The following article, written by Dan Druck, was published in the November, 1993 edition of the Council on Domestic Relations national newsletter. Although some of its information may be a bit dated, it remains a good overview of NAFTA. Its warnings haunt us in light of the NAFTA travesties which have come to pass. Also, it reminds us of the lies which were told to soften the blow of its approval. A brief update (current as of 2/96) follows the article which shows that many of the original article's predictions have already come to fruition. Additionally, the update describes a bill in Congress designed to extract us from NAFTA.
Permission to repost / reprint, in whole or in part, is hereby granted so long as such is accurate and proper credit is given.
In June of 1990, President Salinas of Mexico and former President George Bush issued a joint statement in support of negotiation of a free trade agreement and, two months later, President Salinas formally proposed negotiations. In February of 1991, Canada officially joined the United States and Mexico. On December 17, 1992, the leaders of the three countries signed the agreement. For the most part, NAFTA was negotiated in secret and kept from the U.S. public until January 20, 1993. The proposed pact would gradually eliminate tariffs (import taxes) between the three nations and create the world's largest trade bloc.
Article 1, Section 8 of our Constitution mandates that duties (tariffs) be levied on imports as a means to support the costs of government. If ratified, NAFTA will eliminate that source of revenue and plunge Americans further into debt. According to Mr. Jack Hedrick, coordinator for the Tri-National Commission for Justice in the Maquiladoras, in just the first year under NAFTA, America will lose tariffs on an estimated $40,000,000,000 of Mexican imports - that's 40 billion! Senator Bob Dole says, however, that it's an immaterial amount - spoken like a true double-speak propagandist. Mr. Hedrick has been on a nation-wide speaking and debate campaign exposing the horrors of NAFTA and the even more complex and destructive General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). GATT goes beyond the confines of Canada, the U.S. and Mexico by including 30 countries. Most of the 30 are South American.
In the usual scheme of things, the elimination of tariffs is not equal. This imbalance is two-fold:
The inequities of our past trade policies with Japan are minor in comparison and look at how rich they made Japan and how poor they have made us.
The obvious overall area of destruction produced by NAFTA is the enormous volume of American jobs lost. What kind of numbers are we talking about? The estimates vary from one source to the next. At one end of the spectrum, you have our government's absurd doublethink estimate of a net gain of 175,000 jobs by 1995 and the prediction by the U.S. International Trade Commission that our employment growth would grow by less than 1 percent over the long term. At the other end even some of the liberal Washington think tanks like the "Economic Policy Institute" sees 550,000 U.S. jobs vanishing by the year 2002. Another, "The Economic Strategy Institute", projects that more than one million American jobs could be lost in the 1990's under an unrestricted agreement. According to the Congressional Research Service (CRS) Report for Congress," NAFTA, HOW MANY U.S. JOBS ARE AT RISK?" (5-19-93), The Manufacturing Policy Project estimated that 5.9 million jobs are at risk. It doesn't stop with the direct loss of American jobs to Mexico. Under NAFTA, there is a large list of 63 semi-professional and professional reciprocities which means that doctors, architects, engineers, etc., may legally come to America and take our jobs. NAFTA proponents tout that it will solve the illegal immigration problem. Well, we agree.... it makes unrestricted immigration legal. Didn't Hitler and Stalin also create laws to allow their atrocities to be committed under the guise of legality?
Contrary to popular belief, there are some in Washington who still care about their constituency. All emphasis in the following comments are our own.
Rep. David Bonior (D-Mich.): "...Mexico's corrupt one-party system... denies the right[s] of the Mexican people... to speak freely, to freely choose political and labor leaders, to organize for decent wages... how Mexico's political and economic system exploits its own people and has a systematic policy of keeping wages low. Twenty-one financial groups that are controlled by 25 families own the vast bulk of wealth of Mexico, while the rest of the country is trapped in a system... perpetuated on the poor, the defenseless, the powerless, a system of low wages and poverty. NAFTA was negotiated purely in the interests of multi-millionaire investors and multi-national corporations at the expense of working families and working people on both sides of the border."
Rep. Bonior went on to say, "It is the old story around here. You work for the government here... the Trade Office. And you leave and get a job with Japan or Mexico. You know the system. They will pay you big bucks. You come back here and try to work the system that you have been a part of and gave you a livelihood to the detriment of those people who are trying to make a living in this country." (Speaking of a research report by Professor Harley Shaiken), "His study backs up the facts that most American workers have known all along. The ratification of NAFTA poses a very real and a very immediate threat to our jobs, good American jobs, the kind of jobs that raise families, that buy homes, that pay for college."
Rep. Ron Klink (D-Penn): "...if you go back to some of the famous lobbying efforts.... they actually pale in comparison to the size of the Mexican effort that is taking place already... to lobby the United States, and some former government officials are taking some of that money and working for the Mexican government."
