Overseas/Interdiction

Wisdom and Folly on Drug Laws in U.K.

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The wisdom is from North Wales' Chief Constable Richard Brunstrom, as reported in the U.K. Independent. He has called

for all drugs – including heroin and cocaine – to be legalised and urges the Government to declare an end to the "failed" war on illegal narcotics.

The folly, alas, is from 10 Downing Street:

In his conference speech this year, Gordon Brown signalled an intensification of the existing battle. "We will send out a clear message that drugs are never going to be decriminalised," the Prime Minister told the party.

Ron Bailey blogged last month on the prospects for global drug legalization.

Link via Rational Review, a great news aggregator of libertarian interest.

NEXT: Puppycide

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  1. “We will send out a clear message that drugs are never going to be decriminalised,”

    I support the PM in this. Decriminalization is a half way measure that is doomed to failure. The Chief Constable has it right. Legalization is the only sane course of action.

  2. Warm English beer should be a crime.

  3. English beer isnt warm, it is cellar temperature.

    Beer served in a frosted mug should be a dealth penalty offense.

  4. We will send out a clear message that drugs are never going to be decriminalised

    Is ther really, truly so much support for the drug war anywhere (outside of law enforcement and the Moral “Majority”) that a politician would make such a sweeping, blanket statement?

    Honestly, I don’t know how long it’s been since I met anyone who was totally gung-ho on continuing the drug war. Maybe it’s just the people I tend to encounter, I don’t know.

  5. Episiarch,
    How many parents do you know?

  6. I admittedly know almost no new, inexperienced parents. And I am self-selecting in that I would not want to be around someone so hysterical that they actually think a plant is the devil.

  7. How many parents do you know?

    W/O the drug war, how else can the cops keep Americas children off drugs and alcohol?

  8. Episiarch,
    How many parents do you know

    As more and more children become casualties in the WoDs, the opinions of that demographic might change. Whenever a child is hit in a drive-by, I tell all who will listen, “Another casualty in the WoDs. It’s for the children!”

    Try it. It makes some people think. It makes others think you’re an unfeeling bastard. Both reactions help undercut the insanity.

  9. It’s funny but the way we are handeling redicing consumption of cigaretts seems to be effective, and the way we are handeling redicing consumption of drugs is not. Does this give anyone any ideas?

  10. Episiarch,

    Completely anecdotal here, but only one person I know supports complete legalization.

  11. Well, JB, cigarettes are legal. And you only have to be 18 to smoke. I’m sure that has a huge amount to do with it.

    It seems that if you demonize something legal, the rebellion factor in trying is reduced. OMG TOBACCO IS TEH EVIL might make you want to try it, and if you do, go to the store and buy a pack. But it’s not a big deal in that way.

    However, acquiring illegal drugs is a hell of a lot more exciting and “cool” than smoking a legal product. Demonizing it just makes it more attractive.

  12. Prior to 1900 there were no “illegal” drugs in the US and we managed to thrive. The War on Drugs is unconstitutional there was never an amendment to the Consitution to ban drugs. To ban alcohol we required an amendment to the the constitution the 18th and the Volstead Act which defined “intoxicating liquors” excluding those for religious purposes. Drugs should be legal because liberty demands that you have the right to make personal choices that affect your person the government has absolutely no business trying to dictate what you may or may not do with you body. We have to many rentseekers who benefit from the WOD. Law enforcement, politicians, and drugtesting companies just to name a few all benefit from our unconstitutional WOD.

  13. That was actually kinda my point. For a number of reasons one these programs works, but we are not useing it to reduce drug use.

  14. The WOD is illegitimate. Vices are not crimes regardless of what uninformed voters, politicians, law enforcement, etc may think. People recognize that these laws are illegitimate and continue to put whatever substances they want to use in their body. The WOD can not ever work it is really a matter of simple economics. There is demand and there are suppliers willing to meet that demand.

  15. To ban alcohol we required an amendment to the the constitution the 18th and the Volstead Act which defined “intoxicating liquors” excluding those for religious purposes.

    I’ve always wondered why a Constitutional Amendment was necessary to outlaw alcohol, but no such amendment was necessary to outlaw any other drug.

