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Immigration as related to loyalty

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NB, those graphs are not even the same standard of measure. Many graphs caan be drawn with a scale that makes it resemble another graph so that they correlate visually. Even if it's not on purpose, the graphs don't tell us anything as a unit. You need to -calculate- the correlation, not look at the graphs.

The stranger thing to me is that Grames says there is no proof that there will be reduced legal immigration. You seem to support that view and suggest it's just a new merit system. Then Don comes in with the evidence, then you avoid that correction entirely. Whatever questions there are of loyalty, if it matters, if it's collectivist, the actual policies seem to be concerned about race or merely anyone not here already. The RAISE Act by halving green cards without any apparent reasoning isn't some attempt to help Mexico or NAFTA countries. Most immigrants aren't even from North America. Mexico has the most, but China, Vietnam, Pakistan, and India are just a few big ones.

Edited by Eiuol

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56 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

NB, those graphs are not even the same standard of measure. Many graphs caan be drawn with a scale that makes it resemble another graph so that they correlate visually. Even if it's not on purpose, the graphs don't tell us anything as a unit. You need to -calculate- the correlation, not look at the graphs.

This doesn't' even come close to making sense.  Scale has nothing to do with it, lol.

The two graphs show that while Mexico's GDP has gone thru the roof under NAFTA, the Peso has fallen thru the floor.  Contradictions do not exist.  Try and explain, if you can, how this dichotomy between the GDP and the exchange rate came about...

Edit:  NAFTA started January 1, 1994.  Look at the graphs again.

Edit 2:  The answer lies in the opening statement on the NAFTA renegotiations made by Ambassador Lighthizer.

Edited by New Buddha

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59 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

Then Don comes in with the evidence, then you avoid that correction entirely

No, I answered it.  You just don't understand it.

Edit:  As I stated in the North Korea post, don't chase the shiny object....

Edited by New Buddha

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To the graphs: it isn't valid to compare graphs visually to then establish correlation, except in very general terms (e.g., both went up at first). That's not how data analysis works.

EDIT: That's not to say you're wrong, but that your argument is weak.

Edited by Eiuol

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54 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

To the graphs: it isn't valid to compare graphs visually to then establish correlation, except in very general terms (e.g., both went up at first). That's not how data analysis works.

EDIT: That's not to say you're wrong, but that your argument is weak.

I'm not stupid Eiuol, and I can back up my position multiple ways.  I am wanting you and others to grasp for themselves what is at play here.  To ask questions of themselves (as I did) to better understand the level of transnational, corporate crony-capitalism that NAFTA represents.

Ask yourself, how is it that the GDP can go thru the roof and yet poverty still remains at over 50% in Mexico?  Why have wages fallen in Mexico?  Why have many other Latin American countries gotten richer than Mexico over the same time period?    Why did a flood of illegal immigration from Mexico occur after NAFTA was enacted?  Who and/or what was responsible?

Edited by New Buddha

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But I am one of those American workers, so I am voting in my self interest.  Where do you work?  Do you work?

17 hours ago, Nicky said:

“We will reform legal immigration to serve the best interests of America and its workers, the forgotten people. Workers. We’re going to take care of our workers.” - Donald Trump

When you stand for Trump, THAT is what you stand for. Once you support that, you have no leg to stand on accusing anyone else of altruism. Donald Trump's stance on immigration is driven by clear, pure, undeniable altruism. He wants immigrants (legal immigrants, who are wanted in the US by American companies) kept out because they "don't serve the best interests of American workers".

 

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18 hours ago, New Buddha said:

 

us-dollar-mexican-peso-exchange-rate-historical-chart-2017-08-17-macrotrends (1).png

Gosh, this looks like they are deliberately debasing their currency via a central bank.  And this is while simultaneously experiencing strong GDP growth which should be expected to stimulate all kinds of economic demand for goods and services across their economy.  Wow.  Just, wow.

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21 hours ago, DonAthos said:

Well, if anyone can be taken at his word, it's Donald Trump...

