Guy Lawson

America’s Drug War is destroying Mexico


Guy Lawson, author of the Rolling Stone article “The Making of a Narco State,” discusses Mexico’s increasingly violent and destabilizing drug war, the fundamental changes brought about by NAFTA, the rampant corruption throughout Mexico’s government and civil society and why legalizing Marijuana is probably the best long-term solution to the problem.

MP3 here. (28:35)

Guy Lawson is the author of The Brotherhoods: The True Story of Two Cops Who Murdered for the Mafia and journalist for Harper’s Magazine and Rolling Stone.

13 thoughts on “Guy Lawson”

  1. Elections already are war, otherwise there wouldn’t be “campaigns.” The Rs have vastly escalated in the past 2 decades.

    I thought that the big focus on marijuana was that it is the only drug that can be tested for, because it is fat soluble and stays in the body long enough to be detected, whereas other illegal drugs are water soluble and cannot be detected after a very short time. (h/t Ehrenreich in Nickle & Dimed)

    Re: laundering drug money. Slogging thru a book on the BCCI scandal. They were big in that business. There must be another just as obvious candidate today as BCCI was before the truth came out. That is, a bank that is multinational, concentrated in tax havens & other bank secrecy havens, that is doing much better than anyone can explain.

  2. I wanted to say that the above comment isn’t completely true: For many abusers, valium is illegal (Schedule IV, Schedule II in some states) and is fat soluable and stays in the body for a few weeks, especially after repeated doses and accumulation.

  3. This was an excellent interview. It is telling that the mainstream press is not doing this issue justice. Rolling Stone, instead of say Newsweek is providing muckraking coverage of the drug war in Mexico. The war on drugs is a destructive force on the United States, Latin America, and parts of Asia which produce drugs. It is not an issue to laugh off, as President Obama recently did.

  4. Whenever someone makes the comment:
    “I’m as libertarian as it comes…but”, you know you’re dealing with someone that doesn’t have the slightest clue as to what libertarianism is. Poor Guy, the answers are right at the tip of his tongue, but his ideological (mindless statism) blindness prevents him from connecting the dots.

    Why is crack cocaine a “bridge too far”? “I’m not for taking people’s guns away, but something must be done”?!

    Scott, you did a good job of sitting on your hands for the most part (must have been frustrating). Too bad he didn’t fully embrace the tidbits of sanity you kept feeding him.

  5. hey scott i recall a show..where you stated you had tried cocain while purchasing bag of pot……………not to call you on anything i respect you alot and enjoy your show alot……………also i dont believe we are all somoking mexican pot in this counret….alot of the pot is grown here quit blaming pot smokers for mexicos problems

  6. This radio interview was informative and eye-opening, to say the least. However, I’m sure such exchanges have taken place before, say, back when booze was outlawed and people were beginning to question the wisdom of having made that choice. Here we are now, with history repeating itself either because we haven’t learned our lesson, or because the lesson was learned, all right, but is being deliberately ignored for any of a number of reasons.

    I am over 40 years old these days, and it has long since been time for us to solve this problem and move on. God, the energy, time, and resources we’ve wasted! I mean, am I going to die in another 40(60? 20!)years still hearing about America’s ‘war on drugs’? HA! Probably not, actually, because a big system like this one operating so inefficiently won’t function indefinitely. Just look at us right now.

    So, how about some serious talk about the legalization, say, of marijuana? Could the tobacco companies help with production, marketing, and distribution? The plant is easy enough to grow, and this country could certainly use the revenue. It could be made available to anyone over 18, or should there be an minimum age requirement at all? It could be sold anywhere tobacco products are sold, and naturally subject to taxation. Customers could choose nuggets for smoking in pipes, for example, or something like an individual joint, or perhaps even marijuana buds that have been processed until they are the more or less the consistency and uniformity of a small sack of ground coffee beans.

    Of course, inhaling smoke of any kind is a non-salubrious act in general, so maybe the way of the future is for us to learn to enjoy eating, rather than smoking, our marijuana. I personally would like to have a strawberry sodapop kind of cannabis-beverage, and the aforementioned ground marijuana could literally be used like salt or pepper, a seasoning to be added to a hamburger or steak just prior to consumption. In fact, it could be mixed with salt or pepper, in case finely ground marijuana particles don’t taste very good.

    And on we go!

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