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Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
03-22-2010, 09:18 PM,
#1
Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
By Terri Hall
March 22, 2010

[Editor's note: The Free Trade corridor network that tie Mexico, Canada and the U.S. together are a critical component of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) that was negotiated by George W. Bush and signed into law by Bill Clinton. Both Bush and Clinton were members of the Trilateral Commission. Furthermore, NAFTA's chief architect was U.S. Trade Representative Carla Hills, also a Trilateral. The Trans Texas Corridor is the first major link of this super-corridor system; if successfully completed (e.g., if Texans lose the fight to stop it again), America will be opened up like a can of sardines. Please see additional links below for other August Review articles on this topic.]

After Rick Perry's highway department announced the Trans Texas Corridor (TTC) route known as TTC-35 was "dead" in 2009, we find out post-election in 2010 that it, along with free trade, is very much alive and well. Canadian officials have shown renewed interest in a multi-modal trade corridor along I-35. Winnipeg recently announced its intention to build an inland port similar to those in San Antonio and Dallas. One such inland port in Kansas City has ceded sovereign United States territory to Canada and Mexico with the flags of all three countries flying over it. Officials in Winnipeg said it also intends to run a logistics and trade corridor to include rail and high speed highways all the way to Mexico as an Asia-Pacific gateway connecting to Toronto and Montreal.

It should surprise no one that former San Antonio Mayor Phil Hardberger and tolling authority (Alamo RMA) Chairman Bill Thornton took a trip to Toronto in 2006, partially at taxpayer expense, to promote Trans Texas Corridor-style trade connections and to be certain it includes the Port of San Antonio.

Norris Pettis, Canadian Consul General in Dallas, notes in the latest San Antonio Business Journal that "of all the urban centers I deal with, San Antonio is right up there in preaching free trade." The article also said Canadian officials observe an anti-trade sentiment in the U.S. as a whole, but see an open door in Texas, which they say doesn't share "protectionist policies."

Thank you, Rick Perry.

Tullos Wells is part of the Lone Star Rail project (pushing an Austin-San Antonio commuter rail line) and also traveled with Hardberger. He also happens to work for the law firm Bracewell & Giuliani, one of the biggest players in pushing the privatization of our public roads (and represents Spain-based Cintra on private toll deals here in Texas) as well as pushing these multi-national trade corridors. Read more about the Bracewell & Giuliani connection here. It's not rocket science to conclude this is why Rick Perry endorsed Rudy Giuliani for President in 2007.

The Trans Texas Corridor has always been about exploiting Texas landowners and taxpayers to open up new trade corridors to facilitate the free flow of goods among the three countries to benefit private corporations. Executive Director of the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), Amadeo Saenz, admitted in public testimony February 1 (watch it here), that though TxDOT says the TTC is “dead,” it could change its mind tomorrow and still move forward with the Trans Texas Corridor since the statutory authority to do so remains in the Texas Transportation Code. This is one time we can take them at their word. They are indeed moving forward.

While most Texans have no problem with trade, many have expressed dismay with so-called "free" trade. It'd be more aptly called government managed trade, which is heavily tilted in favor of foreign countries, fails to insist on reciprocity, and overly taxes American goods while providing tax breaks on foreign imports. The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) has done more to hurt the U.S. manufacturing sector than any other government policy in recent history. In fact, more than one million Americans have lost jobs due to NAFTA. Given the grim state of the economy and high U.S. unemployment, now more than ever, the U.S. needs to reconsider NAFTA.

Read the rest of the article here
http://www.augustreview.com/news_commentary/north_american_union/trans_texas_corridor_racing_ahead_20100322157
An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it.
Mohandas Gandhi


Each of us is put here in this time and this place to personally decide the future of humankind.
Did you think you were put here for something less?
Chief Arvol Looking Horse
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03-27-2010, 09:13 PM,
#2
RE: Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
How NAFTA / Globalization could work from a trade perspective:

The main issue with NAFTA is that it brings system standards and labour rights and wages down to the lowest common denominator, usually to Mexican lovely worker model in this instance of implementation.

