Monday, April 17, 2006

Quick hits

I woke up feeling kind of crummy today so I'm having a heckva time getting going. While I pull myself together, here's a few links off the top of the inbox.

Hammer of Truth posts an uplifting email from Steve Kubby who is finally a free man. He's still on probation of some sort for two years but he's out of jail and discovered through his ordeal that Marinol is an effective if not perfect medication for his cancer.

Just your usual have a fire - find marijuana in the basement story but it's a good illustration of why cultivation should be legal. Although it had nothing to do with the fire, the house was rigged so the electricity use didn't register on the meter in order to avoid detection. In a legal market, this wouldn't happen. Just one more revenue source lost to the prohibition approach

I liked this one, Fantastic Voyage, a longish but moving story about a class trip to DC by a bunch of kids who live on the Texas border. The story touches on how poverty and drugs define their community, said to be one of the poorest in the country. Here's the money quote.
In a world with few options, the drug trade is almost too tempting to resist. The children amid the flowering trees and well-kept statuary of official Washington are two years from getting their driver's licenses. Maybe they will get a part-time job at Roma's Burger King or Pizza Hut, but more likely someone will give them a chance to drive the truck. What's in the truck? Don't ask.

But someone can get paid $5,000 to drive it from Roma to Corpus Christi or San Antonio. Maybe $15,000 for getting it across the border from Mexico. Everyone knows Los Zetas pay better than the government or the handful of fast-food joints in town.
Ironically, for these people, although it would make their community safer, the downside of drug legalization is they would no longer have an opportunity to make that kind of money. Unfortunately for them, black market employment is virtually the only avenue for the uneducated to lift themselves out of poverty.


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