Friday, October 05, 2007

Despite What President Arias Might Want You to Believe: Why Costa Rica Might Not Need CAFTA After All, and Why It May Be a Bad Deal for the Average Co

"Collective suicide."

"It was what Costa Rica President Oscar Arias has publicly predicted for his country if its good citizens don't ratify the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) , which will be put to referendum this Sunday. "Let's not close the door. Let's not cut our wings. Lets not deny our young people this challenge, " was the impassioned, almost moralistic appeal that Costa Rican economist Alvaro Cedeno made in the country's national newspaper La Nacion. This hortatory, if not establishmentarian advice on the part of Arias and the Costa Rican academic, is reminiscent of President Clinton's appeal to Democratic legislators in 1994 when he urged them to vote for NAFTA. Just as the pro-free trade bloc bought NAFTA by throwing millions of dollars to promote the enactment of it, a comparable fortune has been spent in Costa Rica to guarantee that no October surprises take place on Sunday."

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