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Friday, April 16, 2010

Keith Martin and marijuana legalization

Keith Martin, a Liberal MP, has written an op-ed piece supporting the decimalization of small amounts of marijuana:

The lethal gun battles on the streets of Vancouver, the astounding number of murders in Mexico, and the insurgency that continues to grow in Afghanistan (which results in our soldiers being killed) all have one thing in common: the trafficking of illegal drugs.

The U.S.-style war on drugs that is being pursued by Canada’s Conservative government has proven to be an utter failure. It has not reduced crime, harm or even drug use. The only groups benefitting from the status quo are organized crime gangs, insurgent groups, and terrorist organizations. Who pays a heavy price? Society, our soldiers, some of the world’s poorest countries, and the most vulnerable people in our communities.

This is at the same time that Angus-Reid has come out with a poll that shows a majority of Canadians support not the decriminalization but the legalization of marijuana.

This is an interesting poll; it shows that Canadians support some of the harsh punishments of the Conservative crime legislation. This is in spite of the fact that 53% of Canadians support legalization of marijuana.

This apparent contradiction can be solved by looking at some of the other statistics from this poll. Only 36% of Canadians support the government in scrapping the Liberal plan to decriminalize marijuana. Furthermore only 36% of Canadians support eliminating harm reduction sights. This tells you that Canadians want the government to target drug providers not drug users.

Keith Martin is on the same side of Canadians when he writes:

So how do we deal with this? First, our government needs to change its perspective and see substance abuse as a medical problem, not a judicial one. In order to reduce the supply of illegal drugs flowing into our communities and, by extension, the funding of organized criminal groups and insurgents, we must get our own house in order and reduce the demand for these drugs.

Both the Liberal Party and the Conservative Party should take note of this poll. The Liberal Party wants to break back into Western Canada, well 61% of BC and 59% of Alberta support legalization. The Conservative Party wants to strengthen its support in Ontario and Quebec; the support of legalization in Ontario is 57% and in Quebec it is 51%.

Both parties have something to gain in a drug policy that would legalize marijuana and focus on the distributors of other drugs rather than punishing addicts. Keith Martin is principled enough and wise enough to see this opportunity. Let’s hope that other MPs jump on the band wagon.

Posted by Hugh MacIntyre on April 16, 2010 | Permalink

Comments

The problem is that Martin is here advocating not legalization - which is what over half of the population approve of - but decriminalization, in which marijuana prohibition continues, and imprisonment is simply replaced with fines and a host of other legal implications related to having engaged in illegal activity.

Posted by: Paul McKeever | 2010-04-16 4:31:48 AM


Paul,

Good point, my title is a bit misleading.

Posted by: Hugh MacIntyre | 2010-04-16 4:43:31 AM


Heads up people! The person who posts comments as Shane Matthews,419, Zebulon Pike & others will soon start their prohibitionist attacks on this article using long disproved propaganda. I used to think this person was a cop. But, it dawned on me it's most likely a former cop turned cannabis grower/trafficker. He knows how to spew all the propaganda. But, goes beyond what most cops know & believe when he'd have us believe prohibition is doing good in any way. Why is it that the only thing both cops & cannabis traders fear is legalization? Because, cops will lose jobs that accomplish nothing to control cannabis use, they won't be able to steal cars legally because some pot or money was found in them, & criminals will lose their massive, tax-free profits. Alcohol & tobacco are readily used by cops even though these drugs are proven killers. Because, their legal drugs that just can't be prohibited. They tried it with alcohol. Remember the Volstead Act? Every American cop who likes to drink alcohol owes that right to people who refused to obey prohibition. But, cannabis is far safer, having never killed even one user in 5000 years mankind has used it. The US Govt even has patents based on the health benefits of cannabinoids. Plus, Marinol is a pure THC pill that pharmaceutical companies legally sell. Pure THC, & not one death. Wow! Sad it doesn't work due to them leaving out the CBD needed to balance it's effect, & it's a pill that nauseous patients can't hold down. Plus, the price for Marinol is higher than good quality cannabis. It's always been about cop jobs, criminal profits, power, control & prisons. But, prohibition most certainly has never been about protecting the public. Proof? Prohibition makes it easier for minors to buy cannabis. Because only criminals sell it & they don't card for age. But, licensed merchants prevent minors from buying the drugs called alcohol & tobacco 90% of the time. The same would be true for cannabis & some minors most certainly don't want it legalized, either. It's a shame the US Congress is turning alcohol into a problem by once again allowing the advertising of alcohol. Cannabis wasn't a problem until prohibition made it into one. Well, some racist southern Democrat, bible thumping US Congressmen felt prohibition would punish jazz loving minorities for using cannabis. That's why they came up with the alien word 'marijuana' & created 'Reefer madness' to demonize & criminalize it. But, I digress. 74 years of racist prohibition have made cannabis as popular as tobacco, & as widely & readily available. We're told legalization won't work. Really? Well, how's that prohibition going for ya? A 2009 Zogby Poll says only 11.3% of responders believe the war on drugs is working. Some far off sunny day we'll find that prohibition really will reduce cannabis use. But, a cumulative $1 trillion taxpayer dollars hasn't worked so far. Maybe, we just need to try harder? Prohibitionists are the ones addicted to the need for ever more tax dollars, powers, bigger govt, & taking away more property & civil rights. All justified in the name of pot prohibition. Remember, cannabis extracts of up to 40% potency were used in 50% of American medicines to successfully treat over 100 illnesses, & not one death. Plus, anyone who wants pot can get it right now, in spite of prohibition. So, how will legalization increase pot use more than prohibition has already done so?Hugh MacIntyre wrote an excellent article here. But, a certain person (pot grower/trafficker?) who doesn't want it re-legalized will eventually roll out of the sack (not typical cop hours) & begin his vicious personal attacks. Because, there isn't one reason to keep cannabis illegal, unless you make your living off continuing this counter productive & self fulfilling disaster called prohibition.

Posted by: 418 | 2010-04-16 6:10:27 AM


Note the use of the customary epithet "U.S.-style." If this MP had not been identified as a Liberal in the piece, that tidbit alone would have clinched it--the Natural Governing Party likes to govern from wherever the U.S. isn't.

Also, like most Liberals, he's trapped in the past. Drug violence in Vancouver's streets has all but disappeared now that most of the big fish are in the tank, as it were. In fact, it's also disappeared from Colombia, having been forced out long ago by an overhauled judicial and legal system--a marked change from 20 years ago. Skyscrapers are going up in Bogota and it is now considered one of the safer South American countries in which to invest. Furthermore, a single initiative of the city of Surrey--the inspection of properties that consume suspicious amounts of electricity--has succeeded in sharply curtailing grow ops in the Lower Mainland, and representatives from the rest of B.C. and Alberta are already visiting to discuss implementation of the practice in those places.

Sure, the war on drugs is "unwinnable" the way that the wars on crime, disease, and depression are all "unwinnable." That doesn't mean we can't shift the balance in our favour. Mexico is having problems not because of the presence of cartels but because of massive, pervasive corruption. As they say, in Mexico the income tax rate is five percent, and everybody cheats. A full-scale legal and cultural change similar to the one taking place in Colombia will be required to solve this issue. The correction will be a painful and violent one precisely because they've waited so long to tackle the issue.

Also, am I the only one to notice the dichotomy--indeed hypocrisy--of decriminalizing possession while continuing to criminalize production and distribution? That's like saying the prostitute is guilty, but the customer is innocent. Even the polls indicate that while most Canadians advocate decrim FOR MARIJUANA ONLY, they still think those who actually grow it should face prosecution. A reason for that, ye libertarians!

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 7:16:25 AM


Heads up people! The person who posts comments as Shane Matthews,419, Zebulon Pike & others will soon start their prohibitionist attacks...

