Some very light reading

Here’s a six-page paper called Drug Legalisation: An Evaluation of the Impacts on Global Society. Position Statement

It’s been put together by:

  • Drug Prevention Network of the Americas (DPNA)
  • Institute on Global Drug Policy
  • International Scientific and Medical Forum on Drug Abuse
  • International Task Force on Strategic Drug Policy
  • People Against Drug Dependence & Ignorance (PADDI), Nigeria
  • Europe Against Drugs (EURAD)
  • World Federation Against Drugs (WFAD)
  • Peoples Recovery, Empowerment and Development Assistance (PREDA)
  • Drug Free Scotland

Transform describes it best

Is this seriously the best the defence of prohibition that can be mustered? Its embarrassingly bad.

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51 Responses to Some very light reading

  1. Peter says:

    What do you expect with Calvina Fay on their side….

    • Tommy says:

      Ms. Fay’s name is all you need to see to know that this is coming from the old Straight, Inc. crowd. Those folks abused thousands of teenagers back in the ’80s and early ’90s. And they bloviate about “the rights of the child”. Amazing.

  2. TrebleBass says:

    As bad as the whole thing was, they left the worst for last. This is the last paragraph:

    ” Any government policy must be motivated by the consideration that it must first do
    no harm. There is an obligation to protect citizens and the compassionate and sensible
    method must be to do everything possible to reduce drug dependency and misuse, not
    to encourage or facilitate it. Any failures in a common approach to a problem would
    result in a complete breakdown in effectiveness. Differing and fragmented responses
    to a common predicament are unacceptable for the wellbeing of the international
    community. It is incumbent on national governments to cooperate in securing the
    greatest good for the greatest number.”

    First do no harm? Are they even aware of what they are saying? And they make this argument not just for America, but for worldwide drug policy. Considering things like the fact that governments around the world give Iran and many other governments money to KILL people, by the hundreds if no thousands, for selling drugs, how can they claim that they are doing no harm. And forget that, giving someone a criminal record is harm. In fact, the definition of criminalisation is punishment for a certain conduct, and the definition of punishment invariably incudes doing some kind of harm. If the person doesn’t suffer harm it’s not punishment. Then, also, if there is an obligation to protect citizens, where do things like witholding information about the signs on ecstasy pills that are contaminated and have been causing FATALITIES fall into?

    • kant says:

      I think you’re missing the juiciest part of paragraph you quoted.

      Any failures in a common approach to a problem would
      result in a complete breakdown in effectiveness. Differing and fragmented responses
      to a common predicament are unacceptable for the wellbeing of the international

      basically. Everyone must do exactly as we do or else.

  3. primus says:

    Someone please fisk this. Transform is correct; this is weak–very weak.

  4. Francis says:

    “Superficially crafted, yet pseudo-persuasive arguments are put forward that can be accepted by many concerned, well intentioned people who have neither the time nor the knowledge to research the matter thoroughly, but accept them in good faith.”

    *dramatic slow clap*

    Well, I think I’ve found my nominee for the Most Unintentionally-Ironic Statement By A Drug Warrior.

    Seriously, that whole thing (all six pages) was just embarrassing. Are you honestly telling me that was put together by a god-damn alphabet soup of nine different anti-drug organizations (including heavy-hitters like Drug Free Scotland)? Honest to God, it reads more like a 5th grade D.A.R.E. student’s final report.

    (Side note: did anyone else notice how the first use of “prohibition” got scare-quotes … and then they used the term completely unselfconsciously throughout the remainder? Nice work, dipshits.)

  5. Duncan20903 says:


    Why is it that they don’t all have way cool acronyms?

    Say, couldn’t we have a POTY award for best prohibitionist propaganda masquerading as real research? Also, we need another T for our way cool acronym to make it a really way cool acronym..

    • claygooding says:

      Best I could come up with is


      Targeted science being research that has a goal,such as proving harm in marijuana.

  6. Nick says:

    Thanks Pete!
    The second paragraph says it all.

    “It is important to note that international law makes a distinction between “hard law” and “soft law.” Hard law is legally binding upon the States. Soft law is not binding. UN Conventions, such as the Conventions on Drugs, are considered hard law and must be upheld by the countries that have ratified the UN Drug Conventions.”

