Saturday, February 06, 2010

Bye bye "Buy Local' - Hello "Buy North American"

Harper and Co have been working hard. They have decided the prorogation of parliament is the ideal time to implement a crippling new extension of NAFTA into our lives .

The Deal :
In exchange for a 10 day window in which Canadian corporations will theoretically be allowed exemption from some of Obama's protectionist Buy America economic provisions, Canadian provinces and municipalities will permanently relinquish their right to award local contracts to local businesses.
Our taxes, our jobs. Bye bye 'Buy Local', hello WTO.

As Harper has previously stated :"I do think that the proliferation of domestic preferences in subnational government procurement is really problematic."

Stockwell Day has been pushing the provinces towards this since last June, even though many US cities and states continue to have laws restricting their contracts to their own domestic contractors and much of Obama's US-only stimulous spending has already been spent. Well, these are the folks who negotiated the softwood lumber deal for us after all.

CP :
"Harper says he doesn't believe there will be any opposition to the agreement, but adds his government could ratify the deal without Parliament."
John Manley, head of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives, former Liberal deputy prime minister, Canada Chair of the deep integration project 2005 Independent Task Force on the Future of North America, and co-author of "Building A North American Community" for the US Council on Foreign Relations, is also celebrating the deal :
"It's good that it has given us a relationship with the United States that recognizes the degree of integration of our economies."

2010 was of course the date by which Manley predicted "the establishment of a North American economic and security community, the boundaries of which would be defined by a common external tariff and an outer security perimeter."

Or, as a Chicago School alumni once told me, Canadians will be ok with the integration of their culture, industry, and military into the US as long as they still get to vote and keep their flag.

We'll see :
"More than 25 organizations are meeting today in Ottawa to launch efforts to counter this and other trade deals whose aim is to destroy local democratic control over public spending."

Update : Walkom says it better.

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