The North American Union — the idea to integrate the political and economic realms of the United States, Canada, and Mexico — understandably makes American patriots and nativists nervous. They fear this plan will erase the borders and surrender U.S. sovereignty over to internationalist ideologues, multinational corporations, and the socialist regimes to our north and south.
This issue deserves more attention. What is missing from the discussion, however, is some appreciation of the historical context in which these plans are being considered. In meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Mexican President Felipe Caldern recently, President Bush was just the last U.S. president flirting with the idea to absorb the three nations into one. Looking at the last few hundred years, U.S. nationalists have indeed been the most determined advocates of a single nation on the North American continent.
We certainly see internationalist impulses in the Council on Foreign Relations, so ardent and outwardly optimistic a supporter of the scheme that the group speaks of "a new [North American] community by 2010." Could it be, however, that the American establishment expects to gain at least as much as the enemies of American sovereignty? It would be hard to otherwise explain why U.S. elites would want one North American Union, indivisible. Despite what many American patriots fear, the U.S. government, as global empire, has little intention of sacrificing its sovereignty to Mexico and Canada. In terms of trade, migration and certainly political influence, Washington doesn’t want to erase U.S. borders. It wants to extend them. And it always has.
An Idea Older Than American Independence
The idea that people of Anglo heritage would rule all of North America traces back to Elizabethan England and was deeply implanted in the minds of the New England Puritans by the late 17th century. The first Colonial charters affirmed the right to the entire continent, picking the Pacific Ocean as the western boundary of their jurisdiction.
In their early confrontations with what is now Canada, such as the 1654 Massachusetts attack on Acadia (then part of New France), colonists in the British Americas were fighting on behalf of London and its mercantilist interests and against the French, who also sought a North American empire. For the second half of the 17th century, New England and Acadia remained in conflict and in 1709, British naval forces helped American soldiers subjugate the territory. In 1711, they teamed up again against Canada, then also part of New France, but failed.
Such New World territorial struggles between London and Paris persisted for decades, with the American colonists frequently urging the British Crown to sponsor more American expansion to the supposed benefit of both the empire and its subjects. In such writings as Observations Concerning the Increase of Mankind (1751), Benjamin Franklin argued that as the American population continued to grow, it would inevitably need more living space, and that the British had a duty to assist in this expansion, whether by acquiring new territory, seizing it from the American Indians, or both.
During the Seven-Years War (1756—1763) between Britain and France, the British government established the precedent that it would come to the defense of its colonists along the colonial frontier. In 1760, as the balance of power appeared to be shifting toward an expansive British-American empire on the continent, Franklin wrote to his friend Lord Kames,
No one can more sincerely rejoice than I do, on the reduction of Canada; and this is not merely as I am a colonist, but as I am a Briton. . . . All the country from the St. Lawrence to the Mississippi will in another century be filled with British people.
In 1763, Britain acquired Canada and much of New France as war spoils. That year, the Royal Proclamation imposed a number of restrictions that repressed French Canadians, including measures against the French language and Catholic faith. While taking over Indian land in Canada and what is now Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin and part of Minnesota with the expansionist Quebec Act in 1774, Britain reestablished French civil law and Catholicism. This angered anti-Catholic Americans, most notably in Massachusetts, and contributed to their desire to revolt. They saw the "most execrable Quebec Act," as one Connecticut merchant put it, as a reversal of British gains in the Seven-Years war, an unforgivable betrayal to the benefit of Montreal.
A new nationalism took root, and American expansionists would no longer wish to conquer the land to their north on behalf of the British, but rather to drive out the British enemy and secure the land for the newly formed United States.
Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Canada
Canada was on the minds of the rebelling Americans. It was the only colony whose annexation to the United States was automatically approved in the Articles of Confederation, pending petition from the Canadians. The leaders in the American Revolution were virtually united in the goal of acquiring the territory. The first major American military operation in the Revolutionary War was the invasion of Canada in 1775. American forces invaded, hoping to get the French Canadians to join the United States in its revolution, only to be defeated at the Battle of Quebec in December. After more diplomatic attempts to get Canada to join the United States, the last hungry and defeated American soldiers finally left Canadian land by June 1776.
As for jeopardizing American independence for the sake of North American Union, the tradition traces back to the American Revolution. Americans like George Mason worried that peace would come too soon, before they could conquer Canada, and they were thus only emboldened by British peace feelers relatively early in the war. According to historian William Marina, “Peace might have been had in 1777—78, after the victory at Saratoga, and before the alliance with France, had the War Party in the American Coalition been willing to negotiate with the Carlisle Peace Commission, leaving out its continued demand for Canada.”
