Legalizing marijuana won't stop the war on drugs, and would likely have very little effect on Mexican drug cartels, the Atlantic reports. How could one of America's most popular underground pastimes not affect its distributors? Because they're no longer the providers, and they haven't for quite a while.
Many have argued that legalized marijuana would adversely affect Mexican drug cartels. Some think-tanks even estimate that legalizing weed in Washington state alone could cost Mexican drug cartels nearly $1.37 billion in profits. But as Keegan Hamilton reports, the only way that legalized weed will likely harm cartels is if states which still buy cartel-supplied marijuana legalize the drug. And those are mostly conservative states unlikely to adopt marijuana-friendly laws.
Additionally, the promulgation of medical marijuana has flooded the marketplace with cheaper, American-produced pot, squeezing out the cartels as suppliers. And this has led the cartels to diversify their illegal activities, including meth trafficking.
Here is my take on drugs. The MONEY generated from the drug trade has long had a POSITIVE effect on the economy of the united states and politicians, both local and federal have known this for a very long time. I would be willing to bet that if a switch could be thrown that would stop all drug activity,prescription drugs included, NOT one entrenched politician would willingly flip that switch.
"Large-scale dealing, production, import and export are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, even if it does not supply end users or coffeeshops with more than the allowed amounts.
Exactly how coffeeshops get their supplies is rarely investigated, however.
The average concentration of THC in the cannabis sold in coffeeshops has increased from 9% in 1998 to 18% in 2005.
This means that less plant material has to be consumed to achieve the same effect.
One of the reasons is plant breeding and use of greenhouse technology for illegal growing of cannabis in Netherlands.
The former minister of Justice Piet Hein Donner announced in June 2007 that cultivation of cannabis shall continue to be illegal." . . . "The drug policy of the Netherlands officially has four major objectives:
1.To prevent recreational drug use and to treat and rehabilitate recreational drug users.
2.To reduce harm to users.
3.To diminish public nuisance by drug users (the disturbance of public order and safety in the neighbourhood).
4.To combat the production and trafficking of recreational drugs.
By contrast, most other countries take the point of view that recreational drug use is detrimental to society and must therefore be outlawed.
This has caused friction between the Netherlands and other countries about the policy for cannabis, most notably with France and Germany.
As of 2004, Belgium seems to be moving toward the Dutch model and a few local German legislators are calling for experiments based on the Dutch model.
Switzerland has had long and heated parliamentary debates about whether to follow the Dutch model on cannabis, most recently deciding against it in 2004; currently a ballot initiative is in the works on the question.
New law to come in shortly in three provinces first including Maastricht and Eindhoven (covering other provinces including Amsterdam in 2012) only allowing registered members of clubs to go to the cannabis cafes, only Dutch residents who are at least 18 years of age can register but all foreigners will be banned including those from EU states.
By test, a few coffeeshops in the south of Holland were already forced to handle this new law.
Residents are complaining about growing criminality problems due to drugdealers in the streets." . .
@CanisCanemEdit - The increased THC in Dutch marijuana was found even before they legalized it... It has alwa6ys been higher than American cannabis and others, but the THC content has doubled since legalization... They also charge much higher prices for "nederwiet" (or Nether-Weed)- SOURCE: Trimbos Institute
Law Could Hamper Drug Tourism in the Netherlands By DAVID JOLLY Published: April 2, 2012
2.In some respects, tolerance appears to have been successful: despite the easy availability, the Dutch are far less likely than Americans or many other Europeans to use marijuana. About 14 percent of Americans use marijuana, versus about 5 percent of the Dutch, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Alex Stevens, a drug policy expert at the University of Kent, argues that the tolerance policy has reduced the harm caused by prohibition, in part by separating the markets for hard drugs like heroin from the market for marijuana, and by getting cannabis dealers off the street and into a regulated environment.
But Amsterdam’s days as a destination for hazy holidays may be numbered. Prime Minister Mark Rutte’s right-wing coalition government is pushing to sharply restrict the operations of the coffee shops and to prohibit the sale of the drugs to nonresidents. If the measures survive a court challenge and the opposition of local officials, the first phase would begin May 1.
Leave it those right wingers to screw up a good thing. Watch. They'll close down the industry and then gripe because people are out of work. Why are those on the right so determined to control what other people do?
There will always be a market for whatever is illegal or difficult to get, however, legalizing pot will put a huge dent in the illicit drug trade. Dealers might move on to selling other drugs, but on a popularity scale those drugs don't come close to marijuana. The money we save chasing down weed dealers could well be spent on rehab for serious drug users.
