Home | Articles by Topic | Events | Advertisers | Back Issues | Links | Contact Us | Ad Info

Fall 1999
Issue 11

Soul Food
by Terry D.Samuel

Leaving Home: Nestle, Nature's, Stan Any, and "Rootless Corporations"
by Ness Mountain

The War on Drugs: Unhealthy For All Living Things: A History of "The WOD"
by Tom Cahill

Dreams of Kindness, Love & Grace
by Carolyn Berry

Fin-De-Siecle, Like You Wouldn't Believe
by William Benz

Confronting Goliath: Exploring the Link Between Projection and Mass Oppression
by Maria Todisco

A Call For A Cease Fire In The Ancient Forest Wars
by Jeremy Hall

Riffs On Bruce Cockburn's "Trouble With Normal"
by John Rude

Starry Eyed
by Spyrit

(War on Drugs. . . .)

An Investment Opportunity!
America’s prison/industrial complex has grown so dramatically that America now has the highest prison population of any nation in the world.

And Good News for investors! Penitentiaries are being privatized! The latest “emerging market” exploited for profit by savvy corporations is the building and servicing of the new prisons required to keep up with demand for cells created by the supply of new prisoners.

We all know that corporations invest in “dependable” long-term profit ventures. And with the spector of millions of The WOD’s victims pencilled out as profits in the columns of corporate ledger sheets, the “smart money” rides with prison futures. Imagine the strength of your stock portfolio! Wall Street trades in the “futures” of the ruined lives of millions of America’s citizens, with the flow of prisoners guaranteed by The WOD!

But are we to invest in America’s future by such a betrayal of our citizens? No profit margin can justify the human cannon fodder, supplied by our nation generation after generation, to feed The WOD. This is a war directed against the civil population of our country during peacetime. It is obscene.

Protecting The Public What?
To keep it all rolling, we have a burgeoning police state protecting the public health. Pre-dawn raids by ninja-suited, heavily-armed assault squads have already terrorized, maimed and even killed many innocent citizens. (Oooppps, sorry, wrong address.) Millions of dollars have been paid to informers and bounty hunters. Anti-drug hysteria has bred a culture of “snitching” that, in many cases, rewards the guiltiest and punishes the less guilty. Outright extortion is being practiced by both prosecuting and defense attorneys. Drug offenders are receiving longer sentences than those convicted for violent crimes like murder and rape. The Constitution has been all but suspended for drug offenses. Now it’s guilty until proven innocent for drug crimes. Forfeiture of property is used by local police departments as fund-raisers to balance their budgets, while the federal government currently holds $1 billion in seized assets from drug related forfeitures. The hysteria of McCarthyism in the Fifties pales against the heart of darkness created by The WOD.

A Republican Governor Speaks Out
“We are spending incredible amounts of our resources on incarceration, law enforcement and courts. As an extension of everything I’ve done in office, I made a cost-benefit analysis, and this one really stinks .... I would like to see a discussion on this, A to Z. The reality of what might evolve … is that we could learn how to legalize or decriminalize. Politically, I can’t ascertain if there has been a positive or negative reaction. But publicly, I’ve found that people overwhelmingly want to talk about it.” — Gary Johnson, Republican governor of New Mexico.

An unlikely voice in the anti-prohibition movement, Governor Johnson admits to using marijuana and cocaine in college. He has come out in favor of the federal government decriminalizing, and perhaps even legalizing, drugs.

A Judge Rules and the Swiss Reply
“We couldn’t design a system worse than the one we’ve got,” — James P. Gray, Superior Court Judge, Orange County, California

Judge Gray looked upon himself as a conservative Republican until he deserted The WOD a few years ago. Judge Gray’s alternative? Sell controlled doses of drugs with sterile needles and with it supply information about the danger of drug abuse and where help is available. He would maintain the price low enough so a black market wouldn’t be worthwhile, and ban all advertising and sale to minors. Then he would put money saved from drug law enforcement into treating the possible, but not certain, increase in drug casualties. As of this writing, Judge Gray is still on the bench in Santa Ana, California, despite his “treason.”

In response, Clinton’s zealot drug czar Barry McCaffrey recently went to Capitol Hill to call proposals for decriminalization of drugs “sheer buffoonery from an ivory tower.” Obviously, General McCaffrey prefers the “prison tower,” as he shamelessly bids for job security, like so many other administrators in the vast bureaucracies of The WOD and the Prison/Industrial Complex.

Lest the reader think Judge Gray’s remedy is too “out there” for community standards of western civilization, consider that Switzerland’s marijuana prohibition will soon be a thing of the past as that country follows a course very similar to what Gray proposes. Swiss officials have promised to decriminalize marijuana use and possession. A Swiss government study shows 27 percent of 15 to 35 year olds in the country use cannabis, a statistic not dissimilar to our own. “The consumption of cannabis can’t be avoided through prohibition,” the Swiss Department of the Interior said in its proposal. “We aim to adapt legislation to reality in the area of drug consumption.” The proposal stated cannabis, “does relatively little damage to health,” and under certain circumstances “can have a therapeutic effect.” The Swiss government has also suggested criminal penalties be eliminated for the use of harder drugs such as cocaine as well. In June, voters approved legislation to legally provide heroin to addicts if they have a prescription. Drug use will remain illegal for children under 18 years of age.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

Top | eMail Alternatives | Home