France, in its diplomacy with the American rebels, promised a free hand to the Americans to conquer Canada, inspiring such figures as John Adams to shift their affinity toward France. Adams now argued that "[a]s long as Great Britain shall have Canada, Nova Scotia, and the Floridas, or any of them, so long will Great Britain be the enemy of the United States. . . . [we] have the surest ground to expect jealousy and hatred of Great Britain. . . [and] the strongest reasons to depend upon the friendship and alliance with France. . . . The United States, therefore, will be for ages the natural bulwark of France against the hostile designs against her, and France is the natural defense of the United States against the rapacious spirit of Great Britain. " An alliance with France was thus required if the United States would ever secure Canada. However, in 1778, France would not go along with Congress’s attempt to launch a joint invasion of Canada to "liberate" it and annex it to the United States.
As the American Revolution ended, U.S. leaders continued demanding Canada in their negotiations with Britain, but aside from a few concessions such as the lower Great Lakes, U.S. expansionism lost out. The dream hardly died, however. In 1801 President Thomas Jefferson wrote to James Monroe, hinting at the inevitability of a vast Anglo-American Union (with little room, presumably, for the people already inhabiting the land):
However our present interests may restrain us within our limits, it is impossible not to look forward to distant times, when our rapid multiplication will expand it beyond those limits, & cover the whole northern if not the southern continent, with people speaking the same language, governed in similar forms, and by similar laws. . . .
(Under Jefferson, the United States would come close to reversing itself, pondering another alliance with the British and against the French once again to advance American expansion — but Jefferson decided against this once the Louisiana Purchase reinforced the idea of France as a natural ally against Britain. A couple years later, he contemplated an alliance with Britain against Spain to snatch Florida. It seems that nearly any entangling alliance was worth consideration, so long as it advanced the American frontier.)
The goal of annexing Canada, now divided into two provinces, became a major factor leading to the War of 1812. For the first couple of decades after the Revolution, many Americans had just assumed Canada would become part of the United States; it was only a matter of time and opportunity. This promise warmed Northern Democrats up to another war with the Crown. In the West there were eyes on Canadian agricultural land. Northwesterners wanted to drive the British out, suspecting that they were backing Tecumseh, the Shawnee leader who worked to rally together Indian tribes against American expansion. And many Southerners favored attacking Canada as retaliation against Britain over maritime grievances. The plot against Canada united Americans across regional lines. Jefferson assumed it would be a cakewalk, "a mere matter of marching," given the immense U.S.-born population in Canada. However, the 1812 American invasion of Canada did not result in annexation any more than the invasion in 1775 had, and for a while the expansionists were again disillusioned.
For a generation afterwards, not many opportunities to outright conquer Canada arose. However, the drive to dominate the Northern land was in the background of significant foreign policy events. In 1837, Northeasterners supported rebelling forces in Canada, provoking a Canadian raiding army to violate U.S. territory in New York. President Martin Van Buren avoided war — a heroic accomplishment, considering that he would have likely gotten away with one.
In the early 1840s, Upper and Lower Canada were united and then granted self-government by the British. To the west, there was once again a boundary dispute and potential excuse for war. What is now the boundary between Canada and the United States is set at the 49th parallel, but Americans had long envisioned it differently — the James Monroe administration in the early 1820s had sought all the habitable land in the Pacific Northwest. In 1844 the Democratic Party platform declared U.S. "title to the whole of the territory of Oregon" to be "clear and unquestionable." Unlike the Jeffersonians, who for all their expansionism had at least favored an independent Oregonian Republic, the neo-Jeffersonians famously bellowed, "Fifty-Four-Forty or Fight!" as they sought to annex all of what was then the Columbia District. In 1846, Britain and the United States set the Oregon boundary by treaty, but this left some matters unresolved, such as control over the San Juan Archipelago, which after a joint occupation was finally settled in favor of the United States in 1872.
Expansionists were far from satisfied by the 1846 agreement. Meanwhile, the pending admission of Texas had prompted many Northern expansionists to call for the annexation of all or part of Canada as a way to maintain balance between North and South in the Senate. And there was increasing demand to take other parts of Mexico.
A famous map from 1816, one of several by official U.S. cartographer John Melish, who tended to ambitiously draw the boundaries where he thought they would soon be, rather than where they were..
