Google To Help Take On Mexican Drug Cartels

from the do-no-evil dept

Normally when we talk about Google 'round these parts, it's to discuss issues of privacy and piracy. But, according to an ABC News report, Google is going on the offensive to help take down Mexican drug cartels.
"Eric Schmidt, Google's executive chairman, has taken a keen interest in Mexico, where more than 47,500 people have been killed in drug-related violence since President Felipe Calderon launched an offensive against the cartels in 2006. Schmidt recently visited most of Mexico's most violent cities, Ciudad Juarez, where civic leaders asked if he could help.

"Defeated, helpless, these people have been so hardened in their experience with cartels that they have lost battles and they have lost hope," Schmidt told a conference on international crime this week. "They were looking for a universal hammer to protect them. For me the answer was obvious. It was technology.""
At the conference in California, put on by both Google and the Council on Foreign Relations, a variety of ways technology and Google could help the Mexican authorities tackle their drug cartel problem were discussed. Some of the strategies may raise eyebrows for privacy-minded citizens of any country: sharing real-time intelligence with police, identifying through Google's data how individuals are connected with one another, and even showing links between criminals or corrupt politicians and potentially implicated bank accounts.

But, in my mind, the real winning ideas probably won't raise any of those privacy concerns: creating an anonymous network through which anyone can report drug cartel information or activity, so as to avoid reprisal, and creating community web platforms so citizens can share information about the criminals and publicly chastise them.

If I had to guess, that's where you're going to have the most success. Using technology to empower the police can be a good thing, but using technology to empower the citizenry, that's how you can really have an impact.

Of course, it will take more than Google's help to take down drug cartels, something Eric Schmidt recognizes:
""I think at the end of the day, there really are bad people, and you have to go in and arrest them and kill them," he said."
Still, empowering the Mexican people with technology should produce a step forward in the fight against the drug cartels, and that's a good thing.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Ralph, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 4:36pm

    Yer kidding right?

    >>For me the answer was obvious. It was technology.

    For me the answer is obvious also. Decriminalize most drugs.
    Anything else is just a waste of time, money and lives.

    Of course, Mexico has already shown how brown their nose is as they allow themselves to be the cats paw of the US.

    This is a US problem being fought on Mexican soil. Mexico is the country losing their citizens lives and futures because they won't (for whatever reason) tell the US to handle the problem themselves.

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 4:41pm

    The right to bear internets?

     

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    Jay (profile), Jul 20th, 2012 @ 4:42pm

    I see this as an excuse to share more info to law enforcement and less to more enforcement that hasn't worked for forty years. Given how drug contracts are lucrative for law enforcement, expect Google to be paid for every person they sell out.

     

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  4.  
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    Mason Wheeler (profile), Jul 20th, 2012 @ 5:04pm

    Re: Yer kidding right?

    Sorry, but no. "Decriminalize the drugs" sounds very nice and idealistic, but in the real world it's a horrible idea.

    Just look at alcohol. The completely legal use of alcohol causes more deaths, more misery, and more poverty than all illegal drug use put together. The last thing we (or any society) needs is more ways to do that to themselves.

    What is really needed is exactly what Schmidt said here: find the people at the top, and arrest or kill them. We haven't ever actually tried to do that. Some people say the War on Drugs is failing, but they're wrong. The War on Drugs isn't "failing"; it never existed in the first place. We've never treated the drug problem as anything even slightly resembling a war.

    When we do, and when it becomes successful enough that it is no longer an economically rational decision to produce and distribute illegal drugs, (as it is now, because of the high reward/risk ratio involved,) then the drug problem will go away.

     

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  5.  
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    Tom Landry (profile), Jul 20th, 2012 @ 5:05pm

    Its stunning how our finest minds and political leaders can't grasp the simple fact that until the demand for illicit dope is quashed, all these attempts at stopping the source will be nothing more than band-aids.

    Or how about treating addiction as a medical issue rather than a criminal. We have over 100 years of poof that locking up users , even for long periods, does NOTHING to stop the use of illicit dope. Gangland murders didn't stop until prohibition was repealed. Why does anyone think its any different with drugs.

