Monday, December 08, 2008

Legal Drugs in Action

Holland ought to be a libertarian dream. Prostitution is legal, and so is possession and use of marijuana. Oh look, it seems even when those things are legal they still attract criminals and make the neighborhood go to, ah, pot. So the Dutch are shutting down some brothels and "coffee shops" where you could get a cuppa joe and a spliff. Seems the area had a problem with organized crime, who would have thought it? Given that organized crime can get a shakedown operation on garbage collection, which has always been legal in the US, how exactly is legalizing prostitution and drugs going to evade their notice? Oh yes, I know the approved story is how all that goes away as soon as dope is legal and look, Prohibition FAILED, lather-rinse-repeat. Actually, Prohibition had a big success which we don't even notice because we take it for granted -- public drunkenness is rather rare (New Orleans during Mardi Gras being a notable exception). That wasn't always the case.

The other hoary chestnut the legal-drugs crowd bring out to be admired is the prevalence of hemp in early American life. Even George Washington grew hemp! they say triumphantly, expecting that little factoid to destroy the flimsy house of cards erected by those notorious wet-blankets who won't let them get high. Hemp, the fiber != pot, the smokable drug. When you have a citation to say, a letter wherein Geo. expounds "Ye brownies of Martha's are in truth moft amazing and caufe Colours to be feen the like of which I have not previoufly perceived..." get back to me. Lots of evidence they grew hemp, none that they smoked it. Those guys actually got stuff DONE.


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