Gun control, repressive government and the mafia?


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MeekandMild
September 15, 2003, 06:43 PM
I thought of this thread recently as I watched a television show about the Russian mafia.

It occurred to me that the conditions under which the Russian mafia (and come to think of it the Sicilian Mafia, the New York Irish Mafia, the Klan, Jesse Jackson's shakedown group and many other similar organizations) developed and flourished were:
1)government corruption with inadequate protection of business,
2)poverty and lack of legitimate opportunity for personal advancement,
3)prohibition of one or another form of entertainment, beverage, activity,
4)lack of communication between the normal citizens between themselves,
5), you guessed it, gun control.

So my question is this: Consider that the inner cities of the US have all the five conditions, what would be the best way to stop the growth of another generation of mafiosos in the US?

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Mark Tyson
September 15, 2003, 07:47 PM
There will always be organized crime because of the legislation of morality and illicit opportunities to make money in trafficking stolen goods. The best way to fight organized crime is to go after the money launderers - the bankers, financiers and the people who move the money. These three piece suit types are much less hardened than the people they are working for. Incidentally, this is also a good way to go after terrorist organizations.

Marko Kloos
September 15, 2003, 08:32 PM
Actually, the best way to fight organized crime is to stop enacting prohibitions that have no logical chance of succeeding.

Prohibition brought us the Mafia, organized crime, and NFA '34.

The War on Drugs brought us drug cartels, inner-city drug turf wars, GCA '68, AWB '89, and the 1994 Crime Bill.

Know the past, and learn from it....that's the only way to eliminate organized crime. It wouldn't be there if our legislatures hadn't made the ground fertile for it first.

Standing Wolf
September 15, 2003, 08:49 PM
Actually, the best way to fight organized crime is to stop enacting prohibitions that have no logical chance of succeeding.

I concur. Our nation's legal prohibitions are a hodgepodge of prejudices without a shred of scientific basis. Victimless crimes aren't real crimes. I don't doubt criminals would turn to new avenues if we were to decriminalize all the stuff and activities that now afford them so much revenue, but believe they'd have fewer opportunities to get rich quick, buy politicians, et cetera.

vmi93
September 15, 2003, 09:54 PM
Problem solved, guys.

Now all we have to do is to get all the 'thumpers and pleasure-Nazis to stop voting and we can cut violent crime in half. :D

I'm always amazed that the ideological descendants of a rogue rabbi who hung around with loose women and commercial fishermen can justify using government to force virtue on people at gunpoint. :rolleyes:

rock jock
September 15, 2003, 10:04 PM
Actually, the best way to fight organized crime is to stop enacting prohibitions that have no logical chance of succeeding.
Oh my. Another opportunity to rail against prohibition of [insert favorite gripe]:rolleyes: Organized crime flourishes when people turn to sheep and allow themselves to be victimized. In New York, experts estimate that influence over the construction industry by organized crime through overt control or indirect threats/extortion drives up building costs by 20%. Likewise, shipping, the fish market, and several other entire business sectors are set at a premium because of the mafia, or don't you remember a little controversy with the Teamsters. Last time I checked, concrete and halibut were still legal, even in NYC.

rock jock
September 15, 2003, 10:07 PM
I'm always amazed that the ideological descendants of a rogue rabbi who hung around with loose women and commercial fishermen can justify using government to force virtue on people at gunpoint.
I'm always amazed at people who enjoy the freedom and benefits of this country and yet to fail to recognize that its ideological foundation laid down by the Founding Fathers was based on the teachings of that rogue rabbi his Israelite God.

Nightcrawler
September 15, 2003, 10:16 PM
Um, hate to be the lone voice of discontent here, but ending the War on Drugs in the US wouldn't make the Colombian cartels go away. They'd just be legitimate businessmen in the US and would continue their nefarious ways in the rest of the world where drugs were still prohibited.

It also wouldn't make drugs go away, or make life go back to how it apparently was in the fifties, or whatever, anymore than banning them has. Drug decriminalization CERTAINLY won't make organized crime go away, especially on a world wide scale. (Unless you want to end prohibition, on, say, 17 year old sex slaves, too, which there is a massive illict global trade in.)

