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Fentanyl: The U.S. Drug War's Next Big Failure

Fentanyl: The U.S. Drug War's Next Big Failure

Libertarian Country |

On Tuesday, the White House announced it would increase sanctions against Mexico, targeting drug cartels and arms traffickers. The government's move to crackdown on drug traffickers is a response to the growing Fentanyl epidemic in the United States.

Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and members of his security cabinet will meet U.S. officials this week to discuss illicit arms trafficking and their public enemy number one, Fentanyl.


What is Fentanyl?

According to the DEA, "Fentanyl is a potent synthetic opioid drug approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use as an analgesic (pain relief) and anesthetic. It is approximately 100 times more potent than morphine and 50 times more potent than heroin as an analgesic."

On the street, Fentanyl goes by various names, including China Girl, Dance Fever, He-Man, Jackpot, King Ivory, Goodfellas and Murder 8.

Like heroin, Fentanyl users experience deep relaxation, euphoria, pain relief and sedation. That may sound appealing to some until you consider the dangerous potential side effects, including but not limited to; intense nausea, vomiting, coma and death.


Combating Drug Traffickers

“The nature of these drugs, and their ease of access and potency, presents a national security, public safety, and public health threat,” the White House said.

The U.S. government has vowed to tackle the Fentanyl problem and curb the opioid epidemic by increasing sanctions and obstructing drug traffickers' access to U.S. financial institutions and money streams.

The latest crackdown comes mainly from public and official criticism of the Biden administration's failure to respond to the crisis.

The government seeks to build a global coalition to fight the illicit synthetic drug industry, hoping to “develop solutions, drive national actions, and create synergies and leverage among like-minded countries.”

The U.S. War on Drugs is mostly a bipartisan effort. Republicans have offered ideas and bills such as bombing cartels and sending military units across the border with or without Mexico City's permission. But whatever their plans, the U.S. continually refuses to acknowledge fundamental black market realities.


Fentanyl: The U.S. Drug War's Next Big Failure

The simple reality concerning black market drug cartels is that they are unstoppable. Cartels will always navigate and circumvent U.S. attempts to thwart them. You can slow them down--you may even take out an entire cartel, but they will be replaced quickly.


Billion-dollar industries like the underground manufacturing of pharmaceutical and illicit drugs thrive because the demand is abundant. Wherever there is high demand, markets will meet that demand by any means necessary.

Throwing U.S. tax dollars at the issue won't solve the problem. Nor will military intervention. It will only waste money, creating more burden on taxpayers who are already suffering from wild inflation and economic despair.

Global business interest envelops the illicit drug trade. Concerning Fentanyl, for example, Mexican mass-production facilities use chemicals sourced from China. Chinese authorities are, no doubt, soberly aware of the result produced from their trade.

With colossal profit incentives and powerful entities working together (including mafias and foreign governments), the drug trade is the 800lb gorilla whose rampage will never end.

Drug abuse is a real problem we wish there were an easy solution to. But the sad reality is that as long as people want to buy opioids or illicit drugs, there will always be cartels providing the goods.

We hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the reality is that Fentanyl will prove to be the U.S. Drug War's next big failure.

Libertarians oppose drug abuse, but we also oppose the government creating black markets and using military force to stop cartels. Criminalizing drugs creates huge profit margins and black markets, which empower the very entities and people they are trying to stop.  


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