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June 6-9: Bilderberg Meeting behind Closed Doors. On the Agenda: Domestic Spying, Diffusing Social Protests, War on Syria and Iran

Global Research, May 17, 2013
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Its four-day meeting occurs annually. It’s a rite of spring. British political economist Will Hutton calls the group the “high priests of globalization.”

Powerful movers and shakers have their own agenda.They discuss key issues.

They do it year round. Once annually they meet face-to-face. They plot strategy to exploit the world’s riches. They want them for themselves.

They try to keep meeting dates, locations, and issues to be discussed secret. Word gets out. It’s official. Britain’s five-star Grove Hotel is this year’s venue. It’s a Hertfordshire, England hotel resort. It calls itself “London’s cosmopolitan country estate.”

It’s 18 miles from London. It’s 30 minutes from Heathrow Airport. It’s ideal for secluded meetings. Great pains are taken to keep journalists, activists, and other uninvited guests away.

On May 13, Infowars reporters Paul Joseph Watson and Jon Scobie visited the Grove Hotel. They claim to have “groundbraking” information.

Google’s CEO Eric Schmidt is a regular Bilderberg attendee. Watson and Scobie said his company is “merging” with Bilderberg.

“Google’s annual Zeitgeist conference, which has been based at the Grove since 2007, immediately precedes the Bilderberg Group conference by a matter of days.”

“Backed up by prior research, we were able to confirm in conversations with hotel managers and others that the Grove is now a central base for Google’s agenda to control the global political and technological landscape.”

Bilderberg’s “being recast as ‘Google-Berg’ – partly because of efforts on behalf of activists to tear away the veil of Bilderberg’s much cherished secrecy, and partly as a means of re-branding authoritarian, undemocratic secret gatherings of elites as trendy, liberal, feel-good philanthropic-style forums like Google Zeitgeist and TED.”

In May 2012, London’s Telegraph headlined “Google invites the best and brightest into its Big Tent.”

It’s Google’s annual Zeitgeist conference. The Telegraph compared it to annual Davos World Economic Forum meetings. Major global figures participate in both.

Eric Schmidt thinks “privacy is a relic of the past,” said Infowars. He “plans to turn Google into the ultimate Big Brother.”

He and Bilderberg members share a common agenda. In part, it reflects a “collectivist, permanently networked world (without) individuality and privacy.”

Bilderberg’s grand design is one-world government comprised of rulers and serfs. It wants total unchallenged global control.

Infowars said its “inside source” listed the following June issues for discussion:

  • destroying Iran’s nuclear facilities within three years;
  • prolonging war on Syria by arming anti-Assad elements;
  • the threat of a global pandemic;
  • controlling 3D printing;
  • Internet control through “cyber resilience;”
  • establishing a ministry of truth; Orwell explained its mission and more, saying:

“The Ministry of Peace concerns itself with war, the Ministry of Truth with lies, the Ministry of Love with torture and the Ministry of Plenty with starvation.”

“These contradictions are not accidental, nor do they result from from ordinary hypocrisy: they are deliberate exercises in doublethink.”

Other Bilderberg topics include:

  • smart cities for mass surveillance;
  • diffusing austerity induced social protests;
  • preventing Britain from leaving the EU;
  • propping up the euro to keep the Eurozone intact;
  • minimal 2013 economic growth;
  • increasing central bank power;
  • transferring more wealth from ordinary people to corporations and super-rich elites; and
  • preventing a growing credit bubble from popping.

In 2007, Privacy International’s “Race to the Bottom” report addressed privacy rankings of Internet service companies. A previous article discussed its comments on Google, saying:

“….throughout our research we have found numerous deficiencies and hostilities in Google’s approach to privacy that go well beyond those of other organizations.”

It’s “an endemic threat to privacy. This is in part due to the diversity and specificity of Google’s product range and the ability of the company to share extracted data between these tools, and in part due to Google’s market dominance and the sheer size of its user base.”

“Its aggressive use of invasive or potentially invasive technologies and techniques” is unmatched.

It’s able to “deep drill into the minutiae of a user’s life and lifestyle choices.” It has no qualms about doing it irresponsibly.

It retains volumes user information. No limitations are placed on its subsequent use or disclosure. Users aren’t able to delete or withdraw it.

It retains all “search strings and associated IP-addresses and time stamps for at least 18 to 24 months, and does not provide users with an expungement option.”

It has other personal information on hobbies, employment, addresses, phone numbers, and more. It retains it after users delete their profiles.

