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Trans-Pacific Partnership be afraid.

#1 User is offline   HDMC 

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Posted 06 October 2013 - 06:24 AM

Frightening stuff



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WHAT SORT of “Trade Agreement” manages to both criminalise internet use and force coal seam fracking onto communities?

The answer to this is the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a pact that has the ominous potential to achieve both these corporate objectives — and many more................



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The Gillard government made it clear that Australia would not sign another trade agreement that included international dispute settlement by tribunals. This followed Australians being burnt by an agreement that has allowed Phillip-Morris to take Australia to an international tribunal over its plain packaging laws, even though our own High Court already decided against Phillip-Morris.

Other countries are experiencing equally serious consequences.

The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is being used by gas and oil company Lone Pine Resources to sue Canada over Quebec’s moratorium on fracking. A trade agreement was also used to sue Ecuador for USD $1.77 billion.




And Independent Australia is the only outlet shining a spotlight on this disgraceful sellout.

Fucking media in this country isn't worth pissing on.

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#2 User is offline   scotto 

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Posted 06 October 2013 - 02:25 PM

I think this is potentially a 2-way street. International treaties such as the law of the sea and so on are the backbone of of some standards, whilst these trade-based agreements are often intended for the uses that you quote above, which is in my opinion truly disgusting. I was living in Canada when the north American FTA came in, and many predicted the commercial outcomes like the one you refer to.
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#3 User is offline   HDMC 

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Posted 07 October 2013 - 07:43 AM

I don't see it as a two way street, Scotto.

From this more detailed article, there's not much for us to gain but a hell of a lot to lose.



Quote

Craig Emerson, who was Australia’s trade minister at the time (and who retained the portfolio until Labor’s recent election loss to the Tony Abbott Coalition), insists today that the policy shift was made with no significant opposition.

“No one in the business community thought that an odious position,” he tells The Global Mail.

And the evidence coming out of countries that did sign on to trade deals including ISDS provisions shows the “folly” of it, he says.

Emerson cites an example from Canada where, in 2011, the province of Quebec called a moratorium on the controversial gas extraction method called fracking (hydraulic fracturing) while it undertook an evaluation of the possible resulting environmental damage.

Well, a United States company, Lone Pine Resources, which operates out of Calgary but is incorporated in the US tax-haven state of Delaware, decided to take action under the ISDS provisions of the North American Free Trade Agreement, (NAFTA), to which Canada, the US and Mexico, are signatories. It sued for C$250 million.

Emerson could equally have pointed to a large number of other actions taken by US corporations against countries with which it has trade pacts involving ISDS. Consider a couple of Canadian cases, for example. There was a C$500 million suit by the giant drug maker Eli Lily in response to a Canadian-court-ordered invalidation of the patents of two of its drugs, Strattera and Zyprexa.


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#4 User is offline   scotto 

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Posted 07 October 2013 - 09:23 AM

I see your point, no problem. I think the critical difference is that the commercial agreements wrongly put business (typically multinationals) as the arbiters of right and wrong over government or UN agencies, or intergovernmental panels. There is no public input into the commercial entities and so radical capitalism is free to run riot.
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#5 User is offline   HDMC 

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 11:00 AM

http://www.truth-out...rate-domination
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#6 User is offline   scotto 

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 12:19 PM

it comes.down to the fact that 'free trade' is often not free at all, but tilted strongly in the big guy's favour.
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#7 User is offline   HDMC 

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 04:13 PM

View Postscotto, on 09 October 2013 - 12:19 PM, said:

it comes.down to the fact that 'free trade' is often not free at all, but tilted strongly in the big guy's favour.




This goes much further than the traditional heavying by big nations against small.

This gives multinational corporations control of our democratic systems.

An example from the above link -

Quote

As an example of harmful policies, through leaked text it is known that the TPP gives pharmaceutical and medical device corporations the ability to ‘evergreen’ their patents and prevents governments from negotiating fair prices. This keeps the price of medications and other necessary health goods high and prevents generics. Similar provisions in other free trade agreements raised the cost of medications by 20 percent or more resulting in a negative impact on public health. These provisions will make life-saving medications unaffordable and increase disease and death, particularly in poorer countries, all so that corporations can make unreasonable profits. They will also undermine top public health systems in Japan and Australia.
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#8 User is offline   scotto 

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 07:05 PM

Yes, by 'big guy' I meant the multinationals.
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#9 User is offline   HDMC 

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 08:58 AM

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The New York Times has endorsed the Trans-Pacific Partnership; a trade deal negotiated in utmost secrecy, without public participation, whose text is still not public. From leaks, we know that TPP wasn't just anti-democratic in its process -- it also contains numerous anti-democratic provisions that allow private offshore companies to overturn domestic law, especially laws that allow for free speech and privacy online. TPP is slated for fast-tracking through Congress, minimizing any scrutiny of a deal negotiated behind closed doors before it is turned into law. From what we've seen of TPP, it recapitulates all the worst elements of ACTA and then some.




http://boingboing.ne...l-secret-i.html
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#10 User is offline   scotto 

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Posted 15 November 2013 - 02:03 PM

It's bad news.
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Posted 18 November 2013 - 06:35 AM

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Laws protecting public health are not the only laws able to be challenged. The inclusion of an ISDS clause in the TPPA could, for example, allow a corporation like Metgasco to sue the state at international arbitration. Metgasco is currently challenging NSW laws protecting human and environmental health from risks associated with Coal Seam Gas drilling.

Metgasco chief executive Peter Henderson has attacked the state government’s laws for being ambiguous, resulting in losses to the company that it may seek compensation for.

If a case like this were to go to international arbitration, the state government would likely be required to provide evidence that the laws would protect human and environmental health from the risks posed by CSG mining (difficult to prove). If unsuccessful, there is a possibility that the government would have to provide compensation to Metgasco and/or allow it to mine as it wished.


http://theconversati...ia-beware-18419


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#12 User is offline   scotto 

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 03:54 PM

This story has surfaced a little on other media as well.

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A document published by WikiLeaks overnight shows the Obama administration still pushing hard for increased copyright and patent protections that could push up the cost of healthcare in Australia.
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Posted 28 November 2013 - 05:21 PM

View Postscotto, on 28 November 2013 - 03:54 PM, said:

This story has surfaced a little on other media as well.



An improvement, but still no coverage of the ISDS provisions. The copyright issue is a biggy, but the ISDS provisions effectively allow multinationals to ignore laws put in place by democratically elected governments.

Tim Dunlop's piece in The Drum gives an indication where that will lead.

Quote


The six heirs to the Walmart retail fortune in the United States have a net worth greater than the bottom 40 per cent of the population.

Let that sink in for a second. And while it does, consider this further Walmart-related fact: one of their stores recently ran a charity drive asking customers to donate food in order to help ... their store's employees. Yes, they were begging their customers for food for their staff.

You can pretty easily see what the Pope is getting at with his recent exhortation that we do something about "the new tyranny" that is "unfettered capitalism".


http://www.abc.net.a...mic-one/5122022




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#14 User is offline   scotto 

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Posted 18 February 2014 - 04:12 PM

A nice little graphic essay on this:


Economixcomix
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#15 User is offline   scotto 

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Posted 14 January 2015 - 11:57 AM

And now there is some disquiet on the US over an equivalent agreement, the TTIP:

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I’m talking about the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and its provisions for “investor-state dispute settlement”. If this sounds incomprehensible, that’s mission accomplished: public understanding is lethal to this attempted corporate coup.


Sounds like the mutlinationals are getting the qhole world sewn up. We might have to undertake jihad!
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