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TPP vs. Democracy: Leaked Draft of Secretive Trade Deal Spells Out Plan for Corporate Power Grab

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posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 12:34 AM
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originally posted by: greencmp

...I cannot in good conscience advocate for state granted monopolies.


So, do you, in good conscience, advocate for private granted monopolies?

"regulatory capture"? Poh-tay-toh poh-tah-toh ... It's semantics.
Let's keep tip-toeing around the denominator, though. Monopoly.

But, is there really such a thing as "free trade"? Sounds like the easter bunny to me. If there's anything I've learned from trade (all trade) is,"... A sucker is born every day."

And we keep playing the sucker card.

Who benefits from all of this?
edit on 30-3-2015 by Flux8 because: (no reason given)




posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 08:30 AM
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a reply to: Flux8

I believe that monopolies and their manifest detriment, monopoly prices, are only really possible under regulated economies.

So, no, I don't advocate for private monopolies either.

You are certainly not alone in your disbelief in the ability of people to peacefully interact. I am trying to make the case for freedom and I get a lot of pushback on that subject.



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 08:41 AM
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originally posted by: Aazadan

originally posted by: greencmp
This statement challenges my sanity, I cannot reconcile what you mean by it. Why would walmart care what jobs came to your area? Why would competition cause them to raise prices?


Good catch, sorry I meant raise wages. As things currently stand they can keep wages lower. With more employers they would have to be more competitive and raise wages.



This seems to imply that you recognize that the entity that enables corruption is politicians in positions of official power receiving campaign contributions for in kind attention.

But, who acts against walmart? A competing hardware store? If you are saying that the local official government, having received large campaign contributions will punish the upstart hardware store, I agree and that is in fact my point.


All employers at some point become political entities, and that is when they've gained too much power. Cable companies that strike anti competitive agreements to be monopolies. Local Walmarts that prevent new business from taking root. It's all the same thing and it's the result of policies that don't limit the influence of corporations.



I assume that you mean the above scenario and I would ask, who cares if you lose walmart to a more competitive store with better prices?


I wouldn't care, but the people who are working at Walmart that would lose their jobs care even though more jobs would be created in the end. Given the realities of the economics of Walmart, new businesses that pop up wouldn't be able to offer prices that are as low either. So the consumers would lose out as prices rise.


Cool, I should have assumed that, at least partly my misunderstanding of what I should have known was your intended meaning.

Still, if new businesses offer higher wages to your population, you should be in favor that. If walmart threatens to leave, let them.

Only when politicians have the power to thwart open competition with protectionist and punitive legislation can a special interest achieve the kind of "political power" that you and I describe as responsible for monopolies.

Without the regulatory hammer, no company could seize and hold a market.



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 10:12 AM
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This article shows what is wrong with politics, especially the left. This is everything the left hates, but they cannot fully call it out. This is all under President Obama, but they cannot say it. The only time the mention the name "Obama" is with

"Groups across the U.S. have staged mounting protests against an ongoing attempt by the administration of President Barack Obama to fast track the accord to completion."(Sic)

They have to shield him by saying his administration, they cannot single him out.

Until people stand on principal over party, we won't fix this shizle.



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 09:33 PM
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originally posted by: thinline
This article shows what is wrong with politics, especially the left. This is everything the left hates, but they cannot fully call it out. This is all under President Obama, but they cannot say it. The only time the mention the name "Obama" is with

"Groups across the U.S. have staged mounting protests against an ongoing attempt by the administration of President Barack Obama to fast track the accord to completion."(Sic)

They have to shield him by saying his administration, they cannot single him out.

Until people stand on principal over party, we won't fix this shizle.


If you bother to find out what real 'leftists' think about the TPP you will find that they are much more vocal and active in their protests then anyone on the right.

The left doesn't support many of Obama's policies, in fact, thinks even those with 'good' intent are so trianglized as to be useless. The left does appreciate have someone who believes in goverance (rather then anarchy) in the white house.

It's not an either/or world. And he is a much better 'leader' then either of his opponents would have been.



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 10:53 PM
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originally posted by: greencmp
a reply to: Flux8
You are certainly not alone in your disbelief in the ability of people to peacefully interact. I am trying to make the case for freedom and I get a lot of pushback on that subject.


