A Very Special Drug Propaganda Thursday


Going way back to 1986, I give you the sixth-grade class project of a young Indiana kid who would one day grow up to be a senior editor at reason magazine.  Enjoy.

NEXT: Imperial Revenuers

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  1. worst special effects ever.

  2. worst special effects ever

    Not only that, but I couldn’t hear a word the punk was saying.

  3. Best. Video. Ever.

    Could Radley Balko and Opie
    be the same person?

  4. Between the special effects and the gross misinformation (LSD can cause numbness and cause you to not feel pain? What kind of shit have you been droppin’?) that deserved an F.

  5. You made drugs sound awesome. To see yourself in the future and in the past, to see fantasy illusions, don’t worry, you were subversive back then too.

  6. Best Hit and Run post ever.

    Nice tie, too.

  7. Radley,

    Were you at a Catholic school, or were you the kid who wore a tie, like young Michael Scott?

  8. What no jefferson airplane?

  9. I dunno, Balko, the eyes look a little glazed in that video. A little too much research, perhaps?

    Also, I’d like to find whoever started that nonsense about flashbacks decades later. To quote my legal hero, Lionel Hutz, that was “the most blatant case of fraudulent advertising since The Never-Ending Story.”

  10. That was adorable.
    You know, I can trace my eventual antiprohibitionism to reading Go Ask Alice in 7th grade. I found it fascinating and wanted to learn more about drugs and drug culture.

  11. I recognize the effect at about 3:20 from a sequence in The Prisoner.

  12. Awwwwww. You were so cute! But was the sound supposed to vanish around the one-minute mark?

  13. That video induced a flashback from a particularly heinous trip where I tried to eat the rook off of a chess board that wouldn’t stop bouncing around. Thanks for that.

  14. Great project, RB.

    The moral of the story might be that all of us eschewed drug use, say, as 10-12 year olds, before we chose as 13-20 year olds to try things out. Despite the propoganda to which most young people are subjected, many (most, maybe even) experiment. Some of us like what we find and have to spend the rest of our lives trying to reconcile our feelings with the impression resulting from the compulsory anti-drug indoctrination. I wonder if that’s part of the mental illness/drug abuse connection…

    In order to free myself of that particular conundrum, I hereby proclaim myself to be Pro-Euphoria.

  15. And BTW: I didn’t notice that the sound died out – I heard voices all the way through.

  16. From one Hoosier to another, I can relate. The Primary message is that drugs are bad, but there is the obvious fascination with the altered state. The battle between subjective and objective reality and the existence of a person independent of context.

  17. Reminds me of when I got second place in an anti-drug rapping competition in junior high. I wish I could find a video of that, we’re thinking about making videos for the songs on the CD, and I wanted to use at least part of the anti-drug rap for an intro to “Fuck Your Drug War”.

  18. Lighten up guys, Radley’s special effects were better than the cheesy TV tricks that Hollywood was using to do “trip” sequences in the ’60s and early ’70s.

  19. I remember some of the things I was earnest about in my youth (which was at least 20 years before yours, Mr. Balko) and the efforts I put into sustaining them. I was not fortunate enough to own a movie camera at the time, so this only comes from memory.

    In sixth grade had frameworks about what is ‘right and proper’ (going to church from time to time, washing behind my ears, eating everything on my plate, doing book reports, studying for exams, getting a haircut at least once per month, cleaning my room, shooting practically any small furry or feathered thing that moved just because I could, staying away from girls, supporting the political party of my dad, etc.)

    My current framework for ‘right and proper’ is that this is to be chosen by the individual, and the results that follow the choice are to be accepted simply as consequences of that choice.

    And not getting to hung up on the message of the video, veiwing it without moral or even practical filters, I cannot help but recognize and acknowledge the earnest dedication and yes, the early creative juices of the young Balko. Good on ya mate!

  20. And BTW: I didn’t notice that the sound died out – I heard voices all the way through.

    Which only goes to show you didn’t heed Balko’s fine warning about the dangers of hallucinogens.

    But seriously–for me the sound died out around the one-minute mark, so I didn’t watch the rest of the video because the drug-trip special effects were rather dull without the voiceover.

  21. I’m freaking out, man… I can taste time

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