When Does X Trump Liberty? When X Is Fear of Marijuana.

Yesterday This Week, ABC's Sunday news talk show, sponsored a debate about big government. On the pro side: Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) and former Labor Secretary Robert Reich. On the other pro side: Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and syndicated columnist George Will (a regular panelist on This Week). Since this was a debate between Democrats and Republicans, there was no anti-statist side, although Frank did a pretty good job of chiding conservatives for their inconsistency in that regard:

I would assume, George, you're going to sign on with me and Ron Paul in removing the criminal penalties on the use of marijuana and on stopping this terrible regulation of the Internet in which we tell adults that they can't gamble.

And frankly, here is where the right wing is very much for big government. They are the ones who want to regulate personal choices. Birth control...gambling, private sexual practices. Who can get married. I have never understood why heterosexuals who want to get married believe that if I were to marry a man, they would somehow lose interest in their wives....

[That's] also the case, of course, with the military...A major reason for the expansion in American government, taxation, et cetera, is an overly extended American military, which is committed all over the world to accomplish all kinds of social and economic purposes far beyond defense.

Will, to his credit, backed the legalization of online gambling, but he expressed reservations about marijuana decriminalization, saying, "I need to know more about whether it's a gateway to other drugs. I need to know how you're going to regulate it, whether you're going to advertise it." Frank rightly deemed this response a "cop-out," especially because Will had just answered a question about traffic light cameras this way:

When does X trump personal liberty? Almost never....I don't want to make safety parallel with, equal to, let alone trump personal liberty. 

That was in reference to a policy ostensibly aimed at protecting third parties. Yet Will seems ready to accept marijuana prohibition as a way of protecting people from themselves—and not even from harm caused by marijuana itself but from harm caused by the drugs they might use after trying marijuana.

Ryan likewise confirmed that conservatives have a blind spot about big government when it comes to the military:

Ryan: I noticed, Barney, you have a big thing with the national defense, with the Defense Department. That's the primary function of the federal government. You may not like what they do.

Frank: But to build bridges in Afghanistan—where in the Constitution is that?

Ryan: This time last week, this time last week I was in Helmand Province with our Marines in Afghanistan. They're out there fighting for our liberties and our security, depriving safe havens for terrorists who can come and attack again. You might not like that. You might have a problem with that.

Frank: They go far beyond it. 

The fact that national defense is a "primary function of the federal government" does not mean everything done under that heading is justified. Self-identified fiscal conservatives like Ryan should be at least as skeptical of government programs that deliver bombs and bridges in other countries as they are of programs that deliver subsidies and social services here. 

[Thanks to Richard Cowan for the tip.]

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  • Carmen Senz||

    If you don't like marijuana, then don't use it.

  • ||

    But that they don't like marijuana means you shouldn't be able to use it either, so fuck yeah drug war1!!1!!!!

    *APC raid on 85-year-old's window sill pot*

  • ||

    If you don't like traffic light cameras, don't use intersections with traffic lights.

  • Carmen Senz||

    That's logical, but mocks my point.

  • ||

    Only to people bigoted against cameras.

  • Walter U. Smoken||

    ?

  • Anon||

    If marijuana is legal then children will be smoking and getting fatter than already and then moving on to hard drugs because everyone knows that marijuana is a gateway drug to heroin.

  • ||

    when u smok marijuana u then get contaminate in ur head and do drugs liek magic marshrooms and lsd and speed and mdma and speedMDMAlsdspeed and heroijuana and marijuaine. and then ur kid is borned with down syndrom and ther is many crime and the black chidrun in harlem all die of crackhead diseas -- this must be prevent by durg warriors!

  • pmains||

    Gabby Johnson is right!

  • Sponge the Dyslexic||

    Actually, studies have shown that regular smokers have a much less chance of becoming obese. The "munchie" effect is only usually really present in new, occosianal smokers. Notice hippies tend to be thinner?

  • Sponge the Dyslexic||

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Skinny intellectuals.

  • ||

    I was super high and managed to order a pizza hut pizza. It came later than 40mins and was congealing a bit. I was aware of too many textures/layers and was grossed out. No more munchies ever again. The cause of and solution to all of life's problems....

