I have started reading a book called Last Call which is about the prohibition of alcohol in the 1920s which I find similar to the current situation people face themselves here at IBS today. I did find an interesting review of the book by Macleans magazine about the impact and perhaps one might say benefits that accrued to Canada during prohibition.
Extract for Macleans magazine:
Just as all the clichés about Canadian-American relations say—the mouse and elephant, the U.S. sneezes and we catch cold—Canada does not normally benefit when the Americans undergo one of their periodic upheavals. The way their current security consciousness is thickening the 49th parallel and slowing trade is a prime example. But there are exceptions to every rule, and Prohibition—perhaps the maddest of mad American dreams—did pretty well by our nation from 1920 to 1933. As American writer Daniel Okrent points out in his fine social history of the era, Last Call, the rivers of Canadian booze that flowed south enriched not only the Bronfman liquor empire, but our federal government. Canadians did make and smuggle illegal liquor, evading both Canadian taxes and American law, but we also made millions of litres of the legal, taxed stuff, the ultimate destination of which was of no concern to Ottawa. The amount of alcohol subject to excise tax—most of which went south one way or another—went from 36,000 litres in 1920 to five million 10 years later, and the excise tax on it rose to a fifth of federal revenue, twice as much as income tax.
Few in Canada had the slightest inclination to aid the American government in cracking down on alcohol use. When a U.S. Coast Guard cutter in pursuit of a Lake Erie rum-runner ran aground near Port Colborne, Ont., locals looted the vessel, then filled its engines with sand. About the only Canadians Okrent could unearth who thought the Dominion should help Uncle Sam seal his border were those making a fortune selling alcohol to American visitors. One way or another, most Canadians agreed with the smug satisfaction of CNR president Sir Henry Thornton, whose railway was growing fat off liquor tourism: “The dryer the U.S. is,” opined Sir Henry, “the better it will be for us.”
One thing I find amazing is the utter hyprocracy of the US politicians of the day and the fact nothing really ever changes in history. Its the reason Shakespeare sells, the thing that brings you down at the end is the thing that was always going to bring you down.