Tag Archives: Barack Obama

The Big Squeeze – How Obama Killed the Middle Class

Wal-mart is no longer the only retailer full of cheap, poorly-made foreign goods, American cars are made in Mexico and middle-income earners are extinct.

That’s the economy President Obama is setting up for the United States.

barack_obama_overtime exemptionTwo major agenda items for the President will cause the collapse of the manufacturing and start-up sector. The trans-pacific partnership (TPP) and his new push for raising the ceiling for overtime exemption.

The overtime exemption change won’t have the effect the president expects. Instead of magically raising everyone’s income, it will likely hurt millions of Americans:

“This change is likely to have the opposite of its intended effect and will clearly harm more workers than it helps,” Robert Cresanti, a spokesman for the International Franchise Association, said in an e-mail. “Millions of salaried workers will now become hourly and lose out on key benefits such as workplace flexibility and long term advancement opportunities. This is just the latest example of the Obama Administration unnecessarily meddling in the everyday management of small businesses.”

Obama’s proposed  change will likely force many lower level managers and technical workers into hourly pay and businesses will have no choice but to cap their hours to maintain their budgets. With inflation at historic lows, business have no ability to raise prices – so incomes cannot be increased simply because the president wills it so.

“There simply isn’t a magic pot of money that lets employers pay more just because the government says so,” said David French, National Retail Federation’s Senior VP for Government Relations.

One alternative will be to find someone who will do the job for a lower hourly wage (H1 visas anyone?) so that the overtime costs the company nothing additional. For factories, a more likely approach will be to move manufacturing plants overseas or over the border where U.S. labor laws don’t apply.

The TPP is perhaps the final blow. Making the flow of imports much easier from countries with less stringent labor laws and non-existent safety regulations means that American companies would be crazy not to relocate their plants overseas and import the products back into the country to satisfy the veracious American consumer.

This two-pronged attack will continue the death of the American worker that NAFTA started when it sent textile manufacturer, auto makers and electronics plants to foreign countries so that they could re-import their previously American-made products back into the U.S. for less cost than it took to make it in the United States in the first place.

Highly paid super-skilled workers and extremely low paid unskilled workers will be all that remain – a service economy that imports everything it needs.

Obama changing overtime law – workers to suffer (again)

arrogant_obamaPresident Obama has decided to change the overtime ceiling from $23,600/year to over $56,000/yr – but it won’t have the affect he promises.

Currently, salaried workers making more than $23,600 per year are exempt from the overtime pay rate which requires that employers pay them 1.5 times their pay for each hour over 40 hours.

According to Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez, the President has already sent an order to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review that would almost double that limit. The OMB report will likely be glowingly in-favor of Obama’s proposal.

Obama’s plan is to make more employees eligible for overtime or push them up to a new ceiling. Unless someone is already close to the new ceiling, neither will happen.

The economy has been struggling to create wage inflation, so what could be wrong with the president’s idea? Won’t it increase wages?

Ummm, no. The only thing that can create wage inflation is a tight labor market and, despite Obama’s claims, the market isn’t even close to that.

First, employers aren’t seeing the economic boom progressive demand-side economics were supposed to produce. Cash for clunkers, shovel ready projects, stimulus, stimulus II, night of the living stimulus and more have all failed to create the booming economy of yesteryear.

Second, oppressive taxes and regulations make it much more expensive for employers to hire or even retain existing employees. Obamacare, skyrocketing energy prices and silly rules like this make it impossible to compete.

Employers will examine the rule, do the math and realize that they can neither afford to raise essential personnel to $56k nor pay them 1.5x their pay. Instead, they will trim back operations or send them overseas. *Gasp* you say?

U.S. regulations already make it favorable to build factories, offices and distribution overseas. Add this stupidity to TPP and just like NAFTA, there won’t be any work left for Americans in America.

This and TPP might just crush middle-income earners into the ground.

But maybe that’s the point .. the President is kinda’ running out of time to fundamentally transform the nation.

Liberals Never Stop Seeking To Disarm America Unilaterally

Liberals never give up in their campaign to disarm America unilaterally. As the service lives of the components of America’s nuclear triad – the missiles, the aircraft, the submarines, and the warheads – come to an end, the Pentagon will have to replace them with new ones in the years ahead. Liberals believe this is a great opportunity for them to disarm the US unilaterally – through neglect and nonreplacement of America’s aging nuclear arms.

