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Why Exactly DO Republicans Support the War On Drugs?

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The War On Drugs has been a staple of Republican campaigns since Richard Nixon helped use drugs as code words for blacks and hippies (Nixon Tapes Show Roots of Marijuana Prohibition: Misinformation, Culture Wars and Prejudice). There has always been the element of hypocrisy since drug use has always been present among some Republicans as well (they are human beings, after all).

Some prime examples of drug using Republicans are Rush Limbaugh (Rush Limbaugh’s legal battle in Palm Beach County) and of course our values President, George W Bush. Mr. Bush said: “I wouldn’t answer the marijuana questions. You know why? Because I don’t want some little kid doing what I tried.” From: In Secretly Taped Conversations, Glimpses of the Future President

So why do Republicans think that drugs should be illegal? Because they are dangerous and harmful to people, correct? Here is a quote from the official site for the Office of National Drug Control Policy: “The goals of the program are to reduce illicit drug use, manufacturing, and trafficking, drug-related crime and violence, and drug-related health consequences.”

Well, the drug-related crime and violence issue is largely a self-fulfilling prophecy. Some people will commit crimes when drugs loosen their inhibitions, just as many people rob stores while drunk out of their mind or drag black people behind cars while under the influence of white supremacy propaganda. We can educate our youth (if not prohibited by White House policies) to avoid situations leading to STDs, car accidents from driving while under an influence or falling into cults of hatred and fear. But this needs to be a more general education than just pointing to one area of danger to our youth.

But let’s look at the issue of crime related to the distribution of illegal drugs. Luckily in America we have another example of prohibiting a substance and its association with crime. When were gang wars fought over alcohol? When were drive-by shootings and police corruption the strongest from whiskey, beer and other alcoholic drinks? Why of course, it was during prohibition, when alcohol was strictly illegal. Since prohibition ended, have you heard of a gang shooting over distribution of alcohol? Have you hard of “alcohol wars” in inner city neighborhoods? No, I didn’t think so.

So the current violence over drug distribution is CAUSED by the artificial markets FROM the war on drugs. If drugs were legal, the amount of inner-city violence might drop dramatically. While some might believe the war on drugs is an effort to save the lives of young minorities, it is actually a reason for the deaths of young black people. And the war on drugs can be seen as a cause for the incredible strain on countries like Columbia and areas struggling to become countries again such as Afghanistan.

Republicans will point to the health affects of drugs as reasons for government intervention in the free market distribution of drugs. This seems reasonable, there are health effects to drugs that are currently illegal, very similar to the health effects of alcohol and cigarettes. Yet Republicans never seem ready to make cigarettes illegal. Strom Thurmand and many other Republicans from tobacco states seemed quite ready to sacrifice the health of America’s youth (and adults also) to the rights of tobacco companies to make money.

And when it comes to the environment, apparently the health of America’s youth suddenly has ZERO priority. No wonder it is hard for thinking people to get behind the Republicans, they seem unable to decide what the core values and priorities of their own party really are. Are they worried about the health of America? If so, why doesn’t it apply to pollution? If they don’t value the health of America, why are they fighting this war on drugs with its associated increases of government interference in personal choices and anti-free market regulations? It seems there is no coherent policy at work, just a collection of disjointed buzz words and Election Day vote triggers.

Perhaps when the Republicans actually can point to a “value” that they would apply in ALL situations (it doesn’t always have to be the highest priority for every situation, but a value that is so important that it should be considered in every situation) they will attract the respect of thinking Americans. Republicans supposedly value families and marriage, yet some want to pass a law reducing the numbers of marriages and families in America by forbidding gay marriage. Republicans want to save America’s youth through drug laws, yet they are willing to sacrifice the health of America’s youth through polluting the environment. They want to fight crime and promote free enterprise, yet they are willing to increase crime through artificial market manipulations of drugs.

It doesn’t make much sense to me…

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About Big Time Patriot

  • Democrats support the war on drugs nonsense as much, and these days seemingly MORE than Republicans. What elected Democrat supports drug legalization?

