Wednesday, July 08, 2015

"After the Senate joined the House of Representatives in granting President Barack Obama fast-track authority to negotiate trade agreements, National Public Radio aired one report on the legislative action that paves the way for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and other corporate-friendly international deals. The report, by correspondent Yuki Noguchi, had three sources:

Business Roundtable president John Engler, 'president of the Business Roundtable, which represents more than 200 member companies who took to Capitol Hill armed with data.' National Retail Federation vice president Jonathan Gold. National Association of Manufacturers vice president Linda Dempsey, who says the 1993 US/Mexico/Canada trade agreement 'NAFTA has actually made US manufacturing overall much stronger and much more competitive.' "

-->NPR didn't bother presenting any experts besides the ones who lobbied for fast-track. The US media, including NPR, reports what corporate America wants us to hear about trade deals. NPR, like Obama himself, is bought and paid for by billionaire corporate interests. FAIR reports that "Fully three out of every four trustees of the top NPR affiliates belong to the corporate elite."


Common Dreams:
"TISA Exposed: 'Holy Grail' of Leaks Reveals Detailed Plot for Corporate Takeover. Days ahead of another round of secret international negotiations, WikiLeaks on Wednesday released what it described as 'a modern journalistic holy grail: the secret Core Text for the largest trade deal in history.' ...

'There is deep irony whenever governments make commitments to transparency in contemporary pro-corporate treaties that are negotiated under conditions of extraordinary secrecy,' the WikiLeaks analysis reads. ...

Referencing the Trade Promotion Authority bill signed by President Barack Obama on Monday—which will allow Obama to ram the TISA, TPP, and TTIP through Congress with minimal input from lawmakers—[Larry Cohen, president of the Communications Workers of America] added: 'Today's leaks...reveal once again how dangerous Fast Track authority is when it comes to protecting citizen rights vs. corporate rights. This TISA text again favors privatization over public services, limits governmental action on issues ranging from safety to the environment using trade as a smokescreen to limit citizen rights... TISA is as big a blow to our rights and freedom as the Trans Pacific Partnership and in both cases our governments secrecy is the key enabler.' "

-->US news reporting has been an unfortunate accomplice in this secret process. We see that WikiLeaks is infinitely more trustworthy than most of our national media.


Common Dreams:
"After failing to criminally prosecute any of the financial firms responsible for the market collapse in 2008, former Attorney General Eric Holder is returning to Covington & Burling, a corporate law firm known for serving Wall Street clients.
The move completes one of the more troubling trips through the revolving door for a cabinet secretary. Holder worked at Covington from 2001 right up to being sworn in as attorney general in Feburary 2009. And Covington literally kept an office empty for him, awaiting his return.

The Covington & Burling client list has included four of the largest banks, including Bank of America, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo. Lobbying records show that Wells Fargo is still a client of Covington. Covington recently represented Citigroup over a civil lawsuit relating to the bank’s role in Libor manipulation. ...

The Department of Justice under Holder not only failed to pursue criminal prosecutions of the banks responsible for the mortage meltdown, but in fact de-prioritized investigations of mortgage fraud, making it the 'lowest-ranked criminal threat,' according to an inspector general report."

-->The NYT decided to cover Holder's return a little differently: "His Justice Department wrested huge fines from banks, including JPMorgan Chase, Barclays and Citigroup." Nothing about his failure to prosecute the criminal behavior of the big banks. In fact, no mention of any "revolving door."

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