Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Dick Morris and Julian Assange agree on TPP

Bipartisanship!. Dick Morris and Julian Assange agree. The TPP is anti-democratic.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) has nothing to do with trade.

While it officially embraces 11 countries plus the U.S., 76 percent of our trade with these nations is with Mexico and Canada, already covered by the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Any export growth is likely to have been already covered by NAFTA, making the TPP irrelevant to our trade relations.
The TPP is nothing but an effort by the globalists to circumvent American sovereignty, transferring a host of issues from the control of the U.S. Congress and the various state legislatures to international trade courts....

The long-term goal of the globalists is an international rule of law unaccompanied by democracy. Because there is no global forum for the manifestation of worldwide popular will, this formula leads to rule by bureaucrats: those who know best. It is government by a new aristocracy of civil servants and technicians.

Why are they so eager to pre-empt the power of elected bodies? Steeped in the traditions of opposition to democracy, they regard the will of the people as unpredictable and subject to demagoguery. The French and the British have always used their civil service to insulate their countries from the ravages of ambitious populist politicians. Germany has a well-deserved suspicion of popular sovereignty, and Japan has always been ruled by its bureaucracy.
Multinational corporations find bureaucrats easy to control, subject as they are to the influences of the revolving door between regulators and those they regulate. Coming from industry or planning to return there, the supposedly disinterested bureaucrats are anything but impartial. 
What is incomprehensible is why normally trustworthy Republican senators and congressmen are falling in line behind Obama. Hasn’t this president stripped our nation of enough power? Has he not tipped the system of checks and balances all out of kilter? Are we to trust him with more power? Are the Republicans to vote him more power?

It is mostly not about trade. Only five of the 29 chapters are about traditional trade. The others are about regulating the Internet and what Internet—Internet service providers have to collect information. They have to hand it over to companies under certain circumstances. It’s about regulating labor, what labor conditions can be applied, regulating, whether you can favor local industry, regulating the hospital healthcare system, privatization of hospitals. So, essentially, every aspect of the modern economy, even banking services, are in the TPP.

And so, that is erecting and embedding new, ultramodern neoliberal structure in U.S. law and in the laws of the other countries that are participating, and is putting it in a treaty* form....
Democracy Now!
Julian Assange on the Trans-Pacific Partnership: Secretive Deal Isn’t About Trade, But Corporate Control
Amy Goodman interviews Julian Assange

h/t Lambert Strether at Naked Capitalism

• Congressional Institute, Trade or Treaty? Why Does the House Approve Free Trade Agreements? By Mark Strand and Dan Risko
Unlike treaties, trade agreements affect U.S. law regarding foreign commerce, which Congress regulates, thus requiring legislation to implement. Also, Article I states that bills concerning the generation of revenue must be introduced in the House of Representatives. Because free trade agreements deal with our nation’s revenue stream, the House has a Constitutional obligation to participate.
Remember, once signed, these free trade agreements are U.S. Law.... 
The expedited consideration of free trade agreements, known as Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), was formerly known as “fast track” legislative process because a bill avoids many of the timely legislative constraints, such as the filibuster or amending the bill to change the terms of the agreement. The president was able to utilize the “fast track” authority in Congress until it expired 1994. It was then reapproved under the Trade Promotion Authority Act of 2002, but once again expired in 2007....


NeilW said...

Now you guys will know what the EU treaty feels like :)

Ryan Harris said...

Isn't Dick Morris a Clinton advisor with a penchant for hookers? Good analysis anyhow IMO.

Interesting stuff on the reasons they require House approval. Basically, they are over-riding and replacing domestic laws which only the House & Senate can do together. More evidence that this treaty goes way beyond trade.

The unfortunate thing, is it is an opportunity lost. Improving labor conditions and reducing the ability of companies to engage in various other regulatory arbitrage is important but you can be sure that if Walmart, GE and Motion Picture Asssociation are writing the agreement they have other interests at heart.