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Canada EU Government The Internet Politics

Bye ACTA, Hello CETA 225

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the hide-it-in-subsection-c-part-seventeen dept.
New submitter xSander writes "Is anyone really surprised by this? ACTA may have been rejected by the European Parliment, but it is far from dead yet. Apparently, the EU is trying to revive ACTA through the Canada-EU Trade Agreement (CETA)." The article contains a handy side-by-side comparison of the CETA clauses that are nearly identical to ones found in ACTA.
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Bye ACTA, Hello CETA

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  • by captainpanic (1173915) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @05:38AM (#40600405)

    How long will this continue to go on?

    Hopefully forever. European counties founded the EU because it's better to keep the politicians talking about money than to have them threaten each other and start a war. First it was a union for coal and steel, now it's apparently music and entertainment. Same thing though: it keeps them occupied, and the results are generally a bit less awful than a world war.

    The more they talk, the less harm is done.

  • This is war (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Pecisk (688001) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @05:41AM (#40600417)

    If someone didn't understand, this is war. We have billions industry fighting this who has lot of money to waste on politicians and lobbying, and they won't give up their rights to get easy money without any economical logic. This ain't first, and won't be our last battle, and we should accept this as that. What's good that this also creates generation of new politicians who are very informed about moral/economical/legal issues of IPR regimes. More they pushing this, more people see what's their real aims are.

  • by Rogerborg (306625) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @05:50AM (#40600453) Homepage

    This is the lobbyists 9-5 (well, 11-3 including a 2 hour expenses lunch) job. It's just going to go on and on and on, and they will never stop, ever, regardless of either setback or success. There won't be enough profit or laws or mandatory nagware or State enforcement to satisfy them, because this is what they do. This is all that they do.

    While we won the battle on the barricades, they continued the war by creeping in through the sewers. They're in this for the duration, and so we have to be too.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @05:56AM (#40600469)

    Can't they make it illegal to waste court's time by bringing up similar proposals under newer names every month or so.

    Instead of rejecting the proposal, they need to reject specific provisions of the proposal so they can't be rehashed under a new name again.

  • Re:Not a surprise (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ifiwereasculptor (1870574) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @06:00AM (#40600483)

    I can't really decide if that's extremely funny or incredibly scary. Did she actually say that people should have nothing to do with laws? That she'd keep pushing it covertly until it passed, making no compromises? Whoever votes for that woman is a very special kind of idiot.

  • Re:Not a surprise (Score:5, Insightful)

    by JaredOfEuropa (526365) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @06:30AM (#40600551) Journal
    We don't really vote for MEPs. We vote for European political parties, almost all of which are made up of groups of national political parties. So people end up voting for the same party they vote for in their own country, and it's often not the best and brightest who advance to European politics, quite the contrary in fact. It seems that the only "good" politicians who get into europarliament are the onces who need a bit of a break from the busy life of national politics.
  • by Fixer40000 (1921598) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @06:39AM (#40600583)

    You will vote on this referendum again and again until we get the result we want.

    At which point you will be stuck with it forever.

    Democracy in action.

  • It never will (Score:5, Insightful)

    by oztiks (921504) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @07:37AM (#40600753)

    Name your reason, kiddy porn, hacking, illegal downloads, so on and so fourth.

    Polticans will think they are doing the world/country justice trying to eliminate one of the above problems, they put forward a policy until its very many faults are examined and it's abandoned.

    Another policitican comes along, thinks they are doing the world/country a justice trying to eliminate one of the above problems, except for the last one cause that's still in the news, they put forward a policy until its very many faults are examined and it's abandoned.

    Another politician comes along ........

  • by Andtalath (1074376) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @07:39AM (#40600761)

    As long as they are on the offense, we are on the defence.

    Meaning, even if they don't win, we don't either.

    That's why the actual goal is to attack them.

  • Re:Great (Score:5, Insightful)

    by siddesu (698447) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @08:01AM (#40600869)

    You can blame anyone you choose, but your reasoning is faulty.

    In general, the leverage that the European citizens have over the EC is significantly smaller than the leverage the Americans have over their federal government. This is so because of the way EC commissars .... ops, commissioners are appointed to serve, and because of the complex patron-client relationships that exist between the various national political elites that make the appointments, the European Council, the key commissars and the major European "parties".

    In this specific instance, the only body of the EU that represents the "little guys" directly, the European Parliament, rejected ACTA very clearly (and under massive grassroots pressure), so you cannot really blame the EU electorate.

    What you are witnessing here is a small clique of euro bureaucrats gaming the rules of the EU, trying to subvert the will of this elected body. They are the ones who should bear all the blame.

  • Re:Great (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Teun (17872) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @08:23AM (#40600965) Homepage

    it is the European Commission -- the unelected cabinet of Europe, way beyond any control from the little Europeans

    Crap, yes it's the commission that brings up these dofus ideas but they are no more 'unelected' than many EU governments.
    These guys don't fall from the sky but are appointed by national governments that are controlled by elected parliaments and their plans have to pass the elected EU parliament, it's up to you to take part in your national and EU elections to control them.

