Kids Say the Darndest Things

The latest entry in our series is not from a High School or College newspaper, but rather from the Young Leaders Program at the Heritage Foundation. Whereas our college writers came about their ignorance honestly, you have to wonder whether Ashley Mosteller (although her writing itself is good) got some help from Heritage.

Even the title of the OpEd sends off alarm bells: Losing the Mexico Drug War: One Protest at a Time

Does she really mean that protesting the drug war is the problem in Mexico?


Ashley’s concern is that protests, like that of Mexican poet and intellectual Javier Sicilia who lost his son, are aimed at the government instead of the criminals, and that such protests are undermining the efforts of the government and aiding the criminals.

First of all, what possible good could you accomplish by protesting the criminals? You’re not going to convince them to end the drug war. Javier Sicilia realizes that the people directly to blame for the death of his son are the criminals. He also realizes that it wouldn’t have happened if it wasn’t for the drug war.

Ashley several times expresses concern that the criminals and the government are being unfairly seen as morally equivalent.

This, in a nutshell, is one of the huge blind spots of the Heritage Foundation folks. Because they see “the other” as morally bad (criminals, terrorists, etc.), and anything that we do as morally good, they can’t accept (or even see) the fact that the actions of the “morally good” can actually be the proximate cause of criminal or terrorist violence.

So when terrorists object to our military presence with terror attacks, we respond with increased military presence and pressure, creating new terrorists with each action we take. This doesn’t make the terrorists right, but it also doesn’t make our response smart. But to the bright-line-moralist Heritage types, even attempting to explain the cause is an unacceptable attack on America, let alone considering crafting a non-retributive-based solution.

Same with the drug war. With each increased level of enforcement, we cause the increased violence by the criminals (that’s established fact) with no long-term benefit. It doesn’t make the criminals right, but it doesn’t make us smart, either.

Javier Sicilia lost his son. He doesn’t care about assigning moral equivalencies. He wants the drug war ended so no more sons are killed.

The Heritage Foundation type doesn’t care how many sons are killed as long as they can claim moral superiority and show off their dicks (ironically enough, military superiority and moral superiority are closely aligned in their minds – now there’s a fascinating Easter message).

Ashley has a couple of other ignorant moments in her OpEd.

[The administration] must balance a “stay the course” approach with disturbing signs that President Calderon is losing control of the narrative and the support of the Mexican people. All of this, of course, is to the delight of Mexico’s criminal organizations, whose goal is to disseminate fear and uncertainty on both sides of the border.

Really? Is that their goal? I thought it was to make money selling drugs. Fear is one of their tactics, not a goal.

Finally, Ashley lost all credibility with using Michele Leonhart as a citation to back up her points:

“It may seem contradictory, but the unfortunate level of violence is a sign of success in the fight against drugs,” said U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration chief Michele Leonhart.”

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16 Responses to Kids Say the Darndest Things

  1. pt says:

    That’s a good little NeoCon, yes you are, yes you are. Who’s a good little NeoCon?

  2. N.T. Greene says:

    “It may seem contradictory, but the unfortunate level of violence is a sign of success in the fight against drugs,” said U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration chief Michele Leonhart.”

    Only in America would we call an “unfortunate level of violence” a “sign of success”. Especially when all evidence points to the level of violence being a sign of failure.

    But hey, why rely on evidence when blind rhetoric has been standard issue for over forty years?

    • Benjamin says:

      Only the most insipid and narrow-sighted person would actually quote that line from Leonhart as positive support for their argument.

  3. kaptinemo says:

    A line from an old poem immediately comes to mind:

    “The best lack all conviction, while the worst
    Are full of passionate intensity.

    Well, not all the ‘best’ lack conviction; the proof of that is found here.

    But the ‘worst’ just never seem to realize the freakin’ planks sticking out of their eyes when they complain about the comparative (or, in this case, illusory) dust motes inhabiting the ocular equipment of their opponents.

    But one thing is certain; the Heritage Foundation is no ‘think tank’; such are supposed to be comprised of individuals who actually do think rather than engage in rote regurgitation of propaganda. For no matter what fancy verbiage may be applied, that’s just what that article was.

    • denmark says:

      Good poem, it fits our “modern” world. Imagine that!
      The “think tank” is the American public, not the deluded self-proclaimed idiots that think they are above the rest of us.
      Stupid is as stupid does once again.

  4. warren says:

    It does not make them RIGHT. It takes two morons to fight.

  5. kaptinemo says:

    OT: Another anti-cannabis hypocrite caught red-handed with weed.

    This is partly why we have such a hard time; effing hypocrites like this. Jerks…

  6. Servetus says:

    Each time the United States loses a war, the losers who originally backed the war blame the loss on critics and protesters who warned well in advance that the war was unwinnable.

