The political, social networking site that integrates politics with popular culture.
The political, social networking site that integrates politics with popular culture.

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Gary @grand-vizier

@ thatdudeyoulike
Alex,while I disagreed with you on another topic I completely agree with you on this subject.
I believe if we spent 10% (probably less) of the anti drug budget on PR de-glamorizing drug use we would have far better results.
The two groups most interested in keeping drug use illegal are the DEA/Drug enforcement groups and the actual drug dealers.
The former to keep their jobs and the latter to keep prices up.
Just imagine how many people would be out of work if we declared victory on the war on drugs and closed the programs.
I gave you a l”like”.

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James L. Riggs @jlriggs57aol-com

@thatdudeyoulike
@grand-vizier

Here are a few excerpts from the link below.

{“We were getting more and more comments from people who are working downtown, owning a business, living downtown or visiting, that they just weren’t feeling comfortable anymore,” says Kate Joncas, Executive Director of the Downtown Seattle Association.

Joncas wrote a letter to the city council saying the level of violence downtown was unacceptable and was putting Seattle’s economy at risk.

One business apparently not hurting is marijuana sales. But while recreational pot is now legal statewide, it is still against the law to smoke it in public.}

And

{Meantime, violent crime in the downtown business district jumped. Among the highest profile crimes were the fatal stabbing of a soccer fan by a homeless man and a city bus shooting that left the driver injured and shooter dead.}

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/12/10/seattle-facing-rift-between-police-and-politicians-over-ump-in-crime-open-pot/

What I am going to say is purely opinion. There are things unseen that will show themselves when and if drugs are legalized.

These are purely conjecture on my part.

*Those who use the drugs will become addicted. (or at least the majority)
*Those who become addicted will not be able to keep a job.
*Those who cannot keep a job will still be addicted to drugs.
*Those who are addicted to drugs and cannot keep a job, will rob, steal, and murder to get the money to buy the drugs.

You guys can see this free society of perfectly happy drug users if you want to, but history has shown us that it just doesn’t work that way.

Except for what is currently going on in Seattle, all the rest of my post is opinion and should not be viewed as anything else.

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Gary @grand-vizier

@jlriggs57aol-com
Drugs if legal should be so cheap the the packaging and shipping would be the most expensive part.
That leads me to believe robbing to pay for the stuff will not be necessary.
I would however make the penalties for selling to minions VERY harsh. VERY!
If there were little profits because the stuff was so cheap the risks to sell into the minor market would be unprofitable vs the risks.
Likewise there would not be the vast sums to bribe officials or provide the infrastructure like tunnels,aircraft,boats ,planes,and smugglers to import the stuff.
One thing is certain,what we are doing is not working and the cost in money and human suffering is just awful.

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James L. Riggs @jlriggs57aol-com

@grand-vizier

I will just say that your view of this situation is more positive than mine.

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Gary @grand-vizier

@jlriggs57aol-com
HOPE AND CHANGE!!
LOL!
I couldn’t resist.
By the way I meant Minors not minions.

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Kevlar @kevlar

I side with James on this one. I think this is a Pandora’s Box that we do not need to open but it seems that we might indeed open it and the only apparent reason for doing so is because we can. That hardly seems enough of a reason.

Being a free-market capitalist I understand the profit motive and supply/demand issues and the notion that removing the profit motive has the “possibility” to reduce the violent aspect but I think the physiological aspect will take the place of profit-motive and keep the usage level high (possibly higher) which in turn will keep demand high which will in turn keep profit motive high. Possibly not as high as it is currently but still high (no pun intended).

Mind control is a funny thing and something we are only beginning to explore. If you want to have someone killed but don’t want to do it yourself you can hire someone to do it (this is somewhat hypothetical but sadly somewhat real). Most people won’t kill for money but if you control their mind with drugs that are now legal, they can lose that power to reason and killing for money might all of a sudden seem rational to the person who has no control of his mind.

I know there is some soundness to this theory because when I was in college we had a professional hypnotist come put on a demonstration in the student-union. The purpose was entertainment but it was educational as well.

He started off by saying that everyone can be hypnotized and then proceeded to prove his point. He attempted to hypnotized the entire audience and within a few short minutes he had some thirty students hypnotized and selected them to come up on stage for the demonstration. He told the rest of us that he could actually hypnotize us as well but that it would take longer and because of the demonstration he didn’t have time. I believe this would have been possible if he had the time.

He got those students on stage and proceeded to tell the audience that people under hypnosis cannot be made to do what is against their beliefs (seemed rational). Then he made them all strip to music This seemed counter to what he just said. To be clear we were all college kids and some would strip in public just on a dare but there were several girls on stage whom I knew would never submit willingly to this yet they were doing it.

This performance was rated “G” so the hypnotist kept a close eye on things. He allowed the guys to completely take off their shirts but he stopped the event before any girl removed any clothing that could put them in a compromising position. Then he explained what he just did and it was revealing how human behavior can be manipulated. This is one example of how the legalization of drugs is, in my opinion, a bad idea or at least an idea that needs more study first.

The hypnotist fully admitted beforehand that even under the mind-control of hypnosis the person could not be made to compromise their beliefs. He then set out to prove how to get around this limitation. It should be noted that this worked on most but not all of the students.

Before he started the strip-tease music he told them (under hypnosis) that they all worked in a strip club and that stripping in public was their profession and that they were very good at it. For most of them this removed the inhibitions of taking their clothes off in public. The key was to create the mindset where the behavior is no longer considered wrong. I am not a psychologist but this seemed to work amazingly well and if this type of mind-control can work in hypnosis one can reason that it will probably work even better with mind-controlling drugs. Isn’t this the basis for the Jason Bourne movies?

If these drugs are even more readily available because they are legal, does this actually damage society? Personally I am not ready to even take that chance.

Another thing. My career was in something that required clear thinking because many lives depended on that clear thinking. We think we have a reasonable understanding of how much alcohol (a legal mind altering drug) a person can consume and still safely drive a car. We have spent the last 100 years trying to figure that out and even then we are still only making an educated guess.

Many people think I am a strict constitutionalist and to some extent I probably am, but there are exceptions. I believe in every one of our rights and that the only limits on my rights are your rights. I also believe that reasonable people (society) can and should take reasonable precautions to help ensure these rights. We have discussed this in depth on another thread and I don’t think we need to re-hash it here. If you want to get involved in that conversation it was beat to death on the “Principled Non-Voter” thread.

How many more years will it take to travel through this education and decision process to learn how much of a given drug is considered safe when operating a vehicle. Remember that each drug is different and will require a separate study. How about flying an airplane? How about dealing with a dangerous science like nuclear medicine to improve health? How much marijuana is reasonable for that nuclear-medicine doctor to have in his system? It isn’t just the science of the nuclear medicine, but if he makes an error in storing the specimens for the night that by itself could kill many people.

After we spend years making that decision we can then do it all over for each and every drug that we decide needs to be legal because if it is legal we can’t stop the doctor from consuming it can we? There are many unintended consequences and I believe these unknowns far outweigh the attempt to remove the “profit-motive.” Especially considering that we don’t even know if removing the “profit-motive” will make society safer.

How about the residual effects of each and every drug we decide to make legal? What about the long term use of each and every drug we legalize? Speaking of residual effects, how does that DIFFERENTLY affect the underwater welder who works in an environment where the normal person never goes? The underwater welder is operating in a different atmosphere than any of your non-existent studies have studied. This often changes the normally understood side-effects of the drug.

How about the pilot flying the commercial jet that your wife and small children are on? What are the effects of and how are they different from the again non-existent studies that responsible society should have conducted on a person operating in a normal atmosphere (on the ground)? We don’t know the implications of a particular drug on the average person on the ground so how could we possibly have any idea how those will impact people in different environments?

