Mercy, Mistress. Mercy!
Over the weekend Mistress Judith laid out her credentials as a minister who’s tough but crushingly ignorant. Here’s two excerpts from her rant:
Gangs . . . have been slammed as "bloody evil bastards" by police minister Judith Collins, who has vowed to do all she can to crush them.
"They [gangs] are not harmless rebels which some people like to think they are. They are bloody evil bastards. They are only there for one thing and that is to make money out of crime."
And what are Mistress Judith and her prohibitionist colleagues doing about it? Here’s what: they’re making it possible to make more money out of crime. Every time another War on Drugs is declared, guess who cheers loudest? That’s right, it’s those bloody evil bastards whose profits go right up.
Basically, if you accept her premise (that gangs are “bloody evil bastards”) then you have to ask why you keep making them rich with the failed policies of prohibition. Prohibition doesn’t decrease gangs’ involvement in crime, it increases it. It doesn’t decrease their profits, it increases them. It doesn’t decrease drugs’ virulence, it increases it. It doesn’t decrease police corruption, it increases it. Just ask Al Capone. He didn’t make his money by buying and selling stocks and shares – he made it by buying and selling policemen, and by making the “tough” politicians who tried to stop him look impotent.
Mistress Judith is right enough about the evils of gangs, but her prescription is just what they’re after.
[Gangs] add nothing to our society other than misery [she continued]. If people decide they are not going to accept them, they will eventually die out. But it will not happen unless people stop tolerating them.
Actually, they will not die out unless people stop buying drugs from them. And that’s not going to happen unless the government makes it legal for consenting adults to buy recreational pharmaceuticals from safe and legal vendors.
Because, let’s face it, if a government can’t even keep drugs out its prisons, then it’s never going to keep them off the streets. Which means that all that prohibition is doing is to increase revenues for these bloody evil bastards. That’s not smart, it’s dumb.
If you want to crush the power of gangs, which is what she says she wants to do, then she needs to crush the policies of prohibition that feed them money.
Nothing else is going to do it. Four decades of the failed War on Drugs should show you that, even if the experience of alcohol prohibition doesn’t.