Good morning, Oog. How's the widget business?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 7:17:20 AM


Keith Martin's bid to "decriminalize" marijuana is a red herring. First of all, "decriminalize" is a non-word meaning a non-thing. Something is either legal and regulated, or it is not. Nothing else in Canada is sort of kinda legal.

Secondly, where this term is used, it usually denotes a "net-widening" policy in which many times more people are busted each year, they just face reduced penalties. This suggests that pot use is something that is "unacceptable" and that it is something which needs discouraged and punished. This is nonsense. Even when smoked, the benefits of pot use far outweigh any dangers.

All science and history shows that the the half-measure Liberal "decrim" approach will cause even more problems. There is only one way to fix this problem: full legalization.

Russell Barth
Federally Licensed Medical Marijuana User
Drug Reform Analyst and Consultant
Educators for Sensible Drug Policy

Posted by: Russell Barth | 2010-04-16 7:32:12 AM


Shane,

I ordinarily agree with you that using the phrase "US style" as a purjorative is idiotic. But in this case I think it makes sense. Mr. Martin is refering to a specific failed policy that is being imported from the US into Canada. It would be like an American saying that they don't want a "Canada style health care system." It is no insult to Canada, merely a recognition that Canada does not do well in this particular policy area.

Posted by: Hugh MacIntyre | 2010-04-16 7:34:05 AM


Sorry typo: pejorative and referring

Posted by: Hugh MacIntyre | 2010-04-16 7:35:23 AM


"Decriminalization" as proposed in Dr. Martin's bill is merely RE-penalization, since there is in fact no law whatsoever in Canada which prohibits the possession and production of cannabis. I explained that to Dr. Martin fairly well in a letter I wrote to him more than a year ago, and I can easily expand on my explanation with all of the relevant case law if required.

My thanks do go to Dr. Martin for his concern and action over this issue, but so does my conviction that neither he nor any government is ever going to achieve a "compassionate" goal by being punitive in any way. The cannabis prohibition law is long dead, cannabis possession is already entirely legal in Canada, and he should have drafted a bill which merely recognizes and legislates the Canadian courts' jurisprudence that say so.

Posted by: Michael Muirhead | 2010-04-16 7:59:37 AM


Secondly, where this term is used, it usually denotes a "net-widening" policy in which many times more people are busted each year, they just face reduced penalties. This suggests that pot use is something that is "unacceptable" and that it is something which needs discouraged and punished. This is nonsense. Even when smoked, the benefits of pot use far outweigh any dangers.

Getting stoned is not a benefit; it's an indulgence. The arrest of intellectual and emotional development is not a benefit either. Marijuana has some usefulness in treating certain illnesses, but there are no benefits to using it recreationally.

All science and history shows that the the half-measure Liberal "decrim" approach will cause even more problems. There is only one way to fix this problem: full legalization.

You're out of step with your brethren here, Russell; many libertarians point out the supposed benefits that decriminalization has brought the Netherlands and Portugal.

In any case, I think we're fairly safe in assuming that your first contact with marijuana came before you got your medical exemption, not after. You have a scraping, self-righteous, obnoxious delivery that's quite typical of the breed.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 8:29:19 AM


You are incorrect, Hugh. The British Empire outlawed cannabis in 1928. The U.S. Marijuana Tax Act passed in 1937, and marijuana remained in the U.S. pharmacopoeia until 1942, when it was removed--by doctors. The current law and policy are not American imports.

Also, to judge from the recent reports in the Lower Mainland papers, the policy has not failed, but has succeeded in rounding up most of the big drug distributors and forcing out production. Addiction rates are also less than half of what they were in 1900. So how has the policy failed?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 8:35:10 AM


The cannabis prohibition law is long dead, cannabis possession is already entirely legal in Canada, and he should have drafted a bill which merely recognizes and legislates the Canadian courts' jurisprudence that say so.

What jurisprudence, specifically, says so? Is this to be an exercise in misdirection, like how the courts have supposedly ruled that Marc Emery should be simply fined based on what someone would get for selling seeds in Canada, completely ignoring the fact that the maximum penalty for EXPORTING or IMPORTING scheduled substances is LIFE IN PRISON?

This is why pot isn't legal, Michael. Far too many of its proponents are liars, and lousy liars at that.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 8:38:22 AM


I read and save most of the heated Wipehead paranoid stories here onto disc and mark them as
" Evidence why Cannabis is not a good idea "
I hardly ever go back toi look at them, but I know they are in there, and some are Lulus - and the posters almost always confess to severe and constant drug use so zero speculation as to
cause & effect from my part is necessary

As soon as Emery goes off to jail I will donate this collection to the National Archives so that future generations can see, for themselves not Big Pharma studies and scientific essays, formal surveys, opinion polls and lab experiments but actual- public sector drugged up Wipehead ravings. Other friends are scouring other Cdn stoner websites and doing the same: collecting stoner writings and putting them on disc for deposit in the National Library.

It's probably a little unkind to laugh at you self poisoned dope animals, but I do. I consider it a valid pastime to discover & culture map
" The Way of the Wipehead "

Thank you for making it possible.
Your sacrifice of mind & body
to demonstrate this has been noted

Posted by: 419 | 2010-04-16 9:28:41 AM


Liberal = Automatic Fail. They have nothing to offer but incompetence and stupidity.

What does he mean by "small amounts"? 100 pounds? 1 ounce? He makes no consideration of context. If driving, any amount should be too much, much like it is for alcohol.

What does he mean by "de-criminalization"? Regulation has the same effect. Abusing the rules such as licenses has consequences.

His use of extreme examples - "gun violence in Vancouver", "drug war in Mexico" and (most inappropriately) "soldiers in Afghanistan" - nullifies his case. None of these things merit a reconsideration of drug policy.

Why do you people back these losers?

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2010-04-16 10:16:28 AM


Shane-
"Drug violence in Vancouver's streets has all but disappeared now that most of the big fish are in the tank"


Lets see how things are going in BC with the "big fish" in the "tank"...

"This week, the Economist magazine compared B.C. to Colombia in an article called: British Columbia or Colombia? Organised crime brings fear to Vancouver’s streets."

The article says that since 1997 nearly 450 gangsters have been killed in Vancouver and quotes the RCMP's Pat Fogarty as saying the recent surge in shootings is directly related to a crackdown on gangs in Mexico and the United States.

The article describes Vancouver as a "distribution hub in a global drugs trade," where "local gangs ship out cannabis, amphetamines and ecstasy made in BC, importing cocaine, heroin and guns for the Canadian market."

The article says 135 gangs are fighting over the drugs business worth an estimated $7 billion Canadian each year, and says the police have been unsuccessful at collaborating to curb the gangs.

"Despite some recent high-profile arrests of gangsters, Vancouver’s local police admit they are not winning the war," the article says, but adds that "the gangsters, by contrast, are well funded and have little trouble replacing those lost in shoot-outs.""

Hmm, looks like the RCMP doesn't even agree with your interpenetration shane-o... So what was it you were saying about B.C again..?


Shane-
"Mexico is having problems not because of the presence of cartels but because of massive, pervasive corruption."

Whos corruption who shane-o? Cartels corrupting enforcement? How do these cartels corrupt law enforcement? Money? Where do they get upto 60% of their profits? Cannabis sales? Oh yea!! So it looks like mexico's problems are related to the drug war, unless you have logic to the contrary. What do you think is going to happen when drug cartel leaders are listed on the top 100 lists of the richest people? (remember, money = power). They run the show down there, usually it isnt a choice whether law enforcement accepts bribes as they are given the option of accepting, or have their family killed. Is this worth keeping people from doing something that only hurts themselves?