I guess we needn’t even consider the astronaut because to study that would certainly cost somewhere north of a couple trillion dollars, for each drug. You might say that these people, the underwater welder, the pilot, and the astronaut, wouldn’t use these drugs and you might be right. I would expect these people, who are likely very educated, to have the sense to stay away from these drugs. However, if the drugs were legal you couldn’t stop them. How many of us know of a pilot who has ever taken a drink of LEGAL alcohol? How many of us have even given consideration to how the affects of alcohol with a change in altitude? Those who want to legalize these drugs have probably never thought about this but the problem is VERY real.

There are too many unknowns in this for me to be comfortable legalizing drugs just to try to remove the “profit-motive” when even that is questionable.

There are a number of people who are against the legalization of drugs that are now illegal and they have different reasons. Of that group I suppose it is a very small minority of us who have these questions and as such we have little say in the matter (as a group). That said, is there anyone who can answer these concerns with supporting evidence of those answers?

I will answer my own question. NO, this research has not been done (the closest we have come is on how much alcohol we can consume and safely drive a car (on land with a normal atmosphere) and after 100 years of study we still aren’t very good at that.

We will never study the effects of each and every different drug on a person operating at other-than one atmosphere because that study is impractical. But if we legalize them we will not be able to stop those people from using them because they will then be in compliance with the law.

To be sure, in the aviation business there are industry imposed regulations but they are difficult at best to enforce when there are off-duty rules (civil laws) and on-duty rules (industry standards and regulations) that are different. The discrepancies and abuse for the most part go unnoticed until someone is killed, but by then it is too late to enforce the rules on that person and the lives he took with him.

Bottom line: I question the responsibility of legalizing drugs without a valid reason. I might be paranoid but I might be right – who knows? Is it worth the risk?

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Peter T. Burke @peter-t-burke

@thatdudeyoulike
CC:
@grand-vizier
@jlriggs57aol-com
@kevlar

I am absolutely opposed to legalizing recreational pharmaceuticals, but I am all in favor of decriminalizing all recreational pharmaceuticals. To paraphrase Mr. Reagan; “Well, There I go again!!”

I don’t use any of the recreational pharmaceuticals but if somebody who is capable of informed consent, desires to use engage in the personal use of any variety of recreational pharmaceuticals I have no objection, save and except that the user is entirely responsible financially for the deleterious consequences of his own voluntary acts. If you would play you must pay.

Legalization would only be accomplished by creating an agency of regulatory law something on the scale of the EPA, or the IRS, to grant permission for a citizen to engage in the use of recreational pharmaceuticals after proper application, examination, and payment of associated fees and taxes. I oppose the creation or expansion of regulatory agencies.

Decriminalization is simply a Legislative action to remove the section of the State and Federal statutes that prohibit the, production, manufacture, possession, use, transportation, distribution, or sale a crime as specified in the relevant penal code.

Now, given that the personal use of recreational pharmaceuticals is decriminalized, who is going to pay for the requisite hospital care for the addicts, and for the attendant social issues related to families and children that will arise from the decriminalization of recreational pharmaceuticals?

Who pays for disposing of the bodies of the users who overdose or expire from exposure connected with the life style? Who pays for the ambulances and the fire services? I am unwilling to pay for the predictable bad consequences of someones own reckless behavior.

If someone freely chooses to smash a plate glass window by ramming their own face into the glass I am not willing to their medical bills. If someone freely chooses to soak themselves in gasoline and them light themselves on fire I am not willing to pay for the predictable consequences of their bad judgement.

Criminal behavior or not, the use of recreational pharmaceuticals is rife with overdoses, counterfeit products, disease issues, etc. Regardless of the retail price of the recreational pharmaceuticals there will be a portion of the addicted population who will be unwilling to pay the open market price and they will gain the predictable consequences of black market kitchen chemistry just the same as they do presently.

Decriminalizing the recreational use will not make the attendant problems go away as if by magic.

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Kevlar @kevlar

I don’t have an opinion on the differences between “legalization” and “decriminalization” of these drugs. I do know there is a difference, but I am just saying that I don’t currently have an opinion on that.

In addition to my abovementioned stance against just casually and irresponsibly legalizing this stuff, I think Peter brings up a very valid point.

There will be financial consequences to this and as it is now, since these drugs are illegal there is a legal foundation from which we can hold these people financially accountable for their actions. I am not saying that they enforce this in a taxpayer-responsible manner, just that they can currently hold people accountable for their actions.

If we make these drugs fully legal (even more than decriminalization) that legal foundation to hold them accountable goes away and it will then be a struggle to hold them financially accountable.

As it is now if an illegal drug user caused damage to the property of another citizen he can be held to account financially and if he dies in the process his estate can be held to account. Make that drug legal and the lawyers will screw the victims more so than they do now.

Think about it, if alcohol was illegal in any amount and you had it in your system and destroyed the personal property of another, it would be very easy to find you in the wrong and you would probably be assessed damages. However, you can have alcohol in your system up to a certain level. This gives the lawyers considerable room to maneuver, protecting their client while leaving the victim out in the cold.

If alcohol was il-legal in any amount and you had it in your system and your car crashed into someone’s house, the wrongfulness would be easy to ascertain. Since it is legal to a certain point the lawyers will argue the road condition, or perhaps the legal height of the curb the car went over because if it wasn’t high enough then the city might be liable, regardless of the notion that a sober person might not have hit the curb in the first place.

How about the breathalyzer or blood test? How soon was it administered? Was it administered by a qualified person in a sanitary environment? The computer that analyzed the sample (whatever they use, it could just be a chemical reaction, I don’t know), was it properly certified, calibrated and used?

It might be easy to determine the presence or non-presence of alcohol but it is another thing to determine which side of the legal limit the driver was on. These are all tricks lawyers use to get a guilty person off the hook and the victim is left with the bill.

For clarity I do not advocate making alcohol illegal (I drink some from time to time), I am just using it as an example of how it, in concert with other things (driving, etc.) complicates our lives.

We all know the legal difficulties of assessing blame and we all know that the presence of a mind-altering drug (such as alcohol) can frustrate that already difficult process. Do we really want to complicate our problem by legalizing another thirty or forty drugs? Watch the news and you will see right now that we are struggling to determine how much of the recently legalized marijuana is legal in the system of a driver.

What happens when you are using two of those legal drugs (alcohol and marijuana for example) and both are under the legal limit (which we don’t yet have for marijuana) which means you are cleared to drive a car? How do those two legal drugs react when taken together?

We can’t even foresee accurately what will happen when you take a prescription drug and alcohol at the same time. We warn against it (especially if operating machinery) yet but people do it all the time. Prescription drugs at least have some study behind them and we still can’t accurately predict the results of mixing them. Yet we want to substantially complicate that problem? And the societal benefit that justifies that limitless and unstudied problem is what again? Somebody please tell me!

I think we are on the precipice of substantially complicating our lives and doing it for a possible societal benefit that does not exist and doing it without having given it any thought. The upside of this is limited at best and it is likely that there is no upside at all. However the potential downside is tremendous and can (in my opinion ‘will’) further damage our country. The really big attention grabber that goes unnoticed is that this is almost certainly irreversible.

Why do we, as society, want to give legal credence to something (recreational drug use) that is likely to cause much more harm to society than good?

I’m not saying this can’t ever be done but we have not even started to do our homework on this. DUE-DILIGENCE MUST BE THE WORD OF THE DAY. For some reason we are willing to skip that due diligence. Ask any investor who has made an important decision without due diligence and he will tell you a very scary and regretful story that he will never do that again.