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 5:11pm

    The Answer is Simple

    Legalize drugs

    Why it won't happen:

    Too much $$$$$ to be made. The big U.S. banks would not have all that cash to launder. The government would not have slush money to fund black projects and covert wars. Big pharma would have to compete with "practically" fee. The beer industry would lose customers. And all those bribes...

    What Google is doing is not a good thing. They are only providing more tools to enable failed policy.

    Schmidt's quote: "I think at the end of the day, there really are bad people, and you have to go in and arrest them and kill them," he said." --> is more appropriate for those running things in the good old US of A

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 5:14pm

    Re: The Answer is Simple

    I would say citation needed, but it's pretty clear you're a batshit insane conspiracy nut.

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 5:24pm

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    "What is really needed is exactly what Schmidt said here: find the people at the top, and arrest or kill them."

    What if these people included high level politicians, military personel and spooks... working for the USA, Mexico, the UK or any other government?

    Should we kill all of those fuckers?

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 5:26pm

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Your ability to ignore reality in pursuit of your delusion is impressive.

     

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    Hephaestus (profile), Jul 20th, 2012 @ 5:32pm

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    He is not kidding. If you look at Portugal where drugs are decriminalized, you see drug use didn't go up, it actually fell. If drugs are legal or illegal roughly the same percentage of people use.

    About the rest of your rant.

    -Lets arrest people, that will make them stop.
    -Arresting people didn't work.
    -Lets make the jail sentences longer.
    -Damn that didn't work.
    -Lets kill them, that will make it stop.
    -Hell, killing them didn't work.

    Historically attempting to legislate human nature never works, and escalating has an effect opposite to the desired outcome.

    Since your next argument is going to be "its not human nature to do drugs" Ask a psychologist about self medication and addictive personalities.

    PS- I am sorry about which ever family member(s) of yours had a drinking problem.

     

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    Urza9814, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 5:33pm

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Yes, that's exactly why we made Alcohol illegal. And then reversed that after we realized that _prohibition_ caused more problems than the alocohol itself!

    If you legalized drugs, the money you would save on enforcement would be enough to send EVERY SINGLE CITIZEN through rehab programs if desired. The problem isn't drug dealers, it's addiction.

    Look at cigarettes. Nicotine is the most addictive drug we know of. And yet the number of smokers in the US is in a MASSIVE decline. And it's not from banning tobacco. It's from education and support programs. Plus, since it's legal, we can age limit it! In most American highschools, it's easier for the kids to get pot than cigarettes!

    Oh, plus -- weed is one of the most popular illegal drugs. It's also safer than crap a 10 year old can buy at the local drug store. YOU CAN'T DIE FROM MARIJUANA. It's physically impossible. In all of recorded history, it has never happened. The only way ever found to kill someone from marijuana smoke is by suffocation. Or if it's laced with something -- which wouldn't happen if it was legalized!

     

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    Patience, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 5:55pm

    Good to see Google considering law enforcement, at least I welcome the new an_caps internet sovereign. Just like Gandhi envisioned; "the tiger's nature, but not the tiger.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 6:03pm

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 6:09pm

    Oh god no Eric, don't give the authorities access to high levels of information.

    You'll be handing it to the cartels before the citizens. You'll be responsible for thousands being tracked down and murdered.

     

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    paywall bob, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 6:10pm

    More Big Techdirt bullshit.

    There's no way Big Search would help stop Big Drugs because there's too much money in both. Why would Big Search volunteer to stop Big Drugs when their true aim is stopping my not-Big Content?

    All you Big Readers have been Bi(n)g(e) Drinking the Big Kool-Aid by Big Masnick of Big Techdirt.

     

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  16.  
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    phlynhi (profile), Jul 20th, 2012 @ 6:13pm

    Re:

    I agree that this is a US problem. I agree that ultimately the only real solution is legalization in the US. I disagree that the cartels could buy off Google in the same way that they buy off government officials in Mexico.
    Barring the capacity to threaten/harm Google employees and their families, if there is one thing that Google has,it's cash money.
    Eyebrows up at Eric "don't be evil" Schmidt re: You have to go in... and kill them. Google Hawk!

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 6:50pm

    Google and governments are idiots.

