Showing posts sorted by date for query Drug War. Sort by relevance Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by date for query Drug War. Sort by relevance Show all posts

Wednesday, February 03, 2021

So, Blueballs Combined With Hopelessness And Angst....,

Commenter at Naked Capitalism called Amfortas the Hippie dropped this today, I'm copying it here apropos of nothing in particular....,

Anecdote on the vibe in north houston 2-3-2021…feels very germane to this part of the zeitgeist: cousin calls, and says he’s coming up…same worry in his voice as a year ago, when he came out here to hide from the pandemic and correlated uncertainty. (he stayed til late april).

This time, his worry is civil unrest, violence, insurrection.

He’s a self-described “manwhore”…never nailed down…having numerous women all over texas that he breezes though and stays with for a while when work brings him near(he’s a roofer and tree expert and heavy equipment operator…with ample talent in all of them). The women in question are all divorcees, and seem happy with the arrangement: playing happy married to a hot guy who leaves before he becomes a chore.

Anyway…lately, he’s been hanging around north houston…where we’re both from.
Woodlands, magnolia, tomball, etc.

He lives in his truck on a spread of pineywoods he inherited…and gets a hotel room off and on, for a week at a time.
He spends a lot of time in bars, beer joints, dancehalls and clubs. It is this part of his life where we find the Doom:
he says the clubs, etc are at best ¼ populated…and that the ratio of men to women is, at best, 3 to 1.
of course this is the pandemic, and all…we both understand that…although he chafes at the mandates more than I do.

The scary part is the sentiments of the remaining men in these stag halls: “f&&k it…i ain’t doing this any more…they’ve screwed us all…” etc.


the way he puts it:”they’re tired of everything…the pandemic, the half-assed attempts at mitigating the pandemic, the economic results of those half-assed attempts, the lack of material support to mitigate the half-assed mitigations…and on and on in that vein…”

I interject: “so…blue balls, combined with hopelessness and angst”

him:”exactly!”

so I ask what he thinks will become of this mood/vibe…

Friday, January 01, 2021

Drug Addicts Out'Chere Dying Like Hotcakes...

gatestoneinstitute  |  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Over 81,000 drug overdose deaths occurred in the United States in the 12 months ending in May 2020, the highest number of overdose deaths ever recorded in a 12-month period..." That is equal to one-third of the total number of deaths supposedly attributed to the COVID pandemic.

Deaths equal to one-third of the pandemic? From another cause? Where is the wall-to-wall news reporting on that public health crisis? Why aren't people marching in the streets demanding action and justice for that threat to human life? Since Joe Biden was elected president, we have not heard a peep from Antifa and BLM -- maybe they can take up the drug overdose cause?

In October, federal law enforcement officials arrested Mexican General Salvador Cienfuegos as he arrived in Los Angeles for a family vacation. Cienfuegos was accused of taking bribes and protecting cartel leaders when he served as defense minister from 2012 to 2018. A month later, the U.S. dropped charges and returned Cienfuegos to Mexico. "Foreign policy considerations" was the official lie covering for the reversal of what might have been an incremental step forward towards legitimate justice in America's decades-long, losing "War on Drugs." Every thinking person who has contemplated the drug corruption crisis confronting America knows that absolutely nothing will happen to Cienfuegos now that he is back in Mexico. He gets off Scot-free, other than having to vacation in places other than the United States.

The Wall Street Journal, reporting on the Cienfuegos debacle, noted:

"Gen. Cienfuegos's return puts an uncomfortable spotlight on Mexico's judicial system. More than nine in 10 crimes are never reported or punished, according to the country's statistics agency."

Let us look more deeply at the drug crisis we face at the level of families and communities. We can get lost looking at national overdose numbers and corrupt foreign generals. Dirty cops are killing Americans, directly and indirectly. In a border community like El Paso, the Mexican cartels have an insidious, silent and powerful control that few people wish to acknowledge or accept -- that includes a largely compliant news media who usually report what happens, but rarely, if ever, ask "Why?" or "How can this go on, decade after decade, without accountability or resolution?"

More than seven years of ongoing investigation by Judicial Watch in that region has revealed law enforcement corruption that ranges on a scale from merely turning a blind eye; to marked law enforcement vehicles being used to move burlap bales of marijuana; all the way up to senior officials communicating with and tipping-off cartel members about planned operations. That is what some of the supposedly "good guys" are doing.

This is a dark, dangerous and threatening side of life in American communities across the country. The drugs do not just materialize out of thin air in Dayton, OH, or Rockville Centre, NY, or Whitefish, MT. If a population is dying from overdoses that is one-third as large as the COVID pandemic -- and we don't see, don't hear about it, and apparently don't really care about it -- what does that say about us?

Tens of thousands of law enforcement officers, billions of taxpayer dollars, nearly fifty years -- and the highest overdose rate in history? It is terribly unpopular to blame law enforcement, especially when they are being unfairly attacked by the militant fringe elements like Antifa and various lunatic municipal officials seeking to defund them -- but cleaning house within various agencies and increasing police pay would go a long way towards thwarting our greatest domestic threat.

A year ago, President Donald J. Trump declared he would name Mexican Cartels as foreign terrorist organizations. He paused his decision, and then tabled it, based on assurances from Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and a reported wave of resistance from his own cabinet.

The incoming Biden administration has the cartels virtually "high-fiving" each other -- they know a Biden administration will do nothing to stop cartel dominance and control of the US-Mexico border. What law enforcement officer is going to put his life on the line for a Biden administration policy? None. Unless there is an unforeseen and dramatic positive change in law enforcement at the federal, state and municipal levels, expect more of our dirtiest little secret for years to come and a continuation of the United States' longest war.

Thursday, November 05, 2020

Military And Law Enforcement Collaboration To Violate Rights And Grift Taxpayer Dollars

newyorker  |  Before dawn on January 23, 2019, Mark McConnell arrived at the Key West headquarters of the military and civilian task force that monitors drugs headed to the United States from the Southern Hemisphere. McConnell, a prosecutor at the Department of Justice and a former marine, left his phone in a box designed to block electronic transmissions, and passed through a metal detector and a key-card-protected air lock to enter the building. On the second floor, he punched in the code for his office door, then locked it behind him. On a computer approved for the handling of classified information, he loaded a series of screenshots he had taken, showing entries in a database called Helios, which federal law enforcement uses to track drug smugglers. McConnell e-mailed the images to a classified government hotline for whistle-blowers. Then he printed backup copies and, following government procedures for handling classified information, sealed them in an envelope that he placed in another envelope, marked “SECRET.” He hid the material behind a piece of furniture.

