Matthew's Foray into Blogging

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Throw Enough Money at It…

Despite providing the Columbian government with more than $4 billion since 2000 to combat drugs, Colombia’s coca crop expanded by nearly 21 percent last year, according to the Office of National Drug Control Policy. The White House’s explanation: rather than an increase in the crop’s size, the higher numbers may reflect a more thorough job of surveying the Colombian countryside. Interestingly, the numbers seem to be more reliable when they are favorable for the anti-drug efforts, the Houston Chronicle reports. When the CIA survey showed a decline in coca production in 2002, White House drug czar John Walters interpreted the figures as evidencing the success of the drug war: “These figures capture the dramatic improvement.... Our anti-drug efforts in Colombia are now paying off.” I’ve not been in the market for cocaine, but the continued ready availability of the narcotic on the streets also suggests that eradication efforts are failing. Even if the strategy has no chance of being successful, with enough perseverance and taxpayers’ money, any plan can work.

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