It's time for a North American Union

Discussion in 'Globalization' started by topolm, Jun 16, 2006.

  1. topolm

    topolm Member

    It's time for a North American Union


    Posted on Sun, Jun. 11, 2006
    Special to The Washington Post WASHINGTON - Immigration issues are always ripe for demagoguery, particularly in an election year. But the solution to the very real problems along the U.S.-Mexican border can be found, ironically, in that other part of the world that demagogues love to ridicule: old Europe.

    Two years ago, the European Union admitted 10 new members. Like Mexico, all of these nations were poor, some of them fairly backward and most recently ravaged by war and dictatorship.

    The leaders of the European Union wisely created policies for fostering regional economic and political integration that make the North American Free Trade Agreement "look timid and halfhearted by comparison," according to Bernd Westphal, consul general of Germany.

    Europe realized it had to prevent a "giant sucking sound" of businesses and jobs relocating from the 15 wealthier nations to the 10 poorer ones. It also had to foster prosperity and the spread of a middle class and prevent an influx of poor workers to the richer nations.

    So for starters, it gave the new states billions in subsidies to help construct schools, roads, telecommunications and housing, thus making these nations more attractive for business investment. It was expensive, but the result has been a larger economic union in which a rising tide floats all boats.

    In return, the 10 poorer nations had to agree to raise their standards on the environment, labor law, health and safety -- and more.

    Worker migration is regulated. Immigrants will be carefully integrated so as to cause the least disruption to the developed economies, with the goal of having open borders down the road.

    This bold yet carefully planned EU approach suggests the direction that policy between the United States and Mexico should take. The demands of the global economy will push North American regional integration out of the realm of a shadow economy and flawed free-trade agreement. But what might such a U.S.-Mexico union look like?

    It would start with massive subsidies from the United States to Mexico, a Tex-Mex Marshall Plan, with the goal of decreasing disparities on the Mexican side of the border and fostering a climate riper for investment. This would create more jobs in Mexico and foster a middle class, homeownership and better schools, roads and health care. Mexicans would stay home, becoming consumers of U.S. products.

    But Europe's union is not just an economic one. It also includes continentwide political institutions for all 25 nations. As American-Mexican economic integration unfolds, regional political structures also make sense to allow better coordination and supervision of the regulatory regime and common goals.

    We always assume that opening the border means hordes of Mexicans streaming north, but under this scenario, more Americans also would begin emigrating to Mexico. With the cost of living spiraling along the U.S. coasts, many Americans would find not only the cheaper prices but also the warm climate of Mexico a more attractive alternative than relocating to Kansas.

    Call it the Mexican safety valve, with American workers migrating to Mexico in search of jobs, homeownership, even to start businesses. They would chase the American dream in Mexico.

    The Census Bureau predicts that by 2050, the number of Latinos and Asians will triple in the United States and Anglos will make up only 50 percent of the nation's population. For many people, these changes are alarming, but economic disparities guarantee that poor Mexicans will continue seeking entry into El Norte.

    Given these demographic realities, gradual integration of the American and Mexican economies is the only sensible solution.

    The United States is missing out on huge economic opportunities; the European Union has grown to the largest trading bloc in the world.

    Old Europe is looking spry, while the United States is looking clumsy and stuck to the flypaper of old ideas.

    Steven Hill is director of the political reform program of the New America Foundation. This essay appeared previously in The Washington Post.
  2. White Scorpion

    White Scorpion 4umotographer

    Why not aim to go all the way, and have a Pan American Union, encompassing both north and south America? Besides, I was under the impression that US companies were already exploiting these countries. I could be wrong, however, maybe they've just been helping them out.
  3. gardener

    gardener Realistic Humanist

    The US already provides Mexico with subsidies that aren't measured. We provided free health care and education to most of their poor. But Mexico and some of the Texas legislators want us to provide these illegal workers with social security when they retire.

    When Nafta was passed Mexico was given the pass on cleaning up their environmental issues, and given more leniet rules as to the safety of their trucking industry. Under Clinton we forced the World Bank to bail them out.

    Want to decrease the disparities on the Mexican side, have the Mexican's clean up the corruption on their own side. Why should the depressed American worker lift their boats, when we don't even have boats of our own? The US is losing it's middle class, what makes you think the elite in Mexico even want a middle class, they prosper from the money their poor send home after they cross the border and find work in the US. Why should they pay them, when the US will?
  4. gardener

    gardener Realistic Humanist

    Many americans have tried that, but the corruption of the government is such that only the richest can profit from that at this point. When you have to do six different payouts to get a small building permit.

    Mexico is a country with a temperate climate, rich in natural resources, why hasn't it developed along with the rest of the developed world? Corruption! You are suggesting we subsidize that corruption.

    I prefer Kansas.
  5. Pressed_Rat

    Pressed_Rat Do you even lift, bruh?

    Well, obviously you do not have a clue about the goals of the people who want this Pan-American Union, which is NOT the average American, Canadian or South American. It's all about the centralization of power into fewer hands and just another stepping stone to a one world government, which, might I add, won't be a government that respects the freedoms of Americans or anyone else living under it. This is all being planned BY the Elite, FOR the Elite.
  6. zeppelin kid

    zeppelin kid Member

    I can't wait for the elite to unite the world under their rule. It will be a great day when that finally happens......I am being sarcastic.....
  7. White Scorpion

    White Scorpion 4umotographer

    You're not wrong, Pressed Rat, I was actually being ironic. Companies care for profit and little else. It's like trying to turn a tyrannoaurus rex into a veggie.

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