  • Adrian||

    Marijuana isn't a gateway drug! Anything can be considered a gateway drug. I'm sure you drank milk before you drank alcohol. So does that make milk a gateway drug to alcohol? According to a new study marijuana use is up to a new all time high in high school students. But alcohol use has dropped, tobacco use has dropped, cocaine use has dropped, crack use has dropped, and the list goes on and on. If marijuana was a gateway drug why are we seeing a decline in hard drugs and a increase use in marijuana?

    reference: nytimes

    http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/.....teenagers/

  • Appalachian Australian||

    Coffee was my gateway drug to hot chocolate.

  • Brian D||

    Thank goodness none of that stuff is happening now!

  • ||

    This is a joke right?

  • Colin||

    Four idiotic statists who are in basic agreement, and too stupid to realize it.

  • Invisible Finger||

    Some idiot at ABC probably thought his name was Ryan Paul.

  • ||

    Or Ron Paul. I bet none of them even know what he looks like.

  • sarcasmic||

    The greatest threat to our liberty is not terrorists.
    The greatest threat to our liberty is government.

  • Apatheist||

    Statist hacks are statist hacks.

  • Koan||

    Behind door number One is statist fuck A, who'll raise your taxes, increase the national debt so that the dollars stacked atop one another could reach to Jupiter, and redistribute your income to whiny freeloaders who'll then protest that you're not giving them enough.
    Behind door number Two is statist fuck B, who will demand war against brown folks all across the planet, deny you the right to ingest harmless substances because it may lead to you having too much fun, and will make sure you are safe from those hell-bound sin machines . . . THE GAYS! *cue spooky music*
    And ladies and gentlemen, behind door number three is the wild card, that truly strange, some would say bizarre creature called a libertarian, who not only opposes everything mentioned above about statist fucks A and B, but goes even further than that! *cue Twilight Zone theme*
    The libertarian wants to repeal the Patriot Act, get rid of motorcycle helmet and automobile seatbelt laws, and - are you ready ladies and gentlemen - "just wants to be left alone". Just plain weird, odd, wacky and unbelievable, I know folks, but there it is, the libertarian. Now, which door do you choose?
    DOOR ONE!!! DOOR ONE!!! No! Wait! Ummm . . . No, TWO! TWO! I want door number TWO!! OH my, this is so hard to choose! These statist fucks sure are great, both of em! Oh, well, Mom was a statist fuck A lover, and Pop was a statist fuck B lover. Sorry Pop, but I'm a Momma's boy! I'll go with Door Number One . . . RAISE MY TAXES! YaaaaaY!

  • ecian||

    "just wants to be left alone"

    The flip side of that is that you are no longer able to tell others what to do. Totally unacceptable!!

  • Tim||

    If Ron Paul keeps growing in popularity we'll see guys like Will and Frank uniting in opposition. Talk about strange bedfellows.

  • Barney||

    I've had stranger.

  • Appalachian Australian||

    Geez, every film with Seth Rogen in it is an advertisement for marijuana. (Or a PSA warning you not to use it, depending on your interpretation.)

    I'm personally offended by too many liquor stores on my drive home and I also hate seeing state liquor stores since it feels like the government is promoting alcoholism. And I really hate the food pyramid promoting consumption of carbs. That stuff is bad for you.

    But I can keep my preferences to myself, y'know?

  • robc||

    apparently not.

  • Raston Bot||

    That's some great boiler-plate statism.

  • ||

    I'm unclear how traffic light cameras have anything whatsoever to do with liberty.

    Presumably Reason doesn't think that a cop parked on the side street waiting to ticket anyone who drives through the red light is an encroachment on liberty, so how does a camera that does the same thing encroach on liberty? Seems like another instance of Ludditism.

    And of course no one's ever been tased or illegally searched by a camera.

  • Appalachian Australian||

    The government should not own/operate roads or traffic control devices, and police powers on (private) roads should be limited to removing trespassers at the behest of the rightful property owner.

    Even that power is questionable; private security should be sufficient for the removal of unwelcome gambolers.

