Monday, September 27, 2010

Political Violence

I'd like to begin this post by stating that I REJECT VIOLENCE in all its forms.

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The 60's are over. Rioting in the street is just soooooo passe.

If political violence comes to pass, think Pakistan and the bombings of police stations. Think Timothy McVeigh. Think Andrew Stack (the moron that crashed a plane into the IRS building in Austin, TX).  Think Mexico's drug lords, mafioso, jihadists....

Gerald Celente is fond of saying that "when people lose everything, they lose it".  No, should political violence come to pass here in the U.S. it won't be anything so easily contained as inner city rioting.

The unintended consequences of our vitriolic political discourse have not been given their proper airing.  The smug elitism of certain groups can, and very well might, lead to their demise.

Consider Mexico.  At this time there truly IS NO BORDER with this nearly failed state. (Of course, this is where the non-thinking true believers start to see me as some kind of Xenophobe...)  The kidnapping and political murder taking place in northern Mexico could quite easily make its way DEEP into the U.S. borders states.  Think about that..... think there might be some unintended consequences to whatever policy the U.S. Government pursues?  Could our most populous state, California, sink into the muck and mire of anarchy?  It really wouldn't take much. California cannot fund its law enforcement budget at this time.

Don't worry about Newark.  The Southwest is a well armed tinder box just waiting to happen, and the Southwest is hardly our only liability.  The continued assault on individual freedoms and social control could easily result in certain groups engaging in push back.

This is to be avoided at ALL costs.  Just look at the policy response to 9/11.  The Patriot Act, et al, and the loss of freedoms too numerous to mention.... not to mention a MILLION PERSON government agency, Homeland Security, established to spy and intrude on every one of us (you can be sure that someone from that illustrious agency will read this blog and file his "report").

Is this what a free country looks like?  And the Left wants to INCREASE the size and scope of government by increasing its funding?  Our universities are FAILING us miserably.  (I have a simple solution to help Americans to think ahead: A National Chess Challenge at every American High School and college under-grad program with big scholarship money to spur interest. How can anybody claim to have a well rounded education yet cannot demonstrate an ability to think of the permutations of consequences to actions?)

America is in the midst of a Cultural Crisis of epic proportions. Freedoms are not protected, responsibility is not required, Life is not sacred, violence is worshiped in video games, movies, T.V., etc... but we seem to be incredibly concerned with the sex lives of our political leaders...

Call me crazy... but I think the Right to "Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" extends to the unborn, IRS workers in Austin, Federal workers in Oklahoma City, Afghani goat herders, atheists, Fundamentalists, even pro-abortion vegetarians (although I find it difficult to suppress the urge to reach out and b*#ch slap the living sh#! out of them... just kidding! Sort of...).  But its not enough to believe something. One must also consider the unintended consequences and permutations of events from actions taken.

47 comments:

tweell said...

The kidnappings have already moved north into Arizona, part of the reason SR1070 became law. What the feds don't get is that Arizona had to do something, before the people here concluded that laws aren't functioning and went vigilante. The ranchers that were holding illegals for Homeland Security aren't doing it any more since the human rights lawsuits have cost some their homes. The phrase 'shoot, shovel, shut up' has become a border byword instead. Arizona is indeed a tinder box, and the adults trying to hold things together are being hit from above and below.

Anonymous said...

Prohibition never works. It only creates violence and criminality. Completely decriminalize of all drugs, tax it modestly and let the junkies do their thing.
Fewer people will die.
Those who forget their history are condemned to repeat it.
Just say NOW.

Greg T. Jeffers said...

Tweel:

Most reading here do not know what you do for a living and the value of your perspective.

Feel free to inform folks as much as you fell comfortable with, given any desire for anonymity - understandable given your position.

Greg T. Jeffers said...

ANd its not just the Southwest, though that is a highly likely spark.

I can't comment on the Law, as I have not read it nor understand all of the positions... but I am disinclined to tell folks living in an area of the world how best to deal with their part of the world provided they are WITHIN the context of ETHICAL law and order.

