Mexico Decriminalizes Marijuana, Cocaine, Heroin Personal Use – Is it about tourism?

Wise Move in the Drug Wars… or Desperation By A Failed Nation?

Our favourite Bob

Our favourite Bob

This week the Mexican government decriminalized personal possession of marijuana, cocaine, LSD, methamphetamine and heroin.

I’m no expert, but it seems to me that Mexico has just expanded the demand for product and enriched the drug cartels and local dealers – while doing nothing to stop the gang warfare that has killed over 11,000 people in the last three years alone.

Had the Mexicans also instituted governmental production and distribution of the drugs – much as jurisdictions control and license liquor – the drug wars in Mexico would have ended virtually overnight just as the end of alcohol prohibition in the USA and Canada ended the turf wars of the rum runners in that era.

Why Did The Mexican Government Make This Move?

Mexican Federal Police... serving what master?

Mexican Federal Police... serving what master?

According to Mexican government officials (as reported here, here and here) one of the primary reasons for decriminalization is to stop corrupt Mexican police officers from using the drug laws to extort money from casual drug users and other little people.

In other words, the Mexican police are so out of control, so corrupt and so autonomous that the government’s only hope of limiting abuse of police power was to change the drug laws. With this admission, all the other supposedly good things about this change (like being able to offer treatment to addicts) become so much window dressing to brighten up an otherwise desperate move by a desperate government.

“Parents will be delighted to learn that their college students now have a legal place to experiment with hard drugs. And it’s just across the border.”

Phoenix Times: Want to Do Drugs? Go to Mexico: Now Small Amounts are Legal!

Drug Tourism… Here We Come! “We gon get high, high, high!”

The Stranger (a famous or infamous counter-culture publication out of Seattle, Washington) discussed the decriminalization and then summed it up with the phrase “In the meantime, have fun vacationing in Mexico.”

This sentiment is echoed on dozens of other blogs to the point where it is obvious that many people in the USA will now consider vacationing in Mexico because recreational drugs will be available. I can’t really empathize with these folks because my drug comes with a Mount Gay label on the bottle. Then again, would I consider a vacation at a “dry” destination? Probably not, so maybe I can understand the potheads to a certain extent.

Mexico’s tourism has been in the dumps for some time due to the recession, out of control crime and the drug wars. There’s nothing like a few severed heads rolling about on a nightclub floor to attract tourists, you know! Or heads left by the side of the road in a cooler.  Even the Mexican police are frightened to death.

Mexican Tourist Attraction: Severed heads in coolers by the roadside

Mexican Tourist Attraction: Severed heads in coolers by the roadside

Will decriminalization stop the drug wars? I don’t think so.

Will decriminalization “save” Mexican tourism? I don’t think so – but it may attract more of a certain type of tourist and “retiring” person to enjoy recreational drugs as Mexico moves even closer to the abyss of being a failed country.

VACATION IN MEXICO?

“Just say No!”

16 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Crime & Law, Police, Tourism

16 responses to “Mexico Decriminalizes Marijuana, Cocaine, Heroin Personal Use – Is it about tourism?

  1. Green Monkey

    The drug war is supposed to follow a very clear script: According to the official screenwriters, the U.S. justice system is pitted against corrupt players in foreign countries who are trying to flood American streets with illicit drugs. The narco-traffickers, crooked cops, and thieving politicians in the drug war are always over there, in Latin America, and elsewhere, and U.S. law enforcers and government officials are always the good guys battling these forces of evil.

    But what happens when evidence surfaces that turns that script on its ear? What happens if proof emerges that it is the U.S. justice system that is corrupt? A document obtained recently by Narco News makes those questions more than hypothetical queries. In this document, Department of Justice attorney Thomas M. Kent claims that federal agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration’s office in Bogotá, Colombia, are the corrupt players in the war on drugs. (The DEA is part of the larger Justice Department.)

    The information in that document is also corroborated by a number of other sources that spoke directly to Narco News, including former government officials who are familiar with the DEA’s Bogotá operations

    SNIP

    These charges blow away the smoke concealing the pretense of the war on drugs. If they are true, there will be no brushing them aside at pre-scripted press conferences; everyone who becomes aware of these allegations will be forced to consider where we go from here in that so-called war.

    http://www.narconews.com/Issue40/article1543.html

  2. BFP

    There was a time when dozens of pilots on the south american drug runs were CIA.

    As many Senate hearings confirmed, the USA funded drug deals to supply the Contras with weapons in the USA’s quest to overthrow the Sandinistas in Nicaragua.

