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May 2011
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Open Thread

I’ve gotten way too little sleep this weekend.

I hear we’ve won the war on terror, so I guess that’s a good thing. Now we can focus on winning that pesky war on drugs, right?

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73 comments to Open Thread

  • gravyrug

    But the War on Drugs is over, isn’t it? The Drug Czar said so, and everything!

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .
      Well you know how us potheads can’t remember anything. Shoot, we’re lucky when we remember how to cash our welfare checks or in which homeless shelter we’re staying each night much less which of the 37 or 38 current wars the country has won or ended by fiat.

      Have we won the war on war yet?

  • Cheers, fellow followers of this blog!

    I’ve been keeping my eye on the issues surrounding the so-called War on Drugs for quite some time, and it /seems/ rather clear that it has failed remarkably.

    In another online debate, I went as far as to insist that prohibition has never worked anywhere. My opponent, though, pointed out that there were around 313.000 opium addicts (0,5 % of the population) in the US in 1896, and only 282.000 heroin addicts in 2008, which would constitute about 85% of all people addicted to illicit opiates. Since the US population has grown during that interval from about 63 million to about 300 million, this seems to suggesr that prohibition of drugs has saved more than a million people from becoming addicts — i.e, if there would have been no prohibition, the percentage of opioid addicts among the population would have remained at the same level, which would mean 1,5 million addicts in the US now instead of the ~300.000.

    How do I refute that? Or was I actually wrong in claiming that prohibiton has never worked?

    Also, it seems that the number of addicts dropped by 100.000 between 1896 and 1923, which would mean that the Harrison Act was a very effective tool for reducing addiction among the general population. What’s wrong with this logic?

    Thank you for any help with tackling this.

    P.S. Sorry for my ‘orrible English; I am not a native speaker.

    • strayan

      http://books.google.com.au/books?id=RM_oWWqv54IC&lpg=PP1&dq=Addiction%3A%20A%20Disorder%20of%20Choice&pg=PA3#v=onepage&q&f=false

      For data on number of addicts in late 1800s compared to now.

      Don’t forget about people addicted to prescription opiates like oxycodone

      • Duncan20903

        .
        .
        I really can’t take anyone who claims that addiction is a “choice” seriously. That’s one of those things I’ve seen with my own eyes, and given the choice between believing an ivory tower outsider and my eyes I’ve learned the hard way to always believe my eyes. IMO the reason outsiders mistake it for a choice is that there are a considerable number of people who aren’t degenerate addicts who will use drugs at extreme levels who then quit. Think drinking alcohol and “Animal House”.

    • pfroehlich2004

      You should have pointed out to your opponent that there are no reliable statistics on drug use from the late 19th century. 313,000 (assuming it wasn’t invented by your opponent) would have to be a very rough estimate, based on a variety of primary sources.

      The first systematic, nation-wide surveys of American drug use habits (the National Household Survey on Drug Abuse and Monitoring the Future survey) were not carried out until the 1970s.

      Survey results from these two studies (available online)are the most reliable data available on American drug use trends. Purported statistics from the 19th century should not be taken seriously.

      An interesting trend which you will immediately notice when viewing the MTF data (www.monitoringthefuture.org) is that teen use of alcohol and tobacoo has fallen dramatically over the last 35 years, despite being perfectly legal for adults. No such downward trend is apparent in the data on illicit drug use. If prohibition were indeed more effective at reducing drug use than a system of legal, regulated distribution then one would expect to see sharper reductions in illicit drug use than licit drug use.

      • WhoDoWeStringupFirst

        Du machst mich froh!

      • pfroehlich2004 said: “313,000 (assuming it wasn’t invented by your opponent) would have to be a very rough estimate, based on a variety of primary sources.”

        It’s not invented, I’m sure. The number crops up in all sorts of sources (try googling “united states 1896 addicts 313000”). I don’t know how it was arrived at, but no-one seems to question it much — as a ballpark figure, I believe it may not be too far off the mark.

      • Duncan20903

        .
        .
        OhutumValik, are you aware of how many people have accepted as fact that the Earth is the center of the universe? 72 billion flies think a pile of turds is a free all you can eat buffet, can all those flies be wrong? Oh now I’m dating myself. That flies joke was created when Dick Nixon was running for re-election in 1972. Oh well, so you don’t like authority? Next time call a hippie for help instead of the police.

    • DdC

      100,000 safe junkies using quality assured heroin. Obtained in a drug store after a medical evaluation to dosage. Is better than 20,000 risking their health sharing needles and adulterated dope, jobless and living as street urchins.

    • yang

      Back in the 1800s states were pushing opium without any restrictions. I’m sure there are some libertarians here but I don’t think the prohibition debate really is about whether state intervention can do anything at all but instead more about aknowledging the limits of public control.
      At least in my opinion it’s about finding that right balance in how much you squeeze the trade, enough to restrict it for the benefits of public health but not so much that you push it underground.

      I googled what you said to google and this turned up, it’s a good read, I don’t see any mention of the Harrison Act in it though, it was a more global issue:
      http://www.mail-archive.com/ctrl@listserv.aol.com/msg32620.html

      • Thanks for the link; it really is an interesting read. Some of the conclusions, though, are not what most anti-prohibition people would rush to agree with. I quote the same source:

        “Despite all these considerable drawbacks, multilateral controls do have their successes. By limiting the power of states and corporations to traffic in drugs without restriction, the League of Nations did effect significant reductions in the gross consumption and production of narcotics.

        Through these efforts, the constant, century-long upward trajectory in drug abuse was finally broken, and, for the first time since the 18th century, both use and production began to decline.”

        So, it could be argued that although prohibition may not be the most effective way to reduce addiction rates, it does occasionaly achieve some of its goals — or did I misinterpret that somehow?

      • Duncan20903

        You forgot to include the alcoholics again. A drunken stumblebum is not better than heroin addict.

  • Ed

    Re. Opium prohibition.

    Interesting points made by Ohutum there, several questions would need to be answered before any law makers could take the credit for lowering the number of opium heads though:

    What advances were made with regards to public awareness of the effects of opium addiction between 1896/1923?

    What happened to the transit channels for the drug between these dates?

    How about production levels?

    Did opium simply become less trendy and get replaced by another drug?

    What about the quality of the available opium in 1923 compared to that of 1896?

    The first World War happenend in the middle of 1896/1923 – that was a pretty major factor in global events, transit routes, population and financial demands – the globalised world of 1896 was considerably fractured by 1923.

    On the whole, prohibition does not work – as has been proved time and time again since the 1920/30s. When drugs are prohibited the quality becomes lower, damage to people becomes worse and prices tend to rise along with criminality.

    The impact of decriminalisation of all drugs in recent years has been a resounding success in Portugal, the Czech Republic have now followed suit and during the tolerant years in Holland heroin addiction rates dropped to the lowest in Europe. The Dutch also developed a very mature attitude to drug consumption.