It “collects all search results entered through Google Toolbar, and identifies all Google Toolbar users with a unique cookie that allows Google to track the user’s web movements.”

Information is retained indefinitely. It provides a permanent record. Doing so spurns OECD Privacy Guidelines and EU data protection law provisions.

Users can’t edit or delete records and information. They can’t access log information generated through various Google services, such as Google Maps, Video, Talk, Reader, or Blogger.

In 2004, Google also acquired the CIA-linked company Keyhole, Inc. It maintains a worldwide 3-D spy-in-the-sky images database.

Its software provides a virtual fly-over and zoom-in capability. It does so within a one-foot resolution.

It’s supported by In-Q-Tel. It’s a venture capital CIA-funded firm. It “identif(ies) and invest(s) in companies developing cutting-edge information technologies that serve United States national security interests.”

In 2003, its CEO, John Hanke, said:

“Keyhole’s strategic relationship with In-Q-Tel means that the Intelligence Community can now benefit from the massive scalability and high performance of the Keyhole enterprise solution.”

In 2006, former CIA clandestine services case officer, Robert Steele, said:

“I am quite positive that Google is taking money and direction from my old colleague Dr. Rick Steinheiser in the Office of Research and Development at CIA, and that Google has done at least one major prototype effort focused on foreign terrorists which produced largely worthless data.”

“I think (Google is) stupid to be playing with CIA, which cannot keep a secret and is more likely to waste time and money than actually produce anything useful.”

On April 29, 2009, Willem Buiter’s Financial Times article headlined “Gagging on Google,” saying:

“Google is to privacy and respect for intellectual property rights what the Taliban are to women’s rights and civil liberties: a daunting threat that must be fought relentlessly by all those who value privacy and the right to exercise, within the limits of the law, control over the uses made by others of their intellectual property.”

It should be strictly regulated, “and if necessary, broken up or put out of business.” It “lays the foundations for corporate or even official Big Brotherism.”

Google Street View’s addition to Google Maps, “provides panoram(ic) images visible from street level in cities around the world.”

“The cameras record details of residents’ lives.” They do so without permission. Personal privacy is violated.

It’s also done through tracking cookies or “third-party persistent cookies.” They assist interest-based advertising. It’s known as behavioral targeting.

In the wrong hands, information can be used “to put a commercial squeeze on people, but also to extort and blackmail them.”

In government hands, it enhances “a pretty effective and very nasty police state.”

Can Google be trusted to use this information responsibly? “Of course not.” It’s a business run by “amoral capitalists.” It seeks profits by any means.

Google and other Internet search engines “should not be trusted because they cannot be trusted.” Because of its size and dominance, Google’s “the new evil empire of the internet.” It’s a menacing “Leviathan.”

If true, partnering (merging) with Bilderberg enhances the threat. Institutionalized spying endangers everyone. Today’s technology exceeds the worst of what Orwell imagined.

Big Brother isn’t fiction. It’s watching everyone all the time for any reason. It does so with sweeping technological effectiveness. It makes Bilderberg’s ideal world more possible.

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

His new book is titled “Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity.”

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

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs Fridays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour



NO BANK DEPOSITS WILL BE SPARED FROM CONFISCATION

May 16, 2013 by ajfloyd

 
 
 
 
 
 
1 Votes

NO BANK DEPOSITS WILL BE SPARED FROM CONFISCATION

I challenge anyone to prove me wrong that confiscation of bank deposits is legalized daylight robbery

Bank depositors in the UK and USA may think that their bank deposits would not be confiscated as they are insured and no government would dare embark on such a drastic action to bail out insolvent banks.

Before I explain why confiscation of bank deposits in the UK and US is a certainty and absolutely legal, I need all readers of this article to do the following:

Ask your local police, sheriffs, lawyers, judges the following questions:

1) If I place my money with a lawyer as a stake-holder and he uses the money without my consent, has the lawyer committed a crime?

2) If I store a bushel of wheat or cotton in a warehouse and the owner of the warehouse sold my wheat/cotton without my consent or authority, has the warehouse owner committed a crime?

3) If I place monies with my broker (stock or commodity) and the broker uses my monies for other purposes and or contrary to my instructions, has the broker committed a crime?

I am confident that the answer to the above questions is a Yes!

However, for the purposes of this article, I would like to first highlight the situation of the deposit / storage of wheat with a warehouse owner in relation to the deposit of money / storage with a banker.

