The Real Problem at the Border

The US is experiencing the worst drug addiction crisis in decades. Heroin addiction is out of control. Whole towns are being wiped out by heroin. I have students who are escaping such towns and they tell of terrible things. 

94% of all the heroin in the US comes from Mexico. In Mexico, cartels are slaughtering each other and the innocent civilians for access to the distribution areas of the drug in the US. Drugs cross the border with ease. 

The problem is that there is no evidence that clamping down the border will help. When there is such a huge demand, there’s no likelihood that it will go unmet. 

In the last years of the USSR, an attempt was made to battle alcoholism. But when the access to alcohol was limited, not a single addict got cured. Those of the lower social classes drank cologne and sniffed glue. Those higher up switched to hard drugs. The anti-alcoholism campaign turned out to be part of a concerted effort to promote drug addiction in the USSR.

Addicts will find their drug and the drug will find its way to them. Drug addiction rates can only be addressed from the consumption side. Treating people and creating conditions that will prevent new addicts from appearing will defeat cartels. Borders never did and never will. I wish this weren’t true. I hate drugs and I’d support any kind of border security that could limit the flow of heroin into this country. But there is no evidence that it ever helped. 


7 thoughts on “The Real Problem at the Border”

  1. After reading your posts about automation and seeing it in action at my local Israeli supermarket, I predict the addiction rates will soar, unless I am much mistaken and people don’t become addicted out of feeling useless and their life – pointless.

    What are other reasons for addiction, except the above and over prescription of drugs lending a helping hand too?


    1. Low self-esteem, oral stage traumas, and a negative father complex.

      On the positive side, treating addiction is so easy that psychoanalysts get their training in treating addicts. It’s the easiest thing there is for analysts to treat aside from things like migraines and gastritis.


  2. “The anti-alcoholism campaign turned out to be part of a concerted effort to promote drug addiction in the USSR.”

    Could you go into more detail about that?


    1. Gladly. So the Soviets knew they had to take the troops out of Afghanistan, right? That meant they would lose the part of world trade that went through Afghanistan (and that’s an enormous part of the world drug trade network.) They knew they needed a new arena to sell drugs.

      In the USSR, drug addiction was minimal and very marginalized. People used alcohol instead. But alcohol was legal and didn’t allow for such enormous profits. So a decision was made to push people towards drugs by withdrawing alcohol. It worked. Today, the drug addiction figures in Russia, for instance, are staggering. Much of the stuff that is completely illegal everywhere else is sold openly and cheaply to people of all ages in Russia. The narcomafias are a great asset to the Kremlin. The drug barons operate openly and without any fear. This is why there are no drug wars in Russia: the government is the cartel.


  3. The Colombian cartels have so much money that they have purchased small submarines for bringing drugs into the US. A drug sub was captured by the Coast Guard back in October with 5,000 pounds of cocaine. Does the wall go under water??


  4. Our inept drug enforcement efforts have put the cartels in business and given them their massive profits. We did the same thing in the 1920s with alcohol, with a similar lack of success. The alcohol ban simply put the Mafia in business. It’s past time for a different policy. (I feel the same way about drugs that you do, but I’m also a fan of policies that work.)


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