A ceasefire in the war on drugs

posted at 5:01 pm on January 6, 2013 by Jazz Shaw

It’s a conversation which seem to keep coming up year after year. Has the “war on drugs” been a complete bust? (If you’ll pardon the pun.) After more than forty years it seems like an increasing chorus of voices are calling for a new approach to a problem where we just don’t seem to be making much progress. But now the Wall Street Journal is getting in on the act, asking, “Have we lost the war on drugs?”

President Richard Nixon declared a “war on drugs” in 1971. The expectation then was that drug trafficking in the United States could be greatly reduced in a short time through federal policing—and yet the war on drugs continues to this day. The cost has been large in terms of lives, money and the well-being of many Americans, especially the poor and less educated. By most accounts, the gains from the war have been modest at best…

The decriminalization of both drug use and the drug market won’t be attained easily, as there is powerful opposition to each of them. The disastrous effects of the American war on drugs are becoming more apparent, however, not only in the U.S. but beyond its borders. Former Mexican President Felipe Calderon has suggested “market solutions” as one alternative to the problem. Perhaps the combined efforts of leaders in different countries can succeed in making a big enough push toward finally ending this long, enormously destructive policy experiment.

It’s a rather clinical, emotionless analysis if you read the entire thing, but perhaps that’s the best approach if we’re to have a serious discussion about it. The entire concept of drug legalization – or, at a minimum, decriminalization – seems to be a study in mixed emotions for conservatives. And that may explain, at least in part, why there doesn’t seem to be much movement in either direction on this. On the one hand, the normal libertarian, “keep the government out of my business” tendencies of many Republicans seem like they should find the concept of decriminalization appealing. Further, the idea of the individual accepting personal responsibility for the consequences of their choices rather than having the nanny state dictate their actions certainly sounds like a natural fit for conservatives. And finally, the cost to federal and state budgets for fighting this war – well described in the WSJ editorial – looks like an appetizing potential target for cost cutters.

But there are obviously factors which make this a difficult proposal to sell on the starboard side of the aisle, and perhaps the first – and biggest – is purely ideological. For too many conservatives, it seems as if one of the chief arguments against decriminalization is that it’s something that liberals want, and thus it must, by definition, be a bad idea. Further, there’s that whole “pot smoking hippie” thing. The idea of doing anything to make them happier will drive away Republicans in droves, unfortunately.

And are the arguments I laid out above all that salable among 21st century conservatives? Not all Republicans are small “L” libertarian by nature, particularly those who self identify as social or national defense conservatives. And when it comes to personal responsibility, the counter-argument can quickly be made that those who choose to engage in drug abuse never really face those consequences because societal safety nets not only catch them when they fall, but spread the cost of their rescue out among the rest of us. As to the cost savings, well… that one would be pretty hard to argue with, at least in terms of the raw bills for enforcement and incarceration.

Still, it seems to me that this war has been a losing proposition for some time now and has long since passed the point of being unaffordable. If the regular readers of the Wall Street Journal begin absorbing and considering this message, maybe we can find a way to start climbing out of this hole we’ve dug for ourselves. But in the end, I agree with the basic premise… the war on drugs has been a bust.


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I remember your claims and rationalizations, but thats all they were.
You offered no evidence that your claims were true.
Questions were asked, and you either deflected or ignored. These are qualities of an argument based on emotions and hope.

Mimzey on January 7, 2013 at 1:44 PM

Seriously? You still imagine that the price of a drug will remain high if made legal? You are freaking incredible in your stupidity.

astonerii on January 7, 2013 at 1:47 PM

Introduce a “surrender bill” that ties the drug war to the war on Islam. If it passes, we give up to both at the same time.

If we won’t fight a critical danger to society on the homefront, there is absolutely no point in our sad little forays into desert nations. So put it down on the record that we acted like cowards on all fronts and let the consequences hit home.

MelonCollie on January 7, 2013 at 2:47 PM

Introduce a “surrender bill” that ties the drug war to the war on Islam. If it passes, we give up to both at the same time.

If we won’t fight a critical danger to society on the homefront, there is absolutely no point in our sad little forays into desert nations. So put it down on the record that we acted like cowards on all fronts and let the consequences hit home.

MelonCollie on January 7, 2013 at 2:47 PM

Actually we already surrendered to the drug war. The drug lords are winning and have been for two generations. So, I guess you are alright with the United States of America becoming a total locked down police state in order to minimize this? How far should we take the war on drugs?

astonerii on January 7, 2013 at 2:51 PM

Look, if you legalized pot, wouldn’t that remove the main “gateway” risk for exposure to crack, meth & smack? You would no longer go to a drug dealer who may feel he is “in for a penny, in for a pound”, you would go to the gas station or liquor store, or maybe your own greenhouse.

I would say few people are on the fence with the “is meth bad” question, but the obsession of the gov’t on local pot is about as nuts as hippies pretending that all they want is “medical” marijuana for their aching back.

