Skip to comments.The FTAA Deception
Posted on 02/17/2004 3:31:41 PM PST by Tailgunner Joe
According to its proponents, the Free Trade Area of the Americas, or FTAA, will create a "free trade" area encompassing the entire hemisphere -- from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego. According to President Bush, the FTAA, which is scheduled for completion next year, would "make our hemisphere the largest free-trade area in the world, encompassing 34 countries and 800 million people." The result would be new export markets for American goods and a corresponding increase in our national prosperity and the standard of living throughout the hemisphere.
At least, that's the story. It's an attractive one, and to many a persuasive one. Many Europeans eagerly embraced an earlier version of the same story about the European Common Market, now known as the European Union. Sold to the public as a free-trade pact, the European Union is rapidly taking shape as a centralized socialist mega-state.
As the EU takes form, citizens of once free and independent European nations are surrendering their sovereignty, as well as their currencies, and their domestic laws.
Citizens of Great Britain, whose heritage of liberty under law spans nearly eight centuries -- a heritage that we share -- are learning that EU membership would mean the loss of critical guarantees of individual rights. For example: Under the EU, British citizens could find themselves arraigned in foreign courts to be tried for offenses not recognized by British law.
The EU's currency, the euro, has supplanted most European currencies. As EU supporter Lionel Stoleru wrote more than a decade ago, "Money is the key link which will transform economic union into a political union. Take the central bank to a supra-national level and the national balance of powers collapses ." In other words, monetary union is a prelude to political union, with all of Europe's formerly free nations ruled by one elite.
Irish journalist Vincent Browne is among those who have denounced this effort to place Europe under the heel of a centralized ruling elite. "[W]ith the European Union, Europe has moved back towards oligarchy, which, by definition, is outside any process of meaningful accountability to the people as a whole," Browne observes. And this conquest has been carried out by deception, rather than military occupation. The UK's involvement in the EU offers a useful illustration of this deception at work.
In 1970, the government of Prime Minister Edward Heath applied for membership in the European Common Market, as the entity was then known. Heath and his associates assured the British public and Parliament that the Common Market was simply a free trade arrangement intended to produce new export markets for British goods, and increased prosperity for all.
"There will not be a blueprint for a federal Europe," Heath told the House of Commons on February 25, 1970. A White Paper issued by Heath two years later declared: "There is no question of any erosion of essential national sovereignty." Nearly two decades later, after Britain was firmly committed to European unification, Heath could afford to be candid. During a November 1, 1991 interview with the BBC, Heath was asked: "The single currency; a United States of Europe; was that in your mind when you took Britain in?" "Of course, yes," Heath eagerly replied -- thereby indicting himself as a liar and a traitor.
The year 2000 brought about the release of hundreds of previously classified documents describing the British government's deviousness and duplicity in committing that nation to a unified Europe. According to British journalist Christopher Booker: "What these papers revealed more starkly than ever before was just how deliberately the Heath Government and the Foreign Office set out to conceal from the British people the Common Markets true purpose. They were fully aware that it was intended to be merely the first step towards creating a politically united Europe, but they were determined to hide this away from view."
Booker continues: "For 40 years, British politicians have consistently tried to portray [the Common Market and EU] to their fellow-citizens as little more than an economic arrangement: a kind of free-trading area primarily concerned with creating jobs and prosperity."
But from the very beginning, the European Union was intended to become a socialist regional government, functioning as an administrative unit of a UN-based global government. This was laid out with commendable candor in the Resolutions on Political Union at the 1948 Congress of Europe: "The creation of a United Europe must be regarded as an essential step towards the creation of a United World."
Building a single government for the entire world -- thereby placing total power in the hands of a few -- is an ambitious undertaking. One of those openly pursuing that objective is Zbigniew Brzezinski, a co-founder of the Trilateral Commission. In a 1995 address, Brzezinski pointed out: "We cannot leap into world government in one quick step . [T]he precondition for eventual globalization -- genuine globalization -- is progressive regionalization, because thereby we move to larger, more stable, more cooperative units."
The FTAA is designed to be nothing less than the Western Hemisphere counterpart to the European Union. The FTAA would enlarge upon the so-called North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, under which the United States, Canada, and Mexico have begun the process of merging our economies and political systems.
