A ridiculous little offshore island
What about TTIP, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment deal that is being negotiated between America and Europe at the moment? In this context America means, for all intents and purposes, American multinational corporations, and even the EU is struggling to make a good deal for itself. Under TTIP the parties have to sign up to ISDS, Investor State Dispute Settlement, which contains a clause allowing corporations to sue governments if they think there has been a restriction of trade. Under this clause corporations can pick off smaller economies like sparrows. Thus Uruguay tried to pass a law saying cigarettes had to be sold in plain packaging, were sued by Philip Morris which took the case to the WTO, won and Uruguay had to pay Philip Morris 300 million dollars in compensation (The Independent October 21st 2014). If we want a trade deal with America we might as well say goodbye to the NHS. But in any case we won’t be able to afford it. Every competent economic authority in the world came after careful calculation to the conclusion that Brexit would lead to the UK economy shrinking drastically, and was met with the empty cry Project Fear. We will, and this is my fear, become a ridiculous little offshore island, the laughing stock of the world, as Farage made a laughing stock of us in the European Parliament yesterday. Of course immigration has got out of hand in Britain and we need to keep agitating for something to be done about it. But don’t forget that over a miilion British citizens work in the EU as well, and if we want access to the single market we’re going to have to sign up to free movement of peoples or something very like it anyway. Brexit is a disaster. Did you do your homework before you voted leave? All the information about TTIP and ISDS is on the internet. Let us get out of Project Stupid before it’s too late. Add your name to the petition for a second referendum.