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Archive for May 16th, 2012

Let’s get something straight. President Obama is a tool of Wall Street in its war against the middle class. He is their class warrior. The Obama team is negotiating to ship more jobs overseas, gut US laws and do a lot of other nasty stuff to the middle class. Check out the video below from Occupy Dallas.

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Here’s how free trade works; your income is freely given to the rich. It’s that simple. When your government signs a free trade treaty, it is opening up doors for US companies to ship jobs overseas from the USA, or giving them a conduit through which to create jobs over seas rather than here, which would never have occurred without the treaty. The difference between the old wages here and the new lower wages there go into the pockets of the one percent via higher corporate profits, rising dividends and enhanced share prices. The losers of those jobs might get unemployment insurance, if they’re lucky. The American tax base is being systematically destroyed via each treaty as more and more jobs are shipped or created overseas by American companies. Schools are starving for money, so are public libraries and other governmental agencies because the tax money has been stuffed into the already fat wallets of the one percent via trade treaties.

In other words, the Obama administration is knowingly negotiating to redistribute income from your pockets and the pockets of your children to the rich as it negotiates the Trans Pacific Free Trade Agreement. How’s that for a man of the people?

Here’s the latest update from Dallas, Texas.

As trade negotiators from throughout the Pacific Rim gathered outside Dallas for a trade summit aimed at speeding the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Free Trade Agreement towards conclusion, Texans were out in force to demand a public voice in the negotiating process. With the help of Citizens Trade Campaign and the Texas Fair Trade Coalition, local labor, environmental and community advocates:

Delivered over 42,000 petition signatures urging the U.S. Trade Representative to release the texts. Over 24,000 were presented during a media event with speakers from the Texas AFL-CIO, Lone Star Sierra Club, Communications Workers of America Local 6215, and then delivered to Assistant USTR Carol Guthrie. Later in the week, CTC hand-delivered an additional 18,000+ to lead U.S. negotiator Barbara Weisel during a stakeholder briefing, at which point she publicly stated USTR’s new position that “constantly evolving TPP chapter texts cannot be released to the public” — a rollback in transparency from both the current World Trade Organization negotiating process and the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) of more than a decade ago.

Followed up on the petition with a high-energy “TPP: Out of the Shadows!” rally and march. The demonstration started with a rally trade justice advocates from across Texas and the Pacific Rim. More than 300 people then marched over into the parking lot of the hotel where negotiators were meeting, before they were stopped by police. Texas AFL-CIO President Becky Moeller led the march by asking “What are they trying to hide?,” and CTC Executive Director Arthur Stamoulis led the crowd in a spirited “mic check” directed at negotiators.

Conducted a wide range of educational activities, including a teach-in moderated by the Dallas Peace Center, with fantastic presentations by Lori Wallach (Global Trade Watch), Celeste Drake (AFL-CIO), Ilana Solomon (Sierra Club) and Sanya Reid Smith (Third World Network). CTC staff also participated in a CWA-hosted telephone town hall, as well as meetings and events throughout the week with the Steelworkers, Teamsters, Building Trades, Sierra Club and Occupy Dallas. Occupy even live-streamed the May 12th rally.

Separate from CTC’s efforts, a number of independent activists also carried out a variety of stunts throughout the week, including a Yes Men award presentation; replacing hotel toilet paper with special TPP TP; projecting transparency messages onto the side of the hotel; putting flyers under negotiators’ hotel room doors; and more.

The next round of TPP negotiations will be in the United States from July 2 – 10, 2012, widely rumored to take place in Los Angeles.

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