As a percentage of the population those incarcerated in America remained more-or-less constant from 1929 until 1980. However, since that time, when George Bush I decided to "escalate" this "war", our incarceration rate has quadrupled.
More than half of all federal prisoners are there for drug offenses, and about a quarter of state prisons. The majority of the rest in state prisons are there for economic and violent crimes related to the acquisition of drugs which could be panhandled for were they not illegal. The victims of these property and violent crimes number in the millions and virtually each and every one of those victims were in fact victimized as a direct and proximate consequence of the war on drugs - not the drug use or abuse itself.
Some "success" you have had there eh Mr. Government Man?
In the mean time we've destabilized multiple nations with our nonsense policies. Mexico is not the first - but it's the closest. We've had multiple "endeavors" with El Salvador, Colombia, Nicaragua and of course Afghanistan, where we are today. Much of Afghanistan's insurgency and the Taliban are funded by - surprise-surprise - opium poppy cultivation.
Cut off the drug money, cut off the insurgencies and violence at the knees - not by bombing, spraying or shooting, but by destruction of the profit margin in the business.
Economics is a short suit among our policy makers. Or is it?
This much is certain - it was only a matter of time before the problem got close enough to us that we would be forced to do something here, lest our people get shot and ultimately invaded.
That day has now arrived with the Mexican drug gangs pressing northward just as they press throughout the Mexican nation. We cannot solve this problem with gunships and war, just as nobody has managed to cut it off in Columbia or Afghanistan.
It can only be stopped via the destruction of operating profit margins in the narcotics business, and that can only happen via legalization and taxation, which in turn causes an immediate price collapse at the production and wholesale level and effective de-funds the thugs and gangs.
Wake up America.
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