Free Trade At Any Price

ceta

Opposition in Belgium has collapsed. The ‘Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement’ (CETA) is to be passed after all. It’s really not surprising. In fact, it was inevitable. There can be little doubt that all the other secretive, underhand, so-called ‘Trade’ agreements will also eventually pass into law.

Had it not been for WikiLeaks no-one, except those few individuals privy to the negotiations, would have known what was involved until the contents were eventually made public – if ever. It’s ironic that, in just over a week, elections will be held by the major power behind these clandestine agreements. Elections held in the name of democracy.

That same power has been blasting Middle Eastern nations apart for the last few decades in the guise of ‘spreading freedom and democracy’. The phrase has become synonymous with ’empire-building and subjugation’. America, in the form of the United States, has changed the very meaning of ‘democracy’ in its bid to control all the nations of the planet. It sees itself as the ultimate force for good against those who would live by different rules – those it regards as ‘evil’.

For that’s what America’s engaged in today, the fight of good against evil. But only as it sees the world, not as the world truly is. Torture, napalm, depleted uranium, white phosphorus, incarceration without trial, sexual humiliation, assassination by remote control, even the pigeon-holing of many thousands of dead innocents as ‘collateral damage’ – are these the tools used by ‘good guys’ fighting evil? No! They are the very embodiment of evil – the tools of evil, the weapons of some of the worst, most evil, criminals in our history.

Not only is the United States, together with its puppet allies, waging evil war for its own gain, it has another arrow in the bow of supreme domination – that of economic control. Super-Capitalism has become the other weapon in the armoury. Huge corporations, expanding like cancerous growths in the body of humanity, seek new markets and fresh businesses to engulf and swallow like some grotesque, science-fiction, monster devouring all in its path.

US telecoms giant AT&T has announced that it will buy entertainment group Time Warner for nearly $86bn (£70bn).
The deal – one of the biggest this year – still needs approval from regulators.
If the takeover goes through, it would combine AT&T’s distribution network with content from the Warner Brothers film studios and the cable TV channels HBO and CNN.
AT&T’s chairman described it as “a perfect match” but critics say it concentrates too much media power.
The deal is likely to be closely scrutinised by US antitrust regulators. AT&T is already the third largest cable TV provider in the US.
Randall Stephenson, who is both chairman and chief executive of AT&T, said he did not anticipate any regulatory obstacles, saying any concerns could be overcome if concessions were made.
“This is a perfect match of two companies with complementary strengths who can bring a fresh approach to how the media and communications industry works for customers, content creators, distributors and advertisers,” he said. [1]

The merger of AT&T and Time Warner is just the latest mega-deal in the pipeline. Note that the deal is to be “closely scrutinised by US antitrust regulators.” It will almost certainly pass that scrutiny, even though some publicity may be given to certain ‘concessions’. And we can forget the baloney spouted by Mister Randall Stephenson (who, not-incidentally, is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a major think-tank advising the U.S. government on foreign policy issues). This merger is all about profits.

The Western world, though large, has geographical limits on corporate ambition. Where to find such corporate succour when America and the West are no longer large enough to sustain it?

Hence the welcome mat rolled out in the form of CETA, and the TPP, and all the other ‘Trade’ agreements that will follow in time. A world of free trade where U.S. companies can devour their rivals abroad with impunity. Once these ‘Trade’ agreements are passed there’ll by no more ‘regulators’. It’s been cleverly written into CETA and the TPP that any government regulation stifling profits will cost the tax payers dear. We are witnessing the greatest hand-out of power to the Masters of Super-Capitalism the world has ever seen.

Can it be stopped? No, it can’t. Many have tried, but all have failed. Once, it could have been stopped at the ballot box. But then there was still democracy. Democracy is now dead. When Americans go to the polls on November 8th, who will they be voting for? In truth, two evils. There is no ‘lesser’.

Clinton is a proven war-hawk and has been working hand-in-glove with her President for the last four years to bring the Trans-Pacific Partnership and The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (now neatly relabelled CETA and served up as stew instead of goulash) to fruition. She says she’s no longer in favour of it, but she is lying through her teeth. It’s one of Clinton’s greatest assets. It’s why the corporations, usually Republican, are backing her over Trump. They know she’ll lie for them easily once she becomes president, as has the present incumbent. A glib, lying, tongue, capable of sounding sincere in public, has become a U.S. president’s greatest asset.

Trump also states he’s not in favour. He may not be now, but he’ll be ‘persuaded’ to change his mind if he’s ever elected – which is highly unlikely as the big guns of corporate power have been blasting away at him from the time of his nomination.

The electorates of the world are easily manipulated. Gone are the days when ordinary folks were prepared to die for their rights. Now, it’s much easier just to complain to each other on Twitter or Facebook.

It won’t happen overnight, but the time is approaching when we will all be forced to face the truth of what’s happening to the world we inhabit. CETA and TPP are just steps on the way to new forms of government – corporate government, where all that matters is profit, and broken human lives are just more ‘collateral damage’.

[1] “AT&T seeks to buy Time Warner for nearly $86bn” BBC, October 23rd 2016

2 Replies to “Free Trade At Any Price”

  1. There’s a good chance that climate change will step in to shake things up, put an end to their plans, but present an altogether harder scenario to deal with and profit from. We’re screwed either way of course – “we” meaning those of us still around.

  2. Twilight – try as one might it’s really difficult to see a way forward for the human race. As you rightly point out, if the corporations don’t finish us it’s likely global warming will. That’s assuming the U.S. National Security State (now being referred to as the Global Security State) doesn’t cause WW3 and finish us that way.

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