Drug War

David Frum Joins Board of Anti-Marijuana Legalization Group He Promoted in Newsweek Column


On Dec. 17, Newsweek published an anti-marijuana column from David Frum in which the Republican pundit praised former Office of National Drug Control Strategy staffer Kevin Sabet for "forming a new group to find a third way" for U.S. drug policy. "[Sabet] deserves support," Frum wrote, "because young Americans deserve better than to be led to a future shrouded in a drug-induced haze."

We didn't know the name of the group at that time, but we do now: It's called Project SAM, which stands for "Smart Approaches to Marijuana." According to an Associated Press report that ran yesterday, Frum is on the group's board of directors. 

Considering Frum's endorsement of Sabet's work, and his own opposition to liberalizing America's drug laws, you'd think he would've announced by now that he's going to be a board member (along with Sabet) of a new anti-pot group being headed up by former Congressman Patrick Kennedy: 

Kennedy, 45, a Democrat and younger son of the late "Lion of the Senate" Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts, is leading a group called Project SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana) that opposes legalization and seeks to rise above America's culture war over pot with its images of long-haired hippies battling law-and-order conservatives.

Conservative political commentator David Frum, a speechwriter for former President George W. Bush, is also a board member on Project SAM, which lends it a bipartisan flavor.

In an email, Sabet, who's risen to prominence as an anti-marijuana pundit since the election, confirmed that Project SAM was the group Frum wrote about in his column, but said that he had not been offered a role on the board at the time his column was published. 

Personally, I don't think it's problematic that Frum is on Project SAM's board, because I don't think it's problematic for journalists to have opinions. I do think it's interesting that a guy who so frequently accuses people he disagrees with of duplicity has yet to tell his readers about his new role in the drug war. 

UPDATE: Frum announced his involvement with the group in a column for CNN this morning: 

Last week, I joined the board of a new organization to oppose marijuana legalization: Smart Approaches to Marijuana. The group is headed by former U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy and includes Kevin Sabet, a veteran of the Office of National Drug Control Policy under President Obama.

The new group rejects the "war on drugs" model. It agrees that we don't want to lock people up for casual marijuana use—or even stigmatize them with an arrest record. But what we do want to do is send a clear message: Marijuana use is a bad choice.

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  1. Qui bono?

    1. “Cui bono”, not “qui bono”. You need the dative, not the nominative.

      1. declensions are teh sexy

  2. So will it be “smart” or just the usual bullshit?

    1. So will it be “smart” or just the usual bullshit?

      Project SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana) that opposes legalization

      the usual bullshit.

    2. Probably just “shit.”

    3. That’s a trick question. It will be smart bullshit, of course.

  3. What a dishonest hack.

  4. Eric Cartman: You just have no long term memory because you get high all the time.
    Towelie: [look at each other angrily] Don’t preach to me, Fatso.
    Eric Cartman: I can preach to you all I want because you’re stupid!
    Towelie: You’re stupid!
    Eric Cartman: Yeah, you’re a towel!
    Towelie: You’re a towel!

    1. You’re the worst character ever, David Frum.

      1. And Hugh gets right to the heart of it.

  5. Fuck Frumpy Frum. Schmuck!

    1. e.e. cummings would be proud.

      1. I don’t respect anyone who has a lowercase name.

  6. Well this is obviously going to blow up on the launchpad. The combined brightness of the board of Project SAM couldn’t illuminate a 10-watt bulb.

    1. What a about a CFL?

      1. Ten percent of nothin’ is, let me do the math here. . .nothin’ and a nothin’, carry the nothin’.

      2. Maybe an LED. And not a nice bright white one.

    2. At least it concentrates David Frum and Patrick Kennedy in one location. Just set up a quarantine zone with a 5 mile radius around the board room.

    3. How could something with so little power blow up?

  7. It’s good to know that the economy’s all back to normal and that civil liberties are all restored so that these uberintellectuals like Frum, a Kennedy, and Miss Universe can oppose people smoking a plant.

  8. Ah, yes, headed by Patrick Kennedy. This Patrick Kennedy:

    “On May 4, 2006, Kennedy crashed his automobile into a barricade on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., at 2:45 a.m. A Capitol Police official said the congressman had appeared intoxicated when he crashed his car, but Kennedy claimed that he was merely disoriented from prescription medications Ambien and Phenergan,

    On May 5, 2006, Kennedy admitted that he had an addiction to prescription medication and announced he would be re-admitting himself to a drug-rehabilitation facility at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota where he has sought treatment for prior addictions. He has stated that he has no recollection of the car crash.