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 6:58pm

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Are you so fucking stupid that you really think that by legalizing drugs people are going to rush right out and start using them?

    Alcohol is legal and yet I don't drink.Will you start using marijuana if it were to become legal?

    The people who use all forms of illegal drugs will continue to do so legal or not and the cartels will continue to get filthy rich.

    Legalizing drugs will keep billions in our economies eliminate drug cartels reduce the gang and crime problems, create jobs. All with out firing a single shot!

    Oh,I know, ten year olds will be able to get drugs if they're legal...I got news for you...they're the ones selling this stuff now!

    But legal drugs will create a bunch of addicts and Dopers...
    Yeah right.We already have them.In large numbers.

    Get your head out of your ass and see life for how it really is for a change!

     

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  19.  
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    Mason Wheeler, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 6:58pm

    Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Absolutely. Leaders--especially ones chosen by their people to represent them--need to be held to the highest standard. Otherwise you end up with a mess like... well... what we've got now. Again, people engage in (and end up getting away with) corruption because it's currently an economically rational choice for them. Change that equation, and the corruption will stop.

     

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  20.  
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    Mason Wheeler, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 7:07pm

    Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Your Portugal link is broken, and comparing incidents of something before and after it was decriminalized is an inherently flawed methodology, since people knowingly breaking the law have a strong incentive to hide what they're doing. So any figures about the rate of drug use in Portugal before it was legalized are made up at best, and "extrapolated" (made up with the help of some sort of data) at worst.

    As for your historical examples... wait. There are no examples. You're just making tired old Libertarian ideological points and trying to legitimize them by tacking the word "historically" on there. And since Libertarians tend to be on the wrong side of pretty much every social and moral issue there is, such points can be safely ignored.

     

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    That One Guy (profile), Jul 20th, 2012 @ 7:08pm

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    To use your own wording, 'Sorry, but no'.

    Yes alcohol causes a ton of problems, and even a ton of outright deaths, but you only have to look at what it was like when it was made illegal to see that it's much better to have a substance like that legal, so that it can be controlled and monitored.

    Let's look at probably the two most important effects that occurred when it was made illegal:

    -Turned entire generations into criminals, who due to already breaking some laws, had a higher likelihood of breaking more laws.

    -Increased, massively the power of criminal organizations, and provided them with a drastically increased, steady stream of income.

    Either of these two look at all similar to the current situation?

    The idea that 'arresting and killing' the leaders of the drug cartels could even begin to deal with the problem is laughable; due to the illegal nature of the product they are pushing, it is massively profitable for them, so there will always be someone willing to step up and replace those that get taken out.

    So to sum up: the current strategy of trying to get rid of the 'supply' side of the equation is at best, not doing any good at all, due to how insanely profitable it is for them. I'd say doing so is like trying to behead a hydra, but that would have better odds of working compared to this.

    What needs to be done is to tackle the problem on the 'demand' end, by making the drugs legal, so that they can be controlled and monitored, those that desire quitting can get the help they need, and the criminal element gets cut out of the equation.

     

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  22.  
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    Mason Wheeler, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 7:23pm

    Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Prohibition was unfortunate, and even more unfortunate is the way a lot of people don't understand the difference between a bad idea and a bad implementation of a good idea. Prohibition was the latter: take an entire nation of people, a high percentage of whom are used to consuming a substance known--even back then--to be highly addictive, and tell them they all need to suddenly quit cold turkey? Of course it was a massive failure! That doesn't mean that the idea was fundamentally bad, because it wasn't.

    And sending "every single citizen through rehab programs" isn't desired. What's desired is keeping them from needing the program in the first place. And we're going about that entirely the wrong way. You're right that we're wasting a lot of money on enforcement; that's because we're focusing far too much on the end of the distribution chain when we should be going after the beginning.

    Keep the drugs from hitting the streets in the first place, or even entering the country, when possible, and there will be a lot less problems with addictions. I never said drug dealers were the problem; the problem is the drug makers.

    I'm a bit confused by your saying that you can age-limit cigarettes. Are you honestly saying that drugs should be legalized so we can effectively make them illegal?!?

