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ONDCP propagandist suddenly concerned about accuracy of information

This is hilarious.

Kevin A. Sabet: Former ONDCP propaganda writer, who was involved in helping the Drug Czar craft his campaign of misinformation about drugged driving (you know, the one we helped refute and forced a correction) complete with blatant misuse of NHTSA study statistics, who never complained when the Washington Post printed absolute lies based on his misdirection…

Kevin A. Sabet: Is now complaining that the report about medical marijuana states having a reduction of traffic fatalities doesn’t meet his standards, and he is appalled that media outlets are actually… believing it.

And his “refutation” fails to even address the main point of the study.

This guy has no shame or integrity at all. (Update: I don’t actually know that. I can only infer it in terms of this particular issue based on his actions.)

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55 comments to ONDCP propagandist suddenly concerned about accuracy of information

  • ElVira28

    Kevin actually does make some sense here, and his argument goes to the heart of the proposed study.

    I used to be with you guys…but your blatant lying makes me sick.

    Seriously, why are you insistent on presenting baseless attacks to your readers?

    • His argument completely ignores the heart of the study.

    • darkcycle

      Not only that, the argument he presents wouldn’t pass muster in a first year logic class. “•The paper ignores the fact that alcohol crash fatalities were already coming down far before the introduction of medical marijuana in any state” That is nonsensical obfuscation. Their entire “pro se” argument rests on the premise that marijuana causes a significant number of accidents, and that if it were legalized, even for medical purposes, that a bloodbath would ensue on our nation’s highways. This study, while not conclusive (what statistical analysis is?), is solid evidence that the ONDCP’s claims are lies. Kevin Sabet has shown little concern for accurately presenting the findings of research. In fact he’s given no indication before now of any concern for the difference between correlation and causation. The entire gateway argument is based on this faulty premise.
      You used to be with us guys? Now why do I have doubts about that?…

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .
      There’s nothing baseless about calling Mr. Sabet a pathological liar who is a strict adherent to the motto of the Know Nothing prohibitionist.

      Has anyone noticed the recent, sudden increase of Know Nothing prohibitionists masquerading as either people who previously enjoyed cannabis & other mind bending drug, or at least as people who used to support abandoning the epic failure of public policy which we call the war on (some) drugs, but have now seen the light? I’ll wager dollars to dirt that there’s a prime example of that tactic two posts above this one.

      But keep coming back ElVirus. The only other thing that
      Pete needs to make the jump to the big leagues is a resident foaming at the mouth Know Nothing prohibitionist to mock him periodically but no less than 3 times a week.

    • Malc

      ElVira, why do I suspect you’re simply Kevin Sabet in drag?

      “Pretty big publication for anyone. And a damn good article.”

      Rather pathetic of you, Kevin, don’t you think?

  • mappy

    He is actually pretty reasonable, Pete. Calm down.

    • Really? Reasonable? Did you notice that he “countered” the study about the reduction in traffic fatalities (which did not, by the way, claim causality nor that driving stoned was in any way safe), with marijuana statistics that had no connection to impairment and studies about marijuana impairment that had nothing to do with the question at hand?

      He notes: “The authors act as if there were no evidence linking car crashes with marijuana.” What a ridiculous statement. The authors also acted as if there were no evidence linking bacon with obesity. Because that wasn’t what they were talking about!

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .
      Wow, check that IP address Pete, I’ll betcha mappy is ElVirus in drag.

  • Cannabis

    That’s all Kevin has, so sad.

  • mappy

    The media completely spun this story out of control, Pete. It hurts our cause when we do things like that. The study was presented as linking medical marijuana with a reduction in car crashes,but no such link exists. I agree with Elvira on this one. Did you read the study Pete? I just did from the link on the Huffington Post site, and the authors repeatedly talk about how marijuana and driving is safe and how there is no link between marijuana and car crashes. That is blatantly false. I might smoke some but I won’t drive and I don’t believe people should.

