How about we actually use science and facts to deal with addiction?

Good article in New York Magazine by Jesse Singal: The Tragic, Pseudoscientific Practice of Forcing Addicts to ‘Hit Rock Bottom’

He’s talking about Maia Szalavitz’s new book: Unbroken Brain: A Revolutionary New Way of Understanding Addiction

Or, as Szalavitz put it to the Daily Beast: “If you don’t learn that a drug helps you cope or make you feel good, you wouldn’t know what to crave. People fall in love with a substance or an activity, like gambling. Falling in love doesn’t harm your brain, but it does produce a unique type of learning that causes craving, alters choices and is really hard to forget.”

This can help explain many little-known facts about drug addiction: for example, that the vast majority of people who try even drugs like heroin will not become addicted to them; or that early-life trauma hugely increases the odds of becoming addicted to a substance. To take an oversimplified hypothetical: If someone first offers you alcohol at a time when you’re dealing with serious family issues, unresolved trauma, and other addiction risk factors, you’re more likely to develop an unhealthy relationship with the substance than if your first sip comes at a time when stuff is going okay for you. Many, many factors intermingle in complicated ways to determine whether a given individual will develop an addiction. […]

But throughout her book, Szalavitz argues, and argues compellingly, that when it comes to “hitting bottom” and so many of the other pseudoscientific approaches to fighting addiction, the actual goal — or part of it, at least — has always been to marginalize the addict, to set them apart and humiliate them. There’s a deep impulse to draw a clear, bold line between us, the healthy people, and them, the addicts. What clearer way to emphasize that divide than to cast them down into a rock-bottom pit, away from the rest of us?

[Thanks dc]
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47 Responses to How about we actually use science and facts to deal with addiction?

  1. Servetus says:

    Evidence is mounting of market manipulation in the current opioid prescription fiasco. It’s another case of too little science, too much prohibition mindset, and too little clarity on the part of Big Pharma whose performance in this matter just happened to boost their profits:

    1-JUN-2016—Schatman discusses his recent paper ‘The MEDD myth’. Despite the method of MEDD (morphine-equivalent daily dose) being confirmed as invalid late last year (Rennick et al), it has continued to be utilized as a dependent variable in pain research as well as in influential opioid prescribing guidelines, such as the 2015 Washington State Opioid Guidelines. “It’s fraudulent, and that means that the guidelines based on this concept are fraudulent,” Schatman comments. “We can’t have a ‘one size fits all’ answer.”

    Schatman debates that these guidelines are a key cause of ‘opiophobia’, with doctors withdrawing opioid prescriptions where they are still needed and setting dosage limits that do not take into account differences in drug metabolism between patients. “There are many more patients in the US with chronic pain who don’t respond to other treatments than there are prescription opioid addicts, yet the media are not particularly concerned with genuine data,” explained Schatman.[…]

    …key drivers of the epidemic, including fraudulent marketing, financial motivations, and engrained cultural and political factors.[…]

    AAAS Press Release: Opioids are not necessarily evil.
    Interview in full (paywall):

  2. Spirit Wave says:

    “Researchers have long recognized the strong correlation between stress and substance abuse…” – U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse (1995 stress bulletin)

    Contrast that with…

    “…to marginalize the addict, to set them apart and humiliate them.”

    Drug prohibition addiction (including its corresponding hypocrisy addiction) is aggressively rampantly the real drug epidemic requiring an immediate public intervention.

  3. CJ says:

    WOW !!!!!!!!! you have no idea how good it feels to see that headline. I think some of the good folks here know that I have been saying this for years… my specific words have been, in person and online, be it this site or other reform sites, “treat someone like they’re dead long enough and its no surprise that they, well, END UP DEAD.”

    Its both gratifying but also horribly sad/painful.

    I’m sure many of you good folks here know the feeling I’m about to describe, imagine or remember the last time you had one of those days right, now we all have our routines, but I mean specifically, take one of those days you went about your routine but met with difficulty after difficulty, challenge after challenge, had to go out of your way to take care of something either hard to do or just extremely tedious, and then, when your daily routine would usually call for you to go home and relax, on that kind of day you just cant and lo, dont wind up back home for another few hours… Now after a day like that, the feeling I’m going for, is that feeling when, its pitch black outside and you walk in your front door after all that, mentally exhausted but emotionally jubilant to FINALLY be back home, all that difficulty FINALLY put behind you. You know that feeling? That sort of refreshing feeling….

