Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

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skolnick1
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Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby skolnick1 » Fri Nov 04, 2011 2:20 pm UTC

Alright, so I've done a lot of thinking and researching about this and come to the following conclusion:
There is literally no reason you should be able to buy cigarettes and alcohol at the gas station, but not marijuana. There's no arguing that it's less dangerous than alcohol and less addictive than cigarettes. The government won't open the debate right now because it doesn't meet the FDA guidelines for safe and effective medicine. But we don't want medicine. When you crack a beer, you're not looking for medicine, you're looking for pleasure. There's nothing wrong with that. enjoy it! We're all responsible adults here. So why does Uncle Sam think we can't enjoy responsibly?
12% of prisoners in state and federal prisons are there for cannabis crimes.
Take ten seconds and really think about prison--locking someone up in a building with thousands of violent criminals and forcing them to work for the state. How fucked up is it that it's a part of our social contract that that happens to you if you want to grow a pot plant in your yard? I don't know [i]anyone[/i] who thinks that seems fair. 12% of the nation's 2.3 million prisoners, by the way, is about 280,000. So 280,000 citizens are locked up for doing something that very clearly should not be illegal.
In fact, 500 economists (including some Nobel laureates) wrote an open letter to George W. Bush urging him to consider an honest and open debate about ending marijuana prohibition.
So why aren't people taking this seriously? The attitude I've encountered seems to be "It's how things are, we can't change anything, stoners gonna stone, etc..." but people need to consider the societal harm done by outdated and ignorant policy. I don't know about the economy, about wars or the 99% or defense and homeland security, but I know for a fact that cannabis shouldn't be illegal, and that instead of cutting teacher salaries to build a Megajail in Texas, we could maybe end prison overcrowding and inject $77 Billion into the US economy by ending the War on Drugs. People need to realize how damn big of an issue this is, and how messed up it is that there are still no mainstream politicians in support of legalization.

Do you remember how, during the Vietnam era, the US would sponsor the flying of planes spraying the toxic defoliant Agent Orange over the jungles of 'nam, trying to flush out the VC but instead causing birth defects and poisoning millions?
Did you know that we still do that? It's true, except don't worry kids, this time it's Central and South America, and we're only using Roundup (which just happens to be made by the same motherfucking company that produced Agent Orange.) Do you know why your tax dollars still fund that?

To reduce and eradicate the coca leaf.

Guess how effective that's been. It still causes crazy birth defects and death while destroying legitimate crops and starving entire communities, though. But it's probably less neurotoxic than Agent Orange. I don't even understand it; it's like they put a bunch of really clever people in a room together and told them to stop the drug problem in this country, then gave them $15 Billion a year and absolutely NO comprehension of macroeconomics. When you reduce supply (war on drugs, etc.) while demand is increasing (decriminalization efforts in colorado, etc.), the price of something is going to go up, and therefore profits for dealers and producers go up, encouraging them to produce more.

So let's get shit changed, yeah? End the absolute fucking madness that is our current drug policy. There's actually a bill that's been proposed to do just that, and I feel like if enough people get behind it and spread the word, we could start fixing things. H.R. 2306 is the bill. Let's liberate 280,000 wrongly-imprisoned. Let's cut the nation's police forces in half. Let's regulate and tax marijuana sales, and use the billions of dollars from that to fund a public works project for all our out-of-work police and ex-prisoners. Let's get a transnational high-speed rail system built.
It's an obvious solution if you think about it for more than ten seconds, which means that at least 40% of Americans haven't thought about it. So get people thinking.
We have a tremendous opportunity here, but it starts with making people think. Because you can always expect a politician to act in his own best interest, and right now we're at the 50/50 tipping point. So once there's a net political gain to be had by being on one side of the floor rather than the other, you can bet your ass they'll be hurrying across the aisle.
Would you all be down to help me get people thinking?

skolnick1
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby skolnick1 » Fri Nov 04, 2011 2:25 pm UTC

Almost all facts in the above post, by the way, come from wikipedia and are available for your citing pleasure. The articles for "War on Drugs" and "Incarceration in the United States" were particularly helpful.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Cleverbeans » Fri Nov 04, 2011 2:33 pm UTC

Posting on an existing topic, double post, mis-formated, run on paragraph... you high bro? :lol:
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skolnick1
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby skolnick1 » Fri Nov 04, 2011 2:40 pm UTC

Ahhh no, just unfamiliar with the forum. And where's the existing topic? I did a search and didn't find it

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LaserGuy
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby LaserGuy » Fri Nov 04, 2011 3:50 pm UTC

Here's the Legalizing drugs thread.