    Blaming the messenger has limitations. The Heritage Foundation’s habit of passing the buck for the ill-conceived social policies it supports is old stuff. We might as easily blame the Heritage Foundation itself for losing the drug war because the alleged think-tank can’t produce a viable plan to win it.

    A little library research by Ashley could have convinced her that prohibitionism has never worked to eliminate anything. Whether it’s promoting sexual abstinence by teenagers, banning heretical books, outlawing religions like Judaism, or proscribing the use of mind altering drugs, failure remains a constant attribute when basing law enforcement on unsolicited government inquiries instead of voluntary public accusations.

    In each case, the authorities and their think-tanks fail because they believe they can use the coercive power of government to force everyone to be more idiotic than the government officials themselves. Policy failures become inevitable in such cases for a significant and unyielding percentage of the population.

  7. ezrydn says:

    I’ve been asking questions with my coffee group here. Just as the US has an upcoming election for President, so do we down here. So, I’ve been asking what the people think, PAN, PRI or PRD?? And, what would each do in regards to the narco problem here.

    A majority say that PRI will upend PAN. Then, I asked, “How will they handle the drug violence differently?” The answer was “They’ll negotiate!”

    Keep that in mind as the election cycle plays out and let’s see if there’s any true insight to it. One must remember that this violence situation arose under PRI to begin with.

  8. Black Market says:

    Whenever you start judging who is morally good and bad, you end up in weird policy knots. Not to sound like a realpolitik practitioner, but all types of moral judgements should be excluded in determining drug policy.

    • denmark says:

      Then the war on its own people would be over. It’s not a war on drugs, what it is is a war on certain people alone.

      Notice all the t.v. shows with the word “war” at the end?
      Storage Wars
      Turf Wars
      Cupcake Wars
      Drawing a blank on the rest of them right now.

      • Duncan20903 says:

        We really should insist that the government declare a war on war. Drop bombs to make peace, that’s just so 60s nostalgic that it brings a tear to my eye.

  9. vicky vampire says:

    Yeah Denmark what the FRAK is up with that all these reality shows with the Wars name in it I thought all those TV producer folk hated War Stuff I guess they thought the word word titillate folks watch the show sounds stronger than Storage competition or Cupcake Games. You know similar to that test they did if you put your hand in ice to relieve pain cuss words help psychologically calm pain better so you say heck its ineffective instead you say oh Fuck and you feel better maybe naughty factor has soothing effect.

  10. DdC says:

    Losing the Mexico Drug War: One Protest at a Time?
    And a decision to experiment with drugs as far away as Mexico’s Copper Canyons

    Just the facts Ma’am…
    Oh Mexico… The poor, dirt poor throughout the Americas have been driven into their conditions while the rich get richer. US exploitation at its finest. Same with Ghetto’s in the states. Fabrications. Then the fix, cover them up from the view of the TV or put them in a cage out of sight out of mind. What alternatives do they have. Tequila, serving Touristas or the Copper Mines. Why not Hemp like Canada? 25,000 products in 1938. With today’s technology the sky is the limit. Afrikan apartheid fans like good ole boy Pat Robertson, though he has diamond mines. Exploiting the kids in the Gold mines, using Mercury extraction. Waiting and a praying for that tired boring old song to stop playing. And the trickle downs start spraying ole Milwaukee like its raining. I’m still anticipating the time when Tricky Dick’s promise of flashbacks comes true.

    Are US Pot Laws the Root Cause of Mexican Drug Violence?

    So another educated idiot. Curriculum depravation syndrome. Passing the tests with flying colors, reading censored books. Who knows with the Koch roaches and Texas Teabog rushbites could have us back on a flat earth and school swears and illegal abortions. Women in ankle length dresses and mandated haircuts for men. Killing the communist rock and roll devil’s tool. Injecting the bibble as science. Home schooling and vouchers stealing public school funds. Leaving over crowded classes and then blame the teachers. Its the fault of the Unions. From brats not around when the kids were in sweatshops and collecting pop bottles. Seniors without health care doesn’t look pretty in the old pictures. Deadly diseases spread through the campsites like pox on the past indian blankets. Soup lines and Klogogg, before criticizing and shaming Phelps. Causing the dust bowl and now we in Cali have to put up with Pot phobic Okies and their buck #+@@$@! owens!

