had taken which were regarded by many as anti-women or otherwise offensive.[11][18] It was the largest single-day protest in U.S. history.[19]   

The Washington March drew 440,000 to 500,000 people. Between 3,267,134 and 5,246,670 people participated in the Women’s March in the United States.[23] In total, worldwide participation has been estimated at over five million.[9][10][24]  . . .   including 29 in Canada

[26][27] In Washington D.C. alone, the march was the largest single political demonstration since the anti–Vietnam War protests in the 1960s and 1970s.[28][29] The Women’s March crowds were peaceful, and no arrests were made in Washington, D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles,[b] New York City, and Seattle, where an estimated combined total of two million people marched.[31]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2017_Women%27s_March  (Some of the data is from the Washington Post, this-is-what-we-learned-by-counting-the-womens-marches

9.  Climate March April 2017

10.  March Against Monsanto May 2018    Coming.

11.  Charlevoix, PQ G7  Jun 2018        Coming.

Donald Trump will be an attendee.  Mind you, he backed out of a trip to the UK because of warnings about the protests that would ensue.  He has the memory of the June 2017 Women’s March.   The protesters came from everywhere, including Canada.

George W Bush and Dick Cheney no longer come to Canada after protesters mobilized to insist that the Rule of Law applies to everyone.   Protests in Vancouver meant that Cheney was confined to “the club” for 7 hours, unable to leave.   That helped convince him that he shouldn’t come back.

I could list Occupy events, Idle No More rallies, on and on without end – – the root of the disquiet is similar.  The protests at the Summits are part of the same phenomenon, the mobilization of people who understand that we have to bring about change, if our children are to inherit a habitable and empathic world.

We live in interesting times.  Don’t think we don’t have power.

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The above is consequence of the following:

On 2/6/2018, Sandra Finley wrote:

Hi Guy (not his real name),

I undertook to send you info re Harper’s attacks on activists, “environmentalists” and others of their ilk.

I think the following are better than his words.  They are his actions.

. . .

2.       Or, how about this one?   Montebello, the “North American Leaders’ Summit”, connected to the “SPP”, 2007.   They got away with it.   A year-and-a-half of calls for a public inquiry, which should have happened.

I still find it hard to believe that this not only can, but did, happen in Canada.  Harper, his boys, and the Police working together.  I repeat the description many times, trying to drive it into my head:   the Police had to have been trained, they were disguised, and they were deployed as provocateurs, to turn a peaceful protest violent.  Thank goodness for video cameras.    I know Paul Manly who pieced together the video and put it up on the internet.  They don’t come any better than Paul.

2008-11-28  Follow-up on Montebello, Police provoke Violence at SPP protest (2007)  

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Sent: February 7, 2018
To: Sandra Finley
Subject: Re: re Harper’s attacks on activists

Was this not preceded by violence in Toronto when protesters violently attacked during a Summit?  This was a police effort to get ahead of the problem but was handled amateurishly if not stupidly.  The tactic is a good one meeting fire with fire.  I like the idea of outlawing face masks.  Facial recognition techniques will help to curb the violence.

/g

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

From: Sandra Finley
Sent: February 8, 2018
Subject: RE: re Harper’s attacks on activists Montebello, Toronto

Hi G,

Wrong time line, which is important to correct:  Montebello came first

Montebello 2007

Toronto 2010

A bit of background:  Through the years, the name of the “corporatocracy” has changed.  “SPP” is no longer used, not after it became too well-known to the public.  The corporatocracy used it up to about the time of Montebello, and then dropped it.  (Remove the target.)

Their tactics remain largely unchanged and were partly spelt out (stupidly and brazenly), see   2006-09-13  Maclean’s Magazine interview, President of the Americas for Lockheed Martin Ron Covais, Meet NAFTA 2.0

The protests against the corporatocracy go back beyond Seattle, but use that as a starting point – – 20 years of protests over the transnationals.   Global – – the protests in other countries don’t receive a lot of coverage in Canada, no matter how big they are.