    Thats how I felt and I imagine others did, at night time, when i got to the back of the Cooper Square Building

    or the corner of bond street

    or the corner of great jones

    and if not the corner of great jones then across the street from the Fire House on Great Jones where there were multiple construction projects going on and you could sleep in front of any of those buildings, of course, to be woken up by the construction workers.

    those are just some of the places i remember most and most fondly but really theres too many to list. But for protection, comradery, etc. most of the time youre not only but amongst your fellows who you see and hang out with everyday, alot of time in passing, sometimes collectively, putting your cash together moving in these packs to see the man together. But at night time when everybody is filing over to the street, and you stay up and chat as the normal people walk by in disgust, for a few hours, who didnt make it to the spot that night but who had been there without fail every day for the past few weeks, i wonder, did they die today? maybe they got busted today… sometimes when that happens, it takes a few days to find out. maybe they got desperate and had to do a trick that night, maybe they ran into someone who promised them something and took them somewhere, that could be good or that could be… a reason youll never see them again.

    But feeling like that, that, sort of triumphal exhaustion if you will, and looking at the others around you, I would always think to myself, were all in similar positions here, total at the bottom, honestly one foot in the doorway to death and one foot in the living breathing world. But its mostly suffering and of course how could all of your efforts be for anything other than a guaranteed relief from that suffering?

    and then you think of all the people over the years, in different times, in a different life perhaps, who said they loved you, do anything for you, girls, friends, family….. but, because of a choice, I make, with my body, with my indisputable right to do what I want, with my body, I am in this position, and sure, theyll offer help, but that help has to be unconditionally THEIR way, asking you to sacrifice the one thing you were willing to give it all up for, a thing that has no effect on them whatsoever, but the drug war paranoia mania has them thinking some kind of satan incarnate lunacy stuff…

    Now of course it is wrong and it is bad and its not right, to steal from your loved ones, to steal cash, to steal things to sell for cash (jewlery, electronics, aka anything you can) but it rarely if ever begins like that, and though I’ve done that to a heavily criminal extent, it took a long time to get to that point, and thats unpardonable, but it doesnt have to get to that point per se.. and at the end of the day, its just materials and possessions, and what relationship of true love is really less than important than possessions? not to excuse it for sure..

    and man it just always seemed so wrong what the loved ones were doing to us, dont take our calls, visit someone at their job have security throw us out, whatever, like suffer, you suffer suffer suffer, and more suffering… and in the midst of all that pain, why on earth would ANYBODY want to get clean??

  4. Servetus says:

    Driving-while-high [on THC] bills were dissed by the California Legislature, that and incriminating cotton swabs. Seems there is no scientific support to justify interventions by law enforcement.

    The Assembly Appropriations Committee sidelined a measure by Assemblyman Evan Low (D-Campbell) that would have made it a crime for a person who has 5 nanograms or more of THC, the active ingredient in pot, per milliliter in their blood to drive a vehicle.

    The Senate Appropriations Committee also killed a measure by Republican Sen. Bob Huff of San Dimas that would have allowed law enforcement officers to use oral swab tests to strengthen cases.

    What’s interesting is the respective state appropriations committees took the advice of “cannabis industry officials”, or the DPA, which led to sidelining the bills, rather than relying on the faux expertise of prohibition crackpots such as SAM and others.


  5. B. Snow says:

    Hey Pete,
    I read her article and it seems kinda like an excuse to plan interventions for people using meds legitimately, or perhaps physically dependant but not actually ‘addicted’ – people with chronic pain who are getting painted with the new Moral *Opiate* Panic – who aren’t getting any reward-like effects, just some degree of respite from pain they live with daily…

    The fact that the ‘Related Story’ next to that is “Why A.A. Works” = is also a huge red flag IMO…
    I read this and come away with a feeling that She’s offering up a way to rationalize forcing people into “treatment” that they do not want AND may not actually need.

    I see a variation on parents taking away the Rock & Roll albums from teens, because they Might Actually Be = “The Devil’s Music”…

    I’m sure there was a little bit of “back-masking messages” in some music, (I can’t even think of an example) – it wasn’t in any of the popular music I can recall, or in the music of musicians/groups who were sued over it allegedly influencing teens.

