Friday, April 22, 2011

Drug gangs muscle into new territory: Central America | McClatchy

Drug gangs muscle into new territory: Central America | McClatchy

Yeah, but...

There is one economy. Just one. That it is composed of legal and illegal sectors might as well be by design.

The legal part of the economy is much more complex, thus much more difficult to deal with, than the illegal part of the economy. When the legal economy declines you have to mortgage the future, start hot wars and apply complex, politically challenging programs to try to avoid depression.

It makes little sense to damage any part of the overall economy, especially at a time when the legal sector has been so severely challenged as of late.

In contrast to the legal sector of the economy (where you must have massive, complex and at least somewhat transparent bureaucratic programs to prop it up) the illegal sector of the economy is relatively simple to deal with.

Yes, you have to apply subsidies to the illegal sector of the global economy in order to bolster its contribution to the whole, because what's good for the illegal sector of the economy is good for the whole economy. Part of the genius of Prohibition is that it applies the required subsidy to the illegal sector of the economy at virtually no cost. The measly few billions in the budget for the ONDCP, for example, generate two or three orders of magnitude greater effect in the illegal sector of the economy, providing greater bang for buck than almost any other government economic program.

There are intangible social costs of applying such subsidies to the illegal sector of the economy, of course, but intangibles are essentially unquantifiable and therefore, as in other arenas like anthropogenic climate change, these not much weighted in such analyses.

The policy of Prohibition must be maintained in order to maintain the contribution of the illegal sector of the economy to the overall economy. This is especially true with marijuana because of its dominant role in the illegal economy.

How could it be otherwise?

Monday, April 04, 2011

NRA asks: President Calderon’s Eyes On The Wrong Border?

I'm generally in agreement with the NRA when it comes to gun rights, but I don't think they are serious about rights in general. Maybe someone has studied the question and could correct me if I'm wrong, but I perceive the leadership and membership of the NRA to be, generally speaking, a bunch of right-wing authoritarian followers, unconcerned with rights in general.

What sets me off is this annoyingly written piece, President Calderon's Eyes On The Wrong Border? Oh, what the hell. Here it is:

President Calderon’s Eyes On The Wrong Border?

Friday, April 01, 2011

Blaming America for Mexico’s problems has been something of a national pastime for Mexican politicians for many years. True to tradition, Mexican president Felipe Calderon has been blaming Mexico’s astronomically high murder rate on Americans who buy drugs and who sell guns, rather than on the Mexican drug cartels who commit a vastly disproportionate share of those murders, and the historic corruption in Mexico, from which the wicked cartels have spawned.

However, an article published by the Mexico City newspaper La Jornada suggests that el Presidente might better serve the good people of his country by looking to his southern border, instead of al norte.

As explained in English by the Latin American Herald Tribune, “The most fearsome weapons wielded by Mexico’s drug cartels enter the country from Central America, not the United States, according to U.S. diplomatic cables disseminated by WikiLeaks and published on Tuesday by La Jornada newspaper. Items such as grenades and rocket-launchers are stolen from Central American armies and smuggled into Mexico via neighboring Guatemala, the U.S. Embassy in Mexico City reported to Washington.”

The article also refers to “Fast and Furious,” an element of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives' “Project GunRunner” operation that allegedly knowingly allowed more than 1,700 firearms to be smuggled into Mexico from our country, including those that may have been used to murder U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry in December and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Special Agent Jaime Zapata in February.

Increasingly, the question is who knew about the operation, and when. President Obama has stated that neither he nor Attorney General Eric Holder were aware of the scheme. Holder is said to have told his subordinates that letting guns “walk” to Mexico is wrong and should not be repeated. The McAllen, Tex., newspaper, The Monitor, quotes the Mexican government as saying that it “did not have knowledge on an operation that included the controlled traffic of weapons in Mexican territory,” and that “The Mexican government has not and will not give any implied or formal authorization for this to happen.”

Meanwhile, Fox News reports that U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, today issued a subpoena to the Justice Department demanding that the BATFE respond to his March 16 request for information about the operation, the deadline for which passed on Wednesday. Rep. Issa is quoted as saying, “The unwillingness of this administration—most specifically the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms—to answer questions about this deadly serious matter is deeply troubling.”

CBS News similarly reported that “The Department of Justice and ATF have missed repeated deadlines to turn over information and documents” to Congress, and further noted that the investigation of Project GunRunner may significantly delay hearings on President Obama’s nomination of BATFE agent Andrew Traver, an activist gun control supporter, to head the BATFE.

The BATFE has until April 13 to respond to Rep. Issa’s subpoena. Stay tuned.
Keep it simple, dumbshits. Don't write anything deeper than you absolutely must.

Restating the obvious for the NRA, the root of the problem IS north of the border. The root of the problem is the enormous subsidy provided to "the wicked cartels" by the idiocy that is prohibition. That's not the party line, though, is it?

What is it about these True Red White and Blue patriot types that prevents them from seeing the

Never mind. Hopeless...