    And no one has ever died from a THC overdose. This is not the same as what you're saying, though. Marijuana smoke still contains approximately the same number of harmful chemicals--including carcinogenic ones--as tobacco smoke, and as it's typically smoked by being held deep in the lungs for an extended period, you end up absorbing more of it.

    You're probably right about the "laced with something" bit, though. Afterall, it's not like anyone would go mixing weird, harmful, or poisonous chemicals into a legal drug intended for smoking, right?

     

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  23.  
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    Mason Wheeler, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 7:37pm

    Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    See my post above. The problem with Prohibition wasn't the concept itself, but how they went about it. The implementation was obviously doomed to fail, but that doesn't mean it wouldn't have been effective if done right.

    And I'm sorry if this doesn't fit your theories, but in the real world what's laughable is asserting that you can take care of it on the demand side by making it possible for people who desire quitting to get the help they need. Just look at how much good that's done with alcohol, where anyone can join a rehab or 12-step program at any time. But the relapse rates are scary high. By the time it gets to the point that someone needs treatment, the system has already failed.

    And it's no different with other drugs, even the ones that are currently legal. I used to work in a rehab program. There is nothing making it difficult for people who desire quitting to get the help they need. I've been on the inside of the system. I've seen just how easy it is for someone who wants to change to get in when they need it. The problem's not there.

    What I also saw was how little good it did, how few people we were actually able to help, no matter how much they wanted to be clean. If you study up a little on the physiological and biochemical affects of addiction, that makes a lot more sense. Addiction causes permanent damage to your brain and your biochemistry, leaving certain set-point regulatory systems weakened and out of balance for the rest of your life.

    By the time the person becomes addicted to something, it's simply too late in a heartbreakingly high percentage of cases. The only acceptable solution is not treatment, but prevention. Keeping people from getting addicted in the first place would be far more helpful than treating them afterwards. And for that, we need to go after the supply as far up the chain as possible instead of wasting resources at the street level.

    As I said originally, we aren't losing the War on Drugs; we never had one to begin with. Would you run a war on actual invaders by letting them freely enter our country and only try to actually shoot an enemy soldier when you saw them on the streets pointing a gun at one of our citizens? Of course not! The first thing a sane leader would do in a real war where we were being invaded is throw every resource he could spare at securing the borders and keeping the enemy out.

    When we've been trying to do *that* for a few years and it's done nothing to reduce drug problems, then you can talk about the war on drugs failing. Until then, it's nothing but nonsensical rhetoric.

     

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    Mason Wheeler, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 7:42pm

    Re:

    Common sense? Don't be silly. Common sense tells us, especially if we look at the last few decades of history, exactly the opposite: legalizing illegal drugs would be a windfall for the people currently making and selling *legal* drugs, because they'd end up being the ones doing all the selling.

    Maybe not right away, but give it a decade or so for them to consolidate and Big Pharma would be the ones selling marijuana, cocaine, heroin, etc to the masses. Anyone who thinks that wouldn't happen is delusional.

     

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  25.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 7:45pm

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Wow, you are deluded on so many fronts.

    There hasn't been a war on drugs now?

    Let's see
    There was a war on Afghanistan, that cost about $37.5 billion dollars per year from 2001 to 2009
    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CREC-2009-11-04/html/CREC-2009-11-04-pt1-PgH12340-2.htm

    The U.S. federal government spent over $15 billion dollars in 2010 on the War on Drugs
    http://www.drugsense.org/cms/wodclock
    In 2012 to date, Federal and State expenditure on this non war is already over $22 billion dollars.

    Back in '89, the US invaded Panama and seized the leader of that country, a CIA stooge as it happens, and brought him back to the US to face trial on drugs charges.

    All over the world, the US interferes, destabilises countries, undermines democracy and destroys lives, all in the name of the war on drugs.
    The more that those actions get ratcheted up, the more valuable producing and distributing "illegal" drugs becomes.
    It is the high risk, that makes the drugs trade so much a high reward deal.
    Some people simply don't have the mental acuity to grasp that, I'd blame misuse of drugs, but so many of them insist that they don't have that excuse.
    So, I'm left with the probability that such people were either just born dumb.

