USTR Lies: Says TPP Is No Different Than US Law

from the except-it-does dept

Soon after the TPP IP chapter was leaked via Wikileaks, we predicted that the USTR would claim that it doesn’t require legal changes in the US and was just about harmonizing norms. It took all of a day for that prediction to come true. In US Trade Rep Michael Froman’s interview with Variety, he said exactly that:

“what we have in there are things that are already in U.S. law about making sure, whether it is copyright or other protections, are fully enforced around the world.”

That is a lie. It’s fundamentally untrue. For example, in just the copyright section alone, Margot Kaminski from the Information Society Project at Yale has outlined eight things that differ from US law in the text proposed or supported by the US, some of them rather substantial, including the standards for criminal liability as well as the standards allowed for reverse engineering exemptions for DRM. Jamie Love, over at KEI, pointed out early on that many of the US proposals “are more restrictive than U.S. laws.” Also, as we expected, the language on the “three step test,” which the USTR pretended was about supporting fair use, actually would massively limit fair use.

Of course, as we pointed out with ACTA and again with TPP, even if it was just about taking things that are in US law and making sure they’re “fully enforced around the world” (which is not actually what TPP is about), it would ridiculously lock in a bunch of bad things that are in US law, which pretty much everyone not under the full-time sway of Hollywood already knows has been really bad for the US economy and creativity. The very fact that this agreement would effectively block many of the suggestions made by the head of the US Copyright Office to Congress in terms of copyright reform should show why the USTR has no business doing anything around copyright.

Who in their right mind would try to export US law and lock us into it at the very same time that the experts in the field of law they’re talking about have admitted that it’s outdated and a mess and in need of a major rewrite? Apparently, the USTR is so clueless that it thinks existing copyright law is settled law and that it’s so great we should lock it in and force everyone else to do the same, at the very same time Congress, the head of the Copyright Office, and a lot of other people have admitted it’s time for a change.

So why is the USTR blindly pushing ahead with it?

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Comments on “USTR Lies: Says TPP Is No Different Than US Law”

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Anonymous Coward says:


They know they want this. They want to make it easier for their propaganda mouthpieces to have monopolies on all culture and information. No powerful empire would even let an opposing voice out that doesn’t border on parody. They want to suck those they haven’t killed off or imprisoned dry.

And if things don’t go their way, they’ll whine some more and push for something even worse, assuming there’s anything left.

Anonymous Coward says:

‘So why is the USTR blindly pushing ahead with it?’

just guessing but

a) because those sorting it out have been encouraged to do so, particularly by Hollywood and the entertainment industries

b) if they can get this brought into agreement with a dozen other nations carried along, it is going to massively benefit the USA while being as equally detrimental to those other nations by limiting what they can do for their own people; by forcing the purchase of USA drugs and media at prices set by the USA that the people of those other nations couldn’t afford; by removing the option of changing any part of the ‘treaty’ without agreement from the USA, which would never happen.

c) once this is in force with these dozen nations, it would be used as a means to force other nations to agree to the one sided conditions as well, all of which would again benefit the USA whilst being detrimental to all other nations. dont forget that if any other nation at any time tries to do something similar to what the USA is doing, there will be all sorts of threats from the USA to whichever nation is in question.

the aim is to basically take over the control of the other nations by ruling their economies and their internet capabilities. it is an occupation akin to winning a war with no shots being fired and no lives lost, not until, that is, the poor in the other nations start to die because they are forced to either go without medicines or pay x1000 for USA supplied drugs! anyone in the USA pharma industries that haven’t been behind this can be counted on one hand. anyone that gives a toss about those people amount to zero! so much for a democratic nation that does it’s best to help all others at all times. i think that has changed to who helps itself to the detriment of all others!!

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: @ AC: MPAA has little to do with TPP: that's just Mike's mis-casting.

@ just guessing but

a) because those sorting it out have been encouraged to do so, particularly by Hollywood and the entertainment industries

It’s far larger than MPAA, and that Mike doesn’t even get near to mentioning the major corporations just shows that he’s a corporatist and/or lightweight.

Read this article and you won’t have to guess:

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Well, that is a bit… However, it is true that USTR is owned by large companies, including several members with significant affiliation to the RIAA and MPAA.

USTR is not a true government entity. It is a government mouthpiece for large industries. Unfortunately the politicians fear holding them back, resulting in deals void of workers, consumers and NGO opinions.

As an official negotiation team for USAs government, USTRs construction is completely insufficient.

out_of_the_blue says:

"So why is the USTR blindly pushing ahead with it?"

Gee, Mike, maybe you’re just too blind to see the globalist corporatist conspiracy right in front of your nose. For a few million tops, everyone necessary can be bribed to go along with a scam that’ll net trillions. Go’vt policy is always the best “investment” for corporations.

TPP: NAFTA on Steroids

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a trade deal from hell. It’s a stealth corporate coup d’etat.

It’s a giveaway to banksters. It’s a global neoliberal ripoff. It’s a business empowering Trojan horse. It’s a freedom and ecosystem destroying nightmare.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) calls it “a secretive, multi-national trade agreement that threatens to extend restrictive intellectual property (IP) laws across the globe and rewrite international rules on its enforcement.”

By the way, Mike, that’s as a real writer produces, not brief re-writes ending with rhetorical question.

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: Re: Re:

@ “silverscarcat” So, Blue, how come you’re still willing to defend Warner Bros. when you keep going on about a Global Conspiracy theory involving businesses?

a) I’ve explained that I side with Warner Bros narrowly over you nasty little pirates: the former are producers, you’re just petty sneak thieves.

b) So how come you’re not concerned about actual globalists and their corporations which plan to take over the world and are well begun on it? Read the linked article.

c) It’s difficult to make progress when tiny minds like yours are too small to grasp the real threats.

silverscarcat (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:


A: Warner Bros. don’t produce anything, they’re the backers, the directors produce stuff.

B: Who says I’m NOT concerned about that stuff? But by stopping copyright from getting worse, it makes their jobs harder.

C: You really shouldn’t insult yourself like that, man. I mean, we know you have a hard time doing critical thinking, but no need to say that you have a tiny mind.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

A) Wait wait wait, WB is a ‘producer’ but talk about an corporation outside the context of copyrights with you and they’re a scum sucking leech that extracts all the value from their workers labor and profits from it. Double standard much?

B) Your point being that if you care about the copyright provisions in the TPP you’re incapable of caring about any of the others?

C) After the circular logic, the hypocrisy, and the straw men have been expended it always boils down to a lame ad hom with you doesn’t it.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

TPP is all about trying to represent commercial interests from the countries involved. The real trick is to get the formulations in line with the law.

Just pushing the line of “no laws will change” is very likely to be true about the end-result, but the real value of trade agreements is their ability to shatter specific jurisprudence and thereby force a new interpretation of the laws that is more to the liking of the negotiating parties. It has the added bonus of soft-locking legislation and making some reforms almost impossible to pass on account of “international obligations”.

I don’t know about constitutional issues and therefore SCOTUS jurisprudence, but in general all jurisprudence has to be reinterpreted.

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