Spartacus on January 7, 2013 at 2:59 PM

Why would bring the price of destructive drugs down decrease their negative impact?
If making something illegal increases its desirability why doesn’t that apply to guns?
Why not just dispense heroin and a place to lie down at about 68 degrees to everyone over 60 ?

Observation on January 7, 2013 at 3:57 PM

I cannot understand why ANYBODY and EVERYBODY caught either using or selling drugs are not arrested, charged, and convicted of accessory to murder. Anybody that uses or distributes drugs enable the drug cartels, not only in Mexico but in all of central and south America, and extending all over the world. Therefore, distributing and purchasing their products should be an accessory crime to murder, extortion and all the other crimes that drug cartels engage in.

boogieboy on January 7, 2013 at 11:55 AM

If you really don’t understand that, you should probably consider getting yourself checked out for mental retardation.

To get you on your way, however: There were around 1 million arrests last year for possession of drugs. To charge and try each of those people under murder statutes would overwhelm the court and prison systems, by a conservative estimate, within a week.

Normally I don’t ask people who are mentally retarded to think these things through, but I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt…

JohnGalt23 on January 7, 2013 at 4:02 PM

Why would bring the price of destructive drugs down decrease their negative impact?
If making something illegal increases its desirability why doesn’t that apply to guns?
Why not just dispense heroin and a place to lie down at about 68 degrees to everyone over 60 ?

Observation on January 7, 2013 at 3:57 PM

It might not. But it will lay the burden of carrying that negative impact more onto the shoulders of those who it belongs.

Right now you are automatically considered a criminal even if you do nothing destructive at all. But hey, the same reasoning they ban drugs would never be used to confiscate your guns, right? It is very much like how the left wants to treat guns. Owning a gun they want to be the crime, but the real crimes are when you use the gun destructively… Or would they?

astonerii on January 7, 2013 at 4:04 PM

Introduce a “surrender bill” that ties the drug war to the war on Islam. If it passes, we give up to both at the same time.

MelonCollie on January 7, 2013 at 2:47 PM

Then the WoD is already over. Because, once again since you clearly don’t read the newspapers enough, this nation has never been in a war against Islam.

From GWB’s lips

JohnGalt23 on January 7, 2013 at 4:06 PM

How do you spell surrender? “A n e w A p p r o a c h”

Don L on January 7, 2013 at 4:07 PM

I cannot understand why ANYBODY and EVERYBODY caught either using or selling drugs are not arrested, charged, and convicted of accessory to murder. Anybody that uses or distributes drugs enable the drug cartels, not only in Mexico but in all of central and south America, and extending all over the world. Therefore, distributing and purchasing their products should be an accessory crime to murder, extortion and all the other crimes that drug cartels engage in.

boogieboy on January 7, 2013 at 11:55 AM

If you really don’t understand that, you should probably consider getting yourself checked out for mental retardation.

To get you on your way, however: There were around 1 million arrests last year for possession of drugs. To charge and try each of those people under murder statutes would overwhelm the court and prison systems, by a conservative estimate, within a week.

Normally I don’t ask people who are mentally retarded to think these things through, but I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt…

JohnGalt23 on January 7, 2013 at 4:02 PM

I would have went the other route and doubled down on his stupid…

Why do we not arrest every oil using person in the country and try them for terrorism that oil producing nations support and fund.

Why do we not arrest ever Chinese product purchasing person with for support of slave labor?

astonerii on January 7, 2013 at 4:08 PM

It is very much like how the left wants to treat guns. Owning a gun they want to be the crime, but the real crimes are when you use the gun destructively… Or would they?

astonerii on January 7, 2013 at 4:04 PM

Yes, we all find that “unencumbered drug use” amendment to be as solid as the 2cd?

Don L on January 7, 2013 at 4:10 PM

To JohnGalt.

Reference me not understanding economics. Pleeasseee. You people kill me. This is the exact type of argument I try to avoid when dealing with drugs.

Why? Because it seems as part of the process of dope smoking one of the areas of the brain that gets burned out first is the area that handling critical thinking. I’ve dealt with long time dopers and know this to be true. Dumb is a way of life and if any of you actually know a doper you know I’m telling you the truth.

But, for the sake of defending myself I’ll try to go slow and argue the points John is making.

1. “Market forces will set prices in a free market.” I agree. Show me a free market in this world. (theme from Jeopardy plays….) Yep, thought so. There isn’t any. Actually I’m wrong. The closest thing to a “free market” controlled only by supply/demand/cost curves is the drug trade. A little sideways I’ll admit, but it is pretty pure. Why? Outside interdiction by police (which is less than 3% it is estimated and already priced into the product) what pressures do the producers and traffickers feel? Legal department needed? Lawsuit? Nah.. Insurances premiums going up? Nope. Costs of production? Sure by a rifle butt to the skull of the cocaine grower helps keep labor issues in check.

Competition. Absolutely. That is an issue. But ask yourself if this already unregulated product, being arguably supplied by at least four major sources (Cubans,Mexicans and Colombians mostly)seems to hold a pretty constant price across the land, how is that happening? Why is weed in L.A. close to the price of weed in Florida? (where it is grown in great quantities and qualities- trust me, I pulled my share from grows)

Why is a ten dollar or twenty dollar rock, well, ten or twenty dollars across the land? Could it be that the market has already set the price?