If people are suing gun companies because there wasn't a warning label on the gun that said "WARING: PULLING TRIGGER WILL FIRE GUN", it'd be fascinating to watch the lawsuits that would come against the drug companies when some addict took a little too much commercial heroine and died on the spot.

"But I didn't KNOW that heorine was BAD for you!" :rolleyes:

I should think that tort reform would be an important thing to consider along with drug decriminalization.

I'm always amazed that the ideological descendants of a rogue rabbi who hung around with loose women and commercial fishermen can justify using government to force virtue on people at gunpoint.

OOH! ZING! Way to stick it to those stupid Christians! Oh man you got 'em good!

Please. :rolleyes:

Question: How can you tell if someone is an atheist? Answer: Talk with them, and eventually they'll tell you, even if you don't ask.

Marko Kloos
September 15, 2003, 10:18 PM
rock jock,

I don't want to kick loose a religious debate here, but maybe you can get in touch with me via PM or email and line out for me the Bill of Rights, and the corresponding teachings of Jesus upon which they are based.

Oh, and organized crime springs up whenever the government takes it upon itself to turn a simple plant product into contraband with 10,000% profit margin. Simple economics, that's all.

Monkeyleg
September 15, 2003, 11:23 PM
All I know is that, in years past, I knew some middle to high-level gangsters pretty well, and I would trust them more than I trust our current crop of elected officials.

When they said you'd pay a dime on what you owed, you paid a dime. They didn't add on excise taxes, death taxes (well, not unless you wound up dead), or other hidden fees.

Compare any infamous mobster to the folks running the show today in DC, and I'll show you a relatively honest mobster.

rock jock
September 16, 2003, 06:04 AM
Oh, and organized crime springs up whenever the government takes it upon itself to turn a simple plant product into contraband with 10,000% profit margin. Simple economics, that's all.
Organized crime is not exclusive to contraband.

Oh, I will try to PM you with some info. It will take some time to do the research.

Mark Tyson
September 16, 2003, 08:53 AM
Yes, organized crime also profits from trafficking in stolen goods, protection rackets, human smuggling and various financial frauds. So legalization of drugs or prostitution won't make these organizations disappear. However, it will eliminate a hefty chunk of their profit. There are many models for drug legalization/decriminalization to follow - look to Europe for examples. The devil, as always is in the details, and there needs to be some serious planning done for how to deal with the societal effects of increased drug use which will probably follow(alcohol consumption DID drop somewhat during prohibition; it's logical to conclude that drug consumption will increase at least some). Unfortunately nobody is even talking about alternatives to the drug war.

Nightcrawler
September 16, 2003, 12:49 PM
it's logical to conclude that drug consumption will increase at least some

I'm glad to see someone arguing for ending the drug war actually ADMIT that. Most seem to act like drugs will just disappear if they're made legal. Quite the opposite, I think, once you start seeing advertisments for them on TV and such.

ReadyontheRight
September 16, 2003, 01:03 PM
Last time I checked, concrete and halibut were still legal, even in NYC.

I think the original point is that -- without legal access to guns -- the legitimate business owners in the concrete and halibut businesses have no means to protect themsleves from an organized force controlling their business using violence as part of negotiations.

rock jock
September 16, 2003, 01:06 PM
Ready,

I am with you on that point. I disagree though, that organized crime will not find a new avenue of income should drugs become legal.

jsalcedo
September 16, 2003, 01:12 PM
Most seem to act like drugs will just disappear if they're made legal. Quite the opposite, I think, once you start seeing advertisments for them on TV and such.

Think of it this way:

If an ounce of cocaine goes for $200 (guessing) with organized being in control then that profit goes to further organized crime.

If American pharmaceutical companies sell cocaine over the counter it would be $30 per ounce and less dangerous due to purity.
The mafia gets nothing unless they can beat quality and price (not likely)

That means dope heads will not have to rob as many little old ladies
and can work at Mcdonalds to pay for their fix.

Heroin would probably become almost free (derived from a common plant)

The junkies would not have to kill people, become prostitutes and would eventually get help or die from it instead of stringing themselves along for years at a time.

