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August 28, 2005

Drug War Hypocrisy-- and the Value of Publicity

As I've often pointed out, lack of the need to register when applying, plus
the "liberal"  wording  of California's Proposition 215 were precisely
what had induced a substantial population of chronic users to come forward--
and thus become available for my study. The corollary is that the much more
stringent  limitations agreed to by sponsors of the  medical pot
laws passed by all other states have so limited the potential applicants
as to make similar studies almost useless; at least in terms of demonstrating
any possible emotional component in their pot use (although I've had some
further thoughts on that subject and will air them in due time).

The most restrictive (and ridiculous)  law of all is  Vermont's,
recently passed by its legislature and signed by Dr. Dean; it specifies that
only patients with a confirmed diagnosis of cancer, AIDS or MS may use pot
legally.  But even that was too liberal for Vermont cops, who like most
other local police, are in agreement with the feds and will try to punish
medical users any way they can.

However, all is not lost. What Vermont's law lacks in scientific potential,
may be offset by its political value in calling attention to federal duplicity--
especially now, when current hearings in DC demonstrate the degree to
which DEA (and NIDA) will collude to frustrate research.

In a similar vein, if the execrable Raich "decision" had any value; it may
have been in encouraging journalists like New York Times columnist John Tierney
to study and comment intelligently on drug policy issues. It's clear that
entrenched bureaucracies (I include our Judicial system) will not change
drug policy unless forced to by an informed public that finally understands
how much the drug war really costs-- in both human and financial terms.

Dr. Tom

Posted by tjeffo at August 28, 2005 01:35 AM