Oh no, I do believe that people can interact (trade?) peacefully. But deregulation is not the answer. The current problem, as I see it, is that those who regulate and legislate have been "captured", hence why I said regulatory capture. This would happen ten-fold without any regulation; So no, that would severely exacerbate the problem and the environment would suffer proportionately, as it has been doing, from deregulation.

If you are trying to champion freedom, I'd ask, "freedom for whom?"

I keep thinking/going back to what some of our "fore-fathers" warned us about... non-chartered corporations.



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 10:59 PM
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originally posted by: Flux8

originally posted by: greencmp
a reply to: Flux8
You are certainly not alone in your disbelief in the ability of people to peacefully interact. I am trying to make the case for freedom and I get a lot of pushback on that subject.


Oh no, I do believe that people can interact (trade?) peacefully. But deregulation is not the answer. The current problem, as I see it, is that those who regulate and legislate have been "captured", hence why I said regulatory capture. This would happen ten-fold without any regulation; So no, that would severely exacerbate the problem and the environment would suffer proportionately, as it has been doing, from deregulation.

If you are trying to champion freedom, I'd ask, "freedom for whom?"

I keep thinking/going back to what some of our "fore-fathers" warned us about... non-chartered corporations.


I am arguing that it is the regulators who enable the capture of which you speak.

Without the threat of the use of state force to defend the established monopoly, there can be no lasting market capture.



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 11:07 PM
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a reply to: Flux8


The current problem, as I see it, is that those who regulate and legislate have been "captured", hence why I said regulatory capture. This would happen ten-fold without any regulation


The government writes laws.
Businesses buy politicians to write laws that favor them.
Your solution is to have those same politicians write laws making it illegal for them, the politicians, to take bribe money...

You do realize you are using poor circular-reasoning, right?



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 11:21 PM
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a reply to: Aazadan


Because that's precisely how they create an uncompetitive environment. Once you're successful enough, you get some political sway and can use that to benefit yourself.


So you agree, then, thought government has the real power, yes?

If the state did not have a monopoly on power, corporations would have no incentive to bribe politicians.




These situations naturally evolve from an open market.


No. Governments being bought happens because governments are allowed to exist.

If there was no group that existed with a monopoly of power and no competition, businesses wouldn't have a centralized place to go to obtain power.



In a free market, most people are supposed to lose because that prevents them from amassing political power or money to corrupt the market.


I don't understand what you are trying to say here.


That is why you need controls on a free market in order to prevent corporations from getting too powerful.


Once again, more poor circular-reasoning. Whom do you suggest should be placing controls on corporations? The government? But, I thought that corporations obtain power by buying politicians? Are you going to ask those same politicians to write laws to make it illegal for them, the politicians, to take bribes?


Let me give an example in my town. Walmart is the towns largest employer, employing about 10% of the population (so about 16% of jobs). We also have a real unemployment rate of 43%. One of the problems our city council has been trying to quietly solve is that Walmart doesn't want new jobs brought into the area because that creates competition and will force them to raise prices. If someone acts against Walmart, their opponent gets large campaign contributions, and Walmart has threatened (being the only source for many goods in under a 1 hour drive) to simply leave if new jobs are brought to the area.


Walmart is bribing your city council with campaign contributions? Well, surely you can just ask your city council to write a law making it illegal for them to accept campaign contributions from large companies, right?

What would happen if you got rid of your city council, and started a business to compete with Walmart?
edit on 30-3-2015 by LewsTherinThelamon because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 11:25 PM
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originally posted by: LewsTherinThelamon
a reply to: Flux8


The current problem, as I see it, is that those who regulate and legislate have been "captured", hence why I said regulatory capture. This would happen ten-fold without any regulation


The government writes laws.
Businesses buy politicians to write laws that favor them.
Your solution is to have those same politicians write laws making it illegal for them, the politicians, to take bribe money...

You do realize you are using poor circular-reasoning, right?


There's actually a solution to this, it's just unpopular. If you take the idea that the salary you pay a politician is your lobbying money, then to get better representation than the lobbying firm all you have to do is pay them more money. Any additional taxes this costs are balanced out by the improved legislation that spends more effectively.



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 11:34 PM
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a reply to: Aazadan


There's actually a solution to this, it's just unpopular. If you take the idea that the salary you pay a politician is your lobbying money, then to get better representation than the lobbying firm all you have to do is pay them more money. Any additional taxes this costs are balanced out by the improved legislation that spends more effectively.


