« 이전계속 »
Hartley Act at present, in article 10 of that law, the concept of assertion of jurisdiction is contemplated with the requirement that the state body, which assumes jurisdiction on labor-management relations, will not do other than administer the Taft-Hartley Act.
So that this point that is brought in the popular party's proposals that is furnished in a very intelligent manner, that the jurisdiction be ceded, is within what is allowed actually, but it transfers to the Puerto Rico Labor Relations Board the administration of the Taft-Hartley Act, which the Labor Board of Puerto Rico and that of the United States condemns energetically.
Mr. Montalvo. We would recommend that the—the point that the Governor of Puerto Rico is making is accompanied by this transition of a mechanism that initially the local board will assume the administration of the Taft-Hartley Act, but with a transitional commitment so that that act will become a local act, approved by our legislature, with the participation of the working class. And we would be willing to consider it.
Voice Two. The problem that this would mean to the Puerto Rican workers is that the government of Puerto Rico pretends to go to Washington with the friends they have in Washington, such as Senator Kennedy, and approve anti-labor laws, and try to leave the workers in Puerto Rico orphaned of the rights they are entitled to as workers.
Voice. I would like to clarify. We have answered the question of the honorable, distinguished Senator with regard to the specific proposal of the popular party on this area. But, in our paper, we have been very clear that we are not considering at this time the options that are presented by the political parties.
The basic point of ours is that there must be a transfer of powers, and that once the sovereignty goes into Puerto Rico, Puerto Ricans in a transitional period will define these options and we will design them. Because our people are confused as a result of this colonialism process in which we exist.
And we are on our final destiny, but we have been clear on our paper, you have to yield and transfer powers that you exert colonial power on our country. Otherwise, we are talking of what happened in 1952 and what happened in 1967 which, regardless of the changes that appear here or there, has not altered the colonial relationship in dominion of the government of the United States and the people of Puerto Rico and the negative consequences this has had on our country, in terms of social deterioration.
And the paper of our colleague Antonio Alvarez on the agricultural aspects, not only are the farmers that are represented in jobs for Puerto Rican workers, but also in terms the distinguished Senator Johnston was concerned about: the products becoming dearer, and we are allowed to develop our own agriculture. We insist on the transfer of powers.
But, in the present situation, if we could develop our own agriculture, then we would have the capacity to create jobs in Puerto Rico and not force thousands of Puerto Ricans to have to go to the United States or to have to go to work in the farms of the United States and then, eventually, with this development, we could lower the cost.
Senator Mcclure. I wanted to address a comment to what Mr. Alvarez has said in his statement. I do not know that it requires a response. On page three of the statement, there is reference to the dumping of lower-quality eggs on the Puerto Rican market. We have had similar problems between the states on the mainland.
And I assume that what you are suggesting here is the practice of shipping eggs that will not meet standards in one area of our country into markets in another area of our country. And if that is the case, that is a problem which we confronted and stopped on the mainland.
Is that what you are referring to?
Mr. Alvarez. Really? What is happening in Puerto Rico is that we are getting not only eggs, but also other products.
Senator Mcclure. I was referring specifically to your statement that lower-quality eggs are imported from the United States. Is that because they do not meet the standards in the United States?
Mr. Alvarez. These are small eggs. And very small eggs do not have a market in the U.S.
Senator Mcclure. That is a different question.
Mr. Alvarez. I understand that, but let me get to that.
Senator Mcclure. I want to focus on the question of eggs for a moment, without getting into the other product questions for a moment. What is the problem with eggs? Are they bringing eggs to Puerto Rico that do not meet the standards of the United States?
Mr. Alvarez. They are bringing eggs that, when they get to our consumers, do not meet the highest qualities of what I consider fresh eggs in Puerto Rico.
Senator Mcclure. We ran into the problem, as I said earlier, that eggs that were graded at one point in the United States, and could not meet the quality in that market, were then shipped to other markets within the United States. We put a stop to that practice. I am just trying to find out if that is what is happening here.
Mr. Alvarez. The time that it takes those eggs to get here and the managing of those eggs in transportation and handling, it sometimes takes weeks before they get to the consumer. That is why we state that when they get to the consumer they do not meet the highest qualities.
Senator Mcclure. With respect to a couple of statements on page four of your prepared remarks: one, is that I am not familiar at all with the question that is with the subject in the second paragraph on that page of free access of produce not harvested in the United States and which are not a part of the diet of mainstream America. That is something I am going to investigate. It may be something that needs some attention, and we will certainly take a look at whether or not we can do something about it.
With respect to the statement further on in the same page, that studies conducted by the Agrilogical Laboratory of the Puerto Rico Department of Agriculture indicates significant levels of these pesticides. That is, Aldrin and DDT are being found on imported produce. I believe that would be a violation of existing law. It is an enforcement question, rather than a question of policy, if I would understand it.
