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The utter immorality of the War on (some) Drugs

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The utter immorality of the War on (some) Drugs

Old 04-05-2013, 11:05 PM
  #51  
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Originally Posted by Psylocide View Post
Similar to the statements the president and several libs are constantly putting out about ARs and the recent shootings?

Propaganda?

Read the articles carefully... they read like infomercials.

"Limited research suggests," "research has shown," etc.

Where are the studies? They don't even cite them in the article.

Anyway, I said I was going to stay out of here...
Okay. Let's say the fed is putting out infomercials/propaganda, etc. for the sake of argument.

Now ask yourself a series of questions and forget about studies, articles and just rely on your own common sense.

You admit that cigarette smoke is a health hazard, correct? What about the smoke from a house fire? Hazardous, yes? How about woodsmoke from a wood-stove? Burning a brush pile? Burning just about anything? Is ingesting smoke from anything burning completely safe for your lungs and health? No health issues whatsoever?

It's hard to make the argument that smoking anything doesn't at least cause "some" degree of lung/health damage, isn't it? Even without those studies, you kind of instinctively know that there's some kind of a problem.

I get the points that people don't trust the government. A lot of time they are wise to do so. At the same time, I don't totally trust some "scientist(s)" who support marijuana as being unbiased in their "research" either.

I haven't made an argument or posited a position on whether marijuana should be legal or not. Quite frankly, one could make a halfway argument in either direction.

What I do draw the line at or find a little insulting is when Pro-marijuana people make poor arguments about how marijuana is less dangerous, etc. and expect me to simply believe them. Some of the anecdotal arguments about how they've smoked marijuana for years without health problems are very similar to people who've smoked cigarettes, etc. for years and haven't had health problems. Kind of like those people who insist they can consistently kill a grizzly bear with a 22 LR. Yes, it's possible but still isn't highly probable and is not a wise idea.
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Old 04-06-2013, 03:00 AM
  #52  
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I was just reading an article in today’s local paper on how the VT legislature is looking at decimalizing small amounts of MJ and making possession of less than an ounce similar to a traffic ticket. It would still be illegal to have a small amount but the penalty would go from a criminal court to a judicial court. I can’t say I agree with this method of controlling drugs. Taking the criminal penalty away will just make it far easier for people to get it and use it. I know the argument comparing it to alcohol but there are laws concerning possession of alcohol by a minor and they are there to protect them and society just like current marijuana laws. Softening the penalties doesn’t make it more right to violate the law.
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Old 04-06-2013, 03:49 AM
  #53  
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Okay, of you say it's "more safer." Seriously, your argument here appears to be that alcohol is dangerous for drivers (DUI) and marijuana is less dangerous (no claim that it's safe) so legalizing marijuana makes sense (sort of). That kind of reminds me of people (my kids spring to mind) saying they shouldn't be in trouble because what they did was "less wrong." Not the most persuasive argument and is almost as bad as "well, he did it too."
You have more than one kiddo? Did you punish both for whatever they did? If you have alcohol at the legal age, you're free to drink, but having marijuana is punishable, so I don’t see it as “Well he did it too”.

Also, if it ends up being a substitute, then it’s totally moot anyways.

“Many adolescent consumers of cannabis increase their use of alcohol and decrease their use of marijuana shortly after turning 21 years of age, according to data published in the Journal of Health Economics.”

http://www.ucdenver.edu/about/newsro...ic-deaths.aspx

Study shows medical marijuana laws reduce traffic deaths

Lead to lower alcohol consumption

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2795734/

“Medical cannabis patients have been engaging in substitution by using cannabis as an alternative to alcohol, prescription and illicit drugs.”

I don't disagree with this but don't see how this applies to this discussion.
Why doesn't it? I can just imagine someone on here working the night shift looking at the CNN article and thinking what dopes those potheads are for driving at twice the risk.

Okay. And this changes what?
There's a choice to inhale the smoke/impurities.