Let’s talk weed. We can grow weed anywhere. Home grown WILL drive prices down…some. I agree. If we all grow and smoke our own the weed will be cheap. The supplies to grow the weed right- lights, hydroponics, growth mediums might spike. But we’ll see.

But here’s the catch. Who really thinks government will let you grow your weed unmolested? You can’t build a shed on your own property in this country without permits and fees. How about dope fields? Right now you can’t hardly grow corn without dealing with the feds,right, so why do you think they’ll leave you alone to grow weed? Taxes, fees, regulations, EPA, FDA (it is a drug after all dude, just saying…), all will come to you with their hands out.

Not to mention the IRS. Oh boy will you suffer there! Selling weed is a cash business. Do you think you’ll be able to run around in your new car with your new Nikes and not draw the attention of the tax man? Dope arrests WILL be replaced with tax evasion arrests. You watch.

Pricing/Market issues- Tobacco is not hard to grow. Neither is corn or most crops. Yet cigarettes are expensive- so what happened to the free market there? How much does a bottle of whiskey really cost to produce? I know how much I have to pay to get some, so what happened? For that matter, the jeans you wear, the shoes, toothpaste etc. All seem to have found a market price in a regulated market, even with competition.

Point is there is no free market.

Supply- Weed is easy to make on our own. Cocaine is not. Cocaine usually comes from a limited area where the plant grows well. That area is controlled by cartels. They aren’t going to give it up to other producers in the spirit of fair play. So now your supply is controlled and now your product price will be controlled. Opium is a little easier. But the best is grown in controlled areas run by very ruthless people. They will be ruthless the day after WE legalize it here. Which brings up a small side point. Just because we legalize doesn’t mean Mexico will legalize trafficking or Colombia or any of the “gans” in the Middle East where drugs are produced. It is their choice not ours.

How about Meth and other chemistry drugs. Again, a supply problem maybe. Also a production issue. Are we asking for the right to cook it in our homes? Not a good idea. It is a tad unstable process that can kill people and blow stuff up, like your neighbors. So is Merkel going to get involved and do it legit? Fine.

However, that reduces producers, which as we know in the drug business control prices. Not a free market. Do you really think major companies, suffering all the risks they will suffer (as we talked about earlier) will sell a product to a consumer cheaply? Especially a product as addictive as meth or cocaine or heroin? Why? What is their incentive? The government will allow higher prices because guess what SALES TAX! Do you think the blood pressure pills I take (greatly reduced since I retired and don’t have to deal with dopers every day) really cost fifty dollars for thirty? No way. Yet every major producer and supplier and retail outlet seems to offer those pills at or near the same price.

Because I’ll pay it.

If you have ever seen a tweaker or a crackhead in withdrawals you will realize they will pay it to.

As to court costs. I argue that one type of cost will be replaced with another. As one poster noted, when unleashed, humans tend to veer off course. Addiction will increase. It will not happen in a vacuum. Crashes, accidents, lost lives, lost futures, broken families will occur. Economic damage will be HUGE. Crime will go up. Dopers and crackheads and tweakers cannot hold jobs, so they’ll steal or rob. People, innocent people, will get hurt.

This is not the first time our society has dealt with the trouble of drug abuse. As one poster pointed out, laws were passed by society because of the damages it felt from it. That’s just a fact.

I agree warring on drug users and traffickers is a waste if we are going to do it wrong. We don’t have the gonads to do it right. That said, I do believe that even if we don’t always succeed at something it doesn’t mean we’re wrong or they win. Sometimes the struggle is the goal. We fight against, and have laws against murder, child abuse, robbery, burglary, theft. And frankly there are a bucket load of murderers, child abusers, robbers and thieves out there. So are we wrong to try to control them? Would the proper thing to do is give up?

As for the false but popular argument that drug use is a victimless crime I will respectively disagree. I wish it were. I wish I had the power to take all the dopers who want the freedom to smoke, shoot, snort any drug they want and put them someplace all together. Let them build their own society and not drain mine. Let them set their own laws, not violate mine. Let them attack each other, lie, cheat, steal, run over, blow up, infect to their heart’s content. But only with each other.

And in a year or two, maybe three, I’d go back to that place and see who was left. Who managed to live free, high all the time, and didn’t starve to death, die of dehydration or freeze in the cold, to stoned to realize they were in trouble.

You see, outside the occasional doper- which I have no problem letting have their drugs- as long as they can control it, most hard core drug users are a drag on society. We spend millions upon millions cleaning up their messes. What drives me nuts is as they pull us down collectively, almost without exception, they will claim it is their right to be this way because they are only hurting themselves.

See, critical thinking is always the first thing to go.

Sorry for the long post. I needed to say my peace. Good luck on that freedom to ruin your lives thing you are working on. I stand over here, in the corner, so I can get a good view of you crashing your life.