McConnell had uncovered what he described as a “criminal conspiracy” perpetrated by the C.I.A. and the F.B.I. Every year, entries in the Helios database lead to hundreds of drug busts, which lead to prosecutions in American courts. The entries are typically submitted to Helios by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the F.B.I., and a division of the Department of Homeland Security. But McConnell had learned that more than a hundred entries in the database that were labelled as originating from F.B.I. investigations were actually from a secret C.I.A. surveillance program. He realized that C.I.A. officers and F.B.I. agents, in violation of federal law and Department of Justice guidelines, had concealed the information’s origins from federal prosecutors, leaving judges and defense lawyers in the dark. Critics call such concealment “intelligence laundering.” In the nineteen-seventies, after C.I.A. agents were found to have performed experiments with LSD on unwitting Americans and investigated Vietnam War protesters, restrictions were imposed that bar the agency from being involved in domestic law-enforcement activities. Since the country’s founding, judges, jurors, and defendants have generally had the right to know how evidence used in a trial was gathered. “This was undisclosed information, from an agency working internationally with different rules and standards,” Nancy Gertner, a retired federal district judge and a senior lecturer at Harvard Law School, told me. “This should worry Trump voters who talk about a ‘deep state.’ This is the quintessential deep state. This is activities beyond your view, fundamentally affecting what happens in American courts.”

But the scheme benefitted the C.I.A. and the F.B.I.: the former received information obtained during operations, and the latter reported increased arrests and was able to secure additional federal funding as a result. The scope of the scheme was corroborated in hundreds of pages of e-mails, transcripts, and other documents obtained by The New Yorker.

For weeks, C.I.A. officials had been trying to stop McConnell from revealing the agency’s activities. They sent a lawyer to Key West with nondisclosure agreements, but McConnell refused to sign. A day before his early arrival at the office, McConnell had learned of an order to delete the screenshots on his computer. “I knew that I had to get the electronic evidence to outside investigators,” he told me. “There was no doubt about what I needed to do, and there was no doubt retaliation against me would follow.” He worked quickly, not knowing when security officers would arrive. Later that day, they came to McConnell’s office and deleted the images.

A little more than a month later, after C.I.A. officials accused McConnell of “spilling” classified information, the director of the task force suspended him. Soon, the C.I.A. director, Gina Haspel, visited the task force and was briefed on the matter. According to a sworn affidavit that McConnell filed with the Senate Intelligence Committee, and to a source with knowledge of the meeting, Haspel said that there needed to be repercussions for McConnell. (A C.I.A. spokesperson, Timothy Barrett, called the allegation “inaccurate and a gross mischaracterization.”) The military leadership of the task force ignored McConnell’s appeal of his suspension, and discussions about future assignments came to an abrupt halt. Six officials said that they believed the C.I.A. had retaliated against McConnell, leaving him nominally employed but unable to find a new post after decades of public service.

Cienfuegos Zepeda Mexico's Former Secretary Of Defense Busted At LAX....,

theamericanconservative  |  While American policymakers focus intently on developments in Europe, the Middle East, and the Indo-Pacific, trouble is brewing much closer to home. Under growing stress from drug-related violence and systemic corruption, Mexico is exhibiting worrisome signs of governmental dysfunction. The latest shock occurred on October 16, when U.S. authorities arrested Mexico’s former defense secretary, General Salvador Cienfuegos Zepeda, at Los Angeles International Airport on drug trafficking and money laundering charges. Cienfuegos Zepeda was a major player in Mexico’s military and political affairs, leading the country’s armed forces for six years under former president Enrique Peña Nieto (2012-2018).

His disgrace is especially important because the military has been in charge of waging the war on illegal drugs since President Felipe Calderon made it the lead agency for that mission in 2006. Allegations that Cienfuegos Zepeda was on a drug cartel payroll, therefore, were especially embarrassing and demoralizing. As the Associated Press reporters Christopher Sherman and Maria Verza point out, Mexico’s reliance on its military has grown under current president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador: “He has entrusted it with not only leading the government’s ongoing fight with drug cartels, but also with stopping rampant fuel pipeline theft, building major infrastructure projects and being the backbone of the new, ostensibly civilian, National Guard.”

 Moreover, the military has long occupied a special status in Mexico’s political hierarchy. An ironclad agreement has been in place for decades that the army doesn’t interfere in politics, and civilian political leaders, including the president, do not interfere in the army’s internal operations. The appointment process for defense secretary highlights the extent of the military’s clout. In contrast to all other cabinet posts, the president does not have the latitude of making a personal choice for defense secretary; he or she chooses from a list of acceptable candidates that the generals submit.

The incident with Cienfuegos Zepeda was hardly the first time that scandal has rocked Mexico’s military and drug-fighting establishments. Genaro García Luna, who served as Mexico’s secretary of public security from 2006 to 2012 under President Calderon, was arrested last year in Texas on drug trafficking charges. U.S. prosecutors allege that he took tens of millions of dollars in bribes to protect Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman’s Sinaloa cartel. Another notorious incident occurred even earlier. In 1996, the Mexican government appointed General Jesus Gutierrez Rebello, who had overseen military operations for the previous seven years in the narcotics-infested region of Guadalajara, to head the National Institute for the Combat of Drugs. U.S. officials hailed the appointment and how it symbolized the growing role of the country’s military in the drug war. Just months later, he was arrested for drug trafficking.

Saturday, October 31, 2020

Who Are Homeless Veterans?

NCHV  |  The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) states that the nation’s homeless veterans are predominantly male, with roughly 9% being female. The majority are single; live in urban areas; and suffer from mental illness, alcohol and/or substance abuse, or co-occurring disorders. About 11% of the adult homeless population are veterans.

Roughly 45% of all homeless veterans are African American or Hispanic, despite only accounting for 10.4% and 3.4% of the U.S. veteran population, respectively.

Homeless veterans are younger on average than the total veteran population. Approximately 9% are between the ages of 18 and 30, and 41% are between the ages of 31 and 50. Conversely, only 5% of all veterans are between the ages of 18 and 30, and less than 23% are between 31 and 50.

America’s homeless veterans have served in World War II, the Korean War, Cold War, Vietnam War, Grenada, Panama, Lebanon, Persian Gulf War, Afghanistan and Iraq (OEF/OIF), and the military’s anti-drug cultivation efforts in South America. Nearly half of homeless veterans served during the Vietnam era. Two-thirds served our country for at least three years, and one-third were stationed in a war zone.

