Ex Mexican President Vicente Fox addressing the CATO institute

    Mexico is on the front line of the war on drugs right now, it’s on the route between the suppliers and the worlds biggest consumer of prohibited drugs, the home of prohibition, the USA. This is a video of the ex-president of Mexico, Vicente Fox, addressing the CATO institute about the need for change in his country regarding drugs policy.

    The CATO institute is a US based think-tank which describes itself as

    The Cato Institute is a public policy research organization — a think tank — dedicated to the principles of individual liberty, limited government, free markets and peace. Its scholars and analysts conduct independent, nonpartisan research on a wide range of policy issues.

    Founded in 1977, Cato owes its name to Cato’s Letters, a series of essays published in 18th- century England that presented a vision of society free from excessive government power. Those essays inspired the architects of the American Revolution. And the simple, timeless principles of that revolution — individual liberty, limited government, and free markets — turn out to be even more powerful in today’s world of global markets and unprecedented access to more information than Jefferson or Madison could have imagined. Social and economic freedom is not just the best policy for a free people, it is the indispensable framework for the future.

    It is 70 min. long but anybody interested in the legalisation issue, be it in favour or against, ought to listen to in full. Q&A start around the 37min. mark This is a keynote speech and is certainly worth watching, please pass it around.

    The CATO webpage is here

    • http://www.stopthewarondrugs.org Gart Valenc

      Thanks, Derek. As you rightly say, «Mexico is on the front line of the war on drugs right now», but we should not forget the millions of victims of this insane and irrational “war”. It is also worth remembering that other former Latin American presidents have been voicing the need to put an end to Prohibition and the War on Drugs on international forums and through a number of publications, in particular the ones published by the Latin American Commission on Drugs and Democracy

      http://www.drogasedemocracia.org/English/

      and by the Global Commission on Drug Policy

      http://www.globalcommissionondrugs.org/Report

      Finally, it is worth mentioning that even though the current president of Mexico, Felipe Calderón, had in the past expressed reservations about drug legalisation, he has somewhat somehow changed his tune and is now showing a more favourable position regarding legalisation — admittedly, for political and strategic reasons, he uses “market alternatives”, but the implication is obvious. This is what he said recently:

      «Consumer countries are morally obliged to reduce their vast economic demand. If you can’t cut it, cut the economic profits. You have to find how to staunch this demand. Seek out all possible options, including market alternatives, so that drugs trafficking ceases to be a source of violence in Latin America …»

      I do believe that now is a golden opportunity for drug consuming countries to unite around a common purpose and to pledge their support to producing countries to end Prohibition and the War on Drugs. It is time, indeed, that countries that have adopted harm reduction policies, or have decriminalised or depenalised the demand — the likes of Germany, Holland, Portugal, Spain, etc. — recognise that they have the MORAL OBLIGATION to support, promote and introduce changes in national and international laws seeking the decriminalisation or depenalisation of the supply, too. Not to do so is hypocritical, cynical and frankly speaking, criminal.

    • Anonymous

      So how are things going with the Clear campaign? I noticed only 10,000 sigs on E-petition site! Nothing really in the main media, ACMD being ignored – an intransigent Home Office – how did the manchester debate with hitchins go? Nothing on the Clear site?
      When does the sentencing council issue new quidlines? 

      I cannot get a reasonable answer from my Doctor as to why i cant get sativex and i dont know any Doctors in holland whom i can go see and get a bedrocon perscription

      I wrote my MP – he is as useful as an ashtray on a motorbike 

      I am left with one option – grow my own – which i have been doing – but worry a lot because i have two kids and live in a HOusing association housing – which means i will end up evicted if caught – i feel i’ve been lucky with 7 grows in the last few years – but know i get the feeling my luck is running out!

      Whom ever maintains the Clear website – can you keep it up to date with all the latest news and views – how about getting some politicos to chime in?

      How about getting Newsnight or Panorama to do a program on prohibition?

    • http://www.peter-reynolds.co.uk Peter Reynolds

      @psmith67:disqus  This website is only a part of CLEAR’s online presence.  Stay up to date on an hour by hour basis with the CLEAR Facebook page where there is a constant stream of information.

      On the lack of petition signatures, lack of mainstream media coverage, ignoring of ACMD, intransigent Home Office…. these are hardly news!  Dozens of us are engaged in camapigning every day up and down the country.  You are not alone in your frustration.  Perhaps you could consider joining in and making a contribution?

      If you stayed in touch on Facebook you would know the answers to the questions you pose – the Hitchens debate will be online this week, the Sentencing Council have deferred their report until the new year.

      CLEAR puts enormous effort into publishing a great deal of information on a daily basis.  All you need to do is stay in touch.

    • Anonymous

      Peter, when i get my redundancy this Thursday i will be becoming a member of clear