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I'll Have A Porous Border With "Cheese" Please

Bryan Preston at Michelle Malkin's mega-blog Hot Air is very upset about the "cheese" epidemic that's killing kids in Texas. Preston's no rabid drug warrior, rather he falls into the growing camp of frustrated observers who reject legalization but acknowledge that drug-freedom is not exactly on the march.

Here's his depressing conclusion, including my own optimistic reactions:
All around, it’s an awful story. Drug cartels will always stay a step or two ahead of law enforcement. Legalization really won’t work.
It worked against the alcohol cartels in Chicago. They were always "a step or two ahead" until their livelihood was transferred to private business owners. Poisonings from rancid bathtub gin went away too, as did violent turf wars. It was glorious.
Unless we find a way to license every weed patch, meth lab, crack house and "cheese" shop in every country in the hemisphere and enforce the relevant regulations, the drug networks will always find a way to operate outside the law.
Black markets for legal products are tiny and very rare. People buy their beer at the store, not from an alcoholic in an alley. Have some faith in capitalism, man.
Legalize one drug, they’ll just invent another one or mix a couple of current ones for a whole new buzz, and then they’ll sell it to kids no matter what age restrictions we try to slap on.
The current market couldn't be better designed to maximize dangerous merchandise and unrestricted youth access. We have everything to gain in these areas and nothing to lose. Recall that the whole premise of this story is that a new drug cocktail is killing young people.
They’re criminals, and that’s just what criminals do. Our lax border laws aid and abet these criminals in preying on yet another generation, and the media and political elites just paper over the inconvenient particulars. It’s a shame and a disgrace.
Yes, there's plenty of shame disgrace to go around. Criminals take over any profit-making opportunity left available to them, but drugs are far too valuable and dangerous to leave in crooked hands. As for the border, it's the drug war that incentivizes traffickers to cut holes in the fence. It's also black market corruption that fosters political turmoil throughout Central and South America. This is a big reason people are fleeing Mexico in the first place.

Bryan Preston, you hate the solution we propose. I know you do. But do you prefer things the way they are now? The dead youth? The turf wars? The porous border? The wasted billions?

Isn't it time to try something completely different?
United States
Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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Meth Wars

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John Harris

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