Thursday, July 5, 2018

A Little More on Florida's New Anti-Opioid Law

If you haven't followed it, there has been an active discussion about what might be reasons behind the the post I put up mentioning Florida's new opioid law on Monday.

To sum it up, I don't see any disagreement that the root cause of the so-called opioid crisis is the government at all levels attacking prescription pain pills when the actual problem is people using heroin, which is often cut with fentanyl that the cartels buy because it's cheap, powerful and available by the pound from China.  It also happens to have a very small gap between doses that will get buyers high and those that will kill them.

There has been some talk pondering exactly who is behind this and who's benefiting the most.  This afternoon, I remembered a story from 2012 that leads me to a group I hadn't thought of: the Fed.gov.

In 2012, the story showed up and then quickly vanished that a high-ranking official from the Sinaloa Cartel, alleged that "Operation Fast and Furious" was not about specifically about running guns to Mexico to get gun control legislation, but that it was to supply the Sinaloa cartel specifically.  Jesus Vicente Zambada-Niebla, known as the cartel’s “logistics coordinator”, was in US federal prison in awaiting trial and made the claim.
Zambada-Niebla claims that under a “divide and conquer” strategy, the U.S. helped finance and arm the Sinaloa Cartel through Operation Fast and Furious in exchange for information that allowed the DEA, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and other federal agencies to take down rival drug cartels. The Sinaloa Cartel was allegedly permitted to traffic massive amounts of drugs across the U.S. border from 2004 to 2009 — during both Fast and Furious and Bush-era gunrunning operations — as long as the intel kept coming.
A perfectly reasonable question might be why would the US fed.gov get in bed with the Sinaloa cartel.  At the time, a spokesman for the Chihuahua state government in northern Mexico appeared to imply it was well known that what Zambada-Niebla alleged was true.  He said U.S. agencies “don’t fight drug traffickers,” instead “they try to manage the drug trade.”

Back in 2012, I speculated on this a bit.  Perhaps it was part of a plan to shut down the cartels.  The US would provide guns to Sinaloa; for information, then use that info to kill off the competing cartels, so the cartel gets both guns and the US anti-drug forces to kill off their competitors.  That sounds like Sinaloa gets all the benefits, and gives up nothing of value to them.  In fact, it seems worse than that.  It seems that what the US DOJ/DEA offered Sinaloa was unrestricted access to the US drug markets - apparently in trade for nothing.

If the US had wiped out the competition and then figuratively nuked the Sinaloa cartel, all the cartels would be gone and the border problems might conceivably drop to a small fraction of what we have now.  Solving problems, of course, is bad for the federal government and all entrenched bureaucracies.  They're going to be there in perpetuity, so there's no incentive to "work themselves out of a job". 

As a comment to that 2012 blog post pointed out, and as we all know, this is nothing new.
In 1970 SHOCK! The CIA uses the Vietnam war as cover to smuggle heroin out of the golden triangle. SHOCK! 1982 the US uses the war in El Salvador to smuggle heroin AND cocaine IN and GUNS out of the US. SHOCK guns to IRAN(1983). This has gone on with every president from AT least WW2 [Note - edited to add some spelling corrections - SiG]
Typically, I think this "black money" is used to fund things without getting budget money from congress, as it did with Iran-Contra mentioned in that comment.  It's not that congress is reluctant to borrow money (or get it created out of thin air); it's that money the deep black agencies get entirely off the books never entails an investigation or sitting in a chair in front of a board saying, "I'm sorry, senator, but I have no recollection of that".

Since my knowledge of this story was essentially frozen in 2012, I looked up Jesus Vicente Zambada-Niebla (there are other family members in the cartel, so you have search the whole name) to find he did a plea deal with the feds to "cooperate with authorities" and potentially stay out of long term lockup.  I found a Forbes article from 2014 saying the same things as the Blaze article my post was based on in 2012.  I've not found anything conclusive saying it was admitted to in court, but there is evidence that the US deal with the Sinaloa cartel was real, and there's a trail of bodies to back it up.

If we're really still allowing the Sinaloa cartel to traffic drugs into the states (the articles said they had a big center of operations in Chicago), that would explain lots.  Reporters ask who benefits from the opioid crisis and immediately attack "big pharma"; maybe they should be looking at big government. 



