Decriminalize Drugs? Check Out Portugal's Experience

I have frequently ranted about the failure of the so-called war on drugs. That so-called war wastes valuable taxpayer resources and causes crime, burglaries, robberies, murders etc by desperate druggies trying to get money for their illegal drugs.

The drug laws impose excessive cost on the consumers of legal prescription drugs by limiting supply and suppliers.

As is typical, naysayers of decriminalization paint terrible scenarios. We now have an example of actual real-world experience with decriminalization in Portugal (from the Politico):
By any metric, Portugal’s drug-decriminalization scheme has been a resounding success. Drug usage in many categories has decreased in absolute terms, including for key demographic groups, like 15-to-19-year-olds. Where usage rates have increased, the increases have been modest — far less than in most other European Union nations, which continue to use a criminalization approach.

Portugal, whose drug problems were among the worst in Europe, now has the lowest usage rate for marijuana and one of the lowest for cocaine. Drug-related pathologies, including HIV transmission, hepatitis transmission and drug-related deaths, have declined significantly.
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