The corporate nabobs behind the drive to enmesh us in the Trans Pacific Partnership are having a tough time of it.
Seems some of their fellow nabobs feel unduly constrained by the obligations democracy has imposed on them. That's led a few of them to take contrarian positions for the simple reason that they know they'd have hell to pay in the next election.
But let's not get ahead of ourselves. The TPP pushers are down, but not out. They'll be back!
Remember, this is in the first instance an attempt to create an Asia-Pacific trade bloc that excludes China. As such, it'll be a convenient tool for the Americans when they're busy asserting their full-spectrum-dominance vis-a-vis Beijing. No serious person imagines that this TPP trading bloc will not be entirely dominated by the Americans.
Which is not to say that the money-grubbers in Canada or Chile or New Zealand or Malaysia don't see something to gain here. When we hear talk of "homogenizing" labour standards, environmental standards, and so forth, what do you suppose that means?
It means driving everybody to the lowest common denominator.
That's why the nabobs have worked so hard to keep these negotiations secret.