Honestly, I don't think you're going to get too many people disagreeing with you about cannabis legalization on these fora.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Randomizer » Sun Nov 06, 2011 12:49 am UTC

That thread's been locked since May: "I'll unlock this mess when I get around to cleaning it more thoroughly."

I used to be totally pro-legalization. Then some people I knew who smoked it kept trying to get me/my then-boyfriend to smoke some when I clearly wasn't interested. It pissed me off, and now I'm not so hot on the legalization idea anymore.
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Thesh » Sun Nov 06, 2011 4:44 am UTC

Randomizer wrote:I used to be totally pro-legalization. Then some people I knew who smoked it kept trying to get me/my then-boyfriend to smoke some when I clearly wasn't interested. It pissed me off, and now I'm not so hot on the legalization idea anymore.


Yeah, because if pot is legalized then people will try to pressure you into smoking, which clearly doesn't happen with pot being illegal.
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Sweeney_Todd » Sun Nov 06, 2011 4:54 am UTC

I don't know about legalization. My dad used to get high, and it really affected me growing up. I think that marijuana and alcohol should be legal, but very restricted.
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby svakanda » Sun Nov 06, 2011 6:20 pm UTC

It sounds like your Dad really affected you growing up. Don't worry, thats normal. Hold him responsible or his actions. Even if he doesn't.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Izawwlgood » Sun Nov 06, 2011 6:25 pm UTC

Sweeney_Todd wrote:I don't know about legalization. My dad used to get high, and it really affected me growing up. I think that marijuana and alcohol should be legal, but very restricted.

My mom was/is an alcoholic, and it greatly affected me and my siblings growing up. The legality of the drug abused is not the operative issue with it's abuse affecting children of addicts. She drove drunk, sometimes with us in the car, repeatedly, so it's not like I'm suggesting legal ramifications aren't a factor. I'm sorry your dad got high enough that it negatively affected you, but the prohibition didn't work too well for limiting alcohol, and as pointed out above, there's a pretty high %'age of people in prisons now, at great cost to the tax payer, for marijuana related crimes.

So, yeah, OP: I doubt many people will disagree with you.
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby omgryebread » Sun Nov 06, 2011 6:35 pm UTC

A half-argument against legalization: There's no political will for it.

Reasons for doing stuff in politics:
It's a good idea. (Believe it or not, politicians are people and like to do good things.)
It gets votes.
It gets political capital.
It gets money.

Reasons not to do stuff:
It loses votes.
It loses political capital.
It costs the government too much.

On legalizing marijuana:
Yes, it's a good idea. Kinda. It doesn't save a ton of money, and you can save enforcement costs by other means as well. (Prison reform, end mandatory minimums, simply enforce the law less.)
It doesn't get votes. Preference tends to lean towards legalization, but that never tells the whole story. I haven't seen a poll looking at the intensity of those preferences. I'm guessing it would change the votes of very few people.
No politician would like to see this enough that they'd reciprocate anything. No political capital.
Marijuana lobby doesn't have much money.

It probably loses some votes. Politicians don't want to be associated with drugs, for obvious reasons. They're going to take a reputation hit just from people making jokes about them. I'm guessing anti-legalization preferences are more strongly held than pro-legalization, but that's a total guess.
You're going to piss some politicians off, who aren't going to be as willing to play ball on other things you want done.
It won't cost the government anything, and would save money.


There are very very few political gains, and a decent amount of losses. You can still get things done, but it requires political courage. Willingness to do something even though it will hurt politically, like LBJ signing the Civil Rights Act. Honestly, if politicians are going to summon up some courage and hurt themselves and their party, I'd rather it be on something better. I don't want to see Democrats get hurt politically because of this. Why not go for tax reform, or stricter finance laws, or go after agriculture and oil subsidies?

As promised, a half-argument. It's only half because I actually think legalization is a good idea, just not a good one to pursue politically.
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Apeiron » Sun Nov 06, 2011 9:45 pm UTC

i don't want pot legalized (like water) i want it decriminalized (like booze).

