With Senator Sanders and Donald Trump winning in New Hampshire yesterday, the 2016 election suddenly became a lot more interesting.
Donald Trump came out with some statements this morning concerning his and Sanders’ agreement on the TPP issue, to wit, it’s bad for the American economy. While he estimated that Senator Sanders was ignorant of the inner workings of the TPP, a little digging by this writer found that the Senator is actually quite knowledgeable and understands perfectly well the disastrous consequences of its legislation.
Here’s a quote, in case you don’t have time to read the article, in which Senator Sanders elegantly states the negative consequences of the TPP on world democracies:
Third, the TPP would also undermine democracy by giving multi-national corporations the right to challenge any law that could reduce their “expected future profits” through what is known as the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) system. Under existing trade agreements, Phillip Morris is using this process to sue Australia and Uruguay for passing laws designed to prevent the children in those countries from smoking. These countries should be rewarded for taking action to protect the public health of their citizens. Instead, they are being taken to an international court because their laws are hurting the bottom line of one of the largest tobacco companies in the world.
Vattenfall, a Swedish energy company, has used this process to sue Germany for $5 billion over its decision to phase out nuclear power. Should the people of Germany have the right to make energy choices on their own or should these decisions be left in the hands of an unelected international tribunal?
A French waste management firm, Veolia, used this process to sue Egypt for $110 million because Egypt increased its minimum wage and improved its labor laws. In other words, Egypt’s “crime” is trying to improve life for their low-wage workers.
Do we really want to tell governments all around the world, including the U.S., that if they pass legislation protecting the well-being of their citizens they could pay substantial fines to multi-national corporations because of the loss of future profits? What an incredible undermining of democracy! But that’s exactly what will happen if the TPP goes into effect.
I suppose it’s some consolation that Donald Trump at least recognizes that the TPP is an economically enervating piece of corporate greed. He misses the mark when he considers that Senator Sanders is uninformed about the agreement. He’s well informed and comprehends completely that democracy is at stake.