Going protectionist over the constitution

The U.S. is known for its "paranoid style" of politics, so brace yourself for the next Big Scare coming down the pike (literally) -- the Trans-Texas Corridor. Isolationist conservatives, emboldened by their jihad last year against the Dubai Ports World deal, have identified this road project as the spearhead of a conspiracy to dissolve the United States of America. [...] Even Texas Rep. Ron Paul, a libertarian Republican candidate for president, has fallen for the paranoia. You'd think that Paul would be chanting hosannas to anything that facilitates free trade, but he too fears that the "superhighway" is part of a scheme by foreign companies to erode U.S. borders and create a North American Union combining the United States, Mexico and Canada -- complete with a single government and a common currency called the "amero."

Superhighway opponents regard even routine dialogue between the three neighbors as a treasonous assault on U.S. sovereignty. They are apoplectic about the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP), a forum created in 2005 for bureaucrats to discuss such radical topics as how to snag terrorists before they enter the continent and how to speed up cross-border traffic for just-in-time deliveries.

All of this could be dismissed as the paranoid rantings of a protectionist fringe -- except that it is beginning to have a tangible negative effect on public policy. [...] But the impact of today's isolationists threatens to affect the entire economy. If unchallenged, these ideologues of fear will kill the United States' prosperity in the name of protecting its sovereignty.

Source: Los Angeles Times

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