TPP: Score One For the Donald

no-tppPresident-elect Trump has made it absolutely clear that on day one of his Presidency, he will withdraw the US from support of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP).  We can breathe a sigh of relief because Trump is right — this would be a disaster — although probably not for the reasons I give.

The TPP had nothing whatsoever to do with trade: the US already has good trading relations with all the nations involved in the treaty (from which China was excluded, of course). This was all about deregulation and giving even more powers to corporations than to elected governments. This was about giving powers to corporations to restrict labour and environmental protections.

Trump will find a lot of criticism about this decision from billionaire executives and those they pay — Congressional politicians — to lobby on their behalf.  The loudest screamers will be those most deeply in the pockets of big business, on both sides of the aisle.

What is odd to me is that you would expect Trump to be among that crowd calling for freer trade, less regulation on corporations, and more strength against China.  I am confused as to the why of his position (because I believe him to be a full-bore capitalist and not an economic nationalist) but I cheer him for it.

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