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Skipjack
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Postby Skipjack » Mon Nov 10, 2008 7:43 pm


Skipjack
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Postby Skipjack » Mon Nov 10, 2008 7:53 pm


Mike Holmes
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Postby Mike Holmes » Mon Nov 10, 2008 8:29 pm

Not sure your point about religion... I was talking about it as a socializing force.

In any case, as for annecdotal evidence being able to prove "never" and such untrue, well nobody has said that addiction isn't a bad thing. Or that nobody ever got damaged by it. Everyone here is in agreement that addiction can be horrifically harmful in many cases. We'd all do away with it if we could.

The question is how to reduce addiction. Your solution, if I have it correctly, is that we can cut off supply. Thirty years of America's "War on Drugs" and prohibition ways that the idea of cutting off supply is nonsense. We DO bomb suppliers, etc, and that just means that somebody else will step into the chain to produce the supply. It's economics. If somebody wants something, somebody will supply it.

And criminalization has done nothing to stem the tide either. In fact, during the period where penalties got worse and worse for offenders, that just increased our jailed population. Statistics say that, during the period of increasing criminalization of drugs that drug use has actually gone up. I won't make a correlation there, but at the very least criminalization is not working.

And why would it? Again, you're not treating the disease. You're punishing those who have fallen susceptible to the disease. Are they blameless "victims?" Perhaps not blameless in becoming addicted. But there usually are reasons that people turn to drugs for surcease of sorrow, rather than other societal supports.

Find a cure for clinical depression, for instance, and I'm pretty sure that you'd drop the rate of addiction in affluent people (who really don't have any other reason to feel the levels of stress that usually cause addiction). Cure poverty, and you cure the reasons for the vast majority of other people.

I'm not sure how feasible any of that is. But it addresses the actual cause. Until we look at that, no other solution will work. Give people some sort of support system that they can go to with a sense of self-esteem intact (hence why welfare won't suffice for this purpose), and you'll go a long way to curing addiction.

Once again... I hope I'm not having a kneejerk reaction here, but your implication seems to be that somebody in this thread is a liberal college ivory-tower intellectual causal drug users. Well, again, you shouldn't make assumptions about people. From what little I know of MSimon, for instance, that doesn't fit him even remotely (he and I differ in that his views are far right of mine). As for myself, I have never even been drunk on alcohol.

I'll repeat that. Not only have I never had any illegal drugs at all, I've had few prescription painkillers. And I've never been drunk. Not once.

I'm not advocating legalization for myself. It would have zero effect on me. I'm advocating it because I believe that with legalization of marijuana especially, that we'd improve both the ability of people to make relatively better choices in their drugs, and be able to seek treatment without worrying about persecution for doing so. Consider for just one moment the possibility that we've thought this out rationally, and come to the conclusion we have. And then try to address our arguments, rather than trying to cast aspersions on the motives you suspect.

No, reducing social stigma is not a solution to the problem. But it would mitigate things. In the meanwhile, it would save the thousands of lives lost in the War on Drugs in the next generation (that's just the lives of the good guys). All the while cutting off the drug dealers, and making our farmers no more morally culpable than the cigarette manufacturers are right now.


The idea that anyone is saying that we ought to make drugs legal to sell to minors is ridiculous, another straw man. It's illegal to sell alcohol to minors. Why would legalizing it for sale to adults mean that we would automatically make it available to 13 year old kids? Because you disagree with the policy that means that we must have taken leave of all of our senses?

Next you'll imply that we're suggesting that Marijuana use be made mandatory for kindergarteners. Try to give us a little credit.

Will legalization make it easier for kids to get? Can't get any easier. 50% of kids have tried it before they leave high-school in the US. The other 50% didn't refrain because it wasn't available, but because they're smart. 21% of kids are regular users in the US before they leave high school. If we're to bomb farms to get rid of marijuana, we're going to have to start with the US state of Alabama, because we grow it here. We don't have to get it from Colombia, the source is in our back yards.

I don't think there'd be a lot of support for bombing inside the USA, by the USA.


What's your position on alcohol? More people are arguably addicted to alcohol than any single other drug. And it is, in fact, the most debilitating sort of addiction that one can have. On a heroin high? Does that compare remotely to the debilitation of being drunk (alcohol makes you actively stupid, and sometimes violent)? So I assume you feel we should bomb the corn fields, too, to prevent ethanol production?

Or is it just the drugs that you have a personal gripe with that we need to eliminate?

Is heroin worse than alcohol? http://www.reason.com/news/show/28809.html

We have to stop seeing substance abuse in terms of the substances causing the problem, and figure out how to eliminate the societal causes that give people reasons to become addicts.

Mike

{Edited to note that I cross-posted with Skipjack's last post, and to say that, in fact, I have always been against the war in Iraq (or at least the way in which it's been prosecuted). We need to get out now, and start spending that money on energy. Or at least not spend it to reduce debt.}

Skipjack
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Postby Skipjack » Mon Nov 10, 2008 8:53 pm

Alcohol does not make you addicted on first use, by far not.
Even drinking an average of one beer a day does not make you addicted. People are still highly functional after one beer. They are not after one shot of heroin. Also "normal" people can moderate their alcohol consume, heroin users can not moderate their heroin consume, since they are addicted after the first time use.
You are not drunk after one beer. Actually you are pretty far from being legally drunk. It will even be quite difficult to even detect the affect of one beer in the average person.
Yes alcohol does make you addicted and that is a problem, but you have to consume a lot of alcohol over a very long time in order to become addicted and you have to drink the "wrong way" and for the wrong reasons. Wrong is allone and because you are depressed. This is something that most young people from good families learn from their parents here. You NEVER drink allone! It is bad conduct and the first step to becoming an alcoholic.
I had a time as a youngster where I drank a lot and frequently too. But I drank at parties and with friends. Still, I am not proud of it, but I did not turn into an alcoholic either, neither did any of the people that I went drinking with. Yes that is annectodal evidence, but it is nevertheless true.
Actually, here we have less alcoholics than there are in the US, besides people here drinking younger and more.

Some alcoholic drinks can also actually be good for your health. I have to look up the actual study but a glas of red wine in the evening is according to at least one study (I am sure I have seen more) beneficial for your heart. I dont think there is any such benefit to heroin.
That said, I am very much for consuming alcohol with moderation. Personally I have an average of one beer a month. That is very little, but I do not really feel like more usually (I got over my craving for alcohol and parties in my "wild youth days").

Skipjack
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Postby Skipjack » Mon Nov 10, 2008 9:13 pm


Mike Holmes
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Postby Mike Holmes » Mon Nov 10, 2008 9:18 pm


Skipjack
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Postby Skipjack » Mon Nov 10, 2008 9:32 pm


Mike Holmes
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Postby Mike Holmes » Mon Nov 10, 2008 9:53 pm


Skipjack
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Postby Skipjack » Mon Nov 10, 2008 10:17 pm


Mike Holmes
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Postby Mike Holmes » Mon Nov 10, 2008 11:14 pm


Skipjack
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Postby Skipjack » Mon Nov 10, 2008 11:27 pm


MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Tue Nov 11, 2008 1:18 am


MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Tue Nov 11, 2008 1:25 am


Skipjack
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Postby Skipjack » Tue Nov 11, 2008 1:36 am


MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Tue Nov 11, 2008 1:38 am



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