Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Law reform debate gathers pace

Legal luminary Charles Waterstreet returned to the drug law reform theme in the Sun-Herald/Age over the weekend, criticising sniffer dogs for not catching the "Mr Bigs of Baggies" and for spoiling parties.

And tonight, Foreign Correspondent looks at California's "Germinator", a cannabis breeder who purveys boutique strains of cannabis in the same way that wine-buffs enjoy the varieties and blends of fine wines.

The usual arguments apply, but the Foreign Correspondent blurb runs some arguments from the opposition. It shows up the poverty of prohibitionist argument, each point in the following gush about cannabis being objectively and demonstratively untrue:

It’s a major cause of substance dependence in the United State. It’s a leading cause of going into treatment in the United States. It’s a leading cause of highway fatalities that rivals alcohol in the United States. It’s a very serious health problem - and especially I would say, for youth.

-- DR ROBERT DU PONT Head of Drug Policy (Ford/Reagan)

Interestingly, the DuPont corporation is often said to have driven the original banning of cannabis and hemp in the USA before WW2. The banning of hemp, which is not even an active drug, opened up huge markets for nylon rope made by DuPont.

Ironically, WW2 saw shortages of nylon rope so they re-legalised hemp, promoting it to farmers with the slogan "Hemp for Victory" --  and then banned it again after the war. Such integrity.

PS I met Mr Waterstreet yesterday morning as he was breakfasting in Darlinghurst. Nice bloke.

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