Attention all members of the global development community: there’s a new player in town. After almost three years of negotiations, senior officials from the world’s five largest emerging economies Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa — collectively known as the BRICS — finally unveiled Tuesday a new multilateral bank.
I received an Email on July 6, 2015 about the Trans-Pacific Partnership from the largest federation of unions in the U.S. I have received previous Emails from them regarding this subject and they have been a vocal opponent of the TPP for years. What I found curious about this communication is how it has shifted its goal – from seeking the defeat of the bill to asking the president for revisions that will be good for labor. Now, keep in mind that many individuals and groups have stated that this is an awful trade bill. I have characterized the bill in a previous article as “trash” and attempted to make the point that, no matter how you try to dress it up or make it seem more palatable, trash is still trash.
Nothing would prevent the Congress from voting the TPP down, especially and because the contents of the Treaty are secret. The public isn’t informed of the details. Any US legislator with a trace of courage would do just that—vote it down.
The legislators themselves have been allowed to enter a sealed room and read some of the content. But there is no guarantee that what they’re reading is in the final draft of the Treaty. The legislators may takes notes in the sealed room, but they can’t keep their notes. They can’t make copies. They can’t discuss what they’ve read with the press or the public.
Again, on that basis alone, any legislator with a shred of honor would vote no on the Treaty. And no on secrecy.
If a member of Congress did break omertà and reveal to the public what he read in the sealed room, he would be violating Executive Branch regulations on classified data (“national security”), and he could be arrested.
Well, that is exactly what a Senator or Representative who, with courage and honor, opposes the TPP, should welcome. An arrest? He should celebrate it.
The Greek PM has announced a national referendum on July 5 on the conditions of the debt deal with international creditors. It’s up to the Greek people, Tsipras said, to make a fateful decision on the country’s sovereignty, independence and future. “These proposals, which clearly violate the European rules and the basic rights to work, equality and dignity show that the purpose of some of the partners and institutions was not a viable agreement for all parties, but possibly the humiliation of an entire people,” Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said in a televised address to the nation, as cited by Reuters.
Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras launched a scathing attack on the International Monetary Fund for rejecting Greek reform proposals ahead of talks in Brussels Wednesday, denting hopes of a final debt deal to prevent Athens from defaulting and leaving the euro. The leftist leader hit out at the “strange position” just minutes before going into an eleventh-hour meeting with key lenders including Christine Lagarde, the head of the IMF, and the European Union.
Over the last three months there have been dozens of suspicious sightings of military and UN equipment being moved throughout the country coupled with numerous realistic military training exercises with a sharp domestic focus. This is all happening in the lead up to Jade Helm 2015 which has sparked a plethora of theories and strong opinions on what is actually happening.
I want to use an analogy to demonstrate what I think is happening with our U.S. Congress and the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations. The Fast Track and TPP are like having trash put on a plate and served to you as dinner. You look at it and know instantly that it is nothing that you would ever want to eat, but the president and many Republican legislators tell you that it is going to be good for you and that the U.S. and 11 other countries have been working on perfecting this recipe for nearly a decade. Many of the Democratic legislators agree that there are problems with this recipe. Yet the president believes that he can convince them to vote in favor of this being something that all U.S. Citizens, and those of the other 11 nations, will be forced to swallow.
Karen Hudes worked in the World Bank legal department for more than 20 years and held the position of Senior Counsel. She was fired for blowing the whistle on corruption inside the World Bank. Ms. Hudes knows exactly what the global elite are after — total control. They are jockeying financial institutions and transnational corporations into position to dominate the planet.
Congress should not grant President Barack Obama authority to conclude another free trade agreement in Asia, because it would lower American wages and exacerbate income inequality. The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) would eliminate tariffs and lower other regulatory barriers to trade and investment among the United States, South Korea, Japan and nine other Pacific Rim nations.If successful, China, India and several other nations could seek membership. Hence, the TPP has the potential to redefine the rules for international commerce in the most rapidly growing region of the international economy, but President Obama has given ordinary workers good reason to believe he is not looking out for them.
TWO years ago today, three journalists and I worked nervously in a Hong Kong hotel room, waiting to see how the world would react to the revelation that the National Security Agency had been making records of nearly every phone call in the United States. In the days that followed, those journalists and others published documents revealing that democratic governments had been monitoring the private activities of ordinary citizens who had done nothing wrong.
The US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has received government permission to field test its HELLADS laser weapon system. “The technical hurdles were daunting, but it is extremely gratifying to have produced a new type of solid-state laser with unprecedented power and beam quality for its size,” DARPA program manager Rich Bagnell said in a statement cited by the agency’s website… It is intended for use as a protection system for aircraft…The statement adds however, that the laser could also be used for attack: “Laser weapon systems provide additional capability for offensive missions as well—adding precise targeting with low probability of collateral damage.”
The corporate media’s coverage of Putin and the Ukraine is part of a larger pattern of bias identified by Cohen. He has described the positive US press coverage enjoyed by President Boris Yeltsin in the 1990s, at a time when “the US media adopted Washington’s narrative that almost everything President Boris Yeltsin did was a ‘transition from communism to democracy’ and thus in America’s best interests.” Whereas the US media presented Yeltsin as pursuing legitimate politics and national interests, the frame that US media now use to portray Putin and Russia is that Putin’s Russia has no legitimate politics and national interests, even on its own borders, as in Ukraine.
Don’t feel bad if trade talk – treaties, exports & imports – makes your eyes glaze over. It’s understandable. Most likely, you’ve heard about this Trans Pacific Partnership, or TTP at least once a week. But you’re busy & probably haven’t really looked beneath the headlines. Even if you have, some of the authors don’t always do a great job breaking the nuts & bolts down for you. So, you leave frustrated that they don’t get to the point. This article seeks to tell this story in more plain language. Make no mistake this TPP story is big, full of intrigue, and needs heroes and heroines to stand up to the bad guys. You can be one of the many that are standing up. But time is short because the congress is being asked to shut down debate on this sucker and say yea or nay to it under a limited time crunch to read & understand what’ll probably be over a 1000 pages & then figure out if it is right for America.
As you may have heard, the Fast Track Bill was introduced last week. It may come up for a vote anytime next week. This would mean that the Congress would surrender its right and obligation to debate a treaty before voting upon it. You have an opportunity to sign your company’s name on to a letter, being sent to our representatives, urging them not to vote for Fast TrackJust go to the following link: www.tradewatch.org or call Lacey Colmooth at 202-454-5134 and ask to have your company’s name added.