As the necessity to replace these aging weapons approaches, liberals are spreading blatant lies about the nuclear arsenal replacement’s costs, necessity, and the scope of the nuclear threats facing the US. In fact, liberals deny there are any nuclear threats to America’s security. This article will utterly refute their lies and state the truth on the subject.

The “director for disarmament and threat reduction” at the Arms Control Association (a far-left pro-unilateral-disarmament group funded by other far-left organizations), Kingston Reif, a pro-unilateral disarmament hack already refuted a few times here, has recently lied:

Instead of moving forward with an overly ambitious and excessively expensive modernization plan that would recapitalize a US nuclear force that is, by the Pentagon’s and the president’s own analysis, far larger than US nuclear deterrence needs require, the White House, Pentagon and Energy Department should examine common-sense options for reshaping the arsenal in ways that would save billions and still provide more than adequate nuclear deterrence capabilities. Such options exist.”

“The Pentagon’s and the president’s own analysis” that Reif invokes is Obama’s own, singular, completely baseless claim from June 2013 that America can supposedly deter Russia, China, and North Korea with just 1,000 deployed warheads, while these two states pursue a limitless nuclear buildup.

But contrary to Reif’s and Obama’s blatant lies, the size of the nuclear force planned by the Pentagon for the future (similar to today’s nuclear force) will barely be adequate – and only assuming Russia and China don’t grow their arsenals much further. If they do build their arsenals up further, the US will also have to.

Russia currently has 375 ICBMs capable of delivering over 1,000 warheads to the CONUS, 80 strategic bombers capabe of delivering 886 warheads, and 14 ballistic missile subs capable of delivering over 1,200 warheads to the CONUS.

On top of that, Russia possesses 13 attack submarines and 8 guided missile submarines capable of unexpectedly attacking the US with hundreds of nuclear-tipped cruise missiles and 171 “continental” Tu-22M bombers capable of reaching the US with their payload (10 nuclear-tipped missiles each) if refueled mid-air.

In addition, Russia has a huge tactical nuclear arsenal that numbers up to 4,000 warheads. Their delivery systems range from short- and medium range Iskander and R-500 ground-launched missiles (which violate the INF treaty

Moscow is now busy replacing all of its Soviet-era systems with new weapons. It is building a fleet of new ballistic missile subs, building an additional 50 Tu-160 intercontinental bombers, and developing a new, stealthy strategic bomber as well as a hypersonic glide vehicle which, if delivered by a missile, could itself deliver a nuclear payload anywhere in the world in less than an hour. And, by 2022, all of Russia’s Soviet-era ICBMs will be replaced by new ones; what’s more, the fleet will grow to more than 400 missiles from 375 today.

Furthermore, Vladimir Putin has just announced that he’ll add over 40 new ICBM’s to Russia’s missile fleet this year alone. There is currently a dispute on th Net on whether these new missiles will be an addition to or a replacement for Russia’s current ICBMs. But even if they’re just replacing older missiles, that’s still a huge boost – this mean replacing 13% of Russia’s entire ICBM fleet in one year.

Российские разработчики создали уникальную ракетную систему Ярс

A Russian RS-24 Yars ICBM being test-launched. Russia will add 40 such ICBMs to its arsenal this year, President Putin said on June 16th. Photo credit: Sputnik News

Moreover, Russia’s new ground- and submarine-launched ballistic missiles can carry far more warheads than the old Soviet-era missiles they’re replacing. The new Yars and Rubezh missiles can carry 6-10 warheads each, unlike the old single-warhead RT-2PM Topol (SS-25 Sickle) ICBMs they’re replacing. Likewise, Russia’s new Bulava and Layner (Liner) submarine-launched missiles can carry 10 and 12 warheads, respectively, per missile; the Skiff missiles they’re replacing can only carry four. So a single Russian submarine armed with 16 such missiles can deliver 192 warheads to the CONUS; keep in mind Russia has 14 ballistic missile subs, including 9-10 operationally available at any moment.