  • ||

    But who owns the roads if they aren't public??????????????

  • robc||

    The owner of the road.

  • ||

    But how can it work if the government's not running it??????????????????????? Won't the owners of the road ufck you over at every turn?????????????? Dogs and cats???????

  • ||

    Why is the owner of the road letting you drive on his or her road?

  • Zuo||

    Because you pay him.

  • Apatheist||

    So you wouldn't care if a cop was posted permanently in front of your house, a drone was on constant flyby and cameras were posted directed at your house from every conceivable angle (from public property) just in case you ever do something wrong?

  • Appalachian Australian||

    What do you have to hide?

  • BakedPenguin||

    It's Tulpa. Probably not.

  • ||

    I'd be bummed, but there wouldn't be a constitutional problem with it.

    And of course that's really not comparable to the RLC situation at all.

  • ||

    Traffic cameras, while legitimate in theory, frequently end up malfunctioning and causing false citations for right on red turners and local governments start thinking of them as revenue generators rather than safety devices, cutting yellow signal times to help feed the government meter. Granted, similar concerns are created when police officers create speeding quotas for revenue generation, but cameras have no repercussions for being wrong, so there's no brake on the abuse possible.

  • ||

    Those are problems that can be dealt with individually. They're not inherent problems with RLCs.

  • ||

    "Presumably Reason doesn't think that a cop parked on the side street waiting to ticket anyone who drives through the red light is an encroachment on liberty"

    Well I do think that.

    And the very existence of public roads and public cops to enforce traffic laws on those roads is the very essence of encroachment on liberty.

  • ||

    I should have directed my question at people who understand that the only sensible way to operate a system of roads is for the govt to run them. Sorry for the inconvenience.

  • ||

    wake up to your own indoctrination.

  • ||

    Presumably Reason doesn't think that a cop parked on the side street waiting to ticket anyone who drives through the red light is an encroachment on liberty,

    The occasional cop at the odd corner, meh.

    A cop on every corner is a different kettle of fish.

    Some of the limitations on state power are purely practical. When the state figures out how to get around those limitations, well, its power increases.

  • ||

    Explain what right is encroached upon by having a cop on every corner. The right to break the law?

    And that's not really what's happening here, since a cop on every corner could be looking for violations of every one of the thousands of laws on the books, while an RLC is looking for only one type of violation.

  • shamalamadingdong||

    Well, judging from the actions of cops, which are well documented here by Balko, et al, I would say there are going to be a whole lot more laws broken (with impunity) when a cop loiters on every corner.

  • Zuo||

    Everybody should be a cop. And crimes dealt with the same way a cop criminal is treated today.

  • Appalachian Australian||

    It's really quite funny that a geriatric, Baptist, and personally QUITE socially conservative guy is getting painted as someone who will degenerate our young people with reefer madness.

    You can tell when he talks that Ron Paul personally doesn't like drug use or drug users. He quickly changes the topic on to something else.

  • robc||

    Im 2 of those 3 and gaining quickly on the 3rd.

  • Zeb||

    As much of a turd as he is in many ways, I have to say that I kind of like Barney. He is right about a few things and is amusing to watch.

  • Gojira||

    I can tolerate people I completely disagree with as long as they're honest about it.

    I'm not sure that applies to Frank, who may (or may not be) crooked as the day is long. I haven't read about him enough to know, and I don't want to assume.

    But you take a guy like Jon Stewart, who may be disingenuous when he hides behind the "I'm a comedian!" thing, but I honestly don't think he's just a lying sack of shit. He practically fellates Ron Paul.

  • Robert||

    Most people can tolerate people they disagree with only if they're dishonest about it. Why are you different, and why should I tolerate you?

  • ||

    Sure, he's great at defending your right to get high and bugger other men - unfortunately he took time off from those causes to legislate and regulate us into a depression.

  • Owen Moore||

    And of course no one's ever been tased or illegally searched by a camera.

    Yet.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Will is often better than many Republicans on a lot of issues; it's too bad he's so taken in by bullshit regarding pot.

    ...national defense [is] ...the primary function of the federal government.