Glenn said...

You say you reject violence in all its forms, but what about violence in response to the initiation of violence (i.e. self-defense)?

Secondly, the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness only extends to those who respect those very same rights. We're all born with these rights, but must continue to *earn* them by our behavior.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 8:26 AM

Have you had a junkie in your family? You would condone such a scourge with legality?

When heroine and cocaine were legal, addiction was rampant, and society was coming undone from the social damage. That is why they were made illegal.

Sin taxes disgust me. Blood money. Why should the state profit from the suffering of its citizens? It makes the state just another pusher.

Those who forget their history are condemned to repeat it.

Regards,

Coal Guy

Anonymous said...

Phoenix is second only to Mexico City in the kidnap for ransom business. It's one of Mexico's exports. The open border is open both ways too. The unguarded border has encouraged the arms and drug trade and contributed greatly to the demise of Mexico. The border issue has damaged both the US and Mexico greatly. It is an unintended consequence of our government's lawlessness in its attempt to prop up the housing and credit bubbles at any cost.

The decision to open the Mexican border was not made in a vacuum. TPTB expected to gain from it. That is why the policy has bi-partisan support in Washington despite the fact that 85% of the population oppose it.

Regards,

Coal Guy

bureaucrat said...

You're crazy. :)

You are buying to the TV mode, where if people watch "Law And Order" enough times, they'll think everyone they see is a criminal!

1) The cops and jails will be funded first, before the fire dept., streets, garbage and human services. There will always be cops. Get used to it.

2) Please name me even ONE freedom you've been denied lately. The Tea Party screams about all these freedoms that that nig .... darky Obama is denying them. Yet when asked, they can't come up with even one freedom that has been taken away. People just like to complain.

3) Patriot act? Now tell me what bad things has the Patriot Act done to poor little you? All they have done is leaglize looking at billions and trillions of pieces of data that confirm the obvious: Americans are amazingly BORING people. :)

Anonymous said...

Coal guy, given Alcohol's massive negative effects on society--given your logic to prevent the "scourge" why is it still legal/and taxed heavily then? The statistics on crime, child rapes, abuse, domestic abuse and violence is replete with alcohol abuse.

Most people aren't going to go for Heroin in this society, and most likely couldn't afford Cocaine. The US has a massive amount of data on those who chronically abuse alcohol--many of them are in prison, or doing harm to society at this very moment. I think its hard to make a libertarian argument for legalization of drugs and cherry pick the drugs--perhaps some degree of inhibition.

Most people aren't aware that lots of children are on ampehetamines, many people are legal opiate addicts and the like.

I've seen people with hardcore alcoholism, no difference than being a junky--except alcohol is legal and socially accepted, Heroin and Cocaine is not. Do adults lack the ability to be drug free without the nanny state dictating to them what is a legal drug that people can get rich off of, and what is an illegal drug that people can get rich off of? If you believe that human beings will just run out and do cocaine/herion etc. then they are going to need a massive nanny state to manage them--freedom is not a utopia either.

-Meiyo

Anonymous said...

We're stuck with alcohol. It is a scourge. I'll say that even though I'll have a drink once in a while. It is part of our culture. Still, it causes great damage.

Should we really add to the list? Can one scourge be used to justify another? And, no, I don't think that drug enforcement is doing much good. But, I can't see society condone it either. I object to the moral slide. Legalizing it sends the message that the US government says its OK. Tax it. Never!

A junkie rips off his parents, buys a hit, and the government gets a cut.

A junkie gets a job, has his hand in the cash drawer, buys a hit and the government gets a cut.

A junkie sells her body, spreads Hep C, buys a hit and the government gets a cut.

A junkie knocks the local 7-11 over, buys a hit and the government gets a cut.

There is no such thing as a functional junkie or crack head. And don't think that the users are "victims of addiction." The victims are everyone they come in contact with. It is butt ugly, especially if it is one of yours doing the damage. One of the things that finally encouraged my daughter to clean up was the 3 months she spent in jail.

