Wednesday, October 24, 2012 10:00:06 PM
Illicit drugs have become more addictive in the last 40 years. I don't know about "addictive," but they certainly have increased in strength and purity. Marijuana today is much stronger than it was 40 years ago. However, this is a natural and inevitable consequence of prohibition. If you can grow pot with 5 times as much active ingredient, you can sell it for 5 times as much, but it still takes up the same amount of space to transport it.
Prohibition incentivizes concentration. Just look what happened during alcohol prohibition. We were turned from a nation of beer drinkers into a nation of liquor drinkers, because bootleggers couldn`t haul enough beer to make it worth their while.
And if you still have doubts as to the perniciousness of prohibition, remember that Alcoholics Anonymous didn`t even exist before prohibition.
Wednesday, October 24, 2012 1:07:30 PM
@Crakr: Obviously you missed my comment earlier: post hoc ergo propter hoc. The most you have to show for your country's policy is ridiculously large rates of imprisonment. Usage in the US is still something like twice the amount of the Netherlands for weed and cocaine. Drug war policies are antiquated and counterproductive. The Dutch have also had addiction rates fairly constant for decades, but at least they don`t lock up 1% of their population.
Wednesday, October 24, 2012 9:25:09 AM
@som-tam: I see your point, and the graph is poorly presented, but the % for addicts is reasonable, because it is a rate, which could be presented as a ratio or a percentage. The dollar number is incomplete, but for the drug war to be useful, you should see the addiction rate go down, or drug usage go down. You don't see either of these.
Nixon`s initial drug budget was $100 million, now it`s $15.1 billion, which is 31 times Nixon`s amount, and that`s AFTER inflation adjustment.
Yet spending is increasing much more for the useless policies of imprisonment and policing instead of useful programs like treatment.