Tools for Organizing Creative Actions 4

EDUCATE | TAKE ACTION | ACTION TOOLKIT

AustinTPPDayofAction

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Across the country and internationally people are rising up against a trio of corporate rigged “trade” treaties: the Transpacific Partnership (TPP), the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), and the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA).  Together these secret deals represent an enormous power grab by the world’s largest and most dangerous multinational corporations. They will impact every aspect of our lives (see issue-specific info below) and they must be stopped!

In June, 2015 the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives passed a Fast Track bill that makes it easier to pass these gargantuan treaties through Congress (no amendments, no filibuster, limited time for debate, and only an up or down vote) after years of secret negotiation. Obama quickly signed the antidemocratic Fast Track process into law and is now working hard to finalize the first of the three deals, the TPP.

So, first on our agenda is stopping the TPP (which could potentially derail the other deals too). The next, and possibly final, round of TPP negotiations will take place near the end of July, likely in the US. This needs to be protested! The treaty is nearly complete and member nations could sign on this summer, meaning the TPP is likely to come to Congress this fall!

Former US Trade Representative Ron Kirk said that if the people knew what was in the Trans-Pacific Partnership, it would be impossible to get it signed. This means a big part of our job is to let people know what the TPP (and the other two deals) is all about. Education for mobilization is a key piece but there are many ways to get involved:  pressure members of Congress, use creative actions, get media and public attention, create TPP-free zones, do teach-ins, and more.

We also know from the Fast Track fight that we need to escalate–phone calls, emails, visits and rallies were not enough to stop Fast Track for the global corporate agenda and they will not be enough to stop TPP, TTIP, & TiSA. Just like when we stopped the Free trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) agreement and the Multi-lateral Agreement on investments (MAI) we need to get organized, continue to build a new mass anti-corporate globalization movement, and escalate to stop the global corporate coup.

We have the power to stop the world’s largest corporations and end their assault on our communities, workplaces, democracy, and environment. Here we have compiled tools and resources that you can use to help stop these destructive deals.

You can also contact us directly if you would like some help. Once you have a date set for your event, make sure and submit the details on our Actions page. It will then be listed here as well as on other coalition websites. And don’t forget to set up a Facebook event page. This is one of the best ways to get the word out and promote your action to a wide cross section of people and a broad coalition of organizations.

Educate!

Learn the basics and more:

Education leads to action and action to education. Here are some articles to learn about the basics of Fast Track and corporate “free trade” deals like the Transpacific Partnership (TPP), the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA).

General articles
Trans-Pacific Partnership-Corporate Coup d’Etat Against Us: by Jim Hightower
Won’t Be Fooled By Rigged Corporate Trade Deals: by Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese
10 Tall Tales on Trade: Fact Checking Obama’s Top Trade Official: by Ben Beachy
Now is the Time To Escalate: By Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers

Congressional Opposition to Fast Track: Where do your Senators and Reps stand?
Over 150 Members of Congress Oppose Fast Track
Letter to President Obama to Stop Fast Track
GOP Split on Fast Track

For more articles, see news. For more resources, including handouts and TPP occucards, see below.

You can also join our “National TPP Resistance” weekly calls that focus on organizing and mobilization.

Take Action!

Pressure Congress:

Corporate deals like the TPP and TTIP must be stopped and this means stopping Fast Track (also called Trade Promotion Authority) in the Senate or the House. Fast Track is the secretive anti-democratic process that allows the President to sign “trade” agreements before sending them to Congress for only a brief review and debate on the floor of thousands of pages of documents with no committee hearings. Then Congress has an up or down vote with no amendments. Without Fast Track, TPP and TTIP would be exposed to public and Congressional debate and would never pass. If a Fast Track Bill were introduced today it would probably get stopped in the House. That’s why Obama, big money, and corporate media are pressuring Senators and Representatives to vote for Fast Track. We have to put our own pressure on to make sure both Republicans and Democrats stand firm against Fast Track and these dirty deals.

List of Congresspeople Opposed to Fast Track: Click here

Call or meet your Senators and Reps: Calling often has a greater impact than emails or letters. Go to stopfasttrack.com to call their offices. Let staffers know how constituents are feeling about the TPP. Keep an eye out for national call in days or organize your own. Offer yourself as a resource to the staffer to provide information about the TPP. Send relevant articles. Try to set up meetings with their trade staffers. Always ask hard questions! Here are some tools for your meetings and calls.

Handout: Reasons to Vote “No” on Fast Track

Fact Sheet: Questions Congress Should Ask About the TPP

Letter to Congress member on Fast Track and the TPP

Birdogging: Show up at their public events that your Senators and Reps will be attending in your district, state, or in D.C. Know the issue and ask them tough questions to get them and the media thinking, something they are not accustomed to doing. Push them for an answer. If they don’t respond, ask again. Hound them over and over, everywhere they go. Record the response and let everyone know! For more on birdogging see these tips.

Other: Write letters to the editor (here is a sample of ed) that put local pressure on your Senators and Reps. Talk to constituents that your member of Congress cares about (labor, churches, health groups, etc). Ask them to sign a petition, write letters, or come to a meeting with your Senator. Organize creative actions in or outside of Congressional offices or at your Senator or Rep’s home (see creative actions below).