Regards,

Coal Guy

Anonymous said...

And, by the way, I feel the same way about alcohol, gambling and tobacco taxes.

Regards,

Coal Guy

Anonymous said...

The CIA operates a drug trafficking scheme. Before the "war on drugs" was launched by our fine government, heroin use in the country was at 500,000. A few years after the "war on drugs" was introduced, this number sky rocketed to 5,000,000. The whole government intervention was simply to eliminate competition throughout south America and protect CIA "assets" (those willing to give our government a cut).

I have a relative serving in Afghanistan and his unit's objective is to protect mass fields of poppy crops. The drug trade is too lucrative for our government and banks to pass up. But as long as everyone continues to pay their taxes and be productive members of society, you are feeding the beast that is spreading pain and suffering throughout this world.
- Expatriate

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry to hear about what must have been a horrible experience for you and your family. I hope your daughter is well now.

I used to work with D&A folks, many who were polysubstance abusers. Without legal ramifications, many would not stop, although most got in trouble not for illegal substance use, but rather theft. I remember one family whose daughter auctioned off many of their belongings while they were on vacation--that family finally pressed charges--even though their daughter had stolen from them and other family members for many years to pay for her drug use.

I think this illustrates the point that many people have a 'horse' in the race for many issues--and that is part of the reason we have so many laws, its not merely Big Government trying to control things--but rather many aspects of the nanny state have good intentions. The slippery slope of good intentions though has led us partially to the predicament we are in now--its not merely the corporate/gov't mafia pumping out there sometimes ill-gotten gains.

Violence is endemic not only in this culture, but the world, we live in an external locus of control world--not an internal locus of control world. The US was an interesting experiment for freedom at one point, not so much anymore--despite the rantings of our local minister of propoganda.

-Meiyo

bureaucrat said...

(Jeez, talk about going off on a tangent. :))

Anonymous said...

Meiyo,

I'd almost be willing to support legal drugs if society would recognize addiction for what it is, and not support or enable the user. The common wisdom that the addict is a “victim” is entirely incorrect. The victims of addiction are the family, friends, acquaintances and employers of the addict. The addict is the perpetrator. The addict steals from, cons and defrauds everyone he comes in contact with to support his addiction. Addicts build a base of support from the people around them and proceed to use and abuse them as long and as hard as they will tolerate it. They'll even clean up temporarily if the situation demands it. They know exactly what they are doing, and it is what they want to do.

Early in my daughter's addict years, my wife and I made a pact with her. We would pick her up and take her to treatment any time she asked. That was all we could do. She could not live with us. Once in a while she would show up at the door, and we'd give here a meal and a hug. There is absolutely nothing that you can do for an addict that won't be subverted into another hit. The sooner that friends and family figure that out, the sooner things get better. Some called us callous for not "helping" her. It isn't that. You can't help. And, it just becomes too painful to watch. You grieve for them as if they had died, and accept that the phone call could come any day.

Eventually, she eroded her support base to zero, and had no one to help her and no one to blame. Within days, she began to clean up.

Someone told me once that avoiding responsibility is the essence of addiction. It is absolutely true. Today's nanny state, and “victim” mentality contribute to addiction by denying the existence of personal responsibility. I expect the rate of addiction to recede on its own as personal responsibility becomes necessary for survival.

Only about 20% of heroine addicts survive. Most die in their twenties, some bounce into and out of prison and treatment facilities for years, but few make it to 50. She's been clean for over 5 years now. We have been blessed.

Just felt the need to vent, and hope someone may be helped by this.

Regards,

Coal Guy

PioneerPreppy said...

The border has been open with Mexico for at least thirty years. I spent my last year before joining the army myself with my family stationed at Ft. Bliss and living off post. You could literally sit outside and view the mass illegal border crossings from our yard.

Crime was rampant even back then in El Paso. One vivid memory I had was crossing the river on foot and being behind a group of very attractive Mexican girls. Not a one of the six had so much as ID and yet all they did was flirt a bit with the border guard and allowed to enter. Even then the US border patrol was easier to get passed than the Mexican ones were while leaving. I can't imagine what it's like now.

