"War on Drugs" = War on Cash
by Nick Sandberg

"War on Drugs" = War on Cash, or, Why the "War on Drugs" may well be worth fighting.

The massive and ever-increasing presence of illicit drugs within our society is prompting much concern. The US Government's "War on Drugs" is demonstrably not working and further considered by many to be counterproductive.

Here in the UK, heroin usage, (which along with crack cocaine is generally regarded as the most socially dangerous illicit substance), is now reckoned to be approaching 2% of the general population of some cities. Prompting louder and greater cries that "something must be done".

I believe there are three principal reasons why government, and the forces behind government, are allowing the drug situation to get so out of control. I will relate these and then hypothesise further about where all this is leading.

Firstly, it helps facilitate transnational corporate expansionism. In a world where very big companies are seeking to get bigger still; to expand their holdings, both fiscal and human; it is very useful to be able to both socially and politically disenfranchise those persons who, for one reason or another, do not quite fit into the corporate gameplan. Heroin does this admirably. It is a very powerful painkiller whose essential action is to partially remove the user from the life process; to reduce the emotional impact of incoming stimuli and so lower our response to our environment. Junkies typically neither vote nor riot. They are rendered socially and politically inactive by their drug of choice and so do little to threaten the advance of consumerism.

Secondly, heroin, and also cocaine, are now such major commodities, any effective attack on their presence would inevitably have a major effect on the world markets. Some analysts suggest effective action to lower heroin and cocaine supplies could end the current bull run and cause the market to enter a phase of depression. Something those who run the worlds' finances apparently seem determined to prevent.

Thirdly, and more sinisterly, I believe the increasing presence of heroin and crack cocaine within our communities, and the accompanying calls for 'something to be done', will be used to manoevre us into finally rejecting cash once and for all. For, without cash, untraceable financial transactions such as the sale of illicit substances are not possible.

I believe that early in the coming century, somewhere, likely in Western Europe, there will be a pilot scheme to remove illicit drugs by outlawing cash currency. This scheme will work, and, more importantly, be seen to work. From then on, the media will unrelenting sell the idea that the outlawing of cash will remove illicit heroin, to the point where the public will be literally begging government to undertake a similar scheme in their neighbourhood. Large retail chains will proclaim their allegiance to the War on Drugs by renouncing the acceptance of cash. Media worthies, in TV extravanganzas, will exhort us to give up cash "for the sake of our childrens' future". Increasingly, persons still using or accepting cash will be seen as social pariahs, selfishly putting their own obsession with personal freedom above the needs of the community.

Over the following years cash will be steadily removed from our society until all money is electronic and controlled by a vast interlocked network of computers.

People will now possess "smart cards", credit-card sized things with vast amounts of information about the holder on them, including his or her current financial limits.

Then, once cash is fully eliminated, and not before, big problems will begin to "occur" within the electronic money system. Massive frauds will happen. People will find all their money suddenly disappearing without their knowing where it's gone. About this time, the media will begin introducing the idea that only by putting the info on the smart card actually into the users' body, by microchipping people, can our personal and financial details be 100% safe.

Pilot schemes will operate, (some are already in existence), and the persons signing up for "chipping" will be seen to be totally resistant to fraudulent loss of their money. Banks and employers will offer incentives to people to get chipped. The media will sell the idea unrelentingly. Small children will go missing and be found "because they were chipped". Films and TV will show chipping as the socially positive thing to do. Youngsters will be bombarded with propoganda telling them chipping is cool, and a smart idea if you want to get ahead. Greater and greater problems will occur with smart cards, until the general public are queuing around the block to get themselves chipped.

Finally, we will have a world where nearly everyone will be chipped, everyone linked to, and in constant communication with, one central computer. A computer that both receives information from the person, medical as well as personal and financial, and sends it.

And now of course, as others have also written, the darker purpose becomes revealed. For the chip is capable not only of receiving updates of a persons' finances. But also electonic signals capable of altering mood, emotional state and a host of other factors. We will end up with a situation where all humanity is regulated by a computer. Hell on Earth. A control fantasy that has likely been pursued by those who run our society for many thousand years.

Many reading this will be skeptical as to whether we would ever allow ourselves to be chipped. But, if you look closely, you will see that once cash is eliminated, so much control over our finances is centralised that there are any number of pathways that can be pursued to make chipping an inevitability.

The key is removing cash. Give up cash and we give up our soul. And the question therefore is - What can we do about drugs without having to give up cash. For if it can be demonstrated that illicit heroin and crack cocaine can be dealt with without the need to outlaw currency, one very powerful route for rendering all money electronic is destroyed.

Help may come from an unexpected quarter. In June 1998, at a Special Session of the United Nations Drug Control Programme, newly elected UNDCP supremo, Pino Arlacchi, delivered an address to some 168 world leaders and their representatives. In it he outlined his "grand plan" to eliminate heroin and cocaine worldwide by the use of crop replacement programmes, (schemes to encourage or compel poppy and coca farmers to switch crops). Arlacchi, a former mafia-buster in his native Italy, had pioneered such schemes in places like Burma and Afghanistan with considerable success.

Arlacchi's plan was costed at US$5 billion, divided between participating nations and spread over ten years. This is not a lot of money, especially when one considers that the US State Department openly admits illicit drugs cost the US economy alone over $75 billion per annum.

What is also interesting about Arlacchi's plan is that, despite the presence of Clinton and countless other world leaders at its unveiling, barely a word of it has escaped to the media. In the UK, to the best of my knowledge, it has not attracted a single column centimetre of coverage in any major newspaper. In a country where tales of playground drug dealers regale our front pages on a weekly basis, it seems it's decided no-one would be interested in hearing about a UN head who says he can eliminate drugs at source! Needless to say, the plan to eliminate heroin and cocaine has received virtually no funding to date. But if people knew about it?

In addition, many people are also not aware of the existence of substances that can eliminate the symptoms of withdrawal associated with drug addiction. The most noteworthy of which being ibogaine, an indole alkaloid derived from an African plant source. Ibogaine, in addition to removing withdrawal symptomology, is beneficially oneirogenic. Meaning it induces a dreamlike state in which the user can begin to examine his or her drug-using behaviour from a new perspective, frequently helping to facilitate long-term drug abstinence.

To sum up, I believe it is in our considerable interest to devote time to thinking about the "drugs problem" here and now. Leaving it to the politicians may prove a dangerous mistake.

Nick Sandberg
December 1999

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