R.I.P. TTIP?

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Holy Grail US-EU trade deal is “probably doomed.”

By Don Quijones, Spain & Mexico, editor at WOLF STREET.

TTIP, the once super-secret transatlantic trade deal that is now broadly despised on both sides of the Atlantic, may not be alive yet but it could soon be dead. And all thanks to leaks which confirm a longstanding suspicion in Europe that the ultimate goal of TTIP is to pry open European markets for big U.S. corporations, with little offered in the way of reciprocity.

The UK Independent reports that the 248 pages of documents released by Greenpeace show that the “hated” deal would grant US corporations “unprecedented powers” over any new public health or safety regulations to be introduced in the future:

If any European government does dare to bring in laws to raise social or environmental standards, TTIP will grant US investors the right to sue for loss of profits.

It is iron-clad confirmation that many of our biggest fears were well-founded. At long last the treaty that should not be named is being exposed to the harsh light of day, all its darkest intentions splashed across the front pages of Europe’s biggest selling newspapers. As the European Green party notes, “every single publicly voiced suspicion concerning the lack of transparency in these TTIP negotiations has been justified by the revelations stemming from the leak.”

Here’s a check list of other widely held fears that appear to have been confirmed in the last two days:

  • TTIP would represent a direct threat to the existence of public health services in Europe — CHECK
  • If TTIP is signed, taking proactive steps to protect the environment would be much harder on both sides of the Atlantic — CHECK
  • TTIP would almost certainly spell the end of the precautionary principle in Europe, which will be replaced by weaker, corporate-friendlier standards — CHECK
  • It would also represent the final victory of Monsanto & Friends, which have faced massive public resistance in Europe and have struggled to overcome many European lawmakers’ aversion to granting their GMO seeds blanket approval for European markets — CHECK
  • TTIP would accelerate data flows between the U.S. and Europe, with seemingly little in the way of data protection. Like TPP, it would also lead to much stricter rules on encryption and much stiffer enforcement of intellectual property rules, with serious implications for internet rights and access to medicines — CHECK
  • The trade deal would almost certainly sound the death knell of the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) “General Exceptions” rule (which allows nations to regulate trade “to protect human, animal and plant life or health” or for “the conservation of exhaustible natural resources). The rule did not even merit a mention in the leaked text.

Most importantly, TTIP, together with its sister deals TPP, CETA and TiSA, would — as I warned in the 2013 article “The Global Corporatocracy is Almost Fully Operational” — usher in a whole new era of corporate dominance that would put the current one to shame.



U.S. negotiators continue to insist on the inclusion of an Investor-State Dispute Settlement clause in TTIP, despite widespread European concerns about the prospect of corporations suing governments (i.e. taxpayers) for damages if they feel that any new laws or regulations introduced in the public interest might impinge on their ability to maximize profits.

To placate the fears of European citizens and MEPs, the European Commission even went so far as to propose a modified approach, the Investment Court System (ICS), which it claims addresses the problems of ISDS. Even though the ICS idea was formally presented to the US last year, one of the TTIP leaks shows that it was not even discussed during the 12th round, something that the European Commission’s public report on the negotiations omitted to mention.

As if ISDS wasn’t enough to worry about, the leaked documents also include a “State-to-State Dispute Settlement” (SSDS) clause, which essentially means that if TTIP is eventually signed, all 28 member nations of the European Union could face the exciting prospect of America “the nation” also filing law suits against them.

In light of all this, it’s probably a good thing, for European and North American citizens alike, that both TTIP and CETA, the EU-Canadian trade deal, have never looked less likely to be signed.

A couple of weeks ago the Dutch parliament passed a motion rejecting provisional application of the EU-Canada trade deal. The country might also hold a referendum on the issue. Opposition to the trade deal is moving inexorably from the streets to parliaments. On April 27, the Walloon parliament (French-speaking Belgium) also refused to sign CETA. Romania has threatened to do the same after Canada rejected offering visa-free travel to its citizens.