People would no longer be taking animal tranquilizers like PCP.

Police would have to start commiting their resources to actually helping
prevent property and white collar crime, catching rapists and patroling neighborhoods.

Gangs (more organized crime) would be hit hard when their main source of income dries up.

Making drugs illegal does not stop people from abusing drugs just like gun control does not stop people from abusing firearms.

cordex
September 16, 2003, 01:23 PM
I disagree though, that organized crime will not find a new avenue of income should drugs become legal.
*sigh*

So ... if it won't stop them 100%, we should just leave things the way they are? Interesting. Of course they'll find another illegitimate enterprise, but few could be as profitable as the drug trade thanks to our thoughtful gov't.

In drugs,we have given organized crime a relatively easy, high-return investment opportunity. I see no reason to continue to pay out the nose to guarantee organized crime's monopoly on drugs.

LiquidTension
September 16, 2003, 01:26 PM
If drugs were decriminalized there would definitely be a period of several years where drug consumption increased - the forbidden fruit would be made available for all to sample. HOWEVER - after a few years, the problem would fix itself.

Many countries have no drinking age, and they do not have nearly the problem with drinking that we have here - because everyone grew up with it. It is not a big deal to drink when you've been having wine with dinner since you were 9. When the current generation outgrew the drug scene, the next generation would have grown up with it and it would be the same as growing up with alcohol.

I'm mainly talking about marijuana, because it doesn't lead to violence (except when dealers/growers are involved - but that situation would be fixed with legalization). Hard drugs like heroin, crack, coke, and meth change a person's behavior and often lead to violence. These drugs should not be legalized IMO.

braindead0
September 16, 2003, 01:30 PM
I don't agree that drug use will go up if it's legalized. That's like saying murders will go up if they are legalized. The false assumption people make is that laws control society, they do not. Laws provide a framework for punishing behaviour and do nothing to control it.

If herion was made legal today, would you go out and start using it? I wouldn't...

Nightcrawler
September 16, 2003, 01:46 PM
I'm not saying I think the drug prohibition is working. As a rule, I try to stay out of this issue, as I have very strong persional biases against subtance abuse that prevent me from taking a truly objective look at it.

However...people will be more apt to try hard drugs if they're legal and readily available. Many people go on the assumption that if it wasn't safe to use, the government would/should ban it. So, if heroine was legal, they'd think, "well, they wouldn't sell it if it was dangerous", and give it a shot. Especially, you know, college students and the like, who in many cases will do nearly anything (I'm not the only one who's seen those advertisements for the Girls Gone Wild videos, right?) at least once.

However, as far as I'm concerned, they can go ahead. I once put it this way, just to turn some heads at a small conversation I was at. "I think drugs should be legalized." "Yeah, marijuana" they said. "No," I said, "all drugs." Why, I was asked. "Well, YOU want only pot legalized because it's the only illegal drug you want to do. I, however, don't do ANY of the drugs, so my reasons are very different," I told them. "College students, as a rule, are heavy substance abusers, right? Right. Well, the way I see it, the more of my 'peers' that overdose and die, the less competition there is for me to get into law school."

"You're sick," they told me, and I laughed. I laughed and told him to go ahead and have another cigarette. :evil:

I wasn't being serious, but it was funny. That statment does reflect my opinions on drug use, though. If you want to shoot up, fine, shoot up, just leave me out of it and don't get all upset if I don't want to talk to you. *shrug*

But then, even if drug use goes up with and end to drug prohibition, that would just be the price of freedom, yes? Freedom isn't free.

TallPine
September 16, 2003, 01:49 PM
I'm glad to see someone arguing for ending the drug war actually ADMIT that. Most seem to act like drugs will just disappear if they're made legal. Quite the opposite, I think, once you start seeing advertisments for them on TV and such.
Well, "statistically" that is guaranteed to happen.

If you ask someone a question on a poll if they use X, they are a lot more likely to admit it if X is legal than if X is illegal.

So all the people who lie and say "no" (for good reason) will now just say "yes" ... :) .... and so drug usage goes up. :rolleyes:

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