Concerned citizens desire transparent NAFTA negotiations | Letter

Renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is underway.

Renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement is underway. Concerned citizens desire democratic, transparent negotiations. Imperative for U.S. negotiators is the removal of controversial NAFTA provisions that gave multi-national corporations immense powers to attack environmental and consumer safety laws, which corporations deem detrimental to their business model and to offshore American jobs.

Perhaps the most egregious chapter of NAFTA is the Investor-State Dispute Settlement. Under this provision of NAFTA, multi-national corporations have the right to sue for the loss of anticipated future profits before a tribunal of three corporate lawyers. This tribunal can order American taxpayers to pay corporations when their lawyers “prove” to the tribunal that existing laws protecting public health or the environment violate special trade agreement rights and thereby impede the corporation’s ability to make profits. The tribunal’s decisions are not subject to appeal. Corporations thus benefit from a special system of “justice” outside our courts.

These 1994 NAFTA trade provisions, coupled with 1995 World Trade Organization agreements, precipitated the loss of more than 79,000 Washington jobs, according to the Trade Adjustment Assistance program. Americans nationwide have experienced the loss of nearly five million manufacturing jobs. This “free trade” agreement has driven down wages and created record trade deficits. The Center for Economic and Policy Research found that a majority of Americans have experienced wage suppression of 12.2 percent. In 2016, the trade deficit for American goods rose to $173 billion.

A new trade agreement must include enforceable labor and environmental standards that protect us all from corporate greed. Replacing NAFTA is essential to creating a global economy that benefits working families instead of corporate elites.

For more information, refer to www.tradewatch.org.

Linda Bock,

Sammamish

More in Letters to the Editor

Vote yes on Initiative 1639 | Letter

Vote yes on Initiative 1639 On Sept. 28, the Bothell-Kenmore Reporter published… Continue reading

Trump should stand up for public lands / Letter

When Donald Trump was elected president, sportsmen had high hopes that the… Continue reading

Kavanaugh should be rejected / Letters

I find Republican caviling at the Brett Kavanaugh hearings baffling. For just… Continue reading

The complexities of the abortion debate | Letter to the editor

A Bothell resident believes the abortion debate can be resolved by meeting in the middle.

Vote them out | Letter to the editor

A letter about state lawmakers and gun violence.

Not everyone wants the Bothell/Kenmore Reporter | Letter to the editor

A majority of Reporter subscribers have neither asked for the paper delivery nor have they ever been contacted to see if they desire it.

I urge my fellow citizens to vote yes on all three upcoming Northshore School District measures

On Feb. 13, the Northshore School District will have two renewal levies… Continue reading

Why didn’t our Legislature fully fund education? | Letter

A letter in support of the upcoming Northshore School District measures.

Deputy Zornes will be difficult to replace | Letter

Zornes’ calm demeanor and easy attitude was comforting to the many kids that he interacted with throughout the years