    Apparently, at one time people had a different understanding of the Commerce Clause, such that the federal government did not have plenary power over anything that has the potential to move between states.

  16. Read the book by Consumer Reports Licit and Illicit drugs if you want to understand the dirty tricks and bigotry that form the basis of our drug prohibition laws. The statist in the Supreme Court went along with this illegal expansion of the governments powers (via an intrepretation of the Commerce Act that benefitted the government power grabbers) and voila you have one of the best examples of why government powers need to be severely curtailed the WOD. Jefferson actually grew poppies on his property and a few years ago the DEA forced the park services that work on his property to cut them down. The Founders did not believe that the government should have the powers that we have allowed them to take. It would have been ludicrous to them to believe that the government could say what a man could or could not do with his body or his property.

  17. Prior to 1900 there were no “illegal” drugs in the US and we managed to thrive.

    At perhaps reduced capacity.

    The War on Drugs is unconstitutional there as never an amendment to the Consitution to ban drugs.

    They didn’t yet know how to interpret the commerce clause, which supercedes everything else in the constitution. The constitution is just a piece of paper, and a living document.

    To ban alcohol we required an amendment to the the constitution the 18th and the Volstead Act which defined “intoxicating liquors” excluding those for religious purposes.

    Perhaps because these substances were widely used in western society, so more authority was needed.

    Drugs should be legal because liberty demands that you have the right to make personal choices that affect your person the government has absolutely no business trying to dictate what you may or may not do with you body.

    Drugs have negative downstream effects on society, they are 1000’s or more times more addictive than alcohol and cause violence. What about your reduced health and economic productivity, this is the governments responsibility to maximize your contribution to society.

    We have to many rentseekers who benefit from the WOD. Law enforcement, politicians,
    and drugtesting companies just to name a few all benefit from our unconstitutional WOD.

    What else would we do with these people?

  18. The WOD is illegitimate.

    All democratically passed laws are legitimate.

    Vices are not crimes regardless of what uninformed voters, politicians, law enforcement, etc may think.

    No, it is the propper function to enforce morality, things that are wrong should be illegal.

    People Criminals recognize that these laws are illegitimate and continue to put whatever substances they want to use in their body. The WOD can not ever work it is really a matter of simple economics. There is demand and there are suppliers willing to meet that demand.

    Tougth enougth laws could work, life w/o parole for possesion, death for dealing, hire ten times more cops, drug test everyone, etc.

  19. Whew, that’s good comedy, Frank. Right?

  20. Yeah Frank you must be trolling. You need to take some tips from Dan T. He is pretty good at it. If you’re not kidding all I can say is yikes! Strike 3 for government mis-education.

  21. Yeah Frank you must be trolling. You need to take some tips from Dan T. He is pretty good at it. If you’re not kidding all I can say is yikes! Strike 3 for government mis-education.

    I learned the truth about drugs in Dare classes.

  22. Frank/Juanita,

    All democratically passed laws are legitimate.

    Have you heard of the Supreme Court, and do you know what they do?

  23. Whew!!! Frank you’re trolling! You had me scared for a minute.

  24. We can apply a common gun rights argument to the WOD: The right to own marijuana plants, cocaine, heroin, et al. is simply an extension of the right to own personal property.

  25. for all drugs – including heroin and cocaine – to be legalised and urges the Government to declare an end to the “failed” war on illegal narcotics.

    […]

    In his conference speech this year, Gordon Brown signalled an intensification of the existing battle. “We will send out a clear message that drugs are never going to be decriminalised,” the Prime Minister told the party.

    Which idea do you think will prevail?

  26. Have you heard of the Supreme Court, and do you know what they do?

    I believe it’s part of the Executive Branch?

  27. “Tougth enougth laws could work, life w/o parole for possesion, death for dealing, hire ten times more cops, drug test everyone, etc.”

    …and you’re cool with paying for all the extra enforcement and detention costs. Awesome.

  28. Whew!!! Frank you’re trolling! You had me scared for a minute.

    Even the neo-fascist trolls like Frank are no worse than guys like that “N.A.L.” douchebag who posted here not too long ago (who claimed to be a libertarian defending anti-drug laws himself).

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