Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

“Most of the energy of political work is devoted to correcting the effects of mismanagement of government.”     Milton Friedman

January 4, 2007

What Would It Take?

by Adam Selene

Jerry Taylor, of CATO, has a great question for those who continue to support the horribly failed War on Drugs:

While it should be obvious to any fair-minded observer that our increasingly brutal war on drugs is a losing proposition on all counts, few of us seem to be fair minded observers. So allow me to pose a question to those of you still clinging to this benighted enterprise: Exactly what would it take to convince you that the drug war was causing more harm than good?

Inquiring minds would like to know. I’m sure that at least a couple of folks who read The Liberty Papers believe in the War on Drugs. So, what would convince you that it was a bad thing and needed to end?

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5 Comments

  1. I’ll take your question, although I oppose the War on (some) Drugs.

    It will probably take someone they love very much getting killed by a SWAT Team to change their mind.

    Comment by Kevin — January 4, 2007 @ 10:55 am
  2. You don’t think that “true believers”, the ones who think drugs are bad, therefore we must fight them, can be convinced by anything else? The true believers got overturned on Prohibition, how did that happen?

    Comment by Adam Selene — January 4, 2007 @ 11:55 am
  3. I don’t believe the true believers did change their minds.

    Prohibition required a coalition of industrialists and moralists to pass. The industrialists were concerned about drunkenness on the job. They saw alcohol consumption as costing them economically in the form of lowered productivity, and decreased quality of product.

    During the Roaring 20′s, the industrialists began to see prohibition as being even worse for business. So they ended their support for it.

    The moralists have always been opposed. Of course, they have largely died out (they didn’t do a good job of recruiting younger members), so it looks like they gave up, when in fact old age caught up with most of them.

    Comment by tarran — January 4, 2007 @ 6:59 pm
  4. Except that we clearly have a whole new generation of moralists driving Drug Prohibition.

    Comment by Adam Selene — January 4, 2007 @ 8:18 pm
  5. The biggest problem when I debate someone is that they think if we let drugs beomce legal, the world will go to shambles because everyone is going to start getting high every night and wasting away. They see drugs as this huge evil and are so convinced that drugs are the worst thing ever to come into existence that they cannot see the errosion of our civil rights and the complete failure that is the war on drugs. Honestly, for some people I know, I’m not sure the SWAT-team based death would shift their stance, simply because to them drugs are that evil. It’s scary really.

    Comment by Ryan — January 4, 2007 @ 9:16 pm

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