The Conquest of the United States by Mexico
For several decades before the War Between the States, expansionists in the North and South had made compromises to extend U.S. territory westward to the benefit of both regions. With the Antebellum population boom in the North, Southerners knew that the House of Representatives was a lost cause and so the Senate became increasingly crucial. Such political balancing acts, beginning with the Missouri Compromise in 1820, can partly be attributed to coy politicians trying to avoid national debates on such issues as slavery: as long as Americans were united in expansionist exploits, they could delay facing domestic controversies. But there was also just an old-fashioned lust for conquest in both North and South, combined with a somewhat uniquely American aim to extend the blessings and prestige of this great commercial republic, this Shining City on a Hill.
In the South, once Florida was incorporated into the United States, most of the focus was on Latin America. (Even the Jeffersonian Democrats had thought their wise and frugal government would swallow up Cuba one day.) And there was wide support for heading South of the border to grab Mexico, an idea that had gotten traction among expansionists at least by the time of the War of 1812.
By the 1840s American expansionists were shameless and vocal in claiming a natural right to California. The only question was how to snag it. President John Tyler originally favored Daniel Webster’s plan to secretly allow Britain control of a substantial portion of Oregon in exchange for diplomatic help in grabbing California — but the president changed his mind, deciding that the United States was entitled to all of Oregon. There would be no alliance with Britain to take California and its precious San Francisco harbor; it would have to be done differently.
Tyler’s successor, President Polk, bent on acquiring California, toned down the extremist demands for all of Oregon so as to better position himself for his other, more pressing exploit. In Texas, he continued Tyler’s policy of sending American agents to agitate for war between Texas and Mexico over the unsettled territory between the Rio Grande and Nueces Rivers. Americans since Jefferson had considered the Rio Grande to be the legitimate boundary under the Louisiana Purchase, although this would have absurdly meant that Mexican towns San Antonio, Albuquerque and Santa Fé were part of the United States as early as 1803.
The Texans, for their part, having rebelled against Mexico for independence, were uncertain that they wanted to join the American Union, but the prospect of assistance in claiming the land up to the Rio Grande won many of them over. Soon after he came to power, President Polk began offering deals to Mexico that he knew would be turned down, all the while concocting ways to spark open conflict over the disputed territory and allow the United States an excuse to wage war in the "defense" of Texas. In April 1846, as Americans closed in on the Rio Grande, the Mexicans were finally provoked into starting the fist battle of the war, most of which actually occurred on the south bank of the river. Meanwhile, the U.S. Pacific Squadron had standing orders to capture San Francisco and Monterey as soon as war broke out — and the determination to conquer California along with Polk’s disingenuous diplomacy made such war inevitable: Polk revealed his final decision to go to war in his diary on May 8, 1846, one day before news came to Washington that Mexico had, as hoped, fired the first shot.
There was some suspicion in the North that Polk was waging war for the purpose of expanding slave territory, but many Northern politicians wanted to avoid that issue for the time being; they, too, favored expansion for its own sake. Meanwhile, Southern expansionists weren’t too worried that some areas in Mexico weren’t fit for slavery. Robert J. Walker, born in Pennsylvania, a Mississippi Senator and a premier expansionist, had even argued that annexation of Texas would be a wonderful anti-slavery policy. Nationwide, Americans began wanting much or all of Mexico and, not having forgotten about Canada, perhaps the entire continent. The idea of a North American Union was as hot and as American as apple pie.
In the fall of 1847, Mexico agreed to an armistice, and to surrender the disputed territory, along with San Francisco as indemnification for its "aggression." Polk was furious. At a minimum, he also wanted Lower California along with Mexico’s other northern states. Finally, as a condition of the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, Mexico relinquished what is today California, Nevada, Utah, most of Arizona, and significant parts of Colorado, New Mexico and Wyoming. Present-day Americans would likely consider it unthinkable that the United States might not have manifested its destiny to run this territory. But the Treaty was actually a disappointment for many of the expansionists emboldened by the war. They had wanted the whole enchilada.