A Wikipedia link concerning a current controversial political issue is not going to be objective description.  You should have linked here instead.

The RAISE act eliminates the tendency for "chain" immigration to occur, where one immigrant qualifies and then their whole family follows.   The same number of immigrants can come in under the changes of the RAISE act but they will be less concentrated into "lucky families" and more immigrants overall have to qualify under the regular provisions instead of the family clause.

The RAISE act also reduces the total number of refugees admitted, but under current arrangements the refugees we take are from some third country (not the country of origin or the US) and are split up among several final destination countries.  A particular refugee may never have intended to end up in the US.  They may not wish to be a good citizen of the US and they usually cannot be vetted for criminal background.  So, justified change IMO.

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19 minutes ago, Grames said:

Gosh, this looks like they are deliberately debasing their currency via a central bank.  And this is while simultaneously experiencing strong GDP growth which should be expected to stimulate all kinds of economic demand for goods and services across their economy.  Wow.  Just, wow.

Lol, good to see that someone on this forum actually understands what's' happening.  I thought I was pissing in the wind.

An increase in the GDP (and jobs in general) should also have resulted in an increase in wages in Mexico - but, of course, this never happened.  The wages are kept artificially low thru currency manipulation by Mexico's Central Bank (at the bidding of foreign owned companies). NAFTA has no provision for sanctioning the devaluation of the Peso.

From the article:

The other key policy is that Mexico’s government simply let its currency drop. Since NAFTA, the peso has weakened nearly every single year — compounding the advantages on price that Mexico already has over US manufacturers. During 1993 NAFTA hearings, Democratic Representative John LaFalce of New York warned that the treaty had “no mechanism to coordinate monetary policy between the United States and Mexico.” The big fear was that Mexico would weaken its peso for competitive purposes once it joined NAFTA, and the United States would be unable to do anything about it.

The Peso Crisis just pre-dated the enactment of NAFTA in 1994, and of course, Mexico swore up-and-down that they would never do it again, lol.  NAFTA was originally seen as a way of creating parity in wages among the US, Canada and Mexico.  Instead, it's turned into a huge swindle benefiting three key players.

1) The Democrat AND Republican establishment who receive corporate donations to fund their campaigns and line their pockets.  Both groups who are, by the way, united against Trump.

2) The oligarchs who own Mexico - since foreign companies must "team up" with local Mexican business owners (and just guess who actually owns those local Mexican business shells....).  Funny how many billionaires were created in Mexico under NAFTA. 

3) US and other Transnational Corporations who write legislation in the US, Mexico and Canada benefiting themselves.

This and other multilateral trade agreements are a race to the bottom....

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2 hours ago, Grames said:

A Wikipedia link concerning a current controversial political issue is not going to be objective description.  You should have linked here instead.

The RAISE act eliminates the tendency for "chain" immigration to occur, where one immigrant qualifies and then their whole family follows.   The same number of immigrants can come in under the changes of the RAISE act but they will be less concentrated into "lucky families" and more immigrants overall have to qualify under the regular provisions instead of the family clause.

The RAISE act also reduces the total number of refugees admitted, but under current arrangements the refugees we take are from some third country (not the country of origin or the US) and are split up among several final destination countries.  A particular refugee may never have intended to end up in the US.  They may not wish to be a good citizen of the US and they usually cannot be vetted for criminal background.  So, justified change IMO.

I was making no argument as to whether the changes brought by this act are good or bad, but I was challenging the idea that there are no proposals (supported by Trump) to reduce the number of legal immigrants.

I also mean to make no defense of Wikipedia generally, but the analysis there (and on the National Review website I'd also linked) is that this act will reduce the number of legal immigrants. Do you disagree with that analysis?

If not, and if Wikipedia is accurate in reporting that Trump supports the RAISE act, then wouldn't you agree that it is incorrect to say that there are no proposals to reduce the number of legal immigrants?

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1 hour ago, DonAthos said:

I also mean to make no defense of Wikipedia generally, but the analysis there (and on the National Review website I'd also linked) is that this act will reduce the number of legal immigrants. Do you disagree with that analysis?