    That's right, Mr. Ryan. Maybe those troops should be brought home so they can be ready in case we need to defend this nation.

  • ||

    That Will is hesitant to legalize drugs does not make him complicit in the leviathan state Frank is defending. Will may err on particulars like drugs but nevertheless advocates real limits on state power. Frank does not; he advocates the limitless state power that has brought us Obamacare, to name just one example. In essence, Frank's argument -- if it can be called that -- is force Will to concede that the regulation of anything justifies the regulation of everything. It's a deceptive bait-and-switch that serves as the last redoubt of many progressives who can't articulate limiting pricnciples, because they have none.

    Frank is simply wrong to imply that republicans are the only ones who want to regulate personal choice. Frank's unstated disctinction between personal and economic choices is not only a lie, but it, along with a religious zeal for equality at all costs but their own, is the very foundation of modern liberalism. So of course they don't toe to any such line in practice. In Frank's state he can marry a man but not choose his own lightbulb. Nor (if modern progressives have their way) will he be permitted to continue with the type of diet that no doubt contributes to his ample girth.

    Frank's argument that building a bridge in a theatre of war strays beyond the military's constituional role is baffling. I suppose principles of limtied government would have had us stop at the Rhine? Of course one can object to the mission in Afghanisatn in total but to nitpick its every undertaking is silly. Not to mention that Frank's intellectual comrades were fully supportive along the way, rendering his argument pointless.

  • Appalachian Australian||

    Afghanistan's not a theatre of war. No declared war there and the government installed there is allegedly an ally.

    It makes about as much sense as building bridges in South Korea just beacuse we have many troops stationed there.

  • Spencer||

    I did want to scream "THERE IS NO PERSONAL LIBERTY WITHOUT ECONOMIC LIBERTY", but my kids were napping.

  • Robert||

    You can have a lot of personal liberty with only a little economic liberty, and vice versa. It's only the absolutes (which are unreachable anyway) that are incompatible.

  • Spencer||

    Barney Frank actually said logical and valid things.

    Of course, this was only about a minute of the whole show.

  • Appalachian Australian||

    Frank: But to build bridges in Afghanistan—where in the Constitution is that?

    Ryan: This time last week, this time last week I was in Helmand Province with our Marines in Afghanistan. They're out there fighting for our liberties and our security, depriving safe havens for terrorists who can come and attack again. You might not like that. You might have a problem with that.

    There was a leader in Europe who was passionate about building bridges.

  • Spencer||

    Franco? Merkel? Blair? Too cryptic for me to get the point ;)

  • Appalachian Australian||

    Here's a hint: this leader inspired a future President of the U.S. to follow in his footsteps in mass road and bridge building.

  • ||

    Napoleon III?

  • Spencer||

    Nope, it's gotta be Charlemagne.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    I don't like agreeing with Barney Frank. I don't like it one bit.

  • ||

    I'm sure 20 seconds later he was defending Dodd-Frank or Fannie Mae. Both indefensible.

  • ||

    National defense NEVER meant sitting around our borders waiting to see if someone attacks. That is just stupid. What Ryan is saying is, since national defense is a primary function of a federal government, the issue of what constitutes national defense is open to debate. Sometimes, it certainly means delivering bombs in faraway places, and building bridges too. Now, Pat Buchanan would disagree with the US doing that in 1941-45 and the Marshall Plan. But, most people would not.

    The war on drugs is an affront on our civil liberties.

    Conflating the two issues really makes little sense.

  • ||

    Sarcasm? Guarding borders and training to defend against attacks is pretty much all national defense should be most of the time.

  • ||

    Nope. I disagree with your limited notion of national defense. I respect it, but disagree. But, my main point was that conflating issues of civil liberties with national defense is playing into Barney Frank's game. He's basically saying that conservative Republicans are statists because, SOME of them might believe that national defense includes the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. He intimates that his form of statism, which includes intervention in virtually every part of economic life in the US, is the rough equivalent.

    All I'm saying is, they are unrelated issues.

  • Apatheist||

    Both parties by and large are statists on both economic and personal liberties. So they are pretty equivalent.