Through Utopia No Railway Ran
During the War Between the States, many Mexicans feared that Confederate independence would be followed by a Confederate conquest of the rest of Mexico and the establishment of slavery there. While some elements within the CSA certainly wanted to do this, others wanted good relations or even an alliance with Mexico to preempt its possible alliance with the Union. Confederate diplomat J.T. Pickett, for one, invoked both the carrot and the stick: He unofficially warned Mexico in 1862 that if it didn’t nullify its agreement with the Union to allow U.S. troops through Mexican territory, the Confederacy would invade and seize Tamaulipas. He also proposed, however, that if Mexico agreed to a treaty and free trade with the Confederacy, the latter would return California and New Mexico. Confederate Vice President Alexander Stephens, on the other hand, tried to get Union diplomats at the Hampton Roads Peace Conference to agree to a plan for a joint invasion of Mexico — even before completely settling that pesky little issue of Southern secession vs. American Union. Abraham Lincoln, in contrast, was more concerned with restoring the Union than with Mexico (or with slavery).
Once Lincoln forcibly established the principle that no one could peaceably leave the Union, Americans were soon enough again united, eager to extend this Lincolnian principle wherever they could. In 1866, just a year after Lincoln’s war, another bill to annex Canada was on the House floor and Americans decried the pending federation of Canada. Maine’s legislature, lusting over New Brunswick, referred to Canadian federation as a "violation of the Monroe doctrine."
Former Whigs, Republicans and others in the conservative Hamiltonian tradition were now pushing the expansionist agenda that they had, to their credit (and they don’t deserve much), been a little more reluctant to embrace than the Democrats in the years of Madison and Polk. (Federalists had decried the War of 1812 as "Madison’s War" and Henry Clay and even Abe Lincoln had some good critiques of aggressive designs on Mexico.)
In an April 22, 1870, Senate speech advocating the annexation of part of Canada, Senator Zachariah Chandler, who had been critical of Lincoln and President Andrew Johnson for being too soft on the South, personified America’s post-Civil War expansionist nationalism when he declared to the president, "The time has arrived or nearly arrived when we shall say to all the world, u2018Hands off from this continent; it is ours, and we intend to possess our own.’”
Throughout the late 19th century, Hamiltonian nationalists continued to see North America, at a minimum, as a potential experimentation lab for their neo-mercantilist projects. James Wickes Taylor, a New Yorker and Treasury Department official who pondered obstructing Canadian consolidation by annexing the Red River, had his own modest plan to build a Pacific railroad running from St. Paul into Saskatchewan.
Perhaps the most fascinating example of such corporatist infrastructure scheming can be seen in the story of Hinton Rowan Helper. Helper was a North Carolinian who had taken a Republican anti-slavery stand — he thought slavery debased white labor and wanted to send the blacks to Liberia. His views on the matter, quite compatible with much of the Free Soil ideology, had been distributed as Republican campaign literature. After the war he became dedicated to his bold vision for an intercontinental internal improvement he called the Three-America’s Railway, described and defended in his book of the same name. To create this railway, Helper favored a "concerted and concentrated action of the governments of an unbroken series of sixteen of the most stately republics that the wisdom and virtues of the noblest specimens of mankind have ever yet framed upon the earth." The railway would presumably begin as a transcontinental project and ultimately stretch from Chile to Alaska and commercially integrate all the New World, minus Brazil, whose "indescribably depressions and abasements" Helper attributed to "the vile priesthood of the Roman religion." While Catholics inhabited numerous other regions, Helper was particularly upset by the religion in Brazil, from which he thought Catholicism, along with monarchy and slavery, should be extirpated just as "Mormonism should be crushed out of Utah." Once again, we see the urge to unite all of North America not necessarily tied to an internationalist, multiculturalist agenda to include everybody.
Given the technological reality at the time, the Three Americas Railway was far more ambitious than the NAFTA Superhighway promoted by today’s North American Unionists. Indeed, Helper’s book, which features five authors all "strongly advocating free and fast and full and friendly intercommunication between" the sixteen republics, did not shy away from the grandness of their design. In the poem by Frank de Yeaux Carpenter, which the Three Americas Railway Committee selected as best poem on behalf of the railway proposal, we find this stanza:
Utopia’s great plan
Is more than realized in our completeness
For through Utopia no railway ran;
No steamship sailed its seas in strength and fleetness;
No telegraph embraced it in its span
NAFTA Superhighway, eat your heart out!
Telegrams and War Plans
Especially since the dawn of the 20th century, the history of U.S. relations with its neighbors has largely been a history of it meddling with, provoking and strong-arming them. In all instances the United States betrayed no intentions of abandoning its sovereignty or honor.