Russian Navy's Strategic Nuclear Force to Become 2.5 Times more Effective with Modernization of SLBM Sineva

A Russian Liner submarine-launched ballistic missile being test-launched. A single such missile can carry 12 warheads. Photo credit: NavalToday.

As the UK Daily Telegraph has noted about those 40 new ICBMs Putin will deploy this year:

“The older weapons will be withdrawn and succeeded by new SS-27 missiles, each capable of delivering between four and six strategic nuclear warheads. If loaded to full capacity, these new ICBMs could deliver 240 nuclear warheads – more than Britain’s entire arsenal.”

So not only is Russia deploying more missiles and bombers, they can carry far more warheads than the missiles/bombers they’re replacing.

Deputy Secretary Work is keenly aware that Russia’s nuclear arsenal is designed to do one thing: intimidate and threaten America and its allies:

“Bob Work, deputy defense secretary, told lawmakers at the House Armed Services Committee that Russia is “literally playing with fire” through recent actions, which have seen that nation speak openly about increasing its nuclear arsenal.

“Senior Russian officials continue to make irresponsible statements regarding Russia’s nuclear forces, and we assess they are doing it to intimidate our allies and us,” Work said.”

China is likewise deploying ever more missiles capable of carrying ever more warheads. It is now deploying the DF-41 mobile ICBM capable of carrying 10 warheads, has 4-5 Jin-class ballistic missile subs deployed (12 missiles each), and its H-6K bombers’ cruise missiles can reach Hawaii. Beijing is now developing the 24-missile Tang class of submarines, hypersonic nuclear-capable glide vehicles (similar to Russia’s), and a stealthy intercontinental bomber.

China's Type 094 Jin-class submarine will adopt JL-2 ballistic missiles. (Internet photo)

A Chinese Jin-class submarine. China has 4 such boats with a fifth slated to join them soon, and each of them can carry at least 12 JL-2 missiles, which in turn can carry at least 4 warheads each. A four-boat fleet gives China a continous at-sea nuclear deterrent like France and the UK have. Photo credit: Military-Today.com.

In short, both Russia and China already have large nuclear arsenals and are building them up further; arsenals which, in the future, will be even bigger and deadlier than today.

Against this background, it would be utterly suicidal for the US to cut its arsenal any further or to neglect to modernize it.

The truth is that the US – and its 30 allies who rely on the American nuclear umbrella for their security – must have a nuclear deterrent that can survive any potential Russian or Chinese first strike not only today, but indefinitely into the future.

The US nuclear arsenal must be large enough – and survivable enough – to withstand any blow, even a huge one – by Russian and Chinese nuclear forces – not only those of today, but more importantly those of the future.

In short, we must think of the future, not just the present. The new nuclear deterrent the Pentagon plans to build must protect America against any nuclear threat well into the future.

Thus, the US will need to increase – not cut – its nuclear arsenal, and modernize it fully.

In addition, the new Long-Range Strike Bomber is absolutely necessary to perform conventional bombing campaigns as well. And if used against a nuclear power like China or North Korea, it would greatly REDUCE the threat to the US and its allies by being able to destroy enemy missile launchers BEFORE they have a chance to launch their deadly payloads. The LRSB will be a transformational weapon giving the US military new capabilities – not a mere replacement for old bombers. As Dr Robbin Laird rightly writes here:

“The B-3 is not simply going to provide more ordnance over greater distance to do strategic missions; it is about reinforcing and enabling greater capabilities for a radically different combat air force. Range and payload will be important elements of the basic platform, as will leveraging new concepts of stealth to provide low observability. But that is simply a foundation.”

And the cost?

The Pentagon says it will need to spend $18 bn on nuclear deterrent modernization starting in 2021 and ending in 2035, for a total cost of $270 bn over 15 years.

The Pentagon’s total annual budget is around $600 bn; $18 bn is 3% of that. It is utter nonsense to claim that the Pentagon cannot afford to spend a pitiful 3% of its budget on modernizing America’s nuclear umbrella that also shields over 30 allies and friends.

Liberals falsely claim that the total modernization cost will be $1 trillion over 30 years, with $348 bn over the next 10 years.

But that figure is nothing but a claim of the Monterey Institute for Strategic Studies, another liberal pro-disarmament group.