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Thesh » Sun Nov 06, 2011 11:40 pm UTC

Alcohol is legal where I come from.
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Nov 07, 2011 3:40 am UTC

It's a regulated substance though. The wording on the statement was odd, but I believe it is correct. Water is legal, alcohol is controlled.
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby LaserGuy » Mon Nov 07, 2011 4:00 am UTC

I normally take "decriminalize" to mean "You won't get charged for possession if you have it, but you still can't actually purchase it legally." Which, IMHO, isn't really an improvement, since one of the main benefits to legalization is to remove the black market suppliers.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Thesh » Mon Nov 07, 2011 4:03 am UTC

When the word "decriminalize" is used, it usually means making posession of small quantities punishable only by a fine, but sale and production remain illegal and punishable by incarceration. Yes, I know what they meant from the context, yes, technically it may be correct, but that is not what the word usually refers to and using "decriminalization" in place of regulation is just going to confuse people.
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Zamfir » Mon Nov 07, 2011 11:57 am UTC

LaserGuy wrote:I normally take "decriminalize" to mean "You won't get charged for possession if you have it, but you still can't actually purchase it legally." Which, IMHO, isn't really an improvement, since one of the main benefits to legalization is to remove the black market suppliers.

We have something like that here*, and it is an improvement even if it's not perfect. The black market suppliers are still around, and they are the main force of the Dutch criminal domain.

But at least it keeps the problem concentrated there, instead of drawing users into the edges of criminality. And it keeps marijuana use more open, something you don't have to hide. That's rather important for the social controls against overuse and to help people who do develop a problematic habit.


* Possesion of marijuana is not punishable (though not legal either) and the same goes for selling with a license and growing small amounts for personal use. But large-scale growing is punishable, so the shops have to get their supply unavoidably though criminal channels.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby skolnick1 » Thu Nov 10, 2011 9:37 am UTC

omgryebread wrote:Why not go for tax reform, or stricter finance laws, or go after agriculture and oil subsidies?


I think you missed the entire point of the post, friend.

Because I don't know much about tax reform. I don't know enough economic theory to have a strong opinion one way or the other on any of those things, because they're all nuanced issues requiring extensive expertise for any kind of comprehensive solution to be found, whereas it takes only the most basic of cognitive leaps to come to the inescapable conclusion that putting smokers and pot dealers in prison is a bad idea.
Yeah, we ought to get the tax code sorted out, but honestly? I'm pretty concerned about the quarter of a million people who are behind bars another day for every day we wait to get this really stupid issue figured out.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Mishka_shaw » Mon Nov 21, 2011 11:35 am UTC

I'm iffy on this. I would love it to be legalised to state owned smoking houses, that way it has some regulation plus you can be monitored safely in case of reaction. The problem with that though is that people will still smoke it illegally at home or in the park.
I guess even with that problem it is fine to be regulated, as long as punishment for marujana influenced crime is not reduced due to the abundance.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby jules.LT » Mon Nov 21, 2011 12:25 pm UTC

Mishka_shaw wrote:marujana influenced crime

Seriously?
http://marijuanau.com/books/marijuana_and_crime.pdf
http://www.drugaddictiontreatment.com/t ... cts-crime/

In short, marijuana makes people less agressive, and most crimes related to marijuana are due to its illegality.
Last edited by jules.LT on Mon Nov 21, 2011 12:32 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby AvatarIII » Mon Nov 21, 2011 12:32 pm UTC

i guess it's possible that some crimes could be cause by marijuana use, but only indirectly, such as accidentally forgetting to pay for that multi-pack of snacks, or perhaps being an idiot/clumsy (thinking it's a good idea to drive etc) but those type of crimes would be no different to anything caused by alcohol use.
The only crime I can think of that could possibly be directly caused by marijuana use is, well, marijuana use.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby phonon266737 » Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:01 pm UTC

Just throwing this out here as an alternative scenario, but what if:

Smoking marijana becomes legal, however you can still get a DUI if driving on it. Employers still have the right to drug-test / terminate their employees if they so choose - even if you get rid of the criminal side of things, some entrepreneurs just don't want to employ pot smokers and some don't care. Right now this is addressed by drug testing being entirely optional on the employers part.

What proposed system keeps this option in place.... or does firing for pot use become discrimination on the employers end?

