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A few years ago, in Europe they came up with the idea of uniting all nations on that continent.  Many said: it would never work!  Reasons?  There are too many languages, too many idiosyncrasies, too many cultures, too many national interests.  Racism, and the superiority complex of the northern Europeans was also mentioned.  This union is not viable, they stated,  and -of course- they were wrong!

Furthermore, Southern Europeans (who have many more centuries of civilization than the northern "barbarians" -as they often call them) were afraid of having their businesses absorbed by the more advanced economic foundations of Germany and other Northern nations.

Removing Customs offices from the border of these nations was unthinkable.  Most people would agree in those days that Portuguese, Spaniards, Italians, Turks, ... would be free to invade the northern richer countries.  But, who in the mild latitudes would like to relocate to the cold steppes of Europe?  Actually very few.  

The EEU (European Economic Union) brought bigger markets, and technological progress to all associated countries.  And -interestingly- most people would resist to leave the comfort of their regional boundaries, to abandon  their culture, the language that have spoken since childhood, and their familiesLeave all that just to be richer? Come on!    Nobody in his/her common sense is that greedy.  People will emigrate only when there is persecution, or when the economic situation is so desperate, that is unbearable.

No question that some people will look forward to spend a few months -or a couple of years- in Germany, Austria, France, or England.  But, nobody (in Italy, Spain, Portugal or Turkey) who has a heart in his chest, and a good brain in his head, would like to be a permanent Emigrant of no country.

Enough about Europe!  This page is for the NORTH AMERICAN ECONOMIC UNION.

  It would be too much of a political issue to give this North American Economic Union the broad connotation that the Europeans dare to give to theirs.  So, it was found to be more palatable for Americans to refer to this union as NAFTA (just a North American Free-Trade Agreement, not big deal!), although I have also seen the FTAA acronym (Free Trade Area of the Americas).

But, let me tell you my friend, this world is becoming smaller, and it is unavoidable that Canada, the USA and Mexico, and perhaps many other countries in South America (later), will become little by little cohesively united

Am I far out?  I might be, time will tell my friend.  Just wait.  And we will see who is right!


What is the point, anyway? 

The point is that if we really think that the NAEU (North America Economic Union) will be unavoidable, then -if we are smart- we should take early steps to make that process smoother for that time when we would need to implement it.  Just look at what the Europeans did: 

1) For many decades emigration toward Northern Europe was practically impossible for Southerners.  As indicated on the page "Immigration", people from my region of Galicia (Spain) emigrated to Latin America in the 1940's, 1950's and 1960's, and not to Europe (despite reconstructing was under way -after World War II- and they needed cheap labor in their economic recovery).

bulletIn Latin America Spaniards felt welcomed. It was the same culture and language.  However, Latin America was too far away.  There were no planes.  Huge Trans-Atlantic boats would take you there, but it was 14 days of navigation, expensive.  You knew that chances were high you would never come back to Galicia from Latin America.  I saw many of my relatives -in their 20's and 30's crying uncontrollably the as babies, as the Trans-Atlantic boat started to move away from the dock.  Often you will see mothers and wife's fainting with anguish.
bulletLooking back I wished I had not seen those scenes.  I was traumatized for some time.   And it was a weekly occurrence, because a lot of people was leaving.   It is an awful thought for an Immigrant who is leaving family and everything behind to think that he will never return to his homeland.  They survive hoping that economic factors will change, and someday we will be able to return to the place were we grew up, where their relatives, and long time friends live.
bulletPeople would have opted for emigration to France, or Germany, from where you could return by car after just 10 or 15 hours driving. That despite the fact they have a different language and culture.
bulletBut the French would only allow crossing of the border to a few political refuges escaping Generalísimo Franco's regime.  They would also allow a few thousand workers to go to Bordeaux for a few weeks to help with the making of wine.

2) Then suddenly, during the 60's and 70's, Germany, Belgium and others started to offer jobs to Spaniards and Portuguese, and they were issuing visas to us in the hundreds of thousands.  Many more relatives left.

bulletIn about five years, emigration to Europe caused a full stop in emigration to "the Americas"
bulletIt was a needed smart move, in preparation for the EEU, which was announced soon after.
bulletBy the time the gates were fully opened, there was not flood. Nobody would care to cross the border, if not for tourism.

Our Government is not making it public my friend, but we are on that same path the Europeans walked.  And -let's face it- it is irreversible.

I firmly believe, that if we take some precautions to avoid some short-term troubles, the long-term outcome of the NAEU (call it NAFTA, or FTAA if you want) will not be different than what happened in the EEU.  And that is, cultural progress and internationalization.

Letting aside political sentiments -as far as I am concerned- for most practical purposes Canada and the United States are already one single country.  However, not everybody would agree that we have the same affinity to the Mexicans as we do with the Canadians.  After all, in Mexico they speak a different language, they are poorer, they have a different culture, and in the past they never have been our allies.  On the contrary, they were the "bandoleros" we had to fight, and they had the country we wanted to "borrow from them, for good".   And, we have a superiority complex over them Have I wrote this line before?  O yes!  I did at the top when talking about Northern and Southern Europeans.   Remember?

