Friday, May 15, 2015

Senate Advances Anti-Consumer Trade Bill Fast Track Authority: Debates Shifts to House

Senate Advances Anti-Consumer Trade Bill Fast Track Authority: Debate Shifts to House

by Stephen Lendman

A major Tuesday consumer victory became defeat on Thursday in a stunning 48-hour turnaround by swing Democrats - at first against, now for fast track after being bribed and pressured to support it.

The Senate will debate the bill next week - a formality en route to granting Obama Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) fast track authority - secretive anti-consumer, anti-environmental trade bills no responsible society would tolerate.

They gut personal freedoms. They override national sovereignty. They grant corporate predators unrestricted supranational power to establish global trade rules serving investors exclusively - at the expense of popular needs and rights.

Defeating fast trade (trade promotion authority) depends on getting enough House members to block it.

Proportionately more members oppose it than in the Senate - at least before strong-arm pressure tactics try swaying enough lawmakers to support monied interests over popular ones.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) called House Minority leader Nancy Pelosi key, saying:

"(S)he needs to come out strong against the secrecy of trade negotiations and call on others in the House to follow her lead."

She represents San Francisco. In April, its Board of Supervisors unanimously passed an anti-fast track resolution - urging the district's congressional members to oppose it for TPP.

The city's year 2000 Sunshine Ordinance protects government openness, saying:

"Public officials who attempt to conduct the public's business in secret should be held accountable for the actions."

The same applies to binding international deals - especially ones harming public interests.

Pelosi stops short of opposing fast track. At the same time, she said granting it gives Obama "carte blanche" authority to bypass Congress on trade deals.

Most House Democrats oppose fast track. Pelosi's opposition is crucial in getting others to vote no.

Fundamental freedoms are on the line. Obama, his trade representative and other administration officials continue spreading Big Lies about TPP and TTIP. 

Preventing their enactment requires defeating fast track. The next few weeks are crucial, EFF stresses.

Email, call or otherwise contact congressional members to vote no on fast track. At stake are fundamental freedoms and eco-sanity.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

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