The TPP Free-Trade Agreement was a secret deal; the media will now tell us what was done to us by others.
This headline at Newser.com about the Trans Pacific Partnership cracks me up: “Inside the Historic Free-Trade Pact We Just Agreed To.”
“We agreed” to this transnational bureaucratic trade treaty? How could we? We never knew what was in it.
The typical pretense is that the people who “agreed” to the treaty are our representatives. So instead of telling the truth, that they have imposed their will on us, the media insists on the superstitious delusion that, through some mystical process, their actions count as our own as if we did them.
We’re not the victims; we’re the people who make our own decisions. That is the myth the victimizers want the victims to believe.
But the headline is even more gratuitously misleading, because Congress hasn’t acted yet anyway. “We agreed” to this treaty by having unelected bureaucrats negotiate it.
Furthermore, Congress voted to limit their involvement in the treaty by giving the President “Trade Promotion Authority.” Congress voted to limit the exercise of their Constitutional power to make a treaty. Instead they will only get an all-or-nothing vote.
So no one but a secret group within government, along with the corporate lobbyists who paid to influence that group, agreed to anything.
And it is obviously not “free trade.” To institute free trade you simply allow goods to cross the border. This “free trade” agreement gives several countries conditional permission to do so as long as they follow complex requirements. That is the opposite of free trade.
In fact, I suspect many will vote in favor of this monstrosity without ever having a chance to read the full text.
So is it a go? Not yet. Congress now has 90 days to review the agreement, whose full text won’t be available for as long as a month. That puts the up-or-down vote in early 2016 (February at the earliest, per Politico.)
So with ninety days to vote, at least one third of those will go by without the full text of the bill being available.
But “we agreed” to this.
What would it mean for Obama? “Legacy-making” and “legacy-defining” are the phrases being trotted out by the media, with the Times summing it up as a potential “capstone for his foreign policy ‘pivot’ toward closer relations with fast-growing eastern Asia, after years of American preoccupation with the Middle East and North Africa.”
Did anyone care about this when Obama campaigned in 2008 or in 2012? Not only did we not agree to this, we don’t even care about it. Obama’s “legacy” in this area is only of interest to a few corporations and a few corporate-sponsored D.C. think tanks.