Posts tagged treaty

Obama’s Secret Treaty Which Will Merge America More Deeply Into The Emerging One World Economic System

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Source: http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com

By Michael Snyder

 

Obama’s Secret Treaty Which Will Merge America More Deeply Into The Emerging One World Economic System

 

Barack-Obama-On-The-Phone-In-The-Oval-Office-2009-300x300Did you know that the Obama administration is negotiating a super secret “trade agreement” that is so sensitive that he isn’t even allowing members of Congress to see it?  The Trans-Pacific Partnership is being called the “NAFTA of the Pacific” and “NAFTA on steroids”, but the truth is that it is so much more than just a trade agreement.  This treaty has 29 chapters, but only 5 of them have to do with trade.  Most Americans don’t realize this, but this treaty will fundamentally change our laws regarding Internet freedom, health care, the trading of derivatives, copyright issues, food safety, environmental standards, civil liberties and so much more.  It will also merge the United States far more deeply into the emerging one world economic system.  Initially, twelve nations will be a party to this treaty including the United States, Mexico, Canada, Japan, Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.  Together, those nations represent approximately 40 percent of global GDP.  It is hoped that additional nations such as the Philippines, Thailand and Colombia will join the treaty later on.

There are some very good reasons why Obama does not want the American people to know anything about what is in this treaty.  This agreement will impose very strict Internet copyright rules on the American people, it will ban all “Buy American” laws, it will give Wall Street banks much more freedom to trade risky derivatives and it will force even more domestic manufacturing offshore.

It contains a whole host of things that Obama would be unable to get through Congress on his own.  But he is hoping to spring this on Congress at the last minute and get them to agree to this “free trade agreement” before they realize all of the things that are contained in it.

The secrecy surrounding these treaty negotiations have really been unprecedented.  The following is an excerpt from a recent article by Kurt Nimmo

“Since the beginning of the TPP negotiations, the process of drafting and negotiating the treaty’s chapters has been shrouded in an unprecedented level of secrecy,” Wikileaks notes in a statement on the release of the TPP draft. “Access to drafts of the TPP chapters is shielded from the general public. Members of the US Congress are only able to view selected portions of treaty-related documents in highly restrictive conditions and under strict supervision. It has been previously revealed that only three individuals in each TPP nation have access to the full text of the agreement, while 600 ’trade advisers’ – lobbyists guarding the interests of large US corporations such as Chevron, Halliburton, Monsanto and Walmart – are granted privileged access to crucial sections of the treaty text.”

And Obama reportedly is seeking “trade promotion authority” which would give him the ability to sign this treaty before Congress even votes on it…

Normally free -trade agreements must be authorized by a majority of the House and Senate, usually in lengthy proceedings.
 
However, the White House is seeking what is known as “trade promotion authority” which would fast track approval of the TPP by requiring Congress to vote on the likely lengthy trade agreement within 90 days and without any amendments.
 
The authority also allows Obama to sign the agreement before Congress even has a chance to vote on it, with lawmakers getting only a quick post-facto vote.

This is so insidious that it is hard to find the words to describe it.

In essence, Obama is trying to make a giant end run around Congress on dozens of different issues that are addressed by this treaty.

Fortunately, there are at least some members of Congress that are waking up to this.  Earlier this week, a small group of Republicans and a small group of Democrats both sent Obama a letter condemning this “free trade” agreement…

Separate groups of House Republicans and Democrats on Tuesday condemned the Obama administration’s proposed sweeping free trade agreement with 11 Pacific nations, known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
 
Strongly worded letters to President Barack Obama Tuesday were signed by hardline tea partiers, true-blue progressives, and moderate, corporate-friendly lawmakers in both parties, indicating political trouble for a trade deal the administration had hoped to seal by year end.