    On June 13, 2006, Kennedy made a deal with prosecutors and pleaded guilty to a charge of driving under the influence of prescription drugs. He was sentenced to one-year probation and a fine of $350. Two of the three charges (reckless driving and failure to exhibit a driving permit) were dismissed.

    On Friday, June 12, 2009, Kennedy again announced that he has “checked into a medical facility for treatment”. “I have decided to temporarily step away from my normal routine to ensure that I am being as vigilant as possible in my recovery,” Kennedy said.”

    All legal drugs, however, so completely acceptable. At least he wasn’t one of the millions of victims of marijuana addiction!

    1. No, no, see he’s using his “clean and sober” bona fides to be as obnoxious as ex-smokers and ex-drinkers.

      I’ll be dead in the cold ground before I let a member of that inbred batch of nouveau riche one-step-from-the-backwoods-and-trailer-park batch of trash we call the “Kennedys” tell me a goddamn thing. Jesus do I hate them.

      1. strike one of those “batch”‘s as appropriate.


    2. Surprised that I failed to make reference as to how Patrick’s grandfather earned the family fortune. Prohibition does work for some people, like Joe Kennedy.

  9. …that opposes legalization and seeks to rise above America’s culture war over pot…

    I am getting very sick of the phrase “rise above”. Every time a group states they want to rise above, they invariably mean “boot to the face”.

    To David Frum, and the other scumbags at SAM, here is some motherfucking Rise Above!

  10. Unfortunately, D Frum probably does not have any hobbies sufficiently interesting to cause his premature death.

  11. Caption:

    “Eat your heart out, Ezra Klein.”

  12. Exactly what qualifies David Frum to be a marijuana policy maker?

    1. A Frum is a bag, bottle, or some other source of liquid connected to a long, slim, round tip with holes located at the top. The Frum tip is inserted into the vagina and the water is expelled (by squeezing the Frum or opening the valve on an Frum) into the vagina and allowed to flow out. This is usually done on the toilet or in the shower. The water rinses the inside of the vagina to remove to clean, rinse away blood after monthly periods, or get rid of odors.

      The Frum is not an effective means of preventing pregnancy or sexually transmitted disease, but will gladly offer it’s opinions or attempt to control your life through the force of government.

      Read more: This is a serious question: How does a douche work? | Answerbag http://www.answerbag.com/q_vie…..z2HJG7pgzA

  13. a group called Project SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana) that opposes legalization and seeks to rise above America’s culture war over pot with its images of long-haired hippies battling law-and-order conservatives.

    What in the fuck is that even supposed to mean?

    1. It means, “The other guys are all dull, stubborn, pig-headed, and prejudiced, while we’re civic minded, fair, open to new ideas, & smart, so pay att’n!”

    2. The progressives are reclaiming the War on Marijuana.

  14. OT: I made a terrible mistake reading the comments on Krugnuts’ latest $1 Trillion coin article, hoping someone would ask why use platinum when cardboard would be just as legitimate.

  15. Big government sidles over into yet another committee fucking making the world a better place.

  16. What in the fuck is that even supposed to mean?

    There is no way in fuck that they want to be viewed as law-and-order conservatives so they have to rewrite the narrative so they can still be against pot.

    1. Kinder, gentler fascists.

      1. Except they think all the other guys are fascists. With bad breath.

      2. Their boots have velvet soles.

    2. They’re trying to encroach on law and order libertarianism’s turf. This requires a strong response from the LAOL community.

        1. His name is Tulpa: king of kings
          Look upon his works, ye echo chamber, and dispair!

      1. This requires a strong response from the LAOL community.

        Is your mascot a cat that really, really wants a cheeseburger?

  17. I’m always interested in seeing 3rd ways or 3rd positions posed as in distinction to a pair of existing poles of opinion. Usually, though, they turn out to be a mish-mosh from both poles repackaged as “smart” because everybody else was too stubborn & pig-headed to listen to us smart people.

    Once in a while, though, it really does mean a different perspective, such as radical libertarian, Third Position, 3rd World, LaRouche, or Mad. I have to admit I’m one of those I just listed, and that the others are even less attractive to me than the usual dichotomy — but it’s interesting to know they’re there.

