I have no proof of anything that I'm blogging about because if I did, I'd probably be dead already. But it all makes horrible common sense.
One of the mysteries of the 21st Century is why America continues to do battle on the war on drugs. When the European Union was trying to harmonize its legislation on marijuana for example, there was a debate between the countries that wanted to legalize a pound or kilo as opposed to the countries that only wanted to legalize an ounce. And here in America, President #44 admits that he inhaled.
Even more telling was the Washington Press Club Dinner hosted by Jimmy Kimmel who asked the audience of about 2,000 people how many of the hoi polloi guests had never tried mary jane. From what I saw on C-SPAN I counted four people who raised their hands. There appears to be no problem with elite usage of marijuana or cocaine, but the lower classes get to fill our prisons with drug offenders no more guilty than the average US senator. The last estimate I heard of our prison population is that about half of the inmates now doing time are in there for drug violations.
And so one must inevitably ask why the US government continues to spend billions of dollars on what Governor Arnold Schwarzengger called a harmless plant. Why spend billions of dollars on the scourge of reefer madness when a National Institute of Health study of 100,000 drug deaths arbitrarily assigned 1,000 deaths to marijuana while assigning 50,000 deaths to tobacco and 30,000 deaths to alcohol? The number was assigned arbitrarily as there has never been a death reported from a marijuana overdose. Why deny the US and state treasuries of billions of dollars in tax revenues that are literally there for the picking?
If you read the press on the interests that are against the legalization of marijuana you'll find the usual suspects. Giant multinationals like Budwieser and Seagrams are against marijuana. Tobacco companies with obsolete names like Phillip Morris or RJ Reynolds supposedly lobby against marijuana even though they've got brand names like Panama Red or Acapulco Gold squirreled away.
More recently the prison-industrial complex has supposedly weighed in -- companies like the Corrections Corporation of America. And the prison guards union of California has certainly been active in Sacramento, if not nationally. Last but not least, I'm sure that various Protestant fundamentalist churches rail against the killer weed in Sunday sermons and legislative halls. And yet, somehow I don't think this explains everything.
And here's where my deadly theory comes into play. First, we can be certain that Mexican and Columbian drug lords make billions of dollars in tax free money. The picture I put in at the top of this blog is a cash haul taken by Mexican police authorities, and that pile of $100 bills is worth about $1 billion. Evidently the survivors of the drug wars didn't have the infrastructure to effectively launder their money, and they were caught with their pants down. However I can assure you that the Columbians are still alive, well, and quite prosperous. The Columbians have a reputation for being very savvy businessmen and they are no amateurs. They have all of their systems down. And so one can assume that for them and other professionals there is no problem in making dirty money as clean as clean can be -- available for investment purposes in any number of totally respectable businesses.
When you drive from Tijuana to Ensenada you can see brand new empty skyscrapers which are advertised as luxury housing. Sometimes one empty skyscraper is having an identical twin built right next door to it, and both will be empty. But on the books, they're always 100% occupied.
Skyscrapers alone aren't enough to launder money. Legitimate businesses need investment too. After all, that's how the American Mafia went from Moustach Petes to Meyer Lansky to a whole host of Fortune 500 companies listed on the New York Stock Exchange as well as hedge funds. So where would one expect Latin drug lords to find eventual resting places for their money?
Here we have to thank both Bill Clinton for starting the ball rolling, and George W. Bush for getting the whole thing up to speed with 9/11. The Clinton administration started privatizing government functions in the 1990s. And the Bush administration went at privatization with a vengeance after 9/11. The last estimate of annual intelligence spending under the Clinton Adminstration was $28B a year. The last I heard of the intel budget it was north of $88 billion. That's a lot of chicken feed, and it's estimated now that fully 50% of our total intelligence operations are in fact private companies.
The Washington Post had a very famous series of articles entitled Top Secret America, and I urge everyone to look it up on the net. The series of WaPo articles detailed out the structure and function of the myriad of private contractors now serving the intelligence community, and I'm almost certain that you could find a private contractor in your neck of the woods if you searched through the website.
So picture this. You're a Mexican drug lord, and you want to put some of your clean money into an ongoing enterprise with guaranteed profitablity. Wouldn't it make sense to invest in some private security/intelligence firms that specialized in catering to the Drug Enforcement Agency, US Border Patrol, or other government agencies specializing in fighting the war on drugs? It seems to be a win-win situation as they say in the business world. Cost plus contracts from the US government, and you get the inside skivvy on any classified operations ongoing in counternarcotic operations.
And here we get to the issue of Citizens United and campaign finance reform. As a drug lord, you get to not only win-win, but you now have access as an American corporation to any lobbying services you may want to purchase in Washington, DC to insure that nothing radical (like legalization) was to occur, and you get to influence your favorite politicians through unlimited secret campaign financing.
There's the making of an easy to research news story in here, as someone with the right skills (and testosterone level) could investigate how much private security/intelligence firms were directing towards lobbying expenses. And one could correlate which lobbying firms in Washington were spending how much particularly to keep the war on drugs from being diminished.
Connecting the dots to Mexican drug lords would almost be impossible due to the nature of world class accounting tricks, legal legerdemain and shell corporations. However, if I were the head of the DEA or CIA, I would be a very strong but quiet supporter putting real teeth into campaign finance and lobbyist disclosure laws.