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tony draper
15th Dec 2013, 23:00
Interesting talk on same by the chap who wrote The Wire,he may be well known tother side of the pond but I aint ever heard the man before,(I lead a sheltered life)
A side effect of there being nowt but shite on the telly is I surf youtube for treasure. (or what I think is treasure)
The Wire creator David Simon on what's behind the US war on drugs - YouTube

500N
15th Dec 2013, 23:29
The Wire was a real eye opener to a lot of people in the US
as it showed the whole gamut of the dealings all in one,
unlike a 1/2 cop show.

SpringHeeledJack
16th Dec 2013, 06:17
I was home alone on saturday night and despite it being peak time, on the hundreds of channels available there was almost nothing to watch except (IMO) crap. What that says about myself and the millions who were enraptured lord only knows. I fell asleep, but have been known to embark on a youtube odyssey where some remarkable gems are discovered, very edumacational such as mr draper's video above.

Man has always had a need to change his perceptions through mind altering substances, be it herbs, alcohol or today's laboratory produced offerings. To stamp it out and make illegal only benefits the suppliers and the authorities in the long term. A radical rethinking is needed, answers on a postcard to this address......



SHJ

PLovett
16th Dec 2013, 11:55
One very erudite chap.

racedo
16th Dec 2013, 13:09
Have come to the conclusion that if people wish to take drugs, let them BUT
hurt someone post this then you go to jail for a long time,
become ill then you are on your own whether its bad reaction or heroin cut with rat poison.

You have freedom but you are responsible.

bcgallacher
16th Dec 2013, 18:40
SHJ - The difficulty of legalising hard drugs is that there would be no going back if it proved a failure. Alcohol is addictive to some people but hard drugs will become addictive to most people -the results of thousands of addicts trying to function in society could be horrendous.I really do not know what the answer is -I do not think anyone else does either.

defizr
16th Dec 2013, 19:01
The Wire was the finest bit of telly I've ever seen. I have the box set and re-watch it twice a year to see just how TV programmes OUGHT to be made. It just drags you in whenever you watch it.

500N
16th Dec 2013, 19:05
defizr

Agree :ok:

The lack of good TV on free to air just beggars belief, thank god for DVD's.

tony draper
16th Dec 2013, 19:34
You can watch the entire five series of The Wire for nowt on tinternet,spent last week doing so,
All the good series that Sky Atlantic hoovers up is available, The sopranos Game of Thrones, Broadwalk Empire, Breaking Bad ect.
:rolleyes:
Pssst! go here but dont tell em I sent you.:uhoh:
Watch The Wire Season 2 Episode 1 Ebb Tide online (http://www.tvids.net/watch108/The-Wire/season-02-episode-01-Ebb-Tide)

500N
16th Dec 2013, 19:41
I have started watching things on youtube.
Hundreds of videos available.

I just re watched the whole series of Ross Kemp and Jamie Driven
in Ultimate Force.

SpringHeeledJack
16th Dec 2013, 19:43
The difficulty of legalising hard drugs is that there would be no going back if it proved a failure. Alcohol is addictive to some people but hard drugs will become addictive to most people -the results of thousands of addicts trying to function in society could be horrendous.I really do not know what the answer is -I do not think anyone else does either.

Could the problem be more to do with the culture within which said freedom is unleashed ? The UK and Ireland seem to have a very 'special' relationship with alcohol that is downright dysfunctional compared with many other countries that have a higher per capita consumption. Holland seems to have a very mature attitude towards drugs with relatively minimal problems, at least amongst the cloggies themselves. I wouldn't be comfortable with the making of all drugs legal, but the present tip-toe around the massive usage of said drugs by all walks of life seems to be getting us nowhere.


The Wire was the finest bit of telly I've ever seen. I have the box set and re-watch it twice a year to see just how TV programmes OUGHT to be made. It just drags you in whenever you watch it.

Has anyone had a gander at Breaking Bad ? That had the same effect on all the people that I know who have watched it.