Shane-
"A full-scale legal and cultural change similar to the one taking place in Colombia will be required to solve this issue."

LOL REALLY? Well lets see whats happening in Columbia this week shane...

"The first batch of Coca Colla, about 12,000 half-litre bottles going for $1.50 each, went on sale in La Paz, Santa Cruz, and Cochabamba. Like Coca-Cola, it is black, sweet, and comes in a bottle with a red label. Unlike Coca-Cola, which originally used full-fledged coca leaf extract but began de-cocainizing it early in the company's history, Coca Colla is the real thing."
"While Morales' government has vowed zero tolerance for cocaine, it has encouraged Bolivian companies to use coca in products including tea, syrups, toothpaste, liqueurs, candies, and cakes. The Bolivian government backed Coca Colla from the beginning. If Coca Colla and other coca products take off, the government could expand the amount of land authorized for legal coca production from the current 30,000 acres to as much as 50,000 acres."


"The mayor of Bajo Cauca, a region in northern Colombia, says that the murder rate in Caucasia, a town in the region, is soaring while murder rates in neighboring municipalities are falling, due to violence by competing drug gangs, reports El Mundo."
"A recent spate of violence in Caucasia killed more people in the first eleven days of April than in that entire month in 2009, according to Mayor Jorge Ivan Valencia, due to gangs battling for control of the narcotics industry."


"TEGUCIGALPA (Reuters) - Suspected drug hitmen killed nine people in Tegucigalpa in one of the deadliest attacks in Honduras since Mexican drug kingpins escalated their war over smuggling routes, police said on Sunday.

Masked men with automatic weapons opened fire in the street in a poor area of the Honduran capital on Saturday night and then burst into two houses, killing seven men and two women, police said. Several bodies lay in the street, oozing blood, police said.

"These deaths were provoked by territorial disputes between drug traffickers," Tegucigalpa's police chief Mario Chamorro told reporters.

Since last year, drug violence has been rising in Honduras, a key transit route for Colombian cocaine heading to the United States, as powerful Mexican cartels fight over smuggling corridors through Mexico and Central America."

So what is it are you trying to claim about Colombian success there shane-o?

Posted by: Baker | 2010-04-16 10:56:12 AM


Shane-
"What jurisprudence, specifically, says so?"


"Back in July 2000, in the "Parker" (epileptic Terry Parker) decision, another judge had made a declaration of invalidity of Canada's drug laws as they relate to the "simple possession" of marijuana due to the lack of a reasonable exemption from the law for medicinal use. The Canadian government was given one year (a suspension of the declaration of invalidity) to remedy the situation, and created the Marihuana Medical Access Regulations. These regulations have been repeatedly deemed unconstitutional in a series of court decisions including "Hitzig."

In a similar case based upon these decisions, lawyer Brian McAllister argued on behalf of a sixteen-year-old that because the Canadian government, after setting up the MMAR, never reenacted the relevant section of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, Canada effectively has no prosecutable laws prohibiting the "simple possession" of any amount of cannabis."


R. v. Parker 2000 Ontario Court of Appeal

R. v. Parker was the landmark decision that first invalidated the marijuana prohibition. However the declaration of invalidity was suspended for one year. It concerned the case of an epileptic who could only alleviate his suffering by recourse to marijuana. The Court found that the prohibition on marijuana was unconstitutional as it did not contain any exemption for medical use.


R. v. Long 2007 Ontario Court of Justice

The Ontario Court of Justice held in R. v. Long that the prohibition in the Controlled Drugs and Substance Act against the possession of marijuana were unconstitutional in the absence of an accompanying constitutionally acceptable exemption for medical marijuana. The current exemption depended on the government supplying marijuana, which it was only doing as a result of the policy. However, the policy did not impose a legal obligation upon the government to supply marijuana to those who needed it for medical purposes. The court held that without such an obligation, the exemption was constitutionally unacceptable, as access to marijuana depended on the implementation of a policy rather than the application of a law. If the government wanted to control the supply of marijuana, it had to impose an obligation upon itself to supply marijuana to eligible persons. The court held that if the government was obliged by law to supply marijuana in accordance with the policy, the exemption would be constitutionally acceptable.

R. v. Bodnar/Hall/Spasic 2007 Ontario Court of Justice

In R. v. Bodnar/Hall/Spasic, the Ontario Court of Justice followed the Long decision, holding that the prohibition against possession of cannabis in the Controlled Drug and Substance Act is invalid and of no force or effect. Hon. Justice Edmonson stated in his ruling that "there is no offence known to law that the accused have committed."

Posted by: Baker | 2010-04-16 10:57:21 AM


The poor sap Shane Matthews , you know what happens to people like him , he will one day become addicted to drugs and will end up on the street .
Anybody who believes war drugs (actually it s people)is good has to be criminally insane

Posted by: don | 2010-04-16 11:06:08 AM


Baked: the courts can only strike down laws, they cannot legalize. If any of those cases did so, we wouldn't be having this debate. Drugs are, thankfully, still very illegal and so it shall remain for the foreseeable future.

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2010-04-16 11:09:28 AM


Zeb, what does it mean when there is no law against something or the law against it is struck down? It is legal? What else in Canada is illegal but doesn't have a law prohibiting it?

Ie, same sex marrage. Sure the gov passed an act, but..

"Court decisions, starting in 2003, each already LEGALIZED same-sex marriage in eight out of ten provinces and one of three territories, whose residents comprised about 90% of Canada's population."

So it looks like when judges strike down laws against some specific activity, that action becomes legal, AS THERE IS NO LAW AGAINST IT. get it?

Posted by: Baker | 2010-04-16 11:27:46 AM


I knew we needed a good old drug post to get the "you only have the rights I say you have" crowd out. Keep the illogical and disingenuous comments coming boys!

Posted by: Charles | 2010-04-16 11:50:19 AM


This is just another sign that we're winning.

Posted by: Cytotoxic | 2010-04-16 12:42:55 PM


Prohibition is a sickening horror and the ocean of incompetence, corruption and human wreckage it has left in its wake is almost endless.

Prohibition has decimated generations and criminalized millions for a behavior which is entwined in human existence, and for what other purpose than to uphold the defunct and corrupt thinking of a minority of misguided, self-righteous Neo-Puritans and degenerate demagogues who wish nothing but unadulterated destruction on the rest of us.

Based on the unalterable proviso that drug use is essentially an unstoppable and ongoing human behavior which has been with us since the dawn of time, any serious reading on the subject of past attempts at any form of drug prohibition would point most normal thinking people in the direction of sensible regulation.

By its very nature, prohibition cannot fail but create a vast increase in criminal activity, and rather than preventing society from descending into anarchy, it actually fosters an anarchic business model - the international Drug Trade. Any decisions concerning quality, quantity, distribution and availability are then left in the hands of unregulated, anonymous, ruthless drug dealers, who are interested only in the huge profits involved.

Many of us have now, finally, wised up to the fact that the best avenue towards realistically dealing with drug use and addiction is through proper regulation which is what we already do with alcohol & tobacco, clearly two of our most dangerous mood altering substances. But for those of you whose ignorant and irrational minds traverse a fantasy plane of existence, you will no doubt remain sorely upset with any type of solution that does not seem to lead to the absurd and unattainable utopia of a drug free society.

There is an irrefutable connection between drug prohibition and the crime, corruption, disease and death it causes. If you are not capable of understanding this connection then maybe you're using something far stronger than the rest of us. Anybody 'halfway bright', and who's not psychologically challenged, should be capable of understanding that it is not simply the demand for drugs that creates the mayhem, it is our refusal to allow legal businesses to meet that demand.

No amount of money, police powers, weaponry, diminution of rights and liberties, wishful thinking or pseudo-science will make our streets safer, only an end to prohibition can do that. How much longer are you willing to foolishly risk your own survival by continuing to ignore the obvious, historically confirmed solution?

