Ultima Thule

In ancient times the northernmost region of the habitable world - hence, any distant, unknown or mysterious land.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Task Force Urges Measures to Strengthen North American Competitiveness, Expand Trade, Ensure Border Security - Council on Foreign Relations

By Aussiegirl

Unfortunately real life beckons today and I don't have time to write as much as I'd like. I plan to be back later today with more analysis and more articles. In the meantime here are a few points to ponder. Consider these recommendations from the Council of Foreign Relations. It is the document that formed the basis for the agreement reached at the Trilateral Summit held between the presidents of Mexico, the United States and Canada, which expressed a goal of achieving a common North American space for economic, travel, trade, immigration and purposes.

Suddenly the senate's and the president's insistence on this immigration "reform" is easier to understand. Welcome to the EU of North America, complete with bureaucratic regulations. Notice the recommendations for regulations of everything from food to medicine to agriculture. Also the notion that future immigration should be restricted to just immigrants from North American -- i.e. low-wage, unskilled workers. I suppose that means that companies that currently have to outsource cheap manufacturing jobs overseas will simply be able to find cheap labor in our own country. But where will all these people live, just for starters? And in what conditions? Will we have to build massive low-income dwellings for them like the euros have done, while the wealthy live in gated enclaves while being served by a large low-paid servant class? Or will we continue down the present road where previously middle-class neighborhoods are overrun by immigrants sharing housing with as many as 25 people sharing one house that used to house an American family of 4, complete with dozens of vehicles parked on neighborhood roads, loud and disruptive parties, trash, and a resulting destruction of a decent place to live.

Evidently the antiquated concept of a nation with borders and a common culture is now rather quaint and out of step with the need to compete in the globalized eonomy. Who needs borders or identity or culture, or even language for that matter, if there is money to made? Of course, the EU's economies are virtually moribund and stagnant while our economy is booming without these new regulations for a common economic space. Not to mention that the European countries are facing unbearable economic burdens from the welfare state needed to provide services for all these people. And these are only a few of the problems that will result from these sorts of policies.

Task Force Urges Measures to Strengthen North American Competitiveness, Expand Trade, Ensure Border Security - Council on Foreign Relations

North America is vulnerable on several fronts: the region faces terrorist and criminal security threats, increased economic competition from abroad, and uneven economic development at home. In response to these challenges, a trinational, Independent Task Force on the Future of North America has developed a roadmap to promote North American security and advance the well-being of citizens of all three countries.

When the leaders of Canada, Mexico, and the United States met in Texas recently they underscored the deep ties and shared principles of the three countries. The Council-sponsored Task Force applauds the announced "Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America," but proposes a more ambitious vision of a new community by 2010 and specific recommendations on how to achieve it.

Pointing to increased competition from the European Union and rising economic powers such as India and China in the eleven years since NAFTA took effect, co-chair Pedro C. Aspe, former Finance Minister of Mexico, said, "We need a vision for North America to address the new challenges." The Task Force establishes a blueprint for a powerhouse North American trading area that allows for the seamless movement of goods, increased labor mobility, and energy security.

"We are asking the leaders of the United States, Mexico, and Canada to be bold and adopt a vision of the future that is bigger than, and beyond, the immediate problems of the present," said co-chair John P. Manley, Former Canadian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance. "They could be the architects of a new community of North America, not mere custodians of the status quo."

At a time of political transition in Canada and Mexico, the Task Force proposes new ideas to cope with continental challenges that should be the focus of debate in those two countries as well as the United States. To ensure a free, secure, just, and prosperous North America, the Task Force proposes a number of specific measures:

Make North America safer:

Establish a common security perimeter by 2010.
Develop a North American Border Pass with biometric identifiers.
Develop a unified border action plan and expand border customs facilities.
Create a single economic space:

Adopt a common external tariff.
Allow for the seamless movement of goods within North America.
Move to full labor mobility between Canada and the U.S.
Develop a North American energy strategy that gives greater emphasis to reducing emissions of greenhouse gases -- a regional alternative to Kyoto.
Review those sectors of NAFTA that were excluded.
Develop and implement a North American regulatory plan that would include "open skies and open roads" and a unified approach for protecting consumers on food, health, and the environment.
Expand temporary worker programs and create a "North American preference" for immigration for citizens of North America.
Spread benefits more evenly:

Establish a North American Investment Fund to build infrastructure to connect Mexico's poorer regions in the south to the market to the north.
Restructure and reform Mexico's public finances.
Fully develop Mexican energy resources to make greater use of international technology and capital.
Institutionalize the partnership:

Establish a permanent tribunal for trade and investment disputes.
Convene an annual North American summit meeting.
Establish a Tri-national Competition Commission to develop a common approach to trade remedies.
Expand scholarships to study in the three countries and develop a network of Centers for North American Studies.
Co-chair William F. Weld, former Governor of Massachusetts and U.S. Assistant Attorney General, said, "We are three liberal democracies; we are adjacent; we are already intertwined economically; we have a great deal in common historically; culturally, we have a lot to learn from one another."

Organized in association with the Consejo Mexicano de Asuntos Internacionales and the Canadian Council of Chief Executives, the Task Force includes prominent former officials, businessmen, and academic experts from all three countries. A Chairmen's Statement was released in March in advance of the trinational summit; the full report represents the consensus of the entire Task Force membership and leadership.


At 9:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are very well informed.
Have you read Professor Carroll Quigley's "Tragedy and Hope"?
He revealed the cfr consiracy back in 1966. It seems as though it's still going on.


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