I wonder if there is any comment from the Secretary of Agriculture on that question.
Mr. Laborde. What it means is this. Actually, Aldrin and DDT are forbidden from use in the United States or Puerto Rico. The same laws do not apply to other countries that still use it, sometimes for agricultural, sometimes for other uses. But we still have—you still permit a tolerance level, even though it cannot be used, we still have in the regulations a tolerance level.
And they come in with a tolerance level, and if they are still in that level, they can be introduced into the island or into the United States. We say that that is not fair. That if the use is not permitted, there should be no tolerance level.
Senator Mcclure. And you believe that would be a similar problem for all producers, wherever they are in the United States.
Mr. Bauza. Yes, sir.
Senator Mcclure. Thank you very much. And thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Chairman. Thank you very much, gentlemen. You have been very helpful. I appreciate it.
The next panel is Mr. Carlos Chardon, former Secretary of Education and Dr. Pedro Rossello, who is Vice President.
STATEMENT OF CARLOS E. CHARDON, FORMER PUERTO RICAN SECRETARY OF EDUCATION
Mr. Chardon. Yes, sir, my name is Carlos Chardon. I am an anthropologist by training. The first 20 years of my professional life were given to education and supporting cultural activities.
During the past eight years I have concentrated on business development within the private and public spheres. I am an employee of the Federal Government. My comments in no way reflect the views of the Small Business Administration which employs me, nor the Federal Government.
I would like to request that my testimony be accepted by the committee as soon as it is reviewed by the agency for which I work. The agency has reviewed this summary, which I have prepared. And I tried not to cover my basic testimony. In lieu of my testimony, I would like to ask some questions as a teacher so that we can derive some light and less thunder from these hearings and that we be able to make a less uninformed decision on our relation with the U.S. than we have made in the past.
Once before, we were consulted on a constitution which had as its basis a permanent union, which now we find out does not exist. I am very much worried about this, because we went through this exercise once before, and now we have independence as a possibility. If permanent union existed, it has ceased to exist by an act of someone; apparently it is by an act of Congress or something else. I am very much worried about this because this does something to the credibility of the U.S. Congress and does also something to the credibility of the people of Puerto Rico.
A question has also been raised about the citizenship of Puerto Ricans. You have noticed, of course, I am sure, that citizenship has become Caesar's wife. Now, her honor is at stake. And I appreciate the efforts of Senator Johnston to clear up this brouhaha. But the fact is that Caesar's wife is no longer clean. And this worries us. Because, as a teacher, I must go, if I were in the classroom, and explain this to my people.
This is something which is exceedingly serious. It is so serious that the Independence Party did propose the possibility of dual citizenship for a while, or at least accepted or tried to defend that point, or mentioned it.
I would like to make some observations, if I may. One of them is the Senate seems to favor placing responsibility for informing the voters on political parties. Puerto Ricans are not the wards of political parties; we are wards of Congress. I do not think that you can give political parties—or delegate this responsibility to them.
On the other hand, political parties cannot be excluded from the process. They are very much a part of the process. But political parties in Puerto Rico are not of the same nature as political parties in the Nation. And this is very important that we recognize.
So, the use of political parties is not the most adequate in this. I think there are enough honorable persons in Puerto Rico, perhaps just nine left, I guess, but you could have three of each party being involved in this on behalf of the U.S. Senate or on behalf of anyone. But the fact is that we must inform our people correctly.
I am sure you have already been exposed to the process of disinformation, which is very common. This is the nature of political parties. And I am very sure that the gentlemen know it as well as we do in Puerto Rico.
Puerto Rican parties are informers and disinformers. We must have the presence of the U.S. Congress and the U.S. Government informing correctly.
Of course, you will realize that my point of view is a very colonized view. It is the view of a person who is waiting for the U.S. to tell us what to do.
Today, another point is there are three options being discussed here. And I think this is very important. But there is a fourth option, and that is the unmentionable commonwealth as is.
When we go to vote, unless there is a specific requirement for a run-off, we will be maintaining commonwealth if we do not give a majority. This is very important. Because we may decide not to give a majority and we want to know what this option is. What is commonwealth as is? What are its possibilities? And what will happen?
I think this is exceedingly important. We should have an option to make a decision as well as not to make a decision. And in not making a decision, we should be quite clear as to what that means.
This is exceedingly important to us. Why is it exceedingly important? As you can tell by these hearings, we place very little faith in what parties tell us—political parties. On the other hand, if you see the legislative record, commonwealth has been whittled away for a number of years since 1952. It has been whittled away by Congress and it has been whittled away by the U.S. Supreme Court.
So we want to know exactly what is it that we are voting against and for.
If a majority is reached, and that majority is not enough for Congress to act, will that vote have eliminated the other formulas politically or legally? This is very important that we also hear it from you. Because this may set us on the road to a large majority or a very small majority. This is important for us.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Chardon follows; additional material submitted has been retained in committee files.l