    Yeah, Nixon was a dick on this topic, as was Reagan. On the other hand, I didn’t see Carter doing anything to help. Dubya is not progressive on these issues, but Clinton wasn’t any bit better. It was HIS Justice Department that started the persecution of the California medical marijuana users.

  • Eric Olsen

    I agree that in general it isn’t a partisan thing – the problem is that it is very difficult to take a political position that can very easily be characterized as being “soft on drugs” or “soft on crime” or being harmful to children. There is a vast amount of hypocrisy and political expediency going on in all camps.

  • bang on there. I agree with the comment that it’s not just a Republican thing.
    The situation is similar here in the UK, although at least our authorities seem to have a slightly more relaxed attitude to certain drugs than the US, which i think otherwise would contribute to an icnrease in crime.
    Marijuana is illegal but easy to get, hell, you can even grow your own if you want, the equipment and info is easily available online.
    Magic mushrooms are legal if they haven’t been processed, ditto the mescaline-containing cacti (i believe in the US, only Peyote is legal, and then only if you are officially a member of the Native American Church, or whatever its name is), and as such there’re plentiful sources of both info and the means to grow these yourself, without the need to go to some dodgy drug dealer who has his/her hand in every dirty pie going.
    I don’t actually think that making the mushrooms and cacti illegal would greatly increase crime, but if our police were tougher on marijuana, i do believe that’d just push more business the way of the “traditional” drug dealers, as is already the case with heroin and cocaine.
    Apparently, there’s been a sharp rise in the number of people here doing coke – no i’ve never tried it and never will – with a big proportion of them being middle/upper class peeps evidently bored and with too much money to spare. The BBC site even had a feature a couple of weeks back, a week’s diary of one such woman from central London. These people buy from whoever they can (usually a “proper” drug dealer as you’d expect) and don’t even give a thought to where that money might end up, or what else that dealer might do.
    like with tobacco, if these drugs were legalised, there’d be a better chance of helping those who get addicted.

  • Carter did make it legal once to brew beer at home.

    Of course, the Libertarians believe in the de-criminalization of drugs. That said, as a Libertarian candidate, I take enormous heat over this position, even though I am not an advocate for the use of drugs. I think recreational drug use is stupid, but no law really prevents stupidity.

    The hypocrisy of the Democrats and Republicans on this issue is so vast, and Libertarians are so targeted by the position we take, that we coach our candidates not to introduce the topic at public forums or on the record unless running for the kinds of offices that actually can affect drug policy, such as Al Barger’s 2004 US Senate campaign.

    There can be no doubt on this: the criminalization of drugs creates a black market for them. It does nothing to eliminate the demand for the illegal drugs. Thus, it empowers the worst elements of our society- those willing to take criminal risks- and makes the products vastly more dangerous than they could be.

    Legal alcohol is the obvious point of comparison. Capone and so many others made untaxed fortunes and killed hundred over beer and whiskey. Nobody gets killed in the distribution of beer, unless there is a motor vehicle accident. The use of alcohol obviously has its dangers, but legalization makes it all far more civilized.

  • Hey BTP – who said we do? The War on Drugs is a joke, a waste of money, a source of gross civil rights violations and needs to be done away with.

    NORML and other drug legalization groups are now particularly targeting Republican legislators for lobbying because they have identified them as being more sympathetic to drug legalization than moderate Democrats.

    Dave

  • >>Of course, the Libertarians believe in the de-criminalization of drugs. < < Actually, most Libertarians believe in the legalization of drugs. Not quite the same thing. >>That said, as a Libertarian candidate, I take enormous heat over this position, even though I am not an advocate for the use of drugs. I think recreational drug use is stupid, but no law really prevents stupidity.< < Interesting. When I ran for office as a Libertarian no one ever asked me a single question about drug legalizaton even though it was mentioned on all my position papers and flyers. And I still got one of the highest percentages of the vote of any Libertarian to run in Texas since the party was founded. >>The hypocrisy of the Democrats and Republicans on this issue is so vast< < There are large elements in both parties which favor drug legalization. >>, and Libertarians are so targeted by the position we take, that we coach our candidates not to introduce the topic at public forums or on the record unless running for the kinds of offices that actually can affect drug policy, such as Al Barger’s 2004 US Senate campaign.< < Interesting. No one from the LP ever suggested avoiding discussing drug legalization when I ran for office. It must depend on where you are running. Here in Travis County drug legalization is pretty popular. So Mike - you're running for office? Ever considered how nice it might be to have a chance of winning? Perhaps you should take a look at http://www.republicanliberty.org/ and discover where Libertarians go who actually want to get elected and keep their principles.

