Archive for November 14th, 2013

Schweitzer Strikes Back

by lizard

Once upon a time there were two men named John stuck in a realm of obscurity where surely they would have remained, toiling as faceless nobodies, if fate hadn’t intervened.

And for these Johns, fate came wearing a bolo tie.

You guessed it, by fate I mean Brian Schweitzer, our former Governor.

It seems we have the Brian to thank for the primary battle between the two Johns, Bohlinger and Walsh. You see, Brian plucked these two men from obscurity so, because Brian conjured their political worth out of thin air, he obviously feels obligated to insert himself into this surprise primary, a primary I wouldn’t be surprised he had a hand in creating.

Oh yeah, the title of the article I linked to reads: Schweitzer Not Helping Senate Democrats with Montana Primary. Here’s an excerpt:

In a phone interview with CQ Roll Call on Tuesday, Schweitzer said only that he had “conversations” with Bohlinger about “the good, the bad and the ugly” about the Senate and Washington, D.C. He thinks both Democrats would make “very good senators” and could defeat likely GOP nominee Rep. Steve Daines, but deciding the nominee is up to Montana voters.

In his trademark brashness, Schweitzer also claimed some credit for the fight.

“In fact, I guess I’m responsible since I plucked both of them from obscurity,” Schweitzer said. “To ask me to pick favorites is like asking a father to pick his favorite son.”

Sen. Jon Tester and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, have endorsed Walsh as their candidate for the seat of retiring Sen. Max Baucus. Meanwhile, Tester and Baucus are headlining a fundraiser for Walsh on Wednesday in Washington, D.C.

Brian Schweitzer will probably continue pulling crap like this to keep his brand relevant for the presidential run he’s clearly fantasizing about.

Now the Walsh campaign will have to spend precious loot on a primary fight while our former Governor, who considers himself a populist outsider, moonlights for CNN Crossfire.

Yeehaw!

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by lizard

For those who pay attention to the mechanisms of the global corporate elite, the Trans-Pacific Partnership is not new news, considering whispers of the secret negotiations have been wafting out since 2010.

What is relatively new is the wikileaks disclosure of one of the secret draft chapters:

The 30,000 word intellectual property chapter contains proposals to increase the term of patents, including medical patents, beyond 20 years, and lower global standards for patentability. It also pushes for aggressive measures to prevent hackers breaking copyright protection, although that comes with some exceptions: protection can be broken in the course of “lawfully authorised activities carried out by government employees, agents, or contractors for the purpose of law enforcement, intelligence, essential security, or similar governmental purposes”.

WikiLeaks claims that the text shows America attempting to enforce its highly restrictive vision of intellectual property on the world – and on itself. “The US administration is aggressively pushing the TPP through the US legislative process on the sly,” says Julian Assange, the founder and editor-in-chief of WikiLeaks, who is living in the Ecuadorean embassy in London following an extradition dispute with Sweden, where he faces allegations of rape.

“If instituted,” Assange continues, “the TPP’s intellectual property regime would trample over individual rights and free expression, as well as ride roughshod over the intellectual and creative commons. If you read, write, publish, think, listen, dance, sing or invent; if you farm or consume food; if you’re ill now or might one day be ill, the TPP has you in its crosshairs.”

The legislative process that the duplicitous Obama administration was trying to fast-track is being slowed down thanks to 151 House Democrats. Here is an excerpt of the letter they sent to the president:

We write to express our serious concern with the ongoing negotiations over the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Free Trade Agreement (FTA), a potential agreement of tremendous consequence for our country. Specifically, we remain deeply troubled by the continued lack of adequate congressional consultation in many areas of the proposed pact that deeply implicates Congress’ constitutional and domestic policy authorities.

For some time, members of Congress have urged your administration to engage in broader and deeper consultations with members of the full range of committees of Congress whose jurisdiction touches on the numerous issues being negotiated. Many have raised concerns relating to reports about the agreement’s proposed content. While your Administration’s goal was to sign a TPP FTA at the October 2013 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit, we believe that to date the process has failed to provide adequate consultation with Congress.

Such opportunity for input from Congress is critical as the TPP FTA will include binding obligations that touch upon a wide swath of policy matters under the authority of Congress.

Beyond traditional tariff issues, these include policies related to labor, patent and copyright, land use, food, agriculture and product standards, natural resources, the environment, professional licensing, competition, state-owned enterprises and government procurement policies, as well as financial, healthcare, energy, e-commerce, telecommunications and other service sector regulations.

The TPP—described as NAFTA on steroids—is incredibly dangerous, and should be opposed by anyone who thinks maybe corporations shouldn’t have full spectrum dominance over the lives of humans across globe.

For a list of the Democrats who didn’t sign this letter, click continue. Continue Reading »




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