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Trans Pacific Partnership – Free Trade Is Bad News For Americans

| Blog | November 6, 2013

 

free tradeTrans Pacific Partnership – Free Trade

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (“TPP”) is a free trade agreement currently being negotiated by nine countries: The United States, Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam. Although the TPP covers a wide range of issues, this site focuses on the TPP’s intellectual property (IP) chapter.

The TPP suffers from a serious lack of transparency, threatens to impose more stringent copyright without public input, and pressures foreign governments to adopt unbalanced laws.

Obama Free Trade Agreement – Trans-Pacific Partnership Threatening American Jobs
Published on Jul 8, 2012

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement will remove a steep import tax on Vietnamese-made sneakers, putting more than 300 U.S. manufacturing jobs at the athletic shoe company New Balance on the line. Anthony Mason reports.

 

Clinton Announces Trans-Pacific Trade Agreement
Published on Jul 10, 2012

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged Vietnam to pursue democracy while announcing details of a a new trans-Pacific trade agreement focused on south Asia, during a visit to Hanoi on Tuesday. (July 10)

Obama to Fast-Track Trade Agreement This Weekend?
Published on Oct 3, 2013

Know much about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)? If you don’t, it’s not your fault. According to Zoë Carpenter (The Nation), Congress hasn’t heard much about TPP either. That’s because this so-called “free trade” agreement is being negotiated in “extreme” secrecy by representatives of twelve different countries—the United States, Japan, Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam. Carpenter says that the Obama administration has ignored “repeated calls from legislators to make the process more transparent, while pressing to finalize the agreement this year.”

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The Top Secret Trade Deal You Need to Know About 

Bill Moyers discusses the Trans-Pacific Partnership with journalist Yves Smith and economist Dean Baker, then a preview of filmmaker Robert Greenwald’s new documentary Unmanned: America’s Drone Wars. Also a Bill Moyers essay on Obamacare’s rocky rollout.

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President Obama Speaks on the Trans-Pacific Partnership
Published on Sep 7, 2012 November 12, 2011 | 2:42 | Public Domain

President Obama speaks with leaders of Pacific nations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership and trade agreement.

Obama’s TPP trade deal screws American economy
Published on Oct 31, 2013

US President Obama’s so called “Free Trade” deal the “Trans Pacific Partnership” is bad news for American jobs, off shoring more manufacturing jobs to foreign countries, decimating the workforce to become just a consumer economy. NO economy can survive being mostly a consumer economy, just look at many European countries.

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 daniel-tencerBy Daniel Tencer

Trans-Pacific Partnership Talks Headed For Finish Line Amid Official Secrecy

The Financial Times describes the TPP as being “billed as a 21st century trade deal aimed at setting new high standards for future agreements.” But critics, such as the Council of Canadians, say it sets a new standard for prioritizing “corporate rights” over the rights of consumers. read more

 By downloadIlana Solomon – Trade Representative, Sierra Club

Secrets Revealed: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Free Trade Agreement

Tight-lipped police officers and security guards: not exactly what I expected to see when I walked onto the second floor of the Intercontinental Hotel in Addison, Texas where trade negotiators convened last week. While representatives from the U.S. and eight other Pacific Rim countries met behind closed doors for the 12th round of negotiations for a massive new free trade agreement, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement, I was barred from negotiating sessions. I have never seen a single word of the draft TPP. And while roughly 600 corporate and 30-odd non-corporate trade advisers do have access to the text, federal law prohibits them from discussing specific contents of the TPP. read more

Zach-CarterBy Zach Carter

Congress Revolts On Obama Plan That Would Ban ‘Buy American

WASHINGTON — A group of 68 House Democrats and one Republican sent a letter to President Barack Obama on Thursday urging him to reconsider an element of the controversial free trade agreement currently being negotiated by the administration. If approved in its current form, the pact would effectivelyban “Buy American” policies in government contracting.

 

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A group of 68 House Democrats and one Republican sent a letter to President Barack Obama on Thursday urging him to reconsider an element of the controversial free trade agreement currently being negotiated by the administration. If approved in its current form, the pact would effectivelyban “Buy American” policies in government contracting.

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Democrats Balk at Obama’s Pacific Trade Accord Fast Track

Some Democrats in Congress, whose support Barack Obama needs for trade accords, want to put the brakes on a Pacific-region deal just as the president prepares to meet with leaders of nations drafting the pact.

