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Comment count is 28
EvilHomer - 2014-04-29

Well, you wouldn't have to steal to support your heroin addiction if heroin was legal, available, and cheap, but whatever. As counter-productive as Mr Cohen's arguments may be in a historical context, the government is not going to give up on the idea of blue laws and the coercive enforcement of body politics, so if shifting the focus of the state's moral rage onto a smaller group of enemies is what it takes to make things a little better, then what's what it will take!

Baby steps, guys, baby steps!

Oscar Wildcat - 2014-04-29

Humorously enough, we already had legal, available and cheap heroin for the last decade or so. It's how we got a second generation of addicts to a drug that was largely confined to the extreme fringes of society. Thanks, pharmaceutical companies!

OTOH, we've had cheap and available marijuana for longer ( 2 out of 3 ain't bad ) and outside of a substantial spike in junk food consumption there seems no obvious ill effects.

EvilHomer - 2014-04-29

I'd like to add that Mr Botticelli does raise a valid point near the end; policy makers *should* defer, as much as possible, to the independent judgement of the scientific community. He's clearly trying to pass the buck (if you set executive policy, that policy is still your responsibility) and I'd argue that this dilemma serves to underline the problems inherent in giving sweeping regulatory powers to a centralized, politically-connected scientific body that is at least as concerned about business and the biases of bureaucracy as it is about actual science (like the FDA and the flagrantly biased NIDA), but Mr Botticelli's point is a fair one, and I think Mr Cohen started to lose it a little at the end.

Maybe I'm being too cynical, but I've long thought of American politics as a battle between people who are wrong for the right reasons, and people who are right for the wrong reasons, and this exchange does little to disabuse me of that notion.

EvilHomer - 2014-04-29

Also, Mr Botticelli was dissembling through his teeth when said the Feds never wanted to go after medical marijuana. Raids on state-sanctioned medical marijuana growers and sellers were one of the first courses of action that the Obama administration undertook, and such actions have continued on and off clear up till today. Yeah, OK, TECHNICALLY you may be telling the truth, Mr Botticeli. Most of the Federal effort is focused on harassing people selling and growing the stuff, not on the individual patients. But that's a pointless distinction; making it impossible for patients to get their medicine is no better than going after the patients themselves!

Old_Zircon - 2014-04-29

Demerol has been around a lot longer than 10 years.

Oscar Wildcat - 2014-04-29

True: but the specific opiate that fueled this new epidemic of heroin addiction is our old pal, oxycontin. AFAIK, doc weren't handing out demerol scrips like candy. All these opiates have been around since the 30's, but Purdue Pharma didn't start the big tidal wave of junkies until '95 or thereabout when they started pushing oxy.

cognitivedissonance - 2014-04-29

There's no coincidence that crackdowns on Oxycontin coincided precisely with a new bunch of Afghan heroin warlords we needed to negotiate with to fight the war on whatever.

Old_Zircon - 2014-04-30

Is heroin use really up (or rather was it really ever down significantly) or is it just getting more attention lately? Because I remember the last big heroin boom was most of the 90s and the current one was most of the 2000s, and the only gap I remember was around 9/11 when the news media was otherwise occupied.

Old_Zircon - 2014-04-30

I'm not saying I don't believe it I'm genuinely curious but not enough to do the googling myself.

Old_Zircon - 2014-04-30

Plus the stars I keep forgetting.

ashtar. - 2014-04-29

Am I the only one that always is more interested in the bored pages sitting behind the guys talking on c-span?

EvilHomer - 2014-04-29

I like the one on the right. Those sunken eyes and ghostly Edwardian complexion call to me.

SteamPoweredKleenex - 2014-04-29

I'm not going to read the YT comments, but I do wonder how far down I'd have to scroll to see some MRA douchebag pipe up with "Hey, wives beat their husbands, too!"

Gmork - 2014-04-29

Everything I see "MRA" I hear "MRSA". MRA stands for mens rights advocate, right?

Gmork - 2014-04-29


Rodents of Unusual Size - 2014-04-29

I'm pretty sure they are in the same category.

memedumpster - 2014-04-29

"Unless they're married to pies."

Rodents of Unusual Size - 2014-04-29

When will the cycle of abuse and corn syrup end??

SolRo - 2014-04-29

You've seen a stoner beating up a pie?

SteamPoweredKleenex - 2014-04-29

Put it this way: No pie professional can make whole any pie that's been in the hands of a stoner.

Jet Bin Fever - 2014-04-30

After gay marriage, it's just a matter of time before people start marrying pies! WAKE UP people, it's a SLIPPERY SLOPE.

TeenerTot - 2014-04-30

If that slope is slippery with pie filling, I'm in.

Old_Zircon - 2014-04-30

Nearly everyone I know who's a serious stoner is also at least a semi-serious cook (and the people I've known who were part-time dealers were disproportionately professional cooks). So I guess what I'm asking is are the pies they destroy offset by the pies they create?

cognitivedissonance - 2014-04-30

Lord Jesus, heal the heart of this pie, savaged by the degradations of sin and munchies.

memedumpster - 2014-04-30

I was going to say, Old Zircon, that there are exceptions to that rule, such as myself, but then I thought of the no bake peanut butter, apple butter, dark chocolate Millennium Falcons I made recently.

Jet Bin Fever - 2014-04-30

People in 50 or so years will look back at the "war on drugs" the same way that we now look back at prohibition of alcohol. It's ridiculous and unsustainable.

Binro the Heretic - 2014-04-30

But I'll bet there will still be some people who say, "But it kept a lot of people from doing drugs!" just the way some people today say, "But prohibition DID keep a lot of people from drinking alcohol!"

And I can guarantee they'll be smug about it.

Binro the Heretic - 2014-04-30

Wait, wait...

Are you saying people whose job is fighting marijuana might exaggerate the negative effects of marijuana?

Why would they do that? What possible motive could they have?

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