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby jules.LT » Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:07 pm UTC

phonon266737 wrote:Just throwing this out here as an alternative scenario, but what if:

Smoking marijana becomes legal, however you can still get a DUI if driving on it. Employers still have the right to drug-test / terminate their employees if they so choose - even if you get rid of the criminal side of things, some entrepreneurs just don't want to employ pot smokers and some don't care. Right now this is addressed by drug testing being entirely optional on the employers part.

What proposed system keeps this option in place.... or does firing for pot use become discrimination on the employers end?

Why would pot use outside of work be better grounds for firing someone than occasionally getting drunk outside of work?
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby AvatarIII » Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:37 pm UTC

yeah I would say unless they could prove you were at work "under the influence" they would have no legal grounds for firing someone. but why would you fire a perfectly good employee just because of what they do in their own time? if the marijuana smoking was affecting their work, they could be fired for unsatisfactory work, but so can anyone.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Shivahn » Tue Nov 22, 2011 4:19 am UTC

AvatarIII wrote:yeah I would say unless they could prove you were at work "under the influence" they would have no legal grounds for firing someone. but why would you fire a perfectly good employee just because of what they do in their own time? if the marijuana smoking was affecting their work, they could be fired for unsatisfactory work, but so can anyone.

While it makes little sense, especially phrased like that, it's not exactly an uncommon thing. Think about why we need sexual orientation and gender identity-related anti-discrimination laws.

Not that... smoking pot is like being gay, but people do get fired because employers don't like whatever totally unrelated aspect of the employee's life.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby AvatarIII » Tue Nov 22, 2011 10:17 am UTC

Shivahn wrote:
AvatarIII wrote:yeah I would say unless they could prove you were at work "under the influence" they would have no legal grounds for firing someone. but why would you fire a perfectly good employee just because of what they do in their own time? if the marijuana smoking was affecting their work, they could be fired for unsatisfactory work, but so can anyone.

While it makes little sense, especially phrased like that, it's not exactly an uncommon thing. Think about why we need sexual orientation and gender identity-related anti-discrimination laws.

Not that... smoking pot is like being gay, but people do get fired because employers don't like whatever totally unrelated aspect of the employee's life.


true, but anybody can be fired almost any time for almost anything by the whims of the managers, I would say the main reason for people not being constantly fired and replaced is having to rehire and retrain a replacement is more hassle than keeping on the current staff.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby mister k » Tue Nov 22, 2011 3:05 pm UTC

In the UK at least, being tough on drugs is a very media friendly position to take. Yes, its hypocritical, irrational, and possibly even bad to the nations health, but theres a significant demographic who associate being tough on drugs with being tough on crime in general. The pro-legalisation lobby has never managed to be terribly respectable. If people think carefully about the problem then they usually end up being pro-legalisation, but most people simply don't.
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby AvatarIII » Tue Nov 22, 2011 3:27 pm UTC

mister k wrote:In the UK at least, being tough on drugs is a very media friendly position to take. Yes, its hypocritical, irrational, and possibly even bad to the nations health, but theres a significant demographic who associate being tough on drugs with being tough on crime in general. The pro-legalisation lobby has never managed to be terribly respectable. If people think carefully about the problem then they usually end up being pro-legalisation, but most people simply don't.


which is a good reason to keep a pro-legalisation stance on drugs out of election campaigns, but not really a good excuse for not legalising it once in power, but perhaps no one who ever made it to be in power has ever wanted to legalise it?

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Chen » Tue Nov 22, 2011 3:53 pm UTC

AvatarIII wrote:which is a good reason to keep a pro-legalisation stance on drugs out of election campaigns, but not really a good excuse for not legalising it once in power, but perhaps no one who ever made it to be in power has ever wanted to legalise it?


Doing something that upsets a large part of your voter base is not a good way to STAY in power. In my experience (anecdote I know), a lot of the elderly are quite opposed to drugs. They're also a demographic with high voter turnout. I suspect once their children start to become their age (and they're dead), things like this will become easier to pass.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby elasto » Tue Nov 22, 2011 4:11 pm UTC

New Labour in the UK made the very mature decision (imo) to extend licensing hours - to allow people to drink in pubs and nightclubs later into the evenings.

I don't know how much credit they got for it in the general public but the media were relentlessly negative towards it (despite journalism being one of the industries with heaviest drinking rates...). There were loads of stories of increased policing costs and drunk and disorderly behaviour; scaremongering just simply sells more newspapers.