I still have to agree with Stephen from the last post. The violence will start on the left and will be because of lack of money for social programs in some form blamed on the right and it's politicians.

Publius said...

A large number of peace activists in my city were raided by the FBI on Friday.
They were not arrested. I doubt they will be, because they are not terrorists. They simply protest the government's continuing war-crimes, and talk to other peace groups around the world.

This is a denial of freedom, Bureaucrat. You are the one in crazy denial.

FBI raids against peaceful activists, who are well known to be peaceful and routinely apply for permits for their protests (!), is in effect a denial of freedom.
It is intimidation, pure and simple. It's real. It's here. Now.

"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble.
It's what you know for sure that just ain't so."
Mark Twain

PioneerPreppy said...

Oh ya let's see...

A couple of big ones...

The right to peaceably assemble is constantly violated.

The right to hold property is also violated repeatedly even to yours truly.

The right to own firearms is totally infringed on Nationally and much more so within urban areas.

The right to equality especially if your white and male.

Even the right to travel is infringed on.

tweell said...

I work for Arizona Corrections. We have prisons in Douglas and Yuma, and I hear quite a bit from the guys working there. The southern Arizona border is a powderkeg, and the people living there have come to view the feds as enemies. So far they're willing to listen to state and county law, but that can change real quick.
Bureaucrat, the state and local entities cut law enforcement first, not last. It's a brinksmanship exercise, where the voters are threatened with higher crime unless they pay more taxes. It's the same way with education - the teachers are the first to be cut. Bureaucrats are the protected ones, the lordly administrators and papershufflers whose positions are sacrosanct. Just take a look at Oakland, CA., where it didn't work. Were the office workers laid off? No, but a chunk of the police were, and the police chief announced that many crimes were going to be ignored.

Greg T. Jeffers said...

Publius:

That IS disturbing...

Perhaps we should call the FBI the Federal Bureau of Intimidation.

Greg T. Jeffers said...

Pub:

This is why the first reaction by thinking people MUST be the complete and utter rejection of violence. This strategy might take longer, but the results will be much improved, and last longer, over the outcomes imposed by Timothy McVeigh's of this world.

I do not know what "oath" Federal Law Enforcement personnel take - perhaps one of you knows. Not that it matters... governments know how to manipulate their law enforcement and military units to do things these people would normally never even consider - think about it... with the raid you mention... how many FBI agents were willing to resign in protest before engaging in unconstitutional actions? What about ATF personnel during the Waco standoff? No, once these personnel begin to identify themselves as "FBI", "Special Forces', "SWAT", whatever, the cease to see themselves as regular folks see themselves.

The perfect example was the use of all black murder squads employed by the Apartheid Government of South Africa. Who would have thought these people would murder and torture their fellow country men? Well, the folks running this enforcement agencies in every country use the exact same playbook... because people are people.

Greg T. Jeffers said...

One of the primary reasons I desire an end to the prohibition on drugs is that people are regularly shot to death by government agents over drugs.

Somehow I think being shot is worse for you, and having citizens shot is worse for society, than drug use. This is a case where the cure is worse than the disease... yet I recognize that the disease IS horrid.

PioneerPreppy said...

Greg

I know you are using it simply as an example but as I have pointed out before the black "tribe" which gained so much support from the international community in SA had many enemies and scores to settle. Not ALL of their targets have been or were limited to whites BTW. Simply put these black "squads" were no more countrymen of the Zulu tribe than we white Americans were/are related to Nazi Germans.

Also we have no idea what the warrant said or what briefing info these FBI agents were given. Of course we have no idea if they even had a warrant. Was property seized? Was anyone hurt? Which rights were violated?

Thankfully I was never put in a position to question an order as being non-Constitutional. I was required to think about it and honestly if your just a grunt you may not really know until well after the time for action is over unless it is very cut and dry.

John said...

