A long discussion on the captured state (of affairs) for working people in the US, UK and a case in the WTO, DS503 that could pull the rug out from underneath developed country workers worldwide.

A few days ago I was reading British news where they were reporting on the expectations of Leave voters for what would be done with Brexit. It seemed so very far off the mark from what I knew was happening I almost wanted to scream. The same woeful situation exists in the US, where people who have everything to lose are gleefully voting for Biden and Trump clearly unaware of the agendas they represent. When my primary rolls around, I'm voting for Sanders, fully aware, however, unlike many people, I've been fully aware that Sanders signature issue(s) - 8single payer* *was officially "decided" by the WTO >20 years ago*. However, single pater, pure single payer is exempt from GATS so it could conceivably work, except for the little problem of it being 2020, not before the WTO existed, or perhaps the standstill may have even begun as early as the early 80s or formally, September 20, 1986. So frankly, the entire situation is bizarre and doesn't add up. That is unless you realize that the system is very close to 100% captured, Only then - it all makes perfect sense. What a major mess.

So, I was watching the news and it really made me sad to see the British voters expressing optimism that Brexit was going to solve their problems, when it is fairly obvious to me that it will make it much worse, because of GATS, under GATS the best thing they could do is nothing, except swear to get out of it first, before doing anything else.

(that applies to the US too)

They were so far removed from what I know to be going on that I almost wanted to scream at how shamelessly they have been lied to, by all their political class. (Big lying by politicians - just as shamelessly is also whats being substituted for reality here in the US, the literal valley of the shadow of death as far as neoliberalism goes.)

As I've said before, I think that the British (and American) electorates are quite obviously and shamelessly being led into traps that are intended to act as a shield or scapegoat to hide long planned changes - originating in GATS, outsourcing and offshoring a large amount of work, because its more profitable to hire workers at the lower wages paid in the developing world, and then use them here.In other words, the period of time where immigration quotas and rules kept the wages of millions of workers much higher than workers elsewhere are likely to come to a close soon, due to the web of trade agreements that are being used to dismantle them by stealth "by mutual agreement". A good search term to learn about this scheme, generally, is "movement of natural persons". Here, there is a bunch under "GATS Mode 4" and also some good writing can be found under the keyword "AFSC" which stands for "American Friends Service Committee" a Quaker group. Unfortunately their former newsletter, "Trade Matters" no longer seems to exist.


They keyword links can be found on the left. Please scroll down.

As covered extensively here and very little - if at all, in the mainstream media, starting more than two decades ago, the WTO GATS set up (on an autopilot of sorts), a framework to make that not only possible, it and the pending TISA literally make it mandatory and almost inevitable, by artificially rigging a host of conditions. Creating a mess of a situation I discuss extensively here.

People in these developed countries, if deprived of jobs by large scale changes like the ones being contemplated, to make businesses more profitable, wont be able to survive. GATS will also make it FTA illegal to help people more than the bare minimum possible. (That is unless something like single payer healthcare passes the two line test in GATS Article 1:3 - which you can read about on the left.

In other words, changes that the people would never in a million years vote for, that will likely destroy their lives and their equity,  are being stage managed into place by subterfuge and a conspiracy of silence (except for token "cover your ass behavior" by insiders.) This is why the powers that be really want to get Senator Sanders out of the race, as he would have been the first candidate in more than 25 years who was not part of a cult like movement, "Neoliberalism" which is a reaction to the advances made in the 20th century, that aims to roll back the changes, for the benefit of a global oligarchy. . (Which originated in part in the Law and Economics Movement, which you can read about here)

The GATS, part of the WTO which became effective in 1995, with the financial services provisions having become effective in February 1998, more than 20 years ago, is a treaty that supersedes national laws to create a web of very bad policy. Policy so bad its become a sort of mother lode of politician dishonesty. We'll eventually be looking at the Brexit as an example of what I mean, I'm sure. Why? Because Brexit deliberately triggers a loss of protection for the NHS in the US, from the GATS.

Nothing is as it seems. this is despite the fact that many of the things I am predicting are even in college textbooks.

