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Article posted Wednesday, June 24, 2009 5:37pm

Quotable

“We’ve spent a trillion dollars prosecuting the war on drugs. What do we have to show for it? Drugs are more readily available, at lower prices and higher levels of potency. It’s a dismal failure.” – Norm Stamper, former police chief of Seattle, in the New York Times, June 14

41,000

Number of people in prison for drug offenses in 1980

500,000

Number in prison today

44.1

Billion dollars, the amount spent annually in the US to enforce drug laws

14

Percent of people imprisoned with drug problems who get treatment in prison

15

Square feet of retail space per person in the U.S. in 1986

20

Square feet of retail space per person in the U.S. today

13

Square feet of retail space per person in Canada, the country with the second highest ratio (Sweden has the most in Europe, at 3 square feet per person)

Sources:  Retrofitting Suburbia; New York Times