It is impossible to even list all of the detriments to our economy, our sovereignty and our domestic tranquility in this brief article. It should be noted, however, that there are no areas of our lives that are not negatively effected.
The passage of NAFTA would be a giant step towards a one world socialistic government. With the jelling of the European Economic Community (EEC) in Europe, NAFTA and GATT in the Americas and the formation of an Asian economic consortium, the three legs of the Tri-Lateralist plan for global unification of commercial and banking interests are rapidly coming to fruition. It is also an overall giant leap toward the New World Order's one world government. NAFTA impacts far more than our jobs and our economy. It:
To sum things up, perhaps Patrick Buchannan's analysis is worth quoting. He said, "We have it on the testimony of Henry Kissinger himself that NAFTA is not even a conventional trade treaty at all, but a giant step toward a New World Order. [NAFTA] is about losing America, the country we grew up in, the country we love, where the first duty of government was to look out for Americans, not just those with the skills (technical, financial and lingual) to prosper in the new economy."
"Behind the rising spirit of rebellion in this land is a gathering consensus that the nation's elites do not give a damn about the old republic. Rather, they are enraptured with what Dr. Kissinger calls the 'architecture of a new international system.'"
"You may be sure that in this 'new international system', the American citizen will count for precious little. Already, we are told that, henceforth, U.S. Marines may be put at the command of the UN's Boutros Boutros- Ghali, to fight and die for the New World Order."
"As with the Panama Canal treaties, NAFTA is fast becoming a patriotism issue - and the republican party is on the wrong side."
"...[NAFTA] is a ship that carries in its cargo the virus of globalism and the bacillus of statism. Populists and conservatives ought to tow it out beyond the 12-mile limit with a long rope and blow it out of the water."
Since the unconstitutional implementation of NAFTA, America has suffered a net loss of 460,000 jobs! The US Department of Labor has received more than 644 petitions for assistance for workers who lost their jobs as a direct result of NAFTA - that's one plant per day since Jan., 1994!
The consulting firm DRI/McGraw-Hill predicts that U.S. job loss from the Mexico crisis could reach 350,000 over the next two years. Allen Myerson of the "New York Times" has predicted that 500,000 U.S. jobs will be lost in the next four years.
NAFTA was promoted (conned) as being a job creator but we now see how big of lie this was. According to a recent report by Public Citizen, fully 89 percent of NAFTA's business backers who made specific promises of job creation or export growth are not heading in the direction to ever fulfill those promises. Only 7 of the 65 (11%) corporate promises to increase U.S. jobs because of NAFTA have been realized.
The San Antonio Express-News recently reported that Texas now stands to lose more than 100,000 export related jobs that were expected to appear over the next two years.
Prior to NAFTA, America had a trade surplus with Mexico. In 1995, we suffered a $20 BILLION Mexican trade deficit and a deficit with Canada almost as high. This equates to a twenty-four fold reversal in our trade balance with Mexico and a 69% increase of our deficit with Canada!
Family farmers in grain-producing states such as North Dakota have been subjected to the dumping of cheap grain by Canada. California agriculture has been especially hard hit by NAFTA. It's top position as a domestic tomato producer is being challenged by Mexico, Mexico no being the number one source of tomato paste imports and supplying 95% of fresh tomato imports into the U.S. Moreover, California's avocado farmers are asking for relief from import surges of Mexican avocados being dumped into the U.S. markets.
And finally, we have the $50 billion bailout of the Mexican Peso. Those were hard-earned tax dollars which came out of American pockets.
US border patrols report a 30% increase in arrests since the Peso crisis as hundreds of thousands of Mexicans struggle to escape the crushing economic crisis in their own country. In Arizona, the number of apprehensions has more than doubled. It must be remembered that the number of apprehensions represents only a fraction of the number of illegal immigrants who actually cross the border and do not get caught.
In the wake of NAFTA's destruction, we are witnessing the attempts to expand NAFTA. Congressman Phil Crane (R-IL) sponsored HR-533 which gives the Caribbean Basin countries all the benefits of NAFTA with nothing in return.
Also, toward the end of 1995, Crane joined former President George Bush in Chile to lobby that country to join NAFTA!!! We can only assume that his trip was paid for by OUR tax dollars!!
On November 17, 1995, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (D-OH) introduced "The NAFTA Accountability Act" (HR-2651) which sets the stage for U.S. withdrawal if the Agreement's promises remain unfulfilled. (Want to bet they will remain so?) As terrible as NAFTA has shown itself to be, the powerful forces which foisted it upon us will most likely go to great extremes to defeat the bill.
We urge you to contact your congressman and demand that he/she support this bill! Also, feel free to contact us if you need any additional information on how you can help get America out of NAFTA (and GATT).
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