Panama Trade Deal Given Go-Ahead by White House

By: Monday April 18, 2011 4:17 pm

The White House has given the go-ahead to a third trade agreement since December, this one with Panama. US Trade Representative Ron Kirk hinted that the Panama deal was coming soon in a conference call earlier this month announcing the Colombia trade deal. The NAFTA-style trade deal with Korea was announced in December.


Senate Republicans Hold Commerce Department Hostage over Trade Deals

By: Tuesday March 15, 2011 1:15 pm

The Administration should take the opportunity to dissolve the Department and move its parts into other federal bureaus, and blame Republicans for forcing his hand to boot.

More GOP Hostage-Taking – Trade Deal Edition

By: Thursday March 10, 2011 3:56 pm

Personally, given how stupid all three trade deals are, this is one time I would be perfectly happy to see the Republicans shoot the hostage, but I fear Obama will use this as an excuse to make a bad piece of legislation even worse.

GAO Audits and Poppy Bush’s Covert World

By: Sunday August 8, 2010 11:30 am

Steven Aftergood has an important update on the continuing saga of whether or not GAO can conduct investigations of intelligence activities. He explores the source of current restrictions on GAO review: a 1988 OLC opnion written by Douglas Kmiec. Aftergood goes on to explore the troubling current use of this 1988 opinion protecting raw intelligence to protect more function-oriented reviews of Executive Branch counter-terrorism activities. It’s troubling that this 1988 OLC opinion used to protect details inconvenient to Poppy Bush’s aspirations are now being used to hide details of Obama’s counterterrorism programs.

It’s Not “Free Trade” When Union Members Are Murdered

By: Wednesday July 7, 2010 1:25 pm

President Obama apparently plans to submit long-stalled free trade deals with South Korea, Panama, and Colombia to Congress “as soon as possible,” according to a speech he made today. If Obama wants to have the Colombia agreement see the light of day, there’s a number of “outstanding issues” to be resolved. Specifically, the murders of more union members in Colombia than the rest of the world combined every year

FDL Book Salon Welcomes John Perkins, Author of Hoodwinked

By: Saturday February 6, 2010 2:00 pm

The title of John Perkins’ latest book, Hoodwinked: An Economic Hit Man Reveals Why the World Financial Markets Imploded–and What We Need to Do to Remake Them, comes from a conversation the author had with Panama’s populist head of government, Omar Torrijos, in the late 1970s. Perkins describes that he was trying to convince Panama to assume huge World Bank loans, which would bankrupt Panama, and thereby ensure that the US retained control over the Canal. But Torrijos wasn’t interested.

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