Mind you, what's exactly your point? Marijuana would end up under the same laws and regulations cigarettes are, and marijuana users are less likely to chain smoke.

I don't recall anybody suggesting marijuana is a "gateway" to other drugs.
Where does the increased health and financial consequences come from then?

[…]
Another study that trumpets an observation without providing context. According to the latest census, there's about 315M people in the U.S. Comparing 67% (approximately 210 million) of this population to 1% (a little over a million) without some sort of context filter does not come across as very scientific nor unbiased (see below links establishing those figures).
Since you don’t think it’s a gateway drug, I feel no need to looking further into it.

LOL. That's a very pessimistic statement.
A person in those circumstances doesn’t have an internal locus of control.

“$121 billion to arrest more than 37 million nonviolent drug offenders, about 10 million of them for possession of marijuana. Studies show that jail time tends to increase drug abuse.”

Here's some facts from the government. I know, you don't trust them and they must have an ulterior motive, right??
Lets see…

How Does Marijuana Affect the Brain?
This is a lot like the back and forth studies on ginkgo biloba or vitamins etc.

Effects on Life
Correlation doesn’t equal causation.

"The author of the study said it can't prove whether that's due to the drug's effects, the social environment in which it's used or whether pot smokers are just more likely to be laid-back from the get-go."

What Are the Other Health Effects of Marijuana?
So does coffee, energy drinks and sex.

“Even higher risks were found for younger slow metabolizers -- those under 50. They were up to four times more likely to have a heart attack than slow metabolizers in their age group who drank little or no coffee.”

“The scientists say that this five-fold marijuana risk is a little higher than the risk for sexual intercourse”

Speaking of cardiovascular problems, have a look at this:

http://theconservativetreehouse.com/...he-trans-fats/

You admit that cigarette smoke is a health hazard, correct? What about the smoke from a house fire? Hazardous, yes? How about woodsmoke from a wood-stove? Burning a brush pile? Burning just about anything? Is ingesting smoke from anything burning completely safe for your lungs and health? No health issues whatsoever?
For anyone using a vaporizer, this is a red herring.

It's hard to make the argument that smoking anything doesn't at least cause "some" degree of lung/health damage, isn't it? Even without those studies, you kind of instinctively know that there's some kind of a problem.
Not really. Unlike tobacco, you have numerous studies suggesting that the cancer risk is less than smoking cigarettes. It helps that it doesn’t have nicotine, and many users simply stop in their late 20’s or early 30’s.
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Old 04-06-2013, 05:08 AM
  #54  
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In a libertarian utopia, legalization of recreational pharmaceuticals might certainly be practical. However, most ideologically-pure libertarians I know are fervently opposed to what, in the end, amounts to the governmental assumption of the consequences of one's behaviors.

http://www.lp.org/platform

On the other hand, you have the liberals and the conservatives. Neither seem to be very consistent in how they view the concepts of "liberty" or "choice." Both are about control - just in different directions. Conservatives want to save the babies but kill the adults if they grow up to be mass murderers. Liberals want to kill the babies but save the adults even if they grow up to be mass murderers. Liberals want to ban guns but legalize pot. Conservatives want to ban pot but are against further restrictions on firearms ownership. A difficult place to find one's position within, and it's not uncommon that liberals and conservatives cross over. Some liberals believe that firearms ownership cannot be infringed. Some conservatives believe that abortion is a woman's choice. It's difficult to be entirely true to a "party platform."

It's going to be difficult for the "legalize pot" crowd to ever overcome the stigma that they're "slackers." Even if they're "successful" in a career, that they couldn't have become even moreso. I've seen example brain activity scans of MJ, meth, cocaine, alcohol, and non-users. There IS a difference, although the impacts vary in severity and duration. All this chatter about veterans, PTSD and TBI? Similiarities exist in terms of brain effect. Stress and shock "light up" the brain, which in turn "dulls", during which time veterans do nutty things, drive too fast on motorcycles, think they're invincible, make bad choices, commit suicide, etc.

