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|Miscellaneous Statements on Drug Policy|
Drug wars: Menace to America
Tod Mikuriya, M.D.
The escalating increasingly desperate authoritarian efforts to stem the rising tide of lawlessness caused by drug prohibition are held in check only by the limitations of shrinking budgets. These measures have failed by any standards.
Worse, the side effects harm the community through the overloading of the enforcement/corrections, social, and health services resources.
Individuals and society are victimized directly and indirectly by this harmful social policy.
At the core are ignorance and denial that afflict policy makers at all levels of government and society.
Denial takes many forms... from the economic- the usual free market mercantilists who fail to include these commodities in their spreadsheets and ignore these market forces... to the fundamentalist religious who shut out the facts with moralistic homilies. Authoritarian public officials facilitate these policies.
In this tricentennial of the Salem witch trials we are in the grips of another attack of the "American disease": Prohibition. The War on Drugs.
This collective moralistic delusion is seemingly unique in western civilization. Over a century ago America went through a painful civil war on drugs that culminated in prohibition of alcohol from 1919 to 1933.
The agitprop contemporary "War on Drugs" is even nastier and more intrusive than Prohibition. Added evils include:
The corruption, violence, and divisive consequences appear to be lessons that we have forgotten today as social policy mistakes are repeated..
The bribing of police, prosecutors, attorneys, and judges
Capitalization of crime by a black marketplace: drugs for guns.
Subversion of International Law
Funding firearms for the young
Murder and mayhem facilitated
Materialism and alienation
Destruction of families
Abuse of children- robbed of childhood and trust
At the local level there is little more that can be done that can be paid for by the public. Vigilante activities while commendable in their initiative have great potential for abuse. All pretext to due process and civil liberties are then hopelessly abandoned to the mob.
Structural emblematic efforts like school uniforms, anti drug rallies, and exhortations by public figures are feel good exercises- Like inveighing against Satan. All the while we do battle with the enemy- us.
The exercises in group think are not unlike the two minutes of hate rallies depicted in Orwell's 1984. Unlike the centrally controlled hermetic authoritarian state such efforts are ineffectual. In the torrent of advertisements to self medicate anti-drug appeals are ineffectual or ironically humorous.
The ignoring of the reasons and etiologies of the reasons for the involvement in
illicit drugs will delay the solving the problems attached to a situation is bad and
Poisoning of the font of knowledge:
"He who pays the piper calls the tune"
A significant component is the special interest control of information. Until this problem is acknowledged and solved there can be no progress.
A drug craving and drug dependent society is facilitated and exploited by the drug industries.
Sales of over the counter and prescription drugs are stimulated by intensive advertising campaigns that "educate" the public starting at a young age.
Spuds MacKenzie and Joe Camel don't make it into the Partners for a Drug Free America ads as scapegoats.
Most drug prevention education is ineffectual propaganda.
Send them a signal rather than tell the truth.
Beer advertisements encourage dangerous behavior.
Some wine advertisements do not depict wine as a foodstuff.
Over the counter drugs promotions set up a drug-craving public.
No self-regulation skills are taught to children.
Development of legalized drugs available through non-profit pharmacy-based drug users' cooperatives eliminates "crack houses" or "shooting galleries". Drug dealers would disappear from the streets. Criminal enterprise zones are obsolete.
Restoration of the infrastructure of sports, arts, and music needs to be top priority.
Jobs and educational opportunity are required to fulfill dreams instead of the need to distract from or suppress frustrated, angry, and hopeless feelings.
Drug abusers are unhappy. They suffer from waking perpetual nightmares of disempowerment.
It is high irony that the illicit free market has brought money into the minority communities where the federal programs have failed. It is blind stupidity to ignore the connection between illicit drugs and guns. If drugs were legalized their meaning are redefined from expensive forbidden fruit to affordable commodity. Coca derivatives are then like the other stimulant, caffeine. There would undoubtedly be some abusive use, but of a more treatable nature.
The side effects of the imposition of the moralistic model of the "War on Drugs have been far worse than the drugs themselves. This illicit mercantile enterprise creates nightmares that primarily affects the poor. The failure of leaders at all levels to address this economic reality must be blamed for this growing social problem.
