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Former Staffer Accuses Drug Czar's Office of Faking Statistics

Submitted by smorgan on
There exists a gaping black hole where the Drug Czar's credibility used to be. Even John Carnevale, a former big-shot at the Drug Czar's office is over at Huffington Post explaining that the drug war isn't going the way the White House says it is:

As an insider in the nation's war against drugs, I spent almost fifteen years in the executive office of the President. Eleven of these years were in the Office of National Drug Control Policy where I served four of the nation's so-called drug czars preparing the federal drug control budget, writing many of the national drug control strategies, and conducting performance measurement and analysis of the efficacy of those strategies.

In the latest 2008 National Drug Control Strategy, the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) -- the federal executive office agency charged with shaping this nation's national drug control strategy -- claims that America has reached a turning point in the war on drugs. In reality, we have little reason to believe a significant change has occurred. ONDCP based its claim on declining use for youth -- a trend that long precedes this administration's tenure -- but ignores the lack of progress with regard to adult drug use, rates of drug addiction, the inaccessibility of substance abuse treatment, and new emerging drugs of demand such as pharmaceutical drugs and methamphetamine. If America is to be successful in the fight against drugs, the first priority for the next administration -- Republican or Democrat -- must be to reinventing ONDCP as an effective policy office capable of leading the nation's struggle with drugs.

That is basically the most polite possible way of saying these guys have their heads up their asses. It's a familiar sentiment, to be sure, but not what one typically hears from the guy who used to write the national drug control strategy.

To be clear, Carnevale is hardly the new poster child for drug policy reform. He simply wants to curtail our failed foreign drug war adventures and bring the money home to be spent on prevention and domestic law-enforcement. But his remarks serve to illustrate that there remains next to no one in America at this point who believes a single word the Drug Czar says. In this context, it seems likely that none of the people who've run that office into the ground over the past 8 years will still be working there in January regardless of who is elected president.

Update: Pete Guither has more over at DrugWarRant.

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