Saturday, April 29, 2006

Drug legalization in Mexico

This isn't going to help achieve to victory in the war on drugs:
Mexico's Congress approved a bill Friday decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana, ecstasy, cocaine and heroin for personal use.
The Mexican Congress claims that it will allow Mexican authorities to focus on smugglers rather than casual users, but Mexico's endemic corruption and the thirty some-odd billion dollars generated from the drug trade evince the risibility of such a claim. Northern Mexico is still run by drug cartels--legalizing possession is obviously not going to hurt business. Mexico exports drugs and social problems to the US in return for $17 billion in remittances and several billions more in narcotics sales. The Mexican government is not a friend.

These are not innocuous quantities:
The bill says criminal charges will no longer be brought for possession of up to 25 milligrams of heroin, five grams of marijuana — about one-fifth of an ounce, or about four joints — and half a gram of cocaine — about half the standard street-size quantity, which is enough for several lines of the drug.
The bill passed the Mexican Senate by a majority of over two-to-one. Most Mexicans favor this move. This is yet another reason that massive Mexican immigration to the US is bad. Drug use externalities do not benefit society. It hammers lower income, less endowed folks especially hard. We have witnessed the devastation the crack wars of the late eighties and early nineties wreaked upon our urban centers. Why make life even tougher for those already fighting an uphill battle?

Building a wall and militarizing the border will severely cut down on the importation of both underclass liabilities and drugs.


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