For example, the following is a graphic from a college health textbook, explaing what government funded health systems can be public services (not under GATS jurisdiction) and what are (and have to be "minimally trade restrictive" a set of conditions likely to lead to a services slow death by a thousand cuts, because subsidies cant be allowed to compete with commercial offerings of products like insurance and for profit education, basically what were once public services are now increasingly under death sentences because the need of the ruling class for workers is now declinng due to globalization and automation. If you can import workers who will work for a third as much or less, why employ your own domestic workers, or so goes the advice. the same applies to education, why educate your own domestic, expensive workers when you can rent educated workers elsewhere for less. This is really how a few bad actors used to think but unfortunately they were very powerful bad actors. Now its three decades later and these plans are almost completed, and its not so surprising that the people of all these countries are the last to be told.

The pres should share a lot of the blame for helping hide it.

The same news organs that refuse to discuss them today, wrote about them in the late 1990s. They have not gone away. You can still find articles about the WTO's GATS in their archives. Predicting the things that are happening now.

But right around 2002 they stopped. But the changes they impose on countries, such as privatizing once public services are still occurring. Disinvesting in society ensures a major disaster, however.

So why are these facts being swept under the rug?

Greed. the prospect of easy money for the wealthy, coming at the expense of the people who built our nations and who hope to thrive in them once more.

They have already been written off. Although they don't realize it.

The signs are certainly there if one looks for them.

The few politicians who have discussed the GATS have done so in the most minimal manner possible, never referring to it by name.

A phrase that comes to mind is "cover your ass behavior".

The statements by authorities who do know better, on the WTO - for example its Director General - who has bluntly alluded to the battles that remain to be fought over the UK's exit from the EU's and its WTO commitments, and re-entry fail to come out and bluntly explain the most important facts.

Like the fact that the way the rules work, as far as I can see, is likely to strip the UK of its NHS.

Brexit is a trigger of requirements that the UK bring its NHS which is in non compliance because the UK sells insurance to its rich people.If the UK had stopped doing that before January 1, 1995, they would be in the clear.

So Brexit is a change that likely will require that the UK update its behavior to conform to the ideologically extreme requirements that our own (UK and US) lobbies wrote. (Americans are also being deceived that fixing our health care system is merely a matter of voting for the policies that became FTA illegal in 1995, thats not true. All of the US Presidential Candidates are misleading us too, with Bernie Sanders being about the best it seems to get but even he is making a big mistake to not tell the country, because its a trap its a trap saying all the right things if it was still 1993, he's basically in many ways pretending it is still 1993 before GATS or NAFTA or any of the other FTAs rigged the system. Its not. That said, only his proposals - for example, for Medicare for All, have a chance to succeed, but only if literally the day he's inaugurated we begin the GATS Article 21 process to withdraw the relevant service sectors from the WTO GATS. the UK has to do this too.

The system here is just as rigged as it is in the UK. And even more dishonest.

Whats the truth ? The truth is ugly. A million people who would not in any civilized country, have been sacrificed to a big lie. With more on the way if we dont stop this madness. This is why I am aiming this talk to the UK. You dont know how dishonest they are.

The instant the UK is no longer protected by the vague European carveout (which only applies to public utilities a term which is understood to exclude services for which competition exists, or which are undertaken for profit in any way, anywhere) the NHS is toast. Brexit is insanity because of this triggering effect. They are deliberately screwing it up.

What a lapse in your coverage means is the NHSs death. THEY HAVE A HIDDEN AGENDA.

What it means is that the NHS most likely will -perhaps gradually, or perhaps not, no longer be allowed to exist as it is today or as it has been unless the UK literally dismantles its health insurance business for the rich, completely AND pays off countries that claim to be owed jobs under its present GATS obligations which are in the future- only as long as nothing changed.

Any "like" services which would tend to adversely affect the supply of a financial service is  required to conform. There are a great many links on this site which should make this clear.

Its obvious to me that this is all a sort of theater.

A shell game that applies to British commitments both to its people and to other countries, and its clear who will be the ones asked to pay the price, and its not the upper crust.

