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2.3. A Policeman's Surveillance Report: Keeping an Eye on the Trail of the Bennett Plan PDF Print E-mail
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Grey Literature - DPF: The Great Issues of Drug Policy 1990
Written by Ralph Salerno   

The latest phase in along history of addressing the narcotics problem in the United States, began two years ago with the passage of the Anti-Drug Abuse Act (October 1988), which created the Office of National Drug Control Policy. This paper is a view limited to the perspective of a person who has spent more than four decades in the law enforcement field, and leaves to the expertise of others to examine and treat the many other complex and diversified facets of the subject. It is not an attempt to speak for anyone else, but it does offer to law enforcers and criminal justice personnel a point of view which might be helpful.

In the professional style of yesteryear's DRAGNET and Sgt. Joe Friday, one would wish to deal with "Just the facts," and not allow the persona and style of anyone involved in this true story of tremendous importance to the nation to intervene, but I confess at the outset that Director William J. Bennett makes this extremely difficult, if not impossible. There is a further admission on my part to an existing bias, one which existed prior to 1977, when I had completed three decades in and around law enforcement and Dr. Bennett was involved in the world of academe. Having been invited to contribute a chapter on organized crime for a book to be used at college level education for criminal justice professionals, I treated the subject of narcotics and wrote; looking into the future:

"After 1984 we will arrive at the logical conclusion that there is no way to cut off the supply of heroin and cocaine. We will then concentrate on trying to reduce the demand."1

In the intervening years many have come to agree with that statement. In the 1988 Act, Congress created for the new national office, the positions of Deputy Director for Demand Reduction and a Deputy Director for Supply Reduction. Throughout the 1980s federal spending against drugs had consistently given law enforcement a majority of budgets, in the high 70 and 80 percentiles, with abuse prevention, treatment and research receiving the remainder. In this law, the legislators recommended sharing between the two on a 50-50 basis, a definite departure in intent from past history. There was an additional departure from federal legislation; the bill contained a death penalty provision for "drug kingpins," endorsed by many in the Congress whose approval contradicted long debate and voting records to the contrary. There has not been an execution for violation of federal law in decades.2

The New York Times, (its reporter having read the lips of the President of the United States) reported on Jan. 26, 1989:

Bush, Citing Cost, Says Drug War Will Focus Largely on Education

President Bush said today that the all-out war on drugs he promised in his Inaugural Address would be mainly an educational effort rather than a law enforcement crackdown.

"The answer to the problem of drugs lies more on solving the demand side of the question than it does on the supply side of the equation — than it does on interdiction or sealing the borders or something of that nature. And so it is going to have to be a major educational effort."

It was somewhat surprising then, when shortly after his confirmation, Director Bennett announced that he would make the nation's capitol his "Test Case." The goal was to reverse the soaring rates of crime, violence and murder in Washington, D.C.. The surprise came when it became clear that this was to be essentially a law enforcement effort supported by additional prison space, with up to $80 million to be spent through seven federal agencies.

In the first week of September 1989, the national strategy was revealed. In fairness it must be considered as much the Bush Plan as the Bennett Plan, for it clearly indicated that the president had been convinced of the wisdom of a reversal of his earlier opinion that the program would be focused largely on education efforts. The budget allocations went 71 percent for arrests, interdiction and incarceration and 29 percent to education, treatment and research. The chief executive had changed his mind, or had it changed for him. What happened to the Congressional intent of a 50-50 division of priority? The Office of National Drug Control Policy, in rather cavalier fashion, indicated that this had been only a "suggestion" and was not binding. With a greater total budget, there were a variety of increases but the greatest were 100 for more federal prisons and another 100 increase was in the amount spent by the military in drug efforts. Not long before, then-Secretary for Defense Frank Carlucci and his Chiefs of Staff had opposed any expansion of the use of the military on the basis that it would be both, improper and unsuccessful. The Plan was a total "get tough," plan more law enforcement, more punishment, more of the same of everything in programming that had not worked in more than 30 years. Joseph Biden in the Senate and Charles Rangel in the House, committee chairmen with major direct involvement in drug issues, did not indicate major criticism of what had been brought forth. Director William Bennett could not be said to have entirely failed to consider the supply/demand dual considerations. In a mid-April speech to newspaper editors in Washington, D.C., he had said:

