The Drug Czar Just Says No to Marijuana Legalization

As Mike Riggs noted this morning, the Obama administration last Friday night finally got around to addressing the "We the People" online petitions urging repeal of marijuana prohibition. First it had to deal with the clamor for excising "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance (a cause that attracted 20,328 signatures) and removing the slogan "In God We Trust" from U.S. currency (12,273). By comparison, the eight petitions recommending some form of marijuana legalization totaled more than 150,000 (possibly overlapping) signatures; the most popular one, "Legalize and Regulate Marijuana in a Manner Similar to Alcohol," by itself attracted more than 74,000. If you bother to read drug czar Gil Kerlikowske's embarrassingly weak response, you can see why the White House buried it in the weekend news graveyard:

Our concern about marijuana is based on what the science tells us about the drug's effects.

According to scientists at the National Institutes of Health—the world's largest source of drug abuse research—marijuana use is associated with addiction, respiratory disease, and cognitive impairment. We know from an array of treatment admission information and Federal data that marijuana use is a significant source for voluntary drug treatment admissions and visits to emergency rooms. Studies also reveal that marijuana potency has almost tripled over the past 20 years...It is not a benign drug. 

That's pretty much it for Kerlikowske's argument against legalization. Since people can become addicted to anything that gives them pleasure, that risk hardly makes the case for prohibition. If Kerlikowske truly were concerned about the respiratory effects of marijuana combustion products (a negligible risk for all but the heaviest pot smokers), he would recommend vaporizers, which release marijuana's active ingredients without burning it. And he would not go on to bemoan rising marijuana potency, since that trend makes pot safer by delivering more bang per puff, meaning smokers are exposed to fewer toxins. As for "cognitive impairment," Kerlikowske presumably is referring to marijuana's acute psychoactive effects, which most pot smokers consider a feature, not a bug. In any event, the fact that an activity is risky does not mean banning it is just, wise, or cost-effective. Notably missing from Kerlikowske's argument is any accounting of prohibition's costs and any suggestion of benefits that might outweigh them.

Kerlikowske does deviate from prohibitionist orthodoxy in one respect, acknowledging that marijuana has medical potential—something he himself was denying not too long ago. The administration's position, which Kerlikowske does not always state accurately, is that cannabinoids should be approved as medicine (as synthetic THC, in form of Marinol capsules, was back in 1985) if they are proven safe and effective through the usual (expensive and time-consuming) process but that smoking pot is not an appropriate way to treat any medical condition. That is pretty much par for the course at the FDA, which likes its drugs isolated and frowns on anything involving whole plant matter. But this attitude leaves no room for people to use marijuana as a self-help folk remedy, as they do with many other herbs that do not appear on Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act. The justification for putting marijuana in that category—supposedly reserved for substances with "a high potential for abuse" and "no currently accepted medical use" that cannot be used safely even under medical supervision—is precisely what the marijuana petitioners are challenging.

Noting rising public support for lifting pot prohibition, which hit 50 percent in a recent Gallup poll, Andrew Sullivan regrets the administration's failure to "actually engage the salient arguments of legalizers." In an email message, Tom Angell of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition suggests the administration "dumped the response late on a Friday night hoping no one would notice" because "the White House is aware that their anti-legalization position is a political loser with the president's base (and beyond)." In the October issue of Reason, I analyze the ways Obama has disappointed supporters who hoped he would dial back the war in drugs. Among other things, I note that Obama's avowed commitment to sound science, which Kerlikowske parrots in his petition response, does not jibe with the administration's obstruction of cannabis research and its insistence, despite much evidence to the contrary, that the plant meets all the criteria for Schedule I.  

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  • Paul||

    Gil Kerlikowske, not just Seattle's problem anymore.

  • ||

    Is it just me or does that pathetic motherfucker look like Droopy Dog?

  • BakedPenguin||

    I see it, but I think Kerlikowske has bigger jowls.

  • Warty||

    He looks like he's not mad at you, just very disappointed. He thought he and your mother had raised you better than this.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Gil Kerlikowske is a political bitch and a turd thief.

  • ||

    It is time we stop using the word "liberal" to describe the ideology of people such as Barack Obama.

