If you can't beat 'em, join 'em.

Oldest rule in the book of business. But when it comes to the international war on drugs, the takers for this maxim are few. The South American country Uruguay is considering taking a giant step for mankind and actually having the government sell weed.

All in the name of battling cocaine. Yep:

Responding to an alarming uptick in cocaine-related homicides, Uruguayan officials, including the country's president and its minister of defense, have proposed that the government take over pot sales to adults who register at an official database, according to BBC News.

The tax proceeds would be used for hard-drug diversion programs. A reduction in such use, the argument goes, would then hurt drug gangs selling a crack-like drug called pasta basica by shrinking their customer base and diverting users toward pot, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The idea is being debated in the country's congress. It would make Uruguay the first country in the world to sell weed.

The man who's proposing the legislation, Fernandez Huidobro, says:

We believe that the prohibition of certain drugs is creating more problems for society than the drugs themselves… with disastrous consequences.

[@dennisjromero / djromero@laweekly.com / @LAWeeklyNews]

Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.