  • RyanXXX||

    rac, what do you have against defending our borders?

  • ||

    ""and building bridges too.""

    Not unless you need that bridge to complete a military objective.

    Nation building is not a part of national defense.

    Yes, it isn't always limited to our border but being world cop isn't national defense either. Also, there's a big difference between fighting for defense of the nation and fighting for defense of national interests. We seem to do more of the latter.

  • ||

    ""and building bridges too.""

    Not unless you need that bridge to complete a military objective.

    Nation building is not a part of national defense.

    Yes, it isn't always limited to our border but being world cop isn't national defense either. Also, there's a big difference between fighting for defense of the nation and fighting for defense of national interests. We seem to do more of the latter.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    Except that it is government conflating the issues.

    Or am I mistaken that our DoD/military is routinely used in the WoD (no, I'm not)?

  • Tim||

    Some days I don't know what's a bigger threat to me and my family: pot or gays. Thank goodness the government is protecting me from both of them.

  • Jews 'n Things||

    What scares me is when the queers smoke weed. Things just get CRAZY!

  • Tim||

    You can say that again.

  • ||

    Queers smoking weed on their honeymoon.

    The horror!

  • Jews 'n Things||

    What scares me is when the queers smoke weed. Things just get CRAZY!

  • ||

    you can, aw fuck it.

  • West Texas||

    I can never seem to beat these pot-smoking jews at internet poker, either.

    Please, someone protect me.

  • Mom's Wallet||

    These are the same Libertarian principles trotted out in the earlier post of Judge Napolitano's argument about freedom to travel. Both Liberals and Conservatives do not object to gambling and marijuana out of fear. Both gambling and drugs have proven human costs that outweigh the principles of Libertarians. The truth is that a majority of the country also understands the paradox of drugs and gambling vs. personal liberties and has correctly chosen to compromise. Of course there is room for debate and culture and society can change. But Libertarians would rather stop debate by hiding behind a single principle without looking for compromise.

  • Tim||

    You neglected to mention gays, should gays compromise with the government to keep the people happy?

  • Mom's Wallet||

    At least gay rights advocates are participating in the national discourse. They are using a multi-pronged attack through the courts, legislatures, and public opinion. Along the way they have had to make compromises like DADT as well as suffer defeat like CA Prop. 8. My point is that they don't stand behind an unyielding principle and refuse to consider that others may not share the same values. Libertarians are very principled and that is great but for America to work will necessitate compromise.

  • ||

    Blah blah...multi pronged...unyielding...stand behind blah blah

  • ||

    -- Compromising our liberty to sate the perennial immorality of the statist fuck = America working.

    What a asshole.

  • Tim||

    what AN asshole.

  • ||

    No, I mean 'a'. You don't get the reference?

  • ||

    "Both gambling and drugs have proven human costs that outweigh the principles of Libertarians. "

    Talk about begging the question.

  • ||

    Both gambling and drugs have proven human costs

    Sure, sure. Everything has a cost. But I'm not sure how, on even a purely utilitarian basis, anyone could conclude that the costs of gambling and drugs outweighs the benefits in the form of the pleasure they bring their practitioners.

    And that's even before you get to the question about whether the net costs are so high we have to ashcan our freedom.

  • Jerry||

    So we compromise by sending a huge number of black people off to prison. Nothing wrong with that, right?

  • MJ||

    Either the government has proper authority to make something illegal and such laws benefit society. Whether or not a particular ethinc or cultural group is more affected more should be irrelevant if the first two conditions are met.

  • ||

    The funny thing about liberty is that not only is it righteous from the perspective of morality, of principles, but it's also the winner from a consequentalist standpoint -- its outcomes are the best. That happens to apply to drugs and gambling, dimwit. Nice try.

    You realize you're a guy advocating compromising on freedom with our governments on a libertarian website, right?

  • Mom's Wallet||

    I understand that this is a Libertarian website. I also understand that even Ron Paul would have to compromise his principles if he was elected POTUS. I don't think it would change his principles internally but he understands the give and take that is necessary to do the nation's business. It seems many Libertarians aren't willing to engage in the give and take. Like I said above strong principles are great and we all should stand by our own. But because many of these principles are in conflict a compromise is often necessary.