Without having to clean it up anymore.

http://www.truthandcommonsense.com

archer52 on January 7, 2013 at 4:24 PM

Yes, we all find that “unencumbered drug use” amendment to be as solid as the 2cd?

Don L on January 7, 2013 at 4:10 PM

Are you honestly telling us that the existence of the 2nd amendment is the only good reason to oppose gun control laws?

If the 2nd amendment were abolished today, I would still oppose gun control legislation on the same grounds I support drug legalization: freedom.

Moreover, there is a strong 10th amendment argument to be made that federal drug laws cannot trump a state’s decision to legalize drugs– see Justice Thomas’ dissent in Gonzalez v Raiche.

bocat on January 7, 2013 at 4:26 PM

Seriously? You still imagine that the price of a drug will remain high if made legal? You are freaking incredible in your stupidity.

astonerii on January 7, 2013 at 1:47 PM

Always with the fantasy.
The point I made regarding drug prices was in the context of the present and foreseeable future, as evidenced by the cost of “legal” medical pot.
The price did not go down for “medical” pot.
The price would not go down if taxed or regulated by the government. Rationalizations for the high cost would be up if needed.

Did the price become cheap in the Netherlands? Why not?

Mimzey on January 7, 2013 at 5:26 PM

archer52 on January 7, 2013 at 4:24 PM

Good post.

You’re wasting your time though.
Just sayin’.

Mimzey on January 7, 2013 at 5:33 PM

If a constitutional amendment was required to outlaw alcohol in the US, why was it not required to outlaw drugs?

Why hasn’t anyone noticed that drug prohibition has had the same effect as prohibition in the ’20′s?

Why do I now have to show my drivers license to buy effective cold medication when the effect on illegal meth sales is absolutely ZERO!?

Why are our tax dollars being spent to equip medium and small cities and towns with SWAT teams?

How much more difficult is it to rehab a drug abuser whom wants to stay clean when his/her job search is hobbled by a felony conviction for drug possession?

Why are we conservatives OK with civil forfeiture laws? Since when is carrying cash a crime? What happened to due process? I thought giving up our rights for temporary safety was the surrender mentality of liberals.

How many of our rights are we willing to give up to fight a war we have absolutely no chance of winning?

Russ in OR on January 7, 2013 at 5:43 PM

archer52 on January 7, 2013 at 4:24 PM

Reference me not understanding economics. Pleeasseee. You people kill me. This is the exact type of argument I try to avoid when dealing with drugs.

As well you should, since you clearly are an economic illiterate.

Why? Because it seems as part of the process of dope smoking one of the areas of the brain that gets burned out first is the area that handling critical thinking

Yeah. I smoke cannabis regularly, and I can guarantee you I know more about the economics of black markets than you. And the faculty at a couple of universities would attest to that.

As does your demonstrated ignorance of economics, BTW…

I’ve dealt with long time dopers and know this to be true.

And I smoke cannabis with people who buy and sell lowly civil servants. Like you.

DumbDishonesty is a way of life and if any of you actually know a doper narcotics officer you know I’m telling you the truth.

FTFY.

1. “Market forces will set prices in a free market.” I agree. Show me a free market in this world. (theme from Jeopardy plays….) Yep, thought so. There isn’t any.

Uh huh. Deny the existence of free markets. Got it.

Very Marxist of you.

Outside interdiction by police (which is less than 3% it is estimated and already priced into the product) what pressures do the producers and traffickers feel? Legal department needed? Lawsuit? Nah.. Insurances premiums going up? Nope. Costs of production? Sure by a rifle butt to the skull of the cocaine grower helps keep labor issues in check.

Once again, economic ignorance shows through, especially among incompetent feeders at the public trough.

Hint: The costs of the inputs aren’t responsible for the relatively high cost of black market drugs. Lack of competition is.

Which, if you didn’t get your economics education from the back of a cereal donut box, I wouldn’t need to explain.

Pricing/Market issues- Tobacco is not hard to grow. Neither is corn or most crops. Yet cigarettes are expensive- so what happened to the free market there?

Guess you must have missed the news stories about excise taxes placed on cigarettes. Not that I’m surprised.

Absent excise taxes on cigarettes, their price in real terms is the same as it was in the 1970′s.

But I forgot. I should avoid terms like excise taxes and real terms with economic ignoramuses. It just confuses you, doesn’t it?

Point is there is no free market.

Once again, how wonderfully Marxist of you. Must have taught you that at the Academy. Just another civil servant training program, apparently…

Supply- Weed is easy to make on our own. Cocaine is not.

Real easy for Merck pharma to make it. If it weren’t illegal.

How about Meth and other chemistry drugs. Again, a supply problem maybe. Also a production issue. Are we asking for the right to cook it in our homes? Not a good idea

And yet you argue for a system where the only place meth can be made is in homes, as opposed to factories. Real bright.

However, that reduces producers, which as we know in the drug business control prices. Not a free market.

How in the world do you come up with entry into the market by legitimate producers, reduces producers.

Son, are you retarded, or a narcotics officer?