It is GUARANTEED that there will be unintended consequences, many of which are very bad for society and precious few that are good for society (I would go so far as to say that there is no benefit to society here). We need to do our homework first and I feel very strongly about that!

I think this is a valid concern but I do respect the opinions of others. I hope others who do not share this concern can post their reasons why none of this matters!

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Peter T. Burke @peter-t-burke

@kevlar
CC:
@grand-vizier
@jlriggs57aol-com
@thatdudeyoulike

The issue of decriminalization leaves the user responsible for the consequences of his un-regulated acts.

If something is permitted by regulation and it results in a tort injury to a non-participating bystander the liability can be limited by the nature of the regulation.

A US citizen is permitted any action that is not specifically prohibited by act or effect of of public law. In performing a non-prohibited act the citizen assumes full and complete responsibility for the consequences of his acts intended or unintended.

By the decriminalizing of the use of recreational pharmaceuticals the user is at liberty to use those recreational pharmaceuticals as the user deems appropriate with the proviso that the user also assumes all responsibility for the use, suitability, etc and the liability for the consequence of his acts.

By the legalizing of the use of recreational pharmaceuticals the user is granted license by a superior authority and is exempted from some aspects of the consequences of the use of legal recreational pharmaceuticals.

When alcohol is not prohibited and there is no license grant to a consumer, the consumer has no excuse from liability for the consequences of his acts. Consuming alcohol that results in his impaired abilities is not a defense to liability.

Currently alcohol is permitted by regulation and therefore all of the requisite caveats for exemption from liability apply. When the State grants license by setting all of the conditions that are embedded in regulation the user is provided with a myriad of defenses to prosecution i.e. “Your Honor, it was just an accident that I killed all those people because while it is true that I was drunk my defense is that I was just under the ‘legal limit’ so it is not negligent homicide, your Honor!”

Nota Bene: I am not getting any notifications of any replies despite the fact that my profile is set for me to be notified by email. I was getting the notification and then they just stopped. I probably offended someone at the NSA (I assume that still stands for “No Such Agency”). I would be grateful if you would send me a message on Volkalize if you chose to respond to something I wrote. Thank you.

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1. Maybe. Too many variables to predict.
2. It would reduce dramatically.
3. Yes.
4. No. Always ways to make money if crime is your way.
5. Yes.
6. Probably true, over the long run.
7. No. May open up research, though.

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sean cassidy @smc635

Only doctors are allowed to sell drugs because they are better than us and are entitled to 17% of America’s wealth even though they provide the 37th best healthcare in the world…..on a good day.

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Steve Ja @sdj54321

I believe in a controlled legal environment illegal drugs will in fact become safer to use. I believe we should legalize all illegal drugs and control their usage through warnings, instructions on how to properly use, recommended safe dosages and laws on being under the influence, much like we do alcohol and cigarettes. We tax them as well and turn what right now is a costly preventive measure into a profiting let’s make it safer measure. We can use proceeds to place ads about the dangers of use and to set up rehab centers to get people off the drugs. also it will free up tons of prison space and reduce crime both violent and non violent in this country.
On another topic I also believe prostitution should be set up the same way nation wide as it already is in states like Nevada.

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Kevlar @kevlar

@grand-vizier
@jlriggs57aol-com
@peter-t-burke
@chris-gidney
@smc635
@sdj54321

Steve:

So far nobody has attempted to answer my concerns and neither have you so I will ask some questions based on your post.

You said: “I believe in a controlled legal environment illegal drugs will in fact become safer to use”.

Question: What logic and rational thought do you use to make and support this statement?

You said: “I believe we should legalize all illegal drugs and control their usage through warnings, instructions on how to properly use, recommended safe dosages and laws on being under the influence, much like we do alcohol and cigarettes”.

Question: What warnings would you put on the labels and how would you tailor each different label to the different drug because not all of these drugs are alike?

Question: Have you EVER known ANYONE (perhaps even yourself) to take more aspirin (a legal drug) than the directions indicate? What if someone who is less responsible than you does the same for one of these newly “legalized” drugs?

Question: Before we even get to the abovementioned point, what is the recommended “safe” dosage for each different drug? Since we are talking about drugs that are now defined as “narcotics” which are by definition more potent than non-narcotics (I am not a doctor so don’t hold me to an exact), shouldn’t we consider, in all cases as we often do for non-narcotics, body weight of the patient among other factors?

Question: The “safe” dosage of many of these drugs (not all) is currently known but they are known only from a standpoint that they are administered by trained physicians who, within reason know the side effects meaning that in a hospital setting they can reasonably control negative side effects if they happen.

These trained physicians also know the condition they are treating and other things like allergies, body weight, how one drug interacts with another drug the patient is taking. In other words these trained physicians in a clinical or hospital setting are taking reasonable precautions to ensure the safety of the patient. In addition to that, often because these people are hospitalized they are temporarily removed from society where they might do unforeseen harm to themselves and others.

Even at that, medicine is not often an exact science but is a “practice” performed by those who verifiably have, or should have the training and expertise to do this. Do you propose providing this training (that of MD qualification) to all of society?

Question: How do we determine laws concerning being “under the influence” in light of the fact that we have studied the use of alcohol for hundreds of years and how it pertains to the operation of motor vehicles for at least 100 years and we still don’t really have anything other than an educated guess? I have asked this many times and nobody has an answer.

We even decided at one time that alcohol was so bad that we needed to amend our constitution to make it illegal. We then, several years later decided that this drastic action of amending the constitution was unwarranted and we took equal and opposite action to amend the constitution to “undue” what we originally did. Even today people argue over the validity of that, both for and against one amendment or the other even both of them. Point – the research was not performed then on alcohol (a legal drug) and it has not yet been conducted to the extent necessary on most pharmaceuticals.

You said: “We tax them as well and turn what right now is a costly preventive measure into a profiting let’s make it safer measure”.

Question: Do you realize that once we teach (allow) the federal government that they can “tax” (make money from) these newly legalized drugs that is worse than giving candy to a baby?

The difference is that if you then determine that giving candy to the baby was a bad idea you can take it back from the baby. He might cry but you are in every aspect bigger than him and you will win all day long unless you are weak in the presence of a crying baby (many people are, by the way).

If the federal government is that baby and you gave him candy in the form of more taxes, you will NOT be able to take it away if you realize later that it was a bad idea. You won’t be able to take it away because the federal government has the power to legislate.

Think about cigarettes and how they are taxed. We all know that smoking cigarettes is bad for your health (someone else is responsible for your actions and pays for that but the subject here is not Obamacare). Do you really think the federal government wants to get rid of all cigarettes and lose all of the tax revenue they generate? No they don’t. You might notice that they tout the dangers of smoking at the same time showing favoritism to the tobacco industry because that industry is a very large and important source of tax revenue (the candy to which government is addicted).

The federal government will cultivate the new income stream and try to make it grow. No matter how much money society gives to the federal government it will NEVER BE ENOUGH.

On that note, in my opinion even those in government know this and deep down inside they know how destructive this can and probably will be to society. It is my opinion that this is why this idea, inside the halls of government, is only on a low simmer. There are those in government who have the power to make this happen and who want it to happen but they are far out-numbered by those who for a variety of reasons refuse to give-in because of the potential dangers. Perhaps we should “wait for the bill to pass so we can see what’s inside.”

You said: “We can use proceeds to place ads about the dangers of use and to set up rehab centers to get people off the drugs.

Question: You just openly admitted there are dangers; perhaps we should take your warning here. Do we not have enough billboards lining our interstate highway system warning us of this or that? Are there not enough warning ads in magazines and newspapers to make you cancel your subscription now?