19 comments:

  1. "Reporters ask who benefits from the opioid crisis and immediately attack "big pharma"; maybe they should be looking at big government."

    Right hand, left hand, both connected in the middle, and one hand washes the other. One is reminded of the four blind men each describing an elephant. reporters, being the kids not bright enough to go into STEM, also have their own axes to grind, so anything that doesn't fit the narrative is jettisoned, lest they be fired by their editorial zampolits.

    It's also what happens when you have a foreign president, raised in Djakarta, who's totally both culturally and personally clueless about what happens after you pay the Dane-geld.

    It's lastly a lesson in the perpetual problem with a bureaucracy that serves itself first, the administration only when whimsically impelled, and the public which employs it accidentally, if ever at all.

    Had the airplanes in 2001 hit Congress in session and several government agencies instead of the pentagon and the WTC, 9/11 would today be celebrated as a national holiday.

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    1. "Had the airplanes in 2001 hit Congress in session and several government agencies instead of the pentagon and the WTC, 9/11 would today be celebrated as a national holiday."

      Absolutely. Tom Clancy did that in one of his "Jack Ryan" novels, and I wanted to build a shrine to that Japanese pilot. I think the only reason ISIS or some other group of muslims haven't done it is because they a) don't want to bite the hand that feeds them, and b) they know we will be easier to defeat (by demographic jihad, if nothing else) if Congress is there to muck things up, the way only Congress knows how.

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  2. When I was working for USGOV in Mexico about seven years ago, and the push in the US to legalize marijuana was underway, CJNG and the Sinaloa Cartel were both looking for way to find a replacement drug. They settled on opium because they were already growing it in Guerrero and felt that they could expand into Honduras and Guatemala, which they subsequently did.

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  3. Did the CIA engage in drug smuggling? Many police department's use under cover police to arrest prostitutes. They both get undressed and may actually engage in sex (just to get the evidence of course). Does this mean that our police engage in prostitution? The FBI actually pays criminals and murders and excuses their crimes using these people as informants. Does that mean the FBI are criminals and murders?

    What I believe happened in both Vietnam and El Salvador was that the CIA operatives, who were shady people with contacts in the area , used their CIA connections to continue their own shady operations. NOT that the CIA themselves smuggled drugs and NOT that any significant amount of drugs were smuggled in this way. Most of this was hype by anti-American factions (Russia) to reduce the effectiveness of the CIA. Propaganda pure and simple.

    When I was 16 two policemen walked up on me and three friends who were playing nickle dime poker at the local park. They threatened us and pocketed the $3-5 bucks that was laying out in front of us. Even at the young age of 16 I knew this was not the same thing as all police being crooks.

    So, NO, the CIA was not in the business of smuggling drugs. Some unscrupulous people with connections to the CIA may have smuggled drugs and enemies of our country put out propaganda to make it all appear as something bigger than it was but it is pure left wing BS.

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    1. As long as we're talking nuance, you'll note that I did not say the CIA was running drugs, as an agency or as individuals working on their own, nor did I say that the allegation that the DOJ was allied with the Sinaloa cartel was verified.

      I said that the allegation the CIA ran drugs for Iran Contra was made by a reader.

      I specifically said I don't know if the allegations of involvement with Sinaloa are true, but there was evidence. Second to last paragraph, which concluded with I've not found anything conclusive saying it [the DEA/Sinaloa cartel] was admitted to in court, but there is evidence that the US deal with the Sinaloa cartel was real, and there's a trail of bodies to back it up. and linked to an article describing a killing attributed to the US/Sinaloa activities by the Mexican government. To quote "The evidence suggests the consulate killings were part of a tapestry of events that some people believe is traceable to U.S. law enforcement’s decision to work with one set of criminals in Juárez at the expense of another."

      I'm perfectly aware that various police agencies make deals with drug dealers all the time, in an effort to get "the bigger fish" to fry. This is a murky area. However, whether intentional (and misguided) or not, the US seems to have paved the way for literally tons of heroin and opium products as well as fentanyl to be smuggled into the country.

      In the originating piece, one of my conclusions is that the forces that are trying to get heroin legalized may be at the root of the opioid crisis. The people that get major cities almost an inch deep in discarded syringes.

      I'm just trying to figure out what's going on, and I don't buy that prescription drugs are the root of the problem.

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    2. Even at the young age of 16 I knew this was not the same thing as all police being crooks.

