By Daniel Taylor
Update: Obama Suffers Setbacks in Japan and the Mideast – “Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was not able to overcome entrenched resistance from Japan’s farmers [against the TPP] in time for the president’s visit.”
President Obama has begun a week long campaign in Asia to promote the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
The TPP, sold as a “free trade agreement” has been criticized as allowing another wave of outsourcing similar to the 1994 NAFTA agreement. The TPP will also create an international “internet police” that will have the power to censor content and remove whole websites. Mega corporations will gain more power to wage war against competition and censor speech online. To demonstrate the influence these entities have, over 600 corporate advisers have helped create the TPP.
The TPP would require all countries involved to align their laws with the agreements copyright laws. The Electronic Frontier Foundation says of the TPP,
“TPP raises significant concerns about citizens’ freedom of expression, due process, innovation, the future of the Internet’s global infrastructure, and the right of sovereign nations to develop policies and laws that best meet their domestic priorities.”
Food safety will also be impacted by the TPP, as it could allow corporations like Monsanto to force genetically modified crops into TPP countries. In 2010, Obama appointed Islam Siddiqui to be the Chief Agricultural Negotiator for the United States. Siddiqui is the former Vice President for Science and Regulatory Affairs at CropLife America, a Monsanto front group. He is working with the administration on the TPP.
Senator Ron Wyden strongly opposed the TPP in remarks to Congress in 2012. Wyden pointed out that the U.S. Congress is being kept in the dark on details of the agreement. Wyden stated,
“…the majority of Congress is being kept in the dark as to the substance of the TPP negotiations, while representatives of U.S. corporations – like Halliburton, Chevron, PHRMA, Comcast, and the Motion Picture Association of America – are being consulted and made privy to details of the agreement.”