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Letter to the Editor: Risk to economy

— Risk to economy

To the editor:

Negotiators for the United States are working in secret in Singapore on a massive trade agreement called Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). It’s being sold as a “free trade” agreement, but really it’s NAFTA on steroids. TPP would actually provide new rights to multinational corporations with incentives to off-shore our jobs, require the U.S. to import unsafe foods and would even ban Buy America policies that reinvest our tax dollars locally to create jobs.

This will be the largest economic pact in decades. Eleven countries are involved in these secret talks. It’s open to many more to join, even China — our biggest trade deficit country. Only five of the 29 chapters of TPP actually deal with trade. The rest is designed to allow corporations to supersede American regulations that protect consumers from fraudulent banking practices, freedom of the Internet, and local investment that creates our job. Multinationals will be able to challenge our laws and will expose the U.S. to corporate attacks in foreign tribunals demanding compensation in our tax dollars.

President Obama wants TPP completed by October of this year. It’s been three years of negotiations and yet the public and Congress know little about what U.S. negotiators are proposing in our name.

Forget Obamacare. If the Tea Party wants to get ruffled about something, this is it. The long-term ramifications are so deep and complex a little domestic socialized medicine is nothing to worry about in comparison. The American people have a right to know and I would appreciate more newspaper coverage on the subject.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Debra Lutje

The Dalles

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