Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
The dispute resolution system should also permit companies and NGOs to sue states who willfully violate good governance or the human rights of their citizens in order to obtain a competitive advantage. Potential infringements include:

*Restrictions on the right to organize and bargain collectively.
*Restrictions on the right to strike.
*Disproportionate restrictions on the right to blockade.
*Arbitrary restrictions on access to health care (such as restricting access based on medically irrelevant criteria like race, creed, or ability to pay for the treatment).
*Willful and wanton destruction of environmental commons.
*Enabling of tax fraud and shadow finance.
*Willful disregard for proven or materially suspected harmful impacts of consumer products.

Establishing this symmetry between the right of investors to sue over re-regulation and the right to civil society (and investors in other countries who are negatively impacted by regulatory dumping) sue over deregulation will go a long way towards restoring the neutrality of this treaty on the question of overall levels of regulation.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Fri Jul 4th, 2014 at 01:55:25 AM EST
Governments, Trade Unions and private citizens should be able to sue companies who violate any of the points you make above.

Is that not possible within such a treaty? Why only sue Governments?

by rz on Fri Jul 4th, 2014 at 06:45:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It is possible to insert language which commits signatories to draft appropriate national legislation to criminalize such behaviour and give citizen standing to sue in national courts.

And then give citizen standing to sue in the ISDS system if such laws are not promulgated in an expedient manner.

But for it to be a credible deterrent, you would further need a rule stipulating that a person or organization involved in such a dispute carries the whole legal cost if it is more than ten times as large (in terms of turnover) as its opponent. So you can't just outspend the other guy on lawyers. (Exceptions should perhaps be carved out for obviously baseless cases, but on the other hand any exception is a potential loophole.)

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Fri Jul 4th, 2014 at 02:02:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]


Occasional Series