Today the stakes were raised further as France became the first major European nation to threaten to reject the huge trade deal, on the grounds that it is “too friendly to U.S. business” and “probably doomed.” French president Francois Hollande warned that France “will never accept” challenges to its farming and culture in exchange for better access to U.S. markets. “That’s why at this stage, France says no,the Socialist leader said.

Despite all the tough talk from the French government, I have a sneaking suspicion that EU governments could be merely hard balling the U.S. in the hope of extracting better concessions for their own pet corporations, in particular the holy grail of more equal participation in U.S. public procurement processes. Also, as Nick Drearden of Global Justice Now warns, a system is already in place in Europe for trade deals to come into effect even without a vote in member parliaments:

Under something known as ‘provisional implementation’, CETA could take effect in Britain early next year without a parliamentary vote here. In fact, even if the British parliament voted CETA down, the corporate court system would still stay in effect for 3 years!

It is for this reason, together with the Commission’s brazen disdain for democratic process, it’s probably too early yet to begin writing TTIP’s obituary. TTIP, like CETA and TPP, have an enormous amount of political — and financial — capital behind them. For TTIP’s supporters failure is not an option, especially after so many years of tireless scheming in (to quote The Independent) “fanatical secrecy.” By Don Quijones, Raging Bull-Shit

The carefully woven fabric is unraveling. Read…  A Torrid Week for the Transatlantic Corporatocracy



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  60 comments for “R.I.P. TTIP?

  1. Paulo
    May 4, 2016 at 11:14 am

    I hope it’s toast, including the Trans Pacific. It is never about trade, not really. It’s always about feeding and nurturing major corporations and the connected/influenced.

    From L’il Abner Musical

    General Bullmoose:
    (Speaking
    What’s good for General Bullmoose is what’s good for the U.S.A.
    And by Dow Jones and all their little averages,
    Don’t you forget it! Right, boys?

    Men:
    (Singing)
    Right!
    Three rousing rahs and a few hussahs
    And a hip-hip-hip hooray
    What’s good for General Bullmoose
    Is good for the U.S.A.

  2. BradK
    May 4, 2016 at 11:14 am

    Surely this cannot be correct. Just the other day our Dear Leader extolled the bountiful virtues of multinational free trade agreements. As the corporate media continually remind us, He is infallible.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/president-obama-the-tpp-would-let-america-not-china-lead-the-way-on-global-trade/2016/05/02/680540e4-0fd0-11e6-93ae-50921721165d_story.html

    • walter map
      May 4, 2016 at 1:15 pm

      Obama completed the Bush program to turn the U.S. into a debt peon to the global bankster cartel. One wonders what leftovers could possibly remain for current candidates to give away.

      • BradK
        May 4, 2016 at 2:02 pm

        While the globalization scam started long before Bush and is a true bipartisan success story, Clinton I believe did the most with NAFTA and the final killing off of Glass-Steagall along with other giveaways to the banking cartel.

        What I was commenting on was Obama’s shameless shilling for TTP (and by extension TTIP) at at time when much of the Western world is rising up against such schemes to defraud the masses. And the WaPo for being the facilitator.

        • Debravity
          May 5, 2016 at 5:21 am

          Agree with all of the above comments, based on my reading of documents (esp relating to Glass-Steagal)

  3. Ptb
    May 4, 2016 at 11:42 am

    Is it any wonder that the populace is going from distrust of leadership to outright hate?

    • TheDona
      May 4, 2016 at 12:03 pm

      Blackstone CEO Steve Schwarzman told Bloomberg Television that he is bewildered about why Americans seem so discontented. “I find the whole thing astonishing and what’s remarkable is the amount of anger whether it’s on the Republican side or the Democratic side,” the Wall Street mogul said at the World Economic Forum in Davos. “What is the vein that is being tapped into across parties, that has made people so unhappy?” he said.

      How out of touch can one be???

      High five to France for stepping up (for once). Guess I put French Fries back on the menu.

      • Allan
        May 4, 2016 at 12:51 pm

        “How out of touch can one be???” I imagine if you and I had a billion dollar net worth we would soon be out of touch as well. Its the way it works.