    Actual examples were less prevalent than Unicorn Hordes.

    I’m fine with, *Let’s not try to Force People to hit “Rock Bottom” – to help them get clean/sober faster, or more quickly, or whatever*.

    But, I can see that already being spun to justify “Helping People” who neither want or need it = But maybe their S.O. or family/’friends’ *think* they do…

    EXAMPLE: I see people blaming problematic relationships on the other person’s = “drug addiction” – when they’re really upset by their “drug use” or some other issue and drugs are a handy scapegoat.

    I also see parents blaming teenagers – acting like teenagers – on “drug use” & “acting out”, “rebelling against authority ” = As I said, behaving like regular teens nearly all do and will continue to do until the end of time.

    As I mentioned above – I’m all for not making rehab harsher & more punitive than it already is…

    But, I see this as a very possible (even likely) excuse for Preemptive Rehab/Treatment – of the “Nip it in the Bud” variety – in the Armchair Disciplinarian’s Playbook.

    • Forcing people to hit rock bottom for something no worse than “not flossing” is moronic, barbaric and uncivilized.

    • Jean Valjean says:

      Maia Szalavitz (if that is who you refer to) has always been quite specific that AA attendance must be voluntary for it to be effective for individuals with problematic drug/alcohol use. She also makes a clear distinction between the self-help services of 12 Step groups, which are provided free to anyone who wants them, with the for profit treatment industry, which has co-opted 12 step methods. Government interference and court ordering is a major problem as it undercuts the principle of SELF-help and has become just another tool of the drug war. I don’t think this is what Maia is arguing for.

  6. Chronic marijuana use is about as bad for your health as not flossing, researchers find

    “Researchers led by Madeline H. Meier of Arizona State University tracked the marijuana habits of 1,037 New Zealanders from birth to middle age to see what effect those habits have on some common measures of physical health, including lung function, systemic inflammation, cholesterol levels, blood pressure, body weight, blood sugar and dental health.”

    “What they found was surprising: After controlling for other factors known to affect health, especially tobacco use and socioeconomic status, marijuana use had no negative effect on any measure of health, except for dental health. People who smoked more weed had a higher incidence of gum disease.”


  7. Servetus says:

    Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio is facing federal jail time for drug-war crimes, among other activities.

    Jun 01, 2016 – The trial of Sheriff Joe and his crew of law enforcement henchmen has been enlightening. A steady stream of evidence revealing a relentless practice of racial profiling and the blatant robbery of citizens possessions and cash, under the guise of a “war on drugs,” have been highlights. You take this along with Sheriff Joe’s criminal behavior in using Stasi tactics to try to bring down a judge who dared to disagree with Sheriff Joe tyrant’s insane concept of law, and you’ve got a textbook case of law enforcement corruption in the sweltering state of Arizona. Today, Judge G. Murray Snow basically said that Sheriff Joe’s case will be referred for criminal prosecution. […]

    During the hearing, Snow said he was considering four individuals for criminal contempt referrals: Arpaio; Sheridan; the former head of the MCSO’s internal affairs unit (known as the Professional Standards Bureau), Captain Steve Bailey; and longtime attorney for the MCSO Michele Iafrate. [Emphasis added]

    Arpaio began his career as a DEA agent. It is therefore all too fitting that such a war criminal be tried and convicted. What’s ironic is he will probably be given much better treatment in a federal jail than that given the current inmates of his tent-city Arizona prison, i.e., no pink underwear for Joe.

    • Frank W. says:

      He’ll do okay, pensioned off to FOX as a law-enforcement pundit.
      They take care of Their own.

    • Jean Valjean says:

      Arpaio is a big fan of Harry Anslinger, who gave him his first L.E. job. (See Chasing the Scream by Johann Hari, page 105).

      • thelbert says:

        i think ol’ joe arpaio was a d. c. cop before he joined the dea. known for his alacrity to apply the nightstick to unarmed black people.

        • thelbert says:

          correction: dc cop, las vegas cop, fbn, then dea. i wonder if he still beats defenseless suspects just to keep his hand in.

    • tensity1 says:

      Gawd I hope that diseased-pud-sucking shite goes to jail for a loooong time.

  8. Tony Aroma says:

    Title says it all. Be sure to floss regularly.