If there was equal compensation for equal quality and quantity work that were set to a high enough level the balance would shift back to the worker instead of the current scheme.

Environmental standards would need to be on par and at a responsible level and rate of extrapolation and replenishment (if renewable) as decided by the region and how much they are willing to sacrifice since natural resources are supposedly a public asset. Royalties need to be decided more openly so people realize how much they and the future generations are being fucked over.

Safety standards should be set on an even keel to afford all employees equal rights and mitigate the current rapid lowering of standards to gain a competitive edge and normalized.

Penalties and enforcement through level regulation would discourage cheating these standards but they should be reflective of the people's common moral ground instead of dictated by the corporately owned hand of government - of course you would need government reform before you could reasonably consider this avenue and will be beating your head against the wall if this is attempted in the currently structured state of affairs. This is more of a phase II ideology I am presenting. Innovation, production / distribution efficiency and any inherent natural competitive advantage (due to portal location, resources, climate, worker aptitudes etc.) would win out given all other competitive construsions were equal creating a truly free global market system.

Of course this would have to be implemented globally or companies would shift to where they can continue to rape human and natural resources without proper compensation to the citizens that it impacts.

The corporate cronyism and favour dispatched to select companies via subsides grants and tax breaks distorts the free market principles of the capitalist model.

Monopoly (and cartel collusion) laws need to be enforced to keep competition fair for the production, consumption and disposal stages of product and resource development.

This would likely lead to favour local markets or markets that are more adept at developing a good or service based on transport costs and/or efficiency (e.g. you can produce Oranges more efficiently in California) and hopefully consumer awareness and morality as to how they are produced. Brokers or middlemen would be minimal to create the most efficient cost formula for delivery of the end product or they would be forced to add value to justify the cost. In the current model the majority of the economic benefit is distributed to the higher levels of the pyramid leaving a large portion of the labour sector and the rightful resource owners unfairly compensated. Entrepreneurial risk should be rewarded it just needs to rewarded but the pendulum has swung a way too far, some areas more pronounced than others.

On the labour side employment should be based on merit alone. Diversity subsides should be eliminated altogether.

A transparent, enforceable, accountable and equal scale of regulation is mandatory for this to work. If so it needs to be accountable to the people via an accountable representative. Corruption of the system should be examined regularly on all levels, including enforcement via an IA model, to ensure consistency. This would take the benefits centralism and keep the powers in check, otherwise we would ultimately end up with some degree of the the current NAFTA mess.

I can be argued that economic sovereignty is paramount and until there is a fair system of trade and the imbalance in currency systems (that entire game is a disaster that needs to be overhauled) reflect the real wealth nations can protect their jobs and economies the only way they are able - through tariffs. In light of this economic and ownership reforms need to be tackled first before we can consider any sort of globalization of economy or trade without at least basic sovereign protections such as tariffs but that's where we are now and it's a primary reason this model is unfair and facing imminent collapse. A system based more on barter like the one being experimented with in the South and Central American region could be a potential solution to resolve this imbalance and more accurately reflect the value of goods and services as well as the supply and demand curve. This could work as long as these goods and service are not leveraged, usered and manipulated in the same way as international currency and banking.

Workers are relatively powerless under the current regime but they can stand up and refuse to work for companies that abuse standards of all kinds based on their own personal morality gauge as to what is exploitation of themselves, the consumer or their nation's sellout of resources is too much. This might encourage other workers to follow suit when the company moves to exploit another country's labour and resources. The only way for workers to hold any power is to establish world unions with a standard competency and reward them accordingly. Lower level labourers are pretty fucked though but deserve basic levels of safety and pay for an honest days work - they need a voice. Until there is global regulations and standards and the economic gaming scheme has been built on rewarding value, the only card the end consumer has to play is to buy local from individuals and organizations that promote their values. The most powerful vote we have is how we direct our spending and labour energies. A realization of the aforementioned vision is only possible from the bottom up approach.