    True to the region, the Sandinistas were also involved in drug smuggling.

    Keeping drugs illegal only empowers the cartels and the arms suppliers IMHO.

    Cliverton

  3. Green Monkey

    Time magazine, a compliant partner in the coverup of extensive DEA corruption.

    From retired DEA agent Sandalio Gonzalez:

    After Time’s DC office reporter Tim Burger received the initial/sample documents and statements (with NSWBC acting as coordinator and third party), they sat on the story for more than a month. Later we were told that the story was transferred to their Miami Office. After follow ups and pressure by NSWBC on the status of this ‘exclusive story’ with Time, one last meeting was set up with Tim Padgett, Time’s Miami bureau reporter.

    The meeting with the Time reporter in Miami was attended by several other current and former DEA agents as sources and witnesses. Some of these witnesses had to travel to attend the meeting and provide the Time reporter with their reports. The three agents disclosed their account and documented information involving the never-public-before scandal and the subsequent cover up by the US government. Sibel Edmonds, Director and Founder of NSWBC, and Professor William Weaver, Senior Advisor for NSWBC, had also flown to Miami to attend and monitor the interview.

    The center of the report dealt with ‘never-before-public’ documents and first hand witness statements, the Kent Memo, and related subjects and information. This case and its facts, statements, and documents, given to Time Magazine before and during that meeting, involved one of the most serious allegations ever brought against DEA officers.

    SNIP

    That meeting gave Time Magazine one last chance, and the benefit of the doubt, to live up to its word given to us previously; to expose this major case and even more serious cover up by the Justice Department’s IG. We made it clear that after waiting for Time Magazine for months they had to give us a response within a day or two as to whether they were running the story, and if so when. The reporter, Tim Padgett, did seem genuinely interested, and made it clear that he had to persuade the editors and magazine management. He appeared to have his reservations as to the magazine’s willingness and or courage to ‘touch’ a story of this magnitude. We never heard back from him, or Tim Burger, or anyone else from the magazine. Time Magazine never delivered the ‘exclusive scoop’ given to them, all packaged with credible DEA witnesses and envelopes containing official documents. In fact, the MSM has never thoroughly covered this story. The only coverage of Kent Memo was given by web-based publisher, Narco News.

    http://123realchange.blogspot.com/2009/06/project-expose-msm-report-2.html

    FYI, NSWBC mentioned above = National Security Whistleblowers Coalition

    You can download an audio MP3 of an interview with retired DEA agent and whistleblower Sandalio Gonzalez here:

    [audio src="http://justacitizen.com/Audio/BF.show.3.Gonzales.mp3" /]

  4. reality check

    “Had the Mexicans also instituted governmental production and distribution of the drugs – much as jurisdictions control and license liquor – the drug wars in Mexico would have ended virtually overnight just as the end of alcohol prohibition in the USA and Canada ended the turf wars of the rum runners in that era.”

    I am afraid this is the reality of how to stop the whole drug business dead in its tracks. Like Holland, the government legalizes and oversees the production, buying and selling of many drugs.

    In Canada and elsewhere, methadone is given as an alternative to heroin addicts at a drug store for about a dollar a day.

    The whole business equation from warlords in Afghanistan and drug lords in Columbia to numerous middlemen, to police, lawyers and judges along the way, then disappears or significantly diminshes.

    The resulting savings of many billions of dollars could then be directed to social housing, food for addicts and rehab for those who really want to quit and other more productive efforts.

    BFP is absolutely correct when it asks what happens when your kids can access a state run and controlled drug experimentation system but maybe this can be limited to known and proven addicts. Also is it any worse than having the drugs readily available on the streets of North America and Europe today almost as easy as it is to get alcohol?

    One can only wonder what would happen in Afghanistan if the price of opium fell 100 times and food crops became the most valuable product?

    Needless to say, Mexico won’t go all the way because the corruption factor is engrained in its society.

  5. Green Monkey

    Some observers believe that the money generated from illicit drug sales has become so integrated into our modern economies that were the funds generated by illicit drug sales to disappear our Western capitalists economies and stock markets could collapse.

    One such observer is a former Assistant Secretary of Housing in the GHW Bush Administration, Catherine Austin Fitts. She put together a paper explaining the money flow: “Narco-Dollars For Dummies. How The Money Works In The Illicit Drug Trade“.