If we know there will be problems with these drugs that will cause us to set up more “rehab” centers with the sole purpose of getting people off the drugs (as you so eloquently and accurately point out), is it possible that it could make more sense to not even embark on this path which we know for fact is fraught with danger and will, according to your accurate remark cause problems?

Briefly on taxes: We all know that all taxes, even those considered essential like taxes for defense, are ultimately a drain on the economy because even if they are taxes on a product it took labor to make that product (and bring it to market) and this makes that amount of labor NOT contribute to the economy.

If labor (sweat of the brow) contributes to the economy it is justified labor. If a certain amount is negated by tax it does not contribute to the economy. No tax can ever directly contribute to the economy because it first must be taken from the economy before it can be put back in the economy, resulting in a net gain of zero and by the time you pay the overhead of government it is a net loss to the economy. By the way, this is a valid reason why taxes should be as low as possible but that is another topic as well.

It needs to be stated with clarity that without things like specifically defense the economy could not even exist. This justifies the notion of taxes, but it does NOT JUSTIFY over-taxing. Overtaxing destroys the economy and we will all watch Obamacare do this but that is another topic.

It is one thing to spend tax dollars, albeit tax dollars from the product itself to rehab the users but that is at best a “wash.” Keep in mind that the “tax” the user pays when purchasing the drug is money that came from the fruits of his labor, whether that labor is from digging ditches for a construction company or selling shoes at the mall.

It is a “tax” on his labor which ultimately reduces the value of his labor. For provable verification please refer to his paycheck both before and after taxes. You will see and realize that the same amount of work was done for each dollar amount but that after taxes are taken by the government the value of his labor is reduced.

This is a drain on the economy that can ONLY be justified if it is essential to the very existence of the economy, meaning that without that reduction in value of his labor, or tax, the economy wouldn’t exist.

If you have conservative tendencies you will understand this. If you have liberal tendencies you can try to understand it but it is probably over your head because liberals have never met a tax they don’t like, especially if they can get someone else to pay it.

As stated above, by the time you use tax dollars to pay the overhead of government that tax is ultimately a net loss. It would be bad if it ended there with the ONLY damage being the drain on the economy but the potential for this to get worse is indeed great. Consider the following:

What if that person who bought the drug killed someone in the process of consuming that drug? Yes you can exact an “eye for an eye” and make the guilty pay with their life if circumstances warrant, but you can never, even with “an eye for an eye” justice bring back those he killed. Society will almost certainly lose in all cases. Please tell me what the benefit is? Everyone has thrown out ideas but if looked upon with rational thought, none of these ideas rises even part way to a solution.

You said: “it will free up tons of prison space and reduce crime both violent and non violent in this country”.

Question: Part of me wants to agree that it will free up prison space but I think at best that will be an initial and only temporary benefit. I believe fewer imprisonments will happen for things like possession and casual use. That is a given.

You are counting on the notion that there will be less violent crime because the user will be able to purchase the drug at the store and will not need to resort to violent crime in order to acquire the drug on the black market. You might be right!

However, I believe the increase in future crime resulting from the legalization will likely put the same number of people if not more behind bars but this time for even more unconscionable reasons.

As it is now there are many people behind bars for habitual use of these same drugs. Make these drugs legal and these people will no longer be criminals and the prisons will become less crowded. I agree to this point.

Over time and largely due to the questions previously asked (and unanswered) in this post and others pertaining to proper dosage etc., the same prison cells will fill up and even overfill to the same point as now.

The difference is that these new residents won’t be locked up for habitual use of drugs (they are now legal) but they will be locked up for things like vehicular homicide resulting from driving under the influence of a now legal drug for which we have no idea how to set a recommended dosage.

Or perhaps they didn’t read the proper dosage you wanted on the label (again because the “proper” dosage is unknown) and while they were out of their mind or under the influence, they robbed the convenience store and killed three people.

As far as prisons are concerned there might be a net gain of zero except that now you might have more dead people than before. Bottom line: I think the prisons will be just as full but more so for more heinous crimes than habitual use.

Society is about to consciously but without the requisite research attempt the “Triple Lindy” off the high board and nobody has even checked to see if there is water in the pool below. In my opinion and I re-state that this is my OPINION – this is highly irresponsible. If proper research is performed and these questions and more are properly answered then I might support it. Not before then.

To be sure, “life” is a risk-management business and the only way to be sure of not dying by a certain method is to die first of a different method. This means, as Peter correctly pointed out earlier, the only way to ensure without doubt that you will never be harmed by a “certain thing” is to commit suicide before that “certain thing” can happen. While the logic is sound it is also unreasonable. The point is that life has no guarantees (except taxes, LOL) so reasonableness is the word of the day.

Steve, this is not an attack on you personally because many people whom I hold in high regard share your view on this. Your post was clear and concise (this impresses me) and as such it was easy to address.

Bottom line as I stated before: I question the responsibility of legalizing drugs without a valid reason. So far I haven’t heard any valid reasons. The discussion is good but we still haven’t found a solution.

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James L. Riggs @jlriggs57aol-com

@grand-vizier
@kevlar
@peter-t-burke
@chris-gidney
@smc635
@sdj54321

Kevlar, good points. As a person who is definitely against the legalization of drugs, I will be interested in the answers you get to your questions.

We could just leave this issue to natural selection if it weren’t for the non-users who will be hurt when and if drugs are legalized.

If you look at how a drug or alcohol addiction works, they both share one thing, other than they are addictive, is that the more you use them the more it takes to get you to that same level of high as in previous times.

You can stick 20 labels on them that say what the recommended dose or the safe dose is, but when the user isn’t getting the high they are expecting they are going to add more and more and more as usage continues.

When the casual user turns into the addicted user, which in most cases doesn’t appear to take very long, crime will increase because the addict won’t be able to keep a job and he will do whatever it takes to get his fix.

At the risk of repeating myself too much, I will restate one last thing I said before.
“There are things unseen that will show themselves when and if drugs are legalized.”

We can try to foresee what will happen, but there will be a multitude of things we hadn’t figured on, especially when it comes to something that is addictive and mind altering.

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Peter T. Burke @peter-t-burke

@jlriggs57aol-com
CC
@grand-vizier
@kevlar
@chris-gidney
@smc635
@sdj54321

Kevlar, James L. Riggs, et al:
I agree with your specific and general positions. I would like to address the claim that making something “legal” will some how magically remove the criminal motive from the issue.

Real world:

A carton of unfiltered Camels costs $75.00 here in Texas.

A carton of German made unfiltered Camels costs $32.00 USD in Progreso, Tamaulipas, Mexico.

From personal experience;
there are 60 cartons in a case of Camels and that means a $1,980 difference. You can get 50 cases into a pick-up with a camper shell which results in about $100,000 profit per pick-up load. The run across the border is about 10 miles. 10 runs (twice a day for a 5 day week?) with a pick-up would fill a Freight Liner with a 56′ box van.

You can do the math and figure out for yourselves that a Freight Liner with a 56″ box trailer would mean almost $1,000,000 per run for the Freight Liner.

The cigarettes are legal and regulated in Texas and in Mexico. All of the appropriate warnings are plastered just about everywhere.

So if legalizing, regulating, and giving warnings take the profit out of something why do you suppose smuggling cigarettes is competing with smuggling marijuana? Could it just be the profit in beating the tax burden on the retail product? Really? For just a measly $100K in just one pick-up load?

Do you have any idea of what would be the problem in training a dog to sniff out tobacco? Buttlegging is a huge business despite the fact that the product is legal, regulated, and warnings are posted everywhere.

There is also a great opportunity for reprobates around the world to turn from their back sliding ways of counterfeiting US currency and turn their hand to the honest labor of counterfeiting State tobacco stamps. The new US $100 bill is making life difficult for honest, hard-working counterfeiters anyway. New horizons, new opportunities.