“(1) IN GENERAL.—The number of refugees who may be admitted under this section in any fiscal year may not exceed 50,000. "

This one of two specific numbers I saw. The other number was this:

" “(c) Worldwide level of family-Sponsored immigrants.— (1) The worldwide level of family-sponsored immigrants under this subsection for a fiscal year is equal to 88,000 minus the number computed under paragraph (2). "

I'm not sure though how that 88,000 is different than it is now - it takes going down like 4 layers and some familiarity with reading legislation to know what that minus amount is anyway. So, it still might be true that the legislation reduces legal immigration by a fixed number, I just still need a source that can show what that 88,000 means. This is far from a 500,000 fixed reduction.

Looking at the text, the green card reduction is clearly way exaggerated. I can't find a primary source. an effect that can still be altered. It's not "hard coded" that legal immigration is halved. To me, if the number is halved as an effect, it suggests that the law needs a few amendments.

But this is the concerning thing:

https://www.cotton.senate.gov/files/documents/170801_New_RAISE_Act_One_Pager_FINAL.pdf

See the last part. This is a supporter of the bill, and he cites the projected decrease of legal immigration as a good and desirable thing. That it's good to keep low-skill workers out in general. This is the usual "they took our jobs!!!" reasoning which is not based on any discernible economic policy. Grames may be able to formulate a rational immigration policy (despite my disagreement on a lot of things). The actual politicians though? That's not the reasoning. Populism is the basis. It's concerning that low-skill immigrants are seen as threats to America. (This would be protectionism, aka bad.)

Edited by Eiuol

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17 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

I'm not sure though how that 88,000 is different than it is now - it takes going down like 4 layers and some familiarity with reading legislation to know what that minus amount is anyway. So, it still might be true that the legislation reduces legal immigration by a fixed number, I just still need a source that can show what that 88,000 means. This is far from a 500,000 fixed reduction.

Yeah, I have no idea; I'll leave such projections to the legislative analysts. But it baffles me how it's like pulling teeth just to get simple agreement over an idea like "Donald Trump supports a proposal which would reduce legal immigration," whether we agree that's good or bad, or whether we can agree on specific figures, or etc. Blows my damned mind.

But to try to bypass distractions like NAFTA, etc., and get back to the main topic? There's no moral reason to restrict immigration, as such. (Inspecting folks to ensure they're not terrorists? Sure. That's a fine thing to do, but it is not the same thing as a cap on, for instance, the number of Mexicans that can enter the US in a given year.) The suggestion that keeping foreigners out, because that's good for American workers (in restricting competition and thus keeping wages high) -- this is protectionism at its worst.

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4 hours ago, DonAthos said:

I also mean to make no defense of Wikipedia generally, but the analysis there (and on the National Review website I'd also linked) is that this act will reduce the number of legal immigrants. Do you disagree with that analysis?

Yes, I disagree with that analysis.  

 

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I'm reading the current 8 U.S. Code § 1151 as hosted at Cornell.edu and then comparing it with the proposed edits of the bill.

Apparently the current law has way more immigrants allowed under the family provision than the employment provision.   The current number for "Worldwide level of family sponsored immigrants" is 480,000.  The "Worldwide level of employment-based immigrants" is 140,000.  The proposed change of the law is only to the family sponsored immigrants and the new number would be 88,000.  The number for employment-based immigrants would remain unchanged at 140,000.

So yes, the end result is about 392,000 less people would be admitted because they were related to someone already here.  That's where the "low skill" presumption comes from.  Note that once a family-sponsored immigrant is admitted he can sponsor further family-sponsored immigrants.  A sentence from the Wikipedia article states "As of 2009, 66% of legal immigrants were admitted on the basis of family ties, along with 13% admitted for their employment skills and 17% for humanitarian reasons." and this is sourced to a Congressional Budget office report linked here.  Doing my own math and rounding down the ratio, the current law has the net result of admitting 6 immigrants who are not examined for employ-ability for each one who is so examined.  

