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War On (Some)
This nOde last updated September 17th, 2005 and is
(4 Lamat (Rabbit) / 6 Ch'en (Black) - 108/260 - 220.127.116.11.8)
"In Los Angeles I've been stopped and had my car searched. Why? Because of the fictitious war on drugs that we are fighting. The emotional issue of the drug war is used to justify taking away civil rights." - Tim Robbins
In May 2001 Colin Powell gives 43 million dollars to the Taliban in an effort to fight "the war on drugs". four months later, 4,000 people are killed from a terrorist attack in New York and DC instigated by a group directly linked, supported, and protected by the Taliban. aside from "drugs", The Taliban also forbids flying kites, human rights for women, dancing, music, film, and anything else that doesn't fit into their narrow reality tunnel and religious views. the same can be said of the christian right in the U.S... After the terrorist attacks, two leading representatives of this cult, Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson, make a statement blaming homosexuals, "abortionists", the ACLU, and the secular government, as having caused this atrocity.
Drug War: Covert Money, Power & Policy
by Dan Russell, 2000
This new book is comprehensive and detailed. It is the best expose of the real motives behind the Drug War.
o The goal of the prohibitionist leaders is to maximize their profits and power.
o Their strategy is to create a black market in drugs and profit from it.
o The main drug traffickers are the top government officials in Washington D.C.
o The WOD is entirely a deliberate, synthetic problem invented strategically by the U.S. government.
o The biggest popularizer of recreational drug use is the U.S. government.
o Drug squads are meant to distribute drugs and popularize drug use, not to gather drugs and make drug use unpopular.
o Government propaganda is meant to popularize, not reduce, drug use.
o D.A.R.E.'s real meaning and intention is to promote drug use -- to train and coax kids into using drugs.
o The prohibitionist leaders are succeeding at their actual goals.
o The prohibitionist leaders know drugs are not particularly harmful and they enjoy using illicit drugs themselves.
o Drug squads exist to make money by legally stealing wealth from the citizens they theoretically protect.
o The prohibitionist leaders are intelligent con-men, not misguided, mistaken people.
o The strategy of the Nazis and prohibitionists for gathering power to themselves is essentially identical and is also related to the persecution-for-profit strategies of the Church and witch hunters.
o If drug use stopped today, the prohibitionist leaders would hasten to reinstate the drug problem.
o Prohibition is the most profitable industry.
o The prohibitionist leaders read everything that the drug-law reformers read and know more than the reformers about the nature of drug use and the state of the WOD.
School District 202 in Plainfield, Illinois, joins other school districts across the nation in banning "look-alike drugs": candy cigarettes, fake chewing tobacco, non-alcoholic beer, and oregano. Various reasons are cited for the ban, one being that candy cigarettes can possibly lead to real cigarette use, that they send an inappropriate presmoking message. Secondly, that the prevalence of fake drugs makes it difficult for school administrators to find the real ones. And that the use of certain substitutes such as mint-flavored herbal snuff increase the chance that users may be considered "yuppies." (Chicago Tribune, 1/7/92, 2/7/92).
first of all, you can't declare war on chemicals. this "war" is about control and media manipulation. the government has always been involved with drugs both legal and illegal since time began. it just seemed to balloon into ridiculous proportions when the "just say no" thing got kickstarted. since our government likes to see certain drugs proliferate, like cocaine and heroin (both highly addictive physiologically), it is very curious as to why they see psychedelics and empathogens, as well as the completely benign cannabis plant stigmatized. the answer is obvious. the latter drugs must remain illegal because they are profitless. they are easy to manufacture, highly enjoyable, and cannot be taxed. this is bad news for those that are currently holding the reigns: the pharmaceutical industry (which distributes drugs through physicians), along with the alcohol, chocolate, and tobacoo industries. any item that takes profits away from them is deemed a threat. of course, this is a very simplistic outlook. the prison-industrial system is also at fault, which is tied in with the military-industrial complex. one can go on and on. commies and russia don't work anymore as enemies. so they invented something that will never go away to justify the fat checks to the generals (aka international state policemen). - @Om* 5/26/00
According to _The Nation_,
The Partnership for a Drug Free America received $150,000 each from Philip Morris (Miller beer and Marlboro cigarettes), Anheuser-Busch (Budweiser) and R. J. Reynolds (Camel) over 1988–91. Other contributors: American Brands (Jim Beam and Lucky Strike), Pepsico, and Coca-Cola. Contributing pharmaceutical companies included Bristol-Meyers Squibb, CIBA-Geigy, Dow, DuPont, Glaxo, Hoffman-La Roche, Johnson & Johnson, Merck, Pfizer, Schering-Plough, Smith-Kline and Warner-Lambert.
In March 1999, the Institute of Medicine issued a report on various aspects of marijuana, including the so-called, Gateway Theory (the theory that using marijuana leads people to use harder drugs like cocaine and heroin). The IOM stated, "There is no conclusive evidence that the drug effects of marijuana are causally linked to the subsequent abuse of other illicit drugs."
Source: Janet E. Joy, Stanley J. Watson, Jr., and John A Benson, Jr. (1999). Marijuana and Medicine: Assessing the Science Base. Division of Neuroscience and Behavioral Research, Institute of Medicine. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.
The WOD is not "like" the old Inquisition, it *is* the old Inquisition. The best book explaining this is _Shamanism and the Drug Propaganda: Patriarchy and the Drug War_
Dan Russell. 11/98.