But even if that figure were correct – which it likely won’t be – $1 trillion over 30 years is just $33.3 bn per year, i.e. around 6% of the Pentagon’s total budget. Deputy Secretary Robert Work estimates it at about 7%.

A few other liberals (CSIS’s Clark Murdock, Thomas Karako, and Angela Weaver) recently (and falsely) claimed, for their part, that:

Nuclear weapons do not achieve U.S. policy objectives, dominant conventional forces do. The U.S. interest lies in seeking to minimize the importance accorded to nuclear weapons by narrowing the roles they are perceived to play. U.S. doctrine, policy, forces, and diplomacy should all be configured to support this interest. The posture described in this paper achieves just that, in contrast to postures that imagine uses of nuclear weapons that have never actually been demonstrated. After 70 years of indulging fantasies of what nuclear weapons can do, it is high time to acknowledge that they do very little and adapt U.S. nuclear policy, strategy, and forces to those facts.”

What they’re saying, though, are blatant lies, not facts. Nuclear weapons achieve three supremely important US policy objectives:

  • Preventing a nuclear, chemical, biological, or major conventional attack on the US or its treaty allies;
  • Reassuring those allies so that they don’t have to develop their nuclear arsenals, and thus limiting nuclear proliferation; and
  • Preventing wars between the world’s great powers.

And contrary to their lie that “The U.S. interest lies in seeking to minimize the importance accorded to nuclear weapons by narrowing the roles they are perceived to play”, America’s national interest actually lies in preventing WMD or major conventional attacks against America’s allies and achieving the other objectives stated above.

Fantasising about “mimizing the importance accorded to nuclear weapons by narrowing the roles they are perceied to play” will not achieve any US policy objectives. Such childish fantasizing therefore contrary to America’s national interests.

No matter how badly these liberals – and Obama admin officials – wish to minimize nuclear weapons’ role, their importance in the world is huge, and will only grow in the future, as more countries acquire these arms and as existing nuclear powers modernize and expand their arsenals.

Russia, China, North Korea, India, and Pakistan are all growing and modernizing their nuclear arsenals. Because of their actions, the global, objective importance of atomic weapons is growing, not shrinking, no matter how much the US wishes it were otherwise.

It doesn’t matter what America wants; what matters is what the world is currently like. And the world is currently headed in the direction of MORE nuclear weapons and MORE countries armed with them, and thus, MUCH GREATER importance accorded to them.

The Arms Control Association’s Greg Thielmann, for his part, claims that the US should augment its “nuclear disarmament bona fides” by accelerating the nuclear arsenal cuts mandated by the New START treaty and by cutting that arsenal even further, to just 1,000 warheads.

But “nuclear disarmament bona fides” count for nothing in this world. They don’t make a country more secure – on the contrary, they only expose it to danger. Just look at Ukraine, which voluntarily gave up its nuclear arms during the 1990s in exchange for paper promises of respect for its territorial integrity and its independence. Russia brazenly violated these promises last year.

Finally, Adam Mount of the leftist Council on Foreign Relations falsely claims that there are no new nuclear threats, and that:

“It will certainly not help to worry about “new” nuclear threats where there are none. The best way to prevent a new arms race is to refuse to engage in one.”

He also falsely asserts that:

“There are already calls in the United States to fight fire with fire and add to our own nuclear forces. However, there is little reason to believe that building new nuclear capabilities or forward-deploying the ones we already have would restrain Russia. There is every reason to believe that Putin would take these steps as license to divert attention to the nuclear balance, to abrogate existing arms control treaties, to launch a new arms race, and to use his nuclear arsenal to cover aggression at lower levels—in short, to start a new Cold War.”

Like other liberals’ claims, these are also blatant lies. Russia and China have already started a new arms race against the US. At this point, the US only has a choice whether to accept the challenge (and thus develop counter-weapons it needs to defend itself) or not to respond and thus to fall behind its adversaries (which is essentially unilateral disarmament by neglect).

And contrary to his blatant lies, there are new nuclear threats to America’s security: Russia’s and China’s nuclear buildups, North Korea’s burgeoning nuclear and ballistic missile arsenals, and Iran’s nuclear weapons programme.

