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Author Topic: The War on Drugs  (Read 52168 times)
Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #150 on: April 12, 2011, 12:10:46 PM »

I've related this info before, but there are Gullah and Geechee (African) communities along the coasts of South Carolina and Georgia that did not suffer much of the disfunction that the heirs to slavery often did. When those folks were appropriated from Africa they brought malaria, and resistance to it, to the New World. Snatched up specifically for the rice growing skills they practiced in costal Africa, they were often set down in the southern US more or less culturally intact. Malaria sickened the landowners, driving them inland and leaving these cultural groups to chart their way to a degree unimaginable to most slave groups.

Unsupervised or poorly supervised, many of this community escaped south the Florida swamplands where the they joined Seminole Indian groups, and became known as Black Seminoles. The Spanish government, concerned by the expansion of the nascent American nation, armed these tribes so they could serve as a buffer between the US and Spanish Florida holdings. Hence the Seminole wars were launched; American soldiers did not fare very well during it, leaving the government to bribe the Seminole tribes to move out west. Doing so as a culturally intact, armed society that had just taken names, the Seminole tribes and their Gullah and Geechee precursors have done a lot better over the years than the counterparts that had their cultures ripped asunder prior to being made wards of the state.

All of which is a roundabout way of saying that I suspect drug use is more of a symptom than primary cause of many pathologies. Those with strong roots and good support systems tend to surmount or successfully adapt to the human tendency to seek psychoactive experiences. Those that have had their roots ripped out one way or another tend to find something else to make the focus of their existence and that thing often ends up being some sort of inebriant use. Devoid of other options worth grasping at, that cycle is rarely broken.
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G M
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« Reply #151 on: April 12, 2011, 01:38:30 PM »

There is nothing nice about getting conquered. Having said that, note that the Jews have had their share of tragedy, yet tend not to have the multigenerational substance abuse issues previously mentioned. The children and grandchildren of those who fled the horrors of the communists in SE asia aren't showing the same levels of pathology found on the reservations.
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #152 on: April 12, 2011, 08:15:06 PM »

Yet note the cultural continuity of those groups you cite. I'm better acquainted with Judaism than say the Hmong, but despite all they've endured they still had the Torah, traditions, a common language(s), educational structures, and so on. In the case of most blacks and Native Americans, traditions were swept away, language was lost, families torn apart, religion stripped away, education either banned or consisted of little more than pounding square pegs into round holes. Just about every defining characteristic as a people was cut away. With no cultural touchstones to be had other crutches filled the void.
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #153 on: April 13, 2011, 11:02:24 AM »

Meth use progression:

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G M
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« Reply #154 on: April 13, 2011, 01:55:37 PM »

Can addicted parents fail to properly socialize their children? If enough of society becomes addicted, could there be a tipping point where the society fails?
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #155 on: April 13, 2011, 02:57:05 PM »

I dunno. Got any data that supports or refutes that question? Seems in a lot of our exchanges you assume a substance so addictive that only the most onerous and to date counterproductive governmental coercion is fully justified. Unless you count addictive substances like air, food, and water I've not seen any evidence that there is a substance that creates craving so intense it can cause societies to fail, though I guess the redistributionist ideologies some try to foist come close.

Indeed, the long, sordid history of prohibitionists is chock full of instances where uncontrolled behavior inspired by a substance is claimed as reason to impose draconian measures. Reefer Madness tried to do it with grass, I remember Dragnet and other cop shows of the day doing so with acid, cocaine had everyone all aflutter a couple decades back, then came angle dust, heroin, ecstasy, and currently meth, though I'm surely forgetting others. A lot of substances that were gonna end society as we know it came and went, and here we are still sputtering along. 