"Austerity" as its called is a crime against humanity because its totally unnecessary and accomplishes no purpose, poor people not being able to get jobs and the UK preferring to export the good jobs anyway, as its more profitable. They absolutely must get rid of the parasitic vestiges of monarchy and tax their wealthy enough to fund decent social services, this really must be done all around the world in the coming years to prevent the holocaust that the GATS is setting up.

The struggling British and American people who have to pay the price as the value of their labor declines due to competition, eventually approaching zero for all the workers of the world due to the influx of free labor, in the form of computers who perform billions of decisions each second for decades without rests, for a cost of almost nothing, the cost of the electricity. They should not be stripped of their homes and hopes just to show the system doesnt discriminate against others, it must treat everybody equally badly.

Imagine the impact of exponential improvements in labor saving technology in the coming years.

Labor suddenly having no value, except of the sentimental kind.

The workers in developed countries are being portrayed as  beneficiaries of privilege, stealing the food out of the mouths or at the expense of the oligarchical executives of developing nations, who are also magically owed this huge debt incurred in the GATS. Its all part of how the system is being riggesd, to justify this huge con game where democracy can be disposed of using trade as the pretext and the various nations will be asked to make major concessions, particularly on services. Of course it was planned out in advance in painstaking detail.

The US system is truly murderous, resulting in at least 50,000 excess deaths per year in the US, that's one every few minutes. But Americans have been living with this situation for 30 years, (its been that long since s majority of wage earners have been able to afford adequate nongroup insurance, the kind people will need to buy when their jobs vanish to more competitive firms) Britons may suddenly (over a few years, perhaps but maybe not) be asked to change.

What will change? Who is deemed responsible. Despite the fact that t jobs are literally going away for good, in a way that's never happened before, people are being abandoned, the hope that they would do well for themselves is being abandoned. The wealthy are washing their hands of society and putting their wagons in a circle and pulling the ladders up.

Also, they are focusing on short term wealth extraction. For decades they have fretted about how privileged workforces in the developed world had been making so much more than workers in the poorer countries, now they are putting a plan into place that lets them take advantage of that gradient more. So who is doing the work, is supposed to change, also people who are doing the work will no longer bet an invitation to stay, its likely.

This is just as much, perhaps even more due to the actions of their own elites, its likely.They dont like losing their workers to a brain drain. They would rather they kept working for artificially low wages as long as possible.

Many foreign countries consider themselves as having been promised market access, with the goal of helping developing countries pay off their Third World Debt, instead of it being forgiven (it is arguably illegitimate) This was music to the West's banks ears.Oligarchs are scheming to do this together, behind the scenes. They are all in it together against us, who they describe as "majoritarianism" (and against taxation, of course, too)

Also "never let a good crisis go to waste" is the motto of many neoliberals it seems.

Health care is likely the most effective crisis that could be used to break the back of the unions and begin a huge outsourcing of labor, one which would become impossibly expensive to stop. (Huge sanction then kick in if any re-regulatory changes are made).

Of course it would be cheaper to replace workers, with foreign services, so the WTO rules sanction doing anything else, particularly those in service sectors that receive any kind of subsidy, Countries like the US take the position that such changes could only take place at the conclusion of whats called the "single undertaking", a change which has not occurred yet. However, India's position is that earlier rules, established during the Uruguay Round then kick in again.  So this is what the dispute centers around who is right on that. Strange for so many millions of workers futures to be on the line and nothing is being printed in the news about it! Instead the UK has created a diversion which likely will be used in an underhanded fashion to explain the changes that occur - especially if the US loses the case, as the precedent there established applies to all WTO members.

The same dynamic applies in the US with the additional problem of not even having a government that pays lip service to the need for a social safety net.  Instead our country is the one that is pushing hardest for the privatization of services, all around the world, if countries want to trade with us. Its been estimated that we would lose 41% of our jobs to offshoring it the amount could rise to its natural levels. However both of the two applicable studies excluded public services. No doubt if an appropriate amount of public service jobs were included the percentage of jobs lost would be much higher.

Bluntly, if India wins the DS503 WTO case, which is quite possible, it could result in a large scale shift of skilled work of a great many kinds (not just IT, nursing, teaching, etc.) to foreign subcontracting firms, leaving only a small number of jobs (many of which are low skill jobs or jobs in smaller companies likely to be decimated by the influx of very low wage high skilled competition, and loss of customers.

