The trial with the alleged Silk Road operator starts this Tuesday. It will be a battle between good and evil. The evil side wants young people to die from drug overdose or have their lives destroyed by addiction and crime. It wants to force them to use the strongest possible substances to get high as quickly and as intensely as possible. It wants to make huge profits on the suffering of those in the lower levels of the society. It wants to add more fuel to cartel wars which leave thousands of dead abroad while it sits comfortably in front of a computer screen. The good side wants to stop all of it. It wants safe streets clean of drugs, to save lives both in its neighborhood and in distant parts of the world and it doesn’t want any more people to die of overdose.

It’s a battle between drug legislation enforcement agencies, judicial system and elected and unelected officials on one side and Ross Ulbricht on the other. And unlike what the system would like us to think, Ross is the good and state is the evil.

Architects of anti-drug policies not only in the US, but around the world have forced drug trade into dark realms of our society where no law and protection of private property and lives applies. They completely disregard the fact, that people want to take various drugs for various reasons and will use any means available to get access to them. If they acknowledged it, they would understand consequences of their disastrous, stupid and utterly evil policies.

Lack of clear competition, branding and goodwill cause consumers having no idea what are they using and in what amount, which increases their chances of overdosing. Illegality of all drugs forces recreational light drug users to reach for drugs which are easier to smuggle and give them more high in smaller amounts. Like when sport league bans alcohol and fans who drink beer around the stadium before the game smuggle small doses of hard liquor to the game.

Artificially high margins on drug sales create more incentives to make people addicted and drives more addicts unable to afford their dose to crime. Impossibility of legal drugs production in countries with developed law and protection of lives and property forces these to be produced in corrupt places with no respect for either. Asset forfeiture rules create twisted incentives for monopolized state agencies enforcing these policies to make big bucks on seizing money and equipment of not only those involved in the drug trade, but often completely innocent people.

The biggest beneficiaries are comfortably seated in the offices they were elected to for false promises to deal with issues they often themselves created, in corporate headquarters of companies selling equipment for armies fighting the war on drugs on both sides, in pharmaceutical companies which could potentially lose profits to cheap medical marijuana and especially in the US prison-industrial complex, which gets paid for locking millions of victimless criminals serving long sentences in these private, but government mandated facilities.

If Ross Ulbricht is who he is alleged to be, he simply wanted to change all of this for better. He wanted to create transparency in product quality and quantity by introducing customer feedback loop brought about by free trade and rating system, thus protecting health and lives of drug users. He wanted to remove violence from streets by moving the trade to anonymized and safe cyberspace. He might have saved as many and more lives as these murderous thugs in uniforms and suits have destroyed or ended have he been allowed to continue his enterprise.

But the vested interests and power of evil forces standing against him are too strong.

It’s not gonna be fair trial. Forget division of power between police, judge and attorneys. They’re all part of the same rotten system designed to protect those who are part of it and crush down on those who stand up to it. Everything so far in pre-trial actions has been a display of system’s power over near defenseless invidividual. While they are allowed to use evidence related to crimes he is not charged with, he will not be allowed to express his views on personal freedom and liberty making a case the jury nullification because “it’s not related” (unlike the evidence related to those uncharged crimes). It’s getting pretty clear he will not walk free.

The system is dedicated to hang him from the highest pole in the town. His only hope is in all of us pointing out to his entrepreneurial heroism, his correct principles and positive achievements and prepare ground for his release when the sentiment of the society shifts and when we will succeed in bleeding the state dry to the extend it will have to release its own political prisoners, from Ross to millions of mostly colored “criminals” who have done nothing wrong, but are victims of the system designed to profit from their suffering.


Here’s my recommended reading on the topic:

1. How Buying Drugs Online Became Safe, Easy, and Boring by Brian Doherty is in my opinion the best piece ever written on online drug markets.
You can also read his roundup of the first week of trial here.

2. Ross Ulbricht Should Be Freed in a Fair Trial by Jeffrey Tucker

3. Wired’s Andy Greenberg is tweeting and live-blogging from the trial and referring to his own older work on the topic.

4. Nick Gillespie’s Why the Prosecution of Silk Road Creator Ross Ulbricht is “The Most Important Trial in America” and his interview with Ross’ AMAZING mother.

5. Tom Woods’ podcast episode with Derrick Freeman about the case and jury nullification.

6. Roger Ver has been probably one of the largest donors and strongest supporters of Ross from the moment of his arest. Follow him on Twitter or Facebook

7. And finally, if you haven’t, make sure to donate to Ross’ defense fund