I’m done with that TL post. Next time it gets the DNR treatment also, because you really don’t know what you are talking about, other than the propaganda that you and your public trough leeches in drug law enforcement are paid to spew…

JohnGalt23 on January 7, 2013 at 5:44 PM

The price did not go down for “medical” pot.

Mimzey on January 7, 2013 at 5:26 PM

You’re wrong. The cost of cannabis has fallen by 50% across the medical cannabis states, dominated by CA and CO.

You like pulling facts out of your arse, don’t you?

JohnGalt23 on January 7, 2013 at 5:47 PM

Yes, we all find that “unencumbered drug use” amendment to be as solid as the 2cd?

Don L on January 7, 2013 at 4:10 PM

The tenth amendment does not exist? Nice to know.

astonerii on January 7, 2013 at 5:52 PM

archer…

Cocaine is relatively easy to produce in a greenhouse. Easier than meth in fact.

astonerii on January 7, 2013 at 5:54 PM

I support drug legalization: freedom.

Moreover, there is a strong 10th amendment argument to be made that federal drug laws cannot trump a state’s decision to legalize drugs– see Justice Thomas’ dissent in Gonzalez v Raiche.

bocat on January 7, 2013 at 4:26 PM

The 10th amendment? Surely you jest!A handful of politically appointed lawyers create political law out of buzzwords and athe constitution itself is little more that crappapper, because they know that neither the political class nor the masses care to stop them. The tenth amendment’s true value is as a fourth grade test question such as: Which amendment has been routinely abused by the courts?
a) the 10th
b) the 10th
c) the 10th
d) the 10th
e) all of the above

Don L on January 7, 2013 at 5:55 PM

You’re wrong. The cost of cannabis has fallen by 50% across the medical cannabis states, dominated by CA and CO.

You like pulling facts out of your arse, don’t you?

JohnGalt23 on January 7, 2013 at 5:47 PM

Well how can this be?? You’ve been railing on about how the fed crackdown in those states is what is keeping the prices equal to street drugs.
Flip flop much?
You guys are silly, imo. Between you Dante and Galt, your juvenile name calling and childish whinging is not helping your status…it’s like a need to be burped and have a nap.

Mimzey on January 7, 2013 at 5:55 PM

You guys are silly, imo. Between you Dante and Galt, your juvenile name calling and childish whinging is not helping your status…it’s like a need to be burped and have a nap.

Mimzey on January 7, 2013 at 5:55 PM

One of the reasons I left libertarianism, besides the ideological rot, was that way the hell too many of the average libertarians acted like spoiled toddlers who fancied themselves factual geniuses.

Conservationism can suffer from the same problem, but as Galt and Dante are amply demonstrating, it’s much worse on the other side of the fence.

MelonCollie on January 7, 2013 at 6:01 PM

If a constitutional amendment was required to outlaw alcohol in the US, why was it not required to outlaw drugs?

Why hasn’t anyone noticed that drug prohibition has had the same effect as prohibition in the ’20′s?

Why do I now have to show my drivers license to buy effective cold medication when the effect on illegal meth sales is absolutely ZERO!?

Why are our tax dollars being spent to equip medium and small cities and towns with SWAT teams?

How much more difficult is it to rehab a drug abuser whom wants to stay clean when his/her job search is hobbled by a felony conviction for drug possession?

Why are we conservatives OK with civil forfeiture laws? Since when is carrying cash a crime? What happened to due process? I thought giving up our rights for temporary safety was the surrender mentality of liberals.

How many of our rights are we willing to give up to fight a war we have absolutely no chance of winning?

Russ in OR on January 7, 2013 at 5:43 PM

Great question.

mazer9 on January 7, 2013 at 6:02 PM

One of the reasons I left libertarianism, besides the ideological rot, was that way the hell too many of the average libertarians acted like spoiled toddlers who fancied themselves factual geniuses.

Conservationism can suffer from the same problem, but as Galt and Dante are amply demonstrating, it’s much worse on the other side of the fence.

MelonCollie on January 7, 2013 at 6:01 PM

It’s because you are anti-liberty, as you constantly prove. I doubt you could even accurately describe it’s basic tenets.

Dante on January 8, 2013 at 9:50 AM

One of the reasons I left libertarianism, besides the ideological rot, was that way the hell too many of the average libertarians acted like spoiled toddlers who fancied themselves factual geniuses.

Conservationism can suffer from the same problem, but as Galt and Dante are amply demonstrating, it’s much worse on the other side of the fence.

MelonCollie on January 7, 2013 at 6:01 PM

It’s because you are anti-liberty, as you constantly prove. I doubt you could even accurately describe it’s basic tenets.

