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  Reply # 1536266 20-Apr-2016 09:18
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MikeB4:

 

 

 

Can you explain to me, (genuine interest) how legalising (decriminalising) will reduce the collateral damage, family violence and other violence, etc etc? 

 

 

 

 

The article I quoted right back on the first page goes into 54 pages of detail on those very topics, using the actual examples of Portugal and the Czech Republic as examples counter to, say, Mexico where the use of force against the drug gangs has caused the murder rate to climb so far it has literally reduced the average life expectancy in that country.





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  Reply # 1536270 20-Apr-2016 09:26
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SaltyNZ:

 

MikeB4:

 

 

 

Can you explain to me, (genuine interest) how legalising (decriminalising) will reduce the collateral damage, family violence and other violence, etc etc? 

 

 

 

 

The article I quoted right back on the first page goes into 54 pages of detail on those very topics, using the actual examples of Portugal and the Czech Republic as examples counter to, say, Mexico where the use of force against the drug gangs has caused the murder rate to climb so far it has literally reduced the average life expectancy in that country.

 

 

 

 

Apologies, I should have added, in New Zealand not Portugal, not Czech Rep or Mexico. Other countries findings maybe indicative they are not definitive. Something I learnt from a long discussion over the weekend with my son (Psychologist), he used as an example the alcohol issues in NZ compared to other countries and the existing rates of family violence. A lot of what he said parted my hair in the middle as it shot over but the bottom line is in his professional opinion there is considerable work that is need before any decisions are made and should not be aimed at the next election in order to retain one seat.

 

His asserted that any change will be profound, invasive on all of society, long term including genetic and congenital. 





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  Reply # 1536274 20-Apr-2016 09:31
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MikeB4:

 

 

 

Apologies, I should have added, in New Zealand not Portugal, not Czech Rep or Mexico. Other countries findings maybe indicative they are not definitive. Something I learnt from a long discussion over the weekend with my son (Psychologist), he used as an example the alcohol issues in NZ compared to other countries and the existing rates of family violence. A lot of what he said parted my hair in the middle as it shot over but the bottom line is in his professional opinion there is considerable work that is need before any decision are made and should not be aimed at the next election in order to retain one seat.

 

His asserted that any change will be profound, invasive on all of society, long term including genetic and congenital. 

 

 

 

 

Fair point. Unfortunately 'indicative' is all there is unless and until we actually try it here. And clearly, what we're doing right now isn't having any meaningful impact because the problems we have are as bad or worse than they've ever been. Why wouldn't we want to try something else? It's not as if we could never go back to the status quo if it wasn't helping.





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  Reply # 1536276 20-Apr-2016 09:31
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Fred99:

 

tdgeek:

 

Fred99:

 

The Illicit Drug Monitoring System by Massey University is an annual snapshot of drug use, markets and new substances:

 

 

"The proportion of frequent drug users who could purchase methamphetamine in one hour or less increased from 51 per cent in 2011 to 76 per cent in 2014".

 

"Globally, methamphetamine supply networks appear to be more organised and the price of the drug in New Zealand remained stable at $681 per gram in 2014, compared to $815 per gram in 2011".

 

The authorities seized $72,186,000 worth of meth at the border in 2014 - you'd think that might make a dent in local supply - but no, it looks like it's become more freely available.  "Recent claims of a "cannabis drought" in New Zealand are supported by the study".  Wow - that might seem to be a sign of success - but it surely isn't. 

 

 

 

So - how's the "war on drugs" been working out?

 

 

 

 

I dont follow the war on drugs fallacy. Its as though a war on drugs will reduce or remove illicit drug use. Robbing banks is illegal but it happens. Anything that is illegal still happens. So its a fallacy that there is a war on drugs. If meth is $681 a gram, legal meth will be a lot cheaper, freely available, thats got to be good news and a success story

 

 

 

 

Robbing a bank is much more risky (to the perpetrator) than making vast amounts of money by selling drugs.  It's also likely that those seeking to make vast fortunes by robbing banks would need to be the perpetrators - not sit back at a distance to reap vast profits as "kingpins" in a highly successful pyramid selling scheme. It also seems that most bank robberies (let alone petty property crimes) are committed by people connected to the drug trade, users needing money etc.  In a bank robbery, there's also a threat of immediate violence initiated by the perpetrator, the bank workers aren't "willing participants" in a business transaction.  It's not a good analogy IMO, nor do I think that organised crime syndicates would shift their operations to bank robbery if the profit was sucked from their drug business.

