cj#676> letters from readers


Richard Moore

Date: Sat, 24 May 1997
Sender: •••@••.••• (LARRY A BARTON)
Subject: Re: cj#669> Giveaway programs

The attached references clearly indicate the relevance of government in
the (ongoing) development of new technologies that eventually gets into
the hands of the private sector -at less than bargain prices- that in
turns sells it back to the original "investors", i.e., taxpayers, who
find themselves as consumers only and not owners.  Are there any
organized lobbying efforts that aim to affect the process (government
giveaway)so as to ensure that "royalties" are set in place that feed
back to the public coffers for the research and development expenditures
that lead to the innovations?


Date: Sat, 24 May 1997
Sender: Frank Scott <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Re: cj#672> re: corporations, nations, warfare

The Report from Iron Mountain was a hoax, and it apparently surprised its
writer(s), who may not have realized how close to the truth they were. Sorry
I can't give a source, but I think it may have been, most recently, a piece
in The Nation that quoted at least one of the writers and gave background on
the original publication.

I never read it, but certainly have heard of it. Quite a few people from
what could be called the right, or at least libertarian conservativism, have
picked up on it in recent years. Just shows that most of us are upset about
the same things, even if we attribute them to different forces and sources.
But truth is stranger than fiction, though perhaps not as entertaining at


Date: Sun, 25 May 1997
Sender: •••@••.•••
Subject: Re: cj#672> re: corporations, nations, warfare

Report From Iron Mountain was written as a satire (?). The author
has recently rereleased the publication with a disclaimer in the Intro.

Still a mind opener.


Date: Mon, 26 May 1997
Sender: Nick Treanor <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Re: cj#670> MAI - yet another brick in the wall

Further to your timely notice of the MAI problem, a citizens for democracy
group in Boston is sponsoring a conference next Saturday, May 31, to get
the word out about MAI and to study its possible effects.  Here is a
portion of that group's press release, sent out yesterday.

------- Forwarded Message Follows -------
Date:          Sat, 24 May 1997
From:          •••@••.••• (David G Adams)
Subject:       For immediate release: Local alliances organize MAI teach-in

        Will International Business Over-ride Laws Passed
                by our Elected Governments?

At a time when more responsibility is being shifted to state and local
government to deal with social needs, new laws are being drafted at the
international level which will restrict the power of state and local
government to affect economic development, environmental or labor
standards, and the retention of domestic industries.

The Multilateral Agreement on Investment, being prepared by O.E.C.D. (The
European-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) with
the United States, is designed to make it easier for corporations and big
investors to expand their operations into new locales by overriding many
federal, state, and local requirements.  MAI as it stands would jeopardize
the Community Reinvestment Act, which prevents redlining by banks, as well
as programs in cities like Baltimore which require a living wage be paid
by any company with a city contract, minority hiring requirements, plant
closing requirements, development funds for local business or these owned
by women or minorities, requirements for job creation or retention when
tax breaks or other subsidies are given, and human rights laws such as the
Massachusetts Burma law which restricts the state from doing business with
companies based in countries with gross violations of human rights, and
more. The draft document more thoroughly eliminates national and local
regulations.  MAI could be, in short, a devastating assault on the right
of local self determination.

Although MAI could have come to Congress as early as this fall, it has not
yet been released to the public.  It has been drafted virtually in secret
over the last two years and has had almost no coverage in the press.

Multilateral agreements like NAFTA and GATT, which removed trade barriers
and allowed the free importation of goods from low-wage countries with few
environmental standards, have resulted in the loss of many good jobs in US
and-- in the interest of remaining "competitive"--a race to the bottom of
low wages and low environmental standards.  MAI is the latest in that
tradition and perhaps the most critical, because it goes beyond NAFTA and
GATT in establishing--for the first time--the right of powerful,
multinational corporations to sue and collect compensation from local
communities that exercise various kinds of control on investment behavior.
Local and national governments would have no right to sue corporations on
behalf of their people.

MAI proponents say the agreement will put the US in a stronger position to
attract investment, build new facilities, and compete in the global
marketplace.  Opponents see it as an assault on community rule and the
democratic process, an agreement that will reduce wages and lower
environmental standards while giving much more power to large

It is clear that any agreement with such a massive impact on local
authority deserves adequate time for presentation and debate. Our goal is
to start a national debate.

From: •••@••.•••
To: •••@••.•••
Date: Sat, 31 May 1997
Subject: re: Tilting against the academic windmills

Dear Richard,

I am a recently retired professor of psychology and have lived in the
windmill for a very long time. Your advice to Ms. Liao was right on the
money, in my opinion. In her reply to you, she said two things which prompt
my comments:

>An academic, too often, sees "his part" of the tree as
>something to be defended - his ego is identified with its preservation.

The classic treatise on scientific revolutions concludes that paradigms
shift primarily when older theorists die off. That is the ultimate
expression of the "clinging to one's pet ideas" referred to by Ms. Liao.

>Things often turn into their opposites (I forget the generic word for
>this phenomenon). Thus regulatory agencies, instead of curbing corporate
>power, become the vehicles for extending corporate power. Or a goverment,
>set up to represent the people, ends up suppressing people.

The term is "DoubleThink" or "DoubleSpeak" in which the Ministry of Plenty
is in charge of rationing, the Ministry of Love operates the prisons and
interrogation mechanisms, and the Ministry of Truth is in charge of revising
history to justify the policy of the moment. Wouldn't that make a great

Regards -- Chuck Hallenbeck

N0MQP & Dash: Back Home Again In Thunder Country
"A Mighty Shepherd Is My Dog"