I’d love a bit of Green

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8 Responses

  1. Hilary Marchant says:

    The Office for National Statistics reckons that the alcohol-related death figure in the UK doubled from 4,144 deaths in 1991 to 9,031 deaths in 2008. Not exactly a levelling-off during a period of liberalisation….

  2. Ian Marchant says:

    Well, you may be right. It wasn’t the case after the hysteria generated by 18thC gin craze died away, or post-prohibition in the States, but it might be now. After all, it’s a few years since I researched The Longest Crawl; I could be totally wrong about levelling off during periods of liberalisation. This is exactly the kind of evidence a Royal Commission might look at.

  3. Hilary Marchant says:

    Yes, fair enough. And I certainly think that leaving so many drugs open only to the criminal market is a bad idea; it’s just that, as alcohol proves, dangerous substances within the non-criminal system won’t necessarily find a harmless level without some controls in place (such as, for example, managing the price and range of supply).

  4. Stuart Ralston says:

    Great choice of music! I love Ijahman Levi and Alton Ellis!

  5. Ian Marchant says:

    And a Royal Commission might make useful recommendations about what those controls should be.

  6. Ian Marchant says:

    We do our best, my darling. Keep missing you on the rare occassions I get to Newhaven…

  7. Chas Ambler says:

    I would refer the writer to Barbara Wooton’s Royal Commission in 1968 which suggested the liberalisation of the law. Jim Callaghan – one of those great Labour freedom fighters said in Parliament that he had no intention of taking any notice of no pesky Royal Commission chaired by an old biddy and full of mamby-pamby do gooders – and proceeded to increase penalties – engendering a well oiled black market ready and waiting to receive the cheap heroin of the the early 70s. They pay no attention to Royal Commissions that come up with arguments they don’t like, just as they pay no attention to research on education that tells them what they KNOW by common sense, is wrong. Drugs policy is run by people who behave as though they’re on drugs – and not very nice ones.

  8. Ian Marchant says:

    Actually , the 1971 Misuse of Drugs Act did take Wooton’s views into account, up to a point, in that penalties for spliff possession were substantially reduced. But Wooton’s remit was only cannabis; the Green Party are calling for a wider review of drugs laws,which seems to me like a good thing; because the odd lone MP standing up in parliament calling for sanity is always going to be shouted down; whereas a proper Report will be harder to ignore, and might fill the cowardly corrupt hearts of politicians with some small degree of courage, and enable them to come out in favour.

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