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freitasm
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  #1534026 16-Apr-2016 16:31
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nunz
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  #1534029 16-Apr-2016 16:34
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tdgeek:
nunz:

 

jonathan18:

 

 

 

networkn:

 

 

 

Interestingly, I have never taken ANY of those drugs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

And hence why I'm not surprised at your reductionist take on the "problem". Nothing this complex can be simplified down to (or solved by) the mantras "drugs are bad" and "increase the penalties".

 

 

 

There is clearly an increasing body of evidence pointing towards the advantages to the wider society as well as individuals of treating drugs as a medical versus criminal issue. 

 

 

 

Two interesting things I read/listened to on this matter this week:

 

 

 

First up, an interview on Nat Rad with one of the lead authors on the recent report on why the war on drugs is a failure.

 

 

 

Second, closer to home, reporting from a recent survey on NZer's attitude towards maryjane, in particular for medical use

 

 

 

The interviewee in the first link makes some interesting comments regarding the benefits of putting any savings from reduced policing and court/incarceration requirements (and/or I assume tax revenue, if you want to go there) into harm minimisation (drug treatment etc). Something clearly govts the world over do not practice when it comes to the most "dangerous"/costly drug of all: alcohol.

 

 

 

I know I've got as much chance of changing your mind on this issue as a I have of winning Lotto (and I don't buy tickets!), but reading/listening to this kind of stuff will at least expose you to a more contemporary understanding of what is considered an effective approach to drugs - an understanding  that even otherwise conservative politicians (including our own Peter Dunne) are becoming increasingly warm towards.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ironically - the very arguments used regarding making use of the tax take from MJ sales should be applied to tobacco. Has it happened and has it reduced harm? It seems we have increasing numbers of young (women more than men) taking up smoking despite the horror photos, education, cost and social pariah-ship associated with not being allowed inside to smoke. It has become almost cool to stand outside flagrantly lighting up something toxic to all.

 

 

 

We fund patches, gum, education, hot lines etc yet smoking is still very high amongst the most heavily educated, todays youth. Perhaps the best option is to tax it into extinction, but then you just end up growing it under cover (although no one seems to grow their own tobacco funnily enough).

 

 

 

While the mood towards MJ is growing lighter, probably because it is being contrasted with alcohol, tobacco and promoted for its medicinal good, we are ironically looking or moving toward making tobacco illegal and having a smoke free NZ. maybe in 100 years we will be having the legalise tobacco, it's not much worse than MJ debate.

 

 

 

As a youngster I was very puritan in my thoughts on drugs. i watched them foul up a number of friends and family. I didn't drink, smoke or do drugs.

 

 

 

As I get older I have seen friends who have had a quiet joint shared amongst three or four of them while strolling around a golf course with putters in hand, on a relaxed Sunday morning. I cant say I begrudged them the relaxation they enjoyed, although their game did seem improved by it so maybe I should begrudge them being drug cheats.

 

 

 

I hate drug harm - end of story. I drink coffee and the occasional beer / wine. Ive seen alchohol and drugs mess up my wider family big time. I worry for my kids if they will pick up the habit and if they have the gene. However slamming a user in jail / gaol is not the answer. if people want to destroy brain cells - more power to them. It's their body and life, just don't mess up others.

 

 

 

I also think that the penalties for getting into trouble under the influence need to be weighted far more heavily. Drunk driving, habitual drunk driving, drug and alchohol fueled violence should be hammered hard. 30 days breaking rocks for the first offence (I'm not talking half a glass over the odds but really slathered)  and heavier penalties for habitual re-offending (along with education for those who do want to help themselves.).

 

 

 

I've been attached by P heads with a machete. I've had them try to break into my car through the wind screen while my kids were inside and try to run me down with their vehicles. I've been threatened with broken bottles, attacked by drunks etc. I've also worked in drug rehab and walked a lot of friends through the night when they were on the nod or similar. I have a lot of sympathy for the addicted, but none for those who get plastered and choose to do what ever they like to others.