  • Wayne||

    It is time we stop using the word, "liberal", to describe race-baiting, extortionist progressives. But, I see your point.

  • JD the elder||

    Amen to that. Let's not forget that it comes from "liber", meaning "free", and historically "liberal" organizations favored individual rights and limited state powers; calling Obama and his people "liberals" is an insult to the name. Personally, I'd rather call them "serviles"...

  • Colonel_Angus||

    I never use liberal in reference to them. I like explaining what a statist is.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    The White House is now free to focus on that anonymous "We the People" petition to get that handsome president out in front of the camera more.

  • Live Free or Diet||

    Nah, JFK's long since all corpsified.

  • Mainer||

    This is like arguing drug laws with my old man. Pot's bad, people who use it are bad, and anyone who says otherwise is either a dope fiend or a criminal. There is no cost/benefit argument. Drug users burn in hell. Jesus loves you.

  • Mainer||

    ..and alcohol is different.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Alcohol is different.

    It's far more toxic and dangerous.

  • Paul||

    It is. I can order a drink at my favorite restaurant. I can't order a joint or a gram of heroin there, can I?

    See? Different.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Its funny how narced up people in the service industry can be.

  • Surly Chef||

    Arguing with people that have that view is like beating your head against a wall.

    My response to those types of arguments is generally along the lines of "So empowering men with guns to imprison people that have harmed you in know way and then having more men with guns steal money from everyone that disagrees with you to fund more men with guns makes you a good person?"

    I suppose you can't say that to your father though.

  • Mainer||

    Well, I've tried, but then he says, "Pot's bad, people who use it are bad, and anyone who says otherwise...."
    Yup, all you get beating your head against a wall is a headache.

  • Robert||

    So talk about something else. Problem solved.

  • ||

    Do a little research on kaneh bos. It seems the ancient Hebrews used cannibis (aka kaneh bos) in the annointing oils and in the oil burned in the tabernacle's lamps. Moses and all those other Hebrews really were filled with the spirit!

    Probably won't change anything with your Dad, but it will with others.

  • ||

    Alcohol is different because its use is pervasive in our culture. Trust me, the die-hard public health nannies would love to ban that too but it's not practical.

    As bad as mj prohibition is, alcohol prohibition was 10x worse due to that fact.

  • ||

    Yup.

    Federal data that marijuana use is a significant source for voluntary drug treatment admissions and visits to emergency rooms.

    I bet alchohol and gambling are significant sources of voluntary treatment too. I am sure this guy will be aruing to end state lotteries and state run liquer stores real soon.

  • ||

    voluntary drug treatment admissions

    BS, unless court ordered drug treatment is now considered voluntary.

    and visits to emergency rooms.

    How much pot do you have to consume to warrant a emergency room visit. Methinks someone had an emergency room visit and of the myriad of drugs in his system, pot was one of them. Alcohol was probably one too.

  • Skr||

    This

  • ||

    I would be shocked if more people showed up in emergency rooms on pot than those who show up drunk.

  • ||

    ...and then when they come up positive for THC (which they smoked a month ago) bam, another pot related visit.

  • ||

    Exactly. Just like when someone runs a red light totally sober and hits someone who later blows a .09 was just involved in an "alcohol related accident".

  • ||

    There's lies, damn lies...and then statistics.

  • Ice Nine||

    I would be shocked if more people showed up in emergency rooms on pot than those who show up drunk.

    During 35 years of working ER I have never seen someone come in for "marijuana use." Combinations, occasionally. Drunk - every day.

  • ||

    As one would expect, given the toxity level of alcohol vs. marajuana...and the proclivity of drunks to do shit that then subsequently requires an ER visit vs. potheads, who aren't nearly as motivated.

  • ||

    And there IS no ld50 value for pot. In that respect, it is about as safe as could be. Granted, some people can freak out on pot but people can freak out on caffeine.. Or sugar.

    Pot is not benign, but pot use is safe. Excessive pot use is far More safe than. Excessive alcohol use

  • ||

    That line "..significant source for voluntary drug treatment.." has already been successfully disputed. Its untruth is obvious to anyone who actually looked at the statistics supposedly cited. NORML's blog on the "White House response" is a good read; does a good job of critiquing the entire statement.