SHJ

500N
16th Dec 2013, 19:48
SHJ
Yes, watching Breaking Bad with my GF over the last few weeks.
It took longer to get going than The Wire.

defizr
16th Dec 2013, 19:58
Before the 'war on drugs' started in the UK there were ~5000 heroin addicts who were registered with their GPs, got medical grade heroin and carried on a pretty normal life. There was virtually no crime that was drug related.

Since the WoD we have no idea how many heroin addicts there are and the vast majority of crime is drug-related.

That worked really well didn't it?

tony draper
16th Dec 2013, 20:00
Just started watching Breaking Bad this morning so unable to comment,it hurts a Englishman to admit the best TV drama by a long way is coming out of the USA now.
They still have a long way to catch us up yet on comedy though.:rolleyes:

defizr
16th Dec 2013, 20:00
Has anyone had a gander at Breaking Bad ? That had the same effect on all the people that I know who have watched it.

Got it booked at Lovefilm. If it's any good I shall buy the DVDs.

I've got three sets of DVDs which I won't part with:

Band of Brothers
The Wire
The Big Bang Theory

tony draper
16th Dec 2013, 20:16
Never watched any of them, I cant bare subtitles.:)
But you re correct re American remakes of European stuff tends to be poo.

500N
16th Dec 2013, 20:18
Tony

I love subtitles, I need them as I am so deaf.

SpringHeeledJack
16th Dec 2013, 20:21
I love subtitles, I need them as I am so deaf.

What ? Say again ? Probably too much time around guns mr 500 :ouch:



SHJ

500N
16th Dec 2013, 20:23
Yes, very much so.

I can remember two of them, an M60 a bit too close, a 577 next to me
and then collective of all the rest.

tony draper
16th Dec 2013, 20:27
The good stuff started with Hill Street Blues I think,before that American drama was the likes of Magnum PI or Jim Rockford,entertaining but not to be taken seriously,they put their foot down with the likes of West Wing The Sopranos,Deadwood,they did something we have never managed with TV Drama multiple episodes without the plot getting daft or the writing just plain boring.
The best Drama stuff we have done for a long time was The Hollow Crown series,but that had a really good writer.
:rolleyes:
PS, Re the drug debate,I remember in the late seventies being howled down in a Pub discussion by suggesting legalizing all drugs was the best answer,
It will come when the pinstripe wearing spivs in the city of London realize how much money they will make and the paper shufflers in Whitehall start thinking about the tax/duty income from legalizing drugs.

gingernut
16th Dec 2013, 20:50
Thanks for the link Mr D, I watched all of the link from David Simon. Sort of got lost in the last five minutes, but thought it was a fascinating observation of society. (More so than an observation about drug use.)

I wanted to give a tribute to an ex-boss last week, "unaccustomed to public speaking" and all that, I likened her to Frank Furillo........ she was only a whippersnapper, but she got it :-) Does it get much better?

The "War on Drugs?"..... My own experience is that it's here, and we have to deal with it...."legalising" things could indeed produce more addicts, perhaps education is the answer? I'm not sure that downgrading stuff results in more users, I know Blunket experimented a bit with weed, but did useage really go up because of softer legislation.

Illegalising things results in users coming to grief through disputes with dealers, prostituting themselves, blood bourne infections (although more historic now), and trying to escape the police helicopters/dogs/tazers.

Any way, toodle pip, got a bit of catchup .... :)

racedo
16th Dec 2013, 21:00
It will come when the pinstripe wearing spivs in the city of London realize how much money they will make and the paper shufflers in Whitehall start thinking about the tax/duty income from legalizing drugs.

Where does the money get laundered ?

tony draper
16th Dec 2013, 21:08
Where it gets laundered right now London, on that wharf named after a wee yellow bird.
:rolleyes:

radeng
16th Dec 2013, 21:20
I find it slightly worrying the amount one gets on the NHS. Suffering with both arthritis and sciatica - and either can be more than bloody painful! - they give me 100 tablets at a time of 500mg of Paracetamol and 30mg of Codeine - a Class B drug. Not to take more than 8 a day.... fortunately, a box of 100 tablets usually last about 9 months. But the effects of 2 tablets are some very pleasant dreams.... so one can understand how people get addicted. The side effect is constipation.......