     

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  26.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 7:52pm

    Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    or, I'll leave the other option up to your own imagination, or if you need the help, borrow someone else's.

     

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    Sick of the stoned., Jul 20th, 2012 @ 8:03pm

    Re: Yer kidding right?

    Decriminalizing drugs was a thought for me too,but after dealing with the stoned and the druggies that drive around with drugs being illegal I can't even bear the thought of trying to drive U.S. highways with legalized drugs.


    I do admit however that I would absolutely love to see drugs legalized to the point where they are so cheap that I wake up to the news of thousands of useless morons overdosing and therefore improving the world.

     

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  28.  
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    Emil, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 8:14pm

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    "Sorry, but no. "Decriminalize the drugs" sounds very nice and idealistic, but in the real world it's a horrible idea."


    No. It is sad that you don't know what you're talking about. I hope you will take the time to correct this and actually study the subject.

    Try these:

    http://www.leap.cc/read-discuss/publications/
    Read End Prohibition Now!

    http://www.world-war-d.com/
    Read the book

    http://www.drugpolicy.org/resource/war-drugs-and-hivaids-how-criminalization-drug-use-fuels- global-pandemic
    Read the report

    http://profdavidnutt.wordpress.com/
    Read all the posts

    If you can do that and still think prohibition is a bad thing, then you are irrational. There is simply no room for rational disagreement on this issue. There is only not being informed about the evidence.

    Please take the time to correct your mistake.

     

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  29.  
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    Emil, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 8:15pm

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Overdosing is generally a consequence of prohibition. With legal controlled drugs, that won't happen often. Please take the time to actually study the subject.

     

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    Mason Wheeler, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 8:22pm

    Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Yes, because people *never* drink themselves to death. Oh, wait...

     

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    Mason Wheeler, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 8:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    What does Afghanistan have to do with anything? That's got nothing to do with the war on drugs. (If it did, we'd be burning the poppy fields over there, but we're not doing that.)

    Spending a lot of money doesn't prove anything either, except that we're running a Security Theater On Drugs. That's a more accurate description of what's going on.

    Interesting that you should mention Panama, though. It made me think, and I realized that I can't recall at any point after that happened hearing about the US having problems with drugs coming in from Panama. So apparently when you take it seriously instead of waging a Security Theater on Drugs, you do get effective results afterall.

    And I never said that the high risk doesn't make the drug trade such a high reward deal. What I said is that it is currently an economically rational business to be in. (In other words, you're more likely to make good money than you are to get caught and end up losing everything.) Treating it as a serious problem and actually going after the people at the top, making it so that it is no longer economically rational because you *are* likely to end up dead or otherwise severely inconvenienced, would change that. If you do not understand the concept of economically rational behavior, that does not make it an invalid concept.

     

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  32.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 8:36pm

    Re: Re:

    Wouldn't that solve the problem that Google is trying to solve? Without calling for the killing of "really bad people" by the CEO of a large public U.S. corporation.

    No more Cartels. Safe access to a trusted source. Revenues for the State.

    As long as they did not try to patent anything or limit personal and communal production/use, I think this may be a very good alternative to current policy.

     

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  33.  
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    Mason Wheeler, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 8:39pm

    Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    I know exactly what I'm talking about, and I've read the pro-drug propaganda before. It's wrong because it misses the fundamental point: by the time someone becomes addicted, their life is almost certainly already ruined.

    I've seen it, hundreds of times, back when I used to work in rehab. These people's lives weren't destroyed by illegality or "prohibition"; they were destroyed by addiction. Heck, a lot of them got started by doctors or dentists who didn't know what they were doing prescribing perfectly legal painkillers for people and keeping them on for too long.

    You do not discourage addiction by making addictive substances easier for people to obtain. Period. There is no room for rational disagreement on *that* issue, and that is the most important point that can be made on this subject.

     

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  34.  
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    Mason Wheeler, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 8:42pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    No, because the problem here is not cartels, it's drug addiction and the immense societal harm that it causes. Cartels are the root cause of the problem, but they are not, themselves, the problem, and moving the root of the problem from one group of thuggish "businessmen" to another (do you *really* trust Big Pharma?) would do nothing whatsoever to get rid of the problem.

