Everything related to the talks is being kept highly classified. Even though the deal will affect the futures and interests of 500 million EU citizens, member states agreed to keep them in the dark about TTIP negotiations. All papers, documents, emails and negotiating minutes have been marked secret. Only the senior-most party members in the European Parliament's International Trade Committee are allowed to see documentation relating to the negotiations and they are forbidden from discussing what they see. Not even the negotiating mandate, upon which the talks are based, has been made public. In addition, the US has forbidden the EU from passing along American position papers, even to members of the European Council and European Parliament -- despite the fact that these same papers have been shared with 600 industrial lobbyists in the US.Today George Monbiot writes in the Guardian about TTIP with exceptional lucidity;
Nothing threatens democracy as much as corporate power. Nowhere do corporations operate with greater freedom than between nations, for here there is no competition. With the exception of the European parliament, there is no transnational democracy, anywhere. All other supranational bodies – the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the United Nations, trade organisations and the rest – work on the principle of photocopy democracy (presumed consent is transferred, copy by copy, to ever-greyer and more remote institutions) or no democracy at all. When everything has been globalised except our consent, corporations fill the void. In a system that governments have shown no interest in reforming, global power is often scarcely distinguishable from corporate power. It is exercised through backroom deals between bureaucrats and lobbyists.Of course this blog and Mr Monbiot suffer from the same inherent disadvantage; the Peter and the Wolf syndrome. Our polemic against sundry wrongs, injustices and neglected matters has been so long and so vocal (though radically different in focus and in many cases opposed in position) that when something really serious comes along, it gets lost in the White Noise. Se well done all at Ford, Nissan, General Motors, Monsanto, Renault, Thyssen, Nokia, Siemens, BP, Lafarge, Wal-Mart, Apple, Chevron, Erikson, Alcatel and General Electric and the rest; you win.