About 1.4 million other veterans, meanwhile, are considered at risk of homelessness due to poverty, lack of support networks, and dismal living conditions in overcrowded or substandard housing.

How many homeless veterans are there?

Although flawless counts are impossible to come by – the transient nature of homeless populations presents a major difficulty – the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) estimates that 40,056 veterans are homeless on any given night.

Approximately 12,700 veterans of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF), Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Operation New Dawn (OND) were homeless in 2010. The number of young homeless veterans is increasing, but only constitutes 8.8% of the overall homeless veteran population.

Why are veterans homeless?

In addition to the complex set of factors influencing all homelessness – extreme shortage of affordable housing, livable income and access to health care – a large number of displaced and at-risk veterans live with lingering effects of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and substance abuse, which are compounded by a lack of family and social support networks. Additionally, military occupations and training are not always transferable to the civilian workforce, placing some veterans at a disadvantage when competing for employment.

Saturday, October 03, 2020

Oathkeeper LARPS Been Telling Themselves A Story - But They Don't Yet Know The Plot...,

theatlantic  |  I drove from Kentucky into the mountains of Carroll County, Virginia, and, in a field along a winding road, parked at the end of a long row of pickup trucks and SUVs. A hundred people, most of them armed, were looking up at a man giving a speech from the back of a flatbed truck that was painted in camouflage. Between the crowd and me were two young men with semiautomatic rifles. They stopped me in a manner—neither friendly nor unfriendly—that I’d encountered at checkpoints in other parts of the world.

So-called militia musters like this one had been quietly happening all over the state. The legislature was still pushing ahead with gun-control measures, and people were preparing for the possibility of more riots, and for the election. Rhodes was scheduled to give remarks but, as usual, he was late.

One of the young men said something into a walkie-talkie, and a muscular Iraq War veteran named Will joined me and explained the reason for the guards and the men posted in the woods on the far side of the field. They weren’t worried about law enforcement—a deputy from the sheriff’s department stood not far from me, leaning against his cruiser. It was leftists, antifa, who might record your license plate, dox you, show up at your home.

This was a different kind of crowd than Rhodes had drawn to the VFW hall. Many were in their 20s and 30s and had come in uniforms—some Three Percenters wore black T‑shirts and camouflage pants, and members of another group stood together in matching woodland fatigues. From the latter, a man climbed onto the flatbed and introduced himself as Joe Klemm, the leader of a new militia called the Ridge Runners.

He was a 29-year-old former marine and spoke with a boom that brought the crowd to attention. “I’ve seen this coming since I was in the military,” he said. “For far too long, we’ve given a little bit here and there in the interest of peace. But I will tell you that peace is not that sweet. Life is not that dear. I’d rather die than not live free.”

“Hoo-ah,” some people cheered.

“It’s going to change in November,” Klemm continued. “I follow the Constitution. We demand that the rest of you do the same. We demand that our police officers do the same. We’re going to make these people fear us again. We should have been shooting a long time ago instead of standing off to the side.”

“Are you willing to lose your lives?” he asked. “Are you willing to lose the lives of your loved ones—maybe see one of your loved ones ripped apart right next to you?”

After he finished, Rhodes rolled up in his rented Dodge Ram and parked in the grass beside me. He walked to the flatbed but didn’t climb it. Then he turned and faced the crowd. His speech meandered back to revolutionary times, evoking the traditions of a country founded in bloodshed. He urged them to build a militia for their community.

Rhodes stayed at the muster long after most people had left, meeting every last person, his history lessons stretching on and on. Eventually the conversation turned to the problems in the area—the drug overdoses and mental-health crises and the desperate state of the local economy. The people there seemed to believe that taking up arms would somehow stave off the country’s unraveling rather than speed it along.

When the protests erupted in Kenosha a month later, many of the demonstrators brought guns, and vigilante groups quickly formed on the other side. They called themselves the Kenosha Guard. There was a confrontation near a gas station like the one at Pepperoni Bill’s, and a teenager allegedly opened fire and killed two people. A man affiliated with antifa allegedly gunned down a Trump supporter in Portland later that week, and Rhodes declared that “the first shot has been fired.”

By then, some writers popular on the militant right had been warning that wars don’t always start with a clear, decisive event—an attack, a coup, an invasion—and that you might not realize you’re in one until it’s under way. Civil conflict is gradual. The path to it, I thought, might begin with brooding over it. It could start with opening your mind.

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Urban Warfare Personalized With Individuals And Their Families Targeted



Counterpunch |  Entitled Future Strategic Issues/Future Warfare [Circa 2025], the PowerPoint presentation anticipates: a) scenarios created by U.S. forces and agencies and b) scenarios to which they might have to respond. The projection is contingent on the use of hi-technology. According to the report there are/will be six Technological Ages of Humankind: “Hunter/killer groups (sic) [million BC-10K BC]; Agriculture [10K BC-1800 AD]; Industrial [1800-1950]; IT [1950-2020]; Bio/Nano [2020-?]; Virtual.”

In the past, “Hunter/gatherer” groups fought over “hunting grounds” against other “tribal bands” and used “handheld/thrown” weapons. In the agricultural era, “professional armies” also used “handheld/thrown” weapons to fight over “farm lands.” In the industrial era, conscripted armies fought over “natural resources,” using “mechanical and chemical” weapons. In our time, “IT/Bio/Bots” (robots) are used to prevent “societal disruption.” The new enemy is “everyone.” “Everyone.”
Similarly, a British Ministry of Defence projection to the year 2050 states: “Warfare could become ever more personalised with individuals and their families being targeted in novel ways.”

“KNOWLEDGE DOMINANCE”
The war on you is the militarization of everyday life with the express goal of controlling society, including your thoughts and actions.

A U.S. Army document on information operations from 2003 specifically cites activists as potential threats to elite interests. “Nonstate actors, ranging from drug cartels to social activists, are taking advantage of the possibilities the information environment offers,” particularly with the commercialization of the internet. “Info dominance” as the Space Command calls it can counter these threats: “these actors use the international news media to attempt to influence global public opinion and shape decision-maker perceptions.” Founded in 1977, the U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command featured an Information Dominance Center, itself founded in 1999 by the private, veteran-owned company, IIT.

