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The Free Trade Deception Almost No One Understands

More on those evil twins of global trade, the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) and Trans Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) which are not about freeing business from bureaucracy but freeing corporations from the tiresome obligation to obey national laws covering trading standards, food quality, workers' rights, consumer protection and the environment. We've written about both treaties many times before.
edited by Ian R Thorpe

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TTIP, TPP, It's Free Trade Jim, But Not As We Know It

Contents




The Free Trade Deception Almost No One Understands

reproduced by courtesy of Compassion In World Farming

posted by Arthur Foxake

If you have heard about the two huge free trade agreements — the Trans-Pacific Part­ner­ship (TPP) and the Transat­lantic Trade and Invest­ment Part­ner­ship (TTIP) — being negotiated by the Obama administration, you probably think they have some­thing to do with an attempt to create more jobs by lowering tariffs.

That’s the decep­tion. While you’re being told that these “free trade” agree­ments will bring prosperity, they are actually being used by establishment elites to create economically and politically integrated blocs of nations that can be knit together into a New World Order. This means that the TPP and TTIP trade pacts are a direct threat to our national independence and personal freedoms.

For example, 28 formerly independent European nations have lost their national independence to the European Union (EU) based on a deceptive series of free trade agreements. Similarly, there has been a well-organized effort to merge the United States, Mexico, and Canada to form a North American Union (NAU) based on the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA); however, widespread grassroots opposition has greatly slowed down this initiative.

Today, the TTIP agreement represents an attempt by European and American establishment elites to merge the United States with the EU; the TPP is an attempt to economically and politically integrate the United States with eleven Pacific Rim nations.

The seventh round of TTIP negotiations [started] on September 29 (2014). The TPP negotiations could be completed as soon as late this year.

If we are to preserve our national independence and personal freedoms, we must create enough pressure on Congress to reject the TPP and TTIP “free trade” deals.

We must also convince Congress to reject any legislation reauthorizing Trade Promotion Authority TPA (aka fast-track authority) that would be used to expedite passage of the TPP and TTIP agreements.

Please contact Congress in opposition to TPA, TPP, and TTIP. There are separate, prewritten, editable messages set up for all three issues.

But, you say, you’ve already contacted your representative and senators and one or more of them say they support the TPP and TTIP. That means you still have more work to do. Get others to contact your representative and senators in opposition to these agreements and recontact those legislators who support the TPP and TTIP pacts with evidence for why they should be rejected. The best source for such evidence is the special report, “How the Free Trade Agenda Is Knocking Down America,” The New American issue for September 2, 2013.

Source: http://agenda21news.com/2014/10/free-trade-deception-almost-one-understands/

(The above is reproduced verbatiom as required by terms of the Creative commons licence and 'fair use' terms. To talk of contacting congress members does noty make much sense to a European of course, but you can contact elected members of your national government or your European Parliament member and encourage opposition to TTIP, a free trade deal which will benefit corporate business greatly as the expense of individuals' rights.)

EU-US TRADE DEAL BLOCKS FUTURE OF GOOD FOOD AND FARMING

The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) is a proposed free trade agreement between the European Union (EU) and the United States (US). Proponents argue that it will increase trade leading to economic growth and jobs. But opponents have voiced many concerns, including its impact on food and farming on both sides of the Atlantic and its potential to undermine a more sustainable food system. This is because TTIP will promote an industrial model of food and farming, threatening the survival of small family farms, local food initiatives, standards for healthy and safe food, animal welfare, the environment, and public health.

TTIP: A corporate dream scenario

Industry lobbying in favour of TTIP has been fierce across the board, but agribusiness corporations have been in the lead, as they consider the treaty a perfect tool to redirect public money and counteract existing and future regulations aimed at protecting workers, public health, animal welfare, and the environment. Agribusiness corporations, including multinational food and drink companies, agrochemical, animal feed industries, and ‘big’ farming interests, all stand to gain from this and have massively lobbied the European Commission on TTIP. Free trade vs healthy food

Transnational corporations – including food and beverage companies and supermarket chains – have been some of the driving forces behind free trade agreements. This free trade food model is gradually altering diets from traditional and unprocessed foods to high-fat, high-sugar diets closely linked with diseases such as obesity, cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.