    Dave

  • This was a good post, until it devolved into inane GOP-bashing.

    So, no “thinking Americans” support the Republican Party? Yeah, right…

    Also, most Democrats also support the War On Drugs. But you didn’t bother to mention this fact. Why not?

  • In a two-horse race against an incumbent in 2002.

    Dawnna Dukes – Incumbent DEM* 19,090 88.31% Dave Nalle LIB* 2,526 11.69% 910 8.82%

    Congrats on running and thank you. You make it sound historical and noteworthy, however. A Democrat beat you in Texas. In 2002, the year of the Republican.

  • RJ

    12% for a Libertarian is pretty damn good, in any state…

  • sydney

    For once I agree with Dave Nalle. Must be a cold day in hell?

  • “Republicans supposedly value families and marriage, yet some want to pass a law reducing the numbers of marriages and families in America by forbidding gay marriage. Republicans want to save America’s youth through drug laws, yet they are willing to sacrifice the health of America’s youth through polluting the environment. They want to fight crime and promote free enterprise, yet they are willing to increase crime through artificial market manipulations of drugs.”

    On these points alone I don’t think it is inane to question the rationality of Republicans, but I admit I was probably aiming a bit wide at whom to blame, many Republicans used to think protecting the environment was a conservative value (and some may still do so, but any voted for Bush definately didn’t). I should have limited my insults more to Bush supporters, since they are willing to give up what USED to be Republican policies to support Bush policies instead (remember fiscal responsibility? remember personal responsibility? remember small government? those were once Republican values).

    But you are probably right, it doesn’t help to insult even those Republicans who have “lost their way” and decided to support the President instead of supporting America. Just laying out the facts should be enough to convince most Americans who are “reality based”.

  • My point was that if there’s no other candidate, no it’s not that great. Not all the Republians were going to vote for the Democrat were they?

  • I also have to admit that on drugs, Democrats have not shown as great of a commitment to clear thinking as I would wish. But at least Democrats do generally try and support the environment so that when Democrats claim to support the health of our youth, they are not hampered by as much evidence to the contrary such as supporting polluters, supporting the introduction of more guns into the world and denying our youth the sex education to help save them from STDs and teenage pregnancy.

  • Dave- Here in Indiana, we have had some notable ex-Libertarian candidates drink the Kool-Aid fed to them by the GOP. “If you want to win elections, you have to joint the GOP”.

    Both of these candidates lost their subsequent races as Republican candidates, although their returns were significantly higher. We discovered that it was mere kool-aid feeding. The GOP offered these candidates no support, in either staffing or dollars. The GOP happily buried our star candidates. I am very obviously a Libertarian player here, so I am sure that either party would delight in giving me similar ‘assistance’.

    The best known case of an ex-Libertarian Republican is Ron Paul, a Representative of Texas. He does win elections, and he has remained true to his libertarian principles. The price he has paid for this is that after several electoral wins, the GOP helped to run Dr. Paul out of his district via gerrymandered redistricting, as an incumbent! This practice is loathesome enough when the party in power does it to exclude the opposition, but the Texas GOP did it to ‘one of their own’. Also, Dr. Paul has found his way to exactly zero committees, watching junior Representatives pass over him time and again. The bills he authors are rarely co-sponsored by any other Republican, and they invariably fail to make it out of committee.

    These are not the kind of ‘rewards’ I find enticing.