As for Mount’s false claim that Putin would use an American nuclear buildup as an excuse to “divert attention to the nuclear balance, to abrogate existing arms control treaties, to launch a new arms race, and to use his nuclear arsenal to cover aggression at lower levels” – he’s already doing all of that.

He has already launched an arms race against the US, is violating arms control treaties with impunity, is building up his nuclear arsenal and diverting the Russian public’s attention to it, and is using that arsenal to cover his aggression against his neighbors.

At this point, the US faces a simple choice: it will either build up its nuclear deterrent to a superior level, or it – along with all of its allies – will live under constant threat from an ever-aggressive Russia.

 

Report: Obama gives in – no inspections of Iranian nuke facilities required for deal

Israel National News (Arutz Sheva) is reporting that the P5+1 led by the United States has capitulated to Iran’s demand that no inspections of nuclear facilities take place.

President Obama has been working to record another controversial accomplishment for his legacy – the Iranian nuclear weapons program negotiations.

A centerpiece to the Obama position has always been that inspections would be required for any deal to take place and that he would only accept a deal including this provision.

Iran has a history of cheating on sanctions and IAEA regulations on nuclear weapons development. Without inspections, the question to the value of the president’s negotiations is seriously in question.

Saying that the only deal he would sign off on would be a “good deal,” the President was expected to follow a “trust, but verify” paradigm as was central to the Nuclear START treaty with Russia decades ago. Instead, the President appears to be accepting of any deal, as long as he can claim credit for having secured the agreement.

The NEW WORLD ORDER SOCIALIST PARTY Controls America

 

Demomcrat Logo

The united states of America is ruled by one political party. It has a donkey wing and an republican logoelephant wing, both pledging allegiance to the NEW WORLD ORDER cabal of globalist billionaires headed by former Nazi George Soros. Soros got his start to billionaire status by selling fellow Jews to the Nazis and taking their possessions for himself.

Soros now seeks to destroy our nation and rule as a minion of Satan himself as he sold his soul many yearsGeorge Soros ago and was undoubtedly promised a kingdom as Jesus was nearly 2,000 years ago. Jesus refused but Soros accepted the offer it appears.  Soros has the money and lack of morals it takes to pay politicians and judges to get his evil way done to the detriment of liberty. His paid minions are trying to destroy Christianity as God’s people are the only roadblock to the control he seeks and they (Soros/Satan) will stop at nothing to accomplish the goal of the total destruction of the Christian way of life in America. The unlimited funding of immoral causes such as the homosexual Gestapo agenda, the murder of unborn children through abortion, and the support, both financially and physically, of the invasion of Godless criminal illegal aliens and moslems shows his disdain for the rule of God and the Constitution.

Both wings of Satan’s political party Il Duce Obamahave assisted Soros and his puppet, fuehrer barrack Obama, in their quest to turn this nation into just another third world satanic toilet of depravity, slavery, poverty, and misery. The homosexual activists are too deceived to realize that they are being used to implement their own destruction, now and in eternity. They are told they have the “right” to impose their immorality on “intolerant bigots” who follow the Word of God and see homosexuality as sin. God destroyed the ancient cities of Sodom and Gomorrah for the same attitudes and activity but the homosexuals call that a myth to justify their immorality to themselves. The donkey wing is unabashedly open about their disdain for God, booing Him loudly and proudly at their 2012 convention. The elephant wing blatantly lies to Holy bibleChristians to get their votes and, once elected, goes right back to supporting evil and making excuses by calling themselves “bi-partisan”, inclusive, and diverse” while joining the donkey wing in calling Christians vile names. Very few people in government today have any regard at all for the “law of the land”, Constitution 2the Constitution of the United states of America and that fact both angers and saddens me.

As for me and my house, we will follow the Lord!!!!! I ended my affiliation with the elephant wing of the NWOSP due to their despicable behavior at the 2012 Oklahoma state and national conventions where they violated parliamentary procedure and their own “party rules” to disenfranchise the Ron Paul faction they saw, rightly, as a threat to their treacherous ways.

People say we were not founded as a Christian nationBible n Flag Picture but that is not true. While it is true that this nation was not founded as a theocracy, God and the Judeo-Christian faith were an integral aspect of the plan and lives of our founding fathers.

