SORRY, THE TPP IS NOT ABOUT TRADE
Senator Wong begins with a few motherhood statements about how Labor supports "reducing barriers to trade can boost our economic growth." As inoffensive as this may seem, it overlooks the fact that the TPP is NOT ABOUT TRADE. It is only called a trade agreement to disguise the fact that the agreement is really about destroying the sovereignty of all the nations that sign it, including the US itself. By continuing the pretence that the TPP is about trade, she fails to explain to her readers the reason some 600 multinational companies are pushing President Obama to implement the TPP as quickly and as silently as possible. If the TPP was explained to the citizens of the relevant countries, they could not understand how their leaders could consider agreeing to such a corporate takeover of their political system.
SO CHINA IS NOT IN THE ASIA-PACIFIC REGION?
Another serious distortion is her claim that "the TPP could be an important stepping stone to closer economic engagement across the Asia-Pacific region." In fact the TPP is not about "closer economic engagement" between countries, but the subordination of all the signatories to the demands of the largest multinational corporations. Further she ignores the fact that the TPP does not include China, Australia's largest trading partner and the real powerhouse economy in Asia. We increasingly depend on trade with China. So much for closer economic engagement with Asia!
A QUESTION FOR SENATOR WONG: IS THE TPP IN AUSTRALIA'S INTEREST?
Senator Wong points to four areas where she admits that the TPP might just possibly not be in Australia's interest:
(1) If it undermined the pharmaceutical benefits scheme.
(2) If it shifted the legal balance between creators and users of protected works.
(3) If it "constrains the ability of future governments to make laws on social, environmental and economic matters where those laws treat domestic and foreign businesses equally".
(4) She also makes a vague reference to some problems identified by the Productivity Commission about the Investor State Dispute Settlement system. (This "dispute mechanism" is the centrepiece of the TPP. It is the method used to override decisions of any sovereign state. You don't need to refer to the Productivity Commission to work out what is wrong with this feature of the TPP.)
Note that Senator Wong DOES NOT ASSERT THE TPP IS NOT IN AUSTRALIA'S INTEREST. She knows it is not in Australia's interest but avoids saying so. However, if she did acknowledge this, it would raise the obvious question: Why did Labor go along with it for all those years? Still we could ask another question: If YOU have no real idea whether this is in Australia's interests or not, what are you doing RUNNING THE GOVERNMENT? Does Labor really think they can escape blame for this monster?
LABOR BELIEVES WHAT....????
Senator Wong concludes with a statement of what she claims is one of Labor's core values: "Labor believes the full text of any proposed TPP should be released well before it is signed." Oh really?? Virtually the whole of the TPP has been negotiated during the term of the previous Labor government in which she served as a minister. She KNOWS it was IMPOSSIBLE to undertake these negotiations without agreeing to COMPLETE SILENCE and highly limited disclosure. As far as I know, there are even no members of the US Congress who have seen the TPP documents. Labor believes nothing of the sort and they never did!
WHAT LABOR REALLY BELIEVES
Labor believes it is a good thing to do exactly what the US wants. Their real difference from the Liberals is that they hide this fact from their supporters. The TPP negotiations show where the loyalties of the senior members Labor and the Liberal parties can be found. They care more for the interests of the US government and the 600 multinational for which they speak than the citizens of Australia who actually pay their wages. I believe supporters of Labor who cannot stand the TPP should realize that it is just as much a result of Labor as the Liberals. Blind Freddy can see that this totally secret attack on the power of elected governments is a complete disaster. It is not in the national interest of any country, even the US itself. It is only in the interest of the 600 multinationals who worked to create it. Sorry Senator Wong, the TPP is your baby just as much as it is Tony's. We know who the parents are, and we will not forget.
Senator Wong's article can be found here: http://www.stephenjones.org.au/senator_penny_wong_tpp_must_not_trade_away_australia_s_national_interest
For more information on the TPP see:
AUSTRALIA MUST OPPOSE THE TPP AGREEMENT!