“Information Operations in support of civil-military interactions is becoming increasingly more important as non-kinetic courses-of-action are required,” wrote two researchers for the military in 1999. They also said that information operations, as defined by the Joint Chiefs of Staff JP 3-13 (1998) publication, “are aimed at influencing the information and information systems of an adversary.” They also confirm that “[s]uch operations require the continuous and close integration of offensive and defensive activities … and may involve public and civil affairs-related actions.” They conclude: “This capability begins the transition from Information Dominance to Knowledge Dominance.”

“ATTUNED TO DISPARITIES”
The lines between law enforcement and militarism are blurred, as are the lines between military technology and civilian technology. Some police forces carry military-grade weapons. The same satellites that enable us to use smartphones enable the armed forces to operate.

In a projection out to the year 2036, the British Ministry of Defence says that “[t]he clear distinction between combatants and non-combatants will be increasingly difficult to discern,” as “the urban poor will be employed in the informal sector and will be highly vulnerable to externally-derived economic shocks and illicit exploitation” (emphasize in original). This comes as Boris Johnson threatens to criminalize Extinction Rebellion and Donald Trump labels Black Lives Matter domestic terrorists.

In 2017, the U.S. Army published The Operational Environment and the Changing Character of Future Warfare. The report reads: “The convergence of more information and more people with fewer state resources will constrain governments’ efforts to address rampant poverty, violence, and pollution, and create a breeding ground for dissatisfaction among increasingly aware, yet still disempowered populations.”

Saturday, September 12, 2020

The Future Is Here Already, It's Just Not Evenly Distributed


Forbes  |  Mexican drug cartels are using weaponized consumer drones in their latest gang war, according to reports in El Universal and other local news media

A citizens’ militia group in Tepalcatepec, Michoacán, formed to protect farmers from the cartel, found two drones in a car used by gunmen belonging to the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG), a group estimated to control a third of the drugs consumed in the U.S. The drones had plastic containers taped to them filled with C4 explosive and ball bearing shrapnel. The militias say that they have heard explosions, and believe that the drones are the latest weapons an ongoing gang war. 

“The CJNG has been involved with such devices since late 2017 in various regions of Mexico,” says analyst Dr. Robert J. Bunker, Director of Research and Analysis at C/O Futures, LLC. “This cartel is well on its way to institutionalizing the use of weaponized drones. None of the other cartels appear to presently even be experimenting with the weaponization of these devices.”

In 2017, Bunker reported on the arrest of four CJNG members with a drone carrying a ‘papa bomba’ (potato bomb) , an improvised hand grenade. In 2018 an armed drone attacked the residence of a senior official in Baja, California. The official was not at home, and the attack seems to have been intended as a warning. Three CNJG drones with explosive were recovered this year , part of an arsenal for use against the rival Rosa de Lima cartel.

Bunker says that suitable consumer drones are now easy to acquire and use, but that the challenge is weaponizing them.

“The limiting factor is not so much the availability of military grade explosives—commercial or homemade explosives can be substituted—but the basic technical knowledge necessary to create improvised explosive devices or IEDs,” says Bunker.


Wednesday, July 01, 2020

“It’s almost like someone thinks there’s a benefit to keeping people divided.”



nakedcapitalism |  The racial categories of white and black were developed around 1600. Probably a little after by wealthy Americans who used it to keep divided Black slaves, poor often indentured Whites, and the often enslaved Indians. These people were not disposable because they were useful as workers, but who often worked and even socialized frequently. As a group they had potentially considerable political power during the 1600s. This was deliberately dealt with. The Blacks were brutally suppress with (the category of Black indentured was eliminated. There was no Southern style chattel slavery for Blacks at first). The Whites were placated with some very modest reforms. The Indians (labeled as savages) were just driven off at gunpoint. This is also where the Southern Slave Patrols started to terrorize and keep down the slave population as well as keep down any poor whites. Where they started asking for people’s papers.

When my Irish great whatever grandfather stepped off the Coffin Ship around 1850, he was barely considered human, never mind white, and about on par with the black community. This was true for decades as were the “Irish need not apply signs” and the creation of the Paddy Wagons. Would you consider him having White Privilege?

It was only after the development of political power over multiple generations that the Irish-Americans were given the status of being both human and white, which only really happened during the early 20th century. Similarly with the Italians, Poles, Czechs, Slovaks, Italians, Greeks, and so on. 
Then there are the Jews. The Italians only finally became real whites after the Second World War although I do not think that they were quite as abused as the Irish. Going up to an individual in these groups at anytime before the 1960s and saying that they have White Privilege would have had them laugh at you in your very face. Today, they have been giving the category of White with its very real privilege of being treated like a human being, so long as you are not poor. But in the past?

During the Antebellum South and after Reconstruction when a poor white farmer or laborer even got friendly with a black person, the local wealthy white landowner and his hired goons would often beat up the offending white man. After Reconstruction, the allied white and black reformists in the South were literally extirpated via guns and the rope. If they were lucky and in the government, they were merely deposed, and run out of town by armed white supremacists during actual coups. Much like the American led coups in the Americas and elsewhere.

When a leader, especially a black one, becomes successful in his leadership and starts to bring up class and poverty, to suggest crossing class and race as well as mentioning our common humanity they often wind up dead like MLK and Fred Hampton. Working just on racism is much less dangerous.

Actually in the South and Southwest during the 19th century Blacks, Hispanics, and the very, very occasional White who were too successful as business owners were sometimes lynched for just that reason. To destroy the opposition.

There are a number of ways to destroy reformists movements besides murder especially those that threaten the power and money of the elites. Hell, you can find elite co-option, police and goon squad assassinations in the labor movement, equal rights movement, even in feminism (no murders, but plenty of false arrests and beatings). All of these movements were captured by elitists who expunged first the non-whites, then the socialists, then the working class from what became their movement. Any economic benefits from these “reforms” only accrued to the Upper Class Whites.

Why do cries of racism become so strident and the very real problem of racism become something that must be solves right now, today when cries of poverty and want are also raised. Every single time? Do you think that the current debates about racism just happened right after Bernie Sanders near success and the rise of an actual American Left fifty years after it was destroyed is a coincidence? Really?

If this was really and truly about racism or even poverty, why are the Native Americans, trapped on their Reservations with the highest poverty, drug use, rape and murder statistics of any group of Americans, bar none, not mentioned. They have the most police brutality as well and some of the reservations, due to legal loopholes, are happy hunting grounds for rapists coming from outside of some of the reservations. Their leaders usually do not have political power and wealth and they are isolated and beaten down at least compared to the national political leadership. So just under three million people are ignored and targeted.]

