Believe it or not, I tried three times to respond to the well-reasoned comment made by Don to my previous post using this site‘s comment function (You can try it below). And each time my words spontaneously disappeared. Maybe it was operator error (highly likely with this operator) or maybe the computer just did not like what I was saying, but here‘s hoping Number 4 is a charm--and to be doubly sure, I am posting my reply to Don as this blog entry, which uses a whole different mechanism.
Anyway, what I have been trying to say is that I agree pretty much with everything Don said, which, if I am summarizing correctly, amounts to sheer wonderment at the fuss being made about trucks from Mexico daring to cross “our” border.
Turning to the Teamsters, let me just say right up front I happen to believe trade unions have just as much right to exist and to advance their agendas vigorously as do corporate entities. That being said, I don‘t speak for this union or any union or corporate entity for that matter so I can only imagine why the IBT is beating the anti-Mexico drum to a pulp. My guess is garnering publicity has something to do with it.
I agree that the Sierra Club, an organization I happen to have respect for, is sure barking up the wrong tree this time. And I will even go out on a limb and suggest that if Mexican carriers are to be successful operating here over the long haul, they‘ll want to run equipment--and employ drivers-- that will enable them to truly be competitive with U.S. carriers on service and not price alone.
Turning to CRASH and their ilk, I‘ve got to admit I‘ve been impressed by how strongly and forthrightly FMCSA Administrator John Hill (pictured below) has vouched for the safeness of the pilot Mexican carrier program--even going so for as to practically endorse it personally: “Look I‘ve been in law enforcement for 29 years - it‘s all I‘ve ever done - and I am personally committed to highway safety,” said Hill. “I would not be part of any program that wasn‘t committed to highway safety.”
As for the overall economic impact of letting Mexican fleets truck here and our fleets truck there (and the same applies in my book to every trucker and conducteur de camion in Canada!), I say again let the chips fall--or fly--where they may. That is what free trade is all about.
And remember, it cuts both ways-- or three ways in this case. You can be sure there are industries in Mexico and Canada that are not thrilled with having “their” borders fully opened to American competitors. What also comes to my mind is a quote made famous by John F. Kennedy: “A rising tide lifts all boats.”
We might also try asking ourselves if we are of the land of the free and the home of the brave, why pray tell are so many of us so afraid of a little competition?