Flash2001
16th Dec 2013, 21:20
After alcohol was re-legalized in the US, a lot of people had nothing to do. They didn't just go into the legal, and thus less profitable, alcohol business. They expanded into other unlawful, and profitable, enterprises. Think organized crime. Heaven help us when the present crop of drug goons get released on the remainder of the economy. Be very careful what you wish for!

After an excellent landing etc...

Fox3WheresMyBanana
16th Dec 2013, 21:30
Does society have any obligation to provide support for the consequences of drug addiction?
My attitude, as a taxpayer, is no. The same applies to child support beyond a certain point.
I would like to hear a justification of why any drug addict should receive any of my hard-earned cash, whether for treatment or anything else.

tony draper
16th Dec 2013, 21:35
Read once about a strange unexpected side effect of Prohibition in the USA was that whole sections of Society never before known to be that much in the way of drinkers took to throwing it down their necks in a big way,housewives and students were two that were mentioned.
:uhoh:

Flash2001
16th Dec 2013, 21:39
F3

That's a bit of a low CoF slope though, What about excess alcohol, food, etc? What about any risky lifestyle? Who defines the risk? I don't want the government doing that. Where does it stop?

After an excellent landing etc...

tony draper
16th Dec 2013, 21:46
If I remember my Orwell correctly he suggested twere Big Brother who supplied the proles with drugs and pornography to keep them quiescent,well by following his advice in all matters our governments have certainly created the proles, so the rest follows.
:rolleyes:

Fox3WheresMyBanana
16th Dec 2013, 22:09
Flash 2001-You are quite right - it does open up the whole question of excess food, horseriding, etc.
In former times, a large number of past-times (if not all) could be justified as being useful in character development, whether or not the skills were directly applicable to the service of society in some form - sailing, horseriding, etc.
It would be hard to claim that obesity benefits society, with the possible exception of food critics (it is noteworthy, indeed praiseworthy, that Jonathan Meades ditched food criticism and lost all the excess before it became an NHS problem). I see no benefits at all in drug addition.
It's about time we took a long hard look at all reasons for treatments, payments, etc. I think we are long past the point that all forms of aid are seen as automatic.
Worth mentioning is the original 1964 singlehanded transatlantic race - none of them expected anyone to go out of their way to rescue them.

A separate issue is addictive personalities. At what point this is a recognisable mental illness is very debateable, but we do need that debate.

Lastly, as a former teacher, I abhor the legalistic rubbish that makes it inadvisable for anyone to criticise the young. In my experience, the person most likely to abuse a child these days is another child. This leaves us stuck in the situation that many young people are going way off the rails, and it's not really their fault because they literally don't know any better because we (adults) are not preparing them for adulthood, and we are stuck with being obliged to treat drug addiction, obesity etc at our expense because it is our fault, through omission. It certainly does not help that drug-taking by media personalities is not treated with the same criminal proceedings that are almost inevitable for poor "yobbos". The BBC, for example, is still in deep denial about it in the same way that it was in deep denial about paedophilia until last year.

So, in my opinion there are two debates which need to be held, about who society helps and what constitutes avoidable character failings. These debates need to be held without initial assumptions, and with the clear aim of deciding what is an issue and what is a problem - i.e. avoiding the fluffy rubbish of treating everything as an issue. We should no longer ignore these debates just because, as you rightly point out, they are very difficult.

bcgallacher
17th Dec 2013, 08:20
Gabonastick - we do indeed have the problem with alcohol which is why the drug problem could be even worse - as I said some people can be addicted to alcohol but hard drugs are more addictive. I know a little about alcoholism as my first wife became severely alcoholic and died from the results at an early age.

defizr
17th Dec 2013, 09:01
I would like to hear a justification of why any drug addict should receive any of my hard-earned cash, whether for treatment or anything else.

It's cheaper to give them a prescription for heroin that have them mug you for your money so they can buy it on the black market?

