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Drugs and the drug war
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Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 11475
Location: Berkeley, California

PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2014 8:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So CB--what do you think about the Colorado experiment?
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Joined: 26 Oct 2009
Posts: 3131

PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2014 1:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote


Even though I have never been much of a user of pot (tried it, inhaled, did not think it was my thing), I did vote for its legalization.

Now, I am not so sure that it will work out the way I thought. Apparently, every little hamlet is either trying to capitalize on the sale and distribution or is actively pursuing methods to pass ordinances restricting the use. I had hoped this would be more of a "look the other way" law.

My fear is that it WILL go the way of alcohol and become a regulated substance. This will just add a layer of regulation to government. This should be a law about personal freedom, not commerce.

As far as predicting if the legalization will cause an increase in its use..time will tell. It is not like pot has not been widely available here for a long time.
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Joined: 11 Nov 1993
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2014 2:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CB, I agree with what you wrote. It should be a look the other way law.

However marijuana has a major downside with regards to carcinogenic properties, and early onset psychosis. The government should not profit on other peoples misery.
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Joined: 10 Jul 2005
Posts: 3598

PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2014 6:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree Steven.
With alcohol and cigarettes, they have profited a long time.
The theory is that gov. picks up part of the tab for the damage and these taxes shift those costs onto the user, while discouraging an increase in the damage.
Seems to be working with cigs..
Now if we could do that with oil and the cost of defending it....
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Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 18761

PostPosted: Sat Jan 25, 2014 1:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Let's Not Kid Ourselves About Marijuana
By MITCHELL S. ROSENTHAL, a child psychiatrist and the founder of the nonprofit substance-abuse treatment and prevention organization Phoenix House.
WSJ Jan. 9, 2014
Pot is always good for a giggle, but ... Legalizing marijuana isn't just amusing ... Gallup poll last year found 58% of Americans favoring legalization ...

Yet marijuana is far from safe ... Pot damages the heart and lungs, increases the incidence of anxiety, depression and schizophrenia, and it can trigger acute psychotic episodes. Many adults appear to be able to use marijuana with relatively little harm, but the same cannot be said of adolescents, who are about twice as likely as adults to become addicted to marijuana. The new Colorado law limits pot sales to people 21 or older, but making marijuana available for recreational use normalizes it in society. The drug will be made more easily available to those under 21, and how long until the age limit is dropped to 18?

Adolescents are vulnerable—and not just to pot. That's how they are programmed. They make rash and risky choices because their brains aren't fully developed. The part of the brain that censors dumb or dangerous behavior is last to come on line (generally not before the mid-20s). Meanwhile, the brain's pleasure-seeking structures are up and running strong by puberty. When you link adolescent pleasure-seeking and risk-taking to marijuana's impairment of perception and judgment, it isn't surprising that a 2004 study of seriously injured drivers in Maryland found half the teens tested positive for pot.

Marijuana impairs learning, judgment and memory—no small matters during the adolescent years—and it can do lasting harm to the brain. Dr. Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, has found that marijuana can damage cognitive function in adolescents by disrupting the normal development of the white-matter that brain cells need to communicate with each other.

Most disturbing is a discovery about marijuana last month at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine. Researchers there have found lasting changes in "working memory," brain structures critical to memory and reasoning. A source of ready recall for basic information, like telephone numbers, and solutions to everyday problems, working memory is also a strong predictor of academic achievement.

Dr. Volkow and most other experts are troubled by changing teen attitudes about marijuana. Barely 40% of adolescents now believe regular use is harmful—down from 80% two decades ago. Teen drinking and cigarette smoking have declined, and their abuse of prescription painkillers has fallen off sharply, but teen marijuana use continues to increase. The University of Michigan's Monitoring the Future survey last year found that more than 45% of high-school seniors have smoked pot and 6.5% now smoke it daily (a rate that has tripled over the past two decades). At the substance-abuse programs of Phoenix House, and at similar programs across the country, marijuana is the primary drug of abuse for close to 70% of teens in treatment.

No one can say how marijuana legalization will play out. A perception of legal marijuana as safe, combined with sophisticated marketing, may well double or triple pot use. Warning of aggressive promotion, drug-policy expert Mark Kleiman, who studied potential issues of a legal marijuana market for the Seattle City Council, pointed out last year: "The only way to sell a lot of pot is to create a lot of potheads."