 

 

 

 

Bank robbery was just an example not an analogy. My point was that every law that prohibits something, will not remove it. It will reduce it, but it will never remove it, so a war on drugs, is a fallacy IMHO. Its as though there was an expectation that it will be largely removed, which is silly. And therefore it makes the "war pn drugs" and automatic failure. Then a target for legalising the crime as prohibition has failed. This applies to each and every prohibited act in the Statutes.




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  Reply # 1536299 20-Apr-2016 10:00
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MikeB4:

 

 

 

Can you explain to me, (genuine interest) how legalising (decriminalising) will reduce the collateral damage, family violence and other violence, etc etc? 

 

 

 

 

I can’t give you a full answer to that. I am not an expert in any relevant field, but I can tell you what I believe on the basis of what I have seen and read and heard and what I think is logical.

 

I think one big problem with the kind of violence and other collateral damage you mention is the difficulty of getting help with substance abuse when the substance abused is illegal. This puts up a barrier for the victims as well as any potential services that might want to help them. This has already been cited in a previous post here. Decriminalising or legalising drug use would remove this obstacle.

 

The experience in Portugal is often cited. Decriminalisation there does not seem to have made things worse. According to everything I have seen, it has actually made them better. If it works there, why wouldn’t it work here?

 

It is also important to remember the distinction between drug use and drug abuse. Not every user becomes an abuser. One of the most violence-inducing drugs in our society, right up there with P, is alcohol, yet not every drinker becomes a basher. I think the kind of collateral damage you refer to comes from people who are already damaged by their upbringing and other factors. They abuse alcohol and other drugs because of that, not the other way round. I happen to know of a case where someone became violent simply because he couldn’t get hold of the illegal substance he was dependent on. I can imagine there are a lot more cases like this. If it had been easily obtainable through a legal outlet, the violent episode would not have occurred. I don’t think that in itself should be an argument for legalisation, but it does illustrate a point.

 

One of the main arguments for decriminalisation is that this removes the incentive to ‘push’ drugs. As long as drugs are illegal, there are enormous profits to be made from supplying them. This creates an incentive for organised criminals to keep recruiting new drug users. Maybe it is too late to do more than provide an ambulance at the bottom of the cliff for families and others already trapped in a pattern of abuse and violence, but legalisation could at least make it possible to identify potential new abusers at an earlier stage and to provide targeted help to them.

 

Regardless of any other arguments, I think the current situation is already a disaster. Families are being destroyed, crime is rampant, people are taking truly dangerous substances because there is no control on their purity, criminals are reaping enormous profits to expand their operations and fund other illegal activities. Clearly prohibition hasn’t worked. Our country is already awash in drugs. It has been said that we have one of the highest per capita rates of marijuana consumption in the world. Many houses that come up for rent or sale show signs of P contamination so I would guess that truly nasty drug is also fairly widespread. Isn’t it time to try a different approach? I honestly think it can’t make things worse, and if it is properly done, would very likely make them better.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 





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  Reply # 1536315 20-Apr-2016 10:09
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The underworld will still be there growing and manufacturing drugs, that wont change. They will be cheaper, they will have strong demand due to that. Who cares iof legal P, meth, MJ are better quality? if its cheaper they will buy cheaper

 

People are not arrested for seeking drug help

 

That drugs are currently a disaster is an overstatement. Booze is a disaster.


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  Reply # 1536321 20-Apr-2016 10:15
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Rikkitic:

 

MikeB4:

 

 

 

Can you explain to me, (genuine interest) how legalising (decriminalising) will reduce the collateral damage, family violence and other violence, etc etc? 

 

 

 

 

I can’t give you a full answer to that. I am not an expert in any relevant field, but I can tell you what I believe on the basis of what I have seen and read and heard and what I think is logical.

 

I think one big problem with the kind of violence and other collateral damage you mention is the difficulty of getting help with substance abuse when the substance abused is illegal. This puts up a barrier for the victims as well as any potential services that might want to help them. This has already been cited in a previous post here. Decriminalising or legalising drug use would remove this obstacle.

 

The experience in Portugal is often cited. Decriminalisation there does not seem to have made things worse. According to everything I have seen, it has actually made them better. If it works there, why wouldn’t it work here?