 

 

 

Rehabilitation, education, moderation, and huge dis-incentives to deter abuse. Above all - tax it and DO put the money into harm reduction and medical car.e After all, as Mr Roger Douglas advised, user pays. Self fund the support.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



Agree 100%

It's bad enough now, why add to it?

 

 

 

 

Again, ironically - de-criminalisation may be a way of reducing it, not adding to it. The harm decriminalisation removes is probably more than the harm of giving another option for recreational substance usage. As a coffee drinking, occasional beer imbibing guy, I stand on the brink of hypocrasy - legalise what I am comfortable with, not others.

 

Earlier this year I went on a four week opiate holiday. opiates all day and night. Thanks little poppy. however I'm not a drug user. Why? It was legally prescribed morphine, etc to deal with bone fractures and surgery. Whats the difference between that and my mate who sells the same stuff at $20 per pop or similar? Legalisation nad acceptance. But it is still drug use.

 

 

 

We already have legalised heroin alternatives ( methodone) which is nothing more than a legal loop hole minimizing harm from those who would commit more crime to get more heroin.  The 'done programme gets people seriously high, it just reduces criminal activity. As such it has achieved its goal.

 

One thing I know about human nature. We want to get laid, we want to reduce our psychic pain (ie the sorrows of life and hard work) and we  will do as little as possible to increase our pleasure and reduce our pain (ever seen a marathon running go through the finish line and keep running another km or two just for the fun of it?).  Drugs have been around almost as long as fire and aonly a little less long than sex. Its part of our human condition.

 


 

 

 


Rikkitic

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  #1534047 16-Apr-2016 16:59
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freitasm: A good read about why drugs are seen as they are now.

 

Excellent article. It really nails all the points. Thanks for that.

 

 





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Rikkitic

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  #1534239 17-Apr-2016 10:01
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Drug issue on Q&A right now. Worth seeing. TV1.

 

 





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  #1535483 19-Apr-2016 11:51
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And of course, here is the open letter signed by "24 current and former law enforcement officials, 37 members of the clergy, more than 230 health and medical professionals" ahead of the UNGASS meeting (for which the Lancet article I originally linked to was also written) concluding that prohibition is a disaster. On a related note, Theresa May didn't like the UK's own conclusions that prohibition was having no effect on drug use and tried to nix them in the report.





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Rikkitic

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  #1535535 19-Apr-2016 12:29
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Don't confuse us with the facts. Our mind is already made up.

 

 





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  #1535588 19-Apr-2016 13:13
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How facts get distorted - when people have an agenda:

 

http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/crime/78486729/how-an-unemployed-westie-discredited-a-key-police-report-on-cannabis.html

 

The "actual" ~200 admissions where primary diagnosis is cannabis related - not the figure (deliberately?) fudged by a zealot,  presumably include people admitted with psychiatric disorders which may or may not have been induced by cannabis (very hard when drugs are used by some to self-medicate) - but anyway pales into insignificance compared with ~10,000 admissions where primary diagnosis is alcohol related.

 

By that measure, alcohol is 50 times worse.

 

 

 

 




Rikkitic

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  #1535610 19-Apr-2016 13:34
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 Excellent article. Thanks for the link. I hope some others here read it.

 

 





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freitasm
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  #1535643 19-Apr-2016 14:35
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What I've found over the years is that if someone points to an article that goes against your bias then it's immediately discarded and not read.

 

It's hard to change people's attitudes and bias with good arguments alone.





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Rikkitic

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  #1535670 19-Apr-2016 15:12
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freitasm:

 

It's hard to change people's attitudes and bias with good arguments alone.

 

 

I fully agree. It may even be impossible. But intelligent people are sometimes prepared to reconsider their assumptions and bend a little. I also believe that discussions of this kind can have a degree of influence on others who do not hold strong views either way. Change is a slow, gradual process that builds momentum over time. That is the value of a discussion like this one.

 

 





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Fred99
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  #1535677 19-Apr-2016 15:18
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freitasm:

 

What I've found over the years is that if someone points to an article that goes against your bias then it's immediately discarded and not read.