        • polecat
          May 4, 2016 at 1:27 pm

          …….”Blackstone CEO Steve Schwarzman told Bloomberg Television that he is bewildered about why Americans are outside the studio building waving pitch forks and erecting gibbet and guillotines”………

          fixed…..

        • TheDona
          May 4, 2016 at 1:31 pm

          So Trump is the only one who got the memo?

      • Randy Durd
        May 6, 2016 at 9:37 am

        That illustrates how out of touch the corporate (banking)/government cabal is. They have been running things for so long without even a murmur from the voters they thought we would never wake up. I thank Obozo and administration for us waking up. They are waving their corruption blatantly in our faces and we finally see it.

  4. Michael Gorback
    May 4, 2016 at 11:51 am

    I can write a free trade agreement on one line:

    No tariffs. No subsidies.

    Have I missed anything?

    • TheDona
      May 4, 2016 at 12:14 pm

      That about covers it. You would make an excellent Cabinet member, Sir. I hope The Donald approves your appointment. Please post back what his hair looks like in person. ;-)

      • Chicken
        May 4, 2016 at 12:29 pm

        Donald is a frugal man, I speculate that’s dryer lint covering his head.

        • walter map
          May 4, 2016 at 1:02 pm

          Squirrels turn orange when they become zombies.

    • Gordon
      May 4, 2016 at 12:24 pm

      You missed: No rules. No regulations.

      But essentially you are right; “Free trade” doesn’t exist. Trade is always managed, and in great detail – hence the thousands of pages these agreements run to.

      • Bigfoot
        May 4, 2016 at 7:49 pm

        Here’s a link to the World Trade Organization (WTO). I spent a few hours once pouring through the ridiculous amount of trade agreements throughout the world. It’s an eye opener for anyone that doesn’t understand where we are at & incontrovertible proof that there is no such thing as free trade.

        https://www.wto.org/english/tratop_e/region_e/region_e.htm

    • May 4, 2016 at 12:59 pm

      The “no subsidies” part is the hardest thing in the world to push through. Why? Because nearly all legislators nearly everywhere, but particularly in the US and the EU, are beholden to lobbyists and their corporate backers – and they all want subsidies, either direct or out of sight in the tax code. Not just on the federal level but also the state and local levels.

      • nick kelly
        May 4, 2016 at 11:06 pm

        So if legislators are beholden to provide subsidies the only way to remove subsidies is to remove the ability of legislators to provide them-i.e. to override local or national legislation.

        • Debravity.
          May 5, 2016 at 5:29 am

          And how do you do that, Nick? Surely not with Isds clauses?

        • nick kelly
          May 5, 2016 at 11:47 am

          Debravity: you tell me. I’m just applying logic. If A implies B and you don’t want B you can’t have A.
          Are you saying trade treaties shouldn’t exist at all?- because that seems to be the consensus among the sky- is- falling gang.

        • Debravity
          May 6, 2016 at 2:02 am

          Nick: I think your missing my point. Firstly, you show your partiality by lumping my comments in with ‘the sky’s falling in’ commenters, whoever THEY are in your so learned eyes. Although, you haven’t indicated what your criterion are at all. So, it would seem quite reasonable for me to take umbrage to that nonsense. Informal fallacy is not an argument, Nick.
          Secondly, in case you HADN’T noticed, the context of my counterpoint was your pro-attitude toward ISDS. So, to try to slither your way out of my challenge, by “just applying logic”, is not really a logical response to my further questioning of your unwavering support for the TTIP, TPP ETC. Let me help you, in case this isn’t clear. It was a challenge to your perpetual contrarianism toward anything that might challenge these horrendous, secret deals.
          But, you are a paid shill. This is what u do. Nothing of any real substance lies behind your well constructed obfuscations. Touché, shill.
          PS the “sky is falling” in for the common person, Nick. Proof that you do know what you are saying, very clearly, and you handlers are frightened that they are losing control at the wrong time.

        • May 6, 2016 at 7:18 am

          Think about what Nick said, rather than accusing him of being shill. If you don’t like subsidies for companies (paid for with your money), then re-evaluate what Nick said.

