Drugs, Violence, and Economics

The recent spate of drug gang shootings in Toronto has brought out the worst in the chattering classes and politicians while most people can’t see any solution for this problem.

The biggest domestic problem Canada faces is drug use. This has the potential to destroy our quality of life more than anything else. This is exacerbated by adopting the same failed policies as the U.S. War on Drugs. These policies have not worked! We have 35 years of proof!

Publicity-seeking politicians, supported by the bureaucrats living off the War on Drugs, have increased the penalities for trafficking and this drives up drug prices to accommodate the greater risk. As trafficers are incarcerated for longer and longer terms, they are quickly replaced due to the enormous profits. The high prices also mean more violence as traffickers compete for market share.

We must also endure increased rates of crimes like B&E, robery, and prostitution as users attempt to finance their addiction. The damand for drugs is what economists call an inelastic demand, which means the addict will pay whatever the trafficker charges. Severe penalities and high prices have not quelled this market for illicit drugs and it never will.

Our politicians refuse to acknowledge that drug use is primarily a self-destructive behaviour that does not respond to legal coercian alone. Long jail sentences and no treatment just creates angry and more skilled criminals leaving jail. Former inmates know the long sentence was unjust. They were just selling to a market of self-destructive individuals. We are hard wired to recognise injustice and these people see it and they are enraged by it. Combine this with the graduate course in criminal behaviour they get in jail, and a greater problem is created.

The politicians know that education and treatment are the only effective avenues to solving this problem. However, they would rather go to photo ops involving cops with automatic weapons and spout a lot of hogwash about being tough on crime.

The politicians know that severe penalities and militarized police can’t stop the drug use that drives the violence surrounding the drug trade, nor will more so-called gun control that only affects people who have nothing to do with the shootings or the drug trade. Political theatre doesn’t help the families being destroyed by drugs and violence.