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YDs Most Southerly Monkey
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Watched Layercake on DVD last night and then read this article in the Torygraph today

Drug addicts do not deserve our indulgence | Dt Opinion | Opinion | Telegraph

and it was the readers' comments that got me thinking once again; this War on Drugs thing, is it worth it?

It seems to me that with the exception of Methamphetamine and driving or operating machinery under the influence, the use of most currently illegal drugs is largely a victimless crime, sure they'll bugger your life up if you misuse them but so can diving, hang gliding etc.

Despite being to the right of the proverbial Attila, I've long held a view that if it doesn't affect anyone else, why should your use of a substance be anything to do with the Govt and Police, (provided I don't expect society to pick up the pieces afterwards) and how and in what respects has the last 35 years or so of the worldwide War on Drugs succeeded?

There seems to be 5 times as much drug use now as when I was a teenager and pretty well 90% of property crime here seems to be drug related, bringing with it gun crime, violence etc, while the crims grow steadily richer at everyone else's expense.

If we legalised the stuff, (and it's only prohibition which makes it expensive and a profitable cash crop), and sold it at say 1/10 of the current street price, we'd make it a completely worthless enterprise; we could provide gainful employment to Afghan farmers, the Mafia would be rooted, along with the Yardies and god knows who else. It would also mean that many otherwise blameless people wouldn't end up with a criminal record.

But on the other hand, I have two teenage sons (so, rather selfishly, I'm not totally convinced this is a good idea).........however, I think the reason they don't do marijuana, for example is seeing the what f-ckwits the dope users they know have turned out to be, so probably, they don't do drugs for the same reason as they don't smoke. (although I wouldn't be shocked if I heard they'd had a toot).

So what does the YD Massive think? Keep the ban, make it even harder, with tougher penalties or legalise & control?

I'd be interested to hear the views of anyone in the Police Force too.
 

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PADI Internet Specialty Diver
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Some drugs like crack are very addictive and should IMO be illegal (although a "war" against them is moronic). Weed, Es and the like IMO should be legal for the reasons you give Richard.

Trouble is yer average Torygraf reader likes black and white issues and uncomplicated ideas. Even more so yer Mail types. Drugs are all evil, black people are to blame, youth isn't what it used to be, Mrs T would have sorted them out, etc etc. So its votes, not commonsense that run the shop.

Sadly, we must also recognise that the now unemployed drug dealers will turn to other income generating activities and the "war" against criminality will continue albeit in another form.

My bet therefore is for the status quo to continue...

Chris
 

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It seems to me that with the exception of Methamphetamine and driving or operating machinery under the influence, the use of most currently illegal drugs is largely a victimless crime, sure they'll bugger your life up if you misuse them but so can diving, hang gliding etc.
Everyone has the right to choose to bugger up their own lives however, i have to disagree with you here. Tell the person who has been mugged/robbed/burgled/beaten up/raped that the use of drugs is largely victimless. There have been studies which show (yes, i accept, stats can be used to prove or disprove just about everything) that somwhere down the line, the majority of crime is in some way linked to the use or abuse of drugs.
 

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Getting Grumpy, Old and Twisted
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They will never legalise drugs as there are too many vested interests involved.
When you look at the number of law enforcers, social workers, legal eagles etc that are involved if drugs were legalised the jobless total would rise signficantly.
Plus if the multi-national chemical companies took over many third world economies would collapse.
 

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Everyone has the right to choose to bugger up their own lives however, i have to disagree with you here. Tell the person who has been mugged/robbed/burgled/beaten up/raped that the use of drugs is largely victimless. There have been studies which show (yes, i accept, stats can be used to prove or disprove just about everything) that somwhere down the line, the majority of crime is in some way linked to the use or abuse of drugs.
I don't disagree that some crimes are related to use (or abuse) of drugs but is it really that much more than crimes related to the use (or abuse) of alcohol?While alcohol is largely seen as socially acceptable, many other drugs are not.

Do you have links to details of these studies you mention? I would be very interested in reading up on them.

