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January 23, 2011

Spinning the Truth

For the past several years, the focus of my (limited) ability to study the phenomenon of cannabis (“marijuana”) use from a clinical perspective has shifted from defining pot's appeal to its chronic users to an attempt to understand why (how) such a badly mistaken and intellectually shabby policy as "marijuans" prohibition has been able to retain the allegiance of government policy makers the world over. This morning, quite by accident, I stumbled into a major new insight; one that's still evolving and yet has taken my understanding to a whole new level. I awakened to TV: the program being aired had been produced for cable by an entity known familiarly as “Nat Geo.” It was a slick, brand new production dated 2011 and entitled “Drugged, High on Marijuana."

 It’s axiomatic that new insights favor a prepared mind (Darwin, for example, was familiar with the then-novel work of Geology pioneer Charles Lyell before he visited the Galapagos). As for me, I'd long been suspicious that “Nat Geo,” for all its undeniably interesting educational and scientific programming, was also a shill for the Drug War’s fascist status-quo. This morning, I finally had that confirmed by doing something I should have done a long time ago: I Googled "Nat Geo,Discovery" and was amazed to learn that their majority owner was that well known international fascist, Rupert Murdoch.

To back up a bit, I'd originally become suspicious of Nat Geo's basic motivation: from their Border Wars series, which is so highly selective in its characterization of marijuana and human smuggling that it could easily be accused of intellectual schizophrenia: no mention of even the possibility that US efforts at "control" on the border are failing for the same reasons: endemic greed and dishonesty in both nations. Instead, while Mexican suffering is largely ignored or minimized, the personnel in our militarized Border Patrol and ICE are portrayed as heroes frying to keep the rest of us safe from the twin scourges of illegal drugs and illegal aliens.

Another thing I have only recently had time to confirm: so far as I can tell, I'm the only "Pot Doc" who has been asking the same questions of applicants in any state with a medical marijuana law. I would not have believed I could spend almost 10 years taking histories from pot smokers (and reporting the results to any who would listen) and still encounter such dedicated ignorance from "colleagues." However that statement seems at least as accurate as my patient data.

To return to this entry's purpose; it's aptly summarized by its title, which, in turn, turns out to be the shorthand answer to the question raised in first paragraph: the drug war bureaucracy has been successful because of support for fascist causes by wealthy people (Rupert Murdoch is but one of several possible examples) many of whom are also committed to the extreme conservatism that fell under the rubric of "fascism" early last century. Once one understands Mussolini and Hitler (his best pupil) it's but a short step to the realization that extreme "control" policies often end up justifying the imprisonment (or destruction) of perceived enemies.

In the fascist movements of the early Twentieth Century, the common good came to be defined nationally in Germany and Japan. In the case of the drug war, the context of its (presumed) "control" mandate was enlarged to embrace the whole species when its responsibility was arrogated into a need to protect (all the world's) "kids" from "addiction" (similarly; some opponents of abortion believe they have the right to protect fetuses by killing physicians who perform legal abortions).

More, later.

Doctor Tom

Posted by tjeffo at January 23, 2011 05:36 PM