It is now conventional wisdom among many to believe that work at the criminal law side is not the answer. No, the real answer lies on the demand side. Of course, that's true. That's "trivially true," as one says in philosophy. It's obvious. If people don't want it and didn't take it, we wouldn't have a problem. No, the question is, "How do you encourage people to stop?"

He had evidently not found, or else had little confidence in any answer to his question. One need not match the Director's own Ph.D. in Philosophy to know that part of the answer lies in not ascribing so low a priority that you give it only apart of 2 percent of your resources!

Bennett began a series of trips about the country seeking to build up political support for his program, and did not find much. It had been noted that while he had strongly encouraged the construction of new prisons, that the various states were going to have to devise means of obtaining funds from already enraged citizenries simmering in tax revolt. If mayors in large cities with major drug problems expected a flow of federal funds to them from Washington they were disappointed that there would be no such direct funding. They were going to have to settle for whatever trickled down from grants made to state governments.

One did not need a background in police intelligence work, or analysis of any kind, to report the Director's response to his early campaigning. Everything was someone else's fault! From the Miami Herald, Nov. 7,1989:

Frustrated Drug Czar Vents Anger Bennett: Leaders Lack Will for a Fight

Appearing frustrated and disheartened, drug control director William Bennett said he was concerned that the country's leaders lacked the "will, the patience and maybe the stomach" to fight the battle against drugs. "I just don't see the sense of urgency anymore" in Congress and among state and local lawmakers.

He accused Congress of dallying, state legislators of posturing, educators of hypocrisy and some drug-producing nations of inaction. He said the effort was being undermined by the "defection" of leaders advocating some form of legalization, citing the example of former Secretary of State George Shultz. "I'm mad. I'm frustrated. I'm worried."

Anger, frustration and worry led to another major change. In addition to street dealers of drugs on the streets of the District of Columbia, major foes had been identified as including Latin-American cocaine cartels and Asian heroin combines. These were set aside, at least temporarily. The Drug Czar would declare war on the reformers who suggested legalization of drugs. The strategy was to fire the first shot at Harvard University (from which he obtained his law degree). On Dec. 11, 1989, he spoke at the John F. Kennedy School in a manner that Scripps Howard News Services described as "Bennett launches plan against legalization." The Washington Post politely said he thought the idea of legalization was the product of "intellectual liberals." Actually, with William F. Buckley, regarded as one of America's most respected conservatives and in favor of legalization, keeping count, Bennett went far beyond the word "crazy" that he had earlier used. In a 36-hour period, during and after the Cambridge address, he added the words, "superficial, disingenuous, morally atrocious and stupid." Speaking for himself, Buckley paraphrased Winston Churchill, who under similar circumstances had said, "It makes me look stupid, which I ain't." Buckley, who says he admires Bennett, gave this advice:

He should do pushups in the morning until he recaptures his old strength. He is very much needed as an advocate of present policies, because those policies cannot defend themselves.

Anthony Lewis, columnist for The New York Times, who had been mentioned in the Harvard speech came back with, "Increasingly, Bill Bennett comes over as a ranting popinjay." It was this writer's opinion that the drug czar's use of vernacular was prompted by frustration over the results of his Washington, D.C. "test case."3

