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idlisambar Donating Member (916 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 05:52 PM
Original message
AFL-CIO goes after CAFTA on TV
The AFL-CIO began airing U.S. TV commercials Wednesday against the proposed Central American Free Trade Agreement.

The ads are running in seven states and urge viewers to contact their elected representatives about opposing the free trade deal.

The nation's largest organized labor organization says the North American Free Trade Agreement cost hundreds of thousands of jobs.
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Toucano Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 05:56 PM
Response to Original message
1. Rock ON!
Thanks AFL-CIO!
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 06:01 PM
Response to Original message
2. How great is this?
Republicans despise unions, and have done their best to destroy them. I'm so glad the AFL-CIO isn't going to go quietly!

From the article:
CAFTA will rip jobs out of our communities and line the pockets of giant corporations at workers' expense, said AFL-CIO President John Sweeney. These elected leaders must say 'no' to sending their constituents' good, family-supporting jobs overseas to sweatshops.

:woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo:
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 06:12 PM
Response to Original message
3. It's about more than jobs as well.
So far, they don't have the votes, but they are working very hard at it and have enlisted the lobbyists on K street.

These have been posted in the Stock Market Watch thread, but they bear repeating. CAFTA doesn't seem to get much attention these days, and they are looking for a few Dems on the vote. Don't let it be one of your reps.

CAFTA and Dietary Supplements


Pharmaceutical companies have spent billions of dollars trying to get Washington to regulate your dietary supplements like European governments do. So far, that effort has failed in America, in part because of a 1994 law called the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act. Big Pharma and the medical establishment hate this Act, because it allows consumers some measure of freedom to buy the supplements they want. Americans like this freedom, however-- especially the health conscious Baby Boomers.

This is why the drug companies support WTO and CAFTA. They see international trade agreements as a way to do an end run around American law and restrict supplements through international regulations.

The largely government-run health care establishment, including the nominally private pharmaceutical companies, want government to control the dietary supplement industry-- so that only they can manufacture and distribute supplements. If that happens, as it already is happening in Europe, the supplements you now take will be available only by prescription and at a much higher cost-- if they are available at all. This alone is sufficient reason for Congress to oppose the unconstitutional, sovereignty-destroying CAFTA bill.

Countering Doublespeak

42" target="_blank">

The House of Representatives is moving toward a vote on the proposed Central American Free Trade Agreement, and the spin machines of the White House and the corporate special interests - along with their amen corner in the media - are working overtime.

These are the days when the big lies get told - as we learned more than a decade ago when the Clinton White House was busy working with congressional Republicans to win support for the North American Free Trade Agreement and more recently when Congress debated establishing permanent normal trade relations with China.


No. 9: CAFTA slows immigration.This same false promise was made under NAFTA, and we all witnessed the opposite result of increased immigration from Mexico. CAFTA has back-door provisions that may make U.S. immigration laws and visa requirements in violation of the agreement, and unenforceable.


No. 4: CAFTA is a relatively small trade agreement.CAFTA is the largest trade agreement before our country since NAFTA, and a critical steppingstone toward creation of a 34-nation Free Trade Area of the Americas. It has become a national referendum on failed trade policies of the past, and the outcome will set a course for our future dealings with China. For local and state government, CAFTA would become the highest law of the land, determining rules on procurement, health care, zoning and immigration.


Rep. Blunt seeks K Street help on CAFTA

Majority Whip Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) has asked lobbyists hoping to pass the Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) to redouble their efforts to press members of the New Democrat Coalition to support it.


Presumably falling short in its vote count with two weeks left before the August recess begins, the House GOP whips office turned to its K Street allies to try to persuade Democrats to vote in favor of CAFTA.

The Republican leadership will not schedule CAFTA for a floor vote without significant bipartisan support, Sam Geduldig, Blunts liaison to K Street, told the lobbyists in an e-mail sent last Tuesday. It was sent to remind staffers and GOP lawmakers about a meeting organized by Blunt and the House GOP conference to discuss CAFTA.

Geduldig concluded the e-mail with a request to forward any Member intelligence to

Burson Taylor, Blunts spokeswoman, said, Trade votes never pass without Democrats. wants to see the Democrats who run on pro-trade platforms stay pro-trade when it counts.

U.S., Others Agree to Rework CAFTA Rules,1,13...

The U.S. trade representative's office, which had refused to amend the U.S.-Central American Free Trade Agreement, received a letter from the ambassadors of the six CAFTA nations agreeing to prohibit the use of non-U.S. pockets and linings in duty-free apparel from the region, House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Thomas (R-Bakersfield) said Tuesday.

CAFTA would end tariffs on more than $33 billion in goods traded between the U.S. and Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. It also would do away with a requirement that shirts, trousers and other items from the region can enter the U.S. duty free only as long as they are made from yarn or fabric produced in the U.S.

In a letter to Rep. Bob Inglis (R-S.C.) on Monday, Thomas pledged to push legislation through Congress that would change that, maintaining requirements on the pockets and linings being made in the U.S.


Democratic opponents of CAFTA criticized the new textile agreement, saying the Bush administration is unwilling to push for improving labor rules in the agreement in order to get broad bipartisan support, but is willing to change a small element on textiles in order to round up a few Republican votes.

"If they could do it for pockets and linings, I would hope they could do it for something as important as the core rights of workers," ...

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gizmo1979 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 06:42 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. I thought they scheduled a vote for tuesday?
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 06:51 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. They said "mostly likely" next Tuesday. That's why the big push.
They want it before the break coming up in August, but they'll be willing to drag their feet a little bit to get the votes.

