WikiLeaks Reveals Provisions of Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement Where Countries Oppose United States

By: Wednesday November 13, 2013 10:32 am

Thanks to WikiLeaks, it is now clear what the US aims to do with the TPP, and media organizations that have been silent about the deal and chosen to ignore what has been secretly happening between countries conspiring with the US on behalf of corporation should reconsider their decision to not cover this unfolding process.


Tyler Cowan Recognizes Public Health Problem of Pandemics: More Money for Drug Companies

By: Sunday May 5, 2013 8:30 am

Showing the sort of creativity that we have come to expect from economists, Tyler Cowen used his NYT column today to call for giving more money to the pharmaceutical industry as a way to deal with the risks of pandemics. Cowen moves from the true statement that research and development into prescription drugs and public health more generally has a substantial public good character, to the idea that we need to give pharmaceutical companies more money in order to get them to do the research.

Novartis Ruling In India Could Spark Larger Movement Against Patent Trolling

By: Tuesday April 2, 2013 8:30 am

So let’s say you are a leading multinational pharmaceutical company and you have a blockbuster cancer drug. You patent the drug, make tremendous profits, but now the clock is ticking and the patent is set to expire. What do you do?

If you are Novartis and your blockbuster cancer drug is Gleevec you are going to engage in a common practice in the pharmaceutical industry – as well as other intellectual property dependent industries – known as evergreening. A few tweaks here, a few tweaks there, and voila reset the clock. The patent is back in effect and the money can keep rolling in. Why spend money on developing new drugs when you can spend just a fraction of that cost on legal bills defending your tweaked patent?

Apple-Samsung Trial: Another Loss for Consumers

By: Saturday August 25, 2012 11:00 am

Patent expert and author Leah Shaver told Wired, “When companies turn to litigation rather than innovation, consumers lose.”

Robert Samuelson Goes to Bat for Paul Ryan: Strikes Out

By: Monday August 13, 2012 11:15 am

Governor Romney’s decision to select Paul Ryan as his running mate has condemned the country to 90 days of ridiculous news stories and columns about a choice on the size and role of government. The debate is silly because its explicit assumption is that Paul Ryan wants a small role for government. It is flatly wrong to describe Mr. Ryan as a supporter of small government. He is more accurately described as an opponent of government interventions that redistribute income downward and a supporter of government policies that redistribute income upward.

TransPacific Partnership Protest Wrap-up: Secret Deals Under Fire

By: Monday May 14, 2012 4:15 pm

After a weekend of protest and controversy, it’s clear that the TransPacific Partnership, the secretive and far-reaching international trade deal negotiated in Addison, Texas is under fire. The more sunshine we let in, the less attractive this deal looks to world leaders.

From a direct action perspective, the highlight of the week was the major disruption caused by Yes Lab pranksters with support from Occupy Dallas. Their efforts, which included replacing the toilet paper in the hotel with special ‘TPP’ message paper, culminated in a major infiltration and the presentation of a fake “Corporate Power Tool” award to US Trade Representative Ron Kirk.

Patent Reform’s Done, So Let the Job Valhalla Commence!

By: Sunday September 11, 2011 8:45 am

In a way, I’m not sure why the President made a jobs speech to Congress yesterday at all. Clearly all of our job worries have been solved with the passage of a patent reform bill.

Congress Returns to Session Amid High Negatives and Much Despair

By: Tuesday September 6, 2011 7:59 am

Congress is back on the job today, at least in the Senate. The House just had to have one more day off to refresh them for the ideological agenda-setting ahead. The return to session comes at a time when polls show a total collapse in confidence in Congress’ ability to do their job, and a general pessimism about the prospects for a turnaround in the economy. The big story of the week will be the President’s jobs speech on Thursday. But what will Congress do when left to their own devices?

Exceedingly little.

Obama Administration Plans Round of Trans-Pacific Free Trade Agreement Talks

By: Thursday September 1, 2011 7:00 am

Next week in Chicago, the Administration kicks off the eighth round of Trans-Pacific free trade agreement talks with multiple Asian nations. The nine-day negotiation includes talks with Vietnam, Brunei Darussalam, Singapore, Malaysia, New Zealand, Australia, Peru and Chile, but whatever comes out of the talks is intended to be a “docking agreement” to which larger nations in Asia and South America can sign up. That would include Japan, India and Taiwan; heck, it could include mainland China. This has been in the works for many years, and the Obama Administration has been negotiating since late 2009. The soft deadline for a Trans-Pacific FTA is November, just two months from now.

White House Has Several Unused Options When It Comes to Jobs

By: Thursday August 4, 2011 8:30 am

While there is a rhetorical pivot to jobs, jobs, jobs , what the White House is proposing is not even close to the most they could do. What we have here is actually a poverty of imagination. There are plenty of things that the executive branch can do – power they’ve had since they came into office – to boost jobs. They have $80-$100 billion in unused TARP funds that could be put to productive use, including at least $40 billion dedicated for housing. They could use Fannie and Freddie much more aggressively than this renting idea, creating a kind of modern-day HOLC to buy up homes.

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