Re: Department of Justice is lying about racial …
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Sager, a bit above you wrote:
HotRocks — do you understand what the purpose of this site is? Are you familiar with the three "E"s? What does this have to do with the three Es?
While I’m not HotRocks, I’ll make an attempt to put this topic in a basic three E’s framework. I’ve only briefly looked at the thread and have not read the linked report, but think I get the gist. Please note, I’m not making any moral argument here.
So the question is how do drug laws and/or their accurate reporting pertain to any of the three E’s? One could say depending on the law in question (i.e., substance) you can walk down any of the E’s, so they all apply.
First, it does apply in an economic sense. With any substance it’s easy to agree that if it were legal then taxpayer money would not be required to increasingly fund a prison system to support drug offenses and all the expenses associated (administration, police, courts, etc). I haven’t seen the chart, but the attached pdf files/Percentage of prison population.pdf, also found at this link (http://www.albany.edu/sourcebook/ind/DRUGS.Prisoners.Federal.2.html) shows that the percentage of prison population in on drug offenses went parabolic starting around 1973. From 1970-1973 the percentage was around 16%. In 1973 it hit 25.6 and in 2004 stood at 54. It crossed the 50 threshold in 1989/1990. Does this approach an exponential function? The trend is certainly there. My question is do we really have that many bad citizens? Or is it more that certain laws create more opportunity to be labeled as bad? Or alternatively, is it more important to help rather than confine most of these citizens? If we agree that most of these people need help rather than prison, the question is more about in a declining economy is there a better use for taxpayer money?
It also applies to energy. I’ve explored biodiesel for a few years and remember reading about farmers in Canada working on biodiesel made from hemp oil. Highly sustainable and does not take away a food source like ethanol and is not dependent on hostile countries.
Where the environment is concerned, there are many industrial uses for hemp that could offset the impact of declining resources, similar to energy. Such uses are paper, clothes, rope, flooring, etc. In a resource strapped world, I’ll bet timberlands become very expensive. Even moreso as timber becomes scarce. Besides it’s natural purpose, perhaps timber should only be used for shelter and warmth. Why do we need paper made from wood, which brings us back to energy. The wood and paper pulp industry is something like the fifth largest consumer of energy.
Just some thoughts. A basic view of history makes it look like drug offenses were an easy way for certain titans of industry and government to expand their reach.
Lastly, their is the reduced crime argument by changing our policies. The most basic explanation of economics is supply and demand. Couple restricted supply with even just level demand and prices stay high. Illegality works on the restriction to supply side of the ratio even when there is not a shortage. It also creates a market where the market makers are breaking the law. Some of those market makers are real criminals and our policies keep them in business. Reduce the offenses for individuals or make certain substances legal and the criminal element gets squeezed out of the market through the most basic law of economics.
Have a great weekend.