"The boisterous sea of liberty is never without a wave."
"I have always loved marijuana. It has been a source of joy and comfort to me for many years. And I still think of it as a basic staple of life, along with beer and ice and grapefruits - and millions of Americans agree with me."
Hunter S. Thompson
"He that will not apply new remedies must expect new evils; for time is the greatest innovator."
The war against drugs has not really stemmed the growing number of heroin addicts and substance abusers.
Five Key Facts about UK Drug PolicyCourtesy Transform - Working for an effective drug policy
1) Prohibition costs billions each year
In 1997 the Treasury conservatively estimated that total Government drug spending was around pound;1.4 billion a year. Today's figure is much higher.
2) Rising drug use
Between 1974 and 1996 the number of notified heroin addicts increased by almost 2000% (Home Office). The UK now has the highest overall drug use in Europe (EMCDDA).
3) More drug related crime
2-300,000 illegal drug addicts commit over half of all UK property crime (worth pound;2 billion per year, Home Office) to fund their habits.
4) Increasing availability of drugs
Impressive drug seizures cannot hide the fact that drugs are cheaper and purer than ever before. In 1990 a gram of heroin cost pound;100 and was 15-20% pure. By 2000 it cost pound;60 and was 35% pure (NICS)
5) Rising profits from organised crime
Drugs are organised crime's biggest earner and the harder we crack down - the bigger the profits. The UK illegal drug market is worth pound;5-10 billion per year (Office of National Statistics, 1998) - and that's all tax free. The global illegal drugs market is worth pound;300 billion per year (Interpol)
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