I often wonder where the idea of “Legalize it plus regulate it and the result will be decreased criminal motive!” comes from because it is so naive.

The only way to eliminate the criminal motive is to eliminate the criminal.

Decriminalize the personal possession, use, transportation of recreational pharmaceuticals.
Mandatory death penalty for the manufacture, transportation with intent to distribute, distribution, sale, or storage with intent to distribute of any prohibited narcotic.

Nobody will get any smarter and nobody will be rehabilitated. After a while there just won’t be enough criminals left to run the trade. Most of them will either get smart and move on or wind up as fertilizer.
This works in Mexico – just look at how the Cartels run their business. It is on a “Do or Die” basis – you do as you are told or you die. Is there anybody you know who is interested in setting up shop in South Texas and challenging the Cartels?

I think all of this is really silly. People are going to do what they are going to do. People who use drugs place a different value on their time and their lives than the people who don’t use drugs.

I lost somebody who was near and dear to me to recreational pharmaceuticals. I was astounded to discover that I didn’t have enough money or influence to make her see the world differently or to value her own life differently. There were no Doctors, Hospitals, Churches, counselors, Judges or material things that could convince her to do anything other than temporarily postpone her use of recreational pharmaceuticals.

People she knew and associated with, including her family, were like cannibals being kicked off a person they had invited to come over for dinner. Her friends, and family, were happy to help her get what ever they though she ought to try – marijuana, cocaine, pills, alcohol, you name it. She got clean for three years and her friends and family got her back on it so they could sell it to her.
The local dealers didn’t appreciate me, or my friend Sam Colt who went with me to talk to a few of them. All my efforts got me was heart ache at home. When I got between her and her “choices” she got really angry with me.

I finally realized that this is a contest like so many other contests in history. A quick read of how this sort of issue was handled in societies in the past reveals that all victories in this contest are just temporary. From Rome to the USA there has never been a permanent solution to this issue. There has just been a lot of misery and profiteering from the self-inflicted misfortune of people who are committed to synthetic happiness.

Yes, recreational pharmaceutical use is a personal choice issue and she died in February from her choices. I still miss her, but it was her choice that killed her.

This is a moral issue and government has never been able to legislate morality regardless of how much misery they inflict.

For all the BS and bravado it is impressive how quickly people line up and behave when there are just a few heads on sticks around a toll booth. If the US is not going to get serious about this they should stop profiteering from the people who choose to surrender their lives to the effects of various forms of recreational pharmaceuticals.

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James L. Riggs @jlriggs57aol-com

@grand-vizier
@kevlar
@peter-t-burke
@chris-gidney
@smc635
@sdj54321

All of these things, we have brought out, show that there are still things we have yet to foresee. It could grow to twice the size and there still will be as many that we won’t know.

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Gary @grand-vizier

@kevlar
@peter.t.burke
@jlriggs57aol-com
@chris-gidney
@smc635
@sdj54321
For me you are overthinking this
Drugs have been around for thousands of years. They have been illegal a VERY small portion of that time without mankind or civilization being destroyed.
The vast majority of people will not become addicts and I for one don’t care to babysit the others. A lot of popularity of drug use is just marketing. If it becomes Uncool a lot of social use will disappear.
When I said legalization would take the illegal profit motive out of the equation I did not say to tax it to death to raise prices to the point of reinstating the profit motive as accurately described by Peter.
I stated much earlier the two groups most interested in keeping the un-winnable drug wars going are the dope dealers and dope fighters.
More money is spent year after year and we are not one bit closer to “Winning” the drug wars than when we started. The old definition of insanity” keep doing the same thing over and over hoping for a different result” would seem appropriate to me.

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Gary @grand-vizier

@ peter.t.burke
I do NOT mean to minimize your story about the drug user you were close to.
I have had close personal experiences along the same lines and it is beyond terrible.It was a hard task to overcome and even then failure is all too often the result but the simple fact remains,until the person decides FOR THEMSELVES to cease using drugs they continue to do so.
Still I remain opposed to using laws to incarcerate people and by criminalization further assist in completely ruining lives for what in the end is a personal and private choice.
There is plenty of personal and private suffering without Government assistance.
This is a heartfelt issue for me as I can tell it is for you and others.

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James L. Riggs @jlriggs57aol-com

@kevlar
@peter.t.burke
@grand-vizier
@chris-gidney
@smc635
@sdj54321

Gary, I find this an odd situation, as you and I are usually of the same mind, it is odd to have an opposing view.

I will agree that there have been several drugs around for thousands of years, however, there were never as many as there are now, thanks to advance chemistry. Nor were so many ways to enhance the natural ones to make the effects stronger and longer lasting in pot, coke, etc.

In many of those thousands of years the availability was mostly restricted to the areas where they grew. In the U.S. opiates were not available to the public, they had barely begun to be used in medicine in the 1800’s.

However, I digress. Drug testing began in the 1980’s. Here is an excerpt from the link below.

{Meanwhile, other employers were persuaded on their own to test by statistics showing that drug users are more likely than other workers to file workers’ compensation claims, use sick benefits, be late to work, be involved in a workplace accident, request extra time off, steal, perform poorly, and create disciplinary problems.}

http://nwlaborpress.org/2001/8-3-01Drugs2.html

These were the problems that they found in the 1980’s when drugs were illegal, are we to believe that this will somehow, miraculously be different because the drugs would be legal? You can change the legality of drugs, but you can’t change human nature, especially when that nature is altered by drugs.

Having watched this “drug war” for the past several decades I have come to believe that it is bogus. We all see in the news where they will catch some high profile drug dealer, the DEA stop a speed boat carrying drugs get captured, or some other BS story.

This all reminds me of the Vietnam War. We are not “in it to win it”. We have wasted billions of dollars on a war we, I mean the government, had never intended on winning. Is there anyone who still believes that the government is truly trying to eliminate drugs in this country? It’s been a bogus effort from the beginning, a dog and pony show.

Do I believe we could keep 99% of the drugs out of this country if we wanted to? Without a doubt, but we are not in it to win it and we never have been. If you want to know why, look up the noses of the D.C. politicians.

I work in construction, and have for nearly 30 years. When I climb a 40’+ scaffold to do a job, I don’t want anyone on that scaffold to be hungover from a night of partying nor do I want some drug burnout up there with me. The actions of a heavy boozer or a drug addict are too unpredictable and when it’s my butt on the line, I’m not taking any chances.

Before I will let either get me hurt, I will drop him like a sandbag. That may seem harsh but it’s my life on the line up there.

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Steve Ja @sdj54321

@kevlar
Could you break those down a little bit so it is not so long, or private message me that entire thing so I can break it down easier and make sure not miss any questions you have. I will be more then happy to answer them to the best of my ability

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Kevlar @kevlar

@sdj54321

Steve:

Your request for me to shorten my posts is certainly valid and when and where possible I will comply. However, my posts are only as long as necessary to convey my thoughts on a particular subject. No longer.

I agree that my posts get lengthy and for that I apologize to you and everyone else but I assure you that I do not ever intend to be longer than necessary.

Here is what I do and it might work for you as well. I go on to the Volkalize site and copy all the relevant posts going back to my last post (using SELECT/COPY). Then I open Microsoft Word (or whatever word processor you use) and PASTE it into the document. This allows me to use the capabilities of the word-processor to highlight important parts of other people’s posts I want to address and make certain I said what I wanted to say before posting.

Using the word-processor gives you all those capabilities including grammar and spelling checkers (errors will inevitably get through). If your thoughts are out-of-order you can always move a paragraph to a new position.