          Corporate subsidies are a TERRIBLE thing. And they’re hard to get rid of. These kinds of trade deals are an outside enforcer to get rid of them. That’s what Nick is saying, in response to my earlier comment. You might not agree with him, and you might LOVE subsidies, and you might want to even increase subsidies, but that doesn’t make Nick a shill.

    • Salamander
      May 4, 2016 at 1:16 pm

      Yes, mutually acceptable standards. But I’m quibling…

    • walter map
      May 4, 2016 at 1:26 pm

      They can write a free trade agreement in one line too:

      “Inventory your assets, income, and household members and contact us to arrange for liquidation.”

  5. OutLookingIn
    May 4, 2016 at 12:13 pm

    The Banquet of Consequences Is Now Being Served

    CAT is closing 5 US plants and their 820 jobs
    To date, 5,300 positions now gone and a further 20 facilities will close by 2018

    CHINA – exports down 10% in Q1, imports down 13.3%

    KOREA – exports down 11.2% which marks 16 consecutive months of decline

    SINGAPORE – exports down 14%

    HONG KONG – exports down 11%

    TAIWAN – exports down 19%

    INDONESIA = exports down 21%

    BRAZIL – exports down 24%

    Despite reports, Chinese petroleum consumption for Q1 is down by 2% from an average five year growth of 5.5% per annum. This shrinking demand is indicative of an unfolding deflation. Not a return of boom times as some pundits have pertained.
    The global economy is quickening it’s pace of slowdown, so the powers that should not be are quickening their pace, to have these so-called “free trade deals” ratified. The only thing “free” about them is the fact that TPTSNB are free to rob and thieve with global impunity.

  6. Chicken
    May 4, 2016 at 12:47 pm

    Perhaps, and I fully realize reciprocity is absolute, however, the collective has endured assault, bombardment, battery and accused of peddling fiction for decades (pfft, what change?) but in this asymmetric environment where up is down and out is in, how does one predict when the looting that doesn’t exist actually stops and everyone rushes for a chair?

  7. walter map
    May 4, 2016 at 12:56 pm

    “the prospect of corporations suing governments (i.e. taxpayers) for damages if they feel that any new laws or regulations introduced in the public interest might impinge on their ability to maximize profits.”

    Presumably the laws against grand larceny and slavery would still be in place. Has anybody checked the fine print?

    “We’re taking your house and your car and selling off your wife and kids.”

    Maybe I shouldn’t be giving them any ideas.

  8. Paulo
    May 4, 2016 at 1:00 pm

    Ran into this one. Seems timely. The only thing I would add is that the system rules are being changed because the system is now winding down…perhaps towards collapse.

    Make a plan.

    Capitalism does not permit an even flow of economic resources. With this system, a small privileged few are rich beyond conscience, and almost all others are doomed to be poor at some level. That’s the way the system works. And since we know that the system will not change the rules, we are going to have to change the system.

    Martin Luther King, Jr.

  9. walter map
    May 4, 2016 at 1:43 pm

    “The only thing I would add is that the system rules are being changed because the system is now winding down…perhaps towards collapse.”

    Not collapse. Consolidation. The financial interests that run the world consider most of its population to be non-performing assets which have become too expensive to maintain.

    Don’t take it personally. It’s only business.

  10. nick kelly
    May 4, 2016 at 1:57 pm

    ‘I have a sneaking suspicion that EU governments could be merely hard balling the U.S. in the hope of extracting better concessions for their own pet corporations, in particular the holy grail of more equal participation in U.S. public procurement processes.’

    Now there’s an afterthought! So after a long warning about the US suing European countries- lo! THEY can also sue the US, or each other.

    As a Canadian who has watched US protectionist antics concerning everything from beef to wood- you really really need a extra-USA legal framework to protect yourself. Canada has had to use extra-national law to obtain damages for US tariffs on wood and for thinly disguised ‘health’
    regulations designed to keep out beef.