Taxation is not unpopular, in fact, increasing taxes at every opportunity is everyone's favorite goto bandaid.

A better solution would be to abolish government and set fire to your local Walmart. After both are gone, you and your friends can start local businesses that benefit everyone.



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 11:53 PM
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originally posted by: greencmp


I am arguing that it is the regulators who enable the capture of which you speak.


Without the threat of the use of state force to defend the established monopoly, there can be no lasting market capture.


I am arguing that deregulation is a more severe threat that enables monopolies to grow much faster and stronger, because at that point nothing will stand in "their" way. Nothing is there to stop them. But we need to address regulatory capture, not get rid of regulation.
edit on 30-3-2015 by Flux8 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 11:58 PM
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originally posted by: LewsTherinThelamon
a reply to: Flux8
The government writes laws.
Businesses buy politicians to write laws that favor them.
Your solution is to have those same politicians write laws making it illegal for them, the politicians, to take bribe money...

You do realize you are using poor circular-reasoning, right?


No, my sol'n is to address regulatory capture, as well as other "captures". It's systemic, and needs to be addressed, among other things. So, no, it's not circular, only the strawman put in front of me.



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 12:20 AM
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originally posted by: Flux8

originally posted by: LewsTherinThelamon
a reply to: Flux8
The government writes laws.
Businesses buy politicians to write laws that favor them.
Your solution is to have those same politicians write laws making it illegal for them, the politicians, to take bribe money...

You do realize you are using poor circular-reasoning, right?


No, my sol'n is to address regulatory capture, as well as other "captures". It's systemic, and needs to be addressed, among other things. So, no, it's not circular, only the strawman put in front of me.


What strawman?


The current problem, as I see it, is that those who regulate and legislate have been "captured", hence why I said regulatory capture. This would happen ten-fold without any regulation


Who else writes regulations other than governments?



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 01:05 AM
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originally posted by: LewsTherinThelamon


The current problem, as I see it, is that those who regulate and legislate have been "captured", hence why I said regulatory capture. This would happen ten-fold without any regulation


Who else writes regulations other than governments?


Wealthy corporations are writing regulations (or manipulating them in their favor), not the people's gov't. That is who is writing regulations. Regulatory capture.

And the strawman is the false argument you tried to pose as mine.
edit on 31-3-2015 by Flux8 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 01:17 AM
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originally posted by: Flux8

originally posted by: LewsTherinThelamon


The current problem, as I see it, is that those who regulate and legislate have been "captured", hence why I said regulatory capture. This would happen ten-fold without any regulation


Who else writes regulations other than governments?


Wealthy corporations are writing regulations (or manipulating them in their favor), not the people's gov't. That is who is writing regulations. Regulatory capture.

And the strawman is the false argument you tried to pose as mine.


You seem to understand and acknowledge the situation.

I do not see that we are far apart in our understanding of what the problem is.

The difference between our two positions can be summed up by saying that you believe that government officials, though historically notorious for producing the regulatory capture that we are in agreement exists, can be trusted to correct those instances of systemic corruption.

I, on the other hand, do not.



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 02:58 AM
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originally posted by: greencmp

The difference between our two positions can be summed up by saying that you believe that government officials, though historically notorious for producing the regulatory capture that we are in agreement exists, can be trusted to correct those instances of systemic corruption.

I, on the other hand, do not.


Oh no sir, I do not believe gov't officials will fix anything. In fact, I believe the opposite. They are a part of the problem... a big part, but then again we let them.

It is the people who could fix something. But critical mass/energy has not yet been achieved... The willpower is not there quite yet. We can withstand more abuse, and so we shall endure more abuse, until it stops working for the vast majority of us,(and that would be the "end times" some people keep chanting on about... Look throughout history to see the trend).

However, playing into this implied false dichotomy (full throttle or nothing reasoning), deregulation would be, in my opinion, exponentially worse! There would be nothing to stop hegemonic powers from taking over everything in an incredibly short amount of time. To me it is absurd.

We are at a point in history that we can collectively address the corruption, identify it, face it, and constructively attack it,.. or turn our backs in ignorance to it. Deregulation would be paramount to willfully opening the doors to it, which is far worse than ignorance.... It is complicit.



