…anti-tpp?!! the lady doth protest too much, methinks…

…that (in)famous tarp, no! then tarp, si! two-step, or the lucy promise to charlie brown…

In that magic moment, most assuredly fleeting, of triumphalism, some US legislators would expound on their selfless fidelity to their momentarily attentive constituents, and then do the voting in dramatic demonstration.

One famous Senator in declaring her opposition, at that moment, would attack the secrecy surrounding the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), The Intercept, as the most apt medium, informs us, “You Can Read My Notes? Not on Your Life!”: Top Democratic Senator Blasts Obama’s TPP Secrecy. As the report states,

Boxer, who has served in the House and Senate for 33 years, then described the restrictions under which members of Congress can look at the current TPP text.

“The guard says, ‘you can’t take notes.’ I said, ‘I can’t take notes?’” Boxer recalled. “‘Well, you can take notes, but have to give them back to me, and I’ll put them in a file.’ So I said: ‘Wait a minute. I’m going to take notes and then you’re going to take my notes away from me and then you’re going to have them in a file, and you can read my notes? Not on your life.’”

The atmosphere is tense, the drama is heavy, the passion is intense – for that vote, at that time. And the US MSM is breathless with its reporting. And the many usually inattentive USans are truly satisfied with, proud of their legislators fulfilling their responsibilities. Happy days are here again! Details at 11!

The corporate US President should win the day, as the ‘rebels’, the ‘recalcitrants’, after their earlier sterling performance, will see their ‘concerns’ just as suddenly addressed, even if not even cosmetically. The Clinton-esque Model again glides smoothly down the runway – for take-off.

On cue the beneficiary corporations then do their part. More contributions flow to the corporate duopoly and their expectant members. The corporate MSM will then herald the power and dynamism of US democracy, beacon to the world. Win-Win-Win.

As the very same Intercept (where Glenn Greenwald is situated) would inform us, truly spoiling the fun, You Can’t Read the TPP, But These Huge Corporations Can.

So who can read the text of the TPP? Not you, it’s classified. Even members of Congress can only look at it one section at a time in the Capitol’s basement, without most of their staff or the ability to keep notes.

But there’s an exception: if you’re part of one of 28 U.S. government-appointed trade advisory committees providing advice to the U.S. negotiators. The committees with the most access to what’s going on in the negotiations are 16 “Industry Trade Advisory Committees,” whose members include AT&T, General Electric, Apple, Dow Chemical, Nike, Walmart and the American Petroleum Institute.

From a glance at some of the ‘Chosen Few’ and a slight recall of history, we do recognise sovereign equivalence with many an independent state, which would obviously lack that ‘fire power’ to change minds or change governments, peacefully or not, when the corporation fails to abide by local laws, not at all whimsically developed or enforced.

To knock down some of the specious nonsense:

  • ‘Currency manipulation’ – China is deliberately excluded from TPP, is far less a culprit than other proposed members – plus most USans know precious little of ‘currency manipulation’, or China for that matter
  • Intellectual Property (IP) rights – US firms benefit most (patents and copyrights), and ts citizens less harmed, being patriotically long conditioned to unnecessary charges, than those outside the US, especially with regard to access to generic drugs
  • ISDS (as described here and here) – and remembering which country has been intruding in the affairs of so many other countries. Multinational corporations (MNCs), especially mining, seem to always prefer their own (non-existent) rules and regulations to those of the host country, and are endowed with the wherewithal to ensure favourable outcomes.

Sen Warren and her few like-thinking colleagues face daunting challenges if she and they continue to adhere to the inconvenient assumption that the welfare of the US citizen trumps satisfying the cupidity of the ever beleaguered corporation, so desperately in need of government assistance. Form, appearance, as recognised by many, is far more important than substance in the absurd theatre that is US politics. Peerless and principled, even if neoliberal, are qualities that are anathema to the status quo.

…yes, charlie brown, in the us they can fool most of the people most of the time, time after time…