    For its part the US would like to gun down Canada’s extremely protectionist dairy system and so they should. It is largely the result of domestic politics, an expensive concession to Quebec, which has about half the quota in Canada. Quota? That is the right to produce milk. If you want to open a dairy your largest start-up expense won’t be land, cows or machinery- you will have to buy quota from an existing holder.
    Imports of most dairy products like cheese are subject to a tariff of about 250%.
    French ag is also full of similar rent seekers, and hardly a month goes by without some cavalcade of tractors descending on Paris to protest something or other.
    Depending on local law to create a level playing field is like depending on politicians to stop playing politics.

    • MC
      May 4, 2016 at 2:30 pm

      The scariest thing is that French agriculture is not even the most heavily subsidized in the EU as GDP percentage: Italy and Spain take gold and silver, with France having to do with bronze.
      But if we go outside of the EU, things are taken to the next level by Switzerland and Japan though South Korea gives them a run for their money.

      If we want to speak quotas, in the EU there’s a decades long legal battle about them between Italy, Germany, France and the EU itself with fines and lawsuits flying in all directions.
      Scope of these quotas was, obviously, to drive up the price of milk: central planning at its very best.

      But the absolute top is reached with oranges. Due to the usual wonders of bureaucracy, orange farmers are first given subsidies to increase production by planting trees on dwarfing rootstocks to increase density, then paid to crush “excess production” to artifically increase the price of otanges.
      The two main orange producers in the EU are, you guessed it, Italy and Spain.
      But wait, it gets better: due to trade treaties with Israel, the Middle Eastern country exports to Europe thousands of tons of oranges and other citrus fruits, so more production has to be crushed to keep prices up. If the same favorable treatment is extended to turkey, another major citrus producer, things are bound to get bizarre beyond belief.

      • Chicken
        May 4, 2016 at 3:22 pm

        Corn is heavily subsidized in the US, I bet Germans hate the idea of TIPP (or whatever this secret accord is being called today) due to they’d be forced to drink fake beer made from corn. I don’t blame them!

        • MC
          May 4, 2016 at 3:41 pm

          We already have oxygenated fuel here, thank you very much.
          Luckily some brands (Aral in Germany and Total in France for example) still offer ethanol-free unleaded… at a premium, of course!

      • d'Cynic
        May 5, 2016 at 1:42 pm

        Agriculture is strange sector: not like any other sector of the economy. It is a business, and it also provide a very basic staple. You can plan and save for a TV down the road, but you cannot plan to eat sometimes down the road.
        This fact is sometimes lost in the abundant society. And it can also be taken advantage of.

    • Chicken
      May 4, 2016 at 3:13 pm

      Your argument seems contrary with the Canadian Dollar’s rise from ghetto status. Sometimes governments aren’t straightforward in their rhetoric, perhaps Canadian government wanted Canadian agriculture/milk to remain a captured market for their own selfish reasons?

      • Chicken
        May 4, 2016 at 3:17 pm

        For example, what if you wanted to import something like a vehicle from the lower 48, is it true the Canadian government has erected high walls to discourage this?

        • nick kelly
          May 4, 2016 at 6:19 pm

          Agree with yr first not sure about facts in second- I know if a car is older than some years it can be brought because I know one guy who has done so. With newer cars you may have to pay something- we have tax on all cars even second hand ones.
          But re yr first point about Canadian govt doing it for ‘selfish reasons’ I thought that was my point but maybe I wasn’t clear enough. Most of these tariff barriers that the TTP and similar deals are aimed at local ‘selfish reasons’ often a small elite that profits from them.
          In Uruguay where I just spent a few months virtually EVERY manufactured product is very heavily taxed coming in. You will see toasters in store windows with three equal payments. If the idea is to encourage local manufacture-it’s not working very fast.

          riculture as we all know operates under a halo- it is hundreds of times more polluting than mining but mining is dirty and farms are holy- no matter how many million tons of fertilizer or antibiotics they empty into water systems.

