You know the old saw, if we legalize drugs the illicit drug dealers will go out of business. Enormous benefits will follow in the form of reduced crime and fewer ruined lives from drug addiction. [I know, I know, tobacco is addictive but weed isn’t. Sure.] This last one was somehow going to occur because when people can buy their drugs legally they won’t get addicted or dependent. No explantion of just how that works has ever given. It turns out everything said to flow from the elixir of legalization is a mirage. The black market is doing fine and probably growing.
The reason for this was predictable. Legalization fuels other addictions. The ability to tax drug addicts for the drugs they buy is nirvana for Politicians addicted to big government and high taxes. Those high taxes coupled with lots of red tape, to which politicians are also addicted, makes the price of legal dope high enough to create and maintain opportunity for black market sellers and their customers.
When the users can buy their ganja cheaper on the black market and sellers can set up shop at little or no cost and no red tape and then make terrific profits, the black market will thrive. That’s exactly what is happening in Colorado.
Do politicians learn after a while and begin to reduce the taxes and the red tape to make it more difficult for the illegal market to compete? No, Colorado governor Hickenlooper wants to increase the marijuana tax.
The legal market fuels the addiction politicians have to power and taxes. It also erodes hope of better government because all the new tax revenue creates more opportunities for politicians to spend on more things and to increase the size and power of government. It is axiomatic, as well as historically proven, that government power and government corruption are directly proportional.