    I agree it's rather scandalous they once more try to force such unwanted legislation but have good hopes the various national governments will instruct their commissioner to either take out the sting or stop the whole process, otherwise the EU parliament will bury it as happened with ACTA.

  • Re:Great (Score:4, Insightful)

    by siddesu (698447) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @08:47AM (#40601071)

    Aw, come on. The national governments do indeed appoint the candidates, and there are hearing sessions in the EP before the commissars are put forward and the commission is approved, but the process behind these appointments is in no way transparent, compared to, say, electing a national government.

    The big countries and the important bureaucrats play complicated games with their clientelle in the smaller countries, there are all kinds of backstage games and agreements, etc. so in the end you get a "government" that is much more responsive to the cabal that runs these negotiations than to anyone else.

    Then, there is the sad fact that the Commission is viewed as something remote and inaccessible by the voters in Europe (or at least by the people I know), and there is a lot less public scrutiny directed at them as well.

    So, compared to a national government, the EC suffers less oversight, gets less feedback, and consequently feels more powerful.

  • by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @08:48AM (#40601079)
    Eventually, protesters run out of steam. High-paid lobbyists don't stop. This sort of thing will be revived over and over until the industry gets what it wants. That's how democracy works, right? Keep demanding things until people lose the energy to vote against you.
  • Re:Great (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Gr8Apes (679165) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @09:35AM (#40601375)

    but to me it looks like in the US this is happening because more people find it acceptable

    This. For whatever reason, it seems like more and more people are voting against their interests, all because of the promise of some benefit to someone else. ...

    I don't know when it happened, but a sizable number of people in this country have been convinced that the government they themselves elected is an evil machine hell bent on wiping them out ....

    First, people appear to be voting against their interests because they are voting for a very specific interest that amounts to crap in the big picture of politics (abortion anyone?).

    Second, those latter 2 statements are not necessarily opposing facts. The government they elected is not the one they received, and there's plenty of evidence they're an out of control evil bent on subjugating the populace, or strongly going that way. Heinlein, Huxley or Orwell may have been prescient instead of merely writing dystopian fiction. Heinlein is included because of the social commentary in Starship Troopers.

  • Re:Great (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gorzek (647352) <gorzek.gmail@com> on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @09:48AM (#40601467) Homepage Journal

    You can thank Ronald Reagan for much of that sentiment: the idea that the government is incompetent at best, evil at worst. The federal income tax burden on someone making around minimum wage is not just non-existent, it's negative: the Earned Income Tax Credit is a refundable credit available to the poor, meaning they can get back more than they paid (and they often pay next to nothing.)

    If they want to whine about something, maybe they should look at the regressive taxes that disproportionately hurt the poor: gasoline taxes, sales taxes, and the like.

    Americans benefit in a lot of ways from the various social programs we have. Food stamps, unemployment, Medicaid, Medicare, TANF, Social Security, etc. etc. The individual who never draws on any of these is a rare creature, indeed, perhaps even mythical. They are there in case you need them. Claims of fraud are generally exaggerated, except in Medicare, which has massive levels of fraud that somehow don't get talked about.

    I've noticed that a lot of the "low tax, small government" conservatives are "pre-rich." They think they will be wealthy one day, and the thought of Uncle Sam taking a good chunk of it is horrifying to them. Never mind that if you are pulling down over a quarter million a year, you aren't going to miss a few tens of thousands. Well, maybe you'll have to settle for one Lexus instead of two?

    Oddly enough, I make more money than the vast majority of people who spout such rubbish, and I never complain about paying my taxes, even though they are in the five figures per year. I value the services that the government provides to people less fortunate than me, because I value having a functional society and a government that respects and upholds the social contract. What disgusts me is our runaway defense spending--as if killing foreigners is more important than looking after our own people. It's curious how the same people who are against spending money on the poor and sick are nevertheless fine with dropping billions on boondoggle weapons systems and wars in the Middle East. Talk about fucked up priorities.

  • by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @10:13AM (#40601653)
    You're missing the point. The lobbyists are never "defeated" -- they keep trying to get what they want, and we need a more permanent solution to that problem. Yes, people eventually run out of energy -- the fact that one protest has remained active in Frankfurt does not mean that people can keep coming out and protesting whenever lobbyists try to attack the Internet.