It is delusional to dream about non-violence. The world is a violent place, and your enemies have no compunction about gutting and filleting you and your loved ones. Be prepared!

K said...

It is not delusional to dream about non-violence. It is delusional to think it exists when it does not.

Dan said...

Coal guy,

Two wrongs don’t make a right. However, the evils of drugs are outweighed by the evils of prohibition. Most of these things substances have negligible value save prohibition which acts s a subsidy. They aren’t fighting over drugs so much as the ridiculous profits to be made on the black market, and the market forces are such that make the war unwinnable.

When we shut down a distribution network for heroin the price spikes, and the addicts don’t care. For the more addictive drugs the addicts will do whatever it takes to come up with the loot, they will not say that’s too high I’m not buying it. So what you have is a high price with fairly stable demand drawing the devils entrepreneurs into the vacuum until reestablished supply channels bring the price back down. Rinse and repeat with stiffer penalties and more violence with each iteration.

As an example of how f#$%ed up it has become just consider the sad spectacle of Kenny. Kenny is a meth-cook, a sociopath and one hell of interesting character. Kenny was facing 100+ years when someone decided to turn states evidence on him. As you could imagine Kenny was not happy about it, so he decided to kill the other guy. He kicked in the other guy’s front door while he was watching TV and unloaded a 1911 in the guy’s chest. Miraculously the guy lived, however the assault wasn’t a total loss for Kenny; the guy was intimidated and refused to testify. The states case collapsed and Kenny got 10 years for shooting with intent. Attempted murder less severe than cooking meth; only on bizarro world.

We are also paroling burglars, car thieves, and other assorted petty hoodlums to make room to lock up dopers whom have to serve 85% before they are eligible for parole. Throw in the loss of freedoms in the name of the drug war, and all the other bads and it is a strait up looser.

Dan said...

Ironically the heavy handed policy response just feeds the problem; and provoking a heavy handed response to turn the populace against the government is the goal in an insurgency. The mayhem in Iraq and Afghanistan is not random violence; there is a method to the madness and as illogical as it sounds, it usually works. Putting down an insurgency is damn hard.

Closer to home, after the assault weapon ban of 1994, militia enrollment surged up to round 2 million. Were it not for Tim McVeigh, and especially the daycare center on the second floor of the Murrah building, they would probably be a potent political force today. When they booked McVeigh in to jail, before they knew who he was and that he was the guy they were looking for, the arresting officer noted that he was visibly upset about the daycare. He didn’t do his homework and he knew the collateral damage killed his cause.

Dan said...

On a lighter note, I have always considered the lands where they don’t serve sweet tea to be less than civilized, and the talk of sectionalism reminds me of a commercial that was aired around here for years.

Donal Lang said...

Underlying all of these comments are some basic facts:
Borders only slow people down, they don't stop them.
Prohibition; alcohol, drugs, guns, only slows down consumption, it doesn't stop it.

Its like osmotic pressure; the greater the difference between both sides of a situation, the greater the intention to move from one side to the other. For Mexicans its not just money, its also safety, education opportunities for their children, even healthcare and a safety net if they can get citizenship. But the USA NEEDS these people as workers too, so this isn't a one-way pressure - the US economy would collapse without immigrant and illegal workers.

Similarly with prohibition, it can work where there isn't much pressure to break the rules. But if you feel your family/life is threatened you'll own a gun even if its illegal. If your daily life is crap and without hope because your school failed you, and you have no job or home or aspirations, then obliteration in drugs may be a pressure hard to resist.

Which comes to the point; making new rules, enforcing new laws, sending in the army, will all fail. Its the social issues which need solving to take the pressure off the system. Enlightened policies may be to build good trade schools in Mexico attached to productive factories, or improve life chances and aspirations for poor people in US cities.

Trouble is; police, army, border guards, security companies, and many politicians (especially right wing) LIKE to be able to say that the world/country/neighborhood is becoming more dangerous and only by spending more money on my ***** solution will the situation be saved.

Seems we're back with the Tea Party again!

