Petty drug crimes

January 8th, 2013 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

Ben Heather at Stuff reports:

Hundreds of people are locked up for petty drug offences every year – many for crimes our top legal body says should not exist.

Justice Ministry figures show a significant amount of court time is taken up by minor drug cases, with nearly as many people imprisoned for possessing a small quantity of cannabis as for dealing.

Among these offenders are hundreds imprisoned for possessing a pipe or a needle, an offence the recommended legalising last year.

I wonder if those imprisoned for possession of a pipe or needle only convicted for that offence?

The figures also show fewer than one in three minor drug offenders is offered diversion, allowing them to avoid a criminal record.

How many were eligible for diversion? It is only available for first time offenders.

In the past six years, possession of small amounts of cannabis or smoking utensils, such as a pipe, made up about half of all drug charges laid by police.

While most offenders received a fine or community work, more than 2800 were imprisoned on minor drug offences.

These included possession of needles, pipes, and small amounts of cannabis or methamphetamine.

I note that proportions going to prison were:

  • Cannabis possession 6.8%
  • Cannabis utensil 9.7%
  • P possession 22.4%
  • P utensil 19.8%

Rather than dealing with people through the criminal justice system, the Government could introduce a mandatory cautioning scheme, he said.

“For a drug like cannabis you could get three cautions before being diverted to a treatment programme. We are not talking about decriminalising or legalising, it’s about a more pragmatic way to get help for people that need it.”

However, Ms Collins said the justice system was the right place for all drug offenders.

“The Government relies on enforcement agencies such as police to make appropriate decisions on how to charge someone for their offending, and the judiciary to make appropriate sentencing decisions based on the circumstances of individual cases.”

Personally I think the Law Commission proposal of a mandatory cautioning scheme is a sensible initiative, and would like to see it implemented. And I am not sure that the justice system is the right place for all drug offenders.

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265 Responses to “Petty drug crimes”

  1. alwyn (426 comments) says:

    I would love to know when the Law Commission became “our top legal body”.
    I have always believed that Parliament was supreme, and I would be willing to listen to arguments for the Supreme Court but the Law Commission?
    It seems to be a home for self-righteous failed politicians like Geoff Palmer. Actually I don’t believe he is there any more but I haven’t the faintest idea who is.

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  2. kowtow (8,487 comments) says:

    Again shit journalism.

    We’re not told how many of those jailed for minor drug offences had previous convictions and how many previous convictions.

    As to the guy saying they’d come out meth cooks ,then we must have an awful lot of them!Bollox.

    Narcotics are dangerous and destroy lives.

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  3. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Very cautious post. ‘Ms Collins said the justice system was the right place for all drug offenders’, while DPF is ‘not sure that the justice system is the right place for all drug offenders’. Any chance of DPF saying that our drug laws are a mess and the Justice Minister is completely wrong?

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  4. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    Alcohol is the principle that gives to ardent spirit and wine their intoxicating power; while the narcotic principle to opium and tobacco imparts similar properties. In popular language, alcohol is classed among the stimulants; and opium and tobacco among the narcotics; which are substances whose ultimate effect upon the animal system is to produce torpor and insensibility; but taken in small quantities they at first exhilarate. And since alcohol does the same, most medical writers, at the present day, class it among the narcotics.

    — Edward Hitchcock, American Temperance Society (1830

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  5. Put it away (2,878 comments) says:

    Many of the dope smokers should be busted for benefit fraud too. ..eh?

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  6. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Kowtow,

    Narcotics are dangerous and destroy lives.

    Indeed, but nowhere near as much as prohibition itself. Marijuana prohibition has resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands in Mexico in just the past few years. Do you seriously believe that the drug itself is this dangerous?

    Indeed no drug is that dangerous, even the worst of them.

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  7. KiwiGreg (3,255 comments) says:

    A government which was serious about deficit reduction would abolish the Law Commission. Probably deciminalising drugs would help too.

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  8. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Everyone who wants to do drugs is already doing them. The problem of gangs, organised crime, girls forced into prostitution to pay for drugs habits, violence etc… are the result of the law, not the drug.

    If we legalise drugs, then many of these issues will be reduced. There will be a percentage of people who will destroy their lives with drugs, just like there is now, but it will not be forced underground to the same extent. Society will be better able to address drug issues if it is out in the open.

    I choose not to do drugs because I do not like them. It has nothing to do with the law. Most people are the same. What we do need to do is allow personal choice and personal responsibility. No benefit for those who can not support themselves due to out of control drug habits. At present we remove the choice, but also the consequences. It is clearly not working.

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  9. MT_Tinman (3,188 comments) says:

    I’m with Ms Collins.

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  10. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    alwyn (138) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 9:07 am

    I would love to know when the Law Commission became “our top legal body”.
    I have always believed that Parliament was supreme, and I would be willing to listen to arguments for the Supreme Court but the Law Commission?

    You are conflating two separate functions. The court is there to tell us what the law is not what the law should be. Regardless of whether one agrees with all their recommendations it does seem sensible to have a commission established to investigate how or whether laws work and suggest ways laws might be improved.

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  11. thedavincimode (6,759 comments) says:

    Chain gang.

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  12. Davo36 (35 comments) says:

    What a waste of police time!

    Most people who have looked into this reckon cannabis use should be ignored by the police and the time and money spent elsewhere.

    Despite all the billions of dollars thrown at the War on Drugs around the world, they’re more available than ever. It simply doesn’t work. By making drugs harder to get, you make them more valuable, which makes the drugs suppliers richer. Which actually just encourages them – they are prepared to go to even greater lengths because they will make so much more money.

    It really is a health/disease type issue (just like alcoholism) and should be treated as such.

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  13. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “Marijuana prohibition has resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands in Mexico in just the past few years.”

    It has caused none in Singapore.

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  14. flipper (4,068 comments) says:

    So what is it about those pesky Courts?
    Do they not believe the upstanding blue gang?
    Or is it that they are just a little cynical over the attitudes of the Molesworth Street Cowboys and the blonde (?) Beehive cowgirl, ad don’t always believe them? :)

    Look at the conviction (v charged) rates (MoJ stats as quoted by Fairfax):

    Cannabis possession 73.2 % (successful)
    Cannabis utensils 68. 5 %
    Met amphétamine possession 68.7%
    Met amphétamine utensils 70.9 %
    Over those four categories the conviction v charge success is 70.3%
    Prosecution, Court and, most likely also legal aid costs (in total, millions), were taxpayer costs. Money wasted ?

    The Drug Foundation may be more sensible on this than Collins. But then, like AGW/CC BS, there are big budget dollars at stake.

    Solution? Lord knows. :) But maybe the LC and DPF are on the right track.

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  15. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Chain gang.

    Mind your own business thedavincimode.

    Imagine how dull KB would be if it were not for stoners like Griff telling us the world is ending ;)

    I am against all drug use, but the fact is that smoking the odd joint is probably no more harmful than having the odd drink. There is rather a lot of evidence to suggest that it is less damaging, to society, than alcohol. The bottom line, for me, is that a bunch of self appointed busy bodies should not be telling us what we can, & can not, do with our own bodies.

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  16. kowtow (8,487 comments) says:

    Mexico’s drug problem is not due to prohibition. It’s due to criminals choosing to deal in illegal substances and choosing to murder other people. It’s literally that simple.Personal choices.

    Criminals will always find something to trade in.And criminal chemists will always be at least one step ahead of decent society creating new drugs and the mayhem and destruction that goes with it.

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  17. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Reddy sure loves Singapore. Nice law-abiding society, virtually a one-party state, restrictions on personal freedom, Paradise for a right-wing authoritarian, perhaps?

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  18. xy (187 comments) says:

    Nanny state! Nanny state!

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  19. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Sure kowtow. If we made alcohol or tobacco illegal we would get violent criminals dealing in those commodities too. However, what would be the result if we allowed adults to make choices about the substance that they ingest.

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  20. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    The price Singapore pays for its orderly society is too high. I would rather have a level of disorder than that. Many of their penalties are not befitting a modern civilised society. It is disgusting and barbaric torture.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caning_in_Singapore

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  21. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    Liberals constantly whine that “the war on drugs” cannot be won.

    This is utter crap. There is no war.

    There is no war in Singapore, where the drug problem is almost non-existent compared to NZ or other Western “liberal” societies.

    Cue wet liberals who claim Singapore is a “police state”.

    If Singapore is a police state what is Cuba?

    In fact where Cuba’s problem is keeping people in, Singapore’s problem is keeping people in.

    Singapore is a success because one man, Lee Kuan Yew understood completely how Communists work and he kept them and every social issue they employ to get a political beachead out of Singapore.

    Thereby making Singapore one of the globe’s most successful societies with one of the highest standards of living (and relatively crime free) for its citizens.

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  22. Akaroa (557 comments) says:

    With all due respect..what on earth is the matter with you David?

    I mean your observation here: “Personally I think the Law Commission proposal of a mandatory cautioning scheme is a sensible initiative, and would like to see it implemented. And I am not sure that the justice system is the right place for all drug offenders.”

    For my – admittedly woefully innocent part – I always thought there was a law against drug use? In which case offenders and breakers/non-observers of that law need to be whacked. (Not literally of course!!)

    Put ‘em into Court and at least sock ‘em with a heavy fine – and give them a criminal record too!!

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  23. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    Kea I might like the odd smoke however could you please share the drugs you take as your repeated fantasy about me and what I think and say have a distinctly hallucinogenic flavor. As such I am intrigued as to whether you take LSD or have discovered some new drug for distorting reality.

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  24. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    Oh poor little criminals get caned, how barborous.

    Wet liberals like you Kea are why NZ is rapidly becoming an unliveable socialist bog hole.

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  25. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    Whoops – correction needed:

    In fact where Cuba’s problem is keeping people in, Singapore’s problem is keeping people OUT.

    (I could blame the difficulty of commenting from a phone but that would only be trying to avoid responsibility wouldn’t it?)

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  26. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Reddy is hot for for the Singapore model of a free(ish)-market economy with drastic limits on political freedom and a hereditary leadership. Sounds a bit like ‘Red’ China.

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  27. Viking2 (11,471 comments) says:

    The war on drugs is a yankee construct like so many others and doomed to fail (just like so many others.)

    In the USA now there is a move by some states to decriminalize and the movement is growing.

    In NZ we have seen a hardening of attitudes and reclassification of drugs like ecstasy (that no one has died of, although we kill people with alcohol) the result of which is even worse mixes becoming available and being used. The er at hospitals are reporting people which are worse than ever as a result of removing the once more available drugs.

    No one, as long as their arse points to the ground, will stop drug use. (not even in RB heaven) It’s been around as long as mankind and is not going away.

    Better we adopt a sensible approach and allow minor use as a personal responsibility than drive it underground with the consequences of that, deaths, addictions, Gangs, criminals, money laundering, laws, jails, police cost to the taxpayers etc.

    wouldn’t it be interesting to compare costs to the taxpayer, with and without drug law.

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  28. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Redbaiter, I never thought I would see you advocating more State control of our lives. It is none of the governments business what we do, so long as it does not affect others. Get your shit together you little stateist.

    I defend Griff’s right to get wasted and post end-of-the-world prophecies all over KB. Its his karma, not mine ;)

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  29. kowtow (8,487 comments) says:

    Better yet. They hang them.

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  30. Nostalgia-NZ (5,214 comments) says:

    The progressive Don Brash had an excellent idea on this, but Mr Banks wouldn’t support his own leader.

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  31. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    Reddy you would last days in Singapore before your politics would have you caned and deported.
    Remember its the dissenters that suffer.

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  32. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Severe penalty for drinking in Singapore video

    http://www.flickitup.com/view/1812/severe-penalty-for-drinking-in-singapore/

    Disgusting !

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  33. GPT1 (2,122 comments) says:

    In nearly ten years of being involved in the criminal court I cannot recall a single incidence where a defendant has gone to jail just for possession. I can recall one or two times where a Judge has said words to the effect of ‘it’s against the law, if you keep coming back for this then one day a Judge is going to have no option but to lock you up’ but on its own I cannot even recall seeing it. No doubt it happens but I suspect very really. Generally prision sentences for possession are cumulative and because the defendant is already going to jail. So a commercial grower with possession simpliciter is still likely to get, say, a month’s jail for possession.