    • The study was presented as associating medical marijuana with a reduction of fatal crashes (not what you said) due to a substitution of alcohol with marijuana. This fits all data. I read the study. Everything they said about marijuana and driving was taken from other established studies, not made up by themselves. They never claimed that marijuana made you a safer driver. Please read the study again. They claimed that, compared to alcohol, marijuana isn’t as dangerous, and that a situation that actually causes more young people to use marijuana than alcohol will therefore necessarily result in safer roads.

      This is not some kind of pie-in-the-sky goofy spin. This is real.

      I have never said that smoking marijuana makes you a safer driver. The study never said that. The media never said that. Kevin Sabet is inferring that we did. And that is dishonest.

      • Julia

        I looked at the study because I thought it was a manipulation of statistics- and the study itself did not convince me otherwise. I only skimmed the study, so I am interested in if others saw something key that I missed, which is a control group. I never traffic fatalities in other non-medical marijuana states reviewed over the same time periods. From my understanding, there have been major reductions nation wide in traffic fatalities and drunk driving fatalities due to numerous factors. If the reduction in traffic fatalities (and drunk driving fatalities) fell by similar percentages in medical and non-medical states, it can’t be attributed in medical marijuana.

        There are loads of good and honest reasons to legalize medical marijuana. We don’t need to manipulate statistics, and when we do, it makes it look to the public like we don’t have any honest reasons to advocate on behalf of.

        • Julia – look at the study a little closer. The authors took great pains to take a wide variety of factors into account. For example, look at the variables in Table 6:

          MMLa 0.122 (0.325) = 1 if a state had a medical marijuana law in a given year, = 0 otherwise

          Unemployment 5.65 (1.64) State unemployment rate

          Income 10.26 (0.16) Natural logarithm of state real income per capita (2000 dollars)

          Miles driven 14.12 (2.05) Vehicle miles driven per licensed driver
          (thousands of miles)

          Decriminalizeda 0.316 (0.465) = 1 if a state had a marijuana decriminalization law in a given year, = 0 otherwise

          GDLa 0.501 (0.493) = 1 if a state had a graduated driver licensing law
          with an intermediate phase in a given year, = 0 otherwise

          Primary seatbelta 0.430 (0.490) = 1 if a state had a primary seatbelt law in a given year, = 0 otherwise

          Secondary seatbelta 0.547 (0.492) = 1 if a state had a secondary seatbelt law in a given year, = 0 otherwise

          BAC 0.08a 0.566 (0.487) = 1 if a state had a .08 BAC law in a given year, = 0
          otherwise ALRa 0.723 (0.444) = 1 if a state had an administrative license
          revocation law in a given law, = 0 otherwise

          Zero Tolerancea 0.752 (0.424) = 1 if a state had a “Zero Tolerance” drunk
          driving law in a given year, = 0 otherwise

          Beer tax 0.252 (0.215) Real beer tax (2000 dollars)

          Speed 70 0.456 (0.498) = 1 if a state had a speed limit of 70 mph or
          greater in a given year, = 0 otherwise

          All these factors and controls (not just one control) were figured in. When they first looked at the raw data, they saw a 20% reduction in traffic fatalities associated with medical marijuana laws and then they accounted for all these other factors.

          How is this kind of detail manipulating statistics? What the drug czar does is manipulating statistics. This is actual statistics.

          Don’t blame us for telling the truth.

          What Kevin is doing is nitpicking within the detailed statistics, saying that they should have classified a particular state a year earlier or a year later based on his view of when they actually started having medical marijuana. He’s making it seem like there wasn’t true scientific statistical studying being done, and apparently he’s getting some commenters here to buy that pig in a poke.

        • Julia

          “How is this kind of detail manipulating statistics?” Pete, I can’t say because I don’t understand statistics. Those numbers don’t mean anything to me. What does make sense to me is that we have seen huge drops in both traffic fatalities and drunk driving fatalities nationwide during the years profiled in the study. Couldn’t that be the result of nation-wide educational campaigns, policy initiatives, car safety improvements, and many other factors? These researchers are suggesting that a tiny percentage increase in use of medical marijuana, and not all these other factors, is associated with this drop in alcohol related driving fatalities. That assertion should not be accepted easily in my opinion. If those numbers do indeed prove that medical marijuana laws, instead of any other factor, can be associated with this drop, they need to explain it instead of simply throwing the public some numbers and asking for our trust. I think medical marijuana advocates really want to believe the study, but that doesn’t mean it’s scientific. Everyone should seriously question any study that is not in their field of expertise and is not peer reviewed.