But worry not, our current means of dealing with the awful possibility some will find life more tolerable after ingesting this substance or that spins off perverse incentives at such a furious rate that we will always have it until the psychoactive substance no one can resist does indeed arrive on the scene.
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G M
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« Reply #156 on: April 13, 2011, 03:14:28 PM »

China was severely damaged by the opium the Brits waged wars to sell to them. They're still pissed off about it today. Most hard illegal drugs are not used by the the vast majority of the public. Do you think society would be better off were coke, meth, heroin as commonly used and freely available as alcohol is today?
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #157 on: April 13, 2011, 07:28:19 PM »

Wow, is there a hole in this bucket or what? No matter how many laps around the track we take, we end up chasing tangents that fail to address the utter failure of American drug policy by any rational standard. So you feel Great Britain muscling in on feudal China is somehow germane to this conversation? Perhaps if you could explain how I'll be able to muster the energy to traipse down another alley with little to do with the abject counter-productivity of America's current prohibition spasm.

As for the impact of use of all the substances you cited, we've been there already too. Recall the discussion where it was mentioned that cocaine, opiates, marijuana, et al were once legal in the US? The nation didn't fold up shop then. Or recall the discussion where studies stating addiction rates remain about the same regardless of whether strict, middlin', or lax laws were in place? Do we really need to go down that road again?

Indeed, the more I contend with issues where you and I disagree the more it seems your tactic is to postulate an existential threat that necessitates an authoritarian response while ducking and weaving when any sort of rational benefit/cost analysis is called for. Well I see no existential threat here beyond the one created when millions of Americans are arrested, hundreds of thousands of them imprisoned, and hundreds of billions of dollars are spent et al on an anti-drug pogrom that has failed by any reasonable standard. I find no value partaking of "can god create a rock so big he himself can't move it" gamesmanship so unless you can answer questions like "why is it a good thing to have a half-million citizens in jail while our collective wallet is a trillion dollars lighter" I'm done dancing in circles with you.
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G M
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« Reply #158 on: April 13, 2011, 07:43:41 PM »

Well, Mexico decriminalized drugs and that's worked out well.

Here is the Libertarian cost/benefit formula, as best as I can tell:

A law costs money to enforce and people keep violating the law, so decriminalize the crime.

Thus, as we keep losing the war against murder, time to treat murder as a public health issue and not a crime.

The majority of the public doesn't want weed legalized, much less meth. This is why Libertarian talking points like this keep Libertarian Party a fringe group and nothing more.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #159 on: April 14, 2011, 10:39:08 AM »

1)  Murder laws and enforcement seem to have a significant effect on the net amount of murder.   I'm not seeing that the same can be said of the WOD.

2) Concerening your example of Mexican decriminalization, part of the libertarian argument is that criminalization, which remains the case here in the US, creates extreme profits and thus extreme criminal behavior.  Thus the argument is that the evil behaviors we see in Mexico are fomented by the illegal mega profits here in the US. 

3) In my case, I tend to organize my thinking to distinguish drugs that tend to transcend free will (e.g. heroin, meth, etc) and those that don't (e.g. pot)

4) I think BBG's point that GM tends to avoid cost/benefit analysis has merit

5) I think GM has moved my heart with some of his entries about the costs to the children of drug users
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G M
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« Reply #160 on: April 14, 2011, 11:01:02 AM »

1)  Murder laws and enforcement seem to have a significant effect on the net amount of murder.   I'm not seeing that the same can be said of the WOD.

You don't think people respond to social stigma and the potential for legal penalties? Depending on the type of murder, some offenders have almost no risk of re-offending. Should we incarcerate that group for the same length as the others? Should there be a moral basis for public policy?

2) Concerening your example of Mexican decriminalization, part of the libertarian argument is that criminalization, which remains the case here in the US, creates extreme profits and thus extreme criminal behavior.  Thus the argument is that the evil behaviors we see in Mexico are fomented by the illegal mega profits here in the US. 

And if the rest of the world dosn't also decriminalize, isn't there still the potential for profits elsewhere?