If you still support the kool aid mass suicide cult of prohibition, and erroneously believe that you can win a war without logic and practical solutions, then prepare yourself for even more death, corruption, terrorism, sickness, imprisonment, unemployment, foreclosed homes, and the complete loss of the rule of law and the Bill of Rights.

"A prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded."
Abraham Lincoln

The only thing prohibition successfully does is prohibit regulation & taxation while turning even our schools and prisons into black markets for drugs. Regulation would mean the opposite!

Posted by: Malcolm Kyle | 2010-04-16 12:53:48 PM


Shane Matthews; you appear to be living in some strange parallel universe, one where prohibition actually works, here is part of the testimony of Judge Alfred J Talley, given before the US Senate Hearings of 1926:

"For the first time in our history, full faith and confidence in and respect for the hitherto sacred Constitution of the United States has been weakened and impaired because this terrifying invasion of natural rights has been engrafted upon the fundamental law of our land, and experience has shown that it is being wantonly and derisively violated in every State, city, and hamlet in the country."

"It has made potential drunkards of the youth of the land, not because intoxicating liquor appeals to their taste or disposition, but because it is a forbidden thing, and because it is forbidden makes an irresistible appeal to the unformed and immature. It has brought into our midst the intemperate woman, the most fearsome and menacing thing for the future of our national life."

"It has brought the sickening slime of corruption, dishonor, and disgrace into every group of employees and officials in city, State, and Federal departments that have been charged with the enforcement of this odious law."

TESTIMONY OF JUDGE ALFRED J. TALLEY, JUDGE OF THE COURT OF GENERAL SESSIONS OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK

http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/HISTORY/e1920/senj1926/judgetalley.htm

Posted by: Malcolm Kyle | 2010-04-16 12:55:54 PM


all these powerful dramtic posts about why prohibition is so wrong and bad and legalization is so right and good,

Only trouble is, the drug policy are not leaning that away- drug laws are getting harder and punishment is getting more severe and more people are waking up and realizing that letting the law go soft on party drugs are not a good idea

Great drama though, too bad nobody is going to implement legislation as the Wipeheads & their supporters suggest.

It's too late to legalize marijuana=
last opportunity to do that was the late 80s
which was about 25 years ago

Posted by: 419 | 2010-04-16 1:14:00 PM


419; if your argument sounds ridiculous even to you, and to such an extent that you don't even want your name attached to it, then save us all the trouble of reading your nonsense and find yourselve another lost cause. I know you feel it sucks to see support for your beloved prohibition fading rapidly, but your stupid ideas are what got us into this mess in the first place, so to continue to spew your cognitive dissonance isn't going help at all.

We will always have adults who are too immature to responsibly deal with tobacco alcohol, heroin amphetamines, cocaine, various prescription drugs and even food. Our answer to them should always be: "Get a Nanny, and stop turning the government into one for the rest of us!"

Nobody wants to see an end to prohibition because they want to use drugs. They wish to see proper legalized regulation because they are witnessing, on a daily basis, the dangers and futility of prohibition. 'Legalized Regulation' won't be the complete answer to all our drug problems, but it'll greatly ameliorate the crime and violence on our streets, and only then can we provide effective education
and treatment.

The whole nonsense of “disaster will happen if we end prohibition” sentiment sums up the delusional 'chicken little' stance of those who foolishly insist on continuing down this blind alley. As if disaster wasn’t already happening. As if prohibition has ever worked.

To support prohibition is such a strange mind-set. In fact, It's outrageous insanity! --Literally not one prohibitionist argument survives scrutiny. Not one!

The only people that believe prohibition is working are the ones making a living by enforcing laws in it's name, and those amassing huge fortunes on the black market profits. This situation is wholly unsustainable, and as history has shown us, conditions will continue to deteriorate until we finally, just like our forefathers, see sense and revert back to tried and tested methods of regulation. None of these substances, legal or illegal, are ever going to go away, but we CAN decide to implement policies that do far more good than harm.

During alcohol prohibition, all profits went to enrich thugs and criminals. Young men died every day on inner-city streets while battling over “turf. We wasted a fortune on enforcement instead of on treatment. On top of the budget-busting prosecution and incarceration costs we also missed out on billions in tax. Finally the economy collapsed. Sound familiar?

In an underground drug market, criminals and terrorists, needing an incentive to risk their own lives and liberty, grossly inflate prices which are further driven higher to pay those who 'take a cut' like corrupt law enforcement officials who are paid many times their wages to look the other way. This forces many users to become dealers themselves in order to afford their own consumption. This whole vicious circle turns ad infinitum. You literally couldn't dream up a worse scenario even if your life depended on it. For the second time within a century, we've carelessly lost "love's labour" , and, "with the hue of dungeons and the scowl of night", have wantonly created our own worst nightmare.

So should the safety and freedom of the rest of us be compromised because of the few who cannot control themselves?

Many of us no longer think it should!

Posted by: Malcolm Kyle | 2010-04-16 1:28:54 PM


Oh I love it when people use contextless quotes! It's so easy to poke holes in their illogic. The young Lincoln referred to his opposition to an alcohol prohibition act encouraged by the local temperance movement. The full quote reads:

"Prohibition will work great injury to the cause of temperance. It is a species of intemperance within itself, for it goes beyond the bounds of reason in that it attempts to control a man's appetite by legislation, and makes a crime out of things that are not crimes. A Prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded."

He, like many of the day, believed that no law was necessary to achieve the same ends. In this case, he saw alcohol as a curse on society. Indeed, he rarely drank himself. The only prohibition he sought during his lifetime was to ban slavery from the western territories.

The druggies, however, see this as historical justification for their side. They are, as always, wrong. Lincoln meant both another topic entirely, and to achieve the opposite ends. The drug culture seeks to legitimize and expand drug use; Lincoln wanted people to avoid the problems of substance abuse.

In this vein, druggies are more like racist slaveholders who seceded to protect their investment in human chattel. President Lincoln, once again, stands high as the man of freedom.

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2010-04-16 1:29:21 PM


Zebulon Pike; another prohibitionist who's too embarrassed to use his real name.

If you support prohibition then you've helped trigger the worst crime wave in history.

If you support prohibition you've a helped create a black market with massive incentives to hook both adults and children alike.

If you support prohibition you've helped to make these dangerous substances available in schools and prisons.

If you support prohibition you've helped raise gang warfare to a level not seen since the days of alcohol bootlegging.

If you support prohibition you've helped create the prison-for-profit synergy with drug lords.

If you support prohibition you've helped remove many important civil liberties from those citizens you falsely claim to represent.

If you support prohibition you've helped put previously unknown and contaminated drugs on the streets.

If you support prohibition you've helped to escalate Theft, Muggings and Burglaries.

If you support prohibition you've helped to divert scarce law-enforcement resources away from protecting your fellow citizens from the ever escalating violence against their person or property.

If you support prohibition you've helped overcrowd the courts and prisons, thus making it increasingly impossible to curtail the people who are hurting and terrorizing others.

If you support prohibition you've helped evolve local gangs into transnational enterprises with intricate power structures that reach into every corner of society, controlling vast swaths of territory with significant social and military resources at their disposal.

Posted by: Malcolm Kyle | 2010-04-16 1:35:52 PM


This week, the Economist magazine compared B.C. to Colombia in an article called: British Columbia or Colombia? Organised crime brings fear to Vancouver’s streets.

You mean they actually began a magazine article with a provocative title? Well, holee shit.