It is time to abolish this federal government that has become a satanic agent and start over as a “shining city on a hill” as our nation was once and needs to be again. Ronald Reagan once said that “if we ever forget we are one nation under God we will be a nation gone under”. This nation has abandoned God and is well on its way under today. Only a return to God and His morality can save this nation now but it appears no one in government and many citizens of today want that to happen. I daily pray for God to raise up a Gideon to lead the USA back to the road to the promised land established by God and our founding fathers.

I submit this in the name of The Most Holy Trinity, in faith, with the responsibility given to me by Almighty God to honor His work and not let it die from neglect.

Bob Russell

Claremore, Oklahoma

June 26, 2015

 

Obama’s Definition of a Terrorist

Isn’t it amazing how Barack Obama refuses to label Muslim murderers Il Duce Obamaas terrorists yet has no problem calling me a terrorist. My qualifications as a terrorist? I am white, a Christian, an honorably discharged veteran, a gun owner, and believe in the Constitution. I have NEVER committed ANY type of crime yet am labeled as a dangerous person based on a PROFILE designed to remove my liberty, not on any criminal activity or real threat to anyone. I thought Obama is against any kind of profiling but that seems to be based on his prejudices, not a true aversion to profiling. Obama and his ilk desire to relegate me and those like me to criminal status while protecting those who are actually trying to subjugate all people to their demented idea of life, using terrorism to do so.

Obama sends our military to “fight terrorists” while simultaneously sending billions of dollars to help finance the terror organizations.   Our military is handcuffed by “rules of engagement” designed to ensure failure and maximum American casualties. Why am I the enemy? I believe Obama and his allies are in cahoots with Islamic terrorists, and know that I, as an American patriot, am not the problem but insists on labeling me as such to cover his treasonous actions.

I can now be held without crime or charges because he doesn’t like my beliefs, how quaint!!!!! How unconstitutional!!!!! The saddest aspect of this is that most of those in Congress actually stand with fuehrer Obama against the Constitution they swore to uphold and the people they claim to represent.   Obama is turning the USA into the ussa, with the assistance of nearly every member of Congress. TheyConstitution are selling our nation to the NEW WORLD ORDER cabal of billionaires controlled by former Nazi George Soros. Barack Obama has spent millions of taxpayer dollars hiding his records from scrutiny and has in his pocket a media that makes no pretense of objectivity where he is concerned. Never in my life have I seen a more corrupt, immoral, and Marxist president. Obama blatantly supports real life Islamic terrorists while labeling the defenders of our nation as “potential domestic terrorists” although these “suspected terrorists” merely pledged to defend liberty and have done so in an honorable fashion. So, I ask all people; who is endangering your freedom and safety, myself and other veterans or the narcissistic radical Islamist sitting in the White House? Look back at how Adolph Hitler was adored by Germans until he sent them to total destruction and then look at how Obama is adored and bowed to by too many Americans, many merely because of his skin color!

Obama promotes racial division, immorality, and Islamic murder while trying to destroy the Constitution and the Christian faith that this Bible n Flag Picturecountry was founded upon. It saddens me greatly to see the nation I was willing to die for fall so far from being the “shining city on a hill” that it once was and to become a modern day Sodom and Gomorrah!!!!!

I submit this in the name of the Most Holy Trinity, in faith, with the responsibility given to me by Almighty God to honor His work and not let it die from neglect.

Bob Russell

Claremore, Oklahoma

June 19, 2015

 

 

SHOCK: Obama Calls for Change to How Media Reports

Obama isn’t happy with the way that the media reports on his failing economic and social policies.

At a discussion at Georgetown University on Tuesday, the President scolded the media for showing the unemployed demanding phones and other entitlements:

“I don’t know where they find them. They’re like, I don’t want to work, I just want a free Obama phone”

The media finds people to interview in actual America, not the one the President wants to pretend exists. The entitled want their Obama phones, EBT card money and everything else the left has been telling them that they should expect.

The President continued his rant against accurate reporting by  calling for an outright change to how the media reports:

“We’re going to have to change how our body politic thinks, which means we’re going to have to change how the media reports on these issues..”

How, exactly, does Obama plan to change how the media reports on these issues? Net neutrality gave the government more control over the internet and we are already dealing with the least transparent administration in history. Anything more obtrusive by the government and we’re looking at censorship – that pesky first amendment should at least slow him down.