    I am also aware that many police take a caution first approach. So if a person is caught having a smoke, co-operates and destroys the cannabis then an on the spot caution is often all that occurs. As a rule of thumb to get locked up for cannabis possession (personal use) you have to fail the attitude test and/or have significant previous.

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  34. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    That’s crap Grief. You’re always so full of shit. I’ve lived in Singapore and political discussion is probably more open than it is here in NZ. T least you can tell jokes about queers there.

    What you liberal mugs need to read up on is the theory of demoralization and how Lee Kuan Yew defeated every communist initiative employed to gain a political foothold there.

    Consequently Singapore is the greatest success story in Asia and has grown in stature while NZ has collapsed like a wet stinking decrepit and decaying socialist shit hole.

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  35. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “Severe penalty for drinking in Singapore video”

    Not for drinking but for drinking and driving.

    Try to be truthful or you just become another weak lying commie.

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  36. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    GPT1
    All the more reason to separate possession and use of such substances from other behaviour that should remain criminal. A decent society would regulate the use of tobacco, alcohol, marijuana and any other substances on the basis of harm to individuals and others, not on historically accidental classifications.

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  37. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    If its so great FO there
    it would save us from your nonstop fascist ranting

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  38. flipper (4,068 comments) says:

    Red et al…..

    Before you pontificate further on the world drug problem…. please… go read Frederick Forsyth’s “Cobra”, (published end 2011).

    The (horrific) stats there are checkably accurate (it is said).

    The “war” can be won. But are we (the world, actually) really prepared to bear the cost?

    Luckily, down here in NZ, notwithstanding the propaganda, we are relatively free of the scourge of addictive drugs and their violently criminal purveyors. As Forsyth makes clear in Cobra, it is the ocean around us that we have to thank for that – not posturing politicans and their functionaries.

    Oh, on a personal note: I hate the stuff – all of it – and have never, ever, indulged. :)

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  39. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    All Reddy is saying is that when his Mum took him to Singapore he found it was quite close to his authoritarian fantasy land where behaviour he disapproves of are crimes.

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  40. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Redbaiter (1,750) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 9:50 am

    “Marijuana prohibition has resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands in Mexico in just the past few years.”

    It has caused none in Singapore.

    Aside from those whom the state executes, that is true enough. However, the situation is hardly comparable given that Singapore is a city-state (i.e. it is a corridor for trafficking rather than a source). It is also a borderline dictatorship with a lack of due process and limits on press freedom.

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  41. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Redbaiter,

    If Singapore is a police state what is Cuba?

    I wouldn’t endorse Cuba either.

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  42. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    So flipper hates the stuff he has never tried reminds me of trying to get a five year old to try new food
    You do drink flippy don’t you

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  43. muggins (3,787 comments) says:

    What I can’t understand is why anybody would want to smoke cannibas in the first place. I have never smoked as much as a cigarette in my life,never felt the need to.
    Having said that, it is obvious there are people that feel they have to smoke cannibas for some unknown reason, and for that reason I am inclined to say lets make it legal . Sell it over the counter. Still convict those that are found under the influence when driving a car,or whatever.
    The revenue fron cigarette sales is likely to reduce over time. This could be offset by the revenue from sales of cannibas.

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  44. kowtow (8,487 comments) says:

    “The war on drugs is a Yankee construct.” The name may be but the concept isn’t.

    The Chinese had a huge opium problem thanks to the Honourable East India Company and all that.Drugged up populace and loss of silver.1839 the Chinese burned down the factories in Canton and expelled the foreign traders.War ensued and China was defeated and forced to make massive and humiliating concessions.

    China won it’s war on drugs after Mao seized control and had all the drug traffickers (and probably a lot of users)shot.

    Since Deng’s time crime and corruption has returned and the war continues.

    The war on drugs is not a Yank constuct and it can be won.

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  45. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Redbaiter,

    I’ve lived in Singapore and political discussion is probably more open than it is here in NZ.

    It’s always “open” when you agree with the powers that be and the status quo.

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  46. flipper (4,068 comments) says:

    Griff…
    Are you really as silly as you appear?
    It is NOT consumption; it is not temptation, and it is not only stupidity. It is $$$$$$s…billions, upon billions.
    Go read Cobra, do your own checking, then come back . :)

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  47. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Kowtow,

    So in your mind a state which engages in mass execution of its citizens is to be considered a “win”? It is difficult to argue with someone who is so lacking in moral standards so I will not attempt to. Suffice to say your fantasies of mass slaughter will never come true in this country.

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  48. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Lee Kuan Yew defeated every communist initiative employed to gain a political foothold there.

    Redbaiter, good on him for that, but it does not relate to the topic at hand.

    Less state interference, in our lives, is hardly promoting communism. Your approach is more at home in North Korea. Ask Griff for a joint, it may chill you out a bit.

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  49. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    China won it’s war on drugs after Mao seized control and had all the drug traffickers (and probably a lot of users)shot.

    Now we have kowtow celebrating the success of Mao. Incredible stuff ! :(

    The price is too high for such an orderly society. Most of us stirrers here on KB would be the first to go under the sorts of regimes promoted by Messers Kowtow & Redbaiter.

    Get a grip guys. How much harm does Griff’s dope smoking really cause to you ?

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  50. ChardonnayGuy (1,207 comments) says:

    I’m inclined to think that the Misuse of Drugs Act should be streamlined. Get rid of the Class C classification altogether, and introduce age-restricted decriminalisation for recreational cannabis use, except in instances of legitimate medicinal useage, as occurs in the United States. However, maintain strict penalties under Class A headings for P/crystal meth and similar hard drugs. Also, reconcile alcohol regulation laws to reflect the actual harm that alcohol causes in people’s lives unless responsibly used. As for Class B drugs, either partially decriminalise or retain their current classification according to actual, evidence-based clinical criteria for harm, risk, harm minimisation and risk reduction.

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  51. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    Redbaiter, good on him for that, but it does not relate to the topic at hand.

    It is exactly the topic on hand and when you understand that you will be on the road to recovery from your addiction to liberalism.

    As for Grief, fuck him. This is an idiot who complains of “authoritarianism” and yet like most commies, wants to impose the highly anti-capitalism highly anti-freedom global warming regime upon the west.

    Not only a hypocrite but a fruitcake hypocrite.

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  52. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Redbaiter,

    Consequently Singapore is the greatest success story in Asia and has grown in stature while NZ has collapsed like a wet stinking decrepit and decaying socialist shit hole.

    And yet by most measures (HDI etc.) we are considered among the top nations in the world.

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  53. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Kea (1,419) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 10:46 am

    Get a grip guys. How much harm does Griff’s dope smoking really cause to you ?

    Redbaiter (1,753) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 10:48 am

    As for Grief, fuck him. This is an idiot who complains of “authoritarianism” and yet like most commies, wants to impose the highly anti-capitalism highly anti-freedom global warming regime upon the west.

    And thus we reach the crux of the matter: Griff doesn’t cause anyone harm. What is “harmful” are his views with which Redbaiter is in disagreement. :)

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  54. backster (2,172 comments) says:

    I think the Law Commission Boffins are either removed from reality or being deliberately deceptive, but they won’t fool ‘Crusher’. First there is a world of difference between ‘P’ offences and Cannabis offences. The ‘Stats” are probably distorted by the fact most criminals arrested for other offences are also found in possession of Cannabis so they are also charged with that as well as burglary, robbery, rape, ete and the Judge imprisons them concurently on all charges. I have never heard of a person being sentenced to imprisoment for possession of a small amount of cannabis, there would be a scrum of Legal Aid Lawyers wanting to assist him to appeal if he was. P offences are a different matter and I would expect the Police to continue a no holds barred war against it to continue despite quasi legal hindrances.

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  55. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Of coure Reddy has to resort to abuse when he is unable to carry a point. Deep down, even he knows he cannot reconcile his espoused political views with his love of authoritarian power used to suppress all personal behaviour to which he personally objects.
    This is a thread about drug use. It is not about Griff’s view on AGW.
    If we stick to the topic at hand, we will find who in this discussion is most committed to personal freedoms.

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  56. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    flippty
    I tried hard to translate you post into something meaningful and failed
    could you repeat your points in English please
    something about money is the best I can do

    Kea

    I do believe that you are developing a obsession with me
    creepy and a little gay

    still you know you have an impact if you have your own cyber stalker :lol:

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  57. Scott Chris (6,139 comments) says:

    Consequently Singapore is the greatest success story in Asia and has grown in stature while NZ has collapsed like a wet stinking decrepit and decaying socialist shit hole.

    Well go live there and see how your inevitably dissenting views of their leadership would be tolerated.

    Face it Redbaiter. You are biologically disgruntled.

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  58. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Red, Sorry for being such a wet liberal pantywaist homo loving communist, but a persons view on drug law, AGW and the role of government, may not follow your simplistic narritive. It is not all or nothing.

    If you are trully on the “right” then you would advocate personal choice and personal responsibility. Not micro management from central government, backed up by Draconian laws and penalties.

    Shit ! you now even have me agreeing with the resident commies and other assorted rabble :)

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  59. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    ChardonnayGuy (307) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 10:47 am

    However, maintain strict penalties under Class A headings for P/crystal meth and similar hard drugs.

    Folly, although little else is politically feasible. Meth needs to be decriminalized as well precisely because it is relatively popular and harmful. Maintaining strict penalties will only help to ensure that our neighbourhoods continue to be at risk from P-labs and will also ensure the price of the drug remains high, increasing the potential for addicts to cause harm in an effort to satisfy their habit. Production needs to be regulated and users put into treatment.

    Also, reconcile alcohol regulation laws to reflect the actual harm that alcohol causes in people’s lives unless responsibly used.

    In which case they would be classified alongside other “hard drugs”. Indeed many of the “hard drugs” typically referred to as such are less harmful on an objective basis.

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  60. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    creepy and a little gay

    Now Griff is gay-bashing !

    The whole world is upside down this morning.

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  61. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    backster (1,675) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 10:54 am

    I think the Law Commission Boffins are either removed from reality or being deliberately deceptive, but they won’t fool ‘Crusher’. First there is a world of difference between ‘P’ offences and Cannabis offences. The ‘Stats” are probably distorted by the fact most criminals arrested for other offences are also found in possession of Cannabis so they are also charged with that as well as burglary, robbery, rape, ete and the Judge imprisons them concurently on all charges.

    An offense should not remain on the statute books merely by virtue that some offenders also break other laws. Each law should be judged on its own merits and clearly this is one that lacks merit.

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  62. Scott Chris (6,139 comments) says:

    As for Grief, fuck him. This is an idiot who complains of “authoritarianism” and yet like most commies, wants to impose the highly anti-capitalism highly anti-freedom global warming regime upon the west.

    Fool. The river Thames was virtually flammable until the nasty old authoritarian government stepped in and built a sewage system, curbing the right of Londoners to throw their shit into the street.

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  63. kowtow (8,487 comments) says:

    Shooting drug traffickers is not a celebration of a communist or an endorsement of communism. It is an example of how to deal with evil people who profit from others misery.
    Few jurisdictions deal harshly with narcotics these days and so trafficking is out of control.

    Mass slaughter does take place in NZ and many other “enlightened” states,only the slaughter is not of people convicted of serious crime ,it is done in the name of women’s rights.

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  64. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “Shit ! you now even have me agreeing with the resident commies and other assorted rabble”

    That should make you think shouldn’t it?

    If you do you will understand that their views on this are the usual upside down bullshit that underpins every idea they have ever had.

    It is really about enforcing the law, and if you don’t do that you get an entirely lawless society, which is basically what we have in NZ.

    And no state can control a lawless society.

    Singapore works because its citizens are not liberals, and therefore, they are responsible for themselves. They have a social environment that largely disregards any need for self medication and artificial detachment from reality. They are largely Conservatives, and they respect the law and they agree that laws must be enforced.

    That they are so successful is why the lying commies try so hard to pull them down, for they stand as a stark reminder to the world of what can be achieved if you do not listen to the whining of the likes of Jacinda Ardern, Grief, Milkie and Helen Klark.

    Singaporeans do not need drugs, therefore drug laws are no infringement on their liberties.

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  65. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Red, I am not knocking Singapore generally, just some aspects of it.

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  66. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    Its bloody amazing the links that the redster makes my support of science is now whining like das clarkenfurer
    Guess what reddy
    NSDAP would be a party tailor made for a fascist like you
    complete with the socialist part

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  67. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “Well go live there and see how your inevitably dissenting views of their leadership would be tolerated.”