419
17th Dec 2013, 09:24
Where it gets laundered right now London, on that wharf named after a wee yellow bird.

Yellow Worf?

http://withfriendship.com/images/e/21538/worf.jpg

racedo
17th Dec 2013, 09:33
Where it gets laundered right now London, on that wharf named after a wee yellow bird.
:rolleyes:

Make it legal and less money and becomes more traceable.

cockney steve
17th Dec 2013, 10:31
419 said Yellow Worf?

By Heck! That's one ugly bearded "bird" ( most certainly not a "lady")

WRT drugs legalisation....Whichever party legalises, will have egg on their face ,as all the Pollies are complicit in perpetuating the "anti-drugs"
propaganda.

Mr. Plod also has a vested interest in keeping the "law enforcement" bandwagon rolling and I'm sure the illegal drugs industry occupies a fair amount of plod's timeHeaven forbid that they have to re-prioritise their duties and deal with a lot of stuff that is currently conveniently side-stepped. The irony is, perhaps, that a lotof time is wasted by the fallout from the main legal drug...ALCOHOL.....Many large conurbations would appear to be very unsavoury places to be , around "chucking-out time"

Cheapish, legalised drugs could be readily distributed through the government -sanctioned official distribution networks for Alcohol and Nicotine (how long before the tobacco healthcare V revenue seesaw tilts the wrong way,and they slap a huge tax on the burgeoning E-Cigarette industry?)
Many people nearing retirement (or, indeed, retired) were part of the 60's "scene"...Society hasn't disintegrated!
A small percentage of alcohol consumers become abusers and drink themselves to death....Some see the future and become abstainers.....likewise, some smokers live with an unpleasant, phlegmmy, hacking cough and shortage of breath...a few contract cancer over which they have very little control...a few give up and their lungs recuperate some of their function.
SO, a percentage of druggies will over-indulge, despite having a clean, legal, known strength supply....it's a bloody sight better than the preaent crime-fuelled Russian Roulette that they all play..Darwinism will continue to cull the gene-pool, so what's the problem?
Note:- I haven't accessed any of the links/videos preceding this post, so I may well be repeating.

PTT
17th Dec 2013, 10:34
some people can be addicted to alcohol but hard drugs are more addictivePossibly:http://www.safertexas.org/comparingdangers.png

But there there is the effect of addiction which must be taken into account:
http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/49735000/gif/_49735645_drugs_comparisons_464gr.gif

"Hard" (both addictive and harmful) drugs are already legally distributed, sold and taxed in most countries. Do the same with the rest, with the same restrictions on individuals which we have on those who overindulge on alcohol.

Fox3WheresMyBanana
17th Dec 2013, 11:07
defizr - with respect, that's not a justification but a pragmatic solution. One which I am prepared to accept, but I would like it admitted by the fluffies that it is not a justification, and that we should continue the search for a better solution.

PTT - the Lancet's definition of harm to others is presumably based on medical harm. I suspect it does not reflect burglaries, etc committed by drug addicts to fund their habits. I am not aware of burglaries being committed by alcoholics/smokers to fund their habits. My biggest personal concern, and that of many people I know, is the risk of encountering someone out of their head invading my home at 3 am. The Lancet data does not reflect that.

racedo
17th Dec 2013, 11:13
Drugs scene with "Upper" classes has never really gone away as appears to be suggested by media reports in Nigella case.

Difference is police will not crash a dinner party of the great and good.

PTT
17th Dec 2013, 11:16
My biggest personal concern, and that of many people I know, is the risk of encountering someone out of their head invading my home at 3 am. The Lancet data does not reflect that.Is there any data which reflects that? Or are we working from anecdotal evidence?

Fox3WheresMyBanana
17th Dec 2013, 11:18
I think I was quite clear that my evidence is anecdotal.

Do you have access to The Lancet's definition of 'Harm to Others'?

PTT
17th Dec 2013, 11:18
So dismissing Lancet data when you have none of your own is reasonable?

