This is certainly not the way I wanted it to happen, but the Trans-Pacific Partnership is dead. Personally, I’d take neoliberalism and the TPP over Trumpism and no TPP any day. The killing of the TPP in this fashion really isn’t going to solve any of the problems with it. The Trump administration is still going to be a boon for corporate domination, for pharmaceutical companies, and for employers seeking to exploit workers. I can’t really comment on how this affects U.S. relationships with its allies in Asia but given the utter disaster that Trump’s foreign policy is going to be, I imagine China is going to be a huge winner in the next 4 years with or without the TPP. Not subjecting even more workers and more national laws to the ISDS courts is a good thing. Rejecting the TPP is at least a sign that maybe, just maybe, the U.S. is going to start revisiting its 50 year tradition of encouraging American jobs to go overseas and then call anyone who questions that as the greatest thing in history a moral monster. But then we all know the Trump administration isn’t going to do anything to keep American workers employed. And this is more about hating Obama and denying him a policy goal than any actual opposition to anything in the TPP.
In the hell that is to come, it’s important not only to fight but also to still articulate a more just world for global workers. What I called for in Out of Sight seems even farther away than ever, but nevertheless, I still believe in the ideas of global workplace standards and enforceable labor rights across the world as the future for which we should envision and demand.