Something Wicked According to Both Sides – Trans Pacific Partnership

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) treaty is an attack on our nation’s sovereignty. Both the left and the right are opposing it as details emerge. Representative ISSA has posted a leaked document to show the public what is being secretly negotiated by the Obama administration. I have included four articles representing a broad spectrum of political and foreign viewpoints. How do we know which hand to watch in this administration? Especially when treaties are negotiated in secret from the public and Congress.

David DeGerolamo

Treaty Negotiated In Secret – Hidden Even from Congressmen Who Oversee Treaties – Threatens to Destroy National Sovereignty

The normally-reserved Yves Smith asks whether Obama should be impeached over it.

Democratic Senator Wyden – the head of the committee which is supposed to oversee it – is so furious about the lack of access that he has introduced legislation to force disclosure.

Republican House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa is so upset by it that he has leaked a document on his website to show what’s going on.

What is everyone so furious about?

An international treaty being negotiated in secret which would not only crack down on Internet privacy much more than SOPA or ACTA, but would actually destroy the sovereignty of the U.S. and all other signatories.

It is called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

Wyden is the chairman of the trade committee in the Senate … the committee which is supposed to have jurisdiction over the TPP. Wyden is also on the Senate Intelligence Committee, and so he and his staff have high security clearances and are normally able to look at classified documents.

And yet Wyden and his staff have been denied access to the TPP’s text.

This is similar to other recent incidences showing that we’ve gone from a nation of laws to a nation of powerful men making laws in secret.

For example,  in the summer 2007, Congressman Peter DeFazio – who is on the Homeland Security Committee (and so has proper security access to be briefed on so-called “Continuity of Government” issues) – inquired about continuity of government plans, and was refused access. Indeed, DeFazio told Congress that the entire Homeland Security Committee of the U.S. Congress has been denied access to the plans by the White House (video; or here is the transcript). The Homeland Security Committee has full clearance to view all information about COG plans. DeFazio concluded: “Maybe the people who think there’s a conspiracy out there are right”.


Another analysis outlining “Obama’s intent to give tyrannical new powers to multinational corporations”:

Trans Pacific Partnership – A Scandalous Agreement to Sell Out the United States

Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a trade agreement of goods and services.

It is being negotiated in secrecy because it will likely include some very alarming provisions which affect copyright infringement, abandonment of Buy American provisions, and allow an international tribunal to decide the fate of U.S. rulings concerning foreign companies operating within the United States.

The section that puts a stop to “Buy American” protections will remove protections for American goods and will probably slow job growth in this country for companies that manufacture their products in the United States.

Early today, June 13th, another document was leaked by Citizens Trade which reveals Obama’s intent to give tyrannical new powers to multinational corporations.

The latest leak exposes Obama’s advocacy for policies that leave American corporations subject to all domestic laws but foreign corporations within the U.S. would be able to appeal American domestic rulings to an international tribunal which would in turn have the power to overrule our laws and impose sanctions on the U.S.

Members of Congress are outraged by the secrecy. Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore) has introduced legislation to protest the Obama administration’s outright refusal to share any controversial information with him even though he is the chair of a subcommittee on international trade.

Here is New Zealand’s opposition to TPP:

New Zealand government exposed over Trans-Pacific Agreement

Thanks to yesterday’s leak of papers in the US,  details have been revealed of New Zealand government moves to secretly sign up to the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), that contain provisions that would allow for foreign countries and corporations to sue governments if they dislike the policy.

One example of this would be if a future government tried to enact measures to protect the country’s sovereignty or environment by restricting the drilling for oil off the coast the oil companies could sue the NZ government.

It seems that the Australians, who are subject at the moment to legal action over their plans to introduce plain packaging for cigarettes are refusing to agree to these provisions, whereas New Zealand has already indicated its assent.

Today the leader of the opposition Green Party, Russel Norman, gave an interview on the radio in prime time that very effectively revealed the deeply duplicitous and anti-democratic nature of the NZ government’s actions.

The reaction of the government to this will be highly revealing. Either they will back down to maintain their rapidly fading popularity or they will stonewall and be revealed to all for what they are.


Here is an analysis from Public Citizen (a member of Progressive States Network

FR: Lori Wallach and Todd Tucker, Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch
DT: Wednesday, June 13, 2012
RE: Public Interest Analysis of Leaked Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Investment Text

After more than two years of negotiations under conditions of extreme secrecy, on June 12, 2012, a leaked copy of the investment chapter for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement was posted at Public Citizen has verified that the text is authentic.

The leaked text provides stark warnings about the dangers of “trade” negotiations occurring without press, public or policymaker oversight. It reveals that negotiators already have agreed to many radical terms granting expansive new rights and privileges for foreign investors and their private corporate enforcement through extra-judicial “investor-state” tribunals.
Although TPP has been branded as a “trade” agreement, the leaked text shows that TPP would limit how signatory countries may regulate foreign firms operating within their boundaries, with requirements to provide them greater rights than domestic firms. The leaked text reveals a two-track legal system, with foreign firms empowered to skirt domestic courts and laws to directly sue TPP governments in foreign tribunals. There they can demand compensation for domestic financial, health, environmental, land use laws and other laws they claim undermine their new TPP privileges.

The leak also reveals that all countries involved in TPP talks – except Australia – have agreed to submit to the jurisdiction of such foreign tribunals, which would be empowered to order payment of unlimited government Treasury funds to foreign investors over TPP claims. As revealed in Section B of the leaked text, these tribunals would not meet standards of transparency, consistency or due process common to TPP countries’ domestic legal systems or provide fair, independent or balanced venues for resolving disputes between sovereign nations and private investors. For instance, in a manner that would be unethical for judges, the tribunals would be staffed by private sector lawyers that rotate between acting as “judges” and as advocates for the investors suing the governments.

U.S. negotiators are alone in seeking to expand this extra-judicial enforcement system to also allow the use of foreign tribunals to enforce contracts foreign investors may have with a government for government procurement or to operate utilities contracts and even for concessions related to natural resources on federal lands. (Text that is not yet agreed in the leaked text appears in square brackets and Public Citizen has seen a version of the text that lists which countries support various proposals.)

While 600 official U.S. corporate advisors have access to TPP texts and have a special role in advising U.S. negotiators, for the public, press and policymakers, this leak provides the first access to one of the proposed agreement’s most controversial chapters. In May, Sen. Ron Wyden, the Chair of the Senate Finance Subcommittee on Trade – the U.S. congressional committee with jurisdiction over TPP – submitted legislation requiring that access be provided to members of Congress and their staff after he and his staff were denied access to even the U.S. TPP text proposals submitted during negotiations.


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Stephen olof Wikblom
9 years ago

Definitely a wicked band of criminals especially with the Australian Prime Minister who has pledged to die for Israel .

Stephen Olof Wikblom …Sheep Shearer… Australia.