The Seattle protests (simultaneous in Washington, New York, etc.) were in 1999 when “WTO” was the nomenclature.  You may remember them, or not if you were outside North America.  Friends of mine joined the busloads of Canadians who traveled to Seattle to protest the corporatocracy.   The estimated number of protesters was not less than 40,000, in Seattle alone.  There’s a well done, balanced, film I should watch a second time – – “Battle in Seattle”.   A tactic, resisted by Seattle’s mayor, but done anyway:   when the violence started (provocateurs who were paid?),  the police (National Guard)  were placed in a strait-jacket with instructions not to interfere with the trashing of property – for a period of time.  THEN they were called in with tear gas, clubs, rubber bullets.

The  violence became the message.

2016-08-25 Revisiting the lessons of the Battle of Seattle and its aftermath, by Walden Bello.

2008-11-23 Battle in Seattle, the movie. Highly recommended. Resistance WTO, SPP.

 

So, we have Seattle in 1999.

Montebello was 2007.

There is no doubt that the “provocateurs” who attempted to turn the protest violent were police officers.  The videos, the fast-thinking protesters who yanked down the face masks while others photographed the faces, the ability to name the officers, forced the head of the Quebec police to hold a press conference. It’s all in the video.

Harper, after relentless insistence that a public inquiry was needed, finally agreed.   That was a tactic in itself:  agree to the demand;  wait long enough, people will eventually forget.  The inquiry was never held.

There was no doubt in my mind that the next protests over the “corporatocracy” would be met with, by more sinister tactics;  the power brokers would not be caught out as they were at Montebello.

They never think to do the rational thing:  use your brains, deal with the “why” of the protests.   No, they continue to protect their turf, be damned what’s happening to the planet, using force and violence against the peasants.   They don’t understand that they are going to die, just like everyone else.  What is the point of their behavior?

 

The 2009 G20 Pittsburgh Summit.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2009_G20_Pittsburgh_summit

. . . Friday also saw massive actions involving a broad coalition headed by the pacifist-oriented Thomas Merton Center. As one speaker emphasized at the action’s start, said, “I remind you, this is a peaceful, permitted march. We’re confronting G20 policies, not police.” This “Peoples’ March” (linked in the minds of many with issues raised in the earlier Peoples’ Summit) was punctuated by three rallies). . ., with an estimated 5000 to 8000 participants. The demonstration was quite diverse, including religious and community activists, anarchists, socialists, environmentalists, human rights advocates, opponents of war, trade unionists, veterans, and others. The mood of the action tended to be uncompromisingly critical of the G20, of big corporations, and of capitalism as such. “We’re rallying here just a few miles from where the corporate robber barons have settled down to divide up the planet, that group of bankers, financiers and political leaders who have wreaked havoc upon our world,” proclaimed one of the speakers, urging listeners to “fight for another world, put people before profits.” The crowd roared with approval, and others spoke in a similar vein, but the assembly was completely free from violence and arrests.[49][50][51][52][53][54]

Much of the news media tended to minimize peaceful protests, however, and gave greater attention to arrests. These included controversial police actions of Friday evening, after the G20 Summit and the organized protests had ended. Taking place in Schenley Plaza and at the nearby University of Pittsburgh campus, they involved more sweeping arrests, and more charges of police violence, than had been the case the night before.

According to police accounts, about 4,500 people participated in protests throughout the city, with 190 arrests being made.[55] Approximately $50,000 worth of damage was caused to area businesses, with $15,000 worth being attributed to one individual, David Japenga of California, accused of breaking 20 windows and doors in Oakland on Thursday night.[56]

 

Toronto 2010,  the G20-G8 Summit.

Ottawa initially allocated $179 million for the G8 and G20 summits — three days of talks that are now expected to set taxpayers back at least $1.1 billion. Most of the money, about $930 million, is for security.

You will recall the $2 million dollar “fake lake”  – a backdrop they could take pictures in front of;  all the money that went into the riding of Tony Clement (Federal MP, President of the Treasury Board), including, for a $100,000 gazebo that was an hour’s drive from the location of the Summit.