In a 2002 address in Madrid, Spain, Mexican President Vicente Fox was remarkably blunt in his description of the purposes to be served by NAFTA and the FTAA: "Eventually our long-range objective is to establish with the United States, but also with Canada, our other regional partner, an ensemble of connections and institutions similar to those created by the European Union."
Another crucial illustration of this process is found in the "Declaration of Principles" signed at the 1994 Summit of the Americas in Miami, where the first outline of the FTAA was created. In that document, American heads of state, including then-president Bill Clinton, attested: "We are determined to consolidate and advance closer bonds of cooperation.... We reiterate our firm adherence to the principles of international law and the purposes and principles enshrined in the United Nations Charter ."
Obviously, political and economic consolidation of this hemisphere's nations isn't necessary in order for free trade to occur. Clearly, the FTAA's promoters are following the same game plan used successfully in Europe by using the prospect of free trade and increased prosperity to delude the public into supporting the creation of a continent-spanning mega-state -- a building block for a UN-dominated world.
It's important to remember that free trade is an exchange of goods and services between two parties, unhampered by government intervention. Those involved may be neighbors, citizens of the same country, or citizens of different countries. And in order for this exchange to occur, the benefits to each party must outweigh the costs -- or else the transaction won't take place.
Furthermore, genuine free trade has the effect of minimizing government's role. Where free trade takes place, society is shaped by free choices made by individuals, rather than by the heavy-handed intervention of those who want to mold it, by force, in a fashion they choose. Simply put, free trade cannot co-exist with large, interventionist government -- and the reverse of that statement is true as well.
With this in mind, it's clear that NAFTA -- the forerunner of the FTAA -- deserves to be called a "free trade" agreement in the same sense that Communist East Germany deserved to be called the German Democratic People's Republic.
To accomplish NAFTA's stated intention -- lowering government barriers to trade -- a very brief document would be necessary. Yet the text of the basic NAFTA accord devours hundreds of pages and is divided into two thick, heavy volumes. Much of the text is devoted to a blueprint for a large, cumbersome international regulatory bureaucracy. Furthermore, at several places the agreement anticipates the creation of additional "annexes" that would create even more layers of international bureaucracy.
The NAFTA pact called for creation of 30 new international government committees, subcommittees, councils, working groups, and subgroups. It also mandated the creation of a Free Trade Council that would function as a continental government-in-waiting with enormous discretionary powers. Provision was also made for numerous additional permanent committees, various "working groups," subcommittees, subgroups, and other bureaucratic bodies whose enactments would supposedly have the force of law.
Rather than relieving the burden of regulation that impedes genuine free trade, NAFTA internationalized the regulatory apparatus -- thereby making it less accountable to the U.S. citizens affected by those regulatory decisions.
NAFTA also led to the creation of new taxpayer-funded international financial bodies.
When NAFTA's implementing legislation was passed in 1993, it included a provision creating the North American Development Bank, a financial institution modeled on the UN-aligned World Bank. Another side agreement to NAFTA created the North American Financial Group, which was intended to "stabilize" exchange rates among the three signatory countries. In practice, however, both of those financial institutions have served as slush funds for politically protected interests, particularly in Mexico.
As noted earlier, true free trade requires a reduction in, or abolition of, government regulations. However, NAFTA -- which, once again, is the forerunner to the FTAA -- is designed to ramp up regulations throughout North America. This was admitted by former U.S. Trade Representative Mickey Kantor in August 1993. Under NAFTA, Kantor observed, "No nation can lower labor or environmental standards, only raise them, and all states and provinces can enact even more stringent measures ."
This process is often called "upward harmonization" -- the creation of a socialist multi-national government on the installment plan. NAFTA's regulatory bodies, which are completely unaccountable to American citizens, are constantly urged by radical non-governmental organizations to increase the regulatory burden on productive businesses throughout North America.
Once again, NAFTA is just a preview -- a down-payment -- on the continent-wide regime that would be created through the FTAA.
"Upward harmonization" of government power inevitably produces a corresponding phenomenon -- "downward harmonization" of living standards, sometimes called the "race to the bottom." As governing elites pool their power across borders, those they rule lose a corresponding amount of freedom and prosperity. This is happening already under NAFTA as over-regulated American industries lose market share to less expensive competitors abroad.
