Margret Kopala, The Ottawa Citizen, with her article: How to win the drug war
There has been little mention in this election campaign of the most pernicious evil of our time. Yet recent reports from a UN agency leave little doubt that the war against drugs is being won and that, with full engagement, victory is if not possible, then very nearly possible.
…little doubt that the war against drugs is being won? Now that’s first-class delusion.
The World Drug Report 2008 launched in June by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime reveals how opium and cocoa cultivation, whose heroin and cocaine extractions are the scourge of Canada’s inner cities, are now largely confined to rebel-held areas in Aghanistan and Colombia. It also reveals how worldwide deaths from illicit drugs at around 200,000 a year pale in comparison to deaths from legal substances such as cigarettes (five million a year), and alcohol (2.5 million). “The drug problem was dramatically reduced over the past century,” says UNODC executive director Antonio Maria Costa, “and has stabilized over the past 10 years.”
In other words, prohibition works.
Well actually, the reason that most of the heroin and cocaine comes from Afghanistan and Colombia is that we’ve made it very profitable for the black market to operate out of those two locations and that they are able to supply most of the demand in the world despite all the drug war efforts. If we actually cut down the supply enough in one of those areas, it would pop up somewhere else.
And it’s pretty bizarre to assert that the fact that less people die from illegal drugs than legal ones is a result of prohibition.
Then Margret gets real ominous:
We’ve come a long way since then but signs are surfacing that new kinds of vested interests are seizing the drug control agenda. Blogging on Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside Enquirer, for instance, reveals the menacing ascendance of the medical industrial complex. Serviced by numerous medical organizations, it works in tandem with a burgeoning poverty industry that residents call the “povertariat.”
Translation: there are horrible people out there who think that drug addiction is a health issue that is exacerbated by poverty.
Daily drug busts demonstrate that Canadian police forces are doing their part to control supply. Their efforts, however, are being undermined by harm reduction initiatives which merely serve the vested interests of the Taliban, drug dealers and Canada’s burgeoning medical industrial complex while addicts remain victimized — first by their habit and then by those exploiting them.