3) In my case, I tend to organize my thinking to distinguish drugs that tend to transcend free will (e.g. heroin, meth, etc) and those that don't (e.g. pot)

4) I think BBG's point that GM tends to avoid cost/benefit analysis has merit

I think BBG ignore the unintended consequences of what he advocates.

5) I think GM has moved my heart with some of his entries about the costs to the children of drug users

I'll note that I've seen more children with the obvious signs of fetal alcohol syndrome than those who were also exposed to other substances, although FAS is physically obvious where as the other substances tend to be neurological and developmental in their presentation.
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #161 on: April 15, 2011, 01:04:35 PM »

Wow, ignoring unintended consequences with the irony utterly lost. No percentage in deconstructing that.
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G M
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« Reply #162 on: April 15, 2011, 03:05:17 PM »

Right, because in the magical land of Libertarianstan, meth and crack legally sold at Wal-mart wouldn't have a downside. We have a culture of governmental dependency alread. Let's see how legalized hard drugs add to that mix.

What could go wrong?
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #163 on: April 15, 2011, 03:28:37 PM »

And what has gone right with the current regimen? You know, the one we are talking about? The one that has resulted in a greater supply of purer product with each new law? The one that spins off the perverse incentives the drug warriors then cite as reason to keep funding it?

But by all means indict liberty rather than the authoritarian folly the has failed by any sane standard. Do it for the children, you know the ones with all their parents in prison.

Can't wait for the next lap. Perhaps we can explore the use of betel nut in Swaziland during the 15th century or something.
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G M
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« Reply #164 on: April 15, 2011, 03:37:58 PM »

So the legal and thus even purer product would be even better? Societies/cultures don't always change for the best. I'd cite our own as a good example. Hey, how great would it be to have Snooki as a spokesperson for legal cocaine products on MTV?
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DougMacG
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« Reply #165 on: April 15, 2011, 04:00:46 PM »

We could move the discussion move away from stark extremes and see what small, incremental changes right now might work better toward drug use and abuse, lower our costs and enhance our liberty a little without hurting others.    Any ideas?

Full legalization of even just pot will quickly make it a government controlled, heavily sin-taxed business in this climate, still in need of an underworld market, with crime enforced territories and distribution.  (That is why I favor limited decriminalization instead.)  If we had a coherent Supreme COurt, what is grown and consumed personally on your own property without harming others would already be a protected activity. We already have taxation before legalization in our state (and 18 other states): "Minnesota assesses a tax of $3.50 per gram ($100 per ounce, $1600 per pound) of marijuana. Though the law is largely unobserved by marijuana purchasers (do ya think?), failure to comply could result in additional fines of up to $14,000 and jail time of up to seven years. Ultimately, the stamp law allows for the additional charge of tax evasion to be assessed to individuals purchasing marijuana." http://www.ehow.com/list_7289139_minnesota-marijuana-laws.html  I'm sure 'legalized' drug traffickers won't forget to buy and affix the stamp and avoid the 7 year imprisonment.

We need in my opinion legalization of things like lemonade stands before legalizing of the hardest narcotics.  Also I don't see how the pharmacy industry continues in a libertarian scheme where we are all empowered to buy and sell all product, OxyContin for example.  Legalization of the most dangerous drugs simply isn't going to happen at this point, though the discussion is interesting. Rightsizing penalties and reassigning some law enforcement priorities seems more realistic to me.

I see the point that laws against drugs drive up the price and drive up the crime to protect those profits but I don't believe that under so-called legalization our all-controlling government will actually allow the price to fall below current market price and be readily available.  I also don't that people willing to murder over drug issues will then move into productive work (accountants and school teachers?) with any realistic law change.
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #166 on: May 25, 2011, 12:27:42 PM »

New and Improved, and now without any Iranian Plutonium!

Illegal Act of Love: Wife Says Husband Grew Pot for Her
Autumn Ziemba
Fox 8 News Reporter
6:57 p.m. EDT, May 6, 2011

MEDINA, Ohio -- A Medina County senior citizen is sentenced to jail time for cultivating marijuana that he says was medicinal for his wife with cancer.