        • dt

          Julia: At the very least, the study tells us that driving fatalities do not necessarily increase after MMJ laws are passed. Even this unspectacular conclusion contradicts prohibitionist claims.

          I also didn’t see anything in the study about non-MMJ states, but maybe I missed it. The only way this study could be negated is if it turns out that other states experienced the same decrease in fatalities during the time period, or worse, that they experienced greater decreases.

        • pfroehlich2004

          Julia, Mappy, dt, et al:

          Alcohol-related traffic fatalities, and traffic fatality rates in general, have been falling steadily in all 50 states since at least 1994.

          However, on average, traffic fatality rates have fallen FASTER in states with medical marijuana laws. The authors of the study suggested two possibilities for this: 1) That mj users may be more likely to get intoxicated at home, rather than a bar or restaurant, and are therefore less likely to drive while intoxicated, or 2) That drivers who have been smoking mj, while impaired, are less reckless than drivers who have been drinking alcohol.

          Please look at the data and then suggest another reason why mmj states have experienced GREATER declines in traffic fatalities than non-mmj states. Do mmj states have better anti-drunk driving education? Perhaps they enforce the drinking age-limit more strictly than non-mmj states? Seriously, propose another mechanism which could account for such a significant statistical difference.

          You can check the data here: http://www-fars.nhtsa.dot.gov/States/StatesFatalitiesFatalityRates.aspx

        • Julia

          People, please think for yourselves! You don’t need to be in a university to research for yourselves! Look at how a group of non-medical marijuana states saw similar if not higher drops in alcohol-related traffic fatalities as California did over the same years CA’s prop 215 went into effect-

          Percentage drop in alcohol related fatalities between 1996-2009:

          California: 42%-36%

          Texas: 53%-47%
          Iowa: 36%- 29%
          Florida: 40%-35%
          Kentucky: 38%-30%
          Georgia: 37%-31%
          Idaho: 36%-29%

        • Julia, we ARE thinking for ourselves. Some of us do research and understand the numbers that are being used (I teach in a university.) They not only have allowed for the overall reduction in fatalities across the country, but have also factored in such things as seat belt laws, age of drivers and a lot of other things that you haven’t.

          After allowing for all those factors, they still found that the states that had medical marijuana laws had a greater reduction in fatalities within those parameters than the other states.

          This did NOT mean that marijuana made people drive safer. But they also found that medical marijuana states had a greater reduction in alcohol use than non-medical marijuana states, and it was that reduction in alcohol use that caused the reduction in deaths.

          Again, medical marijuana didn’t directly cause the reduction in fatalities. Medical marijuana caused a reduction in drinking as people switched to marijuana. Since marijuana is safer than alcohol, that meant a reduction in deaths.

          Kevin Sabet is completely ignoring the actual results of the study and trying to claim that the study is saying that driving while stoned is safe. The study DOES NOT say that. I don’t believe he is that stupid, so I have to believe that he is purposely trying to discredit the study.

          What makes this particularly outrageous is that he blatantly, and provably lied about statistics in his work with the ONDCP. He took data from the NHTSA that they specifically said could not mean what he said it meant and tried to get laws passed using that lie.

          Either you’re a supporter of Kevin’s, in which case I suggest you take a closer look at what he did while working for the ONDCP, or you really are a drug policy reform supporter who is uncomfortable with the notion of promoting marijuana as a safer alternative to alcohol.

          Sorry, but the facts are the facts. Marijuana is safer than alcohol. If less people drive drunk we will save lives, which means if more people switch from alcohol to pot, we will save lives. And Kevin Sabet is a liar.

        • Julia

          “Either you’re a supporter of Kevin’s, in which case I suggest you take a closer look at what he did while working for the ONDCP, or you really are a drug policy reform supporter who is uncomfortable with the notion of promoting marijuana as a safer alternative to alcohol.”