 

It's hard to change people's attitudes and bias with good arguments alone.

 

 

 

 

There's also group polarisation.  The curse of the internet, social media, newspaper comment sections. Where the bitter, angry, keyboard warriors rule.

 

I'd add that to the thread on "What's something small that really annoys me", but it's actually something big that scares the crap out of me.  Perhaps I've been polarised.

 

 


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  #1535678 19-Apr-2016 15:18
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Fred99:

 

How facts get distorted - when people have an agenda:

 

http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/crime/78486729/how-an-unemployed-westie-discredited-a-key-police-report-on-cannabis.html

 

The "actual" ~200 admissions where primary diagnosis is cannabis related - not the figure (deliberately?) fudged by a zealot,  presumably include people admitted with psychiatric disorders which may or may not have been induced by cannabis (very hard when drugs are used by some to self-medicate) - but anyway pales into insignificance compared with ~10,000 admissions where primary diagnosis is alcohol related.

 

By that measure, alcohol is 50 times worse.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

two things stopped me from reading the article linked.

 

1, it is a Stuff link

 

2, it is couched in language that is not professional. 


tdgeek
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  #1535691 19-Apr-2016 15:23
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freitasm:

 

What I've found over the years is that if someone points to an article that goes against your bias then it's immediately discarded and not read.

 

It's hard to change people's attitudes and bias with good arguments alone.

 

 

 

 

I agree. Take global warming. Ive read and watched many pro docs and artclies, and many anti. My position hasn't changed (although it could have), but I at least

 

availed myself of all available info to be better informed.

 

But the bias and good arguments goes both ways. Both sides are biased and have what they see as good arguments.

 

The trick is being able to have an adult discussion, many/some here can do that. Some cannot. Thats the untameable bias, spoils a debate/discussion.

 

 


BlueShift
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  #1535704 19-Apr-2016 15:33
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Fred99:

 

How facts get distorted - when people have an agenda:

 

http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/crime/78486729/how-an-unemployed-westie-discredited-a-key-police-report-on-cannabis.html

 

The "actual" ~200 admissions where primary diagnosis is cannabis related - not the figure (deliberately?) fudged by a zealot,  presumably include people admitted with psychiatric disorders which may or may not have been induced by cannabis (very hard when drugs are used by some to self-medicate) - but anyway pales into insignificance compared with ~10,000 admissions where primary diagnosis is alcohol related.

 

By that measure, alcohol is 50 times worse.

 

 

That's not comparing apples with apples though. Alcohol is legal and pot isn't. That affects useage, are 50 times as many people using alcohol than pot?

 

Its like saying ACC pays out 50 times as much to people injured playing rugby than people injured in home invasions, so rugby is much worse than home invasions.


Fred99
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  #1535705 19-Apr-2016 15:34
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MikeB4:

 

Fred99:

 

How facts get distorted - when people have an agenda:

 

http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/crime/78486729/how-an-unemployed-westie-discredited-a-key-police-report-on-cannabis.html

 

The "actual" ~200 admissions where primary diagnosis is cannabis related - not the figure (deliberately?) fudged by a zealot,  presumably include people admitted with psychiatric disorders which may or may not have been induced by cannabis (very hard when drugs are used by some to self-medicate) - but anyway pales into insignificance compared with ~10,000 admissions where primary diagnosis is alcohol related.

 

By that measure, alcohol is 50 times worse.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

two things stopped me from reading the article linked.

 

1, it is a Stuff link

 

2, it is couched in language that is not professional. 

 

 

 

 

That's the state of journalism in NZ - I agree the article doesn't "flow" very well.

"Ordinary person proves how trusted government experts cheated and distorted figures to support a propaganda campaign".
The guy should be given a medal.

 

At least Stuff published it.  If they hadn't, I wouldn't have heard about it - but I do remember the fuss years ago when cannabis was reported to be NZ's "worst drug problem" and responsible for a large number of hospitalisations.  That surprised me. 


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