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .
      Another salient question would be is heroin addiction really just as bad as opium addiction? We have managed to pretty much eliminate opium smoking in our day but the price was heroin use. Somehow I think opium smoking is less deleterious to the user. Dick Cowan’s “iron law of prohibition” says the more absolute the policy of prohibition, the harder the drugs are. I was only aware of a rather small circle of people who ever took up smoking opium and that was back in 1981 when yours truly became fascinated with papaver somniferum and brought in a couple of crops. Yes Virginia, growing opium isn’t particularly hard to do. That got really boring after a while and so those who were in the circle lost their source. To the best of my knowledge there wasn’t anyone waiting to step in and fill the demand. Well with opium for smoking anyway.

  • Thank you, Ed!

    The questions you have formulated are obviously relevant, and now I will have to do my best to try to find some answers. Any hints as to where I should start researching?

    You said: “The impact of decriminalisation of all drugs in recent years has been a resounding success in Portugal.”

    Some would disagree, though. I am quoting from the Boston Globe (http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/ideas/articles/2011/01/16/drug_experiment/?page=full):

    “Not everyone agrees with this analysis. The rate of people reporting drug use in Portugal is, in fact, increasing — and some say alarmingly so. Others argue that it’s hard to draw lessons from Portugal’s experiment because the nation increased access to treatment at the same time it decriminalized drugs. Many believe that Portugal’s new focus on treatment — and prevention — may have had as much, if not more, to do with its success than its policy of decriminalization. /…/

    In this sense, one drug policy expert noted, the Portuguese experiment has become a sort of Rorschach test — in the dark blobs on the page, people can see whatever they want to see. /…/

    But the numbers aren’t all positive. According to the latest report by the European Monitoring Center for Drugs and Drug Addiction, the number of Portuguese aged 15 to 64 who have ever tried illegal drugs has climbed from 7.8 percent in 2001 to 12 percent in 2007. The percentage of people who have tried cannabis, cocaine, heroin, amphetamines, ecstasy, and LSD all increased in that time frame. Cannabis use, according to the drug report, has gone up from 7.6 to 11.7 percent. Heroin use jumped from 0.7 to 1.1 percent, and cocaine use nearly doubled — from 0.9 to 1.9 percent. In other words, said Keith Humphreys, a professor of psychiatry at Stanford University, the changes in Portugal have had a somewhat expected outcome: More people are trying drugs.”

    (I do not necessarily agree with these inferences, but it is not easy to argue that a rise in the number of “drug-triers” is not a negative/unwanted consequence of the Portuguese drug policy.)

    Regarding Holland, I would agree on the whole, but, again, there are some troubling tendencies, as pointed out in this work: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16402286 (early onset cannabis use is a strong predictor for other drug use), and also here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16022944 (parental cannabis use is a predictor for cocaine and ecstasy abuse among Dutch youths).

    • It really doesn’t matter if use/abuse/addiction goes up with the repeal of drug prohibition. The (inevitable) dramatic decrease in crime will be well worth any increase. And it was the formation of the FDA in 1906, which required ingredients to be labeled – about the only worthwhile action the FDA ever took – that led to a decrease in opiate use, not the Harrison Narcotics Act of 1914.

      And if you’d like a reference for the history of drug use and drug prohibition, you could do worse than read my book, The Naked Truth About Drugs. You can read the Author’s Preface for free by visiting http://www.theopiumden.net and clicking the book icon on the left-side column.

      • Daniel Williams said: “…it was the formation of the FDA in 1906, which required ingredients to be labeled – about the only worthwhile action the FDA ever took – that led to a decrease in opiate use, not the Harrison Narcotics Act of 1914.”

        Ooh, that would be a very good argument to make, if I had some hard evidence/data to back it up.

        “…if you’d like a reference for the history of drug use and drug prohibition, you could do worse than read my book, The Naked Truth About Drugs.”

        Thanks; it seems like a useful tool for debate.

        Amazon doesn’t seem to carry it (there are links to both used and new books from other sellers, though). I’ll have to figure out some other way to get my hands on it. Any suggestions (I’d need it shipped to EU, and not all US sellers are willing to do that).

    • Jake

      Ohutum, two things regarding Portugal – firstly, use doesn’t constitute abuse i.e. millions of people drink Alcohol but you don’t worry that they are all addicts, and secondly, how do you gauge use in an illicit market, where admitting it could land the police on your tail. So maybe increasing use figures have to do with more honest self-reporting as people know they won’t go to jail if they say they have used rather than keep it secret for fear of the authorities…

      Also, regarding the drop in Heroin addicts per capita compared to Opium.. just think, Tobacco use is falling even with an increasing population and that was done through education and changing social norms not banging down peoples’ doors and putting them in jail. Education is far more powerful in preventing abuse than prohibition…

    • Duncan20903

      According to the latest report by the European Monitoring Center for Drugs and Drug Addiction, the number of Portuguese aged 15 to 64 who have ever tried illegal drugs…

      Back at the start of my days of romance with cocaine I gave some to my best friend from high school. He tooted it up and swore it off, he just hated the shit. I always think of him when I see stats that include people who have ever tried whatever substance. Yet he’s still included in the stats as a “cocaine user”. The statistic that I’ve heard from the Know Nothings when they misrepresent Holland’s cannabis use is that the number of “users” tripled, when in fact the only category that saw such an increase was the “lifetime” use category, i.e. the people who tried it for the novelty. I can hardly take seriously the thought that people that stopped into a coffee house because it was a brand new thing but never were interested beyond that are validly counted as “users”. Heck, I had the same experience with beer. I drank 1/2 a can in 10th grade and I think it’s vile, nasty shit. More power to you if you enjoy it, I only regard it that way if it’s headed for my mouth. But still, I’m a beer drinker using that flawed method of counting users. During high school I was aware of at least a dozen people that tried cannabis and were repulsed, swearing it off forever just like me with beer or my friend with cocaine.

      Did you know that authorities in Holland have a regular habit of noticing that US authorities are misrepresenting their statistics? One of the more amusing things about Holland’s cannabis laws is that if you get arrested for violating their cannabis laws you’ll be more likely to get a prison term, and will get a longer average prison term than in any other EU country. Now that’s not so stunning when you take into account they’re not arresting people with a joint, convicting them and giving a few days in jail or straight probation, so it’s not an apples to apples comparison. I must admit I was very sad when I heard that Holland was on the verge of re-criminalizing cannabis because of all the problems it’s caused. But after a few years of hearing that every year or so I became skeptical of that claim, and it’s now been 21 years since I first heard that Holland is “on the verge”. Given that track record I can hardly take the word of the same people when they analyze Portugal’s numbers. Wolf, wolf indeed.

