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April 2009
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Tom Tancredo – another voice for legalization

I haven’t generally considered myself a fan of Tom Tancredo in most political areas, but apparently he’s looking to become a new force in drug policy reform.
Vincent Carroll: Tancredo’s next crusade? in the Denver Post…

What do you talk about at lunch with Tom Tancredo? I thought I knew, but to my surprise (and relief), we spent much of the hour discussing the wisdom of legalizing drugs rather than rehashing our disagreements over illegal immigrants.

“The status quo isn’t working,” Tancredo says, meaning the war on drugs has failed ÷ spectacularly. And while that’s hardly a novel insight, most people who reach it don’t take the next step of questioning the drug war itself. […]

Meanwhile ÷ and you already know this from a slew of news reports ÷ the ferocity of international drug cartels is simply breathtaking. Cartel-related violence and terror ÷ including beheadings and torture right out of al-Qaeda’s playbook ÷ snuffed out 6,000 or so lives last year in Mexico alone, with 1,600 murders just in Ciudad Juarez. Tancredo worries about this corruption seeping northward if we don’t de-fund the drug lords by legalizing at least some narcotics.

Tancredo’s also established a think tank – The Rocky Mountain Foundation – and one of its major thrusts appears to be to discredit the war on drugs.
The more allies we get from an ever wider range of political homes the better.
I’d love to see Tancredo go on Lou Dobbs and tell him that drugs should be legalized, just to see Dobbs’ head explode.

Portugal decriminalization success gets some play

Glenn Greenwald’s excellent report (on the successful decriminalization of all drugs in Portugal for personal use) was picked up by Scientific American: Portugal’s Drug Decriminalization Policy Shows Positive Results What really caught my attention in this article was that they got the UNODC to agree that it seemed to work, but the response was Kafkaesque.

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