Other provisions of current US immigration law are at work to admit people that do not count toward the limits because about 1 million people get legal permanent residency status every year but the numbers given above (480K plus 140K) are quite a bit less than that.   

 

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There are several points to consider when reviewing the proposed RAISE Act:

  1. It will probably receive bipartisan support because it depoliticizes immigration by moving to a points-based system.
  2. As it works its way through Congressional Committees, BOTH the total number allowed AND who is covered by the Act will almost certainly change i.e. go up.  By focusing on numbers, and less so on the move to a points-based system, both "sides" of the issue will be able to claim victory on the compromised final number.  This is a standard negotiation ploy in the passing of legislation.  Start with a low proposal that allows for an increase in the numbers as the legislation moves thru the process.  It's no different than making an initial low-offer on a house, and then meeting somewhere in the middle for the final price.
  3. The so-called "protectionist" provisions (which Don alludes to) of limiting low-skilled workers in favor of higher-skilled workers who can demonstrate self-sufficiency is something that Labor Unions, largely supporters of Democrats, would most favor.  Most highly skilled workers do not belong to Unions.  This is one of the reasons why the Act will probably receive bipartisan support.
  4. It's not a coincidence that the RAISE Act was announced at the same time that NAFTA is being renegotiated.  It will serve as a tool in the renegotiation process.

Here is a pretty good detailed review of the Act.  The author of the piece agrees that, in some parts, the number is too low, but that it can be easily changed without altering the overall goal of the proposal.  Also, the number will fluctuate over time regardless.

https://thefederalist.com/2017/08/03/everything-need-know-raise-act-without-reading/

Edited by New Buddha

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Regarding Point Number 4 above, here is something that not many people know about.  Remittance .

From the link:

$133,552,000,000 in remittances was sent from the United States to other countries in 2015.

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18 hours ago, Grames said:

But I am one of those American workers, so I am voting in my self interest.

Care to spell out the logical progression of that one?

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4 hours ago, New Buddha said:
  1. [should say 3] The so-called "protectionist" provisions (which Don alludes to) of limiting low-skilled workers in favor of higher-skilled workers who can demonstrate self-sufficiency is something that Labor Unions, largely supporters of Democrats, would most favor.  Most highly skilled workers do not belong to Unions.  This is one of the reasons why the Act will probably receive bipartisan support.

This is not a principled point. This is saying that "in order that Democrats receive less support, we want fewer low-skill immigrants". This would be protectionism, that is, you would keep some people out only because they don't fit a highly politicized and pre-defined agenda of the "American Worker". There's no such thing as a unified American Worker. If someone says they support American interests, at least on this forum, they should mean individual rights of its citizens, not the particular needs of a specific group. Citizens only need to expect defense from initiation of force - not from labor unions, not from immigrant low-skilled workers interfering with their employment.

This is why I also think loyalty is irrelevant. I would eliminate any possible element in RAISE that can be construed as "American Workers' " interests. What counts as far as RAISE is merit. The rest harms your case you're making.

I wouldn't generally want RAISE, but as long as there is opportunity to alter immigration away from lottery completely, I want that.

1, 2, and 4 are arguable points. 3 I think is a horrible justification. It's the very thing I don't want. It would be bad for an economy if that's the reasoning.

 

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42 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

1, 2, and 4 are arguable points. 3 I think is a horrible justification.

Item 3 is not my position - nor is it in any way a "justification."  It is what I believe will be one of the reasons that the Bill will receive bipartisan support.  I could, of course, be wrong about that, but my entire post is what I think will happen to the Bill as it moves thru Congress - regardless of what I think of its merits or demerits.

Edited by New Buddha

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I do not get why people are linking free trade or currency manipulation to immigration.  Free trade allows people to freely associate and deal with each other without paying a fee to do so.  Malinvestment is caused by tax policy, not the lack thereof.  At best, for immigration the trend would be inversed. 

People in our country being allowed to freely associate with people in a poorer country incentivizes those people to stay there to continue to receive the benefits of future transactions.   They would not move here to be ignored since businesses will be trading with those still in the cheaper homeland.