      The flaw in that methodology is based on the inaccurate premise that addicts aren’t born, but made. Until people get passed that incorrect perception we’re never going to be able to mitigate the addiction problem in the US.

    • Ed

      Not sure where you’d look for answers to the questions i posed – maybe there are some academic journals that deal with the history of drug use/abuse/production etc. Reckon your best bet would be to track down an academic who could point you in the right direction – good luck!

  • DdC

    Drug War?

    This is no drug war.

    It’s just dull old fashioned oppression by suppression and intimidation.

    This is the drug war. Between the cialis viagra propecia levitra ferminite cartels. Fighting tooth and nail on every TV set every 20 damn minutes around the clock.

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    Its the Hops in the beer! Homebrew the prohibby’s out of biz with Ganja Gruit. The happy person relieving the days stress without burps, swigs and staggering obnoxious slobbery. Peace and Love without the white powder side effects, which may include…. for over 4 hours call a doctor, heart attack death may occur, blindness… but hey at least you’re not getting “high”.

    The Fall of Gruit & the Rise of Brewer’s Droop

    for most of European history gruit (or sometimes grut) was what beer was. If you went into a pub in the middle ages in most of continental Europe you would have been served gruit. Hopped beers came much later, gaining dominance about 1750 A.D. – though gruit ale continued to be brewed in small, out-of-the-way places until World War 2.

    to have in addition some narcotic properties, being used in Germany to make beer more intoxicating.”

    among them all yarrow, the innocuous garden herb, was best known as an inebriant.

    The high virtues of Gruit

    Modern scientific research has born out the fact these herbs do contain substances that are mildly narcotic, psychotropic, or inebriating. In fact, indigenous cultures throughout the world used these herbs for at least 60,000 years, not only for their medicinal actions but also as mild inebriants and sexual stimulants.

    To understand why hops replaced gruit it is important keep in mind the properties of gruit ale: it is highly intoxicating and aphrodisiacal when consumed in sufficient quantity. Gruit ale stimulates the mind, creates euphoria and enhances sexual drive. Hopped ale is quite different. Contemporary scientific research has conclusively demonstrated that hops contains large quantities of estrogenic and soporific compounds. In fact hops has been used for many thousands of years in traditional medical practice as a natural estrogen replacement therapy and to help insomniacs sleep. The high level of plant estrogens in hops makes hopped beer an extremely good drink for women in menopause but also makes it a very bad drink for men. Consumption by men of large levels of estrogenic compounds can lead to erection problems later in life. In fact, there is a well-known condition in England called Brewer’s Droop which is regularly contracted by bartenders and brewers after years of exposure to hopped beers and ales.

    Gruit ale stimulates the mind, creates euphoria and enhances sexual drive.

    Gruit was lost for “reasons not so different than the ones used to illegalize marijuana in the United States.”

    Pot References By Beer Companies And How They Tried To Evade The Feds

    • DdC

      Portugal: What Pot Legalization Looks Like Apr 28 2011
      Portugal shows the best way to keep kids away from pot is to make it legal for everyone else.

      Medical Marijuana Crusader Is Hardly Mellow
      He went through a difficult period after Vietnam with drugs, but got his life back together, married and raised a family, eventually settling in Rockingham. He became a corporate pilot for Murphy Farms and worked as a pilot examiner for the Federal Aviation Administration.

      Gregoire Considering Partial Veto of Medical Marijuana Bill
      Gov. Chris Gregoire appears to be weighing either a partial veto or a full veto of a medical marijuana bill passed by the Legislature last week. full story

      Time to Vote Canada – This Monday May 2!
      Conservative Stephen Harper could win a majority government with as little as 34% of the vote on May 2. We must ensure this does not happen, or S-10, and mandatory minimums like it, will be law in 100 days. The most important thing you can do is VOTE on May 2! full story

  • Thank you very much, Strayan! I’m going to have fun going through the book you’ve referenced.

    • Jim

      The notion that “Prohibition has never worked” is overstated; I think that the prohibition on the sales of lawn darts is working pretty well.

      Two complications are that (1) there are many dimensions of consequences, many but not all that an enforced prohibition makes worse; and that (2) “works” must be judged against some (so far unstated) alternative. Surely if the current drug prohibitions were eliminated overnight, and replaced with a system of laissez faire, experimental use would rise and at least in the short to medium term, I think, addiction would rise. The conditions of addicts probably would be improved. The lawlessness associated with prohibition would be curtailed, though perhaps not immediately.

      But a replacement of drug prohibition with Transform (http://www.tdpf.org.uk/blueprint%20download.htm) -style controls would, I believe, offer better outcomes across almost all dimensions of consequences.

      Incidentally, I think there is a lot of uncertainty about use rates, and addiction rates, from the pre-1914 era, and for today as well.

      Here’s a lengthy passage (sorry) from my book (or rather, from a late draft of my book), Regulating Vice (footnotes have been omitted):

      “Why do I think that legal, regulated regimes will work for the currently illegal vices? First, there is nothing inherently special about the addictive properties of illegal drugs relative to the legal alternatives. For many (perhaps most) individuals in various settings, no doubt some forms of consumption of opioids, methamphetamine, or cocaine are more addictive than alcohol or nicotine. But for other people the addictive calculus runs in the opposite direction, while the personal and social costs of addiction tend to be lower under a legal regime. Second, when cocaine and heroin were legal, they caused problems, of course, but problems that appear smaller
      to similar problems today under prohibition. Habitual cocaine use in the US is much more common today, in both absolute and per-capita terms, than in the peak pre-prohibition years. For opiates, the per capita extent of addiction may have been similar or even greater circa 1900 than now, but the shift to heroin and injection, along with the marginalization that comes with illegality, have raised the costs of today’s opiate addiction. “It is hard to deny that opiates have become a far greater social problem since the passage of the Harrison Act.” Third, the pre-prohibition era for narcotics prior to 1914 in the US was one of near free availability, not a system with significant taxes or controls. Information disclosure about the ingredients in patent medicines was not required until the Pure Food and Drug Act of 1906, and hence many people habitually consumed substances that they did not know contained cocaine or opiates. The 1906 Act itself led
      to greatly diminished use of opiates, as informed consumers found such drugs less attractive than did those who didn’t know what they were imbibing. (This response to new information was later paralleled by the remarkable 50% decline in smoking prevalence in the US in the generation
      following the Surgeon General’s Report of 1964.) Drugs like heroin, methamphetamine, and cocaine can be amazingly reinforcing, such that occasional use converts to habitual use. But that very property makes these drugs quite unpopular in overall terms: most people quite rightly want nothing to do with recreational use of these dangerous substances. The chaotic, unhealthy, and unrewarding lives of drug addicts are a persuasive form of counter-advertising, and when legalization takes the trade out of the black market and ensures information provision about the hazards, there is little reason to think that large increases in abusive drug consumption will increase. Finally, the illegal drugs generally have close analogues (such as some anti-depressants)
      rather easily available legally via a prescription, so already a type of regulated supply is in place, lowering the additional risks of across-the-board liberalization…”

      • Jim said: “(This response to new information was later paralleled by the remarkable 50% decline in smoking prevalence in the US in the generation
        following the Surgeon General’s Report of 1964.)”