    Hard law, and soft law.
    States and countries.
    The state is no more.
    The UN Convention is god.

    • Windy says:

      So which country’s policies are they going to make the norm? Will it be those which execute drug users, like Afghanistan? Or the ones that have decriminalized, like Portugal? or one in the middle, like the uSofA?

      • Francis says:

        It looks like the paper takes the position that Portugal doesn’t exist. What a surprise. Speaking of Portugal, I have a suggestion for the drug warriors: after you get through with the paper linked above (if you’re not too mentally fatigued), why don’t give this one a try? Then tell me which one you find more convincing.

  7. claygooding says:

    Luckily all any country has to do is give written notice that they are dropping out of the treaty six months before they do,,pool on how long before countries start dropping out?

    And in order for uniformity of all countries,,who is going to pay for the swat team equipment and more prisons for the poorer countries?

    • Duncan20903 says:

      clay, I’ll take a week less than 7 months ago.

      • claygooding says:

        I am speaking of the ones that will drop when they are told that they have to spend more of their budgets to become consistent with the rest of the world drug enforcement,,,we have federal grants to help police buy all the latest greatest drug war gear,,where is Honduras,Haiti and Greece going to get theirs? More ONDCP money may not be available if they are spending it on Blackwater operations.

  8. Dudeman says:

    Why bother having just one citation? If you’re going fact free, there is no need to cite any sources at all!

  9. filesharing is terrorism says:

    40 plus years of epic failure and the prohibitionists still just don’t get it.

  10. allan says:

    I haven’t read it yet (saving it for morning coffee) but my first thought is ooh, is somebody getting nervous?

    My second thought is… is anybody surprised it reads like a poorly done student paper (I’m safely assuming comments from couch potatoes are mostly accurate) that would get a C, at best?

    Have I ever mentioned the time I had to bowl in a league w/ a bunch of old farts while I was on mescaline? Interesting experience… recommended only for those w/ a Hunter S Thompson appetite for strange, incongruous, intoxicated realities. I bowled the best game of my life too… 🙂 one of those experiences that started to clue me in as to the multiverse’s weird sense of humor. Meeting Malcolm (virtually speaking) was another clue…

    Speaking of making people nervous… during the Kerry campaign JK had a site that was a topics bulletin board. We creamed it… a lot of the people here, naturally… and kept drug policy front and center, I think we drove ’em nuts actually… but it sure would be nice if one of this year’s candidates repeats Kerry’s blunder.

    I’m disappointed Mr Paul is being so quiet. He has a chance to really turn the compost pile and it seems like he’s standing around with a straw o’ grass in his mouth thinking about maybe doing something… he has a platform from which to speak, well Ron, speak! Dang it… c’mon. This is serious shit, people are still getting killed (last week in Arkansas, suspect shot and killed by LE).

    • Windy says:

      Why don’t you ask his campaign? There is a contact page where you can email various people connected with his campaign. I have the url for that page but the browser where I bookmarked it is not functioning right now (damn AOL is always locking up, I wouldn’t keep it except for I’ve had my email account there for so long I really don’t want to change it now, maybe I should just give it up and save myself $15 a month). Anyway, it’s easy to find, just do a search for “Ron Paul’s official campaign page” without the quotes.

    • Duncan20903 says:

      The question I always wanted to ask during the 2004 campaign was, “Senator Kerry, why the long face?”

    • claygooding says:

      I think Paul is feeling his age,,the pace and travel could be wearing on him,,I hope he is OK but at 63,,I understand it.

  11. kaptinemo says:

    The inevitable is finally happening. This is the prohib’s rearguard speaking; “We must all hang together, or we may hang separately.” And hang they should, for what they’ve done.

    The foundations of the prohib sand castle are getting washed away by the rising economic and social tides. And the various prohib organizations leeching off the taxpayer’s money to support themselves are beginning to worry about feeling something cold, hard and sharp against their necks.

    When stripped of the final misinformation and lies regarding the (pseudo)science of prohibition, the prohibs are left with little more than force and bluster. They never could defend their operations with anything more than what amounts to an (armed and dangerous and none-too-bright) five-year-old’s rejoinder of “Well, it’s because!”

    Adult: ” ‘Because‘…what?” Prohib (stamping feet, fists balled, face snarling in frustration at having to explain) : “You know, just…just…because! Because I say so!

