By Martin Feldstein
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The alcohol used for industrial purposes differs chemically from beverage alcohol and is in fact poisonous. It can be converted to beverage alcohol with little difficulty, however. 56 | Drug War Crimes 3. 9 in 1906 are large in comparison to virtually all subsequent fluctuations. S. Bureau o f the Census 1975: 408). Moreover, the states in the initial sample had relatively low homicide rates (Eckberg 1995). Thus, especially tor the first decade o f the century, data from ad ditional states might have raised the overall homicide rate simply because o f differences across states.
S. S. cirrhosis death rates in states adopting prohibition before 1919 -CO ■M I - A - O H - j f c - U T - Q - V T i 3 2 | Drug War Crimes INew York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey). There is some evidence o f declin es in states that adopted prohibition during this period, but -the declines were smaller on average than the declines in wet states. *These figures do not support die hypothesis that state prohibitions lowered cirrhosis death rates. 5. The key fact is that cirrhosis declined first; indeed, alcohol consumption gives no indication o f a decline until 1918, well after the wave o f state prohibition adoptions.
2, which plots a measure o f drug and alcohol prohibition enforcement over the past century. 5 The figure suggests a strong, positive rela tion between enforcement o f prohibition and the homicide rate. Enforcement climbs along with the homicide rate during Prohi bition and then falls at the end o f the period, as does the homicide rate. Enforcement is relatively low during the 1940s and 1950s, as is the homicide rate for the most part. And enforcement o f prohi bition rises along with the homicide rate beginning after 1960.