          Actually, I support the truth, whatever side of drug legalization it seems to support. I don’t care what Kevin Sabet did in the past or his current stance on this study; I found it highly suspect the first time I read about it. I’m also not uncomfortable with the notion of marijuana being a safer alternative to alcohol. I work at one of the oldest medical marijuana clinics in CA, where I see patients on a daily basis who are looking to use marijuana as a safe alternative to alcohol dependence or abuse. Every day, I met people who are living testimonies for why we need to legalize medical marijuana nation-wide. That’s part of the reason why I cringe at advocates blindly throwing themselves behind “scientific” studies that our opponents can easily pick apart. If you work at a university, don’t you think it’s rare and possibly irresponsible for a researcher to garner so much public attention and press for a study that is not peer reviewed?

        • This study is not being easily picked apart. So far, it’s one person who is making up bad things to say about it that can be easily refuted by simply reading the study.

          “Peer review” sounds like some magical term when mentioned by Kevin, as if it’s unfinished if it wasn’t “peer reviewed.” That’s not the case at all. Studies are often not peer reviewed – you only have them peer reviewed if you want to publish them in an academic journal. Peer review doesn’t necessarily make a study any better. Almost any researcher can find a way to get junk peer reviewed.

          As far as garnering so much public attention and press? Take a look at the biggest press it got: Time Magazine. Do you know who wrote that article at Time Magazine? Maia Szalavitz. She is a drug policy expert and an expert on addiction and other areas related to drug policy. You don’t pull one over on Maia. She didn’t just read the summary and say “Hey, I’ll put this in Time Magazine.” No, she read the study and understood it.

          “Blindly throwing ourselves”? I don’t think so.

    • mr. wiggle

      mappy there are LOADS of good and HONEST reasons to stick my stickshift in your mouth and spray my washer fuild all over your mouth with my STATISTICS,it would be sooo manipulated.it be concidered that it’s KEVIN SABET running little bullshit around town.with his PH.D in master penis fucking, sucking ,domination. CALM THE FUCK DOWN PETE. i just found out that kevin sabet has been giving cookies to little boys for hush money ,his in line with JOE TOUGH ON DRUGS soft on pedo-bears,fucking makes me sick . i’m gonna go free base now with bling bling

      • Duncan20903

        .
        .
        I’ve been looking for you wiggle dude. I really do miss you when you disappear for some number of days to go on one of your oxycodone & Marinol® binges.

        • mr.wiggles

          thank you duncan very much.. and allen i’m sorry for being unclassy for you,and something as a threat for “your cause” as the way I interpeted the comment you posted ,though i’m probably wrong..You can find me igorant all you want,a guy has shitty humor you don’t feel should be tolerated around this here Couch.Oh Lordy I appolgize Sir!.I will not applogize.
          For you forget you’re view and opinions on Drug policy ,are HELPING PEOPLE LIKE ME! i’m a drug addict who roams the streets, I fear every damn day,will i live or go to prison. sometimes I think it be safer to just die.But no i try and remain optimisic, i do toliet humor that taste amazing like shit.whatever dude.Just remember your fighting for people in my shoes.the ONES WHO SUFFER THE SHIT END OF THE STICK.

      • darkcycle

        Yeah. I say wiggler, you do have a way of cutting through the bullshit to the heart of an issue: how it affects your knob. Sometimes the complexities of a topic and social niceities get in the way of a proper expression of obscenity. Kudos on a well written post.

      • I don’t appreciate “Mr Wiggle” at all. There are other places where folks may play in such manner, but here… nah. Pete’s a classy guy and this wiggle character is just that, a character w/o any class. I sure can’t be called a prude… I just don’t appreciate lowbrow crude and unsuccessful attempts at humor. Every lower denomination we embrace only slides us further downhill. Let’s keep the couch aimed uphill.

        But whatever…

        • darkcycle

          Oops, forgot my sarcasm disclaimer. My bad.
          Although, I do believe that social niceties sometimes get in the way of proper displays of obscenity.

  • TomTomStoker

    Actually what Kevin has is pretty good!

    • claygooding

      How can what Kevin have be good when he uses statistics from a NHTSB study as his sole source of drugged driving evidence on impaired driving,when the study says in the 2nd paragraph that the findings in that study did not determine or indicate that the presence of drugs actually impaired the drivers?