Of course it won't. Because there will always be that addict who has to shoot smack, smoke rock, or snort powder. The Cartels will simply go from marijuana to cocaine and heroin. They'll probably up the ante in human trafficking as well. They could be stopped. Secure our borders and authorize the use of deadly force by our National Guard, landowners, Minutemen. And if the Mexican Government asks for it, we can send in the Marines (Hell, I would happily volunteer to get back in uniform and fire a few rounds downrange at those cartel scumbags)...
We can't have a perfect world. We can at least reduce violence by taking things like drugs and prostitutes(adult and consenting) out of the hands of the black market and into a legal regulated market. In the end there are things that seriously hurt other people like human trafficking, but crimes that create victims tend to be easier to police, because if the victim gets the chance they may turn in their assailants. Organized crime was even worse than it is now back during the 1920s. That's because alcohol was illegal. Making marijuana legal might not eliminate the black market, but it will reduce it substantially.
Not only would legalization, taxation, and regulation of marijuana reduce the amount of pot crossing the border, but think of the money that would be generated to reinvigorate the economy.
Also, consider the billions spent on incarcerating non-violent drug offenders that could be saved. Right now, there are more prisons being built than schools for our children. Decriminalizing, regulating, and taxing marijuana seems like it would be a no brainer given the state of our economy.
Any reasonable person isn't going to make a jump from recreational pot smoker to meth addict even if all drugs were unscheduled. Basic economics show that if supply is increased, then demand will go down. If someone wants a harder drug, they're going to get it regardless of its legal status. It's cheaper to provide rehabilitation services than incarcerating inmates for a victimless crime. If you look at other countries with more relaxed drug laws, there's always a decrease in crime. There are a lot of counterpoints, however, and I don't personally support 100% legalization of all illicit substances, but legalizing a relatively harmless plant like MJ would be a good start to getting our country back on track.
Keegan Hamilton said it so it must be true guys! So he even said so himself legalizing it in the states where the drug cartels sell would affect it. So we do that. Then we start bringing troops home from some of the bases we have over 130 countries, stop policing the world, put some of those troops on our border, and let them stop the cartels and illegals from coming in illegally. I think that would have a big effect on it but we better ask Keegan Hamilton.
Drugs are leagal in mexico, and weed is leagal in Colorado and Wash, don't see any difference in drug usage, the people that use drugs still use them and the others don't the war on drugs is the all time waste of money.
I totally agree with you legalization does not increase the number of users... but it does decrease the number of drug abusers... drug abuse has fallen drastically in those countries who refuse to enforce US drug laws against their own citizens any more.
As long as something is illegal, there will be a black market. Legalization of cannabis is big stepping stone, but it needs to be nation-wide for it's full effects to be felt. My hope is that once that happens, everyone takes a minute to chill out, light up a fatty and sit and think for awhile.
If one of your family members is going to use marijuana, who would you rather have sell it to them? A retail merchant at the corner store? Or a member of street gang?
More than half of all drug smugglers sell marijuana exclusively. Putting them out of business is a good thing, isn't it? It would drastically reduce the violence and other dangers at the US-Mexico border. Mexicans would finally have a way to make a living in their own country... and without the risk of getting murdered by some cartel-owned army.
Keeping marijuana illegal is telling kids that alcohol is the safer drug. We see evidence of this faulty reasoning at every 21st birthday party around the country. Marijuana legalization does NOT "send the wrong message to kids" any more than namecalling sends the wrong message about freedom of speech.
Legalizing only in a few states will simply shift dangerous cartels to do more business in states that still enforce prohibtion. The anti-drug laws need to be repealed entirely.
While most hard drug users also use marijuana, it is not true that marijuana users also use hard drugs. By legalizaing their drig of choice, we remove millions of Americans from harm's way by allowing them to do business with a local taxpaying retailer. And some social research has shown that hard drug users, given a safer alternative, may finally beat their addiction to hard drugs.
Cartels make more money from marijuana than they do from hard drugs... No amount of marketing or coercion can turn pot-heads into meth-heads. Cripple their revenue stream, and they will just have to spend more money and make fewer profits after legalization.
Take a look at Portugal's success in legalization...
Yes there is and it is so obvious. I'll keep that to myself as I would like to go on living. I can't believe that the government hasn't already considered it. The war on drugs in my neighborhood is a joke. This neighborhood has at least one dope house on every street. The police spend their time harassing those of that walk instead of drive, while they ignore the continuous activity at the dope houses.
heck that will not stop the cartels,they will just set up legal shops here and put the hurt of Americans like they do in mexico.
if we really wanted to stop them or even slow them it starts with border security.as it stands nothing is stopping them. when you hear of stores and businesses here own by cartels it says a lot about our security,there is close to none.
the way it is now we just as well have the welcome mat out. until the gov starts seeing every illegal aliens as a cartel member we will continue to be flooded by drugs and terrorists. we need the otm papers published to show all just what all it is coming in from our south and maybe even the north.