  • Number 2||

    What does the term, "significant source for voluntary drug treatment" mean anyway? What constitutes "significant?" How does "voluntary" treatment differ from medically necessary treatment? This is a classic weasel phrase that sounds impressive when you first hear it, but on reflection says absolutely nothing.

  • BoscoH||

    Someone needs to make a petition to legalize and tax marijuana, with proceeds going to the Social Security fund. The listen to what tune your old man starts signing.

  • ||

    SS is sacred. Can't pollute it with drug money. That needs to come from his grandson's hard earned dollars.

  • Skr||

    Besides medicare is for drug money.

  • JohnD||

    Sounds like your father is a lot smarter than you are, Mainer

  • Mainer||

    He is, but you wouldn't know it from his views about pot.

  • violent_k||

    I feel the same way about my dad. A very smart man that I look up to. His view of the drug war is just batshit insane, however.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Alcohol use is associated with addiction, liver disease, and cognitive impairment. We know from an array of treatment admission information and Federal data that alcohol use is a significant source for voluntary drug treatment admissions and visits to emergency rooms.

    You know, he does make a pretty good point. That shit is a health hazard, and as such it would be unwise to even consider legalization.

  • AZ||

    Shorter Kerlikowske: "Voluntarily shrink my budget and powers? Hahahaha, fuck you."

  • ||

    Winner!

    And who gives a shit if they take "God" out of the pledge. Get rid of the pledge altogether. It was a progressive tool from the beginning anyway. Can't believe conservatives are so attached to that thing these days.

  • BelowTheRim||

    No joke, I still get frustrated that for so many years in school I blindly followed and pledged allegiance to a piece of fabric.

  • Sam||

    this

  • Joe M||

    That fuck is pure conflict of interest. How can his nonsense even be taken seriously? Of course he opposes it. No Drug Czar will ever support legalization. Dog bites man.

  • Joe M||

    Our concern about marijuana skydiving bungie-jumping flying skiing driving walking down the street day-to-day life is based on what the science tells us about the drug's effects of being alive.

  • Cognitive Dissonance||

    Shorter version: "Jesus Hates Weed"

    Fucking Teabaggers.

  • JohnD||

    Fucking pot heads.

  • Cognitive Dissonance||

    Shorter version: "Jesus Hates Weed"

    Fucking Teabaggers.

  • Cognitive Dissonance||

    Shorter version: "Jesus Hates Weed"

    Fucking Teabaggers.

  • Cognitive Dissonance||

    Shorter version: "Jesus Hates Weed"

    Fucking Teabaggers.

  • Wayne||

    I guess you just can't say it often enough.

  • Wayne||

    Oh, and Kerlowski is no "Teabagger".

  • Cognitive Dissonance||

    Shorter version: "Jesus Hates Weed"

    Fucking Teabaggers.

  • Wayne||

    Oops, my bad, missed this one.

  • ||

    Well, don't let it happen again!

  • Live Free or Diet||

    Oh, well, there ya go!

  • Live Free or Diet||

    Like missing a grain of sand on the beach. Who could blame you?

  • ||

    "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon not understanding it."
    _ Upton Sinclair

    Gil is a truly an entrenched defender of the status quo. Ron Paul for President!

  • ||

    I love how the same politicians who think that the evil weed should be banned because someone might get addicted think it is perfectly okay for state governments to run the numbers racket for the Children. Hell, even the mafia never claimed playing the numbers was a good idea. But state governments advertise the lottery and say as much every day. And I would sure as hell rather be addicted to pot than addicted to gambling. Gambling is short of being a junkie the worst addiction you can have.

  • Mainer||

    And with gambling, they can't even claim that it's somehow different from booze or pot or whatever. They basically say, OUR numbers racket or casino or race track is the good kind of gambling, but YOUR numbers game or on-line poker is the bad gambling.

  • ||

    I would wager (pardon the pun) that gambling has been illegal for more of this country's history than drugs have. You can't say gambling is like booze and some kind of a historical exception that is so rooted in the culture you can't ban it.

    Having tried both drugs and gambling and known people who have been addicted to both, I can't see how gambling is any different or less destructive than drugs. Their position is just insane.