  • ||

    Yeah -- I just hope he doesn't over-compromise, eh?

  • ecian||

    Yes because Democrats (not one dime from our precious entitlements) and Republicans (not one dime from the military-industrial public feeding trough) are so big on compromise. Our current economic malaise is primarily the result of several decades of the "instead of spending money on your priority OR my priority, we'll spend money on BOTH and leave the next generation with the bill" compromise.

  • The Ingenious Hidalgo||

    Like I said above strong principles are great and we all should stand by our own.

    No, no, no, no, NO, NO, NO! you bumbling relativist. If your principles are fascist, racist, homophobic and authoritarian, you should not stand by them. You should abandon them and get yourself some new principles. I can make a decent argument for the pragmatic benefits of legalising drugs in terms of health, prosperity, security etc., but screw that. It's no one's choice but mine what chemicals I put into my body. I'm my goddamn body. And I won't compromise with someone demanding sovereignty over it for the same reason you don't compromise with rapists.

  • Robert||

    We compromise with rapists all the time. It's called sexual intercourse, dating, marriage, etc.

  • The Ingenious Hidalgo||

    I don't know what you mean by that.

  • The C£aw||

    People want sex. Rape, you get it for nothing, not even permission. The compromise is you get it, but only by permission, and not for nothing. Was that not evident?

  • The Ingenious Hidalgo||

    I don't know what you mean by that.

  • Robert||

    So suggest some good compromises to work on. I've been looking for that sort of thing for a vey long time. Politics is the art of the possible, and I want to mke the possible possible.

  • ||

    In the future, our culture's prevalent utter irrational fear of other people using drugs is going to be looked at as a collective madness.

  • GILMORE||

    "I need to know more about whether it's a gateway to other drugs."

    There's no way we can figure that out until we have another 2 generations smoking the crap for anothe 50years with no apparent effects other than have been a prime contributor in the long term success of The Simpsons.

  • ||

    Yes let's compromise and lock up 3 million americans in my prisons.

  • ||

    Mom's wallet, perhaps we can just put 1 million more blacks in my free trade oriented work camp institutions and I'll send you a bill for my trouble? Surely you would accept such a compromise for making your streets safer?

  • ||

    A missed opportunity with Will.

    The response should have been "What if we regulate it exactly like we do alcohol? Would you support that, and if not, why not?"

    National defense NEVER meant sitting around our borders waiting to see if someone attacks.

    That's pretty much exactly what it meant up until WWI, and even after that until Pearl Harbor, to most people.

  • ||

    It doesn't have to be at our borders. If, say, China launches a barrage of nuclear missiles at the United States, an immediate, commensurate declaration of war would be the appropriate response, rightly followed by grinding the reds to dust.

    These interventionists seem to think non-interventionists are pussies, or dislike military action. Martial practice is essential to the maintenance of liberty. The difference between people like us and shitheads like Bush and Obama is that we don't use it lightly.

  • ||

    I would count retaliation against Chinese missiles crossing our borders as a defense of our borders.

    Its never been the case that a country that has been invaded has to stop its army at its own borders when driving the invaders out.

  • Spencer||

    what if they just declared war on us but didn't act on it? I mean, they just go on CNN and say, "We declare war on the USA."

    Can we attack them yet?

  • ||

    If the People's Republic of China declared war upon the United States and appeared to do nothing, they'd be doing something anyway -- just not something easily discoverable by the average Joe, so yeah.

  • Spencer||

    The logic is impeccable!

  • ||

    I know, dude. :)

  • ecian||

    Yes. A declaration of war means they intend to do us harm. Of course, it is highly unlikely that a country would declare war and then not go ahead and wage war but the declaration is sufficient to defend our nation against an explicitly stated threat of attack.

  • ||

    Sitting around the borders waiting to see is someone attcks is what national defense means to the Swiss. And you-know-who never attacked...