First, you will notice that all wheat is the same i.e. the wheat in one bushel is no different from the wheat in another bushel. Likewise with cotton, it is indistinguishable. The deposit of a bushel of wheat with the warehouse owner in law constitutes a bailment. Ownership of the bushel of wheat remains with you and there is no transfer of ownership at all to the warehouse owner.

And as stated above, if the owner sells the bushel of wheat without your consent or authority, he has committed a crime as well as having committed a civil wrong (a tort) of conversion – converting your property to his own use and he can be sued.

Let me use another analogy. If a cashier in a supermarket removes $100 from the till on Friday to have a frolic on Saturday, he has committed theft, even though he may replace the $100 on Monday without the knowledge of the owner / manager of the supermarket. The $100 the cashier stole on Friday is also indistinguishable from the $100 he put back in the till on Monday. In both situations – the wheat in the warehouse and the $100 dollar bill in the till, which have been unlawfully misappropriated would constitute a crime.

Keep this principle and issue at the back of your mind.

Now we shall proceed with the money that you have deposited with your banker.

I am sure that most of you have little or no knowledge about banking, specifically fractional reserve banking.

Since you were a little kid, your parents have encouraged you to save some money to instil in you the good habit of money management.

And when you grew up and got married, you in turn instilled the same discipline in your children. Your faith in the integrity of the bank is almost absolute. Your money in the bank would earn an interest income.

And when you want your money back, all you needed to do is to withdraw the money together with the accumulated interest. Never for a moment did you think that you had transferred ownership of your money to the bank. Your belief was grounded in like manner as the owner of the bushel of wheat stored in the warehouse.

However, this belief is and has always been a lie. You were led to believe this lie because of savvy advertisements by the banks and government assurances that your money is safe and is protected by deposit insurance.

But, the insurance does not cover all the monies that you have deposited in the bank, but to a limited amount e.g. $250,000 in the US by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), Germany €100,000, UK £85,000 etc.

But, unlike the owner of the bushel of wheat who has deposited the wheat with the warehouse owner, your ownership of the monies that you have deposited with the bank is transferred to the bank and all you have is the right to demand its repayment. And, if the bank fails to repay your monies (e.g. $100), your only remedy is to sue the bank and if the bank is insolvent you get nothing.

You may recover some of your money if your deposit is covered by an insurance scheme as referred to earlier but in a fixed amount. But, there is a catch here. Most insurance schemes whether backed by the government or not do not have sufficient monies to cover all the deposits in the banking system.

So, in the worst case scenario – a systemic collapse, there is no way for you to get your money back.

In fact, and as illustrated in the Cyprus banking fiasco, the authorities went to the extent of confiscating your deposits to pay the banks’ creditors. When that happened, ordinary citizens and financial analysts cried out that such confiscation was daylight robbery. But, is it?

Surprise, surprise!

It will come as a shock to all of you to know that such daylight robbery is perfectly legal and this has been so for hundreds of years.

Let me explain.

The reason is that unlike the owner of the bushel of wheat whose ownership of the wheat WAS NEVER TRANSFERRED to the warehouse owner when the same was deposited, the moment you deposited your money with the bank, the ownership is transferred to the bank.

Your status is that of A CREDITOR TO THE BANK and the BANK IS IN LAW A DEBTOR to you. You are deemed to have “lent” your money to the bank for the bank to apply to its banking business (even to gamble in the biggest casino in the world – the global derivatives casino).

You have become a creditor, AN UNSECURED CREDITOR. Therefore, by law, in the insolvency of a bank, you as an unsecured creditor stand last in the queue of creditors to be paid out of any funds and or assets which the bank has to pay its creditors. The secured creditors are always first in line to be paid. It is only after secured creditors have been paid and there are still some funds left (usually, not much, more often zilch!) that unsecured creditors are paid and the sums pro-rated among all the unsecured creditors.

This is the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

The law has been in existence for hundreds of years and was established in England by the House of Lords in the case Foley v Hill in 1848.

When a customer deposits money with his banker, the relationship that arises is one of creditor and debtor, with the banker liable to repay the money deposited when demanded by the customer. Once money has been paid to the banker, it belongs to the banker and he is free to use the money for his own purpose.

I will now quote the relevant portion of the judgment of #3b4d81;”>the House of Lords handed down by Lord Cottenham, the Lord Chancellor. He stated thus:

Money when paid into a bank, ceases altogether to be the money of the principal… it is then the money of the banker, who is bound to return an equivalent by paying a similar sum to that deposited with him when he is asked for it.

