Currently viewing the tag: "MARIJUANA"

potConservatives are not just hypocrites about immigration or war, they also ignore the brutal effect that the drug war has on families. Today the internet offered up not one, but two of my favorite writers telling drug war horror stories. Let’s play the bleakest game ever and decide which one is worse!

First, Mike Riggs of Reason on some desperate-sounding parents “stealing” back their own children:

Joshua Michael Hakken and his wife Sharyn Hakken are on the run in Florida after kidnapping their own two children from Sharyn’s mother this morning. Patricia Hauser has had legal custody of her grandchildren, four-year-old Cole and two-year-old Chase, since 2012, when Joshua and Sharyn lost custody for displaying pot in front of their sons at an “anti-government rally” in Louisiana.

And Conor Friedersdorf of the Atlantic on a father facing 25 years in prison for selling a few pain pills to an undercover cop:

James Horner, a 46-year-old fast-food restaurant worker, lost his eye in a 2000 accident and was prescribed painkillers. Years later, he met and befriended a guy who seemed to be in pain himself. His new friend asked if he could buy some of Horner’s pain pills. Naturally, the friend was a police informant.

It helps to be reminded, when things lately seem so promising in terms of drug war progress, that this sort of lunacy is happening all the time in the country that professes to be the land of the free. So no, Ann Coulter, I am not going to focus on privatizing garbage collectors now, and the drug war once we’ve solved every single fiscal problem (the drug war being one of those as well, come to think of it). If you care about people, about families, and about choice, you care about the drug war. If you do not, even if you think it’s something to get to “later” you’re a cold,partisan hack, or a at least a very unserious thinker.

  • I wish you would drink a 20-oz Vicodin soda, sir. Apropos of my post from yesterday, Mayor Michael Bloomberg has decided to restrict the use of prescription painkillers in New York City hospital emergency rooms. He’s a doctor…of entire cities…right?
  • David Frum is so scary-retro-hypocritical in his objection to drug legalization. His live chat with Daily Beast readers makes me want to burn my keyboard. 
  • “Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good” is one of my dad’s favorite mottoes  but dammit, Andrew Kirell rants so beautifully against Glenn Beck’s new “libertarianism.”
  • On the other hand, Jeffrey Goldberg at The Atlantic, welcome to (moderate) libertarianism. Yes, please. We want you. Conor Friedersdorf can teach you the ways. 
  • Yes, I am about to link to an article that is technically about Lindsay Lohan, but this, (ahem, Esquire), is how you write about entertainment and actresses. Show, be restrained, don’t get all pretentious about the meaning of actress x, just tell the story. Make them a human, as Lohan actually is, turns out.
  • Also: Girls is moderarately entertaining and sometimes funny, this Slate television critic writing about it makes me want to pull my own teeth out.
  • Peter Suderman really liked Zero Dark Thirty and dammit, I still feel conflicted (albeit not Glenn Greenwald level conflicted) about it. I guess, if the CIA is going to give you way too much access, why wouldn’t you take it?
  • Guns don’t protect people.  
  • Thaddeus Russell mourns the current lack of leftists like Howard Zinn. Yeah, I’ll take Code Pink over Obamatrons,  but hmm… Well, read it.
  • Smoking children as art. Awesome.
  • Obama is so cool, check out what his DOJ has done to people who try to provide medical marijuana in states where it is legal to do so.
  • David Frum is a comfort in this world, because he is wrong about everything.
  • Cato’s Trevor Burrus on guns.
  • What the Institute for Justice was made for.
  • Kennedy and Matt Welch are on Red Eye tonight (3 a.m. EST) which should make it well worth watching. 
  • “DNA testing from as early as 2000 excluded Starks as the perpetrator, former Lake County prosecutors repeatedly refused to acknowledge the results, coming up with improbable theories to deny Starks’ innocence.”
  • The Onion knows.
  • Good point, good issue, no context, no introduction, just snippiness and loaded language (accurate or not) — the continued inability of Lew Rockwell writers to blog well. 
  • Oh, hell no.
  • Since I spent New Year’s Eve with ’em, four of my photos are up at the Old Crow Medicine Show website in their fan gallery. I flatter myself by saying mine are the best.
  • Jeffrey Tucker is coming to Pittsburgh! Woo!
  • Infowars titling this “Shock Video: Cop Protects First Amendment” cracks me up in super depressing fashion. Looooow standards! However, over here, when the cop says the words “he doesn’t have to show you his identification” — well, when I wear my minarchist hat I love that so much.
  • Speaking of things that shouldn’t be celebratory but are: Patricia Spottedcrow spent almost two years in prison for selling 31 dollars worth of weed, but now she is free. Two years caged would be horrifying except that Spottedcrow was facing 12 years.
  • Once again, libertarians, privatizing prisons does not fix the problem of prisons. Don’t be that guy, you know, like the libertarian whose biggest problem with war is how expensive it is.
  • Jon Ronson on the artist who did those 50 self-portraits while on drugs which you may have seen on Buzzfeed or some other internet locale. 
  • Sometimes Bill Maher proves that he almost knows better and maybe doesn’t have to be such a hack.
  • Oh, the things on facebook that could help prove I am a scary radical. Ugh.
  • Islamic theocracies are not funny, but this is still sort of an amazing headline.
  • Go follow my friend Andrew Blake for Bradley Manning hearing tweets and reporting. Bradley Manning is important, pay attention.

John Payne, executive director of Show Me Cannabis Regulation would like everyone, including people who are pro-legalization, to stop acting like the topic is an excuse to make jokes about Cheetos.

Yes, jokes can be found in all subjects, and allies doing it is less offensive than when the president brushes legalization questions off with a stoner joke, but the point still stands. This issue is finally, almost, something legitimate to discuss after only a trillion dollars, 50,000 dead Mexicans, militarized SWAT teams, and scores of thousands of arrested Americans. We get it, the munchies, LOL, so funny.

Payne:

This policy is killing thousands of people abroad, eroding our civil liberties by ransacking our homes and suffocating free speech, and creating a permanent underclass of people who have been convicted of nothing more than possessing a plant. I can think of no other domestic policy in the United States today that does so much damage and all in the name of a policy that has been entirely ineffective at preventing people from using marijuana.

When most politically-engaged Americans start to think of cannabis prohibition in these terms, the laughter will stop, and newscasters will stop showing B-roll of people taking bong rips every time they interview a cannabis law reformer. The consequences of cannabis prohibition are deadly serious, and it is time that this issue moves from the periphery of our political discourse to front and center.

The whole thing here.

Previous heroics on the subject: Penn Jillete’s delicious rant about Obama not taking the issues seriously, this video response to hack extraordinaire Kal Penn’s winking video that urged stoners to vote Obama, Michael C. Moynihan, omsbudsmaning on Red Eye, reminding a former prosecutor/bimbo that the drug war is terrible and wrong.