  • claygooding

    Kevin’s new job advising drug rehab operators must be pretty boring after doing all that exciting propaganda creation and support at the ONDCP.

    Since he probably is the one that came up with the idea of skewing statistics for Kerli’s drugged driving rant,he had to come out and defend it.

  • kaptinemo

    Given his erstwhile employer’s legal cachet to lie to the public that pays its’ bills – and paid his salary – I am not disposed to consider anything he says as having even a passing relationship to the truth.

    Lie down with dogs; get up with fleas…”and scratch forever in trying to dislodge them. “Doctor” Sabet’s tenure as ONDCP’s Lysenkoist will follow him the rest of his life. And when legalization comes, his name will be remembered.

    But, like the original Lysenko, not in any salutary way…

  • dt

    The most convincing-sounding part of Kevin’s argument is his assertion that “the authors studied Rhode Island, Vermont, and Montana” but not the larger medical marijuana states. This is completely disingenuous – the only part of the study limited to those states was Part 3, Medical Marijuana Laws and Marijuana Use, not Part 4, Medical Marijuana Laws and Traffic Fatalities. (Part 3 only looked at those states because of limitations in the government survey data.)

    I saw Kevin’s response before I looked at the study, and I thought he had a point until I did so. Pete is right that the guy has no shame.

  • Servetus

    As I anticipated in a previous posting, the prohibitionists jumped all over the drugged driving study because it contradicts their presumptions and theorizes that relative increases in recreational pot use might be leading to fewer auto accidents. There is a solid basis for making such a prediction, as all driver testing since the 70s has shown alcohol to have far greater negative influences on driving skills than marijuana.

    Kevin Sabet is no scientist; he’s a political policy wonk. He doesn’t write or sound like a scientist. At no time has Sabet or his colleagues made similar complaints about studies which claim marijuana to be harmful, even though such claims are later proven to be in error. It is not science and empiricism Sabet commands, but belief.

    The proper approach here is to perform further research to discover any procedural errors and to refine the conclusions of the study. Sabet won’t be providing any new experimental techniques to do so. That’s not what he does for a living. He might glance at some numbers, but otherwise he is unlikely to know or care how the numbers came about. It will require others to make connections between sets of data; non-government scientists, people with an open mind. By contrast, Sabet’s entire career and future depends upon marijuana being evil. Without reefer madness, he and others like him are just washed-up hacks.

  • darkcycle

    Interesting, lot’s of new visitors at the site, all siding up with Sabet, yet claiming to be legalization advocates. Some body tracked something in on thier shoes.
    To all those who think that maybe Kevin has a point: Kevins Sabet has played a major role in pushing “per se” laws, and in blatantly lying about NHTSA studies to push that agenda. All the regulars here know this, and it was the webmaster at this site, as well as some of the dedicated regulars here that forced an official retraction of the Drug Czar’s misleading statements. The entire premise of “per se” laws is that marijuana impairment is a major contributor to highway fatalities. Not only does this study strongly contradict that assertion, it points strongly to an inverse effect. The study finds a high level of correlative data implying that substitution of marijuana for alcohol has contributed to that drop. The study looks sound to me, it was well performed and contained all the qualifiers I would have included. I can’t find fault, and this needs to be studied further.
    It is easy to see WHY this story has ruffled the feathers of drug warriors such that they might send out trolls to sow doubt in advocates minds. HOWEVER, Pete’s couch is not a place where you’ll find people squishy-minded enough to be “doubted into silence” about this report.

  • darkcycle

    This is FUN! Boy, I’m sure glad we decided to turn off family feud and invite the Jehova’s Witnesses in for a chat!

  • ezrydn

    They’ll just tell the Mormons you’re “open.” 😉

  • claygooding

    at least I got a disliked from one of them,,,makes my day.

  • In late 2009 and 2010, the Director of the ONDCP put out press releases about the dangerous new epidemic on the roads, claiming that a National Highway Transportation Safety Administration report had shown that a high percent of drivers on the road were impaired by drugs. He even got the Washington Post to print: “Feds: Watch out for drivers high on drugs” which reported: “About 11 percent of motorists are high on the weekend, and the number creeps up past 16 percent once night falls on Friday and Saturday, according to federal drug czar Gil Kerlikowske and a national roadside survey by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.”