    Chronic marijuana use is about as bad for your health as not flossing, researchers find

    Long-term marijuana use is not associated with a raft of physical health problems, according to a new study, with one surprising exception: gum disease. In some domains, marijuana use was associated with better health outcomes.

  9. Science? Facts? What have I stumbled into, a den of iniquity??

    Wait, it’s dark in here, let me find the… there’s a little chromium switch here somewhere… ah, here it is.


    OH! no wonder, it’s Pete’s couch. I thought I smelled burning reefer.

    • Servetus says:

      Welcome back, oh smokeful one.

    • Fan of la llescera aka NCN says:

      I want the facts on that sweet-looking purple Afghani mixed in there with photos of your lovely model and muse Courtney.

      • yo yo!

        I must admit while I miss mi gente I’m not missing the battles.

        NCN… that is a strain from So Oregon seed stock, about 20 years running, no official name, I call it Sajo ’99 and it does get a nice purplish black to it when ripe.

        Sadly Appleseed is gone… there will of course be another calendar in the fall.

        I was out picking my strawberries and had to take a break (4 quarts and not done) and have a sit on the couch. Thanks for keeping on with the keeping on mates.

        I love legalization. I love walking around with a spare 1/8 of bud or a couple of phat roaches that I can share with some of the local less-fortunates. That part to me – how I grew into adulthood with cannabis as something gladly shared, you know, Free The Weed! – seems to have fallen by the wayside.

        I got a sweet deal on some clones so will be growing 3 strains, Harlequin, Trainwreck Ambrosia and Pineapple Kush (with photos to follow in the fall!). And I’m already excited for next year! If I’m still here at the farm I wanna grow a Thai plant. Start in March, keep under a frame until May and then let that baby rip…

        And since Ganjapreneurism is all the rage tomorrow I will be talking to a local group of folks about distributing my cannabis art products thru them – calendars, cards, throw pillows, posters, all that shit! I’ll be posting more canna-art on my not-adult redbubble page. And you bet I be sharing that URL, mon.

        I and I smokes on a spliff all day. The farm keeps me busy and sane, I get all my news from FB (heh…) and life is pretty darn good. I do need a muse tho’.

        • Hope says:

          Love you, always! I’m so happy for you.

        • darkcycle says:

          Love that Harlequin. Couple of different phenos running around, but I still haven’t found one I don’t like. I’m sticking with my tried and true strains, but I’m going to pull some Flaming Girl Scout Cookies and Blue Pineapple a friend gave me for variety. The BP is so stinky it overwhelmed my new carbon filter before it finished. I shall have to get a new bag’o’charcoal now. Oh the problems. 😉

        • I love you too Hope! Good to see you girl.

          darkcycle, thanks for the heads up on Harlequin. I have 3 diff strains of pollen so will be making some seed stock from all.

  10. Daniel Williams says:

    Just watched a video of Obama addressing a crowd during a PBS Newshour gig. When Obama was asked a question on guns, he blamed the NRA and Republicans for ignoring science, data and research the CDC wants to do on gun violence.

    That’s rich. Especially since all the science, data and research is nearly empirical that the overwhelming cause of gun violence is drug prohibition. So Obama, either fix that problem, as you promised, or just shut the fuck up.

    • Frank W. says:

      He has always “shut up” about the violence/prohibition connection, at least since choosing Joe Biden as a running mate.

      • Jean Valjean says:

        The appointment of Biden was the mask slipping moment for Obama. Those of us hoping for change knew at that point it would be business as usual in the drug war. Hillary or Trump don’t even have masks on…. the ugliness of their prohibitionist roots are there for all to see. And this election is about “choice?” Another $50 to the Sanders’ campaign is a must.

        • B. Snow says:

          Well, I would suggest you include a handwritten letter to Bernie and Jane regarding exactly what it will take to get you, and all of us truly “on board” with Hillary.

          No less than a promise to meet Sanders position on marijuana = Removing it from the CSA entirely – not a vague commitment to “Criminal Justice Reform”…

          It must acknowledge that we’ll also have to tell the UN drug-squad goons *where they can stick* the 1961 Single Convention Treaty and the other two that additional add-ons that included other drugs like ecstacy, psilocybin, or whatever = That’s going to be an absolute requirement if we ever want to end the war on drugs…

          And also neccessary if we ever hope to bring an end to the Executions for drug trafficking in Asia, the are clear Human Rights Violations, and it was our hubris that we could ever create a drug-free country like the U.S. – much less the entire globe.