 

It is also important to remember the distinction between drug use and drug abuse. Not every user becomes an abuser. One of the most violence-inducing drugs in our society, right up there with P, is alcohol, yet not every drinker becomes a basher. I think the kind of collateral damage you refer to comes from people who are already damaged by their upbringing and other factors. They abuse alcohol and other drugs because of that, not the other way round. I happen to know of a case where someone became violent simply because he couldn’t get hold of the illegal substance he was dependent on. I can imagine there are a lot more cases like this. If it had been easily obtainable through a legal outlet, the violent episode would not have occurred. I don’t think that in itself should be an argument for legalisation, but it does illustrate a point.

 

One of the main arguments for decriminalisation is that this removes the incentive to ‘push’ drugs. As long as drugs are illegal, there are enormous profits to be made from supplying them. This creates an incentive for organised criminals to keep recruiting new drug users. Maybe it is too late to do more than provide an ambulance at the bottom of the cliff for families and others already trapped in a pattern of abuse and violence, but legalisation could at least make it possible to identify potential new abusers at an earlier stage and to provide targeted help to them.

 

Regardless of any other arguments, I think the current situation is already a disaster. Families are being destroyed, crime is rampant, people are taking truly dangerous substances because there is no control on their purity, criminals are reaping enormous profits to expand their operations and fund other illegal activities. Clearly prohibition hasn’t worked. Our country is already awash in drugs. It has been said that we have one of the highest per capita rates of marijuana consumption in the world. Many houses that come up for rent or sale show signs of P contamination so I would guess that truly nasty drug is also fairly widespread. Isn’t it time to try a different approach? I honestly think it can’t make things worse, and if it is properly done, would very likely make them better.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When victims of family violence etc came into my care I did not give a toss if the attacker was on P, Steinlager or lollipops my concern was for the welfare and protection of the victims. The fact that drugs were involved made no difference as to access to help.

 

Some folks seem to think that drug related crime (better term is substance abuse) is mainly as a result of the manufacture and supply, it is not. If it were why the level of crime and violent crime around alcohol a legalised drug ?

 

 

 

 





Mike
Retired IT Manager. 
The views stated in my posts are my personal views and not that of any other organisation.

 

 It's our only home, lets clean it up then...

 

Take My Advice, Pull Down Your Pants And Slide On The Ice!

 

 




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  Reply # 1536343 20-Apr-2016 10:32
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MikeB4:

 

 

 

When victims of family violence etc came into my care I did not give a toss if the attacker was on P, Steinlager or lollipops my concern was for the welfare and protection of the victims. The fact that drugs were involved made no difference as to access to help.

 

Some folks seem to think that drug related crime (better term is substance abuse) is mainly as a result of the manufacture and supply, it is not. If it were why the level of crime and violent crime around alcohol a legalised drug ?

 

 

I wasn't referring to help for the victims. The violent abuser also needs help. The reason there are victims of family violence often has to do with substance abuse on the part of the perpetrator. If that is properly dealt with, there should be fewer victims.

 

I agree the situation with alcohol is bad. Maybe that is the drug that should be banned. Unfortunately that was also tried before and that didn't work either. The solution has to lie somewhere else. The situation with alcohol is made worse by powerful vested interests and a gutless government that seems to be in the pocket of those interests so no meaningful attempts to deal with the problems are made. For example, a good start would be banning all alcohol advertising. It is simply stupid that this obvious step isn't taken. If any drugs were made legal, it should be done in a manner similar to tobacco and the products certainly should not be advertised or promoted in any way. Those who want them will be able to find them without any other help. Ideally, this should also apply to alcohol.

 

 

 

 





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  Reply # 1536360 20-Apr-2016 10:37
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I see reported on Paul Henry today a survey that says 75% of users in NZ can access P within an hour.

 

That's a high service level for an illegal product and suggests prohibition isn't very effective ...

 

The drug trade stimulates violence because it is illegal so those in the trade can use violence against their customers, competitors and  associates because it won't be reported.  When alcohol was prohibited in the US it had a similar effect. 

 

Compare this to pharmacies, some of which sell prescribed methadone to addicts, legally but under strict regulation.

 

When did you last see a report of a pharmacist walking into another pharmacy and cracking skulls, or arranging the murder of someone who laid a complaint with the Pharmacy Council of NZ? 

