It’s unbelievable. The G20 — the most powerful summit of world governments — meets tomorrow to discuss the global economic crisis, and who is sponsoring the meeting? Banks and corporations!
No wonder the site of the meeting — the French city of Cannes — is completely locked down to any ordinary citizens, while banks and large corporate CEOs have all access passes to tell our governments what to do.
Corporations have captured our governments, winning vast corporate bailouts despite destroying our economy. Now they are buying their way into the very meeting that could decide the financial future for much of the globe. Together we can persuade summit host Nicolas Sarkozy to cancel the sponsorship — let’s build a massive public outcry that causes a media firestorm and forces Sarkozy to kick out the corporate sponsors and clean up the G20. Sign the petition and forward widely:
The line between corporate power and responsible government has steadily blurred. Politicians take money from corporations for their campaigns, make policies that reward them when in office, and then take high-paid jobs with them after they leave. It’s corruption, plain and simple.
Now Société Générale, a French bank that received a US$12 billion bailout three years ago and has a massive vested interest in Europe’s response to the Euro crisis — this summit’s main topic — has paid to have its logo prominent as an official sponsor. The US Chamber of Commerce and its equivalents from other countries are invited for a cosy ‘B20 summit’ to tell our leaders what they think.
The only way to get policies that protect jobs, tackle speculators and guarantee a fair future for us all is to kick back against the lobbies and prise our leaders away from corporate interests. Let’s tell Nicolas Sarkozy and the other leaders that their future depends on ditching the sponsors now and agreeing to no more corporate capture of our governments. Sign the petition and send to everyone:
The global economic crisis resulted from greed and narrow self-interest. But when people are most under pressure they can come together in amazing ways, as we have seen repeatedly this year. From Wall Street, through London, to Melbourne, tens thousands of people are today occupying their cities — we can join them in their call for responsible government and kick the corporations out!
With hope and determination,
Alex, Maria Paz, Emma, Ricken, Morgan, Wissam and the rest of the Avaaz team
Business leaders press G20 (Financial Times)
Business 20 summit parallel to the G20
Ottawa Steered Clear of Corporate Sponsorships for G20 (Globe and Mail)
List of G20 Cannes Sponsors
Société Générale gets $12 billion in AIG bailout (New York Times)
The Occupy movement is also a different kind of protest because of the strange way it encompasses both the radical and the eminently reasonable. Or really, how it shows that the reasonable has become radical.
The radical-looking people in the photo—the dirty-hippy types and the scary black-masked folks—most of them weren’t screaming for the downfall of the State or the overthrow of capitalism. They were shouting things like “fund healthcare and education” and “reduce the deficit.” I live in a country where people are putting on masks and writing a defense attorney’s phone number on their arm so they can say things like “rich people should pay more taxes.”