Why voting for drug-warrior politicians is like voting for Hitler

I’m should be studying right now, but I just came across a target that was a little to easy to resist talking about: a Slate article that, among other things, attempts to explain “Why buying Cocaine is like donating to the Nazi party.”

I don’t want to in any way minimize the horrors described in the article, including:

No one has good numbers on the death toll of a given drug trade. I called and asked a few think tanks how many people cocaine has killed over the past 100 years and got mostly bemused laughs. Ioan Grillo, author of El Narco: Inside Mexico’s Criminal Insurgency, has thought about this as much as anyone. When I asked him, all he could guess was a number with nine figures in it.

Yet such facts could just as easily be used to write an article arguing that voting for politicians who support making cocaine illegal is like voting for Hitler. After all, the millions of people killed in the illegal cocaine trade wouldn’t have been killed if cocaine were legal.

Alternatively, you can imagine rewriting the article as a prohibition-era argument about the evils of alcohol:

When people back home drink a small glass of whiskey, they call it a “shot.” It’s a marvel of the English language that something so horrible, so corrosive can have such a cute little name. I wonder what Al Capone’s victims would have said to that innocuous little word. “Glad I could help brighten the party,” maybe?

Yup. Clearly alcohol is evil and prohibition should never have been repealed.

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  • Dave Ucannottaknow

    Modern drug war politics is full of enough violence to make Hitler look like Walt Disney! The only way to kill off the cartels is to kill off all drug legislation, and with it that platform for murderous politicians to flog.

  • L.Long

    The Re-PUKE-ians claim they want gov’mint out of every ones hair and to get smaller and it needs more money but no taxing anyone with money. So legalize all drugs, control them like the two legal drugs (tobacco & booze) and tax the crap out of them and rake in the money! I would find it strange that hey are not pushing for that except I also know that thy are all about CONTROLLING everyone else.
    Yes the ‘war on drugs’ has killed a lot of people one way or another; BFD!!! what about the word ‘WAR’ makes this surprising???

    • Tova Rischi

      I know I’m not addressing what you say; I do actually agree with the sentiment, but,


      Please, don’t do this. Please don’t ever do this. Not just for you, but for everyone. It just looks incredibly stupid, as stupid if not more than “lieberals” or “demonazis” or whatever crypto-racist term Free Republic is using this week. It’s just so dumb, please stop.

      • L.Long

        Name one good thing they have done for us since Bush took office and I may reconsider using the term.
        If the democrats where trying to crap all over women, taking my paid for social security away to allow rich dicks (& yes most are male) not to pay taxes, trying to take away my paid for medicare away, then they would be Demoncrats. So what have the awesome republicans done that is worth calling them such???
        And since no one allows the string of appropriate 4-letter words to describe this collection Aholes then there aint much else to use to describe their awesome status.

        • Tova Rischi

          I’m just saying it makes us all look dumb.

  • CottonBlimp

    Just a reminder: the drug war was founded on lying, racist propaganda (weed will make your daughter dance with negros!) It has been about cultivating fear, and using that fear as an excuse to chip away at civil liberties and arrest millions of people, largely on the basis of their race.

    But yeah, it’s the drug USERS who are Nazis.

  • Gregory Stacey

    Just to say- the point made above (i.e. that those making drugs illegal are as guilty of the financial success of violent criminals as those who purchase said drugs) is clearly wrong, for two reasons.

    Firstly, you seem to be conflating necessary and sufficient conditions. Admittedly, it may be a necessary condition for the profiteering of violent drug cartels that e.g. cocaine is illegal, but it’s not a sufficient condition, since lots of selfish people in the West (and elsewhere) could just not buy illegal narcotics from these people. On the other hand, such purchases are clearly both necessary and sufficient to ensure that gangsters make money (that is, sufficient given that drugs are illegal, but presumably most such purchases wouldn’t take place otherwise).

    Secondly, at least some of the politicians act from a noble motive- i.e. the desire to protect the public from drugs which destroy individuals and communities. The main motive for starting to consume drugs seems to be the mindless pursuit of personal pleasure, which is hardly comparable.