As we learn more about the realities of legalizing recreational marijuana, I suspect pot won't seem so funny anymore. Remember, drunks used to be good for a laugh too. A hiccupping, stumbling tosspot was a staple of Hollywood's screwball comedies in the 1930s and '40s. Smoking cigarettes was considered cool. The reality of wrecked lives and ruined health eventually changed public perceptions of these addictions. Now marijuana is becoming more widely regarded as a harmless amusement. That's not funny, it's tragic.
Yet now the President of the U.S. is downplaying its threat because he was a stoner and survived (and gets a pass for it while Dubya gets demonized because he used to drink). Does he know even one statistic or medical fact about it? Does he REALLY think the nation will be better off when millions more potentially productive people turn on and drop out, whether just on weekends plus a few weekdays or day in and day out? How does comparing pot to alcohol, which has destroyed millions of lives, make implying pot is OK acceptable? I don't notice the man's color or DNA, but I DO notice that he used to do recreational drugs, and it disgusts me that he thinks that was and apparently is still OK. Maybe I'm biased because my Dad was an alcoholic* and in my workplace alcohol abuse and ANY drug use were court martial offenses, but that's a bias I welcome.

* Then one year it killed him in what should have been the prime years of his executive career. Think any of us cared when he died? Guess again. Then remind yourselves that the vast majority of drug addicts started on pot.

All that is partly why my jaw dropped once when I first saw Bud's "WAZZZZZUP" commercials glorifying drunkenness, then dropped again when the public actually thought those ads were cool. I gotta wonder how many kids are dead, crippled, or orphaned because of ads like that.

Last edited by isobars on Sat Jan 25, 2014 1:41 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Joined: 10 Jul 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 25, 2014 1:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was a drug counselor. The vast majority of drug addicts started on alchohol and cigarettes and continued until they died.
A much smaller group started on pot. Most hard drug addicts find pot not to their liking and stop using it while continuing to drink.
Another large group started with drugs in their parents medicine cabinets, including some of my own childhood friends.
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Joined: 18 Aug 2012
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Location: Classified

PostPosted: Sat Jan 25, 2014 1:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

UF study shows long-term drug abuse starts with alcohol
Published: July 10th, 2012
Category: Education, Family, Health, Research
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Alcohol — not marijuana — is the gateway drug that leads adolescents down the path toward more serious substances, a new University of Florida study shows.

The findings may not settle a decades-old debate over how drug abuse begins, but it could help educators and policymakers build more effective drug-prevention programs, said Adam Barry, an assistant professor and researcher in the College of Health and Human Performance.

“By recognizing the important predictive role of alcohol and delaying initiation of alcohol use, school officials and public health leaders can positively impact the progression of substance use,” he said. “I am confident in our findings and the clear implications they have for school-based prevention programs. By delaying and/or preventing the use of alcohol, these programs can indirectly reduce the rate of use of other substances.”

The study appears in the August issue of the Journal of School Health.

Barry used a nationally representative sample of high school seniors, evaluating data collected through the annual Monitoring the Future study. The study, conducted by the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan, uses questionnaires to examine the behaviors, attitudes and values of secondary school students, college students and young adults. Once collected, the data is made available for evaluation by other researchers and institutions.

Barry’s study focused on data collected from 14,577 high school seniors from 120 public and private schools in the United States.

He evaluated whether the students had ever used any of 11 substances, including licit substances such as alcohol and tobacco, as well as illicit substances like marijuana, cocaine, heroin, LSD, amphetamines, tranquilizers and other narcotics. The results indicated that alcohol, not marijuana or tobacco, was most often the first substance students tried, he said.

In the sample of students, alcohol also represented the most commonly used substance, with 72.2 percent of students reporting alcohol consumption at some point in their lifetime. Comparatively, 45 percent of students reported using tobacco, and 43.3 percent cited marijuana use.

In addition, the drug use documented found that substance use typically begins with the most socially acceptable drugs, such as alcohol and cigarettes, then proceeds to marijuana use and finally to other illegal, harder drugs. Moreover, the study showed that students who used alcohol exhibited a significantly greater likelihood — up to 16 times — of licit and illicit substance use.

“These findings add further credence to the literature identifying alcohol as the gateway drug to other substance use,” he said.

Barry also cited the important role of parents and their alcohol-related attitudes and policies in the home.

“Parents should know that a strict, zero-tolerance policy at home is best. Increasing alcohol-specific rules and decreasing availability will help prevent an adolescent’s alcohol use,” he said. “The longer that alcohol initiation is delayed, the more likely that other drug or substance use will be delayed or prevented as well.”
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Joined: 08 Nov 1993
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 25, 2014 2:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You know, I'm glad that paranoid folks are steadily losing ground regarding marijuana and its use. Fortunately, people are seeing beyond the tired talking points and outright lies promoted by zealots that want to continue the war against marijuana.

It's interesting to note that while isobars continues to feverishly rant against the government and its control over our lives, he remains hellbent on having the government continue to criminalize marijuana and its use. What a hypocrite.
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Joined: 25 Jul 2001
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 19, 2014 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Reap what you sow:
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Joined: 18 Aug 2012
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Location: Classified

PostPosted: Sat Apr 19, 2014 10:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

reinerehlers wrote:
Reap what you sow:

Don't you mean you smoke what you sow?

The article is really another reason to legalize it. There would be fewer illegal operations sucking up that water in the wilderness if growing were legal.
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