People are finally taking some notice of the shrinking middle class and of the increasing homeless population. If you wanted, I can take to some of the skosh less then fifteen thousand homeless in San Francisco. Or the over one hundred thousand throughout the state. At least half of whom are White. Are there any real protest over them? We can look at the millions wasted every year by San Francisco with cushy jobs being created, but not much progress. However, there are fine demonstrations on racism, which is good because racism and also police brutality with no mention of the increasing poverty in this country. Even now large sums of cash are used to “deal” with the problems, nationally. Problems that always get worse.

So cui bono? At least half of any negative statistic one could name, with the possible exception of prison, which IIRC only one-third are White. Unemployment, poverty, drug use, police brutality and police murders. Poor and struggling people are much easier to manipulate, aren’t they?

However, when there are protests about those issues it very often morphs into one about just racism. Let’s tear down some statues. Yah! When ever there is smart, hardworking, talented, and dedicated reformist or a successful non-profit making progress dealing with those issues, including racism, money from somewhere drops from the sky like manna. So long as small concessions are made. Or a slick person applies for a job there. Always has money somehow and eventually takes over or at least co-opts the organization. Or cushy jobs are offered elsewhere to certain people. In the old days like the 1960s and before, if that didn’t work s*** would happen, sometimes fatally. Sometimes nothing needs be done because often college educated are already brainwashed into uselessness by Neoliberal propaganda. The wealth and power of the Haves remain protected.

As an aside, Social Darwinism and Eugenics were created and spread by very wealthy people and foundations in the United States. Much like racism. If one doubts this, I can recommend some books I have. A good start would be War Against the Weak by Edwin Black.

So, in two part harmony, the Black Misleadership Class starts it latest performance along with the Backup of the White Misleadership Class (what else should I label Pelosi, Schumer, and McConnell? Or the leaders of the entire state of California?). Racism, the horror! And the police, oh my! Screaming, shouting (a whisper about poverty, homelessness, hunger, unemployment.) Perhaps Obama pops out and says some soaring nonsense or some very poor white fool is interviewed. A fantastic tempest in a teapot with nothing every actually getting done.

Then some Alt-Right creeps pop out and start saying you are White or not, and that’s all that matters! There is no American nationalism, only White Nationalism. White Power! Join us! (and don’t forget the Jews!) Finally, lies like the 1619 Project or propaganda like White Fragility are published.

Yes, racism does exist, and as a percentage of all the ills of our American nation, Blacks get it the worse excepting the Native Americans, of course. White Privilege is a real thing. But just as the categories of White and Black, of racism were deliberately created in the 17th century, for benefiting the powers that be, I wonder about Identity Politics and Cancelling. That blend of Nazi racialism and Maoist thought control. I wonder how racism and its pernicious child Identity Politics has been created, nurtured, fed a steady diet of hate, and then used as a weapon upon those who would care about everyone regardless of there supposed identity. I also wonder what would happen if I approached the man sleeping on cardboard, perhaps in the usually three month rainy season, or that family living in their car/van/RV on some out of the way road, that the do have White Privilege, which the do and usually means being treated as a human being. I also wonder about my nose.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Imagine if These Dirty MF's Had Had Today's Surveillance Technology at Their Disposal


commondreams |  After the FBI took to Twitter Monday with a message that allegedly aimed to honor "the life and work" of Martin Luther King Jr., a chorus of critics promptly urged the bureau to "sit this one out," pointing to its history of spying on King and trying to convince the civil rights leader to kill himself.

Each year on the national holiday dedicated to King, progressives criticize and work to counter the whitewashed public narrative of a man who, particularly in the years leading up to his April 1968 assassination, passionately condemned the "evils" of capitalism, militarism, and racism.

The FBI, during both the Obama and Trump administrations, has provoked a wave of criticism for posting shoutouts to King on social media, given the bureau's past treatment of him. Monday was no different.

Some critics expressed anger and disbelief. Rewire.News senior legal analyst Imani Gandy wrote in response to the FBI, "You've got to be fucking kidding me."

Journalist David Corn posed "a sincere question," asking: "Has the FBI ever apologized to King's family for wiretapping King, blackmailing him, and trying to get him to commit suicide?"

Crawford also noted that "the FBI's surveillance of black Americans isn't just history. [In 2018], we learned the FBI has been spying on black activists, labeling them 'Black Identity Extremists.' The feds also use powers obtained through national security laws like the Patriot Act to target people in the racially biased drug war."

"More disturbing: The FBI that spied on King and today classifies Black civil rights activists as 'extremists,'" Crockford continued, "is now partnering with Big Tech to amass unprecedented surveillance powers that history has taught us will be used to target communities of color, religious minorities, dissidents, and immigrants."

FBI director Christopher Wray testified before Congress in July 2019 that the bureau has stopped using the term "black identity extremism." However, some groups and individuals on Monday shared critiques of the FBI's current practices alongside denunciations of the bureau's past behavior.

The London-based advocacy group CAGE, which works to empower communities impacted by the War on Terror, tweeted Monday that the FBI still tries "to suppress dissent" and uses "dirty tactics that would make Edgar Hoover proud. But [is] happy now to co-opt MLK to try to cover up the above."


Thursday, December 05, 2019

Regime Change in Mexico - Conspicuously Obvious to the Casual Observer...,


thegrayzone |  AMLO’s left-wing policies have caused shockwaves in Washington, which has long relied on neoliberal Mexican leaders ensuring a steady cheap exploitable labor base and maintaining a reliable market for US goods and open borders for US capital and corporations.

On November 27 — a day after declaring Nicaragua a “national security threat” — Trump announced that the US government will be designating Mexican drug cartels as “terrorist organizations.”

Such a designation could pave the way for direct US military intervention in Mexico.

The designation was particularly ironic considering some top drug cartel leaders in Mexico have long-standing ties to the US government. The leaders of the notoriously brutal cartel the Zetas, for instance, were originally trained in counter-insurgency tactics by the US military.

Throughout the Cold War, the US government armed, trained, and funded right-wing death squads throughout Latin America, many of which were involved in drug trafficking. The CIA also used drug money to fund far-right counter-insurgency paramilitary groups in Central America.

These tactics were also employed in the Middle East and South Asia. The United States armed, trained, and funded far-right Islamist extremists in Afghanistan in the 1980s in order to fight the Soviet Union. These same US-backed Salafi-jihadists then founded al-Qaeda and the Taliban.

