Gambatte: Generations of Perseverance and Politics, a Memoir

Gambatte: Generations of Perseverance and Politics, a Memoir

David Tsubouchi

Language: English

Pages: 250

ISBN: 1770411313

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Gambatte: Generations of Perseverance and Politics, a Memoir

David Tsubouchi

Language: English

Pages: 250

ISBN: 1770411313

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


A revealing memoir from a former Ontario cabinet minister “Gambatte” means do your best and never give up, and that spirit is at the heart of David Tsubouchi’s life story. This memoir of the former Ontario cabinet minister begins as his family strives for acceptance amid the imprisonment of Canadians of Japanese descent and the confiscation of their property, possessions, and businesses by the Mackenzie King Liberal government in 1941. Despite growing up on the outside looking in, Tsubouchi never felt disadvantaged because he had a good family and was taught to persevere. Gambatte outlines his unusual career path from actor to dedicated law school student/lumber yard worker to politician. Tsubouchi was the first person of Japanese descent elected in Canada as a municipal politician and, as an MPP, to serve as a cabinet minister. His story also reveals an insider’s perspective of Mike Harris’s “Common Sense Revolution.”

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lived in subsidized housing and I knew her sole income was from her Old Age pension. She hailed me in the aisle. “Mr. Tsubouchi! I need a will and a power of attorney. Can you tell me what you charge for this?” At the time, the going rate was $150 for the will and power of attorney, but I knew that she didn’t have much money. “I’ll do it for you without any charge,” I offered. “No, no, no,” she said. “I need to pay my way.” I asked her, “How does five dollars sound?” “That sounds fair,” she

headquarters and to do some campaigning on Main Street with me. He is great with people. I took him over to Goodies Restaurant at Markville Mall, where he chatted and met with customers and Frank Ampatzis, the owner. We then went to Main Street and visited the businesses. We stopped in to see Ross Rennie at Markham Hardware and Greg Weeks at Carson and Weeks Insurance. Mike Harris was a smashing success. My opponents in Markham were Khaled Usman, a long-time Liberal organizer and resident, and

him deliver speeches that I had heard several times before, yet I was still listening to his every word. In 1995, just after the election had been called, I was asked to campaign with Mike Harris down in Kensington Market. Mike and I were going to be walking down the street and just dropping in to all the stores. There was nothing pre-arranged. There were no safe businesses that had been pre-approved. The party was in last place. We had no choice but to take a few chances. We had been lucky

Takahashis had settled in Toronto after the war and my mother and Auntie Haru enrolled at Central Commerce Collegiate, my grandmother continued her strict ways and did not allow them to go to their prom. After being released from POW Camp 101, my uncles Hideo and Akira went to Toronto before the rest of the family arrived in order to prepare the way. Hideo worked at a mushroom farm in Port Credit, and Akira worked at some kind of packaging plant. The first place that my uncles secured for the

pleasant and had the same corny humour that all my Takahashi uncles had. He was, by consensus, the intellectual of the Takahashi clan. Uncle Nisan had a strange hobby, at least for most people. He subscribed to the printed records of the proceedings of Parliament. He was the only family member who seemed interested in politics. Looking back on the times he had lived through, it may have been a survival instinct to want to know what the enemy might be thinking. At least the next time he might get

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