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updates on tpp and ttip

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The recent legal challenge brought by TransCanada seeking $15 billion in damages over the Obama Administration’s decision to reject the Keystone Pipeline, has raised new questions about the TPP. The suit was brought under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which grants corporations special rights to challenge U.S. laws and undermine climate policy. The TPP includes the same corporate rights provisions, and would allow an additional 9,000 foreign corporations to challenge U.S. laws.

“The TransCanada case is a red flashing warning sign about whose interests these trade deals represent. These same corporate rights provisions have successfully challenged rural communities’ democratic rights to limit fracking and regulate mining,” said IATP’s Climate Director Ben Lilliston. “This deal is literally in climate denial—the words climate change are nowhere in the text. Yet the TPP supports an extractive, climate-damaging mode of globalization that has led to mass deforestation, fossil fuel withdrawal and an energy-intensive industrial model of agriculture.”

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maine sail freight revives a salty history of revolution & independence

Greenhorns press! 

In this new millennium marked by the looming threat of transnational trade deals like the Transpacific Partnership (TPP), The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), and the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA), one unusual trade adventure, Maine Sail Freight will embark on a creative, bold journey as an act of defiance against business-as-usual.  When Maine Sail Freight launches its maiden voyage at the end of August carrying 11 tons of local, Maine-made cargo, the Greenhorns – a plucky band of young farmers – and the sailing crew of an historic wooden schooner are declaring their independence from corporate tyranny and re-invigorating sail freight as a wind-powered transportation agent of the booming local food economy.

And, interestingly, they will carry one freight item that has a long history of revolutionary potential: salt.

Yes, salt.

Over a hundred years before Gandhi’s independence movement kicked the British Empire out of India, the American colonies were roundly beating the same empire using tools of nonviolent action – noncooperation, civil disobedience, boycotts, strikes, blockades, parallel governments, marches, rallies, and self-reliance programs. The two independence movements even shared parallel salt campaigns.

Both the American Revolution and the India Self-Rule movement used salt as a tool of resistance and liberation. Gandhi’s 1930 Salt Satyagraha campaign is famous. The 1776 New England saltworks expansion is virtually unknown. Indeed, the well-organized, clearly identifiable nonviolent campaigns are often overshadowed by violence and war in the retelling of revolutionary era history. The research, however, testifies to the nonviolent campaigns pivotal role in the struggle.

Know your history, as the saying goes. The British certainly should have. In 1930, one hundred and fifty years after American Independence, Lord Irwin, Viceroy of India, commented on the brewing salt law resistance saying, ” At present the prospect of a salt campaign does not keep me awake at night.” Too bad . . . if he had stayed awake, studying the history of salt, colonial governments, and independence movements, he might have lost sleep . . . but he wouldn’t have lost India.
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This week’s Ind.ie roundup focuses on de-mystifying two areas relevant to our privacy and freedoms: encryption and trade deals. They can both sound like dull and difficult topics, so I’m going to do my best to make them clearer, with the help of many, much-smarter, people…

Encryption

Encryption is a way to make data more secure, and unable to be intercepted by anyone unauthorised to view it. For example, encryption allows us to send messages to each other that can’t be read by anyone besides the intended recipient.

Accordingly to the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s (EFF) Surveillance Self-Defense guide, there are three key concepts in encryption:

Private and public keys

Common types of encryption include a private key, which is kept secret on your computer and lets you read messages that are intended only for you. A private key also lets you place unforgeable digital signatures on messages you send to other people. A public key is a file that you can publish or give to others that allows people to communicate with you in secret, and check signatures from you. Private and public keys come in matched pairs.

Click here to visit the ind.ie roundup blog to read lots more!