Treatment for drug abuse would be available upon demand if it were supported by transaction fees from the sale of drugs. A harmfulness tax (Grinspoon) or pricing structure commensurate with potential toxicity would provide additional income for treatment and abuse prevention.
Advertising of drugs rather than censored by government should be from self-discipline by the industry. Removal of the exemption from product liability laws for alcohol and tobacco would insure self discipline in advertising.
Institutionalized or socialized use behavior will minimize abusive use. The concept of
the "designated driver" is exemplary of the kind of custom that facilitates
alcohol risk management.
The economically irrational prohibitionist policy suborns the Monroe Doctrine with the inadvertent empowerment of authoritarian regimes that are hostile to the United States. Their hostility is beyond economic control of the OAS or the World Bank since they are now funded by the illicit drugs. Good-bye United Fruit. Hello unnamed successors to Medellin and Cali cartels.
The Sendero Luminosa despite the capture of their leader and the corrupt military in Peru has set back the emergence of democracy. The Drug Enforcement Administration and their "advisors" continue to aggravate the situation. throughout Latin America.
Columbia continues to suffer terrorism and destruction of their judiciary. the economy hammered by undercutting the coffee market.
Panama escalates the money laundering and transshipment. Business as usual even though president George Bush captured General Manuel Noriega, former friend and CIA and Drug Enforcement Administration employee. Operation "Just Cause" perpetrated urban undevelopment and "installation" (like a new motor in an old car) of a "new" government.
The Iran-Contra guns for drugs scandal continues to attenuate the legitimacy and efficacy in both foreign and domestic policy. Besides the embargo and mining of the tiny poor country of Nicaragua with illegal support of the guerrilla army, Lt. Colonel Oliver North lied to Congress to support former president Ronald Reagan and his vice president George Bush, commander designate of the War Against Drugs.
Mexico continues to suffer U.S. raids and interference with their government by the DEA. Border traffic continues to suffer disruption and human rights abuses from the drug law enforcement.
American drug prohibition dims the future of democracy in the hemisphere.
America exports criminal mercantile opportunity.
Prohibitionism, the American Disease
American recurrent Prohibitionism is a peculiar majoritarian auto immune social disease regarded with perplexity by the rest of the world. With all the exemplary features of America, this anachronistic problem sadly detracts from world leadership.
American drug prohibition darkens the prospects for the country's future. Demagogues facilitated by profit-driven special interest groups create policy and laws that erodes evermore rights of their citizens. Gradually, and by small increments what protections were once taken for granted have disappeared.
Lulled into a narcotism induced by television and materialism, the Trojan horse of authoritarianism has breached the gates of the city, its moralistic armed clergy busily snuffing out pockets of critical thinking- ever striving to make the world safe for profitable hypocrisy.
Alexis de Toqueville's warning of an all pervasive tutelary power ruling through the manipulation of a distracted materialistic populace becomes an approaching reality.
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DRCNet Library | Schaffer Library | Miscellaneous Statements on Drug Policy
Schaffer Library of Drug Policy
Major Studies of Drug and Drug Policy
Marihuana, A Signal of Misunderstanding - The Report of the US National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse
Licit and Illicit Drugs
Short History of the Marijuana Laws
The Drug Hang-Up
Congressional Transcripts of the Hearings for the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937
Frequently Asked Questions About Drugs
Basic Facts About the Drug War
Charts and Graphs about Drugs
Information on Alcohol
Guide to Heroin - Frequently Asked Questions About Heroin
LSD, Mescaline, and Psychedelics
Drugs and Driving
Children and Drugs
Drug Abuse Treatment Resource List
American Society for Action on Pain
Let Us Pay Taxes
Marijuana Business News
Reefer Madness Collection
Medical Marijuana Throughout History
Drug Legalization Debate
Legal History of American Marijuana Prohibition
Marijuana, the First 12,000 Years
DEA Ruling on Medical Marijuana
Legal References on Drugs
GAO Documents on Drugs
Response to the Drug Enforcement Agency
|Drug Information Articles|
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