     

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    aster, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 8:48pm

    The war on drugs has failed, the evidence can be found in your local jail where even here drugs are sold, dealt and consumed. If you cant keep drugs out of a jail, what hope do you have of keeping them out of a whole country.

     

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  36.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 8:57pm

    If all drugs were legalized this problem would quickly disappear. The truth is junkies will get their fix whether it's legal or not. Trust me I know from first hand experience.

    Once you're in the loop it's so hard to get out. I've been clean going on a few years and I was assured it would be better over time. "The people that told me this have never abused drugs." I still feel like shit most of the time with mood swings very very frequently. Multiple times in an hour..

    I was a thousand times more productive when I was abusing drugs. After being busted the lack of drugs has ruined me. Just to make it clear I did not sell drugs I bought them with my own money I earned. I was never out of my mind when I was on them I held down a truck driving job working my ass off. Driving far more hours than my logs would allow.
    "I was an opiate abuser not speed."

    That being said I've only had one ticket in my life and that was when I was 16. It was for no seat belt and even worse it was on the day I got my drivers license. Needless to say I've buckled up ever since lol.

    So what was wrong with my abusing opiates? I held a full time job.. My driving safety record is spotless.. I never stole or scammed to support my habit.. My abuse never hurt any relationships with friends and family..

    I only had one problem and that was bad depression and well opiates took that away for me. Anti-depressants which I did try and they made me try to kill myself.

    So people are going to do what they want it's better to just make the shit legal and tax it.

     

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  37.  
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    Mason Troller, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 8:57pm

    Consider...

    ...supply and demand. Choke off a source of drugs, prices skyrocket, and more people join the lucrative trade. Prohibition is inevitably a losing battle, because the demand will never go away.

    Maybe you do not believe decriminalization or legalization is the the way to go, and that's fine, but you can't just eradicate drugs off the face of the planet. We'll just manufacture more. Or we'll create similar analog drugs. Or we'll have crooked doctors prescribe "painkillers".

     

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  38.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 9:11pm

    Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    This is a good point, by completely banning it you lose complete control, by making it a bit legal you retain control of the market that can be exposed.

     

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  39.  
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    The eejit (profile), Jul 21st, 2012 @ 12:27am

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    It's interestingt o hear you say that. LEgalizing all but one or two non-medicinal drugs would allow revenues to come in through taxation, you could then have an open dialogue about targetting the addictions and then target the one or two drugs that are fully illegal.

     

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  40.  
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    arcan, Jul 21st, 2012 @ 12:40am

    without turning mexico into a non-corrupt police state dedicated to fighting drugs, which is by itself inherently impossible, dropping the cartels would be near impossible.

     

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  41.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 21st, 2012 @ 5:02am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    You are claiming that the rewards are worth the risks because the risks aren't high enough and I am pointing out that it's the ridiculous level of risk that makes it the high violence, corruptive and rewarding "business" that it is and that is after 40 years of the "war on drugs".
    As for Panama, your ignorance does not indicate successful drug policy - http://www.panama-guide.com/article.php/20100319100147267

     

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  42.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 21st, 2012 @ 5:11am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I'm pretty much on the fence when it comes to legalising drugs, but the one thing I've noticed in all your comments is a complete failure to provide anything to even remotely back up your opinions. This is in spite of the fact that many of the commenters you are refuting have provided multiple sources to back their claims.

    Given you clearly can't be bothered to back up your opinions, or worse, believe your opinion is all that counts, I won't bother to read your comments any more as they're worthless.

     

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  43.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 21st, 2012 @ 5:14am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    You are absolutly right! A friend of mine, a really nice person, got addicted to marijuana. Ended up with an horrible disease from sharing the joints with his addicted pals! He now costs the State (and so all of us) a fortune.

