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Stop TPP

TPP is a trade agreement that if passed will turn over our national sovereignty to multi-national corporations.

Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP): "NAFTA on Steroids"

  • As in NAFTA, corporations could sue nations or even states like Oregon or Washington for having laws that potentially could harm their profits. The lawsuits go to
    three-person tribunals typically made up of corporate lawyers, who would decide the case – without any transparency or chance for appeal. Lori Wallach of Public Citizen, a leading opponent of TPP, called this a “corporate kangaroo court” and emphasized, as others have, that TPP is “NAFTA on steroids.”

  • The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a trade deal from hell. It’s a stealth corporate coup d’etat.

    It’s a giveaway to banksters. It’s a global neoliberal ripoff. It’s a business empowering Trojan horse. It’s a freedom and ecosystem destroying nightmare. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) calls it “a secretive, multi-national trade agreement that threatens to extend restrictive intellectual property (IP) laws across the globe and rewrite international rules on its enforcement.”
  • For those who have lost jobs to NAFTA, a two-decade-old trade pact that has cost over 5 million manufacturing jobs as well as electrical, retooling, and other jobs that supported them, and 45,000 U.S. manufacturing facilities that likely will never return, the current version entitled the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP)has been called “NAFTA on steroids”.
  • While the Obama Administration appears to be growing ever-more-limp domestically, the president is still making a vigorous international push that has the potential to shift economic power dynamics, rewrite intellectual property laws, establish new labor and environmental regulations, and reduce the authority of Congress. And, the White House hopes to have all this sorted out by the end of this year.
  • " of the main purposes of the TPP, like previous "trade" agreements including the World Trade Organization, is to bind the United States to a set of rules that our political leaders would have difficulty putting into law in the U.S. These include raising
    pharmaceutical prices by strengthening and lengthening patent protection; allowing corporations to sue the government for regulation that infringes on their profits; and undermining public health and environmental protection, and financial regulation. So by corrupting democracy for this one big, lame-duck vote, our politicians can undermine and limit democracy for many years and even decades to come."
  • The deal beefs up intellectual property laws for drug manufacturers, extending the US’s already substantial patent laws to each partner country, and adding news laws that would bolster Big Pharma’s ability to hold monopolies on some drugs while making it harder to fight flimsy patent claims.

    President Barack Obama has said these changes will help spur innovation, because it gives pharmaceutical companies even more incentive to invest in research and development: come up with a new drug, and you’ll get to reap all the benefits for years to come. But some economists argue beefed up IP protections could actually have the opposite effect of stifling innovation, while preserving unaffordably high prices for existing drugs—particularly in developing countries that have signed onto the deal.

Opposition to deal coming from Left and Right:

For those who have lost jobs to NAFTA, a two-decade-old trade pact that has cost over 5 million manufacturing jobs as well as electrical, retooling, and other jobs that
supported them, and 45,000 U.S. manufacturing facilities that likely will never return, the current version entitled the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP)has been called “NAFTA on steroids”.
An increasing number of liberals are aligning themselves with Tea Party members in a strange right-left coalition to voice concern over the Obama Administration’s heavy-handed push to at least 11 other countries, mostly in the Pacific rim, for a binding international governance system that will have the practical effect of circumventing actual legislation on issues that extend far beyond trade issues. Of the 29 chapters in negotiation, which has been ongoing for over three years now, only five deal with trade. Non-trade issues being proffered in secret negotiating texts include government procurement, including “buy American” and “buy local” laws, intellectual property, financial services, food standards, labor, environmental and drug patent provisions. [November 2013]

Democrats in Congress are standing up to Obama's sellout

  • Congressional Democrats have often been frustrated by his lack of attention to their concerns, but they've been especially disturbed lately that in his grand pivot to Asia and push for a 12-nation trade pact dubbed the Trans-Pacific Partnership, they and the rest of Congress largely have been cut out of negotiations....
    As a result, many Democrats fear the actual terms of the deal do not reflect traditional Democratic Party policy priorities.
    TPP soup can
  • Democrats in the House and Senate have complained for years about the secrecy standards the Obama administration has applied to the TPP, forcing members to jump over hurdles to see negotiation texts, and blocking staffer involvement. In 2012, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) complained that corporate lobbyists were given easy access while his office was being stymied, and even introduced protest legislation requiring more congressional input.
  • And most Democrats don't think the pending TPP deal addresses numerous labor, environmental and other issues adequately. Like NAFTA, the TPP would empower foreign corporations to directly challenge the laws and regulations of a country before an international tribunal. Under other trade frameworks, like the World Trade Organization treaties, only nations themselves are permitted to bring trade cases before an international arbiter, meaning companies must first win support from a government before attacking a law. Exxon Mobil, Dow Chemical, Eli Lilly and other corporations have used NAFTA to attempt to overturn Canadian regulations regarding offshore oil drilling, fracking, pesticides, drug patents and other issues.
  • U.S. participation in a final TPP agreement will only happen if President Obama is able to get Trade Promotion (or fast-track) Authority from Congress.
    ...groups opposed to the TPP -- and there are many, including 151 Democrats in the House of Representatives who complain about inadequate consultation by the
    It’s a bad deal for the bottom 90 percent of Americans.
    - Robert Reich
    White House -- will have no qualms about shooting down Trade Promotion Authority to prevent the agreement’s passage.

TPP is being done in secret and through deception:

  • "As we've discussed in the past ITAC 15 is a committee of high powered corporate representatives who are basically the only ones with full access to the text of the intellectual property chapter of the TPP. Those on ITAC 15 are allowed to see the latest text by logging into a system from the comfort of their desks. If Congress wants to see it? No luck. Members of Congress are allowed only to visit the USTR offices, where they'll be shown a copy of the document in a sealed room. They're not allowed to bring staff (such as the experts who would understand this stuff). They're not allowed to take notes or make any copies. Basically, the corporate interests have a lot more oversight over the whole process than Congress does." (source)
  • With the introduction of fast track authority (also known as "trade promotion authority") in Congress, by which Congress abdicates its constitutionally-granted sole power to regulate foreign commerce, the USTR (which gains that power) is out in force, spreading all sorts of lies about what this means. It's not exactly encouraging when the organization that has been hiding all the details of the TPP agreement for years is now trying to push it forward by directly lying to the American public. It's almost as if the USTR can't be honest or people might realize that it's spent the last few years pushing forward on an agreement designed to prop up old legacy businesses at the expense of the public and new innovators. (source)

The Public Opposes TPP/free tade agreements:

  • A "New York Times / CBS News poll revealed that 63 percent of the U.S. public believes that “trade restrictions are necessary to protect domestic industries ” while only 30 percent think “free trade must be allowed..."

Powerful voices against TPP

  • Robert Reich: Economist, Former Secretary of Labor in The Clinton Administration:
  • The administration is quietly stating that the reason for the TPP is not economic, it’s all about China and constraining China’s
    TPP power grab
    power. That argument makes no sense. All the TPP does is it gives large global companies, some of them headquartered in the United States, more power. There’s no reason to believe that even global companies headquartered in the United States are going to bend to the wishes of an administration in Washington more than they will bend to the wishes of any administration anywhere where they want to do business.
  • I think that’s why the Trans-Pacific Partnership is something that’s very attractive to the business community. They’re very actively seeking as much technological displacement as they can get with tax advantages attached to investing in labor-replacing technologies like the ability, for example, to write off most of that equipment completely in the year it’s purchased instead of amortizing it over it’s entire life. That, again, is keeping wages down.