Goals of Market Interposition

Goal 1: To eliminate drug violence and drug-related crime.
Goal 2: To eliminate illegal drug commerce and related criminal activities as financial supports to criminal gangs, gangsterism, and corrupt
Goal 3: To arrest the processes of criminalization of young drug users.
Goal 4: To reduce reliance on costly, socially destructive and counterproductive criminal justice measures of drug control.
Goal 5: To arrest the social wreckage attending drug use and the war on drugs.
Goal 6: To abate the economic rewards to the seduction of new drug users and to retard and reverse the drug use epidemic.
Goal 7: To reduce harm from drug use, both to drug users and to society.
Goal 8: To reduce youth exposure to drugs and the drug culture.

These goals may seem commonplace, but in fact, they are all completely external to the current narrow objective of drug control policy. The analysis of the drug/crime epidemic reveals that the pursuit of the narrow goal of drug prohibition sets in motion social processes promoting use of increasingly dangerous drugs that magnify health detriments and attendant social costs. For only two of many examples, paraquat is added to the harm from marijuana, and the transmission of devastating blood diseases is added to the harm from intravenous drug use. These are completely avoidable consequences of prohibitionist zeal.

The eight goals of interposition far transcend in complexity the monomania that drives contemporary drug control policy amuck. Yet it has also been observed that all eight goals may be summarized in one - the seventh - harm reduction. There is elegance in that simplification, but it is also well to have the eight-point complexity to remind us of the details that properly must be addressed if human welfare is genuinely to be advanced through drug policy.

All of the eight goals of interposition must be served simultaneously through mutually compatible policy measures. There can be no tradeoffs; no sacrifice of one goal in favor of another. Progress toward any goal must also bring progress toward all of the others. How is that possible? By using the strategic goals of interposition as criteria in the selection of policy measures. The selected measures must exhibit the essential properties that serve the goals and their strategic purpose of controlling the drug/crime epidemic.


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