Thursday, November 27, 2008

A Probing Attack?

I don't know if that is intentional but, the attack in Mumbai, India looks to be having the effect of probing Obama's response to future attacks on America and elsewhere.

Nov. 27 (Bloomberg) -- President-elect Barack Obama led global condemnation of grenade and gun assaults in India’s financial hub of Mumbai, the third major terrorist attack targeting foreigners in South Asian nations this year.

The U.S. will work “with India and nations around the world to root out and destroy terrorist networks,” Obama’s transition team said in a statement.
I was under the impression that The One thought that going after Osama and al Qaeda was enough. Evidently Reality Is Setting In.

And which politician on the international scene made the strongest statement?
British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said the “outrageous” attacks in India would be met with a “vigorous response,”
In any case I believe that Obama is going to get a lot of guff from the anti-war left. So far he seems to be ignoring it. We will see how long that lasts.

Policy wise Obama's domestic agenda - the one that requires money - is going to be held hostage to world events. If he cuts back military spending and there is an attack on the US he will be in trouble. If he fails to deploy a missile defense and there is a significant missile attack. He is in trouble.

So what domestic policy can he pursue that will actually raise money and lower economic output significantly? Why anti-CO2 measures of course. The fly in that ointment is the "lower economic output". Since he has promised to save jobs and get us out of a recession.

So is there a policy that might raise money for the government, please his supporters, and not be a hit on the economy? Yes there is.
Eric Nash can barely contain his excitement waiting to hear from Health Canada whether he can start growing marijuana for 250 patients now that the Federal Court of Appeal has struck down the government's monopoly on supplying medical marijuana.

That would be just the start. He says there are tens of thousands more who are ailing across the country, clamouring for his organic B.C. bud.

"There is a great opportunity here for the government to collect significant tax revenue currently being lost to the street market," enthused Nash, whose company, Island Harvest, has cleared the industrial security regulatory hurdles and meets the standards set by Ottawa to grow cannabis legally.
Tax revenue. Significant tax revenue and a blow to criminal gangs. A blow that will be harder to survive than a major bust. Revenue shortfalls for the gangs. What is not to like? Government gets more money - the gangs get less. If only we were as smart as the Canadians.

Now I also need to mention that opium is supporting the tribes in the Pakistan/Afghanistan tribal areas. Opium may be a harder nut to crack politically - but you know - when the pain gets severe enough we will take our medicine.


Richard Sharpe said...

The problem I have with this is that when a government condones the drugging of a good proportion of its citizens, we are on the slippery slope.

I think that Pournelle and Niven have written very good treatments of what happens when you start down that path. Pretty soon, in a democracy, someone proposes that we should spend a significant proportion of our GDP keeping the bottom 30% or so happy by drugging them up to the eyeballs.

Of course, the attendant medical problems associated with people who are too buzzed out to attend to their own care are also a problem.

Just ask the Chinese how they liked having large amounts of opium available in the latter half of the 1900s.

M. Simon said...


You are confusing the Liberty to self medicate with socialism.

And you also assume that drugs are attractive to those that don't NEED them.

Perhaps a little education is in order:

Round Pegs In Round Holes

PTSD and the Endocannabinoid System

Addiction Is A Genetic Disease

The drug War IS a Socialist enterprise.

The Drug War as a Socialist Enterprise by Milton Friedman


You also make the fundamental mistake of believing that prohibition laws prevent people from getting something. In fact all they do is determine source of supply. Legal channels or criminals.

And then you might want to ask yourself how the nation managed to survive the free availability of opiates before 1914? Or the free availability of marijuana before 1937. Or why cannabis extract was a part of the pharmacopoeia before it was outlawed in 1937.

And why was opium such a problem for the Chinese? Was it the opium or the British monopoly?


So who uses opiates? I answer that question in:


Anonymous said...

Yeah, repealing Prohibition and legalizing the sale of alcohol eliminated those pesky Capones and solved all of our problems right?

Oh wait -- I guess not. A quick look at NIH and CDC research shows that ~100,000 deaths a year are directly attibutable to alcohol:

How can alcohol be blamed for 100,000 deaths each year?

-5% of all deaths from diseases of the circulatory system are attributed to alcohol.
-15% of all deaths from diseases of the respiratory system are attributed to alcohol.
-30% of all deaths from accidents caused by fire and flames are attributed to alcohol.
-30% of all accidental drownings are attributed to alcohol.
-30% of all suicides are attributed to alcohol.
-40% of all deaths due to accidental falls are attributed to alcohol.
-45% of all deaths in automobile accidents are attributed to alcohol.
-60% of all homicides are attributed to alcohol.

Perhaps a little education is in order for you. However, I know you're not into reading peer-reviewed research. You're much more comfortable with the trash spewed from self-professed experts (like yourself!) and blogs and newsletters from the Canniboid crowd.

Time to self medicate, right?

RavingDave said...

Wow! 99% actually posted something with actual REASONING in it.(and a little bit of snark)

In my opinion, Al Qaeda just committed suicide.

Attacking the pakistan leadership was a huge mistake, attacking India pretty much guaranteed that Pakistan will now have to wipe Al Qaeda out.


Richard Sharpe said...

In any analysis of the situation, we have to balance the benefits of unrestricted availability of drugs like alcohol, Mary Jane, Heroin, and so forth, with the disadvantages.

We must also consider who the stake holders are.

As someone below points out, drugs are very effective at removing the defective from the gene pool.

On the other side of the fence, parents who do not want to lose their offspring often crusade to restrict the availability of these drugs. In addition, wives want to restrict the availability of money wasting diversions their husbands might engage in.

If we could come up with low-cost sex machines (perhaps direct neural stimulation for males) I suspect that many wives would find it an acceptable alternative to alcohol, prostitutes and so forth.

M. Simon said...

Well 99%. I don't believe I ever said repealing alcohol prohibition would solve our alcohol problem (the straw man is a powerful way to argue - empty but powerful).

You see we have choices - an alcohol + criminal problem or just an alcohol problem.

There are a lot of folks who think that criminals deserve government support. Are you one of them?

Anonymous said...

Msimon, how can you agree that alcohol is a problem, if, according to you everyone deserves the fundamental right to "self medicate"?? Promoting the right to self medicate implies that a medication be available (alcohol in this case).

Is there anything that you would limit access to in this world? I.e., is there anything in your mind that should be deemed too dangerous in our society? Let's apply your reasoning to weapons possession. If, according to the NRA wingnuts, weapons really aren't the problem, then why do we have a ban on ownership of automatic weapons? Hand grenades? TNT, C4, Semtex? Stinger missiles? Seriously, at what point would you draw the line and finally agree that a citizen of the United State cannot own or use something? If you truly believe the Government is the Devil, then I assume you feel any citizen should really have the right to possess these items, correct? To further your alcohol analogy legalizing "illegal" weapons would eliminate the "Crime+Guns" problem and reduce it to just a "Guns" problem right?