The day after Bennett's talk, Federal Judge Robert Sweet, of the U.S. Southern District of New York came out in favor of legalization. In so doing he joined a growing list which already included, George Shultz, William Buckley, economist Milton Friedman, Ira Glasser, National American Civil Liberties Union executive-director, Arnold Trebach of the Drug Policy Foundation, Dr. Lester Grinspoon, Harvard Medical School and Professor Ethan Nadelmann of Princeton University. "Liberal intellectuals" are not generally found in the law enforcement community. Yet, I am proud to stand alongside police colleagues who favor legalization, such as Chief David Couper, Madison, Wisc., P.D.; Chief Nicholas Pastore, New Haven, Conn., P.D.; Chief Joseph McNamara, San Jose, Calif., P.D.; Brian Kelly, former commanding officer, Narcotics Unit, Hartford, Conn., P.D.; Deputy Chief Joseph Russo, Passaic, N.J., P.D., and many others who think of themselves as police officers of considerable experience, rather than intellectuals of any political stripe.

Of course the areas of disagreement are not limited to the growing debate on legalization. One of the early telephone calls made by William Bennett, when designated, was to Lee Dogoloff, who had been a White House advisor to President Jimmy Carter. Dogoloffs advice was to make the ratio 70 percent for demand reduction 30 percent for enforcement. Bennett had directly reversed that. Jeane Kirkpatrick, who has held responsible positions in Republican administrations is in disagreement with Bennett. Her March 18, 1990, column reads :

Drug production is not the problem. Consumption is the problem. Even if we were able to cut off all importation of foreign produced drugs, we would not solve the problem.

„[T]he problem is fundamentally a domestic one. Obviously the U.S. government can hardly hold others responsible for a failure to control problems that we cannot control in our own nation's capitol.

Francis C. Hall, was the Assistant Chief Inspector, commanding the New York City Police Department's Narcotics Division. With 1,300 officers it is the largest unit of its kind in the world. He describes a condition that is not widely appreciated. To shouted suggestions of immediate execution for drug dealers, he and other police executives, (that political leadership delegates to face angry citizens at public meetings) had to explain the U.S. Constitution and due process of law, and the need for both of these to be supported. He points out that during the last half of the 1980s decade, it was policeman who became the widest defenders of the civil liberties guaranteed by law. Hall was among those interviewed to be one of Bennett's top deputies. His feeling that the millions of dollars spent on the South Florida Task Force (led by then Vice President George Bush) had done nothing to reduce the flow of cocaine into New York City certainly eliminated him from consideration.4

December 1989 was not a good month for the Bennett Plan. In addition to the responses to his Harvard speech, and Judge Sweet's "defection," law enforcement voices, in disagreement with the Director began to be heard. On the fifth of that month, speaking at a forum sponsored by the Michigan ACLU in Lansing, the state's own drug czar, Donald L. Riesig, an attorney of impeccable credentials said:

1.    The role of law enforcement is, at best, a holding action until better alternatives come along. He had been told that by every single law enforcer he had consulted in the state of Michigan, and he had spoken to many.

2.    The battleground is within the United States and we should not try to fight it in South America, Mexico or anywhere else.

3.    The heaviest stress of government programming should be on demand reduction and treatment.

The law enforcement community had been aware for some time that the billions of dollars spent in the past decade had been utilized in dedicated effort, which, in solely law enforcement terms, had been tremendously successful. Their evidence was to be found in the overcrowded prisons throughout the nation, filled with the "good cases" the law enforcers had produced in court. Yet, no one thought the problem had improved, and the police agreed with them in that evaluation!

In a Dec. 26 interview with The Washington Post, Chief Isaac Fulwood in the District of Columbia spoke out:

"Bennett's approach is absolutely wrong. Don't send me more [police].... Make sure we've got a treatment bed for everyone that needs a treatment bed.... Let's start educating our kids at prekindergarten with a massive educational program about substance abuse." Mr. Bennett is fixed instead on imprisoning people, an approach Chief Fulwood said was "missing the boat."

Other respected law enforcement voices were heard.5 Patrick Murphy, former New York City Police Commissioner:

You hear police chiefs saying things they didn't say a few years ago. Like: "Do I want to lose a cop in a raid on a crack house when there are 100 other crack houses in my city? Let's talk about alternatives."

