Any number of roasters may pay a decent price for coffee, visit a farm, or offer a good cup. But no matter how much direct trade coffee you buy, or fair trade coffee for that matter, we won't transform the current system that puts corporate profits first and marginalizes small-scale farmers until we become politically engaged and start supporting the democratic organizations that advocate and agitate for change from the grassroots up.
There's no reason for the US to swallow a trade deal filled with rotten rodent terms. American workers know for sure that if the scheme contains any foie gras, it'll be served on silver platters to corporations while workers are force-fed rats. America should withdraw. Congress should reject the TPP.
Protesters warned about the problems the Pacific Rim trade deal could bring to people around the world. Whether it's jobs being shipped overseas and wages being driven down in the U.S., medicine prices going through the roof, more pollution or unsafe food and products heading to our shores as a result of this bad trade deal, that wasn't enough to sway TPP negotiators.
We can afford to pay workers fairly and it is the right thing to do. We also need equal pay for equal work. Today, women, on average, still earn only 78 cents for every dollar earned by men. It is even less for women of color -- for African-American women it's 64 cents and for Latinas it's 55 cents. This is unacceptable.
The most salient "add-on" feature of the TPP is its investor-state dispute settlement mechanism, which gives investors private rights of action against governments outside the court system. The problem is not so much that it violates rule of law and sovereignty, but that it shrinks the actual and potential role of the public.
Ending child labor requires fair wages for adults, adequate legal protections for children and access to health care and education. Education is absolutely critical in the fight against child labor. Where there are few educational opportunities for children to choose another path in life, they work because it prepares them for the life they are going to lead.