One note though: When you copy/paste from Volkalize to your word-processor the format might be extremely small font which might not be readable (this is the case for me). If it is, you need to select the text inside the word-processor and (in my case) right-click and select “clear formatting.” Depending on the WP you use there might be an extra step involved. If you “clear formatting” the text will appear in the font and size you have selected as default.

I find this handy and you probably will too, especially when addressing a long post or several posts at the same time. I find that I often address several posts at the same time because to do so separately would require saying the same thing multiple times and that can degrade from the desired clarity.

I hope this helps!

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Kevlar @kevlar

@jlriggs57aol-com
@peter.t.burke
@grand-vizier
@chris-gidney
@smc635
@sdj54321

James:

Great post! You have personified very well the true essence of this problem. Many people want to legalize these drugs without a valid reason (none have been presented so far), yet they never consider that they will be making it very difficult for the individual to protect his interest.

Stated differently, you have a valid point that you don’t want to get on that 40′ scaffold with the drug user because this puts your life unnecessarily at risk. As it is now under current law, if you refuse on the basis that he has been using illegal drugs you at least have the law on your side. You still might have to prove he is using it but for the sake of conversation we presume you can.

If these drugs become legal and you are required to be on that same scaffold with the user, if you refuse on the grounds of safety, you could lose your job. Because of this you will take risks you wouldn’t otherwise take and that is wrong just so that he can get legally “high.”

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Steve Ja @sdj54321

@kevlar
Excellent idea I’ll work on my answers now

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Steve Ja @sdj54321

@kevlar
@jlriggs57aol-com

Hope this helps. I tried to answer each question thoughtfully and to the best of my ability
Included you Riggs, because I read you were interested in the answers

I said: “I believe in a controlled legal environment illegal drugs will in fact become safer to use”.

Question: What logic and rational thought do you use to make and support this statement?

Answer: Currently drugs are mixed with other things to maximize profits for the dealers. Resulting in an unpure drug. A person takes X amount one time and is fine, takes the same amount the next time and over doses due to different concentration levels. In a controlled, regulated if you will environment, you will get the same concentration each time, so you know exactly what you are getting.

I said: “I believe we should legalize all illegal drugs and control their usage through warnings, instructions on how to properly use, recommended safe dosages and laws on being under the influence, much like we do alcohol and cigarettes”.

Question: What warnings would you put on the labels and how would you tailor each different label to the different drug because not all of these drugs are alike?

Answer: Warnings would be similiar to what we put on cigarettes. You can tailor the warnings of each drug with the active components of each drug on the harmful side effects of the components and addictive natures of the drugs. also warnigns about mixing the drug with other drugs(alcohol) and whether it is a downer/brings you down drug(alcohol) or an upper/makes you high drug(caffeine)

Question: Have you EVER known ANYONE (perhaps even yourself) to take more aspirin (a legal drug) than the directions indicate? What if someone who is less responsible than you does the same for one of these newly “legalized” drugs?

Answer: Anytime you take more then the reccomended safe dosage you rick something
harmful, such as hospitalization and even death. This would be no different with these drugs, then any other drug and most things period. You can actually die from drinking too much water

Question: Before we even get to the abovementioned point, what is the recommended “safe” dosage for each different drug? Since we are talking about drugs that are now defined as “narcotics” which are by definition more potent than non-narcotics (I am not a doctor so don’t hold me to an exact), shouldn’t we consider, in all cases as we often do for non-narcotics, body weight of the patient among other factors?

Answer: I am not an expert on that field and it would of course require studies on *safe*, where you get the desired effect, doesn’t nessecarrily mean it does not come with risks, as safe does not mean risk free. aka any legal drug and *unsafe* where if you go above the *safe* dosage you are at a much higher risk of harmful non desired effects.

Question: The “safe” dosage of many of these drugs (not all) is currently known but they are known only from a standpoint that they are administered by trained physicians who, within reason know the side effects meaning that in a hospital setting they can reasonably control negative side effects if they happen.

Answer: didn’t see a question here

Question: How do we determine laws concerning being “under the influence” in light of the fact that we have studied the use of alcohol for hundreds of years and how it pertains to the operation of motor vehicles for at least 100 years and we still don’t really have anything other than an educated guess? I have asked this many times and nobody has an answer.

Answer: Under the influence would mean you are currently experiences effects of the drug. Of course you would have to set a number on levels on what is considered under the influence, like we do alcohol. Again this requires studies and I do not have an exact number, but if a person tests above that number then they can be charged with a DUI just the same as alcohol.

Question: Do you realize that once we teach (allow) the federal government that they can “tax” (make money from) these newly legalized drugs that is worse than giving candy to a baby?

Answer: It is no different then a cigarette or alcohol tax that we use today to educate on the effects of cigarettes and alcohol and the harmful effects these drugs have. Would be used the same way

I said: “We can use proceeds to place ads about the dangers of use and to set up rehab centers to get people off the drugs.

Question: You just openly admitted there are dangers; perhaps we should take your warning here. Do we not have enough billboards lining our interstate highway system warning us of this or that? Are there not enough warning ads in magazines and newspapers to make you cancel your subscription now?

Answer: Yes there are dangers, just as there is with drinking and smoking which are all legal. educating the public on harmful effects is not a bad thing, but yes soemtimes there is an excessive use of billboards etc etc, but education I feel is important in all aspects of a society to include drug use, sex, food.

If we know there will be problems with these drugs that will cause us to set up more “rehab” centers with the sole purpose of getting people off the drugs (as you so eloquently and accurately point out), is it possible that it could make more sense to not even embark on this path which we know for fact is fraught with danger and will, according to your accurate remark cause problems?

Answer: The rehab centers exist currently, just the tax dollars extracted from drug sales can be used to pay for them, rather then the current tax pool.

What if that person who bought the drug killed someone in the process of consuming that drug? Yes you can exact an “eye for an eye” and make the guilty pay with their life if circumstances warrant, but you can never, even with “an eye for an eye” justice bring back those he killed. Society will almost certainly lose in all cases. Please tell me what the benefit is? Everyone has thrown out ideas but if looked upon with rational thought, none of these ideas rises even part way to a solution.

Answer:. People kill on these drugs now, that will not change with making them legal. People kill while under the influence of alcohol today too. solution is education and rehabilitation. Its all I have on this, other then that how can you prevent someone from being immoral if he/she wants to be?

I said: “it will free up tons of prison space and reduce crime both violent and non violent in this country”.

Question: Part of me wants to agree that it will free up prison space but I think at best that will be an initial and only temporary benefit. I believe fewer imprisonments will happen for things like possession and casual use. That is a given.

Answer: Didn’t get a question here.

You are counting on the notion that there will be less violent crime because the user will be able to purchase the drug at the store and will not need to resort to violent crime in order to acquire the drug on the black market. You might be right!

Answer: Never really got a question, but i’d like to respond to the prison part. People go to jail today for murder and other violent crimes while beign under the influence. So legalizing the drugs will nto increase this number, in fact it might even lower the number when people get educated on *safe* usage. I do not believe that just because you make them legal that all of a sudden millions of people will become habitual users and fall dependant on these drugs. I also do not believe that crime will go up over time due to legalizing the drugs, I believe they will go down. I also realize that an illegal trade for drugs will still exist, but believe it will be drastically lower then it is today

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Kevlar @kevlar

@sdj54321

Steve:

With all due respect not a single one of your answers did anything to even partially convince me that doing this will be a net-positive for society. I believe it will be a net negative (by a considerable amount) for society.

In fact if you take each item by itself, in other words ignoring the net effect, not one of them paints a positive picture even by itself.

Most of your justification is based on another bad idea. What I mean is that you cannot justify bad behavior by pointing to other bad behavior.

