Prohibition: 16 Results


When a law bans exchanges wanted by everyone directly involved a number of things happen:

1) The exchanges continue;
. . .
15) The vast network of beneficiaries of the law applaud and lobby for its continuation, vilifying all opposition;

16) Everyone gets more and more discouraged and inclined to hate all humanity. This list is probably too short.
. . .
It is not enough to simply ban exchanges that have consequences we don’t like. The costs of doing it should be compared with the costs of not doing it. Those costs usually dwarf the costs that would arise from unhindered transactions.

Prohibition: 16 Results


So we now have a politician directly dictating medical policy to doctors at city hospitals. Some of us have been raising red flags about [Philosopher King] Bloomberg’s ban on smoking in privately-owned bars and restaurants, his ban on trans-fats, the farcical ban on large soda sizes, and his other paternalistic policies for years now. This is what happens when government decides it should have the power to protect us from ourselves. Let’s be clear, here. This policy is going to cause needless suffering. People who genuinely, legitimately need pain medication aren’t going to be able to get it. And guess what? Addicts and thrill-seeking teenagers will find other ways to get high.

Since the announcement, I’ve seen some reaction on the Internet expressing hope that [Nanny] Blooomberg is afflicted with some chronic pain condition, so he’ll be able to feel firsthand the suffering he’s causing with this policy. I wouldn’t go that far, though I understand the sentiment. But that also misses an important component of this policy: It only applies to the city’s public hospitals. Which means it will largely be poor people who are forced to suffer pain that can easily be treated. If [Nurse] Bloomberg’s ever afflicted with long-term, chronic pain, he’ll certainly get all the medication he needs to be comfortable.

One telltale sign that we’ve entered a bona-fide drug war hysteria is when government officials start treating people suspected of abusing whatever drug is causing the latest mass case of the vapors not as human beings–as citizens with rights–but as an enemy.

New Victims In The War On Painkillers


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