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European Parliament Declaring War Against ACTA 307

An anonymous reader writes "The European Parliament is preparing to take on ACTA. A joint resolution (DOC) has been tabled by the major EP parties that threatens to go to court unless things change. The EP is calling for public access to negotiation texts and rules out further confidential negotiations. Moreover, the EP wants a ban on imposing a three-strikes model, assurances that ACTA will not result in personal searches at the border, and an ACTA impact assessment on fundamental rights and data protection."
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European Parliament Declaring War Against ACTA

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  • ACTA (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sopssa ( 1498795 ) * <> on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @11:24AM (#31414044) Journal

    It's getting heated up in my country too. People are demanding answers from politicians, but even they don't know what the fuck is going on. ACTA is seriously the kind of secrecy movement that should not be allowed. It's good to see we actually have some backbone. My image towards EU has growth a lot with this.

  • Re:ACTA (Score:3, Interesting)

    by girlintraining ( 1395911 ) on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @11:34AM (#31414194)

    My image towards EU has growth a lot with this.

    *cough* No, I think the EU is doing this as an act of self-preservation. Unlike the US, that has an economy that is mostly closed (despite what you may think, our import/exports make up only a small amount of GDP), most of the EU has an open economy. The ACTA would screw them a lot harder than the United States. The US is just looking for a way to justify backing out of various free trade agreements and the ACTA is basically a way of us adding tariffs to our imported/exported services by creating artificial marketplaces while maintaining the illusion that we're all about free trade. We've created an artificial division between goods and services because our economy has transitioned from producing goods to producing services. It's in our best interests, financially, to create an artificial framework now to ensure we'll get our cut when other countries' economies transition to this as well -- basically continuing the long-standing tradition of passing the production to poor countries and living on top of them by providing the services and support that ultimately control the means of production.

    Quite clever, don't you think? The EU can portray itself as the hero to the people, but it's only delaying the ACTA and similar acts -- once its economy gets closer to being representative of the US model, it'll quietly resurrect. So they get to be heroes today, and tomorrow they're just "going with the flow", portraying it as the inevitable price we have to pay for economic progress.

  • Tabled? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Rysc ( 136391 ) * <> on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @11:45AM (#31414360) Homepage Journal

    A joint resolution has been tabled

    Whose "tabled" is that? Is that "brought forward" or "set aside"?

  • by Vayra ( 1744282 ) on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @11:48AM (#31414396)
    Having too much freedom for the people and too transparent a government is endangering the power of individual politicians as they can more easily be held accountable for their actions. This they do not like, and so they came to the conclusion that going back to secrecy and less freedom for the people is the way to go, as that would help secure their powers. Sucks monkeyballs, but that's what you get when you have people who think of themselves instead of the people they represent in power.
  • Re:Good (Score:3, Interesting)

    by KlaymenDK ( 713149 ) on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @11:57AM (#31414550) Journal

    I'm a European. I'm not particularly proud that it took this bloody long for some common sense to throw a spanner in those works.

  • by openfrog ( 897716 ) on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @12:00PM (#31414590)

    Moderators please read the parent before modding up the grandparent. The grandparent starts well reflecting on national interests and then veers into total nonsense.

    The EU parliament is waking up to a serious threat to democracies everywhere and this is a case for us to acknowledge them wearing pants.

  • by HungryHobo ( 1314109 ) on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @12:16PM (#31414872)

    stop being a self rightous cunt.
    I'm pro EU.
    I like the whole free trade and free movement.

    Not everyone who thinks the EU is overly ineffecient and bureaucratic is a daily mail reader or even actually against the EU.
    Not everyone who thinks the EU has had a long standing problem with corruption and lack of accountability is a daily mail reader or even actually against the EU.

  • by Plammox ( 717738 ) on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @12:24PM (#31415030)
    Judging from your top level domain, you don't see the conflict in the first place. The EU system seems to be closely modelled on the French way of government, i.e. non-transparent decision making, the European School system for EU employee's kids (my sons are in one of these) are resembling the insane way the French conduct their education system, the EU hiring competitions (French as well) plus the insane and bureaucratic francophone administrators employed in the system.

    Did you ever read the annual audit reports from the EU court of auditors? Left page: EU Court of Auditors: "We think the commission didn't provide enough documentation to show where billions of Euros went in agricultural support" EU commission response: "We don't see the problem....". The list goes on.

    Incidentally, the previous EU commissioner of anti-corruption was implicated in a major corruption case in his home country.

    Not to mention the lack of an investigation into the case of Antonio Quatraro. The EU commission prevented the Belgian police from investigating their premises for several hours after his death. Any investigation into this case has been obstructed by the commission and even the whistle blower from the EU court of Auditors, Douglas Watt, lives in hiding in fear of his life.

