Thursday, December 07, 2006

Meth madness



Last week, New Zealand Police announced that they had located 1000 clandestine drug laboratories since official recording began ten years ago. In 1996 they located just one lab. Lucky lab 1000 was the 184th for 2006.

"Quality intelligence and increased understanding of the dynamics of illicit drug markets mean we are continually improving our work in zeroing in on the supply chains and networks of manufacturers and dealers," said Assistant Commissioner Peter Marshall. But is it quality intelligence and increased understanding? Or a decade of insanity ("doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results")? I guess that depends on what results you're trying to achieve.

Since 1996 the police have
  • Wasted an estimated $500,000,000 "fighting P".
  • Filled our jails to overflowing with clandestine laboratory technicians, at a cost of $50,000 per inmate per year.
  • Ruined hundreds of lives (it's generally accepted that a sentence to life imprisonment - the penalty for manufacturing Class A drugs - is ruinous).
Since 1996 the police have NOTCommenting yesterday on the conclusion of a year long operation, which resulted in 9 arrests and the seizure of large amounts of cash and methamphetamine worth $1.5 million, Detective Senior Sergeant Scott Beard said that for a while there would be a gap in the methamphetamine market. "But like all things that hole will be filled." This is a very clear admission from the police that they have little to show for their expensive P fighting efforts. A decade is 10 years too long. Stop the meth madness.

Anyone seen Elvis?
 

3 Comments:

At 10:02 AM, Blogger Genius said...

The police are in the long term probably loosing in all of the areas you mention in terms of most crime not just drugs. As with some other crimes it could be that they are wasting their effort (maybe the police shouldn't even pretend that house theft is illegal), or it could be they are just slowly loosing a battle absolutely critical to society.

 
At 11:35 AM, Blogger Blair J Anderson said...

Prof James Roumaset, Economics, Hawaii U. wrote a superb analysis on meth (ice) and why it is prevelent that New Zealand can take a good lesson from. Hawaii's island state, position off the major drug routes (like us, no spillage into the market) and cultural factors and an enforcment of the the law (yep, those UN conventions again) that where the rules are the same.. the shit is the same. James shows that elevated enforcment of cannabis (pokalo) in Hawaii LEADS to correlate prevelence and harms from meth.

Wow...

Now there is a thought! Pot ENFORCMENT = meth prevelence. So who's responsible now?

 
At 8:50 PM, Blogger MikeE said...

Of course stricter enforcement on Cannibis leads to higher use and pushing of Meth. Due to the fact that higher enforcement makes it a better deal to manufacture meth due to the high return on investment vs pot, hence the incentive to push it.

Milton friedman and others have demonstrated that as enforcement is increased, the demand for crack, meth, speedballs and other dangerous, impure, highly addictive and strong substances increases.

The same thing *will* happen in New Zealand if BZP is criminalised. Its disgusting really.

 

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