    • Debravity
      May 6, 2016 at 2:09 am

      Nick’ OBVIOUS PRO-TTIP standpoint, cleverly disguised as candid experiences in a casual chat. Wolf and Don, your site has made it. You have a full-time shill working your site. WELL DONE, you must be doing something very right! NICK KELLY DECLARE YOUR REAL INTEREST, SHILL. WHOM DO YOU WORK FOR?

      • May 6, 2016 at 7:11 am

        Just because someone disagrees doesn’t mean he is a shill.

      • nick kelly
        May 6, 2016 at 2:01 pm

        I know I ain’t paid! And I post under my name.

  11. Petunia
    May 4, 2016 at 2:02 pm

    Everybody in America has lived with NAFTA and globalization for over two decades. We can see it doesn’t work. These treaties will never be passed in America because it will spell the end of the country and we all know it. The political parties are seeing what a constrained amount of anger is doing and they are running for the hills. Imagine when the peasants get really pissed. They should all be praying that Trump will win and can fix even a little of what’s broken. Otherwise, it is basically over.

    • walter map
      May 4, 2016 at 3:18 pm

      “They should all be praying that Trump will win and can fix even a little of what’s broken.”

      Trump can not and would not fix anything. He’s positioning himself to save his own empire while he still can. Despite his horrific personal deficiencies he can hardly be faulted for his motivations for self-preservation. The costs will be extravagant but they would be incurred anyway.

      The world’s last possible hope was for Obama to rein in the financial industrial complex while he had the chance. Now there is no hope at all. No possible path to peaceful, prosperous, and equitable human societies exists short of a planetary systems collapse which would risk human extinction. The coming partial planetary systems collapse has been in the works for a long time and is very likely to succeed. Human genetic engineering and information technologies practically guarantee the resulting dystopia can be made permanent.

      It is only a matter of time, but not much. I pity the children, knowing they have no future.

      • Chicken
        May 4, 2016 at 3:37 pm

        I don’t discount Trump so easily, I believe he means much of what he says from a prospective of spirit. He’s kind of new at this political doublespeak spindoctor stuff so I expect he will be polishing his ideas as he goes.

        Obama had the perfect opportunity and overlooked it for whatever reason, the financial industry best be on it’s best behavior else if they give Trump the opportunity I’m confident he’ll stomp them into the dirt. I think he means it.

        Look at all the other candidates, despite their political spin-abilities you can see in their faces they know the jig is up this time.

        Hopefully the American public furor and backlash from promises never kept kicks them all the way back into the stone age where they can rot for eternity in payment for what they’ve done, trouble they caused in the ME, and all the other misleading lies they’ve fed for decades, to the American public.

        Mitt Romney’s dancing horses for crying out loud, just the kind of dog and pony show you’d present as an insult.

        And we have our POTUS Nobel Peace Prize winner… Yikes, where’d that sorry excuse of a poorest of poor record winning idea come from?

        • nick kelly
          May 4, 2016 at 6:37 pm

          Bush should have got it. It’s one thing to destroy a country based on info that you later admit was wrong ( but you sincerely believed it) but to destabilize an entire region…
          The only prob with awarding it to Bush- he could say he was manipulated by Cheney.
          Question- how does the US with some of the smartest people in the world, and 350 million of them, end up with Bush junior, who go into the Air National Guard without any previous flying, was AWOL on that – and basically didn’t a have a clue (or a passport)

      • Petunia
        May 4, 2016 at 6:24 pm

        Walter,

        While I agree that Trump will help himself to the goodies, much like the Clintons already have, Trump is smarter than Hillary. Trump understands that if you steal everything, people notice. Hillary just keeps stuffing her pockets and saying the stuff is really hers.

        • walter map
          May 4, 2016 at 7:45 pm

          Laugh about it, shout about it
          When you’ve got to choose
          Every way you look at this you lose.

          Take my advice. I do.

          Look around you all you see are sympathetic eyes,
          Stroll around the grounds until you feel at home.

          What can I say? I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind.

          “Excellently observed,” answered Candide; “but let us cultivate our garden.” Do that, if you can do nothing else.