Chief Charles A. Gruber, Shreveport, La., president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police:

For all our policing, we understand that law enforcement is not the solution to the problem of drugs in our society.

Chief Fulwood added:

Our best efforts have not stemmed the flow of drugs. We have to do other things. We've got to expand these programs [educational efforts directed toward children]. We target kids who are high risk and get them before they get into criminal activity. It's cheaper and makes more sense.

The pattern continued into early 1990. Robert Stutman retired as head of the New York Regional Office of the U.S. Department of Justice's Drug Enforcement Administration and deplored the lack of drug treatment in federal policy. Michael Levine, a DEA Supervisor who the agency had held to be one of its most superior undercover operators, retired and voiced his outrage at policies that placed the lives of drug investigators at great risk in programs he considered futile. Law enforcement officers in drug enforcement have found visiting wounded, maimed and injured colleagues in hospitals a depressing occurrence that happened frequently, and attendance at funerals was not unusual. A matter of ever growing concern to police administrators is the fact that assignment to the narcotics unit today, constitutes the most dangerous assignment ever given to officers, and they have the casualty figures to substantiate this. On Jan. 10, 1990, together with Eric Sterling, President of the Criminal Justice Policy Foundation, I addressed a letter to Director Bennett. We suggested that his office collate national data on law enforcement drug casualties and report them on some regular basis to the public, citing the fact that war casualties are regularly treated thus, right up to the recent military incursion into Panama. We included in our definition of casualties agents and officers falling victim to the use of drugs, and those who succumb to corruption. Our reply came from Daniel Casse, Special Assistant to the Director, and it read:

Thank you for your letter to Director Bennett suggesting a regular tabulation of casualties in the drug war. Our office shares with you the desire to have a complete up-to-date stock of important drug-related data. I'm afraid however, that your suggestion to include the number of drug enforcement casualties misses the essential point of having long- and short-term objectives (emphasis added).

The thrust of National Drug Control Strategy is to reduce drug use. That's why we focus on a set of various indicators that, in one way or another, help us measure the amount of drug use in the U.S.

In the plainest of non-governmental English, Dr. Bennett is interested in data showing whether drug use goes up or down. How many law enforcement officers are killed, maimed and wounded in trying to achieve his goals in the War on Drugs does not fall into thecategory of "important drug-related data" to the Office of National Drug Control Policy. None of the law enforcement officers who have read this exchange of correspondence was enthused about the lack of interest in themselves and their colleagues. Americans thus find themselves in a very strange position. During 1990 the Mexican government paid for full page ads in leading newspapers to remind our citizenry that 110 of their police officers lost their lives in that country helping to fight our war. By mid-1990 an average newspaper reader knew that the total number of Colombian police officers killed thus far had reached 144, in their cooperation with the Bush-Bennett' War on Drugs. But our government would not report its casualties in this same war!!

Having been a police intelligence analyst I can make the educated prediction of what is happening and what will continue to be the case. The number of casualties will probably be reduced, not as a matter of national strategy, but as the result of changes by responsible law enforcement commanders. The zeal of enforcers will be better controlled. Drug raids are now planned with greater priority for the safety of personnel. Today, in some jurisdictions, entry into hazardous premises is not made until there is sufficient back-up, with some chiefs insisting upon utilization of Special Weapons Attack Team (SWAT) units. There is a rotation of personnel out of drug enforcement, particularly from undercover assignments to reduce mental stress damage arising from envelopment in the horrible milieu. On June 18, 1990, The New York Times reports:

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is taking steps to ease its policy on the use of deadly force, allowing agents to shoot not only to defend themselves but also to stop fleeing suspects believed to have caused death or injury.

In a broad sense, the plan to shift (from former guidelines) reflects the increasing danger confronted by agents, particularly in fighting drug-related crime.

Representatives of some law-enforcement groups said the change would probably prompt local police departments to re-evaluate their own policies.