    I’ve lived there for years you slow witted moron.

    Its a much better living environment than the basket case you have made of NZ.

    One of my mate’s visited last week and said the place was a disgusting rathole compared to what it was, and this degeneration is all the work of the left. You don’t know it because you’re a simpleton frog in slowly warming water.

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  68. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    kowtow (3,507) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 11:13 am

    Shooting drug traffickers is not a celebration of a communist or an endorsement of communism. It is an example of how to deal with evil people who profit from others misery.

    You mean like these people? http://www.db.co.nz/Our-Company-Heritage/Our-Team

    :)

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  69. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Redbaiter (1,755) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 11:14 am

    It is really about enforcing the law, and if you don’t do that you get an entirely lawless society, which is basically what we have in NZ.

    No, it’s about changing the law to remove laws that are harmful and unnecessary.

    They have a social environment that largely disregards any need for self medication and artificial detachment from reality…

    Singaporeans do not need drugs…

    And yet they apparently need alcohol delivered to their door in under an hour.

    http://alcoholdelivery.com.sg/

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  70. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Weihana, Griff
    It is useless to argue with Reddy on the basis of rationality. When his Mum took him to Singapore, the order, cleanliness and discipline appealed greatly to his personal ethos. He thus able to convince himself that this was the work of one people, one nation and one leader; an example that needs to be replicated elsewhere to defeat communism.

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  71. kowtow (8,487 comments) says:

    weihana

    This thread is about illegal drugs. Why do you people constantly harp back to tobacco and alcohol. (rhetorical)

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  72. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    One of my mate’s

    We don’t believe you weddy

    we all know you have no friends because you are such an obviously bitter and twisted little facist

    :lol:

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  73. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    kowtow,

    Really? I thought it was about abortion. :P

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  74. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Red, things are made illegal by laws. Unless it is written in law, it is not a crime. Politicians make laws. People like the hideous Clark, for example.

    Cannabis used to be legal, until some busy bodies decided it should be banned, because “they knew best”. This has happened repeatedly in recent times with a variety of recreational chemical compounds.

    Why do you think Nanny State knows what is best for YOU?

    Can you not decide for yourself ?

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  75. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    kowtow,

    BTW, you said drug traffickers should be shot. Alcohol is a drug.. it is trafficked… and it causes misery.

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  76. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    And yet they apparently need alcohol delivered to their door in under an hour.

    A friend of mine is a very successful business woman in Singapore. She drinks like a fish. She has to maintain herself to the high standards expected of her, when in public. It is a harsh, materialistic, image obsessed culture. When the business day is finished she drinks herself numb.

    Poor old Red is too focussed on the image. This is misleading in Asian culture. You may not see the problems, as you do here in NZ, but they exist.

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  77. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    The whole point of Singapore is it stands as an obvious rebuttal to the liberal’s claims that there is a war on drugs and that it cannot be won.

    This is bullshit. There is no war on drugs. There is no war on drugs being lost.

    All we are seeing is a failure of a weak willed self destructive society and a politically impaired justice system FAILING TO WORK.

    Like every other facet of our society since the socialists became ascendant.

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  78. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Don’t want to go to prison for drug use? Don’t use drugs.
    Don’t want a criminal record as a result of drug possession? Don’t use drugs

    Pretty simple really.

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  79. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Reliance on Singaporem as an example of anything is fraught with hazards. Singapore’s ‘success’ at keeping out illegal narcotics may need to be balanced against a loss of personal freedom. How much personal liberty would New Zealanders trade away to eliminate drug trafficking here?

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  80. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    You don’t give a fuck about personal freedom you fucking insulting charlatan. Go play your stupid games elsewhere.

    Socialism is not just about taking away your money; it’s also about making you praise the takers as your saviors. You are expected to feel good about being robbed of opportunities, talents, and success. You must agree that “you didn’t build that.” There must be a popular consensus that the crumbs you are getting back from the government are a sign of caring and largess — not a meager fraction of your actual earnings. Last but not least, you must sincerely believe that those who are trying to protect you from the thieves are really your enemies and deserve to be destroyed.

    Building up and maintaining such an illusion on a massive scale requires participation of the media, education, and entertainment industries in a coordinated, long-term propaganda campaign.

    Once the illusion reaches a critical mass, those afflicted by it become immune to facts, numbers, or rational arguments. Confronting them with logic will only cause more resentment, name-calling and, sometimes, violence.

    Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/2013/01/the_socialist_mind_game_a_brief_manual.html#ixzz2HKjiBmU0

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  81. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    mikenmild, not that much !

    Red, you still have no answered my question: Why do you need Nanny State to tell you what your allowed to put into your body?

    Is the only thing stopping YOU from being a raving junkie, the law, or is it personal choice ?

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  82. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    Want to destroy some young twits life for no real reason?
    give him a drug conviction at eighteen
    better yet expel him from school at sixteen just because the drugs he uses is not the one you use
    who cares that the officially sanctioned drug is far more harmful than the ones he uses
    who needs to be rational its drugs after all

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  83. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Redbaiter (1,757) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    You don’t give a fuck about personal freedom…

    Neither do you evidently.

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  84. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Red, this is not about “socialism”. It is about freedom of choice. The opposite of socialism.

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  85. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    bhudson (3,078) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 11:57 am

    Don’t want to go to prison for drug use? Don’t use drugs.
    Don’t want a criminal record as a result of drug possession? Don’t use drugs

    Pretty simple really.

    Do you believe that laws should be justified? Or that the law is a justification unto itself? By such logic a woman in Saudi Arabia has no cause for complaint just as a homosexual in Iran has no cause for complaint. It’s the law and, according to the terminally retarded, the discussion ends there.

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  86. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    Weihana, you’ll never get there if you focus on pissant diversions like drug laws.

    Sure the police and law enforcement agencies are out of control but that is what the liberals want.

    Drugs were not always in our society.

    Today they are a big part of it.

    Why the change?

    The same reason as almost every other change that has been foisted upon us.

    The objective is to make us the subjects of tyranny.

    The same people who brought us Helen Klark and Barack Obama and so many other socialist losers brought us drugs.

    Drugs are just another part of the equation aimed at destroying the moral character of the west because once that destruction is achieved, we will be easy meat for the far left totalitarians. Then you will wonder how you lost your freedom, and it will be too late.

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  87. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    I think Reddy needs to take some of his pills, smoke a joint, and chill for a while.

    Ending the prohibition on certain psychoactive substances for adult consumers threatens no one’s freedom.

    It tends to be the authoritarians – whether of left or right – who want control over people’s bodies. Ban this, ban that, when in most cases we could simply trust adults to make responsible decisions in matters that only really affect themselves.

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  88. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    mikenmild (6,352) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 11:58 am

    Reliance on Singaporem as an example of anything is fraught with hazards. Singapore’s ‘success’ at keeping out illegal narcotics may need to be balanced against a loss of personal freedom. How much personal liberty would New Zealanders trade away to eliminate drug trafficking here?

    Moreover, even with such draconian penalties they have not eliminated drug trafficking or drug abuse. Indeed, despite their harsh zero-tolerance policy drug arrests have risen since 2008 (after they admitted their statistics needed correction).

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  89. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Drugs were not always in our society.

    Total and complete bullshit Red. Every culture has its drugs, even the most primitive & the most conservative.

    But wait there is more…………

    The same people who brought us Helen Klark and Barack Obama and so many other socialist losers brought us drugs.

    :) :) :) :)

    Reddy, please please PLEASE do not force me to defend the hideous Klarken monster !!!

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  90. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “when in most cases we could simply trust adults to make responsible decisions in matters that only really affect themselves.”

    You are one disgusting hypocrite. Your whole political ideology is aimed at taking that capability away from people.

    It is only since socialists have incrementally generation by generation eroded people’s ability to act responsibly and make choices for themselves and live independently of government that we have had the drug problem along with every other problem that such a servile state of existence brings with it.

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  91. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “Drugs were not always in our society.”

    Talk to your grandmother you fucking idiot.

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  92. Elaycee (4,392 comments) says:

    bhudson:

    Don’t want to go to prison for drug use? Don’t use drugs.
    Don’t want a criminal record as a result of drug possession? Don’t use drugs
    Pretty simple really.

    Agree 100%. The solution is simple…

    And its laughable that morons who choose to break the Law, suddenly feel the need to bleat and complain because they’ve been caught. It was their choice to break the Law in the first place. So rather than bleat and whinge they need to HTFU and accept the consequences of their own actions.

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  93. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    Drugs were not always in our society

    :lol:
    Alcohol is a drug rednut
    It has been a factor in western society since Gnut found some rotting fruit to get pissed on
    As to the other drugs opium as my stalker has already pointed out was part of life as was cannabis absinth wormwood and lots more fun things
    history is not your strong point is it rednut
    you are not right wing as you claim you are fascist hence closer to socialism than any other political persuasion

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  94. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Redbaiter,

    Drugs were not always in our society.

    Today they are a big part of it.

    You are misinformed.


    Drug regulation began in New Zealand with the regulation of opium in the later half of the 19th century. Opium was widely available and was used medicinally in Europe and America during the 18th and 19th centuries. After morphine was first derived from opium in 1803, it too was liberally used as a strong palliative.194 Similarly heroin, which was synthesized in 1874, was used to treat a broad range of ailments. It was only just before the turn of the 20th century that the medical world concluded, after protracted debate, that these drugs were addictive
    and dangerous.

    Gold miners, who came to New Zealand from California, are credited with first 4.3 introducing opium and morphine into New Zealand. Some of these early miners were veterans of the American Civil War and some were addicted to opium or morphine, which had been liberally used to treat wounded soldiers during that war.196 Opium and morphine, and later heroin, were also used in many of the patented medicines and various tonics that were imported and became increasingly available in New Zealand towards the end of the 19th century.197

    http://www.lawcom.govt.nz/sites/default/files/publications/2010/02/Publication_143_455_Part_6_IP16%20Chapter%2004%20-%20Controlling%20and%20Regulating%20Drugs.pdf

    And this is ignoring the fact that alcohol is also a drug that alters people’s perception of reality and which has been historically popular in various western societies for centuries.

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  95. andretti (130 comments) says:

    I have had a massive change of heart on all things drug related since watching Milton Friedman talk about the stupidity of locking up drug dealers/users ect.He has caused me to now believe that all drugs should be De criminalized and instead of saying users are criminals class them as sick.

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  96. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “You are misinformed.”

    I am not misinformed. “Drugs” as a common term for various mind altering substances were a few generations ago never used as freely as they are today. As I said above, just ask your grandmother.

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  97. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Reddy might turn nasty on this one if forced to confront his contradictory ideas.

    Also nice to see bhudson and Elaycee still can’t see that it is possible to advocate for law changes while following those laws to which one objects.

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  98. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    The support for drug use is just another indication of how totally in the thrall of the far left this country has become.

    You people do not know the force you are fighting.

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  99. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    andretti (119) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 12:30 pm

    I have had a massive change of heart on all things drug related since watching Milton Friedman…

    The problem with legalization/decriminalization campaigns is that they’ve generally been promoted by people who are not persuasive. This is hopefully changing as various business leaders and former presidents and other world leaders start to promote the notion that prohibition has caused immeasurably more harm than it originally sought to cure.

    http://www.globalcommissionondrugs.org/

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  100. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Do you believe that laws should be justified?

    Weihana,

    I am comfortable with our drug laws – even as they are currently enforced by Police and administered by the Courts. If you wish for the laws to be changed it is over to you to put forward a compelling argument as to why they should be changed, not for me to argue why they are justified.

    according to the terminally retarded

    I out that down to a little kiddie throwing a tantrum because they’re not getting what they want. That being the case, throw your toys out of your own cot.

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  101. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Redbaiter (1,762) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    The support for drug use…

    Opposing draconian and unjustifiable laws does not imply support for drug use.

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  102. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    “Drugs”include alcohol.

    That the conservative seek to remove alcohol from contention as a drug is purely because they use it.

    Excluding alcohol from any discussion about recreational drug is just self interest from the establishment.

    Alcohol rates up there with meth and heroin for the damage it inflicts on society

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  103. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    bhudson
    I agree with you that those who wish laws to be changed need to make a compelling case. I believe the Law Commission made such a case. Could you tell me which parts of their argument you disagree with?

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  104. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    bhudson (3,079) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    Do you believe that laws should be justified?

