January 1, 2013

The War on Drugs

Anti-Gnostic writes in the comments:
It’s not that the War on Drugs creates criminals (other than as a marginal phenomenon). It’s that the War on Drugs puts the trade in the hands of criminals. If drugs were the root cause, college campuses would be filled with the same kinds of violent turf battles, gun fights, beheadings, etc. When was the last time anybody had to risk their life buying marijuana in a criminal ghetto? 
The War on Drugs needs to be ended in order to deprive criminals of their funding. Criminals have very few sustainable talents outside of violence and intimidation. We’ve legalized gambling, enabled payday/pawn/title loans, and nobody’s getting kneecapped anymore. We’ve decriminalized alcohol and enacted sunshine laws for municipal government. (We also started handing out municipal contracts to “minorities” instead of guys whose last names end in vowels, but that’s another thread). What are all the guidos doing now? They’re on disability and telling their higher IQ offspring to go into real estate or outside sales, which is a hell of a lot better than beating up shopowners and hijacking trucks.

My main concern would be that legalization might wind up unleashing the full power of American marketing and logistics on selling drugs. For instance, Steve Wynn and Donald Trump are a lot better at promoting gambling than Bugsy Siegel was (although they are still geographically restricted).

Walmart could sell drugs a lot cheaper than drug dealers can. 

By way of analogy, in making loansharks more or less obsolete over the last generation, did we unleash the subprime bubble? Angelo Mozilo was a lot better at promoting high interest loans than Rocky Balboa's old boss was. 

This need for a legal but semi-crippled market for dangerous drugs doesn't seem like an impossible problem to solve, just a difficult one.

223 comments:

1 – 200 of 223   Newer›   Newest»
Anonymous said...

"My main concern would be that legalization might wind up unleashing the full power of American marketing and logistics on selling drugs."

But we don't see cig and hard liquor ads on TV.

It's music and movie culture that promotes drugs... as with guns as fun culture.

Anonymous said...

"By way of analogy, in making loansharks more or less obsolete over the last generation, did we unleash the subprime bubble?"

Unrelated. Bubble would have happened regardless of rules on loan sharking. Loan sharking was always small potato. Housing bubble was loan whaling. It involved huge powers.

Anonymous said...

I get my magic mushrooms from peaceful hippies. They live in rural Northern California and Colorado and ride a circuit. Judging from the cars, not very profitably. A few times also from store clerks in Amsterdam, where they are sold labeled from a refrigerator case.

Frankly there really was nothing that would stop me from getting ahold of them. The basic description of their effects I found online sold me right away. In addition to being safe and non addictive, they magnified my appreciation of art, music, and architecture.

Michael Ard said...

The so called war on drugs--never a war in fact--did manage to stigmatize cocaine use. We are actually seeing declines in coke use now.

Crack was a root cause of violence. It still is in Brazil.

Legalization will lead to more usage; we are seeing this with marijuana right now. Already states that legalized it for medical purposes are getting buyer's remorse!

Michael Ard said...

The war on drugs has stigmatized cocaine usage, which is down.

Crack was a root cause of crime. Heroin often is too.

Marijuana usage is rising because of legalization for medicinal use. Who could have seen that coming?! Now states are getting buyer's remorse already.

Even with legalization, you will have to have a "prohibition regime" of sorts: what would be the legal age of usage? Who would not be permitted to use it at any time (cops? bus drivers?) Wouldn't you still prohibit some drugs, like meth?

Matt Parrott said...

Common law has our back on this issue with a handy thing called the "misdemeanor".

A misdemeanor which isn't actively pursued has a punishment which is too harsh for the corporations to actively pursue and yet too soft to create an opportunity for organized crime networks. It optimizes it so that harmless marginal entrepreneurs (read: losers) dominate the market.

The complete legalization of drugs is unacceptable, because their inclusion in the public square is unacceptable. Whether they've taken the time to realize it or not, nobody but the most rabid libertarians and burned out drug activists actually think it's a good idea to allow people to flagrantly consume street drugs in broad daylight.

That's assuming we actually want to solve the problem. The WASPs of yesteryear came up with the War on Drugs as a handy encrypted way of targeting deviant minority youths. Because they were being duplicitous, they never explained what they were doing to the next generation of conservatives. Younger people, even conservative ones, are left scratching their heads assuming that the draconian penalties and massive dragnet pursuit is all one gargantuan case of reefer madness hysteria.

LemmusLemmus said...

"My main concern would be that legalization might wind up unleashing the full power of American marketing and logistics on selling drugs. Walmart could sell drugs a lot cheaper than drug dealers can."

That could be taken care of by taxation. Gary Becker discussed all this long ago. If memory serves, he recommended taxation also be designed to adjust for loss of stigma; you could do the same to balance the increased attractiveness due to marketing.

Anonymous said...

http://nfs.sparknotes.com/

I can finally read and understand the bugger.

Ross said...

If legalised drugs were subjected to the same kind of taxation and advertising restrictions as tobacco then they needn't become too cheap and available.

Anonymous said...

And isn't music and movie culture part of American Marketing?

Carrie's necklace in Sex in the City? Manoholo Blanik (spelling whatever)

Seriously, movies ARE marketing.

Bostonian said...

Legalizing all drugs, like open borders, may be incompatible with the welfare state. Should people getting high also be getting food stamps, unemployment benefits, and other transfers? I realize that many do now, but legalizing drugs would reduce the cost of drugs and increase the number of drug users.

OTOH, if there are drugs people can use while still being productive, the above argument loses force. It's my impression that there are marijuana users who can hold down jobs.

Steve worries about unleashing marketing, but cigarettes are legal while their marketing is heavily restricted, and they are taxed heavily. The same could be done with marijuana.




Anonymous said...

Large, legit corporations have replaced former mafia businesses such as casinos and trash removal.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know - is it an urban myth that names like Acapulco Gold are copyrighted by tobacco firms against some future date of legalisation?

I wonder how companies would get on selling herbal marijuana given its carcinogenic effect, let alone its effect on mental stability. In Europe most cannabis sold is the genetically modified, high-THC 'skunk' which seems to cause mental health issues ('cannabis psychosis') with a minority of young users. Would not a large multinational be deluged with lawsuits ?

(same applies to a lesser extent to amphetamine and cocaine)

Jeff W. said...

I would approve of legalization if each drug user would sign a contract saying that he will assume full responsibility for his own financial support if he becomes incapacitated and/or unemployable due to drug use, and that he will not, under any circumstances, become a government dependent.

Similarly, prostitution could be legalized if all prostitutes and their customers would sign a contract saying that they will bear all financial responsibility for any sexually-transmitted diseases.

Even if this were done, the community should discourage drug use and prostitution by constantly preaching against it. It should be illegal to advertise drugs and prostitution.

Libertarians approve legal drugs and prostitution because of their goofy idolatry of freedom, which puts freedom ahead of the good of the community.

Liberals approve of legalization because it enlarges their therapeutic/welfare state.

People of good sense who care about their communities are generally opposed to legalization.

Ryan said...

Steve, what do you think will be the result of pot legalization on the black neighborhoods? I'm referring only to the removal of the main source of income for millions of young black men.

I assume they will shift out of necessity to selling something that is illegal, that has a profit margin.

heroin? meth?

Anonymous said...

Steve. The solution is to convert some existing bars to legal sale and consumption points for drugs but keep drugs illegal outside the bars

Bars already have infrastructure for keeping minors out. Prohibit advertising. People addicted to drugs wil spend time in the bars getting lit up but there will be very few illegal pushers trying to addict new people

Dana Thompson said...

If criminals lose drugs as a funding source, what will they turn to next, to recover their lost income? Burglary, auto theft, carjacking, kidnapping? As it is, they have a pleasing habit of killing each other, and perhaps drug dealing is a desirable way of keeping our criminals occupied.

Anonymous said...

"My main concern would be that legalization might wind up unleashing the full power of American marketing and logistics on selling drugs."

The solution: Make the recreational drug market a government monopoly. We'll end up with licit but inefficient drug manufacturing, distribution, and sales. After all, already government is essentially a mechanism for legitimating crimes such as violence, extortion, and theft; or as Max Weber put it, government is a "monopoly on the legitimate use of violence".

Anonymous said...

There too much money to be made and the gangs and drug cartels would still be involved they would make the business legalimate. Whether its selling sex or drugs the black market elements are still there if you legalized it. Countries that have done it still have the black market element as well.

Anonymous said...

Walmart could sell drugs a lot cheaper than drug dealers can. 

You mean like beer?

The real issue is:

Marijuana smells bad and is used by demographic groups people hate. So it is made illegal.

Opium is very unsightly leading to opium dens and zonked out people staring aimlessly in public. So it is made illegal.

Meth is not really illegal as Ritalin and Adderral are recommended for children. If you search on meth you will find most complaints are about its manufacture with a few meth mouth stories thrown in. Meth may be illegal for the same reason steroids are, to maintain a level playing field at work.

Of course enforcing drug laws is the single best job in law enforcement so that might explain some things.

dearieme said...

Another shrewd and unusual comment from you, Mr iSteve. Happy New Year.

Jack T. said...

Steve, you bring up a good point that underscores a fatal flaw in legalization ideas- the willful corruption and crumbling of society, basically the idea of just accepting that your country is going to go to rack and ruin so lets at least give everyone some lube. Drug laws were dramatically weakened, and prostitution was legalized in the Netherlands- is their country better off for it? Hard to say so.

A better stance is the opposite route- crack down super hard on it, and get rid of the dominant liberal thought for drugs being cool, free use of drugs, etc. Singapore cracks down very hard on drugs, particularly at the dealer level (you can get the death penalty for it), and as a result, they just don't have the problems with it that we have here.

I think Americans are against the idea of that here, because their friends or they themselves have done drugs, or fear that, too easily, their teenage kid could mix with the wrong crowd and get themselves into an impossibly deep mess.

That is largely because there currently is high use. There has been such a push in the US to view drug use as 'cool'. But what would happen if there wasn't this drive for drug use as being 'cool'? Pot may be readily accessible to their kids currently, but what would happen if it were not easy at all for people to get? What if you combined these two- poor access, and low demand?

Their teenage son simply wouldn't want to be associated with it, because he thinks of drug users as filthy scrawny losers who can't get it up and fuck up their lives, instead of the cool crowd, and if for some reason he was in the weird minority in that parallel universe who did desire it, he would either be scared to death to try because of the stiffness of the laws (much like everyone would like to punch someone in the face but most people hold back because they don't want to risk being arrested on assault charges), or if he lacked that level of common sense, he would still find it extremely hard to gain access, because nearly all the would-be dealers have been scared away from the widely publicized executions of people who are in possession of significant amounts of drugs.

The bottom line is that this works, its been tried in the real world, and works better than legalization does.

Corn said...

"We’ve legalized gambling, enabled payday/pawn/title loans, and nobody’s getting kneecapped anymore. "

Yes. But as someone asked once at another website, was it worth it? We have payday loans and states allow higher rates of interest, but maybe we were better off letting a few hundred or thousand guys get kneecapped every year instead of bringing that crap into the greater economy of hundreds of millions of people.

As for the War on Drugs.... I'm torn. Many of the criticisms of the War on Drugs are perfectly valid. The militarization of the police, checkpoints, erosion of civil liberties/right of sober citizen to be left alone etc. But drugs are corrosive to the individual and society.
I don't want the drug war continuing in its current form... but I also believe to end it would be cultural surrender.

William Boot said...

Oddly, all the legal gambling and high interest loans haven't destroyed the illegal market for such things.

In the US, illegal gambling is thought to be about a $150b market (compared to about $250b for illegal drugs) and loan sharking is thought to be nearly that large.

Hard to tell for sure, of course, but those are guesses. Here's an interesting web site that tracks it all as best as possible: http://www.havocscope.com/

Anonymous said...