Dante on January 8, 2013 at 9:50 AM

Actually, the reason that libertarianism is so detestable is that libertarians look at purely the liberty angle and always fail on the personal responsibility level. The other aspect for which they are absent is in ensuring that those of good morals have the tools they had in the past to enforce their moral codes in their communities. I am sure you will argue otherwise on a wide scale, but when it gets down to the nitty gritty individual powers that the moral people in the past used to police their communities, you will always fall on the side of defending the immoral.

astonerii on January 8, 2013 at 10:06 AM

Actually, the reason that libertarianism is so detestable is that libertarians look at purely the liberty angle and always fail on the personal responsibility level. The other aspect for which they are absent is in ensuring that those of good morals have the tools they had in the past to enforce their moral codes in their communities. I am sure you will argue otherwise on a wide scale, but when it gets down to the nitty gritty individual powers that the moral people in the past used to police their communities, you will always fall on the side of defending the immoral.

astonerii on January 8, 2013 at 10:06 AM

You aren’t speaking from knowledge; you are speaking from ignorance. I doubt you could even define what libertarianism is in one or two sentences. Libertarianism is a political philosophy. That a person is human and “fails on the personal responsibility level” is not an indictment against the philosophy. It is, of course, disingenuous to state that libertarians always fail on personal responsibility. That is ignorance speaking.

So let’s start fresh; let’s see if the two of us can have a discussion without straw men or personal attacks or any other logical fallacy, and we can start this way:

In one or two sentences, what is libertarianism?

Dante on January 8, 2013 at 2:13 PM

Us libertarians aren’t enemies of personal responsibility. We just want that personal responsibility to exist within the framework of maximized personal freedom.

In other words, you can promote monogamous relationships and two-parent families all you want, but don’t start outlawing premarital sex or ban birth control as a means to that end. Make driving under the influence a serious crime, sure, but don’t ban responsible adults from buying or using those drugs that may put them under the influence.

I’d rather discuss having controlled environments for licentious activities/things that harm no one else, than just flat out criminalizing/banning them, as the nanny-staters always love to do.

TMOverbeck on January 8, 2013 at 3:30 PM

Us libertarians aren’t enemies of personal responsibility. We just want that personal responsibility to exist within the framework of maximized personal freedom.

In other words, you can promote monogamous relationships and two-parent families all you want, but don’t start outlawing premarital sex or ban birth control as a means to that end. Make driving under the influence a serious crime, sure, but don’t ban responsible adults from buying or using those drugs that may put them under the influence.

I’d rather discuss having controlled environments for licentious activities/things that harm no one else, than just flat out criminalizing/banning them, as the nanny-staters always love to do.

TMOverbeck on January 8, 2013 at 3:30 PM

If the moralists can’t have any fun, they want to make sure nobody else does either.

mazer9 on January 8, 2013 at 4:45 PM

If the moralists can’t have any fun, they want to make sure nobody else does either.

mazer9 on January 8, 2013 at 4:45 PM

Psuedo-moralists, you mean.

Dante on January 8, 2013 at 5:01 PM

You aren’t speaking from knowledge; you are speaking from ignorance. I doubt you could even define what libertarianism is in one or two sentences. Libertarianism is a political philosophy. That a person is human and “fails on the personal responsibility level” is not an indictment against the philosophy. It is, of course, disingenuous to state that libertarians always fail on personal responsibility. That is ignorance speaking.

So let’s start fresh; let’s see if the two of us can have a discussion without straw men or personal attacks or any other logical fallacy, and we can start this way:

In one or two sentences, what is libertarianism?

Dante on January 8, 2013 at 2:13 PM

I speak from the experience of dealing with libertarians online.
There is a reason everyone calls it the pot head movement. They are the vast majority of your numbers.

As it stands now, libertarianism is the enabler of the progressive left in the nation. First, the people are not responsible and are by and large huge users of the welfare state. They want the ability to do their perverted and sick activities, they want everyone else silenced on calling them out on their perverted and sick activities, and when their perverted and sick activities leave them screwed they turn into leeches.

First and foremost before I ever give respect to a libertarian is that those powers which civilians in the past had at their disposal to deal with miscreants be made immune from liability. Things like tarring and feathering and running out of town. Calling a man to a gentleman’s duel. Once vulgarity leaves the lips of the vulgar, their right to remain free from harm is temporarily nullified.

You see, that libertarian lifestyle you all dream ever existed was enforced through violence that was presented by those who were moral in order to keep order in their communities. If those methods remain illegal as they are today, then I am all for using the force and violence of the government to prevent other people’s vulgarity from being practiced at all.

It is the retards like Dante who have no understanding on how society was enforced in the past that make libertarians a worthless lot of pot headed wannabe perverts. They recall a time when there were many fewer laws, not understanding why there was no need for those laws.

As Ace of Spades had on their site today… Only an idiot, upon finding a road block on the highway, chose to, without ever contemplating why it was put there, tear it down or drive around it head long into the reason it was there. Libertarians in the whole, not every one of them, but on the whole are those idiots.

astonerii on January 8, 2013 at 6:29 PM

If the moralists can’t have any fun, they want to make sure nobody else does either.

mazer9 on January 8, 2013 at 4:45 PM

I have plenty of fun and I could care less what forms of fun you partake in, as long as if they are immoral, they remain behind closed doors and are not advertised to my minor child.

astonerii on January 8, 2013 at 6:31 PM

If the moralists can’t have any fun, they want to make sure nobody else does either.

mazer9 on January 8, 2013 at 4:45 PM

“Moralist”: the liberaltarian definition for anyone who has more standards than a hippie, and/or would like a society with more law and order than a pub brawl.

