Sunday, October 11, 2015

The Trans-Pacific Partnership: What We Know and When We’ll Know It

It’s been a long road.  After eight years of negotiations 12 countries finally agreed on something.  That alone is a pretty big deal.  Getting 12 people to agree on one thing is hard enough.  Unfortunately, I think much of the story about the TPP so far has been distorted by misinformation and anxiety on the part of the general public.  It has been hard to debunk the myths, scaremongering, and misconceptions about the TPP thus far because there is not enough information to present in response.  We had that problem because until last week, there was nothing.  We had statements of priorities from various trade representatives, but no actual deal.  A statement of your priorities has all the standing of a grocery list.  You need your partners to agree to the same things for them to have any meaning. 

I'm back!

Hey there, fellow Asia-philes!  It's your old Uncle Alex.  After a very long hiatus, I'm finally ready to return to blogging.  A lot happened in the last year, and I just needed fewer things to deal with for a time.  I'm settled in at a new job, new digs, new city and eager to return to my old interests.  So I'm planning to revive the blog and commit to a regular schedule of a writing.  I intend to do at least one major post a month; a nice long analytical piece.  In between those, whenever my muse inspires me I will post something, shorter.

There is plenty to talk about out of Asia.  For instance, Japan's new defense policies, the Trans Pacific Partnership, economic temblors in China, and of course, a mainstay in this space: North Korea!