On the tenth anniversary of the NAFTA accord, the Christian Science Monitor noted that the agreement, "while opening the doors for U.S. exports and helping Americans get low-cost consumer goods, has also shaken entire industries from textiles to cars."
As our economy has been merged with socialist Canada and corrupt Mexico, "NAFTA has displaced American workers and devastated entire towns. It's evident from the job-training centers in southern Texas to the `NAFTA ghost towns' of North Carolina, with their shuttered textile plants."
Economist Jorge Gonzalez of San Antonio's Trinity University claims that NAFTA has done "exactly what it is supposed to do . We've basically taken two economies with vastly different resources [those of the U.S. and Mexico] and integrated them. That helps the whole region become more competitive." Economist Russell Roberts of George Mason University agrees that the political benefits of integrating North America more than compensate for the hardships NAFTA has inflicted on American workers: "The bottom line is this -- NAFTA has caused hardship for some Americans in certain sectors, but it's made for a more stable and integrated Mexican political system -- and that's a real good thing for the world."
Scant comfort such glib assessments will provide to Americans whose lucrative manufacturing jobs have fled the country. Breadwinners seeking to provide a decent standard of living for their families, and perhaps even leave an inheritance for their children, have little interest in regional "competitiveness," or in helping Mexico become "stable and integrated." But they are the ones paying the price of the Power Elite's grand designs.
And it's important to recognize that while American workers have endured hardships as a result of NAFTA, the political class is prospering as never before. Indeed, the Power Elite benefits directly by inducing "downward harmonization" on the middle class. This is illustrated by the existence of the so-called "Trade Adjustment Assistance" program -- a $1.3 billion federal welfare program for Americans who lose their jobs as a result of NAFTA and other socialist "free trade" initiatives.
Once again, all of this is merely the faintest foretaste of what the FTAA will do to our economy -- if the pact goes through as planned.
President Bush's plan to grant amnesty to an estimated 6-12 million illegal aliens underscores another element of the FTAA drive: The de facto abolition of our southern border with Mexico. Amnesty was a key agenda item during the 2001 visit of Vicente Fox to the U.S., and it may already have been implemented were it not for the 9-11 terrorist attacks -- which offered a tragic and bloody illustration of the costs of open borders.
President Bush's conduct during the 2001 summit with Fox provoked raised eyebrows from several commentators. At every opportunity, Mr. Bush appeared next to Fox at gatherings of Mexican-Americans; just as frequently, Mr. Bush expressed a desire to make it easier for Mexicans to come to the U.S., and to lavish taxpayer aid on Mexican business interests.
"There are people in Mexico whove got children, who worry about where theyre going to get their next meal from," asserted the president in a typical speech during Fox's visit.
"And theyre going to come to the United States.... Thats a simple fact. And weve got to respect that...." Apparently, Mr. Bush had forgotten that he had been elected to look after American interests, and to see that our nation's laws -- including those dealing with immigration -- be faithfully executed.
Bush's actions prompted Newsweek commentator Howard Fineman to observe: "Whatever else George W. Bush does, or doesnt do, he has earned a place in history as the first American president to place Hispanic voters at the center of politics, and the first to view the land between Canada and Guatemala as one. It makes sense, if you think about it: Texas, long ago and far away, was part of Mexico. Now a Texan is trying to reassemble the Old Country, and then some."
A September 7, 2001 commentary by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution presented an even more pointed description of the agenda being followed by both Fox and Bush. Mexico's President Fox, commented the paper, "envisions a North American economic alliance that will make the border between the United States and Mexico as unrestricted as the one between Tennessee and Georgia .. [Furthermore, continued the paper,] The ultimate goal of any White House policy ought to be a North American economic and political alliance similar in scope and ambition to the European Union. Unlike the varied landscapes and cultures of European Union members, the United States, Canada and Mexico already share a great deal in common, and language is not as great a barrier. President Bush, for example, is quite comfortable with the blended Mexican-Anglo culture forged in the border states of Texas, California and Arizona."
