Criminal Law

Bolivia's concerns are different. Bolivia remains a main coca-producing nation, not a cocaine-trafficking one, even though more Bolivian nationals emerge to be getting involved in the refining stages of the industry. Bolivia's problems are consequently not traffickers or refiners however growers and the economic and social conditions that attracts them to the drug trade. Supply suppression along with vigorous policies to enhance the country's overall development, particularly for those who are drawn into the illicit drug industry, can be usefully pursued under the existing international-prohibition regime.

(Pamela J. Shoemaker, 1989). The present supply-suppression policy that comprises alternative development initiatives has had an optimistic impact on economic conditions for some Bolivian growers. Though, the strategy has not inevitably dampened their general enthusiasm for coca growing. (Pamela J. Shoemaker, 1989). Demand reduction, decriminalization, and conceivably even other kinds of harm reduction—the three basic policy orientations beyond supply suppression—would discourage Bolivia's farmgate coca prices, mainly where it has been politically unfeasible to carry out vigorous crop-eradication programs.

(Pamela J. Shoemaker, 1989). This would turn people's interest to alternative crops and alternative development—if they were accessible. Bolivians started growing coca for the international market in the first place for the reason that they needed alternative development. (Alfred Blumstein, 1995). Peasants may well end the practice when they no longer need coca so as to sustain life for self and family. Absent both coca and alternative development, though, Bolivian peasants would turn much more to political agitation and, probably, eventually to another civil war.

Desperate people with no alternative income possibilities sometimes do that. (Alfred Blumstein, 1995) These are not happy conclusions. Though alternative development has few negative moral plus social overhead reverberations, it is difficult and costly and would have to be applied worldwide. (Alfred Blumstein, 1995). Decriminalization or legalization advances unknowns that can merely be imagined but never determined definitively until after the fact. The immediate impact would be to hurt hundreds of thousands of growers and others who are tied economically to the illicit-drug trade.

It would as well undo the international drug mafia. (Jordan Goodman, Paul E. Lovejoy, Andrew Sherratt, 1995) However, at some point, as the current drug-control regime carries on deteriorating, some principal consumer countries may decide that the risks of the unknown are worth taking. Decriminalization/legalization would be remarkably beneficial to Colombia and countries like it. (Jordan Goodman, Paul E. Lovejoy, Andrew Sherratt, 1995). The current prohibition regime—when accompanied by alternative development strategies—hugely aids Bolivia and its producer equivalents around the world.

One country stands to win, the other to lose, if a radical change in international prohibition were to take place. (Jordan Goodman, Paul E. Lovejoy, Andrew Sherratt, 1995) This set of conditions clearly pits principal consumer and principal producer countries' interests to some extent against each other and even differentiates among producers themselves. Nonetheless, the cries of frustration are increasingly understandable: "The present course has formed no good end. Try something else. " What will the intended and unintended consequences be? Better than the present ones, we hope.

(Kathleen Auerhahn, Robert Nash Parker, 1998) I return to the question: What ought to be done? What can be done? What would the consequences be? " This study reveals the pragmatic attractiveness of at least two "oughts. " First, internationally, in socially productive ways we ought to try to reduce consumption abuse as well as its deleterious externalities; second, we ought to eradicate and avoid drug-control policies that generate unacceptable unintended consequences, or as a minimum reduce those consequences as much as possible. (Kathleen Auerhahn, Robert Nash Parker, 1998)

Direct demand reduction plus other harm-reduction strategies can assist to reduce consumption abuse and its deleterious externalities. Abandoning international supply-suppression strategies can assist net producer countries for example Colombia in their lethal struggle with drug-funded counter states. (Kathleen Auerhahn, Robert Nash Parker, 1998). This approach may hurt countries such as Bolivia, however the hurt can be ameliorated by noteworthy compensatory international finance that really helps achieve one of the most indefinable tasks of our time—distributive economic and human resource development.

(Joseph F. Sheley, James D. Wright, 1995) The international drug-control policy signals appear understandable enough: reduce consumption in principal consumer countries, abandon supply suppression in principal producer countries, and start considerable compensatory development in countries that would be disastrously hurt by this reorientation. (Joseph F. Sheley, James D. Wright, 1995) The unintended consequences of this domestic and international harm-reduction strategy cannot be recognized before implementation.

Some of the consequences could be unfortunate; however the prospects for constructive results are good. (Joseph F. Sheley, James D. Wright, 1995) We do have plenty evidence of some of the unintended consequences of the existing prohibition regime—global illicit-drug consumption largely unchanged if not increasing; a further delegitimation of the state; and provoked widespread violence, political corruption, social stress, and cultural distortions. Those costs are fairly high.

It is hard to picture that a domestic and international harm-reduction alternative could be anything but an improvement.

References:

Alfred Blumstein (1995). Youth Violence, Guns and the Illicit-Drug Industry; Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, Vol. 86 Benedikt Fischer, Louis Glicksman, Maritt Kirst, Wendy Medved, Jurgen Rehm (2001). Illicit Opiates and Crime: Results of an Untreated User Cohort Study in Toronto;