Here’s Why America’s Drug War Has Been an Epic Failure, by Alice Salles

The war on drugs, like the wars on poverty and terrorism, promotes that which it ostensibly is meant to either curtail or eradicate. From Alice Salles at

The U.S. government’s efforts against illicit drugs have finally run their course. With over one trillion dollars wasted over the past several decades and nothing to show but failure, taxpayers are beginning to ask a simple yet pertinent question: Is it time to end the bottomless funding of this utterly ineffective anti-drug crusade?

With a $29 billion budget for the 2017 fiscal year, the Department of Justice (DOJ) has secured vast resources to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). With a sizeable budget — $2.8 billion in 2015 — the agency tasked with the chore of enforcing “the controlled substances laws and regulations … and [bringing] to the criminal and civil justice system … organizations and principal members of organizations involved in the growing, manufacture, or distribution of controlled substances appearing in or destined for illicit traffic in the United States” has continued to be the number one drug warrior within the federal government. But the DOJ’s Criminal Division, which is tasked with overseeing multiple offices, also houses the Organized Crime and Gang Section (OCGS), an agency that specializes in “developing and implementing strategies to disrupt and dismantle” gangs and organized crime, including drug trafficking. The 2017 budget for the Criminal Division alone is $198.7 million, which represents a “9.3 percent increase over 2016.”

Over the years, these agencies have time and again been tasked with capturing drug lords and low-level sellers, attempting to put an end to the flow of illicit substances into the country. But despite the copious amounts of resources used in this task alone — whether it’s through the DEA, the OCGS, or even the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) — illicit substance use (and abuse) has only grown across the country.

To continue reading: Here’s Why America’s Drug War Has Been an Epic Failure

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