    Weihana,

    I am comfortable with our drug laws – even as they are currently enforced by Police and administered by the Courts. If you wish for the laws to be changed it is over to you to put forward a compelling argument as to why they should be changed, not for me to argue why they are justified.

    What do you think I am doing? This is a forum for debate and discussion. If you choose to participate it is reasonable for me to expect that you would justify any position you wish to advocate. If you do not I will criticize you accordingly.

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  105. andretti (130 comments) says:

    im of the opinion that most people who want drugs have already sourced a supply,and take no account of penalties and even when they have been locked up and done their time go straight back on them and take some pride in being classed as a risk taker or living outside the law when really they are just sickos. I seriously doubt that there is anybody that doesn’t take drugs just because its against the law and is waiting for the law to change so they can become a druggie.If drugs were legal the price would collapse and maybe the dangerous P would disappear to be replaced by a historic drug like cocaine/lsd ect.Not saying this is ideal but we will never win the war on drugs.

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  106. andretti (130 comments) says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XpCTOcwBvFk

    I challenge you all to watch Milton Friedman,he changed my mind.I have always and still are totally against drugs but its time to change the law.

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  107. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Alcohol rates up there with meth and heroin for the damage it inflicts on society

    Griff, the cost to society is far higher for alcohol. (The cost to individuals may be higher for meth & heroin)

    If you wish for the laws to be changed it is over to you to put forward a compelling argument as to why they should be changed, not for me to argue why they are justified.

    bhudson, it is up to the person imposing the law to justify it. No law is the default position. It is the person claiming a law is needed to who must provide evidence in support.

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  108. gump (1,649 comments) says:

    @Redbaiter

    Your hypocrisy is tiresome.

    You want freedom for yourself, but you support an expansion of the Government to reduce the freedom of others.

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  109. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    You people who claim that drug laws are an infringement upon your personal liberties are just being used by the left.

    You’re worried about your personal liberties there are much greater priorities than drug use. Once you have fixed the more important issues, you’ll find that the drug use issue solves itself.

    Get the commies out of education, out of our media, out of our bureaucracy, out of our parliament and most importantly OUT OF OUR CULTURE.

    After you have achieved those objectives then whatever you want to do about drugs then go for it.

    What I will say is this:

    Once you have achieved those key objectives, you’ll find that drugs are just not an issue. And I would bet my house on that outcome.

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  110. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    Gump, take your fourteen year old perspectives back to the 3rd form will you.

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  111. andretti (130 comments) says:

    redbaiter.

    You’re worried about your personal liberties there are much greater priorities than drug use. Once you have fixed the more important issues, you’ll find that the drug use issue solves itself.

    Get the commies out of education, out of our media, out of our bureaucracy, out of our parliament and most importantly OUT OF OUR CULTURE.

    Thats exactly what Friedman talks about.

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  112. coventry (321 comments) says:

    Why is the maximum sentence for Utensils greater than that for possession of the substance ?

    Surely they should all be treated the same ?

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  113. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “Opposing draconian and unjustifiable laws does not imply support for drug use.”

    OK, so removing the penalty for murder would not provide an increase in murderers??

    If anti drug laws are so draconian and unjustifiable, and such an imposition of your freedom, what the fuck are you doing tolerating them? Why are you living under this terrible tyranny? Why don’t you move to where you have “real” freedom?

    If drug laws are such an unconscionable and intolerable assault of freedom, why are there so many people happy to live in Singapore, and so many others so keen to live there???

    You make drug laws seem like they are something that you might find in Libya or Nth Korea. If that is so, why the fuck isn’t there a much greater concerns with losses of freedom- as there is in regard to those countries?

    I’ll tell you why- because its an entirely false construct, a trick, and used by the left to consolidate their political ascendancy, and that is nothing that in the long term will ever be any help to freedom.

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  114. RRM (9,924 comments) says:

    Christ you’d want to be stoned to dip into such a thoroughly rebaitered thread as this one.

    And haven’t we discussed all this before, about 312 times?

    [ ;-) Happy new year, everyone! ]

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  115. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Redbaiter, drug use is not a symptom of socialism. Every culture, even the most primitive hunter gatherers, use some form of drug. It is a very human thing to do and is an ancient practice. A few busy bodies, in central government, have no right to infringe upon it. That is the correct default position to take as a champion of the “right”.

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  116. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    RRM
    I am and it helps:lol:

    we just go around and around its the nature of the beast

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  117. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Redbaiter (1,765) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    “Opposing draconian and unjustifiable laws does not imply support for drug use.”

    OK, so removing the penalty for murder would not provide an increase in murderers??

    First, murder is inherently harmful to another person. Drug use is not, but rather it’s prohibition is justified based upon its propensity to harm the user and consequently the propensity of the user to harm someone else. The same is true for those who advocate to prohibit alcohol for the propensity towards domestic violence, drunk driving etc. I oppose both rationales.

    Secondly, I do agree that legality can have an influence on behaviour, and in particular drug usage. But the deterrent effect of draconian punishments for drugs is not worth it in my opinion and that is a view presumably supported by most New Zealander’s who would not support capital punishment for any crime much less drugs. Moreover, even such deterrent effects are irrelevant in places where production of drugs gives rise to powerful criminal organizations which operate outside of the law (e.g. Mexico).

    If anti drug laws are so draconian and unjustifiable, and such an imposition of your freedom, what the fuck are you doing tolerating them? Why are you living under this terrible tyranny? Why don’t you move to where you have “real” freedom?

    New Zealand isn’t that bad on a relative basis. However I have no interest living in Singapore.

    If drug laws are such an unconscionable and intolerable assault of freedom, why are there so many people happy to live in Singapore, and so many others so keen to live there???

    Ignoring the economic incentives, different people have different values.

    Many people like living in Iran and Saudi Arabia. Doesn’t change my opinion of those places.

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  118. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @Weihana,

    If you choose to participate it is reasonable for me to expect that you would justify any position you wish to advocate.

    My position was, and remains, if you do not wish to go to prison and/or have a criminal record, don’t break the law. It actually applies to far more than just the drug laws.

    These being under discussion, I have stated that I am comfortable with our drug laws as they stand and do not advocate change.

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  119. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @mikey,

    I disagree with the Law Commission’s findings and do not feel that have made a compelling case for change.

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  120. gump (1,649 comments) says:

    @Redbaiter

    The annual usage rate for Cannabis in NZ by those aged between 16-64 is 13.4% (as of 2006).

    So it would appear that a very large number of New Zealanders don’t tolerate our anti-drug laws, they simply ignore them.

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  121. Scott Chris (6,139 comments) says:

    Do you believe that laws should be justified? Or that the law is a justification unto itself? By such logic a woman in Saudi Arabia has no cause for complaint just as a homosexual in Iran has no cause for complaint. It’s the law and, according to the terminally retarded, the discussion ends there.

    Don’t be a woman or a homo.

    Pretty simple really Weihana. Happy new year btw.

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  122. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “First, murder is inherently harmful to another person.”

    This does not address the point. You claimed that calling for drug laws to be annulled does not signify support for drug use. I say it does, just as calling for murder laws to be annulked would signify support for murder.

    You need to tell me why you think that calling for laws against an action to be changed doesn’t imply support for that action. None of the long comment you posted above addresses this point.

    As for the point you tried to shift to- the claim that drug use does no harm to anyone. It does do harm Weihana, it makes it easier for the left to control countries.

    Why do you think it is an epidemic in the west right now?

    Because drugs are another weapon in the left’s long term strategy to impose left wing tyranny in the west. A drug befuddled citizenry is less likely to give a damn about principles and principles must be destroyed if the left is to win, most notably principles of freedom and liberty.

    So even when you think you’re working for those principles, in respect of this issue you are not profiting, and only being fooled by the left and unknowingly helping them in their long term tyrannical objectives.

    So don’t tell me it does no fucking harm. I didn’t come down in the last socialist shower like most of you wet liberal useful idiots.

    Dumbing down and destroying our civil society is the way leftists gain power. Drugs are a weapon used towards this end.

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  123. redeye (629 comments) says:

    As we saw in the last US election the ‘stone’ has started to roll and is now virtually unstoppable. Once the US decriminalises completely the rest of the world will follow.

    Except of course those that practice Sharia law. And Singapore:-)

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  124. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    bhudson,

    I’m at a loss to understand why anyone should care what you are and are not comfortable with. I was under the impression this was a forum for debate, not your pulpit.

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  125. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Redbaiter (1,766) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 2:02 pm

    “First, murder is inherently harmful to another person.”

    This does not address the point. You claimed that calling for drug laws to be annulled does not signify support for drug use. I say it does, just as calling for murder laws to be annulked would signify support for murder.

    You need to tell me why you think that calling for laws against an action to be changed doesn’t imply support for that action.

    The same way I’m not calling for a law against banging your head against a brick wall.

    As for the point you tried to shift to- the claim that drug use does no harm to anyone. It does do harm Weihana, it makes it easier for the left to control countries.

    That is not harm, that is vague unquantifiable bullshit from a paranoid schizoid.

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  126. gump (1,649 comments) says:

    @Redbaiter

    If drugs are part of a “left-wing tyranny” that “makes it easier for the left to control countries.”

    Then why have recreational drugs (aside from tobacco and alcohol) been illegal in every single Communist country since the beginning of history?

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  127. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    redeye (561) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    As we saw in the last US election the ‘stone’ has started to roll and is now virtually unstoppable. Once the US decriminalises completely the rest of the world will follow.

    Hopefully but I wouldn’t count my chickens just yet. Many states had decriminalized in the 70s and the trend was heading that way before the “concerned mothers” monopolized the political narrative.

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  128. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    bhudson
    Your statement would be a little more compelling were you to engage with the argument and demonstrate how and why the Law Commission have got it wrong, in your view. Just saying ‘I’m for the status quo’ brings you dangerously close to Reddy’s level of being unable to construct an argument.
    There are rational reasons in favour of the status quo, but no one on this thread has presented the argument for maintaining the current legal status of possession of marijuana.

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  129. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “That is not harm, that is vague unquantifiable bullshit from a paranoid schizoid.”

    Lee Kwan Yew kept drugs out of Singapore because he knows it is a big part of the demoralisation process that accompanies leftist power strategies.

    The “man of steel”, one who took Singapore from a collection of mosquito infested swamps and jungle to one of the most thriving and successful examples of western civilisation in the world today (while NZ was conversely collapsing back into a rhetorical version of those initial swamps) was a paranoid scizophrenic?

    Hapless bullshit Weihana.

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  130. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    Then why have recreational drugs (aside from tobacco and alcohol) been illegal in every single Communist country since the beginning of history?

    Exactly right. Why are they apparently only a necessary part of the west?

    To weaken us of course.

    FFS, can’t you see the point of your own fucking question?

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  131. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Scott Chris,

    Don’t be a woman or a homo.

    Pretty simple really Weihana. Happy new year btw.

    Happy new year to you. Another year and plenty more “debates” on gay marriage and the left-wing-liberal-communist-homo-loving-tyranny to come! yay… :)

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  132. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Redbaiter,

    The “man of steel”, one who took Singapore from a collection of mosquito infested swamps and jungle to one of the most thriving and successful examples of western civilisation in the world today (while NZ was conversely collapsing back into a rhetorical version of those initial swamps) was a paranoid scizophrenic?

    NZ isn’t collapsing. Standard of living remains among the highest in the world.

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  133. gump (1,649 comments) says:

    @Redbaiter

    If Singapore is “one of the most thriving and successful examples of western civilisation in the world today” then why is the total fertility rate only 0.78 per woman (the lowest rate in the world – and well below the 2.1 needed for population replacement).

    If your idea of a “thriving and successful” society is one that discourages families and children, then you’ve been drinking too much sherry.

    Singapore’s economic vitality comes from the 40% of its population that wasn’t born there.

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  134. kowtow (8,487 comments) says:

    redeye

    Good luck with your rolling stone. The US won’t decriminalise,All that’s happened is possession of 1 ounce in public in Washington is not illegal. Any more is. And no public consumption.

    And there’s not widesread support.It was 55 /44 roughly. hardly overwhelming.

    Meanwhile Hollywood et al will continue to push hard to desensitise the unthinking and stupid.It’s not called dope and users aren’t called stoners and brainfucked for no reason.

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  135. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    Gump, you’re trying to justify drug use and rebut my argument that it is a tool of the left.