Fox3WheresMyBanana
17th Dec 2013, 11:20
I'm not dismissing it, I'm questioning it's sole applicability to public policy. Medical harm is not the only relevant factor.
I doubt the The Lancet claims it is the only factor. As far as I can see from the article summary, The Lancet article authors only wish for the medical side of the debate to be better informed by more scientific data.

PTT
17th Dec 2013, 11:24
Indeed, but if there is no data on which to found your fears then are they a reasonable basis for public policy?

Fox3WheresMyBanana
17th Dec 2013, 11:31
Firstly, it's a concern, not a fear. One which I have minimised by relocating.
Secondly, personal experience is not 'no data'. I have lived in areas with significant drug addition and had enough nasty experiences and close calls to make me want to live elsewhere. Anecdotal evidence is not good enough to base public policy on, but absence of peer-reviewed evidence is not evidence of absence. I think there is a need to gather such scientific evidence on the attitudes of the general public. Add up enough anecdotes and you have scientific evidence.

PTT
17th Dec 2013, 11:46
personal experience is not 'no data'No, but it is highly biased data (not you who are biased, but the data is biased towards your experiences). To that end it is fairly worthless to the wider public, except perhaps to advise people where not to live, given the choice.
I think there is a need to gather such scientific evidence on the attitudes of the general public.What constitutes scientific evidence on attitudes? Attitudes are, by definition, subjective and malleable. At best you could carry out rigorous polling and even that will be biased by outside influences (media etc) rather than any reality.
More interesting would be to see what proportion of crime was drug-related, how much of that was in order to gain funds for drugs (which, under any decriminalisation, I suspect would reduce as cost reduces), how much of it was purely because the criminal was under the influence etc, and compare that with similar data from alcohol.
Add up enough anecdotes and you have scientific evidence.Er, not really. The plural of "anecdote" is not "data". There's far more to it than simply "adding them up", as I suspect you know.

Fox3WheresMyBanana
17th Dec 2013, 12:07
PTT - you are right about hard data on drug-related crime being useful. There is insufficient evidence, but there is some here if you are interested
http://www.nta.nhs.uk/uploads/nta_criminaljustice_0809.pdf
There's also quite a good short cautionary note on the usefulness of such evidence here
DrugScope | DRUG INFORMATION | How much crime is drug related? (http://www.drugscope.org.uk/resources/faqs/faqpages/how-much-crime-is-drug-related)

However, I do think that correctly gathered attitudinal data is useful. Not all crime is reported. Anecdotally again, I think the proportion of crimes not being reported is increasing. I used to know a local Police Inspector, and he agreed with me. My own experience of reporting crimes was that nothing was done about investigating the crimes, but I did receive a victim support visit 3 weeks later after one of them, even though I specifically stated I did not want one. To me, this was the worst of all worlds - expenditure without effect. I stopped reporting crimes after that.

Yes, I do know what good scientific evidence looks like.

In short, my evidence is anecdotal as I do not have the resources to gather scientific data. However, I feel that no one else is gathering it either and that is unacceptable to me. It is legitimate to counter "Where's your evidence you are right?" with "Where is your evidence I'm wrong?"
At the end of the day, crime is one of the reasons I no longer live in the UK, and in terms of filling employment shortages in the UK, UK society is the poorer for my leaving.

PTT
17th Dec 2013, 12:58
I'm glad you cited the Drugscope article: I was reading it before replying to you.

However, I do think that correctly gathered attitudinal data is useful. Not all crime is reported.Of course it isn't, but we can estimate how big a problem drug related crime is based on the proportion of all reported crime it constitutes. Thing is, we don't even have that data. Even the NHS report cited starts with a circular argument:
Crime and drugs are inextricably linked. Anyone
who sells, buys and uses drugs such as heroin,
cocaine and cannabis is breaking the law
The "acquisitive crime" that report refers to is the same as the crime I think will reduce as cost reduces. People don't steal or rob people (much) to buy cigarettes largely because they are affordable.
It is legitimate to counter "Where's your evidence you are right?" with "Where is your evidence I'm wrong?"Not really, no. As I understand it you are/were a maths teacher, so you will be entirely familiar with the concept of the need to disprove the null hypothesis, which goes hand-in-hand with the concept of the burden of proof. If you are the one making the assertion (that your evidence is sufficient) then you are the one who has to back it up, otherwise I'm entirely logically consistent in stating your evidence is insufficient to base public policy on "concerns". If I were to state a fear of a zombie apocalypse and demand that the government do something about it, would it be more reasonable to build anti-zombie defences, or to look into the reality of zombie apocalypses before doing so, irrespective of the number of people who share that view?

