Friday, September 13, 2013

Money myths and more


  1. The problem with the pro-dope legalization argument is that while legalizing dope will reduce crime in a strict sense (because we would be eliminating an entire class of laws thus getting rid of the crime), it would do nothing to deal with the profoundly anti-social and destructive behavior connected to drug use. Legalize something and you get more of it. Legalize dope and we'll get more of it. And while getting rid of the laws may reduce some subsets of crime, it won't reduce the crimes related to dope use -- theft, burglary, violent crimes committed by people who are doped up, DUI and vehicular homicide from doped up driving, etc. As dope use increases, those crimes will also increase. So, I don't see any real upside to legalizing dope. We will get more dopers, and thus more crime.

    Yet again, libertarian dogma produces no useful solution to a social problem, and in fact makes that problem worse.

  2. Mark in Spokane, I disagree. The social costs of an intrusive police state fighting a "war" it cannot win are, as best as I can discern, worse than the social costs of increased dope use in the wake of legalization.

    Failing that, I'm at least willing to argue that we should try what used to work again since over a century of varieties of prohibition have done nothing good, unless you consider increasing Leviathan's appetite to be a good thing.

  3. Legalize dope and we'll get more of it.

    Terribly unsophisticated argument. There are all manner of things you are free to do and for the most part nobody will stop you: miscegenation, suicide, homosexuality, carving a hole in your head, staying drunk all day, smoking cigarettes. Yet most people don't do these things. And second, if you get more drug use, so what? What will happen when more people use marijuana and psilocybin? Not much if anything, I'm betting. More people drank than didn't after Prohibition was repealed. We still won two world wars, established the dollar as a reserve currency, and attract more investment than anywhere else on the globe, much to the chagrin of Carrie Nation I'm sure.

    Premeditated crimes are most often carried out stone cold sober. And if you feel the urge to commit a crime while not in possession of your faculties, booze is cheap and legal. The streets should be filled with drunken individuals committing crimes with complete abandon. Have you really thought about this?

  4. I'm torn about marijuana. I hear it's called a gateway drug, but it seems to me its legal status is the cause of that. "Well, that's illegal," the logic in my head goes, "and it didn't kill me. So, what about this other stuff?" On odd days, I think legalizing it would take that argument away and provide a source of state revenue. On even days, I worry that employers won't maintain their ability to fire people who use it.

    Side question: Why is miscegenation in the same sentence as a list of objectively self-destructive behaviors?


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