The rhetoric and realities of the U.S.-Mexico Free Trade Agreement
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThis thesis begins with a discussion of the theory behind free trade, and then examines some of the political rhetoric surrounding current free trade negotiations. This rhetoric ignores the potential pitfalls of free trade, and alternatives which would lead to more balanced development. The U.S.-Mexico FTA is placed in global perspective, with a discussion of the GATT. The maquiladora industry, dominated by multinational corporations, is presented as a "sneak preview" of free trade. This agreement would generate multiple realities, in that it would mean different things to different groups of people; it will have numerous negative effects, especially on Mexico's rural population. The ideological rhetoric obscures the fact that a primary result of free trade will not be broad economic development, but rather further polarization of society and the enrichment of certain vested interests.