          We need to bring the Nixon tapes relevant to the start of the drug war – as a campaign issue, and later its use a perfect wedge issue to punish their political adversaries whom Bob Halderman and John Ehrlichman new pretty well what they were getting the Country into – But, I doubt that they would ever have guessed it would or could go on for 40+ years.

          These tapes & facts they contain on the issue MUST come out into the light for more than one News cycle!

          Breaking down the public trust and nearly all respect in Law Enforcement – Beyond fearing their ability to detain anyone ‘suspicious’ and create the culture of abuse around (and customarily ignoring the 4th Amendment) using possible drug possession as an excuse for searching & snatching people’s property, valuables, and cash if an officer believes it must’ve come rrom an illicit source.

          These “civil seizures” that in many places have made the police corruption in ‘Serpico’ look tame by comparison… And, much like some municipalities balance their budgets on the expectation of citations – They’ve routinely used this “civil forfeiture” money in a similarly improper manner – funding task forces & drug units that carry-on this sickening “circle of life” & grabbing extra grant money for what were basically bounties on drug citations, arrests, etc.

          AND, Did we forget to mention ratial profiling? Yeah, its rampant among the workings but this isn’t a BUG 40 years ago it was a FEATURE – again, I think its effectiveness stunned Ehrlichman in an interview recently unearthed a second time – (Nobody cared it last time we were still neck deep in the “War” building private prisons who stock traded in the market based on the % capacity they were filled.)

          (Note:) This quote below was paraphrased elsewhere – Ehrlichman may have phrased it with slightly different words (It seems to me he tried to tell a few people about it and they weren’t shocked or impressed. But, this version is quite close the other and it very much portrays the gist of it.

          “Look, we understood we couldn’t make it illegal to be young or poor or black in the United States, but we could criminalize their common pleasure. We understood that drugs were not the health problem we were making them out to be, but it was such a perfect issue…that we couldn’t resist it.” – John Ehrlichman, White House counsel to President Nixon on the rationale of the War on Drugs.

    • DdC says:

      The Obama Administration’s
      Evidence-Based Social Policy Initiatives: An Overview

      The Obama plan to create evidence-based social policy initiatives turns the normal relationship between policy decision making and use of social science evidence on its head. Instead of evidence being on the outside of the decision making process trying to get in, Obama brings evidence inside from the beginning.

      So they begin with the CSA, not Shafer? Or Anslinger as the Science base? Maybe Hearst headlines or the Gore report. Or just more hypocritical words from another politician.

      I agree that the AG or President can stop the prohibition and the vast majority of violence if they had the courage and weren’t Neocon puppets. But Choice? Biden and SoS Hilzy got the conciliation prizes for trading their delegates to oBama.

      Biden’s latest DEAth tally banning safe use with his lie based RAVE Ax.

      2 dead, 57 hospitalized after Florida music festival

      Why drug safety advocates blame Joe Biden’s RAVE Act for music festival deaths

      Some say the vague language of the act creates a looming threat that keeps festival organizers from providing drug education at the multi-million dollar events where more than a dozen die annually from ecstasy-related complications.

      It’s hard to say if the Drug Enforcement Administration or any other agency ever used the RAVE Act against a festival operator offering drug education on-site, but some organizers stress that the threat — fact or fiction — is too great.

      Anderson said it’s unlikely the DEA would want to use its resources to go after organizers for providing drug education or even drug testing at events, but if enough people perceive the threat as real, it still has consequences, she said.

      “It’s already hard enough to find venues where I can organize events,” Rotella wrote. “Unfortunately, some people view partnering with DanceSafe as endorsing drug use rather than keeping people safe, and that can prevent producers from getting locations and organizing events.”

      The Drug Enforcement Administration referred questions about prosecutions under the RAVE Act to the U.S. Department of Justice, which did not respond to a request for comment.

      Three Things: 3 Ways to Make Raves Safer

      “Prohibition is an awful flop.
      We like it.
      It can’t stop what its meant to stop.
      We like it.
      It’s left a trail of graft and slime,
      It didn’t prohibit worth a dime,
      It’s filled our land with vice and crime,
      Nevertheless we’re for it.”
      ~ Franklin P. Adams, 1931

  11. Mr_Alex says:

    It seems Linda Taylor that lady in California who became a coward after being asked why are the anti cannabis groups policy in California mainly Coalition for a Drug Free California, CALM (Citizens Against Legalizing Marijuana/Cannabis)which is run by Carla Lowe and Scott Chipman mirrors or looks like the same policies that DFAF (Drug Free America Foundation), one of their biggest giveaway in regards to policy is that Cannabis is not medicine which Melvin Sembler is the first person to say.