 

How many violent turf wars are there between bottle stores or tobacconists?

 

 





Mike

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  Reply # 1536385 20-Apr-2016 10:43
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Alcohol is a problem, it is also legal. So we blame the gutless Govt rather than the drug itself? Take away advertising and that solves the problem??? Wow. Any excuse will do. Its very clear that if drugs were legalised and freely available and it failed, more excuses will surface. Alcohol is a test case, it failed. the issue is not the bootleggers, its the substance itself. The underworld will be the underworld no matter what, and IMHO, they drug scene will still be as active then as it is now as they can easily undercut, so no issue there. It seems the disaffected are not important 


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  Reply # 1536389 20-Apr-2016 10:47
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MikeB4:

 

 

 

Some folks seem to think that drug related crime (better term is substance abuse) is mainly as a result of the manufacture and supply, it is not. If it were why the level of crime and violent crime around alcohol a legalised drug ?

 

 

There are multiple types of crime related to drug abuse. Without wanting to in any way belittle it as an issue, prohibiting alcohol would no more stop abusers getting drunk and beating their families than prohibiting P has stopped abusers doing it. But it would certainly cause a whole new wave of crime as people did illegal things to get their illegal alcohol. Prohibition gets you speakeasys and Al Capone. 

 

And that's the crux of the argument: you cannot stop abusers from abusing simply by making it illegal. The only way to stop it is to make people not want to do it, and when they and their family and friends know it is illegal they are far less likely to seek help because they know what will happen as soon as they come to the attention of authorities.

 

 





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  Reply # 1536392 20-Apr-2016 10:50
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MikeAqua:

 

I see reported on Paul Henry today a survey that says 75% of users in NZ can access P within an hour.

 

 

I think you got that the wrong way round.

 

While I was watching the programme the final results were 20% could access P within an hour and 80% couldn't.


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  Reply # 1536394 20-Apr-2016 10:51
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tdgeek:

 

Alcohol is a problem, it is also legal. So we blame the gutless Govt rather than the drug itself? Take away advertising and that solves the problem??? Wow. Any excuse will do. Its very clear that if drugs were legalised and freely available and it failed, more excuses will surface. Alcohol is a test case, it failed. the issue is not the bootleggers, its the substance itself. The underworld will be the underworld no matter what, and IMHO, they drug scene will still be as active then as it is now as they can easily undercut, so no issue there. It seems the disaffected are not important 

 

 

Yes, it's true that the underworld will always exist. But as far as I know, the Mongrel Mob don't have a huge illegal beer trade going on the side, undercutting all the legal sales. And even if they did, I wouldn't buy it. Who knows what s*** they put in it?





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  Reply # 1536396 20-Apr-2016 10:53
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SaltyNZ:

 

MikeB4:

 

 

 

Some folks seem to think that drug related crime (better term is substance abuse) is mainly as a result of the manufacture and supply, it is not. If it were why the level of crime and violent crime around alcohol a legalised drug ?

 

 

There are multiple types of crime related to drug abuse. Without wanting to in any way belittle it as an issue, prohibiting alcohol would no more stop abusers getting drunk and beating their families than prohibiting P has stopped abusers doing it. But it would certainly cause a whole new wave of crime as people did illegal things to get their illegal alcohol. Prohibition gets you speakeasys and Al Capone. 

 

And that's the crux of the argument: you cannot stop abusers from abusing simply by making it illegal. The only way to stop it is to make people not want to do it, and when they and their family and friends know it is illegal they are far less likely to seek help because they know what will happen as soon as they come to the attention of authorities.

 

 

 

 

I agree with some of your points. Where I see it, is that booze is cheap. Drugs are not. legals drugs will be expensive, they will have the regulatory costs attached to them. I feel that and the existing high cost means the drug underworld will remain fully intact. They may in fact be better off as customer numbers will incresae with the ease of availability. To me, the issue is the effect on new users, collateral damage. Alcohol 2.0


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  Reply # 1536398 20-Apr-2016 10:56
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OK, well it was pre coffee but still:  20% in <1 hour ... that's a better service level than a post shop or economy check in :)

 

SJB:

 

MikeAqua:

 

I see reported on Paul Henry today a survey that says 75% of users in NZ can access P within an hour.

 

 

I think you got that the wrong way round.

 

While I was watching the programme the final results were 20% could access P within an hour and 80% couldn't.

 





Mike

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