The article says…The article describes…The article says…

Don’t qualify your statements like this, Baker. It weakens them. Also, this article isn’t saying anything new, which is the point. Violence has dropped sharply since last year. The number of grow ops has trended steadily down. Will Vancouver remain a hub for the remaining drug industry? Of course. It’s Canada’s biggest port, a short drive from the U.S. border, and still close to some of the best pot in the world. But we are talking about a trend, my friend, something your cherry-picked article does not mention.

Despite some recent high-profile arrests of gangsters, Vancouver’s local police admit they are not winning the war," the article says, but adds that "the gangsters, by contrast, are well funded and have little trouble replacing those lost in shoot-outs."

This is the author’s opinion, not fact. And things must be desperate indeed if they’re starting to replace those arrested with women, a trend the police have recently noted.

Hmm, looks like the RCMP doesn't even agree with your interpenetration shane-o... So what was it you were saying about B.C again..?

The journalist who wrote this piece is moonlighting as an official spokesman for the RCMP, then? It was the author who made these claims, not the RCMP. Moreover, the RCMP do not operate in Vancouver; it has its own city force. And, of course, journalists never lie, exaggerate, or offer their own opinion as fact. I LIVE in this city, and I can actually SEE the difference, no matter what your asshole reporter thinks.

See what happens when you allow your petulance and resentment to blind you, Baker? You make idiotic mistakes. Of course, that could also be because most of your grey matter has long since been pickled into complete dysfunction.

Whos corruption who shane-o? Cartels corrupting enforcement? How do these cartels corrupt law enforcement? Money? Where do they get upto 60% of their profits? Cannabis sales? Oh yea!! So it looks like mexico's problems are related to the drug war, unless you have logic to the contrary.

Actually, Mexico’s history of corruption, like America’s, long predates the so-called “drug war.” The Mafia could not have existed for as long as it did without regular payoffs to high-ranking Americans, and even they wouldn’t touch drugs for many years; they considered the business too foul. In Mexico it’s infinitely worse; in some places, uniformed police officers moonlight in kidnapping gangs and death squads. Drug money falls on fertile soil in Mexico, yet not nearly so much here, as there is nothing here to equal the violence there. Because there is less corruption. Ditto, now at least, for Colombia. So your precious author is behind the times yet again; for maximum effect, he should have compared us to Tijuana, not Bogota. Guess your Pulitzer-Prize scribbler grew up with memories of Scarfaceand just can’t shake the habit, if you’ll excuse a small joke.

What do you think is going to happen when drug cartel leaders are listed on the top 100 lists of the richest people? (remember, money = power). They run the show down there, usually it isnt a choice whether law enforcement accepts bribes as they are given the option of accepting, or have their family killed. Is this worth keeping people from doing something that only hurts themselves?

But drug abuse doesn’t just hurt the user, as has been detailed rather exhaustively. And if the cartels run the show and can buy everybody off, what reason is there for violence? Colombia kicked these running sores out; so can the Mexicans. By the way, how does it feel to know you’re bankrolling all of this? All this blood is on your hands, junkie, because it’s your money going into the cartels’ pockets, not mine.

LOL REALLY? Well lets see whats happening in Columbia this week shane...

Articles about soda pop, Baker? Are you high as you write this? Are you so totally deluded, so far out along the curve, that you can’t see how how snippy and petulant, how obnoxious and juvenile, how vain, empty and transparent, how totally stupid your arguments sound to anyone who hasn’t fried their brain on drugs? The amount of coca in the original Coca-Cola formula was pharmacologically insignificant; how is this different?

The mayor of Bajo Cauca, a region in northern Colombia, says that the murder rate in Caucasia, a town in the region…

So what is different about the surrounding municipalities? Are drugs legal there, but not in Bajo Cauca? Is this quote even supposed to make a point?

Suspected drug hitmen killed nine people in Tegucigalpa in one of the deadliest attacks in Hondurus…

We’re not talking about Honduras.

To sum up, Baker, I never said the drug industry in Colombia was gone; I said that the Colombians have made remarkable progress in pushing the cartels out of their country. For the most part, they’ve taken up shop in Mexico, which is geographically much closer to the U.S. and easy pickings because of their decrepit and corrupt legal system. But no private corporation or corporations, however rich and powerful, can long endure the onslaught of a national army, or the loss of so many personnel. Eventually troops and public opinion will simply make further operations there impractical. Then they’ll find another weak, dysfunctional country, Venezuela perhaps, with its moonbat Oliver-Stone-esque president. Might be a blessing in disguise. Because if both drugs AND oil embargoes start coming from that country, it just might persuade the U.S. to invade.

In any case, neither your gloom-and-doom mag article nor your ham-fisted quotes disprove anything I said. Once again, familiar ground; according to you, the war will only be won when not a single person touches drugs, ever; anything less than that is “failed, failed, failed.” Your shrunken brain is incapable of handling anything more complex than that. And I’d like to close with a gentle reminder, once again, that it is YOUR money that is doing all that corrupting, and causing all of that dying. And once again, you have the gall to blame people who do NOT break this law for all the misery. You really are that much of a snake.

Enjoying your blood product, Baker?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 1:37:47 PM


Back in July 2000, in the "Parker" (epileptic Terry Parker) decision, another judge had made a declaration of invalidity of Canada's drug laws as they relate to the "simple possession" of marijuana due to the lack of a reasonable exemption from the law for medicinal use…

And now that this exemption has been made (the fact that marijuana has not been approved by Health Canada and is therefore technically illegal to prescribe notwithstanding)? What is its status now?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 1:40:04 PM


Shane Matthews; so now we’re down to name calling. Isn’t that a loser’s reaction just before the finish?

Like it or not Shane, there has never been, and nor will there ever be, a drug-free society; the use of addictive or recreational drugs is a natural part of human existence. Nobody here is claiming that any substance is beneficial for either the individual or society. It is true however that certain substances help the soul heal and relieve pain while others provide short-term relief from a monotonous existence at the risk of possible long-term health problems.

An important aspect of Individual freedom is the right to do with yourself as you please as long as your actions cause no unnecessary suffering or direct harm to others. Many among us may disagree with this, and they should be free to believe what they wish, but the moment they are willing to use force to impose their will on the rest of us, is the exact same moment that the petty criminals/dealers, the Mafia, drug barons, terrorists and corrupt government officials/agencies enter the equation. The problems created by self harm then rapidly pale into insignificance as society spirals downwards into a dark abyss, while the most shady characters and 'black-market corporate entities' exponentially enrich themselves in a feeding frenzy likened to that of piranhas on bath-tub meth.

Posted by: Malcolm Kyle | 2010-04-16 1:41:18 PM


Malcolm: is that rant of yours supposed to make me feel guilty or change my mind? It looks like you people don't like having your logic challenged.

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2010-04-16 1:49:53 PM


The poor sap Shane Matthews , you know what happens to people like him , he will one day become addicted to drugs and will end up on the street .

Don't you just wish, brick-brain.

Anybody who believes war drugs (actually it s people)is good has to be criminally insane

Anybody who writes like this has to be criminally stupid. Yup, doing drugs has numerous benefits, kiddies, pay attention. Play your cards right, mix your hash and your stash right, and one day you too might have a mind as sensitive and gifted as Don's.

I've simply lost count of the number of times I've told potheads that they're their own worst enemies, and that pot would actually have a better chance of being legalized if they just shut up and let non-toking but philosophically committed (and infinitely more articulate) people like Matthew Johnston do the talking.

True, they don't convince me either, but they'd convince some. Who would listen to Don? Nobody. Because he can't even construct a simple sentence without sounding like he's in the midst of a grand mal seizure. What a wreck. What a shithead. What a perfect waste of twelve square feet of perfectly good skin.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 1:51:40 PM


Zeb, what does it mean when there is no law against something or the law against it is struck down? It is legal? What else in Canada is illegal but doesn't have a law prohibiting it?