---

Question relating more specifically to the article. Isn't a large portion of this taxpayer built highway owned or leased to some Spanish company?
There are no others, there is only us.
http://FastTadpole.com/
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03-27-2010, 10:34 PM, (This post was last modified: 03-27-2010, 10:38 PM by h3rm35.)
#3
RE: Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
(03-27-2010, 09:13 PM)FastTadpole Wrote: Question relating more specifically to the article. Isn't a large portion of this taxpayer built highway owned or leased to some Spanish company?

yes it is - if you link through and read the rest of the article, you'll find it mentioned there - the company is called ACS.

I understand you're talking about second tier reforms, but they seem highly unlikely without the first tier. The first tier cannot be achieved without changing the entire structure of society as it stands now, and doing that will require either the extermination of those who hold the reins of power, or the collapse of everything that we've come to know as civilized life. I suppose we could lace caviar with LSD (I'm kidding maybe) and hope for a swell of holistic vision in the top 0.5%, but not all of those bastards will eat it - Bill Gates is a fruitarian.

Whole Foods hasn't even been able to unionize, so I have a hard time conceiving of global unions. I really like the concept of global strikes, in fact that honestly seems like the only way to force this from the bottom up, but until we can figure out some way to create sustainence distribution to those that we'd need to strike, (that somehow also circumvented the obstacles to it's implementation now,) people won't give up their livelihood, no matter how squalid and hellish their existence is. People work at will in sweat-shops for pennies an hour, and look how many cheap pieces of plastic crap we have floating around this continent!

The problem remains that the whole concept of the WTO, NAFTA and Neo-liberal/conservative "free" trade is consolidation of wealth and increase of profit for multi-nationals. In order to follow this corporate model, one must be completely devoid of conscience, which as the article alludes to, is why Ghouliani and Perry are such a huge proponents of it.

...so now, instead of listing reasons why this can't work, let's focus on what needs to happen to create the paradigm shift necessary to move to this second tier - other than dosing caviar with acid, (that would be really fun, though.)

We need to come up with a way that people can fulfill their basic nutritional needs without working for the fuckers that maintain this awful unsustainable model of existence. We need to activate farmers to grow crops specifically for such a purpose, that can be preserved for long periods of time, and crops whose supply can't be fucked with by giant agribusinesses like monsanto and conagra. That means native species that have not yet been affected by cross-pollination from GM frankenfoods. Creating a global permaculture movement would do the trick, but the top layer of a food forest takes decades to reach full production potential, and there's such a shortage of available arable land not already in the corporate slave-driving fuckers hands', so it will have to come from those who already have functioning field capacity. This network of farmers has to be activated globally, so that transportation of these staples cannot be used as leverage against this agenda.

We also need a way to communicate with those that we'd need to strike in order to gain the leverage needed to force this kind of drastic change, which means we'd either need to crush the great e-wall of china, and similar mechanisms that aim to keep people as ignorant uninformed slaves - but this means we'd also have to give the poorest people in the world internet access and training on how to use it - or we'll have to figure out some other way to communicate coordinated efforts. I guess we could figure this out as we figured out a means of staple distribution.

ok... that's as far as I can go without some serious meditation.
others can feel free to chime in with other concepts or more along these lines.
[Image: conspiracy_theory.jpg]
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03-28-2010, 12:16 AM,
#4
RE: Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
Staple crops (and water) in tandem with distribution are excellent additions to the manifesto. Communication and coordination are critical in this process. Is there any group that I (we) could support that has a solid foundation in taking the first steps to achieve these ends?