For one stark example, consider a little episode in 1914, during the Mexican Revolution. A Mexican commander apologized for having mistakenly dishonored and threatened American sailors on a whaleboat at Tampico. It was demanded that he raise the American flag over Mexico and give a 21-gun salute, but he refused. Woodrow Wilson asked Congress to permit an invasion of Mexico, even as American forces had already begun their six-month occupation of Veracruz during which the city would be shelled and 22 Americans and more than 150 Mexicans would be killed. This added to an atmosphere of mutual distrust culminating in more U.S. meddling in Mexico, Pancho Villa’s vengeful and petty but murderous invasion of New Mexico, and Wilson’s disastrous punitive expedition into Mexico in 1916 and 1917.
Now, Pancho Villa might have invaded, but was he a threat to U.S. sovereignty? No. In 1917, Germany sent the famous Zimmermann Telegram, offering an alliance to Mexico in the case that the United States entered the Great War. Despite a rocky history with Uncle Sam and Germany’s tempting promise that Mexico might reclaim its land taken in Polk’s war, Mexico turned down the opportunity after Congress declared war on Germany. Mexico’s president Venustiano Carranza realized there was no way Mexico could take on the United States, much less pacify the American population. U.S. sovereignty would again be spared. Phew.
However, the United States did not fully abandon its own goals of conquest, as can be seen in the U.S. war plans in the mid-1930s to attack Canada and Mexico. "War Plan Red" was drafted in case the United States went to war with Britain, whereby it would launch a full-scale invasion and occupation of Canada, complete with aerial bombings, poison gas attacks, and the capture of the nation’s mineral resources. The plan was "serious enough to be the object of the largest war games in U.S. history up to that time: 50,000 troops on a detailed dry run of the cross-border assault," according to Chris Floyd, who also discusses "War Plan Green," a plan to invade and occupy Mexico, secure its oil fields, and protect American economic interests there.
"There is a general misconception," Floyd explains, in anticipation of the obvious rejoinders, "that the U.S. military has always turned out plans like these to cover almost every possible contingency, every country; thus you’re bound to run across off-the-wall scenarios, such as an invasion of Canada, that would never be implemented. But this is just a myth. In fact, war plans at this level of detail are never drawn up unless there are very serious policy considerations behind them."
Every Twitch and Grunt
Since World War II, Britain and Canada have been U.S. allies and there haven’t been any overt hostilities or, to my knowledge, planned invasions. The United States has also avoided war with Mexico. But as the major power on the North American continent, the United States commands influence, often unwanted, over its north and south. "Living next to [the United States] is in some ways like sleeping with an elephant," Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau once reportedly said. "No matter how friendly and even-tempered is the beast, if I can call it that, one is affected by every twitch and grunt."
The U.S. maintains paternalistic control over both nations, and its determination to have international support in its foreign and domestic policies has sometimes strained relations. The war on Iraq has been hard for Canadians to swallow. The U.S. government has also internationalized its drug war, intimidating Mexico into abandoning plans to liberalize drug laws, forcing Canada to extradite victims of prohibition and announcing through its Drug Czar office that it would be "forced to do something" if the Canadian government ever legalized marijuana. In terms of economic policy, much of the supposed free trade and shared infrastructure rhetoric is seen as a cover for U.S. interests benefiting at the cost of Canadians and Mexicans. All the ongoing efforts to foster regulatory harmonization must be understood in light of the U.S. desire to dictate its own policy on intellectual property, pharmaceuticals, drugs, agriculture, trade, and diplomacy to its neighbors and indeed the rest of the world.
American paleoconservatives often complain that NAFTA has effectively made Americans more dependent on Mexico, which does not respect our limited-government political traditions, but it is interesting to consider how some Mexicans might see it. America’s hypocritical agricultural subsidies and environmental policies, coupled with NAFTA trade management, have meant more poverty for many Mexicans. Costly ethanol subsidies — a sure distortion of the free market — have raised the price of tortillas by more than 50 percent in some parts of Mexico. U.S. farm policy has hurt Mexican farmers and consumers. As Michael Pollan has written in the New York Times,
By making it possible for American farmers to sell their crops abroad for considerably less than it costs to grow them, the farm bill helps determine the price of corn in Mexico . . . . The flow of immigrants north from Mexico since Nafta is inextricably linked to the flow of American corn in the opposite direction, a flood of subsidized grain that the Mexican government estimates has thrown two million Mexican farmers and other agricultural workers off the land since the mid-90s. (More recently, the ethanol boom has led to a spike in corn prices that has left that country reeling from soaring tortilla prices; linking its corn economy to ours has been an unalloyed disaster for Mexico’s eaters as well as its farmers.) You can’t fully comprehend the pressures driving immigration without comprehending what U.S. agricultural policy is doing to rural agriculture in Mexico.