        Aha, now we’re talking! Thanks for this useful tidbit; I feel more secure arguing already. (Of course, it is not important to WIN the argument — it’s much more helpful to arrive at a reasonable compromise regarding the (in)efficiency of strict prohibition.)

        Anyway, it seems that I need to get your book, too, now. Amazon seems to carry it, so no problems there. Thanks again!

  • N.T. Greene

    I don’t think they’re going to let the “War on Terror” go so easily. Sure, we have conquered this one man, but we did the same to Saddam Hussein and little actually changed.

    If we take this opportunity to depart the region, it would be a huge step in the correct direction — but I doubt it. If anything, the death of bin Laden will bring more unrest, and with that unrest we will invest MORE in “securing” the region..

  • Dante

    Today we mark the end of Osama Bin Laden, the cause and inspiration of the War on Terror.

    Logically, this should end the war on terror. Unfortunately, all I’ve heard today (and last night) from the “terror warriors” is:

    This is not the end. We must be even MORE vigilant. We must CONTINUE to fight.

    Did you hear the sound of the other shoe dropping?

    Just like the War on Drugs, the War on Terror will never end as long as people make good money pursuing it. It doesn’t matter which side you are on, nor does it matter what misery you create. Just keep the Wars on Everything gravy train rolling so they can get theirs.

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .
      The cause of the war on terror was The US meddling in the affairs of foreign countries. In the early 1980s the USSR invaded Afghanistan. There was a ragtag militia and without the help of the US the Afghan Freedom Fighters would have ended up Russian citizens. But we helped them maintain their country’s independence with arms, money, military advisers and all sorts of other resources just because we hated the commies. As a result, today we call the Afghan Freedom Fighters “terrorists” or al Queda. The really ironic thing about this is that Afghanistan would have been liberated just a few years later when the communist countries collapsed and the wall fell. I think what the government needs is a heaping helping of mind your own business.

      • darkcycle

        Duncan, Al Qaeda is not Afghan. Never Was. That’s the Taliban you’re referring to. Our Government has deliberately muddled the definition. And they’ve some how been able to hide Al Qaeda’s POLITICAL goals from the citizens of this country. Al Qaeda and OBL were and are Saudis. Their political (non-religious) goals are simple. An end to Saudi royal family rule and the removal of all foreign (read: American) troops from Saudi soil. Somewhere there is a demand for the unification of the Arabian Peninsula, but that’s way down the list somewhere. George Bush told America that they hate our way of life. And he told them that they were motivated by this strange foreign religion, Islam. What total garbage. And people are still stupid enough to believe it. Islam is a peaceful religion, because of our response to the actions of a few politically motivated people who HAPPEDED to be Islamic (they also happened to be Saudi, but we didn’t invade S.A.) Islamic people within and outside the U.S. are living in terror. We’ve started a religious war over Oil and to support one of our richest allies oppressive government. That more people don’t get how badly they’ve been hoodwinked by the war on Terror amazes me.
        Well, it was once said, and I’m sure someone can help me with the accurate quote, words to the effect of: “A terrorized population will give up any amount of liberty for security.”

      • Common Science

        Was the Russian news service in the 1980’s as rife (as the present Western newspapers) with indignant reference to the Afganistan freedom fighters’ opportunity to procure western funds though the sales of their legendary cannabis resin? I’m refering to those heavenly blocks of black hash with the honourable proclamation in a circular gold seal format:

        “Smoke Russia – Buy Afganistan.”

  • Matthew Meyer

    Since this is an open thread, here’s what the sheriff of Butte County, CA has to say about Prop 215:

    “That recommendation does not make growing marijuana legal. They have no right based on that recommendation to grow marijuana or otherwise possess it. The only thing the recommendation does is allow them, if they are arrested, to present an affirmative defense on their behalf.”

    Sheriff Smith ought to dust off Health and Safety Code 11362.5 (d):

    “(d) Section 11357, relating to the possession of marijuana, and Section 11358, relating to the cultivation of marijuana, shall not apply to a patient, or to a patient’s primary caregiver, who possesses or cultivates marijuana for the personal medical purposes of the patient upon the written or oral recommendation or approval of a physician.”

    Here in Cali, LE makes the law.

    • darkcycle

      Whaddya ‘spect from the Shi-reef of someplace called “Butt”.

    • DdC

      Note. Compassionate Use Act not the MMJ Act

      Time to start suing the piss out of these dinosaur draconian law junkies. As far as the Feds go, Carter made anything under an ounce decriminalized. As far as jail time. Anything under 99 plants is usually left to the states. Unless your a political scapegoat like Tommy Chong or Charlie Lynch or even Ed Rosenthal. The states with initiatives are usually OK unless its an election year and the incumbents need headlines as in Montana and Washington. We are the only state with a Constitution giving us citizens initiatives more weight than the politicians, including the governor. So in retrospect we should sue Wilson and Lungren for not abiding by the law. Arnold didn’t do much either way until the very end of his term. Davis sold out to Clinton. All of the other states have Constitutions watering down the citizens control over their own destiny. Alaska may be an exception. But we still have the Butte butts like Joe Arpaio in Arizona taking the law into their own greedy grubby hands.

      Prop 215 is a defensive measure to keep sick people out of jail. The heathens. Or healthy people out of jail. Its a keep good people out of the criminal system for smoking pot initiative. Its not for the sick people exclusively. Its not a prescription drug white powder from Big Pharma. Its an herb and was illegally classified as a schedule#1 narcotic. So fighting fire with fire Prop 215 Band Aid keeps us from hemorrhaging until sanity pursues. Not holding my breath on that one. I’ve been doing hospice work in Santa Cruz 20 years and have never had a problem with the cops or coroner before or after Prop 215. I have a doctors paper in case a patient was harassed but I’ve always used private growers, so buyers clubs are an extra expense and nice novelty.

      Prop 215 was written to use Ganja “For any Reason” with or without a card. The first thing the Feds and State go for busting a buyers club is the computer for a list of patients. Some believe a half assed law is better than nothing. I believe Ganja is a sacrament and as a natural plant is exzempted from government control. Thats for all entheogens. Ganja as an addictive, harmful menace is ridiculous . Sic Jerry Brown on his redneck ass. Or move to a more civilized place. Ask Steve Kubby and Steve Tuck about other redneck havens in Cali. Un-civilized white trash left overs from the Okie days sour grapes of wrath. I bring quadriplegics to casino’s to play slot machines. I’ve been to Oroville and including the hotel I’d wager they might not appreciate out of control cops keeping business away. I’ll be damned if I bring anyone there as long as psycho-fascists think a badge means law editing privileges. I’m going to write them about it.