    Stay on topic and stop wasting my time with petulant rubbish.

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  136. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    users aren’t called stoners and brainfucked

    I knew a user, he was called Micheal. He flew planes for a living.

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  137. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “Standard of living remains among the highest in the world.”

    Yep, that’s why about 30% of the population chooses to live elsewhere.

    NZ is a drug fucked crime ridden socialist shit hole. As my mate from Aussie described it last week.

    It wasn’t fifty years ago.

    What we see today is the result of around five decades of communist subversion through global organisations like Socialist International etc.

    We on the right do not have any such organisations. All we have to combat the left is our own morality and our civil societies, and these two strengths must be turned into weaknesses for the tyrants to win.

    Lee Kwan Yew knew that, while most NZ (National Party) politicians were politically ignorant fools, which is why Singapore has triumphed while we have plunged into the abyss.

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  138. SPC (5,619 comments) says:

    Redbaiter, Singapore’s success is built upon government involvement in the economy and full employment policies.

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  139. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    I know a user hes a top lawyer
    another is the head of one of nz top schools
    Do I dribble and drawl all over the keyboard? shit dont answer
    but then there is philu

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  140. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    Fuck was that the redster trying to engage in honest debate-actually trying to construct an argument that goes beyond commie bastards
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .

    No its the pot I am smoking :lol:

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  141. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    Redbaiter, Singapore’s success is built upon government involvement in the economy and full employment policies.

    Yes, that is part of it, but its real success is down to the fact that they have retained a civil and law abiding society where self reliance is held in high regard, and they have done it in the face of great odds.

    As opposed to NZ where dependence has been encouraged and civility and morality have been constantly attacked. Hence we suffer under the burden of ascendancy of the left, and our crime ridden and degenerate society with its high proportion of beneficiaries is the result.

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  142. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    but its real success is down to the fact that they have retained a civil and law abiding society where self reliance is held in high regard

    But Red, your policy of the state deciding what drugs we take, is the opposite of “self reliance”.

    You are failing to construct a convincing argument that drug use is a symptom of socialism. ( you would be on better ground if you referred to alcohol use in socialist states)

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  143. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    I’d love to see Reddy present some evidence for his assertion that encouraging drug use is part of an international socialist plot.

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  144. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    Kea, you have an arsonist on the street wanting to burn down your home, do you run out and give him a box of matches?

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  145. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Red, no.

    What has that got to do with Griff having a quiet joint at home ?

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  146. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    Ex-KGB agent Yuri Besmenov explains the stages of Communist subversion (Video)

    http://redwhitebluenews.com/?p=9547

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  147. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    Might be worth reminding some people at this stage of the debate that it is possible to see the widespread encroachment of heavy drug use (often into otherwise law-abiding society) as a harmful thing and to still believe that criminal penalties aren’t the appropriate response.

    And for precisely the same reason that raiding an AA meeting, locking up the attendees and saddling them with a criminal record – thus handicapping their job prospects for the rest of their lives and virtually guaranteeing the continuation of an indolent, pointless lifestyle in which being blitzed out of your mind is almost a necessity to get through the day – isn’t an appropriate response.

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  148. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “What has that got to do with Griff having a quiet joint at home ?”

    You’re a bit slow today Kea.

    You think NZ’s social character is improved by Grief’s contribution to the debate?

    He’s an unprincipled liar and a worthless loser who pushes such totalitarian ideas as global warming.

    The commies need a nation of Griffs and the country is theirs.

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  149. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Red, your mate Yuri is probably rat-faced on Vodka.

    An East German mate of mine used to drink a bottle of Vodka a day when the wall was up. That was not heavy drinking, it was like a glass of wine with dinner, is with us. Getting on-the-piss involved heroic amounts of Vodka !

    Griff’s dope & Yuri’s vodka are both drugs. The only difference is the state profits from one and gangs from the other.

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  150. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    Kea and weddy think all things they disagree with are a cunning plot by the socialist to take over the world.
    their proto brains would explode if they had to contemplate the reality that they are simple morons.

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  151. kowtow (8,487 comments) says:

    kea,like the pilots involved in Fox Glacier and Carterton? How many died? Harmless recreational use…….yeah right.

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  152. Manolo (13,783 comments) says:

    It was long suspected, Griff.

    Too much electric puha and adoration of Gaia have damaged your brain beyond repair. So, your belief in AGW is fully justified given the circumstances and medical condition. Way to go, greenie.

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  153. redeye (629 comments) says:

    Sorry Kowtow but your utopia of a land where alcohol rules is severely under threat. Out of curiosity do you perhaps make a living out of the only legal drug? From my experience those that do are the most vocal opponents of cannabis law reform .

    Rhode Island also voted to decriminalise in 2012.

    Proposition 19 was only just defeat with exit polls showing most favoured decriminalisation but had some issue with the wording of the legislation. Further you’ve missed Alaska, Mississippi & Pennsylvania.

    The stone is rolling and I’d suggest you will see in your life time adults being able to choose what they do in the privacy of their own homes. Legally.

    Oh and BTW the name calling you indulge in says more about the people using those terms than anything.

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  154. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Kea and weddy think all things they disagree with are a cunning plot by the socialist

    Hay Griff, are you even reading my comments ? I am saying the opposite to that. Paranoid much !

    Kowtow gets it….

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  155. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    kowtow
    You are getting to an actual argument: well done! But the argument is not that recreational use of marijuana is harmless. Just as there are aviation rules against inappropriate use of alcohol, so too we need rules against the inappropriate use of other psychoactive substances. Making some substances outright illegal to posess or use actually makes it harder to minimise the harm that can occur from the use of those substances.

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  156. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    Kea is right Grief you moron.

    He is on your side and this is a fact that apparently doesn’t provide him with any cause for reflection.

    When in most cases its a circumstance that would cause any rational person to pause and think.

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  157. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    No I was merely pointing out to you that when others act like you do over the global warming thing it looks pathetic
    Weddy and his everything he dislikes is a commie plot is also your position on agw

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  158. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    kowtow (3,513) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    kea,like the pilots involved in Fox Glacier and Carterton? How many died? Harmless recreational use…….yeah right.

    What evidence do you have that cannabis use caused either crash? That’s not to say that drug use and flying go together (including getting drunk the night before a flight), but in the Fox Glacier incident it appears that weight and balance was the primary cause. Given the sharp pitch up after take-off that would seem a plausible conclusion and I fail to see what that has to do with any purported prior drug use.

    As to the Carterton crash, there too I see no evidence that impairment caused the crash. Ballooning is an inherently dangerous activity IMO and I note the interim report stated that the balloon was about to land when an “isolated gust of wind” caused the balloon to veer sharply into power lines.

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  159. gump (1,649 comments) says:

    @Redbaiter

    And here’s a video in which General Jack Ripper explains the post-war Commie conspiracy to introduce foreign substances into our precious bodily fluids.

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  160. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    kowtow god bothering has rotted your brain
    I hate to tell you this but you are safer with a pot smoker than the population at large
    read the actual scientific research on smoking pot and you will find that stones are more careful than straight people at least behind the wheel of a car
    inconvenient for the repressive cocks that introduced the driving while stoned law
    why let science dictate laws knee jerk laws are much more effective in getting you elected. :sad:

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  161. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    FFS Grief, you’re so in denial you should be in a padded room.

    Just go to the Socialist International website and observe that the first thing you see is their massive commitment to pursuing “Global Climate Justice”.

    Then go to their list of members and see how many countries they dominate.

    Or if that isn’t enough for you go and look at the agenda for Global Peace and Justice. Or a hundred other similar global far left organisations.

    And if that still isn’t enough, go and look at the platform of every Communist Party in every Western country, and or the Progressive Caucus of the Democratic Party, which came about when the Communist Party USA decided it was better to work through existing political structures than from the outside.

    They are all global in their intent and they all have the same objectives. If you can’t see it you need your fucking head looked at. Or to give up dope smoking.

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  162. redeye (629 comments) says:

    Re Fox Glacier; As I understand it no cannabis was found in the body of the pilot but the diving instructors.

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  163. Viking2 (11,471 comments) says:

    mikenmild (6,357) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    bhudson
    I agree with you that those who wish laws to be changed need to make a compelling case. I believe the Law Commission made such a case. Could you tell me which parts of their argument you disagree with?
    —————————–

    UMM.No
    Surely its for those that wish to retain laws to put up the argument for their retention.
    This is already the case with some sunset provisions. It should be extended to every law passed at least every 10 years.

    The result of not doing this has allowed the constant proliferation of law and lawyers and the cost that imposes on supposedly a free so

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  164. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    Science and politics are two separate reality’s weddy
    The right has allowed the nutters in the green party to own the debate around global warming. To continue to denigrate the science is to allow the greens even more power in the future.
    This is not the thread for another climate battle its funny enough as it seeing all the conservo trying to justify an unscientific and biased reaction to drrrrrrgs

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  165. Viking2 (11,471 comments) says:

    kowtow (3,513) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    kea,like the pilots involved in Fox Glacier and Carterton? How many died? Harmless recreational use…….yeah right.

    simply not true. Read the fidings instead of being a lying communist etcetc as RB describes.
    Stick to the truth.

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  166. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Red, I am sure Griff understands that, although I may support him on THIS topic, I will continue to debate him on AGW. That is how rational people do things. I do not hold a point of view in order to be simply, left or right, I hold it because I think it is the best approach. Clearly others may not agree with me, but that does not mean they are communists, or that I am a “wet liberal”.

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  167. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    Griff,

    read the actual scientific research on smoking pot and you will find that stones are more careful than straight people at least behind the wheel of a car

    The scientific research is varied as to the extent of driver impairment from smoking cannabis. Seems to me laboratory studies show clear impairment in skills used in driving though simulator tests tend to show users compensate for that impairment.

    I don’t think the problem is as bad as alcohol but I think it’s fair to restrict driving for any impairment of this type. Driving is potentially dangerous. It’s not too much to ask that people be free of impairment when they get behind the wheel.

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  168. Longknives (4,753 comments) says:

    “read the actual scientific research on smoking pot and you will find that stones are more careful than straight people at least behind the wheel of a car”

    Obviously our Stoner friends aren’t quite as ‘careful’ whilst flying Hot Air Balloons….

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  169. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    The problem with the pot and driving law is pot stays in the body and is detectable long after the effects have warn off
    The research I have read is after three hours there is no quantifiable effect from smoking pot yet it shows up for around a month in drug tests.
    If I was forced to reenter the employment market I would have a hard time returning to my old trade as the drug testing would rule me out even though smoking on weekends or at night does not effect my work.

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  170. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    I was under the impression this was a forum for debate, not your pulpit.

    Oh Weihana, that is just so richly ironic.

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  171. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Your statement would be a little more compelling were you to engage with the argument and demonstrate how and why the Law Commission have got it wrong

    @mikey,

    You agreed that it up to those seeking a change to present a compelling argument. You also noted that you believe the Law Commission presents such. Perhaps you could detail that which makes it compelling – be part of making the compelling argument.

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  172. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    bhudson (3,083) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 4:11 pm

    Your statement would be a little more compelling were you to engage with the argument and demonstrate how and why the Law Commission have got it wrong

    @mikey,

    You agreed that it up to those seeking a change to present a compelling argument. You also noted that you believe the Law Commission presents such. Perhaps you could detail that which makes it compelling – be part of making the compelling argument.

    At 171 posts and counting, plenty of people have been making various arguments on the issue, some more compelling than others. Perhaps you might want to just jump in the pool already instead of dancing around the edges.

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  173. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @Weihana,

    There is no argument to be put to the negative until and unless someone can actually present a compelling reason to change the law. None has yet been presented.

    No point jumping in a pool with no water.

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  174. JMS (330 comments) says:

    @bhudson

    No, the default position should always be for freedom of choice.
    If the state deems it necessary to enforce restrictions, then it must be able to justify those restrictions on an ongoing basis.

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  175. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @JMS,

    I disagree. The laws are in place. If they are to be amended or repealed, it is up to people to provide compelling rationale for that.

    I agree that people should be free to make those arguments on an ongoing basis.

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  176. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    bhudson,

    That the arguments offered are not compelling is merely your preconceived view without you actually having tested your own views against the competition. That said, whether or not an argument is compelling is a subjective determination on your part and in that regard no one can make you want to swim.