This is one of the most important political issues facing our nation here at the end of 2013, and yet you hear next to nothing about this treaty on the mainstream news.  If this treaty is approved, the United States will be permanently bound by the provisions of this treaty and will never be able to change them unless all of the other countries agree

Countries would be obliged to conform all their domestic laws and regulations to the TPP’s rules—in effect, a corporate coup d’état. The proposed pact would limit even how governments can spend their tax dollars. Buy America and other Buy Local procurement preferences that invest in the US economy would be banned, and “sweat-free,” human rights or environmental conditions on government contracts could be challenged. If the TPP comes to fruition, its retrograde rules could be altered only if all countries agreed, regardless of domestic election outcomes or changes in public opinion. And unlike much domestic legislation, the TPP would have no expiration date.

Are you starting to understand just how dangerous this treaty is?

Let me give you just one example of how this treaty could directly affect you.

Do you remember SOPA?

There was a huge public backlash when the very strict Internet copyright provisions of SOPA were revealed to the public, and the American people loudly expressed their displeasure to members of Congress.

But now the provisions of SOPA are back.  Most of them have reportedly been very quietly inserted into this treaty.  If this treaty is enacted, those provisions will become law and the American people will not be able to do a thing about it.

And according to an article in the New York Times, there are all sorts of other disturbing things that have been slipped into this treaty…

And yet another leak revealed that the deal would include even more expansive incentives to relocate domestic manufacturing offshore than were included in Nafta — a deal that drained millions of manufacturing jobs from the American economy.

 
 

The agreement would also be a boon for Wall Street and its campaign to water down regulations put in place after the 2008 financial crisis. Among other things, it would practically forbid bans on risky financial products, including the toxic derivatives that helped cause the crisis in the first place.

Are you starting to grasp why the Obama administration is so determined to keep this treaty such a secret?

In addition, this “free trade” agreement will push the ongoing deindustrialization of America into overdrive.  Every year, we buy hundreds of billions of dollars more stuff from the rest of the world than they buy from us.  Tens of thousands of American businesses have been lost as a result, and millions of good jobs have been shipped overseas.

If you are not familiar with our “trade deficit”, you really should be.  It is one of the issues at the very heart of our economic problems.  Posted below is a short 3 minute video that briefly discusses the trade deficit and why it is so important…

YouTube Preview Image

Slowly merging our economy with the rest of the planet has been absolutely disastrous for America.  Just consider the following statistics…

-Overall, the United States has run a trade deficit of more than 8 trillion dollars with the rest of the world since 1975.

-The United States has lost more than 56,000 manufacturing facilities since 2001.

-Back in the year 2000, there were more than 17 million Americans working in manufacturing.  Now there are less than 12 million.

-There are less Americans working in manufacturing today than there was in 1950 even though the population of the country has more than doubled since then.

-Back in 1950, more than 80 percent of all men in the United States had jobs.  Today, less than 65 percent of all men in the United States have jobs.

-When NAFTA was pushed through Congress in 1993, the United States had a trade surplus with Mexico of 1.6 billion dollars.  By 2010, we had a trade deficit with Mexico of 61.6 billion dollars.

-Back in 1985, our trade deficit with China was approximately 6 million dollars (million with a little “m”) for the entire year.  In 2012, our trade deficit with China was 315 billion dollars.  That was the largest trade deficit that one nation has had with another nation in the history of the world.

-According to the Economic Policy Institute, America is losing half a million jobs to China every single year.

-According to Professor Alan Blinder of Princeton University, 40 million more U.S. jobs could be sent offshore over the next two decades if current trends continue.

Once upon a time, our great manufacturing cities were the envy of the entire planet.  In fact, at one time Detroit actually had the highest per capita income in the United States.

But now Detroit is a rotting, decaying, festering hellhole that is completely bankrupt.  And there are dozens of other formerly great manufacturing cities that are heading down the exact same path.

These “free trade” agreements are neither “free” nor “fair” when you really examine them, and they are absolutely eviscerating the middle class.

Please urge your representatives in Congress to block the Trans-Pacific Partnership.  If this treaty does get approved, it is going to make a lot of our problems a whole lot worse.

