Hail! Hail, Lisbonia!
following are the first and final, quite provocative, paragraphs
from a story found on the Cato Institute web site:
On July 1, 2001, a nationwide law in Portugal took effect
that decriminalized all drugs, including cocaine and heroin.
Under the new legal framework, all drugs were "decriminalized," not "legalized." Thus,
drug possession for personal use and drug usage itself are
still legally prohibited, but violations of those prohibitions
are deemed to be exclusively administrative violations and
are removed completely from the criminal realm. Drug trafficking
continues to be prosecuted as a criminal offense.
The data show that, judged by virtually every metric,
the Portuguese decriminalization framework has been a resounding
success. Within this success lie self-evident lessons that
should guide drug policy debates around the world.
For the rest of the story, along with a more complete white
paper on the subject, go here.