Eroding standards: Harmonisation and mutual recognition

While the European Commission has strongly denied that TTIP will jeopardise EU food safety standards, they have presented little to back up their claims. In fact, TTIP is designed to flatten out differences in current rules between the EU and the US that are seen as ‘trade-distorting’. This could lead to a race to the bottom for standards.

While far from perfect, the EU has a ‘farm to fork’ policy where each part of the food chain is monitored. It also – at least in some areas – applies the precautionary principle, which allows withdrawal from the market of products likely to be hazardous. In contrast, the US system focuses on the end product, which can only be regulated or banned when there is a scientific consensus on its danger or toxicity. Corporate lobby groups are now attacking the precautionary principle by saying it’s not based on ‘sound’ science; in reality what they are asking for is ‘industry-friendly’ science.

Flattening out differences in rules via ‘mutual recognition’ or ‘harmonisation’ of each others’ standards will mean the cheaper, corporate-friendly rules will prevail – a ‘race to the bottom’.

While mutual recognition means easier market access for exporters, the less stringent rules could have serious impacts on human health and the environment, for example from a rise in antimicrobial resistance through routine antibiotic use in industrial animal agriculture, or the use of pesticides implicated in bee colony collapse. TTIP – Impact on farmers’ livelihoods

TTIP will mean that small and medium size family farms will face increased competition. In this scenario, the intensive agricultural model, which is more developed in the US, will expand quickly in the EU and have a devastating effect on rural communities. Transnational corporations would have even more control over the food system, with a subsequent decrease in citizens’ own control over their food, land, water and seeds.

The EU’s higher animal welfare, health, social and environmental standards, but also the cost of land, all mean that production costs in the EU are far higher than in North America. In particular, European farmers’ unions warn that the ‘mutual recognition of standards’ will mean that producers with higher standards – and therefore higher costs – will eventually lose this race to the bottom. TTIP in addition aims to remove all remaining tariffs between the US and EU. Small meat and dairy producers could be strongly hit. It is a choice between trying to survive in the face of enormous distortion of competition, or sink to the lowest standards.

Farmers’ right to use, exchange or sell their seeds will be further threatened by the agreement with the application of even stronger intellectual property rights on seeds, as is the case in the United States. TTIP rules on intellectual property will also affect quality labels and geographical indications. The US uses a patent or trademark system, and opposes the European system of Geographical Indications used to indicate quality and geographic origin. Locking in the future: Regulatory cooperation and Investor State Dispute Mechanism (ISDS)

Regulatory cooperation is the ultimate goal for TTIP; the aim is to create a mechanism for the EU and the US to work jointly on reviewing existing rules or standards (such as labour or food safety standards) that are seen as barriers to trade by industry, and prevent new ones in the future. This would considerably increase corporate influence over the political decisions that will shape the agriculture of the future, closing the door on the possibility of moving the EU and the US towards genuinely sustainable food policies. The goal is the creation of a permanent EU-US dialogue in which industry will have a direct voice.

TTIP’s chapter on the very controversial Investor State Dispute Mechanism will give companies the right to sue governments over regulations that undermine their expected profit, which is a huge threat to democratic decision making. A precautionary tale: Legislation on pesticides

A wide range of pesticides are harmful to human health and ecosystems. Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs), for example, pose a serious threat by changing the way hormones function in humans and animals. These chemicals are directly linked to a wide range of problems in reproductive health, hormone related cancers, and even obesity and diabetes.

The EU has been working for years to agree on a proposal for dealing with these chemicals. Pesticide industries in both the EU and US, however, are pushing hard to minimise legislation on endocrine disruptors, arguing that the categorisation of chemicals as endocrine disruptors runs “counter to the science based risk assessment approach used in the USA”.

In a similar fashion, these same proponents have cited the proposed EU ban on neonicotinoids – the pesticide strongly linked to bee colony collapse – as an abuse of the precautionary principle.

Progress made on regulating endocrine disruptors in Europe could be undermined by the push in the TTIP to ‘harmonise’ standards down to the lowest level. And this could lead to a ‘regulatory freeze’ that would block progress on regulating pesticides containing endocrine disruptors and neonicotinoids.

