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October 2010
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Must Read

Mary Anastasia O’Grady is one of the bright lights in the media in actually understanding and discussing the economics of prohibition. She has an outstanding OpEd today in the Wall Street Journal: The Economics of Drug Violence: Competition in the narcotics trade is preferable to monopolistic syndicates.

It’s a very insightful article about the drug violence in Mexico and how it relates to policies in the U.S., as well as our new understanding of Colombia (she nails former DEA head Bonner).

I also enjoyed her apt description of the challenges of Prop 19:

The combination of conservatives who fear that legalization would transform us into a hash-happy heap of hippies, drug warriors who make a living off of the criminalization of pot smoking, and gangsters whose profits are tied up in prohibition could be enough to defeat it by a narrow margin.

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13 comments to Must Read

  • darkcycle

    Wow. Some of the comments are…..how can I say this….stupid.

  • claygooding

    @ Ben
    After str8 America finds out actual safety and therapeutic attributes of marijuana plus how much the drug warriors have lied and the totals of tax dollars spent just to keep marijuana prohibited,their organizations will not have the credibility and clout to bring to any budget hearing.
    I give it 5 years,after America wakes up and it could happen even quicker if the economy does not improve.

  • claygooding

    oops.commented on Post Prop and it got over here somehow,,,,wow.

  • denmark

    Hash-happy heap of hippies … unfortunately this image is alive and well in the heads of many.

    Government officials who have allowed the violence in Mexico to go on will pay a hefty price in “what goes around, comes around”. I am increasingly disgusted with “drug” policies and the ignorance that floats in the air like smoke from a joint.

  • claygooding

    Two things you cannot hide forever,the truth and the sun.
    The truth will deal more damage to the anti-drug coalition than they can stand and one day,very soon,America will awaken and see the sun.

  • darkcycle

    Great piece at Truthout.org [http://www.truth-out.org/false-arrests-gratuitous-police-violence-false-testimony-wrack-us-justice-system64095]

  • @Denmark: The hash-happy heap of hippies label isn’t all that far off, primarily because that particular segment (bravely) has little concern over self-identification. Those who consume but remain in the cannabis closet need to revisit their position to see if it remains relevant today. Coming out as a recreational cannabis consumer will still be dicey for many but not nearly all.

    Cannabis use cuts across every social and economic demographic, including those in the media and without regard to political affiliation. It is their silence and hypocrisy that mostly feeds the hash-happy stereotype. I’m not certain if it’s cowardness or coziness that inhibits drug policy reform leaders from breaking that silence and exposing the hypocrisy. But we should no longer allow cannabis (not to mention cocaine and speed) consumers in the media to reinforce the stereotype.

  • Just me.

    The combination of conservatives who fear that legalization would transform us into a hash-happy heap of hippies

    Wel call me crazy , but Id rather see a world of hash happy hippies than a world of police statist ,gun toten thugs. it would be a much happier place.

  • darkcycle

    @JustMe: safer and more compassionate too.

  • Just me.

    @darkcycle : Ya I just dont understand why people would choose a world of fear induced by a police state. A world where you are the servants to those who are to serve you.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20101011/ap_on_re_la_am_ca/lt_drug_war_mexico

    I hope with all my being that Nov 2 is the begining of the end for headlines like this.

  • rick b

    The journal also head some great letters to the editor in reply to the article published by the dea drug czars

  • Just me.

    A poster wrote at the WSJ

    As an earlier poster wrote, see Brave New World. What would we get from legalization? Frighteningly, many supporters think legaliztion is the easy way to end a lot of law enforcement expenditures while simultaneously replacing them with a huge flow of tax revenue.

    Is that what we want? A government that operates in partnership with producers of products thatn enslave us through addiction? We already know that every city and state is addicted to tobacco revenue. How easily could those dollars multiply if a range of highly addictive products were legally marketable?

    Arent we all already enslaved? By government, by corporations, by big pharma. The fact is, millions consume various drugs NOW. So how can a new approach be any worse that all the enslavement we already bear?

    This comment struck me the most:

    Is that what we want? A government that operates in partnership with producers of products thatn enslave us through addiction?

    Hello?! This is already happening. Its called prohibition. Its just a partnership that not admitted by our government.They regulate and controll covertly.Legalization would just bring it out in the light…

  • David Marsh

    “The economics of drug violence” it seams were back to numbers again. It is difficult to quantify the economic effect of the elicit drug industry. Like an iceberg we only see the small portion of the effect that rises above the hidden depths. Humboldt County producers that feed their families, pay their mortgages, and each dollar spent weaves it’s way through the system, effect upon effect ad infinitum. Why would Humboldt County want legal cannabis?

    Where ever there is money there are always those who want their piece of the pie. The government is “in partnership” with those bandits who would extort their toll along the modern silk road. Salt and pepper was once worth their weight in gold. At each strategic point along the road local kings built fortresses and used armed thugs to keep away the bandits and to collect a tax. Modern prohibition has given our government their substances that are worth their weight in gold.

    The ancient symbiosis of hero and villain, you can not have one without the other. The addiction is not for the drugs, or even the money. The addiction is for the illusion of safety.

    It is a dangerous illusion. Rome is burning and the counsel claims victory in Gaul. Our economy is a runaway freight train with no one at the controls. We are at war in the desert against the same ancient silk road salt and pepper bandits. Millions of gallons of BP oil are lurking somewhere in the depths of the Gulf of Mexico.

    Will we ever learn?