I believe you said the law was suspended pending the granting of exemptions for medical use. Those exemptions are in place. Thus, according to the ruling, the law is constitutional again. So what now?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 1:53:43 PM


Portugal, Spain, Argentina, Switzerland, Holland etc. all are continuing to move away from a prohibition model as a way of solving the problems created by prohibition (Holland Switzerland and Germany have, for many years, even supplied heroin to many of their hard-core addicts). In each case, the changes have had positive results, and there is no real call, in any of these countries, to return to strict prohibition. The prohibitionists told us the sky would fall in 1996 if California passed their medical marijuana initiative. It didn't. They lie, people die. It's time to end prohibition........again. Maybe we can learn something from history this time?

Posted by: Malcolm Kyle | 2010-04-16 1:56:05 PM


P.S. Both the logic and the LEGALITY of those rulings seem highly suspect. They would seem, in fact, to have struck down the entire system whereby medical drugs are approved, and access to them restricted via physician-issued prescriptions. Exactly who decided that marijuana was medicine? Not the people who actually have that authority, from what I've read.

What we have here is old, baby-boomer judges (and probable onetime pot smokers) playing doctor. I have never seen anyone even attempt to address the issue of why marijuana should be exempt from the process whereby every other drug is tested and approved.

In any case, Zeb is correct--the laws remain on the books, not repealed, and the police and courts still prosecute. That part of the Wikipedia article, from which you gleaned your case rulings, you quite conspicuously omitted. Face it, Baker. In addition to being an accessory to uncountable murders, you're a liar and a knave. No end to your bad habits, is there?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 2:04:37 PM


I knew we needed a good old drug post to get the "you only have the rights I say you have" crowd out. Keep the illogical and disingenuous comments coming boys!

Yes, far more illogical than saying that an uncaring, un-sapient and chaotic Universe grants you rights by dint of a few atoms sticking together. If you really did have these rights, Charles, you wouldn't have to fight for them. They'd simply be.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 2:06:39 PM


Zebulon Pike; You are obviously dependent on prohibition for your survival, so I hardly expect you to change your mind about the failed policy that puts bread on your table. However, there are many people who will read this thread and the vast majority of them will have no trouble judging which one of us is relaying facts and which one of us is spouting nonsense.

The war on drugs is a tale of a several once great and free nations which followed each other down a rat hole into a fantasy world riddled with peculiar and dystopian logic.

The real “drug Dons” are the rich and powerful who control the government-licensed drug cartel (Big Pharma). They view people like yourself who oppose proper regulation of these unpatentable --thus at present illegal-- substances, as “useful idiots”

Posted by: Malcolm Kyle | 2010-04-16 2:12:36 PM


Zebulon Pike; here's Lincoln's quote again:

"Prohibition will work great injury to the cause of temperance. It is a species of intemperance within itself, for it goes beyond the bounds of reason in that it attempts to control a man's appetite by legislation, and makes a crime out of things that are not crimes. A Prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded."

How come you find it so difficult to work out what Lincoln is saying here? Do I really have to explain it to you? Are you truly that challenged or just being purposely obstinate?

The assertion that drug legalization/regulation would bring higher usage rates ignores what has occurred since the early 1970s. The percentage of Americans who have used an illegal drug has gone from less than 5% to about 40%. The cost of one dose of street heroin has gone from $6 to 80 cents while average purity has also increased. The only drug that has decreased in use during this time is tobacco which has plummeted from about 65% during World War II to about 20% today. Tobacco, one of the most addictive substances known to man, has never been illegal, but so many Americans have quit using it for personal reasons that clearly have not been influenced by it's legal availability. They will decide whether or not to use other drugs for the same reasons.


Prohibition continues unabated for shameful political reasons. It cannot, and never will, reduce drug use or addiction.

Posted by: Malcolm Kyle | 2010-04-16 2:20:28 PM


Grunt it out Malcom,
and try to get more fibre in your diet

Posted by: 419 | 2010-04-16 2:25:36 PM


Shane Matthews; Alcohol is a factor in the following

* 73% of all felonies * 73% of child beating cases * 41% of rape cases * 80% of wife battering cases * 72% of stabbings * 83% of homicides

So are you now going to campaign for a return to the prohibition of alcohol? I think not, for even you must realize that the prohibition of alcohol was far worse than what we have now which is the proper regulation of alcohol.

This war has failed Shane Matthews! It has been nothing but a plague or an experiment in how to divert intelligent energy away from dealing with the problem of drug use and addiction. It has wasted our resources whilst encouraging civil, judicial, and penal procedures associated with police states. Even calling it a drug war is grossly misleading; this is a war on all of us and everything this country once stood for.

Of course, if a drug user commits property theft or assault , he should be dealt with accordingly. It is not just unnecessary but also counterproductive to preemptively attack drug users on the basis that they might be criminals. We know that the overwhelming majority of drug users are law -abiding people. They are quite often our close family members, our friends or our neighbors. We have filled a significant portion of the prison system with such people. And where has it got us?
Prohibition will end one day, make no mistake about that; totalitarianism always collapses under the weight of its own incompatibility with human nature. But will it end peacefully due to the adoption of a more sensible policy, or will we allow the already severe and chronic symptoms to worsen beyond a point of no foreseeable return?

If we continue to support prohibition then we're doing nothing but helping evolve local gangs into transnational enterprises with intricate power structures that reach into every corner of society, controlling vast swaths of territory with significant social and military resources at their disposal.

Posted by: Malcolm Kyle | 2010-04-16 2:28:48 PM


Prohibition is a sickening horror and the ocean of incompetence, corruption and human wreckage it has left in its wake is almost endless.

Funny, they used to say the same thing about opium addiction, especially in China.

Prohibition has decimated generations and criminalized millions for a behavior which is entwined in human existence...

All behaviours are entwined in human existence, you moron. That doesn’t make all of them acceptable. Take murder, for instance.

Based on the unalterable proviso that drug use is essentially an unstoppable and ongoing human behavior which has been with us since the dawn of time, , any serious reading on the subject of past attempts at any form of drug prohibition would point most normal thinking people in the direction of sensible regulation.

Which is what we have. They’re available for those who NEED them.

By its very nature, prohibition cannot fail but create a vast increase in criminal activity…

Yet the practice of outlawing dangerous or undesirable things or acts has persisted throughout the history of human society. One thing that has NEVER persisted is the anarchy that would exist if we took your advice and legalized everything.

It actually fosters an anarchic business model - the international Drug Trade. Any decisions concerning quality, quantity, distribution and availability are then left in the hands of unregulated, anonymous, ruthless drug dealers, who are interested only in the huge profits involved.

A lack of quality control does not equal anarchy. There is organization and structure within the cartels. They even war on each other, as actual countries do. By the way, what does it say about drug users, who knowing all of this, still buy their products?

Many of us have now, finally, wised up to the fact that the best avenue towards realistically dealing with drug use and addiction is through proper regulation…

Retread. And what do you call our existing drug laws, if not REGULATION? Do you even OWN a dictionary?

…which is what we already do with alcohol & tobacco, clearly two of our most dangerous mood altering substances.

Tobacco does not significantly alter mood. And if you have to say it’s clear, that means it isn’t.

But for those of you whose ignorant and irrational minds traverse a fantasy plane of existence…

Uh-uh, you narcissistic fruit cake. We are firmly grounded in reality. We don’t flee from it, as drug users do.

…you will no doubt remain sorely upset with any type of solution that does not seem to lead to the absurd and unattainable utopia of a drug free society.

Replace “drug” with “murder” and read that sentence again. It sounds completely stupid, doesn’t it? There’s a reason for that.

There is an irrefutable connection between drug prohibition and the crime, corruption, disease and death it causes.

