Odds and Ends

Found some wifi on a layover in Chicago and have some time to kill.
“bullet” Moron of the day. Florida Senator Mike Bennett wants to reduce unemployment benefits to pay for drug testing those on unemployment. Yeah, that’ll calm things down in periods of extreme financial unrest. Fortunately, the ACLU is on the case. [Thanks, Mel]
“bullet” Quote of the day:

Bill Maher on Presidential cocaine abuse. “To start off, George Bush did a lot more blow than Obama ever did. Please don’t ruin the only thing I like about him.”

“bullet” Next up from the ONDCP, an anti-meth campaign. I think we should scrap all the anti-drug government-funded media campaigns, but if we’re going to have any, this is a better subject than all the stupid anti-marijuana ones we’ve been facing.
Of course, the latest, which probably was actually developed last year and is now seeing some media and blog play, is this stupid online interactive piece that claims that getting high will damage your video game playing capability (via everybody, but I like Reason’s headline best: I Was Gonna Kill an Orc, But I Got High). Because, of course, being a little slower at certain video games can ruin your future success of a lifetime sitting on Pete’s Couch while your dog looks at you with disappointment and an alien steals your girlfriend. Wow. I just realized. The people who make these ads are reeaaallllyyyy stoned.
“bullet” Somebody asked me why I hadn’t talked about Glen Beck coming out in favor of legalizing marijuana. I hadn’t heard about it until then. I really don’t watch any of the 24-hour cable stations (I actually have to put in my parental guidance security code to watch FOX news) and shows like Beck’s don’t interest me in the slightest. If something important happens on any of those talking head shows (other than Stewart or Colbert, of course) I’d rather read a transcript than watch the video.
But apparently Beck did it

Beck starts off this segment saying “I woke up this morning and I thought, we should legalize marijuana.”

All right. Go Beck. Maybe he learned something from his debate with Kampia.
“bullet” Programming note. John Stossel will be talking about medical marijuana provider Charlie Lynch this Friday.
“bullet” New Yorkers: Time to apply some pressure to get rid of the Rockefeller drug laws.
“bullet” Putting pot under the microscope (L.A. Times)

Members of Congress have urged Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. to amend or overrule the order, and he should do so. Then he should go further and change the culture of the agency. Instead of thwarting the advancement of science, the DEA should encourage cannabis research. As California and the U.S. government continue to debate the future of medical marijuana, what we need is a body of work on the drug’s efficacy in treating a variety of illnesses and conditions. Instead, we have a collection of small studies and individual testimony. On Monday, President Obama signed a “scientific integrity presidential memorandum” and promised that his administration would base its public policies on science, not politics; the DEA is one of many federal agencies ready for enlightenment.


“Promoting science isn’t just about providing resources — it is also about protecting free and open inquiry. It is about letting scientists like those here today do their jobs, free from manipulation or coercion, and listening to what they tell us, even when it’s inconvenient — especially when it’s inconvenient. It is about ensuring that scientific data is never distorted or concealed to serve a political agenda — and that we make scientific decisions based on facts, not ideology.” – Barack Obama

Now let’s hold him to it. And get Congress to help out. Remember, science could be a way to sidestep the political traps of drug policy reform. It allows the politician to shift the responsibility onto the scientific evidence when making policy that is controversial.

[thanks to all the usual suspects for links and quotes]
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