You gave several perfect examples:

“Answer: Anytime you take more then the reccomended safe dosage you rick something harmful, such as hospitalization and even death. This would be no different with these drugs, then any other drug and most things period.”

New question for Steve: using your above quote, how does pointing to other bad behavior, that of not following warning labels designed to protect you, justify doing more of that (ignoring warnings) on an even more powerful and more dangerous drug? My analysis of your justification – FAIL

Another example of using other bad behavior to justify even more bad behavior:

“Answer: I am not an expert on that field and it would of course require studies on *safe*, where you get the desired effect, doesn’t nessecarrily mean it does not come with risks, as safe does not mean risk free. aka any legal drug and *unsafe* where if you go above the *safe* dosage you are at a much higher risk of harmful non desired effects.” ANALYSIS – FAIL

The grammar errors make it difficult to decipher that paragraph but I think I was able to muddle through it. If I miss-read it please let me know. I have pointed out many times that even though we have been working with legal alcohol for hundreds of years and applying that to vehicle operation for at least 100 years, we still don’t know the correct answer on dosage. We can only make an educated guess. Some people are dangerous below the legal limit while some people are in full control above the legal limit. The only way to make it accurate (if you even could) is to study it on each and every person in the country to accurately see how they react.

Just because we cannot get the alcohol thing right does not in any way justify trying to replicate our as-yet failed efforts with a different drug. You can’t justify bad or harmful behavior by pointing to other bad behavior. I will let others point out the rest of the inconsistencies, but I found a few favorites.

On the “safe” dsage of these drugs being known to only trained professionals:

Your quote: “Answer: didn’t see a question here”

If you were looking for a question mark so that you could identify a question then you got me. It took three paragraphs to set up the question and the question was asked in the third paragraph. I didn’t try to hide it but since you missed it, here it is:

Do you propose providing this training (that of MD qualification) to all of society?

Of course it loses some of its relevancy with the newly found lack of context but that context was in the original post.

The question, in case you didn’t understand it was that currently trained professionals administer these drugs in a tightly controlled environment. If you provided all that training and certification to everyone who might ever take that drug (a nearly impossible task and as proof I offer the fact that not every citizen is a doctor) the very best you could do, and that is assuming that no one ever abused the drug, is break even as far as society is concerned. You assume that everyone has the proper training to administer heroin to themselves and to do so only when medically indicated, because recreational use of this drug has no benefit whatsoever. AT best you have not improved anything over and above what we have now. But you sure have opened the doors for substantial downside risk.

Your statement “Answer: Under the influence would mean you are currently experiences effects of the drug. Of course you would have to set a number on levels on what is considered under the influence, like we do alcohol.” This is completely ridiculous (in my opinion) because as I have stated many times we can’t even get this right on alcohol after years of experience with it.

To put it even more obviously, society has FAILED for several hundred years to come up with a realistic legal number for alcohol (that fits everyone) and yet you believe this failure somehow justifies society going out and doing it again but this time with a far more potent and deadly drug? And to top it off we should allow these new drugs to be administered by people who have no idea what they are doing and some of them can’t even read English. ANALYSIS – FAIL

In regards to “taxing” these drugs. We place a “special tax” (more than just a sales tax) on cigarettes and we justify that because we all admit at some level that smoking is bad for you. We use this “BAD” to justify the extra tax. However the extra “tax” goes to the general fund and yes, some gets used to print warning labels and such about cigarettes but I guarantee you that if there wasn’t a net gain in this for the government this would not be happening. How can you use this “bad” behavior to justify other “bad” behavior?

Your quote for reference to the last paragraph: “Answer: It is no different then a cigarette or alcohol tax that we use today to educate on the effects of cigarettes and alcohol and the harmful effects these drugs have. Would be used the same way”

The next one really kills me. You admit that you admitted that you know these drugs will harm society yet you can’t even act on your own advice:

Your quote of your own quote: “I said: “We can use proceeds to place ads about the dangers of use and to set up rehab centers to get people off the drugs.”” I don’t even know how to quote you saying that you are fully aware that you previously admitted you were wrong and still willing to give it a try, sorry.

If you know you are wrong and you admit that you are wrong and then later admit that you admitted that you knew you were wrong – why do you insist on going through with this?

This may be difficult for you to follow, it is for me, but even you know that rehab centers will need to be built and the only reason to build them is because people either cannot or will not act responsibly with these drugs and yet, with NO justifying benefit to society you insist on legalizing the drugs anyway.

Let me see if I understand this correctly. If we legalize these drugs, and we know there is no over-arching benefit to society in doing so but we legalize them anyway, we will then be able to identify people who will abuse them and we will then be able to justify building a rehab center and hiring people to run this rehab center. Think about how many jobs that will create!!! These will be make-work jobs that ultimately contribute NOTHING to society but this does fit in very well with the Obama method of creating a problem so we can put people to work fixing it.

On people who kill when under the influence of mind altering drugs your justification is as follows: “Answer:. People kill on these drugs now, that will not change with making them legal. People kill while under the influence of alcohol today too. solution is education and rehabilitation. Its all I have on this, other then that how can you prevent someone from being immoral if he/she wants to be?”

Please tell me that you are smart enough to NOT USE THIS as justification to make even more dangerous legal. “People kill while under the influence of alcohol today” is somehow justification for making more dangerous drugs legal? Respectfully – ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

Sorry Steve, with all due respect I just can’t continue. Your post makes absolutely NO SENSE at all. There are people on this very site for whom I have a great deal of respect even though they disagree with me on this. Even those people know you cannot justify bad behavior by pointing to other bad behavior.

I’m not asking them to but I’ll bet even those who disagree with me about legalizing these drugs could use their capability for rational thought to completely destroy your post.

It is not my intention to do that and I think I have made my point, so I will stop. If you have any, even one idea as to how legalizing these drugs will be a net benefit to society I am ready to listen.

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James L. Riggs @jlriggs57aol-com

@kevlar
@peter.t.burke
@grand-vizier
@chris-gidney
@smc635
@sdj54321

I guess I need to ask a question at this point. Why do we need drugs to be legalized? Will we have a better country for it? Will we have a better society if we do? Would our biggest reason for legalizing drugs is to say “see we are just as cool as Denmark”? Or do we want to legalize drugs just so we can say we did?

We have all been discussing the negatives and how to avoid them, but what would be the real and true positives to making drugs legal?

Kevlar, if I sort of stole your question, my apologies.

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Kevlar @kevlar

@jlriggs57aol-com
@peter.t.burke
@grand-vizier
@chris-gidney
@smc635

James:

To the contrary my friend, you are doing a much better job of explaining this than me.

I love rational debate based on the merits but that last one had no merit and no rational thought.

Rational thought for the other side might include something like a credible study done on the rate of alcohol related crime, both violent and non-violent during Prohibition versus immediately thereafter. I am not sure that study exists in the first place but this would be rational thought.

Using bad behavior to justify more bad behavior has nothing to do with rational thought, intelligent discussion or debate.

James I am going to back out of this for a while to cool off. You can carry the torch for both of us because you explain it better than me anyway.

By the way – great post!

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Gary @grand-vizier

I give up!
I think we beat the life out of this.

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Steve Ja @sdj54321

@jlriggs57aol-com
@kevlar

Well I believe making it legal will be good for society it will clean up a lot of drug infested neighborhoods(legalizing prostitution would do the same) It would not promote destruction and the drugs can be made safer through regulation and the consumer will know exactly what he/she is putting into their body. Plus i feel it would be less government intense then having them illegal and would actually shrink the size of the government. Also I think in the long run less people would be using the drugs then currently do. Also it would create jobs and revenue for government and people

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James L. Riggs @jlriggs57aol-com

@kevlar
@peter.t.burke
@grand-vizier
@chris-gidney
@smc635
@sdj54321

Steve, this is probably coming down to a matter of opinion. You feel that it will clean up a lot of drug infested neighborhoods and I feel it will just create more. You obviously feel that people will be able to control how much they take, while I feel they will need more and more as time goes on. You feel that it would help shrink government and I feel that it would increase crime therefore increasing the size local government, by way of law enforcement.

