Saturday, October 10, 2009

At the End of the Road to Serfdom

[from This Is True]

The first Sally Harpold knew there was a problem was when sheriff's deputies showed up at her home in Clinton, Ind., with a warrant for her arrest. But the evidence was clear: four months before, her husband had gotten a cold, and she went to the drugstore and got him some over-the-counter cold medicine. A few days later her daughter caught the cold, so Harpold stopped at another drugstore and got her some medicine too. Once the purchase paperwork was matched up, authorities realized she had committed the crime of buying 3.6 grams of pseudoephedrine, an ingredient of crystal meth, but also a common decongestant for runny noses. "The law does not make this distinction," says Vermillion County Prosecutor Nina Alexander. "I'm simply enforcing the law as it was written." State law limits purchases to 3.0 grams in any 7-day period. Harpold was taken away in handcuffs, and her local newspaper ran her mug shot on the front page with the headline, "17 Arrested in Drug Sweep". She faces up to 60 days in jail and a $500 fine. "It's unfortunate," said Vigo County Sheriff Jon Marvel, whose deputies made the arrest. "But for the good of everyone, the law was put into effect."

Kent comments:

I am not a ‘drug warrior’ and I doubt I every will be.  This is a good example of why.

In order to make sure no one ever plays with dangerous drugs, the government must become intrusive, and eventually totalitarian.  If you make every chemical component of every dangerous drug illegal, you eventually make almost every substance imaginable illegal.

Having done that, you start arresting innocent mothers of ill family members.  Such laws are not, contrary to this idiot sheriff, ‘for the good of everyone.’  They are wasteful.  Why should taxpayers spend the untold thousands of dollars that will be required to process and perhaps incarcerate this ministering mother?  Idiotic is perhaps too tame a term for this madness.

Who could possibly keep track of, or remember, how much decongestant he has purchased in a given time period?  Not only is the sheriff of Vigo County an idiot, the legislators who passed this law are nitwits – and I am trying to restrain myself here.

Hemp used to be used for rope-making.  I hear it is very good for that.  But, of course, it is almost impossible to grow it because it is the same plant that produces marijuana.

Intoxicating oneself is wrong, and it can be destructive of the social order.  But it is just as wrong to try to handle this problem in the counterproductive, pre-emptive, and thus weenified way that we do.

I my judgment, it would be better to shoot intoxicated people on sight than to arrest mothers who are trying to decongest their sick children.  Yes, I am being hyperbolic.  But why not just punish intoxicated people who actually harm someone else?  That is the way one deals with free people.  When you think you are dealing with serfs, slaves, and ‘the masses’ you do what they now do in Indiana.

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