Well, this is off topice but some of the biggest business in California is big agricultural they make more money than Silcon Valley or Hollywood yet no know talks about their wealth. There is large corporate farming in Ca and the they use cheap immirgant labor more than anyone but the conservatives complain about Silcon Valley or Hollywood the highest percentage usage of illegal immirgants in California is the inland counties that are into agricultural.

Anonymous said...

I believe that drug legalization would increase the public health problem of drugs with a trade-off of a decrease in the funding of criminal gangs. We have seen this with alcohol. The public health impact of alcohol consumption is staggering, however there is a small criminal footprint associated primarily with residual prohibitions. It's tough to fund a large criminal organization as a bootlegger or moonshiner these days. I believe I can live with this situation for drugs as well.

BTW, the liquor and drug taxes should be set at levels adequate to publicly fund rehab.

Anonymous said...

War on Alcohol? Liberal/Progressive.

War on Smoking? Liberal/Progressive.

War on Drugs? Liberal/Progressive.

War on Terror (aka Bring Democracy, Capitalism and Feminism to the Middle East)? Liberal/Progressive.

War on Poverty? Liberal/Progressive.

War on Rape? Liberal/Progressive.

Liberals/Progressives are sure War-Mongers.

foseti said...

My take on the drug war is that it's a response to the Warren Court. If you'll indulge . . .

The Warren Court - for all intents and purposes - made good police work and reasonable prosecutions impossible.

Fortunately for those of us who aren't criminals, criminals like drugs. Criminalizing drugs then essentially un-does the Warren Court's decisions.

I read my neighborhoods police report every day. It's amazing how many non-drug-related crimes are "solved" when someone is arrested for drug use/possession/etc.

My main concern with legalization is that it would be impossible to arrest or convict anyone of real crimes.

Stirner said...

The solution is easy: Nationalize the drug industry instead of legalizing it. Make government distribution of pot and heroin a government monopoly. That will stifle innovation and creativity, and we can make going to purchase drugs as glamorous and appealing as a trip to the DMV.

Alexei Sadeski said...

Harder drugs become more popular when their softer alternatives become cumbersome.

Ban alcohol, and people gravitate towards hard liquor instead of beer.

Ban drugs, and people gravitate towards dangerous meth and heroin instead of less dangerous cocaine and opium and morphine.

The older, softer alternatives could make a comeback. Gone may be the intravenous consumption of heroin, in favor of smoking or eating opium. Gone may be meth, in favor of ephedrine, cocaine, or even coca tea.

The Anti-Gnostic said...

Thanks for the shout Steve. I think that was a comment from Marginal Revolution but I haven't bothered to find it.

The idea of a "legal but semi-crippled market" sounds like a workable concept. I don't want heroin dealers setting up shop across the street from high schools, but professionally packaged and sold marijuana doesn't frighten me.

The kind of thing I'd like to see explored (but won't be) is if marijuana use could displace alcohol on Indian reservations with salutary effects.

Anonymous said...

Unleash the Kraken!!

Anonymous said...

Often clever, seldom wise, these libertarians.

countenance said...

I get the feeling that drugs are going to win this drug war.

It's like you said, S.S.: Do the wrong thing and we'll send the wrong message to the wrong people. This honkey writing this comment, 35 years old and low 140s IQ, doesn't matter a whit what's legal and what's illegal, because I have enough sense not to put anything poisonous in my mouth regardless of its legal status. But low IQ teenage NAMs...different story.

I get the feeling that the ideal paradigm will involve summary confiscation of "possessing" amounts, i.e. small amounts, of illicit dope, whether from teenagers or everyone.

Anonymous said...

My main concern would be that legalization might wind up unleashing the full power of American marketing and logistics on selling drugs
Yes.
And the permanent iq and memory damage it does to young people will hurt NAMs in the area that they are already behind in - Education.

Peter Hitchens (the more sober, prudent brother of the late C.) writes extensively about the mental damage cannabis does to people - if some 'big corporation' were pushing a drug like this, lefties would be up in arms..

It would be interesting to see if big tobacco started to grow and market cannabis how the left would turn on it - since big tobacco are conservative, southern ,and non-scots-irish (unlike the liquor industry which never seems to be the target.. hmm who owns seagrams?)

Thayil B. said...

By all means, lets legalize drugs, and while we're at it, legalize murder for hire, armed robbery, and embezzlement- after all, there are people who want to do these things too- why should their freedom to do what they want regardless of the negative repercussions on society be impinged?

Or better yet, why not just let kids cheat on tests? This is a 'victimless' crime.

Anonymous said...

http://www.amazon.com/Devils-Candy-Anatomy-Hollywood-Fiasco/dp/0306811235

bbartlog said...

Forbid marketing (as for cigarettes). That's an easy law to enforce, for the most part. Should keep the corporate pushers in line.

Mangan said...

If drugs were the root cause, college campuses would be filled with the same kinds of violent turf battles, gun fights, beheadings, etc. When was the last time anybody had to risk their life buying marijuana in a criminal ghetto?

I don't know. Where do the campus marijuana dealers get their supply? It seems to me that just upstream of the campus in the supply chain, you can find plenty of violence.

Dutch Boy said...

We could imitate Portugal, which has decriminalized drug use (but not sales)and refers users to therapy rather than the hoosegow.

Chicago said...

One problem with most discussions about legalization or decriminalization is that all the involved substances are lumped into one category, that of 'drugs', without making any differentiation between them. They are not all the same. Pot could probably be tolerated within a framework of appropriate circumstances of usage similar to that of booze. But cocaine/crack? It's a toxic substance; users who overindulge can become hallucinatory and psychotically paranoid after a three or four day binge. Ditto with Meth. Both destroy the user's appearance and health after a few years of heavy use. Opiates such as morphine/heroin are addictive and induce withdrawal after regular use. Guaranteed a regular supply through a pharmacy addicts could exist their entire lives with this dependency, like insulin users do, but is this all that desirable? The cartels and assorted crime groups will still be there to provide whatever's desired but illegal; once organized they won't just dissolve and go away.

Anonymous said...

So if a person could buy drugs for cheap from Wal-Mart, then they wouldn't need to commit robberies to support their addiction. How is this bad?

Anonymous said...

I want to see drugs legalised. Not because I care either way, but because it would utterly kneecap so many juicy targets.

Do you really think the black ghetto thugs will be able to compete with the major corporations - or hell, your friendly neighbourhood Korean? The War On Drugs, for all the black whining, has given a lot of black men the only employment they'll ever have.

And who knows, they might even be forced to confront the factors that make them unemployable - immigration, anyone? (Hey, stop laughing! I mean it!)

But what gives me great joy when it comes to obnoxious anti-anti-drug nuts, is what will automatically happen to personal freedoms. Potheads in particular seem to assume that it'll be legalised and that's that. I just want to see the looks on their faces when it's subjected to the same rules and regulations as alcohol, guns, cigarettes, fast food etc.

I want to hear their arguments, apart from self interest, that makes their pet cause so special. A lot of the potheads I know, in the million to one chance they consider this, seem to dog whistle that they should get speshul treatment because they're so smart and middle class and white. Which is an interesting argument, sure, but I want them to state it out loud.

Svigor said...

The real problem is that the gov't makes a lot more money off the drug war than it would off of taxation. I couldn't find anyone really exploring this hypothesis so I did one of my back of the envelope ones for MJ a few years back.

MJ is a crop, not much different from other commodity crops. I suppose the best analogy would be tobacco. Except consumption is a fraction of tobacco consumption.

If you compare how much the gov't gets in MJ interdiction money to how much it would probably get by taxing legal MJ, you can see why it's still illegal. And if you think through the politics, you'll see why the feds will probably not back off of states that have legalized it, at least not long term.

And it's not just the money, it's the power. A bigger drug war means more gov't jobs, more legal authority, more materiel, more everything; more juice.

PN said...

Legal but semi-crippled... doesn't this describe the current situation with tobacco? How viable is that situation as a model for the treatment of currently illegal drugs?

Svigor said...

Also, is there a magic bullet in "semi-crippled"? The more crippled it is, the more attractive it is to criminals who bypass the crippling (e.g., cheaper because they don't pay the exorbitant tax, available on Sunday, whatever).

The country is awash in illicit scrips.

Anonymous said...

why has drug used increased?

hardly said...

didnt the opium wars in china settle once and for all what happens when a populace gets hold of narcotics on a large scale? marijuana is the tip of the iceberg.

Anonymous said...

Silly comments by a downright silly man.

The point is that drug addiction will always but always attract the trashy/inadequate section of society - it's not the narcotics in themselves that are the problem (ie chemical compounds, alkaloids etc sitting in chemist's bottles), it's the trash (and I do mean trash) who take them that are the problem, the type of person who no respectable person would even let in through the back gate.
The problem is trash people and the effect of alkaloids on trsah people which makes them even trashier people.
I realise that there are 'good' druggies out there, whom I don't wish to offend, but unfortuantely in this case it really is a case of the rubbish ruining it for everyone.

DirtyTricks said...

"But we don't see cig and hard liquor ads on TV."
Silly you. They are either banned, regulated or heavily self-regulated. Why self-regulate? To avoid the heavy hand of government regulation.

Should hard drugs ever be legalized. Hell no!
Go talk to parents of teenagers, guidance counselors, teachers, etc.
Drugs are openly available at even small town high schools and probably every college. Potent pot, pot laced with PCP, coke, meth, heroin, and the absolute worst!!! are PRESCRIPTION PILLS. Especially opiates. Vicodin and Percocet.
Some kids are chewing fentanyl pain patches. They cut patches into little pieces called chiclets. Fentanyl is 80 times more potent than morphine.

james said...

Yep. Drug use would go way up, with or without legal ads. And that will take down a lot of other people along the way: family members suffering because of addicts. We've already got way too much of that problem.

And I don't think the big boys would sit by and let their money stream dry up without doing something. Just imagine what they'd branch into. They'll probably do it eventually anyway, just sooner rather than later.

pat said...

I use medical marijuana but I'm not particularly if favor of immediate legalization.

As a political conservative I'm suspicious rapid public policy changes.

I have a simpler solution.

I suggest we first of all modify the Controlled Substances Act classifications.

There are five levels of drugs that need to be controlled. The first call is for the most serious drugs like heroin. The second class is for nearly as dangerous drugs like cocaine. The third is for drugs like hydrocodone (the most abused prescription drug). The fourth is for drugs like Xanax. The fifth is for relatively safe drugs like codeine cough syrup.

Marijuana has some risk. It's clearly good for some ailments like combating the nausea side effects of cancer drug therapy. But it may be harmful elsewhere. Nobody ever died or got addicted to marijuana, so where should it be classified? Up in class one with heroin and the other drugs that steal the soul or down in the fifth class with cough syrup?

Currently marijuana is in class one. That classification can't be defended. There is no scientist who will argue that marijuana is as dangerous as heroin. It's preposterous but it has a serious legal consequences.

I propose we just put it lower on the scale and then let all the state, federal and local authorities work out the implications.

I'd suggest it be in the fourth class as a compromise. Fourth class drugs like Xanax are really much more dangerous but I'm a conservative and approve of compromise.

Albertosaurus

Carol said...

Whenever people talk about "legalizing drugs" it always seems to be about pot, as if that were the only thing out there. What if I happen to like codeine? Why can't I buy it OTC like you can in Canada, and probably in Mexico? Why should a grown person with no criminal record have to go through so many hoops to get it, and risk being labeled as a drug-seeker by the medical establishment?

What about hash, THC, coke, smack, X and other things that people may like?

I'm not arguing slippery slope, I just don't like pot that much anymore and don't see why one group's fetish should be elevated over others.

Anonymous said...

Angelo Mozilo was a lot better at promoting high interest loans

The problem was the loans weren't nearly high interest enough.

The underlying problem was that cheap loans backed by the government were being offered to deadbeats with bad credit who couldn't pay them back.

Anonymous said...

