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Drug Prohibition

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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 14, 1995
Re "Drug Cartel May Die, Drug Trade Lives On," editorial, Aug. 8: In one sentence, you state that market forces alone guarantee that the Cali cartel will be replaced. In the next sentence, you state that the expensive, dangerous and frustrating effort to control the supply of drugs should not be relaxed. Such reasoning, in words a Vulcan might use, is highly illogical. Drug prohibition, like alcohol prohibition, is a failed social policy. STAN WARFORD Malibu
ARTICLES BY DATE
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 17, 2012 | Steve Lopez
Stephen Downing speaks fondly of his 20 years with the Los Angeles Police Department, saying he misses the camaraderie and the integrity of the people he worked with in a career that took him from street cop to deputy chief. Along the way, as commander of the Bureau of Investigations, he oversaw the Administrative Narcotics Division. And so when we had lunch at a sidewalk cafe in Long Beach the other day, it was more than a little strange to hear this life-long Republican insist that for the sake of cops, and in the interest of logic and public safety, the United States ought to legalize drugs.
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OPINION
January 19, 2007
Re "Calderon's war," Opinion, Jan. 16 Denise Dresser has it all wrong. Drug trafficking did not spawn Mexico's organized crime networks. Just like alcohol prohibition gave rise to Al Capone, drug prohibition created the violent drug-trafficking organizations blamed for killing 1,500 people a year in Mexico. From a political perspective, Mexican President Felipe Calderon stands to benefit from the violence. The drug war is perpetuated by the mainstream media's complicity in refusing to put so-called drug-related crime in context.
OPINION
October 5, 2011 | By Kevin A. Sabet
Prohibition — America's notoriously "failed social experiment" to rid the country of alcohol — took center stage this week as PBS broadcast Ken Burns' highly acclaimed series on the subject. And already, it has been seized on by drug legalization advocates, who say it proves that drug prohibition should be abandoned. But a closer look at what resulted from alcohol prohibition and its relevance to today's anti-drug effort reveals a far more nuanced picture than the legalization lobby might like to admit.
OPINION
April 30, 1995 | Virginia I. Postrel, Virginia I. Postrel is the editor of Reason, a monthly current-affairs magazine based in Los Angeles.
The social issue that blows apart the Republican coalition won't be abortion, as many Democrats hope. But it may be drugs. If Rep. Susan Molinari (R-N.Y.) stood in the well of the House and declared that the Christian Coalition must be silenced because its opposition to abortion constitutes a threat to constitutional order and an incitement to violence, she would be stripped of her leadership position and cast out of the Republicans' "big tent."
OPINION
October 5, 2011 | By Kevin A. Sabet
Prohibition — America's notoriously "failed social experiment" to rid the country of alcohol — took center stage this week as PBS broadcast Ken Burns' highly acclaimed series on the subject. And already, it has been seized on by drug legalization advocates, who say it proves that drug prohibition should be abandoned. But a closer look at what resulted from alcohol prohibition and its relevance to today's anti-drug effort reveals a far more nuanced picture than the legalization lobby might like to admit.
OPINION
March 31, 2007
Re "Street gang realpolitik," Current, March 25 Gratefully, finally, some talk about the dope-dealing pachyderm in the parlor; however, the bigger beast that spawned these dope gangsters manages to escape Will Beall's spotlight. There will be no discernible abatement of malicious gang activity, adolescent drug abuse, prison overcrowding or homelessness until we fess up to and act on the symbiotic relationship between drug prohibition and much of the turmoil we face. We must weed out lawmakers who reject the fact that addiction is a brain disorder.
OPINION
June 11, 2005
Re "Temptation Along the Border," editorial, June 8: I agree that the recent border drug busts ought to turn on a light bulb. Unfortunately, your editors seem to be standing outside at high noon, so they can't see it. The light bulb is Prohibition. During Prohibition, 10% of the Prohibition agents were fired for corruption -- and those were only the ones who were caught. That problem didn't end until Prohibition ended. Drug prohibition creates a perfect climate for large-scale corruption.
