Entries Tagged as 'Crime'

US Drug Policy

I certainly don’t have a solution to the drug problem in the US; but clearly the US government doesn’t either.

History teaches us many lessons, and when we ignore those lessons we often find ourselves repeating the errors of the past.

Prohibition didn’t work.

We make arbitrary decisions about which drugs are acceptable are which ones are not (we have legalized alcohol, but not drug in social use for much longer).

The Criminal Justice Policy Foundation has some interesting views on US drug policy:

The United States is at a crossroads in its drug policy. In our effort to quell the drug trade, we have greatly increased patrol and inspection on our nation’s borders. We have increased arrests for violation of drug laws and lengthened sentences. We have stripped away the rights of drug offenders and introduced drug testing in our nation’s schools and workplaces. We have poured billions of dollars into overseas anti-drug paramilitary operations that commit violent human rights abuses. And in the process of trying to eradicate illicit coca crops, we have destroyed over a million acres of land in Colombia alone.

Since 1990, more than half of the federal prisoners in America are serving time for drug offenses. The availability and purity of drugs has steadily increased over the past twenty-five years. The violence in the drug trade remains excruciatingly high and surges from year to year and city to city. Meanwhile, there remain a myriad of social issues as a result of drug abuse.

The use of drugs, and the enforcement of the anti-drug laws, effects all subpopulations in the U.S., all sectors of the economy, and many aspects of the legal system. Whether we are talking about violence, poverty, race, health, education, community development, the environment, civil liberties or terrorism, the illegal drug market is an important factor in the conversation.

We have tried to use force, prohibition and incarceration to control the drug market, but our efforts have actually led to a more efficient drug trade and a hugely profitable drug market. It is time to rethink our strategy and redefine our goals.

This section holds articles and speeches given by CJPF that address drug policy in all of its forms and effects. In this, we strive to provide a comprehensive framework for rethinking the war on drugs.

You can read the complete statement and peruse their web site at

Criminal Justice Policy Foundation

And if you’re wondering, I found their site through an article from NPR on taxing cocaine rather than (or in addition to) marijuana.


Originally posted 2010-03-28 02:00:43.


Arizona Senator John McCain has described SBInet as a “complete failure”.

And I would not only agree it’s a complete failure, but a poorly conceived project from the beginning (Senator McCain supported the project and funding in 2005).

SBInet for those who don’t know is a high tech border security system pushed for by the George W Bush (another waste of money he got through because it wasn’t patriotic to question him and his war on terrorism) in 2005 that was supposed to be fully operation by 2011.

The initial project was along the Arizona / Mexico border (you know, that state Senator John McCain represents)…

Yesterday US Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano halted the project and pulled $50 million from it and is allocating it to use tested technology to achieve the same goal.

Oh, don’t worry; I’m sure some defense contractor or at least a contractor well represented by lobbyist will get their hands on that money; and since Boeing (the original contractor for SBInet) had huge costs overruns they’ll probably be fine as well.

My view; yes we need to do something to curb the illegal shipments of drugs into this country (and help the Mexican authorities curb the drug related violence in Mexico); but maybe we should learn from prohibition and find a real solution to the problem.

Originally posted 2010-03-18 02:00:29.

Brink’s Pill Heist

On the 17th of March in what could well become the basis of the next Hollywood crime caper movie, $75 million worth of pharmaceuticals was stolen from a warehouse in Enfield, MA from Eli Lilly & Co.

The thieves disabled the alarm system, scaled an exterior brick wall, cut a hold in the roof, rappelled inside, loaded pallets of merchandise onto an awaiting vehicle, and left with a semi-truck full of stolen goods.

Prozac, Cymbalta, Zyprexa according to Eli Lilly no narcotics or painkillers were stored in this ware house.

Why worry about drugs from abroad when it seems the drug trade is very much alive right in our own back yard.

Originally posted 2010-03-19 02:00:13.