A growing chorus of lawmakers is calling for trade negotiators to address issues including currency manipulation, food-safety standards and competition with state-backed industries as the administration seeks “fast-track” authority to smooth eventual passage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. read more

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Obama’s Covert Trade Deal

By LORI WALLACH and BEN BEACHY Published: June 2, 2013

The Obama administration has often stated its commitment to open government. So why is it keeping such tight wraps on the contents of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the most significant international commercial agreement since the creation of the World Trade Organization in 1995?

The agreement, under negotiation since 2008, would set new rules for everything from food safety and financial markets to medicine prices and Internet freedom. It would include at least 12 of the countries bordering the Pacific and be open for more to join. President Obama has said he wants to sign it by October.

Although Congress has exclusive constitutional authority to set the terms of trade, so far the executive branch has managed to resist repeated requests by members of Congress to see the text of the draft agreement and has denied requests from members to attend negotiations as observers — reversing past practice. read more

Trans-Pacific Partnership – Congressman Dennis Kucinich  Published on Oct 18, 2012

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“The negotiations over the multinational Trans-Pacific Partnership, or the TPP Free Trade Agreement, lack transparency. The U.S. Trade Representative denies members of Congress and the public access to the classified text of the agreement.

“This policy of secrecy undermines public trust and denies members of Congress the opportunity Congress has historically been afforded to provide input on trade deals. According to Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch, the U.S. Trade Representative has consulted with ‘over 600 mostly corporate advisors on the context of the classified TPP text,’ while continuing to deny access to policy makers whose constituencies will be greatly affected by the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

“From what has been leaked of the TPP, it is shaping up to be worse than NAFTA. The North American Free Trade Agreement’s (NAFTA) legacy of deregulation, the outsourcing of American jobs, and the undermining of U.S. environmental and health laws is legendary.”

“The devastating track record of Free Trade Agreements (FTA) thus far is clear, and recent reports confirm the fears of those of us who opposed the NAFTA-style FTAs with Korea, Colombia and Panama last year. Colombia continues to be the most dangerous place in the world for trade unionists. Our trade deficit with Korea in the auto sector has grown to nearly $8 billion, a 28% increase over the same period from last year.

“In June of this year, I joined over 100 Members of Congress in asking U.S. Trade Representative for more transparent negotiations and to provide Congress with the vital opportunity to provide input for the agreement. Our voices join thousands of people across the country and a broad range of civil society groups such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the American Medical Student Association and the AFL-CIO that are calling for increased transparency and accountability in the TPP negotiation process.

“When will the U.S. Trade Representative listen? Why is the process so secret? Shouldn’t we know the details of the Trans-Pacific Partnership before the election?”

 

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Your Humble Blogger Discusses the Pending Trade Deals and JP Morgan on Le Show! by Yves Smith

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The Obama administration said it wants a “next-generation” agreement that, in addition to lowering tariffs, lowers investment restrictions, improves labor rights, encourages environmental protection and reduces government favoritism of state-owned businesses. That is an ambitious agenda considering that more than 150 countries are struggling to complete a much simpler deal at the World Trade Organization…. Read more

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The Pacific free trade deal that’s anything but free by Dean Baker 

The draft TPP deal may grant new patent privileges and restrict net freedom, but it’s secret – unless you’re a multinational CEO

dean-baker“Free trade” is a sacred mantra in Washington. If anything is labeled as being “free trade”, then everyone in the Washington establishment is required to bow down and support it. Otherwise, they are excommunicated from the list of respectable people and exiled to the land of protectionist Neanderthals.

This is essential background to understanding what is going on with the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), a pact that the United States is negotiating with Australia, Canada, Japan and eight other countries in the Pacific region. The agreement is packaged as a “free trade” agreement. This label will force all of the respectable types in Washington to support it.

In reality, the deal has almost nothing to do with trade: actual trade barriers between these countries are already very low. The TPP is an effort to use the holy grail of free trade to impose conditions and override domestic laws in a way that would be almost impossible if the proposed measures had to go through the normal legislative process. The expectation is that by lining up powerful corporate interests, the governments will be able to ram this new “free trade” pact through legislatures on a take-it-or-leave-it basis. read more

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This week on Le Show
Harry Shearer talks about free trade agreements with Yves Smith of Naked Capitalism blog

Listen To Interview  

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