The Catholic Church formula was to take all the money and possessions of anyone who used plants to have independent religious experiencing. The authorities forcefully insisted that life must be lived within the total framework they provided, mentally, experientially, and economically. To live outside that framework and to have religious or philosophical experiencing outside that framework was to break the law, which the church liked because then they could gain all your possessions and money. Science, democracy, and the renaissance were largely rejections of that sort of authoritarianism and forced hierarchical government which could treat people as having no rights and no property rights. America was founded on the principle of no martyrs, no victims of government campaigns, of inverting the power relation and rights-relations of citizen and government. The government exists to serve the people; the people do not exist to sustain the government. Property belongs to citizens, not to the king, pope, or governmental hierarchy, nor to the police/guard/soldiers.
We need a better understanding of persecution by the church. People think it is about belief and doctrines at bottom, but as far as the power brokers in the top of the Church hierarchy is concerned, it is purely about worldly money and the power of money and the power to accumulate more money. Ultimately, the Church didn't directly care what people *believed*, but rather, what happened to the people's *money*, which was directly affected by people's beliefs.
The police love druggies and hope for lots of them, because every identified or accused druggie means another property and batch of money to seize. The police-authoritarians love accused druggies for the same reason the Church-authoritarians loved accused witches -- these demarcated "devils" or boogiemen give the authoritarians the green light to take all the wealth which the person has accumulated, without the person having any recourse. The person is sent to hell either way, or some other realm, from which the person has no power to stop the authorities. Whether the person marked as a damned one is sent to jail for a long, long time, or killed and sent to hell or heaven or purgatory, it's all the same to the authorities' bank account: the person is removed, and their wealth is freed up to be confiscated by the authorities.
It is crucial that we study the similarities between confiscation of the property of plant-using people (branded as "witches"), the Boston Tea Party, and forfeiture in the War On Drugs. These are all about the exact same thing at the core. I want to emphasize this above all: it is not an accident that the WOD is covered by the Boston Tea Party; or that drug use is covered by religious freedom. America was not started to prevent things *like* the war on drugs, it was started and the constitution and bill of rights were created to prevent specifically the war on drugs, not to stop things *like* the war on drugs. The Bill of Rights was not created to prevent this *sort* of thing; it was simply and frankly designed to stop this *very* thing. The WOD is not accidently covered by the Bill of Rights; the Bill of Rights was meant to stop the WOD and also other things like it. The Bill of Rights was crafted and designed expressly to block exactly what is really going on at the heart of the WOD, this dynamic of people being victims of arbitrary searches and seizures of contraband, money, property, wealth.
Problem: authorities wield power to pillage and confiscate anything they feel like; all possessions potentially are the property of the State, on excuses so flimsy and accusations so vague, in the final analysis, no excuse or accusation is needed at all. Authorities see something they want, and they take it; this is complete and blatant government anarchy.
Solution: restraints on government. The foundation of America is the idea of restraint on government to prevent arbitrary persecution, persecution which is most perfectly represented by the war on drugs, the war on contrabands, the war on alternatives to the governmentally enforced lifestyle and worldview. Such governments only permit one worldview, the one which causes all wealth to flow their way. If you adopt a worldview which doesn't willingly send your flow of wealth in the direction of the authorities, then they take your wealth against your will, by force and by fiat.
Part of the strategy the authorties must use is propaganda designed to coerce the will of the citizens, the will of "the governed". So we see manipulation of beliefs and encouraging a sense of respect: respect for the King, for the Pope, for the police, for the media. Sure, many Americans favor police action against drug use, but what is the nature of this "favor"? Most Americas have no idea of the dynamics of forfeiture, no idea of the punitive jail terms and realities of jail, no idea of the alternatives, no idea of the debates going on, no idea of the destruction of prohibition itself; they are carefully fed a diet of lies, partial pictures, censored reporting, distortion, biased reasoning, propaganda. *Of course* most Americans favor police action against drug users -- that is what they are trained to think by the establishment media. Chomsky's idea of "manufacturing consent" explains that people will consent to whatever view and opinion the establishment media teaches them to hold, so the will of the people becomes uncritical, uninformed, just a puppet and a dumb mirror reflecting what the establishment media projects onto them. Citizens become clouded mirrors more or less simply reflecting what they are trained to believe by the media machinery of television and newspapers. Only when the parallels with, or repetition of, the Church witch burnings, and the British searches and seizures leading to the Boston Tea Party, and the McCarthy figurative "witch hunt" become painfully obvious to all tv viewers, does the persecution collapse, as the KKK collapsed in the early part of this century and as the persecution of gays recently collapsed, and as the Catholic Church collapsed and caused a backlash. We have reached the necessary bottoming-out point at which the WOD becomes so persecutive, it becomes obvious that it is the same dynamic as with the old literal witch hunt. Church indulgences (buying forgiveness) and forfeiture are seen to be the same thing, to accomplish the same thing, and people reject this when it goes too far.
There are numerous historical parallels to give reformers hope and a sense that things are getting bad enough while awareness is spreading, that this situation will bring about its own collapse as long as we persevere. The WOD is wound up so tight now, it all stands or falls together, and becomes entirely brittle so that the slightest mishap explodes the whole thing. I sense more and more attention given to wholesale rejections of the fundamental idea of jailing people simply for drug use itself -- more mentions of the idea that we should legalize-and-regulate all drugs.
