An outstanding article by Paul Campos in the Wall Street Journal: Undressing the Terror Threat.
It’s primarily about the dysfunctional war on terror and the stupidity of playing by “Terrorball” rules:
- The game lasts as long as there are terrorists who want to harm Americans; and
- If terrorists should manage to kill or injure or seriously frighten any of us, they win.
It’s a climate that has fostered “the current ascendancy of the politics of cowardiceâ€”the cynical exploitation of fear for political gain.”
Terrorball, in short, is made possible by a loss of the sense that cowardice is among the most disgusting and shameful of vices. I shudder to think what Washington, who as commander in chief of the Continental Army intentionally exposed himself to enemy fire to rally his poorly armed and badly outnumbered troops, would think of the spectacle of millions of Americans not merely tolerating but actually demanding that their government subject them to various indignities, in the false hope that the rituals of what has been called “security theater” will reduce the already infinitesimal risks we face from terrorism.
Campus also relates this to the war on drugs:
…not treating Americans as adults has costs. For instance, it became the official policy of our federal government to try to make America “a drug-free nation” 25 years ago.
After spending hundreds of billions of dollars and imprisoning millions of people, it’s slowly beginning to become possible for some politicians to admit that fighting a necessarily endless drug war in pursuit of an impossible goal might be a bad idea. How long will it take to admit that an endless war on terror, dedicated to making America a terror-free nation, is equally nonsensical?
We’ve always said that the current approach to fighting the “war on terror” has its roots in the corrupt war on drugs. They are inextricably linked in their dysfunction.
A former New York City police commissioner backs his car into a pregnant woman and drives off. He faces no consequences.
Yet when drug war victim Jonathan Ayers feared for his life when undercover officers approached his car, and backed into one of them when trying to get away, that was justification for shooting and killing him.
Yesterday the New Jersey State Assembly passed a bill, already approved by the state Senate, that allows judges to waive heretofore mandatory sentences for nonviolent drug offenses committed in “drug-free zones.” Under state law, such zones include any place within 1,000 feet of a school or 500 feet of a park, library, museum, or public housing project. Selling drugs (or possessing them with intent to sell) within that area triggers a mandatory minimum sentence of three years.
Mandatory minimums based on zones have been a particularly ugly aspect of drug law, as they have a greater impact on inner cities and minorities.
Here’s an example of a map from a small town in New Jersey. You can imagine what it’s like in a big city.
Scott Morgan says It’s Time to Legalize Medical Marijuana in Professional Sports
Judge orders CHP to return 60 pounds of marijuana. I would have really loved to watch them return it.
Oregon police chief admits incompetence, says medical marijuana law is “unenforceable.” Seems to me he might want to be a little more concerned about what’s causing those mutant horses in his newsletter’s banner picture.
Couldn’t happen to a better guy… Grand jury investigating Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Arizona
I guess the real question I have is… how can this feudal Sheriff of Nottingham, with such obvious contempt for civilized society, our country’s principles, and our Constitution, operate with impunity for so long?
DrugSense Weekly – a weekly review of the most interesting or relevant articles in the press and on the web related to drug policy reform.
Drug War Chronicle – weekly update of drug war news and analysis from Stop the Drug War.org.