CFLpass has long opined that as the 21st century marches on and the American cultural empire continues losing international prestige and pull, Canada would do well to distance itself from its hungover southern neighbor. CBC online is today running a story likely to be passed over by many readers for its apparent obscurity, but may contain a harbinger or two of oncoming international economic realities.
The story entitled Why some Canadian farmers may soon tower ‘head and shoulders’ above their U.S. rivals in Japan touches on Canada’s rising beef and pork exports to the Aisan nation, but more importantly details the short- and medium-term benefits Canada and most other nations involved in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).
The CPTPP is an evolution of the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) which began coming into shape in 2008. The TPP rapidly became a favoured talking point for American neoliberals, as the agreement would have more firmly ensconced “Western” corporate power in the Far East with massive tax loopholes and continuation of so-called Free Trade Zones which allow sweatshops.
As Hillary Clinton and her allies within the Democratic party weakened and Donald Trump took an anti-TPP stance (just ’cuz, you understand) in the 2016 election, representatives from 17 nations realized that, likesay, maybe they’d be better off forming an alliance without the monolithic power calling the shots.
Over 20 of the more blatantly corporate-favouring precepts were eliminated from the newly-christened CPTPP and, one year after the 45th POTUS withdrew the U.S. from the agreement, it was signed by all parties in January 2018. The treaty agreement has been ratified by six countries this year – Canada and Japan are joined by Australia, Mexico, New Zealand and Singapore thus far – and thus were able to benefit from the new trade rules as of December 31, 2018.
How can we be sure that the CPTPP will continue to benefit the signatory countries going forward? While few guarantees exist in international macroeconomics, the propaganda coming from the U.S. is certainly a cause for positivity.
Back in October 2015, when U.S. trade leaders were comfortable in the feeling that the world would buy Obama/Hillary’s bullshit forever, a typical New York Times headline read “U.S. Allies See Trans-Pacific Partnership as a Check on China.” Within two weeks of Trump taking office in Washington, the imperialist National Interest ran with the spin “The Death of TPP: The Best Thing That Ever Happened to China.”
The message from the power-wielding Anglo cultures is the same it’s been since at least the Opium Wars: How dare China (and other Asian countries) attempt self-determination, reject “Western” consumables and try to provide their citizens decent standards of living! Haven’t they heard that their entire existence is in fact predicated on efficiently servicing the ids of Americans and Europeans?
Funny that the U.S. media – and therefore much of the country’s citizenry – apparently doesn’t realize the inherent contradiction of their reportage on TPP-related issues. Likesay, China isn’t even a signatory on the treaty, not to mention surely the greatest number of exports will be coming from Japan, Canada and Australia, ostensible allies of the U.S.
In any case, let’s all hope that the CPTPP is just another step on Canada’s path to greater economic freedom from U.S. interests.