Sunday, March 8, 2009

The North American Free Trade Agreement

I have been watching Canadians in the past several weeks gleefully gleaning over the inauguration of Barack Obama like teenage girls at a Hannah Montana concert. This unprecedented reverence is in part the product of his hypnotic oratory skills, in part the hysterical hatred of the outgoing administration, and in part Obama smashing through the ethnic glass ceiling of the most powerful throne on the planet.

I can recall the elections of 2004 and 2006 when many of my friends and colleagues were merrily yearning for a Democratic Party victory. Meanwhile I was ominously ringing Hells Bells saying be careful what you wish for. I would take care in reminding them that the architect of the Byrd Amendment was a Democrat, a document that levied illegal tariffs on softwood lumber in direct violation of the NAFTA.

Fast forward to 2009 when we find ourselves with a Democrat President and a Democrat dominated House of Representatives, and suddenly within a week of inauguration day, “Buy American” was the new flavor of the month in Washington. I recall my Intro to Political Science seminar debate at the University of Guelph. I was the sole voice of sanity in the classroom defending the NAFTA. To me the math was pretty simple, if roughly 75% of everything “Made in Canada” is “Sold to America”, it is unequivocally in our best interests to eliminate any firewalls inhibiting those transactions.

The stimulus bill tabled by the Democrat dominated Senate is far worse than a tariff, a tax on imports. This clearly states that ONLY “Made in America” steel and manufactured goods are to be used in the trillion dollar American stimulus package. This is not taxing “Made in Canada”; it is banning it from being used all together! Unless our goal is to be reduced to an entirely resource based economy; our Manufacturing Sector is just a hop, skip, and a jump away from becoming Oliver Twist repeatedly walking up to the Federal Treasury asking “please sir can I have some more?”

Some of the language was changed in the final bill that passed both houses of the American legislature that did not completely ban the use of Canadian made goods, but there are still protectionist provisions in the Stimulus bill. Personally I am concerned that in their first significant piece of legislation, the new Democrat monopoly thought it prudent to include Marxian measures right off the flop. I consider what the future might hold, and I am calculating the probability that it is worse than the present. I recall the campaign, when I had change, change, and more change rammed down my throat, and yet the Messiah never accurately pinpointed specifically when he would change to. Change is all fine and dandy, but if what he was implying that he would transform North America into a Marxist welfare state, count me out.

“Communism doesn’t work because people like to own stuff”
-Frank Zappa

1 comment:

  1. The only good that will come from the reign of President Teleprompter is that some liberals will understand what a colossal fraud the media played on the voters.