  • ||

    Well the Irish, Chinese, Italians, French-Canadians and most other disapproved of immigrants liked to gamble, so obviously it had to be illegal.

  • BakedPenguin||

    The near-total ban on sports gambling (excepting horse / dog racing) in this country is insane. You have to wait until the game is over (usually) to know if you've won or not, so the "high" some people get from winning quickly just isn't there. Yet many states allow casinos, with the tables games that feed that kind of addictive personality.

    Full disclosure - I like sports gambling, and don't give a rat ass about table games. Lotto, as John pointed out, has worse odds than the mafia would give.

  • ||

    I think compulsive gamblers bet on sports. I remember reading about Pete Rose, one of the worst, gambling on every and any kind of sport.

  • ||

    You know you've reached rock bottom when you're holding drenched in sweat and shaking watching the snail races.

  • ||

    Jim Rome had a guy on one time who bet on the WNBA. That is rock bottom. If you ever listen to Bill Simmons ESPN podcasts, him and his degenerate cousin Sal spend an entire hour guessing NFL lines every week. Cousin Sal is like a walking anti-gambling comercial. It is so pathetic it is funny.

  • ||

    Funny, I like table games (hate playing the house however) and hate sports betting. I just don't trust the players to play up to their odds.

  • ||

    I like table games too. I am too much of a sports fan to bet on it. I think too much with my loyalties and prejudices than with my mind. I could probably bet on Soccer or the WNBA or some other sport I didn't care anything about and do okay. But that would require watching and learning about those sports. Not worth the effort.

  • BakedPenguin||

    I can play table games, they just seem tiresome, and I quit the second I'm ahead. I was in St. Louis (I think - somewhere in the Midwest on a riverboat) and I went up to a roulette croupier. I put down $50 on black or red and won the first roll. I said thanks, tipped him $10 and walked away. He had a surprised look on his face.

    I definitely understand why people like poker, but it's not for me.

  • BakedPenguin||

    I just don't trust the players to play up to their odds.

    This is often true. Trying to determine when it will happen is part of the fun.

  • Mainer||

    But of course they do make the cultural argument. Did you know that harness racing is a proud part of the traditional way of life in Maine ? But a casino with slot machines is bad. Hence the "racino"...put the slot machines at the race track, and apparently the good betting on the ponies somehow cleanses the slot machines.

  • ||

    Well horse racing has a proud WASP heritage.

  • ||

    I can't throw stones. I would be a degenerate horse better if I had less self control. God I love the track.

  • BakedPenguin||

    The ponies are fun. I used to love going to the simulcasts at the local jai-alai. My highlight was putting $5 on a 90-1 shot and winning $450.

  • ||

    Endorphin addict. I expect you'll be checking in to some voluntary rehab soon.

  • ||

    Did u know the term endorphin comes from"endogenous MORPHINE?". Oh noes!

  • T||

    Junkies make more rational decisions in my experience. I've never yet met a junkie who thought he had a foolproof method to beat heroin and win big. Gamblers? Every one of them is searching for the trick that'll let them beat the house and win big. The junkie knows all he's gonna get is high...

  • ||

    No, no, I got a system!

  • ||

    You can be a professional gambler and make a good living. Plenty do it, you just have to have an edge, this does not apply to roulette et al, but in games like poker you can be a winning long term gambler. You must have an edge , iow be better than your opponents , bet in small enough amounts to allow your edge to play out over 1000's of hands, and keep on keeping on. I speak from personal experience as well as game theory

  • ||

    Very true. And lots of junkies have jobs and pay for their own habits. Gambler are total degenerates who run through every dime they ever make. Talk to a personal bankruptcy attorney sometime. They all have compulsive gambler clients who have unbeleivable credit card debt.

    Then of course there is compulsive gamboling which turns you into White Indian, a fate even worse than being a junkie or gambler.

  • Clevelandite||

    I have a confession to make. I have for years now struggled with a serious addiction to gamboling. Plains, forests. Doesn't matter. If you can gambol on it, I do. It's pathetic.

  • Clevelandite||

    Damn, didn't see John's post above mine. I thought I got to it first. I'm usually more of a lurker, so my posting skills need work.