The feds are basically looking the other way and allowing a certain popular online drug marketplace to function.

Power Child said...

Back before the Progressives started the war on drugs in the second decade of the 20th century, various governments had ways of creating "legal but semi-crippled" markets in dangerous drugs. In Spanish-controlled Philippines, for example, there was a state-sanctioned monopoly. This kept prices artificially high, but not so high that bootlegging was a big problem. Granted, one error in that case might have been to grant the monopoly to a minority (the Chinese) who were reviled by the Filipino majority.

Another method that's been tried in places like England (in the 1970s) and the US (in the 19teens) is allowing opiate addiction to be treated with maintenance by physicians. The incidence of profiteering was pretty low in both cases, and doctors often were able to slowly wean their patients off the drug. In the US this was actually sanctioned under the first interpretation of the Harrison Act, and it took a bipartisan scare campaign, complete with propaganda and impossible made-up statistics, to put an end to it.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the high rates of opiate use we saw before the Harrison Act had a lot to do with the fact that people--including doctors--knew very little about the drug or about addiction at that time. Opiates were seen as less dangerous than they actually are. (By contrast, nowadays opiates are generally seen as much more dangerous than they actually are.)

Because a non-permissive culture is so essential, I think the best solution would be to legalize drugs but also impose more censorship on positive references to drug use. You could, for instance, recommend that the MPAA readjust its rubric so that any drug reference immediately gets a movie an NC-17 rating. I dunno, that's just one idea.

josh said...

Many people can't even handle the existence of cheap cheeseburgers.

map said...

I used to support legalizing drugs as a solution to much of the crime problem. I've changed my mind about that.

The key problem is that drug gangs are not fighting with each other because their business is illegal. They're fighting each other to maintain a monopoly. Drug violence is about keeping out competitors, it is not some reaction to the illegality of the product.

The price drops and other effects that drug legalizers expect from legalizing drugs depends on the movement of legitimate businesses into areas where their competitors have developed infrastructure designed to murder their competition. Is anyone seriously expecting to open drug resale shops in Tony Montana's territory?

Furthermore, what happens to product liability law? Is merck going to be selling branded crystal meth, heroin and cocaine? What happens when someone dies? You can forget about big companies moving into this space.

Without mom-and-pop stores and big corporations, the only effect of legalizing drugs is legitimize existing drug cartels. You will still have high prices and violence, only now the police will not be able to use drug possession as a useful tool to get violent criminals off the street.

I don't see any advantage to legalizing drugs.

Please note, that the prohibition model is not accurate. Prohibition was taking a perfectly legitimate business and making it illegal. Not only was making alcohol always legit, it was a legit business that employed a broad cross-section of American citizens.

Making alcohol illegal shut down the legitimate infrastructure that led to the liquor gangs. But making alcohol legal again simply brought back online the infrastructure that went dormant. Because that infrastructure was so massive, it completely swamped the liquor gangs.

The modern illicit drug business has no legitimate counterpart. It was built from the ground up by criminal interests.

Polichinello said...

Actually, you do see hard liquor ads on TV, but you're right about the cigarette ads.

Craig C. said...

"My main concern would be that legalization might wind up unleashing the full power of American marketing and logistics on selling drugs."


The libtards probably do a better job of making drug use cool than the Marlboro Man ever did for cigarettes...

Fun said...

This need for a legal but semi-crippled market for dangerous drugs doesn't seem like an impossible problem to solve, just a difficult one.

There are regulations on alcohol and tobacco products that would be considered crippling in other industries: minimum age laws, DUI laws, last call laws, licenses, sin taxes, warning labels, various restrictions on marketing, advertising, and packaging. Why wouldn't those suffice?

Anonymous said...

The War on Drugs needs to be ended in order to deprive criminals of their funding.

What, criminals can't simply amp up their traffic in stolen cars, teen-age girls, plastic explosives and credit card numbers once drugs are legalized? If they do that (or if they simply continue trafficking unregulated and untaxed drugs in the way that some criminal continue to traffic tobacco and alcohol) how much better is the situation going to get?

Speakeasies notwithstanding, one thing that Prohibition did fairly well was to suppress alcohol consumption. How much of these much-vaunted cost savings that are anticipated from ending the war on drugs will be offset by the cost of the added number of rehab clinics, crack babies in the health care system, and other such crises?

Speaking for myself, I'm relieved that the criminal classes spend so much effort on marijuana, which (according to all the potheads I know, anyway) is a lot less damaging to society than what I'm guessing drug dealers will turn to once that's all legalized. (And that's assuming all those drug dealers don't decide that once drugs are legalized they will have to become accountants and orthodontists in order to make ends meet.)

The fact that the war on drugs is probably viewed by some readers here as a really nifty way of jacking up the number of blacks and Hispanics within the prison population (one that will surely have to be replaced with some other tactic once that war is over) doesn't automatically make it a bad idea.

Truth said...

" It’s not that the War on Drugs creates criminals..."

Yes it does as 500,000 to 1,000,000 people are incarcerated a year in the US on possession charges.

K(yle) said...

The mafia was always small, and never extended 500 miles outside of NYC, was never influential, or prominent outside a handful of neighborhoods. It's a piece of American mythology.

Likewise with Prohibition causing organized crime and the end of it ending organized crime.

What curtailed the mafias activity, and the activity of Jewish mobsters during Prohibition was changes in law enforcement and the law. The advent of RICO is huge, as well as the continual shift towards a more militarized police force. Prohibition era mobsters had more members than police forces that were better armed and equipped.

The War on Drugs isn't about drugs; it's about finding a way around the revolving door legal climate that would prevent law enforcement from successfully prosecuting black criminals. The War on Drugs is another RICO-style convention that lets LE put away gangbangers that are tangentially connected to the drug trade in the same way that they put away mafioso for basically just being a part of a criminal organization regardless of actually committing any crime under a traditional definition.

It's the War on Thugs. The issue is that if you take the drug trade out of the hands of "criminals" is that you've now got a lot of still violent people with no interest in being law abiding citizens, who have no interest in giving up the pleasure they find in violence and harm, who are just individual, unconnected criminals with no overarching framework of how to investigate or prosecute them.

You can't throw a gangbanger away for carrying a few pounds of crack anymore. You've got to actually link a body to him, which rarely happens.

Unless you are talking about legalizing drugs while officially declaring black "culture" illegal and rounding up Trayvon Martin looking blacks and throwing them in prison for not acting white enough, then I don't see how this is a good idea.

Anonymous said...

Apropos of Steve's earlier post about Italians and the 1960s:

An uncomprehending Dean Martin makes fun of the Rolling Stones as his guests on the TV show "Hollywood Palace," 1964:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kqYEkYpX-uY

Anonymous said...

The "war on drugs" is as stupid, evil and counter-productive as the "war on alcohol" (a.k.a prohibition) was.

The last people on earth who want to see the "war on drugs" end are the drug cartels.

Anonymous said...

There are regulations on alcohol and tobacco products that would be considered crippling in other industries: minimum age laws, DUI laws, last call laws, licenses, sin taxes, warning labels, various restrictions on marketing, advertising, and packaging. Why wouldn't those suffice?

Because drug traffickers would transition to selling tariff-free black market drugs that did not have all the added costs of regulation associated with it, the same way they do with tobacco and alcohol.

www.npr.org/templates/transcript/transcript.php?storyId=106816342

Anonymous said...

"..one thing that prohibition did was to lower alcohol consumption"
anonymous..

NOT TRUE. Alcohol consumption actually increased during the years of prohibition.

"how much cost savings from ending drugs will be offset by added costs for rehab clinics, crack babies in the health care system.."

Another canard. Prohibition makes a product more dangerous and riskier. On New Years day 1927, 41 people died at New York city Bellevue hospital from drinking bad moonshine. Thousands of American died from drinking bathtub gin, etc, and countless more were blinded.

Mr. Anon said...

"Craig C. said...

The libtards probably do a better job of making drug use cool than the Marlboro Man ever did for cigarettes..."

Actually, Hollywood (which is overwhelmingly liberal) probably did more to make cigarettes cool than the Marlboro Man ever did. Smoking on film seemed to be disappearing by the early 90s, but then made a big comeback in the mid-to-late 90s with all the hipster flicks.

Ray Sawhill said...

I get that society has to maintain some standards, and I'm anything but a doctrinaire libertarian. But sending anyone to jail for using pot strikes me as insane.

Anonymous said...

NOT TRUE. Alcohol consumption actually increased during the years of prohibition.

Alas, typing a statement in bold-face doesn't make it any more accurate.

http://lmgtfy.com/?q=did+alcohol+consumption+increase+after+prohibition


On New Years day 1927, 41 people died at New York city Bellevue hospital from drinking bad moonshine. Thousands of American died from drinking bathtub gin, etc, and countless more were blinded.

Wow -- 41 people. That's a virtual holocaust, that is. And "thousands died" from illegal alcohol, you say? Have you every thought of stacking all that against the dead and maimed on our highways, neonatal fetal-alcohol-syndrome wards, etc., in post-repeal America?

The fact that Prohibition decreased alcohol consumption is not in and of itself a reason to argue reinstating it, but if you're trying do defend its repeal with arguments like those, I might have to reconsider.

josh said...

"Yes it does as 500,000 to 1,000,000 people are incarcerated a year in the US on possession charges."

And the amazing thing is, there are still a bunch of criminals left on the street that ought to be in prison. What a sick society this is.

Mangan said...

To crib from Milton Friedman, you can't have both legalized drugs and a welfare state.

Anonymous said...

To crib from Milton Friedman, you can't have both legalized drugs and a welfare state.

Excellent point. I'll grant you or anyone else the freedom to stone yourself into oblivion once I'm free from the obligation of paying for the health care system, the child protection services, and so forth, that exist in order to pay for the after-effects of said freedoms. Is the drug war's contribution to the prison system, and all of that system's toxic after-effects, any better for society? Maybe not, but some actual evidence would really be helpful.

Anonymous said...

Steve, what do you think will be the result of pot legalization on the black neighborhoods? I'm referring only to the removal of the main source of income for millions of young black men.

Their main source of income is welfare benefits. Drug dealing is pretty marginal for street level dealers - good enough to buy extras, but lower than minimum wage. If we wanted to put a serious dent in the illegal drug trade and petty crime in general, a good way would be to end welfare for able-bodied adults.

Anonymous said...

Well, Booze and Cig stores use to be own by the state government in certain states I believe like Kansas. Conservatives use to be not as free market. I don't think the national govrnemnt should control drugs but a state like California or Colorado could have a state monopoly.

Dutch Boy said...

Years ago there was a psychologist named Samenow who claimed that the stereotype of crime and drugs was wrong. Drugs did not cause people to become criminals - criminals used drugs to lower their inhibitions so they could could commit more daring crimes. So in his view, decriminalizing drugs to reduce crime made no sense - the greater access to drugs would just mean more crime.

Anonymous said...

Walmart could sell drugs a lot cheaper than drug dealers can.

I am reminded of wire-heads from Larry Niven's books.

From an evolutionary perspective, eliminating more deadheads might be useful.

Harry Baldwin said...

Bostonian said...It's my impression that there are marijuana users who can hold down jobs.

Yes, I believe they're building our cars in Detroit.

Anonymous said... Meth is not really illegal as Ritalin and Adderral are recommended for children.

You don't distinguish between amphetamine and methamphetamine?

Anonymous said...

"Should hard drugs ever be legalized. Hell no!
Go talk to parents of teenagers, guidance counselors, teachers, etc."

Teachers and guidance counselors are people who couldn't manage to get real jobs. Why you want to listen to them I have no idea.

That said, legalizing hard drug probably would lead to the ruin or death of many a young screw up. I have no problem with that.

Anonymous said...

That could be taken care of by taxation. Gary Becker discussed all this long ago. If memory serves, he recommended taxation also be designed to adjust for loss of stigma; you could do the same to balance the increased attractiveness due to marketing.

