Monday, 9 December 2013

Why you should care about the #TPP

There is currently an Agreement being negotiated between a number of countries in the Asia/Pacific region, including Australia. It is called the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP or TPPA).

It has been negotiated in secret, with the United States being particularly strong-armed behind closed doors, pushing unilaterally for a range of things that other nations are uncomfortable with.

Sadly, both the Labor Rudd/Gillard governments and the Coalition Abbott government have been equally as soft in freely supporting the US in the negotiations, as was revealed when Wikileaks leaked some of the negotiations online.

In essence, it is an Agreement not about Free Trade (which is generally pretty good), and rather helps to get major concessions for big US corporations, who have pumped plenty of money into supporting the cause. If you want more information about it, please read the excellent pieces at the bottom.

Why should you care? Because:
  • it is going to make medical drugs more expensive, for both us in wealthy nations, and for those millions suffering in poorer nations. 
  • it's going to make online sharing of information and material more tightly regulated (and with stricter penalties), 
  • it's going to make things much easier for corporations to get past governments (and to fight them in court when they don't like the outcome), but harder for citizens.
If you aren't convinced, please read the articles at the bottom of the post.

If you are, please sign these petitions:  Avaaz; Choice; OpenMedia.

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