Our cover story this week questions whether the promises made by proponents of the North American Free Trade Agreement prior to its ratification have been kept.

Authors Dave Devine and Molly McKasson conclude that thousands of Tucson jobs have been lost to Mexico.

It may be too early to draw a definitive conclusion about the merits of NAFTA. But it's not too early to point out that promises made by government and business proponents of a specific strategy are usually overly optimistic and tend to overlook the negative consequences for the typical citizen.

In fact, unintended consequences are the bane of planners everywhere. To be charitable, it seems we're never quite as smart as we think we are. To be uncharitable, it's usually them that's got that get, while the rest of us lose.

Here at the Weekly, we'll keep you informed of consequences--intended or unintended--and how they affect you. We'll give you the real Skinny and keep you current with Currents, but we'll also revisit issues, such as NAFTA, that may have dipped below the radar.

Let us know how we're doing. What issues would you like to see featured? We're most approachable by e-mail. Direct your thoughts to me at mparnell@tucsonweekly.com. I'll reply to all comments, given time.

More by Michael Parnell

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