When Mexico signed NAFTA, I was a professor of Physics at the Autonomous University of Puebla, in Mexico. To tell you the truth, I was happy. Now I am having second thoughts.
I believed in the hidden hand of the market. We will all be better off, if we just obey the rules in an even playing field. I think I am intelligent, so I thought, what can go wrong? Right? Wrong!
To begin with, I did not know, that only goods had free trade, people would have to ask permission to get to a land, where salaries are seven times higher in average. I was married to an American citizen, so I eventually received permission to legally work in the US.
The main miscalculation though, was that I had not realized, that there are simple rules, which everybody, but me, seems to know; for instance, ally yourself with somebody powerful, and you'll be ok.
The hidden curriculum: People just know, what to do to get ahead.
I haven't gotten ahead, but I hope I am wiser. All in all, then, neoliberalism is not all that it is cracked up to be.
I'll rather be here than in Mexico, in spite of American neoliberalism. The strand of neoliberalism there in Mexico, is more blunt, for people like the new member of Banorte, Carlos Hank Gonzalez, all they have to do is belong to a dynasty of wealthy individuals.