Reports of Ashcroft's seven top priorities list before 9/11 may prove once and for all just how costly the drug war really is.
Among his top priorities were drugs and violent crime. However, nearly three months after he made a promise to protect the country from terrorists, terrorism was nowhere on the list.
Interestingly enough, the office of the drug czar spent a few million on ads calling drug addicts terrorists for supllying funds to terrorists. What you can see from the 9/11 investigation is that it was not the drug money, but the drug law enforcement drain on our system that hampered the FBI from really finding terrorists. For instance, MSN reports that out of nearly 2,000 counterterrorism translators requested before 9/11, only about 80 were approved.
Meanwhile, millions of dollars went to fund Ashcroft's bogus efforts to stifle cancer patients in California and take away their pot.
The drug war effects the situation in many different ways. Many of the civil liberties we have protect us from laws that are overreaching. Drug laws are the main fight for minorities because the arrest of our nations young men on drug charges destroys communities and ties up the FBI and CIA at once.
Certain civil liberties that are important to drug offenders could be loosened in terroism cases, however, the ACLU could not stand for any loosening while draconian laws put glaucoma sufferes in jail.
If the drug war ended, there would be money freed up from the wasteful drug czar's office for intervention, education, and treatment. There would be money left over for the FBI and CIA for counterterrorism. There would be state money for violent criminals to stay in jail longer and pay high salaries to jailers. There would be money for Columbians to fight paramilitaries, and preserve freedom in their country. There would also be an end in this country to the practice of herbicide spraying that causes sickness. There would be revenue from excise taxes levied on drugs to fix the deficit. There would be enough revenue in fact to probably clean up our environment. Much more importantly, with drugs regulated, there would be consistency in quality to avoid overdose of our weakest children. And, even more precient is the need to create jobs, which legalizing drugs could do quite effectively, while at the same time taking revenue away from Afghanistan's war lords because opium would be too cheap to grow, and not lucrative enough to fund terrorists. The same funding that supports FARC and the Taliban by killing our children can be put to greater use.
Ports would be freed up looking for bombs instead of bongs. Airlines would likewise be able to concentrate on detection of terrorists and bombs over someone bringing home a joint from Jamaica.
What was the largest failure that caused 9/11- It's the drug war stupid.