Tag Archives: nafta

Trump and the USMCA: From Free Trade to Gassing Migrants

Last weekend, US Border Patrol agents used tear gas against hundreds of migrants protesting on the Mexican side of the border. The men, women and children who were gassed were part of the six thousand asylum seekers who fled violence and poverty in Central America by forming a caravan that has now reached the US border. In a related event, the leaders of the United States, Mexico and Canada will sign the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) at the G20 summit in Argentina this weekend. The two events are related because the migrants who were gassed at the border are economic refugees who make evident a major contradiction in these supposed free trade agreements. In order to facilitate ‘free trade’ these agreements violate one of the basic tenets of the ‘free market’: the free movement of labor. Given this reality, the USMCA could be more accurately named the United States Migrant Control Agreement (USMCA). Continue reading

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Distorting Poverty to Promote Capitalism

While attending the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland last week to discuss global development and poverty, Microsoft chairman Bill Gates claimed that foreign aid from wealthy nations and philanthropy were successfully alleviating global poverty and inequality. According to Gates, “The poor have in fact been doing quite well and people really should feel good about their generosity.” He went on to note, “This is very good news, it means equity in the world is closer than we think.” But is this in fact true? Are foreign aid and philanthropy proving to be as successful as Gates claims? Or are they helping to promote a narrative that seeks to gloss over the brutal realities of global capitalism? Continue reading