The first step in preventing the ratification of the Trans-Pacific Partnership is raising awareness (via protests, petitions, and social media) about the possible consequences from its ratification.
There are very conflicting ideas on whether the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a good deal for the United States or a bad deal, and it definitely depends on whom an individual is speaking with.
First, I am going to briefly explain what the Trans-Pacific Partnership is, however, in order to save space I also included a few links for people that are interested in gaining a deep understanding.
Basically, it is a free trade deal between some of the most influential countries in the world, most notably: the U.S., Canada, and Japan, as well as 9 other countries in the Asia-Pacific region. The countries involved make up 40 percent of the world’s GDP and 26 percent of the world’s trade, so clearly the impact of this deal will be very large.
Each nation has their own goals that they are trying to achieve, such as the U.S. pushing for stronger copyright protections for film and music, and Japan demanding the U.S. eliminate its 2.5 percent tariff on auto parts imports.
So who are the real winners and losers from the Trans-Pacific Partnership? Understanding this will hopefully give an individual a better understanding of whether or not they should support it.
The Peterson Institute for International Economics estimates that the deal will yield annual income gains of $78 billion for the United States. At first glance this alone would make the TPP seem like a good agreement for the U.S. However, deeper analysis shows that the majority of the gains will go to the wealthy, and up to 90 percent of workers would actually see wages losses. It seems that the entire American public will not benefit equally and many, in fact, will actually be hurt by the TPP.
Another major issue with the TPP, besides the gains not being uniformly distributed, is its ability to undermine state and local laws, through the creation of special tribunals, which will settle claims (that cannot be appealed) by foreign investors that their corporate interests are being hurt by a nation that is involved in the agreement.
Although everyone has a right to his or her own opinion, I do not believe that the U.S. should sign onto the agreement. The heavily skewed income gains, along with the ability for foreign investors to undermine local laws make it seem like the TPP has special interests written all over it.
So assuming the reader is on my side, what can be done to stop it from happening?
The first step is gaining an understanding of what the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement is, and what the ramifications of its signing will have on everyday Americans. In order for an individual to argue against the TPP they must understand what it is, at least at a basic level. I would also suggest making sure other colleagues and friends are aware of the TPP, because a majority of the talks have been secret. There are many organizations and activist groups fighting against the Trans-Pacific Partnership, but without the numbers they most likely stand no chance against preventing its ratification.
Some other suggestions to fight the TPP, provided by International Business Times are take part in protests, contact elected officials, sign petitions as well as leveraging social media. The rise of social media platforms, such as Twitter has made it much easier for individuals to voice their opinions. Nearly all politicians have a Twitter account, typically run by staffers, that allows individuals instant access to the people making important decisions for them. So I suggest people use this outlet as much as possible, and maybe with a large amount of effort and a little luck we can prevent the TPP from being ratified.