We're always suckers for interesting lines drawn on a map, so we cannot help but complement our earlier post on the radioactive waste transport routes to Yucca Mountain with this map of the “NASCO Corridor focus area.” It primarily shows existing transportation infrastructures linking the three NAFTA trade bloc countries. Collectively, they are sometimes nicknamed as the NAFTA Superhighway.
The term may also refer to a mythological highway that, according to The Nation, is imagined to “be four football fields wide, an expansive gully of concrete, noise and exhaust, swelled with cars, trucks, trains and pipelines carrying water, wires and God knows what else.” Gap jeans stitched together by little Indian kids? Nonunionized illegal immigrants? Lead-painted toys from China? Cocaine? CLUI tourists?
In any case, this other NAFTA Superhighway, as a matter of cultural geography, sounds incredibly interesting.
Through towns large and small it will run, plowing under family farms, subdevelopments, acres of wilderness. Equipped with high-tech electronic customs monitors, freight from China, offloaded into nonunionized Mexican ports, will travel north, crossing the border with nary a speed bump, bound for Kansas City, where the cheap goods manufactured in booming Far East factories will embark on the final leg of their journey into the nation's Wal-Marts.
In reading BLDGBLOG's post on urban infrastructure as a source of nightmares, one wonders if this is an actual nightmare, a real one collectively dreamt up by the Midwest. Each night, up and down I-35, people violently wake up from the same dream: a road “slicing through the heartland like a dagger sunk into a heifer at the loins and pulled clean to the throat.” They all wish they were dreaming about Freddy Krueger instead of a pack of migrant labors moving in the cover of darkness en route to harvest fields in Iowa.
Or more interestingly, it's the projection of East Coast progressives; it's what they think these people are having or should be having nightmares about.
Better yet, it's the wet dreams of NASCO, Wal-Mart and other multi-national business coalitions.