     

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  44.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 21st, 2012 @ 5:16am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Recreational use of drugs carries with it it's own set of problems, that much is true.
    Prohibition and the war on drugs does nothing to do away with that set of problems, but does add a great many more problems on top.
    Clear away the problems we're creating ourselves and then it will be easier to address the problems caused by misuse of drugs.
    It'll be easier because the situation will be clearer as well as being easier because we will have a lot more money to deal with the problems when we're not wasting money on "the war on drugs", when we are not pointlessly wasting police time, not pointlessly filling the court schedules and not pointlessly paying to house more and more people in prison.
    It'll also be easier because we won't be actively creating a need for crime from people who commit crimes to be able to pay for the drugs they're addicted to due to the prices that our current policies keep high.
    People in favour of legalising drugs are people who are in favour of dealing with the real issues, people against the legalising of drugs, often with the best of motives, are nonetheless people who are helping to make the problems worse.

     

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  45.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Jul 21st, 2012 @ 6:22am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    First the broken link ...
    http://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2011/07/05/ten-years-after-decriminalization-drug-abuse-down- by-half-in-portugal/

    "comparing incidents of something before and after it was decriminalized is an inherently flawed methodology"

    It would be a flawed methodology if the drug use numbers just dropped right after decriminalization. They didn't. We have ten years of data from after Portugal decriminalized drugs. With steadily decreasing drug use over time.

    "As for your historical examples... wait. There are no examples. You're just making tired old Libertarian ideological points and trying to legitimize them by tacking the word "historically" on there."

    Nice ad hominem attack by the way, almost fell for it ... Well not really.

    You should have explained how sex, communications, or drug use have been controlled in the past. Oh wait, if historically we had found a way we would be using it today.

     

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  46.  
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    Pink floyd, Jul 21st, 2012 @ 7:01am

    but i like smoking a joint

    why would google bother me

     

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  47.  
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    Amazing Sammy, Jul 21st, 2012 @ 8:01am

    Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    I agree with you. But Portugal is an awful example. They were hit hard by the Europian debt problem. Their economy is in such bad shape, that they've lost pretty much their entire under 40 population to Brazil and other countries. And while drug use fell, so did consumption of everything else.

     

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  48.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Jul 21st, 2012 @ 9:42am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Doing a little research Portugal's younger population has been on the decline since the early 1900's as the emigrate and return later in life. A sizable piece of their financial issues come from, the population ratio of old to young, and the entitlement culture.

    By the way it is not a "debt problem" it is a "overspending" problem, which increasing the cost of borrowing money as the risk of default increases.

     

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  49.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Jul 21st, 2012 @ 10:08am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Truth be told after a couple thousand years of trying to ban things like premarital sex, cheating, and getting high. You would think that someone would have come up with a solution by now. Fines are a failure, jail is a failure, stoning to death is a failure, you would think that people would get a clue.

     

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  50.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Jul 21st, 2012 @ 10:13am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    "have been effective if done right."

    So explain to us how to do it right.

     

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  51.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Jul 21st, 2012 @ 10:17am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    What he doesn't realize is a kill drug dealers on sight type arrangement will lead the drug dealers shooting first.

     

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  52.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Jul 21st, 2012 @ 10:47am

    Re: Re: The Answer is Simple

    Lets start with this

    http://reason.com/archives/2012/04/22/4-industries-getting-rich-off-the-drug-w/singlepage

    Add the pharma industry to that list also. They lobbied against the medical marijuana laws in a couple states.

     

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  53.  
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    TDR, Jul 21st, 2012 @ 12:46pm

    I wonder if Google and co. realize that if they go after the cartels directly, it's very likely to lead them right to the Mexican president himself. I wonder what they'll do if they can prove the connection?

     

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  54.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 21st, 2012 @ 12:54pm

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    I drive on US highways all the time.No problem.
    Legalizing Drugs doesn't mean legalizing driving under the influence.
    And just because something is legal doesn't mean people will do it.
    alcohol is legal and yet most people don't drink or drink very little.
    If you're in the US you can get all the drugs you want and yet the majority of DUI arrests that I Know of are alcohol related.

     

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  55.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 21st, 2012 @ 5:47pm

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Think harder, guy. If police resources weren't directed at drug enforcement, they could be redirected at other priorities, like running down drunk\stoned drivers.

    And while it a reckless and foolish thing to do, I'd much rather encounter a stoned driver than a drunk. The MJ user is less impaired.

