Early intervention with teens and parents is recommended, and programs and grants in economically disadvantaged communities are being increased.
Drugs are big business and dealers look for big markets. Many young people are introduced to drugs by a friend, but the belief that "everyone" is using drugs is a fallacy. The President's drug control policy is focused on use by young people, while drug use is often related to behavior problems as well; however, the strategy does not address this (General Accounting 2003). In fact, communities are encouraged to apply for grants to set up their own programs. In other words, the government prefers to pass the buck.
According to the 2004 strategy, the drug treatment system is being expanded over five years and an increase in funds is proposed. It is also suggested that drug courts could be established at the county level with incentives for drug users in order to reduce recidivism. Once more, however, as in plans to stop drug use, the community is called upon to develop a residential, therapeutic community-type treatment campus. (Fraser 2006).
Law enforcement often targets smaller issues, while larger issues get out of hand (Fraser 2006). The U.S. Government announced that it would no longer seize small shipments of Canadian pharmaceuticals at the border. Months of aggressive seizures resulted in 40,000 confiscations nationwide. Because of cheaper drugs in Canada, seniors complained about the seizures. As a deterrent to major drug cartels this action had no effect at all and only made it difficult for seniors to survive in a failing U.S. economy. It is said that the FDA and U.S. Customs illegally confiscated medications to boost U.S. sales of pharmaceuticals (Fraser 2006).
Disrupting the Market
Increased initiatives are intended to curtail Priority Target Organizations in the international drug trade, with more flight hours for patrolling regions with radar coverage, and with the Department of State Andean Counterdrug Initiative supporting Columbia, Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Brazil, Venezuela, and Panama (President's National 2004). Unfortunately, an increase in budget in these areas might close down one area and cause another one is set up immediately (Friesendorf 2007).
How Does Arrest of Drug Dealers Factor into the Policy
The effort to curtail access to illegal drugs has been a government initiative for many years, but for every apparently successful effort, another drug trafficking organization arises, with bribery and money laundering as well as corrupt government practices creating a financial bonanza for those in the drug trade. Establishing increased enforcement is all very well if it is successful but too often it meets the barrier of corruption. The effort to limit agricultural sources has not been successful and interferes with a cultural way of life in which a country uses the plants it grows such as coca as medicine or in cultural rituals (Friesendorf 2007).
Government studies show that drug use initiation is highest among