  12. John Doyle
    May 4, 2016 at 8:29 pm

    If push does come to shove,and the PTB browbeat their stooges [politicians] to pass these “trade” pacts, then we need a strategy to make them not worth pursuing litigation.
    Lets think up a few ideas; say; banning the products in question from that nation if there is a guilty verdict, or some such. Pay the fine [which is easy enough as the CB can just write a cheque from thin air] and banish the product or move to a competitor’s one. Tax the product to make up the “loss” and cut sales. I don’t know what repeat “offences” may be covered in the treaties, but get all the friendly nations to club together to squeeze the corporation. Whatever, as long as they get the idea it’s not worthwhile following such a litigious course.

  13. ML
    May 5, 2016 at 12:12 am

    Might explain why your President Obama stuck his nose in about Brexit.

    Here in UK it was thought he was doing our Prime Minister a favour but more likely he is scared that if the result of the referendum is for UK to leave the EU, the USA will lose out on its only proper English speaking foothold in Europe.

    • nick kelly
      May 5, 2016 at 2:47 am

      Or (Occam’s razor) he like almost every professional economist thinks it’s a risky move with few tangible benefits. The pro-side like the wacky London mayor are politicians.
      One of the pleasures of being an outgoing 2 nd term pres is you can say and do what you like. What’s the downside. Maybe that’s what he thinks.
      But from the viewpoint of the US -the last thing it needs is another foreign economy in trouble.
      The Fed would love to raise rates, if it had only the US to worry about we would probably be looking at 3 hikes in 2016. But with China, Japan and Europe all on the brink of banking crises ( Don’t even mention South America) it CAN’T.
      The other night (May 2) the CEO of UBS was on Bloomberg explaining the 60 % drop in profit: ‘there is so much uncertainty our clients are paralyzed’

      • nick kelly
        May 5, 2016 at 2:55 am

        PS -funny thing just on Bloomberg (from London) They were interviewing the head economist from some bank and he was asked to talk about risks- ‘but you can’t mention the B word’
        Smiles all round but the guy knew he meant it
        The main risk he did mention; Fed hiking too soon, i.e, in June

  14. d
    May 5, 2016 at 5:16 am

    “It would also represent the final victory of Monsanto & Friends, which have faced massive public resistance in Europe and have struggled to overcome many European lawmakers’ aversion to granting their GMO seeds blanket approval for European markets — CHECK”

    One of the bad things in TTIP that is not in TPP

    +

    TTIP would accelerate data flows between the U.S. and Europe, with seemingly little in the way of data protection. Like TPP, it would also lead to much stricter rules on encryption and much stiffer enforcement of intellectual property rules, with serious implications for internet rights and access to medicines — CHECK

    So what go to 512 bit encryption, unless its serious national security, they will never invest the time or money, to open, it soon it will be 2GB encryption in general use.

    If you have something that needs that level of security, whats it doing near the internet where some leftist anti everything thief can steal it.

    +

    The trade deal would almost certainly sound the death knell of the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) “General Exceptions” rule (which allows nations to regulate trade “to protect human, animal and plant life or health” or for “the conservation of exhaustible natural resources). The rule did not even merit a mention in the leaked text.

    No it wouldn’t, the leaked text is not the final text.

    +

    The leaker’s, and the people who published the leaks,

    They are trafficking in stolen information, Just like the thieves who stole the Panama papers and the Russian wiki leaks spy’s snowden and assange.

    They think they are clever as they are harming the US and the perceived RICH.

    They are not helping to solve the problem, many of the security intrusions the man in the street has to suffer, are directly due to their kind.

    They are a big part of the problem.

    Many of them are contractors, to anti western anti corporate entity’s. Or anti western Governments. If not direct employees of them.

    If they had guns, they would be classed as globally illegal mercenary’s. Which is what most of these computer information thieves actually are, international mercenary, terrorist, criminals, without guns.

    +

    Be realistic TTIP will never be signed .

    Unless it is how the French want it, and advantages only France.

    Beating on the US and global Corporates is easy and socially acceptable.

    TPP is the only way to stop china enslaving the rest of Asia, Australiasia, and the Western Pacific.

