Before the advent of the internet, and other modern ways of disseminating information, a significant claim made against governments around the world was that there was corruption festering below the surface. While many of these claims were warranted, the truth was hidden by the sheer size of the bureaucracy that was being questioned. Today, we expect even more transparency and honesty from our politicians and governments than we did in the past, and the expectation is that these demands are being met. This is substantiated by the broadcast and publishing of many government events and documents.
Yet this same technology only makes it easier for governments to hide their inner workings and outer influences. This is most visible with wikileaks, where Julian Assange and his fellow moderators publish huge amounts of state secrets — secrets which many believe shouldn’t be kept in the first place, due to the sentiments of the citizens.
Yet the cloak and dagger backroom dealings continue, and corruption is still present. Today more than ever before, single entities are able to control much of a government through donations, which for all intents and purposes are brives. Corporations or people who have vested interests in policy and regulation can easily assert their influence by lining the pockets of influential players in the political arena. Not only is this process hidden from the public’s eye by the very people who receive these private payrolls, but the work that is done for the bidders is whisked away and pushed out of the public eye until the changes are finalized and reform or contention is an impossibility.
The epitome of this is the TransPacific Partnership, or TPP, which has been shrouded in mystery for months. Not only does it contain agreements, regulations, and definitions, or lack there of, which directly benefit the corporations and governments who have been invested in its creation, it goes against many of the beliefs and desires of citizens and organizations around the world who crusade for fairer trade laws and a more open process of passing international agreements such as this..
While the TPP has yet to pass in the United States, it is in the final stages of this process, and a conclusion regarding it will be reached soon. For now, people are hoping that the protests of the many who decry this agreement will overpower the diversions that have been used to appease the public. There is still a chance to prevent this agreement from being pushed through, though it will take immense effort on the part of the people.
To find out more about the TPP and what it means for the average citizen, check out this article, and visit the huffington post feed about the TPP.