Automatic pistols with greater ammunition capacity than that offered by six-shot pistols have been widely adopted by police around the country, to allow better defense from weaponry encountered in drug situations.

William Bennett and his staff spent six months in research for the promulgation of the National Strategy. A good investment would have been to take one week of training at a good Police Academy receiving initial police training where rookies learn that THE FIRST FUNCTION OF THE POLICE IS TO PREVENT CRIME! Arrests come only after society's failure to prevent. This lack of understanding may represent the widest area of disagreement between the Drug Czar and "the troops" expected to fight his war. The police community in the United States believes in the value of Prevention Through Education for reducing drug demand in a way that the man who served three years in a prior administration as Secretary for Education does not!

Bennett Doubts Value of Drug Eduestion6

William J. Bennett, the nation's drug policy director, raised questions today about the effectiveness of drug education programs and said children were more likely to respond to aggressive law enforcement and assured punishment.

In testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Mr. Bennett rejected the argument that education was the major solution to the nation's drug problem. "Should we have drug education programs or should we have tough policy?" asked Mr. Bennett. "If I have the choice of only one, I will take policy every time because I know children."

He continued to maintain this stance in a May 4, 1990, interview with the Miami Herald:

Drug control director William Bennett called for a policy of "consequences and confrontation" that would guarantee punishment for recreational users and hold parents responsible for their children's crimes. Bennett called for more prisons, more law enforcement officers and more prosecutors.

It is traditional for police leadership to simultaneously face increased demands for services with ever limited personnel resources. With great diligence then, planning is dedicated to the allotment of such resources. Darryl Gates, Chief of the city of Los Angeles Police Department has never been called a "softie." When the occasion calls for it he can be as tough as anyone. He is a highly regarded police leader. Years before William Bennett was appointed Drug Czar, Gates brought the Los Angeles Unified School District into partnership in a program named Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE). Objective monitoring having proved it successful it has spread through more than 2,000 communities in 49 states, is duplicated in three foreign countries and is used in schools operated by the Department of Defense overseas. The New York City Police Department has a similar program. Aimed at fifth and sixth graders it brings a desired result. This is a strange war; everyone is in step except the leader.

In his own version of Crime and Punishment, Bennett strongly advocates the construction of many more prisons. This is another area where his range of knowledge and strong convictions places him at variance with lifetime professionals in the field of corrections. In his advocacy of prisons, he never mentions the traditional problem of substance abuse by the inmates of such prisons. He does not suggest that money be dedicated to solve this longstanding problem; it is simply ignored. A prison is a very limited piece of geography, most often surrounded by a high wall or fencing. Every person residing therein is considered to be in the care, custody and control of government. If the Director is not interested in learning how to keep such limited and controlled areas and populations drug-free, how much chance does he have with the streets of Washington, Detroit, New York and Los Angeles? I posed this question to journalist Bob Vacon of the Hartford Courant. Unfortunately, Mr. Bennett was not available to him for an interview to answer this question, but he persevered. His findings were reported in a May 1990 series in the Connecticut paper:

Actually the [federal] government can point to a drug-free prison. In 1989, Marion Federal Penitentiary in Illinois — which has the strictest security of any federal prison — was declared drug-free. Out of 63 federal prisons it was the only one that was drug-free — [My stress added] said Randy Davis, spokesman for the federal Bureau of Prisons.

The reporter interviewed Michael Donahue, acting spokesperson for the Connecticut Department of Corrections.

"Without doubt, hesitation or reservation, drugs play a major role in the incarceration of citizens and as a result in the tremendous overpopulation of our prisons."

Indeed, convicted drug felons have little trouble getting drugs in prison. Donahue readily acknowledges that no prison in Connecticut is drug-free. "Institutions and jails throughout the country have always had to deal with, and address the problem of, drugs in correctional facilities," he said. "If you have a drug problem in the streets, what makes you think you wont have one in prison?" he asked.

In June, when addressing the Texas Correction Association state convention, I put the question to the officers of the group. They knew of no drug-free prison in Texas, or any other state. It would seem to be prudent to solve this basic prison issue if we are to build new ones.'