Friday, 69-year-old Gary Burton was sentenced to 60 days in jail, 30 days house arrest and two years probation, with credit for time served.
 
Burton was arrested in January for cultivating marijuana in excess of 1,000 grams, which is a third degree felony.

But some argue that Burton's reason for committing the crime far outweighs the law.

"He was just trying to take care of me, the best way he knew how," says a tearful Sherri Burton, Gary's wife of 44 years.

Sherri suffers from depression and anxiety, and was diagnosed with breast cancer  that has now spread to her lymph nodes .

The diagnosis was a major blow to the couple.

"If I didn't have Gary there to hang onto me and hold me and say 'it's okay,' I probably wouldn't have gotten through a lot of those days," Sherri says.

But she says Gary wanted to ease her fear and pain with something natural that he could provide on his own.

"[The marijuana has] helped me in sleeping at night. Even though I'm on other medication, it's helped me to relax and not be consumed by the cancer," Sherri explains.

The couple planted two marijuana plants in a secluded spot in their own Chippewa Lake back yard.

Sherri says they chose to grow their own because they wanted it to be pure and free of chemicals.

Gary is now serving his sentence at the Medina County Jail--a sentence some consider to be lenient, but to Sherri, it might as well be a lifetime.

"I don't even want to think about the next 60 days. I don't even want to think about tomorrow," she says.

Their vow was 'in sickness and in health,' but with Gary behind bars, Sherri will have to endure her next two months of treatment alone.

"I refuse to go for surgery unless he's by my side. I need him by my side," she says. "We just want to relax and enjoy what time we have left, and who knows how long that will be. Nobody knows."

Now Sherri want to public to understand one thing.

"Marijuana is not as evil or bad as they think it is," she says. "They need to keep an open mind, and someday, they may need it themselves."

The couple hasn't had health insurance since Gary retired several years ago.

It's possible they may also lose their social security benefits while Gary is behind bars.



http://www.wsbt.com/news/wjw-busted-for-pot-txt,0,1667279.story
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G M
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« Reply #167 on: May 25, 2011, 12:35:58 PM »

Yes, let's toss out that whole rule of law thing and just go with how we feeeeEEEeeeel about something.  I'm assuming Ohio doesn't have medical marijuana, but there is nothing stopping someone traveling to a state where it is an option, yes? Cheaper and easier than a felony conviction, I'd think.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #168 on: May 25, 2011, 01:23:59 PM »

GM:

I love ya man, but on a human level that is one of the more profoundly clueless things you've said.   rolleyes

Marc
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #169 on: May 25, 2011, 01:36:33 PM »

That would be the rule of law meant to protect 69 year old cancer patients from . . . oh wait a second. Nevermind.
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G M
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« Reply #170 on: May 25, 2011, 01:50:40 PM »

I'm guessing that when the Ohio state legislature passed laws against the cultivation of marijuana, and the governor signed it, it wasn't with the intent of incarcerating grandfatherly elders with ill wives, still where does personal responsibility come in?

I own many firearms that are legal in my state, but a felony in California. I make choices on where to live based on the laws of those places. If medical marijuana was important to me, that would influence my decisionmaking in where to live.

I live in a place with a thriving medical marijuana industry that serves the masses of critically ill people who are suffering from some sort of illness that manifests as tie-dyed clothing and patchouli oil instead of regular bathing. Thank god these poor people have found the medication they so desperately needed.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #171 on: May 25, 2011, 04:18:15 PM »

Question:  "Where does personal responsibility come in?"

Answer:  Personal responsibility comes in when you take care of your dying wife.
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G M
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« Reply #172 on: May 25, 2011, 04:25:31 PM »

Question:  "Where does personal responsibility come in?"

Answer:  Personal responsibility comes in when you take care of your dying wife.