MelonCollie on January 8, 2013 at 6:50 PM

I will put one more nail into that libertarian coffin. When it comes to bringing about a libertarian outcome in this nation, you are always voting on the wrong side of the aisle. Instead of voting for conservatives who want to cut the immorality promoting wealth transfers that make it impossible for someone like me to support your legalizing of immoral behaviors you are out there voting for progressives who exacerbate those wealth transfers and promote a more immoral behavior and cut off the immoral from ever facing their consequences for their actions.

If I ain’t subsidizing the results and actors of bad behavior I am much more willing to to ignore it and let it suffer its consequences. Much like I allow my daughter to cause herself pain (note I did not say harm) so that she learns lessons that need to be learned.

But since I am forced to underwrite their bad behavior with my tax dollars and borrowings on my daughter’s and any future children I have earnings, I am not willing to TOLERATE it.

astonerii on January 8, 2013 at 9:10 PM

But since I am forced to underwrite their bad behavior with my tax dollars and borrowings on my daughter’s and any future children I have earnings, I am not willing to TOLERATE it.

astonerii on January 8, 2013 at 9:10 PM

I don’t always agree with your posts but I will stand with you and anyone else on this position to the bitter end.

If Liberaltarians wanted the right to stone themselves to an early grave on some desert island without being bothered, I could care less because I won’t have to pay for their folly. But when they not only want to play the grasshopper while we’re the ants, but pull any semblance of order in drug law and civil order down around our ears, I am compelled to fight in self-defense.

I have a bad feeling many conservatives will realize the last part only after significant pain. Like they find they have no lawful recourse whatsoever to evict the pill-pusher who’s set up shop with his now-legal wares 10 yards past where their kid goes to school.

MelonCollie on January 8, 2013 at 9:57 PM

astonerii on January 8, 2013 at 6:29 PM

Well so much for that. Granted, I didn’t have any confidence that you’d be up for discussion or that you’d try and meet half-way for a civil discussion. No, you just doubled down on your ignorance. That’s all you have to offer.

Here’s to your growing up some day.

Dante on January 8, 2013 at 10:58 PM

“Moralist”: the liberaltarian definition for anyone who has more standards than a hippie, and/or would like a society with more law and order than a pub brawl.

MelonCollie on January 8, 2013 at 6:50 PM

Moralist are just that: people who want to impose their morals on others because they think they know what is best. “Nannies” is another name for them.

mazer9 on January 9, 2013 at 1:43 AM

One more swing through. But not to comment much more than this:

John wants the freedom to smoke dope. He wants a free market to control the costs, which won’t work. No such thing. He wants to be left alone, I actually get that, but it won’t happen. The government, for some reason, has reached the point it CAN’T leave us alone. Read the link below.

http://www.clickorlando.com/news/College-Park-couple-says-front-yard-vegetable-garden-is-under-fire-again/-/1637132/18035884/-/png2kpz/-/index.html

Here is a quick portion, remember what is their “crime” again??

And this is not the first example. Detroit did it to another person up there. Hell, you can’t fly an American flag in some places without violating “code”.—-

ORLANDO, Fla. -

A College Park couple’s vegetable garden is on the chopping block again after the city threatened fines if they don’t uproot it by Thursday, according to the Institute for Justice Florida Chapter.

Jason and Jennifer Helvenston are launching “Plant a Seed, Change the Law,” a protest of Orlando’s law, which they say violates their constitutional right to peacefully use their property to grow their own food.

In November, Local 6 broke the story about the controversial garden after the city told the Helvenstons their 25-by-25-foot front yard vegetable garden was not in compliance with the city’s code.

After hundreds of emails supporting the couple flowed in and initially allowing the Helvenstons to keep their garden, saying it will hold off on violations, the city has since asked the couple to uproot the garden and replace it with a lawn or face fines.

“The greatest freedom you can give someone is the freedom to know they will not go hungry,” said Jason Helvenston. “Our Patriot Garden pays for all of its costs in healthy food and lifestyle while having the lowest possible carbon footprint. It supplies valuable food while being attractive. I really do not understand why there is even a discussion. They will take our house before they take our Patriot Garden.”

According to Ari Bargil, an attorney for the Institute for Justice, the Helvenstons have a scheduled inspection and will be fined starting on Thursday, up to $500 a day.

“We are seriously interested in taking a look at this,” Bargil said, when asked if the firm would be suing the city of Orlando. “We’re focused on helping the Helvenstons get the word out, encouraging the city to reach a sensible compromise here.”

—–

During WWII citizens were encouraged to grow their own food in gardens by the government.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Victory_garden

Ask yourself what happened? What is different.

Government isn’t on our side anymore. It lives to feed itself first, to protect itself first, it will try to survive above all else and will sacrifice you in the process. In that environment John wants to grow, use, distribute drugs freely.