So long as we can keep philosopher-kings in charge of the tax system this seems like a no-brainer.

Cennbeorc

Anonymous said...

If war on drugs ended and a whole bunch of punks couldn't make money selling drugs, might they not turn to other kinds of crime?
Isn't it better to have them sell drugs--which is a kind of business--than go around and rob people?

Anonymous said...

"you can't have both legalized drugs and a welfare state."

What about Netherlands?

Anonymous said...

As for the War on Drugs.... I'm torn. Many of the criticisms of the War on Drugs are perfectly valid. The militarization of the police, checkpoints, erosion of civil liberties/right of sober citizen to be left alone etc. But drugs are corrosive to the individual and society.

It doesn't have to be either/or. We can legalize drugs AND continue down the path to a militarized, semi-fascist society.

Win-win!

Cennbeorc

Anonymous said...

"But sending anyone to jail for using pot strikes me as insane."

I don't think this happens much. At dead concerts, everyone use to smoke up.

And in black areas, there are kids who roll up pot in cigars and smoke it with tobacco.

I thinks cops sometimes lock people not for pot smoking per se but because it's a handy excuse for locking up dangerous people who committed other crimes. If some guy has a reputation as being a thug, menace, or burglar in the neighborhood, but the cops have a hard time getting him on any specific change, cops might book him for possession of drugs.
But the great majority of people who smoke pot don't go to jail.

Anonymous said...

"Yes it does as 500,000 to 1,000,000 people are incarcerated a year in the US on possession charges."

Handy excuse to get scum off the street.

E. said...

If the War on Drugs was terminated, then millions of cops, feds, prosecutors, defense lawyers, jailers, and other assorted supporting characters would become unemployed.

Sheila said...

I read "Rising Phoenix" by Kyle Mills a few years ago. The basic theme (spoiler alert) is that of poisoning the narcotic supply. No one knows which batch is dangerous and which isn't, and enough high-profile users die, to make usage drop dramatically. The author presents this as a terrible thing, of course, and "not possible" in the real world. Why not? Why not buy and seriously corrupt enough of the real drugs that those unable to function in the real world without heroin or cocaine to prop them up simply die off? Other comments re the management of marijuana, like the management of alcohol, are all possibilities. For the drugs that really are incompatible with functioning economic and social activity, I have no problem with the resulting die-off. This would solve the problem of all the potential other crimes the current sellers would turn to. As a side benefit, it would save a ton of money in social services as well. Malthusian - perhaps. Effective? I would expect so.

The Anti-Gnostic said...

Yes it does as 500,000 to 1,000,000 people are incarcerated a year in the US on possession charges.

You seem to be the only person who missed the point.

The context of the discussion was criminal pathology. Martha Stewart is a 'criminal,' but I certainly wouldn't object to having her live in my neighborhood. A percentage of convicts are undoubtedly 'converted' to pathological behavior by prison, which I noted.

Anonymous said...

Look at the dorks who control Google, Facebook, the new psychology, and many high-tech firms.

Given that nerds and geeks took over society, it's like Little Brother is now in control. Little Brother Is Programming You.

Anonymous said...

Legalizing vice is de facto promotion.

Do we really believe that drug usage is so lovely and helpful that we should condone it with legalization?

This is pure folly and violates the "general welfare" injunction of our constitution. Legalization of recreational drugs does not promote the general welfare, but (misdemeanor) prohibition does.

Anonymous said...

Prohibition makes a product more dangerous and riskier.

Good!

That means the conscientious will be even less likely to do it and they are the ones that matter most. The stupid and criminal will pay a higher price for their stupidity.

Win win.

Anonymous said...

Decrease the legal penalties so that the profitability crashes. But keep strict penalties against distributing to minors that are strongly enforced. Strongly punish cases of drug use with children around. That will target the worst of the users among the lower class and will still allow for state intervention in such cases.

The penalties will vary from drug to drug. Maybe we should also stop the national disgrace of psychiatrists prescribing speed to grade-school children.

There will be negative side effects to this, but among the lower class it will be more than offset by safety improvements.(the greatest victims of our drug policy are those poor NAMs who want to raise their children in a safe neighborhood).

For the middle and upper class... drugs like cocaine and speed and marijuana are just not that difficult to obtain as it is.

bdoran said...

Mangan and Foesti carry the Day. As does The War on Thugs.

Anonymous said...

I say get the federal government out of it. If drugs won´t be a problem for Oregonians fine legalize, but if people in Lousiana are against it then outlaw it, makes sense to me.

Also, as a fan of Ron Paul I have to endorse a point he made which was essentially: if heroin were legal would you be shooting up right now??

Undoubtedly drug use would rise if it were legalized, but how much? Maybe less than people expect.

Melikyn said...

As others have said the companies selling dangerous drugs OTC will get their pants sued off. Not only that, the government would be sued for allowing it. It would be like the Indian Residential Schools in Canada, and there would be years of investigations and blaming and payouts to victims and their survivors, etc. Never mind that the people probably would have been addicts anyway. That won't matter.

Svigor said...

Yes it does as 500,000 to 1,000,000 people are incarcerated a year in the US on possession charges.

Another plus in the gov't's estimation. It's hard to catch a murderer committing the act or covering it up because his goal is to deal with his exposure as briefly as possible. Same goes for assault, rape, etc. But not for drug possession; his goal is to make himself available, product in hand, to his clientele as often as possible. So it's easier to catch him in the act with the hard evidence. There are probably quite a few murderers, rapists, and violent thugs locked up for possession charges, but not for violent crimes.

And all those prisoners means more juice for the gov't, more jobs, more funding, etc.

Anonymous said...

Harry:

Meth is prescribed for ADD/ADHD as the drug Desoxyn:
http://www.rxlist.com/desoxyn-drug.htm
However, insurance doesn't cover it due to the stigma.

The reason Meth is so much worse is the typical method of consumption (smoking and snorting and injection) gives a higher peak with greater physical consequence than oral consumption. If you did adderall the way meth addicts did meth, you'd be in equally bad shape.

rob said...

I thought the feds had laws against drug manufacturing, trafficking, possession, and such. Didn't a very prominent supreme court case determine that states can't enforce laws that correspond to federal laws? Like if the feds have laws against illegal immigration, then Arizona can't have and enforce its own? Could Colorado even re-criminalize marijuana?

Ray Sawhill said...

http://blog.norml.org/2011/09/19/marijuana-arrests-driving-americas-so-called-drug-war-latest-fbi-data-shows/

"According to the report, marijuana arrests now comprise more than one-half (52 percent) of all drug arrests in the United States. An estimated 46 percent of all drug arrests are for offenses related to marijuana possession ... Of those charged with marijuana law violations, 750,591 (88 percent) were arrested for marijuana offenses involving possession only."

Yup, hard to imagine anything better to do with our resources than pursue, arrest, and send to jail hundreds of thousands of people who smoke pot.

By the way, doesn't anyone else think that the real drug scandal in the U.S. is the way zillions of kids are being diagnosed as having ADD and put on strong drugs?

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/09/health/attention-disorder-or-not-children-prescribed-pills-to-help-in-school.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

TontoBubbaGoldstein said...

Alas, typing a statement in bold-face doesn't make it any more accurate.

THE HELL IT DOESN'T ; )


Joking aside, y'all do realise that for most of the United State's history, all drugs were legal and unregulated, right?

kaganovitch said...

Sheila said...

"I read "Rising Phoenix" by Kyle Mills a few years ago. The basic theme (spoiler alert) is that of poisoning the narcotic supply. No one knows which batch is dangerous and which isn't, and enough high-profile users die, to make usage drop dramatically. The author presents this as a terrible thing, of course, and "not possible" in the real world. Why not? "

Actually this was federal policy more or less during prohibition, leading to the 41 dead in Bellevue on new years eve 1927 mentioned earlier. see
http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/medical_examiner/2010/02/the_chemists_war.single.html

Carol said...

"The author presents this as a terrible thing, of course, and "not possible" in the real world. Why not?"


The feds already tried this with the alcohol supply in the 1920s...apparently there was an investigation and it was thought unseemly for the government to go out of its way to poison people.

It was also proposed with the paraquat spraying of pot, but again, deliberate attempt to harm just didn't sit well with people, ya know?

Anonymous said...

Alcohol, tobacco and gambling are the 3 scummiest businesses in America.

They take advantage of people's propensity for addiction and ruin lives.

I guess if we have those legal what difference does it make with pot.

HAR said...

I don't buy the common idea that drugs make people that much less productive. I'm guessing the type of people who do drugs for fun would spend their time doing something else if they couldn't get drugs. Perhaps committing real crimes, perhaps drinking instead, perhaps watching TV, probably some combination of all that. But not simply working more.

Very few people are so heavily into drugs that it prevents them from doing their jobs satisfactorily.

Among many of the upper classes drugs are a source of enjoyment with very few downsides. Most people would find the idea that we ban alcohol because of a few alcoholics to be absurd. We should feel similar about marijuana, opium, meth, and coke.

Hacienda said...

Teachers and guidance counselors are people who couldn't manage to get real jobs. Why you want to listen to them I have no idea.
-------------------------------

Yeah, better to listen to the advice of anonymous posters with unknown qualifications any kind.

Anonymous said...

If drugs are illegal because they have the power to ruin lives then why do we send people to prison for being mere users?

I've always argued that the millions we spend on drug law enforcement could be better redirected towards education and rehabilitation.

Putting people in prison for drug use means you're going to have a much harder time getting a good job (employers see recent arrests and incarcerations as a liability) which means you'll, barring really good luck, be stuck on a very low socioeconomic rung of the societal ladder, which means whatever problems you had to make you want to do drugs to begin with aren't going to be easily resolved.

As for the other arguments:

I'm a regular pot smoker and I have a very high IQ. I'm a productive member of society pulling in six figures. I have a family.

If you feel that drug laws are needed for some specific social purpose, then craft the laws so that they reasonably target the actual people who need that guidance. I don't need your guidance. I'm more than capable of knowing my limits and practicing moderation.

Why are iSteve readers all of the sudden caring about the health and welfare of NAMs anyway?

Anonymous said...

Drugs should be legal, but the user should pay for the costs. All of them. Never gonna happen though...

Anonymous said...

I don't see the typical head shop owner being able to compete with the cartels, who aren't going to lay down when their income stream dries up.

I guess if you want more videos of people getting their heads chainsawed off, legalizing this stuff is the way to go.

Anonymous said...

Oddly enough, since Portugal's decriminalization of all drugs in 2001, the amount of hardcore addicts has reduced by about half.

I'm sure to all the paleocon nanny statists in this thread, that is just data to be ignored, as evidenced by the repeated mentions of Netherlands, but not Portugal.

Anonymous said...

Here's my suggestion: Stop taking coke, crack, meth, LSD, heroin, etc. What's wrong with Maryjane & Booze? The fact is we have enough reality enhancing crap you can smoke/drink without all this other shit.

And the idea that legalizing hard drugs us going to solve some sort crime problem is absurd.

HAR said...

I think the point that everyone misses with drugs is that we put people in jail for what they put into their own bodies. You don't have to be a libertarian to be repulsed by that. In fact, an alien that came to earth would find that to be the most shocking aspect of a society that to any extent claimed to prize the concept of "liberty." I'm not really a libertarian, but the way on drugs is by far the most evil thing that the government does.

Sam F. said...

"Yup, hard to imagine anything better to do with our resources than pursue, arrest, and send to jail hundreds of thousands of people who smoke pot."

Because we're doing it wrong. As the saying goes, strike the shepherd and the flock will scatter.

Crush the leftwing childish fascination with glamorizing drug use, and expose it as a tool for making people into slaves for the Dems, with a reckless disregard for ruining peoples' lives,and the destruction of the country.

Anonymous said...