Would that involve thinking "I think medical marijuana would be a good thing for her, but if I grew some here in Ohio, I could face felony charges which would probably have more of a negative effect on her health than any positive that might come from the weed"?
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #173 on: May 25, 2011, 06:42:22 PM »

Oh my goodness. The thesis I've been hammering on in this thread--US drug policy has failed by any sane standard--has not been seriously challenged by any post herein. We've been treated to equivocation, tail chasing, law and order chest thrumming, blamed the symptoms for the disease, and all manner of other sophistry, but NOTHING posted in this thread has come close to causing me to rethink the proposition that our drug policy is the rankest kind of counterproductive folly, and I expect I am not alone in that belief.

So here we have a couple of sexagenarians on social security with no insurance dealing with what appears to be a terminal disease and contending with these sad circumstances by planting an herb that has been used medicinally for thousands of years and the best you got is that these folks of little means should move out of state or suck it up and do the time? For real? This, in your opinion, conforms with the protect and serve ethic? Think the nation's founders would give this travesty a thumbs up? There have been a lot of jurisdictions with a lot of stupid laws--say the eugenic folly foisted by progressive forbearers--would you back all of them as long as they are on the books or does there come a time when rational examination of costs, benefits, results and impact on our humanity suggests that perhaps a policy with no demonstrable upside should be, oh I dunno, reassessed?

There have been folks on this list who have presented global warming as a issue so dire that only policies that would return this nation to a pre-industrial age can save us and no amount of evidence to the contrary caused them to reassess their Luddite proscriptions. There are others who think world opinion bears so much weight that Israel should return to pre-'67 borders despite the fact they are surrounded by sworn enemies committed to their national destruction that would then exploit that return to accomplish what they've never forsworn, yet no argument against national suicide sways them, either. And then there's you who has been shown the unmitigated stupidity of our current anti-drug crusade yet continues to insists against all evidence that this is the Big Muddy in which we must continue to wade. Is this the company you really want to be counted among?

I guess it's time to make fun of Libertarian impotence again, or launch another appeal on the behalf of the kids made drug orphans and wards by the policies of the state, or toss out a one liner about some other substance issue dealt with by another state in another time that has little bearing on current discussion, or do an internet dump, or just generally behave so didactically that it's easier to avoid the conversation than to deal with another lap around an unproductive track. But should you do any or all the fact remains that current US drug policy has utterly failed by any sane measure, a thesis you have yet to address to any successful degree.
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G M
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« Reply #174 on: May 25, 2011, 06:51:18 PM »

Using the same standard, the "war on crime" has failed. Time to give up on the whole law enforcement fad.
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #175 on: May 26, 2011, 11:38:49 AM »

Oy vey. Victim v. victimless crimes. We've been there. Now that we've disposed of the reductio ad absurdum what's next? Ad hominem? Appeal to authority? Roll out the drug orphans again?
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G M
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« Reply #176 on: May 26, 2011, 11:46:57 AM »

Hey, just using your standard for judging the "drug war" a failure. Perhaps murder is better addressed as a public health issue with treatment and education programs? After all, despite the all the money spent on investigating, prosecuting and incarcerating murderers every year, we still have new murders.
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G M
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« Reply #177 on: May 26, 2011, 11:48:24 AM »

"Roll out the drug orphans again?"

You rolled out the drug war grandpa. Does that make a matched set?
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #178 on: May 26, 2011, 02:10:37 PM »

Does anyone know if this forum has a "Poll" function?   I'd love to see a vote on who is "winning" this conversation!
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DougMacG
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« Reply #179 on: May 26, 2011, 03:06:49 PM »

"Does anyone know if this forum has a "Poll" function?   I'd love to see a vote on who is "winning" this conversation!"
-------
VERY interesting points revealed on both sides of this argument.