Animal welfare in the TTIP: Promoting factory farming

The EU has recognised animals as sentient beings and requires Member States to respect the welfare of animals. A number of legislative measures have been passed that guarantee minimum standards for the protection of animals on-farm, during transport, and at slaughter. Among them, EU-wide bans protect against the worst forms of cruelty, such as barren battery cages for hens, veal crates, and sow stalls (after the first four weeks of a sow’s pregnancy). In the US, regulations on farm animal welfare are generally substantially lower.

The deregulatory approach pushed by TTIP through ‘mutual recognition’, ‘harmonisation’ and ‘regulatory cooperation’ is likely to compromise the welfare of animals and will accelerate the process of intensification of animal agriculture on both sides of the Atlantic by lowering existing standards and freezing and even eliminating the possibility for future legislation protecting animals.

Antibiotic resistance

Antibiotic resistance is a huge challenge in both the EU and US. Heavy use of antibiotics in intensive animal agriculture has been linked to the development of antimicrobial resistance in humans, leading to the rise of non-treatable superbugs. The non-therapeutic use of antibiotics and hormones for growth promotion is not permitted in the EU, although the rules are often circumvented to use medicines prophylactically. In the US, non-therapeutic use of antibiotics and hormones for growth promotion is not prohibited. Harmonisation of rules on antibiotic use under TTIP can be expected to weaken standards, undermining all the progress made in the EU in limiting the use of antibiotics and growth promoters.

Inspection of the food chain

Inspections of all aspects of the food chain are crucial to monitor compliance with legislation and standards, including those to protect farm animal welfare. It is unclear however which inspection regime will be put in place under TTIP, whether the inspection bodies will have the capacity needed to carry out inspections and what action will be taken in the case of infringements.

TTIP already at work

Cloning of animals for food is permitted in the US and there is increasing pressure on the EU to open its market to such imports. The European Commission is already watering down proposed rules in anticipation of a TTIP deal. Its proposals on animal cloning provide a clear example; a proposed ban of cloning of animals and the sale of products from clones does not extend to their descendants. This risks opening the market for these products from the US, which will inevitably lead to an increase in the use of descendants of clones in the food chain in the EU, in order to remain competitive. A threat to GMO rules in the EU and US

In the US there are outdated rules combined with a largely voluntary approach on how to safety check for genetically modified (GM) products. Biotech industries and their lobbyists in both the EU and US want TTIP to ‘synchronize’ the more rigorous EU GMO approval process with the US automatic approval process, which would mean a lowering of the EU standards.

At the same time, US negotiators and industry lobbyists have been pushing for weaker EU rules on GM imports. They want the EU to allow imports of food and seeds that are contaminated with GM food or seeds, even in cases where the GM material has not been authorised as safe in the EU.

This would mean farmers and citizens would not know if the food or seeds they were buying contained GMOs – and Europeans could be eating unauthorised GM ingredients which had not been through any form of safety check.

Industry groups are also pushing back on Europe’s mandatory labelling requirement of GMOs. While they are targeting EU labelling programs, the trade rules they push for could also outlaw new GMO labelling laws at state level in the US. Food Labelling

Labelling schemes are different between the two regions. The US focus is on nutrient content. The EU has used a number of criteria for different products. An example is the mandatory egg labelling scheme which tells consumers which production systems their eggs come from. Under TTIP it is not clear which rules will be accepted and whether any labelling schemes will be mandatory or voluntary. EU consumers may find they are unable to choose cage free when purchasing products containing imported eggs.

What’s at stake for farming and food?

TTIP will lower regulations on food safety, animal welfare, public health and environmental protection, and will lead to more industrialised, intensive food production that undermines the health of people and the planet. Trade policy should be for the benefit of people and the environment, not corporations.

STOP TTIP BEFORE IT STOPS GOOD FOOD AND FARMING

Sign the self-organised European Citizens’ Initiative at https://stop-ttip.org/
Read more:

* International website with a good overview of information and actions: http://www.bilaterals.org/?-TTIP-
* Alternative Trade Mandate. Seattle to Brussels Network: www.alternativetrademandate.org
* Institute for Agriculture & Trade Policy (IATP). 10 reasons why TTIP is bad for good food and farming. http://tinyurl.com/IATPdoc
* IATP & Heinrich Böll Foundation. Promises and Perils of the TTIP: Negotiating a Transatlantic Agricultural Market. http://tinyurl.com/IATP-HBoell
* Center for Food Safety. Trade Matters: TTIP – Impacts on Food and Farming. http://tinyurl.com/CenterforFoodSafety
* Corporate Observatory Europe (CEO). TTIP: A lose-lose deal for food and farming. http://tinyurl.com/CEObservatory
* GRAIN. Food safety in the EU-US trade agreement: going outside the box. http://tinyurl.com/GrainDoc
* Friends of the Earth Europe & IATP. EU-US trade deal: A bumper crop for ‘big food’? http://tinyurl.com/FoE-IATP
* IATP. Maine Agriculture and Food Systems in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. http://tinyurl.com/IATP-Maine
Produced by Compassion in World Farming ciwf.org
Corporate Europe Observatory www.corporateeurope.org
ARC2020 www.arc2020.eu
Friends of the Earth Europe www.foeeurope.org
European Coordination Via Campesina www.eurovia.org
Sourced PDF file at: https://www.ciwf.org.uk/media/6305116/ttip-a-recipe-for-disaster-booklet-dec-2014.pdf


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Big Pharma billionaire charged with conspiracy and bribery of doctors
Not long ago it would have been inconceivable that one day a Big Pharma company founder and owner would be arrested for running a criminal drug cartel, but that is exactly what happened a few days ago. “Federal authorities arrested the billionaire founder and owner of Insys Therapeutics Thursday on charges of bribing doctors and pain clinics into prescribing the company’s fentanyl product to their patients ...

Coronavirus Contains “HIV Insertions”: Claim Stokes Fears Over Genetically Modified BioweaponFor the past two weeks mainstream media reporting of the epidemic of a new strain of coronavirus in China has been getting more and more hysterical. However, reports have pushed back against one "conspiracy theory" about the origins of the virus that has now infected as many as 70,000+ people in the central China city of Wuhan alone (depending on whom you believe).

Corona Virus: Should We Worry
The official data coming out of China and from other sources including the World Health Organisation (WHO) on the spread of the Wuhan coronavirus continues to suggest an exponential growth rate. With more and more infectious disease experts are now openly calling the virus a full-blown global pandemic, many people are asking should we in the west be worried and how bad might things get?

The Islamic Republic Of France
France’s left-wing elite are accused of cowardice for failing to support 16-year-old girl facing death threats after she insulted Islam online, the ruling class have been also accused of cowardice for failing to support a 16-year-old girl who has faced death threats after she allegedly insulted Islam online.

Clinton Kill List To Determine Who Will Be US 2020 Presidential Candidate?
And then, in accordance with Murphy’s law, which states just when you think things can’t get any worse, they do, Hillary Clinton has emerged, having found what she obviously thinks is a sure – fire route to the presidency, to offer her services as vice presidential candidate to whoever wins the nomination. And just to show how far The Democrats are removed from reality, many leading figures in the party and the left leaning media think it’s a good idea.

January 2020

Coronavirus Contains “HIV Insertions”: Claim Stokes Fears Over Genetically Modified Bioweapon
The theory that China obtained the coronavirus via a Canadian research program, and started molding it into a bioweapon at the Institute of Virology in Wuhan before it somehow escaped could be an attempt by the establishment (the Davosocracy,) to spread fear and panic as they see resurgent nationalism across the developed world and growing scepticism about

Italy most likely member to quit the EU and demand independence after Brexit -shock poll 23:01 (11 pm) 31 January, the United Kingdom is no longer part of the European Union.

Throughout the day, the last on which the UK will be a member of the European Union, more than 7,000 people took part in an online, and completely meaningless except as a gesture, poll which asked which nation they thought would be next to leave the 27 member bloc ...

US Democratic Party Orders Google To Spread Globalist Propaganda
The U.S. House of Representatives Select Committee on the Climate Crisis has demanded, in a letter to Google CEO Sudar Pichai that the Internet Search giant demonetize climate skeptics, and provide 'education' to millions of people who have been exposed to “dangerous misinformation”. Key actions demanded of Google by The Democrats are:

Time is NOT real: Physicists show EVERYTHING happens at the same time

The concept of time is simply an illusion made up of human memories, everything that has ever been and ever will be is happening RIGHT NOW. That is the theory according to a group of esteemed physicists who aim to solve one of the universe’s mysteries.
Most people do not even consider the concept of time but there is nothing in the laws of physics to state that it should move in the forward direction that we know. The laws of physics are symmetric ultimately meaning that time could have easily moved in a backward direction as it does forward. Indeed some adherents to the ‘big crunch’ theory say time WILL run backwards when the universe stops expanding and starts contracting back in on itself.