    It is not the monster the leftist, anti trade deals, anti rich, anti corporate, communist clan, makes it out to be.

    It does not empower GMO in they way those against it claim.

    You want to see a bad trade deal, try (RCEP)

    • Debravity1
      May 6, 2016 at 2:26 am

      They are trafficking in stolen information, Just like the thieves who stole the Panama papers and the Russian wiki leaks spy’s snowden and assange.

      D, with all due respect, what proof do you have which supports your allegation that Assange and Snowden are paid Soviet spies? That this may have come after Snowden fled to one of the only countries in the world potentially safe from US extradition (or rendition) seems like nothing more than a logical step to save his own life. Where would yo have gone in his shoes.
      I can’t agree that what these organisations/individuals have done is wrong. I there have been negative consequences, that is natural in this context. The majority of these people are patriotic zealots who believe that the common good has been abused and corruption needs to be exposed. Of course challenging the system is not going to be perfect, but without these leaks, we wouldn’t even know the TPP etc existed, and they would probably be law by now. I’ll take the downside to this. Now, over to head shill, Nick Kelly for some interesting response. Nick?

      • d
        May 6, 2016 at 7:41 am

        “D, with all due respect, what proof do you have which supports your allegation that Assange and Snowden are paid Soviet spies? ”

        Who gained, who lost, whose been milking the information in dribs and drabs for years.

        The whole deal is an Anti US smear.

        Where would I have gone.

        I wouldn’t have to go anywhere as I dont work directly or indirectly for the FSB and dont steal information from very dangerous people.

        but without these leaks, we wouldn’t even know the TPP etc existed,

        BS

        TPP only became private, after all the other country’s joined and agreed to negotiate in private, it’s roots and origins were very public, and not American.

        They negotiate in private, so that Hysterical agenda driven, hate and envy filled lefties, finaced frequently from moscow or Beijingl, dont have ammunition to warp manipulate and distort, with the intention of destroying their efforts, long before they come to any consensus.

        They are not challenging corruption, they seek to deliberately malicious and vindictively damage America and teh western way of life whist lining their pockets.

        If you want to challenge corruption, you start with all the people dealing with iran and DPRK, for personal gain, who know they are empowering a genocidal monster, but do not care.

        Then you ask why the greek politicians who lied their way into the Eur and inadvertently set of a major global financial crisis that may yet implode the entire global financial system have not even been publicly, let alone legally brought to account for their actions.

        These data theives you support are not fighting corruption they are deliberately acting against America and the western. As part of of loose entity with a very western negative agenda.

        Snowden, assange, and all the other data thieves are criminals, aiding and abetting Terrorists and anti western intelligence entity’s. They are part of the problem not part of the solution.

  15. Chris Rofot
    May 5, 2016 at 9:36 am

    If anyone thinks the elite will just roll over and die from a little thing like public outrage then you are being extremely naive. They will just make some cosmetic changes and push this through while everyone is distracted with some ‘event’.

  16. Debravity
    May 6, 2016 at 4:04 am

    Don, there were a few comments I made challenging Mr Kelly, some on direct response to his outright insult-slinging. They have not been posted. Surely u, of all people, are not censoring my free speech??? I would be more than outraged. There was nothing out of order about any of my comments. If he is a paid shill, he should be outed. His line of reasoning and obfuscations are so obvious to me – why can’t I call him out on these issues without censorship.
    If they have been moderated away I will be looking for a very good reason from whom ever did so. I will start my own site from that pint and abandon wolf street. This is not meant to be published

    • Debravity.
      May 6, 2016 at 4:13 am

      Sorry Don, I would never have believed it, but for some reason none of my recent comments were there a minute ago, barring the last one to D. So, I wrote the above. Well, my comments are back. Please ignore the above. My world is not crashing in (although the sky is lol) any more.LOVE. YOUR. WORK!! Debravity

      • May 6, 2016 at 7:06 am

        Debravity, you keep using different emails to sign in. Each time you use a new “email address,” your comment goes into the moderation queue and sits there. So if you stick to one email, it’ll make it easier for me and faster for you.

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