123 murders in 12 days

The news from Juárez only receives national attention when it is politically convenient or at an anniversary point (look for year end accountings of the murders) but the death rate there is nothing short of totally astonishing and appalling.

Sixteen people were killed this weekend, 6 on Friday, 10 Saturday. There have been 123 murders in December so far and 2,487 murders this year.

123 murders in 12 days, yet unless you seek out this news in Mexican newspapers (or live in El Paso) there is total silence about it.

This is clearly an insane and out of control crisis. And there is no question--the blood is on our hands.

For all of the talk of expanding our commitment to the failed (or non-)state of Afghanistan it really is time to heighten the realities back in our neighborhood of the failed state we collectively as Americans are producing in Mexico. We might not be actually pulling the triggers but we are encouraging it every day we continue prohibition. Simple.

And this isn't charming 1920s gangster in Hollywood films, these are evil drug murderers every bit as pathological as the fundamentalists in the Taliban, using the same tricks, but who don't even profess to believe in anything but making a profit anyway. Unlike the Taliban they are not on the other side of the planet, and are not supported by the local populace, and they can actually be defeated too.

But instead we are quite literally trashing the future of American power and economic might in the sinkhole/shithole of Afghanistan for no true strategic purpose.

If you listened to Obama's speech announcing the troop increase you may have noticed his mention of the cost of the misadventure. This is the first time I am aware of a President making this kind of concession that we are flat broke and that this is war is really a massive financial risk as well as a threat to our military. Fortunately we can just conjure money out of thin air.

There is that nagging reality that legalization of drugs would raise a lot of money too. The only response on the pro-prohibition side is basically that, uh, 'drugs are really bad, can't you see that?' If anyone can find any argument for prohibition that is not at base this subjective, fundamentalist premise, please do share. It is pedantic (but necessary still) to reiterate that every argument made against drugs can be made against booze, the source of a stunning array of social pathologies.

here is a list that has recently made the rounds, I came to it (along with this nice collection of links on the tax benefits of legalizing marijuana) from Taxprof Blog.

"CNN has published a 50-state ranking of the potential tax revenues that could be raised by legalizing and taxing marijuana, based on state-by-state marijuana consumption, from Jeffrey Miron (Harvard University, Department of Economics), Budgetary Implications of Marijuana Prohibition. The study projects $778.2 million from taxing marijuana; here are the Top 20 states:

1. California ($105.4 million)
2. New York ($65.5 million)
3. Florida ($48.2 million)
4. Texas ($46.6 million)
5. Ohio ($34.8 million)
6. Michigan ($32.4 million)
7. Illinois ($31.6 million)
8. Pennsylvania ($30.5 million)
9. Washington ($22.0 million)
10. Virginia ($20.9 million)
11. North Carolina ($20.6 million)
12. Georgia ($19.3 million)
13. New Jersey ($19.3 million)
14. Massachusetts ($18.4 million)
15. Indiana ($17.8 million)
16. Colorado ($17.6 million)
17. Missouri ($15.6 million)
18. Minnesota ($14.3 million)
19. Oregon ($14.1 million)
20. Maryland ($13.9 million)


STAG said…
Guess you draw the line at a different place, or should I say, a different drug than I do. That don't make either of us bad. Each of us will say t'other is deluded.

You think, I mean REALLY think that if you take away the crooks main source of income that they will suddenly not come up with another one the next day? That suddenly they will become law abiding folk just trying to get high? Or do you suppose they will drop pot and move onto Crystal Meth or Crack Cocaine. (or pick whichever escalation you like, its all good.)
Oh sure....so what's wrong with that? Legalize that and buy ice at the local drug store.

Okay, I have a difficult time defending the evils of ice.
So legalize that, and see if the nice pusher gangsta will NOW decide that he can get by with legal stuff.

Yeah...that'll work.

My personal opinion is that the war on drugs is expensive, and counter productive and a little stupid. But how bout this idea.......stop using the shit.

Hard to do, but then I remember when it was hard to get folks to tie up their seat belts. Stop smoking in bars. Stop tossing back another one "for the road".

I know...doomed to failure...because people by and large are just dumb, and like to party. But my idea just might work. Stop feeding the gangsta, and he starves.

Popular posts from this blog

Can octopus heads be hazardous to your health?

Buddhas, Buddhas, y Mas Buddhas