Julian Assange On TPP: Mostly Not About Trade, Regulates Internet

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Star Fox
EyesOpenReport.com

Speaking to Amy Goodman of Democracy now from the Ecuadorian embassy in London, Wikileaks founder Julian Assange weighed in on the highly secretive Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement which is a current topic of debate in the U.S. House of Representatives.

First of all, it is the largest ever international economic treaty that has ever been negotiated, very considerably larger than NAFTA. It is mostly not about trade, only 5 of the 29 Chapters are about traditional trade, said Assange, who is responsible for making public 4 of the 29 chapters of the agreement through Wikileaks.

The others are about regulating the internet, and what information internet service providers have to collect, they have to hand it over to companies under certain circumstances, the regulation of labor conditions, regulating the way you can favor local industry, regulating the hospital, health care system, privatization of hospitals, so essentially every aspect of a modern economy, even banking services are in the TPP, he continued.

The Wikileaks founder went on to say that the TPP will embed a new ultramodern neoliberal structure over U.S. law and of the other countries participating.

According to Assange, only multinational corporations under the TPP will have the right to sue government over democratically erected law that could potentially cut into their future expected profits. He provides a example in which Togo, Australia and Uruguay are all being sued by tobacco company Phillip Morris to prevent them from introducing health warnings on cigarette packaging under a similar treaty.

Current TPP negotiation member states included the United States, Japan, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei.

The U.S. Senate passed a bill on Friday to put the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) on the Fast Track to approval. According to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, if this fast track approval is able to pass both chambers of congress the White House can rush the TPP through to congressional ratification, with lawmakers unable to fully debate or even amend agreements that have been negotiated entirely in secret.

The fact that the TPP, headed by thousands of corporate lobbyists, is entirely secretive to the point where members of congress must enter a completely private room and surrender all their belongings just to read, should frighten every single American. Members of congress are then unable to speak about the agreement beyond the private room. This should open up the question of, who is enforcing the secrecy and how?

A vote on the Fast Track legislation is expected to take place in the U.S. House of Representatives this week.

Consider that this agreement is secret and our elected representatives in congress and the Obama Administration want to ram it through without any publicity. You can contact your representative HERE. Tell them we want the treaty made public and we as individuals wants to pave the path for future economic development rather then unelected corporate boards.

Star Fox is a U.S. based journalist who contributes to Eyesopenreport.com.