Ray Sawhill nailed the numbers. I'm surprised so many commenters are ignorant of the stats on this issue.
Marijuana should be considered separately in regards to decriminalization.
At this point most weed is grown in the States, and most black thugs, as far back as the Seventies, admitted they got their supply from white growers.
Until the early part of the 20th century, anyone could buy Marijuana and/or opiates over the counter or via mail order in the form of tinctures. This ease of access didn't create any moral panic at the time, and it shouldn't now, at least not for weed. Millions of productive white Americans smoke it, and they shouldn't face jail time for doing so.

"I don't know. Where do the campus marijuana dealers get their supply? It seems to me that just upstream of the campus in the supply chain, you can find plenty of violence." Well Dennis, you'd be wrong. Marijuana sales and distribution have never been associated with violence, and certainly not the sustained ultra-violence that characterizes cocaine/heroin/meth.
White hippies grow the weed, and then easily distribute it via informal networks. No need for armed gangs and violent street battles, even in black neighborhoods.


Anonymous said...

Hey, here's an idea that would solve many of posters' concerns about drug legalization. Legalize drugs only for white people!

Anonymous said...

By now most of us should have accepted that there is little chance that any of our tax dollars will be used for good purposes (or given back to us).

So this is sort of a silly question, more suited to a pre-2012 environment. At this point, the war on hard drugs is probably less harmful than whatever else they'd be doing with the money. More TSA screeners maybe?

Marijuana should be legalized for reasons mentioned above. But we should make them fight for it.

All the other drugs may as well stay illegal because it gives the criminals, police, judges, politicians and lawyers something to do that keeps them out of my life.

And it gets criminals off the streets. They're not going to get real jobs if crack is legalized.

Anonymous said...

You know, not to be a wet blanket, but most of the posting here is really short on facts/stats/knowledge.

There are plenty of examples of places/times where drugs have been legal. Aren't there any books examining, eg, the opium trade in CHina or cocaine use in Victorian England from the perspective of light it can shed on legalization in the here and now? Hasn't anyone read anything like this?

Mr. Anon said...

"Carol said...

It was also proposed with the paraquat spraying of pot, but again, deliberate attempt to harm just didn't sit well with people, ya know?"

If that caught on today, politicians like Michael Bloomberg and Jerry Brown would be doctoring Big Gulps and Fois Gras with Strychnine rather than trying to ban it.

Mr. Anon said...

As many here have pointed out, many drugs - pot, opium, cocaine - used to be legal in this country, and we did not have a national epidemic of addiction. However, was it the case that these things were perhaps more expensive then? Most consumer products are cheaper today in inflation adjusted dollars. I expect that drugs are too.

That said, I am not a strict prohibitionist. I think that the war on drugs has done, and continues to do, great damage to our civil liberties. I would advocate partial legalization or decriminalization of drugs like pot and oral opiates, and a major demobilization in the overall effort. Even if we do not make drugs completely legal, we should not have a "war" on them.

Anonymous said...

Reply to anonymous at 1:20 PM:

So then what are YOU SAYING?

That you favour prohibition of alcohol?

Anonymous said...

I think the main reason for "the war on drugs" and the menatlity that supports it, is an outdated moral code. I believe attrition will eventually solve the problem as the 'reefer madness' types pass on.

Anonymous said...

you can't have both legalized drugs and a welfare state.


This.



Eventually, it all comes down to the fact that with freedom comes responsibility. We have made responsibility optional, which mitigates against freedom.

Anonymous said...

I think the main reason for "the war on drugs" and the menatlity that supports it, is an outdated moral code.


Ah, yes, cause and effect are so passé.

Anonymous said...

--When was the last time anybody had to risk their life buying marijuana in a criminal ghetto? The War on Drugs needs to be ended in order to deprive criminals of their funding.

not sure what was being said here, but it's either a contradiction or a non sequitur.

by this logic, the pot criminals lack money? violence?

tons of violence and money in CA growing.

http://articles.latimes.com/2011/sep/04/local/la-me-fort-bragg-20110904

http://www.pressdemocrat.com/article/20100819/ARTICLES/100819415

http://www.pressdemocrat.com/article/20100821/ARTICLES/100829899

that this violence doesn't lead to violence on college campuses isn't a statement about criminal or legal distribution. it's a statement about end user populations and the drug's effects. perhaps using other things you've learned here on steve's blog, you can find other reasons for violence in user populations of other drugs.

the problem with legalization is this: you can change the law so a crack or h or meth junkie doesn't go to jail, but you cant make them capable of working. Therefore unless their drugs are free, you can't stop them from stealing to support their habit. is pot different? not the well bred high thc high hallucinogenic stuff.

bostonian is correct: the welfare state is incompatible with legalization. people on the midpoint or lower of the bell curve can't be made into productive members of society if they are daily taking drugs. for many, the drugs will cause serious mental illnesss, and they will be permanent drains on society.

Anonymous said...

http://bjp.rcpsych.org/content/178/2/116.full

cannabis is bad news for the unstable.

K(yle) said...

I'm surprised so many commenters are ignorant of the stats on this issue.

I don't think anyone here is ignorant of the stats on this issue, just aware of how to lie with statistics.

I come from a background where pot use among whites is extremely common, and I've never known a single white person to have any legal troubles from drug use that weren't also caused by associating with black criminals.

These are people that engaged in reckless behavior that should itself be illegal and often is, except those charges never stick.

I'm pretty sure I could call the police and rat out a couple I know, that owns a successful small business and regularly smoke pot, and absolutely nothing would happen. The cops would want to know how much, and if the answer was just enough for personal use then they really wouldn't give a shit.

The idea that we are kicking in doors and arresting hippies does not conform to reality. Enough people get arrested for it, and enough people do it and know people that do it that these horror stories would be common knowledge. The pro-pot dopey white kid lobby would be shoving them under my nose but they can't because it's shit that doesn't happen.

These ~1 million incarcerations are overwhelmingly of non-white thugs, and you will only rarely find a white pothead that knows a white pothead that knew a white pothead that got sent up for possession.

There is no grave miscarriage of justice here.

There are plenty of examples of places/times where...

Their situations are not comparable. The demographics are different, the social standards are different.

There was a "Gin Craze" in late 17th century England that was probably laughable compared to the cheap vodka craze in modern England and yet the former required government action to curtail and the latter probably has no end in sight.

If you applied the standards of the Victorians today almost everyone would be in jail (or gaol perhaps), yet they had fewer indictable offenders and fewer incarcerations, so clearly they were doing something right.

Of course when we give you some statistics to lie with you will conveniently ignore that their harsh sentencing for things like foul language had any impact on the social landscape and that supplying everyone in England with a cocaine stipend today would have any negative impacts based on Victorian era data.

See drugs don't affect anything! Let's import 30 million gypsies and get them high as fuck! It worked for the Victorians!

I think the point that everyone misses with drugs is that we put people in jail for what they put into their own bodies. You don't have to be a libertarian to be repulsed by that.

Yes you would have to be a libertarian. I'd gladly imprison people for what they put on their bodies, as in their fashion sense.

I feel no injustice in wanting myself sequestered from your intoxication. Your rights end where my senses begin.

Aaron Gross said...

I think Matt Parrott is wrong about the history of the drug war. First of all, it's hard to see how border programs like Operation Intercept fit into the WASP-conspiracy-against-minorities model. (Since iSteve is a rock and roll history site, I'll mention that I first heard about Operation Intercept as a sixth-grader, listening over and over to Steppenwolf Live.)

By the late 1970s, the drug war had pretty much wound down. The resurgence in 1980-81 can largely be attributed to one man: Jesse Jackson. He made drug policy a major part of his campaign, and all the other candidates, including Republican candidates, had to jump on board. Then Nancy Reagan got into the act. But it was Jesse Jackson who was mostly responsible for it, and he concentrated on drug abuse in the "inner cities." Again, I don't think that fits the WASP-conspiracy-against-minorities thing.

Discard said...

K(yle) has it right, I think. The War on Drugs is really a War on Thugs. Drug use is a pretty good indicator of scumminess, and drug selling even better. Maybe if we routinely executed car thieves and burglars, we wouldn't need to use drug use as a surrogate for criminality.
Those good and decent people who just like their daily joint should have the sense to recognize that laws ought not be written to suit the individual, but the greater community. The very existence of "law" supposes a community imposing its will on all its members.

Anonymous said...

"Teachers and guidance counselors are people who couldn't manage to get real jobs. Why you want to listen to them I have no idea.

That said, legalizing hard drug probably would lead to the ruin or death of many a young screw up. I have no problem with that."

Asshole.

American Realist-Statist-Conservative Mag said...

I once saw an article at Wired quoting the local neighborhood pimp on the decline of his profession since Craigslist... A great semi-legal crippled market there

Pres. Obama said...

"...unleashing the full power of American marketing and logistics on selling drugs..."

Now that you mention this--I think my views have evolved on this issue. Beginning in 2015 ONDCP will become portfolio of the Safe PCP Consumption Czar. We're going to shift the DEA's focus to operating treatment centers and environmental stewardship

Anonymous said...

"Joking aside, y'all do realise that for most of the United State's history, all drugs were legal and unregulated, right?" - Certainly, but counterpoint: Minorities were neither legal, nor unregulated over that same time period.

"There are plenty of examples of places/times where drugs have been legal. Aren't there any books examining, eg, the opium trade in China..." - Yes, they call those history books. Lets go ahead and not repeat that particular mistake here.

jody said...

hey look, it's the "end the drug war" morons YET AGAIN, with their sheer idiocy about making meth, cocaine, and heroin legal.

yeah, we REALLY gotta end the drug war and make sure those substances are all available at wal-mart for low everyday prices.

nothing says "bright future" like having 25% of your population addicted to 1 of these 3 drugs. let's throw in ecstasy and LSD too, because those are good for your brain according to all scientific researchers. for case studies we can use all those countries in...uh...well...i'm sure there's some country where meth and cocaine and heroin and ecstasy and LSD are legal...

FACT: the drug war against meth IS WORKING. the annoying idiots who keep claiming that it's "a waste of time" and "isn't working" have no idea AT ALL what they're talking about.

remember quaaludes? of course not. because the DEA destroyed quaaludes. another drug war that "didn't work", that did work.

Jack Bolling said...

I think the point that everyone misses with drugs is that we put people in jail for what they put into their own bodies. You don't have to be a libertarian to be repulsed by that.

This is probably the most autistic thing I've ever read, and that's saying something considering that this is the alt-right.

The issue isn't what people put into their bodies, the issue is 1) how they behave afterwards and 2) the implied responsibility of others in cleaning up their mess. Life isn't a comic book or video game, however much you'd like it to be. Individual actions don't occur in a vacuum; they are influenced by and in turn influence one's social surroundings.

Those who proclaim their right to eat iced cream for dinner are the same who demand that someone else cover the dental bill. So the problem is not freedom per se, but rather that people only desire freedom when it's to their (perceived) benefit, but, sensing an advantage, will put a gun to my head to make me apply the shackles.

Libertarianism, overtly avowed or not, may satisfy the autist's desire for a world without social interaction, but it does not reflect reality.

Anonymous said...

So one of the major themes on here is the costs of healthcare for people who abuse drugs. I think this is a valid point in of itself. But how do you draw the line? In the most liberal nanny state, we wouldn't have soft drinks because they rot your teeth, we wouldn't have fried foods because they clog your arteries, we wouldn't have salty food because it raises your blood pressure, and etc. ad nauseum.

How many millions of obese people do we have that could have theoretically kept in better health had we some form of government intervention in their diets? How much healthcare costs could have been saved?

See where this is going?

jody said...

LOL. it's all legal in portugal? not really. but they do allow you to have a small amount of...some stuff. i doubt they let you have meth or crack. i love the idea that cheap, super pure meth or crack at wal-mart is something of little consequence.

