"I love (the North American Union theory) because if you ever doubt your own sanity, all you have to do is read this stuff and realize that you're okay." -- Charles Krauthammer
"You lay out a conspiracy and then force some people to try to prove it doesn't exist. That's just the way some people operate." -- George Bush on the North American Union
"But aside from the chilling prospect of a ‘Monster Highway’ (Why is a new road in Texas supposed to be so scary?) there’s no reason at all to believe in the ludicrous, childish, ill-informed, manipulative, brain dead fantasies about a North American Union." -- Michael Medved
Other than the 9/11 conspiracy theory, the most popular conspiracy theory these days seems to be the North American Union. Go to Google and you'll find more than a million hits on the words "North American Union." Prominent conservative online magazines regularly run columns by people who believe in this conspiracy theory. Getting emails that reference it? It's almost an every day thing...even though the odds of the NAU coming to pass are slightly less likely than a Dennis Kucinich/Rosie O'Donnell ticket winning every state in 2008.
Unfortunately, it's difficult to logically prove to people who buy into the NAU (Try to stifle a giggle here) that George Bush isn't going to merge the United States, Canada, and Mexico together to form one giant nation -- because there's no logic, consistency, or reasoning behind the theory. It's nothing more than the worst sort of black helicopter paranoia combined with naked ignorance about how our government works -- promoted by con men, nuts, and ignoramuses who think they'll increase traffic to their websites, raise money, or sell more books by convincing people that the North American Union is actually going to happen.
But, rather than just hurl more invective at the NAU wackos, let me give you a general rundown of the nuts and bolts of the theory (with heavy emphasis on the nuts).
If you buy into the North American Union conspiracy theory, you probably believe that:
* A think tank called the Council on Foreign Relations put out a report called "Building A North American Community." This was the blueprint for the North American Union.
* Additionally, a professor named Robert Pastor has supplied the intellectual firepower behind the NAU.
* George Bush formed the Security and Prosperity Partnership based on the report put out by the Council on Foreign Relations. It’s working to merge the US, Canada, and Mexico, to use NASCO to build a massive highway that runs from Canada to Mexico, and to replace the dollar with the amero. Bush's plan will come to fruition before he leaves office or alternately in 2010 (I know, that makes no sense, but just ignore it for the moment). Once that happens, you might as well learn Spanish and start to love ice skating because we'll all be taking orders from our new Canadian and Spanish masters!
Now, you may be thinking that this whole theory is a little foggy and short on specifics -- and you'd be right. It's sort of like handing someone some cake mix, a frying pan, and 4 pine cones -- and then saying you expect them to make clam chowder out of it in 30 minutes, but people are buying into the NAU by the thousands, so let's just take the theory as we find it.
* First of all, a Council on Foreign Relations task force did indeed put out a report called "Building A North American Community." However, the Council on Foreign Relations is not a government entity (nor do they even take stands on particular foreign policy issues as a group) and more importantly, if you read the report in question, you'll find that it doesn't call for a North American Union.
* Robert Pastor, whom I've previously spoken to on the phone about the NAU, is not a government employee, nor is he advising the Bush administration on this issue. Moreover, not only did he refer to the NAU as a conspiracy theory in our conversation, he has publicly said this,
"Each of the proposals I have laid out represent (sic) more than just small steps. But it doesn't represent a leap to a North American Union or even to some confederation of any kind. I don't think either is plausible, necessary or even helpful to contemplate at this stage."
* The Security and Prosperity Partnership is not based on the "Building A North American Community" report and it implicitly and publicly denies that it’s working on an amero or a North American Union. It's worth noting that the conspiracy theorists have never put forth any real evidence that the SPP is working on the NAU. It's just an assertion they've made without providing anything of substance to back it up.
* As to NASCO, it promotes business up and down a certain stretch of highway. It’s not a government entity, it doesn’t work for George Bush, it doesn’t "set transportation policy, build highways, or set up customs facilities," and it wasn’t formed to create any sort of North American Union.
* The idea of a combined currency, an amero, has been floating around since at least 1999. However, there is no evidence that the federal government is working on merging our currency with that of any other nation. Even if the federal government were inclined to do so, it would take a constitutional amendment to pull it off per Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, which gives Congress the power, "To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measure."
The only way another nation could be allowed to coin our money or regulate it, which is something that surely would have to happen with an amero, would be if we had a constitutional amendment. Given the unpopularity of that sort of maneuver, the chances of its occurring are as close to zero as it gets.
You can go on and on with examples like this that show how there is nothing to the NAU conspiracy theory while the proponents of the theory will babble on about Red China, NAFTA, immigration, or something else that doesn't prove their point. However, the bottom line is that it is simply impossible for the President of the United States to merge our nation with our neighbors without the knowledge and consent of the people, Congress, and the Supreme Court.
At a time when illegal immigration, carbon offset trading schemes, the international criminal court, the Law of the Sea treaty, and so many other real issues that may affect our sovereignty are being debated, it's a shame to see so many conservatives marginalizing themselves by tilting at an imaginary NAU windmill. With that in mind, once all you conspiracy theorists are done fretting about the Canucks and Mexicans teaming up to take over the world's only super power with George Bush's help, those of us back in the real world could use your help fighting the good fight for this country's future.