Last week, more than 550 groups, representing tens of millions of individual members, signed a letter to members of Congress urging them to vote against a push by President Obama for 'fast track' authority for the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a so-called "free trade" now under negotation between the U.S. and eleven other Pacific rim nations.
First, we have a major democracy problem. Citizens United paved the way for unlimited corporate spending to distort our elections. Second, until we fix the funding of our political campaigns, we can't fix the individual issues that matter most to everyday Americans.
In 2010, Gordon Lafer sat across the table from Assistant US Trade Representative Barbara Weisel, who was responsible for negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the mega-regional free-trade treaty among Vietnam, Malaysia, and ten other Pacific Rim countries that President Barack Obama's administration wants to conclude in the coming weeks.
When you think of NSA critics, you probably think of crusading reporters like Glenn Greenwald, whistleblowers like Edward Snowden, left-leaning ACLU types and libertarian Ron Paulites. Certainly, an image of aging lawmen from the Dixie south probably isn't the first thing that pops into your mind.