Why the Drug War is The Issue


Jim Henley speaks wisdom to libertarians who question why other libertarians make supposedly outrageous and alienating positions like an end to the drug war central to the libertarian cause. He starts with justly deserved praise for Radley Balko's recent Hudson-blogging (which we hipped you to here) and gets to:

Definitively rebuked by recent history [are]….the "realistic" so-called libertarians who show up in one or other forum to chide the movement for marginalizing itself by pursuing the "fringe issue" of drug prohibition. But realistically, drug prohibition is the whole political ballgame. It drives the aggrandizement of police power and the paring of civil liberties. It establishes precedents that generalize to other law enforcement issues. It exemplifies and undergirds the principles of the Loco Parentis state. It is everything any libertarianism worthy of the name must not only oppose, but make central. There is no area of American life where the state said more clearly, "We must be free to kill you with impunity to protect you from making bad choices."