     

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  56.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 21st, 2012 @ 5:52pm

    Homework for the intellectually curious.

    http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/

    This has a list of almost every major study of the effects of drug use on humans, back to the 1890s. Not a single one recommends criminalizing the use of marijuana. It's interesting reading.

     

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  57.  
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    Daniel (profile), Jul 21st, 2012 @ 8:14pm

    Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    I agree. Plus it's ALWAYS going to depend on the person. Some people drink and get crazy mad. Others just chill. Some can actually drive drunk, others can barely drive sober.

    The US tried restricting alcohol a long time ago, and how did that turn out? More or less the same. There were underground "cartels" distributing it. People can get there hands on it either way, and if they're wanting to do it they will legal or not. The same way people abuse pills like Xanax, Vicodin (sp?), Adderall, etc..

    Actually, some "drugs" are probably safer than what is already legal. Marijuana in my opinion is less dangerous than alcohol. It also reduces violence. As for the more hardcore drugs, let em do it. Don't waste police resources arresting someone that hasn't done anything (yet), if they want to kill themselves then more power to them. Merely having the substance on you should not be enough.

     

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  58.  
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    Daniel (profile), Jul 21st, 2012 @ 8:23pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    Marijuana is no where close to as harmful for you as cigarettes. It's natural. There was a study that says THC actually has a protective effect. While I will tend to agree with you on cocain, meth, heroin, etc., marijuana is no worse for you than the advil, asprin, or whatever other pills people take.

    The problem with marijuana is that you can't stop the distribution of it. Anyone can grow it. Indoors, outdoors, whatever. It's extremely simple to do, but the more attention you pay to it the better it will be.

     

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  59.  
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    Brendan (profile), Jul 21st, 2012 @ 9:07pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    If you could wave a magic wand and have the drugs go away, sure. But sadly that's not possible. Outright bans just don't work. End of story. What vdoes work is education and treatment. Coincidentally, these approaches are also much cheaper than (ineffective) enforcement, and have less collateral damage.

     

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  60.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 22nd, 2012 @ 10:36am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    How you gonna ban something that can be produced locally?

    article.wn.com/view/2012/07/12/New_Federal_Ban_on_Synthetic_Drugs_Already_Obsolete/

    O n the bright side a lot of kids in the poor places will start learning chemistry so they can make their own drugs.

    Most drugs can be derived from plants they are not that hard to produce, it will be problematic to try and control gardens though.

    How will we train enforcement to recognize illegal plants to plant?

    Having the apparatus for a microbrewing that can be used to produce almost any drug will be made illegal too?

    Drugs are already legal, because the law can't keep up with technology in that space either.

     

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  61.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 22nd, 2012 @ 11:25am

    Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    That's because alcohol is the most insidious drug out there.

     

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  62.  
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    CosmoLogic, Jul 22nd, 2012 @ 2:57pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Yer kidding right?

    "And sending "every single citizen through rehab programs" isn't desired. What's desired is keeping them from needing the program in the first place."

    This seems like an admirable idea, unless you're a human being with feelings and decide to acknowledge all classes of society. You might approach this from the viewpoint that these peoples' lives would be better without the use of drugs - more often than not, people take the drugs because their lives are so bleak in the first place. If you remove the current illegal drugs from circulation, people who don't like to experience the world as it currently is (those who were born into a state of disadvantage, those who do the jobs you don't want to) will be just as motivated to either create their own drugs, or take existing legal ones (alcohol, pharmaceuticals)which are just as dangerous, if not more so.

    The only reason there's a supply of drugs, is because there is a demand. Cutting off the supply will only create an impetus for a new supply. We need to focus on the human element, the reasons why people desire the drugs in the first place. Look at the socio-economic factors contributing to which people take what drugs and a lot is revealed.

    Psychopathic big-stick-brandishing is a temporary solution that only exacerbates the problem.

     

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  63.  
    identicon
    hegemon13, Jul 23rd, 2012 @ 9:36am

    Re:

    "Its stunning how our finest minds and political leaders can't grasp the simple fact that until the demand for illicit dope is quashed, all these attempts at stopping the source will be nothing more than band-aids."

    More like band-aids laced with staph, which make the problem far worse instead of better.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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