Darrell Issa Puts Old Leaked TPP IP Text Up For Discussion

from the why-isn't-ron-kirk-doing-this? dept

We’ve written a few times now about Rep. Darrell Issa, and the Madison platform his office has set up to allow for crowdsourcing opinion on legislation and other government documents. He originally used it for his OPEN Act, but then later posted the text of ACTA as well. His latest move is to post the leaked text of the US’s negotiating position on TPP. This is the same text that leaked out last year. It would be nice if the USTR did something like this itself with the latest text, but that’s not how USTR Ron Kirk works. To him “transparency” is only sharing the text with big industry special interests, and declaring it a matter of “national security” if anyone else wants to see it.

Issa recognizes how this is dangerous to a functioning democracy, when our federal government is negotiating deals in back rooms, despite the fact they will have a massive impact on the public:

“At a time when the American people and Internet users all around the world are rightfully wary of any closed-door negotiations that could adversely impact their ability to freely and openly access the Internet, the Obama Administration continues to pursue a secretive, closed-door negotiating process for the Trans Pacific Partnership,” Issa said. “I have decided to publish the intellectual property rights chapter of TPP in Madison so that the public can provide input to those negotiating this agreement, and to push this Administration – and the federal government as a whole – to be open, transparent and inclusive when it comes to international intellectual property rights agreements that have potentially serious consequences for the Internet community.”

Again, it’s great that he’s added this text to the Madison platform, but it’s disappointing that it’s still the old leaked version, rather than anything more up to date. The version he posted is now 15 months old, and there have been a bunch of additional negotiations since then. Still, it’s good to see others in the federal government trying to encourage discussion on this agreement, even if the USTR continues to hide in secrecy (unless you’re a big corporate lobbyist, of course).

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Comments on “Darrell Issa Puts Old Leaked TPP IP Text Up For Discussion”

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Pjerky (profile) says:

Subject To Law

Personally I think that any law/rule that is secret or is negotiated in secret should be automatically considered illegal. The same with any legal interpretations. There is no way anyone that is subject to a law can possibly follow a law they don’t even know the details of or if it exists. The same with interpretations of the law.

And you shouldn’t be subject to any law that you or someone that can represent you (outside of big businesses and the government itself) can have any input on. It just doesn’t make any sense to require that of anyone.

You wouldn’t do this at a company. Create a rule that you expect all your employees to follow, but never tell them what it is and even have secret interpretations of it. You would get sued in very short order and possibly be shut down depending on the severity of the case.

There are so many inequities and possibilities for discrimination that no one in their right mind would allow this in the business world. So why allow it in the government world?

PlagueSD says:

Subject To Law

There are so many inequities and possibilities for discrimination that no one in their right mind would allow this in the business world. So why allow it in the government world?

Because the Government is no longer run “By the people, for the people.” It’s run “By the lobbyists, for the Corporations.”

Mason Wheeler (profile) says:


…and designed OPEN, SOPA’s only-slightly-less-evil little brother. I wish people who should know better would stop talking about Issa like he’s some sort of Defender Of The Internet. This is a guy who is still buying into the industry rhetoric about how ordinary users are criminals and they laws are needed to protect their intellectual property from us.

Simply because he favors less draconian remedies than what we’ve been hearing does not make up for the fact that he makes no secret of believing in a made-up “problem” that has no basis in reality. If anything, he’s the lesser of two evils.

Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Oh, please...

Do you really think Rep. Issa would have anything to say if it was a Republican administration that was pushing TPP?

Well, it was a Republican who pushed SOPA, and he went against that. So, perhaps.

No one is claiming Issa is perfect. I specifically have called him out for other things. But if you refuse to cheer on any action by a politician unless they support every single point that you like you’re not going to get very far in life.

This was a good move, at least celebrate that.

DCX2 says:

Oh, please...

I understand no politician will support every single point I want. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to refuse to cheer on good actions by politicians…so long as they’re being honest.

We should look at the motive before congratulating a politician. And I don’t think Rep. Issa has an honest motive here. I am not going to celebrate when someone does something right for the wrong reasons; the ends do not justify the means.

Think about what he’s implying; that TPP is owned by “The Obama Administration”. Do you really believe that? Because I believe that TPP would still be happening even if Sen. McCain had won the election. I don’t see this as belonging to one party or the other; it belongs to The Federal Government.

By the way, I’ll see your “went against SOPA” and raise you “co-sponsored PRO-IP act”.

G Thompson (profile) says:

Chile might have a good bargaining chip in this context.

All they need to do is say to the USG “look we need to change the text of this bullshit that you are currently trying to force into TPP and if you really refuse to come to the party we will remove ourselves from the negotiations, refuse to sign anything, and though you might jump up and down and threaten use with economical sanctions [they all giggle at the absurdity of USA doing this nowadays] we will also release the full text of the TPP up to and including the current revision we have nw to the world.”

“What that would breach some weird international ethics or code…. and the USA really wants to state this in public? Mwuahahahahahahahahaahahahahahaha”

Could be a good stick for Chile to beat them over the head with. Since it could be construed to be in the national Interests of Chile to release the text.

E. Zachary Knight (profile) says:

Oh, please...

Because I believe that TPP would still be happening even if Sen. McCain had won the election.

McCain is not interested in trade negotiations. He would much rather subdue those nations currently in the TPP negotiations using the might of our military. The guy is a warmonger. If you think Obama has been bad about war policies and use of the military, it would ahve been far worse the other way.

Anonymous Coward says:

i assume he hasn’t a copy of the latest ‘draft’ then? seems naughty when senators cant get copies either. considering the absolute bullshit responses that Ron Kirk gave to questions put to him personally by senator Wyden, i would have thought there would have been more people questioning what was happening here.

DCX2 says:

Oh, please...

McCain himself might not like trade agreements too much, but a McCain Administration would probably support it anyway. An Administration is a very big thing with a lot of people. And the lobbyists pushing for TPP would still push for it regardless of who was the President. If it wasn’t Ron Kirk, it would be whoever was in his stead.

As far as I’m concerned, there is little difference between which party controls the executive. Taxes always go down. Debt always goes up. Bombs are dropped on nations who did nothing to us.

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