|Posted on August 18, 2009 at 11:03 AM|
Left: Liberal-Libertarian Carlos Lemos Simmonds, former President of Colombia and author of "The Thief State," held early high-level colloquia on drug and personal rights policy, as LIO advisor and former LIO Advisory Chair, with many Latin and EC leaders. Calling for "common sense for harmless users" he was also famed for risking his life and leading the fight that put major violent drug traffickers in jail. He is the main author of the present Columbian Constitution, which has among other innovations direct appeals for rights violations, term limits, and strong decentralism that are now a model.
Mexico City, Mexico, and Lisbon, Portugal, Combined: August 19, 2009. The paradigm is drug use will never pass or Libertarians have nothing to do with efforts. Think again.
The LIO confidential group working on personal rights has posted wins in Mexico and the EC, and is developing policy contact and study groups for legislators in 12 Latin countries:
>In Portugal, drug decriminalization of small amounts proceeds and has been analyzed as a success by reports from e.g. CATO www.cato.org . Metrics include helping and reducing real addicts while keeping casual and recreational users out of jail. Police are freed to concentrate on criminal groups that seduce weak minded people into addiction.The previously reported study is at: http://www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=10080
... Portugal legalizes drugs, crime falls.
>Mexico is as a result announcing it will not arrest for small possession of all drugs based on the Portuguese experience. The legislature had previously passed a drug legalization bill in 2006 that was held in abeyance to not irritate border discussions, said legislators and LIO activists who worked on the effort.
Said LIO Facilitator M. Gilson-de Lemos: "At minimum, adults and educated experimenters should as a matter of morality be able to take or not take any drug they want with appropriate insurance, informed consent education, or a doctor's prescription depending on local understanding. All drug laws do is enrich corrupt groups. I believe that both wins show the value of coalition efforts and policymaker education, supported by LIO high-level consultations. LIO recommends similar efforts in all countries, and activists looking into legalization of personal rights--drug and sexual choice, removal of religious based restrictions such as blasphemy laws, punitive petty regulations, freedom from the remnants of Officially Established Religion, etc--by direct democracy where available."
The USLP has encouraged members to join coalition and other efforts, and adopted drug reform as a "signature issue." Non-partisan groups such as the LIO Club in Florida is working on a drug legalization proposal via direct democracy there, and Libertarians have been highly active in the 'medical marihuana' push across the US, while cautioning it should not be used as an excuse for expanded 'non-medical' prosecutions (see links below).
UPDATE: 8/26: Argentine Supreme Court Legalizes Personal Marihuana (GOOGLE)
UPDATE: August 20 on.
Sample news Items are below:
>Comment: US Governments Attempt to Spin Mexico Decision?
Law Enforcement in US Reacts
Say police: " While law enforcement in Laredo don't expect an immediate change they do say they will remain vigilant because the war on drugs at home is what's important...
"To be honest with you people who really want to go out and get drugs can get them right now anyway. We are doing our best to curtail that from happening and take the business away from the cartels because it has a ripple effect."
..."The U.S. government urged former Mexican president Vicente Fox to reconsider a similar bill in 2006, but it appears this time around the Mexican government plans to move forward with their decision."
>AP:Mexico decriminalizes small-scale drug possession
MEXICO CITY ? Mexico decriminalized small amounts of marijuana, cocaine and heroin on Friday ? a move that prosecutors say makes sense even in the midst of the government's grueling battle against drug traffickers.
Prosecutors said the new law sets clear limits that keep Mexico's corruption-prone police from extorting casual users and offers addicts free treatment to keep growing domestic drug use in check.
"This is not legalization, this is regulating the issue and giving citizens greater legal certainty," said Bernardo Espino del Castillo of the attorney general's office.
The new law sets out maximum "personal use" amounts for drugs, also including LSD and methamphetamine. People detained with those quantities no longer face criminal prosecution.
Elsewhere: New "personal use" amounts have been clearly outlined, and detained individuals will no longer face criminal charges.
"Mexico has emphasized the need to differentiate drug addicts and casual users from the violent traffickers whose turf battles have contributed to the deaths of more than 11,000 people since President Felipe Calderon took office in late 2006" said Castillo
>Latin America's Legalization Push
"...the multidisciplinary Latin American Commission on Drugs and Democracy (co-chaired by former Presidents Fernando Henrique Cardoso of Brazil, Cesar Gaviria of Colombia, and Ernesto Zedillo of Mexico) called the drug war a "failure" and issued a groundbreaking report urging other governments in the region--including the United States--to rethink prohibition policy. "
>Mexico moves ahead of U.S. in drug legalization
"The United States should follow suit, and take it a step further by fully legalizing all drugs in all amounts. Only a complete end to drug prohibition will decimate law enforcement corruption and gang violence..."
>Commentary: Legalize drugs to stop violence
Prohibition creates violence because it drives the drug market underground. This means buyers and sellers cannot resolve their disputes with lawsuits, arbitration or advertising, so they resort to violence instead.
Violence was common in the alcohol industry when it was banned during Prohibition, but not before or after.
Violence is the norm in illicit gambling markets but not in legal ones. Violence is routine when prostitution is banned but not when it's permitted. Violence results from policies that create black markets, not from the characteristics of the good or activity in question.
The only way to reduce violence, therefore, is to legalize drugs. Fortuitously, legalization is the right policy for a slew of other reasons..."
UPDATE: Libertarians work in coalitions, teams for medical marihuana, sample activity from GOOGLE
>LIBERTARIAN PARTY OF COLORADO BLOG: Medical Marijuana: How ...Sent in by Colorado 420 Coalition and I felt like it might be a talk of interest to some of the readers of this blog: For immediate release: ...
lpcolorado.blogs.com/.../medical-marijuana-how-patients-and-caregivers-can-protect-themselves.html - Cached - Similar
>St. Charles County Libertarians support Kenneth Wells in fight for ...Jun 23, 2009 ... St. Charles County Libertarians support Kenneth Wells in fight for Medical Marijuana. Mr. Wells took his own health away from Government ...
www.lpmo.org/media/releases/2009/PR-20090623-01.shtml - Cached - Similar
>Libertarian Perspective: Respond to Medical Pot Raids with ...Apr 8, 2009 ... Via: Libertarian Perspective: Respond to Medical Pot Raids with ... On medical marijuana, Obama was supposed to signify a shift in policy. ...
www.showmethefacts.org/.../libertarian-perspective-respond-to-medical-pot-raids-with-legalization/ - Cached - Similar
>Libertarian Party - Medical Marijuana - ProCon.orgSep 13, 2007 ... Medical Marijuana Home Page > Biographies > Libertarian Party ... "The Libertarian Party is a long-standing advocate for individual liberty ...
medicalmarijuana.procon.org/viewsource.asp?ID=001413 - Cached - Similar
>Delaware Libertarian: It's About Time : Medical Marijuana in DelawareNationwide, efforts like Henry's got a boost last week when the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear a challenge to California's medical marijuana law, ...
delawarelibertarian.blogspot.com/.../its-about-time-medical-marijuana-in.html - Cached - Similar
>Official Steve Kubby Home PageLibertarian National Presidential Debate Part 1 · Libertarian National Presidential Debate Part 2 ... Medical Marijuana in Jamaica ...
www.kubby.com/ - Cached - Similar
Watching America : » Medical Marijuana and Gay Unions - America's ...Apr 22, 2009 ...