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  177. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    bhudson
    The Law Commission was somewhat constrained by its approach that New Zealand law needed to be in sync with international conventions against illicit drug trafficking and consumption. Even with that constraint, the Commission recommended partial decriminalisation and a mandatory cautioning scheme. This is an approach clearly ground in harm minimisation, by teating drug use as more of a health issue than a law enforcement issue.

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  178. Redbaiter (8,929 comments) says:

    “Red, I am sure Griff understands that, although I may support him on THIS topic, I will continue to debate him on AGW.”

    Yeah, but as usual the fucking bleating idiot sidestepped the issue, which was his claim that there was no globally coordinated leftist plan.

    There clearly is, but as I said, after being shown to be wrong, he suddenly acted like the issue was something else.

    Its a trick left wingers always pull.

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  179. JMS (330 comments) says:

    @bhudson

    I would love it if more, if not all, of our laws and regulations had so called “sunset clauses” on them.
    That way, those wishing to maintain state intervention of any form (ranging from tax rates to cannabis bans, you name it) would regularly need to justify their reasons for continuing to butt into our lives.

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  180. Longknives (4,753 comments) says:

    “it is up to people to provide compelling rationale for that.”

    bhudson- The only ‘compelling rationale’ we have had so far is one Stoner claiming that he personally feels fine to drive a few hours after a ‘session’…well I’m sold! All the lawmakers must be wrong….

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  181. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    Weihana – I was under the impression this was a forum for debate, not your pulpit.

    bhudson – Oh Weihana, that is just so richly ironic.

    Weihana does like to preach a bit, particularly when his superior intellect is so desperate needed by the rest of us: (emphasis mine)

    Weihana, March 2012 – “Therefore if the educated among us are able to determine objectively that certain methods of [redacted] are not positive and not healthy then that to me constitutes a rights based argument. The idea being that the [vast majority]% (in reality probably lower) is ignorant and should be corrected by the force of superior knowledge. We should not hold their view valid merely by force of numbers”

    Back O/T, Personalised choices that lead to socialised consequences are not a winning formula. The social and economic devastation cause by alcohol abuse should have taught us that long ago. I’ve yet to hear those who campaign for increased drug liberalisation also campaign for individuals to assume liability for the costs and consequences of any abuse of that drug.

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  182. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    I’ve yet to hear those who campaign for increased drug liberalisation also campaign for individuals to assume liability for the costs and consequences of any abuse of that drug.

    krazykiwi, you heard exactly that from me. Along with personal liberty should come personal responsibility.

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  183. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Commission recommended partial decriminalisation and a mandatory cautioning scheme. This is an approach clearly ground in harm minimisation, by teating drug use as more of a health issue than a law enforcement issue.

    Thanks mikey, but what were their arguments and, particularly, what about them made their recommendations compelling to you?

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  184. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    KK if the damage caused by drug x is less than that caused by alcohol surly it makes sense to encourage persons to use drug x as apposed to alcohol
    that would;d seem to be ae logical route to the minimization of drug harm
    instead we persecute those who use less harmful drugs like xtc lsd and pot and entrench the more harmful drug alcohol
    quantified drug harms http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736%2810%2961462-6/abstract

    Findings
    MCDA modelling showed that heroin, crack cocaine, and metamfetamine were the most harmful drugs to individuals (part scores 34, 37, and 32, respectively), whereas alcohol, heroin, and crack cocaine were the most harmful to others (46, 21, and 17, respectively). Overall, alcohol was the most harmful drug (overall harm score 72), with heroin (55) and crack cocaine (54) in second and third places.

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  185. JMS (330 comments) says:

    I’ve yet to hear those who campaign for increased drug liberalisation also campaign for individuals to assume liability for the costs and consequences of any abuse of that drug.

    Along with personal liberty should come personal responsibility.

    Fully agree.

    Problem is that, as the laws currently stand, we encourage the exact opposite of personal resposibility.

    We treat adults like children in that we tell them what they can and cannot put into their own bodies, and punish them accordingly.
    When they then go out under the influence of drugs and injure a third party, the punishment the receive is often barely any harsher.

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  186. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    Griff – I makes sense to remind them they can take whatever the hell they like, but they’ll be picking up the tab for medical and psychological harm to themselves, and the cost of harm experienced by others.

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  187. redeye (629 comments) says:

    bhudson: The argument in video form for simple digestion.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8UtNF-Le2L0.

    Featuring 2 former US presidents, the former President of Brazil, former President of Colombia, Richard Branson and a number of others. Narrated by Morgan Freeman.

    But I somehow doubt you’ll watch. You mind appears to be made up.

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  188. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    bhudson says:

    The laws are in place. If they are to be amended or repealed, it is up to people to provide compelling rationale for that.

    Even when the rationale (i.e. they are not achieving their purpose) is obvious?

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  189. nasska (11,525 comments) says:

    The current law, at least in the case of marijuana, owes its existence to a scare about the effects of hashish on a group of Egyptians back in the 1920’s. As is the wont of governmental control freaks everywhere, when laws regarding use of opiates were altered or introduced the opportunity was taken to slip marijuana use in under the radar. The legislation was the NZ Dangerous Drugs Bill of 1927 passed to ratify the 1925 Geneva Convention on Traffic in Opium and Other Drugs.

    Worth noting is that the Geneva initiative did not require individual nations to make possession or use an imprisonable offence….this came about because it was tacked on to a bill regulating sale & use of opiates.

    ….”For more than thirty years the cannabis prohibitions remained unchanged
    and apparently unenforced: throughout that period there seem to have been no
    reported cannabis offences2o and use of the drug was virtually unknown.”…..
    Ref:http://www.austlii.edu.au/nz/journals/OtaLawRw/2001/3.pdf

    In the 60’s as a response to US Government hysteria, (anecdotally linked to a desire by the authorities for a club to bash the Bohemians, forerunners of the hippies) control was toughened to include the growing of Indian Hemp, an activity not previously banned.

    Subsequent legislation, too long winded for a comment on this forum, cemented the criminalisation of marijuana with far more emotion & prejudice to the fore than thought or justification.

    The time is well overdue for a full overhaul of NZ drug laws using up to date information as opposed to the bleatings of those who pontificate on the evils of something they know jackshit about while gargling a single malt.

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  190. kowtow (8,487 comments) says:

    oh here we go ,the erudite nasskrap doesn’t like whisky drinkers but wants to hug a dope headFFS

    and there’s a hell of a lot of studies to show dope is just that.

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  191. wat dabney (3,769 comments) says:

    Every single one of them deserves not just a pardon but compensation for being locked up for their made-up victimless “crime.”

    Sooner or later the evil War on Drugs will end. It’s then a question of how many generations societies will take to recover from its effects.

    If on a jury, never vote to convict on drugs. And always vote to convict if the accused is a politician; even if the bastard’s innocent of the case before the court.

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  192. gump (1,649 comments) says:

    @kowtow

    I don’t mind whisky drinkers. However I do have a problem with people who drink the entire whisky bottle in one sitting.

    And that’s really what the arguments on both sides come down to. Use of cannabis or alcohol isn’t a problem, but abuse of either is a big problem.

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  193. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Even when the rationale (i.e. they are not achieving their purpose) is obvious?

    Then surely those advocating the change will use that compelling rationale Rex.

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  194. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Its funny that the NZ society that existed, before cannabis use was made illegal, would appeal far more to the likes of Redbaiter. The sorts of things he complains about were not so prevalent back then. After Nanny state banned it, we got all those commie hippies emerging. Ironic.

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  195. Yoza (1,877 comments) says:

    If drug law liberalisation is a communist plot then surely Redbaiter would have no problem of providing an example of a communist state with liberal drug laws.

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  196. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Every single one of them deserves not just a pardon but compensation for being locked up for their made-up victimless “crime.”

    How much compensation would you propose for Steve Williams, to go with his pardon Wat?

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=3538849

    Or do you have irrefutable evidence that he would have killed Coral even if he had not been “up all night smoking P”. Victimless crime indeed. Well, except for the victims of course.

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  197. Longknives (4,753 comments) says:

    That’s the point Gump- I am a lover of fine alcohol (preferably Whisky), but I know that drinking all day every day would kill me. I would also never be so arrogant and selfish as to get behind the wheel after half a bottle.
    Potheads, on the other hand, all seem to believe their precious ‘Sacred Herb’ is harmless, and see no problem with getting baked out of their brains every day. They also seemingly have no problem with getting behind the wheel (or controls of a Hot Air Balloon…)
    To constantly condemn alcohol yet exhort the benefits of the supposedly wonderous drug Cannabis is more than absurd.

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  198. wat dabney (3,769 comments) says:

    bhudson,

    No one has ever suggested that people be excused of anything they do under the influence of drugs, including alcohol.

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  199. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    Researchers led by Professor David Nutt, a former chief drugs adviser to the British government, asked drug-harm experts to rank 20 drugs (legal and illegal) on 16 measures of harm to the user and to wider society, such as damage to health, drug dependency, economic costs and crime. Alcohol is the most harmful drug in Britain,scoring 72 out of a possible 100, far more damaging than heroin (55) or crack cocaine (54). It is the most harmful to others by a wide margin, and is ranked fourth behind heroin, crack, and methamphetamine (crystal meth) for harm to the individual. The authors point out that the model’s weightings, though based on judgment, were analysed and found to be stable as large changes would be needed to change the overall rankings.

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  200. wat dabney (3,769 comments) says:

    Prof Nutt was sacked for telling the British government things they didn’t want to hear.

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  201. nasska (11,525 comments) says:

    Longknives

    I don’t think that any of the 200 comments on this thread have pushed the theory of the effects of cannabis being totally benign. If you smoke up large, same as if you drink to excess then common sense dictates that a generous amount of time should be allowed for the effects to wear off.

    The laws regarding use of a drug, any drug, & the laws prohibiting certain activities under the effect of the same drug need not involve prohibition…..if they did then logically the use of alcohol would banned overnight.

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  202. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @wat,

    The legalisation of drugs would make them more readily available, and likely cheaper, than they are today. There is a very high likelihood that there would be more Coral Burrows’ if we did anything to liberalise drug laws.

    Better to start with the fence at the top, rather than relying on the ambulance at the bottom [being held accountable for their personal responsibility after the killing.]

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  203. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    krazykiwi (8,542) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 4:50 pm

    I vaguely remember you making a fuss over that statement at the time. I still fail to see what is so remarkable about the notion that children have rights independent of their parents wishes and that objective scientific evidence can be used to determine what those rights are and what is in their best interests irrespective of what the majority thinks.

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  204. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    bhudson
    I’d advocate a single regime to be applied to all psychoactive substances – a regime of regulation and control.

    It is interesting that you brought up the case of the extremely nasty Steve Williams. We do not cut him any slack because of his abuse of drugs. Neither should we be lenient on any other violent offender because he or she abused alcohol.

    I don’t think the supply, possession or use of alcohol (to use one example of a legal substance) should be criminalised. Straightforward regulation to minimise the social harm from its abuse is required.

    The supply, possession and use of cannabis (to use one example of an illegal substance) should be subject to a similar regulatory regime. This would allow concentration on minimising the social harm the comes from cannabis abuse. At present, minimising the abuse is hindered rather than help by the legal status of cannabis.

    I would make the same arguments in comparing any other legal substance with an illicit counterpart. We do not have to judge adult humans as criminals simply by the type of substance they knowingly ingest. People should be held to account for harm caused by their actions while under the influence of a psychoactive substance irrespective of what substance they have used.

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  205. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    bhudson (3,089) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 6:42 pm

    @wat,

    The legalisation of drugs would make them more readily available, and likely cheaper, than they are today. There is a very high likelihood that there would be more Coral Burrows’ if we did anything to liberalise drug laws.

    Cheaper is a good thing. A substantial portion of the harm associated with drugs is fueled by the inflated price. Moreover, what you suggest hasn’t happened in Portugal. And more to the point even the worse drugs do not automatically make people kill. It is all too easy to excuse a murderers responsibility based on their drug addiction.

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  206. wat dabney (3,769 comments) says:

    bhudson,

    It is far more likely that decriminalisation would lead to far less harm, both by and to drugs users.

    Just look up what happened when Portugal decriminalised drugs more than a decade ago.

    Plus, you have to consider the extreme harm that the War on Drugs does to societies and individuals.

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  207. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    bhudson,

    Unfortunately many people are up all night smoking P. Every night of every week all year long. They will generally end up destroying their health (if they don’t quit). Why don’t all these people kill others? Perhaps because the link between drug abuse and specific criminal acts is not as simple or clear cut as you make it out to be?

