By the Way…


? Last month we wrote ("A Hard Sell," Editorials) that government officials vowing to sweep America clean of illicit drugs have no new ideas for achieving this. Never let it be said that they don't have some old ones. William J. Bennett, philosophy professor promoted to philosopher-king, told the Senate Judiciary Committee during his drug czar confirmation hearings that he wouldn't mind calling on the military for help. He would also be willing to suspend basic civil liberties such as the right of habeas corpus. After all, he said, Lincoln did it during the Civil War. Well, at least they're admitting that this really does amount to a civil war.

And the vigilant senators who solicitously saved the American people from Robert Bork for his allegedly insufficient respect for civil liberties? Bennett's appointment passed handily.

Meanwhile, in Delaware, the Democratic leader of the state senate introduced a bill to bring back public whipping as punishment for drug dealing. Democrats aren't good for anything anymore.

? In the state of Gujarat, India, over 100 people recently died from tainted homemade liquor. Another 250 victims were hospitalized, at least 25 of them blinded. This is not the first time it's happened. Gujarat, by the way, is the only Indian state where it's illegal to sell alcohol.

? It's amazing what can get you sympathy if you're in the money. "The rich and the famous, as well as the couple down the street," cries a Los Angeles Times reporter, "have been victimized by price-slashing 'bandit' limousine companies" operating without a license.