When Even Bloomberg Is Saying The TPP Is A Dangerous 'Corporatist Power Grab' That Everyone Should Avoid...
from the put-it-out-of-it's-misery dept
U.S. lawmakers and civil-liberties groups have complained for some time about the opacity surrounding the treaty’s terms. Mild grousing turned into outrage last month after WikiLeaks did what Barack Obama’s White House refuses to: share portions of the document with the public. The draft of the intellectual-property rights chapter by Julian Assange’s outfit validated the worst fears -- that TPP is a corporatist power grab. Rather than heed the outcry, the U.S. doubled down on secrecy, refusing to disclose more details.From there, columnist William Pesek explained that most of the more advanced economies in Asia know that it's a bad idea to be involved in the TPP, and that's why they're staying away:
Hasn’t the U.S. wondered why so many of East Asia’s most promising democracies have so far avoided the treaty? The popular excuse for why Indonesia, the Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand aren’t yet among the 12 TPP economies is that they aren’t ready or are trapped by their own timidity. A better explanation is that their leaders realize that truly transparent and accountable governments, to borrow Kerry’s own words, shouldn’t be leading their people into the unknown.The article goes on to mock the USTR's arguments that it knows what it's doing better than the public and that you peons shouldn't worry about the TPP at all. Pesek points out that the secrecy in all of this from the Obama administration is more along the lines of what you'd expect from a "closed Communist Party state" and the only reason to negotiate like that is "to circumvent the legislative process."
Here's a general tip to the good folks at the USTR: when Bloomberg News, of all places, is calling the trade agreement you're working on "a corporatist power grab," comparing the secrecy to "closed Communist Party states," telling every other country to back out, and decrying the general lack of democracy in the agreement... perhaps it's time to rethink your strategy.