NAFTA logo by Wikipedia
"Citizens of the U.S., Canada or Mexico should be able to work legally in any Nafta country in the same way that citizens of European Union countries can work anywhere in the EU. This mobility would allow the North America labor market to function as efficiently as the industrial, agricultural and financial markets that Nafta has created, matching workers with jobs in a seamless continental web.
Allowing markets, rather than immigration officials, to decide where people can work would likely boost economic growth by reducing labor shortages, providing greater flexibility to employers, and giving more options to unemployed workers willing to relocate."
I see this differently. I see this as a strategy that will further attack the American middle class and do massive damage to US unions. This will weaken job safety and make it easier for US employers to avoid paying living wages and raised minimum wages.
The bad news is it Cellucci suggests that the NAFTA immigration option could be negotiated by President Obama, then ratified by the Senate. In other words, the corporatist in the White House will propose a bill that the corporatists in the Senate-- Republicans and liberal Democrats (less a handful of remaining lndependents and progressives) will probably enable this bill to cruise through.
Cellucci's article argues that this trade deal addendum will make it easier for American workers to move to Mexico and Canada to find work. Picture that. This kind corporatist will help Americans move to a third world nation to get better jobs. Ross Perot talked about the giant sucking sound we'd hear if NAFTA was implemented. Well it was worse than we imagined-- and signed off on by Democratic President Bill Clinton. This new deal will make things so much worse.
And that's not all. Obama, further stabbing US workers in the back, is negotiating in secret, with corporations, keeping congress out of the loop, on the TPP-- the Trans Pacific Partnership, and he's also started on developing a European globalization agreement as well.
NAFTA was the first corporate globalization treaty to brutally betray American workers. It set the standards for how the US would cut deals favoring the few hundred multinational companies while destroying whole US industries and putting millions of skilled workers out of jobs.
I would be very surprised if this immigration add-on to NAFTA was not followed by immigration add-ons to all the trade agreements we have. This fits the Milton Friedman University of Chicago economic model of freeing up markets. This bogus theory is one of the favorite tools used to bust unions and eliminate regulations.
Also concerning, this approach may be just the ticket the Republicans are looking for that would please Latino voters. On the other hand, it may just raise objections from the Tea Party. It would be ironic if the Tea party stopped Obama from implementing a policy that could be the death blow to unions. I don't think there's reason to doubt that Obama is a flaming globalizationist, as are most members of the senate.
This op-ed proposes an idea that is incredibly dangerous, partly because the corporatist Democrats will rubber stamp it. They'll pick up the union support they lose from lobbyists. Any Democrat or Republican who even entertains this idea should be primaried.
Let me be clear. I believe that the US needs to deal in much better ways with people from other nations who are working but unregistered in the US. But this idea is not the solution. Where we now have ten or twelve million foreign workers, we could end up with scores of millions. The only good thing about this concept is that it would be easier to escape to Canada.
There's a solution to this problem. We've seen it in the recent Israeli elections-- changing our political system to end two party, duopoly rule, so third parties thrive. Anything less will keep the US heading into third world nation status-- just as Cellucci and his fellow author suggest this idea will make it easier for US workers to move to third world working conditions.