      HS 11362.5. (a) This section shall be known and may be cited as the Compassionate Use Act of 1996.

      * has been recommended by a physician

      * person’s health would benefit

      * or any other illness for which marijuana provides relief.

      * no physician in this state shall be punished,

      * Illegal possession and cultivation of marijuana,
      shall not apply to a patient, or to a patient’s primary caregiver

      * upon the written or oral recommendation or approval of a physician

      * The department shall establish and maintain a voluntary program for the issuance of identification cards to qualified patients who satisfy the requirements of this article and voluntarily apply to the identification card program.

      * “Qualified patient” means a person who is entitled to the protections of Section 11362.5, but who does not have an identification card issued pursuant to this article.

      * It shall not be necessary for a person to obtain an identification card in order to claim the protections of Section 11362.5.

      * A qualified patient or a person with an identification card

      * Any individual who provides assistance

      * A designated primary caregiver who transports, processes, administers, delivers, or gives away marijuana for medical purposes

      * (a) Subject to the requirements of this article, the individuals specified in subdivision (b) shall not be subject, on that sole basis, to criminal liability.

    • WhoDoWeStringupFirst

      If the Court upholds the Justice Department by ruling against Raich, experts argue, the precedent will be a huge expansion of the Commerce Clause, and will give the federal government power to regulate almost anything, no matter how private, no matter how non-commercial, no matter what voters have voted, .. and no matter what we have been led to believe concerning the likelihood of a complete and corporate fascist takeover of our dear republic.

      http://old.nationalreview.com/adler/adler200506070921.asp

      • DdC

        It gives the federal government power to regulate almost anything, but they were very careful not to claim it made cannabis illegal for states. Only for trade or commerce across sate lines. Even contraband. If it effects price. Even if its free donations it can effect price. Not state cops like the butthead in Butt. Only feds can enforce the fed laws and they haven’t the man power. State AG’s can order state cops to enforce state laws, including propositions. Protecting patients but not busting them. Those who think they are above the law get sued and return the property confiscated or if the plants are dead they get money compensation. All costing the tax payers. That has to be explained to them why, and with elections its not smart for politicians.

        If you want to get rich selling pot and have no affiliation with caregiving or the patients then you may get busted. Individual patients or caregivers are under the fed limits and authorized by state law have little to worry about. Like I’ve said the local cops here were busting WAMM before our Measure A in 93 but not after. State and County GOP politicians busted Peter McWilliams, McCormick and Rene’ for thousands of plants. But not after they were booted out of office. Kubby and the BC 3 got minimal time, except Marc Emery which was more of a political statement than drug bust. Like Tommy Chong or Edde Lepp the 3rd time after two previous acquittals. DA’s have too much power and are too slimy to trust with laws in my opinion. I believe we’ll have Justice when we pull the prosecutor and defense names out of a hat for each trial and stop this money game and dream teams getting the rich off for murder and giving 90 years for 5 plants in Okieland.

        When WAMM’s garden was raided the county Sheriff acted as the arbitrator between WAMM and the DEA after they blocked their van from leaving with the plants. On the condition Val and Mike were released, as they were. With Prop 215 state cops can’t do much. They tried tweaking it with SB 420 and failed. Locals tried limiting amounts and failed. Jury Nullification has thrown out several cases. Even when found guilty Charlie Lynch didn’t receive the MM. Although he was still wrongly imprisoned. Ed Rosenthal was appealing his 1 day sentence and that jury said they would have nullified if they had known the facts hidden by the 404 gag rule. So far only high profile profiteers and advocates are getting busted. The others aren’t fighting back.

        The states have powers that the Constitution doesn’t provide the Feds, in writing. Including the Commerce santa Clause in spite of a fascist side of the supremest court appointees. Appointees can be impeached. So the sheriff of Butt can call the feds and if it is over 99 plants… but can’t spend citizens tax money enforcing a law the citizens voted to oppose.

        The feds will raid buyers clubs that aren’t sanctioned by prop 215. They are a convenience and most in the state realize this and outside of San DEAgo and the Cowboy counties most city councils planning departments only regulate the number allowed to open. Not outlaw them. Some try to ban certain locations but it seems to me that would include drug stores. If the ban is only cannabis then it probably has no legs. That’s not saying if the citizens say nothing they won’t try. Charlie Lynch in conjunction with Morrow Bay grew pot. It was the Sheriff of SLO who busted him and couldn’t even do that without calling in the feds to make the actual bust. Another joe arapio. Over the hill in the garlic capital of Gilroy they ordered a buyers club to shut down and last I heard the guy was still snubbing his nose at them. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

      • DdC

        Just found this, haven’t read it and…
        I’m not posting it as a reference to my previous post.
        I already see two discrepancies on the cover page.
        All 15 states are not the same. Only California has an Initiative process that can’t be overturned by politicians. Like what is going on in Washington, Montana, Arizona and Colorado. Second the first medicinal Ganja laws took place in 93. First with Measure B SF and then Measure A in SC. Under Carter even more states decriminalized for medicinal purposes. All riding on Nixon’s flat out lies. Making the Ganjawar null and void due to the poison roots of the law.

        Now Available.
        NORML Legal Guide For Medical Marijuana Laws in California
        May 3rd, 2011 By: Allen St. Pierre, NORML Executive Director

  • Look at what happened with the production and sales of cigarettes following the 1906, 1914 and 1937 prohibition acts in the U.S.

    http://freedomofmedicineanddiet.blogspot.com/2011/03/drug-war-tobacco-pharma-agricultural.html

  • darkcycle

    Maybe OBL’s death will mean he won’t be out campaigning for the republicans this next national election cycle.
    Uh-Oh, darkcycle’s been plunged into the sea of absolute cynicism. Somebody throw him a life preserver! Or for God’s SAKE, at LEAST pass him a bong!

    • Windy

      I can’t pass you a bong, but did you know those Spokane dispensaries that got raided on last Thursday had ALL the stuff that was confiscated in the raids, returned to them on Friday, with an apology, no less. Strange thing, tho there has been nothing on the news about this, I know it is true because someone I know very well (and who NEVER lies), was in his local dispensary when the owner received a phone call from one of the dispensaries that had been raided, and after he passed along the news the volunteers who work there and the patients started whooping and hollering.

      I wonder why it is the news people haven’t reported that, they had plenty of time before the bin Laden news broke, so it wasn’t the “a more important story took precedence” excuse. Very strange, one would think the media supports the drug war and the raids and doesn’t want the people to know those raids were nothing more than harassment and bluff. Almost as if they are trying to sabotage the effort to get I-1149 on the ballot.