The truth IMO, in just this one case, is somewhere in between the extremes.  We aren't about to legalize meth level dangers and we don't need to lock and throw away the key on Grandpa for honestly helping Grandma. I propose a compromise.  If you are terminally ill with less than a year to live, you can smoke anything you want.  But at the end of the year, unlike the released and Lockerbie bomber, you have to keep your part of the bargain.

I believe (stated previously) that the casual and safe user of mild and relatively accepted substances will be far better served with decriminalization than with legalization which would most certainly be accompanied with a complete government takeover - enforced with criminal penaltiues.  The user whose odor permeated the hallway should learn to efficiently operate a one-hitter.  And weatherstrip that door; your heat and AC are getting out too.   smiley
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #180 on: May 26, 2011, 03:29:40 PM »

"If you are terminally ill with less than a year to live, you can smoke anything you want.  But at the end of the year, unlike the released and Lockerbie bomber, you have to keep your part of the bargain."

Does this mean Grandma has to commit hara-kiri if she is still alive?  Isn't that against the law?  cheesy

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G M
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« Reply #181 on: May 26, 2011, 04:25:14 PM »

Let me again point out that I distinguish between things like methamphetamine and cocaine and marijuana. I also understand that the black market for illegal drugs creates lots of wealth for criminal enterprises, including those that might use those profits to fund catastrophic terrorism. However, there are serious short and long term social impacts from legalization and there are many different things that are illegal in this country that I think even the most ardent Libertarian would shy away from legalizing. The exploitation of children and/or human trafficking being a few things that leap to mind.
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #182 on: May 27, 2011, 12:57:30 PM »

GM: Feel free to post stories of drug orphans that supports your arrest millions, incarcerate hundreds of thousands, spend trillions all to no discernible benefit position. I've no desire to foist prior restraint, and offer no apologies when I provide a concrete example of the utter folly of the drug war and drug warriors. Please further note a qualitative difference in our posting habits: I post a primary source speaking specifically to the thesis I've outlined repeatedly, while your drug orphans appear generically, with few specifics, specifics I suspect would bulwark my thesis far better than they would support yours if they were indeed offered. Red herrings, in other words, brought forth to guise your inability to seriously challenge the thesis that the drug war has failed by any rational measure.

BTW, see the recently released FBI crime stats? It seems serious crime is falling, which suggests to me something is being done correctly. Any similar dataset to support your authoritarian predilections where the drug war is concerned or does my thesis that the war on drugs has failed by any rational criteria still stand?
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G M
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« Reply #183 on: May 27, 2011, 01:05:50 PM »

"challenge the thesis that the drug war has failed by any rational measure."

What is the rational measure for success/failure in enforcing any law? If we enforce laws against any crime, and we still have more crimes committed, is that a failure?

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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #184 on: May 27, 2011, 01:58:45 PM »

" However, there are serious short and long term social impacts from legalization and there are many different things that are illegal in this country that I think even the most ardent Libertarian would shy away from legalizing. The exploitation of children and/or human trafficking being a few things that leap to mind."

I'm not following the logical progression here GM.  How does decriminalizing pot for example lead to the exploitation of children and human trafficking?
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G M
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« Reply #185 on: May 27, 2011, 03:22:21 PM »

It doesn't lead to that, but those things are prohibited by law, just like illegal drugs are. If we accept that "prohibition never works", then should those things be prohibited or legalized as drugs would be legalized?
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #186 on: May 27, 2011, 04:37:38 PM »

Sorry to be slow but I'm still struggling here to follow what you are saying.  If you are not saying that legalizing/decriminalizing pot would lead to the exploitation of children and/or human trafficking, then why aren't you for decriminalizing/legalizing pot?
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G M
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« Reply #187 on: May 27, 2011, 04:53:13 PM »

If the public wants marijuana legalized, I don't have much objection to it. There are some problematic issues, such as driving under it's influence, and workplace safety but I don't see it as catastrophic. Now, legalizing meth would be very different, wouldn't it?
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G M
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« Reply #188 on: May 27, 2011, 05:01:41 PM »

