ReasonTV Replay: Drew Carey on NAFTA

On the 20th anniversary of the North American Free Trade Agreement, it's a great time to revisit one of ReasonTV's earliest productions - Mexicans and Machines: Drew Carey on NAFTA.

Here is the orginal text from the June 28, 2008 video:

Campaign season is just getting warmed up, but looking back on the primaries we've already seen plenty of the usual fare: candidates shaking hands, hanging out at diners, and scaring voters about foreigners who are taking your jobs.
Sometimes the threat comes from China, Japan, or outsourcing to India. Today, it's NAFTA, the North American Free Trade Agreement-you know, all those Mexicans taking our jobs.
Senator Barack Obama joins the likes of CNN's Lou Dobbs in decrying NAFTA. So many free trade foes fret about cheap foreign labor, yet they rarely holler about competitors who will work for far less than any foreigner. Politicians don't pay much attention to it, but-from Terminator toIce Pirates-Hollywood films have been warning us about humanity's inevitable war against the machines.
"Now, think about it," says host Drew Carey. "How are we supposed to compete against something that doesn't get paid, doesn't get health insurance, and never goes on breaks?"
Today, we don't need human workers to book our travel, do our banking, or file our taxes. From factory workers to symphony conductors, countless workers are locked in battle with soulless job stealers known as computers, websites, and robots.
"No job is safe from the robot threat!" warns Carey. Of course, the warning is more than a little tongue-in-cheek. There's no need to take a sledgehammer to a robot, because, although technology shakes up the labor market, it ends up giving us higher living standards as well as more and better job opportunities.
Like technology, trade gives us more good stuff than bad-yet Americans are likely to cheer technology and fear trade. No doubt TV talkers and White House wannabes will keep stoking our fears of foreigners until voters and viewers stop buying it-or until robots snag their jobs, too.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • Almanian!||


  • Fist of Etiquette||

    If you are reading this, you are the resistance.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    United States Air Force Band does Christmas carol flash mob

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    *er, I guess technically it's an impromptu concert or smart mob.

    In any case, cue the War on Christmas/War on Secularism stuff

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    And the Cleveland Browns let their fans down one more time.

  • Kid Xenocles||

    There was that questionable pass interference call, but that's just the nature of football. I've seen that called against them before, and I've seen worse ones go uncalled against their opponents. It happens.

  • Fluffy||

    When you're rooting for the Patriots, but you STILL think the refs fucked over the Browns...that's not good officiating.

  • Knarf Yenrab (prev. An0nB0t)||

    Nothing says free trade like passing a regulatory trade law.

  • RishJoMo||

    Sounds like some pretty crazy stuff man.

  • ||

    Listen, and understand. That robot is out there. It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until it has your job.


Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online

  • Video Game Nation: How gaming is making America freer – and more fun.
  • Matt Welch: How the left turned against free speech.
  • Nothing Left to Cut? Congress can’t live within their means.
  • And much more.