TPP Tuesdays!

Since the TPP has been negotiated in secret, the goal is to educate as many people as possible about the TPP. In order to mobilize people to organize educational events, we called for #TPPTuesdays, weekly actions to draw attention to the trade agreement. This doesn’t mean every action has to be on a Tuesday. People decide what  works best for their local area or organization. The goal is to be visible and to educate.

One regular TPP Tuesday event is the Twitter Storm. If you know how to tweet, click here for the instructions and we’ll see you on twitter!

Be creative! Make TPP Tuesdays fun and informative! And after your event, send us a story, photos or video to share! Contact [email protected]

Declare Your Community a TPP-Free Zone!

Communities around the country are taking action locally to declare their area a “TPP-Free” Zone. This is a great opportunity to educate about the TPP and build community support for Fair Trade, not rigged corporate trade that is negotiated in secret. Here are some tools to get started:

Pointers for Getting a TPP-Free Zone Law

TPP-Free Zone Model Law

More information here

Creative Action Ideas:

Actions can be as simple as passing out literature or holding signs in a public place, or more involved such as nighttime light projection on buildings or displaying giant banners on highway overpasses. Or consider some of these creative actions:

Also see Backbone Campaign’s toolkit for light projections, banner hangs, and more.

Action Toolkit!

Select Your Protest Target

Where should you hold a protest? You can choose a corporate office like Monsanto, Walmart or Peabody Coal who are pushing the TPP to expand their profits at the expense of people and the planet, or a member of U.S. Congress’ district office to tell them not to Fast Track the TPP, or even simply a public location that is highly visible.

Below is a list of some of the more well-known corporations involved in drafting the TPP. And here is a full list of TPP corporate advisers, known as of June, 2012.

  • American Petroleum Institute
  • Archer Daniels Midland
  • AT&T
  • BNSF Railway (Tar Sands)
  • Boeing
  • Cargill
  • Caterpillar
  • Chevron
  • DuPont
  • Federal Express
  • Ford Motor
  • General Electric
  • Georgia Pacific
  • Halliburton
  • Hershey
  • Hewlitt Packard
  • Honeywell
  • IBM
  • Johnson and Johnson
  • Kraft Foods
  • M&T Bank
  • Monsanto
  • Pharma
  • Procter and Gamble
  • Starbucks
  • US Chamber of Commerce
  • Verizon
  • Walmart

Hand-Outs and More Info:

Information to Deliver to Congressional Offices:

Labor Unity Letter Opposing Fast Track

550+ Group Letter Opposing Fast Track and Explaining What We Want Instead

General Information:

These are all great to pass out during presentations, when tabling or protesting in a public location, or to share with your networks. You can update them depending on who you want to reach. Here is a simple TPP Flier. Here is another flyer. Here is a basic fact sheet to get informed. Here is a handout for March Against Monsanto actions. Best of all, you can order TPP occucards (colorful, informative postcards) for 9 cents each to hand out at your event.

TPP-front-620

TPP Organizer Toolbook:

TPPtoolkit_Nov2012

Issue-specific handouts:

The Triple Treaty Threat of TPP, TTIP, TiSA will impact every aspect of our lives. Here are some educational tools to use in our organizing when talking about specific issues.

Food safety here or here,

Environment here or here or here

Democracy here. Also read Bernd Hamm on the end of Democracy: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

Corporate power or here

Impacts on Communities of Color or here

Off-shoring american jobs

Workers rights

Public health

Internet freedom

Financial regulations and banking privatization and deregulation

Public services and here

Buying local

Investor State Dispute Settlement Tribunals (ISDS) here

Alternatives to corporate “trade” and globalization:

Here is a basic summary of the trade act. Here is the final house legislation on the trade act. Here is a letter written in support of the trade act. Here is more information on alternatives! The Trade Act is one important model that has wide support. There are many other ideas about how to fundamentally restructure the global political economy to work for people, planet, and peace instead of corporate power, profit, militarism, and continued economic growth.

 

Other Resources:

Chants: Click here and here

Make your own stickers: Click here

Videos:
Expose the TPP’s “TPP: The Dirtiest Deal You’ve Never Heard Of” (2:40)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DnC1mqyAXmw 
AFL-CIO’s “Workers Speak Out on the TPP” (2:15)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zq3ujEx9r5I
ORFTC’s “What Is the Trans-Pacific Partnership?” (4:00)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-GURmyY-Pgg
Ana Tijoux’s “No al TPP” (3:19)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBLtU-X5oVk
Doctors without Borders’ “Hands Off Our Medicine” (2:15)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Voa7Lc9pX38
Friends of the Earth’s “Peril in the Pacific” (11:11)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LW-TEHIScvw
Institute for Agriculture & Trade Policy’s “Fast Track to an Empty Basket” (2:01)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IRK3zfL42Sg 
Lee Camp’s “TPP Moment of Clarity” (4:02)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=22077TwLXUg
Consumers International’s “Let’s Stop the TPP” (3:14)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JGqREPciMSc

More Resources!

FlushtheTPP

Exposethetpp

Public Citizen

Citizen’s Trade Campaign