The WOD and its propaganda must keep on ramping up to the point of being blatantly absurd and psychotic to everyone even when watching the official propaganda. When the propaganda becomes so extreme and foaming-at-the-mouth, with calls for the death penalty or worse, and declarations that drug use is worse than murder... at *some* point, the audience will turn against the punitive, alarmist prohibitionists. At *some* point, people ask "this story is obviously motivated, so what is the real goal and the real force driving this campaign to demonize people who use drugs?" However, if people are totally passive and totally apathetic, they will become cynical but inactive; they will gain understanding and have the truth, but won't take action. Even that could be an improvement; that inaction could be better than today's active support by citizens who ignorantly buy into the propaganda.
Don't think of "witch hunt" and "martyrs" as a metaphor; these are literal terms. The WOD is literally a witch hunt, when you conceive of the persecution of witches in the dark ages as a programme of accusing people of taking entheogens for religious experiencing as a way around the Church's economic framework. One of the most paradoxical things about entheogens is that they provide real religion and cast doubt upon organized dogmatic wishful-thinking religion. Entheogens can reveal reality as opposed to wishful thinking. When people live in reality rather than childish wishful thinking that is controlled by manipulative authoritarians (who are not themselves true believers, but are just immoral materialist opportunists), people are unlikely to support the authoritarian manipulators by supporting forfeiture or indulgences or other ways the authorities line their pockets with the wealth of "the governed". Witches (entheogen users and freethinkers) are not inclined to support the manipulative systems which are designed especially to draw wealth from the people toward the authorities.
Philosophy and religion are both directly related to psychedelics. Psychedelics do not mimic religious experiencing synthetically; they are the actual historical foundation of religion. Organized religion typically is a substitute for actual religion, which is plant-inspired religious experience; and organized religion is essentially motivated by financial opportunism, which requires declaring plant-based religious experiencing strictly forbidden. Plant-based religious experiencing and finance-driven, organized religion, are inherently mortal enemies. If anyone can continuously cultivate plants which give full-blown religious experiencing and full-blown philosophical experiencing twice a week, people have no need to buy their way to religious fulfillment. When a material is free and widely available, and you have a product to sell that addresses the same need as the free and abundant material, the only way to sell your product is to make an artificial scarcity. The governor of Mars in the movie _Total Recall_ tried to hide and suppress the discovery of the alien oxygen-generator in order to sell air to everyone. Jesus said salvation is a free gift, gotten not through paying for sacrifices or paying for forgiveness, but simply through the non-monetary, abstract act of "believing in" the figure of Jesus instead. From reading Barbara Thiering, I believe he wanted every person to eat of the special sacramental loaves which were baked exclusively for the high priests. He said that everyone should be a high priest themselves, for free -- there is no need for church authorities and thus no way for church authorities to charge people a lot of money to be saved. The Catholic Church was, above all, a financial scam, selling people the fantasy of forgiveness and the fantasy of postponed bliss, conning them into experiencing themselves as guilty of invented abstract "original sin" in order to sell them Product. I do not believe that the religious leaders themselves believed in their own religious stories; the con man does not con himself but is only cynically manipulating the outlook of others, to fleece the sheep.
Religious truth and philosophical experiencing are a free gift from psychoactive plants. There is no need to pay anyone for religious or philosophical fulfillment, since the fulfilment is already freely available in the form of plants. The only way to make money off of people's desire for religious and philosophical fulfillment is to absolutely suppress and demonize the use of plants to achieve that fulfillment.
It's true that some people who don't stand to profit believe that drug use really is evil and that it is evil to not believe in the authoritarian religions. However, these misguided beliefs are only a symptom, not the main drive to demonize use of drugs. Those people are merely puppets dimly repeating what the authorities trained them to think. The real drive to tag druggies as demonic non-persons is driven not by beliefs, but by strategy for robbing people. People think they are tough on burglars, but the actual burglars, the main burglars who merely lead to burglary by heroin users, are the police. Violent crime in the WOD is primarily caused by police against "the governed", and only *secondarily* caused by drug users. Burglary in the WOD is primarily committed by the police, and only secondarily committed by drug users. When a news item starts off by talking about a burglary or a violent crime that has been committed, my first, natural assumption is that the crime is committed by police. Criminal means police.