  • denmark

    Think it was commenter claygooding who wrote in a comment section that he did his own study of cancer and found that the cases of cancer INCREASED when the war on drugs was started.

    Do not want or need any links provided concerning my comment.

    • DdC

      The Ganjawar causes stress. Stress is the foundation of all disease. Giving it fertile ground to grow. It also inhibits recovery. But then that means more profit for the pill pushers, poisons and prisons. Ganja relieves stress.

  • ezrydn

    Anytime you see something labeled “War on –,” the bottom line isn’t the betterment of any segment. It’ll always boil down to “M-O-N-E-Y.” Especially, if it’s something generic, like “War on Drugs” or “War on Terror.” These are “pseudo-wars” without any forseeable solution. Therefore, it’s a known “moneymaker” in the eyes of “bottom feeders.”

    And, if you are a Prohibitionist, of any sort, you are truly a Bottom Feeder!

  • This is not my America

    Naw..the war on terror hasnt been won. There will always be terrorists just as there will always be drugs and people to use them.

    But, now that Bin Laden is dead , do ya think we will leave over there now…not a chance. Remember, as with the drug war, the rise in violece means we are winning.

    Besides, the Empire wont give up its strategic positions when Iran still holds on to its evil ways.No different than the cartels still holding on to their evil ways and prohibition gives them the strategic position of a moral obligation to save the children and create a “Drug free world”.

    What were you thinking Pete?

    On aside note: Why did they get rid of his body so quickly ? Now no hard proof hes dead? Just some “DNA’?

    Sounds fishy like saying the war on drugs is over.

  • vickyvampire

    Yeah may is turning out to be month of the let’s be cowards Gov.Gregoire Vetoes Washington State Medical Marijuana Bill.but vows to push feds on it,Oh may your twat between your legs may it rot like your callous uncaring brain.

    Yeah and now it looks like The Governor of Rhode Island, is now backing off of dispensaries afraid of the feds, and The Governor of Montana will lets let the atrocious Medical Reform MARIJUANA Bill become Law and maybe fix it later, what a bunch of crappy cowards.
    Yeah Pres Obama may get an EXCELLENT REPORT card for capturing and killing Osama Bin Laden,but until he shows some compassion for Cannabis users he will get an F on this big domestic Issues from me and many others I’m sure.

  • ezrydn

    Someone reported today that some official in Afghanistan put out a message to the Taliban, like, “Let this be a lesson. We will not go away!” ‘Nuff said there.

    I’m coming up short on some of the congratulations for someone without any military service getting credit for the OBL takedown. Credit goes to those who planned and those who executed. Congratulations particularly to Seal Team 6 and Team Support personnel. No injuries! Those are the hands to be shaken.

    • darkcycle

      Yeah. Seal Team Six didn’t even stub a toe in the op. And I listened to a CNN talking head say “All of the credit goes to Leon Panetta, who was the operation commander.” I almost choked on thin air at that.
      No matter how you feel about it, cleanly done. I just wish DEA would stop using those tactics to kill family pets.

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .
      If they prove that the cure for cancer is contained in the cannabis plant don’t expect anyone to give the potheads credit for successfully jump starting the research project. The politicians will claim credit, and that they did it in spite of the potheads who just want to get high.

    • This is not my America

      I agree EZ. Congrates to team 6.

  • strayan

    Duncan20903

    Here is an interesting discussion about addiction and the choice model: http://www.philosophymonthly.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/bpmaug10.mp3

    My personal experience does not mirror yours. I have been able to cease drug use very easily – I was barely challenged by the act of quitting a number of addictive drugs that I was using regularly.

    • strayan

      Also remember if you ask ex-smokers about quitting you get results that seem to validate the choice model:

      in a large British study of ex-smokers in the 1980s, before the advent of pharmacotherapy, 53% of the ex-smokers said that it was “not at all difficult” to stop, 27% said it was “fairly difficult”, and the remainder found it very difficult http://www.plosmedicine.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pmed.1000216#pmed.1000216-Marsh1

      In other words, most people with a history of tobacco addiction (a substance with the highest capture rate of all habit forming drugs) can quit pretty easily.

      Sure, a small percentage really struggle to overcome their addiction, but addiction in the general population is not the kind of lifelong disease it’s made out to be.

    • darkcycle

      Strayan, if you include only those who successfully kicked, you are using a sample that is excessively skewed. Some estimates have seventy percent of serious alcoholics never being able to quit. Smokers are just as unlikely to be able to quit. I’ll grant you…maybe it IS a choice for those who kicked. Maybe it’s not for the ones that die addicted. The majority, it seems, fall into the latter category.

      • strayan

        darkcycle, most people (the gen pop) can and do quit even though they’d probably meet ICD-10 or DSM-IV criteria for dependence. Read some Robins on Heroin use among Vietnam vets: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1360-0443.1993.tb02123.x/abstract Rapid or spontaneous recovery from addiction is the norm, not the exception (despite what the profit driven treatment industry say).

        Meanwhile, 40 million people have quit smoking in the US and people are still quitting (there is no sign that the trend will stop).

        Furthermore, I take issue with being accused of presenting skewed data. If anything, studying only the extreme cases (the people you refer to as ‘serious alcoholics’) is what skews things. Most studies of alcoholism are from clinic samples. You cannot understand the natural history of alcoholism from clinic samples without ending up with biased data.

      • strayan

        Remember that only a tiny percentage of alcoholics present at clinics. Most quit in their own time, without formal treatment and for this reason are rarely studied. It is these people who we should be studying because they form the bulk and are the most representative sample of addicts.

        Here are some actual facts for you darkcycle:

        http://books.google.com.au/books?id=4l04ZV0TfLAC&pg=PA2&img=1&zoom=3&hl=en&sig=ACfU3U2yNc36loBZTZwI47EPw7Lkn3H-pg&w=685&w=800

      • strayan

        If your intention was to hold up extreme non-representative cases of alcoholism to prove that drinking isn’t a choice, you’ve failed to convince me. Sure, drinking is motivated by being alcohol dependent, but that doesn’t mean you’re forevermore enslaved.

      • darkcycle

        Strayan I never accused you of anything, brother, I just said that data that only includes recovered addicts is skewed. It doesn’t represent those who didn’t kick, man. That’s all I said. You selected a study that only asked people who successfully quit….what about those that didn’t? You didn’t make that data, you misinterpreted it. Sorry, I didn’t mean to accuse you of anything, least of all dishonesty. Peace.

      • darkcycle

        Get a grip, “actual facts”? Different perspective maybe. Still doesn’t explane the huge cohort of people who die every year from addiction and addiction related illness. I’m not here to argue the nature of addiction (while I’m well positioned to do just that) with you. You chose a study with a non-representative sample, bub. That’s a statistical no-no. No ammount of other data will unskew that research. Doesn’t matter what the ‘actual facts’ are.