    Quote from Part 11 of her 13 part series:

    Indeed, what a history of narcotics trafficking and piracy and various other forms of organized crime over the last five hundred years show is that our leaders have been in a double bind for centuries. The only thing more dangerous than getting caught doing organized crime, is not being in control of the reinvested cash flows from it. This is why monarchs played footsie with pirates in Elizabethan times and no doubt have been doing so ever since.

    After taxation, organized crime is a society’s way of forming lots of pools of low cost cash capital. Organized crime is a banking and venture capital business.

    So the reality is that if you want to control the cash flow and capital that controls the overworld, you’ve got to control the cash flows getting generated by the underworld. Indeed, you’ve got to have an underworld. If it does not exist, you need to outlaw some things to get one going.

    Here’s the link: http://solari.com/articles/scoop_narco_dummies.htm

  6. NewDay

    They did what? How come I didn’t hear the U.S. making noise about that?

    Somebody has to take the initiative , there is way to much death and corruption in the illegal drug trade.
    The madness has to stop.

  7. Eddie

    It is quite obvious that the govt. has lost the perennial brutal war with the drug lords.

    They probably see themselves as having no other choice.

  8. kiki

    When you remove a drug gang a more ruthless drug gang steps in… Same as the fight against terror.

  9. Green Monkey

    Reuters: Pot Kills Cancer But Don’t Even Think About Using It!

    http://blog.norml.org/2009/08/18/reuters-pot-kills-cancer-but-dont-even-think-about-using-it/

  10. Avatar Gurl

    Well, you never know…

    Maybe an element in cocaine just MIGHT cure AIDS! Anyone think about that?

    To be quite honest, the Lord has given us a lot of PURE, GOOD plants to use for the greater good, but what have we done?

    We just take out the good stuff and warp them (the plants) until we make something that is bad for us, and then we use it and share it to make us sick!

    Come on, humans! Are we not with SOME sort of intelligence here?

    Instead of using the coca plant to make cocaine, we should investigate it to see what GOOD qualities it has! The same with the poppy, which can be made into heroin!

    Marijuana has already been checked into, with its healing properties for cancer, cataracts and other ailments. Isn’t there a way to make a LEGAL medicine from it that can help people?

    All these plants have been OUTLAWED because we, stupid as we are, have NOT FOUND A BENEFICIAL USE for them!

    WE’VE ONLY FOUND DETRIMENTAL USES! WE MESSED OURSELVES UP!

    So what would you expect? The price of knowledge and power….will doom us all.

  11. marvinbareback

    There is an interesting theory about to be tested. Imagine if the US and other forces in Afghanistan went out an bought all the opium poppies at a fair price….or all the coca leaves in Colombia. The producers of the crop get paid very little but then the aggregators, transporters, and dealers mark it up so many times. Why not buy the whole crop to begin with and destroy it then before anyone can break it down and export it? The cost would be like a direct agricultural subsidy and I imagine it would cost a whole lot less than all the law enforcement, trials, prison time, etc. etc.

  12. Darian

    Why not just spray herbicides and kill of the crops?

    A few years ago there was a program to get the growers to to produce something else. Roses. They grew beautiful roses instead. They even made some money. That was before the U.S. growers complained. These roses were of high quality and sold for less or comparable price than the American ones. Guess what happened? The ones from Columbia were pulled. The growers when back to the coca plants.

    Basically, if you can’t please everybody the trade will flourish.

    As for law enforcement, who do they really catch?
    Small fry which are replaced over and over again. The beat just goes on and on.

  13. Sargeant

    Did I read that 90% of US paper money has traces of cocaine?

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32450588/ns/business-personal_finance/

  14. Illuminator

    Green Monkey…

    U gun cause somebody bout hey to blow a head gasket with your earth shaking truths ……Keep it up…lol. Luving it.

    This world is really not like what many of us think it is. It may sound corny….but I am realising this fact more and more. I am also realising that it is no accident that it is this way either.

  15. Illuminator

    This could easily happen once the ‘right’ people wanted it so and could benefit tremendously from it themselves.

  16. S Jones

    Why is it no one is talking about the drug use of Mexican citizens? The reason is 90% of the drugs routed through Mexico are headed for the U.S. The Mexican government is not so concerned about legalization in their country because on the whole their population doesn’t use drugs like the more “highly educated and sophisticated Americans.

    Parents who worry about their kids using drugs in Mexico should worry about their kids using drugs period. If there is no desire it’s hard to find a market. America needs to stop trying to kill the plants and start dealing with the culture that makes drug use seemingly necessary.