Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Continued Lobbying

Ernesto Zedillo, Fernando Henrique Cardoso, and César Gaviria, the presidents of last year's Latin American Commission on Drugs and Democracy (as well as the former leaders three nation's with serious drug problems), have issued something that they are calling the Vienna Declaration, which appears to reiterate the points of the Commission's final report: the War on Drugs has failed to reduce supply or demand, it has caused all manner of horrible side effects in Latin America, and alternative approaches are needed.

One of my wishes is that a relatively big-name American official will one day embark upon a quixotic, one-issue presidential campaign centering on the insanity of the war on drugs. Since even liberal, formerly drug-using presidents won't take the issue of marijuana legalization seriously, such a campaign could be a way to loosen up the prevailing restrictions on serious drug policy debate in the US. But if that's not going to happen, Zedillo, Cardoso, and Gaviria turning into legalization activists is something of a consolation.

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