Let's look at Colorado's laws. Marijuana was pretty much decriminalized in the 1970's. Under an ounce for personal use is a petty offense, not even a misd. Now, with medical marijuana, it's quasi-legal.

http://www.denverpost.com/news/marijuana/ci_16985232

Experts worry that medical-pot laws promote teen use
By John Ingold
The Denver Post
Posted: 01/01/2011 01:00:00 AM MSTUpdated: 01/01/2011 03:38:13 PM MST


 A marijuana plant flourishes under grow lights at a warehouse in Denver on Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2010. Experts are worried that increasingly lax attitudes toward marijuana with the boon of the medical marijuana industry is promoting teen use. (Ed Andrieski, Associated Press file)Substance-abuse experts, alarmed by the rapid growth of Colorado's medical-marijuana industry, are intensifying their efforts to study the industry's impact on drug use.

The experts say they especially worry that increasingly permissive attitudes surrounding marijuana use might be leading to higher teenage drug use and addiction rates.

That has been an often-voiced concern during debates over medical marijuana in Colorado. But substance-abuse-prevention workers say evidence from their clinics seems to bear it out. And they point to a recent study showing an increase in teenage marijuana use nationwide and a decrease in perceptions of its risk as further evidence of a need to examine the issue.

"The basic rule with any drug is if the drug becomes more available in the society, there will be more use of the drug," said Thomas Crowley, a University of Colorado psychiatry professor and director of the university's Division of Substance Dependence. "And as use expands, there will be more people who have problems with the drug."

At his substance-abuse-treatment clinic for adolescents at Denver Health Medical Center, Christian Thurstone said he has seen hard evidence of the trend. Since the summer of 2009, roughly when Colorado's medical-marijuana boom began, Thurstone said he has seen treatment referrals triple, from five to 15 per month. The large majority of those teens are referred either by the criminal justice system, social services or other means because of marijuana, he said.

Worried by the increase, Thurstone conducted a survey of 76 kids in his program. Of those, 60 said they knew someone with a medical-marijuana card, and 37 said they have obtained pot from a medical-marijuana patient, though none were patients themselves.

What's more, Thurstone said teens who got marijuana from a patient were more likely to report smoking pot daily than those who didn't. About 83 percent of the teens who scored pot from a patient reported daily use, compared with about 56 percent of those who didn't get marijuana from a patient.

"It looks like it's increasing access," Thurstone said of the state's medical-marijuana program. "It looks like it's making social norms more positive for marijuana. And it looks like it's increasing frequency of use."

Thurstone said he intends to apply for federal grant funding to more fully examine the subject.

That funding would come from $2 million a year that the National Institute on Drug Abuse set aside late last year to study the effects of medical-marijuana policies on broader drug use and public health.

NIDA officials decided to offer the funding after seeing a rapid change in marijuana policies across the country 15 states and the District of Columbia now have medical-marijuana programs, and California voters vigorously debated a legalization initiative this fall before voting it down.

Wilson Compton, the director of NIDA's division of epidemiology, services and prevention research, said very little research has looked at how medical-marijuana policies affect overall marijuana use. Compton said he was surprised to see how openly dispensaries were advertising when he visited Colorado last year on a ski trip.



Read more: Experts worry that medical-pot laws promote teen use - The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/news/marijuana/ci_16985232
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #189 on: May 28, 2011, 06:22:08 AM »

Quote
What is the rational measure for success/failure in enforcing any law? If we enforce laws against any crime, and we still have more crimes committed, is that a failure?

Sir: I have a long list of questions and statements that you have failed to address in any meaningful way throughout this thread, unless one counts the ad hominem. Before I devote the energy to untangle yet more rank sophistry such as that quoted above, do you have any data that suggest the WOD has not failed by any rational standard? You know, the thing we are arguing about here?