    Look at it this way: we are fighting the wrong battle. Instead of protesting ACTA-like treaties, we should be pushing for laws that protect the Internet from such things. We need to slap down the lobbyists and the industries they represent once and for all -- so that we don't have to go out and protest the same laws and treaties every few months. We should be moving our focus on to new issues, not rehashing the same old problems over and over again. Voting no on an individual treaty is putting a band-aid on a broken leg; we need to vote yes on a resolution that rules out all such treaties.
  • Re:Great (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gorzek (647352) <gorzek.gmail@com> on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @10:24AM (#40601739) Homepage Journal

    The idea that hard work == material success is very Calvinist in origin--not a surprise that so many Americans buy into it unthinkingly. Calvinist doctrine and the Protestant work ethic are deeply-ingrained traits of our culture. It's a circular bit of logic born out of a belief in double predestination: God has elected who will go to heaven and who will go to hell; he blesses those who will go to heaven with material success; those people are successful because they worked hard and God rewarded them; therefore, they will go to heaven. This allows its adherents an airtight logic loop: people who are poor are being punished for not working hard enough, and God knew they wouldn't work hard enough to be successful, that's why they aren't among the Elect. The wealthy are so because God ordained them to be, because he knew they would work hard for it.

    In this way, both the rich and poor divinely deserve their fates, which are simultaneously determined in advance and the result of free will (in your hard work/lack thereof.)

    Most Americans never stop to think about it beyond the level of "hard work == success," but the theological beliefs underpinning it are pervasive.

    Naturally, societies not poisoned by this Calvinist bullshit recognize that success and failure are a product of the circumstances of one's birth, upbringing, work habits, education (and access to it), healthcare (and access to it), and just plain dumb luck. How hard you work certainly plays into it, but it is not the sole factor, and often not even the most important factor. That's not an excuse to be a lazy ass, of course, but it's an acknowledgment that reality is not a black-and-white place where the good people are Christians who worked hard and got rich and the bad people are heathens who never did anything with their lives and remained poor.

  • by oztiks (921504) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @10:28AM (#40601783)

    I'd challenge that only because a person being a public servant or being in a position of power doesn't necessarily make them a smart person.

    I mean let's look at it this way, if I cry poor and I'm big business that suffers because of X and if X has political relevance to a particular political party, I.E Republican is right wing and X helps big business then yes, they believe what they are doing is correct by their views.

    As if I'm a farmer and the guy across the road is selling unvaccinated chickens or using illegal aliens as employees and if it was the Democrats in power, I don't know, shutting down that farm would hold political relevance and if there wasn't a policy out there then me getting local congress to deal with the issue would be favorable for their political motivation and easier to leverage.

    I'm not all up with the US political structure so if I have it wrong then sorry but you get what I mean.

    It's really what's wrong with politics IMHO because I like to see the law / political system very similar to a computer program "if this then that else the other" and because it upholds this static behavior it's why laws that may be ethical and good in one end of town, kills and destroys the other.

    If piracy was about real damages and not made up damages because the law allows flashy lawyers to substantiate a lot of bogus costs and damages against piracy or pirates, then we wouldn't have this ethical haze of which your refer too.

    If I pirated a video and the RRP of that video was $10 and I was caught doing so and some media company wanted to take me to court over the cost of the stolen goods, then the damage is $10 and I would be liable to pay the media company $10. This doesn't seem work in the favor of the media company because it seems like an awful lot of work for just $10 so then they go after all the substantiated costs and thereabouts, why? because the law let's them, why because of legal precedence established within the civil court system.

    We wont touch on criminal implications because that's prolly even more complex but this concept or precedence did hold ethical purpose at one point and therefore was written into law, the backlash being that it can be leveraged unethically at any point.

    Same thing which I believe caused the GFC. In 1932 saw a depression, then the world recovered, as a result we wrote laws to prevent it from happening again. Then this legal precedence process repeated itself, undid the knots we imposed on ourselves and presto 2009 and we are back at stage 1 again. Now we are just in bandaid mode, patching the holes thinking that we're smart enough to out patch the problem (back to the software analogy) but the truth is it won't work out that way, sometime at some point the real value of the dollar has to find itself, when it does it's gonna hurt.

  • by CodeBuster (516420) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @10:53AM (#40601991)

    Greeks and the other countries that have been forced to beg for aid feeling they've lost all sovereignty and is being dictated by France and Germany

    In a way they already have lost their sovereignty to their creditors. In previous centuries, a profligate Greece would have been invaded by a foreign army bent on enforcing the debt. That doesn't happen anymore in Europe because it's no longer necessary. The European Central Bank and the IMF can very effectively bring Greece to heel as evidenced by the votes in the Greek parliament for continued austerity in order to continue receiving bail out monies from those who have effectively become their political masters. Invasion and occupation are thus no longer necessary to place a country like Greece under foreign control.

  • Re:Great (Score:4, Insightful)

    by dkleinsc (563838) on Tuesday July 10, 2012 @12:38PM (#40603449) Homepage

    You can thank Ronald Reagan for much of that sentiment: the idea that the government is incompetent at best, evil at worst.

    My usual view on the GOP: Modern post-Reagan Republicans believe that government can't function well, and while in office do everything they can to ensure that they're right!

"It is easier to fight for principles than to live up to them." -- Alfred Adler

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