The money paid into the banker’s, is money known by the principal to be placed there for the purpose of being under the control of the banker; it is then the banker’s money; he is known to deal with it as his own; he makes what profit of it he can, which profit he retains himself,…

The money placed in the custody of the banker is, to all intent and purposes, the money of the banker, to do with it as he pleases; he is guilty of no breach of trust in employing it; he is not answerable TO THE PRINCIPAL IF HE PUTS IT INTO JEOPARDY, IF HE ENGAGES IN A HAZARDOUS SPECULATION; he is not bound to keep it or deal with it as the property of the principal, but he is of course answerable for the amount, because he has contracted, having received that money, to repay to the principal, when demanded, a sum equivalent to that paid into his hands.” (quoted in UK Law Essays,  #3b4d81;”>Relationship Between A Banker And Customer,That Of A Creditor/Debtor, emphasis added,)

Holding that the relationship between a banker and his customer was one of debtor and creditor and not one of trusteeship, #3b4d81;”>Lord Brougham said:

“This trade of a banker is to receive money, and use it as if it were his own, he becoming debtor to the person who has lent or deposited with him the money to use as his own, and for which money he is accountable as a debtor. I cannot at all confound the situation of a banker with that of a trustee, and conclude that the banker is a debtor with a fiduciary character.”

In plain simple English – bankers cannot be prosecuted for breach of trust, because it owes no fiduciary duty to the depositor / customer, as he is deemed to be using his own money to speculate etc. There is absolutely no criminal liability.

The trillion dollar question is, Why has no one in the Justice Department or other government agencies mentioned this legal principle?

The reason why no one dare speak this legal truth is because there would be a run on the banks when all the Joe Six-Packs wise up to the fact that their deposits with the bankers CONSTITUTE IN LAW A LOAN TO THE BANK and the bank can do whatever it likes even to indulge in hazardous speculation such as gambling in the global derivative casino.

The Joe Six-Packs always consider the bank the creditor even when he deposits money in the bank. No depositor ever considers himself as the creditor!

Yes, Eric Holder, the US Attorney-General is right when he said that bankers cannot be prosecuted for the losses suffered by the bank. This is because a banker cannot be prosecuted for losing his “own money” as stated by the House of Lords. This is because when money is deposited with the bank, that money belongs to the banker.

The reason that if a banker is prosecuted it would collapse the entire banking system is a big lie.

The US Attorney-General could not and would not state the legal principle because it would cause a run on the banks when people discover that their monies are not safe with bankers as they can in law use the monies deposited as their own even to speculate.

What is worrisome is that your right to be repaid arises only when you demand payment.

Obviously, when you demand payment, the bank must pay you. But, if you demand payment after the bank has collapsed and is insolvent, it is too late. Your entitlement to be repaid is that of a lonely unsecured creditor and only if there are funds left after liquidation to be paid out to all the unsecured creditors and the remaining funds to be pro-rated. You would be lucky to get ten cents on the dollar.

So, when the Bank of England, the FED and the BIS issued the guidelines which became the template for the Cyprus “bail-in” (which was endorsed by the G-20 Cannes Summit in 2011), it was merely a circuitous way of stating the legal position without arousing the wrath of the people, as they well knew that if the truth was out, there would be a revolution and blood on the streets. It is therefore not surprising that the global central bankers came out with this nonsensical advisory:

“The objective of an effective resolution regime is to make feasible the resolution of financial institutions without severe systemic disruption and without exposing taxpayers to losses, while protecting vital economic functions through mechanisms which make it possible for shareholders and unsecured and uninsured creditors to absorb losses in a manner that respects the hierarchy of claims in liquidation.”(quoted in #3b4d81;”> #3b4d81;”>FSB Consultative Document: Effective Resolution of Systemically …)

This is the kind of complex technical jargon used by bankers to confuse the people, especially depositors and to cover up what I have stated in plain and simple English in the foregoing paragraphs.

The key words of the BIS guideline are:

“without severe systemic disruptions” (i.e. bank runs),

“while protecting vital economic functions” (i.e. protecting vested interests – bankers),

“unsecured creditors” (i.e. your monies, you are the dummy),

“respects the hierarchy of claims in liquidation” (i.e. you are last in the queue to be paid, after all secured creditors have been paid).

This means all depositors are losers!

Please read this article carefully and spread it far and wide.

You will be doing a favour to all your fellow country men and women and more importantly, your family and relatives.


“Secret Negotiations”: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP): A Corporate Takeover?

