Washington’s Blog | March 21, 2016
NAFTA and other mega-‘trade’ deals are actually about lots more than merely ‘trade’; they’re about sovereignty — the ability of each of the participating nations to establish laws and regulations restricting toxicity of products, environmental pollution, protecting workers’ rights, and many other things that are essential to the public’s welfare. These ‘trade’ deals lock-in existing laws and regulations so that no matter what is found by future scientific studies which may indicate, for example, that a given product is actually far more toxic than had previously been known, the laws and regulations can’t be increased, because any such increase would subject the given nation to multi-billion-dollar lawsuits by international corporations for ‘infringing on the rights of stockholders to profit’ by any stiffening of those regulations existing at the time the ‘trade’ deal became law. Thus, for the first time in world history, the rights of the holders of the controlling blocs of stock in international corporations are coming to supersede the rights of any government, so that those stockholders can sue taxpayers of any such country, not in any democratically accountable court and judicial system, but in private panels of unaccountable international ‘arbitrators’ who won’t be subject to any nation’s laws. It’s an international-corporate world government now forming, and the U.S. Constitution prohibits the U.S. from being any part of it (because what’s forming is an international-corporate dictatorship); so, in the U.S., it’s being done entirely unConstitutionally.
The Treaty Clause of the U.S. Constitution says:
[The President] shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur.
The Trade Act of 1974 introduced a new way to pass a treaty, the way now called Fast Track Trade Promotion Authority, by means of which that two-thirds requirement can be eliminated and ‘trade’ deals can now become law merely by being approved by 50%+1 members of the Senate. This was done because President Richard Nixon and some members of Congress wanted to be able to pass into law treaties that would be so controversial (so odious, actually) that approval by two-thirds of the Senate wouldn’t be possible; such proposed treaties wouldn’t be able to become approved in this country unless the two-thirds-rule were eliminated for them.