    Moreover, I guess I could run as a candidate for either of the other two major parties, if I felt a closer affinity to them. I don’t. I am a philosophical libertarian, and fortunately for me, there is a Libertarian party accordingly. You will note that there is not a ‘republican’ or ‘democratic’ philosophy being implemented by a corresponding political party, only some fuzzy, shape-shifting ‘left’ and ‘right’, ‘liberal’ and ‘conservative’.

    I have a good feeling about my Libertarian candidacy, though. Rebecca Sink-Burris ran for Secretary of State, the office I seek, in 2002, and gained better than 4% statewide, in a 3-way race, where both of her opponents raised and spent nearly a million dollars each, to her $40,000. She earned above 7% in four different Indiana counties.

    Since then, we have won some races, and average more than 20% in two-way races such as you ran in Texas. In my county, we had two candidates lose two-way races with 43% and 40% each. This is plenty to build on.

    I began running for S.O.S. more than 2 years in advance of the Novembr 2006 ballot, and intend to raise and spend a minimum of $100,000. In reality, I’ll probably go a half-mil by time it’s done. With the kind of momentum the LPIN is building, and I am building, well, strange things can happen.

    In sum, I believe in the value of having the Libertarian Party and its candidates on the ballot. The GOP certainly isn’t implementing libertarian values in Indiana (where are the fiscal conservatives in the GOP?, for instance), no matter how many of ours they take in. When the debates happen, and our candidates stand between the Republican and the Democrat (we always seem to) we seem so distinctly different, not because we are advocating radicalism, but because we advocate 1% cuts in the budget.

    The race I am running in is our ballot access race. If I fail to capture a minimum of 2%, we lose the 4-year automatic ballot access we have enjoyed since 1994. If I get 10%, we gain major party status statewide. That’s a goal worth pursuing.

  • Mike Kole wrote:

    >>Both of these candidates lost their subsequent races as Republican candidates, although their returns were significantly higher. We discovered that it was mere kool-aid feeding. The GOP offered these candidates no support, in either staffing or dollars. The GOP happily buried our star candidates. I am very obviously a Libertarian player here, so I am sure that either party would delight in giving me similar ‘assistance’.< < If they went to the Indiana GOP then that explains the problem. They need to go direc to the RLC which would have supported them as much as they could, and has done very well with scores of successful candidacies around the country. The Republican party as a whole may >>The best known case of an ex-Libertarian Republican is Ron Paul, a Representative of Texas. < < I'm very familiar with Ron Paul since he's the spiritual leader of the RLC and one district over from me here in Texas. >>He does win elections, and he has remained true to his libertarian principles. The price he has paid for this is that after several electoral wins, the GOP helped to run Dr. Paul out of his district via gerrymandered redistricting, as an incumbent! < < This isn't actually true. The gerrymandering was directed at Democrats, and Paul's new district was not that different from his old one, and if anything it was stronger for him than the old one was. Liberty Republicans have a good strong voice here in Texas. We've got people in major offices and in the legislature and can't really be ignored. >> Also, Dr. Paul has found his way to exactly zero committees, watching junior Representatives pass over him time and again. The bills he authors are rarely co-sponsored by any other Republican, and they invariably fail to make it out of committee.< < This is 100% the result of his ideological rigidity. He's more Libertarian than most Libertarians. If he was willing to compromise on anything significant he'd be a real force to be reckoned with in Congress. >> I am a philosophical libertarian, and fortunately for me, there is a Libertarian party accordingly. You will note that there is not a ‘republican’ or ‘democratic’ philosophy being implemented by a corresponding political party, only some fuzzy, shape-shifting ‘left’ and ‘right’, ‘liberal’ and ‘conservative’.< < Yes, but as I pointed out, there are Liberty Republicans who are every bit as Libertarian as you are but are willing to work within the system to actually get Libertarian policies enacted, which the Libertarian party - sad but true - is NEVER going to achieve. >>I have a good feeling about my Libertarian candidacy, though. Rebecca Sink-Burris ran for Secretary of State, the office I seek, in 2002, and gained better than 4% statewide, in a 3-way race, where both of her opponents raised and spent nearly a million dollars each, to her $40,000. She earned above 7% in four different Indiana counties.< < Good luck. I got 12% when I ran for state legislature as a Libertarian, and I think it was the second highest any Libertarian has ever got in a state legislature race here in Texas. If I'd run as a Republican I still would have lost, but I'd have made a lot more progress building support for future campaigns. >>Since then, we have won some races, and average more than 20% in two-way races such as you ran in Texas. In my county, we had two candidates lose two-way races with 43% and 40% each. This is plenty to build on.<< That is indeed remarkably good. Of course, they would have actually won as Republicans just from the 12-16% of people who habitually check off the entire party selection on the ballot - assuming you have that in Indiana. I was an actual employee of the Libertarian Party many years ago and was active in the party for almost 30 years. My eventual conclusion when I got serious about changing our government was that it would never happen through the LP. They're too hidebound, too ideologically inflexible and too unrealistic. They'd rather lose an election than make a few practical compromises, and there are factions within the party which will never, ever see eye to eye. In other parties opposing factions work to find common ground. In the LP they work to undermine and destroy each other. In short, it's a disaster and its own worst enemy. Dave

