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A campaign ad

Also, see Gary Johnson’s OpEd in The Washington Times: JOHNSON: Hitting the cartels where it hurts

Imagine you are a drug lord in Mexico, making unfathomable profits sending your illegal product to the United States. What is the headline you fear the most? “U.S. to build bigger fence”? “U.S. to send troops to the border”? “U.S. to deploy tanks in El Paso”? No. None of those would give you much pause. They would simply raise the level of difficulty and perhaps cause you to escalate the violence that already has turned the border region into a war zone. But would they stop you or ultimately hurt your bottom line? Probably not.

But what if that drug lord opened his newspaper and read this: “U.S. to legalize and regulate marijuana”? That would ruin his day, and ruin it in a way that could not be fixed with more and bigger guns, higher prices or more murder.

You may disagree with his political approach of talking about ending the whole drug war but focusing only on marijuana policy, but you can’t deny that he’s doing an outstanding job of focusing on the anti-drug-war message in his campaign.


Update: You know how practically every mainstream article about marijuana or drug policy has that ubiquitous and anachronistic graphic of the fingers holding a large lit doobie?

Illustration: Legalization by Alexander Hunter for the Washington TimesWell, I was fascinated by the graphic that was used instead in the Washington Times OpEd. Much more interesting and relevant.

It’s “Legalization” by Alexander Hunter for The Washington Times.

It appears to be a graphic showing that under criminalization, there is an inevitable link between marijuana and huge black-market profits, which then leads to blood and violence. And the scissors and dotted line indicates legalization severing that connection.

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12 comments to A campaign ad

  • Peter

    It’s worth registering as a republican just to vote for Gary Johnson in the primaries. (By the way Pete, sometimes when you post something like Johnson’s ad i just get a big space and nothing to click on ….don’t know if there was something at the top which is missing? )

    • The big space at the top is a youtube video of a Gary Johnson campaign ad. What browser/OS are you using? Sometimes it may just be loading slowly and it’ll leave that big space for where the embedded video is supposed to go. But if you’re never getting it, that’s a concern.

      • Peter

        Thanks for the reply Pete. The computer i use has a filter on it and it may be this which is blocking youtube.

  • Ben

    An actual quote from a Drug Warrior blogger:

    “In America, the criminal justice system remains the number one referral agency for people entering drug treatment. That’s a truly wonderful thing.”

    The author’s comment at the bottom of this page: http://pact360.org/blog/2011/07/27/3-guidelines-from-a-cop%E2%80%99s-personal-handbook/comment-page-1/#comment-34

    • Peter

      @Ben….I just added this comment to Shoemaker’s “wonderful thing” posting:

      @Timothy Shoemaker….I would agree with you about the attitude of state and education authorities to ex-drug users who can demonstrate a turn around. However, one area where any conviction for drug use will prove fatal is in the area of immigration. Federal law mandates a life-time ban on immigrating to the US for those convicted of even the most minor drug possession charge. Would you really recommend the parents of a green card holder to turn in their teenager for using drugs knowing that they will be deported and will never be allowed to live in the US again?

      Your comment is awaiting moderation.

  • darkcycle

    Huh. Will it let me comment this time?
    YAY! edit even works now!
    I’m back. Whew.

  • tommy

    “You know how practically every mainstream article about marijuana or drug policy has that ubiquitous and anachronistic graphic of the fingers holding a large lit doobie”
    The graphic that I remember the most (and hate) is the one that features a doobie and a hypodermic needle.

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .
    Darn, have any of the bookies started taking bets on who’s going to become POTUS in 2013? I’ll lay a double sawbuck on Mr. Johnson for 5000:1 or better. Heck, maybe even a c-note if I’m feeling flush.

    edit: well that wasn’t hard to find.
    http://www.1800-sports.com/presidential-betting-odds.shtml

    WTF, GJ isn’t even on the list, and they’ve even included Al Gore and John Edwards for crying out loud.

    Ron Paul at 4500-1 might work though.

