Tuesday, November 09, 2010

More futility

Yesterday the government released its latest progress report [PDF] in its "war on P", in which it trumpeted its "progress". Apparently, police are seizing more P and arresting and convicting more people for using or selling it than ever before. This is interpreted as "progress", a positive sign, but its not - its just a cost of doing business. What matters is price, purity, and availability. And all of those indicators show no change whatsoever.

According to the report, the median retail price of P is $100g / point - exactly where it was 4 years ago. There has been "no significant change" in purity according to users - something the report masks by refusing to give statistics on the purity of samples seized by police. As for availability, it has "been largely stable in recent years". Which means that all those arrests, seizures and convictions are making no difference at all where it matters: to users trying to buy P on the street.

Albert Einstein famously said that insanity was doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. That's exactly what the government is doing in its "war on P". It just keeps banging its head against the brick wall, and expecting it to move this time.

I don't have an answer to this problem, but I know that what the government is doing isn't it. Time to try something new.