Truthout reporter Mike Ludwig talks to Ted Asregadoo about the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA) – Financial Services Annex documents that were recently published by WikiLeaks, and the current status of WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange.
Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder, at a press conference during a court appearance for a verdict on an extradition request in London, Feb. 24, 2011. (Photo: Andrew Testa / The New York Times)
The old adage about insanity – doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results – is an apt description of the Trade in Services Agreement – Financial Services Annex. TISA, like its predecessors the Trans-Pacific Partnership, Marrakech Agreement and GATT (General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade), all aim to liberalize trade and global markets by decreasing regulation and oversight by states bound by the agreement.
TISA seeks to loosen financial sector rules put in place after the Great Recession that will allow insurance services similar to the credit default swaps (CDS) to become a dominant force in the investor class again. Insurance rules that created CDS schemes mean that investors can once again bet on investments that fail – and make money on the insurance claim. If the insurance company cannot pay (like in the case of AIG), taxpayers will bail out the company. If TISA were approved, personal data will be unprotected from state oversight. Like the TPP, TISA is being negotiated in secret, but some of what the TISA actors behind the scenes are negotiating isn’t a secret anymore.
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Truthout reporter Mike Ludwig recently wrote on how WikiLeaks published part of the Trade in Services Agreement on their site, and highlights some of the analysis done on the documents in his Truthout piece. Moreover, in this “Truthout Interviews,” Mike provides an update about WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange – who’s been residing in an Ecuadorian embassy in London for the past two years. The United States wants to prosecute Assange for his role in publishing military documents and communications between diplomats in 2010, and Sweden wants him to answer assault charges.
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