I have no doubt any government legalising soft drugs would suffer a similar media backlash - which is why I'd love politicians to reach a cross-party consensus on the matter.

Maybe once the economy goes into the toilet enough politicians will realise the cash cow that increased taxation and reduced policing/judiciary costs represents but I'm not holding my breath on that one.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby PM 2Ring » Thu Nov 24, 2011 8:08 am UTC

elasto wrote:New Labour in the UK made the very mature decision (imo) to extend licensing hours - to allow people to drink in pubs and nightclubs later into the evenings.

I don't know how much credit they got for it in the general public but the media were relentlessly negative towards it (despite journalism being one of the industries with heaviest drinking rates...). There were loads of stories of increased policing costs and drunk and disorderly behaviour; scaremongering just simply sells more newspapers.

That brings to mind:
Wikipedia wrote:
Six o'clock swill

The six o'clock swill was an Australian and New Zealand slang term for the last-minute rush to buy drinks at a hotel bar before it closed. During a significant part of the 20th century [40-50 years], most Australian and New Zealand hotels shut their public bars at 6 p.m. A culture developed of heavy drinking during the hour between finishing work at 5 p.m. and the bars closing at this early hour.

[...]

The rush to drink
The six o'clock closing time was introduced partly in an attempt to improve public morals and get men home to their wives earlier. Instead, it often fuelled an hour-long speed-drinking session, as men raced to get as drunk as possible in the limited time available.

[...]

Introduction of early closing
Six o'clock closing was introduced during World War I. The Woman's Christian Temperance Union and the Rechabites campaigned successfully for limits on the sale of alcohol and beer. Although the temperance movement had been active since the late 1870s, the successful argument in 1915 and onwards was that a "well-ordered, self-disciplined and morally upright home front was a precondition for the successful prosecution of the war."[2]

[...]

The laws were meant to reduce drunken mayhem but it encouraged it because of the short time men had to consume alcohol between "knock off time" and 6 p.m. Men often drove home from the pub extremely drunk. Car crashes and assaults by men upon their wives and children were at their highest between 6.30 p.m. and 8 p.m[citation needed].


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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby mister k » Thu Nov 24, 2011 11:14 am UTC

Are... we just linking articles now? Cause I really didn't find that one very impressive. The independent had an eye catching change of opinion on cannabis a while back, deciding it was super dangerous based on some pretty specious arguments. That article is more than a little wishy washy, effectively failing to express the authors opinion, or even approaching anything looking like an argument. In particular it mentions the "moral dimension" several times but fails to argue why one might consider the consumption of drugs moral or immoral.
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby AvatarIII » Thu Nov 24, 2011 12:24 pm UTC

mister k wrote:Are... we just linking articles now? Cause I really didn't find that one very impressive. The independent had an eye catching change of opinion on cannabis a while back, deciding it was super dangerous based on some pretty specious arguments. That article is more than a little wishy washy, effectively failing to express the authors opinion, or even approaching anything looking like an argument. In particular it mentions the "moral dimension" several times but fails to argue why one might consider the consumption of drugs moral or immoral.


yeah it was pretty weak, but seemed appropriate to the discussion,

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby elasto » Fri Nov 25, 2011 5:17 am UTC

PM 2Ring wrote:
elasto wrote:New Labour in the UK made the very mature decision (imo) to extend licensing hours - to allow people to drink in pubs and nightclubs later into the evenings.

I don't know how much credit they got for it in the general public but the media were relentlessly negative towards it (despite journalism being one of the industries with heaviest drinking rates...). There were loads of stories of increased policing costs and drunk and disorderly behaviour; scaremongering just simply sells more newspapers.

That brings to mind:
Wikipedia wrote:
Six o'clock swill

The six o'clock swill was an Australian and New Zealand slang term for the last-minute rush to buy drinks at a hotel bar before it closed. During a significant part of the 20th century [40-50 years], most Australian and New Zealand hotels shut their public bars at 6 p.m. A culture developed of heavy drinking during the hour between finishing work at 5 p.m. and the bars closing at this early hour.

[...]

The rush to drink
The six o'clock closing time was introduced partly in an attempt to improve public morals and get men home to their wives earlier. Instead, it often fuelled an hour-long speed-drinking session, as men raced to get as drunk as possible in the limited time available.

[...]