This discussion has crossed the line from informed debate to the sort of uninspired, repetitive, non-sequitor laden verbal gymnastics you have given others grief for in no uncertain terms when encountered elsewhere on this forum. Are you unable to grasp that irony? Are you so locked into the anti-drug dogma that the complete failure of the WOD impacts your thinking not one whit? If so, further conversation makes no more sense than debating the heliocentric universe with a medieval bishop and I will devote no more time to it where you are concerned.
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G M
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« Reply #190 on: May 28, 2011, 10:34:29 AM »

In other words: "I got nothin'".   wink
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #191 on: May 28, 2011, 11:08:19 AM »

Well, inspired by GM's different tone yesterday and a good night's sleep, I will take a stab at it:

With laws concerning violence, theft, and fraud, we don't really have a choice for they are what in the American Creed is called "natural law".  OTOH, with prohibition laws, just as with the prohibition against alcohol and its repeal, we do have a choice based upon our perception of the empirical results.

With the drugs involved in the WoD's prohibitions, IMHO it is not necessarily one size fits all.  Just as there is a choice whether and if so how much to drink, so too with pot.  OTOH a fair case can be made that as a practical matter the nature of some drugs bypasses man's free will.

Does this help GM?
Marc
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #192 on: June 01, 2011, 08:53:43 PM »



http://www.leap.cc/#
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G M
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« Reply #193 on: June 01, 2011, 09:01:10 PM »


I am aware of LEAP. Cranium still intact.  grin
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #194 on: June 02, 2011, 12:16:26 PM »

Quote
In other words: "I got nothin'".

I assume that is self-referential as I've posted plenty that has yet to be responded to in a cogent manner. Or are you truly expecting me to make an argument neither of us agree with to the effect that because murders still occur we shouldn't prosecute murders and then extrapolate that finding in a manner magically demonstrating that the war on drugs has not failed by any rational standard? Whut?
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G M
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« Reply #195 on: June 02, 2011, 03:37:47 PM »

What is the standard you want to use to decide if a law is worth enforcing or not? Simple question. Your answer is?
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #196 on: June 02, 2011, 08:23:31 PM »

See my post of May 28.
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G M
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« Reply #197 on: June 02, 2011, 08:29:47 PM »

See my post of May 28.
As I read your response, I interpret it as you agreeing with me that certain drugs should be illegal, and I'm sure that you'd agree that were something like marijuana fully legalized in California, that there would still be laws regulating it's sales and use, just as there is with alcohol.
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #198 on: June 03, 2011, 08:41:32 AM »

Quote
What is the standard you want to use to decide if a law is worth enforcing or not? Simple question. Your answer is?

I see, so "failed by any rational standard," an argument you've yet to address in any meaningful way, gets trumped by "it's on the books so we gotta enforce" it even if it causes more problems than it cures, tears American founding ideals asunder, and enriches our enemies, too boot. That is your repartee?

It's not that I don't understand that you are trying to create an unstated syllogism, or in this case something better labeled a sillygism, that as best I can tell goes something like this:

All laws must be enforced,

The WOD embodies a lot of freaking laws,

Therefore you can't not enforce drug laws unless you're willing to not enforce murder laws either, so there. 

Don't see how those verbal gymnastics dispute my contention that the WOD has failed miserably by any sane standard, and can't see a reason to get involved in sophist sideshows when you've done such a poor job of addressing the thesis I've been harping on. All I can conclude is that you have an emotional investment in the WOD that trumps the rational debate you are usually capable of and hence I see no percentage in engaging the red herrings that appear to be all you are able to muster.
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G M
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« Reply #199 on: June 03, 2011, 09:05:00 AM »

Again, I'm trying to get your criteria you'd use to judge any law enforcement policy's effectiveness.

If you deem the WOD a failure, please explain how the other "wars" are or are not a failure. Didn't Nixon also declare a war on cancer? We still have cancer, right?
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