Dextred1 said...

Policing powers our reserved for states in the constitution. Therefore the states have a right to "police" drug usage and I agree with coal guy here. Only major busts are handled by the feds. The street pusher to the users is a local police function. You have to realize that police are not busting in to homes to catch users. Almost all arrests are the result of the persons getting pulled over in a car for something else.
My cousin lived with me and my family when his mom moved to California with her new husband and his dad did not talk to him much since my aunt had divorced him. He was 16 at the time. After stealing literally tens of thousands of dollars over a 3 yr period we kicked him out. In this time frame he moved from drinking, to vicodin, to coke, to black tar heroin and crack. Whoever says crack and coke are the same F**K Off. You have never had to deal with the effects of the usage. My aunt moved back home to take “care” of her now 30 yr old crack head son. But her trying to help has made it worse. When he gets in trouble she gets a lawyer. Her enabling him has made it worse. If you have never dealt with this situation then I don't really think you can understand.
This is not really a libertarian issue for me. These people’s choice effects how other people live (stealing and lots of it). The arbitor of two people in conflict is the police. The only other option is violence from the victims. Unless you think ideally standing by while they steal from you is an option.
I don’t really think that legalization will lower the price that much. Here in Michigan we now have the med marijuana law and I know literally 10 people with it (that law is a joke, just provides pot heads with a taxable card, 250 a yr I think). It provides them with the ability to grow like 12 plants at a time. No price drop from what I hear, unless you grow your own, which is actually fairly difficult. IF the state runs the distribution of all drugs do you really think they will sell it cheaply? They still have to buy the drugs from somewhere, most likely the same cartels that distribute it now. The cartels are the most efficient producers and distributors, hence the reason that they capture the market.

Greg T. Jeffers said...

Pioneer:

Of course you are correct. I suppose that is how it goes.

Then again, the "I was just following orders" defense didn't work out so hot at Nuremberg...

I recognize that we NEED law enforcement... and I am thankful to live in a society that enjoys Law and Order... the alternative is truly not so hot... for myself, I am disinclined to point guns at Americans (or pull triggers) at the behest of somebody else.

Anonymous said...

Donal,

Your attitude is exactly the one that encourages addiction. Criminals are NOT the victims. Talk to any addict. They will provide you with a litany of bad circumstance, bad events and reasons for their sorry state of affairs. An addict will run on until your ears bleed. Absolutely never will an addict take any responsibility for his actions. Your attitude just feeds this. You provide addicts with excuses.

Your attitude is also that of an enabler. You assume that the addict doesn't really want to be an addict, and if given the right "help" and relief from the bad circumstances that caused his addiction, he will reform. That is a crock of $#!T so large it would cause the earth to wobble on its axis. Addicts are addicts because they WANT to be. They do not want to accept any responsibility for their actions, and the addiction feeds that. Rejection of personal responsibility feeds the addiction. The bleeding heart, you poor baby, attitude only makes things worse. Addicts feed on people that feel sorry for them. They chew them up and spit them out. They cause enormous damage to every one around them. There is nothing that you can do for an addict until he realizes that his mess is his own. Until society realizes this, I cannot imagine making it easier to be one. I hope you never have the personal experience, nor anyone else.

To your point, addiction is somewhat circumstantial. People are more likely to become addicts when they have crushing responsibility beyond their ability to cope, or if they are given no responsibility at all. Many soldiers in Viet Nam became addicts under circumstances over which they had no control, and cleaned up once they came home. But, despite their circumstances, first and foremost they are responsible for themselves.

Dex,

You have my deepest sympathy. It is hard to watch. It is no easier to convince an enabler to stop enabling than to convince an addict to stop using. They'll be in my prayers.

Regards,

Coal Guy

Donal Lang said...

Coal Guy

If its shit, why is it that most criminals and most addicts are poorly educated and come from disfunctional families and societies?

It is those people with failure in their family background and childhood circumstances that end up failing in school, and those without a reasonable education and a sense of achievement that end up as out-of-work no-hopers, and it is mostly no-hopers that end up into drugs, alcohol, violence and crime.