Introduction of early closing
Six o'clock closing was introduced during World War I. The Woman's Christian Temperance Union and the Rechabites campaigned successfully for limits on the sale of alcohol and beer. Although the temperance movement had been active since the late 1870s, the successful argument in 1915 and onwards was that a "well-ordered, self-disciplined and morally upright home front was a precondition for the successful prosecution of the war."[2]

[...]

The laws were meant to reduce drunken mayhem but it encouraged it because of the short time men had to consume alcohol between "knock off time" and 6 p.m. Men often drove home from the pub extremely drunk. Car crashes and assaults by men upon their wives and children were at their highest between 6.30 p.m. and 8 p.m[citation needed].
Yes. This 'deadline encouraging last-ditch binge-drinking' was one of the key arguments the government made for relaxing the rules. It barely got a mention in the press, though. Their job isn't to present a balanced argument, though, but to make money. Controversy and moral-panic works better than calm, level-headed rational debate, therefore.

Sadly I think drugs would be even more exploited in the media, hence needing a cross-party consensus for politicians to be able to stay the course.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Jave D » Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:08 pm UTC

skolnick1 wrote:Alright, so I've done a lot of thinking and researching about this and come to the following conclusion:
There is literally no reason you should be able to buy cigarettes and alcohol at the gas station, but not marijuana. There's no arguing that it's less dangerous than alcohol and less addictive than cigarettes.


In the pursuit of sticking to one standard, this is an argument also for the criminalization of cigarettes and booze. Which of course, cigarettes are well on their way, and no one's going to bother with alcohol yet out of sheer helplessness, but two wrongs don't make a right.

When you ask me to try to get people thinking, well all I can do is speak from my own personal experience, and smoking pot proved to be my number one method of STOPPING thinking. Today I just don't have marijuana legalization as a priority, politically. There are other much more important issues, some of which you've touched on. Our criminal justice system needs an overhaul, for example. That's a much bigger issue and not necessarily attached to legalization of one particular substance. Our health care needs vast improvements. Our education is pitiful and lacking. Our excursions overseas hurts much more often than it helps. Unemployment is disgustingly high. And for me, learning new things, staying healthy, or getting and holding a job were all things I actively avoided through the magic of marijuana. So I can't condone it, and I try not to condemn it, because not everyone who smokes it is going to have my experiences and who am I to say what mind-altering substances you should be able to bathe in? Nevertheless, compared to my active pot smoking days, I just don't see pot legalization as such a key issue like I did.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby mister k » Thu Dec 01, 2011 3:32 pm UTC

Jave D wrote:
skolnick1 wrote:Alright, so I've done a lot of thinking and researching about this and come to the following conclusion:
There is literally no reason you should be able to buy cigarettes and alcohol at the gas station, but not marijuana. There's no arguing that it's less dangerous than alcohol and less addictive than cigarettes.


In the pursuit of sticking to one standard, this is an argument also for the criminalization of cigarettes and booze. Which of course, cigarettes are well on their way, and no one's going to bother with alcohol yet out of sheer helplessness, but two wrongs don't make a right.

When you ask me to try to get people thinking, well all I can do is speak from my own personal experience, and smoking pot proved to be my number one method of STOPPING thinking. Today I just don't have marijuana legalization as a priority, politically. There are other much more important issues, some of which you've touched on. Our criminal justice system needs an overhaul, for example. That's a much bigger issue and not necessarily attached to legalization of one particular substance. Our health care needs vast improvements. Our education is pitiful and lacking. Our excursions overseas hurts much more often than it helps. Unemployment is disgustingly high. And for me, learning new things, staying healthy, or getting and holding a job were all things I actively avoided through the magic of marijuana. So I can't condone it, and I try not to condemn it, because not everyone who smokes it is going to have my experiences and who am I to say what mind-altering substances you should be able to bathe in? Nevertheless, compared to my active pot smoking days, I just don't see pot legalization as such a key issue like I did.



