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Wasted Tax Dollars: Part 1

Neill Franklin, Executive Director, Law Enforcement Action Partnership | August 23, 2019

Regardless of party affiliation, culture, background, and gender, there is one thing we can all agree on when it comes to working and paying taxes. If that hard-earned money is going to waste, something needs to change. Generally speaking, the government isn’t known to handle their finances very well. Tax revenue spending and efficiency could be dramatically improved in just about every area. I’m not speaking to any particular program, either. The overall management of the different departments at the local, state, and federal level needs an overhaul. Examining the numbers What we’re spending in dealing with the cannabis prohibition, better known as the War on Drugs, is astronomical. We’re starting to see some changes in that arena, but let’s look at the numbers as they stand. Right now, we’re spending about $50 billion—that’s with a B—a year in direct costs, including police, courtrooms, and prisons. In other words, our criminal justice system. That’s not even counting the money we spend on health, treatment and education. What people don’t always realize is that, as taxpayers, we want as many people as possible contributing to that pot of tax dollars. In order for that to happen, people need to be working, buying goods, and spending the money they earn. That generates tax revenue in the form of sales tax, property tax, related fees, and so on. When small businesses open up, they pay fees that the government siphons off of. The War on Drugs failed. Not for lack of trying, of course. In …

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