As for the free flow of information a concept like Reporters without Borders is a good start but an infrastructure and/or network needs to be set up to get though to the 'walled' regions of the Earth. I totally agree that it has to happen, not as a piecework agenda, but as a coordinated global movement or it is prone to be stomped out like brush fires or the remaining portion of the world can be recruited via propaganda and artificially pitted against a larger scale dissenting movement (see axis of evil in regards to non-cooperation to IMF/BIS banking cartel rule).
There are no others, there is only us.
http://FastTadpole.com/
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03-28-2010, 01:22 AM,
#5
RE: Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
If we could get together in regional groups and set about subsidizing farmers/ranchers in our areas to grow our food for us we could (1) help the farmers/ranchers financially, (2) decrease our vote in favour of big agri by leaving less cash votes in their tills. This would afford us increasing levels of control of our food supply and probably increase our physical health because we would be consuming less handled/processed food. Our mental health would be increased because we would be disconnecting from the societe anonymous mob and connecting more directly to the cycle of life.
While we were doing that we could set about writing the bootstrap programs which would inspire humanity to discard the current conceptual destroyer program which we have had inflicted on us.
An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it.
Mohandas Gandhi


Each of us is put here in this time and this place to personally decide the future of humankind.
Did you think you were put here for something less?
Chief Arvol Looking Horse
Reply
03-28-2010, 09:09 AM,
#6
RE: Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
Quote:While we were doing that we could set about writing the bootstrap programs which would inspire humanity to discard the current conceptual destroyer program which we have had inflicted on us.
Absolutely LOVE the way you put this dude.

AS for the rest ..

Code:
while(icosafaceStatementIdeology() + HeremesManifesto(nMercury) >= nCurrentStateofAffaris){ function::propagateTruth(nPeople); echo "bring it on so called 'elite'"; }
There are no others, there is only us.
http://FastTadpole.com/
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03-28-2010, 09:26 PM, (This post was last modified: 03-28-2010, 09:28 PM by h3rm35.)
#7
RE: Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
I don't really follow the code thing you posted Tadpole...
I'm lovin' this thread... are you guys on skype? PM me.
I'm really busy today, so I can't really get into more ideas - I'll put some more stuff up tomorrow sometime
[Image: conspiracy_theory.jpg]
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03-29-2010, 12:13 PM,
#8
RE: Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
Hi All,

I'm new here but was invited to join in this particular discussion by h3rm35 (we've GOT to do something about that name my old friend! Mind if I just call you 'h' for now? LoL).

I'm Karen (known as kazz by most who know me) from Liverpool, UK.
'H' invited me along because he knows of my background in the Transition Towns movement.
In a nutshell, TT is about empowering local communities to withstand the economic and environmental shocks associated with peak-oil and climate change by building in structural, economic resilience and reducing dependence on globalised economic structures.

You don't have to be part of TT to appreciated or develop 'transitioning models though.
The way I see it, the only way to overcome the oppression generated by the top 0.05% in their pursuit of wealth and power is at a grass roots level.

I've been struggling to put into words how I think s0me of the things being discussed in this thread might link in to the TT transition model, so I think I'll got for an example and let you take it from there.

One of my own personal ambitions, inspired by TT, is to establish a local food coop in my area (I live in pretty rough, deprived part of town where access is good wholesome food and local produce is minimal).
By linking in with farmers from the cities hinterland (I've identified 13 within a 15 mile radius!! Smile ) and other local food producers, and providing an outlet within the city for their produce, I can (hopefully) reduce the farmers dependence on supermarkets for their income, encourage diversity in their farming practices (might even get talking to them about permiculture!), and by providing local people with locally produced food and offering a discount for members of the co-op, so hopefully the the consumers dependence of supermarkets will also be reduced.
This same model can be repeated around the city, the country, the world, and as it's repeated so it is strengthened, and so local communities all around the world are strengthened. And as we learn from and share with each other, so new global networks are established outside of the neo-liberal 'free' (free only to those who stand to benefit in profit and power) market economy.

the point of all of the above is that we not only do we opt out of 'their' elitist power structures, we also develop a new egalitarian, community led economic structure which benefits us all, AND the planet.
Add to the food coop idea Local Enterprise Trading Schemes (LETS) and other local currencies, time banks, etc, which would also be developed at a local level but linked in with other localities on the same sharing/learning principle and it soon becomes clear that our dependence on their structures (economic slavery by any other name) can be desolved! Smile

I don't thing the sorts of changes being discussed here can happen over night, nor can they happen all at once all over the world, but they can (and will) grow and spread around the world as the models develop and neighbouring communities see the benefits of them).