Fox3WheresMyBanana
17th Dec 2013, 13:19
I'm not stating public policy should be built on my concerns.
I'm agreeing with you that public policy should be built on verified data. However, it isn't sensible to find the data for one point of view and deliberately avoid collecting data for the opposite view.
I think the evidence of the failure of the war on drugs is sufficient for other alternatives to be sought. My concerns, and those expressed to me by others, are sufficient basis for scientific evidence to be gathered, in order that a more informed debate can be had.
I've rechecked my posts - I don't think I've advocated any public policy other than debates without the assumptions used in the past. I can't see a legitimate argument against that stance.
My belief is that politicians are avoiding collecting the data because they never want to admit failure, and politicians have a lot of 'previous' in this regard. It could be argued that politicians are driven by votes and this reflects the will of the people not to want to hear bad news. Fine. The UK is a democracy. I have therefore exercised my right to change societies.
My attitude is never "you must do what I say". Equally, if there are sufficient major issues for me to say "This is unacceptable", don't expect me to stick around. The day I quit the UK, I was not the only member of my department emigrating, and 2 students and their families were doing so also. All the adults had jobs which the UK Government claims are areas where the UK needs more expertise, not less.
I want a well informed debate. The data isn't there to have that debate, and the UK Government (amongst others) is, I think, deliberately not gathering sufficient data.

PTT
17th Dec 2013, 13:48
What you did was state that the Lancet data did not include data on your personal concern. This fairly strongly implies that the Lancet data is flawed in some manner.

Regardless, I registered on the Lancet website to get access to the article in question (link (http://download.thelancet.com/pdfs/journals/lancet/PIIS0140673610614626.pdf?id=410a13c7e856fa01:-537181ea:14300e10764:-2bc61387291070688) - you'll need to register but it is free) and there are 16 different measures which were put together to come up with the score. Some of the measures included:
Crime
Extent to which the use of a drug involves or leads to an increase in volume of acquisitive crime (beyond the use-of drug act) directly or indirectly (at the population level, not the individual level)

Environmental damage
Extent to which the use and production of a drug causes environmental damage locally—eg, toxic waste from amfetamine factories, discarded needles

Family adversities
Extent to which the use of a drug causes family adversities—eg, family breakdown, economic wellbeing, emotional wellbeing, future prospects of children, child neglect

International damage
Extent to which the use of a drug in the UK contributes to damage internationally—eg, deforestation, destabilisation of countries, international crime, new markets

Economic cost
Extent to which the use of a drug causes direct costs to the country (eg, health care, police, prisons, social services, customs, insurance, crime) and indirect costs (eg, loss of productivity, absenteeism)

Community
Extent to which the use of a drug creates decline in social cohesion and decline in the reputation of the community

The data is presented in a way which even allows you to see the individual measures scores:
http://i1013.photobucket.com/albums/af259/dode74/LancetDrugs_zps38fe022b.png
So, it seems your concerns in that respect might be allayed with regards to the data presented.

Fox3WheresMyBanana
17th Dec 2013, 13:59
Thanks for that.
It appears this data confirms my concerns. The crime effects of heroin and Crack cocaine appear to amount to triple the effect of alcohol. The injury and economic cost of alcohol is very high, which is why I would like a debate about to what extent support is provided to those with arguably self-inflicted complaints (together with a debate on what constitutes self-inflicted).

I didn't challenge the Lancet data, only stated that it wasn't sufficient for the argument. I still think more data is needed, as I suspect the crime data is inaccurate for reasons already stated.