If his idea of changing how the media reports means only telling the stories he finds palatable or in a manner that he approves, well .. that sounds a lot like N. Korea’s way of changing the body politic.

What is the Trans-Pacific Partnership?

Secretary_Kerry_Participates_in_the_TPP_Meeting_with_Nations'_Leaders_(10152830624)While the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) has been in the works for a decade, only recently has it become front-page news. What is it about the TPP that so many find objectionable?

What is the TPP trying to accomplish?

The TPP has been negotiated in near-secrecy for a decade so its exact aims are difficult to discern. Some key objectives have become public after materials were made public by infamous hacker organization WikiLeaks.

The agreement, in its current form, seems to protect the patents of large multi-nationals, creates an international tribunal that can order reparations on behalf of corporations and more.

Even better for global companies, the tribunal can order compensation for any lost profits found to result from a nation’s regulations. Philip Morris is using a similar provision against Uruguay (the provision appears in a bilateral trade treaty between Uruguay and Switzerland), claiming that Uruguay’s strong anti-smoking regulations unfairly diminish the company’s profits.

That tribunal we spoke of earlier can rule on corporation’s claims to be losing profits due to undue regulation. The nation’s may have little-to-no recourse. International law will over-rule.

Some oppose the international tribunal mentioned earlier because it be used by any participating nation’s companies to subvert regulations that Americans support. We don’t like horsemeat in our bologna or fox meat in our donkey meat (ok, that’s more a China thing, but you get the drift – and it could be our problem soon…) This pact could allow foreign companies to import unsafe or unsavory items into America – and U.S. consumers would never be the wiser. Heck, the foreign nations could petition the tribunal that U.S. regulations against fox, donkey, horse or … whatever meat are hurting their profits. raccoonAwesome! Who wouldn’t want some creamed raccoon in a jar for their babies?

It could also allow U.S.-based multi-nationals to get around regulations by claiming harm in the international tribunal – thereby over-stepping regulations on just about everything.

Who is involved in the TPP?

As of today, the agreement is being formed by twelve nations: Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, United States, and Vietnam.

What is the History of the TPP?

In 2002, New Zealand, Chili and Singapore began trade talks as the P3 (Pacific 3) at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Leaders’ Meeting in Los Cabos, Mexico. Brunei joined the negotiations in 2005 making it the P4.

Not until 2008 did the United States join discussions. President George W. Bush engaged the partnership to negotiate trade liberalisation on financial services. The first U.S. involvement in the negotiations was set to be at meetings in 2009.

Obama entered office in 2009 and announced that he was seeking a broader agreement. The 2009 conference was delayed until 2010.

At the 2010 conference, President Obama advanced a proposal to limit negotiations to completing by November 2011 – negotiations are still ongoing in 2015.

Why are the contents of the TPP so secret?

The question to worry all Americans – why are the specifics of the trade agreement being kept secret and why is Congress about to allow the President to negotiate a treaty without them?

There isn’t a benevolent reason anyone has come up with.

Sure, some defend the trade pact as a winner for unions, jobs, American exports, and making sure starving albino monkeys get their porridge.. or something. But that is the justification for pushing the agreement, not why it should be done in secret.

When governments do things in secret, it is either to conceal their intent from their enemies or to conceal the same thing from their own people. This isn’t about hiding anything from ISIS, Russia, North Korea or Iran – that leaves a taste in the mouth.. doesn’t it?

The administration, other nations and even analysts have offered no valid reason to keep the TPP secret, yet Congress (Democrat and Republican alike) are working to give the President fast track authority to approve the treaty – what could go wrong?

What is the Fast Track Authority Congress Wants to Give the President?

Fast track authority (aka Trade Promotion Authority) gives the President of the United States unilateral authority in negotiating a trade agreement.

Normally, Congress has amendment and filibuster capability that can be used to shape a trade agreement. With fast-track, they get only a “yes” or “no” vote – no adding or blocking amendments.. just vote one way or the other on the deal the President negotiates.

Born in 1974 in the Trade Act of 1974, it was advanced by a President consumed with power.  In the end, the provisions it enacted did little to protect Americans, their jobs or their health.

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