    Also new information on Paul Chabot in California, Paul Chabot is endorsed by Melvin Sembler, the other day I confronted Linda Taylor in a Anti Cannabis page based in Colorado and she literally ran off to the admins asking that me and the Straight Inc survivors be blocked for asking about Paul Chabot, Carla Lowe and Scott Chipman’s connection to Melvin and Betty Sembler and DFAF (Drug Free America Foundation). Linda Taylor ran off after being quizzed about the child abuse that happened at Straight Inc.

    • primus says:

      Notice that it takes 29 of these groups to finance one little campaign. That means each group donates about $1G toward the effort. They enjoy having their various logos and slogans displayed for such a low price.

  12. DdC says:

    Muhammad Ali – RIP

    I heard the news on a sports show after the Giant’s game.
    This was strange as the FB page…

    Muhammad Ali death hoax spreads on Facebook
    On Friday (June 03) the boxer’s reps officially confirmed that Muhammad Ali is not dead. “He joins the long list of celebrities who have been victimized by this hoax. He’s still alive and well, stop believing what you see on the Internet,” they said.

    Some fans have expressed anger at the fake report saying it was reckless, distressing and hurtful to fans of the much loved boxer. Others say this shows his extreme popularity across the globe.

    R.I.P: Boxing Legend Muhammad Ali Dead At Age 74!

    News for R.I.P: Boxing Legend Muhammad Ali

  13. Will says:

    OT, maybe already discussed(?), signed into law a couple of weeks ago;

    Transnational Drug Trafficking Act of 2015

    Summary — A bill to provide the Department of Justice with additional tools to target extraterritorial drug trafficking activity, and for other purposes. [emphasis added]

    From High Times article —;

    Co-sponsor Sen. Dianne Feinstein boasted in a press release: “Drug traffickers and criminal organizations in other countries consistently find new ways to circumvent our laws, and the Transnational Drug Trafficking Act gives the federal government the tools it needs to aggressively pursue and prosecute those outside the United States who traffic illegal—often deadly—drugs. This new legal authority is critical as we work to address the opioid epidemic. For example, drug kingpins from countries like Colombia and Peru often use Mexican trafficking organizations as mules to bring illegal narcotics into the United States. Now, the Justice Department will be able to take legal action against these kingpins. This bill also allows penalties to be imposed on individuals from other countries who bring chemicals into the United States knowing they will be used to make illegal drugs like meth and heroin. These changes will help law enforcement keep illegal narcotics out of the United States.”

    Say WHAT?!

  14. Duncan20903 says:


    I’m going to file this one in the “But Maui Wowie x Labrador is some tasty shit!” category and cross filed in the “what about the puppies?” category:

    Pooch ate your pot stash? Hazards of marijuana poisoning in dogs

    Secondhand smoke can become a problem if a dog is in a room where several people are smoking, but Morris explained that ingesting marijuana continues to be the biggest culprit of illness.

    “Dogs who are eating either the owner’s pot stash or, if they’re really small, eating some roaches or butts from the ashtrays. The worst poisonings I’ve seen have been when dogs have got into pot butter.”

    A dog experiencing the effects of marijuana will be wobbly on their feet, have enormous pupils, a slow heart rate and will frequently urinate. The symptoms will usually begin 30 minutes after a dog has consumed the pot and can last up to a few days depending on the amount in their system.

    Don’t they publish maps so that people who are lost in lala land can find their way home?

  15. Mouth says:

    OT: has anyone seen the Noam Chomsky ‘Requiem for the American Dream’?

    Speaking of Drug Addiction, it’s sad that we have become addicted to consumerism and media to the point that success, freedom and happiness is measured by our ability to buy, have and follow. These are tough chains to break.

