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US Rejects Demands For ACTA Transparency 351

An anonymous reader writes "The US Trade Representative issued a release just prior to the launch of the New Zealand round of Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement negotiations that has left no doubt the US is the biggest barrier to official release of the ACTA text. Unlike most other ACTA countries that have called for transparency without condition, the US has set conditions that effectively seek to trade its willingness to release the text for gains on the substance of the text."
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US Rejects Demands For ACTA Transparency

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  • Re:Then fuck it. (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 12, 2010 @01:27PM (#31819210)

    I wouldn't even know where to send a strongly worded letter to.

    Try this guy:

    Barack Hussein Obama
    1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW
    Washington, DC 20500

  • Re:Then fuck it. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by drachenstern ( 160456 ) <> on Monday April 12, 2010 @01:29PM (#31819240) Journal

    No, I personally voted for the other "other" guy. And I voted against pretty much every incumbent in the race (sometimes on moral grounds, sometimes due to political views) ... As an American who's sick of the system the way it is, I vote and encourage people to vote to remove all 535 from office and to replace them by rounds every 2 years. I realize we need party leadership and we need people who understand the system, but guess what, when every citizen CAN hold office, nobody needs to be shown HOW to hold office.

    A handful of men realized this 250 years ago, when they started a new country, and they figured that everyone who had any education could hold office. (granted, I'm not saying all their practices were right: I'm just as against slavery and the oppression of women as anyone else ~ I'm just saying the political concepts were much better suited for citizen self-governance).

    However, given the massive tie-in and buy-in of Corporate America inside the beltway, I'm not sure how we can really revert the damages of our fathers and our fathers fathers.

    tl;dr: Hey AC, we don't all want the hope and change that's being shoveled down our throats, mkay?

  • Good negotiators (Score:5, Interesting)

    by DoofusOfDeath ( 636671 ) on Monday April 12, 2010 @01:36PM (#31819354)

    I feel strangely about this. It's kind of like getting divorced, and hiring a very effective, but unethical and evil divorce lawyer. You want effective representation, but if you weren't interested in the outcome you'd despise the person who chose to employ such a lawyer.

    That's how I'd feel about this, if the US trade representative was working in my interests. But of course, he/she doesn't. They're working for Disney / Microsoft / Viacom / Appple / etc. interests.

    So now I feel like somone really is acting really sleazy in my name, even when they don't represent my actual interests. I'm pretty disgusted.

  • by commodore64_love ( 1445365 ) on Monday April 12, 2010 @01:47PM (#31819484) Journal

    You could also include Alex Jones' opinion (take with a spoonful of sugar):

    - The mainstream media is owned by the banks, so naturally they are not going to talk about it. The banks want to chain the people financially and creatively. The bank-owned media also wants to pass laws to shutdown the net, since it is hurting them financially and politically (people speaking truth to power).

    Please don't shoot (mod down) the messenger.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 12, 2010 @01:51PM (#31819556)

    Anyone care to explain to me why Shotgun's comment was modded "Flamebait?" Is there not a huge disconnect between Obama's grandiose campaign promises and the reality of the policies that he's either implementing or continuing? I know it's a bitter pill for some to swallow, but anyone who was paying attention could've seen this coming.

  • by Imrik ( 148191 ) on Monday April 12, 2010 @02:00PM (#31819696) Homepage

    5. Most people in the US don't consider IP to be a major issue when voting anyway.

  • by spun ( 1352 ) <> on Monday April 12, 2010 @02:03PM (#31819732) Journal

    Perhaps we should differentiate between explicit and implicit conspiracies. Generally in the popular conception of conspiracy, the conspirators actually conspire together. Meaning, they get together to discuss plans to achieve their ends, and then carry out those plans. That is an explicit conspiracy, and TheMeuge was hypothesizing that perhaps the interested parties here never needed to sit down and discuss plans together. Perhaps they were all acting individually, in an implicit conspiracy. In fact, this type of 'conspiracy' is far more common. Very few people are comfortable believing they are the bad guy. Explicit conspiracies require some kind of an acknowledgment from the conspirators that they are engaging in a conspiracy. Because implicit conspiracies require no active conspiring, people engaged in them don't even need to admit to themselves that they are doing so. The oppression of the lower classes by the owning class is an example of such an implicit conspiracy. Far from having to admit to themselves or each other that they are oppressing the lower classes, the owning class has the privilege of believing they are in fact helping them.

  • Re:Then fuck it. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by drachenstern ( 160456 ) <> on Monday April 12, 2010 @02:17PM (#31819906) Journal

    Once again we devolve back down to "because of Corporate America" in any base form. How does politics devolve to this?

