How Did We Get Into This Mess? NAFTA and WTO
NAFTA and then WTO
Actually since December of 2007, it is reported that we have lost 7 million jobs, but since NAFTA was first initiated and while no one was looking, I believe we lost millions more. I remember that Lou Dobbs, on CNN, kept a running total of American jobs, that had been out-sourced to China, India and other Asian countries, because they had really cheap labor. He would show the totals each night on his show. Unfortunately, I never saw the final total before he finally discontinued tallying up the numbers. We lost millions of jobs before 2007, no one really knows what that number really is, but I think it’s close to 10 million+ maybe more.
The following year January 1st, 1995 the WTO, World Trade Organization Agreement was put into law. There are a total of 153 member countries in the WTO. The WTO is an institutional body that oversees the international arena of traded goods, like commodities, to agreements within the service sector and the intellectual property rights arena. The WTO handles disagreements and negotiations regarding reductions or changes in tariffs.
These agreements are the basis upon which we have seen the methodical chipping away of the American economy. These bills were passed by both Houses of Congress too busy to read them. Sound familiar? But more importantly they were passed by a Congress I believe was so busy looking for the next big deal that they could cash in on, that they allowed the American people to be sold down the river.
I’m going to jump forward in time here for just a minute and then come back to events that occurred in 1997.
Here’s an example of how America’s trade agreements work for the Americans. Just some food for thought here.
I was in a local market the other day. It’s very high-end and one I have shopped in for years. This market has an excellent “fish” counter. I wanted something different for dinner that night so I went up to the fish counter to buy some fish. As I gazed over the selection that they offered, I noticed two things. The first was that there were some duplicate selections, but they were from different areas of the world. The second thing I noticed (which really irritated me) was the variety of countries the fish were from. Here’s a list of what they had and where it came from:
Easy Peeled Shrimp—Thailand
Easy Peeled Shrimp—Vietnam
Tequila Lime Salman—Chile
Tequila Lime Salman—Farm Raised—Chile
Honey Citrus Pepper Salman—Farm Raised—Chile
Ocean Perch—Wild Caught—China
Salman Fillets—Farm Raised—China
Salman Steak—Farm Raised—Canada
Orange Ruffy—New Zealand
Yep! Not one kind of fish was caught, or raised in America.
Someone besides myself must have said something about not liking the fact that they didn’t have any fish from the USA in their counter. Two weeks later, I came in to buy some lunch meat and there were two big signs on the lunch meat counter stating, “all our meats are raised in the USA”. I have since visited the fish counter, actually just last week and did take note that there was Shrimp caught off American shores, for sale.
I live in Michigan. It has long been referred to as the “Water Wonderland” of the USA. It is surrounded by water on 3 sides, and has thousands of fresh water lakes. We actually fish here.
The United States is surrounded on 3 sides by water. I know we fish off the coast of the USA. Yet, not one type of fish displayed in this fish counter, was caught or raised in the USA.
So, I would like to know, how many Fishermen have had their jobs out-sourced????? How many American fishing companies have had to close, due to these Trade Agreements passed by our Congress/White House?
Boy, our elected officials certainly are looking out for the Americans who put them in office.