Polity by Rob Salmond

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Polity: TPP, eh?

216 Responses

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  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    being asked to take waaay to much on trust

    Which is a huge issue with the way this has been carried out. The "trust us we're businessmen" just isn't really reasonable when you are paid to represent the public.

    It may just be that Grosser wasn't pushing the Pharmac issue because he trusted the Aussies to do it for him but frankly that is asking New Zealand's health system to take a crap load on trust.

    I don't think we'll be able to judge this deal for quite some time, I suspect there will be things that turn out good or even great and I suspect there will be things that cost people livelihoods and jobs. I just hope it doesn't undermine our health system because there isn't much room for any more stress on the health system under a government that refuses to raises taxes to pay for better health care.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic, in reply to mpledger,

    It does worry me that some foreign corporation can buy land here, totally destroy it, declare bankruptcy and never have to fix up (if they could) what they have destroyed.

    We've already seen these 'phoenix companies' in the building sector. The Clark Govt had measures to deal with them, only to back down after NZ Inc threatened a capital strike. Or if the law is in place, it's yet another wet bus ticket regime.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5441 posts Report Reply

  • SteveH,

    We now cannot prevent TPPA-nationals buying land in New Zealand unless it’s worth over $200 million.

    Not just TPPA-nationals. Other countries with "most favoured nation" investment status, such as China and Korea are effectively grandfathered into this deal and specifically these investment rules. As it happens the Korean agreement already states that we must treat Korean (and therefore Chinese) nationals the same way we treat our own citizens in regards establishment and acquisition of investments. This is why the Government has been (quietly) saying they can't stop foreigners buying property in Auckland.

    Since Sep 2009 • 444 posts Report Reply

  • SteveH, in reply to izogi,

    Is copyright meant to be purely about incentive to create? If so, what’s the argument for extending the term retrospectively for already-created works?

    Because moar profitz!

    Since Sep 2009 • 444 posts Report Reply

  • Tinakori,

    "That said we all need to thank Australia for fighting the battle over drugs that Grosser neither cared about nor had the clout to win."

    Just a thought, but perhaps he was fully aware of what the Australian position was and what they were going to do and backed it, reducing the need for NZ to put as much effort into this area as others. Specialisation and the division of labour probably work just as well in multi-lateral trade negotiations as in the rest of the world.

    Wellington • Since Jul 2013 • 118 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Tinakori,

    Yes, and there were enough competent negotiators on our team to make up for whatever clownery their Minister might impose, in any case.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19740 posts Report Reply

  • linger, in reply to ,

    You really ought to think about the way that comes across, to working class people.

    <sarc>
    Now, why should NZ Labour care if some other government does a deal harming their workers after bailing out managers in the same industry?
    It’s not like there’s any principle involved.
    And those workers aren’t NZ voters, so they don’t count.
    </sarc>

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1942 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to SteveH,

    This is why the Government has been (quietly) saying they can’t stop foreigners buying property in Auckland.

    Which is also the reason why we should ensure that simply buying and selling land in Auckland does not make you a tax-free profit regardless of which country you come from.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • Tinakori, in reply to Sacha,

    And why would it be clownery when he used to lead the team of professional negotiators for NZ under a Labour government? Did declaring a political allegiance and acting on it suddenly tip him into the incompetent basket?

    Wellington • Since Jul 2013 • 118 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to ,

    And on autos, American consumers will get slightly cheaper Japanese-brand vehicles, which will hurt Detroit. But the Senate is probably past doing favours for Detroit after the auto bailouts.

    You really ought to think about the way that comes across, to working class people.

    I think it's fair comment. The US government spent $80 billion rescuing GM and Chrysler and even after it found buyers for the stock, still wound up with an $11 billion loss. Compare with the much-reviled bank bailouts, on which the government actually made money.

    So yeah, Big Auto has probably had all the favours it's going to get for a while.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22848 posts Report Reply

  • Jason Kemp,

    To me it looks like the aim has been to win small $ concessions for sunset industries but trade away the IP based (sunrise) sector. Partly this may be because knowledge based exports are more intangible and harder to value but that seems to be an area that needs more work.

    Secondly – it has been suggested that TPP only needs to be passed by NZ cabinet and not something that even needs to be voted on by parliament. Does anyone know what the ratification process is for NZ ?

    I do think that pressure from the public has helped tone down a couple of the detriments but waiting up to 25 years to see if there is a benefit doesn’t seem like a win. A lot of those $m numbers are equivalent to rounding errors.

    There is an argument that NZ could have opted out and then signed on later if it looks better down the track. Apparently other nations can sign up without all of the secrecy and stumblebum process we have just been through.

    One last question. It seems like the FTA that Australia and US signed doesn’t seem to have worked out for Australia. I wonder if we are in for the same “thumscrew” process here.

    The costs of Australia’s ‘free trade’ agreement with America

    The critics were right. Ten years after the Australia–United States free trade agreement (AUSFTA) came into force, new analysis of the data shows that the agreement diverted trade away from the lowest cost sources. Australia and the United States have reduced their trade by US$53 billion with rest of the world and are worse off than they would have been without the agreement.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 368 posts Report Reply

  • SteveH, in reply to Jason Kemp,

    Secondly – it has been suggested that TPP only needs to be passed by NZ cabinet and not something that even needs to be voted on by parliament. Does anyone know what the ratification process is for NZ ?

    The treaty itself is ratified by cabinet, it does not require a parliamentary vote. However the law changes required to comply with the treaty will be voted on in parliament, probably as a single bill.