"people could handle it, bro"
"it won't be a problem, man"
"people will just do their meth or their crack in the privacy of their own home, nobody is going to get hurt, nothing is going to get out of control."

yeah right!

hard drug use appears to be UP in portugal, not down, and lo and behold, look at the unemployment rate:

http://tinyurl.com/abo3zcl

an ALMOST PERFECT correlation between when most drugs were decriminalized (2001) and when the unemployment rate began to steadily rise. in 10 years the unemployment rate went from 4% to 16%. note how it started going up immediately, and not in 2007, as with many other nations in europe, especially PIIGS. now portuguese unemployment is officially 16.3% and still climbing.

care to wonder what would happen to unemployment in a nation like the US, with 90 million NAMs, and a welfare state, should all hard drugs be decriminalized. oh wait - we already know what happens when meth and crack are widely used.

Anonymous said...

nothing says "bright future" like having 25% of your population addicted to 1 of these 3 drugs. let's throw in ecstasy and LSD too, because those are good for your brain according to all scientific researchers. for case studies we can use all those countries in...uh...well...i'm sure there's some country where meth and cocaine and heroin and ecstasy and LSD are legal...

If you're going to talk about drugs in such a smug smarmy tone at least know what the hell you're talking about. LSD has precisely 0 addiction potential.

jody said...

what about bath salts? should those be legal and cheap at wal-mart, "drug war is a waste of time" guys?

you want people running around your town high on bath salts, LITERALLY eating other people?

talk about convergence of concealed carry laws, zombie pop culture, and drug decriminalization. then the democrats really WOULD have some data to point at and say "handgun shootings are WAY up! ban concealed carry!"

Anonymous said...

The idea that we have a war on drugs while at the same time we put up with the tremendous social and financial damage of alcohol(which dwarfs the damage done by all other drugs combined by a large margin), and dope up 20% of the populace with pharmaceuticals that frequently say "the mechanism of action for this drug is currently unknown" in their PI sheets(while burying research about their dangerous side effects due to a lax FDA), is laughable.

Only an imbecile would try and argue that the war on drugs is about preventing harm, and not about funneling billions in drug money into the proper well-connected pockets.

sunbeam said...

K(yle) said:

"I feel no injustice in wanting myself sequestered from your intoxication. Your rights end where my senses begin."

Really?

"Your rights end where my senses begin."

Do you have the slightest idea where you can take a statement like that?

You'd better hope you have LOTS of friends who share the same esthetics, because if you don't you might find yourself on the receiving end of that.

David Davenport said...

Marijuana smells bad and is used by demographic groups people hate. So it is made illegal.

A good reason to keep marijuana illegal.

The idea that we are kicking in doors and arresting hippies does not conform to reality

However, some of us wouldn't mind kicking in doors and arresting white hippies.

Glaivester said...

1980-81 can largely be attributed to one man: Jesse Jackson... Again, I don't think that fits the WASP-conspiracy-against-minorities thing.

I don't think it was a "WASP-conspiracy-against-minorities" as much as it was a "victim's conspiracy against criminals." The goal wasn't to oppress blacks, it was to suppress the most criminal elements of society, one of which happens to be a particular subset of blacks.

There are plenty of examples of places/times where drugs have been legal. Aren't there any books examining, eg, the opium trade in China...

Wasn't that imposed upon them by the British, and the Chinese fought a war with the British to make opium illegal?

BB said...

If the war on drugs is just a cover for the war on thus, as some commenters have pointed out, it follows that the government should be constantly introducing new drugs for the illegal market.
Hell, if having an illegal drug market keps the NAM´s and several federal agencies busy, let´s have more of it! We need more drugs!
We need to discover new drugs and target new markets. And keep it illegal.
Fine, but what happens when 20 or 30 percent of the population are unemployable thugs, instead of 10 percent or so as we have now? How do we keep them busy? At one point, it will be just cheaper to dump them in the middle of the ocean or Africa.



rob said...

K(yle) said:

I feel no injustice in wanting myself sequestered from your intoxication. Your rights end where my senses begin.


I agree completely. Sadly, one of my senses was exposed to your comment. Never violate my rights again. Thanks in advance!

HAR said...

"responsibility of others in cleaning up their mess. Life isn't a comic book or video game, however much you'd like it to be. Individual actions don't occur in a vacuum; they are influenced by and in turn influence one's social surroundings. "

It's a question of direct or indirect harm. The drug war directly interferes with what people do with their bodies because of an indirect effect that may have.

If someone does drugs, then maybe they will become a drain on society

If they become a drain on society, then maybe others will have to support them

Each of these only applies some of the time. And even if the worst happens, and the drug user becomes a complete dependent of the state, that harm of his action is not nearly as bad as what drug warriors propose doing to him: putting him in jail.

In other words, put someone in jail because they might cause others to pay for higher taxes, even though those

A) who would have to pay higher taxes can always choose to have less of a welfare state; and

B) throwing people in jail is also very costly, probably more so than picking up the welfare tab

Dan said...

WTF is up with SWPLs being totally cool on marijuana but totally anti tobacco?

Marijuana is way more carcinogenic than tobacco smoke.

It seems to me that tobacco has gotten linked to the right while pot has gotten linked with the left. Now that the left is ascendent, they are pushing to legalize pot, just because it is a battle to wage against the right.

The left have been waging a war against tobacco for almost 20 years and pushing for the legalization of pot at the same time.

If these two substances were dropped from outer space at the same time, they no doubt would be treated similarly.

This suggests that it is best for the right to drop out of politics completely. The left chooses its policies in opposition to the right, and the left wins because it controls the levers of culture.

dirk said...

You approach the problem in two stages:

Stage 1: Make drugs legal and subsidize the legal industry to quickly cut the legs out of the black market.

Stage 2: Regulate and tax like crazy, just as we do cigarettes. For crack, have regulated commercial crack houses, where users must stay on premises while high or the retailer loses their license to sell crack.

Carol said...

"These ~1 million incarcerations are overwhelmingly of non-white thugs"

I would like to know how many are incarcerated for possession *only* without any other counts.

Anyway, I was an anti-legalization paleocon for many years, but as my state has inched toward legal pot, I say equal time for other highs!

Which is another way of arguing against. Either way, I'm happy.

Carol said...

Reading the history of prohibition and the women's movement, it seems like the movement to outlaw drinking was really an indirect effort to change the male of the species. They were rotton, faithless lowd-down and dirty, and it was because of...booze.

It's rather like the way we blame the achievement gap on culture.

Anonymous said...

http://www.edmontonjournal.com/news/removes+report+killing+Canadian+soldier+Israeli+forces/7742746/story.html

Anonymous said...

To Jody said..

He was NOT on bath salts.

Dahlia said...

Steve,

Ditto your concern.
If one is ever at a Wal-mart to pump gas, take the time while one is filling up to take in all the advertisements for gambling and cigarette smoking inundating oneself.

The intelligence and effort that go into them! Usually, this intelligent, but anti-social, elite understand us better than we do ourselves.

That same intelligence, with their gains, wins over politicians and helps mollify the intelligentsia.

At mine, a t.v. is built into the pump with a little bit of useful or entertaining bits and then lots of advertising. The pump island also has signage all over.

I'd rather keep bad things out of the hands of intelligent people acting with approval by the elite.
There would be less violence, but far more people will be ruined.

Also, despite the hit cigarettes took, they're still legal, thus far more people smoke them than any single illegal drug.

Anonymous said...

We illegalized truth and so we have politicians.

Anonymous said...

Diseases associated with legal alcohol consumption went down with prohibition those associated with illegal alcohol consumption went up.

Anonymous said...

Thought a lot of the turnaround on pot in the late 70's belongs to Ross Perot who was horrified to find some of his kids smoking pot.
Legal pot seemed ready to happen until Ross put his focus on it while on a Texas state committee on drug abuse.

http://www.textfiles.com/drugs/perofasc.txt

... Perot focused much of his
efforts on stamping out use of marijuana, branding it a dangerous "gateway"
drug. Pamphlets distributed by the committee urged parents to listen in on
their children's telephone conversations and search their rooms for any
signs of drugs. One critic dubbed his war on drugs panel "the Reefer
Madness Committee."

Perot's efforts also produced a sweeping legislative package to toughen the
state's drug laws, including a mandatory 15-year prison term for dealing, a
forfeiture law to seize financial assets of dealers and a prohibition on
"head shops" that sold drug paraphernalia.

Disgruntled said...

Given the hysteria of the anti-drug warriors on this thread, I'm intrigued about their predictions of changes in Washington and Colorado. Marijuana is legal now in both those states.

As a serious question, how will society now change in those states? Do you expect a spike in crime, unemployment, insanity, welfare spending, etc.

I'm predicting the changes will be small, especially prior to the legal sale (not allowed in either state yet) of pot. The current situation is both states is highly desired by drug criminals as demand has increased while supply is still illegal.

One thing that the drug warriors seem to take for granted is that the drug war is being legitimately fought. In fact, the govt and police have been heavily corrupted by the profits in the industry and are deeply involved in protecting the distribution of illegal drugs in the US.

tommy said...

It’s not that the War on Drugs creates criminals (other than as a marginal phenomenon). It’s that the War on Drugs puts the trade in the hands of criminals.

That's correct...

The War on Drugs needs to be ended in order to deprive criminals of their funding. Criminals have very few sustainable talents outside of violence and intimidation. We’ve legalized gambling, enabled payday/pawn/title loans, and nobody’s getting kneecapped anymore.

..but then he falters and pretends that the Drug War really does make criminals. This is a great "lets not think too hard about externalities" analysis. Yeah, because it's not as if those guys who sell cocaine and heroin may not take up other lines of work like stealing your car or burglarizing your home once selling dope is no longer a source of revenue.

What are all the guidos doing now? They’re on disability and telling their higher IQ offspring to go into real estate or outside sales, which is a hell of a lot better than beating up shopowners and hijacking trucks.

The guys who survived the dog-eat-dog world of organized crime, bootlegging, buying and skimming from casinos, siphoning cash from union pension funds, bribing politicians, running multibillion dollar international heroin processing and smuggling rings, and getting away with murder may not have been rocket scientists but they were never necessarily the dumbest guys in the Italian community. Don't kid yourself: intelligence is an asset even among criminals and being recognized as an earner who doesn't get pinched too easily is the quickest way into the mob for a connected Sicilian. But whatever, all we need now is for blacks and Hispanics to start having higher IQ kids and they can follow the Jews and Italians into legitimacy once drugs aren't an issue any longer, right?

As for the guidos, I think they were last seen on Jersey Shore. None of them struck me as mob material.

tommy said...

My experience with pot smokers in Washington state since the referendum passed is that there are suddenly a lot more people smoking pot while driving around in their car--you can smell it when they drive by you in store parking lots--or lighting up in public even though neither was made legal by the referendum.

This just reminds me that a lot of those poor pot-smokers who were "unjustly" harassed by law enforcement prior to the referendum, the ones we were supposed to cry over, were arrested precisely because they used marijuana in ways and venues that would be illegal even if the drug in question were alcohol: think DUIs, open containers in vehicles, and public intoxication.

Truth said...

"hey look, it's the "end the drug war" morons YET AGAIN, with their sheer idiocy about making meth, cocaine, and heroin legal."

That's a fine New England (dare I say Jewish?) liberal viewpoint you have there, lower-case jo; "We'll have to control what everyone else does, because hey, we know what's better for them!"

Good job, Vladimir, Bernie Sanders and Denis Kucinich are proud of you. Ted Kennedy is smiling 6 feet underground right now!

Auntie Analogue said...

The War On Drugs was lost before it began. Throughout history, whether, or not, drugs were legal, human beings have proven endlessly inventive of ways to enjoy a buzz - and endlessly willing to risk being busted wherever and whenever drugs (including alcohol) were prohibited.

Do the math. Does prohibiton cost more in wasted tax dollars, in ever-growing vested interest of police power, in ever-growing cost of jurisprudence, in lives (not just of the offender, but also of his family & employment prospects), in incarceration, and in medical treatment/rehab than it costs just for the...medical/rehab?