I actually think you are wrong about drug legalisation not being a big deal. Legalising a substance would decriminalise all the users and dealers, thus reducing prison populations and reducing drug related crime, and with reduced prison populations prisons might be able to reform more occupants, which would lead to less cime.
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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby fr00t » Sun Dec 04, 2011 2:22 am UTC

Jave D wrote:When you ask me to try to get people thinking, well all I can do is speak from my own personal experience, and smoking pot proved to be my number one method of STOPPING thinking. Today I just don't have marijuana legalization as a priority, politically. There are other much more important issues, some of which you've touched on. Our criminal justice system needs an overhaul, for example. That's a much bigger issue and not necessarily attached to legalization of one particular substance. Our health care needs vast improvements. Our education is pitiful and lacking. Our excursions overseas hurts much more often than it helps. Unemployment is disgustingly high. And for me, learning new things, staying healthy, or getting and holding a job were all things I actively avoided through the magic of marijuana. So I can't condone it, and I try not to condemn it, because not everyone who smokes it is going to have my experiences and who am I to say what mind-altering substances you should be able to bathe in?


I'll agree that marijuana has a lot more potential for self-destruction than users will give it credit for. In my past experiences, there were isolated periods of time when I let it get out of hand, but on the whole I think it made me a better person: it had lasting positive effects on my openness (not that I really needed that) but more importantly on my ability to empathize and interact with people. That's purely anecdotal, of course.

The real issue I see is that, as with alcohol, the war on marijuana is hopeless, and worse, very damaging. Anyone who wants can get it easily and cheaply virtually everywhere in the us. You can order it online. There are cheap, legal chemical analogues which are significantly more powerful and much more probable to cause meaningful damage, which I know some people use to escape drug tests. And regardless of the fact that using marijuana might not be the best idea, being put into jail for it is orders of magnitude worse. I'm pretty sure that the way we handle drug-users will looked back on as one of those embarrassing historical injustices.

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby phonon266737 » Tue Dec 06, 2011 11:56 am UTC

AvatarIII wrote:yeah I would say unless they could prove you were at work "under the influence" they would have no legal grounds for firing someone. but why would you fire a perfectly good employee just because of what they do in their own time? if the marijuana smoking was affecting their work, they could be fired for unsatisfactory work, but so can anyone.


I'm just playing the economics game that a bill is more likely to pass at first if it doesn't upset thousands of business owners who think that "Smoking pot is bad, and I don't want to employ a pot smoker"

I mean, you don't want to work for that guy anyway, and it makes the idea a lot more palletable to the masses. And it keeps you out of prison, which is really the end goal here; is it not?

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Re: Cannabis Legalization as a really obvious solution

Postby Jave D » Tue Dec 06, 2011 5:26 pm UTC

fr00t wrote:I'll agree that marijuana has a lot more potential for self-destruction than users will give it credit for. In my past experiences, there were isolated periods of time when I let it get out of hand, but on the whole I think it made me a better person: it had lasting positive effects on my openness (not that I really needed that) but more importantly on my ability to empathize and interact with people. That's purely anecdotal, of course.


My experiences were similar - but it gave, and it also took away, leaving me only less able to empathize, interact, or be open and refrain from isolation. It turned out for the best, so in that sense it made me a better person, as does my alcoholism and addiction to opiates. On the other hand, a lot of people go through what I've gone through and don't have the luxury of turning out as well (?) as I am, or alive at all. This is a country with major psychological issues, including depression, and while marijuana might help temporarily relieve some of the symptoms there are also plenty of studies (and my own experience) showing it actually makes that problem all the worse.

The real issue I see is that, as with alcohol, the war on marijuana is hopeless, and worse, very damaging. Anyone who wants can get it easily and cheaply virtually everywhere in the us. You can order it online. There are cheap, legal chemical analogues which are significantly more powerful and much more probable to cause meaningful damage, which I know some people use to escape drug tests. And regardless of the fact that using marijuana might not be the best idea, being put into jail for it is orders of magnitude worse. I'm pretty sure that the way we handle drug-users will looked back on as one of those embarrassing historical injustices.


Of course I don't disagree. There's nothing good about putting someone in jail for using marijuana or waging "war" on it. But this comes back to our greater problem of waging "war" on [some] substances and the way we try to "help" the potential problems through the judicious (ha) use of criminal justice. The issue for me is much greater now, it's about creating a society which seeks to help people through health care and other good things rather than to punish people. Many more socially progressive western societies already do this, and have as a result a much cleaner society and outlook. I just think it's possible (and in my case, obsessively so) to concentrate too much on the legalization matter of one substance, or substances in general, while missing the bigger picture which is a thorough modernization and revamping of our judicial and health care system. Doing that would have the positive side effect of treating our substance abusers more like human beings; whereas legalizing or decriminalizing would not have the side effect of solving our injustice and unhealthful care problems. IMO.


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