Saturday, May 20, 2006

Partnership Of North America

Human Events says President Bush has a secret agenda.

The blueprint President Bush is following was laid out in a 2005 report entitled "Building a North American Community" published by the left-of-center Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). The CFR report connects the dots between the Bush administration's actual policy on illegal immigration and the drive to create the North American Union:

At their meeting in Waco, Texas, at the end of March 2005, U.S. President George W. Bush, Mexican President Vicente Fox, and Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin committed their governments to a path of cooperation and joint action. We welcome this important development and offer this report to add urgency and specific recommendations to strengthen their efforts.

What is the plan? Simple, erase the borders. The plan is contained in a "Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America" little noticed when President Bush and President Fox created it in March 2005:

In March 2005, the leaders of Canada, Mexico, and the United States adopted a Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP), establishing ministerial-level working groups to address key security and economic issues facing North America and setting a short deadline for reporting progress back to their governments. President Bush described the significance of the SPP as putting forward a common commitment "to markets and democracy, freedom and trade, and mutual prosperity and security." The policy framework articulated by the three leaders is a significant commitment that will benefit from broad discussion and advice. The Task Force is pleased to provide specific advice on how the partnership can be pursued and realized.

To that end, the Task Force proposes the creation by 2010 of a North American community to enhance security, prosperity, and opportunity. We propose a community based on the principle affirmed in the March 2005 Joint Statement of the three leaders that "our security and prosperity are mutually dependent and complementary." Its boundaries will be defined by a common external tariff and an outer security perimeter within which the movement of people, products, and capital will be legal, orderly and safe. Its goal will be to guarantee a free, secure, just, and prosperous North America.

Why doesn’t President Bush just tell the truth? His secret agenda is to dissolve the United States of America into the North American Union. ...

Dissolve the United States of America into the North American Union.

That’s an extraordinary charge, don’t you think? By my lights, it puts every other accusation of President Bush as a traitor and a secret-agenda driven conspirator to shame. I don't agree with how President Bush has handled the issue of immigration; I think he's dragged his heels and thus ended up in a crisis situation that he helped to create; I believe in very strong border control (though, personally, I'm uncomfortable with the fence idea) and vastly expanding the agent pool; and I think we've let corporate America (and even average Americans who hire workers off the books) off the hook to a scandalous degree.

[Addition, later:] I'm also strongly opposed to just letting "illegal aliens"--which term I use both with heartfelt caveats and also without much regret--off the hook. At the same time, I think physically rounding up and physically deporting 12 million people is an amazing undertaking, not just because of what that would require in a number of dimensions, but also because of all of the potential unanticipated and unintended consequences, both for our nation and we, the people, collectively AND as individuals.[End addition.]

But this article, and what it's accusing the President of, is beyond the pale.

Here’s my quickie, quickie reaction (I have about 15-20 minutes to write this post, and I’ve used a good chunk of that already):

Either someone is jumping the shark here, or there is something very cynical afoot. True, due to time, I haven’t yet read all the way through the referenced docs. But I’m having a very hard time believing that when I do, I’m going to come away with the same sort of conclusion that Human Events is, at least in the way they’re putting it.

First, whatever large, ahem, differences that I have with President Bush, I do not believe that his intention is to “dissolve” the U.S. Second, we are just 2-1/2 years away from the 2008 elections, and President Bush has made an early start at lame-duck status. Even if that were not so, do you seriously think this sort of thing could be accomplished, unilaterally, under the radar, in the specified time period, under the conditions in which President Bush currently must operate? To accommodate those readers who think that this president is capable of anything, I’ll rephrase part of this for your benefit: unilaterally, even by this president?

Then there’s this: Note that in one of the excerpts provided by Human Events (and included here), the target date is 2010; in other words, AFTER the 2008 elections and AFTER whoever wins take office. Whatever may or may not be afoot, this timeline and logic tells me that the outcome ultimately won’t be up to President Bush.

So what is really going here? For now, and off the top of my head, my gut reaction is twofold, one in terms of the short run and the other further out, in order:

1) Immigration legislation is not going the way that a significant portion of those on the right would like. This may be a rather heavy-handed, alarmist way to whip up sentiment in various quarters to renew efforts, and to call to task and put on the defensive those elected officials who may be compromising, wavering or not “performing” in the desired fashion. It's also a way to bolster those with more extreme views.

2) The Council of Foreign Relations—-which the article characterizes as left of center--has been the source and subject of various conspiracy theories going back decades (especially promulgated by the both the far and the fringe Right, to varying degrees). Given that backdrop, it strikes me that this article is about clearly labeling President Bush as not only not a “movement” conservative (which is true, in terms of many core goals, not just in my estimation but in that of actual movement conservatives; this is should not be “new” news to any informed person), and not only someone who should also be abandoned by the religious right, but as someone who is, in practice, in league with those who lean left on key issues.

And the point of that would be: what? To stir up and further empower the Republican Party to push further right (as certain elements of the Democratic Party are working to stir up and further empower their party to push further left ).

This is about 2008, folks, in the longer run—and next fall, in the mid-run.

And it's as cynical as it gets.