Economic hitmen, FTAs, and other scorpions

Economic hitmen, FTAs, and other scorpions

By Pedro López Juiz

By making his confessions in the twilight of his life, John Perkins has shown to have, despite his great sins committed in the service of the Empire, great dignity, transparency and courage, things of which obviously certain native actors within the panorama of the NAFTA negotiation lack the most miserable and sordid way.

I asked Dr. Carlos Sánchez about five years ago a very important question. We had become good friends in a common struggle to improve the prices of rice produced by Ecuadorian farmers in a year when the price of a 200-pound sack of that grass had collapsed to the unsustainable figure of US $ 8.00. That year we traveled together several times to Bogotá and to the departments of Tolima and Huila to explore the possibilities of a massive export of Ecuadorian rice to the northern country to vent the high surpluses that had depressed national prices.

One afternoon when he was visiting me at the offices of ARAS (Asociación Riosense de Arroceros y Soyeros), I asked him what it was like to be President of the Republic of Ecuador.

At that time, Carlos was a Liquidator of the ENAC (National Supply and Marketing Company), an institution of the Ecuadorian State that managed a battery of silos for the storage of grains in different provinces of the Republic. He joked and said that he was not a "liquidator" but a "savior" of the ENAC, since he did not agree with the Ecuadorian government getting rid of such an important instrument as silos intended to store grain at peak harvest points when Prices were sliding into the abyss and it was crucial to stop that slide by taking grain from the market through the warehouse. His wife was a cousin of Jamil Mahuad, and I always suspected that family ties and her support for the candidate in the presidential campaign had facilitated his appointment as Liquidator (or Salvador, as he preferred to consider himself) of the ENAC. That is why I asked him the question about the presidency, imagining that he had information from the "inside" of it.

But his answer puzzled me. "Pedro, the truth is that I couldn't answer you," he replied. "In the campaign I would meet and talk with him constantly, but once he came to power, all contact and all communication with Jamil were frustrated. Even a strange person answered his cell phone and they never passed it on to me. What if I can tell you it is that obviously, installed in the Jamil presidency, they put up a fence, a practically impenetrable fence. " It was never clear to me who built that fence.

And now the news of John Perkins' book explodes under the title of Confessions of an economic hitman, and inexorably leads me to tie the claims of the creepy book with the response of my friend Carlos Sánchez about Jamil Mahuad.

Was Jamil Mahuad visited early by an Economic Hitman of the Empire at the beginning of his presidency, as John Perkins assures that Lucio Gutierrez was visited, who two months into his mandate began to tighten the nuts on the Ecuadorian people through a austerity plan (the famous "puncture") that included raising fuel prices by 35% and freezing public sector wages for one year? According to Perkins, all Ecuadorian presidents have been visited by a US Economic Hitman since the 1950s when Kermit Roosevelt, a grandson of Teddy Roosevelt, former US president, initiated this practice in favor of Uncle Sam and the US multinationals. Of course, there is no shortage of questions about the veracity of John Perkins' book, but it is rare that a publication which supposedly suffers from authenticity becomes in such a short time a teaching text in renowned universities in the United States such as DePaul University in the city ​​of Chicago and Wheaton College in the state of Massachusetts, in addition to becoming a bestseller in that country.

Additionally, it is natural and logical that, with the noisy incursion of Confessions of an economic hitman on the Ecuadorian scene, any thinking citizen also begins to make connections between the negotiation process of the FTA between Ecuador and the United States and the main thesis of the aforementioned book -that is, that, to promote the interests of the Colossus of the North and the American multinational companies, the Empire resorts to the most perverse means of persuasion, such as economic hitmen, bribery, blackmail, threats, and, when these do not work , the assassination (Jaime Roldós, Omar Torrijos) or, in the latter case, the military invasion (Iraq; Saddam Hussein had very good bodyguards and too many doubles and the CIA jackals failed to assassinate him). From there you do not have to walk far mentally to come to suspect that the "Free" Trade Agreement with Ecuador - of utmost importance for the United States within its geo-strategic, geo-economic, and geo-political plans for the Andean region and Latin America - is seriously compromised and polluted, not to say rotten or rotten.

Therefore, now I am not surprised that a reliable source has informed me that a person very close to the negotiators and, in particular, a minister of the current government has tied up the representation of a United States telecommunications company, as a result of their efforts in favor of of the TLC. (And how many more moorings, achieved by others and based on the same management, will there not be under the table and behind the curtain?) Nor is it surprising that this obviously powerful person is mentioned as a future leader of the Ecuadorian Business Committee, that would become, according to journalistic sources, in a higher instance than the Production Chambers and the Federations of the country. But instead this is scary, because under these circumstances in Ecuador we would soon go from a weak democracy to an arrogant "corporatocracy" (to use a neologism of John Perkins himself) run by lively national lackeys of the multinationals of the Empire.

Even thanks to John Perkins, I now understand the abrupt change, the radical turn, that the President cardiologist made with respect to the Ecuadorian FTA: to say that the negotiating team of the Andean country was "weak" and that he, Alfredo Palacio, never it would put the health of its people in jeopardy and jeopardy, and therefore would not offer another year of protection to drug test data; to be willing to give the CAN the third and decisive vote (jointly with Peru and Colombia) for said Andean community to reform its regulations regarding Intellectual Property and allow the protection of test data to be extended for five years for drugs and ten for agrochemicals, punctually avoiding that the current Andean laws contradict that part of the agreement within the FTAs ​​already closed by Peru and Colombia and of which Ecuador hastily wants to conclude with the power of the North in imitation of the other two sheep countries.

By making his confessions in the twilight of his life, John Perkins has shown to have, despite his great sins committed in the service of the Empire, great dignity, transparency and courage, things of which obviously certain native actors within the panorama of the NAFTA negotiation lack the most miserable and sordid way.

* Pedro López Juiz, President of ARAS (Asociación Riosense de Arroceros y Soyeros)

Video: Confessions of an Economic Hitman Book Summary - John Perkins - MattyGTV (May 2021).