Since the WOD began we've been haemmorhaging increasing gouts of money on fighting it and...losing it: drugs are infinitely more prevalent, varied, and accessible than they were before the WOD began. What's that definition of stupid? Insisting on doing the same thing despite ever-rising cost and the reverse of desired results?

Anonymous said...

-=So one of the major themes on here is the costs of healthcare for people who abuse drugs....
See where this is going?

Yes, it is another place where having a welfare state is a problem unless your society's population has evolved and inculcated the values and desires of: nuclear families who value self sufficiency, hard work, and self control; shame for those who do not try to uphold the above; ostracization or incarceration for those who actively undermine prey respectively on the society.

Anonymous said...

The idea that we have a war on drugs while at the same time we put up with the tremendous social and financial damage of alcohol(which dwarfs the damage done by all other drugs combined by a large margin),
the fact that one drug causes damage is a poor excuse for legalizing another one.

If cannabis were become legal the damage it would cause would far exceed alcohol.


But again I ask, why did its use increase?

Anonymous said...

The libtards probably do a better job of making drug use cool than the Marlboro Man ever did for cigarettes..."
true.

Udolpho.com said...

Why do you do this to me, Steve? Why?

Bringing up drug policy on the Internet is just begging for sheltered nerds to post their thoughts despite being 24, completely lacking common sense, and having a debilitating autistic disorder.

Everyone here who watches cartoons, plays video games for 20 hours per week, or runs a Linux workstation should shut up right now.

Udolpho.com said...

I'm a regular pot smoker and I have a very high IQ. I'm a productive member of society pulling in six figures. I have a family.

lol just another day on the Internet, time to talk about my six figure salary and 188 IQ and a bunch of other shit that no one can validate

NOTA said...

Anon 9:23:

So, has the war on drugs actually kept the underclass from using drugs? Or the middle class? Or the working class? Or the filthy rich? Or anyone?

If not, then you need to compare legalization to what we have now or what we can actually do (which amounts to variations on the war on drugs--what we have now with more or fewer harsh sentences, midnight SWAT raids, etc. A whole lot of people are going to continue taking drugs regardless of our policies. If we make it less dangerous to do so via legalization of pot or cocaine or whatever, more people will surely use drugs, and there will surely be a lot less of the costs of the war on drugs (fewer cops, prisons, gang fights over turf). The interesting question is in how those costs and benefits balance out.

For pot, it seems almost certain that the benefits of legalization outweigh the costs--pot is not addictive or especially harmful, it doesn't seem to make people more violent or reckless, it's already widespread and doesn't seem to be doing any massive harm now, etc.

That's harder to see for other drugs. Meth and cocaine and heroin are all seriously addictive, long-term use can be really hard on users (though I'm not sure how representative the horror stories are), and meth and cocaine at least seem to make a lot of people more violent. On the other hand, those drugs provide a vast amount of money and power to exactly the people you would least like to see have either one, and locking up addicts seems like it can't really be all that great an idea.

Anonymous said...

http://takimag.com/article/the_depardieu_revolution/print#axzz2GiwTtphr

Class warfare pushes elites to the 'right'.

Ex Submarine Officer said...

I gotta say, this whole comment thread is a lot more worthy of such lowbrow locales as freep or huffpo rather than iSteve.

All heat, no light.

Tighten up, guys (and gals), you have a reputation to maintain.

munch said...

I'm very surprised at how many here buy the drug warrior meme "drug users can't function and become dependent on society at large."

Some admitted drug users: President Clinton, P{resident Obama.

Probably functioning well in professional sports is the highest physical achievement among adults, yet the only way to keep out drug abusers is unannounced drug tests. You cannot look at their performance and fire the lowest performers on grounds they must have destroyed their ability with drugs. The drug abusers may be at the top of the performance pile in one of the most competitive and physically demanding professions in existence.

But if you want to believe, believe. Drug users canpt tie their shoe laces and can;t earn a livings.

Anonymous said...

(contiued/part 2)

The problem with all the above is that I am jewish (mother born a blonde protestant of Mayflower stock) and I don't dislike these people at all (it's just the political force-as in steering the national conversation that I resent). Ofcourse the j community I have grown up with is not the top echeleon and is less homogenously jewish (lots of mixed jewish partents raising their kids in juadism) (these are not the Phillipe Dauman's though they may work 10 floors below him as lawyers in a general sense for my region power center which isn't NYC or LA). If I could talk to American Jews of which I count myself one I would recommend considering de-politicizing (reform) juadism a bit. So much of the in group identity in the/this j community i notice is political (i.e. talking about how racist the hick masses are, equality, gay rights, etc.). The reason I can't sign on with K-Mac is that in my exsperience these people are not saying these things as a calaculated strategy. Rather this is how they talk among themselves. In other words in the segment of juadism I know they don't change much indoor or outdoor. Ofcourse other places and scenes may be different.

My other message and personal view: is that jews are being too aggressive in their post-WW2 actions: 1. the new majorities of blacks and arabs (and possibly even asians-rest of the world) lack jew-guilt and are not nearly as afraid to call it as they see with regard to jews (riley martin/howard stern/"gentile servants in Weimar germany" clip). Especially in europe if jews made some high up descision to back mass immigration they seem to have way underestimated the risks to jews say in France in the event of France of becoming, say, 40% of that population. But perhaps to take a AJ or K-Mac view of the situation "they"-to oversimplify terribly-think in the future the new divided, multiracial western masses (probably largely without jobs in age of machine) will be either too addled or brainwashed or over stimulated in their digital bedroom/TV/sports/facebook worlds to mount any kind of, say, million man anti-zionist march through Paris or something more threatening to Bloomberg types than that. Or perhaps they figure the fractured groups will cancel out any major collective action (you pick your porn and McDonalds, but no political real decisions for citizens). The only way I could see the Bill Gates, Warren Buffet WASP/non-jewish white elite guys going along with pushing miscegngation is the possibility that Alex Jones is right and they do plan on reducing global population down to 300 million (i.e. their will be no more jobs for a huge part of the population perhaps and thus they either make it seem crazy to have kids if not a elite person or do something using chemicals or mass sterlization) inwhich case I could forsee the Gates' non-jewish guys buying into all the vile miscgenation propganda (old spice/turns white guy into vending machine ad for instance, check out Anti-White Media blog) with the thought that "most of all the mullatto children their propganda will produce will either die or not pass on their genes by 2090 or whatever year inwhich we realize the Luddites had a point about jobs/technology/etc.).

-scotch jew

Anonymous said...


Probably functioning well in professional sports is the highest physical achievement among adults, yet the only way to keep out drug abusers is unannounced drug tests. You cannot look at their performance and fire the lowest performers on grounds they must have destroyed their ability with drugs. The drug abusers may be at the top of the performance pile in one of the most competitive and physically demanding professions in existence.


Top performers can handle a lot of things that average people and below average people cannot handle. That is why our gov't is charged with passing laws that promote the general welfare.

There is a reason the military screens for IQ, physical fitness, morality etc and has a much more restrictive code than we have for the public. It is based on actual experience with real people in extreme circumstances not libertarian and utopian fantasies about everyone having the right to be special.

Anonymous said...

p.s. from scotch jew:

1. i think if K-Mac's premise of group strategy about jews is right then part of it is they don't see the miscegnation monster they're helping create destroying them but do see it destroying or weakening greatly rival white groups and leaving them for reasons of brain power the default world power elite (asians not really even considered in this grand chessboard, how can such a silent people ever beat the verbal, debate champion masters of the world, is the line of thought I think.

forgive my verbosity thought some might appreciate an insider (or sorta insiderish take on a group many-quite rightly-talk about alot in the comments).

Anonymous said...

I want to live in a country were I can aactually take seriously policy questions like drug legalization. I guess maybe that was America 1.0. But in America 2.0 as a white person it seems to inconquestial you turn on ESPN and the ads start getting me thinking about whether white civilization will collapse in 1 or 2 generations. There is so much that has to be fixed that we can't even talk about let alone get anything done about in this 300 million people nation of shoppers. No solutions it seems are gonna come via DC any time soon. We need more Icelands inwhich to huddle and face the huge challendge of the internet/digital age from persrspective of european group intrests (you might be saying "wha?" but you shouldn't)

Anonymous said...

Probably functioning well in professional sports is the highest physical achievement among adults, yet the only way to keep out drug abusers is unannounced drug tests.

But what about all those who fell by the wayside and the guys who never even got out of bed, too stoned to compete all.

Mr. Anon said...

"munch said...

Some admitted drug users: President Clinton, P{resident Obama."

Another one: Carl Sagan (habitual pot user). Too bad he never made anything of himself. He had such potential.

Anonymous said...

"If cannabis were become legal the damage it would cause would far exceed alcohol."

Completely laughable, legalization of marijuana is unlikely to increase its userbase to the 3/4 who admit to using the drug ethanol at least occasionally, with it's correspondingly high population of reckless abusers.

Despite the billions of dollars and thousands of lives that ethanol costs the US every year, oddly enough, it never comes up in discussions of the dangerous drugs we need to crack down on. If we were serious about reducing the damage drugs do to society, we would impose lengthy prison sentences for possession of ethanol, and make it a capital crime to distribute it(HT: Singapore).

Of course, that would impede the hypocrisy of the drug warriors who like to imbibe a nice scotch after work while reciting the inanely redundant phrase "drugs and alcohol" in their conversations about the dangers of drugs.

NOTA said...

Dan:

There are people on the left and right who campaign for legalization of pot and other drugs (famously, Milton Friedman wanted drugs legalized), but the folks in power overwhelmingly oppose it. My guess is that Svigor is right here--the war on drugs, like the war on terror, is a source of a great deal of money and power. Getting the public to accept the routine use of midnight raids by jackbooted thugs, armies of undercover police and coerced and paid informants, and operations that run private armies in drug-producing countries would be worth any number of Americans dead or in prison, to the kind of people who make up our power elite.

Anonymous said...

I'm a regular pot smoker and I have a very high IQ. I'm a productive member of society pulling in six figures. I have a family.

Ah, family. If by that you mean children, then I would remind you that they are the kiss of death of many a libertarian pipe dream.

If you decide you require a regular fix of THC to keep life groovy, that's your call, but don't forget about the kids that your THC-pickled sperm produces, who might one day say that if Dad uses a bong, what's wrong with a few hits of X on the weekend or a few lines of coke every now and then? Maybe your little flowers are too special to turn out that way, and maybe it's actually the kids of the repressed just-say-no parents that are more likely to wind up in state-sponsored rehab, but have a right to be skeptical. I do think it's kind of sad that I appear to be more worried about all that than you are, but then, I don't have all that pot in my system to make me mellow.

That being said, if you are one of those pot smokers who decides that kids aren't really for you, then I would agree that special privileges might well be due in your case.

Anonymous said...

Libertarian fantasy:

"People should be able to do whatever they want to their own bodies"

2013 Reality:

-Druggie gets sick due to drug use & taxpayers pick up the tab.
-Druggie can't work because of drug use & taxpayers pick up the tab.
-Druggie drives while under the influence - Public safety issue &
taxpayers pick up the tab.
-Druggie can't support his kids & taxpayers pick up the tab.
-Druggie votes - what the hell?!

The Anti-Gnostic said...

But what about all those who fell by the wayside and the guys who never even got out of bed, too stoned to compete all.

Who gives a flying f---. They can do that on alcohol, carbs or just a lackadaisical attitude already.

Pimp my blog.

Anonymous said...

Another one: Carl Sagan (habitual pot user).

Wait, isn't he the idiot who, without consulting the rest of us, used our tax money to shoot a spacecraft into outer space containing all sorts of useful information to any alienz who might want to, oh, I don't know, annihilate us? That hey-here-we-are strategy worked out so well for Squanto as I recall, not to mention the dodo bird. It's a wonder he didn't include a recipe for roast human, or maybe a helpful serving suggestion (though as I recall he did send up a picture of two fleshy white people). Too bad his weed didn't cause paranoia, but I'm guessing college professors have access to the really good stuff.

