) House backs 'fast-track' trade bill on second attempt. Reuters, http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/06/18/us-usa-trade-rule-idUSKBN0OY21920150618
The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday approved "fast-track" trade negotiating authority, which President Barack Obama needs to complete a 12-nation Pacific Rim trade pact, although the bill must go back to the Senate for another vote.
The 218-208 House vote to approve the measure on a second attempt in less than one week gives a boost to hopes for swift completion of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which is central to Obama's focus on strengthening Asian ties.
Majia here: The TPP is unacceptable because it allows corporations to sue governments for blocking corporate profits, even to protect the environment, human health, and the commonwealth. Read the article linked below by Joseph Stiglitz, former World Bank President:
Stiglitz, (2015, May 13). The secret corporate takeover. Project Syndicate, http://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/us-secret-corporate-takeover-by-joseph-e--stiglitz-2015-05#9S1LGEAuiydfxKTw.99
These agreements go well beyond trade, governing investment and intellectual property as well, imposing fundamental changes to countries’ legal, judicial, and regulatory frameworks, without input or accountability through democratic institutions.
Perhaps the most invidious – and most dishonest – part of such agreements concerns investor protection. Of course, investors have to be protected against the risk that rogue governments will seize their property. But that is not what these provisions are about.
There have been very few expropriations in recent decades, and investors who want to protect themselves can buy insurance from the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency, a World Bank affiliate (the US and other governments provide similar insurance). Nonetheless, the US is demanding such provisions in the TPP, even though many of its “partners” have property protections and judicial systems that are as good as its own.
Call your senators now and demand they reject approval of the new world order that will be fostered and institutionalized by the TPP.The real intent of these provisions is to impede health, environmental, safety, and, yes, even financial regulations meant to protect America’s own economy and citizens. Companies can sue governments for full compensation for any reduction in their future expected profits resulting from regulatory changes.This is not just a theoretical possibility.
Contact info for senators: http://www.senate.gov/senators/contact/