The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), once thought of as the same “globalism” that would bring the end of American jobs in the same way that NAFTA and CAFTA were criticized for in the 90’s and beyond, has evolved since it was negotiated by our last president. Now it has been resurrected from the grave Donald Trump thought he was sending it to when he pulled out of the agreement, and it’s been fully realized by 11 Pacific countries — without the United States.
Focusing on progressive equality, the benefits of the trade deal have been renegotiated to favor all citizens of the countries involved, with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaking glowingly about the outcome of the pact:
“Trade helps strengthen the middle class, but for it to work we must ensure that the benefits are shared with all our citizens, not just the few.”
So where was the US role in this historic agreement? After all, the nations who will participate include major world powers like Japan and Australia, in addition to our northern neighbor. And the United States, due to Trump’s preoccupation with golf, Twitter feuds, and remuneration for the donors and benefactors who put him in office, was left out in the cold.
According to Bloomberg, “The deal was reached after two days of talks in Tokyo, and came just hours after Trump imposed tariffs on imported solar panels and washing machines — his first major move to level what he says is a global playing field tilted against U.S. companies.”
Those tariffs will cost America at least 23,000 jobs, say solar industry experts, and come ostensibly as Trump tries to favor oil and coal in the global market, despite the fact that the technologies are non-sustainable and employ fewer people than solar to begin with.
Donald Trump has no interest in advancing America’s interests. He simply wants to pursue whatever it is he thinks will resonate with his base, regardless of its benefits to the larger society as a whole. If only our president would govern with the same concern for Americans that other world leaders show for their own citizens.
Featured image via Yuri Gripas/Getty Images via Bloomberg