The curious case of the cocaine codgers is now coming to a close as these geriatric gangsters are slowly convicted and sentenced. Sentencing would be difficult for the judiciary without mandatory guidelines. You want life in prison or 20 years? In the case of these conspirators, it’s all the same.
This just goes to show you that drugs destroy lives. You see it every day. A young guy starts with milk, which leads to cigarettes, marijuana, cocaine and finally meth or heroin. It isn’t always this route, but it’s damned close. Rush Limbaugh got on jelly donuts and the next thing you know he was doctor shopping for prescription drugs. One thing is for sure: milk and sugary treats destroy lives.
What destroyed the lives of the local drug dealers was greed. Money is destroying everything. From the Arctic ice sheet to John Hickenlooper’s chances of being re-elected governor, we are a country obsessed with one thought. How do I get more money? Of course, Hickenlooper will have a great job lined up as soon as he exits the revolving door from government to an oil company, so his path is set. Most people aren’t as shady.
Drug dealers are capitalists. They see a niche and fill it with a product Americans have a great desire to consume. Most dealers aren’t violent, only greedy. Many of our largest and most admired corporations are way more dangerous than a typical coke dealer. That doesn’t mean that a kilo of cocaine doesn’t have blood on it, but so does a pack of smokes and a fast-food cheeseburger.
There seems to be a human need to alter consciousness. We’ve been doing it since the beginning of time. Native Americans were using peyote in religious ceremonies, not to mention cleaning the cow manure off of mushrooms and actually ingesting them. Egyptians were making beer, god bless them. Everyone has been smoking marijuana so long that studies show our nerve receptors are shaped to attach to THC molecules as if we evolved with it. And someone, somewhere, even thought of licking psychedelic toads. If it can make us high, we’ll do it.
We’re deluding ourselves if we think we can defeat these insatiable appetites to mess up our brains simply by making it against the law. We are only setting up a system to send the capitalists that provide our consumables to jail. If that were a crime we’d all be in the hooscow.
Cocaine in Aspen has a long and storied tradition. We used to brag about scoring half grams from local waiters. Law enforcement largely ignored drugs as a victimless crime. On the local level, drugs usually are victimless although Aspen has seen at least one murder inside the city limits due to high-level dealing. On the bright side, the cocaine dealing has been so prevalent it has kept the meth dealers out.
You may have noticed that reports of murders in Mexico have decreased lately. It’s not because the narcissistic American media has decided to ignore another foreign country, it’s because that after 70,000 needless deaths the turf wars have been won. In case you’re wondering, the Sinaloa cartel came out on top.
Those 70,000 deaths, and even the murder in Aspen, are because of the laws the government has in place to stop the drug trade. Without prohibition the black market wouldn’t exist. We’ve proven that the murderous problems will immediately disappear when we legalized booze after Prohibition. That we are so foolish to leave such a lucrative black market in business and to allow such carnage is truly the definition of insanity. Drugs didn’t murder these people, government policy did.
It seems that the only illegal activities that are being targeted in this country are blue-collar crimes. No one has gone to jail for gambling away the world economy and there were plenty of victims in that crime. We allow the revolving door between government and business to remain even as all rules and regulations are routinely written to favor the corporations our so-called public servants are supposed to be regulating. They get paid handsomely for their trouble when they return to the private sector. Do we even know what corruption is anymore?
Selling drugs and selling influence are both based in greed. One has huge repercussions affecting the lives of millions while the other is drug dealing. If we’re going to continue jailing one greedy industry we should start jailing them all.
By the way, when Rush Limbaugh was convicted of using his maid to doctor shop for pharmaceuticals, it was determined that sending him to jail would accomplish nothing. And along a related line, Wikipedia reports that dogs in Australia lick psychedelic toads to get high. Jailing dogs would accomplish as much as jailing Rush. It would only cut down on some howling.
The convictions of the local dealers aren’t a victory by any stretch of the imagination. It’s a loss for their families, our community and the country, and proves the insanity of the system we have set up. Throwing 60-year-olds in prison for making money in a capitalistic society accomplishes zero. Cocaine is still available in Aspen. Nothing has changed.
Meet the new boss; same as the old boss.
Email Johnny at firstname.lastname@example.org.