      • Windy

        My husband used to be a problem drinker (mean drunk — half case of beer almost every night), he quit cold turkey with no help, no treatment and no relapse back in 1985. I would have left him had he not quit as I was tired of getting hit and seeing him do the same to our kids and sometimes his friends when he drank, and I was in a financial position to actually leave (which I had not been before), so I’d finally given him the ultimatum. We’ll be celebrating our 49th anniversary this year, and he hasn’t hit me or anyone else since he quit drinking.

        I never liked getting drunk, I’d tried it three times by the time I was 21 and decided it was not for me (I HATE barfing, which always happens if I have more than 3 drinks over an evening). I still drink a glass of wine with dinner and I have a Kahlua and cream as a nightcap most nights and it doesn’t bother him at all.

        7 years ago tomorrow he quit cigarettes the same way but for a different reason. He’d been a 3 pack a day smoker and he figured out how much it was costing him to smoke. He decided he’d rather have a motorcycle than smoke and so he started paying that cigarette money on the purchase of a bike. He’s traded up 3 times since then and now has a Harley which is the envy of most of his friends (the rest of them have bikes of their own).

        I still smoke cigs — about 6 a day (so a pack lasts me a tad over three days). He’s been after me to quit ever since he did, and I’ve purchased one of those electronic cigs and am trying to get used to substituting it for a couple cigs a day, but I don’t find it as satisfying. I am a born smoker, the first time I tasted smoke in a boyfriend’s mouth when I kissed him I liked it, A LOT! I can go 9 days without smoking when I’m on vacation with my daughter and hardly miss it, so I don’t think I’m addicted to the nicotine, I’m habituated to the flavor (and the act of smoking) and the damn electronic cig just doesn’t have it. I don’t know if I’ll ever actually quit real cigarettes completely but I used to smoke a pack a day and now (well for the past 5 years) I’m down to a third of that so . . .

        But neither one of us is ever going to give up smoking cannabis.

    • Duncan20903

      My personal experience does not mirror yours. I have been able to cease drug use very easily – I was barely challenged by the act of quitting a number of addictive drugs that I was using regularly.

      Strayan, that’s completely consistent with my premise. Quite simply, you’re not a degenerate addict, and I am. Did you take a look at the Rat Park study? All of the rats were dosed with morphine for 57 consecutive days, sent to Rat Park which was built for the pleasure of the rats, but only 2% maintained their addiction when given the choice.

      Meeting the established criteria for being diagnosed an addict is a joke because the established criteria doesn’t accurately identify who are degenerate addicts and who aren’t. The addictionologists are not trying to eliminate the people who are heavy users but not suffering from degenerate addiction. Did you know that there is one school of thought that if you break a law in your desire to get high that’s enough for a diagnosis of addiction. That includes possession charges which is ludicrous. Is person A in Alaska not an addict because an ounce is legal, but in Oklahoma he is?

      It’s completely irrelevant that someone is able to quit and to do it easily. Many college age people drink enough drinking alcohol to look like they’re stumblebums yet quit around the time they graduate. That’s been going on for a number of centuries now. The most basic definition of degenerate addiction is you find yourself still engaged when you don’t want to be using the drug to which you are addicted. All use is not abuse despite the claims of the Know Nothing prohibitionists claim to the contrary.

      Lots of people have quit smoking but some lung cancer/emphyzema patients can be seen smoking cigarettes standing outside the door of the hospital that’s giving them treatment for their probably fatal co-morbity.

      “Forever more enslaved” is simply too extreme of a standard. That’s where your analysis fails.

  • vickyvampire

    Yes, ezrydn,I understand your coming up short on the congrats concerning Pres, Obama but believe me the Ladies on the View were gushing about how great he was getting Bin Laden,and you now Hollyweird will gush too just like some in the media too.

    Oh here is a Link to a story a weekly independent paper that exposes what really goes on in Wasatch front read and see what happened to a Bar Club Owner being harrassed by Mayor developers and the police into selling his bar his wife now terrified of police does not trust the police at all it in Utah. Scary story.

    http://www.cityweekly.net/utah/article-13793-the-canyon-inn-in-your-face.html

  • Now that Osama Bin Laden has been killed, the war on terror has been won. When you kill the figurehead, the organization falls apart from a lack of leadership. Its similar to when the head of a drug cartel gets arrested. When the drug kingpin gets caught and sent to jail, the entire drug industry falls to its knees.

    Sincerely,
    all heads of law enforcement agencies around the world.

  • Chris

    I’m stating the obvious, but luckily the terrorist organizations that perpetrated 9/11 have no future source of income now. Except doing things with those poppies and making millions.

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .
      What makes you think that Mr. bin Laden didn’t direct his money into al Queda’s coffers? People bequeath money to their favorite causes every day of the year.

    • This is not my America

      Dont forget, Iran has stakes in keeping them going too.

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .
    Since the number of heroin addicts toady is not very much different than in 1969 we can indeed conclude that heroin addicts have a marked preference for pharmaceuticals since that’s the singular MAD which registers any, much less a significant drop in use. Why in the world would anyone buy the canard that there are only 50,000 pharmaceutical opioid addicts? SAMHSA statistitics of the number of people in “treatment” for other opioids includes more than 50,000 people. Why there were 8,353 “other” opioid users in “treatment” in California alone in 2009, the latest year SAMHSA has published statistics. For the same year there were 14,609 in NY, 12,609 in Florida, 5,963 in Maryland, 5,245 in New Jersey, 3,637 in Texas, oops, that’s more than 50,000 in “treatment” for “other” opioids and there’s still 45 more States with opioid addicts in “treatment”. So much for the bogus claim that only 15% of opioid addicts are pharmaceutical opioid users. 332,000 * 0.85 = 282,200. 332000 – 282200 = 49,800. Although I’ll most willingly entertain the argument that “treatment” for addiction is a farce and totally ineffective. 10 to 20 people ordered to sit in a circle and listen to a lackey for the government repeatedly telling them the law is the law is really a accepted treatment protocol for a disease? Why don’t I believe that bullshit? Well that’s certainly a mystery, but more appropriately fodder for a different conversation than this one.

    http://wwwdasis.samhsa.gov/webt/quicklink/il09.htm is the link for Illinois’ numbers in 2009. For other States and years just change the il09. E.g. you get New York’s 1996 numbers at http://wwwdasis.samhsa.gov/webt/quicklink/ny96.htm. Wow, isn’t that 564.82% increase in opioid users in “treatment” in IL from 1996 to 2009 simply stunning? From 3,141 to 20,882 in the same time frame which California with Prop 215 in force enjoyed a 46.88% reduction from 69,092 to 36,702. To think that happened with Prop 36, which was passed in 2000, in force. Prop 36 mollycoddles drug addicts by requiring the State to put them in “treatment” rather than prison while IL is a lock ’em up and throw away the key State.