      Can you imagine any policemen who would have undone this action, returned your money, and disciplined these policemen? Can you imagine any policemen who would have stood by and allowed you to defend yourself against these crooked policemen, doing whatever it took to win? No? Then all police are crooks.

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    3. Sorry, I got as far as this nugget:
      "to reduce the effectiveness of the CIA."
      and then I broke down into paroxysms of unconstrained laughter. I may even have cracked a rib.

      That would be the same CIA that missed the Berlin blockade, the invasion that begat the Korean War, the Suez Crisis, the Berlin Wall going up, Castro overthrowing Bautista, ran the entire Bay of Pigs fiasco, lied us into the Vietnam War, missed the Six Day War, the Yom Kippur War, Russian battalions in Cuba, the fall of Iran, the takeover of Grenada, put pineapple face in charge of Panama necessitating an invasion there, the Berlin Wall coming down, didn't see the fall of the Soviet Union coming, missed two coup attempts there, and the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, the Rwandan genocide, the balkanization of former Yugoslavia, the 9/11 attacks, couldn't find Bin Laden for a dozen years, and was taken by complete surprise by the entire Arab Spring and the resultant fall of two and a half governments, the rise of ISIS, and all that just for the highlights?!?!?

      That CIA??

      A quick glance would seem to underline that the best way to "reduce the effectiveness of the CIA" would require only that we continue to fund it fully.

      If he were still alive, Mack Sennett would sue the CIA for copyright infringement on the intellectual property of the Keystone Kops. And he'd win.

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    4. I have to think that the things that the CIA actually is doing, they are doing VERY well. That is, if one believes that the entire role and motives of the CIA are not to act on other nations and to attempt to be involved in gathering intelligence on countries outside of the U.S., but actually to work with factions from within the government to control the American people and the flow of information that is allowed to be made public.
      I think that at best, the CIA is a good example of what will most certainly happen if a government allows an agency to have autonomy over themselves, in the name of National Security.

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  4. My response wasn't intended to be a criticism of your comment but simply an opinion inspired by what you had said. I think that the CIA was simply targeted by the left and just as the Vietnam war protests were funded and directed by Russia I believe that the propaganda against the CIA was as well.

    I do not believe that all police are crooks and I grew up at a time an in a place where "most" police were crooks. They still "mostly" did their job but it was known that most of the police were on the take. But today, I respect and appreciate the police. I do understand that it is unlikely that a policeman will take my side over his fellow policeman's side. I also understand that many police fall from that pedestal because human nature is human nature. But for the most part our police make us safer, save lives, protect the old and weak and make our country better. I would praise them as a group and individually and save any criticism for individual police who screw up.

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  5. Oh please! The CIA, the Bushes, the Clintons, and even historically the Royal family all have been neck deep in the opium and cocaine trade. Let's cut the crap. The CIA is a bunch of thugs, and they need to be imprisoned and the CIA abolished.

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  6. I wish it were as easy as listing the CIA's failures or perceived failures. But the simple truth is we do not know what would have happened if there were no CIA. We do not know if the CIA was effective in restraining or delaying other countries you listed from committing their treachery and we do not know what successes the CIA had that were not made public. Is the CIA useless? I suspect that the CIA is a very large thorn in the side of everyone of our enemies and even our friends who have from time to time betrayed us. So all you are really doing is listing your grudges and biases with a little bit of rumor thrown in.

    By the way it was JFK that screwed up the bay of pigs, got us into Vietnam and it was Johnson who actually took us to war in Vietnam, not the CIA.

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    1. we do not know what would have happened if there were no CIA

      By "we" you mean "you"? Then you do not dispute my assertion of a 99% chance it would have been better without this secret police organization?

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    2. "Then you do not dispute my assertion of a 99% chance it would have been better without this secret police organization?"

      I suspect without a spy organization and the ability to project that into every country that intended us harm that we would be ruled by Russia today. In a world full of nuclear weapons and tyrants who want to rule the world we need information and people on the ground in foreign countries. The effectiveness of the CIA is the very reason for the considerable foreign funded propaganda against it. The unthinking and stupid people will believe this propaganda. That is the way of the world and human nature. I can't fix stupid I can only point it out.

      Could the CIA be improved? Certainly, Obama's politicization of it proved it has systemic problems. Hopefully Trump will make changes that might make this politicization less likely in the future.

