« California’s Booming Recommendation Industry | Main | The Ubiquity of Denial »

December 17, 2009

Mexican Standoffs

In a more rational world, California’s hotly disputed Proposition 215 might have been seen as an opportunity to settle what had become a protracted argument between the US federal government and supporters of drug policy reform: does cannabis (“marijuana”) have “legitimate” medical use? That essentially no agreement has been possible in the thirteen years since the initiative’s passage is but one of multiple ironies as we approach the anniversary of some of the initiative's early landmarks.

Another is that the Mexican Border has become the scene of an increasingly bloody turf war between criminal cartels competing to smuggle low grade Mexican marijuana into the United States. In striking parallel, news and opinion articles describing the burgeoning market for “medical” cannabis (“marijuana”) have been keeping pace with lurid descriptions of the increasing violence at the border. As if that weren't irony enough, there is an incongruous reluctance on the part of mainstream media to even notice the obvious connections between those phenomena; it's as if they were occurring in parallel universes rather than neighboring countries with a mutual history as long as the border between them.

In the meantime, delegates to the long awaited Conference on climate change in Copenhagen will undoubtedly agree to meet again, despite the opinion of many that climate change is a chimera and of others that the current effort has already collapsed.

Such widespread cognitive dissonance in a dangerously swollen human population that has already escaped several self-induced disasters and could not have grown to its present size without its recently developed capacity for spectacular scientific achievements should probably give us pause; at least long enough to ask: how much longer will it be possible to engage in fundamentally irrational denial, now that we are so imperiled by our own cleverness?

Doctor Tom

Posted by tjeffo at December 17, 2009 05:17 PM