STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
Shock: Economist Mag Predicts North American Common Market?
By Staff News & Analysis - May 09, 2013

In Mexico, if you read between the lines, there is something … that gets little mention … Héctor Aguilar Camín, an expert on the bilateral relationship, says the two countries are beginning to address on their own account two issues that were deliberately left out of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) almost 20 years ago because at the time they were considered far too controversial—migration and energy reform. Find solutions to these problems, he says, and the two countries may be on the way to achieving an old dream that could really improve prosperity in Mexico: a North American common market. – Economist

Dominant Social Theme: No such thing as an NAU.

Free-Market Analysis: In an article entitled, "Barack Obama's Visit to Mexico: The Unmentionables," The Economist magazine makes an astounding claim – via a third-party to be sure – that addressing migration and energy reform could really improve prosperity in Mexico and thus help create "a North American common market."

Gee, talk about letting the proverbial cat out of the bag! … We've just published a series of articles focused on an emergent North American Union between Canada, the US and Mexico, and here comes The Economist to confirm the possible beginnings of it.

The idea of a North American Union has been a big conspiracy theory in the United States for years, and those who have suggested it is possible have been mocked relentlessly.

The Economist is evidently and obviously a globalist mouthpiece. It is an important magazine for that reason. And now it seems a North American common market is on the menu, at least according to experts that The Economist seems to quote approvingly.

That's not exactly a full-fledged union (which is supposed to include Canada) but it is surely a first step, or will seem so to some. But it seems a grand political bargain may be on the table regardless. Here's an excerpt from the article:

Mr Aguilar Camín noted that two of Mexico's big exports to America are illegal: manpower and marijuana. These have caused huge tension in the relationship. Yet immigration reform may ease some of the manpower problems; marijuana legalisation in two American states—and for medicinal use—suggests the second problem is likely to improve too.

Better, instead, to focus the relationships on legal exports—especially as robust trade between the two countries is a bright spot at a time of sluggish global growth. It may be too early to start discussions on a North American common market; neither energy reform in Mexico, nor immigration reform in America will be easy to accomplish, and both hurdles would need to be overcome first before anything so ambitious could be considered. But it is heartening to see the two presidents talk at length about the potential for shared prosperity if they manage to increase access to Asian markets via the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The more they talk free trade, the better for both of them.

Of course, it is not "heartening" from our perspective. Free-market types believe that a common marketplace ought to arise from relationships among various private enterprise. Grand political bargains always have a way of backfiring. Look at the trouble the EU is having currently.

The Economist's editors dream of political unions everywhere. Strange for a magazine devoted to business and support of the so-called Invisible Hand.

But we can see here how an NAU might evolve, as it has in Europe, via a common market. It is not theoretical, either.

The US is contemplating a huge energy pipeline from Canada that will run right through the middle of the US to Mexico, apparently. And "immigration reform" is being actively debated in Congress.

The last time these issues were focused on in detail, the administration of George Bush received a good deal of pushback and eventually Bush retreated from immigration reform entirely.

Now the initiatives are being pursued again and seem destined for some sort of significant resolution.

After Thoughts

Tin foil hats, anyone?

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