Friday, April 17, 2009

Mexican-American Drug War: Solution - Legalization

President Obama traveled to Mexico yesterday to meet with Mexican President Felipe Calderon. The discussion that ensued was about the drug war taking place along the American-Mexican border. A few weeks ago Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said, “We know very well that the drug traffickers are motivated by the demand for illegal drugs in the United States, that they are armed by the transport of weapons from the United States to Mexico.” As with many consumer goods, the United States is the largest consumer of illegal drugs. According to Drug Sense the U.S. Federal Government spent over $19B in 2003 and $15B year to date. The Merida Initiative established a pledge of $1.4B in security aid to Mexico over the next three years. Clinton is hoping to use $80M to send Black Hawk helicopters to Mexico which President Obama echoed yesterday.

President Obama talks about making tough choices. I applaud him for not pushing for legislation in banning assault rifles as it was a campaign promise to do so. The three major drugs in question are marijuana, cocaine, and heroin. President Obama said, “You can’t fight this war with just one hand” and “You can’t have Mexico making an effort and the United States not making an effort.” The United States has poured billions of dollars down the Drug War drain. What effort is President Obama saying the United States is not making? The drug problem has been around longer then assault rifles.

Did the United States not learn anything from prohibition?

In nearly every speech President Obama gives, he states that Americans are going to need to make tough choices. Here is a suggestion to that tough choice decision making. Legalize illegal drugs. Before you pass judgment apply some common sense here.

Terrorist and Cartels fuel their enterprises with money raised from the drug trade while America Government spends billions of dollars to stem the tide with little success. Mexico claim that the United States is the source of guns for the cartels is misguided. If the cartels did not get guns from America there is huge black market in Asia and the Middle East.

The tough choice is to remove the cash cow from the Terrorists and Cartels. In order to remove their cash cow is for the United States to legalize illicit drugs. President Obama’s administration is planning to spend trillions of dollars to get out the recession, improving health care, and creating energy sources that promotes the “Green” initiative. The short term funding plan is to borrow money from the Chinese and for the Federal Reserve to print more money.

The time will come that the Chinese will no longer want American debt and will want to collect. In order for the Chinese collect, America will need to raise funds. To raise the funds it will take revenue and the way Governments raise revenue is through taxes. Right now the anger is focused on the rich and the expectation that the rich need to pay more taxes. There will come a time when taxes will fall to the middle and lower class.

Right now the plan is tax the rich more but do not be fooled that everyone will be expected to pay more taxes as it your “patriotic duty” according to Vice President Biden. The excessive taxation and enormous growth of Government is why “Tea Parties” took place on April 15th. To help mitigate the increase in taxes for all and to take bold moves to stem the tide of violence on the American-Mexican border it is time to legalize drugs.

By legalizing illicit drugs the United States government will be able to tax and regulate the potency and purity of illicit drugs. Another aspect is the creation of jobs through transportation, production, and selling of illicit drugs. A byproduct of legalization is it will encourage addicts to seek treatment since the use of an illegal product is no longer demonized.

Personally I am not an illicit drug user nor will legalization drive me to use illicit drugs which are the fear of opponents to legalizing drugs. I agree with President Obama that Americans need to make tough choices and one of those tough choices ought to be to legalize illicit drug use.