cj#1009> Upcoming WTO counter coverage


Richard Moore

Date: Fri, 05 Nov 1999 17:45:08 -0500
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Subject: Upcoming WTO counter coverage.

Institute for Public Accuracy
915 National Press Building, Washington, D.C. 20045
(202) 347-0020 * http://www.accuracy.org * •••@••.•••

Friday, November 5, 1999

                     ABOUT THE WTO: HERE'S WHY

When the World Trade Organization global summit gets underway on Nov. 30 in
Seattle, President Clinton and other top officials will be confronted by
large protests there. Among the WTO critics now available for comment are:

JULIE LIGHT, •••@••.•••, http://www.corpwatch.org
"While 134 governments make up the WTO, it is transnational corporations
that increasingly influence and benefit from international trade policy,"
says Light, managing editor of the Internet magazine Corporate Watch and
co-host of World Trade Watch, which will provide daily live nationwide radio
coverage of the WTO summit. (The broadcasts are a co-production of Corporate
Watch, the National Radio Project and the Institute for Public Accuracy.)
"As the gap between rich and poor widens both within and between nations, as
sweatshops proliferate and biotech companies threaten local crops and
farmers, it is clear that unbridled free trade has brought neither democracy
nor prosperity to most of the world's citizens... Groups from around the
world -- working on a wide range of issues, from forest protection to labor
rights -- recognize that the seemingly arcane decisions of this world body
directly impact their daily lives."

LORI WALLACH, •••@••.•••, http://www.citizen.org
Director of Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch, Wallach comments: "The
World Trade Organization ministerial summit has become the focus of
controversy because it has sacrificed democratic decision-making on the
altar of international commerce. In the five years since the WTO was
established, not a single public health, safety, or environmental regulation
that has been challenged has been upheld; all have been found to be 'illegal
trade barriers.' As the fingers of the WTO work their way further into daily
life -- by watering down food safety rules, for example -- ordinary people are
increasingly concerned about its power and who influences it."

MARK WEISBROT, •••@••.•••, http://www.preamble.org
Research director for the Preamble Center, Weisbrot said: "The U.S. public
has grown increasingly tired and suspicious of the whole process of
'corporate globalization,' in which the ability of multinational
corporations to profit from expanding trade and commerce is assumed to be
identical with the public interest. The argument here is not 'free trade vs.
protectionism,' as it is often framed by proponents of corporate
globalization looking for a straw man to beat up on. The WTO is quite
protectionist, and no friend of free markets, when it comes to 'intellectual
property rights' -- patents, copyrights, and other monopolies created for the
benefit of major corporations."

For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020 or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167


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