    Understand that this culture of corruption is contrary to the customs in some other (typically northern) EU member countries.
  • Re:ACTA (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Brave Guy ( 457657 ) on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @01:03PM (#31415674)

    Doesn't seem to be the way the EU is going

    Why do you say that? Countries in the EU tend to have very strong national identities, with their own long histories and distinct cultures. And most of us, aside from a few politicians and industrial heavyweights, like it that way.

    Pushing toward some harmonized United States of Europe is pretty much our "third rail", as you can tell from the fact that most national governments have avoided giving their people a referendum on constitution-level reform in Europe and the agreements that made it through did so only against popular sentiment in many of the EU member states.

  • Re:ACTA (Score:4, Interesting)

    by magus_melchior ( 262681 ) on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @01:17PM (#31415888) Journal

    No, I think the EU is doing this as an act of self-preservation.

    I've done my fair share of BS'ing/armchair-punditry, but I have to say that this is either grossly naive or overgeneralized. France under Sarkozy has been pushing 3-strikes legislation aggressively, even though it keeps getting killed in court.

    And if the US backs out of its FTAs, that'd be akin to committing economic policy seppuku. Another commenter mentioned China, but do you realize how much we're interdependent with East Asia in general? 90%+ of the components you used to comment were either made there (China) or designed by a firm in that region (Samsung, LG, Sony, Asus, etc. etc. etc.). Now imagine what would happen if the US even thinks about going protectionist on these guys-- you'll see a collapse of the US consumer economy as we know it, because we've abandoned the idea of making goods domestically due to higher costs.

  • Re:An American (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Omestes ( 471991 ) <omestes@g[ ] ['mai' in gap]> on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @01:26PM (#31416020) Homepage Journal

    But it isn't the British, its the rest of Europe. The British are to busy trying to bring about their Orwellian utopia to be teaching us much of anything. Right now England is pretty far behind even the US when it comes to freedom.

  • Funny Story .... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by unity100 ( 970058 ) on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @03:36PM (#31417804) Homepage Journal

    until 1-2 years ago, lobbies of private interests ignored Eu parliament, because it held no power and it was a 'novelty' parliament. Pretty little parliament.

    Lisbon treaty ended up giving powers to Eu parliament. Now, there is a powerful parliament, members of which were elected not through lobby support, but popular support and concerns.

    right at the time they were trying to push acta to put a stranglehold on internet and emerging technologies and people's rights .... and there is not enough time to wait for reelection so that they can support their puppet representatives to power - not that they could easily though - europe is close to 1 billion people, and members get elected from all countries. its not something similar to dominating us houses or brit parliament...

    funny how things turned out ...

  • by TheMidget ( 512188 ) on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @05:06PM (#31419120)
    EU legislating beer glass sizes (making it smaller, of course...). Or EU legislating what a hot dog should be called. Or any of the thousands other equally pointless directives.
  • Re:ACTA (Score:3, Interesting)

    by shiftless ( 410350 ) on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @08:19PM (#31421358) Homepage

    I went to a hematologist about this positive test result and was told point-blank that I did not have this condition as I had not ever been outside the US and this condition is only present in a small numbers in a few third-world countries. I asked for the test anyway, and they gave it to me, confirming what the hematologist said from the start.

    And if the hematologist had been wrong, and you actually had this rare condition and it maimed or killed you, you or your family would then be suing the doctor for everything he's worth. I think if we want to improve healthcare in this nation, we could start by passing some malpractice protections for doctors so that they can do their damn jobs to the best of their ability, without having to constantly worry about losing everything they have to a case of bad luck. Hell, immunize doctors against lawsuits entirely except in cases which are clearly malpractice, in which case the penalty is a fine and/or removal of license. Then set up a web site anyone for anyone to log in and rate doctors based on prior experiences, i.e. similar to RateMyProfessor. (I wouldn't be surprised if such a site already exists.) Caveat emptor--let the buyer (of health care) beware. Then let's throw the health insurance companies in the garbage where they belong as we don't need them any more. Once the field is open, let the market decide who stays and who goes and what a particular service costs to perform.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 09, 2010 @08:51PM (#31421666)

    Don't forget Canada and New Zealand. The leaked ACTA docs show that they were standing up for rights and good law from the beginning.

    As a proud Canadian that is very concerned about the continuing efforts of the current right-wing minority government to elbow this country away from democracy at every twist and turn, I cannot accept your compliment.

    I can assure you that, based on the evidence to date, the so-called Canadian reps only tried to give the illusion of protecting the people's rights, while in fact doing no such thing, in keeping with the modus operandi of that minority government. In fact, they made little to no material objection to the meat of ACTA and commented only on superficialities.

    New Zealand, on the other hand, appears to have represented the interests of its citizenry honourably and made material objections to the meat of ACTA. For that I commend New Zealand's government.

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