This article first appeared here at the Economic Collapse Blog.  Michael Snyder is a writer, speaker and activist who writes and edits his own blogs The American Dream and Economic Collapse Blog. Follow him on Twitter here


Image credit: http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com
 

Edward Snowden leaves Hong Kong for ’3rd country’

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Source: http://www.cbc.ca

By The Associated Press  Posted: Jun 23, 2013 5:38 AM ET  |  Last Updated: Jun 23, 2013 5:33 AM ET

Edward Snowden leaves Hong Kong for ’3rd country’

Boards plane after U.S. begins extradition process

A former National Security Agency contractor wanted by the United States for revealing two highly classified surveillance programs has left for a “third country,” the Hong Kong government said Sunday.

A statement from the government did not identify the country, but the South China Morning Post, which has been in contact with Edward Snowden, reported that he was on a plane for Moscow, but that Russia was not his final destination.

Snowden told a local newspaper that ‘the NSA does all kinds of things like hack Chinese cellphone companies to steal all of your SMS [texting] data.’ (Bobby Yip/Reuters)

While the destination is not known, there are reports it could be Cuba, Ecuador or Iceland.

Snowden, who has been in hiding in Hong Kong for several weeks since he revealed information on the highly classified spy programs, has talked of seeking asylum in Iceland.

His departure came a day after the United States made a formal request for his extradition and warned Hong Kong against delaying the process of returning him to face trial in the U.S.

The Hong Kong government said Snowden left “on his own accord for a third country through a lawful and normal channel.”

It acknowledged the U.S. extradition request, but said U.S. documentation did “fully comply with the legal requirements under Hong Kong law.” It said additional information was requested from Washington, but since the Hong Kong government “has yet to have sufficient information to process the request for provisional warrant of arrest, there is no legal basis to restrict Mr. Snowden from leaving Hong Kong.”

The statement said Hong Kong had informed the U.S. of Snowden’s departure. It added that it wanted more information about alleged hacking of computer systems in Hong Kong by U.S. government agencies which Snowden had revealed.

Snowden’s departure eliminates a possible fight between Washington and Beijing at a time when China is trying to deflect U.S. accusations that it carries out extensive surveillance of American government and commercial operations. Hong Kong, a former British colony, has a high degree of autonomy and is granted rights and freedoms not seen on mainland China, but under the city’s mini constitution Beijing is allowed to intervene in matters involving defence and diplomatic affairs.

Hong Kong has an extradition treaty with the U.S., but the document has some exceptions, including for crimes deemed political.

FULL STORY

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Republished with permission

Yuan tipped to replace U.S. dollar, Euro in southeast Asia

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Source: http://news.xinhuanet.com

By Chen Zhi

Yuan tipped to replace U.S. dollar, Euro in southeast Asia

1 yuan, 90% silver, commemorative; President Duan Qirui, minted in 1924

BANGKOK, Aug. 25 (Xinhua) — China’s currency could be eventually used as an alternative to the U.S. dollar and Euro by southeast Asian countries, experts said.

Phathanaphong Phusuwan, a senior official of the Bank of Thailand, said in a seminar on Thai-Chinese trade, investment and finance relations on Saturday that the yuan would likely be used more between China and ASEAN member states in the long run.

In the panel discussion co-hosted by the National Research Council of Thailand, Huaqiao University and the Thai-Chinese Culture & Economy Association here, the official of the Thai central bank commented the Chinese currency could possibly replace the U.S. dollar and Euro when it comes to trade, financial and money-exchange dealings throughout the ASEAN community, due in part to the unresolved economic and financial problems in the United States and the European Union.

“In the long run from 2015 onwards, trade with Asia will largely increase under the ASEAN-China Free Trade Area agreement, which will influence the use of the yuan and the local currencies. The yuan is then a good alternative for the international trade in the future,” said the official, referring to the year in which the regional bloc will become an ASEAN Economic Community.