1)  About fifteen years ago our country started to play a blind eye to Mexicans who were crossing the border.  They will show us on TV how a few got stranded, and were caught at the Rio Grande and expelled right away.  But most of them passed through.  You know that!.  It is just theatrics my friend.  We need them.  Plus we need to work on the NAEU with them.

Unless you have been living on a cave, you would probably know that it will be relatively easy for our Government to locate many of those illegal Mexicans in the US.  They are all over.  They fill the kitchens of every restaurant from Seattle to Miami. They are meat packers in every slaughter house from North Dakota to Texas.

There are perhaps as many as 6 million illegal aliens in the US, most of them Mexicans.  Many of them working for little, and without benefits.

Our Government insists we do not know that these 4 million souls exist.

 Greedy corporations play that same tune for their own benefit as well.

But, that is an unfair and greedy excuse, because we know they work, they eat, they have families, and their children attend our schools.  In other words, they are not really hiding, and they are easily traceable, they leave an unmistakable trail that even a child could follow.

We do not want to catch them my friends. Because, we do not want to expatriate them.  We need them.  We just want to minimize any disbursement of money that we would have to pay in social benefits for those 4 million souls if we were to admit that, we know they exist.   Shame on us!

Some people are getting deep scars, and it is no wonder to me that some people would hate us.

Don't take me wrong!  Most of us are good, fair, generous, just people... but don't be mistaken, and let me tell you my friend ... we could be a lot better Christians than we are (and this is an non-religious person writing).  I might not believe in a God like you do, but I have ideals, and I was born with a sense of fairness that many other people -I noticed- they lack, totally.

President of Mexico

Most pictures on this page are from issues of National Geographic magazine.

In the picture above you can see how a Mexican border-town can not be more "border" than that.  Tijuana city reaches all the way to the line separating USA and Mexico.  Every time they have a chance many Mexicans will try to enter the US.  Often they will try other locations that are not as watched as this line at the margin of their city.

On this picture to the right you can see the morning traffic of Mexicans who come daily to work in the USA.  What you see here is the border check point in El Paso, Texas.

In another picture you can see a Mariachis band.  For a small gratuity they will sing and play guitar for you.  You can hire them for a day event.  In downtown Mexico city there is a square where in a regular day you will find hundreds of these Mariachis looking for work.

  2) About five years ago,  our Government realized that Brazil (a country with 170 million souls, and estimated that would have 216 million in 2025) was worth catering.  They have a country that is bigger than the USA (if you take away Alaska) And it is an unbelievable fertile land.  No real deserts there, no hurricanes, no tornados.  Basically a paradise.

But some folks gets unruly once in a while.  And no wonder, there is still plenty of social injustice over there.  Many many people are living in decrepit, substandard housing ("fabelas"). Good nice people though.  I am married to one of them, and I love her.  That is why I am so sensitive when we abuse them.

In other words, Brazil is a potentially huge trading partner. 

bulletMost people in America think that they speak Spanish (I am talking of my personal experience in S. Dakota).
bulletActually, they speak Portuguese a language closely related to Spanish, but phonetically a little bit different.
bulletWe do not have enough Portuguese-speaking folks in our shores (other than a few Portuguese fishermen -originally from Portugal's Azores islands- in New England).

Therefore, and to make the story short, our Government started to give tourist visas to thousands of Brazilians, knowing that they will probably stay here after the visa expires:

bullet(a)  Most Brazilians -our Government knows- are "Mineiros".  That is, they come from an economically distressed part of Brazil, a region called Minas Gerais.
bullet(b) We know they are not real tourists, because on arrival they report they have little money.
bullet(c) They do not take a taxi to go to a hotel, instead they are picked up by an acquaintance and taken to a home.

In addition to the thousands of Brazilians arriving as tourists monthly, we also have a few hundred monthly who come with formal extended visas.

(1) It could be inconvenient to admit that the US Government is -purposely- facilitating immigration from Brazil, because this country might be our most tremendous partner in the NAEU (which by then should be called just AEU -without the North) .  In the current economic climate, bringing that issue to the public spot light might bring controversy, and futile -and theatrical- discussions in our Congress. 

(2) As with the Mexicans, if we recognized that perhaps 2 million illegal Brazilians exist, and work their butt off in our lands, then we would have to disburse money for their social needs.  And I already pointed out several times that we have a somewhat materialistic, greedy society.

So, the best course of action is to play a blind eye to their visas, allow them to stay, but say that we do not know about it.  Again, ... it is not fair In one decade or two they might be so close to us, as Spain is of Germany today.  So, let's do the right thing:

bulletlet's admit we need many of them, 
bulletlet's admit we want to get closer to them,
bulletlet's take as good care of them, as we do of our families.

Is in that fair?     Is not this what we tell our children America is all about ?

It is not a few thousands who are living in anxiety.  It is estimated that just in Broward County, FL, there are more than 80,000 illegal Brazilians.  And probably twice as many in New Jersey. And plenty in Chicago and California, ...

Is it the American way to ignore the needs of Immigrants, and take advantage of them?  I do not think so!

I also believe that if many more Americans learn about what is going on, they would revolt.  After all, as I said above, 90% of Americans immigrated to America recently -in relative terms.

For more on international trade, let me recommend to visit the "Bering Tunnel" page (<-click link)
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