TPP Protesters Scale U.S. Trade Rep HQ

Search form

TPP Protesters Scale U.S. Trade Rep HQ

TPP Protesters Scale U.S. Trade Rep HQ
Mon, 9/30/2013 - by Al Kamen
This article originally appeared on Washington Post

As demonstrations go, the protest last Monday against the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a huge trade agreement being negotiated now at the U.S. Trade Rep’s office in Washington, was, in terms of size, no big deal.

The handful of demonstrators from ”Flush the TPP,” an assortment of enviro, veterans, Code Pink, and other activists chanting in front of the building against the 11-nation treaty, hardly merited media attention.

But as pure guerrilla theater, the noon-time demonstration could rank among the best.... ever.

Eight ”construction workers” in blue coveralls and yellow hard hats somehow made their way up an unsecured scaffolding — the building, the second-oldest still in use, was undergoing some exterior work — to the top, where they unfurled a huge, 10′ by 30′ banner condemning the proposed treaty as a corporate giveaway.

Then five of the eight ” workers” moved onto a lower balcony — we seem to recall that’s on the same floor at U.S. Trade Rep. Mike Froman’s office — and hung two more banners.

The police finally showed and briefly handcuffed one protester. But that was all.

The action had been planned for a month, said Kevin Zeese, an organizer at Popular Resistance.org, with the coveralls and hard hats ordered on line. The door to the scaffolding was always open, he noted, and the group did a final “scouting” mission the Friday before the event.

But when they arrived on Monday, wearing their “Stop the TPP” hats, he said, “we were shocked that there were no workers, no security. It was amazing.” ”We wanted to do something audacious,” Zeese said, “we wanted to be bold.” Indeed.

We’re told that for security reasons, USTR would not answer queries about how the protesters managed to scale the building, but said that the agency has a “security posture” that protects all employees.

Did we mention the U.S. Trade Representative’s office is just across the street from the White House complex, specifically the Eisenhower Executive Office Building?

Originally published by Washington Post

Article Tabs

U.S. negotiators are working to permanently block a landmark regulatory proposal in the E.U. aimed at addressing climate change – and instead to force European countries to import the world's dirtiest oil.

This summer, the CIA's private Amazon Web Services cloud—shielded from the public behind a wall of national security—becomes operational.

The study released Monday by Human Rights Watch raises questions about the criminal justice system's ability to respect civil rights and due process since 9/11.

Extensive research and reports commissioned by the fracking industry are treated as seminal, informative works within the U.K. government – but to date, no one outside industry vouches for its safety.

“It doesn’t make sense that I work hard, help the restaurant make money and yet I can’t eat there or support my family on just one job. This is not the America that I believe in."

In the 80s and 90s they called them "IMF Riots" – but what the biggest international investment organizations and consultants now see happening looks a whole lot bigger.

Posted 5 days 13 hours ago

Part 3: Chris Hedges interviewed Harvard professor and MayDay SuperPAC founder Lawrence Lessig about his plans to break the hold of big money on American elections.

Posted 5 days 13 hours ago

Patient details were shared with organizations including private health insurance companies, many based in the United States.

Posted 5 days 13 hours ago

Investors led by BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, and PIMCO, the world’s largest bond-fund manager, have sued some of the world’s largest banks for breach of fiduciary duty.

Posted 6 days 12 hours ago

The aggressive foreclosures and water shut-offs are a deliberate scheme to shock the population, drive long-time residents out of the city center, seize property and gentrify downtown Detroit and the waterfront.

Posted 5 days 13 hours ago

There's no conspiracy underway to destroy Earth. UN delegates inside the Warsaw climate conference, shirking their obligations to us and future generations, are simply following the logic of a system contingent on endless growth in the interest of profit.

What would a new people-powered constitution created by the American public look like? Looking at polls of the public, we think we’d like the result.

Over the past decade or so our elected representatives have slowly but surely handed the power to decide our elections over to a handful of giant, mostly Republican-connected corporations.

Politicians backed by the ultra-conservative American Legislative Exchange Council have introduced 67 laws in 25 states to reduce minimum wage levels, a new survey revealed.

His exposé of the murky world of rigged high-frequency trading, has sold 130,000 copies in its first week. Clearly the public is interested.

Sign Up