In his speech last night, President Clinton said goodbye to the nation and looked back at his eight years in office.He warned the incoming president against retrenching from the world or squandering the country’s economic prosperity.
At least on the economic front, though, Bush is likely to continue trade policies begun under Clinton, even indicatinghis desire to expand NAFTA into South America. On this, the last full day of the Clinton presidency, we examine NAFTA,a key element in the Clinton legacy.
In their extensive PR campaign, pro-NAFTA forces promised that the treaty would raise the standard of living andcreate jobs in Canada, the US, and Mexico. In fact, U.S. workers have lost some 300-400,000 jobs because of NAFTApolicies.
At the same time, the treaty has guaranteed cheap labor in Mexico, where workers are forced to choose betweenemployment at a maquiladora, starving, or trying to jump the U.S. border.
We look at ??The Selling of Free Trade: NAFTA, Washington and the Subversion of American Democracy by John R.MacArthur.
- John R. MacArthur, Publisher of Harper’s magazine and author of The Selling of Free Trade