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  208. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Weihana/wat,

    If Portugal is the only example of drug use declining following liberalisation or decriminalisation of drug laws, then it is surely an outlier – something to learn from, sure, but no strong indicator of what will happen in the event of loosening those laws.

    @Weihana,

    Unless you have some very strong, if not irrefutable , evidence that Willams would still have killed Coral Burrows, then anything that makes P more aailable and/or acceptable is begging for more such killings.

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  209. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    bhudson says:

    Even when the rationale (i.e. they are not achieving their purpose) is obvious?

    Then surely those advocating the change will use that compelling rationale Rex.

    Well yes they might, but it’s been made often enough, by enough persons who aren’t potheads by any means as with the interntional example redeye has linked to above and a group of eminent persons in Australia including Froeign Affairs Minister and former NSW Premier Bobb Carr and…

    former federal police chief Mick Palmer and former New South Wales Director of Public Prosecutions Nicholas Cowdery, has released a report which says the ‘war on drugs’ has failed and concludes that Australia should consider legalising some substances

    Carr’s younger brother died of a heroi overdose so I very much doubt he thinks hard drugs are harmless – he just knows it’s self-evident that the so-called “war” is lost and more intelligent ways of dealing with the issue need to be found.

    Why would those of us who agree reinvent the wheel? The evidence is right there, in the data provided by those groups and otherslike them. It is that our lawmakers are too addicted to the quick rush of a posturing soundbite on “law ‘n’ order” which prevents sensible policy formation, not lack of advocacy.

    Incidentally, how hard ought margarine manufacturers have had to campaign to overturn the Margarine Act of 1908? This was brought in to protect New Zealand’s dairy industry from the threat of the much cheaper spread which was becoming popular in other parts of the world. It heavily regulated the production and packaging of margarine, effectively preventing it from being a viable competitor for butter. It also banned using yellow dye in margarine to make it look more palatable. Margarine didn’t compete on an equal footing till 1980 when the act was finally repealed.

    Now I don’t touch the stuff myself, but I don’t think people disadvantaged by an obviously stupid law should have to expend time, effort and money getting it repealed; we supposedly pay our politicians to stay on top of this stuff.

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  210. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Legalising P might not make it more available – the consumption could well decrease. It is doubtful that P would quickly attain the same social status as alcohol, where over indulgence is still routinely praised by many. The point surely is that we should treat the crimes of a P addict and an alcoholic in the same way and not distinguish legally between the substances which they have chosen to ingest.

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  211. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    Or do you have irrefutable evidence that he would have killed Coral even if he had not been “up all night smoking P”. Victimless crime indeed

    A very sad case, so lets learn from it.

    P was already illegal. Yet it still happened. So the law did not protect Coral.

    The Police gave us all sorts of hysterical predictions about the what was going to happen with P. They drew heavily on cases such as Coral’s. Yet nothing even close to those predictions has occurred. One of the reasons people take such a dangerous drug is availability. If drugs were legal, most of the current crop of P freaks would not have touched the stuff.

    Just like guns & booze, drugs can not be un-invented.

    I am not “pro-drugs” I am pro freedom from an interfering ineffective nanny state.

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  212. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    Evidence is rarely “irrefutable”, as the Bain case goes to show. But these lines from the story on the tragic death of Coral Burrows strongly suggest P only made a violent hothead worse:

    His notoriously short fuse had got him in trouble so many times that those who knew him were resigned to the fact it was going to get worse.

    After more than 10 years of alcohol and drug abuse, Williams’ world was closing in.

    He was out of jail, but only just – on bail with numerous criminal convictions and more charges pending.

    So alcohol – also known to trigger violent outbursts – was also a factor in a long history of violent crime by someone predisposed toward it.

    Which isn’t to say P didn’t play a role. Indeed I’ve seen meth (as it’s called in Australia… where did NZ get “P” from anyway?) turn docile people violent so I’m not advocating for crack dispensers at the shops.

    But right now if I have a meth addiction and am arrested with some on my person, chances are better than average that I’ll be going to jail. Where I’ll meet people who’ll teach me how to cook it, so when I’m finally released with a criminal record that means I’ll be very unlikely ever to get a job, I’ll figure I might as well supplement my benefit and ease my boredom by starting a lab…

    Heck, even I’ve been taught how to cook meth… it’s just my lack of interest in getting high on anything that meant I listened with detached objectivity (the ingenious substitution of everyday items for laboratory materials piqued my interest) rather than filing it away as a career option.

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  213. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Well yes they might, but it’s been made often enough, by enough persons who aren’t potheads

    I think you’d struggle to show that New Zealand’s drug laws have failed Rex. The have helped to maintain a constraint on availability of drugs and, most importantly, they empower the authorities to do something about it when they catch the perpetrators.

    An argument that people still have access to drugs so the laws have failed is fallacious. It is akin to saying that because some people are able to speed sometimes and not get caught, that speed restrictions have failed and should be abolished.

    The legislators and enforcers off the drug laws know only to well that they cannot prevent the manufacture, supply, consumption of all drugs – that would be impossible. But the laws do enable them to take action against those they are able to apprehend.

    As for demand – I believe that liberalisation would increase demand. Portugal is but one example. If it is the ‘rule’ then why has the pattern not been repeated everywhere that drug laws have been liberalised?

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  214. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    But right now if I have a meth addiction and am arrested with some on my person, chances are better than average that I’ll be going to jail. Where I’ll meet people who’ll teach me how to cook it, so when I’m finally released with a criminal record that means I’ll be very unlikely ever to get a job, I’ll figure I might as well supplement my benefit and ease my boredom by starting a lab…

    Rex,

    If you’re using P now, you’ll already likely be fraternising with the same sort of people. It is a fallacy that a criminal, or wayward, youth has to go to prison to learn how to be a more effective criminal

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  215. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    ^^ As your own statement that you’ve been taught how to cook meth somewhat attests to.

    (By the way, we call it P from Pure Methamphetamine – I think the Americans call it Crystal Meth or Ice)

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  216. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Legalising P might not make it more available – the consumption could well decrease.

    Outside of Portugal – which really looks like something of an aberration – what evidence, or rationale, do you have to support that. Far more likely is supply vs demand – which has been proven time and again across human behaviours – will see freer supply at lower prices and a corresponding increase in demand

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  217. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    @bhudson

    I was taught that, and a lot of other useful larks, in jail. I work with prisoners and ex-prisoners, not all of whom are addicts, but the impression I get is that on the outside, cooks jealousy guard their territories and aren’t amenable to training what would effectively be the competition. But in prison boredom gets the better of people, or they try to big note, or they try to trade information for protection and/or popularity. In other words, if meth labs started emulating other workplaces, some wag would put up a sticker saying “You don’t have to have been to jail to work here, but it helps” :-D

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  218. Yoza (1,877 comments) says:

    Could bhudson provide an example of a state where the liberalisation of drug laws has led to a dramatic increase in drug use? As far as I am aware there is no such correlation anywhere.

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  219. Kimble (4,440 comments) says:

    Drinking certainly became less popular after prohibition was lifted.

    And I am sure we will see LESS dope being smoked in Colorado(?) after it was decriminalized there.

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  220. SPC (5,619 comments) says:

    bhudson, legalisation leading to lower prices. Really? Use tobacco or alcohol much?

    Legalisation allows selling rules (age restrcition), tax regimes and even ration card allocation.

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  221. Dazzaman (1,140 comments) says:

    Cannabis & P are not “petty” drugs. They are a constant menace in the workplace, not to mention homes & streets, & many workplaces spend small fortunes in testing to try to rid their businesses of the scourge. Shouldn’t you lot who ramble on about freeing up business to be more productive, etc. support the current hardline incarceration of druggies (users & dealers) focus of the justice system?

    I guess Key being the social liberal idiot that he is, is aware of the high use of “recreational” drugs of his middle class base. Can’t throw those little Johnny’s in the big house with those hori’s, tree climbers, trash & freezing workers can we…

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  222. Kimble (4,440 comments) says:

    People started gambling much less after the casino opened, Lotto started, and sports betting was legalised.

    People also imported fewer overseas goods when import licencing was removed in NZ.

    Jeez, d’ya know? I cant think of a single item, in all of human history, that increased in use after the cost of consuming it decreased.

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  223. thedavincimode (6,759 comments) says:

    If you’re using P now, you’ll already likely be fraternising with the same sort of people. It is a fallacy that a criminal, or wayward, youth has to go to prison to learn how to be a more effective criminal

    Ka ching.

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  224. Kimble (4,440 comments) says:

    The fallacy would be that that’s the only place they can do it.

    But that’s not what people are saying.

    Where would it be easier to learn how to cook? Out in society from people you happen to meet? Or in a large kitchen with some of the best chefs in the world?

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  225. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    Exactly DVM – Let’s deciminilaise murder and watch the body-count head to zero.

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  226. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    bhudson (3,092) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 6:59 pm

    Weihana/wat,

    If Portugal is the only example of drug use declining following liberalisation or decriminalisation of drug laws, then it is surely an outlier – something to learn from, sure, but no strong indicator of what will happen in the event of loosening those laws.

    It isn’t. The Netherlands has had liberal policies for years and usage has been lower than most other European countries and any changes have followed regional trends.

    Unless you have some very strong, if not irrefutable , evidence that Willams would still have killed Coral Burrows, then anything that makes P more aailable and/or acceptable is begging for more such killings.

    No I think the onus is on you to show that P is the primary cause of such violence. I would consider it a factor but I do not see that such drug use automatically leads to murder any more than violence associated with other drugs including alcohol. That does not mean I am advocating use of P or saying that alcohol use is equivalent, but you appear to be making overly simplistic associations.

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  227. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    So many uninformed stupid posts
    Dazzaman alcohol again has significant effects long after the imbibing of minor amounts pot does not have an effect after around three hours
    I would not employ a drinker in any high risk job they are still impaired days after drinking. pot smoker as long as not on the job who cares after three hours there is no detectable impairment

    “Drug War Facts offers a treasure trove for serious seekers of useful facts and sources about all sides of the drug war.”
    http://www.drugwarfacts.org/cms/

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  228. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    The illegal product is likely to be cheaper than the legal product. This is true of bootleg alcohol now. Why would it be different for P, cannabis or any other psychoactive substance.

    I’m interested in hearing any rational argument for treating similar substances differently.

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  229. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    bhudson (3,094) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 7:22 pm

    Legalising P might not make it more available – the consumption could well decrease.

    Outside of Portugal – which really looks like something of an aberration – what evidence, or rationale, do you have to support that. Far more likely is supply vs demand – which has been proven time and again across human behaviours – will see freer supply at lower prices and a corresponding increase in demand

    Is there any evidence you would not discard as an “aberration”? What makes Portugal so different that you casually dismiss it?

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  230. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Weihana,

    Perhaps the act that only Portugal is quoted as an example where liberliasation has led to a decrease in usage. No one appears to be saying Portugal and x and y and z. Only Portugal,

    Although that may not be the case. At least not according to the statistics these people quote:

    http://fullfact.org/factchecks/Portugal_decriminalisation_drugs_effects-3276

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  231. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    but you appear to be making overly simplistic associations.

    I think the reporting and subsequent legal process show that the association was simplistic because the cause was simple. P was not merely a factor in that death. I’m not voting for more of them

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  232. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @mikey,

    I’m happy for p and PCP to be treated the same

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  233. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Out in society from people you happen to meet? Or in a large kitchen with some of the best chefs in the world?

    @Kimble,

    I was thinking more the connections a consumer would make buying and using their product, than a random on the street.

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  234. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    bhudson, legalisation leading to lower prices. Really? Use tobacco or alcohol much?

    @SPC,

    $7.99 for a bottle drinkable of drinkable merlot [Sideways references notwithstanding] without even looking hard. Jacob might have used the water from his Creek, but it is drinkable. Not exactly crippling.

    Tobacco is another story – a hike in excise as a deliberate measure to reduce demand. A noble objective, but I have issues with the method. (that’s another topic.)

    But, SPC, it is simple supply vs demand. If supply is constrained and demand exceeds ready and easy supply then prices will rise. This is the case with drugs – the people manufacturing and distributing the stuff aren’t doing it out of the goodness if their hearts.

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  235. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    It isn’t just simply supply and demand. A legalised product might well be more expensive if taxed and regulated.

