Wednesday, March 18, 2009

4:20 News - Special War on Drugs Edition

In case you missed it, the Economist had a War on Drugs Editorial. Transform Blog shows that the Economist has been harping on about this for a long time. Everything has always been there; the logic, the economics, the evidence, the need, the costs. Everything it seems, except the political will.

The next big thing in recreational substances will be beta blockers. Some musicians have used them for years, calming stage fright and such in order to do their thing. BBs have also known to ease the jitters for actors and public speakers. Now beta blockers might soon be prescribed to ease Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. They seem to be able to break conditioned learning, if the test of the taserspider is anything to go by.

Hat Tip to Boing Boing for also pointing out this vid of teetotalling magician Penn Jilette:

Vienna has just hosted a United Nations international meeting on drugs:
The drug summit came as the UN, the CND, and the countries pushing the prohibitionist hard-line have come under repeated attack for essentially maintaining the status quo. On Tuesday, the European Commission issued a report that found while in the past decade policies to help drug users and go after drug traffickers have matured, there was little evidence to suggest that the global drug situation had improved.
Ah, Vienna. On the subject of that EC report:

In London, however, Lady Meacher, speaking on behalf of more than 30 members of the Lords, warned that the existing hardline prohibitionist strategy, which has been led by the US, had been deeply damaging. It was now being challenged by politicians, scientists and lawyers around the world, she said.

"We are concerned that the war on drugs has failed and the harm it has caused is far greater," said Meacher, at a briefing organised by the drugs advice charity Release. "What we want the UN to do is accept that the previous declaration was hopelessly unrealistic."

Lindsay Mitchell is calling for another look at the War on Drugs here in NZ. Kotare calls the War on Drugs one for the Bullshit Files.