From Wikipedia, well foot-noted  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_G20_Toronto_summit_protests:

. . .   a large group comprising as many as 10,000 people protested downtown during the afternoon of June 26

if G20 governments could spend billions of dollars to rescue banks in trouble, why not find money to help unemployed workers for the environment and for social causes.” Sid Ryan of the Ontario Federation of Labour said in a speech, “It wasn’t the workers of the world that caused the financial crisis. We don’t want to see a transfer of wealth from the public sector to the private sector.”[30]

Number of Police, according to the National Post:  19,000: Estimated number of police officers in Toronto on the weekend  

The largest number of mass arrests in Canadian history.  The Post reports (June 28, 2010)  900: Estimated number of summit-related

arrests.   (After the dust settled, the total number of arrests was set at 1,100.)    http://nationalpost.com/posted-toronto/the-denouement-g20-protest-by-the-numbers-reports-of-900-arrests

The costs of similar Summits held in other cities were a fraction of what it cost Canadian tax-payers.   The number of police employed was similarly outrageous in Canada.  19,000 versus a general number of 5,000 police for summits in other cities.

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

2012-06-10 G-20 Summit, Toronto. And kettling, a tactic of police, now counter-used by crowds to “kettle” the police.

Much of “The violence” is deliberate instigation, and not by protesters.  It is done to discredit the protesters.  Media are duped into covering the violence and not the issues under protest.  It is also done, especially the Toronto SCALED UP, to send a message:  stay at home if you don’t want to get hurt.   Friends of mine attended the Toronto Summit.  They are good people who went because they are well-informed and worried:  corporate rule is fascism.  The biggest mass arrests in Canadian history took place, more than a thousand.   Among the arrested were people going about their business – -nothing to do with the protest.   A couple of reporters were arrested.  A friend was arrested;  his whole life has been dedicated to community work.  He would not harm a flea.  We all have the right, even the duty to stand up and speak when the elites, who are only people, do what they are doing today.

The violence will be curbed when Government starts doing what it is supposed to do:   there is only one sector of our society tasked with “guarding the store”.   It is the Government.   It is their job to regulate in the public interest, to protect and serve the public interest.  To see that there is adequate funding for enforcement of regulations that protect The Commons, that upon which we are all dependent for survival.   Governments are not the henchmen for the big corporations.

The situation in Canada deteriorates as the Corporates worm their way into more and more of the governance and public structures.  They are a corrupting force.  It is a recognized problem in many countries.   Citizens around the world are connected and working to remove the usurpers.

A few years ago I attended a small gathering of American activists in Washington because I wanted to see firsthand what the mood and thoughts were of these people.    David Korten is the author of When Corporations Rule the World.  He is just one of the people who were there for the 4 days.   Without exception, I found the presenters to be the genuine article.  Caring, thinking people with life and work experience abroad who understand the role of the American empire in the world.  John Perkins’ Confessions of an Economic Hit Man (updated 2014) is further testament.  These people work tirelessly for the public good.  Think of Daniel Ellsberg.  People like him join the protests in front of the White House.  They are the voices of sanity in a crazed society.

As you may have guessed, IMHO the “protesters” are not the problem; They are our hope and our inspiration.

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RELATED:    2010-04-29    Is it armies and war that win civil rights (democracy)?    Soundtrack for a Revolution.    (speaks to one of the biggest myths of our time.)

And, from  The Post-Corporate World, Korten, 1999, P. 27:

When the modern corporation brings together the power of modern technology with the power of massed capital, it also brings together the scientist whose self-perceived moral responsibility is limited to advancing objective instrumental knowledge and the corporate executive whose self-perceived moral responsibility is limited to maximizing corporate profits.  The result is a system in which power and expertise are delinked from moral accountability, instrumental and financial values override life values, and what is expedient and profitable takes precedence over what is nurturing and responsible. 

As Hobbes aptly demonstrated, it all follows logically from the premise that life is accidental and meaningless – a story that denies life meaning, denies life respect, and absolves us of responsibility for the harm our actions may cause.  Yet this is not our natural predisposition, which leads to the stressful and morally disorienting psychological conflict . . .  “

= = = = = =

Now I need some humour!  And beauty.

Sandra

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