  • rawr!||

    you have an addiction to running and/or jumping about playfully?

  • ||

    Gambling isn't an addiction, it's a habit. You don't see frequent gamblers passed out on the floor because they haven't gambled in a week.

    We must not let the public health nannies change the meaning of the word to suit their purposes. Never.

  • SIV||

    The broadening of the definition of "addiction" has been terrible for liberty. Inanimate, morally neutral things are attributed with powers over individuals and responsibility for one's actions are absolved.

  • ||

    We need to ban the position of "czar" and force Obama to come out and stop hiding behind his advisors.

    Also, a president's advisors should be paid out of party money and not be tax payers. I am not responsible for paying for Obama's book club!!

  • Hugh Akston||

    Wasn't there a movement somewhere in history that had a problem with czars? How did they deal with it?

  • ||

    They had less czars to deal with. I think we're outnumbered.

  • Wayne||

    Probably the effects from pot:

    SANTA ROSA, CA—A study released by the California Parenting Institute Tuesday shows that every style of parenting inevitably causes children to grow into profoundly unhappy adults. "Our research suggests that while overprotective parenting ultimately produces adults unprepared to contend with life's difficulties, highly permissive parenting leads to feelings of bitterness and isolation throughout adulthood," lead researcher Daniel Porter said. "And, interestingly, we found that anything between those two extremes is equally damaging, always resulting in an adult who suffers from some debilitating combination of unpreparedness and isolation. Despite great variance in parenting styles across populations, the end product is always the same: a profoundly flawed and joyless human being." The study did find, however, that adults often achieve temporary happiness when they have children of their own to perpetuate the cycle of human misery.

  • ||

    Onion or LA Times?

  • Skr||

    Wasn't that in the Onion?

  • Wayne||

    yes. gotta love the onion.

  • ||

    damn, it was a 50/50 chance.

  • Wayne||

    True. If it had been the LA Times, why, then it would have been authoritative!

  • ||

    That's always your best chance against the house.

  • Shorter "We the People"||

    Please waste your time signing online petitions that we can ignore with canned responses. This will help us check off another meaningless bullet point on our transparency agenda. Rest assured that the "success" of this program will be noted in upcoming campaign literature. Thanks for your time, suckers.

  • ||

    According to scientists at the National Institutes of Health—the world's largest source of drug abuse research disinformation—marijuana use is associated with addiction, respiratory disease, and cognitive impairment.

    And miscegenation!

  • Sherrif Bart||

    Whey da white wimmin ?

  • IceTrey||

    As mentioned in the story below this one, you can eat it. There goes any health concerns about your lungs. As an aside, it was disclosed a few days ago that Amy Winehouse died of acute alcohol poisoning. Bring back the Volstead ACT!

  • ||

    I'd be shocked if they didn't find something other than alcohol in her system. With addicts, one drug just ain't enough.

  • Hugh Akston||

    That's why Warty has three TVs: one for death metal videos, one for slash porn, and one for My Little Pony.

  • ||

    wasn't he locked up in Episiarch's basement? Or was it the other way around?

  • IceTrey||

    Nope. She had an alcohol level of 4.16.

  • Spoonman.||

    Wait, you mean .416, right?

  • Gart Valenc||

    It is just right and proper, nay, it is the duty of every responsible individual to challenge Kerlikowske’s outrageous, dishonest and manipulative sophistry. But what people should not loose sight of, is that Kerlikowske is doing what his job description and the law demand him to do — not that he minds, of course, after all he has taken on the job with gusto!

    According to the law, among others responsibilities, the Drug’s Czar:

    (12) shall ensure that no Federal funds appropriated to the Office of National Drug Control Policy shall be expended for any study or contract relating to the legalization (for a medical use or any other use) of a substance listed in schedule I of section 202 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 812) and take such actions as necessary to oppose any attempt to legalize the use of a substance (in any form) that:

    A. is listed in schedule I of section 202 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 812); and
    B. has not been approved for use for medical purposes by the Food and Drug Administration;

    Therefore, unless the ONDCP have the power to ignore both the FDA recommendations and the Controlled Substance Act, Kerlikowske is just pandering to the official line.

