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Donald Trump was right. The rest of the G7 were wrong

By someone else follow someone else   2018 Jun 14, 10:49am 1,649 views   6 comments   watch   nsfw   quote   share    


https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jun/13/trump-nafta-g7-sunset-clause-trade-agreement

But last weekend Donald Trump got something right. To the horror of the other leaders of the rich world, he defended democracy against its detractors. Perhaps predictably, he has been universally condemned for it.

His crime was to insist that the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta) should have a sunset clause. In other words, it should not remain valid indefinitely, but expire after five years, allowing its members either to renegotiate it or to walk away. To howls of execration from the world’s media, his insistence has torpedoed efforts to update the treaty. ...

But the people of North America did not explicitly consent to Nafta. They were never asked to vote on the deal, and its bipartisan support ensured that there was little scope for dissent. The huge grassroots resistance in all three nations was ignored or maligned. The deal was fixed between political and commercial elites, and granted immortality.

In seeking to update the treaty, governments in the three countries have candidly sought to thwart the will of the people. Their stated intention was to finish the job before Mexico’s presidential election in July. The leading candidate, Andrés Lopez Obrador, has expressed hostility to Nafta, so it had to be done before the people cast their vote. ...

There was much rejoicing this week over the photo of Trump being harangued by the other G7 leaders. But when I saw it, I thought: “The stitch-ups engineered by people like you produce people like him.” The machinations of remote elites in forums such as the G7, the IMF and the European Central Bank, and the opaque negotiation of unpopular treaties, destroy both trust and democratic agency, fuelling the frustration that demagogues exploit.

Trump was right to spike the Trans-Pacific Partnership. He is right to demand a sunset clause for Nafta.


stitch up = A set up, a trick. If someone stitches you up, then they're playing you for a fool.
1   LeonDurham   ignore (0)   2018 Jun 14, 11:08am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Patrick says
But the people of North America did not explicitly consent to Nafta. They were never asked to vote on the deal, and its bipartisan support ensured that there was little scope for dissent. The huge grassroots resistance in all three nations was ignored or maligned. The deal was fixed between political and commercial elites, and granted immortality.


Have the "people" of the US ever voted on a treaty?

I thought that's why we elected officials to represent us. US is a Republic, after all.
2   bob2356   ignore (4)   2018 Jun 14, 11:25am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

LeonDurham says

Have the "people" of the US ever voted on a treaty?

I thought that's why we elected officials to represent us. US is a Republic, after all.


Don't confuse the issue with facts.
3   NoCoupForYou   ignore (4)   2018 Jun 14, 1:26pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

LeonDurham says
Have the "people" of the US ever voted on a treaty?


Under the neoliberals Clinton, Bush, and Obama, multinational corporations certainly influenced vote treaties.
4   NoCoupForYou   ignore (4)   2018 Jun 14, 1:36pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

"But we've got to keep the special deals for Europeans because... uh... uh..."

Well Germany couldn't even find a dozen functioning Leopards to send to the NATO deployment in Eastern Europe. It certainly isn't to either prevent Communism OR to bolster their military against Russia, since most of the Euros aren't spending their 2% of GDP NATO minimum. Germany is about half that, actually.
5   Shaman   ignore (3)   2018 Jun 14, 1:46pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

LeonDurham says
thought that's why we elected officials to represent us.

And if our representatives were actually representing us, they would have renegotiated NAFTA when the great outcries happened. Obama your personal Savior would have done so, champion of liberty and democracy that you think he was!

Instead, it took a much maligned orange real estate broker from New York to buck the will of the US royalty to tinker with a treaty that has been responsible for much of the degradation of the working class.

And for his troubles and honesty of representation, an oligarchy owned media pillories him.

And useful idiots with narrow liberal arts educations and overblown egos fawn over the opinions of the ruling class, savagely snapping at the foundations of American democracy.
6   LeonDurham   ignore (0)   2018 Jun 14, 2:21pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Quigley says
And if our representatives were actually representing us,


Us doesn't equal Quigley. Last polling I saw showed free trade polling at +26. (I'm not a free trade fan myself either, but I don't pretend everyone thinks like I do)

http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2018/05/10/americans-are-generally-positive-about-free-trade-agreements-more-critical-of-tariff-increases/

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