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 08:31 AM
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originally posted by: Flux8

originally posted by: greencmp

The difference between our two positions can be summed up by saying that you believe that government officials, though historically notorious for producing the regulatory capture that we are in agreement exists, can be trusted to correct those instances of systemic corruption.

I, on the other hand, do not.


Oh no sir, I do not believe gov't officials will fix anything. In fact, I believe the opposite. They are a part of the problem... a big part, but then again we let them.

It is the people who could fix something. But critical mass/energy has not yet been achieved... The willpower is not there quite yet. We can withstand more abuse, and so we shall endure more abuse, until it stops working for the vast majority of us,(and that would be the "end times" some people keep chanting on about... Look throughout history to see the trend).

However, playing into this implied false dichotomy (full throttle or nothing reasoning), deregulation would be, in my opinion, exponentially worse! There would be nothing to stop hegemonic powers from taking over everything in an incredibly short amount of time. To me it is absurd.

We are at a point in history that we can collectively address the corruption, identify it, face it, and constructively attack it,.. or turn our backs in ignorance to it. Deregulation would be paramount to willfully opening the doors to it, which is far worse than ignorance.... It is complicit.


What is it about modern human beings that you think is so different as to prompt your expectations that they will behave differently than they have throughout our historical record?




posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 11:04 AM
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originally posted by: Flux8

originally posted by: LewsTherinThelamon


The current problem, as I see it, is that those who regulate and legislate have been "captured", hence why I said regulatory capture. This would happen ten-fold without any regulation


Who else writes regulations other than governments?


Wealthy corporations are writing regulations (or manipulating them in their favor), not the people's gov't. That is who is writing regulations. Regulatory capture.

And the strawman is the false argument you tried to pose as mine.


Even if a corporation hires a team of lawyers to write a bill, that bill still has to makes its way through Congress to become a law. Government is not innocent, government is the bully, hence the incentive businesses have to bribe them. Corporations do not have a monopoly on power, governments do. Governments have the executive branch to enforce laws, and militaries to wipeout dissidents. Corporations have to go outside of themselves to acquire that power, and government is a neat package that makes it accessible to them.

And it's not a strawman. I said that you expect the government to agree to write laws making it illegal for them to accept corporate bribes, and that is exactly what you are implying here.

Except, you are being intellectually dishonest. You are making it seem like the government has been kidnapped by businesses and is being forced to do something against its will. The government is made up of human beings, and human beings have the free will to be able to decide to be bribed or not. There is no magic law (regulation) that can be written to stop them from taking bribes. They will just move their dealings into secret meetings, just like they have before--and we will be left with more of the same.

Also, your distinction of "the people's government" is a subtle, emotional appeal. Empty patriotism is a clever political tool for despots. All governments arrive at corruption at some point, it is inevitable and cannot be avoided, corruption is at the heart of government.

Abolishing government disperses the vacuum of power crested by it's existence. Corporations would no longer have a central place to go to accumulate the power they need.



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 11:28 AM
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Personally, I don't think some people (in the general sense) will necessarily behave differently than they have throughout our historical record on their own accord. Indeed, I believe the lowest common denominator throughout history IS manipulation and corruption; Not that you or I or many others would manipulate and corrupt systems for our benefit, but that there are some that would and do, and we see them in positions of power, calling the shots.

But he skirts around the real argument. In the quote above Bastiat argues that the legislators are appointed agents, but does not address WHO appointed them. It is not that they just belong to the human race that gives them the power/authority to legislate our societies, intrinsically. In our representative democracy, through those who we have (supposedly) elected to represent us as a whole, the people are the legislators. The democracy appoints them, not the monarchy, oligarchy, or despot.

According to our charter the people are supposed to "regulate" the gov't through the voting process. The gov't regulates the economy and markets by enacting laws. The markets regulate the participants of those markets through "market forces". What we are seeing more transparently today are some of those participants have become so powerful that they are now influencing the markets, and therefore the economy, and therefore the gov't, and therefore the people. It's backwards for sure.

But blaming regulation is a red herring in a sense. Regulation is just the tool, not the tool maker/user. Other than boycotting, regulation is the only other "peaceful" tool the people have in defense of the lowest denominator. If we remove regulations from markets then we should continue on up the chain until we are a "free" anarchy, no? Then there would be no gov't for corruption to take hold on, right?




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