Such pressures, along with those caused by other American socialist phenomena such as the housing boom and the welfare state, have attracted illegal immigrants who wouldn’t otherwise come in a market setting. But do NAFTA and North American solidarity guarantee a place for these migrants in the United States? According to Reuters, “Canada and Mexico have been frustrated that growth in trade among the partners to [NAFTA] has been held back by the U.S. crackdown on the border following the September 11 attacks in 2001.” With the United States always wanting to call the shots, we might understand why Mexican nationalists would be concerned about further transcontinental integration.
And of course the United States intends to call the shots. If it wanted true free trade and open borders, as some fear, it would not need to beat around the bush: it would just have to stop controlling imports and shut down the immigration offices. This is not its goal. It does not want to cede control of anything. Phony free trade agreements, immigration plans with trillion-dollar price tags, drug reimportation bans — these are the marks of a government wishing to maintain and extend its control, not let go. It aims to let goods and people in and out at its discretion. It claims to favor free trade even as it erects barriers, blockades nations, and never thinks of just unilaterally dropping its tariffs.
One might concede that the United States can be a nuisance, a hypocrite, even a bully, but wonder if there is any modern threat posed by the United States to Canadian or Mexican territory. Carlton Meyer has warned against the North American Union as a de facto attempt by U.S. interests to seize Canada. But why would this be to the benefit of U.S. interests? "Few Americans know that Canada is the leading source of imported energy to the USA," explains Meyer. "They are the biggest source of foreign oil, natural gas, uranium, and even electricity. As energy costs recently doubled, Canada is becoming wealthy, at the expense of its southern neighbor. This has weakened Canadian support for a NAU. The obnoxious foreign policy of President George Bush has nearly derailed it."
But would the United States ever really want to compromise Mexican sovereignty? Depending on how it was sold, even the less interventionist nationalists might be brought on board. In a backlash against Mexican illegal immigration, paleoconservatives have implied that even military action against Mexico proper might eventually be warranted. Ryan McMaken has critiqued this paleocon position, pointing out that "advocating the invasion of Mexico City if the Mexican government doesn’t agree with his policy preferences is curious for one who claims to support a restrained foreign policy." Indeed, it would seem that some red-blooded conservatives would welcome Bush’s plans to incorporate Mexico under U.S. domination, so long as it was by military force. (When discussing the importance of national boundaries trumping market economics and individual liberty, after all, they rarely admit that to the extent that nations can own land, a Mexican acquisition of the Southwestern United States would be no more intrinsically illegitimate that the initial U.S. acquisition of that land from Mexico.)
Now, don’t get me wrong. I don’t want to be ruled by Mexican or Canadian politicians, and nothing of the sort can be ruled out 100%. Times do change, and the U.S. is indeed weakening. Of course, the best solution to Mexican or Canadian influence over the U.S. government is the same as it was in the case of the Communists: Reduce the power of the government, ideally to zero, and replace it with the institutions of private property, liberty and free association.
But ultimately, as centuries of American imperial ambition show, we U.S. citizens do not have to dread that we will awake one day, finding ourselves suddenly living under an internationalist, interventionist regime with no respect for national boundaries, free markets or the rule of law. We need not fear a North American Union arising and dominating us because it already exists and we already live under it. It is called the United States. If anyone should fear their national identity being sacrificed on the altar of such a Union, they are the Canadians and Mexicans, who have been pushed around by the actual Union for the better part of its existence, a Union that has repeatedly invaded their lands with the pretentious and undying aspiration of one day ruling the entire continent.
- Jeff Broadwater, George Mason, Forgotten Founder (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2006).
- James Morton Callahan, The Diplomatic History of the Southern Confederacy (New York, Greenwood Press: 1968).
- Hinton Rowan Helper, The Three Americas Railway (St. Louis: WS Bryan, 1881).
- William Appleman Williams (ed.), The Shaping of American Diplomacy (Chicago: Rand McNally & Company, 1956).
- Richard W. Van Alstyne, The Rising American Empire (New York, W.W. Norton & Company, Inc., 1974).
And thanks to Mark Brady for some reading suggestions.
Anthony Gregory [send him mail] is a writer and musician who lives in Berkeley, California. He is a research analyst at the Independent Institute. See his webpage for more articles and personal information.