  • Politicians on both sides of the political fence will take up issues; this is what wins votes. It’s all partisan politics and your views are predicated on your political slant.

  • It’s more nuanced than mere issues. In many states, negative campaigning will kill a campaign that is on the majority side of the issues. Obvious dishonesty or scandal will do likewise.

    Plus, a Libertarian candidate in 2002 ran on an issue as her centerpiece issue. When an independent pollster ran the question to Indiana voters, 80% agreed with her position on the issue. She took 4.3% in a statewide race.

    In my estimation, money is most important. Personal likeability is second. Issues is a distant third.

  • Negative campaigning and money don’t matter too much when all the incumbent major party candidate has to do is basically ignore the Libertarian candidate while the media also ignores him or her, and they get away with it because no one takes the Libertarian seriously as a viable candidate.

    Dave

  • Jenny Stephens

    The GOP loves the war on drugs because it fills up prisons for thier Prison industrial complex buddies who are making big bucks on building and supplying prisons. George Allen who is now a US senater almost bankrupted the state of Virginia building prisons which remain half empty, when is was the govenor of the state, Check this out, it’s true. Other states send thier inmates to Virginia, because there is so much available space.

  • Odd, here in Texas it’s Democrats who have traditionally dominated prison contracting and all the associated corruption.

    Dave

  • Why would that be a Republican thing any more than a Democrat thing? They’re all whores for a buck.

  • Exactly, Al. And I don’t see any indication that the Democrats are any less anti-drug than the Republicans – at least not the party mainstream. Both parties have strong pro-drug legalization minorities and majorities which support the WoD for a variety of reasons. IMO the WoD is driven by irrational fear in both parties and pandering to the old folks and those who are easily scared by boogeymen – crack fiends invading their houses and raping and murdering them.

    I think if either main party were to turn against the WoD it would be the Republicans, because they have too many other irons in the fire and I don’t see how they can afford to continue to support the War on Terror, the War in Iraq, the tax reforms they want and still pay for the War on Drugs.

    Dave

  • With drugs illegal, both sides of the war on drugs (the good guys and the bad guys) buy a lot of guns. So whoever wants to legalize drugs is going to have to take on the NRA, because I am sure they are going to be opposed.

    Police officers and undercover cops will tell you the horror stories they have seen of drug addiction. They will be opposed to drug legalization, without any addressing of how the sudden legalization will affect those suffering from addictions. Some very effective and cost efficient remedies to drug addiction will have to be proposed with the legalization.

    Organized crime and any politicians they can buy will be opposed to the legalization of drugs.

    I can’t think of others, but you know there are probably more industries, groups, whatever, that have a financial or some sort of interest in maintaining the war on drugs.

    I think that whoever supports the war on drugs might not fall along ideological lines always, but be more determined by what stake they have in it. If there is a perception that Republicans are more anti-legalization, it’s probably because of their alliance with the NRA.