Does that mean that pot users should be entitled to disability should they have problems at work? All of this stuff seems to start small and then snowballs into something we hadn't even imagined.

While the first-order effect of pot use is probably infinitissimally small, and its legalization might somewhat mitigate the second-order effect of "drug dealers", and be most seen in the third-order effect and impact on the "drug economy" that exists in Mexico and in other countries, we're not considering in this discussion anything beyond that. We have to consider eventualities beyond what's immediately apparent, and assume that (unless we can achieve that libertarian utopia) the foundation exists for "legalization" to bring with it bills that our children's taxes may not be able to afford.

Aside from the "Pot Libertarians", who are really just Democrats pandering for the Libertarian vote, I can't say that I don't see some merit in Libertarian ideals. Practically speaking, though - I couldn't support legalization of pot UNLESS the consequences of its use (and I'd like the same for alcohol and others) be ISOLATED to the user and no longer any of the rest of our financial responsibilities.

Today's reality doesn't quite measure up to that possibility. .

Last edited by homers brother; 04-06-2013 at 05:10 AM.
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Old 04-06-2013, 06:46 AM
  #55  
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Conservatives want to save the babies but kill the adults if they grow up to be mass murderers.
uumm...yea, mass murderers ought to face the death penalty.
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Old 04-06-2013, 08:54 AM
  #56  
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Originally Posted by RobertSubnet View Post
uumm...yea, mass murderers ought to face the death penalty.
From a consequences perspective, I personally agree. That's not the point I'm making, however. There are other issues as well where conservatives and liberals alike wish to have their cake and eat it too. It's not always that simple, and the other side is always going to exploit it to further polarize the issue. And here we are... "Republicans are liars" - vs - "Democrats are liars" Who's platform is so consistent with itself that a defensible argument can be made that one is right and the other is wrong?

Once again, while seemingly valid strawmen can be made that legalizing marijuana is a matter of personal liberty and its use could be confined without negatively impacting the rest of society, the reality is that alcohol currently has that status. But, alcohol does impact the rest of society because it can't always be confined so idealistically. We've already been down the road of banning it, and that didn't turn out so well, either. One political ideology to some degree even encourages (?) its abuse through promise of government subsidy - supplemental/replacement income, medical care, etc.

"It's okay, the government will take away from those who don't abuse it to take care of those who do." For that reason, I won't support legalization of any substance that adds to the problems we already have - not until the responsibility for someone else's behaviors is removed from my tax burden. We have enough problems already.

Simply put, you lose your job because you showed up drunk to work and were fired - no unemployment benefits for you. You crashed into a minivan Soccer mom was driving to practice and kill her and a bunch of kids while DWI, you're a mass murderer and now subject to the death penalty. Those medical bills you incurred while recovering and awaiting trial? Yeah, those are your responsibility, too. Doesn't matter to me whether it's alcohol or weed or something else. Freedom carries with it responsibility and consequences (good or bad). The bleeding hearts don't seem to agree those should be on an individual and would rather we share them with everyone else.

Last edited by homers brother; 04-06-2013 at 09:02 AM.
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Old 04-06-2013, 12:54 PM
  #57  
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Does that mean that pot users should be entitled to disability should they have problems at work? All of this stuff seems to start small and then snowballs into something we hadn't even imagined.
Because all the time workers who are alcoholics are getting workers' compensation.

I couldn't support legalization of pot UNLESS the consequences of its use (and I'd like the same for alcohol and others) be ISOLATED to the user and no longer any of the rest of our financial responsibilities.
What are you talking about? Giving them jail time certainly isn't isolating the consequences and financial responsibilities to the user. They get medical. They get a place to stay. They are watched over by salaried employees They have to go through the legal system if caught.

"It's okay, the government will take away from those who don't abuse it to take care of those who do." For that reason, I won't support legalization of any substance that adds to the problems we already have - not until the responsibility for someone else's behaviors is removed from my tax burden. We have enough problems already.
So we should do what Russia does?