Nevertheless, he said, the role of the Chinese currency in Thailand and other ASEAN states will remain limited in the short and medium terms.

Thai merchants have increased their use of the yuan in trade, following the easing of restrictions by the Chinese government, he said. A dozen Thai commercial banks and foreign banks’ branches here currently offer yuan-based services, including foreign currency deposits, money exchange, fund transfers and purchases of Chinese banknotes.

The Chinese currency has accounted for 10.8 percent of China’s trade dealings with the world during the first half of this year, according to a report of the Thai central bank.

FULL STORY
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Yuan photo added to original post.

GOP Senators Sink Law of the Sea Treaty

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Source: http://cnsnews.com

By Matt Cover

GOP Senators Sink Law of the Sea Treaty

Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) (AP Photo)

(CNSNews.com) – Thirty-four Republican senators have now signed on to a letter circulated by Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) declaring that they will not support ratification of the Law of the Sea Treaty.

Ratification would have required a two-thirds vote in the Senate to pass, meaning that 67 Senators would have needed to vote for the treaty in order for the U.S. to formally agree to it.

Now that 34 senators have pledged to vote against ratification, there are not enough votes to ratify the treaty.

“President Obama and Massachusetts Senator John Kerry were trying to ram through a misguided treaty that conveys ownership of the oceans (2/3 of the earth surface) to a United Nations agency and subjects the U.S. to international environmental judgments,” said Sen. DeMint in a statement released today. “But conservatives defeated this threat to sovereignty by rallying together enough senators to block the Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST).”

Earlier today, DeMint announced that four additional Republicans had signed his opposition letter stating that they will vote against ratification.

(more…)

Acta: Controversial anti-piracy agreement rejected by EU

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Source: http://www.bbc.com

The European Parliament has voted to reject the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (Acta).

The treaty had been heavily critcised in the months leading up to the vote

The European Parliament has voted to reject the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (Acta).

The proposed agreement sought to curb piracy, but internet campaigners said it posed a threat to online freedoms.

The rejection vote followed a failed attempt to postpone the decision because of ongoing investigations into Acta by the European Court of Justice.

Euro MP David Martin said: “It’s time to give [Acta] its last rites.”

Twenty-two EU member states, including the UK, had signed the Acta treaty – but it had not been formally ratified.

Outside the EU, the treaty also had the support of the US, Australia, Canada, Japan, Morocco, New Zealand, Singapore and South Korea.

However, following significant protests, several countries chose not to back it.

Wednesday’s vote is seen by most observers as the final blow to the treaty in its current form. It means no member states will be able to join the agreement.

(more…)

The Past, Present and Future of Internet Censorship

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Source: http://www.corbettreport.com

Beyond SOPA: The Past, Present and Future of Internet Censorship

By James Corbett
grtv.ca
29 January, 2012

When legislators in the US abandoned their support of SOPA and PIPA in the wake of mass popular protest earlier this month, many of those who had been mobilized by the legislation–which would have granted the US government almost total power to block access to foreign websites accused of so much as linking to copyrighted material–did not have long to enjoy their “victory.” The very next day the New Zealand police swooped in to the million-dollar estate of MegaUpload.com founder Kim Dotcom, arresting him and three others at the US government’s request for alleged racketeering, copyright infringement and money laundering. The Department of Justice is now seeking the MegaUpload CEO’s extradition to the US.

Some amongst those who had been campaigning against SOPA and PIPA did not know that the US government already had the authority to shut down entire websites and in fact has exercised that authority on numerous occasions. What many are now learning is that, far from some potential future threat, internet censorship already exists in a variety of legislation that is already on the books in the United States and in nations around the world.

Although most commonly associated with China, which has implemented strict internet filters that prevent its citizens from finding politically sensitive material, various internet censorship programs have already been implemented by countries around the globe.

