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Making Sense of NAFTA and Its Replacement

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2019/06/14/making-sense-nafta-and-its-replacement

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The author makes this claim, “We never quite understood his objection to the original NAFTA…” Really? The hollowing out of the American middle class by shipping literally millions of good paying jobs to countries paying low wages and no benefits would be a good beginning for this nimrod writer.

Almost 100,000 manufacturing companies have moved their facilities to such countries.

We have paid trillions in trade deficits. China, along with 100s of Billions in intellectual theft, has virtually build their country on wealth exfiltrated from America.

Why is it every country can restrict our products with tariffs or in some cases, not even allow our products to be sold? Yet when we finally have a savvy President that understands how to negotiate to put our interests first, he faces a storm of oppo from REgressives and Republicans?

We all know the answer. There are trillions at stake. The Chamber of Commerce headed by the biggest scumbag in history,Tom Donahue,has spent billions buying our politicians, from both sides. The Chamber WROTE NAFTA. The Chamber supplies these scumbag politicians(hello Cory Gardener & John Cornyn and especially Mitch McConnell) with the exact wording they want in legislation. The Chamber spends more money “lobbying” than any corporation or individual, BY FAR.

The position this scumbag writer takes tells me he could care less about the destruction of 1,000s of small communities across the country when their employers were offered deals too good to pas up.

The author states he would need a microscope to find any differences. Liar. I’m surprised CD, which champions living wages, would publish crap like this and use it as another oppo to bash the President.

The author is pretty clearly against NAFTA for exactly the reasons you cite but claims that Trump hasn’t articulated his objection to the details in NAFTA or explained how the new deal fixes each objection. The author then wants to tie trade deals to other domestic policy such as infrastructure investment. I still remember when Sanders somewhat in isolation said he would work with Trump to get infrastructure improvements in the US. I thought at the time (and still do) that this was the right attitude to take. But we don’t seem to be able to move forward legislatively these days though I was encouraged that industrial hemp is now fully legal in the US thanks to farmers in Kentucky advocating McConnell get on board.

As far as true differences between NAFTA and the successor, I’ve heard coverage from a few different places on the left and I think there is recognition of differences, but the consensus seems to be it isn’t the trade deal one would have expected from someone who wants a completely different tack on trade (as do I). I won’t defend the idea you need a microscope to see differencs between the bills but it wasn’t enough for me and likely won’t be enough for many Trump voters either.

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The worst inclusions in NAFTA 2.0 are in the Regulatory Cooperation Chapter 28 and in the creation of Regulatory Cooperation Councils whose job it will be to comb through all our regulations to weaken public health, safety and the protection of the planet. It seems that in the weakening chapter 11, the regulatory and technical barriers to trade provisions will now be enforceable. But why must this be in a trade agreement? So Congress doesn’t have to bring the issues to their constituents to do the hard work of democracy. This is the definition of fascism. Trump also blamed Mexicans for a trade deal designed to destroy their economy, and drive them to our border.
Trade does not work if it obliterates democracy. I wonder if congress will admit that.

How dare you call Stan Sorscher a scumbag. He spends his time on the Washington Fair Trade Coalition advocating for trade policy that lifts up workers.

I mostly agree with the article, but when it uses the term
“intellectual property” it spreads confusion. That term does not fit
the reality of the legal system, because it tries to generalize about
a bunch of unrelated laws which have nothing important in common.

A few of those laws raise important moral and social issues. But each
law raises different issues! If you treat them as a single topic
and look for a single way to treat them, you are already headed for a
bad decision.

Please joining me in rejecting the misguided overgeneralization of
“intellectual property” and treating each of those laws as a separate issue.

See https://gnu.org/philosophy/not-ipr.html.