Saturday, February 21, 2009

Libertarians And The Mexican Drug War

Amanda has a good post about hell breaking loose in Mexico as the government faces off against drug cartels. 6,000 people have been killed in drug-related violence in the past year. In a twist I hadn't heard about before, the government is bringing in the military to patrol some especially violent regions, people are protesting the military presence, and the government is saying that the protestors are backed by the cartels. From our perspective, it's hard to know whether this is the case.

I wondered whether the DC libertarian infrastructure was making noise about the Mexican drug war. And as it turns out, they are -- here's one of Cato's foreign policy guys writing about it. Here's some other stuff they've got going on. You can easily google up more if you like. And, hey, good for them.

Now, libertarians aren't the sort of big political bloc that will put you over the top in your Senate race, but they're pretty well represented in elite public opinion. Which is sort of interesting, given that the venues of elite opinion don't usually carry much commentary that's supportive of drug legalization, whereas they've got plenty of other libertarian stuff going on. I don't know how you'd build such a thing, but I'd be amused to see a map of media outlets where you find pro-legalization commentary versus places where you find libertarian commentary that better serves the interests of the wealthy, like incorrect histories of the New Deal.

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