PTT
17th Dec 2013, 14:14
It appears this data confirms my concerns. The crime effects of heroin and Crack cocaine appear to amount to triple the effect of alcohol.But the overall effect on others is much lower.My biggest personal concern, and that of many people I know, is the risk of encountering someone out of their head invading my home at 3 am.What makes you think the chance of that will increase? I would think that the need to turn to crime in order to acquire these would-be legal (and therefore cheaper) drugs would be reduced.
I didn't challenge the Lancet data, only stated that it wasn't sufficient for the argument. I still think more data is needed, as I suspect the crime data is inaccurate for reasons already stated.I'd like to see the source data and their methodology before coming to any such conclusion. My suspicion is that the chaps who put that data together for peer review have a vague idea what they are on about ;)

Fox3WheresMyBanana
17th Dec 2013, 14:59
Firstly, the details of the weighting factors are very important - one man's priorities are not another's. Personally I don't give a stuff if someone wants to kill themselves with a dangerous activity or substance, but I don't see why I should pay for the consequences along the way.
Secondly, legalising drugs is largely being advocated as a pragmatic solution. But is it a moral one? The problem being the consequences of legalising. If we legalise something, is it implied that society therefore picks up the tab for the consequences? Does legalising drugs make it more or less likely that people will try it? If more people end up addicted as a consequence, but crime per user is less because the cost is lower, does crime increase or decrease?
Is this comparable with, say, BASE jumping, which is currently illegal, arguably addictive, and dangerous? Should BASE jumping be legalised before crack cocaine?

defizr
17th Dec 2013, 15:01
defizr - with respect, that's not a justification but a pragmatic solution. One which I am prepared to accept, but I would like it admitted by the fluffies that it is not a justification, and that we should continue the search for a better solution.

It was a pragmatic solution that was used before the war on drugs started and it worked then. There is no better solution.

There will always be a section of the population that experiments with intoxicants.

I and many of my friends did when I was a teeny. Some of us went on to live normal productive lives. Some of us became hugely successful and wealthy. Some of us died.

There is no magic button. All you can do is arrange things so that the least harm is done to the least number of people.

SpringHeeledJack
17th Dec 2013, 15:31
Drugs scene with "Upper" classes has never really gone away as appears to be suggested by media reports in Nigella case.

Difference is police will not crash a dinner party of the great and good.


Whilst not 'fair' to those of lesser means having their collars felt, the police would have little to gain by doing so to the wealthy, as anyone who is solvent would not be inclined to steal/cheat/act antisocially and will just carry on funding their habit themselves, however dysfunctional their life might be. I used to move in circles that used drugs at all social junctures, but being uninterested in any such substances, was in the unusual position of being able to observe whilst sober the antics that ensued. Perhaps it was the fear of losing their career/lifestyle/etc, but most kept things within limits. Those that didn't went off to a 'tired and emotional' therapy retreat and then once back carried on. None of this is ok, legally speaking, but the effect on society at large is minimal, that is if you filter out all the crazy actions of those with massive influence effecting us all these last few years :mad:



SHJ

Lonewolf_50
17th Dec 2013, 15:41
I have a number of acquaintances in legal profession and in law enforcement.
FWIW: depending on which of the two you ask, between 70% and 90% of all criminal convictions in Texas are directly related to matters regarding drugs and the illegal drug trade. Granted, some of these "directly related" are someone stealing stuff to support a habit, and some aren't. There is also the issue of selective statistics, as some crimes get pled or dropped due to the offender being first time, or an offense being minor, while habitual offenders or those with more serious crimes get more attention from the system and the follow through gets more energy from the system.

Food for thought in this discussion of the influence of drug trade.

The one thing that has bene bugging me since the Clinton adminsitration is the mandatory sentencing guidelines. I think those efforts were profoundly misguided, and lend credence to the spin that Simmons puts out: there is a category of disposable people who society doesn't want any more, or want to deal with, so they get put away ... and that group is more often from among the poor than not.

See also the "three strikes and you are out" crap. Sorry, I never supported that, and still don't. All it does is further crowd our prisons.