I'd say it's well worth linking in with your local Transition Towns, if you have one, or starting one if you haven't.
That said my own involvement with TT Liverpool is very limited at the moment, simply because I so busy with other things. (Any of you heard of Lawful Rebellion?? Wink Check out TPUC.org where I'm a mod, but look out for the paranoid contingent there. Tongue)
This inspiration and ideas I've got from TT has had a lasting impact on my life and my thinking and as soon as my degree is finished (in the middle of my finals now) I'll be back to transitioning and, provided it is what the universe has in store for me, I'll be getting the local food coop off the ground. Big Grin

On a personal note to 'H': Hiya love!!! God it's been AGES!! Thanks for the invite to this discussion. Icon_biggrin
Could you do me a favout and give me a nudge to remind me it's here once in a while, cos right now I'm up to my eyes in all kinds of stuff and I'm likely to forget. Never been so busy!
Pay a visit to TPUC.org (I'm logged in most days, what with modding the place and all that). Watch out for the 'freemen on the land' as some (not all) can be a bit out there). I think you might like some of what's going on there though, some of the ideas and concepts being developed - using the law to highlight corruption within the system, and to hold 'them' to account for their own unlawful actions, etc... All good stuff! Icon_biggrin

And now I have to go and write a dissertation! Hope you're well and happy old friend. Goyt some other friends in SF -0 might just have to pay you all a visit one of these days!!! Icon_biggrinIcon_biggrinIcon_biggrin

Light n love,
Kazz. xxx
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03-29-2010, 04:39 PM, (This post was last modified: 03-29-2010, 05:43 PM by h3rm35.)
#9
RE: Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
hey kazz - nice to see you chiming in.

many here replace the numbers for letters, as it's meant to be read - "hermes," in the mythological context, not French fashion.

to all in this thread:
In the interest of thread continuity and the possibilities arising from this discussion, I'd appreciate for the time being if we could leave the question of the veracity of climate change and peak oil out of the discussion. If something of this magnitude is to be achieved, we're going to need lots of bright minds in numerous areas of activism and the resources that they can muster. There are plenty of other places to have that discussion. This really feels like it could be something that could create positive change of a huge magnitude, and will address many issues in the long run, regardless of what the science proves out. I appreciate everyone's respect along those lines. Thanks.
[Image: conspiracy_theory.jpg]
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03-29-2010, 10:31 PM,
#10
RE: Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
The fact is though, H, the same solutions apply no matter whether we're talking about peak oil, climate change, the neo-liberal economy or the tyrannical new world order. i.e. Independence from the mechanisms of TPTB (the powers that be).
But, yeah, best to save the discussion of whether those things are conspiracies or not for another, more appropriate, thread.
This one is about solutions, not problems. Wink

Light n love,
Kazz. xxx
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03-29-2010, 11:00 PM,
#11
RE: Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
tpuc's pretty bad-ass. Thanks for the reference
[Image: conspiracy_theory.jpg]
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03-31-2010, 12:49 AM,
#12
RE: Trans Texas Corridor racing ahead
(03-29-2010, 11:00 PM)h3rm35 Wrote: tpuc's pretty bad-ass. Thanks for the reference

It's got it's good and bad points, but what I like most about it is that it's filled with people looking for solutions. Even those I may disagree with get my respect for that! (I might just have to tell them so at some point in the near future, now that I've realised it. Tongue)

There are thousands upon thousands of people out there identifying problems, and rightly so, as there are many problems to be identified, but surely that has to go hand in hand with developing solutions, otherwise we might as well all sink into pits of apathy and despair.

I've just remembered another organisation I've come across, but not had a great deal of time to investigate yet. They do look interesting though. The World PROUT Assembly. http://www.worldproutassembly.org/
Take a look H, I'd value your opinion.

Light n love,
Kazz. xxxx
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