When Your Employer is Evil
Google's recently announced official support of the Trans-Pacific Partnership is wrong and evil
As I commented earlier on Rachel Blum's reshare of a Google recruting message from Lea Kissner: what a company does is highly relevant to its stakeholders: stockholders, executives, customers, users, community, business partners, vendors. And employees.
The Trans Pacific Partnership, and the set of so-called "free trade agreements" (FTAs) it's associated with, TTIP, TISA, and BITS, are bad. They're undemocratic. They bypass the domestic legislative practice. They're mislabled stealth power grabs. They create new classes of priveleged and oppressed parties, or rather, use existing class structures to further lock in the gains of the uber-rich, such as Google's founders, board, and investors, against those who have far less. Including some of Google's own employees, but more particularly, billions of people throughout the world.
Don't take my word for it. Space alien cats in masks cannot be trusted.
Nobel laureate economist Joseph Stiglitz has been speaking out against these agreements for years. I've been posting and transcribing several of his talks and lectures on G+.
This one is short, at 10 minutes, and cogent.
The EFF have strongly opposed TPP, and have one of the best basic resources for understanding it: https://eff.org/notpp
(And yes, the EFF and Google are often in agreement, the conflict here is quite notable.)
Over 300 environmental organisations, including the Sierra Club and Bill McKibben's 350.org, oppose the TPP.
If you're an American and are looking to vote in the upcoming Presidential election, the presumptive candidates from both parties, and alternates, oppose TPP. Hillary Clinton, after having been in favour, opposes. Donald Trump, in a rare moment of agreement, opposes. Bernie Sanders has long opposed this and similar trade pacts.
If you're working for Google, or thinking of working for Google, consider the moral implications of what you are doing. Ask why it is that Google supports and is a member of groups pushing massive disinformation campaigns against CO2 emissions and global warming, including the CATO Institute, the Heritage Foundation, the Mercatus Center, and the US Chamber of Commerce.
Ask if Google pays its dues to the National Taxpayers Union, or if it twists itself in ocean-spanning complex structured knots to avoid doing so, as it does its state and federal tax obligations to California and the United States. Transfers of wealth of billions of dollars straight from ordinary taxpayers to the pockets of Google's major investors. Including Larry Page, Sergey Brin, and Eric Schmidt.
If you are using Google products and services, or most of all, are buying advertising from them, announce a contingent intent to discontinue patronage based on Google's support of TPP. Google lives and breathes on advertising. Contact Google's major advertisers, and request they do the same. I've listed those and their budgets here:
And remember that the ultimate power is to walk away, or to use the machine against itself. I've chosen both those paths myself.
And most of all: grow up and take responsibility for what's done in your name and with your support.
As rare avis said of the Science article she linked, it's profoundly bad:
This is an awful, apologist's excuse for an essay.
As an adult, you're responsible for your decisions and your associations, period.
You don't get to say, "I work for so and so because I have to live there. " or, "Because they have the best 401k."
Or, "My lab's decision to vivisect dogs wasn't vengeance based."
That's like saying, "I was just following orders."
I'll be devoting my future use of G+ exclusively to objecting to this treaty and Google's support of it until such time as Google changes its position. I encourage you to do similarly.
I've also disabled all Circle feeds to my Home stream. I'll not be seeing much of what you post.
I encourage you most strongly to do similarly.
Should the treaty pass, I'll cancel this and other active G+ profiles and wipe content.
I'm also organising an area for intelligent discussion based on an earlier experiment begun here at G+, though at Reddit. The URL is https://reddit.com/r/MKaTH While that's currently private, please message the mods (that's me)
Oh: and Reddit oppose TPP.
h/t rare avis and Sakari Maaranen