Words & Numbers


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Insightful weekly commentary on news & current events from economist Antony Davies and political scientist James R. Harrigan.

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Prohibition and Constitutional Constraints

January 15, 2020

The 18th Amendment was ratified a century ago, beginning the United States’ fourteen-year experiment with prohibition. An Amendment was needed because the Constitution did not give the federal government the power to ban alcohol. Yet, today, the federal government bans recreational drugs and puts medicinal drugs under the control of the FDA. But, the Constitution also doesn’t give the government the power to regulate drugs. Either the 18th Amendment wasn’t necessary a century ago, or federal drug controls are unconstitutional today.

TITLE: Prohibition and Constitutional Constraints

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