This strategy was later repeated in the US wars on Libya and Syria. ISIS commander Omar al-Shishani, to take one example, had been trained by the US military and enjoyed direct support from Washington when he was fighting against Russia.

The Barack Obama administration also oversaw a campaign called Project Gunrunner and Operation Fast and Furious, in which the US government helped send thousands of guns to cartels in Mexico.
Mexican journalist Alina Duarte explained that, with the Trump administration’s designation of cartels as terrorists, “They are creating the idea that Mexico represents a threat to their national security.”

“Should we start talking about the possibility of a coup against Lopez Obrador in Mexico?” Duarte asked.

Wednesday, December 04, 2019

Let's Invade Mexico!


unz |  I suppose that by now everyone has heard of Trump’s offer to send the American military to “wage WAR on the drug cartels and wipe them off the face of the earth,” which he asserts can be done “quickly and effectively. “

Trump phrased this as an offer to help, not a threat to invade, which is reassuring. AMLO, Mexico’s president, wisely declined the offer.

While the President seems to have made the offer in good faith, he has little idea of Mexico, the military, or the cartels. The American military could not come close to wiping them off the face of the earth, much less effectively and quickly. Such an incursion would be a political and military disaster. The President needs to do some reading.

If AMLO were to invite the Americans into Mexico, he would be lynched. Few Americans are aware of how much the United States is hated in Latin America, and for that matter in most of the world. They don’t know of the long series of military interventions, brutal dictators imposed and supported, and economic rapine. Somoza, Pinochet, the Mexican-American War, detachment of Panama from Colombia, bombardment of Veracruz, Patton’s incursion–the list could go on for pages. The Mexican public would look upon American troops not as saviors but as invaders. Which they would be.

The incursion would not defeat the cartels, for several reasons that trump would do well to ponder. To begin with, America starts its wars by overestimating its own powers, underestimating the enemy, and misunderstanding the kind of war on which it is embarking. The is exactly what Trump seems to be doing.

He probably thinks of Mexicans as just gardeners and rapists and we have all these beautiful advanced weapons and beautiful drones and things with blinking lights. A pack of rapists armed with garden trowels couldn’t possibly be difficult to defeat by the US. I mean, get serious: Dope dealers against the Marines? A cakewalk.

You know, like Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria. That sort of cakewalk. Let’s think what an expedition against the narcos would entail, what it would face.

To begin with, Mexico is a huge country of 127 million souls with the narcos spread unevenly across it. You can’t police a nation that size with a small force, or even with a large force. A (preposterous) million soldiers would be well under one percent of the population. Success would be impossible even if that population helped you. Which it wouldn’t.

Other problems exist. Many, many of them.

What Would War on the Drug Cartels Look Like?


townhall |  Donald Trump is talking about labeling the Mexican drug cartels that own our failed state neighbor as “terrorist groups,” and this is yet another step toward what is increasingly looking to be an inevitable confrontation. They just butchered several American citizens, including kids, which cannot go unanswered. They murder thousands of Americans a year here with their poison, which cannot go unanswered. But are we Americans even able to answer a bunch of pipsqueak thugs anymore? Let’s put aside the question of if we should use our military against Mexico (I discussed it here in 2018, to the consternation of liberals and Fredocon sissies) and look at what might happen if we did escalate.

None of it is good.

It’s not a matter of the prowess of our warriors. Our warriors, unleashed, would lay waste to anything we point them at. But the question is, “Would we ever unleash them? Would we let them do what it takes to achieve the goal of eliminating the cartels?"

Of course not. We haven’t decisively won a real war since World War II (except the Gulf War, unless you accept the arguable premise that it was an early campaign in a still-continuing Iraq conflict). And there’s a reason we don’t win. We don’t truly want to, as demonstrated by our unwillingness to do the hard things required to win. Could you imagine the Democrats siding with America in a war on Mexican drug cartels? If you can, you’re higher than Hoover Biden at a strip club on a Saturday night.

Again, this is not to say whether a war on the Mexican drug cartels is a good or bad idea. Nor is it to say we do not have the combat power to do it – we do. It’s just to say that America is culturally and politically unwilling to do what it takes to win, or to accept the losses that would come with a military campaign against the drug cartels.

Mexico's Five Year Plan to Decriminalize All Drugs


ronpaulinstitute |  Tuesday morning, President Donald Trump, who has the unilateral power to send the United States military to bomb and invade other countries, as several of his predecessors have done, stated at Twitter that he is ready to send the US military to Mexico to defeat drug cartels.

Trump wrote:
This is the time for Mexico, with the help of the United States, to wage WAR on the drug cartels and wipe them off the face of the earth. We merely await a call from your great new president!
Making clear he is talking about a US military action, Trump declared in another Tuesday morning tweet that “the cartels have become so large and powerful that you sometimes need an army to defeat an army!”.

The truth, however, is that the drug war waged by the Mexico government, with the help of the US government, ensures the continued existence of powerful and dangerous drug cartels in Mexico. Similarly, when the US had alcohol prohibition, there were dangerous criminal enterprises that thrived from satisfying people’s demand for prohibited products.

Eliminating drug cartels can best be accomplished by ending, not growing, the drug war. Indeed, this is the course of action the Mexico government seems poised to pursue. Mexico President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who Trump referenced at Twitter, released this year a plan for Mexico to end its drug war. And the Mexico legislature appears to be preparing to take a major step toward ending the drug war — approving legislation to legalize marijuana countrywide.

I am guessing Obrador will not make the phone call Trump suggests. Obrador has available another, better avenue for dealing with drug cartels.

Friday, November 29, 2019

How the DEA Invented NarcoTerrorism...,


propublica  |  On Sept. 11, 2001, when
 American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon, DEA agents were among the first to respond, racing from their headquarters, less than half a mile away. A former special agent named Edward Follis, in his memoir, “The Dark Art,” recalls how he and dozens of his colleagues “rushed over … to pull out bodies, but there were no bodies to pull out.” The agency had outposts in more than 60 countries around the world, the most of any federal law-enforcement agency. And it had some 5,000 informants and confidential sources. Michael Vigil, who was the DEA’s head of international operations at the time, told me, “We called in every source we could find, looking for information about what had happened, who was responsible, and whether there were plans for an imminent attack.” He added, “Since the end of the Cold War, we had seen signs that terrorist groups had started relying on drug trafficking for funding. After 9/11, we were sure that trend was going to spread.”
  