    The irrefutable fact is that Prohibition and the War on Drugs (WoD) has never been informed by scientific principles. If that were the case, the consumption of drugs would have been considered long, long time ago a health issue, not a criminal one; the production and distribution of drugs, not just marijuana, but all drugs would be a legal albeit regulated commercial activity and the WoD wouldn’t have been engineered in the first place.

    We should continue denouncing the WoD for what it is: an irrational, barbaric and inhumane “war”. We cannot expect those who want to feed, nurture, propagate and enforce the WoD to adhere to scientific principles. The tail does not wag the dog!

  • ||

    and take such actions as necessary to oppose any attempt to legalize the use of a substance (in any form)

    That seems unconstitutional to me. The use of public funds to influence elections and referenda in a way that is not content-neutral violates the 1st amendment, no?

  • nicole||

    You would think so. Fortunately, the Drug War is extraconstitutional to begin with, so it isn't a problem.

  • ||

    Prohibitionists, like Gil Kerlikowske, like to label marijuana a "harmful substance", however marijuana is far LESS harmful than beer and wine which are LEGAL and far LESS harmful than the federal marijuana prohibition which causes the arrest of 850,000 people every year and draws drug dealers into our communities and around our children!

    It is outrageous to have the federal government ban stores from selling legally-grown marijuana to adults when this ban *doesn't* prevent people from buying, selling and using marijuana and it *does* make marijuana easily accessible to children by creating large profits for illegal sellers where otherwise there would be NONE.

  • Haunted Taint||

    Marijuana is far LESS harmful than beer and wine which are LEGAL and far LESS harmful than the federal marijuana prohibition…

    While this is probably true, it's not a line of thought we should promote too forcefully. I know you want people to read that and think "The prohibitionists are being inconsistent, pot should be legal" but it could almost as easily be read as "Golly, booze is dangerous".

    There's a large and increasingly powerful set of voices promoting that latter view. We are heading toward a "public health"-led crackdown on alcohol even as progress on marijuana legalization stalls.

  • Wayne||

    Bring it on. Full-on prohibition. We can't learn that lesson enough!

  • BelowTheRim||

    Taint, as much as I appreciate your idea and fear, read your history.

    It would be political suicide for the president or congress to reenact alcohol prohibition.

  • Haunted Taint||

    I'm not talking about full-scale prohibition. That'll never fly again. It's going to come in the form of heavier regulation: minimum prices, restrictions on what, where, and how you can buy and sell, and so on. And it's going to be done in the name of curbing drunkness, reducing the "social costs", saving the government money on insurance, etc.

    Look at the UK for a preview of how this is going to happen. Their public health authorities have been taking the same strategies used to demonize tobacco and applying them to alcohol. It is coming here too: trust me.

  • twenty-something||

    Whatever. If the college kids are taking to the street over banking reform, imagine what they would do if the government seriously tried alcohol prohibition again.

  • AdvocateReason||

    The Drug Czar is trying to protect his job? Anyone surprised?

    Obama made a mockery of his own gesture of transparency by responding to the 8 or so marijuana petitions (one of which received 74,000+ signatures) with the same tired lies and misdirections. Check out NORML's response: http://bit.ly/rRMMYP

    There is hope however - on top of the fact that the news media will hopefully cover this more fully and be sure to paint Obama as acting in the interests of not the people but the interests of his corporate backers. 50% of the US is in favor of legalization and Obama is unwilling to even have a conversation about it - inexcusable

    There is a way to ensure the federal government doesn't get a say in how states handle marijuana as an issue. We need to remove its power via legislation. Pass H.R. 2306 and limit the federal government's power to enforcing only cross-border trafficking. Regardless of how you stand on the marijuana debate we can all agree it should be left up to the states and the federal crackdown is an abuse that states should not have to tolerate.

    Tell your representatives -> http://pvox.co/CdiFqY

    "[Prohibition] attempts to control a man's appetite by legislation, and makes a crime out of things that are not crimes." - Abraham Lincoln

  • Wayne||

    You might be legit, but the tiny links are a non-starter for me.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    "marijuana use is associated with addiction, respiratory disease, and cognitive impairment"

    Sounds like tobacco (yes, cognitive complications with nicotine). Replace respiratory with cardiovascular or liver, and it sounds like alcohol.

