By Alexander L. Tremayne on February 18, 2012
Do you know what the TPPA is all about? If I had to take a guess I would say it had to do with the loss of rights. Who’s loss?… our loss. Maybe it has something to do with seeing letters like SOPA or PIPA or ACTA that immediately make me think OMGNA (Oh My God Not Again).
I never want to assume the worst – I prefer to be prepared for it – so I started investigating and OH shock horror.. snore… guess what? Stop guessing your just making yourself look stupid.
To make it easy, for me and you, I’ve grabbed some snippets from the net (yes stolen intellectual property) and thrown them together to present a 2 minute factuction – which is more than you are going to get from your Government.
Do you know the difference between Free Trade and Fair Trade? Free Trade is a term used to control your life, where as Fair Trade doesn’t exist or at least that’s how proponents of the TPPA would have it. The TPPA (Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement) currently comprises of nine countries: the US, New Zealand, Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam. Japan, Canada and Mexico are also being considered.
The TPPA creates a standard by which the participation countries must abide by. Its hard to know just what is being tabled here because the negotiations are secret and the only documents that are in the public domain have been leaked. Secret deals.. yet again – but do we really need to be concerned? What about this? The nine governments agreed that none of the background documents will be released until four years after the negotiations end (or collapse), so we won’t be able to hold them accountable for any trade-offs they make until they are no longer in power. Oh No… here we go again.
Lets take a look at what we have managed to find out so far.
- stronger restrictions on foreign investments
- tobacco control laws
- restrictions on sale and manufacture of GMOs and labeling of GM foods
- the Pharmac scheme for buying drugs and subsidies
- the ability to reverse privatisations in the future
- stronger regulation of mining
- parallel importing, especially for music and computer programmes
- Intellectual property protection in the digital media
- how money flows in and out of the country.
It’s far from clear just what is meant by “tobacco control laws” but I think I have a handle on “Intellectual property protection in the digital media”. Trade agreement? Yet another way to try and draw attention away from what is really going on.
The erosion of our right to make choices. Once agreements like this are signed, your right to disagree, your right to choose, your right to have a say in your future is gone.
Take a look at this gem.
Foreign investors could sue the government for hundreds of millions of dollars for breaching their rights under the TPPA, for example by changing our laws in ways that affect their expected profits or share value. The case would be heard in a secretive international tribunal, not in our domestic courts. Why would any Government agree to this? I can only think of one reason – to protect the interests (profits) of Corporation.
There is no doubt that the major corporations are driving the TPPA agenda and seeking binding rules that guarantee them influence within domestic decision-making processes and enforcement powers outside national courts if governments act against their interests.
So what should we do about it? Stop it. That’s right – stop it from happening. If you think stopping it will be hard imaging how harder it will be AFTER is goes ahead. Get Up.. Get Out.. Get Vocal, Get Everyone you know involved. I’m not going to put links to various groups you can join (that might be illegal). Google it! But do it now.
The next meeting is in Melbourne on the 1st to 9th of March 2012.
Occupy the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Center!
*Free trade – describes an approach to international trade that allows traders to trade across national boundaries without any interference from respective governments.
*Fair trade – is centered around a market-based approach that advocates for third world producers to be paid a fairer, higher price for their products, as well as higher social and environmental standards.