When hysteria escalates far enough, people are embarrassed by it and dissociate themselves from it. The WOD is blatantly becoming pure hysteria. The strangest thing is that the prohibitionists signed a pact with themselves that prohibition by definition would be absolute, with literally zero tolerance -- and cannabis counts too. Prohibition thrives on the ease of cannabis persecution and shall die by the absurdity of cannabis prohibition. The prohibitionists might as well have included air in their list of demon drugs: air is easy to bust people for carrying, so it's convenient to lump into prohibition, but by the same token, it's so absurd to prohibit air, that strategy is *bound* to backfire sooner or later. Cannabis makes prohibition easy to pursue and escalate, but the goodness of cannabis eventually brings down the entire prohibitionist programme. Cannabis is destined to have the center stage in prohibition and its repeal. Without cannabis, prohibition would not be worthwhile for the police. Cannabis use is so easy to detect and so easy to persecute, it's a suitable excuse for the profitable forfeiture industry. Leary claimed he was busted for a roach planted by police and was hated for his LSD and mind-freeing ideas -- this shows how useful cannabis is for the prohibitionists... their strategy is to fight hard-to-fight drugs by, in propaganda, equating easy-to-fight drugs (cannabis) with the hard-to-fight drugs (LSD is the most extreme), but then, instead of fighting the hard-to-fight drugs, fighting mainly the easy drugs. "Heroin is bad, cannabis = heroin, and we made all these busts of cannabis suspects and obtained all their wealth, therefore we are winning the war against heroin." Cannabis is convenient to persecute in the name of hard drugs, but cannabis itself is ultimately a *terribly* impractical drug to demonize, and when it inevitably falls and fails to be seen as demonic any longer, so does the rest of the drug persecution fall, all in one blow. The ability to practically continue the drug war depends on the ability to continue cannabis persecution, entirely in the name of protecting people from heroin -- so the WOD hinges totally on the gateway theory. If you disprove the gateway theory, the justification for persecuting cannabis collapses, and so the practical foundation of WOD forfeiture strategy collapses, so the entire WOD collapses. If the gateway theory is publically shown to be a myth and recognized as such, the entire WOD soon collapses. If voters accept cannabis, then the WOD becomes too much trouble for the authorities to bother with.
It's important to realise that the use of drugs for spiritual purposes is nothing new. Rather, the present interest is perhaps a revival of spirituality as it was experienced before religion became so institutionalised. It's also worth remembering that there have been many previous wars against drugs, and that many spiritual practices using drugs have been eliminated through persecution. In India they used Soma; in Europe we had witches who made use of mushrooms and toad skin until they were persecuted out of existence; in Siberia the Communists wiped out the shamans who used fly agaric. In North and South America the christian missionaries are still actively trying to eliminate traditional shamans and their use of psychoactive plants by saying they are devil worshippers. This not only continues, but with renewed vigour by some missionaries whose aim is to eliminate paganism by the millennium.
- Nicholas Saunders - _The Spiritual Use Of Psychoactive Drugs_
The Drug War cannot stand the light of day. It will collapse as quickly as the Vietnam War, as soon as people find out what's really going on. — Joseph McNamara, former Police Chief, Kansas City and San Jose, and Fellow, Hoover Institution
After all, what is the vision of a Drug-Free America? Millions in prison or slave labor, and only enthusiastic supporters of government policy allowed to hold jobs, attend school, have children, drive cars, own property. This is the combined vision of utopia held forth by Nancy Reagan, Ronald Reagan, George Bush, William Bennett, Daryl Gates and thousands of other drug warriors. News media and "public interest" advertising tell us this is the America for which all good citizens yearn.
— Richard Lawrence Miller - _Drug Warriors and Their Prey: From Police Power to Police State_, p. 191.
The high-tech industry, from personal computers to Internet entrepreneurs, is full of people who make big bucks, smoke fine weed, and look the other way while thousands continue to be jailed. Tobacco, alcohol, and crack take an enormous toll, but America has been mesmerized by a remarkable propaganda campaign that has demonized the use of soft drugs such as marijuana and psychedelics. The war on some drugs is wrong, and it's wrong to be silent about it. It's time for the digerati to break silence on this issue.
— Howard Rheingold, December 1998
Covert government by defense contractor means corrupt wars of conquest, government by dope dealer. When the world's traditional inebriative herbs become illegal commodities, they become worth as much as precious metal, precious metal that can be farmed. ... Illegal drugs, solely because of the artificial value given them by Prohibition, have become the basis of military power anywhere they can be grown and delivered in quantity. ... To this day American defense contractors are the biggest drug-money launderers in the world.
- _Drug War: Covert Money, Power and Policy_ p.318.
In _Rethinking Drug Prohibition_ Peter Webster points out that there are multiple factors sustaining the Drug War:
By the end of the 1980's it was calculated that the illegal use of drugs in the United States now netted its controllers over $110 billion a year. — Modern Times, p.782.
Lee Rodgers: The Duplicity of the War on Drugs
Looking at the accumulated evidence that the Contras and the CIA engaged in cocaine smuggling to fund the covert war in Nicaragua, suspicion arises concerning the apparent coincidence that CIA-Contra drug smuggling was contemporaneous with the 'war on drugs'. From a CIA covert action in Latin America the cocaine has made its way NORTH (ala Oliver North) to the American consumer, who is consistently portrayed as African-American by the mass media, even though the majority of cocaine consumption is by whites. The disturbing prospect arises that this 'war on drugs' was nothing more than CIA-style psychological warfare which sought to acquire as much as possible of the sum total of our civil liberties while particularly targeting minorities.
In America the "war on drugs" is big business. Lots of people make a lot of money from it — police, judges, lawyers, probation officers, prison guards, companies that build prisons, companies that provide "security", hand gun manufacturers and many others — including those supposedly "rogue" elements in the government itself (which are hardly "rogue" if they originate from the highest levels of government) that import heroin and cocaine to supply both the inhabitants of urban ghettos and the inhabitants of corporate boardrooms (more cocaine goes up the noses of affluent whites than of poor blacks). This is one reason why development of a saner drug policy is so difficult in the U.S. — there are too many people in positions of power profiting from prohibition.
