Sinaloa cartel flies more aircraft than Aeromexico

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Though most of the world's largest narcotics gang's aircraft are a lot smaller than the Mexican flagship carrier's planes, the Sinaloa have flown at least one Boeing 727; the planes fly drugs, gang members and bales of cash. Read the rest

Nixon started the War on Drugs because he couldn't declare war on black people and hippies

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Nixon aide/Watergate jailbird John Ehrlichman confessed to Dan Baum that Richard Nixon started the War on Drugs because "We knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be either against the war or black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin, and then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities." Read the rest

Gay Tory MP outs himself as a "poppers" user, slams proposed ban

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UK Conservative MP Crispin Blunt, former Minister for Justice, has "outed" himself as a user of poppers -- alkyl nitrites, a psychoactive inhalant often taken before sex -- and decried his party's plan to class poppers as an illegal drug. Read the rest

Irish government to decriminalise personal quantities of many drugs

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Aodhán Ó Ríordáin the Irish Minister of State for New Communities, Culture and Equality, announced that his government is opening safe injection sites, will introduce a new Misuse of Drugs Bill bill in early 2016 that will decrminalise possession of "small amounts" of drugs including heroin, cocaine, and marijuana, and "as far as possible drug addiction should be removed from the criminal justice system." Read the rest

Thanks to the meth wars, cold medicine's effective ingredient isn't

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When the Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act of 2005 passed, pharmacies moved all cold-medicine with the actually-works ingredient pseudoephedrine, only available on request and with a copy of your ID. In its place, the pharmacy shelves were restocked with phenylephrine, which was alleged to work just as well. It doesn't work at all. Read the rest

LA Whiskey Society tastes and reviews "medicinal" whiskey from Prohibition

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From 1920 to 1933, the only way to drink whiskey in America was to get a doctor's prescription, which would be pasted on the bottle (max one bottle/person/week) -- much like the "medical marijuana" of today. Read the rest

John Oliver on Civil Forfeiture

As always, John Oliver's take on something newsworthy, corrupt, and jaw-droppingly absurd manages to nail it straight through the beating heart. Read the rest

America is crazy when it comes to drugs

Ethan Nadelmann, founder and executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, delivered this TED Talk at TEDGlobal 2014 about the insanity of the drug war.

The reason some drugs are legal and others are not has nothing to do with science or health or the risk of drugs, and everything to do with who uses, and is perceived to use, certain drugs. If the principal smokers of cocaine were affluent older white men and the principal users of Viagra were young black men, using Viagra would land you time behind bars.

Read the rest

City Attorneys train local cops to use "wish lists" for civil forfeiture

In "continuing education" seminars, cops are instructed to be on the lookout for people with nice stuff that can be easily resold, figure out a crime that those people might be guilty of, and tell the City Attorney so that that stuff can be grabbed through "civil forfeiture." Read the rest

Weed prohibitionists caught telling lies

Carrying on the sleazy tradition of professional liar Harry J. Anslinger (first commissioner of the U.S. Treasury Department's Federal Bureau of Narcotics), weed prohibitionists are stretching the truth and outright fibbing in a desperate attempt to reverse the nationwide trend towards legalization. Read the rest

SWAT team murders burglary victim because burglar claimed he found meth

The Laurens, GA County Sheriff's Dept broke down David and Teresa Hooks' door and fatally shot David Hooks on a tip from Randall Garrett, a burglar with multiple felony convictions, who said he saw meth while robbing their house. Read the rest

Seattle prosecutor drops all public marijuana tickets

As reported here, almost all of them were issued by a single cop, who hates legal weed and subjected his victims to humiliating rituals like flipping a coin to see which ones would get the ticket and which would walk away free. Read the rest

CBC warns Canadians: US cops will pull you over and steal your money

62,000 US drivers have been pulled over and had their cash seized by small-town American cops in the past 13 years, under civil forfeiture laws that let them declare anyone to be a probable terrorist and/or drug dealer and take their money without charge or evidence; the only way to get it back is to hire a lawyer and return, over and over again, to the tiny town you were passing through when you were robbed at badgepoint. Read the rest

DEA's D&D-themed patches

They may be corrupt, authoritarian, racist and sleazy, but their FPRG-inspired mission patches are cool -- but of course, square-ass pinks who take jobs as DEA spooks are so lame that they flog them on Ebay, for your ironic fashion pleasure.

Dungeons and Dragons-themed DEA Patches

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NY DA says he won't prosecute minor drug possession; NYPD officers ordered to go on arresting

The memo -- requiring Brooklyn cops to continue their racist, brutal stop-and-frisk campaign to make minor drug busts -- is required reading for beat officers.

Last year, the NYPD made over 8,000 minor marijuana possession arrests. As Matt Taibbi documents in The Divide, these arrests are part of a racist, all-out war on young people of color. Even if the DA won't prosecute the people that Brooklyn cops take into custody, the busts will continue to beef up the department's arrest statistics.

DA Thompson's order really doesn't eliminate that many possession arrests. His memo stated that those smoking in public (especially around children), 16-17-year-old offenders (who will be placed into a diversion program) and people with existing criminal records will still be prosecuted. This just leaves mainly the truly harmless: recreational users.

But the War on Drugs is every bit as essential to the NYPD as the War on Terror, and the NYPD (with new chief Bill Bratton's blessing) will continue to make meaningless arrests -- arrests made even more meaningless by DA Thompson's announcement.

If nothing else, this ensures the sort of job security that's usually only touted in sarcastic tones by the deeply cynical. According to the New York Times, arresting recreational users is full-time work for Brooklyn cops.

NYPD Tells Brooklyn Officers To Continue Making Low-Level Drug Arrests DA Has Stated He Won't Prosecute [Tim Cushing/Techdirt]

(Image: NYPD Occupy Wall Street Eviction, Nick Gulotta, CC-BY) Read the rest

Colorado's booming legal weed economy

It's not just the $10M in taxes the state's earned in four months -- it's also the $12-40M in law enforcement savings from not busting and imprisoning pot smokers. Read the rest

Small town sheriff buys tank: "the United States of America has become a war zone"

In rural Indiana, police agencies with smaller budgets are buying military surplus equipment, including tanks. By and large, these counties have no formal policy about when or how they can be used against Americans.

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