This is happening alongside the largest loss of jobs in history due to automation.

It is true that low skill jobs are the ones most likely to be automated in the near future, but high skill jobs are not by any means immune and the financial incentive to automate them is much larger.  What this means is an almost inevitable disaster is coming for the bulk of America's (and the UK's) workers.

This is a situation where safety nets should be growing, not being dismantled.But that bothers the low wage authoritarian bargain countries where all the good jobs are prtty much spoken for. They have a large number of well to do young people whose families have put them through college who need work, or they might be tempted to push for political changes in those countries that the West does not want.

Trade agreements can only directly control the activities of the governments.

So, ironically, jobs where public and quasi public entities at all levels of government are involved are the most susceptible to these shifts. (Except perhaps if they involve national security)

It makes no difference if people have gone to college or taken out loans so they could get those decent stable jobs, the economic core holding many communities together.

if they cannot work for less. WTO rules often give foreign firms an entitlement to bid on those jobs and then do them if their bids are lower. And they are certain to be as the wages of workers with roughly equivalent skills are as much as twenty times lower in developing countries like India.

WTO rules also forbid the government from forgiving the loans of young people because of a policy change that makes their degrees much less valuable. That is framed as a subsidy that gives our poor people who under the natural state of affairs can't afford college, an unfair advantage. (The same kinds of rules apply to the sick, unless a country has a single, unitary healthcare system, the only nation I know of that passes this test is Canada.) If a nation has tiers of any kinds, (for example, private insurance alongside a public system) then its arguably forbidden for the public system to do any more than the absolute minimum and then only for those for whom there is no chance of them being able to afford healthcare anywhere else either. And the help is supposed to be phased out, i.e. the crutches governments rely on are supposed to be temporary, the market forces being the only thing that's perfect in the world, that means subsidies must be for a limited time.

(A mandatory reliance on medical tourism for the needs of many is what the now almost 25 year old rules we ourselves helped write are pushing us towards).

This is the world of verifiable fact, not the fiction we see on TV or coming from politicians mouths.

This is the context DS 503 exists in. A decision adverse to the US could change the entire world of work in developed countries, pulling the rug out from underneath their workers and sick.

The outcome of the now four year old dispute (filed on March 3, 2016) is not all cut and dry either way by any means, but its a fact that many US entities ("think tanks" seem to be taking India's side in the dispute. 

A radical shift is what the self styled disruptive Indian tech firms want. After all they are cheaper. Many of our firms are claimed to be inefficient as they put it and they claim that it makes no sense to educate Americans when the future of technology is so unpredictable and the cost of higher education here so high (especially as GATS is requiring that governments stop helping people unfairly compete with their exports) As they frame it they and other services firms from even cheaper parts of the world like Africa, would be doing us a favor to replace them.

Of course the loss of 40% or more of our jobs, those requiring advanced skills would also heavily impact Social Security.

Probably it would result in it being privatized and turned into a 401k type of arrangement that would heavily benefit Wall Street. This would happen at exactly the same time as many families biggest investment, their homes, would be crashing in value. (The foreign body shop firms typically rent houses and fill them with their worker sleeping four or five to each room, so if the real estate market tanks, houses, even if bought would probably be bought by the hundreds by foreign investors.

Certainly, there is a belt of authoritarian countries where jobs are in very short supply that have a large surplus of college educated and wealthy young people eager to "work in the US", (this also applies to the UK)  even if they have to pay for the privilege, (Its well known that people often are asked to pay for placements, and they do.) or if the pay is very low.

This is the real world, not the rosy picture being painted by politicians - who are all to eager to shed the responsibilities of government now while they still can.

These assertions are well backed up by facts. "Proof by vigorous gesticulation" may fool a lot of people but news organizations should realize that politics is increasingly a branch of the acting profession. 

I think these facts put the burden of proof on the news organizations to prove that when the promises of politicians seem too good to be true that there is some plausible reason why they may actually be worth more than the hot air they are made with.