My candidacy for drug czar

… is kaput. I’ll be playing second base for the Dodgers instead, a job for which I’m equally qualified and in which my errors will be less consequential.

[See update.]

After long and prayerful consideration, I have asked the President-elect to remove my name from the list of candidates for the job of “drug czar.”

Instead, I will be playing second base for the Dodgers, a position for which I am equally qualified and in which my errors will be less consequential. In the off-season, I will play the French horn in the LA Philharmonic, debuting as the soloist in the Mozart Horn Concerto No. 4 in E-Flat Major, K. 495.

Footnote Please treat this as a confidential communication. I wouldn’t want whoever finally takes that thankless job to know that he or she was only a second choice.

Update Just to make it clear: this was a JOKE! I am not, have not been, and could not be under consideration for Drug Czar. Not only have I taken positions that make me politically radioactive, I’d also be absolutely terrible at actually doing the job, which is 10% thinker, 30% manager, and 60% schmoozer.

After only thirty years, I’m finally starting to get the hang of this teaching thing. So I’m going to stick to a job I’m nearly competent at. I can think of three people offhand who would be terrific Drug Czars, but I’m not going to damage their prospects by linking their names with mine.

If the Drug Czar or anyone else in the new administration wants my advice, I’m not hard to find. But, as I tried to indicate above, I’m about as likely to get a recuiting call from the Dodgers or the LA Phil as I am from the transition team.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: