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May 09, 2008

Seeking Perspective in a Confused World (Personal)

I began
blogging in the Summer of 2005 when I finally tumbled to the hostility my three year old ad-hoc study of pot applicants was generating among presumed allies in the Drug Policy Reform movement. Although no longer as overt, that hostility has continued. Ironically, so has the media and electorate indifference towards drug policy issues that the movement has been trying to overcome for years. Just as ironic has been the remarkable global acceptance of drug enforcement failures experienced by UN agencies and nearly all “sovereign” governments attempting to enforce what originally started as a domestic US policy.

In essence, the world and
America seem to agree on two “drug-related” issues: some drugs are so “bad” they should be kept illegal; yet the policy's inevitable failures should never even be admitted; let alone frankly discussed.

Back in California, also in 2005, there was an unexpected surge in the number of “pot docs,” some of whom hadn't  even started medical school when Proposition 215 passed in 1996. Nevertheless my study has continued, aided to a considerable extent, by a “renewal” provision added when dispensaries were known as “buyers clubs” and their owners wanted to convince skeptical  police they were playing by the rules. Of course, the cops soon began using the  "requirement" to arrest medical users who were even a week out of compliance; especially after SB 420 passed in 2004.

In fact, the most prominent feature of Proposition  215 since California voters surprised the world by passing it in 1996 has been confusion; mostly as a result of
foot-dragging by state and local governments. First the state police bureaucracies required for its implementation wouldn't cooperate with the legislature in creating the usual "enabling" legislation and the California and US Supreme Courts have declined to deal with the glaring jurisdictional conflict produced when the initiative was approved.

 All of which has led me to a gradual realization: the chaotic and deteriorating state of the world on the eve of the Bush Administration’s scheduled departure from power is entirely consistent with several of the unexpected revelations about human behavior
Proposition 215 had also afforded me. While I’m no longer naive enough to think those revelations are ready for prime time, having had them published and being able to continue the study should help me to further understand them, and perhaps do the same for others.

That's because the one thing that most people can agree on is precisely what they are still afraid to say out loud: the war on drugs has been a total failure. Just imagine what will happen when self-appointed policy "experts" finally accept the superiority of  pot in treating  the same conditions for which anxiolytics and antidepressants are now being prescribed...

Doctor Tom

Posted by tjeffo at May 9, 2008 01:51 AM