Peter Meyer in _Time_ magazine 10/20/1997
At the very moment when entheogenesis--that is, the birth of the Divine Within--reappears in the West with the late Romantics as a subculture, as "occult history," the conditions were being set up for this paradigm shift. We are still basically undergoing it. The only thing that could even pretend to suppress this shift of consciousness, would be the Law, as in the War on Drugs. But our law is a machine law, a gridwork, clockwork law, and it is obviously unable to contain the fluidity of the organic. That is why the War on Drugs will never ever work. You might as well declare war on every plant. So public discourse is approaching breakdown over the question of consciousness. The War on Drugs is a war on cognition itself, about thought itself as the human condition. Is thought this dualist cartesian reason? Or is cognition this mysterious, complex, organic, magical thing with little mushrooms elves dancing around. Which it is to be?
The War on Drugs is a paradigm war. Each refinement in machinic consciousness will evoke a dialectical response from the organic realm. It is as if the mushroom elves were there; it is as if there were plant consciousness that responds to the machinic consciousness. It is such a beautiful metaphor--you don't have to believe in the elves, it's all human consciousness, ultimately. You don't have to believe in something supernatural to explain this. So around the mid-twentieth century, technology begins to shift away from an imperial-gigantic frame to a more "inward" dimension, with the splitting of the atom, the virtual space of communications and the computer. And it was around that same time that the really serious psychedelics begin to show up--mescaline, psilocybin, LSD, DMT, ketamine, MDMA, etc. etc.
- Peter Lamborn Wilson - _Cybernetics And Entheogenics_ lecture
Renowned Psychiatrist Loren R. Mosher Resigns from the American Psychiatric Association in Disgust
"This is not a group for me. At this point in history, in my view, psychiatry has been almost completely bought out by the drug companies. The APA could not continue without the pharmaceutical company support of meetings, symposia, workshops, journal advertising, grand rounds luncheons, unrestricted educational grants etc. etc. Psychiatrists have become the minions of drug company promotions. APA, of course, maintains that its independence and autonomy are not compromised in this enmeshed situation."
"Drugs, prison building and the criminalization of the non-white underclass is a vicious racket that will never be put out of business by proving that this or that drug is harmless or useful. Keeping drugs illegal and highly profitable is near the top of the agenda of international criminal syndicates, mendacious governments, maverick intelligence agencies, the mass media and their stooges. My suggestions stand as written, I have simply become much more cynical concerning the degree of involvement of so called legitimate governments and institutions in the drug rackets."
The expression "War on Drugs" refers to a governmental program, or series of programs, intended to suppress the consumption of certain recreational drugs, but not others deemed profitable by corporations. The term was first used by criminal Richard Nixon in 1972 to describe the United States' programs. Later, President & war criminal Ronald Reagan added the position of drug czar to the Cabinet. There is no known example of such policies successfully eradicating drug use or addiction.
Most countries have a very similar set of prohibited drugs. Some exceptions exist; most notably, Islamic countries mostly prohibit the use of alcohol, while most other states allow at least adults to purchase and consume alcohol. All countries regulate the manufacture, distribution, marketing and sale of some or all drugs, such as by using a prescription system. Only certain drugs are banned with a "blanket prohibition" against all use. However, the prohibited drugs generally continue to be available through the black market drug trade. Many countries allow a certain amount of personal use of certain drugs, but not sale or manufacture. Some also set a specific amount of a particular drug, above which is ipso jure considered to be evidence of trafficking or sale of the drug.
The War on Drugs utilizes several techniques to achieve its futile goal of eliminating recreational drug use:
* specialized law
enforcement agencies, officers and techniques
* disinformation campaigns to mislead the public on perceived dangers of recreational drug use
* streamlined enforcement and evidence-gathering procedures
Legal Provisions in Various Countries
The following frequently used drugs are prohibited or otherwise regulated for recreational use in most countries:
* Cannabis products (e.g. Marijuana, Hashish and hashish oil)
* Coca leaves and derivatives (Cocaine, Crack cocaine)
* Nicotine-containing products, such as cigarettes and chewing tobacco
* Opium and opiates (e.g. Heroin, Morphine)
* Oxycontin (Rush Limpdick's hillbilly heroin)
Note: The degree of prohibition against the above drugs varies in many countries; cannabis and hashish, for example, are sometimes legal for personal use, though not sale.
Alcohol possession and consumption by adults is banned only in Islamic countries. The United States banned alcohol in the early part of the 20th century; this was called Prohibition. Tobacco is not illegal for adults in any country, yet it causes more death than all other drugs combined.
In the United States, there is considerable impact these laws have had on Americans' civil rights. The War on Drugs has lowered the evidentiary burden required for a legal search of a suspect's dwelling or vehicle, or to intercept a suspect's communications. However, many of the searches that result in drug arrests are often "consent searches" where an arresting officer does not have probable cause or a warrant, but has asked for and received permission to search a person or their property. In all cases, it is perfectly alright to say no when asked. "Just say no" to searches, not drugs.
Sometimes, crimes not related at all to drug use and sale are prohibited in the name of this fake war. For example, the United States recently brought charges against club owners for maintaining a place of business where a) Ecstacy is known to be frequently consumed; b) paraphernalia associated with the use of Ecstacy is sold and/or widely tolerated (such as glow sticks and pacifiers); and c) "chill-out rooms" are created, where Ecstacy users can cool down (Ecstasy raises the user's blood temperature). These are being challenged in court by organizations such as the ACLU and Drug Policy Alliance.