    Oh, but don’t forget to check California’s in “treatment” for amphetamines number, that’s where they’re hiding a healthy majority of the disappearing opioid addicts. Man that meth is peculiar. Wildly popular in the west, practically unheard of in the east. Go figure that one out. But California’s rate of residents in “treatment” to the general population still fell by almost 10% between 1996 and 2009.

    “Illicit Use of Opioids: Is OxyContin® a “Gateway Drug”?

    http://informahealthcare.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10550490701375293

    ^^^There’s actually no information there pertinent to this conversation unless you pay to read the study, but I thought the title was good for some laughs. The “gateway theory”, the stupidity that keeps on going, and going, and going….

    Then there’s the matter of the 2 million cocaine addicts and 500,000 methamphetamine devotees. How many tweakers were fooling around with meth back then? We know Sigmund Fraud was a cocaine addict. Are crackheads not included in the .04% estimated addicts back then? Shucks, if you’re going to include merry wanna users as add dicks, there’s an extra 15 or 20 million. Why, in nineteen hundred and fourteen there were only about 100,000 total marijuana add dicks in the US, and as we all know most were Negroes, Hispanics, Filipinos, and entertainers.

    Say, how do the percentages of degenerate addicts who prefer drinking alcohol compared to that time frame? For some reason they always seem to be forgotten when we talk about drug addiction. I’ve heard there’s been a pretty significant decrease in the per capita consumption of booze without making it despite the failure of making it illegal for adults.

    Then there are quality of life issues. Back in the days of Bayer brand Heroin®, how many of the addicts committed property crimes in order to be able to buy their cough medicine?

    Health issues, how many of Bayer’s Heroin® customers were stricken with AIDS, hepatitis A, B, C or the rest of the alphabet? How many serious infections due to abscessed injection sites? Amputations due to collapsed veins?

    How many people died trying to keep people from buying Bayer Heroin®? How many Bayer Heroin® retail distribution chain vendors were murdered by their fellow vendors? How many terrorist organizations were funded from the profits made by selling Bayer Heroin®? OK you can argue that Bayer is, or at least was a terrorist organization. Their contribution of mustard gas in World War I certainly wasn’t socially conscious.

    Why would we credit the Harrison Narcotics Tax Act of 1914 with the reduction in addicts from 1896 to 1923? Wasn’t 1914 18 years after 1896? My calculator is on the fritz (YPI) so if that’s wrong you’ll have to forgive me, but I’m pretty sure that’s right if I recall my 3rd grade math correctly.

    You know, one of the ironic things about the war on (some) drugs for me is that history and civics were two subjects in which I had little interest in high school. When I was a junior I scheduled my mid-morning nap for history class. Public schools were a different world in 1977. I do recall one time when I had insomnia and stayed awake for the class. We were learning the Constitutional requirements to become POTUS. 35 years of age, natural born citizen, can’t be bald or non-white. I swear to god that’s what that woman told us. She was also the first person that I heard mention that this is a free country as long as you do what you’re told. I don’t think I really missed anything except some stories of mind boggling idiocy from sleeping through her class 9 out of 10 school days.

    Oh, one other question, was the US on the verge of bankruptcy in the early 1900s due in part to all the people addicted to Bayer Heroin®? We certainly are today at that verge with the money borrowed and squandered on the fool’s errand of absolute prohibition to keep people from buying Bayer Heroin brand cough syrup. Yeah, it was recommended for the common cold, no boo sheet.

  • ezrydn

    The only thing the President was involved in was simply giving of the approval to proceed. He has no military background/training, wasn’t very involved in the planning phase and definitely wasn’t one of the “boots on the ground.” So, why the accolades?

    Gawd, people can be so brain dead!

    Maybe a Pro-Obama reader here can clue me into what exactly he DID as far as this operation went, to receive such fanfare.

    • This is not my America

      OH but EZ ! He was so BRAVE sitting behind his desk while signing the order ! He deserves a vacation now for such heroism ! Dont ya think? ( sarcasm> for those that dont get it)

      Oh by the way everyone , now that the war on terror is over…

      Beer cheaper than gas ! Drink ! dont drive ! :/

      Can we move on now people?

    • DdC

      I didn’t vote for him, but. Like it or not he’s President of the United States and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces. That’s all he has to do. His orders, his troops, including the special forces. As for planning, it started in August 2010. How the hell does anyone here know how much he was involved? He may not have joined the Military but he never went AWOL like Boosh either. He doesn’t have a financial stake in the war toy sales like Boosh and Cheney. He never lied and killed 4000 Americans in Iraq that had absolutely nothing to do with 9-11. He didn’t give up and write him off like Boosh did. After the war profits started rolling in. He had his wars profit, he didn’t need ObL. That’s the difference. Same as Nixon taking credit for the grunts stomping around in rice paddies. Only Obombo’s Seals got out alive in a well executed mission. Nixon running on a lie of ending the war, left 50,000 dead and then started the drug war.

  • Duncan20903 asked: “OhutumValik, are you aware of how many people have accepted as fact that the Earth is the center of the universe?”

    I totally see your point. But I would appreciate a source that convincingly topples the number of 313.000 addicts in US in 1896.

    I am aware of the many gruesome “unintended consequences” of the crackdown on narcotics that started with the Harrison Act and proceeded from there, but it would help my case if I could convince my opponent that the number he brought up (and that many seem to accept as fact) does not reliably reflect reality.

    Huge thanks to all you guys; you’ve been a tremendous help.

    • Jim

      The 313,000 number comes from David Courtwright’s 1982 book, “Dark Paradise: Opiate Addiction in America Before 1940.” He bases his calculations on opium import statistics, adjusted (in a rough fashion) for smuggling. By calculating the maximum amount of opium imported annually, and using a figure for how much an addict would consume in a year, he can come up with the maximum possible number of opium-product addicts: 313,177 (on page 28 of his book), for fiscal years 1891 to 1896. Courtwright argues that opiate addiction “peaked in the 1890s, and thereafter began a sustained decline [p. 2].”

  • DdC

    Ron Paul accuses the CIA, Bush sr, and the democrats of drug trafficking U2b

    Exploratory Committe: 2012 Presidential Run by Ed Rosenthal
    The exploratory committee investigating the possibility of my presidential run in 2012 has been working day and night, especially night, to scope out the electoral environment.

    Canada’s 2011 Election: As the Smoke Clears
    Stephen Harper and the Conservatives have secured their coveted majority government in a stunning election-day sweep. Dark days are undoubtedly ahead for Canada’s cannabis culture, but the fight is not over. full story

    ‘High-strength’ Marijuana Found at Osama Bin Laden’s Compound
    High-strength marijuana plants have been found just yards from the luxury home of slain terror chief Osama Bin Laden. full story