    Enough of that behavior in the public’s eyes, in these fiscally tight times, and the pols won’t have too much reluctance in taking the budgetary knife to those once-sacred bovine’s hides.

    • claygooding says:

      They built their fortress on sand,,they spent trillions of dollars making it impregnable but alas,,it was built on sand.

  12. Weimar Wheelbarrow says:

    In a future age when the once great representative republic is belly up, historians and scholars will conclude the grifter cash-in known as the drug war will have played a large part in the demise. Czars, property and asset seizure, mandatory minimum sentences, erosion of civil liberties all came out of or were accelerated by the drug war.

  13. darkcycle says:

    Oh, my. That is prety much one of the most self cotradictory, tortured pieces of reasoning I have seen. At least since that last one. I’ll ask aloud one more time: When do they bring ut their A team?

    • Duncan20903 says:

      What in the world are you talking about? They only pick the best and brightest from the cohort that supports their point of view.

  14. Chris says:

    Obviously the paper is nothing but badly written propaganda, but I had to point this out. Among their ‘reasons for prohibition’;

    “The pharmacology and pharmacokinetics of psychotropic substances suggest that more, not less, control of their access is warranted.”

    Pharmacokinetics is the study of what happens to the drugs in the human body. So they’re worried about what happens to the poor drugs when you take them? We know they don’t care about our health, but I had no idea they were worried about the fate of the drugs themselves.

    I suspect that they were just using big words to make themselves sound super smart.

    • Francis says:

      Ha, yeah, that sentence jumped out at me too. And I had the same thought as you: this is how a not-so-bright person writes when he’s trying to sound intelligent. It reminded me of the Friends episode when Joey uses a thesaurus on every single word of a letter in an attempt to seem smarter.

      Monica: All right, what was this sentence originally?
      Joey: Oh. “They’re warm, nice people with big hearts.”
      Chandler: And that became, “They’re humid, prepossessing Homo Sapiens with full-sized aortic pumps?”

      The only difference is that Joey was a LOVABLE dunce.

  15. claygooding says:

    If I had a hammer,,I’d hammer in the morning,I’d hammer in the evening,,hell,I’d hammer all day long.

    Waiting for allan’s THUD post,,because the whole paper was to rally the prohibition supporters to try and keep it going,,that’s my take on it Vern.

    The problem is that most prohibitionist budgets are being cut,,they are losing numbers.

    • allan says:

      Well now that was an experience full of guffaws! I think I scared the dogs I laughed so loud a few times…

      And clay… I don’t know how to give this a thud. I mean it’s fluffier than a marshmallow and by god I have to believe these folks are keeping the wodwall standing thru levitation or something… are they theosophists (with a sado-moralism bent)?

      Which of course only extends the discussion… is this really the best they have? Do their best and brightest rank among the truly dim? I’d love to dissect that “document” line by line, but why? I think they mock themselves, playing a parody on the Black Knight. I mean really? What’s this conglomerate of OWFMs (Organizations With Few Members) gonna do, chew our ankles? Their power diminishes, their voices not nearly as noticeable as they once were above our ever-rising chorus.

      They have much to be concerned about. Here’s something Neill Franklin (LEAP) said that just hit me as so sweet to hear:

      “I equate it to being brainwashed,” Franklin says. “I don’t mean that in a bad way. It’s just something that they’ve done for many years. And I know how they feel. I was in the law-enforcement business for three decades, and it wasn’t an overnight adjustment for me. It didn’t just happen at the drop of a dime. It took some educating, it took time to look at it from a different perspective, and it took time for people to share data and information with me that I hadn’t seen before. That’s why our organization is so important. We not only interact with ordinary citizens, but we interact with folks in the law-enforcement profession, encouraging them to take the time and go through the same process we went through.

      “We understand that there will be some people who will refuse to hear or see what we have to say. But by far the majority, once we give them the information and they’ve had time to digest it, begin to see the truth. You can’t help but do that, because it’s based on science and facts, not on feelings or innuendos. If you’ve got a logical cell in your body, you’re going to see this, but it’s going to take time.”

