The Thriving Business of Drug Trafficking and the DEA’s Role


For this week’s argument draft I am looking at my topic, drug trafficking and the United States, from a governmental perspective.  One thing that is important in understanding the business of illegal drug trafficking is that it is not like any other organized business in that there are no rules.  If a deal goes bad people do not get fired from their job, they get killed.  Drugs fuel so much of our nation’s crimes that it cost the U.S. economy over $180 billion annually in lost earnings, health care and social welfare costs, and the loss of goods and services (Tandy p.1).  Moreover, drug trafficking plays a role in financing international terrorism.  This is upsetting because due to our high demand for drugs in the United States, it is as if we are empowering the terrorist organizations that have attacked us and still continue to threaten our nation to this day.

The illegal drug trafficking business is fueled by the huge cash pile it generates through the cheap process of making the drugs and making such high profits.  For example, methamphetamine cost approximately $300 to $500 per kilo to produce and is sold on the streets of the U.S. for nearly $60,000 per kilo (Bergman p.3).  Sixty-five billion dollars worth of drug money is passed around each year in the United States.  It is the DEA’s job to try and seize those drugs and drug money to try and diminish the power of the illegal business in an attempt to permanently dismantle the drug trafficking organizations.

The DEA is combating these issues both domestically and internationally.  They must work with global partners in countries such as Canada, Hong Kong, and Mexico to try and target these traffickers and increase chemical control efforts abroad.  Based on my research, numbers have proven that an increase in the funding of the DEA for Priority Target investigations, investigations systems, training facilities, and supporting additional Special Agent positions has led to new records in seizing illicit drug proceeds and related assets.  So a solution that I would ponder for my white paper would be to increase government funding of the DEA.

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6 Responses to The Thriving Business of Drug Trafficking and the DEA’s Role

  1. mnickels says:

    This post reminded me of the movie “Blow” with Jonny Depp. It’s all about drug trafficking and it might be a movie and fiction, but it is a really good movie and really interesting. I think drug trafficking is a really interesting industry and it is so unregulated. It seems really difficult to regulate also since there is so much trafficking going on it must be hard to track all of the activity. I wonder how hard the DEA works, or if they really work hard at all. Does the DEA really try to track all of the drug activity that goes on or do they let some things go to work on “bigger” cases or hunt down the more wanted people?

  2. mike cardinute says:

    Well Nate, after you get out of basic and put your time in the Army maybe you will be able to help put and end to all this mayhem. I agree that government funding to help find new and improved ways of keeping up with these drug offenders are necessary. Like I said in my post, it seems as if these drug offenders are always one step ahead of the government. It is a must to find new ways to beat them to their spot because the longer we wait, the bigger they get.

  3. Jordi says:

    Has funding for policing ever decreased import of drugs or rates of use? Just wondering…

  4. Pingback: The Rise of Femicide and Women in Drug Trafficking « WesternDefenseStudiesInstitute

  5. Pingback: TWENTY CHARGED IN DRUG TRACKING CASE LINKED TO CARTEL « As My World Turns

  6. ana says:

    The DEA is too busy busting legitimate Physicians to do any real good against anything. In Montana alone over 30 Physicians have been falsely accused. Their accusers? – known drug addicts who get paid/and or have their illegal activities overlooked for making things up. This is not a war of on drugs – it is a war on patients and doctors.

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