Drug War

Should the State Punish Drug Offenders?

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Republican presidential contender George W. Bush's refusal to deny cocaine use raises some fundamental, moral questions: Why should the state be punishing adults for drug offenses? Why shouldn't people be free to engage in self-destructive behavior as long as their conduct is peaceful? Why should anyone be put in jail, fined, or have his ... [click for more]

Booze Busting: The New Prohibition

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Sixty-odd years after the repeal of Prohibition, a new anti-alcohol fervor is sweeping the nation. The anti-alcohol mentality is leading to absurd practices: An elementary school in Brandon, Vermont, forced sixth-graders to undergo breath tests to see whether any of them had been consuming alcohol. As lawyer Richard Berman recently noted, "Last Christmas in Georgia, 13-year-old honor student Cosmo Zinkow was ... [click for more]

Policy Overdose

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From 1990 to 1996 heroin use among high-school seniors was up one hundred percent. Imagine how bad things would be if the war on drugs weren't succeeding! A report published in the journal Pediatrics attributes the increase to the falling price and higher purity of heroin, and to the belief that snorting or smoking heroin ... [click for more]

The Bipartisan Drug Warp

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President Clinton promised recently to cut drug use by 50 percent over the next 10 years with the more than $17 billion--nearly a 7 percent increase--he's asked from Congress. Predictably, Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich said the effort isn't enough. Those who hate partisan bickering might take comfort that each ... [click for more]

The Drug War vs. Public Health and Safety

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Many Americans recognize that the drug war has jailed hundreds of thousands of people whose sole crime was to possess substances that politicians did not approve of. However, this is only the start of the casualty list of the drug war. Many other Americans have suffered who themselves had little or nothing to do with narcotics. Foolish drug regulations are ... [click for more]

Destroying Families for the Glory of the Drug War, Part 2

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Part 1 | Part 2 In Clyo, Georgia, 11-year-old Tony Johnson met police Sergeant Sam O'Dwyer during Tony's DARE training. After completing his training, Tony met with O'Dwyer three times and eventually informed the cop of a few marijuana plants on a corner of his parents' land near their trailer home. O'Dwyer busted Tony's mother on April 9, 1992. ... [click for more]

Destroying Families for the Glory of the Drug War, Part 1

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Part 1 | Part 2 Few programs better symbolize the arrogance, propaganda, and political opportunism of the drug war than the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) program. DARE is the most popular antidrug education program in America. Labeled by the Chicago Tribune as "a darling of America's drug war," DARE is currently being taught by police officers to ... [click for more]

The Relegalization of Drugs, Part 3

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Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 I am often asked what distinguishes libertarians from nonlibertarians. I sometimes respond with a political or economic answer. But I've concluded that the best answer is a psychological one: Libertarians, unlike others, have a fierce commitment to reality, which is a commitment to truth. We have broken free of the ... [click for more]

The Relegalization of Drugs, Part 2

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Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 What could be more destructive and dysfunctional than public schooling? Let's cut through the facade of parents' voluntarily taking their children to the school bus each morning or dropping them off at school for their wonderful, cheerful, bright day of learning. The real reason parents do this is simple: If ... [click for more]

The Relegalization of Drugs, Part 1

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Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 A member of the Christian Coalition recently telephoned me and said that she agreed with most of what The Future of Freedom Foundation stands for and wanted to support us. She then asked: "What is your organization's stand on drug legalization?" I responded: "We call for the total legalization of ... [click for more]

The Clinton Administration’s War on Privacy

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The Clinton administration, self-proclaimed champion of civil liberties and small government, is a big fraud. President Clinton's Department of Justice, it was recently revealed, is wiretapping more and more American citizens each year. It is increasing the number of federal wiretaps by more than 30 percent annually. What's more, the administration is bulking up the budgets of the FBI and ... [click for more]

Drug War Dementia

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H. L. Mencken observed in 1918: "A politician normally prospers under democracy in proportion . . . as he excels in the invention of imaginary perils and imaginary defenses against them." In recent years, politicians have found few better ways to frighten voters than with the specter of drugs. The government's war on drug users is annually jailing hundreds ... [click for more]
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