Won’t happen. Can’t. World has changed, sadly forever.

And on our watch. I apologized to my kids just a month ago for failing them. Their future world will not resemble my past world at all.

archer52 on January 9, 2013 at 7:09 AM

John wants the freedom to smoke dope. He wants a free market to control the costs, which won’t work. No such thing.

archer52 on January 9, 2013 at 7:09 AM

Please explain your meaning.

Dante on January 9, 2013 at 10:04 AM

Well so much for that. Granted, I didn’t have any confidence that you’d be up for discussion or that you’d try and meet half-way for a civil discussion. No, you just doubled down on your ignorance. That’s all you have to offer.

Here’s to your growing up some day.

Dante on January 8, 2013 at 10:58 PM

You are the one with the ignorance. You are unwilling to actually live by the rules that existed at the closest to your ideal philosophy, which is that witches were burned, gays were run out of town, peeping toms were likely beaten to an inch of their lives, and otherwise vulgar individuals were called out to the street to be shot fairly and squarely. This is what allowed a limit on laws, such that the diversity of the community was small enough to be tolerated and did not require laws to accomplish. Horse thieves could be strung up without a law enforcement officer present let alone a trial and the likelihood of the person stringing them up being punished was practically zero, and the only exceptions to that were when it was a known miscreant who did the stringing up and his credibility was lacking.

You sure do not know much about the life you promote, do you?

astonerii on January 9, 2013 at 10:33 AM

As Ace of Spades had on their site today… Only an idiot, upon finding a road block on the highway, chose to, without ever contemplating why it was put there, tear it down or drive around it head long into the reason it was there. Libertarians in the whole, not every one of them, but on the whole are those idiots.

astonerii on January 8, 2013 at 6:29 PM

And us responsible libertarians would argue that it would be better off if a checkpoint was placed there instead of a roadblock (in other words, letting responsible consenting adults do a questionable activity instead of flat out banning said activity). Failing that, we’d take a longer way around in secret.

The idiots have already sided with the Democrats.

TMOverbeck on January 9, 2013 at 1:24 PM

TMOverbeck on January 9, 2013 at 1:24 PM

The point is that they would tear down or circumvent something deliberately created with out ever wondering why it was ever put there in the first place.

The reason our nation could prosper with few laws centuries ago is because the vast majority of people were kept moral through the church and self policing where a law did not exist but a social more that had community backing through the threat and actual use of violence against those who broke social mores.

Now days if I beat the shit out of some vulgar punk I will be the one arrested and punished. Just a few decades ago, the police would almost never get involved, unless the vulgar punk won the fight or was politically connected…

You cannot keep the same low level of laws when you strip the community of the power to self police itself.

astonerii on January 9, 2013 at 2:44 PM

Now days if I beat the shit out of some vulgar punk I will be the one arrested and punished. Just a few decades ago, the police would almost never get involved, unless the vulgar punk won the fight or was politically connected…

You cannot keep the same low level of laws when you strip the community of the power to self police itself.

astonerii on January 9, 2013 at 2:44 PM

God you are ignorant. What a little totalitarian you are.

Dante on January 9, 2013 at 9:00 PM

God you are ignorant. What a little totalitarian you are.

Dante on January 9, 2013 at 9:00 PM

You are a far more totalitarian than me. Your solution is the kind of thing that makes people want a tyrant. People will only TOLERATE a certain level of diversity in their communities. This has been the case for all of mankind’s existence.

So, in order to allow this massive level of ultimate allowable diversity that you propose, the only solution is for an all powerful government to use massive levels of threatened and actual violence to force the people to tolerate that level of diversity.

Wrap your head around that, and then come back when you can prove this is not the case.

astonerii on January 10, 2013 at 9:47 AM

You are a far more totalitarian than me. Your solution is the kind of thing that makes people want a tyrant. People will only TOLERATE a certain level of diversity in their communities. This has been the case for all of mankind’s existence.

So, in order to allow this massive level of ultimate allowable diversity that you propose, the only solution is for an all powerful government to use massive levels of threatened and actual violence to force the people to tolerate that level of diversity.

Wrap your head around that, and then come back when you can prove this is not the case.

astonerii on January 10, 2013 at 9:47 AM

More straw man arguments, but that was a great job refuting your totalitarian nature.

Dante on January 10, 2013 at 9:51 AM

More straw man arguments, but that was a great job refuting your totalitarian nature.

Dante on January 10, 2013 at 9:51 AM

Yeah, as always, lots of bluster and sputtering and nothing at all to refute it.

Feel free to show me where I am wrong.

astonerii on January 10, 2013 at 10:21 AM

Yeah, as always, lots of bluster and sputtering and nothing at all to refute it.

Feel free to show me where I am wrong.

astonerii on January 10, 2013 at 10:21 AM

I think I was a bit harsh.

Always is too much of a position, you have presented facts at times. Some were even valuable facts that made me alter a part of my position and view.

astonerii on January 10, 2013 at 1:14 PM

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