I was brought up and knew my way around the 20th century when much to my surprise the 21st century came along and everyone started making up new confusing rules I was supposed to have memorized (long after it was too late to memorize anything).

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Letter to my Senator regarding the Trans Pacific Partnership

In your recent letter to me response to my opposition to the Trans Pacific Partnership you say that ‘when enacted with thoughtful safeguards promote cooperative relationships between nations, ensure America’s competitiveness, promote faster growth, poverty reduction, increased democratization and higher labor and environmental standards.

Congress always legislates with thoughtful safeguards.  Yet the last 40 years Trade Agreements have reduced cooperative relationships.  In the 1960’s, other nations loved and looked up to America.  Today, they abide by our dictates out of fear for economic and military reprisals, awaiting the moment when we are down to stab us in the back and get even.

Increasing transparency has continued to decline in the U.S.
Government corruption has increased, not decreased.

Our competitiveness has been destroyed as a nation as our intellectual and material skills are transferred to people in other countries for lower costs to corporations that cheat on taxes.

Faster growth is not necessarily a good thing.  A cancer that grows faster is deadly and our trade agreements have paralyzed our nation like a cancer.

Poverty reduction???  We have not seen poverty reduction in the U.S., we have seen the middle class moved into poverty.  We have seen the value of wages in America drop to near slave wages by inflation; we have seen jobs reduced in an increasingly modern society where people have no alternative to low paid jobs.  We have seen an increase in the rift between the rich and the poor with the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer and being wrongfully criminalized.  Clearly the trade agreements have not helped in poverty reduction especially as the House of Representatives goes full force to dismantle what petty safety net for the poor already exists leaving the poor with no alternative.
The U.S. is not a central player in the global market.  Rich multinational corporations that evade taxes hiding their money overseas have become the central player.  Yes, a very few people in the U.S. benefit while 99% of Americans suffer.

Being a principle consumer has only contributed to increased waste and energy consumption.  When I worked at Seagate, we guaranteed our disc drives to OEM’s with a five year return warranty for the most complex electronic device that pushes the leading edge of mechanical and electronic capabilities.  Simple headsets sold in the U.S. have about a 3 month lifespan after which they go into a landfill.  The manufacture of this 3 month device is hardly any different from a device that would work 5 years, but the energy waste and resource waste is 20 fold.  Is this the consumer base you are touting as good for our nation and the world?

As you know, trade agreements, according to the Constitution, can take priority over domestic laws.  This means that consumer protections in place in our nation must lower their standards to meet global standards.

As far as higher labor and environmental standards, in the U.S. labor standards have diminished.  EEOC and OSHA are underfunded and simply act as an obstacle to anyone going to court over an issue.  Corporate management literally engages in racketeering, promoting those who lie and cheat to make them look good and penalizing those who operate in good faith, report the facts and observe inconsistencies that diminish or endanger quality and safety.  Perhaps disasters overseas in the huge sweat shops may do something to increase safety and environmental concerns overseas, but if the United States is any indication, even steps improving safety and environmental concerns will be undone as quickly as possible.

These trade agreements, in conclusion, are creating a moment of wealth for the wealthiest in the world and destroying our nation.  Since they are all enacted with thoughtful consideration, perhaps it is time that we begin to become more isolationists and more independent of the junk and waste that comes of consuming throw-away products made overseas.  That or our trade agreements need to consider the quality of trade and not just the quantity.

I urge you to reconsider not only the TPP, but the general course upon which our nation is being guided:  a course that is destroying our nation and our future for all except a few wealthy people who are getting richer.


Blogger Serenityforall said...

All true but very disturbing trends. Eventually all of these issues and more not mentioned will lead to the demise of our once great nation. We will be no more significant than the 3rd World Banana Republics and even less respected. And people wonder why so many Americans are rescinding their US citizenship and moving's simple, they no longer want to be inside this increasingly totalitarian regime.

10:33 PM  

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