    After that, the Drug Czar continued to refer to this study claiming that drivers were “impaired” or “under the influence.”

    But the NHTSA report specifically stated that such conclusions were not to be used:

    “The reader is cautioned that drug presence does not necessarily imply impairment. For many drug types, drug presence can be detected long after any impairment that might affect driving has passed. For example, traces of marijuana can be detected in blood samples several weeks after chronic users stop ingestion. Also, whereas the impairment effects for various concentration levels of alcohol is well understood, little evidence is available to link concentrations of other drug types to driver performance.”

    So where was Kevin A. Sabet when the ONDCP was constantly and routinely misusing federal data?

    He was Senior Policy Advisor to the Director of the ONDCP, leading the office’s efforts on drugged driving.

  • darkcycle

    Say, did I miss something? “Drug Czar says U.S. supports medical marijuana research:
    http://www.salem-news.com/articles/december052011/kerlikowske-slivovitz-pl.php

    • claygooding

      nope,,but Pete needs to crank up his effort to have the ONDCP tell the truth,that he is required by law to oppose medical testing.

    • kaptinemo

      I’m glad I hadn’t tried to eat or drink anything while reading that headline; I would have choked to death from laughter.

      ‘Slivovitz’, indeed. Or perhaps it’s just plain old anoxia from inhabiting an ivory tower too long. Air gets thin up there. Low oxygen content starts to affect your judgment. To make a statement as he has about cannabis research, well, what other conclusion can be made…other than sheer mendacity?

      The problem with propagandists is that they eventually forget that their job is to snowjob other people, and they begin to believe the lies they intend to tell and sell to others.

      The more I think about the workings of the ONDCP, the more I am struck by the similarities between it and another organization that was founded to prove a lie. Just as with the ONDCP today, way back then, that organization was founded to act as a kind of clearinghouse to front for beliefs with no scientific basis but lots of ideological impetus. Needless to say, it was an expensive exercise in futility, but because it had official backing, it was allowed to continue.

      Yep, the ONDCP bears a striking organizational resemblance to these BS peddlers. May they someday enjoy the same ignominy.

  • one thing I thought we encouraged here was dialogue and discussion? Yes, I too think these folks are trolls who won’t ever return, who can’t debate in favor of The Trillion Dollar Failure!® because it’s like arguing in favor of scooping your own eyeballs out w/ a spoon. But the point is, and Pete has asked this in the past, that we treat our guests civilly, no matter the temptation to do otherwise.

    So… we’ve reduced traffic fatalities… significantly, drunk driving fatalities. If we’re going to look at the topic then Sabet, us, everyone, needs to look at ALL traffic fatality data. How many fatalities from exhaustion? How many fatalities from texting/cel phone use? Are we using SWAT teams to reduce these fatalities? Do states w/ DUI checkpoints have lower rates of traffic fatalities?

    And then because of the way my mind works (or doesn’t, depending… ) I have to ask, well, since we’re discussing mortality, what are the things killing us? If we’re losing 35,000 people a year to vehicles but losing more than ten times that many to tobacco… why are we so pointedly focused on this statistically insignificant cause of death and not sending SWAT teams to conduct raids on 7-11s and seizing the contents of their tobacco shelves? That makes more sense to me.

    And I still say… the roots of Prohibition II are lies. Let’s ask the Excremental Prohibitionists to defend the foundation of their beloved and apparently holy (because it makes no earthly sense) Crusade/jihad.

    They’re experts on taking the initiative to turn any argument back on us so we end up in defensive mode. Screw that. You want to kill weeds in your yard? Ya havta attack the roots.

