Hot off the presses from MSNBC:
"Obama said he would vote for a Peruvian trade agreement next week, in response to a question from a man in Londonderry, NH who called NAFTA and CAFTA a disaster for American workers. He said he supported the trade agreement with Peru because it contained the labor and environmental standards sought by groups like the AFL-CIO, despite the voter's protests to the contrary. He also affirmed his support for free trade."
The voter's "protests to the contrary" are exactly right. The AFL-CIO does not support the bill expanding NAFTA into Peru, and the much-trumpeted labor/environmental standards leave enforcement up to the Bush administration, rather than empowering third parties to enforce them (like corporations have the power to enforce investor rights provisions in these same trade agreements). Leaving enforcement to the Bush administration - or any administration - is the biggest loophole possible. It is precisely why corporate lobbyists have bragged to reporters that the standards are not enforceable.
Obama is the first presidential candidate to officially declare his/her support for the NAFTA expansion moving through the Congress. His announcement is not necessarily surprising, considering he was the keynote speaker at the launch of the Hamilton Project - a Wall Street front group working to drive a wedge between Democrats and organized labor on globalization issues. His announcement comes just days after a Wall Street Journal poll found strong bipartisan opposition to lobbyist-written NAFTA-style trade policies.
Trade has been known to be a huge issue in Iowa (remember Dick Gephardt in 1988), so this announcement could very well ripple through the 2008 primary.
Rob Kall is an award winning journalist, inventor, software architect,
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more detailed bio:
Rob Kall has spent his adult life as an awakener and empowerer-- first in the field of biofeedback, inventing products, developing software and a music recording label, MuPsych, within the company he founded in 1978-- Futurehealth, and founding, organizing and running 3 conferences: Winter Brain, on Neurofeedback and consciousness, Optimal Functioning and Positive Psychology (a pioneer in the field of Positive Psychology, first presenting workshops on it in 1985) and Storycon Summit Meeting on the Art Science and Application of Story-- each the first of their kind. Then, when he found the process of raising people's consciousness and empowering them to take more control of their lives one person at a time was too slow, he founded Opednews.com-- which has been the top search result on Google for the terms liberal news and progressive opinion for several years. Rob began his Bottom-up Radio show, broadcast on WNJC 1360 AM to Metro Philly, also available on iTunes, covering the transition of our culture, business and world from predominantly Top-down (hierarchical, centralized, authoritarian, patriarchal, big) to bottom-up (egalitarian, local, interdependent, grassroots, archetypal feminine and small.) Recent long-term projects include a book, Bottom-up-- The Connection Revolution, debillionairizing the planet and the Psychopathy Defense and Optimization Project.
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