"Far from a simple attempt to rid the nation of crime and drugs,
our policy against narcotics -- like any public policy --
comes with strings attached. And increasingly these strings
are constricting around the necks of Americans' lives and liberties."
his book, Bad Trip: How the War against Drugs Is Destroying America, 2005
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Reader comments about this quote:
"Strings"? What a fainthearted criticism of one of the most stupid attempts in this country to solve a major problem. The only answer is to legalize drugs the same as alcohol. Reasons should be obvious.
 -- Dick TRice, Fort Worth     
    And the War on Terror (double-speak) is a veiled expansion of the War on Drugs as thousands of people have been arrested for drug-related crimes while nary a terrorist has been found. I suppose the object is to get us all to hate and distrust each other as few seem to mind cracking down on neighborhoods on the other side of the tracks. Because of the lack of civil protections today, any person can be arrested at any time without warrant, charge, or even counsel. That is what the Patriot Act authorizes.
     -- Chicago     
    The so-called war on drugs is a waste of money. Many people are in jail for simply smoking a joint. Jail is for people who are a danger to society, not a potential danger to themselves. The Patriot Act makes anything the government wants at the moment a crime. Don't be surprised when YOU end up in jail for who knows what.
     -- Joe, Rochester, MI     
     -- Anonymous, Reston, VA US      
    People smoke or drink or ingest things that impair their faculties, then they drive cars, trucks, and airplanes, and kill MILLIONS every year as the result of their impairment. I do not care whether you decide to call this behavior or acts; the result is crime. Not to mention the other crime that coincides with the use of drugs. The founders of America recommended carrying arms for two principal reasons: To serve as a deterrence against potential tyranny in government and to protect themselves against attack in the wilderness areas, where the legal institutions could not protect them. This is not my opinion. This is based on the writings of the founders, their articles and correspondence. If they expected us to defend ourselves against attack, they would clearly expect us to defend ourselves against impaired drivers. I think repeat offenders should be shot.
     -- David L. Rosenthal , Hollywood     
    Uh, 'MILLIONS' is a teensy-weensy bit of an overstatement. It's an assertion that, to put it charitably, would fall into the category of 'excrement'. "The most perfidious way of harming a cause consists of defending it deliberately with faulty arguments." - Sec. 191 - Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche - Die Fröhliche Wissenschaft. Then, of course, there's wholesale fabrication - always a hit. Here are the most current stats I've found - Deaths from Automobile accidents injury: 42,443 deaths in USA 2001 (CDC); 42,401 deaths reported in USA 1999 for "motor vehicle accidents" (NVSR Sep 2001); 41,804 deaths in 2000 (CDC). These numbers denote ALL traffic related accidents in those years, INCLUDING the approximately 41%+/- of those involving alcohol. In 2002, 17,419 people in the United States died in alcohol-related motor vehicle crashes, accounting for 41% of all traffic-related deaths (NHTSA, 2003). That's a high number but it's just a little short of 'MILLIONS'. As for the 'writings of the founders', it would be really useful if David were to cite the actual sources wherefrom he derives his information. In particular, I'd like to know how just exactly how mortals might proceed to divine that "... they would clearly expect us to defend ourselves against impaired drivers." I've been searching for a neat Magi's trick and divination is always a crowd pleaser. Evidently, (and I've said this in reply to another of David's calls for summary executions of those who HE, in his God-like magnanimity, deems 'criminals') he finds the Constitution an obstruction to his base urge to kill: David, Let's just break the law to enforce it. And, while we're at it, why don't we just eliminate the right to a fair trial by a jury of one's peers and the right to face one's accuser(s). Let's eliminate the Bill of Rights altogether while we're at it - it's such an annoying impediment to the fun of summary executions in the town square. How COULD we have ever been so shortsighted as to think this 'Constitution' thing actually made any sense?" If I didn't know better, I'd suspect there's more than alcohol at work here - there's gasbagitis corrupticus. 'Hattip' to 'Bugs'.
     -- Terry Berg, Occidental, CA     
    In the interest of addressing "I think repeat offenders should be shot." - I'd like to offer Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche's. "... But thus I counsel you, my friends: Mistrust all in whom the impulse to punish is powerful. They are people of a low sort and stock; the hangman and the bloodhound look out of their faces. Mistrust all who talk much of their justice!"
     -- Terry Berg, Occidental, CA     
    The criminals of the occupying statist theocracy infesting this land have more than a string constricting around the necks of Americans' lives and liberties. The criminals that legislate, enforce and adjudicate compelled compliance, license, victimless crimes, larceny with impunity (income / life / property / insurance taxes, funny money, etc.) and anti-inalienable rights have choked out of consciousness any cognitive thought or corporeal action as it relates to freedom, liberty, natural law and/or justice.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    David, Hollywood, this so called War on Drugs creates a hundred times more crime than it could ever deter. See LEAP.cc .
     -- jim k, austin tx     
    Criminality of a centralized despot government, run by a minority of tyrants in a never ending sea of unnatural laws ! Seems David sides with punishment rather than Mercy. You receive what you put out ! Be careful what you wish for !
     -- Ron w13, Or     
    We seem to be puppets on a string and i'm not happy with who's holding those strings.
     -- cal, Lewisville, tx     
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