This is a really good article by McClatchey:
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama will travel next week to Asia with the centerpiece of his planned focus on the region still in limbo amid opposition from his own party and thorny tangles with powerhouse Japan over trade.
The White House has been championing the ambitious Trans-Pacific Partnership, which – if it can get through Congress _ would expand trade throughout the Pacific Rim and serve as the biggest trade deal in history.
“It’s where the growth in jobs are. It’s where the money is,” said Matthew Goodman, a former Obama administration official who chairs the political economy program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington research center. “That’s why we go to Asia.”
Our representative democracy has been on a crash course for corruption ever since the Supreme Court of the United States issued its decision in Citizens United v. FEC back in 2010.
That decision contributed to an explosion in political spending at the national level that’s never been seen before, reaching an estimated $7 BILLION in 2012 elections.
It has come to a point where the only people represented in Washington are those who can pay a high-priced lobbyist and bankroll election campaigns.
With the recent Supreme Court ruling in McCutcheon v. FEC that will eliminate the aggregate limit on campaign contributions, the situation is about to get even worse.
But ‘We the People’ are fighting back.
Full Story Here:Will Fair Elections Return to Hawaii?
There is a good article at The Global Think Tank that speaks to a possible emerging understanding of the importance of the Pacific to global development. As the State of Hawaii we have a dog in that fight as the old saying goes. Here is an excerpt of the essay by Muthiah Alagappa.
President Barack Obama’s trip to Malaysia in late April will be the first visit of a sitting U.S. president since Lyndon Johnson traveled to Kuala Lumpur in 1966. Almost five decades later, Obama’s visit presents an opportunity that should not be squandered by focusing on specific issues related to Malaysia’s internal politics and democratic development. Instead, the moment should be used to cement recent positive developments in U.S.-Malaysia bilateral relations and set the tone for this relationship in the decades ahead.
Go here for the full essay:Obama’s Golden Opportunity in Malaysia