    1. “Intelligent” people (generally middle-class urbanites and suburbanites) just know in their smart heart-of-hearts that if we could just get a Great Independent Man (the kind fantasized about in Ex Machina, for example) then the whole country’s troubles would vanish under his gentle, loving Third Way hand.

      1. He’ll know which laws to rise above in order to make the system work. Before he reaches the half-assed ending where he realizes he’s just a pawn in the scheme to conquer the multiverse.

        1. Boy you said it brother. Giving that ending half-an-ass is a generous curve, IMO.

    2. OK, I read the AP article, and apparently it’s the same sort of hope I have about a lot of things: Certain people want A, other people want ~A, so they clash, but if you could change the mind of the people who want A, then they wouldn’t clash any more and everybody would be happy. Their strategy in this case seems to be getting funding for research on alternatives to whole cannabis, plus alternatives to jailing people and branding them criminals for cannabis, so people wouldn’t want cannabis any more and people wouldn’t want to lock up people who want cannabis any more.

      1. But that’s not really a third way; it’s merely an attempt at persuading the first way’s opponents to support the first way.

      2. Why the drug war fails in 5 words:

        People want to get high.

        If your goal is to make people not want to get high, you are going to fail. No amount of social engineering or rhetoric is ever going to change the fact that some people want to catch a buzz.

        1. The AP article actually had a decent comment: “Even God couldn’t enforce Prohibtion, and He only had two people to enforce it against”

          1. I’m gonna have to remember that one for future use.

  18. why use platinum when cardboard would be just as legitimate.

    Assume a can opener.

  19. Frum manages to list all the reasons I don’t smoke marijuana while omitting all the reasons why government prohibition is a horrible idea and will never work.

    1. He’s against the “conservatives”, the “liberals”, the libertarians, the authoritarians, and the centrists, and most of all, he’s against the gadflies.

      1. When he drinks beer, it’s Dos Equis.

  20. I don’t see how they’re rising above the culture war by making one side’s opinions carry the force of law.

    “We must rise above the debate over Coke or Pepsi by making Pepsi illegal.”

  21. Certain people want A, other people want ~A, so they clash, but if you could change the mind of the people who want A, then they wouldn’t clash any more and everybody would be happy.


  22. I say that this (ridiculous) anti-pot group is the way to go. It’s a private group devoted to a specific cause. They say pot use is bad for people. Let them sell the idea on the market. Maybe they’ll help some people, after all. Who knows?

    If the drug war was over, and pot was legal, then govt could even give out grants to these kinds of groups. Nobody would be hurt by them. If you didn’t like what they had to say, you could just ignore them.

    By the way, drug laws are not to keep our “young people” free from sin and heresy. They’re to reduce violent crime, which was the whole reason they were enacted in the first place. No drug war = less violent crime. Frum’s group only wants to convince people to make the right decisions, according to them. There should be a lot more of these groups. And they should be demanding the govt get out of the business.

  23. then govt could even give out grants to these kinds of groups.

    Umm, no.

  24. Alt-Text Caption Contest!

    I’ll start: “Yeesh, it’s creepy to look in the mirror when I’m tripping.”

  25. Lie #1 Gateway Drug.
    FACT Marijuana is NOT a Gateway Drug. Here’s a 12 Yr Univ. Study that says so;.
    Andrew Hryckowian – University of Pittsburgh.
    pitt. edu/~ugr/Hrych2.pdf
    Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Raven-… Marijuana is not a.
    “gateway” drug.

    Lie #2 Marijuana is addictive.
    FACT Marijuana is no more addictive and less harmful than Caffeine;.
    Dr Henningfield is a former NIDA Staffer;.
    Addictiveness of Marijuana – ProCon
    procon. org/view.background-resource.php?resourceID=1492

    Lie #’s 3 & 4, Marijuana has no Medicinal Use and is Dangerous.

    FACT In 1988, a DEA Administrative judge wrote, in a report.
    Commissioned by the DEA; “16. Marijuana, in its natural form, is one of.
    the safest therapeutically active substances known to man. By any
    measure of rational analysis marijuana can be safely used within a
    supervised routine of medical care.”

    FACT For good measure, the CDC reported Med Marijuana doesn’t increase teen use.
    It’s time to end this fiasco. Quit playing this stupid game. We are free Americans. Not some children to be coddled and told about ‘the boogey man.’

    Anyone in the United States with half a brain sees what a horrible hoax has been carried on since 1937.

    Stop locking people up for a plant that could possibly save the US economy.

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