Can the TPP Trade Agreement Be as Bad as It’s Supposed to Be? Leaked Text Suggests ‘Yes’ — and Worse!

Robert Reich TPP[This comes from Robert Cruickshank, Senior Campaign Manager for Democracy for America, who is one of my old sparring partners in the state and national blogosphere, who is now keeping an eye on the TPP — the trade agreement that OJB was among the first to address in print! — GAD]

Elizabeth Warren was right about the Trans-Pacific Partnership — and it’s worse than we thought.

Last month Senator Warren criticized a provision reported to be in the proposed trade deal called “Investor-State Dispute Settlement” or ISDS.

ISDS allows multinational corporations to challenge laws passed by our government — things like environmental or safety regulations — to potentially win millions of dollars in “damages” that would have to be paid by American taxpayers. And they could do all this without ever having to go to court in the United States.

The text of the proposed TPP deal has been a secret — until now. The New York Times and WikiLeaks got their hands on the TPP text, and it’s bad. The TPP would go further in undermining our laws and regulations, and it would benefit more big businesses than we’d originally believed.

The recent leak shows that the TPP would allow corporations to use ISDS to challenge “Buy America” or “buy local” rules that favor domestic manufacturing. The new leak also shows that safeguards to limit the use of ISDS, shown in a 2012 leak of the TPP, are now gone.

With the text of the secretive TPP exposed, the stakes in Elizabeth Warren’s fight against ISDS and the TPP are greater than ever. [Robert would like you to donate money to his organization’s campaign].

ISDS is a secret tribunal. Its members would be corporate lobbyists who would not be acting in the best interests of you or me. The purpose of ISDS is to help big corporations make more money at our expense.

Senator Warren gave some good examples of how corporations are using ISDS to attack laws designed to help working families: They sued Egypt for raising the minimum wage, and they sued Germany for eliminating nuclear power to keep its citizens safe.

Right now, Philip Morris is suing Australia for implementing tobacco regulations designed to cut smoking rates and protect children. Ironically, the leak shows that Australia has insisted it not be subject to ISDS — yet our own government still intends to make the United States vulnerable to ISDS and the big corporations.

We can stop the TPP. The first step is to prevent Congress from giving Fast Track authority to the White House, limiting the power of leaders like Elizabeth Warren to fix this bad deal.

[If you’ve read this far, Robert wants your donations even more.  I can confirm that this is a smart guy and a hard-working organization — and someone has to lead the “outside” fight against TPP, and it’s sure not going to be the political establishment!]

Thank you for standing up to corporate power.

[Ed. Note: Obviously, the degree to which any given reader deserves such thanks may vary.  You can find out more about Democracy for America here.]

About Admin

"Admin" is just editors Vern Nelson, Greg Diamond, or Ryan Cantor sharing something that they mostly didn't write themselves, but think you should see. Before December 2010, "Admin" may have been former blog owner Art Pedroza.