The full range of disagreement with current policy is not limited to the United States. In February 1990, President George Bush attended the Cartagena, Colombia, Drug Summit, meeting with the chief executives of three drug-producing countries. He returned concurring with their demands that there be better efforts at demand reduction in the United States. Later in February, a General Assembly committee of the United Nations shifted the drug stress of the international body to an emphasis on the need to cut U.S. demand and afford compensation for losses to drug-producing nations. Can the United States possibly commit itself to a policy of giving money to stop production of heroin poppies and coca leaves? If it sets such a precedent, will it be expected to do so for every nation that might take up such production? The world is telling us that concentration on demand reduction is the much more realistic policy we must proceed with.

Let us examine in better detail some of William Bennett's positions. In the March 1990 Readers Digest, he writes that drug legalization would lead to an increased use of drugs, by a factor of five or six. Thus, it we can have as many as six million addicts, this number would rise to somewhere between 30-36 million. It is the belief of many police officers that the ready accessibility of drugs in the United States in the last decade, coupled with comparatively modest prices, has soaked up most of those who might be interested in drug use; to the extent that there would not and could not be such an increase. Is there some basis for either contention? Bennett's is based upon a model of the National Prohibition (of alcohol) Era, something that approaches being 60 years old! He states :

All this should be old news to people who understand one clear lesson of Prohibition. When we had laws against alcohol, there was less consumption of alcohol, less alcohol-related disease, fewer drunken brawls, and a lot less public drunkenness. And contrary to myth, there is no evidence that Prohibition caused big increases in crime. No one is suggesting that we go back to Prohibition.8

Why not, Mr. Director? If Prohibition of alcohol was such a rosy picture and you use it to support current Prohibition of drugs, why don't you advocate Prohibition of alcohol? Alcohol abuse kills about 150,000 persons per year in the U.S. and drugs less than 7,000. But does anyone have any empirical data? Yes, there are two polls to look at. One is the Connecticut poll, done by the University of Connecticut and the Hartford Courant newspaper, and the other was done for the Drug Policy Foundation of Washington, D.C. Both showed that less than 4 percent of respondents would be interested in trying any now illegal drug should they be legalized.9 Bennett continues:

What about crime? To listen to legalization advocates one might think that street crime would disappear with the repeal of our drug laws. They haven't done their homework. Our best research indicates that most drug criminals were into  crime well before they got into drugs.

I know of no legalization advocate (and neither does Bennett) who has ever said that street crime would "disappear." They all believe it would be considerably reduced. That most drug criminals were into crime before drugs is true. But what else does the research show, which the Director omitted? That when such persons get into drug addiction the rate at which they commit crime necessarily escalates. It also shows that when provided with an addictive drug, in controlled programs sponsored by government, the rate of crime returns close to what it was before addiction. This was found to be true in the pioneer days of the Dole/Nyswander Methadone Maintenance program, started 25 years ago, and is corroborated by research since then. Opponents of legalization avoid discussing Methadone maintenance programs because they provide, in part, the answer to their question, "Exactly how would legalized drugs work?." The system is not Utopian but it has been extremely helpful in treating heroin addicts. Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-N.Y.) is only one of many intelligent and responsible people hoping that research might give us a "Methadone-clone" that could help cocaine addiction.10

Bennett: "Making drugs legal would just be a way of subsidizing their habit. They would continue to rob and steal to pay for food, clothes, for entertainment." That is true, and exactly the point made by those who favor legalization. The "habits" could be subsidized at a very minimal cost to society. Police involved in dealing with drugs know that addicts spend very little on food; neglect of diet is a hallmark. Their clothes are not ordered from Saville Row; there is little in an addict's life that merits being called entertainment. When the Director says they may continue to steal for food, clothes and entertainment he is suggesting there would be more than a 50 percent decrease in addict crime since they spend considerably more than half of their illegal income for drugs.