I also do not see why debasing currency is relevant nor do we need proof.  Corrupt governments use fiat currency by definition to circumvent objective standards in revenue generation or funding projects.  But again a debased currency incentivized people to stay put if they benefit from an incoming currency that is better.   

So the only thing free trade and fiat currency schemes prove from an immigration standpoint is that it gives an incentive to Mexicans to stay put and receive the wealth the USA pours in.   You would not move to America to be ignored by the same companies and have your purchasing power go down.  Better to stay home and receive the better currency with better purchasing power.

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The reason Mexicans immigrates is:

 1. The Mexican Government is corrupt to the point it makes Chicago Politics look like a Monte Python film, which is why their non-free economy is stagnate and quality of life in rural regions bad.  If I lived in Mexico I would risk an American jail cell to get my family out, it is still an upgrade.   

2. America has many generous public programs which is a problem with Welfare Policy and not immigration.

 

Finally, the reason Americans choose to trade in Mexico is not foreign trade policy. 

When Communist China has lower Corporate Taxes (and Gains Tax) than us, and when Socialist Norway in more business friendly than us, the blame is not Free Trade across our borders. 

It is the lack of Free Trade within our borders.

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SL,

At the start of NAFTA 1 peso could purchase about 35 cents of US manufactured goods and agriculture - and the US had a trade surplus with Mexico. Now, 24 years later, 1 peso can only purchase about 5 cents of US manufactured goods and agriculture and we have a trade deficit.  To keep selling agriculture (mainly corn) in Mexico, US agribusiness lobbied the US Government for and has received hundreds of billions of dollars in tax-payer funded subsidies.  This allowed the US to flood the market with cheap corn which resulted in putting millions of Mexican farmers out of work.  These are primarily the people who headed north.  And a high unemployment rate helped the drug cartels gain a strong foot-hold in the economy.

Both sides are to blame for this, but in no way is NAFTA a free-trade agreement.  Just because there are low tariffs, it does not mean that free market principles are at work.

So why do you think Mexico pursued the monetary policy that it did?  Who benefited?  Certainly not the Mexican worker.  Poverty is still at over 50%, even though the GDP has gone through the roof.  And their wages and purchasing power continues to decline.

In a free market, when unemployment goes down, wages go up.  This is simple supply and demand.  When the labor market is tight, workers can negotiate better wages.  I've done so several times myself throughout the course of my career.  But when unemployment goes down AND wages go down, as it did in Mexico, this is NOT free market forces at work.

You can say that the government is "corrupt" (it is) but what is the true nature of the corruption?  Who benefits from artificially low wages in Mexico?  Who benefits from a corrupt Mexican government?  For that matter, who benefits from corrupt US governmental, non-free market policies?  And if ending this corruption on both sides of the border, through renegotiating NAFTA, can benefit both countries, shouldn't we do so?  And who exactly do you think is resisting the renegotiation of NAFTA?

 

 

 

 

Edited by New Buddha

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18 hours ago, New Buddha said:

SL,

At the start of NAFTA 1 peso could purchase about 35 cents of US manufactured goods and agriculture - and the US had a trade surplus with Mexico. Now, 24 years later, 1 peso can only purchase about 5 cents of US manufactured goods and agriculture and we have a trade deficit.  To keep selling agriculture (mainly corn) in Mexico, US agribusiness lobbied the US Government for and has received hundreds of billions of dollars in tax-payer funded subsidies.  This allowed the US to flood the market with cheap corn which resulted in putting millions of Mexican farmers out of work.  These are primarily the people who headed north.  And a high unemployment rate helped the drug cartels gain a strong foot-hold in the economy.

Both sides are to blame for this, but in no way is NAFTA a free-trade agreement.  Just because there are low tariffs, it does not mean that free market principles are at work.

So why do you think Mexico pursued the monetary policy that it did?  Who benefited?  Certainly not the Mexican worker.  Poverty is still at over 50%, even though the GDP has gone through the roof.  And their wages and purchasing power continues to decline.

