The tide is finally starting to turn in America’s war on drugs. And who do we have to thank for it? These people:
Law enforcement agents who patrol the border between Mexico and California say that sales are down for drug traffickers. Not because of decreased demand, but because small scale Mom and Pop pot growers in California are taking their customers. For decades the war on drugs has gotten us nowhere. Despite increased man hours and funds devoted to anti-narcotic efforts smugglers have still been able to bring drugs into the US. At the same time drug related violence continued to escalate on both sides of the border.
But since California legalized medical marijuana in 1996, many average people have taken up the call to become growers. And why not? For an investment of $100 it is possible to turn a profit of $9,000. Beyond that the product created by domestic growers is more potent, higher quality, and more expensive than the traditional Mexican strains. The higher quality US strains have become the new market standard for quality. This increase in competition has not only hurt sales, sending the cartels scrambling for money and customers, it has hurt the other main aspect of the drug trafficking business: violence. For the first time ever, money is a problem for drug dealers. Without being able to guarantee profits there is less liquid capital to invest in weapons. For the moment violence is on a down swing.
The legalization of medical marijuana in California has been more successful at decreasing drug trafficking than any administration since Nixon, who first committed the US to the “War on Drugs” in 1969.
This shows you that even on the black market, traditional market forces matter. We should not look at issues like drug trafficking which have a huge economic component as purely social or legal problems. Perhaps the best combatant of corruption is competition.
Looks like Nancy Botwin has some competition heading her way.