The biggest indicator of success, in every country, developed or less developed, is still family wealth. Its not being an apologist to recognise the truth of the problem, and there is NO evidence that the path the U.S. is on; suppressing either immigration or drugs, is have any success at all. How many years, how many millions of dollars, how many wasted lives will it take before you realise that what you are doing right now DOESN'T FUCKING WORK!

Anonymous said...

Coal Guy,
Addiction is a mental and physical sickness, not a crime.
Not everyone is going to get sick.
You wouldn't imprison people with lung cancer because they smoke cigarettes.
Most drugs of abuse are incredibly cheap to produce.
The state artifically introduces money into the equation by making drugs illegal.
I worked for two years in a pretrial intervention program for drug and alcohol abusers introducing them into the pleasures of hard physical labor and regular hours.
I knew a bookstore owner who was on the UK's legal addict program in the early '70's. He was not a healthy specimen, but he had a business, supported himself and didn't have to steal to get his drugs.
I am sorry about your daughter but an inexpensive supply of drugs would have caused it to be just her problem, not societies.
Some nanny state things work, but the US lost the drug war the day it began.
Just say NOW.

Anonymous said...

Why is it that some do well and some don't? To some extent it is environment to a greater extent it is personal choice. We all are victims of our environment. We get to chose what we'll do with it. People with all opportunities make messes of their lives. People rise out of the muck to great accomplishment. However, I was speaking about active addicts. There is no "help" for an addict. They have to come to the understanding that their mess is their problem, not someone else's. That's what the 12 step folks call hitting bottom. It is the day of reckoning when the choice to care for oneself is made. Coddling an addict only forestalls the day. It is a hard conclusion to reach, especially if you are a parent. What is true in the individual case is also true in the aggregate, and coddling by the social welfare system is just as destructive to addicts.

We have acquaintances who have lost their home and retirement savings, and finally went bankrupt trying to "save" their addicted son. He's now serving 10 years for armed robbery. His parents are relieved that he is now relatively safe. You simply cannot understand the damage if you have not lived with it. You cannot convince a parent who is determined to "save" his child that the best path is simply to say "NO!" It is heartbreaking.

Should we open the borders because some will sneak past the guards? Should we condone drug use because some will use in any case? Perhaps we should rescind the laws against bank robbery because some will rob in spite of the law. How about rape? Saying that bad should be condoned just because bad happens in spite of everything we try is gross rationalization.

Of course bad conditions breed more trouble, but if 3% get in trouble, what of the other 97% who don't? Telling the 3% that they are victims only reinforces their rationale for bad behavior, and may lead some of the 97% astray. This is exactly what the liberal establishment does. A far better message is that you are surviving under harsh conditions, but if you study and work hard, your life can be better. Then, provide a decent education. Lip service is done to the latter, but the former message is far more prevalent. Education is the key, and it is each individual's obligation to make the most of his life.

I don't believe that addiction is a crime, but addicts commit every imaginable crime in pursuit of their addiction. I don't believe that addiction is a disease either. It is a choice. Some will chose to quit, some will not. Every time my daughter ran out of options, she'd head straight for one of those 5-day detox places that the state runs. She'd stay clean and lucid exactly long enough to arrange to do more drugs. Her choice. Eventually she decided to quit. Another choice. 65% of heroine addicts that quit, do so of their own volition, without assistance. Choice.

Regards,

Coal Guy

PioneerPreppy said...

Greg:

Then again, the "I was just following orders" defense didn't work out so hot at Nuremberg...

No it didn't. As far as I know it never worked for any of them then or any since.

Of course so much of that depends on the winner and which side you were on.

Really the distinction I was trying to make was between LEO and military. An average police officer acting on his own has no real excuse for violating a suspects rights. Your average PFC ordered by his platoon leader to disarm someone and being told that the target is a combatant may not have the time nor the information needed to know if it is an illegal order or not until after the order is carried out.

