Well, it looks like that's beginning to change. This year's World Drug Report 2009 from the UN Office on Drugs and Crime begins by dedicating its very first page to the idea of legalizing drugs.
Of late, there has been a limited but growing chorus among politicians, the press, and even in public opinion saying: drug control is not working. The broadcasting volume is still rising and the message spreading.
Much of this public debate is characterized by sweeping generalizations and simplistic solutions. Yet, the very heart of the discussion underlines the need to evaluate the effectiveness of the current approach.
What follows is an utterly fact-free attack on the legalization argument, relying on all the typical prohibitionist assumptions we've heard before: use will skyrocket, societies will be thrown into decay, and the decades of drug war progress we've supposedly made will be washed away in a raging torrent of death and despair.
It's annoying, to be sure, but it's equally beautiful to behold the sudden desperation and discomfort of the international drug war leadership. They now stand before us, stained and stigmatized by the grand and unambiguous failure of the policies upon which they once proudly placed their names.
It is truly a milestone for the drug policy reform movement that the drug war leaders of the world are now decidedly on the defensive.
Update: Pete Guither has more over at DrugWarRant.Â