In my experience, crime relating to the use of ecstasy, lsd and marijuana is negligible, certainly at the user level. What is being suggested is the legalisation and control of illegal substances. I'm not sure I am in favour of that but I am in favour of greater education. Many deaths attributed to ecstasy usually arise as a result of a lack of understanding of what happens to your body when you take these drugs. Either not enough fluid is taken on or too much is. Also, you can never be sure what is in the pills you are taking. I understand that in Holland they have testing stations where is possible to check the conent of your pills. What does concern me is the lack of knowledge of the long term effects of these drugs.

It is worth noting that not all drug users are the dregs of society or f-ckwits. Many of my friends smoke weed but are well educated and hold down well paid and well respected jobs! I no longer smoke as I stopped enjoying it and felt that it impaired my ability to do my job to a level I was happy with, although I do occasionally like to bake and eat space cakes :)

Cheers/Nic
 

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Utrinque Paratus
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If you looked at this in another way and legalised all drugs make them cheap for the user to buy and accessible to everyone then the problem would slowly end.

Education about drugs and the effects would be a start but because they would be cheap to get hold of and clean,

I.E. not cut with drain cleaner or flour so they would not destroy veins and give secondary infections, this would also make it easier for them to come off as it would be a clean break from a drug of a known amount!

If the drugs whatever they are, are cheaper you wouldn't have the crime as bad to pay for it street cost £50 in the doc's £5 this would also stop the people getting rich off the others misfortune and the drug syndicates would loose out.

education would also help in that better understanding leads to a more informed choice and like drink and cigarettes this would also have a factor

the government could tax it and use all those thousands of pounds to put back into the community for better work experience and training also leisure facility's and this would again filter back and reduce the problem. you could even set up some clinics so that when they do realise what this does to them they have the facility's to stop!

well as i have never done this sort of thing it's just my 2p worth, and properly crap!

Graham :frown:
 
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All hail the mighty ZOM
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Just to explode a few myths about drugs, especially heroin (Missus Woz used to work in a place for people with drink, drug and mental health problems)...

The media and popular view of heroin addicts as squat-living thieves is true to some extent but there is a significant proportion of addicts who are well heeled and hold down proper jobs.

Injection is much rarer in England than smoking it off tinfoil.

The heroin itself causes very few health problems- it's the way you take it that buggers your health.

People take heroin cos they have shit lives and smack makes them feel good. It's a little touted fact that taking heroin is, in fact, a very pleasurable experience.
 

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PADI Internet Specialty Diver
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....There have been studies which show (yes, i accept, stats can be used to prove or disprove just about everything) that somwhere down the line, the majority of crime is in some way linked to the use or abuse of drugs.
The question is though, has there ever been a single study that shows getting rid of drugs would get rid of the majority of crime.

I think not.

Chris
 

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Utrinque Paratus
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The question is though, has there ever been a single study that shows getting rid of drugs would get rid of the majority of crime.

I think not.

Chris
But common sense dictates that if people steal for money to buy drug and the drug are taken away then the crime to pay for it would decrease

or did i miss something :)

graham
 

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All hail the mighty ZOM
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I don't think the dirty sore ridden skeletons that I chase around London who commit crime to feed their habit are riding on a wave of pleasure.
Absolutely. But taking heroin for recreational use is on the up- clubbers who go out on a Saturday and get mashed on coke and pills are now using it to come down on Sunday.

There is an "underclass" of drug use that fits the general media profile. But there's also a whole pile of other people that are using it who you would never have thought would be.
 

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Utrinque Paratus
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Absolutely. But taking heroin for recreational use is on the up- clubbers who go out on a Saturday and get mashed on coke and pills are now using it to come down on Sunday.

There is an "underclass" of drug use that fits the general media profile. But there's also a whole pile of other people that are using it who you would never have thought would be.
Stop snorting the stuff and do some work :)
 

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I don't think the dirty sore ridden skeletons that I chase around London who commit crime to feed their habit are riding on a wave of pleasure.
You are right and wrong! The more you take, the more you need to take to get the same buzz. Once you come down, the lows are massive when compared to the earlier high.

So when you are chasing them, they are chasing the high.
 