Many countries allow the use of undercover law enforcement officers solely or primarily for the enforcement of laws against recreational use of certain drugs. Many of these officers are allowed to commit crimes if it is necessary to maintain the secrecy of the investigation, or in order to collect adequate evidence for a conviction. This practice fails to ensure equality under the law because it grants police officers the right to commit crimes that no other citizen could commit without potential consequences.
The War on Drugs has stimulated the creation of international law enforcement agencies (such as Interpol), mostly in Western countries. This has occurred because a large volume of illicit drugs come from Third-World countries, which is hypocritical when it goes up against free trade policies.
History of Recreational Drug Laws in the United States based on racism
Drug laws initially came about through racism & xenophobia. The first law outright prohibiting the use of a specific drug was a San Francisco, California ordinance which banned the smoking of opium in opium dens in 1875. The inspiration was "many women and young girls, as well as young men of respectable family, were being induced to visit the Chinese opium-smoking dens, where they were ruined morally and otherwise." The primary cause of the movement for the law was a racist panic based on a fear of Chinese immigrants and other railroad workers seducing white women with the drug. This was followed by other laws throughout the country, and federal laws which barred Chinese people from trafficking in opium. Though the laws affected the use and distribution of opium by Chinese immigrants, no action was taken against the producers of such products as laudanum, a mixture of opium and alcohol, commonly taken as a panacea by white Americans. The dividing line was usually the manner in which the drug was ingested. Chinese immigrants smoked it, while it was included in various kinds of (generally liquid) medicines for white people. The laws were aimed at smoking opium, but not otherwise ingesting it. As a result of this discrepancy, it is obviously determined that these laws were racist in origin and intent.
Cocaine was prohibited in the first part of the 20th century. Newspapers used terms like "Negro Cocaine Fiends" and "Cocainized Niggers" to drive up sales, causing a nationwide panic about the rape of white women by black men, high on cocaine. Many police forces changed from a .32 caliber to a .38 caliber pistol because the hysteria that a smaller gun was supposedly unable to kill black men when they were high on cocaine.
This was followed by the Harrison Act, which required sellers of opiates and cocaine to get a license (which were usually only distributed to white people). The supporters of the Harrison Act did not support blanket prohibition of the drugs involved . This is also true of the later Marijuana Tax Act in 1937. Soon, however, the people who were allowed to issue the licenses did not do so, effectively banning the drugs.
The American judicial system did not initially accept drug prohibition. Prosecutors argued that possessing drugs was a tax violation, as no legal licenses to sell drugs were in existence; hence, a person possessing drugs must have purchased them from an unlicensed source. After some wrangling, this was accepted as federal jurisdiction under the interstate commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution.
1937 saw the passage of the Marijuana Tax Act. Harry Anslinger (Bureau of Narcotics Commissioner) testified in hearings on the subject that the hemp plant needed to be banned because it had a violent "effect on the degenerate races". This specifically referred to Mexican immigrants who had entered the country, seeking jobs during the Great Depression. The law passed quickly and with little debate. The American Medical Association (AMA) protested the law soon after, both on the grounds of actual disagreement with the law and the supporters' lies on the subject; Anslinger and others had claimed the AMA had vocalized support when, in fact, the opposite was true.
The War on Drugs involves action taken against three groups branded as 'criminals' when in actuality they are participating in market capitalism:
* Manufacturers (whether through chemical synthesis or
* Traffickers and dealers
A War on Drugs is usually run like a modern war with police and other law enforcement officers instead of military personnel. The apparatus prepared for the War is ordinarily organized to face guerrilla situations, armed attacks or counter-attacks and bombings. These tactics include espionage, as undercover agents (spies) are used to infiltrate drug use and trafficking circles.
Investigation on drug trafficking often begins with the recording of unusually frequent deaths by overdose, monitoring financial flows of suspected trafficants, or by finding concrete elements while inspecting for other purposes. For example, a person pulled over for traffic violations may have illicit drugs in his or her vehicle, thus leading to an arrest and/or investigation of the source of the materials. Most investigations into trafficking or manufacturing are fruitless, and casual users remain at a greater risk of arrest, conviction and imprisonment than others. It is then obvious that the intent of the 'drug war' is to round up and imprison as many people as possible for committing a 'crime', while those profiting most financially from the black market continue to profit, and are themselves tax funded government agencies like the CIA. The reason for imprisoning upstanding citizens is two-fold - 1) killing political dissent. Those that disagree with policies that conflict with the government and corporate sponsored profitability in the illegal drug trade can then be silenced when put in prison. 2) the prison industrial complex requires the modern equivalent of slave labor, as most U.S. prisons are privately owned. Currently, 20% of worldwide prison population is within U.S. borders (over 2 million prisoners), with a worldwide total population of only 5% (300 million people).
* If the goal of a state is to protect citizens' health
and well-being, drugs should be legalized so that their purity can be monitored.
The health of citizens is not best served by prohibiting drugs; this only increases
risk and harm, and reduces health and well-being.
o Drug use is a victimless crime and hence, should be legal.
*Drug laws violate the separation of church & state. That drug use is immoral can only be based off one set of moral beliefs. For example, it is discriminatory to claim that Judeo-Christian abstinence from intoxication is the correct set of moral beliefs, whereas Native American historic and religious use of peyote 1, 2 and psilocybin 1, is not the correct set of moral beliefs.
