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April 28, 2010

War on Drugs: How to defeat the drug lords

Quote of the day: “There are some general features of a socialist enterprise, whether it’s the Post Office, schools or the war on drugs. The enterprise is inefficient, expensive, very advantageous to a small group of people and harmful to a lot of people.” — Milton Friedman

The federal government’s Merida Initiative is a $1.6 billion program to “help” the Mexican government fight the drug cartels.

As you’ll see below, the results have been catastrophic. But Congress can help defeat the cartels and bring an end to this tragedy . . .

* without sending troops
* or more foreign “aid”
* while making your streets safer
* and saving the taxpayers tens of billions per year

Instead of supporting Mexico’s militarization of the Drug War, we can bankrupt the cartels.

We can do this by embracing our most cherished national values, individual liberty and personal responsibility.

If we end drug prohibition, the cartels will lose their obscene black-market profits which they use to terrorize both Mexico and the United States.

If you want . . .

* peace and stability in Mexico,
* with lower crime and more freedom in the U.S.,
* then please tell Congress to end the War on Drugs.

You may borrow from, modify, or copy this letter . . .

Drugs are not tearing Mexico apart, drug PROHIBITION is! As Harvard Economist Jeffrey Miron notes:

“Prohibition creates violence because it drives the drug market underground. This means buyers and sellers cannot resolve their disputes with lawsuits, arbitration or advertising, so they resort to violence instead. Violence was common in the alcohol industry when it was banned during Prohibition, but not before or after.”

The news of Prohibition-caused violence south of the border is quite sobering . . .

* 22,700 have died in Mexico’s War on Drugs since December, 2006
* Which is FOUR TIMES the number of U.S. military deaths in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars since 2001
* More and more Mexicans are fleeing to America, NOT to “seek a better life” but because they fear for their lives  
* Violence is spreading to once-peaceful cities
* Tourism is plummeting, and charitable missions to Mexico have been cancelled

But there is hope. Paul Armentano of NORML shows how we can defeat the drug lords. He notes that . . .

* Between 60 and 70 percent of the profits reaped by Mexican drug lords are derived from the exportation and sale of cannabis to the American market
* 28 percent of their profits are derived from the distribution of cocaine

If Congress repealed federal drug prohibition laws . . .

* the narcotics business would move from the black market, governed by violence, to the open market governed by the rule of law
* which means that drug users could start purchasing from legitimate businesses
* drugs would be regulated and taxed by the states in pharmacies and drug stores, not purchased on the streets and school grounds
* drug abusers could be treated for their addictions just as we successfully do with alcohol and cigarettes
* prison crowding would end, providing room to keep true social threats behind bars
* drug pushers and street gangs would see their profits disappear
* and drug lords from Mexico to Afghanistan would be crippled by financial losses

America has enough problems. The last thing we need is for the chaos in Mexico to spread here. End drug prohibition in America now, and the Mexican drug lords will suffer a fatal blow.


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Thank you for being a DC Downsizer.

Jim Babka

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