Ed Meese on Drugs! Caught on Tape!

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Sorry, strike that–should read Ed Meese talking about drugs.

On March 9, Reason's journalistic Dr. Feelgood, Jacob Sullum, participated in "An Analytic Assessment of U.S. Drug Policy" at the American Enterprise Institute.

Among the panelists were the former Reagan admin attorney general, former Clinton admin drug policy adviser Rand Beers (he's the proud papa of the hideously deformed Plan Colombia), and Peter Reuter and David Boyum, whose bold new monograph on drug policy was being discussed. The panel was moderated by James Q. Wilson, a hardcore drug warrior who recalled with pride his days in the Nixon admin's drug policy shop (go here to read Reason's 1995 interview with him on "bureaucracy, crime, and community"). Not since Riot on Sunset Strip have two such different worldviews collided with enough heat the melt the instruments of The Chocolate Watch Band.

The video is mandatory viewing for anyone interested in drug policy. Especially for pro-prohibitionists interested in a serious discussion of the costs and benefits of the drug war as it is currently constituted. Here's hoping some of them actually watch the discussion, which also poses serious questions for legalizers.

And a massive tip o' the gravity bong (but hey, man, not too big a tip cause then it will spill all over the floor–aw, man, why'd you do that, man) to AEI for bringing together a balanced and informed panel on a topic that rarely gets such treatment.

Go to video here.

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  1. jesus, that was fucking depressing.

  2. dhex, are you high? Aside from Meese, that was encouraging.

    Jacob, you were outstanding. One question; how much KB did it take to keep from shouting BULLSHIT at everything Ed said? Did he actually claim that Columbia is better off for our War On Drugs driven foreign policy? Dismantling the use=abuse fiction within the walls of AEI is a meaningful step forward.

    There seems to be increasing activity/attention around prohibition reform. All we need is one legalized market anywhere in the free world and the whole thing comes crashing down. And once it does, going back will be as unthinkable to going back to alcohol prohibition.

  3. The monumental stupidity of “the War on Drugs” is evident to everyone. A new book on how stupid it is? Wow. Can’t wait to read it. I’m too busy reading flat tax monographs, but I promise I’ll get to it right after that.

  4. Eh, call me a luddite, but I’ll wait for the transcript. I don’t need to see Ed Meese again.

  5. “dhex, are you high? Aside from Meese, that was encouraging.”

    it’s not encouraging because these are policy nerds, and even policy nerds recognize there is no national organization of any efficacy working on harm reduction or (better yet) drug liberalization. we are so fucked it’s not even funny.

  6. I dont know who Ed Mouse is but drugs are bad and no one should do them. Except coke, but that doesn’t count cuz you have to do it to be a model.

  7. the whole drug testing tangent is fucked too.

  8. Hey, RPG, don’t you remember the lines of horse I did off your ass Valentine’s Day?

  9. You were the creepy old guy? Oh yeah. I do remember that. Stop calling my agent, I dont do private parties.

  10. Here is an angle no one is touching. Probably because it is too hot. What if people take drugs because they need them? Pretty novel idea. No?

    Is Addiction Real?

    People who have a shortage of insulin in their system are not called insullin addicts. Why are those with a shortage of cannibnoids called pot addicts?

    Prejudice?

  11. Addiction is real and it’s not like needing insulin to stay alive. (Maybe extreme alcohol addiction, since the withdrawals can cause death.)

    Anecdote: In the past, when I smoked too much of the ganja for too long and then went without, I felt a stong physical desire for it; it felt like a “need”. When I only smoked it occasionally, I never had that need, I only had a desire (because it’s fun to be high).

    IMO, addiction is real but not a disease. You can’t “catch” addiction. You can only cause it by overuse. Calling it a disease is just a cop-out for those who lack a sense of personal responsibility.

  12. M. Simon,

    That post you linked to is interesting, but the author seems to assume that the “normal” state of humans is contentment or happiness. That’s a crock. The idea that a person has a psychological disorder just because they aren’t happy all the time is ridiculous. Constant contentment is the state of an animal soon to go extinct. As if everything not on the big hump of a bell curve is some fucking disorder! (I think a lot of people just want to get their name and/or pet theory into the DSM. If nearly every behavior becomes a disorder, then mental health professionals have some serious job security! Hmm… maybe that’s it?)

  13. OMFG! LEAA? Those slimy bastards who funded The Seed up until the Ervin Report on the Federal Role in Behavior Modification, then went right on ahead and ignored the prohibition on such funding when Mel Sembler set up Straight, Inc?

    Give me a friggen break! Sure, they like drug courts! How else are they going to get people to confess to marijuana addiction but by court ordered Synanon based behavior mod?

    This is very hard to listen to. Some encouraging words from Mr. Sullum, to be sure. But the rest of these guys? How in thee hell can they characterize their authoritarian views as anything like libertarian, or even close to what Republican used to mean?

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