* Drug use is a victimless crime and hence, is unenforceable: without a victim to report the occurrence of a crime, law enforcement personnel can not know of every individual instance of the performance of a crime; they are not able to convict the perpetrators of the crimes that they do not know occurred. Therefore, drug use should be legal so that the deleterious effects can be minimized
*It is not true that the War on Drugs has substantially reduced drug use or availability. However, this probably not the intent of the drug war, as the ones 'enforcing' the laws against use of drugs is usually the ones profiting most from it. Those that 'enforce' want to keep the war alive, as it is a perpetual state of income for them.
* It is impossible to create a drug free society. All of civilization throughout recorded history has had intoxicants as integral part of their daily lives, perhaps on par with the need for food & sex. It has only been a few decades in recent history where this absurd notion of prohibition has come about, coinciding with repressed sexual release most notably demonstrated by evangelical christianity. There are no examples of cultures that included the use of intoxicants and then successfully eliminated the use thereof. There is no indication of a drug free society being possible in the future. There is also no indication that anyone really wants this except a vocal religious minority confined to the United States.
* The War on Drugs increases the profit margin in the sale of drugs, hence, legalization will decrease organized and disorganized crime.
* The use of recreational drugs has no clear and obvious harmful effect on anyone besides the user (who chooses to accept those risks). The War on Drugs, on the other hand, places non-users' friends and loved ones in jail with no victim, and no crime. Hence, the War on Drugs does have clear and obvious harmful effects on third parties.
* It is worth noting that the use of psychedelics or empathogens has not been linked whatsoever to birth defects or mental retardation, but the use of nicotine has as has the use of alcohol. Marijuana has also not been linked whatsoever to birth defects or mental retardation, nor to substantially increased risks of traffic accidents.
* Other countries which have experimented with varying degrees of legalization have had positive results
* The War on Drugs is hypocritical because only certain drugs are targeted. Other drugs, such as alcohol, caffeine and tobacco are legal (in most parts of the world), yet cause many more problems than currently illegal drugs. Even aspirin is, in many ways, more dangerous than currently illegal drugs.
*Cannabis has been socially accepted in many places for millennia. Hallucinogens, such as peyote and psilocybin, have been part of religious ceremonies in the Americas and elsewhere for thousands of years. Coca leaves (from which cocaine is derived) are still chewed by South American natives with no apparent physiological or psychological addiction or other deleterious effects. Opium has also been used for at least two thousand years. Cannabis, peyote, psilocybin and coca have probably been used longer than alcohol, as they can be easily harvested and immediately ingested; alcohol requires some knowledge of fermentation, time and patience. The only drugs which do not have a long history of use were only recently invented, such as amphetamines, LSD and Ecstacy. There are, however, natural drugs similar to these (such as LSA, MDA) which have been used for a long time.
* The prohibition against drug use has boosted black market research on finding new, more powerful drugs that can be transported easier and more safely than existing ones. Because they are more powerful, a smaller amount can be profitable, as well as more dangerous and addictive than older drugs. Hence, drug prohibition has fueled the refinement of heroin (from much less addictive precursors) and the invention of crack cocaine (a cheaper, more addictive and more dangerous derivative of cocaine). Most of these addictive refinements have been sponsored by the CIA, possibly with intent of cultural genocide of certain minorities in the U.S.
* If a corporation did so, it could be required to prove relative safety and clearly mark all packages with danger warnings. It is much easier to force a few corporations to responsibly develop and market drugs than a vast, underground system of individual drug dealers who have no reason not to maximize profits at all costs, as there is no legal method of developing recreational drugs.
* The War on Drugs leads to police corruption, by injecting huge profits into the black market. This inevitably leads to bribery.
* With so much money, drug traffickers and dealers will always be able to bribe some police officers. Often, the bribery extends beyond circumventing drug laws but also to related activities, including murder. The profits to be raised by a police officer selling drugs found in others' possessions (and confiscated without making an arrest or official report) and/or accepting bribes makes the position attractive to some people. In effect, the War on Drugs does and always will attract corrupt people to the ranks of law enforcement agencies.
* Drug dealers will sell to anyone, including children. Merchants who legally sell alcohol and tobacco are not allowed to sell to children. Many high school students report that it is easier to obtain blanket illegal drugs than alcohol and tobacco. Hence, legalizing drugs will help keep more dangerous and addictive drugs from minors, for whom the deleterious effects are greater.
* Parents are currently expected to explain the dangers of using legal drugs such as alcohol and tobacco, as well as frequently abused legal drugs, such as Oxycontin, Valium, and morphine. If they can do so with these drugs, they can do so wit, cocaine, or heroin. Marijuana would be a minor issue, since it has caused zero death or injury for thousands of years of casual use.
* The War on Drugs disproportionately affects the poor and members of racial and ethnic minorities (in the United States). It is often used as a mask (as with any perpetual war, like the 'war on terror) to commit cultural genocide by the christian right wing.
*The War on Drugs was founded on racism in the United States. Opium (a heroin precursor) prohibition began to target Chinese immigrants. Cocaine prohibition began to target African-Americans. Marijuana prohibition began to target Mexican immigrants. LSD prohibition began to target black and white leftist activists.
* The War on Drugs has led to a decrease in civil liberties. Previously illegal searches and seizures, confiscations, wiretaps, and other police actions have been legitimized out of a desire to use them against drug smugglers or dealers.
