Hillary Clinton Reminds a Hurting Latin America That She Is Opposed to Drug Legalization – Hit & Run : Reason.comNovember 30, 2012
At a forum hosted by Foreign Policy magazine, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton reminded the leaders of Latin America, whose countries have been savaged by drug-war violence, that the Obama administration, and Clinton in particular, are opposed to legalizing drugs as a means of making those countries less reminiscent of failed states:
“I respect those in the region who believe strongly that [U.S. legalization] would end the problem,” Clinton said Thursday at a Washington D.C. forum hosted by Foreign Policy magazine. “I am not convinced of that, speaking personally.”
Some Central American leaders have urged the United States to consider other approaches to domestic drug usage — citing ruthless drug cartels that murder thousands of their citizens. Several Central American countries are considering limited legalization of drugs within their borders.
“I think when you’ve got ruthless vicious people who have made money one way and it’s somehow blocked, they’ll figure out another way,” she said. “They’ll do kidnapping they’ll do extortion.”
Speaking about the two states that recently legalized marijuana, Clinton repeated the Obama administration position that they haven’t formulated a response yet.
“This is an ongoing debate,” she said. “We are formulating our own response to the votes of two of our states as you know — what that means for the federal system, the federal laws and law enforcement.”
“I think you can, with a comprehensive strategy succeed in certainly pushing back the tide of violence and corruption that drug trafficking brings,” she said.
Clinton’s statement about ballot initiatives in Colorado and Washington represents the largest number of words a named official of this administration has uttered regarding the single biggest change in drug policy this century. Good on Clinton for acknowleding that it happened.
It’s also fascinating to me how Clinton has shifted on this topic. Here’s what she said during a Mexico City trip in 2009:
“Our insatiable demand for illegal drugs fuels the drug trade. Our inability to prevent weapons from being illegally smuggled across the border to arm these criminals causes the deaths of police officers, soldiers and civilians.”
Maerker: In Mexico, there are those who propose not keeping going with this battle and legalize drug trafficking and consumption. What is your opinion?
Clinton: I don’t think that will work. I mean, I hear the same debate. I hear it in my country. It is not likely to work. There is just too much money in it, and I don’t think that—you can legalize small amounts for possession, but those who are making so much money selling, they have to be stopped.
And November 2012: “I am not convinced of that, speaking personally.”
Since when do personal convictions matter in deciding policies that directly affect billions of people?
back in the day it was the lady warriors who campaigned against the evils of alcohol. Today we have soccer Moms and pantsuit brigades who think of vice in the same manner.
(Daily News) Taxpayers may feel kind of blue when they discover their dollars went to fund a study to determine rats like to bop to the music of Miles Davis while hopped up on cocaine.
The study, which was performed at Albany Medical College, drew jeers from the animal rights group In Defense of Animals and landed it on its top ten list of Real Ridiculous Research.
The research found that sober rats don’t really like music that much. After the silence, the rats liked Beethoven’s “Fur Elise” more than Miles Davis’s iconic jazz tune “Four.”
But when the rats were given doses of cocaine, their tasted shifted and they gravitated toward the jazz.
… Other studies that made the group’s list included the effect of lemon scent on monkey erections, contagious yawning in chimpanzees and the role of single mothers in the prairie vole community.
MPs on the home affairs select committee said the drug was devastating Colombian rainforests because trees are knocked down to grow coca plants.
Group chairman Keith Vaz said: “We were horrified to learn for every few lines of cocaine snorted in a London club, four square metres of rainforest is destroyed.”
Un Office on Drugs and Crime chief Antonio Maria Costa added: “Europeans know they shouldn’t buy blood diamonds or clothes made by slaves in sweatshops.
“Yet with cocaine the opposite occurs. Worse still, models who wouldn’t dare to wear a tiger fur coat show no qualms about flaunting their cocaine use.”
The MPs also warned that more people in Britain were dying from the drug – cocaine caused 235 sudden deaths in 2008. The committee said that it led to heart disease, the erosion of brain function and could be “extremely toxic” when mixed with alcohol.
Members called for police to get tougher on users with more hand-held drug tracing machines in public.
And they said the operation against drugs bosses was “woefully inadequate” with only about 12% of coke coming to the UK being confiscated. Mr Vaz added that the perception of the white powder as safe was a “myth”.