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - The House of Representatives is likely to vote next week on a controversial trade pact between the United States and Central American countries, the chamber's top trade lawmaker said Tuesday.

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Thomas, R-Calif., said the measure would likely be formally moved to the floor later Tuesday, setting the stage for a floor vote before lawmakers leave late next week for the month-long August recess. The committee approved the legislation earlier this month....

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gizmo1979 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 04:13 PM
Response to Reply #5
9. That's what I read my bad.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 08:06 PM
Response to Reply #3
7. fixed links for post above
Edited on Wed Jul-20-05 08:08 PM by 54anickel
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lumpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 07:35 PM
Response to Original message
6. Unions forever.
The only force to protect the American worker. Glad to hear they are taking a stance against CAFTA. The republicans must be defeated in their game against workers rights.
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gizmo1979 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 04:14 PM
Response to Reply #6
10. Absoulutely Right!
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VegasWolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 08:32 PM
Response to Original message
8. Won't big corporations watch out for us? nt
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Chicago Democrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 04:34 PM
Response to Original message
11. Bush: "Here's some Poison, Its actually Medicine really"
Ignor the label that says "Poison" and the skull!
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bvar22 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 05:01 PM
Response to Original message
12. CAFTA must be defeated!!!
NAFTA caused MUCH MORE damage than the loss of a few Hundred Thousand jobs. That estimate is waaaay low. NAFTA has DIRECTLY caused the loss of entire communities and support industries across America, and the job losses are STILL happening. NAFTA has directly caused a significant across the board decrease in wages and benefits for the Working Class. It has also provided the Corporate Owners a terror tool to bring LABOR under their heel by threatening to move offshore!

Corporations in and of themselves are not the problem, they are merely the vehicle that the RICH CORPORATE OWNERS have used to hi-jack our Democracy. There is even a powerful organization INSIDE the Democratic Party that is dedicated to INCREASING the POWER and INFLUENCE of the Rich Corporate Owners inside the Democratic Party (DLC). CAFTA passed in the Senate with the help of Democratic members of the DLC.

Defeating CAFTA is only the first step in reclaiming America for ALL of us and NOT just the Ownership Class.
Here is a list of SOME things that NEED to be done to protect the American Working Class.

*Listen to Bernie Sanders Friday Mornings on the Thom Hartmann Radio Show Brunch with Bernie 11AM Central here: /

*Even if you hate him, listen to Ralph Nader and read his books.

The FIRST thing that SHOULD be done:
*Enact legislation that would make it possible for Mom & Pop to compete with Wal-Marts(term used generically). If Wal-Marts use their size to demand a lower price from suppliers, that supplier MUST make those goods available in the US for EVERY retailer at THE SAME PRICE. Transportation costs for small business would be subsidized to offset the bulk transportation discounts of the HUGE retailers.

*Withdraw from NAFTA (and all current trade treaties). NAFTA cannot be adjusted or tweaked. NAFTA and Free Trade in its current incarnation are BAD TO THE CORE. They are flawed in concept. All international trade treaties should be renegotiated on a BI-Lateral basis conditional on Human Rights, Labor Rights, and Environmental Protection (Level Playing Field). In every case, "barriers to trade" were put in place to protect something valuable!

*Criminalize Corporate lobbying in government.

*Publicly Financed Campaigns ONLY!

*Instant RunOff Elections.

*No BBV without Paper Ballots.

*Aggressively prosecute conflict of interests in government

*Criminalize "secret" offshore accounts for Corporations doing business in the US.

*Legislate transparency in Corporate business. Open the books to the public and offer a 10% bounty to any individual that can uncover Corporate Fraud.

*Limit Corporations owning other Corporations. Complete transparency in Corporate ownership.

*Limit Corporate Profits (the 46% RECORD Profit vs. Record Prices for the Major Oil Cos. last quarter should be illegal. Wasn't gouging illegal at one time?

*Limit the size and power of Corporations (ala Teddy Roosevelt)

*Corporations should be required to commit some profits to education, community charities and infrastructure. Some profits would be required to stay in the neighborhood.

*Re-regulate (and maybe Public Ownership) of Energy, Transportation, & Utilities.

*Support Locally Owned Businesses in your neighborhood!!!

Face the fact that the Rich Corporate Owners have bought their way into the Democratic Party and have enough POWER to control the Party Platform. Identify those Democrats who have SOLD their VOTES to the RICH and POWERFUL. There are three touchstones that can be used:

1) Membership in the DLC


3) Votes FOR the Bankruptcy Bill, Tort Reform, CAFTA, support for Eternal War!
(This should not be used exclusively. Some are able to hide their connections to Corporate Bribes once enough Democratic Votes have been bought to ensure the passage of Anti-Labor legislation)

Actively Work to support Primary Opponents to these Republicans in Donkey suits. Work to publicly expose their true allegiance to MONEY.

Support the people and organizations INSIDE the Democratic Party that represent the American Working Class. You can find them at: /

This SINGLE ISSUE will determine the Quality of Life for THE WORLD in the next 50 years. Don't be distracted by the wedge issues the Corporate Owners and CorpoMedia want you to think are important. The Rich Corporate Owners DON"T CARE:

*who gets an abortion,

*who owns what kind of gun,

*who you pray to or which church you attend,

*whether you call yourself a Liberal or a Conservative.

They are perfectly happy to have the American electorate deciding their votes on these issues. THEY WIN either way.

America should be for ALL of us, not just the RICH Ownership Class!
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 05:13 PM
Response to Reply #12
13. pdamerica - nice site. Found this special section on CAFTA under
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