* The curtailment of civil liberties does not make anyone healthier or more safe. Unfair police tactics currently used against drug dealers, traffickers, and users could be easily used against people of political, religious, or ethnic minorities.
* The United States, where drug laws are strictly enforced, has high rates of drug use as well as an astronomical number of its own citizens in jail. Any definition of a policy "working" which involves rendering such a large proportion of our citizenry into prisoners and ex-convicts (many of whom lose the right to vote) is incompatible with democracy. Therefore, the war on drugs is contrary to the democratic process, as the course of civilization and the entire human species requires recreational drug use as part of its definition. It is the equivalent of outlawing the eating of food, or having sex.
* The current blanket prohibition of both hard and soft drugs (compare ultra-addictive and dangerous heroin to completely benign marijuana) lumps both in the same category in the minds of impressionable children. Drug dealers stand to make greater profit off hard drugs, and so will attempt to convince users to switch from soft to hard drugs. Separating the markets through legalization will prevent this. Compare the numbers between the Netherlands (where the hard and soft drugs markets are separated) to the United States (where they are not).
* Drug legalization will enable users to be certain that they are receiving the correct drug. Currently, drugs are often laced with adulterants for various reasons (to aid in trafficking, to increase the effects, etc). Often, these adulterants are the cause of the primary dangers of use of the drug (as, for example, with Ecstacy). In addition, drug users can not know the purity of such drugs as heroin or cocaine; often overdoses are a result of underestimating the purity. These dangers would be eliminated if drugs were legalized and packages purchased were clearly marked with the purity of the ingredients, as well as a complete list of which ingredients were present.
* The Drug War began for racist reasons, such as the mythical use of cocaine as an incitement to the rape of white women by black men, seduction of white women by Chinese opium-smokers and violent behavior by Mexicans. . Racism is still present in the drug war. A disproportionate number of people convicted for drug trafficking are of a racial minority. Juries and police are more likely to let white drug traffickers off the hook than minority drug traffickers. Only legalization can stop racism in the judiciary.
* Hemp has environmental uses such as in the production of paper, which would decrease the rate that trees are being cut down. Marijuana criminalization has lead the government to prohibit its use even for this. Drug legalization would prevent any government excuse to ban hemp in the production of paper. The drug war primarily helps the synthetic-fibre, wood pulp, petrochemical, and pharmochemical industries.
*Nearly any activity, from driving a car to cleaning the house, can be dangerous. The legalization of drugs can aid in the minimization of the dangers of drug use. It is worth noting that the effects of marijuana on the mind (included "amotivational syndrome") and body are minimal to nonexistent, especially when compared with other, legal activities.
*Many banned drugs are not addictive, or are significantly less deleterious to free will than legal alcohol or tobacco. Severe physiological addiction has been demonstrated for tobacco (stronger than cocaine), but no strong physiological addiction has been shown for marijuana
*Any drug with a market can be legalized for personal use and distributed through lawful channels. This may occur a few times, but dealers will quickly learn that they can only waste time and money inventing something that lawful businesses will sell at cheaper prices.
*Drug legalization would reduce health care costs overall by reducing the probability of overdoses and accidental ingestion of an unintended drug through standardization of drug purity by state-sponsored production and sale. In addition, there is no evidence of prohibition significantly reducing the use of drugs; so legalizing them would not raise health care costs at all.
*The violence associated with the use of drugs would be
greatly decreased if the price was lower, as would certainly happen upon legalization.
Most drug-related crime is caused by users attempting to find funding to buy
drugs at artificially inflated prices (caused by prohibition raising the risk
and cost of creation, transport and sale of drugs).
* There is no clear and obvious third party harm. All examples of such are caused by related activities that can be illegal without blanket prohibition. For example, driving while intoxicated is illegal, while drinking alcohol without driving is not. The harm caused to children by their parents' excessive drug use is criminal insofar as it constitutes child abuse through neglect; drug-specific laws are unneeded. By this logic, alcohol, TV, video games, shopping, cleaning, sex, reading and writing, and virtually any hobby or occupation should be prohibited as some parents may neglect their children in order to focus on having sex, running a business, or building model trains.
*No peer-reviewed scientific study has ever concluded this; many have concluded that the Gateway Theory is clearly untrue, and some have even concluded that marijuana use helps prevent the use of other drugs.
first mention of War On Drugs in Usenet:
From: Don Steiny (steiny@scc.UUCP)
Subject: Re: Re: Gun Control (and Drug Control)
Date: 1984-09-23 09:57:35 PST
> It all boils down to a very simple issue, make people responsible for
> their actions, don't try to restrict the rights and privlidges of
> everybody else.
> mikey at trsvax
I just read an article in the Wall Street Journal that was in favor of legalizing drugs. As part of the argument the author pointed out that the use of tobacco, which is a legal drug, is going down while the use of cocaine, which is an illegal drug, is increasing dramatically. He offered this as evidence that education was superior to regulation for control of drug use.
Perhaps gun control would
be as successful as Reagan's war on drugs. Since the "war on drugs"
began so much cocaine has come into the country that there is a glut and
prices are as much a 50% lower than when he declared war.
Don Steiny - Personetics @ (408) 425-0382
109 Torrey Pine Terr.
Santa Cruz, Calif. 95060
fortune!idsvax -> scc!steiny
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