Behind The TPP Curtain: Harper’s Secret Free Trade Deal

free-trade-agreements-tpp-ttip-tisa-democracyHere at Humans vs. Harper, we have not read the text of the secret Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal. We’re willing to bet that you have not seen the highly complicated thousand-page-plus text either.

Obviously, the 12 governments negotiating the deal have the text. And, it’s highly likely that the dozens and dozens of corporate lobbyists working to make sure the deal immensely strengthens corporate power internationally have also seen the text. It’s worth noting that the full text of the 1988 Canada – U.S. free trade agreement – our first ever free trade agreement – was publically available for months before the deal was finalized.

Meanwhile, the TPP may well be the greatest corporate gravy train ever, but, once underway, it’s not going to be stopping to pick up you, your family or your community.

Harper constantly says that the deal will benefit consumers, but, once again, he’s lying.

According to the media, the  Canadian consumer will see little, if any benefit from the TPP.  Just as with other trade deals, there’s not going to be any savings at the grocery or the clothing store or on the auto lot for you and me.

As important, the National Farmer’s Union condemns the TPP’s impact on Canada’s farmers. “The National Farmers Union (NFU) denounces the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), which would severely damage Canada’s supply managed sectors – dairy, chicken, turkey and eggs – and provide illusory market gains for other agriculture sectors such as beef, pork, grain and oilseeds. The TPP will deny them the ability to fully serve Canadian consumers.” 

Then there’s the matter of the $3.9 billion that will be paid out to farmers – via an income support program to cover losses after the TPP comes into force as well as losses resulting from the new European dairy imports. Harper also newly promised $1 billion to the Canadian auto industry – auto-makers say that amounts to a pittance because building or re-modeling auto plants is hugely expensive. In any case, that protect the TPP deal money will come right out of the taxpayer’s wallet, something the farmer’s union also criticizes. Plus the NDP says, the TPP comes at an immediate cost of 20,000 decent Canadian jobs.

Below, you’ll see links to two videos and an article from substantial critics of this deal, and free trade generally. These materials will fill you in on the back-story of free trade – why it’s happening, why we should be worried and who will  be the beneficiaries of this deal. Short form: It’s not your pocketbook and it’s not your democracy.

TPP Videos

Robert Reich on Trans-Pacific Partnership

Wikileaks Channel: The US strategy to create a new global legal and economic system: TPP, TTIP, TISA

Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz warns of Trans-Pacific Partnership dangers.

Correction: In it’s original post on the TPP, Humans vs. Harper erred in stating that the Harper  Conservatives left the agricultural sector’s supply management system near untouched. After learning that the National Farmers Union strongly opposed the TPP, Humans vs. Harper amended this post to include the Union’s perspective. (Oct. 12, 2015) 

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2 thoughts on “Behind The TPP Curtain: Harper’s Secret Free Trade Deal

  1. Did you check with Canada’s National Farmers Union before declaring that the TPP left supply management largely intact? In fact, the provision of compensation money for dairy and poultry farmers – and the size of the pool – indicates that the effects will in fact be quite large, and ultimately bad both for farmers and for other Canadians (taxpayers, consumers – who else is there?) Information is online at


    • Hello Shannon, sorry to have taken so long to respond to your message, which we very much appreciate. We did not check with the NFU and we should have. We have gone back and amended the TPP post to include NFU’s concerns and have provided a link to their media release on the TPP. We also noted the correction at the end of the post.

      It’s great to know that the NFU has folks out there watching out for their interests.



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