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April 2007
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If at first you don’t succeed…

On March 24, I noted that Arianna Huffington had a very powerful piece in the Los Angeles Times — “The War on Drugs’ War on Minorities.” On March 28, when pointing out that the piece had been reprinted in Alternet, I was rather disturbed that nobody seemed to be picking up on it. Well, finally […]

The year’s most stupid legislator

I had to check the date of this article three times to be sure it wasn’t April 1.

JEFFERSON CITY First, the state said you must make a special trip to the pharmacy counter to buy certain cold medicines. That was to curb production of methamphetamine.
Now, a St. Louis legislator wants you to do the same thing to buy an even more common household item baking soda because it’s used to make crack cocaine.
Sales of cold medications containing pseudoephedrine, such as Sudafed, are strictly regulated in Missouri. Customers must show a photo ID when they buy the medicine. Pharmacists must log the names and addresses of buyers, including how much they buy. People under 18 may not buy the medicines.
The sponsor of the baking soda bill, Rep. Talibdin El-Amin, D-St. Louis, said the same approach was needed for baking soda because crack cocaine is often produced by dissolving powdered cocaine in a mixture of water and baking soda.

Baking soda.
That’s what happens. You let these idiot legislators start making one thing illegal because it’s connected to something else, and the next thing you know, everything is illegal.
Even the DEA’s Tom Murphy thinks that this is unworkable.

“When you generate a list of people who use baking soda, it pretty much includes everyone. It’s a common household item,” said Tom Murphy, a special agent with the St. Louis division of the Drug Enforcement Administration.

The baking soda bill is HB1189. Representative Talibdin El-Amin represents District 57.
If only we could outlaw legislators. They do more harm to this country than criminals, drugs, guns, locusts, asbestos, and trans-fat combined.

[Thanks, Bill from LEAP]

Update: Winning comment from Hit and Run regarding this story:

If baking is outlawed, only outlaws will be baked.

Northeast Regional SSDP conference

The Northeast Regional SSDP conference will be held April 13-15 at Brown University: Confronting the Drug War, Envisioning Alternatives with speakers including:

Lincoln Chaffee, Former U.S. Senator Ethan Nadelmann, Drug Policy Alliance Glenn Loury, Brown University, Professor of Economics Daniel Pinchbeck, Author

While I unfortunately won’t be able to be there in person, I’ll be […]