Sunday, July 10, 2005

CAFTA vs. NAFTA

Congress is set to approve a so-called "free trade" deal. The Senate already has, and the House could vote on it at any time. The Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) extends NAFTA to five additional countries south of the border. There are specific worker protection mechanisms in NAFTA that no one enforces. CAFTA has none - period.

Also keep in mind that embedded in this bill is a provision overriding the 1994 Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) of 1994. Unregulated personal use of vitamins and nutritional supplements would end, & the U. S. would comply with the World Trade Organization's (WTO) Codex Alimentarius Commission (e.g., food standards board). The bottom line for dietary supplements is a lower potency requiring people to purchase a great deal more to receive today's equivalent benefit. Consequently, the expense increases, the availability decreases, a doctor's prescription becomes a requirement. Major pharmaceutical companies would benefit considerably with the elimination of competitor supplement manufacturers.

Here's a quote from Ron Paul - a Republican Congressman with true free trade in mind:

I oppose CAFTA for a very simple reason: it is unconstitutional. The Constitution clearly grants Congress alone the authority to regulate international trade. The plain text of Article I, Section 8, Clause 3 is incontrovertible. Neither Congress nor the President can give this authority away by treaty, any more than they can repeal the First Amendment by treaty. This fundamental point, based on the plain meaning of the Constitution, cannot be overstated. Every member of Congress who votes for CAFTA is voting to abdicate power to an international body in direct violation of the Constitution.

We don't need government agreements to have free trade. We merely need to lower or eliminate taxes on the American people, without regard to what other nations do. Remember, tariffs are simply taxes on consumers. Americans have always bought goods from abroad; the only question is how much our government taxes us for doing so... We don't need CAFTA or any other international agreement to reap the economic benefits promised by CAFTA supporters, we only need to change our own harmful economic and tax policies. Let the rest of the world hurt their citizens with tariffs; if we simply reduce tariffs and taxes at home, we will attract capital and see our economy flourish.

It is absurd to believe that CAFTA and other trade agreements do not diminish American sovereignty. When we grant quasi-governmental international bodies the power to make decisions about American trade rules, we lose sovereignty plain, and simple. I can assure you firsthand that Congress has changed American tax laws for the sole reason that the World Trade Organization decided our rules unfairly impacted the European Union. Hundreds of tax bills languish in the House Ways and Means committee, while the one bill drafted strictly to satisfy the WTO was brought to the floor and passed with great urgency last year.

The tax bill in question is just the tip of the iceberg. The quasi-judicial regime created under CAFTA will have the same power to coerce our cowardly legislature into changing American laws in the future. Labor and environmental rules are inherently associated with trade laws, and we can be sure that CAFTA will provide yet another avenue for globalists to impose the Kyoto Accord and similar agreements on the American people. CAFTA also imposes the International Labor Organization's manifesto, which could have been written by Karl Marx, on American business . . .

CAFTA means more government! Like the UN, NAFTA, and the WTO, it represents another stone in the foundation of a global government system. Most Americans already understand they are governed by largely unaccountable forces in Washington, yet now they face having their domestic laws influenced by bureaucrats in Brussels, Zurich, or Mexico City.

CAFTA and other international trade agreements do not represent free trade. Free trade occurs in the absence of government interference in the flow of goods, while CAFTA represents more government in the form of an international body. It is incompatible with our Constitution and national sovereignty, and we don't need it to benefit from international trade.

The vote spread on CAFTA is very, very close. A change of as little as four votes, either way, could make the difference. If you oppose CAFTA, let your Representative in the U.S. House know about it.

1 Comments:

At 11 July, 2005 23:36, Blogger Kankakee Voice said...

If you are a constituent of the 11th congressional district, call Wily Weller and demand that he keep his campaign promise last summer and not vote on any issues involving Guatemala. His staff will tell you that CAFTA does not have anything to do with Guatemala (on my mother's grave they said that!) but patiently explain to them that it does, they shouldn't believe everything thier boss tells them. And if you really want to freak them out, when you call say you are a member of Kankakee Voices.

 

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