Corruption runs hand in hand with any type of contraband, including nuclear weapons. Crime, disease, and death are caused by what the drugs themselves do to people. Which is why the law discourages them from trying it in the first place.

If you are not capable of understanding this connection then maybe you're using something far stronger than the rest of us.

Yes, actually. It’s called (drum roll) THE HUMAN BRAIN. And it works better when you DON'T soak it in drugs.

Anybody 'halfway bright', and who's not psychologically challenged…

Who told you that you had a lock on what it means to be halfway bright, or psychologically normal?

No amount of money, police powers, weaponry, diminution of rights and liberties, wishful thinking or pseudo-science will make our streets safer…

They’re already safer. That has a tendency to happen when most of the criminals are locked up. Leftist myth aside, the pool of potential criminals is not bottomless. People who are in jail are not elsewhere at the same time committing crimes.

How much longer are you willing to foolishly risk your own survival by continuing to ignore the obvious, historically confirmed solution?

How much longer are YOU willing to line the pockets of criminals rather than give up a stupid, useless and even pernicious distraction? For that matter, how much longer are YOU willing to foolishly risk YOUR own survival by indulging in something that is so intractably associated with “crime, corruption, disease and death”? Who’s not “halfway bright” now, then?

If you still support the kool aid mass suicide cult of prohibition, and erroneously believe that you can win a war without logic and practical solutions, then prepare yourself for even more death, corruption, terrorism, sickness, imprisonment, unemployment, foreclosed homes, and the complete loss of the rule of law and the Bill of Rights.

Oh, stop before you have us in tears. If you find life so utterly wearying, and really do see the future as a nightmarish, dystopian, smoking place of death, the Lions Gate Bridge is that way. Put yourself out of my misery and we'll both be happier.

"A prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded." - Abraham Lincoln

Said the man who prohibited slavery.

The only thing prohibition successfully does is prohibit regulation & taxation while turning even our schools and prisons into black markets for drugs. Regulation would mean the opposite!

Yes, legally purchased heroin is far less addictive than the illegal kind. Thanks for pointing that out.

My God, what an empty, tired, weary, dispiriting, wheezing, dithering, doleful little speech. And so overflowing with bitterness, spite, feckless ego-stroking, and moral proselytizing. The most ghastly irony of all, of course, is that YOU accuse US of being straitjacketed by unreasoning morality. It is to laugh.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 2:33:22 PM


"Yes, far more illogical than saying that an uncaring, un-sapient and chaotic Universe grants you rights by dint of a few atoms sticking together. If you really did have these rights, Charles, you wouldn't have to fight for them. They'd simply be."

That's precisely the point, unless those rights are taken away from me, I do simply have them. We just have to fight scumbags like you who wish to take our rights away from us. You're an oppressor Shane, it's about time you just come out and admit it.

Posted by: Charles | 2010-04-16 2:33:38 PM


Shane Matthews; you appear to be living in some strange parallel universe, one where prohibition actually works…

I live in the city under discussion, Malcom. Do you?

…here is part of the testimony of Judge Alfred J Talley, given before the US Senate Hearings of 1926:..

Holy shit! You mean you actually found a jurist WHO DISAGREED WITH THE MAJORITY? Well, that is certainly without equal in the annals of jurisprudence, isn’t it? Tell me, did they build a monument to this unprecedented development? Where may I view it?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 2:37:23 PM


You do understand the difference between positive and negative rights don't you Shane?

Posted by: Charles | 2010-04-16 2:41:05 PM



"Don’t qualify your statements like this, Baker."

I didnt, note the quotations smart guy. Look it up if you dont know what they mean...

"This is the author’s opinion, not fact."

No its the opinion of law enforcement, specifically Vancouver’s local police as i quoted, and then you quoted lol!

"And things must be desperate indeed if they’re starting to replace those arrested with women, a trend the police have recently noted."

ROFLMAO WHAT?

"The journalist who wrote this piece is moonlighting as an official spokesman for the RCMP, then?"

No, lol. Pleas L2READ.... "RCMP's Pat Fogarty as saying the recent surge in shootings is directly related to a crackdown on gangs in Mexico and the United States."

"And, of course, journalists never lie, exaggerate, or offer their own opinion as fact. I LIVE in this city, and I can actually SEE the difference, no matter what your asshole reporter thinks."

LOL, not the reporter saying it, was Pat Fogarty of the RCMP... Yes the reporter is an asshole for reporting what was said... What a dick eh? lol


"See what happens when you allow your petulance and resentment to blind you, Baker? You make idiotic mistakes"

Could say the same too you, note your shitting of the bed above...

"Actually, Mexico’s history of corruption, like America’s, long predates the so-called “drug war.” The Mafia could not have existed for as long as it did without regular payoffs to high-ranking Americans"

And where did the Mafia get the money to pay off officials shane-o? ALCOHOL PROHIBITION! lol. TY for the point!

"Mexico it’s infinitely worse"

Yes, because those cartels have enjoyed the sale of MANY products for MANY more years then the Mafia had. They have gotten MUCH bigger then the Mafia was during alcohol prohibition, thus much more corruption and violence.

"But drug abuse doesn’t just hurt the user, as has been detailed rather exhaustively."

Not until prohibition is repealed.

"Articles about soda pop, Baker?"

I would encourage you to read the article as it is in fact about more then just soda pop. Its about the place you claimed to have triumphed against drugs, allowing the sale of a product which contains COCAINE.

"We’re not talking about Honduras"

READ
"Since last year, drug violence has been rising in Honduras, a key transit route for Colombian cocaine heading to the United States"

Looks like we are now... lol. Its all about cocaine and columbia, which is what is the subject of our argument. Just because it isnt something you want to hear doesn't make it invalid.


"I said that the Colombians have made remarkable progress in pushing the cartels out of their country."

And i have shown you that despite these claims (which you do not back up) of progress the violence continues. And furthermore how these places you claim as success are actually quite tolerant of drugs, ie, COCAINE in COLA. Or the increased violence related to Columbia cocaine trafficking OUT OF COLUMBIA.

"But no private corporation or corporations, however rich and powerful, can long endure the onslaught of a national army, or the loss of so many personnel."

So in 100 more years? lol They grow more powerful every day, and when one is finally gone there are hundreds more to take their place in the market, as has happened in the past century of prohibition. When and how much will it cost shane? How do you know this will work? It has never worked in the past and cartels have only gotten stronger, so where is the evidence of your logic actually working?

Do you feel the innocent casualty's are justified in order to keep someone, in the worst case scenario, from hurting their own selves? Do you feel good "saving someone from themselves" only to have that choice cause the deaths of innocent people in Mexico and other countries plagued by prohibition created violence?

Enjoying your blood laws, shane-o?

Posted by: Baker | 2010-04-16 2:56:55 PM


419; if your argument sounds ridiculous even to you, and to such an extent that you don't even want your name attached to it…

I attach mine, Malcolm. And many of the pro-pot clique use pseudonyms as well.

…then save us all the trouble of reading your nonsense and find yourselve another lost cause.

Is someone standing at your back with both muzzles of a double-barrelled shotgun pointed at your neck, ordering you to read it? Then simply don’t, and shut the fuck up while you’re not doing it.

…I know you feel it sucks to see support for your beloved prohibition fading rapidly…

Which explains, no doubt, why drug laws are being toughened in previously tolerant places like the Netherlands, or for that matter Canada.

…but your stupid ideas are what got us into this mess in the first place, so to continue to spew your cognitive dissonance isn't going help at all.

Then you won’t mind if he continues.

We will always have adults who are too immature to responsibly deal with tobacco alcohol, heroin amphetamines, cocaine, various prescription drugs and even food. Our answer to them should always be: "Get a Nanny, and stop turning the government into one for the rest of us!"