  • ||

    I'm not a big cigar smoker and can atest to some cognitive impairment after trying too strong a one the other weekend.

  • Mr. Mark||

    Of course he says no.

    To say the least, he's in the drug war industry of sorts.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Odds are, he's a Democrat.

  • ||

    Where is Dunphy to state unequivocally that he almost never ruined anyone's life, just once in a while, with stupid draconian drug law enforcement, because of his belief in freedom and libertarianism after he read The Fountainhead while moving his lips?

    Statist apologists? Really nice cops who would never enforce unjust laws? That asshole who comes to Dunphy's rescue?

  • Wayne||

    I appreciate the sentiment, but it is the law which causes the problems, admittedly aided and abetted by some cops.

    Dunphy strikes me as a pretty good cop, and I appreciate the insight he provides, and I admire his courage in coming here in the first place.

  • ||

    This is a blog comments section, not AA. Disclosure of one's past misdeeds or the lack thereof is not required.

  • ||

    I am so stones forced to enforce all kinds of laws I consider unjust. IMO, mj laws are actually not much of a problem where I work. Most street cops I know barely ever deal with petty miss. Mj possession cases. It is frankly pretty difficult to get more than a fine AT WORSE for mere possession.

    The war on domestic violence results in IMO Far more unjust arrests iow people who are completely innocent and people who are forced to spend 10's of thousands of dollars to avoid an industry that zis built around the domestic violence abuse trade

    No sentient cop on earth will support every law he enforces, welcome to pragmatism. I don't think somebody who had a felony bad check case from 3 yrs ago shouldn't be allowed to carry a gun either, but I don't make that choice. The same reason ignorati. Who bemoan rogue cops seem to be ok with us selectively choosing which penal codes we enforce as long as it is reason ignorati approved.

    We DO have discretion for many minor offenses, and many of us do exercise that.

    That aside, I have been criticizing kerlikowske as a craven, overtly political lackey, cowardly piece o' shit SINCE he was SPD chief, and he continues his assmunchery space in the Obama admin. that's why Obama chose him - he knew he'd be a good little mouthpiece for any statist twaddle that Obama supported.

    Kerlikowske is the coward responsible (partially) for kris kime's death, and he doesn't have 1/10 the dignity or REAL cop chops of any of my fellow officers that I would lay down my life for

  • Wayne||

    I am shocked!

    I figured that after Carlouski saw the results of the online petition he would say, "Geesh, that's how they feel, who knew!", and would proceed forthwith to dismantle the gargantuan,stazi-like network involved in persecuting Americans and destabilizing our southern neighbors.

    I am beginning to think that the president and Mr Farlouskey rather enjoy the sadistic power and control they exert over the peons.

  • ||

    Dunphy wants it both ways. You just can't be a libertarian and a drug warrior. And one marijuana arrest make you part of the problem. You only lose your virginity once, and Dunphy's totalitarian cherry has been busted.

    He may be a swell guy, but he is on the same level as the guys releasing dogs on protesters in the 60s, just in a kinder and less honest way.

  • ||

    Oh look, a libertarian with no sense of proportion. Color me surprised.

  • ||

    Then you can't be a libertarian and an MD either. Get a DEA number as a doctor and you will be forced to be part of the wod too.

    I realize your tired little canard is all you got, but spitting it ad nausea doesn't make it any more valid. We need police, and I would rather have a force with thinking, diverse members, who necessarily do not agree with all laws than a bunch of true believers in whatever our legislature and. Our citizens pass as laws.

    Grow the fuck up. Do some good in the world. Whining your petty purity rant is getting old

  • ||

    And if you think that is extreme, save your pity for the endless throngs of non-violent drug "offenders" rotting in jail or permanently marked as "criminals".

    If even one person had their life trashed by Officer Dunphy, he deserves nothing but scorn.

  • ||

    Since people can become addicted to anything that gives them pleasure

    Jumping on the public health nannies' bandwagon, Mr Sullum? Addiction is a specific phenomenon which requires, among other things, a deleterious physiological response to denial of the stimulus. Most pleasurable things don't produce such.