    • darkcycle

      Say now, some here may have been abrasive, dismissive, or sceptical of the sincerity of our mystery guests, but only the wiggler crossed over the line into rudeness. And as far as that goes, he leaves no doubt that that is what he intends, so some credit for that. Every village has an idiot.
      For my part I started out answering the first post like I would any person who I though was on the right track, but buying in to bad information. After that first post, it became abundantly clear that these were guys sitting in cubicles at Sabet’s current employers, not people who were regular lurkers. Odd, says I, why might this post, of all of Pete’s posts, bring out all these formerly reticent regulars? ’bout that time Nemo and Duncan both came to the same conclusion. Still, I addressed the arguments as well as had a little fun with the trolls.
      I don’t think that any sensitive potential allies were disrespected here today, Allan. And anyway, anybody with a skin should be able to shake off what we dealt.
      I am always careful to respect people who present honestly. And on forums that really get fence sitters, I’m uber careful. But this site doesn’t collect garden variety web surfers. This is a backwater where everybody kinda knows everybody, we run in the same circles, and so it’s really obvious when someone comes through and ties to play us like rubes.
      “We were just having fun with it, dad, we were gonna let it go when we were finished, honest!”

      • Duncan20903

        .
        .
        It’s really not hard to identify the poseurs from the other side of the table who are trying to gain credibility by masquerade. What I’ve been looking for recently is people on our side of the table doing the same in reverse. IIRC I first heard that notion written by you DC. I still haven’t been able to identify even one to a reasonable degree of certainty but that doesn’t mean that I’ve excluded the possibility. It’s just that the entire argument of the Know Nothings is built on a platform of bald faced lies, half truths, and hysterical rhetoric, and they seem to have no requirement that their arguments even be in the ballpark of plausibility. There may be no way to differentiate a drugs law reform advocate masquerading as a prohibitionist short of an admission by the faux prohibitionist himself. The being for the same reason that sarcasm and parody just don’t work because there’s simply nothing too far out for a genuine prohibitionist to believe. Even things that wouldn’t work even in an alternate universe.
        ———-
        Note to allan: missing someone or something only means noticing the absence of. I miss John Walters. Believe me, I notice his absence frequently but that doesn’t mean I want him to be alive.

        • darkcycle

          Well, the problem arises because we demand logic and reason. As well as reasonable-ness.
          Reason and reasonableness are simply not a part of the prohibitionist’s platform. In fact, they are inimical to the prohibitioist’s entire belief structure. You can only attempt use logic and reason on those who accept it’s validity as a guiding principal.
          That is why they can come into our forums and try to “appear reasonable”, and we cannot do the same to them. Why try to appear resonable to someone who rejects reason? Most hardcore prohibitionists become suspicious when the encounter a reasoning person. Their conclusions aren’t informed by it, and people are always using it AGAINST them. So it’s greeted with immediate suspicion. It’s true, I’ve seen it in action and I’m sure you have too.
          Our steadfast adherance to evidence based reasoning is clearly a strength, and a weakness too.

        • darkcycle

          It may be that Nadleman is using this tactic to some lesser extent, ineffectively. He is always giving creedance to one or another of the prohibitionist’s points when making his arguments. That may be why it always looks to me like he’s rolls over too easily, but I’m not sure. Anyway, I don’t think that tactic can work on closed minds.

        • claygooding

          I couldn’t do it Duncan,,my fingers would stutter and spit sputum all over them while I was “trying’ to fit in,,,,,dang,,,and I always wanted to be a spy.

    • kaptinemo

      Allan, normally, I would agree about the civility aspect, except that for me the matter stopped being academic and became intensely personal when the laws that these people support destroyed me and who knows how many others. It took me 5 very long, hard years to claw my way back up to a half-way decent standard of living, thanks to the benighted support these…people…give to a system that trumpets its’ moral superiority while savaging harmless citizens.

      And once you begin to look into the ‘macro’ aspects of drug prohibition, the history of how it started, the vast international scope of the corruption, the hypocrisy, the depth to which our government has fallen to climb in bed with murderers and thieves and then has the absolute gall to tell the rest of us to live according to laws it breaks with daily regularity, you begin to understand why the man who came up with the phrase ‘useful idiots’ had nothing but contempt for those same human tools he used to accomplish his butcheries.