    While drugs should be de-criminalized and legalized in my opinion, (better ability to treat addicts and lower prison population to start with), we’re not talking about saving money as much as we are talking about a huge transfer of wealth. (from gunmakers, organized crime, etc., to retailers/doctors, etc.)

    That’s the obstacle.

  • Less and less do Democrats argue that inner city jails are mere werehouses for minorities and the poor. Increasingly Democrats are leading the charge to build the jails.

    Last night, Marion County (Indianapolis) voted to increase the income tax in order to specifically fund additional courts and construction of jails. The vote on the City-County Council was 21-7. All 15 Democrats voted in favor of raising the tax and building more jails. The Republicans split 7-7. The vote tore at some of the Republicans, who are at once law-and-order types and fiscal conservatives.

    There has been an opportunity to sort out violent from non-violent offenders, but the councilors, lead by Democrats, made the commitment to build more jails instead. This is a great disappointment to me, as the Democrats have walked away from their former position on jails.

  • >>This is a great disappointment to me, as the Democrats have walked away from their former position on jails.<< Maybe a former position in Indiana, but they've always been big on jails down here and throughout the south. Southern jails are big business and the contracts for construction and services tend to go through urban developers who are tied into the democrat alligned urban power broker types. I suspect that pretty much the same dynamic applies in the highly unionized states as well. As for the NRA and drug leagalization, the NRA doesn't get its money from gun sales or gun manufacturers, it gets its money from memberships and private donations. Drug dealers aren't known for joining the NRA. If anything drug legalization would benefit the NRA because they could play up paranoia about drug crazed addicts running wild and thereby encourage more homeowners to join the NRA and support liberal gun laws. Guns are always going to be available to criminals. The NRA is all about making sure they remain available to the rest of us legally. Dave

  • “If anything drug legalization would benefit the NRA because they could play up paranoia about drug crazed addicts running wild” True, but only because it would be paranoia and not facts, as I pointed out with the prohibition example the likely outcome of ending the war on drugs would be a reduction in violence in America…

  • “If anything drug legalization would benefit the NRA because they could play up paranoia about drug crazed addicts running wild” True, but only because it would be paranoia and not facts, as I pointed out with the prohibition example the likely outcome of ending the war on drugs would be a reduction in violence in America…

  • Gah, I hate to find myself agreeing with BTP. But it’s hard to argue that ending the WoD would do anything but lower crime and violence. Now if a raging commie like BTP and a happy progressive Republican like me can agree, why is the rest of the country so backwards?

    Dave

  • Dave Nalle worte: “Now if a raging commie like BTP and a happy progressive Republican like me can agree, why is the rest of the country so backwards?”

    It isn’t, really.

    Have you ever Googled the phrase “war on drugs” (quotes included)? Almost all of the results are drug policy reform advocacy groups. At Yahoo! it is the same.

    Did you notice how important the issue of the war on (certain) drugs was during the last election cycle? The silence was deafening.

    And there is no partisanship when it comes to anti-prohibitionists. People who would probably brawl with one another over their disagreements with regard to most other issues will come together in complete agreement about the failure of (small “p”) prohibition.

    Some good WOD links:

    Drug Sense

    The Media Awareness Project

  • And a few more links, since only two links are allowed per comment posting as part of Blogcritics spam prevention protocols.

    Law Enforcement Against Prohibition

    Drug War Facts

  • Oh, and BTW, did anybody notice that there have been no comments from people who think that the WOD is a Good Thing?

    Considering the wide diversity of opinions here at Blogcritics, isn’t it a bit curious that the only real debate on this thread has been about whether it’s the Democrats or the Republicans who are more or less prohibitionist?

  • ok…let’s twist one up and discuss this!

  • There’s really not much serious public support left for the war on drugs nonsense. There’s more sense of a holding pattern. People know the current deal is not working very well at all, but don’t see simple legalization as viable. What would you do instead?

