Posts tagged cocaine
On July 1st, 2001, Portugal decriminalized every imaginable drug, from marijuana, to cocaine, to heroin. Some thought Lisbon would become a drug tourist haven, others predicted usage rates among youths to surge.
Eleven years later, it turns out they were both wrong.
via BusinessInsider.com Over a decade has passed since Portugal changed its philosophy from labeling drug users as criminals to labeling them as people affected by a disease. This time lapse has allowed statistics to develop and in time, has made Portugal an example to follow.
First, some clarification.
Portugal’s move to decriminalize does not mean people can carry around, use, and sell drugs free from police interference. That would be legalization. Rather, all drugs are “decriminalized,” meaning drug possession, distribution, and use is still illegal. While distribution and trafficking is still a criminal offense, possession and use is moved out of criminal courts and into a special court where each offender’s unique situation is judged by legal experts, psychologists, and social workers. Treatment and further action is decided in these courts, where addicts and drug use is treated as a public health service rather than referring it to the justice system (like the U.S.), reports Fox News.
The resulting effect: a drastic reduction in addicts, with Portuguese officials and reports highlighting that this number, at 100,000 before the new policy was enacted, has been halved in the following ten years. Portugal’s drug usage rates are now among the lowest of EU member states, according to the same report.
One more outcome: a lot less sick people. Drug related diseases including STDs and overdoses have been reduced even more than usage rates, which experts believe is the result of the government offering treatment with no threat of legal ramifications to addicts.
While this policy is by no means news, the statistics and figures, which take years to develop and subsequently depict the effects of the change, seem to be worth noting. In a country like America, which may take the philosophy of criminalization a bit far (more than half of America’s federal inmates are in prison on drug convictions), other alternatives must, and to a small degree, are being discussed.
For policymakers or people simply interested in this topic, cases like Portugal are a great place to start.
If I had a clone I would be roaring like a GTO’s V-8 on jet fuel on this site while taking care of business in my real job. In the absence of such a dangerous innovation, I am forced to split my time and do what I have to do and keep a foot in two worlds at once.
Although I haven’t put up any new articles in almost a week (GASP!!) I’ve been busy lining up some incredible guests for you gals and guys. How about Federal Reserve busting liberty superstar G. Edward Griffin, arguably the most credible conspiracy theorist on the planet FBI Special Agent Ted Gunderson, former IRS Agent and current anti-income tax crusader Joe Bannister (all of whom have committed to connect for an interview, just waiting on a mutually free time) and a special surprise guest who is so far out in left field that you simply have to hear his story first hand to believe he’s not a character in a Dan Brown novel.
Thanks for sticking around, I feel like a parent who spent their first weekend away from their baby; only I’ve been knitting sweaters non-stop ready to dress the little bugger for the cold winter ahead.
And yes, we may be facing a long and nasty stretch of political and economic cold weather. Will we make it? No, sadly WE will not; some people will not adapt and they will end up in very difficult times. Others will change and they will experience great prosperity, joy and passion for life.
Will the dollar collapse and gold and silver take off? I don’t know. Are those currencies likely manipulated to a significant degree by mega banks and hedge funds? Absolutely. Therefore it’s tough to tell what’s happening in reality and what is just the result of a financial gurus gaming the system.
What I do know, is that the following clip gives a glimpse into the scary world of government-sponsored drug trafficking and opens some strange and alarming doors into a parallel reality filled with powerful and relentlessly corrupt individuals with a moral compass set to due south.
If you really want to go on a bender, start digging into the town of Mena, Arkansas during Bill Clinton’s Governorship and the allegations of cocaine trafficking, I warn you though; you might not come back from this one the same person.
“Freeway” Ricky Ross and FBI Special Agent Ted Gunderson are among many interesting characters including Dr. Paul who are now accusing The C.I.A. and other government entities of running drugs to raise money for clandestine operations and/or to potentially undermine society.
Strap your boots on friends, it’s gonna get dirty.