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The Secret Treaty That Could Ruin The World!

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By Akhil Kumar:

Remember the ‘Tobacco’ episode of John Oliver’s show where he explains how tobacco companies are keeping their business strong overseas? He explained how big tobacco companies sued entire countries to protect their businesses, even bullying them through some trade agreements. Well, its not just limited to tobacco companies. If Obama has his way in bypassing the US Congress to ‘fast track’ the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), this secretive trade agreement will affect countries that together represent more than 40% of the world’s GDP, and a third of all global trade!

In January last year, we published an article explaining the dangers of TPP which, if passed, would be the single largest economic treaty ever! Obama is facing vigorous opposition from his fellow Democrats and his own liberal base, but says he is willing to defy them. Why such urgency to push for ‘fast tracking’? This article sums up the politics of the process – “Fast track means Congress agrees with the president’s negotiating demands before an agreement is struck, and then votes quickly on it once it has, voting yes or no, without any amendments or procedural delays in the legislation making TPP a law in the USA. In other words, if “fast track” passes, whatever the President’s trade negotiators agree on will quickly become law of the land. Corporate America in particular likes “fast track.” It means whatever anti-worker, anti-consumer, anti-environment and deals are agreed to at the negotiating table cannot be challenged, amended or reversed by Congress when the vote comes up.”  Katrina vanden Heuvel has argued in her article in The Guardian titled ‘Trans-Pacific Partnership treaty will help neither workers nor consumers‘ that ‘the provisions are so shocking that the TPP mandates that the chapter not be declassified until four years after the TPP goes into force or fails to pass’.

So, why the rush to push this treaty?

The global economic slowdown, the upcoming US election which can see a possible change in leadership, the political timing that is favourable to Corporate America as they can’t wait for the global economy to become more unstable, and the economic (and hence military and political) threat to the US from China, are among the top reasons for this sudden urgency. This video explains the TPP in a simple yet effective manner, watch and tell us what you think!

To know more about what I think of the TPP, follow me on Twitter at @Akhil1490.

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  1. Ritesh Anan

    The author has shown just one side of the story, without giving a clear picture or for that matter ANY PICTURE of the other side. THAT’S CALLED “BIAS”

    Let me show the other side and assuming that half of the public doesn’t understand what fast tracking means, forget fast track TPP, instead of using “glorifying prose” like the author does, I will keep it simple and explain it in context of India.

    Last year when the Islamic terrorist organization ISIS captured nurses in Iraq, there was no way in hell they were going to release them (majority of the nurses followed religion other than Islam) and those nurses were going to end up like scores of Yezidi women (sex slaves) or going to get killed.

    However, our NSA chies, Ajit Doval, managed to “negotiate” with the ISIS and their representatives and were able to free ALL the nurses.

    How many of us know the negotiating tactics used?

    If the negotiating terms were released while the negotiations were taking place, what are the chances of anti-India forces jeopardizing the negotiation and all those nurses getting killed?

    For that matter, how many of us know the “negotiating” tactics used by our Intelligence agencies or other agencies that are pro-India and save thousands of lives?

    What I wrote above is a perfect analogy to what President Obama wants by fast tracking the TPP, just the context was changed from “trade” to “national interest/security”

    The other important thing to remember is by fast tracking TPP, President Obama doesn’t want to take away the right from Congress to vote a “yes” or “no”, all he wants is to keep ‘trade negotiations’ outside the domain of people, a lot of whom can use it for their own interest, interest of enemy countries, interest of organizations they support, MIND YOU not the interest of the nation (U.S.)

    Anti-nationalists, leftists often forget that it takes a lot than mere “protests” for everything they don’t agree with to run a nation, to maintain its sovereignty and in the times we live where trade=money=power, a country cannot risk the “right” information getting in “wrong” hands.

    1. Pranjal

      Oh my god, free nurses! So that’s what corporate america wants- to free nurses from ISIS.
      That sounds good, maybe we can rescue some nurses from RSS too.

      But more seriously, trade negotiations outside the domain of people is a misnomer. After all its people who indulge in trade.

      In any case why should the government not be accountable to its people? why make laws in secret? Author has raised valid points, but as usual some people think that calling the author “leftist” and “anti-national” would rebut the argument itself.

      Unfortunately, in the age of education and god forbid, modernity; reason matters. But in anycase Hindutwabadis dont think rational debate counts for much. Because the last time they tried to indulge in rational debate, they got taken down by this guy called Buddha..

    2. Ritesh Anan


      Slandering instead of rational rebuttal. Yeah every merchant, trader, businessman in the world shares all secrets, at this point I simply pity the guy who came with the phrase “trade secrets”. 😀

      As far as connecting this to Hinduism goes, you just showed your true colors 😛 Bravo for displaying the strength of your IQ 😀

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

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Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

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A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

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As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

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