WILPF US National Issue Committees – Corporations v Democracy, Earth Democracy, and DISARM/End Wars

Act Now to STOP Fast Track to Stop the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) “free” trade agreement. We could be headed for an April vote 

Fast Track will cover three agreements: the TPP, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), that European civil society is vigorously opposing and the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA), all being negotiated in the deepest secrecy.

The TPP is the next stage of corporate rule by “free” trade agreement. http://www.thealliancefordemocracy.org/pdf/AfDJR6105.pdf

WIKILEAKS just released the TPP “Investment” Chapter that details the huge transfer of power to corporations and investors: 

  • Corporations have more legislative and judicial rights than nation states.
  • Federal, state and local law-making authority is gutted
  • Corporate and investor rights to profit is prioritized over democracy, worker rights and environmental protections.        

Read the “investor-state dispute settlement” system (ISDS) that Senators Warren and Sanders are exposing.  Over 9,000 corporations in the 11 Pacific Rim countries could use the TPP supra-nation legal system and secret trade courts to sue our government for loss of “expected future profit” and thereby overrule U.S. national, state and local laws and court decisions on labor, the environment, energy, land-use and zoning and much more.

So far we’ve defeated Fast Track, but we must stay mobilized, focused and creative during the next weeks. We have the momentum on our side, but only if we keep speaking out.

The Clock is Ticking

Citizens Trade Campaign reports that Sen. Orrin Hatch, Senate Finance Committee Chair, has written a Fast Track bill and given it to Sen. Ron Wyden, ranking Democrat on the committee. Our job is to continue to pressure Wyden to oppose Fast Track as he has in the past.

The pressure on Wyden by Pres. Obama, the U.S. Chamber and Wyden’s business supporters to co-sponsor the Fast Track bill is huge. Obama wants to give Fast Track a bi-partisan “fig-leaf” cover to influence the House vote.

Hatch might submit the bill without Wyden, but he might not submit the bill if he knows that the House will vote “NO.” So that’s where you, we all, come in!

So please:

  • Continue calling Sen. Wyden and say “No Fast Track” at 202-224-5244 (D.C.) or 503-326-7525 (Portland, OR)
  • Continue calling your Representative. If he/she has come out against Fast Track say “thank you.” Otherwise, ask for his/her “No” Vote. 

March 30 – April 12 is Congressional Recess and your Representative is in District.

Need inspiration?    

  • Here’s a Fact Sheet 
  • Attend your Representative’s Town Hall meeting and ask for his/her “No” vote
  • Join a “Sit-in” at your Rep’s office if he/she is still undeclared on Fast Track and take our factsheet (link)
  • Join community Teach-Ins, allies, marches, and tabling at events and Farmers Markets.
April 13 or soon thereafter.  If the Fast Track bill is introduced -- keep your calls going.

April 17: 

La Via Campensina: International Day of Peasant Struggle Against International Companies and Free Trade Agreements

April 18:

National U.S. Day of Action Against Fast Track. Information and find an event near you at StopFastTrack.com

Labor unions, environmentalists, consumer advocates, democracy advocates and others are planning rallies, educational events and door-to-door canvasses on and around this day.

Global Day of Action Against Unfair Trade and Investment Treaties: People and Planet Over Profits. https://www.globaltradeday.org

We need your help spreading the word—and, even more so, in organizing additional events in communities that aren’t yet covered.

Late April: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will visit Washington. A state dinner is planned and Obama would like to make an announcement on the TPP and “shake hands” on the deal. But if we can prevent congressional action on Fast Track, the likelihood of such an announcement is greatly diminished.  

So, If we Stop Fast Track now or delay it to the July 4th and the later Summer Recess, candidates will start running for office and the last thing they will want is discussions about corporate trade agreements.

Let’s make this a certainty.

Thank you: Marybeth Gardam, Nancy Price, Carol Urner and Ellen Thomas