I just don’t see that we are gaining any ground on this discussion, one way or another.

If you have no objection, I would like to call this a draw, no winners, no losers.

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Steve Ja @sdj54321

@jlriggs57aol-com

I think that is a good idea. Nobody was hurt by this and it was just friendly discussion. Both sides made their cases

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Peter T. Burke @peter-t-burke

@grand-vizier

CC
@jlriggs57aol-com
@kevlar

Gary,

I did not take your comments as marginalizing my experience. Thank you for the consideration though.

I basically agree with you although that might not be apparent.

I would not legalize drugs but I would decriminalize them. Decriminalization means to remove all criminal penalties (fines, incarceration, government rehabilitation, public exploitation, etc) from the legal fact of the issue that is currently prohibited by statute.

My objection is to the people who operate an industry that exploits the weakness of the drug user. The Penal Industrial complex is absolutely dependent on the continuation of the industry that consists of managing the illicit drug economy in the US.
I also think that if the government were to be interested in actually helping those who are actually victimized by the Recreational Pharmaceutical Industry, the government would terminate the existence of the producers by what ever means necessary.

I haven’t responded to this discussion as I have been left out as you can see by looking at the comments. I have been included by James L Riggs but I have not received any notification from Volkalize so I recently discovered these comments only by accident.

“What is your opinion on this topic, Peter T. Burke?”

My opinion is that I am not particularly welcome in this discussion except by one or maybe two individuals and that Volkalize is probably not as welcoming to diverse opinions as is claimed.

Since I am an outspoken opinionated conservative I have had experience with censorship on Newsvine, Sodahead, and Facebook despite each of those sites claiming it was just a system glitch – until they all finally admitted that they censor certain points of view for the protection of the other users of the site.

I hope that this is not the case here on Volkalize, but censorship of opinion is certainly the standard of managed public exchange in the US.

My compliments to Kevlar, James L Riggs, and yourself for attempting civil discussion.

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James L. Riggs @jlriggs57aol-com

@peter-t-burke
@grand-vizier
@kevlar

Peter I don’t think anyone was intentionally leaving you out of the discussion. I do however think that some do not know about using @ and that it is a courtesy to add the @’s of all involved in the discussion. Those who are new may not be aware of that. When my entire post is for a singular person I will post only his @,

As far as anyone trying to purposely keep you out of a discussion because you are an outspoken opinionated conservative, were that the case they would be censoring me and Kevlar also.

I can assure you there is no censoring on Volkalize. You are free to call XXXXX a no good piece of XXXXXXXX, or even a XXXXX XXXx, if you want to and no one will censor you.

Just kidding.

Maybe @grand-vizier could talk to the right people and see what might be the issue.

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Peter T. Burke @peter-t-burke

@jlriggs57aol-com

CC
@grand-vizier
@kevlar

Thank you for your response. I do intend to hang around for a bit to see what the conditions of free discourse are here on Volkalize.

Just as a matter of information I never feel the need to call XXXXX a no good piece of XXXXXXXX, or even a XXXXX XXXx. That would only entitle them to serve it right back to me and I don’t really like eating crow, particularly used decayed crow.

Personally I enjoy the fact that people don’t automatically agree with me especially if they are intelligent. In my world education does not serve as a useful substitute for intelligence.

I have owned and operated several websites. Fortunately, I sold them to people who enjoyed the burden more than I did. I know that adding features to working websites is not that difficult depending on the site engine that is being used.

Assuming that Jordan Bosstick is still the owner/operator of this site; how do we let her, or her successors-in-interest know that there may be some features that would improve the site? (HTML? Notifications a) Automatic notification of any response to the thread, and separately b) notification of response to individual comments? Email notification should track back to the thread or comment that was responded to not just the site in general.)

I do think that people who choose to not behave should be put in a “time-out” but I am adamantly opposed to any form of censorship.

If this is truly a site for open civil discussion of US politics I would be delighted to advertise it’s existence to the several hundred people who followed me on Newsvine and the 1500 some odd people who chose to follow me on Sodahead.

I found it very interesting that the majority of the people who followed me on Newsvine and Sodahead basically did not agree with me more than half of the time. I enjoyed that and learned a lot from the exchanges.

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James L. Riggs @jlriggs57aol-com

@peter-t-burke

Loved your comment: “Just as a matter of information I never feel the need to call XXXXX a no good piece of XXXXXXXX, or even a XXXXX XXXx. That would only entitle them to serve it right back to me and I don’t really like eating crow, particularly used decayed crow.” Too funny.

Try here, to leave a message for Jordan.

https://www.facebook.com/Volkalize

Glad you’re not jumping ship and I’m sure Volkalize would appreciate your endorsement.

Hang in there.

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TKList @tklist

@jlriggs57aol-com
@kevlar
@peter.t.burke
@grand-vizier
@chris-gidney
@smc635
@sdj54321

End the war on drugs.
Legalize drugs.

It will remove money, guns and power from cartels, gangs, and political corruption.

It will the greatly reduce gang violence and end drug war violence, which will save the lives of children and adults.

It will protect children since there will not be a monetary incentive for dealers to push drugs.

Less fathers will be in prison, therefore more fathers will be with their children and families.

More kids will attend school since there will not be the easy money from dealing drugs to lure them into leaving school.

It will remove money from the inner city gangs which will in turn, make it much harder for gang members to purchase guns.

It will free up money that was used on law enforcement to be used for drug education and treatment. Also freed up resources could be shifted to law enforcement in Murder, Rape, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking, Violent Assault, Burglary and Border Security.

It will remove the problem of drug smugglers crossing the border illegally and lessen the danger to border security and residents of border towns.

Court expenses will be reduced from the reduction in cases.

States expenses will be reduced because they will need fewer jails.

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Gary @grand-vizier

@tklist
And all the others
I think this is where I came in!
Great discussion,I think about every viewpoint has been covered save FREE DRUGS for voters at polling places so there will be good excuses for voting for our political masters.
Having offered this splendid suggestion I withdraw from this topic!
Fine booze for the older generation will also be served !
Vote for ME !
I promise to steal less,pass no new laws,and stay out of everyone else’s business!

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Two Cents @twocents

@jlriggs57aol-com
@kevlar
@peter.t.burke
@grand-vizier
@chris-gidney
@smc635
@sdj54321
@TKlist

I wanted to revisit this discussion now that we are seeing the fallout from Colorado. Have you guys been following the story? I created a discussion on this topic HERE http://www.volkalize.com/topic/weed-party-in-colorado-what-does-the-law-say-what-are-the-economic-effects/ I am interested to know what all of you think. I also appreciate dissenting opinions. Thanks

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Moselle Timless @mosellegold

@thatdudeyoulike

I agree with you on legalization of drugs. We can look at the outcome of it just by looking at the results with Amsterdam as well as other countries who are not strict on drugs use. But if who doesnt know already, the US gov controls the drug trade. This leads back to the French Connection / Pipe lines. It wont stop because its a cash cow and we all know how the US is greedy

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Daniel Baerman @jbdbibbaerman

Well somebody did a good job of explaining the legalization of drugs and why that would be a good idea. I wouldn’t do cocaine myself either, but it’s definitely someone’s choice to do so.

I did notice you never mentioned that the 9th Amendment WOULD protect drug use, but that’s okay.

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