TPP: Name & Shame?

OK, OK, I'm going to have a little fun here, after a couple of serious posts about the Trans Pacific Partnership - which may be dead in the water anyway, as the latest proposed talks in Guam later in May may have been cancelled. But has anyone else noticed how so many people involved in trade (and food trade) have names that really makes you wonder - could these people do anything but support trade agreements? Also, there are others on my list that I admire. Oh well, without further ado-ado-ado (famous quote from ABBA), here we go:

Trade Minister Tim Groser says he is not bothered that his name has apparently become a byword for undiplomatic behaviour. The Labour Party today accused him in Parliament of insulting Canadian diplomats by comparing the country's dairy industry to the Soviet Union.

Trade spokesman David Parker cited a scathing article by an American policy analyst, which said Mr Groser's behaviour had led to a new slang term in Washington: "Grossing".

The article said the Canadian Embassy in Washington was "privately bristling" at the minister's "counter-productive, undiplomatic sledging". Mr Groser said he was not aware his name had been turned into a verb, but added that it could be evidence that New Zealand was "making a mark" with its negotiations on the Trans Pacific Partnership. He said that Canada's dairy interests had been "diametrically opposed" to New Zealand's interests for 30 years, and it took "just a little bit of spine to stand up to it".

Mr Parker said Mr Groser's comments were "abrasive and arrogant". "How does he think slagging off the Canadians using derogatory terms is going to result in a good outcome for those negotiations?" Mr Parker asked.

Mr Groser stood firm: "It's called a negotiation. And to use one of Tana Umaga's memorable phrases, 'We ain't here to play tiddlywinks'."

The minister made the comments in an interview with Reuters when he was in the US for trade talks last month.

He said that Canada's highly protected dairy industry "looks like it belongs in the former Soviet Union".

He urged Canada to open up its markets and "start to engage in a serious way" on the TPP.

Canada, which has about 13,000 dairy farmers, applies tariffs of more than 200 per cent on dairy imports.

In a statement, Marion Gross, senior vice-president of North America supply chain, said that McDonald's "believes that any animals that become ill deserve appropriate veterinary care and our suppliers will continue to treat poultry with prescribed antibiotics".

Mr. Portman backed a series of sweeping trade deals, including the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement, and went on to serve as President George W. Bush’s top trade negotiator.

In March of this year, U.S. Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY) introduced the fourth version of her Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act to the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill would ban non-therapeutic uses of medically important antibiotics in food animal production.

Trade Minister Andrew Robb has hosed down fears the price of medicines will skyrocket with the signing of what has been dubbed the world's largest free trade deal, saying it is "not the intention or the outcome". Mr Robb lashed out at consumer groups and the Greens for spreading misinformation about the Trans-Pacific Partnership, before walking into a meeting with 11 trade counterparts in Sydney on Saturday to finalise the "basic elements" of the deal.

Rob Fish, chairman of the Northern Territory Seafood Council, said many NT restaurants moved to selling local product once the new rules for menus were cast.

Representative Jeff Flake, a Republican, introduced two other cotton-focused amendments. One of them would cut direct payments by the same amount necessary to fund the Brazil Cotton Institute in fiscal year 2013 - i.e. by US$147.3 million. This would effectively take the burden of supporting the Brazil Cotton Institute off taxpayers and put it on cotton farmers.

A “fry-up” pie should be banned from a hospital canteen, says a food expert. The £1.50 “heart attack on a plate” is crammed with bacon, sausage, black pudding and beans, with an egg on top. It is being sold at Ninewells Hospital in Dundee, where doctors fight to save stroke and heart attack victims. Prof Mike Lean, former government adviser, and chair of human nutrition at Glasgow University, said it was a “shocking” example of a meal, adding: “It should never be anywhere near a hospital. It is laden with fat, salt and without a vegetable in sight. There should be strict guidelines for all food sold in hospitals.”

Agricultural consultant Steve Savage accused Dow's opponents of resorting to scare tactics, writing on his blog, Applied Mythology, that what the victims of Agent Orange "don't deserve is to have their tragedy exploited in an irresponsible way."

Source: Huffington Post 'Agent Orange Corn' Debate Rages As Dow Seeks Approval Of New Genetically Modified Seed

And last but not least, who can forget (drum roll):

Bernie Madoff – economic swindler (he infamously “made off” with people’s money…)

Got any more good ones, anyone...?

Update 1: Oh, and I forgot to mention Akira Amari, Japan's chief negotiator to the TPP, born 1949. The kanji of his last name are 甘利 or "Sweet, coax, pamper" and "Advantage, benefit, profit, interest..." "Mr. Sweet Profit," then?"

Update 2: This one is almost too good to be true. The US has just lost a major food labelling case in the World Trade Organization, as Canada and Mexico argued that the US Country of Origin labels for meat were a trade barrier. In fact, much of the US meat industry also wanted the mandatory labels repealed. And it only took the House of Representatives 2 days to go along with industry. And who is in charge? A certain Mr. Conaway from Texas. Con the consumers away!

House Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway, R-Texas, has long backed the meat industry's call for repeal. Along with several of his colleagues, he introduced the legislation to repeal the labeling requirements hours after the WTO decision. He said the bill is a "targeted" response. 

More suggestions, please!


Pandabonium said…
Imagine being in hospital and having a doctor visit you who says, "you deserve to be healthy. It is your right! We will give you our best medical treatment for your condition. Then, when you are well enough, we will kill you and eat you!"

Or maybe just sell your meat to the highest bidder...

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