      [emphasis mine]

      That part of what Neill says about change in his mind didn’t happen overnight, it took time and a factual introduction fo a different perspective. That’s us… that’s what tens of thousands of LTEs sent to every paper in the country helped do, what constant patrolling the wwweb and standing toe to toe w/ the prohibs in public forums did. That’s what websites like Pete’s have done… we have provided the public platform for information and discussion. We stand up and say “let’s talk.”

      But they don’t. We know we can’t comment on their sites. None of ’em. Not a one w/ an un/semi-moderated public forum…

      And that’s a strategic mistake for them. Of course if they did have public comments… heh… it sure wouldn’t help them!

      So, no thud. Maybe a soft thump… or even closer, maybe a near silent poof

  16. Curmudgeon says:

    I’m torn between two responses to this diatribe; Doctor, disconnect the life support, the patient is obviously brain dead; and, I want some of what they’ve been smoking, no drug I’ve ever taken has left me as divorced from reality as these people are.

    • allan says:

      oh no Curmudgeon, not that drug… that’s their version of brown acid man. That’s why they’re so weird (and as you say, divorced from reality).

      I’d only do a line by line rebuttal if I got paid. And paid well… it’s that baaad… * p o o f *

      Of course I’d provide some data and citations if I did a 6 page report and planned to release it to the world. Duh…

  17. stevo says:

    On their bullet point @ the top of page 6 in parentheses they single out cannabis among all drugs to say there is overwhelming evidence that it’s legalization would certainly be irresponsible. They cite no such evidence. Why do they think it would be any more responsible to legalise crystal meth or heroin? Currently, these
    prohibitionists ARE responsible for all the harms of prohibition. Wouldn’t they prefer to be irresponsible?

  18. Duncan20903 says:

    From the “what about the children” category…no, make that from the “it doesn’t matter if we succeed, it’s the Principal of the thing” category:

    Antigo residents reeling after alleged marijuana ring at high school
    Jan. 23, 2012 |

    Written by Kathleen Foody
    Gannett Wisconsin Media

    ANTIGO — Residents in this Langlade County city are reeling after drug charges were filed last week against local football coach and school principal John Lund.

    As the Antigo School District suspended five school employees on Monday, expanding the list of those allegedly involved in a marijuana distribution ring, locals wondered how to explain the situation to their children and what to believe.

    Antigo? Is that a high falutin’ way to say stop? What the heck is a “county city” anyway?

  19. Peter says:

    dont know if anyone spotted this but their position paper has “draft , not for dissemination” written at the top. may explain why its so incompetant.

  20. thelbert says:

    forget it , duncan, its wisconsintown

  21. Duncan20903 says:


    Fourth Circuit Says Government Needs More Proof of Link Between Drug Use and Gun Violence
    Brian Doherty
    January 24, 2012

    The Federal Criminal Appeals blog reports on a decision from the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals regarding when the government can use drug possession as an excuse to deny weapons-possession rights. In short, it can’t just assert that there is a good reason to bar drug users from guns: it has to try to prove it. But the Court also seems to think such proof won’t be too hard.

    Although we conclude, applying the intermediate scrutiny standard, that Congress had an important objective for enacting § 922(g)(3) to reduce gun violence and might have reasonably served that objective by disarming drug users and addicts, we nonetheless find that the government failed to make the record to substantiate the fit between its objective and the means of serving that objective. Therefore, we vacate the judgment and remand for further proceedings…..

  22. Leonard junior says:

    Our “alleged” civil liberties?! What the Fuck. When im harassed or have my house broken into and my dog shot by swat it isn’t my alleged civil liberties but my actual ones that are violated. When you put me in a cage with a bunch of dangerous sodomites for possessing a plant it isn’t my alleged civil liberties that are being violated; you’re doing me more harm than I’ve ever done to myself. These authors are cocksuckers.

  23. Duncan20903 says:


    Malcolm, congrats!

    Michael Roberts [Moderator] 4 hours ago in reply to malcolmkyle

    Quite the list — one we’re going to share as an upcoming Comment of the Day. Congrats, and thanks for reading and posting.

  24. Chris says:

    To achieve the agenda of drug legalisation, advocates argue for […] an inclusion of drug users as equal partners in establishing and enforcing drug policy

    It’s almost as if we think we’re people.

  25. Duncan20903 says:

    Felony charge for possession of 1/10 of a gram of cannabis:

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