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This thread is about the Trans Pacific Trade Agreement and not about Hillary, the Clintons, the CFMA, the Democratic Party, the GOP or the politics of filling the SCOTUS vacancy or anything else that someone wants to rant about again. We have other threads where those topics have been discussed ad infinitum so lets not move those discussions to this TPP thread.
Regarding trade, there continues to be a misunderstanding about what free trade is. So let me broaden everyone's perspective. The United States currently trades with 234 countries (I just looked it up). We have free trade agreements in place with just 20 of those countries: Australia, Singapore, Bahrain, Chile, Peru, Cost Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Israel, Jordan, Oman, Morocco, South Korea, Canada and Mexico.
We do not have free trade agreements with China or any of the major European nations. Mostly trade with those other 214 countries is conducted under the World Trade Organization (WTO) umbrella agreements and/or separate bilateral trade agreements specific to the nations (e.g. Vietnam). There are 162 countries that have signed onto the WTO criteria for conducting international trade. Another 20 are pending as "observer status".
The WTO administers the "legal ground-rules for international commerce. Essentially, they are contracts, guaranteeing member countries important trade rights. They also bind governments to keep their trade policies within agreed limits to everybody’s benefit." It also is the body responsible for dispute resolution.
I suppose I should not find it surprising that people or special interest groups digging into the criteria of the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement find fault with such things as dispute resolution, when the WTO has already been handling countless disputes favoring the USA since it's inception.
There are issues with trade in the past that deserve criticism, and many of these are associated with unfair tariffs that hurt US commerce. But to throw around the term "free trade" as being something that the devil conspired to make corporations rich at the expense of the poor is an emotional knee jerk Pavlovian type response by some union workers lacking any knowledge of what the TPP is all about. There is so much misinformation and fear mongering associated with the TPP for political gain. I have tried to undue some of that misinformation with my many posts and two blog articles, but fixed minds refuse to even read them.
I'll try again...soon.