Our answer to that might be, “Who said you weren’t among the immature yourself?”

Nobody wants to see an end to prohibition because they want to use drugs. They wish to see proper legalized regulation because they are witnessing, on a daily basis, the dangers and futility of prohibition.

You lie. People who willingly fund murder and mayhem by handing money over to criminals could care less about the consequences of their actions. In the words of Baker, the government just needs “to get off their nuts.”

'Legalized Regulation' won't be the complete answer to all our drug problems, but it'll greatly ameliorate the crime and violence on our streets, and only then can we provide effective education and treatment.

How do you figure that? Even legalized heroin will cost something, and junkies are basically unemployable, so they’ll still need to steal to buy their fixes, whether it’s from a pusher or the drugstore.


The whole nonsense of “disaster will happen if we end prohibition” sentiment sums up the delusional 'chicken little' stance of those who foolishly insist on continuing down this blind alley. As if disaster wasn’t already happening. As if prohibition has ever worked.

Addiction rates are half of what they were in 1900. Tell me, Malcolm, where does all this outrage come from?

To support prohibition is such a strange mind-set. In fact, It's outrageous insanity!

First, Malcom, no one gives six and seven-eighths of a cheap dime store whore’s fuck what you find outrageous. Your feelings of no importance; your feelings make me SICK, your feelings are nothing but rancid, putrid, slimy, crumbling little piles of dogshit in the gutter. Second, how sane do you have to be before it dawns on you that trying this shit is pretty INsane?

Literally not one prohibitionist argument survives scrutiny. Not one!

Addiction rates are less than half of what they were while drugs were legal. Disprove.

The only people that believe prohibition is working are the ones making a living by enforcing laws in it's name…

I don’t, and I believe. Your argument does not survive scrutiny. I know you feel it sucks…

This situation is wholly unsustainable…

It has endured for 100 years. In Islamic countries, it has endured for 1,400 years. Your argument does not survive scrutiny. I know you feel it sucks…

…and as history has shown us, conditions will continue to deteriorate until we finally, just like our forefathers, see sense and revert back to tried and tested methods of regulation.

What we have now is regulation. Your argument does not survive scrutiny. I know you feel it sucks…

None of these substances, legal or illegal, are ever going to go away, but we CAN decide to implement policies that do far more good than harm.

You mean like putting all pushers and growers to death? Finally, something we agree on.

During alcohol prohibition, all profits went to enrich thugs and criminals. Young men died every day on inner-city streets while battling over “turf.

Every DAY? Clashes between gangs were actually pretty rare, and were news for precisely that reason. Your argument does not survive scrutiny. I know you feel it sucks…

We wasted a fortune on enforcement instead of on treatment…

Until recently, there was no effective treatment, and even now, the success rate is only about 50%. That leaves about half who are incurable. Your argument does not survive scrutiny. I know you feel it sucks…

On top of the budget-busting prosecution and incarceration costs we also missed out on billions in tax. Finally the economy collapsed. Sound familiar?

The economy collapsed because of risky loans below prime, not the drug economy. Your argument does not survive scrutiny. I know you feel it sucks…

In an underground drug market, criminals and terrorists, needing an incentive to risk their own lives and liberty, grossly inflate prices which are further driven higher to pay those who 'take a cut' like corrupt law enforcement officials who are paid many times their wages to look the other way…

You’d almost think this would be enough to stop people from buying drugs, wouldn’t you?

This forces many users to become dealers themselves in order to afford their own consumption.

Then they shouldn’t use.

This whole vicious circle turns ad infinitum.

Unless the supply is cut off.

You literally couldn't dream up a worse scenario even if your life depended on it.

Sure I could—we could repeal all law, as libertarians advocate, and then everything would be legal, everyone free, and anarchy would endure forever. NOT. Your argument does not survive scrutiny. I know you feel it sucks…

For the second time within a century, we've carelessly lost "love's labour" , and, "with the hue of dungeons and the scowl of night", have wantonly created our own worst nightmare.

Don’t quote passages from better men than you, Malcolm. You are too self-serving and too dim-witted to understand what you’re saying.

So should the safety and freedom of the rest of us be compromised because of the few who cannot control themselves?

Judging by your state of mind, Malcolm (and I use the word loosely), I’d say you’re one of those few.

Many of us no longer think it should!

What you think does not matter. I know you feel it sucks...

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 2:58:54 PM


Malcolm: I can guarantee that I know more about The Great Emancipator than you. Have you ever read his Temperance Speech from 1842? He supports the anti-alcohol movement for many reasons, all tied to liberty. He even compared drunkeness to slavery.

"Turn now, to the temperance revolution. In it, we shall find a stronger bondage broken; a viler slavery, manumitted; a greater tyrant deposed. In it, more of want supplied, more disease healed, more sorrow assuaged. By it no orphans starving, no widows weeping. By it, none wounded in feeling, none injured in interest. Even the dram-maker, and dram seller, will have glided into other occupations so gradually, as never to have felt the change; and will stand ready to join all others in the universal song of gladness."

http://showcase.netins.net/web/creative/lincoln/speeches/temperance.htm

In other words, your little contextless quote means nothing. While Lincoln never dealt with the drug issue, his sympathies clearly lay with finding ways to end it. The drug culture seeks to extend and legitimize it - they're the modern equivalent of slaveowners, and should be treated with contempt. The law is too good for them.

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2010-04-16 2:59:53 PM


Legalization - Worst case scenario, someone OD's cause their stupid, but they accepted that risk by choosing to use the drug.

Prohibition - Worst case scenario, tens of thousands of people whom did not accept the risks they face, are injured or killed each year due to criminal organizations fighting for market space.


What a great and effective policy prohibition is!

Posted by: Baker | 2010-04-16 3:04:46 PM


Shane Matthews; so now we’re down to name calling. Isn’t that a loser’s reaction just before the finish?

Screeched the troll whose entire contribution to this thread has been trainload after trainload of vituperative abuse.

Like it or not Shane, there has never been, and nor will there ever be, a drug-free society; the use of addictive or recreational drugs is a natural part of human existence.

So is denial.

Nobody here is claiming that any substance is beneficial for either the individual or society.

Because they know otherwise.

It is true however that certain substances help the soul heal and relieve pain while others provide short-term relief from a monotonous existence at the risk of possible long-term health problems.

You’re breaking my heart. Get a life, loser. And if you can’t find a reason to go on living without getting high, your life’s not worth the paper on a devalued dollar anyway.

An important aspect of Individual freedom is the right to do with yourself as you please as long as your actions cause no unnecessary suffering or direct harm to others.

And drug addiction causes both.

Many among us may disagree with this, and they should be free to believe what they wish, but the moment they are willing to use force to impose their will on the rest of us, is the exact same moment that the petty criminals/dealers, the Mafia, drug barons, terrorists and corrupt government officials/agencies enter the equation.

No, those only enter the equation when the denied party throws a tantrum, screams “fuck the world” and goes off to do business with them in spite of the law. It is the willingness of people to disobey for no reason that creates the black market, not the existence of the law. You are responsible for your lawlessness, not the lawman.

The problems created by self harm then rapidly pale into insignificance as society spirals downwards into a dark abyss, while the most shady characters and 'black-market corporate entities' exponentially enrich themselves in a feeding frenzy likened to that of piranhas on bath-tub meth.

Two words: OPIUM WARS. And spare us the droll theatrics, if you please. Your total reliance on emotional horseshit only serves to underscore the inconvenient truth that you have not offered ONE SINGLE FACT since you came to this board. It makes you sound like a woman having a hot flash.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 3:06:57 PM


You do understand the difference between positive and negative rights don't you Shane?

You don't understand the difference between fantasy and reality, do you, Charles?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-04-16 3:07:31 PM


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