This essay by Roger Noriega demonstrates the irrational outcome of pursuing policies and placing blames based on subjective moral valuations absent any cause and effect analysis.
U.S. and Mexican authorities are nearing agreement on an aid package to support Mexico’s courageous new offensive against the deadly drug syndicates that threaten both our nations. The stakes are high for the United States: We depend on Mexico as a cooperative neighbor and trade partner, and most of the marijuana and as much as 90 percent of the cocaine consumed in this country pours over our southern border. If Mexico cannot make significant headway against the bloodthirsty cartels, our security and our people will suffer the consequences.
The drug syndicates wouldn’t be deadly if drugs weren’t illegal. Instead, this is a consequence directly attributable to the moral crusade against drugs that readily ignores any notion of liberty. If people were free to make choices that some disapprove of, there would be no need to insert violence into the process of commerce. The persistent demand for drugs will not disappear. It is not the problem. Our relentless at-all-cost war is.
Other elements will prove to be more challenging to legislate or to implement. Congress and the Bush team will have to set aside feelings of distrust and polarization if they are to forge a deal that can win ample funding and long-term, bipartisan backing. U.S. lawmakers need to be brought into the negotiating process so that they can have confidence in the plan and will not seek to micromanage the fight against drugs in a way that will demoralize our Mexican friends. We must strike a balance between congressional meddling and the oversight necessary to sustain funding and political support. Moreover, waiting for the regular appropriations cycle means an eight-month delay. President Bush should move quickly to request urgent supplemental funds, and Congress should do its duty by acting with the urgency this task demands. Our government must reassure its Mexican counterparts that meaningful help is on the way.
Congress must fund the war and let the Bush administration handle the details. It’s their duty to know as much as it takes to continue funding the initiative, but not enough to question whether or not it makes sense. That’s a recipe for success. Aside from the quite unsuccessful war on drugs, I think we have another example in the news that shows how well such Congressional adherence to “duty” works. What sane person could argue that this is good?