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  236. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    How about this drug?

    Krokodil Tears

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  237. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    It gets worse

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Yfd_7jrnMk

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  238. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @mikey,

    Which encourages a black market. Even worse than we have now – back to illegal supply, but now of a fundamentally legal product. It really just becomes govt subsidising gangs. Which is more stupid than legalisation in the first place.

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  239. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    bhudson says:

    the cause was simple. P was not merely a factor in that death

    So the offender’s long history of a propensity to violence and the abuse of alcohol as well as P (and the subsequent brain damage that may have been a factor if the use of either or both were sufficient to cause it) played no role at all? The corollary of that, of course, is to absolve the offender of the moral (though not legal) blame – “the P made me do it”.

    By attributing the event solely to P you are saying that, were it you or I who’d used P that night and taken Coral to school the next morning, you or I would also have beaten her to death, breaking her jaw in two places so her jawbone was exposed. That we would not have been deterred by her cries, or by the “torrential” bleeding.

    Really? Because in the past I’ve been drunk, yet have never beaten, glassed, kicked or sexually assaulted anyone, or mistaken my four year old daughter for my wife and performed oral sex on her, or any of the myriad of things for which booze gets the blame. I’ve never taken P but I suspect the instinctual abhorrence most decent people have toward hurting a child – particularly to that extent – would act as a powerful inhibitor.

    Remove the easy availability of booze and drugs and, as happens in some Aboriginal communities, people will start sniffing petrol. Make it hard for kids to buy booze and make sure (through prohibition) drugs are unaffordable for them and some kids will start “chroming” cans of paint.

    Which illustrates, I think, two things. First, substance abuse can be and usually is a factor in serious offending but it must combine with other factors (including sometimes just the moral defects of the individual) before it triggers violence. I know one couple who went through a meth addiction phase, to the extent they were cooking to supply themselves quantities they couldn’t buy, yet who somehow managed to raise a daughter. Certainly it wasn’t the best couple of years of her life (till they got caught and straightened out with a non-custodial sentence) but she wasn’t beaten at all, let alone to death.

    And that if you make one mind-altering substance hard to get or expensive there will always be those for whom nothing is rock bottom in their search for a fix – even battery acid.

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  240. SPC (5,619 comments) says:

    Or ban party pills – so teens and elders binge drink before/when going out.

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  241. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    The hysteria about drugs (and the readiness of some people to believe anything they’re told about them) reminds me of the time when Europe was in the grip of an addiction to ‘cake’ a new drug smuggled out of Prague.

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  242. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @Rex,

    Without the addition of P, that individual would likely not have killed Coral that day, if at all at any point in the future. P made him do it as much as it made him take it – it was all his personal responsibility right from when he started taking it (as with his other vices.)

    However, if he was not taking P, it is likely that he would not have killed that, or any other child. He had a ‘rap sheet’ and was violent, but he had not been charged with murder or manslaughter previously.

    To relegate P to a mere factor in that killing is equally bad as “it’s not my fault, the P made me do it.”

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  243. nasska (11,525 comments) says:

    Rex @ 8.30

    Hammer meet nail……that is exactly the sequence that seems to unfold. Sometimes it appears almost as a preordained path.

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  244. JMS (330 comments) says:

    It really just becomes govt subsidising gangs. Which is more stupid than legalisation in the first place.

    One word more than any other describes the ultimate government assistance program for gangs: Prohibition.

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  245. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @JMS,

    No. Not prohibition – decriminalisation; where usage (demand) is not really punished and supply remains illegal. That is gross subsidisation of gangs (and is not too dissimilar to a situation under legalisation where govt regulation and tax encourages a black market.)

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  246. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    bhudson
    Correct, which is why legalisation of supply and possession is better than only decriminalising possession.

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  247. tristanb (1,127 comments) says:

    Kea:

    The price Singapore pays for its orderly society is too high. I would rather have a level of disorder than that. Many of their penalties are not befitting a modern civilised society. It is disgusting and barbaric torture.

    It’s not really too high a price. I have never felt as safe at night as I have wandering around Singapore, (even in Little India with a blonde girlfriend!) I also felt free there. I bought a beer without harsh sales requirements (and probably less tax than NZ), I walked around a bit drunk – but didn’t harm anyone and stayed out of trouble. I don’t use drugs, and would not even dare to be around them – I’m not stupid.

    The place isn’t perfect, but they do law and order pretty well. What exactly is wrong with caning? It’s cheaper than locking people up, it’s effective, and hardly a torture.

    Personally I’d legalise drugs, and then punish any crime more severely (and make it a jailable offence to give any drug to someone under 18 or with a known drug addiction.) I’d also make drug testing compulsory to get the dole.

    That way people who so wish can get high with their own money, but those who get high and try and rob others would end up in jail for 20 years. Addicts (which I admit we’d have more of if drugs were legal) could be treated through the health system, rather than the courts. Being addicted would no longer be an excuse to let you get away with crimes.

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  248. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    I’d also make drug testing compulsory to get the dole.

    I do not agree regarding Singapore, but I do agree with that.

    Drug testing for benefits would have a huge impact. Right now we pay people to stay home and get wasted. If they had to work it would reduce their drug intake. They would also have less time, or need, to steal from others to fund their habit.

    I am all for making drug use legal, but people need to take responsibility for their actions. Right now we have the reverse situation. You can not take drugs, but if you do, we will look after you when you wreck yourself. I want to see that change.

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  249. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    The Singapore thing is a bit of a red herring. Singapore gets mentioned because Redbaiter likes to laud it as his ideal authoritarian (fascist if you will) state.

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  250. Kea (12,841 comments) says:

    mikenmild, The price of all that law and order is too high in Singapore. They have crossed the line. Of course they have reason to celebrate some aspects of life, if you are totally image, status and money driven, that is.

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  251. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Correct, which is why legalisation of supply and possession is better than only decriminalising possession.

    @mikey,

    I agree – the two choices really should be prohibition or legalisation. Clearly I don’t favour legalisation, but I favour decriminalisation (as I described it above) even less.

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  252. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    Well, we can agree on that much. I should think that most people advocating decriminalisation would see it as a step towards legalisation.

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  253. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    bhudson (3,102) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 7:55 pm

    Weihana,

    Perhaps the act that only Portugal is quoted as an example where liberliasation has led to a decrease in usage. No one appears to be saying Portugal and x and y and z. Only Portugal,

    Although that may not be the case. At least not according to the statistics these people quote:

    http://fullfact.org/factchecks/Portugal_decriminalisation_drugs_effects-3276

    Well I did cite the Netherlands as another example where usage is lower than many other European countries despite liberal policies and increases and decreases tend to follow regional trends rather than having anything to do with such policies.

    Moreover, if any example is an outlier it would be Singapore for the obvious reason that its system is vastly different to most western nations. Its culture and political system are significantly removed from what is the norm in places like New Zealand and other similar western nations. Portugal on the other hand is far more comparable.

    Furthermore, it’s important not to overly simplify the issue, ignoring the complexities to fit with some narrative. Portugal has experienced both decreases and increases in usage. Most importantly these changes are very marginal and hardly the explosive danger that prohibitionists contend would happen if it were tried here. But perhaps the most interesting measure is of teenagers where annual prevalence has indeed fallen.

    But aside from usage, and as your link shows, figures for transmission of infectious diseases also shows declines as well as drug-related deaths.

    I fail to see why this data should be rejected because it doesn’t fit with the prohibitionist narrative. Indeed at the very least it shows that liberalization is not the extreme idea that it is portrayed as. What is most telling is that this is not an issue that registers high on Portugal’s political radar these days which is a good indicator of how the public feels about it.

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  254. Viking2 (11,471 comments) says:

    here’s a summary.

    Part of my How Things Change study involved re-reading historian Redmer Yska’s excellent story of Aotearoa Marijuana, New Zealand Green. I’m saving the stats for another fight, but here’s a selection of choice quotes from NZ’s drug war:

    “It is impossible to insert any appreciable quantity of drug into chocolates.”

    – Police Commissioner W.B. McIlveney in 1926, responding to a story from the Salvation Army’s Brigadier Burton. Burton had heard a tale of a woman found in an Auckland public toilet, insensible after eating chocolates at a garden dance.

    more
    http://gonzofreakpower.blogspot.co.nz/2013/01/quotes-from-drug-war.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+GonzoFreakpowerBrainsTrust+%28goNZo+Freakpower+Brains+Trust%29

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  255. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    I disagree that decriminalization is worse than legalization. The stronger the state’s efforts to prohibit the drug, the higher the risk the suppliers take and hence the higher the price and the more money that goes to the black market. Moreover, state action (such as in Mexico) encourages an arms race both among the suppliers and to fight the state. Repressive action by the state pushes the trade further underground where disputes are more likely to be resolved by violence because if you are already prepared to break strict laws relating to drugs which carry harsh punishments then you are more likely to also break laws against violence with similarly strict penalties. In such a system it is the most ruthless drug dealer that survives (at least for a while).

    Decriminalization should be used as a pragmatic step towards a regulated market and it should be a stepping stone used to figure out what regulations work best. The most harmful and addictive drugs shouldn’t be sold commercially.

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  256. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    bhudson (3,103) Says:
    January 8th, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    @Rex,

    Without the addition of P, that individual would likely not have killed Coral that day, if at all at any point in the future.

    That is a reductionist fallacy. You are looking for a single cause to fit your narrative. The same could be said of many other drugs, including alcohol. It doesn’t mean the drug is the cause of any tragedy that follows usage, especially given that the vast majority of users (even highly addicted users) do not murder people.

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  257. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @Weihana,

    That is exactly why decriminalisation is a poor choice – if supply remains illegal and enforced, then you have the effects of prohibition on the supply channel, with effectively none on demand. You therefore risk increased demand which can only be supplied through illicit channels – effectively the govt subsuisidisng gangs,

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  258. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    That is a reductionist fallacy.

    No Weihana, it is deductive reasoning. The individual may have had a history of offences and violence, but he did not have form for murder of manslaughter.

    Rather than blaming P to fit my narrative, I argue that a refusal to acknowledge that it was P that was the catalyst for the bad individual to kill is to fit a narrative.

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  259. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    P heron etc are not the death causing horrors pictured in the msm. It is very hard for those who have lived conservative life’s to grasp this fact. Many manage to casually use such drugs with no discernible effect to the outside world. There will be people around our conservative friends who live drug fueled life’s with the conservos not even noticing.
    The classic is the family of a lady I dated a few years ago her two brothers were rampant party animals behind the family back
    I knew them both socially :lol: yet the rest of the family was of the idea that they were both god fearing good boys.

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  260. Weihana (4,537 comments) says:

    bhudson,

    Except that in all likelihood a society which considers decriminalization isn’t going to wage all out war on the suppliers either even if it remains illegal which would tend to limit the harmful effects of that prohibition. Moreover I see no evidence that a significant risk of increased demand would be likely. Your own citation re Portugal showed very marginal increases in annual prevalence rates (within the margin of error type stuff) as well as decreases. Also the Netherlands has had liberal policies re Cannabis for years with lower usage rates than many other European nations which retain strict prohibition.

    Anyway, best call it a day… good debate though I’m sure zero opinions changed. :)

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  261. Griff (7,728 comments) says:

    bhodson has the classic logic loop in his head

    drugs are illegal
    why are drugs illegal ?
    because they are bad
    why are drugs bad ?
    because they are illegal
    why are drugs illegal?

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  262. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @Weihana,

    Isn’t it all too often the way :-)

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  263. Viking2 (11,471 comments) says:

    bhudson.
    Williams was predestined from child hood. Family history was and is not good. “P was the straw that broke the camels back” so to speak.
    Just thought you might like to know.

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  264. Dazzaman (1,140 comments) says:

    Griff
    I would not employ a drinker in any high risk job they are still impaired days after drinking. pot smoker as long as not on the job who cares after three hours there is no detectable impairment

    F’n bullshit!! The cumulative effects of pot & p are bloody obvious. I wouldn’t hire a known doper, never……

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  265. Elaycee (4,392 comments) says:

    The pantywaists who want to legalise drugs and cuddle druggies, traffickers etc, won’t like the news that the first execution for the year has been completed in Saudi Arabia:

    http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/saudi-arabia/saudi-beheads-syrian-for-drug-trafficking-1.1129509

    No worries about ‘rehabilitation’ either – and no worries about repeat offending!

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