    Since Sep 2009 • 444 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Tinakori,

    I'm thinking more of his public statements and suchlike. But nobody in this cabinet seems to be much of a negotiator looking at their track record.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19740 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to ,

    The remains of the Auto industrie workers exist by scavenging scrap metal Etc.

    Like this?

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4593 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Young,

    Obviously, I'm concerned with the pharmaceutical angle. Has anyone else read the Pharmac "pharmacoeconomics analysis" paper, which explains how the pharmaceutical regulator arrives at its supply decisions? While the costs may not be passed on to the consumer, I am concerned that intellectual property and related processing rights will cause delays, increased prices and reduced scope and scale of access to medication for some specific groups- such as People Living With HIV/AIDS.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 573 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Brown, in reply to Russell Brown,

    "Not for the musicians/composers. Copyright in musical works currently extends 50 years from the death of the author. And now it'll be 70 years. So the copyright in, say, Graham Brazier's works will expire in 2085.

    For master recording owners – typically record labels and producers – I have a bit less sympathy. Half a century is a good long time to have exclusive control of a recording that probably cost you very little to acquire.

    Even the current term is locking up a lot of music that no owner claims or wishes to exploit. There are public good arguments here."

    Well aware of the difference between songs and masters re. copyright - but the fact is NZ more and more a place where the originators are independent and own their recordings and a song you record and own at 17 can be damn useful to you and your family when you're 67 and some brand wants to license it.

    Also - there is often income for non-owning performers from masters ( especially under the US model) outside of songwriting rights.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2013 • 137 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Brown,

    Actually, the worst understanding of creative works IP I've seen today was from Gordon Campbell who dissed the 70 year protection on ( although he didn't specify it as such ) recorded works, songs, and publishing as somehow stifling innovation - and went on to talk about what were clearly patent/ biotech-type IP concerns.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2013 • 137 posts Report Reply

  • SteveH, in reply to Martin Brown,

    Well aware of the difference between songs and masters re. copyright – but the fact is NZ more and more a place where the originators are independent and own their recordings and a song you record and own at 17 can be damn useful to you and your family when you’re 67 and some brand wants to license it.

    It’s 50 (soon 70) years after death of the creator. No one will lose any potential income during their life time either way. Honestly, I don’t see much reason why your family should continue to benefit from your creation 50 or 70 years after you die.

    Since Sep 2009 • 444 posts Report Reply

  • Deborah, in reply to SteveH,

    Honestly, I don’t see much reason why your family should continue to benefit from your creation 50 or 70 years after you die.

    I’m puzzled about (as in, still trying to think my way through the issues and I haven’t reached even a tentative conclusion yet) the parallels with real property. If it’s okay to remove copyright protection after a certain period of time, is it also okay to remove real (land, buildings etc) property that people have inherited after a certain period of time?

    NB: This could well be a flawed analogy. But I’ve found that it has brought several issues to the fore for me, with respect to both copyright and real property.

    New Lynn • Since Nov 2006 • 1447 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic, in reply to Martin Brown,

    The extension of copyright terms in the US under the Sonny Bono Act wasn't done with the interests of artists in mind, but rather for the interests of Big Media. There's a good reason why the Sonny Bono Act is commonly referred to as the Mickey Mouse Act.

    And there's been a right blow-up over tax-funded university research being locked behind paywalls by publishing cartels - the kind that Aaron Swartz tried to expose during his lifetime.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5441 posts Report Reply

  • Swan,

    ". If I’m right on that, it will lock in the low level of home ownership in New Zealand, which is an awful result."

    I think you also have to be right about a long list of dubious assumptions about the drivers of the housing market, to draw that long bow of a conclusion.

    Birkenhead • Since Feb 2011 • 86 posts Report Reply

  • Swan,

    "One bouquet here is that tobacco companies have been specifically shut out of the new ISDS rights, meaning we can now safely move to impose plain packaging on cigarettes. (They’d better get on with that now.) "

    The government position is that we won't until we see the outcome of the Australia WTO case. Nothing to do with TPP or ISDS.

    Birkenhead • Since Feb 2011 • 86 posts Report Reply

  • izogi, in reply to Deborah,

    If it’s okay to remove copyright protection after a certain period of time, is it also okay to remove real (land, buildings etc) property that people have inherited after a certain period of time?

    I think a big difference between information and physical property is that the latter has an element of scarcity. If one person has physical property, nobody else can have it at the same time. With information (which is where copyright law comes in), any number of people can be copying and re-using and building on it in parallel without inhibiting each other from also having and using it. All that copyright law does is to temporarily inhibit everyone’s free speech as a compromise to try and make information act as if it’s physical property, in certain ways but not every way, so as to create an incentive for it to be created.

    Expiration of copyright doesn’t deprive the original copyright owner from having it and using it, it merely deprives them of placing conditions on its copying and distribution for any longer. Taking physical property off someone would generally deprive them of using it, so even if there are discussions that could be had on it I’m not sure if they’re very equivalent.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1141 posts Report Reply

  • Swan,

    "Canada did OK by continuing to protect dairy / poultry,"

    The small fraction of Canada that work in the dairy or poultry industry did ok. The other 99.9%, lost out by continuing to overpay for food. In particular the poor are most affected.

    Birkenhead • Since Feb 2011 • 86 posts Report Reply

  • Deborah, in reply to izogi,

    Expiration of copyright doesn’t deprive the original copyright owner from having it and using it, it merely deprives them of placing conditions on its copying and distribution for any longer.

    If they're no longer earning income from it, sure. But if it creates a revenue stream for them, then removing copyright restrictions also removes a tangible benefit for them.

    New Lynn • Since Nov 2006 • 1447 posts Report Reply

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