One of the new Tea Party senators, Ted Cruz, gained a lot of support when he was Solicitor General of Texas and successfully defended his state’s ability to execute a murderer over the objections of the International Court of Justice.
At the time, this fight even led me to confess one of my lurid fantasies.
Now we have another battle involving American states and an international bureaucracy.
Here are a couple of passages from a report in the Seattle Times.
A United Nations-based drug agency urged the United States government on Tuesday to challenge the legalization of marijuana for recreational use in Colorado and Washington, saying the state laws violate international drug treaties. …U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said last week that he was in the last stages of reviewing the Colorado and Washington state laws. Holder said he was examining policy options and international implications of the issue.
Here’s a news flash for the bureaucrats at this branch of the United Nations in Vienna: American states are sovereign and don’t need to kowtow to a bunch of mandarins who get bloated (and tax free!) salaries in exchange for…well, I’m not sure what they do other than pontificate, gorge themselves at receptions, and enjoy first class travel at our expense while jetting from one conference to another.
If the people of Washington and Colorado want to legalize certain drugs, that’s their right. They haven’t signed any treaties with the United Nations.
By the way, this has nothing to do with whether drugs should be legalized.
But since I’m an abstainer, I confess I don’t really lose any sleep about the issue.
I generally do get agitated, by contrast, when international bureaucracies seek to impose one-size-fits-all policies on the world. Much of my ire is directed at the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, which seeks to penalize jurisdictions that commit the horrible crime of having attractive tax regimes (or, to be more accurate, having tax regimes that are more attractive than those in places such as France and Germany).
P.S. Have you ever noticed that U.N. offices are in swanky places such as New York City, Geneva, and Vienna? If these bureaucrats really want to help the world, why aren’t their offices in Havana, Lagos, and Chisinau. That would be quite appropriate, after all, since Cuba, Nigeria, and Moldova are all members of the U.N. Human Rights Council.