    The biggest drag to drug law reform, however, is simply inertia and institutional entrenchment. People who make their living as government anti-drug bureaucrats use public moneys to promote their agenda, and public institutions ie the courts and law enforcement to resist efforts to make any progressive change. California medical marijuana laws vs the feds is the classic example.

  • I say legalize it, tax it and never worry about SS or national debt again!

  • Eric Olsen

    I’m with you Andy!

  • Following up on what Margaret and Al said, what will be required to break the status quo holding pattern is some intrepid legislator at the Federal level to take the lead on scaling back the WoD.

    If doing so were a piece of cake, it would have been done already. Legislators look for slam dunk items to write laws on, and if the drug issue were one such item, again, it would have been done. Even the medical marijuana issue has failed to evolve into new policy. It’s hard to find a softer drug issue than that.

    Leaders are unfortunately in short supply, and taking on public backlash is not what most legislators really live for.

  • I’m with Andy too. Stop spending money on the War on Drugs and start making money from the taxes. More dangerous drugs than Marijuana are already legal – alcohol and cigarettes – so what’s stopping us?

    As for Medical Marijuana, I think its weakness as a campaign lies in its hypocrisy. Everyone sees it as a smokescreen for legalization and I think the issue would do better on its real merits.

    Dave

  • There are two schools of thought with regard to how the WOD will end, either prohibitionist policies will erode slowly over time due to a lack of interest or they crumble all at once due to a Supreme Court ruling — well at least that is where the marijuana laws are right now. We shall see what happens when Aschcroft v. Raich is decided this June.

    In the mean time, advocates of drug policy reform — not just marijuana law reform — need to stop using the word, “legalize” and all of its variations.

    Some time ago, I wrote an essay to this effect and this thread has inspired me to post it here at Blogcritics. Stay tuned.

    Maybe the few prohibitionists who still have the nerve to attempt to defend the untenable WOD will show up so that we can have them for breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert.

  • Kirk Muse

    I’d like to add that if tough-on-drugs policies worked, the
    quixotic goal of a drug free America would have been reached a long time
    ago. And if progressive marijuana laws created more drug use, the
    Netherlands would have much higher drug usage rates than the US. It does
    not. In fact, the Dutch use marijuana and other recreational drugs at
    much lower rates than Americans do. See
    http://www.drugwarfacts.org/thenethe.htm.

    Beyond just the use of marijuana as medicine, why do so many of our
    politicians want to keep criminalizing a natural herb that has never
    been documented to kill a single person? Why do apparently intelligent
    people want to arrest and jail other people who use or sell an
    easy-to-grow weed?

    To understand, study the history of US alcohol prohibition. The gangster
    Al Capone made most of his illegal money from alcohol prohibition.
    Capone often bragged that he “owned” the city of Chicago and indeed, he
    had most of the politicians and police who ran the city on his payroll.
    Al Capone was a successful businessman and it’s not unreasonable to
    suspect that the drug cartels of today are following his business model.

    It’s also not unreasonable to suspect that the drug cartels may have
    many high-level politicians and police officials on their payroll.
    Obviously, those politicians would advocate the continuation of drug
    prohibition, which is making the drug cartels so fabulously wealthy.

    I’m not saying that any specific so-called “drug warrior” is on the
    payroll of the cartels — I’m just a little suspicious of the motives of
    all of the drug-war cheerleaders.

  • Keeping the ingredients of meth behind the counter is certainly a lot better solution than the previous
    non-solution of building more and bigger prisons.

    Oklahoma learned the hard way that the so-called “tough on drugs” policies don’t work and they are very expensive.

    Largely because of their “tough on drugs” policies, Oklahoma became the fourth highest state for incarcerations.

    Largely because of our war on drugs policies, the United States has
    been transformed into the most incarcerated nation in the history of
    human civilization. Even though we in the U. S. have fewer than 5 percents of the world’s population, we have more than 25 percent of the world’s prisoners.

    In other words, one out of every four prisoners in the world in locked
    in an American jail or prison.

    What message does this send to the
    rest of the world?

