The Evil Side of NAFTA

Tiny - Posted on 21 May 2013

Bad News Bruce

May 20, 2013

NAFTA, also known as the North American Free Trade Agreement, was formed in 1994, when the United States, the Republic of Mexico, and the Commonwealth of Canada were competing with the early days of the European Union. The European Union organized European countries into one single all-powerful economic group. Businessmen were trying to figure out ways that we could compete. The way they sold all this to the US Congress was that they got the unions behind NAFTA, saying they could organize to pay the same wages outside as inside the United States. If they were paying workers the same rates in the US and Mexico, they could stop migration to the United States. That idea went out the window as soon as NAFTA started.

NAFTA has their own court, presided over by commissioners. The court can override any of the high courts of the three countries involved. In the first big NAFTA case, Canada sued the US for $970 million dollars, because gas fuel made by a Canada-based company did not comply with California environmental laws about carbon emissions. Canada did not win the case, but this all goes to show that NAFTA is able to move money from governments directly into the hands of corporate interests, and without laws that people vote on.

If the corporations got the money in the California case, it would be taken out of the California budget. The same thing could happen to the US Federal government if the Keystone XL oil pipeline got approved to be built. The US would be forced to pay for the pipeline, even though we refused to accept it as a pipeline, if the NAFTA court decided to sue the US for blocking trade.

The US used NAFTA to stop the drug trade by paying off powerful drug traders in Mexico. NAFTA gave the drug traders maquilas (factories) in Ciudad Juarez, and this is why Ciudad Juarez is now the murder capital of the world. The NAFTA decision allows drug bosses to use the same underhanded techniques of terror and blackmail in a factory setting, by killing one woman a day to keep the other women in line, according to Las Hormigas (the sister organization to the SF Living Wage Coalition). They still have power.

Because of NAFTA, corn has been monopolized by the US, who pays farmers to use genetically modified corn and to undersell the world market and the other members of NAFTA. We are stuck in the grocery stores with genetically altered food, the food that low income people can access and afford. The US forces farmers across the false borders to become laborers in the US, because their multi-generational livelihood growing corn was killed by underhanded the techniques of NAFTA.

Mexico is also using NAFTA to access cheap migrant labor in the beekeeping industry, as I learned at a conference I went to about NAFTA called “NAFTA Conference,” sponsored by Global Exchange.

They have been talking about upgrading NAFTA to a parliamentary system, like the parliament of the European Union.

NAFTA is also against the UN Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, because it forces people from their ancestral land to follow jobs, and because it is so disrespectful to the land that is sacred to indigenous people. It does not help the struggles of workers and indigenous people because it takes decision-making power even further away from them.

This is the bad side of NAFTA, one that the commercial media will not show, because their bosses are afraid of losing sponsorship.

Thank you very much, this is BAD NEWS BRUCE!!


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