Head of TD Bank offers advice to Occupy Toronto
On Wednesday evening, around about the time that rain and high winds were making life at St. James Park miserable for participants in the Occupy Toronto movement, Ed Clark, the head of TD Bank, was awarded with the Ivey Business Leader Award at the Four Seasons Hotel in Yorkville. Prior to the ceremony, a Toronto Star reporter conducted a brief interview with the CEO, the last question of which asked what advice he might give to the protesters. Here's his answer:
"My main advice is stick to your guns. When people say, 'You don't have a solution,' say, 'Of course we don't. If there was a solution, don't you think people would be doing it?' To ask the people who occupy Wall Street or Bay Street to have a full answer is absurd. They're doing their job which is to say, 'If you think this [system] is working for everyone, it's not.' Now they have to figure out how not to get captured by special interest and keep the pressure on. We need people to talk about these problems and how we're going to solve them."
What's interesting about this response — beyond its overall positiveness, which a cynic might chalk up to good PR skills — is that Clark takes to task the common criticism that the protestors aren't offering alternative solutions to the economics they disagree with. This was a common refrain in the comments section of our guest contribution from an member of the Occupy Toronto movement on Wednesday, but perhaps it's not a particularly good knock against their actions. Or, could it be that Clark is offering advice that, if taken, will only further rob the protesters of credibility?
Photo by Tom Ryaboi