Anonymous said...

Dear Coal Guy,
The reason drug addicts commit crimes is that they need large amounts of money to buy artifically high priced drugs.
If the market were free and not constrained by government, the price would collapse, the addicts could get all the drugs they want at low prices and they wouldn't have to commit crime to get money.
Jeffers could grow opium poppies and pot on his farm and maybe make as much as he would for tomatoes.
It would also put the gangsters out of the drug business and cut off a huge revenue source for them.
Read the history of Prohibition. Prohibition established organized crime in this country because it gave the gangsters so much money. It took nearly 50 years after Prohibition to wipe it out.
Gringo drug laws created the Columbian and Mexican cartels.
Just say NOW

Anonymous said...

Dear NOW,

Drug addicts have incapacitated themselves with their drug use. They cannot hold a job, and therefore cannot feed, clothe and house themselves. They would manipulate, cheat, steal, and destroy everything around them, as they do now, even if drugs were free. But, as with all market activities, if it costs less you get more of it. We do not need more of it.

Regards,

Coal Guy

Greg T. Jeffers said...

Pioneer:

I got ya. Your experience these matters exceeds mine by lightyears. I was really referring to LEO not military personnel.

I agree with Dex that drug law is a state issue, and accordingly, the fix is coming via a lack of funding (IMHO).

Dex and Coal guy:

Unfortunately, I have vast experience dealing with an addict. One of my childhood best friends did more damage than you can possibly believe, spent half of hsi adult life in prison, and has only recently come to his senses (pushing 50). It was an ugly thing to watch.

There are countries elsewhere handling things differently, and I think better.

Dan said...

Coal Guy,

You re when you assert that if the price comes down usage will increase you are assuming that the cost of drugs is the price. The principal cost of drugs is addiction and it will remain sky high. We can’t save the world or right all wrongs, however we can engineer a market failure and put the clandestine labs that are looking for new addictive substances, and the cartels that fund them, out of business. In other words we can begin to contain the damage.

I personally favor some type of licensing scheme where current addicts can get drugs and transferring drugs to those not already licensed remains a felony. Of course when someone managed to acquire an diction they would then be licensed, to make sure the black market stayed dead. That would all but stop the spread of addiction and kill the illicit distribution networks. Then, within a generation the problem would be all but over. However, outright legalization would be better than what we have now.

PioneerPreppy said...

Blessedly I have no and I mean ZERO experience with drug addictions outside of alcohol and weed and even then both of those have been outside family observations. I have seen too many friends and near friends ruined by both of those so I cannot even imagine anything more addictive. I have complete empathy and sympathy for anyone who has suffered through dealing with it.

Greg T. Jeffers said...

Pioneer:

I think alcohol is the freaking DEVIL.

Anonymous said...

All,

Thanks for the comments, sorry I dragged Greg's post into the woods.

Regards,

Coal Guy

Anonymous said...

Concerning violence, seems that Pakistan is really getting upset this time, with the US seemingly constant drone bombings in their country. Not sure how much an issue them cutting supply line is in reality, but I guess some other countries still want some sense of sovereignty. Despite whatever "good deeds" have been done killing some terrorists, I couldn't even imagine us putting up with some other country sending drones into our airspace to kill mexican drug lords etc--meanwhile killing other 'innocents' er I mean collateral damage.

-Meiyo

Anonymous said...

Pakistan! Now what would the Taliban do with a few hundred nukes? It's no Iraq or Afghanistan. How does one put the genie back in that bottle?

Regards,

Coal Guy

PioneerPreppy said...

Ya know Greg I will admit that from what I have read drugs like coke and crack are worse than alcohol for an individual but overall I think alcohol has destroyed more men than anything. Even war IMO.

I don't have any facts to back this up just me theorizing.

Anonymous said...

PP,

I'd bet that you are right. Alcoholics can function for years, maintain a job, etc. while emotionally abusing their families to death. They still end up in the same place as other addicts. It's a slower poison, but still effective.

Regards,

Coal Guy