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PADI Internet Specialty Diver
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But common sense dictates that if people steal for money to buy drug and the drug are taken away then the crime to pay for it would decrease

or did i miss something :)

graham
Yes. If you legalise the stuff as Richard says you haven't taken it away... ;)

Mrs T (OMG I cannot believe I can quote that old hag..) said (the only thing she ever got right :D) "you cannot 'uninvent' anything"

The current situation is like one of those old Keystone Cops films with the cops and robbers chasing one another round the block and losing track of who is chasing whom.

Chris
 

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The idiots idiot.
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Couldn't agree more - these are exactly my sentiments.

It's a simple case of supply & demand. There will always be a demand therefore, there will always be someone ready to profit.
Look at prohibition in the States and what a total disaster it was.
The current drug situation is no different - legalise the lot, seriously undercut the gangsters (not the government for once!) and slap plenty of tax on it.

Put the profits into rehab/education and the problem will start to diminish..

If you looked at this in another way and legalised all drugs make them cheap for the user to buy and accessible to everyone then the problem would slowly end.

Education about drugs and the effects would be a start but because they would be cheap to get hold of and clean,

I.E. not cut with drain cleaner or flour so they would not destroy veins and give secondary infections, this would also make it easier for them to come off as it would be a clean break from a drug of a known amount!

If the drugs whatever they are, are cheaper you wouldn't have the crime as bad to pay for it street cost £50 in the doc's £5 this would also stop the people getting rich off the others misfortune and the drug syndicates would loose out.

education would also help in that better understanding leads to a more informed choice and like drink and cigarettes this would also have a factor

the government could tax it and use all those thousands of pounds to put back into the community for better work experience and training also leisure facility's and this would again filter back and reduce the problem. you could even set up some clinics so that when they do realise what this does to them they have the facility's to stop!

Graham :frown:
 

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PADI Internet Specialty Diver
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....
Put the profits into rehab/education and the problem will start to diminish..
Put some of the millions wasted on "enforcement" into rehab/education and the problem will start to diminish.

Chris
 

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Finless: You couldn't invent him...
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Lagalise drugs? But only in open spaces aor buildings with only 2 walls and a bit of roof?

Alcohol is a drug.

Have you heard about the latest patch to help smokers give up? It's about two feet square and is right next to the smelly dustbin! (heard from Jimmy Carr on "8 out of 10 cats").
 

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YDs Most Southerly Monkey
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Everyone has the right to choose to bugger up their own lives however, i have to disagree with you here. Tell the person who has been mugged/robbed/burgled/beaten up/raped that the use of drugs is largely victimless. There have been studies which show (yes, i accept, stats can be used to prove or disprove just about everything) that somwhere down the line, the majority of crime is in some way linked to the use or abuse of drugs.
I am disagreeing with your first statement and agreeing with your second Scubee.

People get mugged/robbed etc by other people who feel the need to raise the money to feed an expensive habit/addiction. The expense of the habit is artificially high because of prohibition; (legal opiates are one of the cheapest pharmaceutical drugs you can get, they grow thousands and thousands of hectares of pharmaceutical opium poppies here in Tas and whilst it's a good cash crop, when grown legally, you don't make enough money to retire out of two crops.)

The whole point is that if this stuff and whatever else (eg dope, cocaine, ecstasy etc) was made legal and sold under strict controls, they could probably put an 80% (or whatever) duty on it and still undercut the drug barons and the dealers.

The need to commit crimes, nick your DVD player for the price of a fix would be greatly reduced, it would probably be as cheap as tobacco & alcohol (for which relatively few crimes are committed by users).

I'm not condoning the use of these substances, far from it but it seems bloody obvious to me that current prohibitions have just been a disaster for all concerned:

  • Otherwise innocent users are criminalised.
  • Completely innocent people suffer many criminal acts committed by (some) users.
  • Prohibition offers major business opportunities to the criminal fraternity.
  • The huge sums of money involved result in high risks of corruption in police forces throughout the world.
  • The efforts to stamp out illicit drug crops overseas are massively destabilising to the nations involved.
  • The huge profits from the drugs trade makes it attractive to international organised crime and terrorist groups and profits are often used to underwrite opther heinous activities, such as people smuggling, international prostitution rackets and all that which it entails.

On the down side, I guess there's the risk that our (and I include mine) kids could become users but as things stand, they could be anyway, it's not as if illicit drugs are hard to find if you have the money.
 
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