Whoever thinks Carl Sagan is a worthy icon for pot smoking seriously needs to put down the bong.

Velan said...

"That's a fine New England (dare I say Jewish?) liberal viewpoint you have there, lower-case jo; "We'll have to control what everyone else does, because hey, we know what's better for them!""

- Once again, Truth is completely off-base. The libs are the ones who are actually liberal on this issue. Sex, Drugs, Rock n' Roll, pretty much the only things they actually are 'liberal' about...




""Some admitted drug users: President Clinton, P{resident Obama."

Another one: Carl Sagan (habitual pot user). Too bad he never made anything of himself. He had such potential."


- If you told me,"I know a girl who is 6'3"- she's a basketball player. Therefore, it can't be the case that women are shorter or weaker than the average man", should I believe it?

HAR said...

"But what about all those who fell by the wayside and the guys who never even got out of bed, too stoned to compete all."

That's besides the point. If drugs were such a hindrance, than all the regular drug users should've never made it to the pros because the few guys who stayed clean would've outcompeted them. But we see a lot of pot smokers in the NBA and NFL.

Mr. Anon said...

"Anonymous Velan said...

If you told me,"I know a girl who is 6'3"- she's a basketball player. Therefore, it can't be the case that women are shorter or weaker than the average man", should I believe it?"

Of course not. But he is also not an isolated example of people of some notable accomplishments who used marijuana. I do not use it myself, nor would I recommend to anyone else that they do. And, for that matter, I don't much like Carl Sagan (he was often an arrogant ass). But the notion that pot use is necessarily a one-way ticket to loserville is simply wrong. Certainly it robs a lot of people of their ambition (or perhaps they had little ambition to begin with) and certainly using pot won't make one successful. I would guess it depends a lot on the underlying personality.

I really don't have much invested in the issue other than wishing to end the war on drugs because of the great damage it does to our civil liberties.

Anonymous said...

Reply to anon at 6:49 pm;

Rather then druggie you could just substitute the word drunk.

But alcohol is perfectly legal.

NOTA said...

Anon 6:48:

Pickled sperm? Really?

From this 2010 poll, 40% of the population has tried pot. (This is based on what people are willing to tell a complete stranger in a phone poll--the real number is probably higher.) That's a whole lot of pickled sperm. Indeed, marijuana use is so widespread that any major problems caused for the kids of pot smokers would be well known by now--subtle stuff that requires careful statistics to catch might still be unknown, but major, obvious problems would not be.

About the same fraction of people supported legalization of marijuana. We put people in jail for this stuff, which 4/10 of our population has smoked and doesn't even think should be illegal, which 2/3 of our most recent presidents smoked. (The other one was definitely a drunk and there are claims he was also a cokehead.). I don't see how that makes any sense at all.

Jefferson said...

[QUOTE]Libertarian fantasy:

"People should be able to do whatever they want to their own bodies"

2013 Reality:

-Druggie gets sick due to drug use & taxpayers pick up the tab.
-Druggie can't work because of drug use & taxpayers pick up the tab.
-Druggie drives while under the influence - Public safety issue &
taxpayers pick up the tab.
-Druggie can't support his kids & taxpayers pick up the tab.
-Druggie votes - what the hell?![/QUOTE]

If all drugs were legalized, there should be a law passed that drug addicts should not qualify for Obamacare.

I don't care how many lines of cocaine you snort in the privacy of your own home, if you overdose on it like like that female porn star character in the film Boogie Nights, I as a taxpayer do not want to pay for your hospital stay.

Anonymous said...

"Druggie can't work because of drug use & taxpayers pick up the tab.
-Druggie drives while under the influence - Public safety issue &
taxpayers pick up the tab.
-Druggie can't support his kids & taxpayers pick up the tab"

Right. Because this never happens with people who don't take drugs.

Here's how your dream scenario is working - Some people get high, and taxpayers pick up the tab of jail and DEA and court, etc.

Hate libertarians all you want, do you have numbers to prove the drug war is cost efficient? If not, why not be honest and just say you hate hippies and minorities?

Anyway, I think we can all agree, this issue is over. Legalization has won the day. Feel free to move.

Anonymous said...

Some admitted drug users: President Clinton, P{resident Obama

Unfortunately, there's a lot of people in this country who are poor, dumb or both. If they can't say no to drugs, I'll loudly do so on their behalf, since I'll wind up being stuck with the bill anyway, thanks in no small part to the policies of liberal clowns like the aforementioned two admitted drug users. (Hmmm, pot smoking presidents who enable other pot smokers...if I were a pot-smoker, I'd probably smell a conspiracy there.) Anyway, it may well be true that the war on drugs is primarily a war on the poor and disadvantaged, but there are some very practical reasons for why that's so.

I do realize that not all drugs are the same, and that the damage that drugs like meth cause is due not just to pharmacology, but also to the poverty and stupidity of those who choose meth as their primary buzz, but that's a side issue. And as for whatever supposedly works in Portugal, let alone the Netherlands, anyone who reads this blog probably already understands that solutions that work there are not necessarily going to translate to East LA or Chicago's "numbered streets" (or pasty-white Appalachia, for that matter).

One of the many annoyances of the drug war (though not quite on the level of narco-thugs, crack babies, and experiencing a head-on with a drunk driver) is the incessant cacophony of pundits who are confident they can fix the problem in the absence of any hard data - data that is going to be extremely difficult to get given the issues of race and class and intelligence that it would expose (much like the issues surrounding the education crisis). And without that hard data, all the postings of all the armchair pundits in the world (and that includes me) don't mean a lot.

Dahlia said...

Udolpho.com said...

Why do you do this to me, Steve? Why?

Bringing up drug policy on the Internet is just begging for sheltered nerds to post their thoughts despite being 24, completely lacking common sense, and having a debilitating autistic disorder.

Everyone here who watches cartoons, plays video games for 20 hours per week, or runs a Linux workstation should shut up right now.
____________

Winner!

Anonymous said...

Indeed, marijuana use is so widespread that any major problems caused for the kids of pot smokers would be well known by now

Really? Exactly how many centuries did it take before people stopped believing that because Uncle Ebeneezer smoked a pack a day into his 90's, or some such, there was no way that cigarettes could be bad for you. Oh wait, there are *still* lots of people who believe that. And we're still back and forth on what exactly alcohol does to the human body, after who knows how many millennia exactly. And despite that, you think that any major problems caused by the kids of pot smokers would be well-known by now? Really?

Let me take a wild guess: you're one of those pot smokers, am I right?

As for what marijuana does to sperm count and testosterone, you're going to have to do the research on that yourself, but you should probably wait till the buzz wears off.

Dahlia said...

Somehow, this comment from Ron Unz's latest post seems appropriate to the discussion on hand:

"Now the proof of the pudding is in the eating, and if the actual real-world results produced by our national elites over the last generation or so had been reasonably good, or even merely acceptable, then we might just grit our teeth and accept the totally unfair and biased system used to pick them [the elites]. But instead our national trajectory has been dreadful..."

I'll say.

Anonymous said...

...to anonymous at 1:20 PM: So then what are YOU SAYING? That you favour prohibition of alcohol?

Even if I would eagerly deprive Americans of their right to drink if that would save some lives (or at least a few of my tax dollars that could then be spent on causes I find worthier), that would not change the fact that according to the best current research on Prohibition, the amendment did reduce alcohol consumption and the number of deaths associated with alcohol, however much it may have increased the likelihood of engaging in binge drinking or consuming harder or more hazardous forms of liquor on those rarer occasions when one did consume.

I'm not sure how my particular views on alcohol prohibition change any of that, except maybe as part of a fishing expedition for an ad hominem argument. What was that quote that Steve cited a few days ago, to the effect that if one doesn't like facts, one can always attack motives?

Anonymous said...

"Hacienda said...
Teachers and guidance counselors are people who couldn't manage to get real jobs. Why you want to listen to them I have no idea.
-------------------------------

Yeah, better to listen to the advice of anonymous posters with unknown qualifications any kind."

Right, your high school baby sitters told you there were bad people on the internet. God forbid you think for yourself.

Truth said...

"- Once again, Truth is completely off-base. The libs are the ones who are actually liberal on this issue. Sex, Drugs, Rock n' Roll, pretty much the only things they actually are 'liberal' about..."

You did include "drugs" there, right, or am I just imagining this?

headache said...

I did a stint as a streetworker in our church's local outreach in the drugscene in our German city. Invariably the initiation drug was Marijuana. THen came Coke and then Heroin. Most of the addicts picked up their habits from their schoolteachers.

The dealers are the pits. Legalising drugs makes it seem harmless, and it isn't.

Same with prostution. Legalising it built an industry in which thousands of girls from Eastern Europe are being destroyed as human beings.

headache said...

Truth sed:You did include "drugs" there, right, or am I just imagining this?



On another statistics-related thread Truth actually came out with his real creds. Somehow Steve managed to get him to come out of the woodwork. Kinda funny this black man schtick he always likes to portray.

munch said...

You are all reasoning from what seems plausible to you. Drugs and booze give pleasurable sensations without the work to achieve something, therefore users will work less.

Women in the US who drink alcoholic beverages earn 14 percent more than nondrinkers and men who drink make 10 percent more than abstainers, according to an economic analysis published in the Journal of Labor Research. Men who drink in a bar at least once a month earn an additional 7 percent, for a total of 17 percent more than nondrinkers.

Velan said...

"Truth said...

"- Once again, Truth is completely off-base. The libs are the ones who are actually liberal on this issue. Sex, Drugs, Rock n' Roll, pretty much the only things they actually are 'liberal' about..."

You did include "drugs" there, right, or am I just imagining this?"


Wow, we need to start calling you Two-fer for how often you're off-base. Of course I included 'drugs' there- in your original comment, you had indicated that the liberals were the ones trying to restrict access to drugs- I pointed out that you were way offbase, and that actually, drugs were one of the few things they were actually 'liberal' (ie- unrestricted) about. It helps if you keep up.



"Pickled sperm? Really?

From this 2010 poll, 40% of the population has tried pot. (This is based on what people are willing to tell a complete stranger in a phone poll--the real number is probably higher.) That's a whole lot of pickled sperm. Indeed, marijuana use is so widespread that any major problems caused for the kids of pot smokers would be well known by now--subtle stuff that requires careful statistics to catch might still be unknown, but major, obvious problems would not be."


- THC lowers sperm counts, and sperm motility, and increases the percentage of abnormal sperm. It may also cause chromosomal damage.
Its well established that sperm counts have been going down in the population over time- perhaps increasing drug use is a reason for this? In addition, marijuana users have greater lung damage on average than cigarette smokers, likely because they hold it in longer and inhale deeper (well, all except Clinton, anyway) to allow more of the drug to enter their system. The average hit to one's lifespan is greater than cigarette smoking. I'm sure having said that, someone will now tell me about a famous pothead professor from the 60s who has gone on to live to be 110. To that I would say see the comment about the female basketball player above. In addition, there is plenty to say of the psychological, social, career impact as well. You can say you manage it, but its clear it does have a significant impact on most users.

Its one thing to say you have the freedom to do it, but as the saying goes, your freedoms end where mine begin. Why should I share the burden for the increased health care costs for people who do it? Or the increased share of the tax burden, etc? We recognize that cigarette smokers should have to give up some of their freedom to smoke as they please and do it outdoors so that everyone else isn't exposed to the 2nd hand smoke. Insurance companies charge them more (which they alone have to bear when on individual or family policies). If you want to do these things, you and you alone should have to pay the entirety of the consequence.




Anonymous said...

Reply to anon at 9:27 Pm;

So then your saying prohibition was a good thing? And its repeal was a mistake?

Simple yes or no answers will suffice.

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