Astonishing as it may seem, Mexico's Vicente Fox spent several days in the Fall of 2003 lobbying American officials in Texas, Arizona, and New Mexico on behalf of amnesty for illegal Mexican immigrants. "We share nation and language," Fox told the New Mexico legislature. "In addition to our geographical vicinity, we are united by inseparable bonds, history, values and interests.... We must join together.... You need Mexico and Mexicans, and we need you."
In a joint press conference with President Bush on January 12, 2004, Fox applauded the proposed amnesty as a good first step. In remarks to the Mexican press, however, both Fox and his underlings made it clear that the Bush proposal is merely a first step. According to Mexico's secretary of Foreign Relations, Luis Ernesto Derbez, "the goal is a total and complete program that protects those [Mexicans] in the United States and those who aspire to go there."
The January 12, 2004 press conference, significantly, was part of a special Summit of the Americas, an event involving heads of state from the nations slated to be absorbed into the FTAA. During that press conference Fox pointedly used the term "migration" to refer to the Bush plan, referring variously to "that migration topic," "the migration matters," "this migration proposal," the "migration flow," and so on. The proper term to describe movement of people across an international border is either immigration (entering) or emigration (leaving); "migration" refers to movement of people within national boundaries.
It's also worthy of remark that at the same press conference Fox also referred to "the leaders of the countries of America" rather than to national leaders of separate and independent nations.
That is to say that Vicente Fox is already acting and speaking as if our nations have been amalgamated into one hemispheric super-state. And although he has been less candid than Fox, George W. Bush's actions reflect that same mindset.
Consolidating the nations of this hemisphere into a regional bloc has long been a goal of immensely powerful figures. Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, a member of the executive committee of the Trilateral Commission and a longtime power in the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) -- the two most prominent and influential globalist organizations -- stated in a 1993 Los Angeles Times op-ed column that NAFTA "will represent the most creative step toward a new world order taken by any group of countries since the end of the Cold War...." NAFTA, Kissinger admitted, "is not a conventional trade agreement, but the architecture of a new international system."
David Rockefeller, former CFR chairman and co-founder of the Trilateral Commission, went so far as to say in the Wall Street Journal that he didn't "think that 'criminal' would be too strong a word to describe ... rejecting NAFTA . Everything is in place -- after 500 years -- to build a true 'new world' in the Western Hemisphere."
We can already see the dire auguries of the new world these insiders are seeking to create. They are the shuttered textile mills of North and South Carolina, and the foreclosure notices that paper the walls of many courthouses as factory workers find their jobs "out-sourced" to Mexico, or points beyond. We see portents of amalgamation with Mexico in the rampant crime, disease, and social turmoil that typify border towns inundated with illegal immigrants. The tightening grip of environmental and workplace regulations suffocating our business sector, and driving jobs abroad, offers another grim foretaste of the world we would know if the plans for regional -- and eventually global -- government become a reality.
We can also see our future in the plight of patriots in Europe as they see their laws, currencies, and national independence abolished. Similar conditions will prevail in this hemisphere if the FTAA comes into being. Eventually, Americans would find that they are powerless to affect decisions being made by remote international bureaucracies that affect their lives, livelihoods, and liberties. The value of our currency, the scope of regulatory burdens on our businesses, the amount we pay in taxes -- all of these decisions would be made by distant, unaccountable bureaucrats whose job is to administer policies handed down from the UN, rather than representing the interest of Americans.
This doesn't have to happen. There is still time to defeat the plans to submerge our nation in a hemispheric socialist monstrosity:
Remember, the EU came about through deception. If we want to preserve our liberty, prosperity, and independence, concerned Americans must act now to dispel the deceptions about the FTAA.
It's clear they have no regard for the principle that the powers of the government are derived from the consent of the governed. They look to the depraved and undemocratic socialist EU as the model for our future!
Wait till we have more Muslims than jews, like Canada does. Our state department will be even more cozy with terrorists than it already is.
The power and influence of these groups will only grow with the growth of the muslim population. If we can't even keep our politicians from pandering to a particular racial identity group at the expense of all natives, then what makes you think the furtherance of the islamist agenda in the US will not be detrimental to the interests of Jewish Americans?
I assert that once muslims outnumber Jews in the US, we will begin to see the development of an atmosphere of violent antisemitism as is happening in Europe right now.