    The Free Mexican Air Force

    * Mexico Decriminalizes Small Amounts of Drugs
    * Mexico legal-drug bill condemned
    * U.S. Cautious on Mexico Drug Measure

    No such thing as a week end. 40 hours your just breaking a sweat. No minimum wage let alone one you can live on. Breaks? Break rooms? Sick pay, unemployment when the factory goes to the land of Shiva? Hold your wheezing, coughing, elevated sputum, shortness of breath. Mexamericanada kids, thanks to NAFTA/GATT, the Kochknockers and the Dick Armey brats. One billion cheap peasants in India. Who needs OSHA with disposable workers? The GOP wants to bail out the Banks that can’t fail. Then break up the Unions for slowing down their agenda. Personally I prefer working for myself. Band Aids we wouldn’t need if the corporations weren’t machines with human rights. Bottom lines in the short term cost more in the long. Fixing exposed machinery cost a few bucks, but it lowers insurance each time some one doesn’t get hurt. Plus the cost of treating the wounds. Long term exposure killing kids in their 20’s. Yet this +*++@ is concerned about Ganja?

    Ganjawar Puppets Cave… again

    * Mexico President Seeks Review of Drug Law
    * Oh, Mexico (Oh the Embarrassment),
    * Threats From USA Force Mexico to Drop Decrim Plans
    * Mexico Moves To Decriminalize Drug Possession~
    ~ No, Wait, Nevermind

    Cheney and what the Hellaburten again, now using deadly chemicals fracking natural gas. These monsters don’t give a fruity tootie rats ass. This chick thinks smoking pot is more harmful than the status weird profits on kids breathing in crystalline silica. Growing pot is worse than these horrible conditions? Or think once you get out that you won’t fight to stay out? As long as the Mexican air force is allowed to do their thing. The cops got their bonus. The people got their wells dug. The primo bud was their banner of glory. Extracting Gold from
    Acapulco doesn’t require mercury. Schools built. Hospitals built. The despots kept the US aid and all was mellow enough for siesta’s. Now look what they’ve done with their damn Prohibitions. Their damn exploitations and their damn hypocrisy. Eat the rich! Viva Sativa Y’all!

    Losing the Mexican Drug War may be better than winning… linx&pix

    Grupo following their mentor’s La Koch aracha

    The Assault on Labor in Cananea, Mexico
    The actions taken in collusion between Grupo México and the Mexican government are an outrage. And if they can crush this very effective, independent union … all independent unions in Mexico are at risk.

    Mercury’s Toxic Legacy
    Over 150,000 Native Americans lived in California prior to the start of the Gold Rush in 1849. By 1870 disease, forced relocations and massacres had reduced the Native population to an estimated 31,000.

    Miners dug up 12 billion tons of earth, and used mercury to extract gold ore.

    Clear Lake, the traditional homeland to Pomo Indian fishing communities, contains over 100 tons of mercury today.

    An international effort to improve hazardous working conditions in Mexico
    Health hazards including exposure to mineral dust (including silica), acid mists, airborne solvents, high noise levels, high vibration levels, and extreme temperatures.

    Lung function testing and interviews with physicians showed a substantial percentage of miners with adverse respiratory symptoms including shortness of breath (46%), wheezing (12%), coughing (12%), and elevated sputum production

    Mercury use Rising
    mercury poisoning can cause blindness, tremors, and neurological damage and accumulate in water, aquatic life and soil,

    Nigeria: Gold Rush Kills Children with Lead Dust
    Five of the 25 children, including Musa’s 1-year-old daughter Nafisa, lost their lives in May after villagers ground ore from nearby hills they didn’t know were also loaded with lead. Rising prices for gold promised a windfall. Instead, they helped unleash the deadliest lead-poisoning crisis in modern medical history.

    Gold, Greed & Genocide
    Over 150,000 Native Americans lived sustainably in California prior to the gold rush. They had existed for many centuries, supporting themselves mostly by hunting, gathering and fishing. This life changed drastically in 1848 when James Marshall discovered the yellow metal in the American River at Coloma, in Northern California.

    The Mexican Drug War
    1575 killed in 2011. Total killed: 36226 (December 2006–March 2011)

    For over fifty years the United States has been committed to a policy of suppressing the “abuse” of narcotic and other “dangerous” drugs. The primary instrument in carrying out this policy has been the criminal sanction. The results of this reliance on the criminal sanction have included the following: continue…

  11. This is not my America says:

    Dont these ‘lawmakers’ know that hash is the same difference as beer is to whiskey? For god sakes, why cant people just mind their own buisness?!! It seems to me people these days are hell bent on looking for ways to put people in a cage and remove freedom from each other!


    24/7/365…day in day out…laws are made to restrict your freedom. Not just drug laws , laws about every facet of our lives… when will it stop?! When we can no longer breath without permission ?

  12. Sakume says:

    According to her logic, every potheads goal is to wind up in prison as many times as they can.

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