American Innovators Get The Heave-ho From Nancy Pelosi

American Innovators Get The Heave-ho From Nancy Pelosi

American Innovators Get The Heave-ho From Nancy Pelosi

Over a year ago, President Donald J. Trump negotiated an updated version of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The new trade agreement is the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). The USMCA includes important protections for American innovators. Nancy Pelosi is going to give those innovators the heave-ho, but for what reasons?

While Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders and Congresscritter Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez blather on about the evil wealthy, most of those who are wealthy had a kernel of an idea that they worked and toiled over to develop into a full blown innovation. A few of our famous innovators are Nikola Tesla, Thomas Edison, the Wright Brothers, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. Their ideas became huge money makers that power the engine of the American economy. NAFTA provided no protections for intellectual property threats. The USMCA, as currently written provides protections and punishments for theft of intellectual capital. The Office of the United States Trade Representative released a list of protections for innovators:

Key Highlights: Protections for Innovators

The new IP Chapter will:

-Require full national treatment for copyright and related rights so United States creators are not deprived of rights in foreign markets that domestic creators receive.

-Provide strong patent protection for innovators by enshrining patentability standards and patent office best practices to ensure that United States innovators, including small- and medium-sized businesses, are able to protect their inventions with patents.

-Include strong protection for pharmaceutical and agricultural innovators.

-Extend the minimum copyright term to 75 years for works like song performances and ensure that works such as digital music, movies, and books can be protected through current technologies such as technological protection measures and rights management information.

-Establish a notice-and-takedown system for copyright safe harbors for Internet service providers (ISPs) that provides protection for IP and predictability for legitimate technology enterprises who do not directly benefit from the infringement, consistent with United States law.

-Provide important procedural safeguards for recognition of new geographical indications (GIs), including strong and comprehensive standards for protection against issuances of GIs that would prevent United States producers from using common names.

-Enhance provisions for protecting trademarks, including well-known marks, to help companies that have invested effort and resources into establishing goodwill for their brands.

-Includes 10 years of data protection for biologic drugs and expanded scope of products eligible for protection.

That seems pretty comprehensive to me. And, the trade negotiators seemed to cover every area of innovation.

Apparently, Speaker Nancy Pelosi is not a fan of American innovators. Kent Kaiser of The Hill took notice:

Yet, just as negotiators have hammered out details for intellectual property protections being included in the USMCA, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is purportedly poised to strip some of them from the agreement. By doing so, she would be pushing American creators and innovators overboard—throwing them to the sharks, that is—and denying them the lifeline that the USMCA’s chapter on intellectual property rights would provide.

Give them the old heave-ho, Nancy. It’s not just the wealthy, and potentially wealthy, innovators that Nancy is tossing to the waves. America is where most of the new ideas in treatments and therapies are developed.

In addition, Pelosi would throw overboard the many people who depend on America’s creators and innovators. Among the most concerning: Pelosi would be abandoning American hospital patients who are relying on the new medicines that likely would not be invented in the absence of intellectual property protections—patients would be marooned in the past. The USMCA would help ensure the availability of the most modern, most effective treatments that U.S. patients have come to expect.

Why, Nancy?

Nancy Pelosi has proven to be an ideologically-driven, know-nothing, craven politician in every sense of that description. Is it that Nancy Pelosi hates Donald Trump so much that she would hurt every patient, worker and innovator in the United States?

Come on, Nancy. Just throw out that life-preserver. American innovation is a good thing. It must be protected. Even if, Donald Trump gets a win. He is the Captain of this ship.

Photo Credit: DonkeyHotey/Wikimedia Commons/Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

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  • GWB says:

    OK, I’m going to toss out one of my You-should-really-look-deeper-into-this bits – though reluctantly, since Pelosi never tends toward liberty.

    Here’s the thing: patent and copyright protections are already too deep in some ways, while not being deep enough in others. And this treaty seems to reinforce the rent-seeking already in place in the DMCA and other places.

    Since this post doesn’t go into the specifics of what she proposes stripping out, I have no idea if she’s (unexpectedly!) advocating the right thing or not. (Even a blind nut finds a squirrel once in a while.)

  • Kevin says:

    I’m with GWB … you should really look more into this. Every reputable article I have read addresses the same four concerns Nancy Pelosi (e.g. the Democrats and some Republicans) has around passage of this legislation. Those four sticking points are: the USMCA lacks (1) strong labor protections, (2) that it lacks strong environmental protections, (3) that it advances the interests of brand-name pharmaceutical companies at the expense of patients, and (4) that its enforcement mechanism is too weak. From my research, one of these issues is close to being addressed and the other three are still in closed door committee work groups so we don’t know where they stand or what’s happening.

    The least you can do in writing this story is address the real concerns out there and not create more “fake news” because you want to gin up the base against Pelosi.

  • GWB says:

    I am curious: What does the Speaker of the House have to do with a treaty? Isn’t this, by definition, a treaty? The Senate ratifies those, without any help from the House.

    Maybe the right answer is “You’re not President, yet, Nancy. Go sit down.”

    • Toni Williams says:

      I think the pharma companies need stronger trade and patent protections. I love Big Pharma.

      Sorry, not sorry for the fake news.


      • Big Pharma is not really the issue – except for the fact that US patients pay ALL of the capital costs for new treatments, which socialized medicine countries then freeload on mercilessly.

        Small Pharma (some of them) are where the issues are. Such as the highway robbery committed by the scumbag that got hold of the EpiPen and created an artificial shortage. (Which, by the way, is being slowly resolved by an Israeli company that started making a generic version earlier this year. Wish that they could be refused to a BDS supporter…)

  • Peter Over says:

    Is there still time to petition for a name change? I really want this renamed the Yankee-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or just the YMCA!

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