But other intelligence agencies saw the DEA’s sources as drug traffickers — and drug traffickers didn’t know anything about terrorism. A former senior money-laundering investigator at the Justice Department told me that there wasn’t any substantive proof to support the DEA’s assertions.

“What is going on after 9/11 is that a lot of resources move out of drug enforcement and into terrorism,” he said. “The DEA doesn’t want to be the stepchild that is last in line.” Narco-terrorism, the former investigator said, became an “expedient way for the agency to justify its existence.

The White House proved more receptive to the DEA’s claims. Juan Zarate, a former deputy national-security adviser, in his book, “Treasury’s War,” says that President George W. Bush wanted “all elements of national power” to contribute to the effort to “prevent another attack from hitting our shores.” A few months after 9/11, at a gathering of community anti-addiction organizations, Bush said, “It’s so important for Americans to know that the traffic in drugs finances the work of terror. If you quit drugs, you join the fight against terror in America.” In February 2002, the Office of National Drug Control Policy turned Bush’s message into a series of publicservice announcements that were aired during the Super Bowl. Departing from the portrayal of illegal narcotics as dangerous to those who use them — “This is your brain on drugs” — the ads instead warned that getting high helped terrorists “torture someone’s dad” or “murder a family.”

In the next seven years, the DEA’s funding for international activities increased by 75 percent. Until then, the agency’s greatest foreign involvement had been in Mexico and in the Andean region of South America, the world’s largest producer of cocaine and home to violent Marxist guerrilla groups, including the FARC, in Colombia, and the Shining Path, in Peru. Both groups began, in the 1960s and early ‘70s, as peasant rebellions; before long, they started taxing coca growers and smugglers to finance their expansion. The DEA saw the organizations as examples of how criminal motivations can overlap with, and even advance, ideological ones.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls, Dying Time's Here....,


courier-journal |   Somewhere deep in Mexico's remote wilderness, the world’s most dangerous and wanted drug lord is hiding. If someone you love dies from an overdose tonight, he may very well be to blame.

He's called "El Mencho."

And though few Americans know his name, authorities promise they soon will.

Rubén "Nemesio" Oseguera Cervantes is the leader of Cártel Jalisco Nueva Generación, better known as CJNG. With a $10 million reward on his head, he’s on the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s Most Wanted list.

El Mencho’s powerful international syndicate is flooding the U.S. with thousands of kilos of methamphetamines, heroin, cocaine and fentanyl every year — despite being targeted repeatedly by undercover stings, busts and lengthy investigations.

The unending stream of narcotics has contributed to this country’s unprecedented addiction crisis, devastating families and killing more than 300,000 people since 2013.

CJNG’s rapid rise heralds the latest chapter in a generations-old drug war in which Mexican cartels are battling to supply Americans’ insatiable demand for narcotics.

A nine-month Courier Journal investigation reveals how CJNG's reach has spread across the U.S. in the past five years, overwhelming cities and small towns with massive amounts of drugs.

kctv5 |   As the officer in charge of COMBAT, Jackson County’s Drug Trafficking Task Force Dan Cumming deals with a lot of dangerous people.

“About 100% of what we recover, if you follow it back far enough up the drug train so to speak, comes from Mexico and is cartel related,” Cummings said.

Just last week, COMBAT worked a case at the request of Independence police.

A tip led them to a Kansas City, Missouri street where a search warrant led to the seizure of tires filled with meth.

“My guess is that’s the way it was shipped from Mexico to Kansas City,” Cummings said.
Cartels get creative when smuggling drugs in customs and border protection has a few recent examples.

Fentanyl in a vehicle transmission, heroine in a gas tank, marijuana inside a car door and cocaine in clay figurines.

Cummings says he’s seeing more cartel related drug busts in Kansas City now than he has in his 35 plus years in law enforcement.

“We switched from meth labs to Mexican cartels,” Cummings said.

kmbc |   Two Mexican nationals have been sentenced in federal court for their roles in a conspiracy that distributed more than 14 kilograms of heroin in the Kansas City metropolitan area, some of which is believed to have resulted in overdoses and deaths.
Julian Felix-Aguirre, 46, and Martin Missael Puerta-Navarro, 38, were sentenced in separate hearings before U.S. District Judge Gary A. Fenner on Wednesday. Felix-Aguirre was sentenced to 24 years and seven months in federal prison without parole. Pueta-Navarro was sentenced to 14 years and eight months in federal prison without parole.

fox4kc |  "No where is immune," said Erik Smith with the Drug Enforcement Administration. "There are people who become dependent on controlled substances and have need to satisfy that addiction, and any place there is a consumer, an addict or user, somebody will supply that drug for that."

The DEA special agent in charge said feeding the demand for drugs in Johnson County goes well beyond teenage drug dealers.

Smith said Mexican cartels really are living here in Johnson County.

"Historically, a decade ago, two decades ago, a lot of cartels would limit themselves to the inner city," he said. "But as they become more established and they become more wealthy, it's quite common to see them branching out into suburban areas including Johnson County."

Saturday, January 06, 2018

Your Views On Marijuana Legalization?


WaPo |  Jeff Sessions hates marijuana. Hates it, with a passion that has animated almost nothing else in his career. “Good people don’t smoke marijuana,” he has said. He even once said about the Ku Klux Klan, “I thought those guys were okay until I learned they smoked pot.”

He says that was a joke, but even so, it still says something about where he’s coming from.

So if you’re wondering why Sessions has endured the humiliation of being demeaned and abused by President Trump and stayed on as attorney general, one big answer is the policy change he announced this week, that he is rescinding an Obama-era directive that instructed federal prosecutors not to prioritize prosecuting businesses like dispensaries in states that had legalized cannabis. Sessions is finally getting the chance to lock up all those hippies, with their pot-smoking and their free love and their wah-wah pedals and everything immoral they represent. He’ll show them.

WaPo |  Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced Thursday that he will rescind a Justice Department memorandum — known as the Cole Memo — that granted protection to state-legal and regulated marijuana companies. In doing so, Sessions has not only brushed aside science, logic and the prevailing public opinion, but he has also contradicted the opinion of the president he serves and his own party’s governing values.

Sessions’s decision empowers U.S. attorneys to begin prosecuting an industry that has complied with state laws and regulations and has, since 2013, been granted an effective waiver from federal intervention. During this time, the legal marijuana industry has become a multibillion-dollar venture, employing tens of thousands of Americans from coast to coast.

