Reefer Madness
Pot Policy Is Really Complicated
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  • Bruce

    The Colorado citizenry has chosen the “least bad” option, given that there isn’t a good one. Life and governance are all about trade offs. As this post rightly points out, it should not be expected that it will be simple.

    • Fred

      I’m not at all sure they have chosen the “least bad” option. I think Brooks is indisputably correct. Among the problems I have with big “L” Libertarians: they have entirely too much faith in individuals; they seem to have no concept that allowing individual freedom to the detriment of social order ultimately deprives _everyone_ of freedom (anarchy being, as John C. Calhoun said “the greatest of all curses”); and they see no place for the state to at least attempt to create an environment in which good choices are easier to make and more clearly rewarded. Drug legalization will be a catastrophe, but once it’s done, the genie’s out of the bottle. Enjoy the mess you’ve helped create, Libertarians.

      • Bruce

        Ben’s comments below reflect my beliefs well. When you put the government in charge of prohibiting something, you are hoping that they will act responsibly. There is no evidence that government can act responsibly and that has especially been shown time after time on the drug war. Everything that government does eventually results in over reach and that has been the case here with SWAT units making marijuana busts and judges imposing mandatory sentencing for getting high. The least bad option is to have the government out of it. The problem with a lot of conservatives is that they don’t want big government – except where they want it – on things like drug wars and the military.

  • Kevin

    Kleiman’s article seemed thoughtful and covered many related aspects and trade offs of the issue. Thanks for linking.

  • Ben

    The key argument about legalization is that kidnapping people, locking them up, and ruining their lives is not a just or moral response to the weed problem. So let’s stop doing that.

    Will legalization solve every problem and make the world a permanent, perfect utopia? No. It just makes the government less evil, in one specific way, regarding one specific activity.

    Life is complicated and there are always tradeoffs for everything. But that’s not an argument for participating — and, if you’re a weed-prohibition supporting voter, you’re guilty of participating — in unnecessary and unjust government bullying and violence against people engaging in a peaceful activity.

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