      Should the CIA be disbanded? Well millions of communists and despotic rulers agree with you that it should. They have spent considerable money and effort to convince ignorant American voters that it should be disbanded. Looks like some of their effort paid off.

      Should we go naked in a dangerous world by not having a spy agency? Again millions of communists and despotic rulers agree with you that we should. Kinda makes you wonder whose side you are on doesn't it???

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    3. That we as the lone remaining superpower simply must have an intelligence gathering body for the purpose of foreign surveillance goes without saying, at least to any reasonable person. It also goes without saying that the role of those intelligence gathering agencies must be defined and overseen by the civilian, duly elected government, with a short leash. The dangers to our way of life here in what is meant to be a free society are simply too great to allow the CIA or it's cousins to run roughshod over the laws of this nation, all in the name of "protecting" us from some undefined threat.
      In the same way that foreign surveillance must be controlled by those in leadership, domestic intelligence gathering agencies have also become much too independent and should be either reigned in or disbanded. I am not speaking about ICE, I am referring to agencies such as the NSA, the FBI, and the other agencies that tend to pop up on our radar from time to time, for reasons that have nothing to do with protecting this nation, but instead are related to projecting federal power onto state and local areas, and often to intimidating individual citizens who dare to step out from their place, and challenge the right of the government to control them. I am thinking of agencies such as the BLM, the IRS, and the Dept. of Homeland Security. We can all remember the raids over the past several years, sometimes ending in the death of innocent civilians, with no federal employees being held accountable for what has been on more than one occasion out and out murder.
      It comes down at the end to, what kind of a country do we want to be? A free nation, with a government that protects it's citizens, while at the same time respecting their freedom, or a nation that protects itself by any means it deems appropriate, and individual citizens rights at times must be secondary to the good of the state.

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    4. I suspect that occasionally, a blind pig finds an acorn, too.
      That's no reason to pay him for the effort.

      See if you can work out exactly how fallacious, and how frankly retarded it sounds to argue "The CIA must be doing something right, because we don't know about any of it" and do it with a straight face.

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    5. The politilization of the FBI and the CIA recently by the Obama administration is scary. Indeed any federal organization can be used by a corrupt administration against their people (the EPA, IRS and ATF for example). But to eliminate them would be foolhardy. Bring them under better scrutiny by congress. Create stronger IG positions with total independence and ability to do their job. I would agree with all these things. I also agree with holding individuals in these organizations responsible for the illegal actions. I want to see some perp walks of FBI agents.

      Understand that most of what you know about CIA transgressions come from far left Hollywood movie producers who like to cast the CIA as the bad guys in movies AND from propaganda distributed within the USA by the left and funded and sourced from Russia and China. If you are immune to common sense and critical thinking perhaps you should learn some restraint before simply going along with every bit of bad news put out there about our government. Look deeper for the truth. Understand that there really are enemies to our country who freely act within our country and have positions within the MSM. Watch the Sunday talk shows where left wing “reporters” gleefully point out Trump’s latest faux pas or other false news report. They are eager to bring Trump down even if it weakens the U.S. and makes us vulnerable to our enemies. If you cannot summon up pride and allegiance to our country because you are so angry at Trump or the FBI then you are part of the problem. I prefer to put America first and knowingly not aid foreign powers.

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  7. Book:
    "The Opium Wars: The Addiction of One Empire and the Corruption of Another", by W. Travis Hines and Frank Sanello

    Q

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    1. Because no author has ever stretched the truth or made up false news just to make a buck, right?

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    2. This is akin to cigarettes. Some years back everyone agreed cigarettes (tobacco) kills and we need to control it so people don't die young. As a result some lawyers shared billion$ every taxing authority raised taxes on cigarettes and made billion$ and the poor who were addicted to cigarettes still bought them but had to pay more. Why didn't we ban them? Well of course we know why, there was a shitpot of money in taxing it and suing it not to mention that we know prohibition doesn't work.

      But that leaves you with this nasty problem that the leaders appear to be encouraging it or abetting it and some sly author can selectively make it appear that they are "pushing" it. I am waiting for that next book "The Tobacco Wars". Probably cannot blame the Queen this time but no worries someone famous will be hoisted on their own petard to make the book more interesting and hide the deceit.

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