Global Research, May 16, 2013

Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP):  More Power to Corporations to Attack Nations

By Dave Johnson

You will be hearing a lot about the upcoming Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement. TPP’s negotiations are being held in secret with details kept secret even from our Congress. But giant corporations are in the loop.

TPP is a “trade” agreement between several Pacific-rim countries that is actually about much more than just trade. It will be sold as a trade agreement (because everyone knows that “trade” is good) but much of it appears to be (from what we know) a corporate end-run around things We the People want to do to reign in the giant corporations — like Wall Street regulation, environmental regulation and corporate taxation.

One-Sided Process

The TPP process appears to be set up to push corporate interests over other interests. The TPP is being negotiated in secret, so what we know about it comes from leaked documents. Even our Congress is being kept out of the loop. But 600 corporate representatives are in the loop while representatives of groups that protect working people, human, political and civil rights and our environment are largely not in the loop.

This one-sided participation unfortunately indicates that the interests of giant corporations are likely to override the interests of working people and those who want to protect non-corporate interests. Otherwise there would be more representation by representatives of organizations representing these concerns, and greater transparency into the process.

 TPP Is A Very, Very Big Deal

The coming TPP is a very, very big deal. If it is agreed to by the Senate and signed by the President it will override American laws in many areas. We won’t be allowed to enforce laws and regulations that impede the “rights” granted to big corporations under this agreement, and it will be very hard to rescind the agreement once signed, no matter how much damage might result. Just look at how NAFTA, China’s entry into the WTO and other agreements are causing huge trade deficits and sending jobs, factories and industries out of the country while dramatically increasing income and wealth inequality.

Making the TPP work for We, the People should be up there on our “litmus test” of things we require of our elected officials — right along with pledging no cuts to Social Security and Medicare.

TPP Not Just Trade

It looks like TPP will go way beyond what most of us would consider to be in a normal “trade” agreement. TPP — negotiated by giant corporate interests — appears set to give giant corporations a veto over a country’s ability to set many laws and regulations that are designed to reign in those corporations. Quelle surprise!

 Leaked documents appear to show that negotiators are writing provisions that will set rules that are binding on Congress and our state legislatures tell us what laws and regulations our own country can pass or enforce in areas like:

  • intellectual property rights like patents and copyrights,
  • government procurement like Buy American which would be banned,
  • investment and land use,
  • service-sector regulation,
  • food and product safety,
  • corporate competition,
  • labor,
  • even environmental standards.
  • Leaks show that TPP even limits government regulation of financial services!

Dean Baker explains that non-trade items like patents in an agreement like TPP can have a huge effect on us by dramatically increasing prices of items like pharmaceuticals, in Political Corruption and the “Free Trade” Racket,

Tariffs and quotas might raise the price of various items by 20 or 30 percent. By contrast, patent and copyright protection is likely to raise the price of protected items 2,000 percent or even 20,000 percent above the free market price. Drugs that would sell for a few dollars per prescription in a free market would sell for hundreds or even thousands of dollars when the government gives a drug company a patent monopoly.

Again: There are over 600 corporate representatives participating in the TPP process, but few if any representatives of human rights, environmental, civil rights or worker rights organizations. And the resulting agreement will be binding on governments! The corporate powers apparently granted in the TPP can override domestic laws on environmental health and safety, and labor and citizens’ rights. If this agreement becomes law multinationals can claim that those domestic laws and regulations hamper free trade and can sue for millions of dollars in “damages.”

 Bad History Of Trade Agreements Harming Economy, Democracy

Our one-sided, corporate-negotiated trade agreements have dramatically enriched Wall Street and a few CEOs. But the devastation that is apparent in many regions of our country along with the hollowing out of our middle class tells the real story of what these agreements can do to an economy. For example, we all know what has happened since China was allowed to enter the WTO. In the 2000s we lost 50,000+ factories and at least 6 million jobs just to China. Because of the massive cost of building a manufacturing infrastructure it will be very difficult to restore even key industries. But the 1% who pushed this made out extremely well.

 Even the just-signed Korea Free Trade agreement is already hurting our economy. It has increased the trade deficit, increased imports and decreased exports! A recently-released fact sheet from Public Citizen looks at the damage our economy is already experiencing from the Korea, Panama and Columbia agreements. The section on Korea tells the story: exports to Korea down 10%, trade deficit up 37%:

“One year into the Korea FTA, U.S. goods exports to Korea have declined by 10 percent (a $4.2billion decrease) in comparison to the year before FTA implementation. U.S. meat producers lost a combined $206 million in beef, pork and poultry exports in the first year of the Korea FTA relative to the year before FTA implementation, while the U.S. auto and auto parts industries suffered a 16 percent increase in the U.S. auto trade deficit with Korea. Overall, the U.S. trade deficit with Korea has swelled 37 percent under the FTA.”