    • Windy

      As I’ve posted elsewhere:
      We CAN end this horrid war on individual freedom, we could get ourselves a president — Ron Paul — who WILL end the federal government’s war on drug(user)s in 2012 (half the war won by our side, right there). We COULD have this, provided most (all?) reformers change their registration to Republican for just this one presidential election cycle and vote for him in the primaries/caucuses and again in the general when he succeeds in getting the Republican nomination.

      Gary Johnson is good (on drug legalization) but not nearly as popular (with people for whom reform of drug policies is not very high on their priority list) as Ron Paul happens to be (he’d be a great VP with Ron Paul as president), so we have a better chance of getting Ron Paul elected than we do Gary Johnson, because others would also vote for him for other reasons (his principles, his support for Constitutional government, for his understanding of the economy and monetary policies, because he is anti- undeclared war, because he is pro-freedom, etc.).

      So, if reformers truly want to end the prohibition of certain drugs, Dr. Paul is the ONLY choice for 2012. If we miss this opportunity to elect an anti-prohibition president, it could be decades before we get another such opportunity.

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .
    I’d be perfectly willing to change my voter registration and vote for Mr. Paul in the primary as part of establishing a voting block so that the powers that be would finally recognize us.

    But quite frankly I’d do the same thing if the candidate in the plan was Bozo the Clown. But there’s simply no way you’re going to talk me into supporting Mr. Paul’s candidacy for the real thing. It’s glaringly obvious to me that had Mr. Paul been in power that our entire economy would already been flushed. The Keynesians may end up not pulling our chestnuts out of the fire but the Libertarians would have smiled a said “swim free little sewer trout, swim free” as they watched our economy swirl the bowl. After the fiscal calamity that I observed in 2008 I’m never going to support another Libertarian candidate, and I have significant regrets over every vote that I’ve cast in every election since 1980. Just for the sake of clarity I’ve voted a “straight” Libertarian ticket from 1980 to 2008, including voting for Mr. Paul in 1988.

    But aside from that isn’t it true that Mr. Paul supports getting the Federal government out of the prohibition business but has no problem with prohibition at the State level?

    But in italics above there’s that pothead character trait that makes it next to, if not impossible for us to form a real live voting block. The very same character trait that’s resulted in 2,872 different political advocacy groups working for cannabis law reform. The really ironic thing is that character trait is what makes cannabis prohibition impossible to successfully prosecute. Were we any good at marching in lockstep, speaking with one voice, and/or doing as we’re told, cannabis would be a long forgotten historical footnote as Harry J and his henchmen would have succeeded in their nefarious plot to do just that.

    Oh well. It’s a dictionary picture example of Catch-22.

    There was only one catch and that was Catch-22, which specified that a concern for one’s safety in the face of dangers that were real and immediate was the process of a rational mind. Orr was crazy and could be grounded. All he had to do was ask; and as soon as he did, he would no longer be crazy and would have to fly more missions. Orr would be crazy to fly more missions and sane if he didn’t, but if he were sane he had to fly them. If he flew them he was crazy and didn’t have to; but if he didn’t want to he was sane and had to.

    ~Joseph Heller, “Catch-22”

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .
    It just struck me that if we were really going to figure out a candidate which we’d support in the primaries in order to let them know that we’re real, and since we’re realistically not going to actually back a winning candidate, that there’s no reason why we couldn’t back a Democrat, and that it may well be a better strategy. There likely won’t be anyone but wing nuts running against Mr. O whereas there will be a number of significantly electable Republicans that will throw their hats into the ring.

    Here’s what happened in the 2004 Republican primaries:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Republican_Party_%28United_States%29_presidential_primaries,_2004#Candidates

    I swear I don’t recognize a single name on that list. Then there’s the Democratic primaries in 1996. I do recognize Mr. LaRouche’s name but he had his dog and pony show headquartered about 20 miles from where I lived the first 4 decades of my life and he was a very colorful man. A totally deranged man and a crook to boot, but nevertheless very colorful, which got him lots of ongoing attention in the local press. I do expect Mr. O will have more competition for the 2012 Democrat Party nomination as in 1996 Mr. Clinton owned the entire process.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democratic_Party_%28United_States%29_presidential_primaries,_1996

  • Hope

    I found the sound with Governor Johnson’s video rather annoying.

    Silence would have been better, perhaps.