    Call me naive, but I believe the little man spending big bucks on Wall Street can help fight against the rich controllers who buy bulk shares. Yes, they will always have the bulk but not the full pie. If our group controlled more, would we have more muscle to flex against the very laws and system we fight? I have to fight my in-laws (who buy property and good homes at Wal-Mart often found inside all stores) ideology of ‘what does it mean to be a shareholder’. If I give the worker more rights and better pay, I will get more money in the long run, which is an Adam Smith and Ben Graham must for wealth. The in-laws have been engineered to feel that I and they should only vote for what is best for the stock price. I think this is a flawed notion that only corrodes the wealth of shareholders in the long run (like us Millennials).

  16. Nonconformist says:

    It’s only in the Americas where dope legalisation is happening.

    It is not “Kosher” to criticize East Asian countries and their vulgar prohibition because of “cultural relativism” and “racism”.

    I saw through the hypocrisy of the Western left a long time ago: They are only opposed to prohibition as long as it is enforced by the West. They are completely OK with prohibition in non-Western countries.


    • Servetus says:

      Here is some criticism. The new Philippine president-elect, Rodrigo Duterte, wants the public to go on a rampage and kill drug dealers.

      MANILA, Philippines (AP) — Jun. 5, 2016 – The Philippine president-elect has encouraged the public to help him in his war against crime, urging citizens with guns to shoot and kill drug dealers who resist arrest and fight back in their neighborhoods.

      In a nationally televised speech late Saturday, Rodrigo Duterte told a huge crowd in the southern city of Davao that Filipinos who help him battle crime will be rewarded.

      “Please feel free to call us, the police, or do it yourself if you have the gun — you have my support,” Duterte said, warning of an extensive illegal drug trade that involves even the country’s police.

      If a drug dealer resists arrest or refuses to be brought to a police station and threatens a citizen with a gun or a knife, “you can kill him,” Duterte said. “Shoot him and I’ll give you a medal.”

      What could go wrong? Vigilante justice, truly a dual use legal procedure. Don’t like your neighbor? Shoot them and plant drugs and weapons on them. Owe someone money? Cancel that debt today, it’s just a bullet away. Collect a reward.

      I knew an ex-Marine who described his duty in the Philippines. He said one day some kid grabbed his watch with a cop close by, and as he said “hey, that kid stole my watch…” the officer pulled his gun and shot the kid in the back of the head as he was running away. He got his watch back, but he didn’t want anything to do with the Filipino police after that.


    • Wahooo says:

      Noncomformist, your idea of the “Western left” is an ignorant strawman argument. Maybe you are confusing the left with neoliberals? I consider myself on the political left and am against prohibition worldwide. We can fight prohibition at home and abroad at the same time, I just think it is more effective to focus our efforts at home right now. There are many people who share that belief. I believe ending prohibition here in the US will make it possible for other countries to end prohibition much more easily, since we have been spreading and funding prohibition worldwide. Cultural relativism and racism have nothing to do with it. Also, “dope”? Really? Couldn’t you think of a more appropriate terminology? Maybe you’re just trolling. You got me..

      • Jean Valjean says:

        He’s just trolling…. previous drive-by attempts were under the name “Will” (not to be confused with our regular Will from Texas) followed by the hilariously inappropriate “Sense.” “Nonconformist,” go away, you’re a joke.

        On a more serious note, could this be Joe Biden sailing out of the mist to save the day for prohibition:

        “…..former Bill Clinton advisor and pollster Douglas Schoen gave the strongest signal yet in a Wall Street Journal op-ed this week (“Clinton may not be the nominee”) that worried backstage huddles in the Democratic party establishment are reaching fever pitch. The article’s floating of the idea of a Joe Biden-Elizabeth Warren substitute ticket (which I’ve been privately predicting to friends all year) is so evenly and magisterially phrased that I wondered if the text had been vetted by an approving White House. So this may be why Bernie Sanders (my candidate) has gone into overdrive—not to damage Hillary, as her acolytes spitefully claim, but to fight off the tactical insertion of Biden at the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia.”

    • Duncan20903 says:


      That’s nothing but utter hogwash “nonconformist”. A person needs to clean up his own house before he helps others clean up theirs.

      But just for kicks and giggles, how would you suggest we talk a country, oh, let’s say China, which is willing to send in tanks and the military to murder protestors? You know, like Tiannemen Square.

      Of course you give yourself away when you talk about the “left.” Prohibition was invented by the left and in no way shape or form is consistent with conservative values. Liberals make me nauseous. In particular the liberals who dress in conservative drag and call themselves Republicans.


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