Saturday, January 26, 2008

Why are they lying?

When high government officials lie, it is reasonable to believe something wrong is afoot.

Take the case of the ‘alleged’ North American Union and its embodiment the ‘alleged’ North American Superhighway (sometimes called the ‘NAFTA Superhighway’) as an illustration.

Not long ago President Bush avoided answering a direct question about whether he would be willing to categorically deny there is a plan to create a North American Union. Instead of answering the question, Bush ridiculed those who believe that a plan to create a North American Union is underway as "conspiracy theorists".

This occurred at a news conference held by Bush, Mexico's President Felipe Calderon, and Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper, when they met at a resort in Quebec to discuss their work on the Security and Prosperity Partnership. The president was specifically asked (according to a White House transcript): "Are there plans to build some kind of superhighway connecting all three countries? And do you believe all of these theories about a possible erosion of national identity stem from a lack of transparency from this partnership?"

Bush's evasive answer was:

"We represent three great nations. We each respect each other's sovereignty. You know, there are some who would like to frighten our fellow citizens into believing that relations between us are harmful for our respective peoples. I just believe they're wrong. I believe it's in our interest to trade; I believe it's in our interest to dialogue; I believe it's in our interest to work out common problems for the good of our people. And I'm amused by some of the speculation, some of the old – you can call them political scare tactics."

Harper of Canada said "There's not going to be any NAFTA Superhighway connecting the three nations, he said, and it's "not going to go interplanetary either".

Harper’s and Bush's comments were similar to the comments published earlier in the Ottawa Citizen by David Wilkins, the U.S. ambassador to Canada:

"While conspiracy theories abound, you can take it to the bank that no one involved in these discussions is interested in, or has ever proposed, a 'North American Union,' a 'North American super highway,' or a 'North American currency,'" he wrote.

However Jerome Corsi, a Harvard Ph.D. whose newly published book, "The Late Great USA," (a book I highly recommend to any doubters of the North American Union plan) writes that the government's own documentation shows the advance of a North American Union, and adds, "ridicule is the last resort of someone who is losing an argument", and further, "Just to ridicule the idea, when he (Bush) had a chance to categorically deny it, raises doubts in peoples' minds, especially when these meetings aren't transparent."

Deceit is the harbinger of bad intentions and much of what the government does via the Bush administration is just plain deceitful. A document revealed by Corsi shows the North American SuperCorridor Coalition, or NASCO. The document is particularly relevant in the face of government denial that a NAFTA "Superhighway" exists.

Christopher Hayes, the Washington Editor of the Nation, joined a growing list of those who deny a NAFTA Superhighway exists. In a cover story in an issue of the Nation magazine, Hayes wrote "There is no such thing as a proposed NAFTA Superhighway" but then describes a Trans Texas Corridor under construction parallel to Interstate 35 specifically designed to accommodate the growing volume of NAFTA and World Trade Organization traffic coming into Texas from China and the Far East through Mexican ports on the Pacific (such as Manzanillo and Lázaro Cárdenas).

A 1998 executive summary (found by Corsi) noted, "Since January 1, 1994, when NAFTA went into effect, the heartland of America has become an increasingly important thoroughfare for trade among the United States, Mexico and Canada. Interstate 35 is the only interstate highway connecting Mexico, the U.S. and Canada through the heartland, and it carries a greater percentage of U.S.-Mexico trade among the NAFTA partners than any other U.S. interstate highway." This sure sounds like the beginning of a North American Superhighway, or whatever you want to call it, to me.

Furthermore, a map of North America available on the internet describes the route of the Superhighway. The map shows the continental route of the I-35, 29, and 94 passing through the United States and linking Mexico and Canada.

NASCO, the Dallas-based trade group called the ‘North America's SuperCorridor Coalition, Inc. (referred to previously), also adamantly denies there is or will be a superhighway (On its website, NASCO proclaims, "There are no plans to build a new NAFTA Superhighway – it exists today as I-35."). However, Tiffany Melvin, NASCO's executive director, cautions "NASCO friends and members" that "We have to stay away from 'SuperCorridor' because it is a very bad, hot button right now." (Interestingly, the North American SuperCorridor Coalition was originally named the North American Superhighway Coalition.)

Letters (also uncovered by Corsi) include one written to Tiffany Newsom, executive director of NASCO, by Francisco J. Conde, editor and publisher of the Conde Report on U.S.-Mexico Relations; and the second, a June 10, 1998 letter written by Newsom to consultants at David A. Dean & Newsom. The Newsom letter says "This bill (Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century, or TEA-21, signed into law by President Clinton June 9, 1998) contains for the first time in history a category and funding for trade corridors and border programs" and, "The I-35 corridor is the strongest and most organized of the corridor initiatives so, if we play our cards right, we stand to get a part of the $700 million."

U.S. Reps. Virgil Goode, R-Va., Ron Paul, R-Texas, Walter B. Jones, R-N.C., and Tom Tancredo, R-Colo. Introduced legislation calling on the president to discontinue plans toward a North American Union and the Superhighway (having co-sponsors from both sides of the aisle), but it is languishing in congress. The pending resolution expresses "the sense of Congress that the United States should not engage in the construction of a North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Superhighway System or enter into a North American Union with Mexico and Canada."

How did Rep. Hayes react when President Bush referred to those who suggest the Security and Prosperity Partnership could turn into the North American Union as "conspiracy theorists"?

"The president is really engaging in a play on words," Goode said. "The secretary of transportation came before our subcommittee and I had the opportunity to ask her some questions about the NAFTA Superhighway. Of course, she answered, 'There's no NAFTA Superhighway.' But then Mary Peters proceeded to discuss the road system that would come up from Mexico and go through the United States up into Canada. So, I think that saying we're 'conspiracy theorists' or something like that is really just a play on words with the intent to demonize the opposition."

Hayes also said "Some really large businesses that get a lot from China would like a NAFTA Superhighway system because it would reduce costs for them to transport containers from China and, as a result, increase their margins".

Congressman Hayes believes the motivation behind the movement toward North American integration is the anticipated profits the large multinational corporations in each of the three countries expect to make from global trade, especially moving production to China. Members of NASCO, a denier of the Superhighway plan, are big businesses that would profit greatly if it is built.

Call me a skeptic (not a 'conspiracy theorist' please) but I believe many of our president’s action, particularly in the second term, have helped really big business. Bush’s position on the borders and illegal immigration, and the secret negotiations toward a North American Union, primarily benefit large multinational corporations, not the rest of us.

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