In 2010, Japan passed amendments to its copyright law making it illegal to download copyrighted material. The move has yet to curtail file-sharing in the country, so the Japanese government recently announced that they are going to begin putting fake copies of popular tv dramas on file-sharing websites that, when opened, remind users that it is illegal to download such material.

In July of 2010, the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement seized the domains of 8 websites that it accused of hosting illegal copies of copyrighted material as part of an investigation dubbed Operation In Our Sites. The seizures came before any trial took place, and six of the websites did not actually host any of the copyrighted material in question, only linking to it. That November, ICE acted once again, this time seizing 82 domains. In December of 2011, over one year later, the agency returned one of the domains, Dajaz1.com, to its owner, after admitting that it had not in fact breached any laws.

In May of last year, the US Justice Department began seeking the extradition of one of the website’s operators, Richard O’Dwyer, from the UK. O’Dwyer is a British citizen who established TVShack.net in December of 2007. The DOJ is hoping to bring O’Dwyer to the US under the Extradition Act of 2003 to face charges of copyright infringement in the Southern District of New York.

Late last year, a number of nations signed a new global copyright agreement known as the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement or ACTA. Signatories include the United States, Canada, Japan, Australia, South Korea, and, as of this past week, 22 member states of the European Union.

Purported to be a treaty against counterfeit goods, generic drugs and copyright, it threatens to fundamentally alter the internet as it has so far existed.

When the Polish government announced its intention to sign earlier this month, protests sprang up around the country.

(more…)

Even Democrats Oppose Obama On Gun Control Treaty

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Source: http://blog.chron.com/texassparkle/

For awhile now I’ve gotten e-mails from people concerned about Pres. Obama and this administration restricting gun rights. I honestly thought they were being a bit conspiratorial. That is, until I read this:

Twelve Democratic senators have joined 45 Republicans in a fast growing movement to halt progress on an Obama-backed United Nations effort that could bring international gun control into the United States and slap America’s gun owners with severe restrictions.

Montana Democratic Sen. Jon Tester’s office today provided Whispers with their letter, signed by 11 other Democrats, urging the president to press for significant changes in the treaty. Their major concern: that domestic manufacture, possession, and sales of firearms and ammo will be included, thereby giving an international authority the right to regulate arms sales already protected by the Second Amendment. They also said any move for an international gun registry would be a non-starter

When Democrats themselves are joining Republicans to defend our 2nd Amendment rights, you know you have something to worry about.

Speaking to La Raza the other day, Pres. Obama said, “I know some people want me to bypass Congress and change the laws on my own,” (to which the crowd chanted “Yes you can!” (Scary, right?) Then Obama added, “Believe me, the idea of doing things on my own is very tempting.”

In this case, so tempting he decided that if he can’t change the laws here, he could just bypass them by an international treaty.

The U.N. Arms Trade Treaty, which the Bush administration had opposed, would regulate with the international trade of arms. It would cover the trading of conventional firearms likes those used by collectors and sportsmen and women.

The goal of the treaty is to come up with internationally recognized rules governing the trade of guns and ammo.

Sen. Jerry Moran wrote in a letter to Pres. Obama, “Our country’s sovereignty and the Second Amendment rights of American citizens must not be infringed upon by the United Nations. Today, the Senate sends a powerful message to the Obama Administration: an Arms Trade Treaty that does not protect ownership of civilian firearms will fail in the Senate. Our firearm freedoms are not negotiable.”

This sort of thing is not out of the ordinary for Pres. Obama. Bypassing Congress with Executive Orders is something he’s gotten very good at doing. From actions using his executive power to advance energy and environmental policy, to getting us involved in the war in Libya, Obama sees no need to let Congress in on these decisions.

Instead of letting Congress enact laws about guns at our border, earlier this month, through an Executive Order (of course), the Obama administration is implemented new restrictions on the sale of certain weapons in border states, and increasing the penalties for violating certain firearms laws.

All Presidents have used Executives Orders to their own end, but this trend is truly concerning for gun owners, and for those who believe in our 2nd Amendment rights.

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