The latest reports at this writing tell us:

Cocaine Epidemic Has Peaked, Some Suggest (New York Times)

"We have multiple indicators that add up to a general picture of stabilization with a trend toward decrease in use," said Bernard Gropper, Justice Department's National Institute of Justice, drugs and crime research leader.

Drop in Cocaine Purity Could Signal Shortage (Washington Post)

"There is definitely a change," said Charles P. Gutensohn, the DEA's leading cocaine expert. "This indicates that the trafficker may not have as much cocaine available but wants to get the same amount of money as he used to."

A policeman's analysis: Cocaine will cost more. Many drug addicts steal to support their habits. There will be more drug inspired crime as certain as two plus two equals four. Even William Bennett agrees as he tells the Associated Press on June 15, 1990:

A shortage of cocaine indicated by rising prices in some cities may trigger increased violence as "the same number of dogs" compete for "a smaller number of bones" national drug control director William J. Bennett predicted.

Although Bennett has long cited a need to get rid of drugs to cut down the violence connected to drug-trafficking in the cities, he said disruption of cocaine flow may have the opposite effect. "We've got a long summer ahead of us," Bennett said.

At mid-summer 1990, the data points to:

Number of Killings Soars in Big Cities Across U.S.11

After an alarming increase last year, homicide rates have continued to soar this year, and experts attribute the rise to an increase in drug disputes, deadlier weapons and a tendency among more young people to start careers in crime with a gun.

Indeed, Gilbert and Sullivan were correct, "A Policeman's Lot is Not an Happy One." Enforcement is doing such a good job of reducing cocaine supply that the effort is rewarded by soaring increases in homicides.

In summary, how good do the American people think the Bush-Bennett Plan has been? USA Today poll dated July 20, 1990, on presidential approval shows: "Drug war. Thirty-six percent approve of (president's) efforts, down from 55 percent." Thirty-six percent happens to be the same number who approve of legalization of drugs; up from 10 percent: The score is tied!

Ralph Salerno is a retired New York City police officer who served as chief detective of the Organized Crime Bureau. His address is 34 Grosbeak Lane, Naples, Fla. 33961.


1 Crime and Justice in America, Critical Issues for the Future, John T. O'Brien and Marvin Marcus, editors, Pergamon Press (1979).

2 Federal prosecutors, in mid-1990, announced in Chicago that they would be seeking the capital punishment provision of the statute. The result and any effect lies far into the future.

3 The final verdict on this effort came in April 1990. Unnamed federal government officials blamed the failure on the city government; city officials blamed federal programmers, but there was unanimity on the fact that it had failed.

4 At the present time those impressed by Colombian government orders to "Shoot to kill" cartel members, should consider that this edict is limited to the Medellin cartel which has conducted terroristic activities. Colombian police and military are ignoring the Cali cartel in that country which supplies the majority of cocaine going into New York City.

5 The New York Times, Dec. 28, 1990.

6 The New York Times, Feb. 3, 1990.

7 Why does the federal government have only one drug-free prison? Probably because it can only afford one. The Marion institution is unusual because of the special efforts to make it so. Its personnel are specially recruited and trained. The ratio of officers to inmates is exceedingly high. Prisoner movement is severely restricted, and contact with other prisoners is almost non-existent. As an old cop, I can live with the reality of this prison, but some suggest that if he were to return, even Attila the Hun would form a special chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union just to protest conditions at Marion.

8 Editorial appearing in the spring 1990 edition of the newsletter of the American Board of Professional Disability Consultant, written by the director.

9 In both polls there is some evidence of the paranoia created by current policies. Ninety-six percent of respondents say they are not interested, yet a majority believe that legalization would bring increased use. "I trust only thee and me, and I'm not too sure about thee."

10 The New York Times op-ed article, Feb. 26, 1989.

11 The New York Times, July 18, 1990.


Our valuable member Ralph Salerno has been with us since Monday, 20 February 2012.

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