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ACTA leak: no surprises about transparency blockers

The most common criticism of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) is the lack of transparency. Before the nations disclose the terms of the agreement under negotiation, we are unable to gain an idea of the big picture, let alone voice our opinions and push for changes. Our politicians don't want us to know. We rely on leaked documents for our information. This is backwards in a world where a state should represent its people. This smells foul to me.

There are undoubtedly some good reasons for the treaty, and if we can contain worldwide, large-scale trade of counterfeited goods and medicine, then that would be a net benefit to us all. However, we must not allow certain governments to succomb to the pressure of (commercially-motivated) lobbyists, to extend that pressure onto other nations using trade as a means of pressure, and to slash our freedom as if it were an inconvenient obstacle in their way.

Only if the terms under negotiation become publicly available, and the public is given a voice, then we can help our governments in entering an agreement that is in the interest of its people, rather than a threat to us.

It is hardly surprising that total capitalist nation USA are the strongest opponents of transparency, because the public might delay or even prevent the treaty. I was also not surprised to see South Korea and Germany in the list of supporters of secrecy either. It is interesting to see that the leaders of Singapore, Belgium, Portugal, and Denmark also seem to believe that these negotiations should be withheld from the public. Does anyone know about Switzerland?

I tip my hat to New Zealand, Canada, Australia, Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Ireland, Hungary, Poland, Estonia, and Austria for their support of transparency.