    Don't get me wrong, I understand the whole shebang in "how it happened, why it's here", but what I wanna know is can we get away from it, or do I need to figure out how to get to the head of DOW or something and then try to effect change? (yeah right, like that would ever happen)

  • Re:Then fuck it. (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 12, 2010 @02:29PM (#31820116)

    I wrote to my senators as well. I got a letter back in which he stated that under the 2nd Article of the constitution, Congress gets to review and vote on any and all trade agreements (ACTA is a trade agreement) and that he will keep my concerns and suggestions in mind. He was incredibly polite and reassuring in stating that congress will get to debate this. I plan on continuing a correspondence with my congressional representatives on this topic. I suggest everyone here do that same. If they get letters and calls about this, Congress can bring pressure to bear and open it up. We all have to let them know that there is widespread concern too. Emails and calls to local news couldn't hurt either to start some word spreading about it.

  • by spun ( 1352 ) <> on Monday April 12, 2010 @02:49PM (#31820454) Journal

    Obama is a corporatist. I knew it from the start. He is much more corporate than even Bill Clinton, who at least acknowledged after the fact that NAFTA was a huge screw-up. John Stewart interviewed Obama's law school adviser on election night, and said adviser admitted that Reagan was Obama's favorite president. Obama is not even close to being a socialist. He's barely a liberal at all.

  • by BJ_Covert_Action ( 1499847 ) on Monday April 12, 2010 @04:20PM (#31821886) Homepage Journal

    The whole damn thing looks like a sham at this point.

    I've been voting for 8 years now in the USA. I've never voted for a democrat or a republican for any office above state-congress level representation. After my poly sci class my senior year of high school I just couldn't bring myself to support either of the candidates fueled by so much, 'special interest money,' (read rich man's bribes). Everyone I've told this to has always criticized me for throwing away my vote, but so far as I see it, voting for third party candidates or write-ins is the only viable means we, as Americans, have to stand up and say, "None of the above," on our ballots. I'd mush rather tell my government, "Screw you, you're all doing it wrong," and be ignored than know that I cast a vote for an idiot, a sociopath, or a psycho.

    The only reason I bring this up is that, if you ask me, it's looked like a sham from the beginning. Then again I am very young, and perhaps there were some decades before my time where politicians and the electoral system didn't suck nearly as badly as they do today.

  • What's being hidden? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by PPH ( 736903 ) on Monday April 12, 2010 @05:21PM (#31822798)

    The USA wants some language in ACTA. But they don't want to tip their hands to certain parties outside of the process. Or these parties might call 'bullshit' on the whole thing and bring their countries negotiators home. So what's in question? Its not patents or copyrights. Everyone knows the negotiating positions and national interests involved with these issues. And the representatives from various nations are well prepared to defend their own interests in these areas.

    It appears that the USA is interested in keeping any outside eyes off their proposals. This would seem to indicate that the language they want added is aimed at something other than the standard IP issues one would associate with such a treaty.

  • by BlueStrat ( 756137 ) on Monday April 12, 2010 @05:27PM (#31822868)

    They were forced to resort to indirect democracy 200 years ago because they lacked the infrastructure for direct democracy, but that limitation is long gone now.

    This is incorrect according to the letters, pamphlets, and other historical writings from the period concerning the Constitution and the founders. "They" (the founders) made a studied and considered deliberate decision to *not* have a direct democracy as they fall prey to the "tyranny of the majority". It had nothing to do with the difficulty in tabulation.

    They feared the population would figure out it could vote itself free stuff. Looking at America today I don't think they went far enough in preventing that, as now it's the politicians voting to give people free stuff for (re-)election votes and to gain power for themselves. This is also why the founders intended the Federal government to have little domestic power and a very limited budget as that minimizes corruption & power-seeking and its' national effects.

    ACTA is simply another symptom of a government that's grown far too large & powerful and seeks to extend its' power even more.

    The only way at this point to prevent the government from taking what's left of individual freedom is a Ghandi-like non-violent movement to take back our government through peaceful means. This will be extremely difficult, as the government and its' non-government proxies such as unions and community organizations are already actively seeking to provoke violence at town hall meetings and Tea Party events as an excuse to use extreme measures to prevent/suppress dissent.


  • by rtb61 ( 674572 ) on Tuesday April 13, 2010 @10:45PM (#31841456) Homepage

    You don't actually slap a big tax randomly on things, that cost should reflect fair trade, where imported goods are subject to the exact same cost impacts of, fair and reasonable wages, safe working conditions, environmental protection costs, realistic taxation basis and, acceptable conditions of employment. In line with normal competitive practices, companies can still be required to compete whether local or foreign, but that competition should be done upon an equal basis. This is ultimately fair and humane, if other countries want to avoid the duty impost, they simply need to improve conditions so that they equal or exceed local conditions. So you are not just rebuilding the politically stability of the US middle class, you are building that politically stable middle class across the globe.

    This is very important as it has already clearly be demonstrated political strife in other countries will always end up having a local impact and modern exotic pollutants know no boundaries, it is impossible to produce clean and safe products in a polluted environment.

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