Kudos to the producers and editors at National Public Radio for the second time in a week for examining parts of the drug war’s underbelly, notably the economics of cannabis under prohibition and the immense problems created in America’s criminal justice system by its over reliance on informants.
Annually, over $30 billion in local, county, state and federal tax revenues don’t find their way to public tax coffers because the government continues to prohibit rather than tax cannabis-related businesses, products and services. To make matters worse, an estimated $300-$400 million is paid out annually by law enforcement to confidential informants and snitches.
Another Public Broadcast Corporation entity, the long-running documentary series Frontline, performed an important public service when it broadcast Snitch in 1999.
In a free society guided by a constitution that secures numerous rights and privilege to individuals–with checks and balances on government power–the over reliance of snitches by American law enforcement is yet another terrible outgrowth attributable to a 73-year old public policy, cannabis prohibition, that has failed to the point where even greater government atrocities are justified to maintain the failed policy.