- Quietly but systematically, the Bush
Administration is advancing the plan to build a huge NAFTA Super Highway,
four football-fields-wide, through the heart of the U.S. along Interstate
35, from the Mexican border at Laredo, Tex., to the Canadian border north
of Duluth, Minn.
- Once complete, the new road will allow
containers from the Far East to enter the United States through the Mexican
port of Lazaro Cardenas, bypassing the Longshoreman's Union in the process.
The Mexican trucks, without the involvement of the Teamsters Union, will
drive on what will be the nation's most modern highway straight into the
heart of America. The Mexican trucks will cross border in FAST lanes, checked
only electronically by the new "SENTRI" system. The first customs
stop will be a Mexican customs office in Kansas City, their new Smart Port
complex, a facility being built for Mexico at a cost of $3 million to the
U.S. taxpayers in Kansas City.
- As incredible as this plan may seem to
some readers, the first Trans-Texas Corridor segment of the NAFTA Super
Highway is ready to begin construction next year. Various U.S. government
agencies, dozens of state agencies, and scores of private NGOs (non-governmental
organizations) have been working behind the scenes to create the NAFTA
Super Highway, despite the lack of comment on the plan by President Bush.
The American public is largely asleep to this key piece of the coming "North
American Union" that government planners in the new trilateral region
of United States, Canada and Mexico are about to drive into reality.
- Just examine the following websites to
get a feel for the magnitude of NAFTA Super Highway planning that has been
going on without any new congressional legislation directly authorizing
the construction of the planned international corridor through the center
of the country.
- * NASCO, the North America SuperCorridor
Coalition Inc., is a "non-profit organization dedicated to developing
the world's first international, integrated and secure, multi-modal transportation
system along the International Mid-Continent Trade and Transportation Corridor
to improve both the trade competitiveness and quality of life in North
America." Where does that sentence say anything about the USA? Still,
NASCO has received $2.5 million in earmarks from the U.S. Department of
Transportation to plan the NAFTA Super Highway as a 10-lane limited-access
road (five lanes in each direction) plus passenger and freight rail lines
running alongside pipelines laid for oil and natural gas. One glance at
the map of the NAFTA Super Highway on the front page of the NASCO website
will make clear that the design is to connect Mexico, Canada, and the U.S.
into one transportation system.
- * Kansas City SmartPort Inc. is an "investor
based organization supported by the public and private sector" to
create the key hub on the NAFTA Super Highway. At the Kansas City SmartPort,
the containers from the Far East can be transferred to trucks going east
and west, dramatically reducing the ground transportation time dropping
the containers off in Los Angeles or Long Beach involves for most of the
country. A brochure on the SmartPort website describes the plan in glowing
terms: "For those who live in Kansas City, the idea of receiving containers
nonstop from the Far East by way of Mexico may sound unlikely, but later
this month that seemingly far-fetched notion will become a reality."
- * The U.S. government has housed within
the Department of Commerce (DOC) an "SPP office" that is dedicated
to organizing the many working groups laboring within the executive branches
of the U.S., Mexico and Canada to create the regulatory reality for the
Security and Prosperity Partnership. The SPP agreement was signed by Bush,
President Vicente Fox, and then-Prime Minister Paul Martin in Waco, Tex.,
on March 23, 2005. According to the DOC website, a U.S.-Mexico Joint Working
Committee on Transportation Planning has finalized a plan such that "(m)ethods
for detecting bottlenecks on the U.S.-Mexico border will be developed and
low cost/high impact projects identified in bottleneck studies will be
constructed or implemented." The report notes that new SENTRI travel
lanes on the Mexican border will be constructed this year. The border at
Laredo should be reduced to an electronic speed bump for the Mexican trucks
containing goods from the Far East to enter the U.S. on their way to the
Kansas City SmartPort.
- * The Texas Department of Transportation
(TxDOT) is overseeing the Trans-Texas Corridor (TTC) as the first leg of
the NAFTA Super Highway. A 4,000-page environmental impact statement has
already been completed and public hearings are scheduled for five weeks,
beginning next month, in July 2006. The billions involved will be provided
by a foreign company, Cintra Concessions de Infraestructuras de Transporte,
S.A. of Spain. As a consequence, the TTC will be privately operated, leased
to the Cintra consortium to be operated as a toll-road.
- The details of the NAFTA Super Highway
are hidden in plan view. Still, Bush has not given speeches to bring the
NAFTA Super Highway plans to the full attention of the American public.
Missing in the move toward creating a North American Union is the robust
public debate that preceded the decision to form the European Union. All
this may be for calculated political reasons on the part of the Bush Administration.
- A good reason Bush does not want to secure
the border with Mexico may be that the administration is trying to create
express lanes for Mexican trucks to bring containers with cheap Far East
goods into the heart of the U.S., all without the involvement of any U.S.
union workers on the docks or in the trucks.
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