Thursday, February 20, 2014

Pushing policy to improve profits is business as usual in D.C.

No one should ever wonder why Americans are cynical about what goes on in Washington D.C. Let’s take the case of former DEA administrator Peter Bensinger who served as a drug warrior under three presidents. Yahoo has posted an interview with him and, as one might predict, he rails against the current legalization trend and makes a boatload of absurd statements about the evils of marijuana that are contrary to science and common sense.

You might be tempted to feel some pity for the silver-haired veteran of the doomed war on drugs, but not so fast. There’s more behind the rantings of an old drug war propagandist than meets the eye. To the credit of the article’s authors, and in a move that is rare in the mainstream press, there is an editor’s note at the end of the story, revealing that, “Bensinger is currently president and CEO of Bensinger, DuPont & Associates, a private consulting firm that promotes drug-free workplaces. Among the services offered to clients are employee drug testing, health and safety training programs and risk management.”

So Bensinger isn’t merely misinformed, there is a method to his reefer madness. Relaxed attitudes about marijuana could directly affect the bottom line of his business. His anti-drug passion is not so much about saving the souls of America’s youth, but about keeping his consulting firm in the black. And so it goes.

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