Smoke and Mirrors by Dan Baum
The War on Drugs and the Politics of Failure

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A critical study of the federal campaign against illegal drugs shows how, despite billions spent over successive administrations, high incarceration rates, and the compromise of civil liberties, drugs continue to spread. National ad/promo. Tour.

About Dan Baum

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Dan Baum is a former reporter with the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and The Nation. His book Smoke and Mirrors: The War on Drugs and the Politics of Failure is a well written, carefully documented, shocking expose of the U.S. government's ineffective, 30-year drug policy. Baum uses his journalism background to document with statistics on drug use and abuse the failure of anti-drug efforts since 1967. He believes that the switch from viewing drug abuse as a health problem to drug abuse as a moral problem has ultimately resulted in injustices, especially the loss of Fourth Amendment and Fifth Amendment constitutional protections. In tracing policies through the administrations of Nixon, Carter, Reagan, and Bush, Baum gives examples of how drug busts not only disenfranchise minorities but also provide police department funding. He is also the author of Citizen Coors: An American Dynasty and Nine Lives: Death and Life in New Orleans.
Published June 1, 1996 by Little Brown & Co (T). 396 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, Children's Books. Non-fiction

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Baum, a former Wall Street Journal reporter, traces American drug policy back to the presidency of Richard Nixon, when several eager young aides were given the opportunity to turn their personal contempt for drugs into national policy.

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Publishers Weekly

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Many sensible analysts have argued the folly of our contradictory and damaging drug policies, but Baum manages to make his argument fresh by tracing what he sees as the escalating missteps and ironies that led us into the ""war on drugs.""A former Wall Street Journal reporter, Baum weaves a brisk...

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