    Habit != addiction, however much the nannies would like us to believe otherwise.

  • Robert||

    That's just because the deleterious physiologic response to denial of those stimuli hasn't been searched for.

  • ||

    I think this is a valid distinction. If one uses the broad definition of "addiction" that people like this use , then EVERYTHING people enjoy doing is an addiction. It defines the word into meaningless.

  • Yes We Cannabis SF||

    I would like to understand why marijuana is unable to be regulated, taxed and controlled, similar to wine. Some need the medical relief it provides, while others simply wish to alter their mental state. This has been the case since the begining of time, when cavemen would eat wild herbs and mushrooms to experience 'enlightenment'..not to mention its usage in ancient rituals. As responsible 'free' adults, we should be given the 'right' to choose what toxins we ingest without government involvement. Alchohol, tobacco, and big pharma are much more toxic and deadly, yet are peddled on nearly every corner in the USA. Marijuana/cannabinoids have proven medical value. It's time for us to fight for our right to 'choose' how we medicate.

  • ||

    Jesus said to do unto others as we would have them to do unto us. None of us would want our child or grandchild thrown in jail with the sexual predators over marijuana. None of us would want to see an older family member’s home confiscated and sold by the police for growing a couple of marijuana plants for their aches and pains. It’s time to stop putting our own family members in jail over marijuana.
    If ordinary Americans could grow a little marijuana in their own back yards, it would be about as valuable as home-grown tomatoes. Let's put the criminals out of business and get them out of our neighborhoods. Let's let ordinary Americans grow a little marijuana in their own back yards.
    Here's one way that was REALLY WORKING until the Federal government targeted them in October 2011: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/.....iment.html
    The current proposal before Congress, bill HR 2306, will allow states to decide how they will regulate marijuana. We can email our Congressperson and Senators at http://www.usa.gov/Contact/Elected.shtml to discuss HR 2306.
    And a big THANK YOU to the courageous, freedom loving legislators, governors, and countless others who are working so hard to bring this through! You’re doing a great patriotic service for all of America!

    99% of the bust was marijuana.
    Let’s put the Cartels out of business forever:
    Let’s let ordinary Americans grow a little marijuana in their own back yard.

  • ||

    Federal drug prohibition is unconstitutional and ILLEGAL! When alcohol was prohibited at the federal level that required an amendment to the Constitution BECAUSE the Constitution gives NO authority to the federal government to prohibit drugs.

    WE THE PEOPLE must take back OUR government and restore OUR rights and liberty! The best way to do that is by electing Ron Paul president.

    For almost 100 years we have lived under the tyranny of marijuana prohibition. It's time to end this harmful, wasteful, Constitution trashing prohibition!

    To end this nonsense "drug war" (which is actually a war on our freedom and the Constitution) we’re going to have to do what works! 10 States ended alcohol prohibition before the Federal government did. This movement has to come from the bottom up, not from the top down. Once enough cities legalize States will follow and then the Federal government will be forced to legalize too.

    Did you know marijuana has been LEGAL in Denver since 2005? Do what they did in Denver in your city!

    How To Make Pot Legal in Your Town, USA:
    http://www.cannabisculture.com/articles/4659.html

    The drug warriors are going to fight it based on State and federal law but just keep adding cities until we win!

    The key is EDUCATING the voters! Get as many people as you can to read:
    THE EMPEROR WEARS NO CLOTHES, Jack Herer
    http://www.jackherer.com/thebook/

    The Constitutional right to freedom of religion, free speech, a free press, to keep and bear arms, to be secure in your person, house, papers and effects against unreasonable search and seizure, to life, liberty and property, to be protected from having your property taken by the government without due process of law and without just compensation, to confront the witnesses against you, to be protected from excessive bail, excessive fines, cruel and unusual punishment, to vote and others have been unjustly denied to tens of millions of Americans in the name of the drug war.

    End the drug war! No one benefits from it except criminals, gangsters, illegal aliens, terrorists and crooked public servants!

  • Kratom||

    The drug czar must legally do this; I bet he doesn't. My money is on Obama that he has a trick up his sleeve. The dude is a master politician.

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