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NAFTA, CAFTA unconstitutionally abdicate power to an international body

| February 16, 2006 11:00 PM

To the Editor:

Is the state of the union really as positive as I heard George W. Bush declare in his speech to congress and to the nation? I heard him say that America is proudly leading a "World Economy."

According to Paul Craig Roberts, (quoting the Jan. 19 issue of Manufacturing & Technology News), "during Bush's presidency the U.S. has experienced the slowest job creation on record (going back to 1939)." During the last five years, private business has added only 958,000 jobs to the economy, while government has added 1.1 million jobs. Many of these new jobs are not for a full work week. The country ended 2005 with fewer private sector hours worked than it had in January 2001.

Last July 207,000 new jobs were reported. Of those new jobs, 26,000 were tax-supported government jobs. That left 181,000 private sector jobs. Of these private sector jobs 177,000 are in the domestic service area. Here is a breakdown of the major categories.

* 30,000 food servers and bar tenders;

* 28,000 health care and social assistance;

* 12,000 real estate;

* 6,000 credit intermediation;

* 8,000 transit and ground passenger transportation;

* 50,000 retail trade;

* 8,000 wholesale trade;

* 7,000 construction - most of which were filled by Mexican immigrants.

Not a single one of these jobs produces a tradable good or service that can be exported to help reduce the massive and growing U.S. deficit.

Economist Charles McMillion reported, in that same issue of Manufacturing & Technology News, that the U.S. has lost 16.5 percent of its manufacturing jobs during the last five years. The hardest hit are clothes manufacturers, textile mills, communications equipment and semiconductors.

When Ross Perot was campaigning for the presidency he made the comment "If the North American Free Trade Agreement is passed you will hear a big sucking sound. That sound will be American jobs leaving the country for Mexico." Mr. Perot's prophesy has come to pass.

Last year another free trade agreement was passed, CAFTA, (Central American Free Trade Agreement). The sucking sound is becoming louder. Multi-National Corporations will be stampeding to move their operations to these locations of cheaper labor.

In Rep. Ron Paul's speech before the U.S. House of Representatives on Sept. 15, 2005, he stated, "We face a financial crisis. Our current account deficit is more than $600 billion annually. Our national debt is increasing by that amount each year. We print $600 billion per year to keep the charade going. If Congress does not show some sense of financial restraint soon, we can expect the poor to become poorer; the middle class to become smaller; and the government to get bigger and more authoritarian - while the liberty of the people is diminished."

Our Congress should not have passed NAFTA, signed by George H.W. Bush and ratified during the Clinton administration simply because it is unconstitutional. The Constitution clearly grants Congress alone the authority to regulate international trade. Now the current administration has given us the equally unconstitutional CAFTA. Every member of Congress who voted for NAFTA and CAFTA voted to abdicate power to an international body in direct violation of the Constitution.

Russell Brown