Thursday, May 09, 2002

Terrorists win war on drugs



The recent ad campaign by the Office of Drug Control Policy (the "drug czar" John Walters) blatantly states that drug money goes to terrorists. Using guilt by association, they claim that if you use illegal drugs, you are as guilty as the terrorists.

The reason that trade of illegal drugs is so lucrative (by some estimates, a 17,000% profit) is precisely because the laws create a great void in commerce, filled by a black market. Thus, our government can do something that will quickly deflate profits from the illegal drug trade: end the drug war. Does that mean that the blood is really on the hands of our policy-makers?

The argument has been made that most money spent on illegal drugs goes to domestic growers of pot.

Even in Iran, where freedom is only a dream of an oppressed movement, efforts to curtail supply of illegal drugs fall well short of their goal. The same goes for our own jails.

John Walters has long advocated drug policy as a criminal matter rather than a public health issue. Thinking of drugs as a health issue makes people too sympathetic to drug users and dealers, so the theory goes.

And, by the way, in a free republic, why do we need a czar? The terrorists want less freedom, and it seems the drug war has given them their magic bullet to bring freedom down.