Thursday, March 26, 2009

At last! The Herald gets real about drugs

Today's editorial in The Sydney Morning Herald marks a sea-change in granny herald's attitudes. Finally Sydney's bikie wars and gang violence are put into their correct context as ‘unintended consequences’ of the failed 100-year War on Drugs.

The piece refers to The Economist's call for decriminalised, regulated availability of recreational drugs because it is the ‘least bad policy’. 

That magazine “noted that in 1998 the United Nations general assembly called for a drug-free world by 2008. In the intervening decade, despite a massive death toll and the expenditure by the United States alone of $US40 billion ($57 billion) a year on the war, the extent of drug use in First World countries has hardly changed at all.”

What a contrast to the spin coming from the UN's chief prohibitionist, Antonio Maria Costa, who interprets this failure as a “stabilisation” of illicit drug use. It is he who uses the coy phrase “unintended consequences” to describe the worldwide violence, corruption and injustice stemming from this stupid war against an industry which makes up about eight per cent of world GDP, bigger than the economies of most countries.

But it's still baby steps from The SMH. The next step is to acknowledge that illicit drugs are not 'the scourge of society’ as the dogma goes, but a pleasurable privilege that is not a significant problem for 98 per cent of users. After all, that's why the “persistent demand” that The Herald refers to just won't go away.


Anonymous said...

I wonder, since the war on drugs is so obviously not working, and the solution is clearly worse than the crime, if its proponents have little interest in the situation other than a desire to have war.

Terry Wright said...

No, No, No. The Courier-Mail has the facts!

Read The Drug Scourge - Special Report for the real situation in Australia.

It's the most accurate and rational article ever written about the subject. I challenge anyone to prove me wrong.

BTW, watch the related video articles - journalism at it's best.