Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Congressman: Superhighway about North American Union


WASHINGTON – Rep. Ron Paul, a maverick Republican from Texas, today denounced plans for the proposed "NAFTA superhighway" in his state as part of a larger plot for merger of the U.S., Canada and Mexico into a North American Union.
"By now many Texans have heard about the proposed 'NAFTA Superhighway,' which is also referred to as the trans-Texas corridor," he said in a statement. "What you may not know is the extent to which plans for such a superhighway are moving forward without congressional oversight or media attention."
Paul explained that most members of Congress are unaware of the plans because only relatively small amounts of money have been spent studying the plans and those allocations were included in "enormous transportation appropriations bills."
(Story continues below)
"The proposed highway is part of a broader plan advanced by a quasi-government organization called the 'Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America,' or SPP," he explains. "The SPP was first launched in 2005 by the heads of state of Canada, Mexico, and the United States at a summit in Waco."
No treaties were involved, and Congress was not included in discussions or plans, he says.
"Instead, the SPP is an unholy alliance of foreign consortiums and officials from several governments," according to Paul. "One principal player is a Spanish construction company, which plans to build the highway and operate it as a toll road. But don't be fooled: The superhighway proposal is not the result of free market demand, but rather an extension of government-managed trade schemes like NAFTA that benefit politically connected interests."
Paul says, however, the real issue raised by the superhighway plan and the SPP is national sovereignty.
"Once again, decisions that affect millions of Americans are not being made by those Americans themselves, or even by their elected representatives in Congress," says Paul. "Instead, a handful of elites use their government connections to bypass national legislatures and ignore our Constitution – which expressly grants Congress the sole authority to regulate international trade."
The ultimate goal, he says, is not simply a superhighway "but an integrated North American Union – complete with a currency, a cross-national bureaucracy and virtually borderless travel within the union. Like the European Union, a North American Union would represent another step toward the abolition of national sovereignty altogether."
Rep. Virgil Goode, R-Va., has introduced a resolution expressing the sense of Congress that the U.S. should not engage in the construction of a NAFTA superhighway, or enter into any agreement that advances the concept of a North American Union.
"I wholeheartedly support this legislation and predict that the superhighway will become a sleeper issue in the 2008 election," says Paul. "Any movement toward a North American Union diminishes the ability of average Americans to influence the laws under which they must live. The SPP agreement, including the plan for a major transnational superhighway through Texas, is moving forward without congressional oversight – and that is an outrage. The administration needs a strong message from Congress that the American people will not tolerate backroom deals that threaten our sovereignty."

1 comment:

bicyclingdude said...

Most Highways Nationwide to be Tolled to Pay for NAFTA Super-Corridors

The massive land grab feature of the Trans Texas Corridor (TTC) is also present in other NAFTA Super-Corridors. But, what makes the events in Texas so unique, are how they are related to other issues, and how they will affect all Americans.

The NASCO (North America Supercorridor Coalition) board, which is heavily influenced by Gov. Perry, successfully lobbied to have money for the federal Highway Trust Fund (HTF) moved “off budget.” It seems as though one of the affects of this Enron-style accounting trick is to force the federal HTF to go broke by 2008.

In August 2005, President Bush and Congress signed into a law a major transportation bill called SAFETEA-LU. One of the provisions of it is to immediately use all money that is expected to be placed into the federal HTF through September 2009. In December the U.S. Chamber of Commerce concluded nearly all funds had been used. The federal HTF will go broke by 2008.

Consider TxDOT Commissioner Ric Williamson's statements, which are not limited to Texas:

"It's either toll roads, slow roads, or no roads." (May 2004)

“ your lifetime most existing roads will have tolls." (October 2004)

It’s clear provisions in SAFETEA-LU, plus lobbying by Gov. Perry via NASCO has been engineered to force the federal HTF into a deficit -- one that will exist for as long as the politicians can get away with it. Therefore, states will no longer receive funding from the federal HTF. (Half of Texas’ DOT budget comes from it.) To make up for that, roads will be tolled.

And there’s more. Texas Gov. Perry and Lt. Gov. Dewhurst, who sit on the Texas Bond Review Board, have been trying to use money from Texas Mobility Fund ONLY to fund TOLL roads. The one who has prevented Perry’s travesty is the third member of the board -- Comptroller Strayhorn, who is an independent candidate for governor.

In and around Austin, toll roads have been built, are under construction, or planning to be built. Yet, there are adequate funds to build those roads without levying tolls. (In the San Antonio Business Journal for Oct 27 - Nov 2, there is an article titled "Larson wants lawmakers to keep highway funds on highways." It states that in 2005, $774 million in the Texas State Highway Fund was diverted for non-highway programs, and $9.3 billion has been diverted over the last 20 years.)

The TTC contract had been secret for 17 months. It was made available weeks before the election. One of the secret items in the contract is for Texas to pay for relocating railroad lines -- to the tune of $16 billion. How would that be financed? Toll roads.

So, clearly steps are being taken to force most highways nationwide to be tolled in order to pay for the NAFTA Super-Corridors.