  • American prisons are the freest in the world! People in other countries’ prisons are eager to enjoy the benefits of American prison life. Maybe we could reduce our trade deficit by importing inmates!

    On a more serious note, the ultimate futility of the war on drugs shines through in its utter failure to keep drugs out of prisons. As if it wasn’t enough, failing to keep every other part of our society drug-free.

    In a free society, it could be tough to keep drugs out of our schools, our pro sports teams, our military forces, our courts, our churches, our police forces, and so on. A reasonable person might be able to look at all these failures and still think victory in the war on drugs is just around the corner.

    But the same reasonable person must admit, if there existed any place we could rationally hope to create a drug-free environment through simply prohibiting drugs, it would be in the prison system. That is where the authorities are least restricted by the Constitution. Courts never tell prison guards they can’t search the cell blocks for contraband.

    Yet even there, with the toughest measures anyone can dream up, prohibition has completely failed to stamp out the supply of illegal drugs.

    This is one of the reasons I must agree with all those who argue prohibition cannot work. My conclusion on this has nothing to do with my own personal tastes. I never use recreational drugs, not even alcohol. The strongest performance-boosting substance I ever use is caffeine.

    I would like to see drug addiction treated as a public health problem, not a crime. Not because I have any fondness for drugs, but because I have this odd tendency to prefer my tax money be spent on programs with a snowball’s chance in hell of actually working.

  • kevin

    big time patriot-
    About your understanding of the Republican party, although I cring responding to you based on your communistic ideals, some of what you said does hold water. Bush has somewhat lost the meaning of conservatism and people have followed blindly BUT that was only bc of 9/11 which was mainly president Clinton’s fault and minutely GWB’s. I belief things would be much more status quo conservatism without 9/11 happening and folks would have a different view of GWB, bc he’s a great man, gentle, outgoing and an extrmely faithful private man. I don’t like how he’s been so lost on fiscal responsibility and small government, but then again both have occurred bc of 9/11. I do agree with the defense budget growth with or without 9/11 bc people hate america bc we are rich prosperous peasants from the old western europeans and arabs love to hate as well. Now what bush has comntinued to hold dearly to the conservative traits are the social aspects of republicanism some as the gay marriage ban, against stem cell research and promoting family based initiatives and having strong values. That is what makes america what it is and that’s why Repblicans are superior to lib dems bc republicans understand culutre and have ideas democrats fumble around lost and just attack folks without having a full udnerstand of issues, and spend spend spend with no end incite. Atleast bush now is trying to narrow some programs tighten the budget and he has been priveleged even with the budget deficit to be below most presidents in spending when opposite output on nation domestic products of a 2.3% total which clinton’s days programs and spending were an astronmical 4.7 of gdp, now tell me which is worse? But I’m sure you liked Clinton bc your a raging communist from what I can tell and think that works, it doesn’t Conservatism will always be superior capitalism is the strength of people socialism/communism is beyond the work of the devil himself, l’chaim

  • Conservatives Against Prohibition

    Cannabis prohibition is a crime. It’s treason against our constitution.

    It doesn’t matter if someone thinks that other people shouldn’t smoke pot. Cannabis has never proven to be a threat to public safety, so there’s no reason why there can be laws against it. Laws that are not in the best interest of the general public and are not enforceable are not valid laws. Repealing the cannabis prohibition is a great way to restore a general respect for the law and more accountable law enforcement. Not to mention it’s a huge waste of money and police hours on something that’s not a crime in and of itself. Laws are supposed to define crimes not invent them out of thin air.

  • Tim R

    As a republican and long time conservative as well as pot smoker this is one of the issues that drives me to the brink of insanity with the republicans. People in my party constantly qoute the constitution on the issue of abortion (which i am against) using the Right to LIFE, Liberty and the persuit of hapiness but noone seems to take qoutes from the phrase simply two words away THE PERSUIT OF HAPINESS who cares if i come home from a long day and unwind with a glass of whiskey NOBODY but God forbid i unwind with a joint or a bowl of marijuana… Hopefully the truth will set us free