The BBC is panicking at the public’s rejection of its arrogant Left-liberal worldview
This is nearly over – this weird disconnect between what most of us understand as reality and the world as seen through the eyes of an all pervasive Authority that was apparently appointed (although we never knew by whom) to establish the limits of public discourse. The crisis of confidence at the BBC – and make no mistake, it is a full blown, all alarm bells ringing, catastrophic crisis ...

The grooming gang cover-up is Britain’s real racism scandal

Forget pathetic 'Princess Pushy' Megan Markle petulantly playing the race card when she found life in the goldfish bowl occupied by Britain's Royal Family was not to her liking, the grooming gang cover up is Britain's racist scandal - and it is far worse than the trivialities that get American libtards screaming about "White Privilege ..."

John McCain’s Widow Comments on Jeffrey Epstein’s Sex Trafficking ChargesJohn McCain’s Widow Comments on Jeffrey Epstein’s Sex Trafficking Charges


Speaking at a human trafficking event in Florida, McCain revealed that her family was quite familiar with Epstein’s wrongdoings as one girl from her daughter’s high school was actually among the financier’s underage victims, then suddenly acknowledging that she “knew” about his crimes.
More posts:

French Intellectual Jailed for Calling Mass Immigration an “Invasion”
French intellectual Renaud Camus (above) has been conditionally sentenced to 2 months imprisonment for arguing that mass immigration in Europe represents an “invasion.” Summit.news reports: The writer, who is the author of Le Grand Remplacement (The Great Replacement), was charged with “public incitement to hate or violence on the basis of origin, ethnicity, nationality, race or religion.”

“Hard” Of Hearing? PornHub Being Sued By Deaf Man For Lack Of Subtitles
We read today that sex supermaket site PornHub is being sued by Yaroslav Suris, who has filed a lawsuit claiming that its lack of PornHub’s lack of subtitles for the hard of hearing is discriminatory. Suris’ bone of contention is that the website violates his rights under the Americans With Disabilities Act, according to showbiz gossip site TMZ, which broke the story ...

Quitaly Back On As Salvini Prepares To Take On The EU
While the bureaucraps of Brussels were still congratuating themselves on forcing Matteo Salvini’s Lega party out of Italy’s governernment, mainstream media barely bothered to cover the news that Lega won the state elections in Umbria towards the end of October 2019. Thus the story that should have had Europhiles like Emmanuel Macron and Guy Verhofshit crapping themselves was barely noticed.

Police Failed To Act Against Muslim Grooming Gang Due To Fears Over "Community Tensions" A new report based on the evidence of former Grester Manchester Police Detective Constable Maggie Oliver acknowledges that the force failed to stop dozens of girls being groomed and sexually exploited by a network of Pakistani men despite being fully aware of what was happening due to fears over creating “community tensions.” The report notes that the instruction to avoid prosecuting came "right from the top ..."

Asian grooming gang given free pass to rape; police officers told ‘find other ethnicities’ to investigate – detective.
A report published today, authored by child protection specialist Malcolm Newsam CBE and former senior police officer Gary Ridgway, comes following the reopening of an investigation into the death of 15-year-old Victoria Agoglia, who – after years of abuse and days after she was injected with heroin by a 50-year-old man – died in hospital of an overdose in 2003.

Greta Thunberg Slams Australia for Coal Industry, Expands List of Climate Demands
Little Greta Thunberg, who was elected by nobody apparently now speaks for us all on matters relating to climate change. The Swedish climate change hustler who is making a fortune for her handlers from donations to her campaign, again castigated Australia for continuing to mine and export coal despite her previous complaints, adding a call for an end worldwide to the actibity to her list of climate demands to be delivered at the upcoming World Economic Forum in Davos ...

Macron Digs In Against The General Strike, But Could It Finish Him?
As the French braces itself for the latest wave of protests and strikes across the country, as attitudes harden against President Emmanuel Macron's pension and retirement system reforms. Karel Vereycken, vice-president of France's Solidarity and Progress Party, has given his version what's behind the recent wave of strikes and why Macron's efforts to calm the situation down are backfiring.


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