The Bookshelf, The Parlor, The Young Texas Reader, and the Monthly

The Texas Bookshelf is different from the The Texas Parlor, . The Texas Parlor carries "general" bookish information and non-book information and even different Texana news and notes of use to the bibliographically challenged and other nosey folks intersted in historical, literary, and cultural observations. Will's Texana Monthly may carry material from either blog, but extends itself beyond those, especially for longer compilations or treatments. The Monthly, the Bookshelf and the Parlor are all companions. So, is the Young Texas Reader which specialized on books and such things for the youngest to the teenagers.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

NAFTA and the Maquiladora - Miller

Image of book cover      Nafta and the Maquiladora Program:  Rules, Routines, and Institutional Legitimacy Edited by Van V. Miller.  El Paso:  Texas Western Press / University of Texas at El Paso, 2007.  Many graphs and charts, pbk, ISBN 0874043042, 182 pages.$33.00
If you know about such things, this volume would be a sort of "how to do a maquiladora."  Miller has collected 17 essays, most of which your humble reviewer doesn't comprehend - but business folks would.  They treat history, taxation, up-grading beyond the assembly level to the manufacturing and industrial levels, foreign investment, effects on border communities, unions, relationship with the Mexican government, etc.  The phrase "institutional legitimacy" was used and discussed often, but I didn't quite really understand it.
I found the historical treatment more palatable.  Did you know that the U.S. has been encouraging over-seas assembly-work of US supplied parts since 1930 via the Tariff Act of that year?  (Which was about the same time as the Mexican government's seizure of its foreign owned oil fields.)  In the meantime, the US officially acknowledged its reliance on Mexican labor with the Bracero program which ended in 1964.  The Mexican government took serious interest in maquiladoras in the 1960's and got subsequently ramped up after the peso devaluations in 1976, 1982, and 1994.  After the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement, the maquiladoras' role, which were originally limited to assembly of products using USA-manufactured parts, has been expanded to permit maquiladora systems to also manufacturing parts and the industrial efforts behind such.  Gee, such a deal!  A newer book would be interesting to consider how the present financial and employment crisis affects the maquiladoras.


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