      The trolls don’t realize it, but that is their true status, vis-a-vis those they support. They are being used. They are being played. Like puppets. And their masters smile as their strings are jerked, because they know the game is rigged, while the puppets blissfully yammer away, certain in their moral rectitude, never realizing that the government whose efforts they support has been involved in the drug trade at least since WW2 and quite possibly before then.

      I was told long ago by those I deemed wiser than me that there is a fine line between ignorance and stupidity. That ignorance was curable, with the proper ‘medicine’. But, as Tom Paine observed so long ago, “To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead.”. Logic and rationality demand the end of the DrugWar. But rationality is sorely lacking in the prohib camp, and the only logic they choose to make use of is syllogistic (“All birds are black, that brilliantly white feathered snowy owl is a bird, so it’s black”).

      Respect that? Be tolerant of that, when it’s the font of so much misery? All I can say is that they are very lucky dueling is illegal.

      • Duncan20903

        .
        .
        Did you know that in Tom Paine’s day they actually did administer “medicine” to the dead? In the late 18th century many believed that tobacco smoke could revive those who had drowned. There wasn’t a recreational swimming facility that didn’t keep a smoke enema kit handy if the need to re-animate the dead occurred. It seems we’re not the first generation to object to people having smoke blown up their asses.

        For those who haven’t seen it before, a 1776 textbook drawing of a tobacco smoke enema device, consisting of a nozzle, a fumigator and a bellows:
        http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f8/Tobacco_smoke_enema_device.jpg/200px-Tobacco_smoke_enema_device.jpg

        Tobacco smoke enema

        The tobacco smoke enema, an insufflation of tobacco smoke into the rectum by enema, was a medical treatment employed by European physicians for a range of ailments.

        Tobacco was recognised as a medicine soon after it was first imported from the New World, and tobacco smoke was used by western medical practitioners as a tool against cold and drowsiness, but applying it by enema was a technique appropriated from the North American Indians. The procedure was used to treat gut pain, and attempts were often made to resuscitate victims of near drowning. Liquid tobacco enemas were often given to ease the symptoms of a hernia.
        /snip/
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tobacco_smoke_enema

      • aye Kap, I as much as any here, understand. I’ve had the experience of a squadron of cop cars descending upon a locale, of being detained until the narcos finish their terrorizing, of watching my employer’s computers and all they held being hauled away.

        A decade later I was working a full time job and 3 part time jobs when that cursed random pee thing rolled around at the full time job… and not soon after that the economy began swinging downward and whoosh… away went one part time job.

        I’ve had my friends (google 5th Adams marijuana raid Eugene Oregon) raided by a near 50 man SWAT team w/ an armored personnel carrier and held at gunpoint (keeping my friend Marcella in her underwear and w/ a spit hood put over her head) while the narcos ransacked their home. I’ve read and read and read and know the tremendous damage these ingrates have perpetrated upon my country and the world. That litany of names… I can pull it up in my head w/o hesitation and start the scrolling, knowing they need not have been killed by their own gummint.

        But ya know, they will never mention those names, they won’t mention Judge Young’s study or any of the gummint studies done that all call for decrim or better… I know that. I am still compelled to respect Pete’s space (as most everyone here does) and wishes for civility.

        Would I like to take some of these excrementalists out behind the shed and beat the crap out of ’em? Aaah yup…

  • Duncan20903

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    .
    Speaking of propaganda…

    Found under an article’s photograph in today’s Reno Gazette Journal’s:

    Recently married Justin Luke Riley, a former [merrywanna] addict, outside where he works with a firm affiliated with a church. A new federal drug report suggests marijuana use is rising again, after several years of decreases. / Kevin P. Casey/For USA Today

    http://www.rgj.com/article/20111206/LIV06/112060302/Marijuana-use-among-young-adults-highest-levels?odyssey=nav|head

    Then on to the first paragraph of the article:

    Growing up in Greeley, Colo., Justin Luke Riley heard lots of anti-drug messages at home, school and church. But he ignored them to escape his insecurities and fit in better with his high school tennis team; at age 15, he got hooked.

    A little pot turned into a lot, and then alcohol, cocaine and whatever else he could get his hands on, Riley said. At 19, when he entered rehab, he was broke and homeless.
    /snip/

    Res ipsa loquitur. Time to call Reno 911.