  • Gerholdt||

    Marijuana is a gateway drug BECAUSE it is illegal. You can't just buy it at your friendly local licensed retailer, you have to find a dealer. And guess what, he (or she) deals other illegal drugs as well. Gosh, buddy, I'm sold out of pot right now, but I bet you'll like this even better...

  • Lewis H.||

    Plus they mix in other drugs into the weed.

  • Spencer||

    Only if you pay a premium.

  • ||

    gerholdt, i agree that the concept of MJ as a gateway drug is specious (it wouldn't be IF it was legal, any more than alcohol), however im (vast) experience, MJ dealers rarely deal other drugs. iow, there are pot dealers, and there are dealers of other drugs. the vast majority of pot dealers deal pot near exclusively.

    again in my (extensive) experience.

    they may KNOW "hard drug" dealers but they usually just stick to mj

  • Lewis H.||

    Why do you want to encourage 8 year olds to Smoke weed?

    /Stop Sprawl!

  • Spencer||

    Because odds are they're already peaking in intelligence and potential. Why not let them numb the inevitable pain early?

  • ||

    Ryan is a fraudulent piece of shit.

    And will and his "gateway"--first, alcohol is the "gateway" drug. Second, there was a government report last week that just said among teens pot use was up, and use of other drugs, and alcohol, was down. What the fuck sense does that make if pot is a "gateway"--sounds more like a mellow exit ramp.

    I fucking hate the government and its shills.

  • SIV||

    Paul "bailout" Ryan is no fiscal conservative.

    re: Legalizing and advertising

  • ||

    I think George Will is sick, or just sick and tired of this boring charade of a debate.
    Usually he is more forcefull, here he seemed just to take it.
    Notice how Barney always brings everything back to pot and homo marriage, issues that directly affect at most 3 or four percent of the population, completely ignoring the consequences of the Feds overspending.
    Robert Reich is an idiot. Albert Jay Knox said a teacher of his said that most people can't read, as in can't read at all, not badly.
    Go through the transcript and by what logic, what criteria can you say Robert Reich knows how to read.
    Truly stunning.

  • ||

    More than 3-4% of the population abuses the pot. They don't call it an epidemic for nothing.

  • ||

    "Epidemic"???
    Pot use has gone down from the peak use in the early 80's.
    Yes, it might rise now and then, but the trend is down.
    I hope your being sarcastic. It sounds like you are, but it would have been better for you to say like, "More than 3-4%,five percent, with most likely twice your amout..."
    You get it.

  • RyanXXX||

    What's with all of these Will defenders? The guy supports Rick Perry for christ's sake

    And I'd venture to say about half of the population of this country has tried pot

  • ||

    You don't agree with Will on what?
    If he isn't a conservative, is there such thing as a conservative?
    Do you think it would be bad to have Will on the Supreme Court?
    Thanks

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Yeah, we call them "Democrats."

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    (response to RyanXXX)

  • MJ||

    "Birth control...gambling, private sexual practices."

    So the Obama adminstration did not propose stricter regulations on the "morning after" pill, they did not prosecute online poker businesses, liberals are not trying to expand the defintion of rape to absurd broadness? Liberal backed limitations on personal choice simply does not count in their eyes, for some reason.

  • MJ||

    "I have never understood why heterosexuals who want to get married believe that if I were to marry a man, they would somehow lose interest in their wives...."

    I am not sure why Frank does not understand this as heterosexuals who believe that only live inside his head.

  • ||

    And Ron Paul is a whacko - George Will, Newt, Romney, Obama, Dubya - all these guys are sane. They think people should be put in jail for growing a fucking plant and for ingesting unapproved substance, but Ron Paul, he's out there! He's a whacko! Fuck this country and the people in it if this is what passes for sanity.

  • Liberty Lover||

    Neither Will nor Ryan responded to the moderator's claim about the difference in the income levels, referring to a famous, recent study whose date range stopped at 2007.

    Alan Reynolds points out the problems with that claim here

  • rst||

    "They're out there fighting for our liberties and our security"

    Are they ever going to give up with that horseshit rhetoric? No deployment in a hundred years has had fuckall to do with our liberties or even our security, it's been about domination and vengeance.

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