Trump Says Murderous Philippine Drug War Is “The Right Way”

duterte-trump

(CNN) “He was wishing me success in my campaign against the drug problem. He understood the way we are handling it and he said there is nothing wrong with protecting your country.

–Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, discussing his phone call with US President-Elect Donald Trump

Back in February, I wrote a blistering attack on Hillary Clinton as a presidential candidate. I was strongly supporting Bernie Sanders and explained how I would never vote for a Republican, referring to Clinton’s tendency to embrace GOP-Lite policy prescriptions.

But then, as the campaign wore on and Sanders was sandbagged by the DNC, the terribly reality grew on me: either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton will become the next president, full stop.

From that point, I recognized that stopping Donald Trump was vitally important. I had no illusions about Clinton and still believe she’d be the kind of president who’d piss me off in all manner of policy areas. But Trump would be disastrous for the country in every measure, including marijuana policy.

(FOX News) “It was very encouraging in the sense that I suppose that what he wanted to say was that he would be the last to interfere in the affairs of our own country.”

–Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, discussing his phone call with US President-Elect Donald Trump

But I knew that at least she was a competent bureaucrat who’d appoint reasonable people to federal cabinet positions and the bench. And I knew that Donald Trump had little interest in actual governing, so he’d basically put his odious Vice President Pence in charge and let the GOP pretty much have its way when it comes to leadership positions in the Executive Branch.

Through it all, I suffered the slings and arrows from fellow Bernie Bros, Clinton-haters, and vote tossers. Hillary and the DNC screwed Bernie, they told me, we have to hold them accountable! Hitlery KKKlinton is the personification of malevolent evil, they told me, we have to ensure she’s not president! Clinton and Trump are just two wings of the same bird, they told me, we have to support Gary Johnson / Jill Stein to upend the corporate duopoly!

Worst of all, some of them used my own words from my February article to defend their position. That I may have cost Hillary Clinton some progressive votes through my writing is a shame I will never live down. Because now it is becoming quite clear that my predictions about Trump’s Administration are coming true.

(New York Times) “He wishes me well, too, in my campaign, and he said that, well, we are doing it as a sovereign nation, the right way.”

–Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, discussing his phone call with US President-Elect Donald Trump

Some of my followers have tried to convince me that everything will be OK with marijuana policy under a Trump Administration. He said he was for states’ rights, they tell me. He said he’s 100 percent in favor of medical marijuana, they tell me. He’s got too much to deal with to spend political capital on marijuana, they tell me.

Then I saw Trump select the very worst anti-pot senator, Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, to be his Attorney General. Don’t worry, they tell me, because Attorney General Sessions will have to follow Trump’s will on the marijuana issue.

Sure, Attorney General Sessions can revoke the Cole Memo, removing the only impediment restraining federal prosecutors and chilling any new investment in the marijuana industry. Sure, he could sue the states to enjoin their commercial marijuana licensing programs as violations of federal law. Sure, he could send the DEA out to raid recreational marijuana grows and shops (the Rohrabacher Amendment protects medical… for now).

I also pointed out to them that not only does Trump install the Attorney General, but also 93 US Attorneys throughout the nation. Those are the prosecutors who, despite President Obama’s view that “we were not going to prioritize prosecutions of persons who are using medical marijuana,” managed to conduct more federal raids on medical cannabis than any other administration.

But they all won’t do that because Trump’s for states’ rights.

(Reuters) Duterte told Democrat Obama to “go to hell” and called him a “son of a bitch” whom he would humiliate if he visited the Philippines.

A source who has advised Trump’s transition team on security policy said the president-elect would start a “clean slate” with Duterte.

“He is perfectly capable of talking to Duterte in an open way without being wedded to previous policy failures,” the source said of Trump.

Then I saw Trump select one of the worst anti-pot congressmen, Tom Price, to become the head of the Department of Health & Human Services. Don’t worry, they tell me, because Secretary Price will have to follow Trump’s will on the marijuana issue.

Sure, Secretary Price will control the National Institute on Drug Abuse, which is the bottleneck through which all medical cannabis research must be approved. Sure, he’ll control the FDA, which could sue programs in 28 states to stop them from using the word “medical”. Sure, he’ll control the Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements to hospitals and physicians that could be withheld if they have anything to do with recommending or allowing Schedule I marijuana.

But he won’t because Trump is for states’ rights.

(The Guardian) A statement from Trump’s team said Duterte congratulated the US president-elect and the two men “noted the long history of friendship and cooperation between the two nations, and agreed that the two governments would continue to work together closely on matters of shared interest and concern”.

So now we have Donald Trump engaging in an “animated” phone conversation with Rodrigo Duterte, the president of the Philippines. Duterte campaigned on a promise to crack down on drugs by simply killing all the drug dealers and drug users. He literally said that he promised to kill 100,000 criminals in his first six months in office. He even stated that there would be so many bodies of dead pushers and addicts in Manila Bay that the “fish would grow fat.

According to reporting from NPR, close to 5,000 people have been murdered already for suspicion of selling or using drugs. The murders are carried out by police or by vigilante gangs, who Duterte has promised will receive full immunity from Philippine prosecution and protection from international prosecution. Tens of thousands of other drug-using or -dealing Filipinos have turned themselves in to prison rather than await their fate.

(NPR) Jepadre was just 17 when he died. His girlfriend stands next to the casket, clutching their 6-month-old daughter. His aunt, Jennlyn Raguindin, says police found his body across town. He’d been stabbed nine times, wrapped in plastic and dumped in an alley.

“When they recovered the body of my nephew, they saw a piece of paper with a note: ‘I’m a pusher. I’m a house robber. Don’t be like me,'” she says.

There was also a small packet of marijuana. The police have told the family they have no clue who was responsible.

It’s a scene repeated all over Manila, and all over the Philippines, since the war on drugs began.

That’s what Donald Trump, according to Duterte, thinks is “the right way” to combat drug problems. Donald Trump is “wishing… success” for Duterte’s drug-pogrom. Donald Trump finds “nothing wrong” with the lynching of thousands of suspected drug users. Donald Trump “would be the last to interfere” with Duterte’s plan to kill 100,000 people. Donald Trump isn’t “wedded to the previous policy” of condemning Duterte’s extermination of people without trial.

Tell me again about Trump’s love of states’ rights?

Russ Belville
About Russ Belville 199 Articles
Russ Belville - or "Radical" Russ, as he is known on-air - hosts The Marijuana Agenda, a live news and talk radio program for the cannabis community, weekdays at 3pm Pacific on MJAgenda.com.  The show is based in Portland, Oregon, but "Radical" Russ has traveled over 300,000 air miles in the past five years, bringing his show to report live from hundreds of cannabis conferences, marijuana expos, hemp festivals, and legalization events in over 70 North American cities.