"At home, though, Russia has been far less active in tackling the problem. Critics go as far as to accuse Moscow of wilfully neglecting its citizens and thereby fuelling what the World Health Organization says is one of the fastest growing HIV/AIDS epidemics in the world.

Unlike most countries around the world, Russia refuses to finance harm reduction programs such as needle exchanges, or to legalize methadone. Over the past few months, Moscow has decided to discontinue the work of foreign donors and NGOs with heroin addicts. It even recently blamed foreign groups for worsening the country's HIV epidemic.

Health experts and drug addicts alike point to official inaction as the real culprit. It's as if Moscow has misinterpreted the old U.S. anti-drugs slogan "Just Say No" and turned its back on the crisis. "My government does nothing for me. I am no longer a person in this society," says Zoya, who lives in Tver, a drab city of half a million just off the Moscow-St Petersburg highway, and whose husband, also an addict, died from AIDS several years ago.

The biggest problem, say health experts, is the government's refusal to address Russia's drug addiction. The lack of official intervention is remarkable. There are currently just 70 needle exchange and distribution programs in Russia, reaching a mere 7 percent of heroin addicts according to the London-based International Harm Reduction Association (IHRA). In terms of needle exchanges, "Russia is not even scratching the surface," says Rick Lines, executive director of the IHRA.44"

Since heroin supplies can run low in Russia, and they don't try to substitute it with methadone, they also have to deal with the growing amount of people using the homemade drug krokodil.
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Old 04-06-2013, 02:40 PM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by BigBuck22 View Post
So we should do what Russia does?

"At home, though, Russia has been far less active in tackling the problem. Critics go as far as to accuse Moscow of wilfully neglecting its citizens and thereby fuelling what the World Health Organization says is one of the fastest growing HIV/AIDS epidemics in the world.

Unlike most countries around the world, Russia refuses to finance harm reduction programs such as needle exchanges, or to legalize methadone. Over the past few months, Moscow has decided to discontinue the work of foreign donors and NGOs with heroin addicts. It even recently blamed foreign groups for worsening the country's HIV epidemic.

Health experts and drug addicts alike point to official inaction as the real culprit. It's as if Moscow has misinterpreted the old U.S. anti-drugs slogan "Just Say No" and turned its back on the crisis. "My government does nothing for me. I am no longer a person in this society," says Zoya, who lives in Tver, a drab city of half a million just off the Moscow-St Petersburg highway, and whose husband, also an addict, died from AIDS several years ago.

The biggest problem, say health experts, is the government's refusal to address Russia's drug addiction. The lack of official intervention is remarkable. There are currently just 70 needle exchange and distribution programs in Russia, reaching a mere 7 percent of heroin addicts according to the London-based International Harm Reduction Association (IHRA). In terms of needle exchanges, "Russia is not even scratching the surface," says Rick Lines, executive director of the IHRA.44"

Since heroin supplies can run low in Russia, and they don't try to substitute it with methadone, they also have to deal with the growing amount of people using the homemade drug krokodil.
Careful now. You might make someone conclude that there's enough danger in drug abuse that it might NOT be such a fabulous idea to legalize their recreational use? After all, look at the problems in Russia?!

Actually, your response is precisely why I wouldn't support legalization. You and your like-minded thinkers would let someone choose to do something that might cause them and the rest of society serious problems, and then clamor for government to come in and rescue them. That old "forced charity" thing, eh? How noble.

Last edited by homers brother; 04-06-2013 at 03:54 PM.
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Old 04-07-2013, 02:01 PM
  #59  
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Simply put, you lose your job because you showed up drunk to work and were fired - no unemployment benefits for you
That is how it is now. Same if you take a urine quiz and fail.
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Old 04-07-2013, 08:01 PM
  #60  
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Originally Posted by Charlie P View Post
That is how it is now. Same if you take a urine quiz and fail.
That actually isn't how it is right now or a number of states wouldn't be seeing the introduction of legislation this session requiring drug testing to qualify for unemployment benefits, now would they?

While your state may require it now, it's not yet universal everywhere else.
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