Last week, the TPP negotiations wrapped up. However, this is not the only job killing trade agreement the president is working on.
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Usually, anything with the term “free” on it has a positive connotation: free cookies, free appetizer, free purse with the purchase of any item over $45, this salad dressing is fat free. However, using the example of “fat free,”when we ran some studies on supposed “fat free,” we found nasty results. Fat free use to be this great, healthy thing for our bodies and it turned out being the total opposite.
When comparing the U.S. to Japan, Japan has less land, a smaller population, less oil reserves, double the air pollution, lower wages, they depend heavily on raw materials for their industrial sector and have to import 60 percent of their food. So how is it possible that a country with so many things working against it can have a trade surplus with the U.S. and an lower unemployment rates? According to the Office of the United States Trade Representative, in 2013, the U.S. in fact had a trade deficit with Japan at $73 billion! They are our 4th largest goods trading partner, importing wine and beer, foods, vegetable oil, machinery, electronics and medical instruments. This tiny island has proven that they are doing something right and we are not.
The current administration’s love affair with “free trade” is snowballing. Before the dust had even settled on the new trade pacts signed in 2011 with South Korea, Panama and Colombia, President Obama initiated an intense push to join the Trans Pacific Partnership. A new agreement with the EU is also in negotiations and would mean the United States would open its economy to a large majority of the world and undermine our sovereignty. The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership consists of the U.S. and the countries of the European Union currently. This “free trade” deal would undermine our ability to govern ourselves and sells out to multinational corporations.
In Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission, the Supreme Court ruled that corporations are equivalent to people, and thus have the same first amendment rights. Any attempt to abridge those rights (for example, the McCain-Feingold bill, which limited campaign donations) is a violation of the Constitution. This disastrous decision has paved the way for companies that care more about overseas profits than America.