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Why Is President Obama Having So Much Trouble Selling TPP?


Why Is President Obama Having So Much Trouble Selling TPP?

Stan Sorscher

Barack Obama is cool and personable -- no-drama Obama. Then suddenly, he scolds critics of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, his NAFTA-style trade deal. He accuses them of being "wrong," unable to look at the facts, fighting the last war, confusing this new improved trade deal with NAFTA, if they don't want TPP they must want nothing at all ... and they definitely are not invited to his next birthday party.


Great article - complicated stuff broken down into understandable language.

On Obama’s “trust me” - trust him? When it comes to supporting the people, we’ve seen what a great negotiator Obama is!

And the one thing the author did not mention was the tribunals where corporations trump governments and where the people have to pay a corporation for the supposed “loss” of future profits. This is really sick. And Obama supports it. And Obama won’t talk about it.


Yet another article on TPP with absolutely no mention of ISDS. When I tried to tell a friend of mine about TPP and ISDS last week, his response was, “This can’t be possible. I’m well informed, I get and read the newspaper every day, and I’ve never heard of it.” Exactly. Mainstream media won’t tell you about it, but lefty media often misses the boat, as well. Good article except for that glaring omission. Sigh.


Peope involved in negotiations are not supposed to talk about what is in TPP or they expect legal consequences.

But, for the handful of labor or environmental people involved, how about telling us what is NOT in the deal. That does not seem to be illegal. We can infer from there.


I like to imagine that someone among the few labor or environmental people involved in TPP will show enough courage to go public. Even taking notes, much less photocopying some text, would be acts of civil disobedience that would do much to counteract Obama’s claims. The most that was by actually done by someone involved, evidently, was to leak some chapters to WikiLeaks - and there’s no evidence that the culprit was a union or environmental person.

I wonder, though, how deeply any real unionists are involved. My guess is that labor is represented not by actual union leaders but by hired lobbyists who serve both sides. For example, a certain very knowledgeable Tim Dickson has lately been winning support for TPP from unions in the pharmaceutical industry. Mr. Dickson is one of those powerful, yet almost unknown, lobbyists who easily straddle the supposed labor-corporate divide. With a record in Democratic politics going back to JFK, he has a website that proudly boasts such clients as the AFL-CIO and Teamsters, both of which have condemned the TPP. Mr. Dickson even brags that he helped to beat union-busting “paycheck protection measures” in several states - so you can’t say he is entirely a shill for corporate interests, tho he represents them simultaneously with the unions.

My guess is that the top people in the big unions and environmental groups are so deeply invested in the structures and relationships of the upper class that they cannot imagine doing any more than whine about the ways in which they disagree with the trade agreement.

Hey, I’d even like to imagine Elizabeth Warren getting herself arrested for photographing secret pages from the TPP that she is allowed to read. But even she is not Rosa Parks, much as I admire her. Once you’re in the upper classes in any way, I guess you don’t go in for civil disobedience.


You gotta wonder if he supports it b/c his job after the WH is going to be working for one of these corporations … Well, either that or he really is a whore.


Just saw that the TPP fast track bill now includes a $700 million cut to medicare. And Obama still wants it passed.


It’s so great we can’t tell you about it!!!


The three strikes against democracy:

Patriot Act

Citizens United


Oh, let’s throw in the:

Military Defense Authorization Act

And we have Global Corporate Domination State at the expense of any National Sovereign State which will be reduced to the allowable archives of history.


Another nail in the coffin of democracy. Imagine you can’t take notes on what you read. How utterly ridiculous.


Misinformed much? The medicare cut is old news (you can thank sequestration for that and was just recently added here for some reason. Gee, I wonder why?


I know! Whenever my union is negotiating something, I’m right there, reading it, taking notes and photos, etc! Because union negotiations are never secret either.
Oh wait.


I think the “Nutty argument about China” that the article simply glosses over is likely the real reason for Obama’s supprt of TPP. Absent a TPP agreement, the countries mentioned, as well as most other Pacific Rim nations will have little choice but to join the Chinese trading sphere. China, you may know, is creating its own World Bank replacement. This could eventually lead to the yuan replacing the dollar as the world’s reserve currency.

I think the choices here are bad (accept TPP) and worse.


How exactly are jobs that went to China attributable to NAFTA? China’s not in a North America.


So you can be accused of treason for disclosing the secret negociations?? Surely the opposite is true: those who are conducting the negociations behind peoples’ backs are the traitors. They are taking power away from We the People and handing it on a plate to mega-corporations and banks.
Do you understand, Mr Obummer?


Very good point. The same is true in the European parliament - no copies, no notes etc. But what would happen if the MEPs actually flouted this rule? Surely, as you say, a long-overdue constitutional crisis.