Just one of many examples in the fact sheet:

  • Imports of cars and auto parts from Korea have soared 15 percent (more than $2.5 billion) under the FTA, driving a 16 percent increase in the U.S. trade deficit with Korea in autos and auto parts relative to the year before FTA implementation.

Also from the fact sheet — loss of 12,000 jobs:

“The combined U.S. trade deficit with Korea, Colombia and Panama under the FTAs has jumped 11percent above pre-FTA levels for the same months as exports to Korea have declined and imports from Korea and Panama have risen substantially. Using the same ratio employed by the Obama administration, this $2.3 billion combined trade deficit expansion implies the net loss of more than 12,000 U.S. jobs in just the first several months of the new FTAs.”

 And that’s just the recent Korea agreement, and in just a few months since it went into effect.

 Trade Can Be Good Or Bad, Depending…

No question about it, a good trade deal can boost exports, boost the economy, boost employment … And of course this promise is how these trade deals are sold to us.

 But the bad trade deals we have gotten ourselves into have instead boosted the trade deficit, boosted unemployment, boosted income and wealth inequality, boosted the loss of factories and industries, boosted the hollowing-out of our middle class and boosted the domination of our politics by the large corporate interests.

 All trade deals have winners and losers. NAFTA and letting China into the WTO were obviously big winners for Wall Street, the 1%ers, and their giant multinational corporations. But these and similar trade deals helped break the back of the unions, the middle class and our economy — especially manufacturing and its supply chains. The result of these changes has been that all of the gains from our economy as productivity increases have increasingly gone to fewer and fewer people who are higher and higher up the food chain.

 We need an open, democratic process that ensures that We, the People are the winners from our trade deals.

 Needed Fixes

The TPP negotiations should not just be negotiated to serve the interests of giant multinational corporations. The process should be opened up to the public and democracy, so people and groups with a huge stake in the outcome — like labor unions, environmental organizations, human rights groups and consumer organizations — can participate. With only corporate participation, only corporate interests will be served. Funny how that works, isn’t it?

 The process of democracy should not be subverted by a “fast track” rule that keeps our Congress from fully considering the implications and effects of such an agreement. “Fast track” just extends the lack of citizen involvement in negotiations into a lack of citizen involvement in the finalization!

Last June 130 members of the Congress wrote a letter to the US Trade Representative asking for transparency in the TPP negotiations and consultation with members of Congress. In addition,more than 400 organizations have asked Congress to replace the “Fast Track” system that limits Congress’ (democracy’s) ability to get involved in the process, and to call for a new direction for TPP as well as other trade agreements.

We also need strong tests and irrevocable language about withdrawing from the agreement if it is harming our economy, environment, smaller businesses, tax base and/or our working people.

 TPP and all future trade deals must include clear and enforceable rules covering currency manipulation and other ways that countries game the system.

Elizabeth Warren Drives It Home

Watch Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) asking about trends in trading patterns with Korea since the new “free trade” treaty went into effect, and about how TPP looks like an end run around Wall Street regulation.

Get Involved

The next round of TPP talks will be held May 15-24 in Lima, Peru. It is time to start making sure that your voice is heard in D.C. Trade deals can lift people on both sides of trade borders. But only if a true open and democratic process is used to reach agreement. Otherwise these agreements will continue to be gamed to enrich the few at the expense of the many.

 One of the best comprehensive sources of information on TPP is at Public Citizen and their Global Trade Watch. They have a landing page just waiting for you: TPP: Corporate Power Tool of the 1%. Go take a look.

The Electronic Freedom Foundation has a TPP page, explaining their concerns about the sections involving Intellectual Property (IP) as well as the general lack of transparency and openness.

Public Knowledge has a TPP landing page expressing similar concerns.

The AFL-CIO has a TPP detail page and offers Trans-Pacific FTA Outline concluding:

 ”Although not all the news coming from APEC was good, it is too early to tell if the TPP will live up to its promise to create great opportunities for America’s working families. Now is the time to speak up. If you have concerns about some of these announcements, too, now is the time to speak up–the TPP is still being negotiated.”

 This post originally appeared at Campaign for America’s Future (CAF) at their Blog for OurFuture & also crossposted at the Huffington Post. the author is a Fellow with CAF.

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