This decision to reignite the drug war comes as little surprise. Sessions once said that “good people don’t smoke marijuana.” He has shown a deep ignorance of the realities of the drug war, which has been ineffective and costly and has disproportionately affected minority communities. And he has committed to numerous claims that have been dispelled by science, such as cannabis’s gateway effect and the idea that marijuana is “only slightly less awful” than heroin.


Monday, December 18, 2017

The Rape of RAP - Don't Say ISHT To Me About Harvey Weinstein...,


yournewswire |  John Homeston, a retired CIA agent, has admitted this week on National Russian Television (NTV) that the CIA was behind the creation of the 1980s hip hop scene and financed major hip hop acts including NWA, Afrika Bambaataa, and Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five.

The government at the time spent “big money, serious money” on this covert operation destined to “further division” and “corrupt the American youth to nihilist, anti-establishment and anti-American ideologies”, he explained in a half hour interview broadcast on national television.
Famous hip hop songs of the legendary hip hop outfit NWA were even scripted by a team of psychologists and war propagandists of the CIA. “F#ck the police,” and “When I’m called off, I got a sawed off / Squeeze the trigger, and bodies are hauled off,” and other nihilist and anti-establishment lyrics were intended to unleash a wave of cynicism towards authorities, promote the use of heavy drugs, and entice the youth with revolutionary, counter-establishment ideas.

The retired CIA agent claims the social engineering maneuver was “extremely successful.
We understood at the time that music was a powerful means of propaganda to reach the youth,” explained the 77-year-old man.

Our mission was to use teenage angst to our advantage and turn Generation X into a decadent, pro-drug and anti-establishment culture that would create uprisings and further division within society. We even infiltrated mainstream radio to promote their music and reach millions of people everyday,” he admitted, visibly proud of the accomplishment.

For many of us in the CIA, infiltrating the 1980s hip hop scene was one of the CIA’s most successful experiments of propaganda to date,” he acknowledged during the interview.
You could say Frankenstein’s monster got up off the table and started goose-stepping.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Government Treats Citizens The Exact Same Way Sexual Predators Treat Victims


counterpunch |  The New York Times recently published a list of 25 men “accused of sexual misconduct” since the Harvey Weinstein revelations first came out in early October. The list is a who’s-who of “players” in the entertainment, political, media and corporate worlds.  Even scandalous stories about Bush-the-elder are finally coming out after decades of suppression.  In being outed, many of the male predators have lost their jobs or contracts, some of their marriages ended, high-priced defense lawyers have been retained and a few say they are seeking professional counseling.

Many of those identified as being or having been a sexual aggressor are being subject to public shaming.  For a while, their lives might be miserable, under a public magnifying glass as to how he could have done what he is “accused” of doing and, therefore, who really is this man?  However, for some, the price to be paid may be far harsher, including an arrest, trial and (if found guilty) jail as a sex offender.  Prosecutors in New York, Los Angeles and London are sharpening their legalistic claws as they seek criminal indictments against Weinstein.  Who will be the next player to fall?

Since the Reagan-era of the 1980s, the U.S. has engaged in two domestic wars – a war on drugs and a war on sex.  Both have roots dating from the 1920s Prohibition campaign; both rejected the 1960s-70s countercultural insurgency. Both have been played out at federal and local levels — and both are failures!

The country’s drug-addiction “epidemic” has shifted from black to while, from the inner-city or urban ghettos to the suburbs and rural heartland.  Throughout the country, low-level drug offenses are being decriminalized, criminal penalties are being lessened and the traditional ethos of harsh punishment is being undercut by calls for restorative justice.

When launched, the war on sex drew politicians, law enforcement and people of good intentions, conservative and liberal (including anti-porn feminist and gay-rights advocates), into alignment with the religious right.  They joined forces in a campaign to forcefully suppress what was broadly conceived as a domestic security threat, violation of the sexually acceptable.

The sex offender was – and remains — a perfect target for moral outrage.  He (mostly) is someone who crossed a moral line and committed an unpardonable offense.  If he cannot be executed for his affront to civil and religious decency than, at least, he can be shamed or stigmatized, imprisoned, placed in indefinite detention and listed on a sex-offender’s registry.

The 25 men identified by the Times are “players” in the entertainment, political, media and corporate worlds.  Others will surely be added to the list.  Their outing is a friction point in the seismic shift in American social values now underway.  Those so far identified come from the celebrate sector, not most people everyday life. Unfortunately, misogyny is endemic to American life, but gets little local media or public attention until it becomes a media spectacle like what’s happening today.  Its all-to-often considered a private matter, rather than a social practice.

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

Drug Industry's Control of Congress Makes the NRA Look Like a Piker...,


WaPo |  In April 2016, at the height of the deadliest drug epidemic in U.S. history, Congress effectively stripped the Drug Enforcement Administration of its most potent weapon against large drug companies suspected of spilling prescription narcotics onto the nation’s streets. 

By then, the opioid war had claimed 200,000 lives, more than three times the number of U.S. military deaths in the Vietnam War. Overdose deaths continue to rise. There is no end in sight.

A handful of members of Congress, allied with the nation’s major drug distributors, prevailed upon the DEA and the Justice Department to agree to a more industry-friendly law, undermining efforts to stanch the flow of pain pills, according to an investigation by The Washington Post and “60 Minutes.” The DEA had opposed the effort for years.

The law was the crowning achievement of a multifaceted campaign by the drug industry to weaken aggressive DEA enforcement efforts against drug distribution companies that were supplying corrupt doctors and pharmacists who peddled narcotics to the black market. The industry worked behind the scenes with lobbyists and key members of Congress, pouring more than a million dollars into their election campaigns.

The chief advocate of the law that hobbled the DEA was Rep. Tom Marino,a Pennsylvania Republican who is now President Trump’s nominee to become the nation’s next drug czar. Marino spent years trying to move the law through Congress. It passed after Sen. Orrin G. Hatch (R-Utah) negotiated a final version with the DEA.

For years, some drug distributors were fined for repeatedly ignoring warnings from the DEA to shut down suspicious sales of hundreds of millions of pills, while they racked up billions of dollars in sales.

The new law makes it virtually impossible for the DEA to freeze suspicious narcotic shipments from the companies, according to internal agency and Justice Department documents and an independent assessment by the DEA’s chief administrative law judge in a soon-to-be-published law review article. That powerful tool had allowed the agency to immediately prevent drugs from reaching the street.