OPINION
September 29, 2010 | By Jeffrey A. Miron
For decades, the U.S. debate over drug legalization has pitted conservatives on one side against libertarians and some liberals on the other. A few conservatives have publicly opposed the drug war (e.g., National Review founder William F. Buckley Jr.), but most conservatives either endorse it or sidestep the issue. Yet vigorous opposition to the drug war should be a no-brainer for conservatives. Legalization would not only promote specific policy objectives that are near and dear to conservative hearts, it is also consistent with core principles that conservatives endorse in other contexts.
OPINION
March 30, 2009
Re "Clinton: U.S. shares blame for Mexico ills," March 26 Hillary Clinton says it is "our insatiable demand for illegal drugs" that fuels the drug trade and violence. In reality, it is not marijuana and the millions of Americans who use it that cause the violence -- it is drug prohibition that makes the plant more valuable than gold and creates a profit motive that people are willing to kill for. It would be more honest and accurate to blame U.S. drug-war policies pushed by her colleagues in Washington.
OPINION
July 5, 2008 | David W. Fleming and James P. Gray, David W. Fleming, a lawyer, is the chairman of the Los Angeles County Business Federation and immediate past chairman of the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce. James P. Gray is a judge of the Orange County Superior Court.
The United States' so-called war on drugs brings to mind the old saying that if you find yourself trapped in a deep hole, stop digging. Yet, last week, the Senate approved an aid package to combat drug trafficking in Mexico and Central America, with a record $400 million going to Mexico and $65 million to Central America. The United States has been spending $69 billion a year worldwide for the last 40 years, for a total of $2.5 trillion, on drug prohibition -- with little to show for it.
OPINION
April 21, 2008
Today, Sullum and Stimson begin their Dust-Up by comparing drug decriminalization and legalization. Later in the week, they'll discuss drug-related violence, federal raids of marijuana dispensaries and more. Prohibition didn't work then; it isn't working now By Jacob Sullum The main disadvantage of "drug legalization" is the implication that the natural course of things, the default position, is for the government to dictate which substances people may put into their bodies.
NEWS
August 18, 2007 | Ethan Nadelmann, Ethan Nadelmann is executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance (www.drugpolicy.org) and coauthor of "Policing the Globe: Criminalization and Crime Control in International Relations."
President Bush and Mexican President Felipe Calderon could reach an agreement as early as Monday that would put American taxpayers on the hook for tens of millions of dollars in counter-narcotics aid to Mexico. It is a familiar game. U.S. leaders blame another country for our failure to reduce drug misuse here at home. That country escalates its war against drugs but asks the U.S. to pick up part of the tab.
OPINION
March 31, 2007
Re "Street gang realpolitik," Current, March 25 Gratefully, finally, some talk about the dope-dealing pachyderm in the parlor; however, the bigger beast that spawned these dope gangsters manages to escape Will Beall's spotlight. There will be no discernible abatement of malicious gang activity, adolescent drug abuse, prison overcrowding or homelessness until we fess up to and act on the symbiotic relationship between drug prohibition and much of the turmoil we face. We must weed out lawmakers who reject the fact that addiction is a brain disorder.
OPINION
January 19, 2007
Re "Calderon's war," Opinion, Jan. 16 Denise Dresser has it all wrong. Drug trafficking did not spawn Mexico's organized crime networks. Just like alcohol prohibition gave rise to Al Capone, drug prohibition created the violent drug-trafficking organizations blamed for killing 1,500 people a year in Mexico. From a political perspective, Mexican President Felipe Calderon stands to benefit from the violence. The drug war is perpetuated by the mainstream media's complicity in refusing to put so-called drug-related crime in context.
OPINION
June 11, 2005
Re "Temptation Along the Border," editorial, June 8: I agree that the recent border drug busts ought to turn on a light bulb. Unfortunately, your editors seem to be standing outside at high noon, so they can't see it. The light bulb is Prohibition. During Prohibition, 10% of the Prohibition agents were fired for corruption -- and those were only the ones who were caught. That problem didn't end until Prohibition ended. Drug prohibition creates a perfect climate for large-scale corruption.
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