In a free market, when unemployment goes down, wages go up.  This is simple supply and demand.  When the labor market is tight, workers can negotiate better wages.  I've done so several times myself throughout the course of my career.  But when unemployment goes down AND wages go down, as it did in Mexico, this is NOT free market forces at work.

You can say that the government is "corrupt" (it is) but what is the true nature of the corruption?  Who benefits from artificially low wages in Mexico?  Who benefits from a corrupt Mexican government?  For that matter, who benefits from corrupt US governmental, non-free market policies?  And if ending this corruption on both sides of the border, through renegotiating NAFTA, can benefit both countries, shouldn't we do so?  And who exactly do you think is resisting the renegotiation of NAFTA?

 

1. Pointing out that the Peso has improved 700% against the dollar does not support the idea that Mexico has devalued the Peso.  If anything it is an argument for US devaluation of the dollar.  Now if you want to argue that the US Fed is causing malinvestment and economic issues, that is a reasonable argument and in line with free economic policy.  Stopping the Fed from dollar devaluation would fix a lot of issues beyond this discussion.  

2. Corn is not an argument against trade, but subsidies.  I agree  that US subsidies policy causes malinvestment and the ripple effect is distorting our economy.  But the issue is reducing Government intervention in the economy at home. 

3. Mexico purses fiat money policy for the same reason all Governments, to avoid the integrity required by real reserves.  All “workers” are poorer in every nation because printed money always benefits those who get it first (the banks) who have non-inflated purchasing power, and as it trickles down through the economy the last to get it suffer through the inflation and are poorer by the time any new printed money reaches them. This has nothing to do with trade and is an argument against fiat money.  

4.  I agree NAFTA should be renegotiated into a proper free-trade agreement, but that was neither stated nor is an issue with this discussion.  In fact if we fixed everything you mention in your last post immigration would increase since we would have more wealth and jobs here and Mexico would still house the same criminal Government that makes the fundamentals of life, let alone thriving, untenable. 

5. That is point: Corruption is that it is the real issue.  It is a moral choice and a primary.  Governments are not corrupt because of policy, but policies are corrupt because the thinking of statesmen is corrupt to criminal.  People are not fleeing Mexico due to corn subsidies and trade agreements which pushed out a benign Government .  They are fleeing to escape conditions that exist due to a criminal government that threatens their ability to live. Conditions created by the Mexican Government and perpetuated by that Government.  

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1 hour ago, Spiral Architect said:

1. Pointing out that the Peso has improved 700% against the dollar does not support the idea that Mexico has devalued the Peso.  If anything it is an argument for US devaluation of the dollar. 

SL,

You are just wrong.  I'm really not sure how you can be so confident making such ridiculous statements about something that anyone can verify if they would bother to spend about 2 min. on the internet.  When viewing the graphs, remember that NAFTA started in 1994.  And the US dollar is the global index against which all currencies are measured.

https://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/columns/2016/10/27/make-peso-great-again-for-workers-sake/goqyqRCDryl9dlK2ij4mTP/story.html

The other key policy is that Mexico’s government simply let its currency drop. Since NAFTA, the peso has weakened nearly every single year — compounding the advantages on price that Mexico already has over US manufacturers. During 1993 NAFTA hearings, Democratic Representative John LaFalce of New York warned that the treaty had “no mechanism to coordinate monetary policy between the United States and Mexico.” The big fear was that Mexico would weaken its peso for competitive purposes once it joined NAFTA, and the United States would be unable to do anything about it.

The warning was prescient. Within NAFTA, there’s no way to address exchange rate risks. Since 1994, the peso has devalued more than the Pakistani rupee — despite that country’s many troubles. (Canada, the other NAFTA member, has seen its currency strengthen against the dollar during the same period.) Year-to-date, the peso is weaker than the Ukrainian hryvnia, a country busy fighting the Russians.

USD.png

CanadaUS.png

Euro.png

Yen.png

MXPUSD.png

Edited by New Buddha

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