Crossfire

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AuthorTopic: Crossfire
Guardian
Member # 2476
Profile #25
That was not the happiest period in my life, Alec. But I did not find that drugs helped. Strangely they have a better effect on you when you are happy. But you don't take them when you are. Oh well, running away has never worked for me.

[ Monday, April 21, 2003 18:31: Message edited by: ef ]

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Polaris
Posts: 1828 | Registered: Saturday, January 11 2003 08:00
Warrior
Member # 2870
Profile #26
Some people read like others take drugs. That is, they read to escape the harshness of reality. Myself included. Though too much of anything is bad, the only side effects from too much reading are bad eyes and a great brain.

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All your base are belong to us!!!!
http://people.cornell.edu/pages/slp29/ayb.html
Posts: 138 | Registered: Saturday, April 12 2003 07:00
(TGM)
Veteran*
Member # 2286
Profile #27
I read too, to.. krhm, "escape the harshness of reality." It has worked well so far.

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Meet the savior. KYMCO Super Fever will force you to do so. Haw.
Posts: 911 | Registered: Sunday, November 24 2002 08:00
Shaper
Member # 496
Profile #28
Interesting - inasmuch as you don't get some 'Fahrenheit 451' style police reaction to compulsive reading, unlike what pot heads experience. I have this image of book dealers having their assets siezed and satellites specially designated to watch for sinister pulp processing operations out in the woods, special laws being written and moralising international conferences organised to discuss this 'problem', etc.... IMAGE(wink0001.gif) (Then again, some books are banned--EDIT: not least, about the cultivation and consumption of cannabis--and people still insist on reading them, so maybe this scenario isn't as fantastic as it appears.)

[ Tuesday, April 22, 2003 10:02: Message edited by: X ]
Posts: 2333 | Registered: Monday, January 7 2002 08:00
Infiltrator
Member # 1823
Profile Homepage #29
'Im sure books on growing cannabis havn't been banned - I've seen them openly advertised.

Wich brings me to an idea about another debate:

Sensorship - should things be sensored. If not, should racism etc. be allowed under free speech. My personal view is yes, all free speech should be allowed, as long as violence does not result or insenting people to do violence results.

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Riot Shields
Voodoo Economics
It's just business
Cattle prods
And the IMF

I trust I can rely on your vote
Posts: 530 | Registered: Sunday, September 1 2002 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #30
I'd agree. As soon as you allow any words, written or spoken, to be made illegal, you have just opened the door for Thought Police and wiretaps everywhere. People have a right to think whatever they want and express those thoughts.

?Alorael, who does think that there is a fine line between demonstration, which is speech, and action, which is not always okay. But it's important to find that line in order to protect both minorities and freedoms.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Shock Trooper
Member # 2300
Profile #31
I agree - it's better to have a (reasonably) good balance than to be blatantly slanted one way or the other - i.e. anarchy vs. despotism

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Beware of pretty girls in dance halls and parks who may be spies, as well as bicycles, revolvers, uniforms, arms, dead horses, and men lying on roads -- they are not there accidentally." - Soviet infantry manual, 1930's
Posts: 267 | Registered: Wednesday, November 27 2002 08:00
Infiltrator
Member # 2669
Profile Homepage #32
In Germany, expressing neo-nazi or nazi ideology is officially forbidden by the state and will be persecuted. Also, the state there has a tendency to outlaw video games or movies that it deems to violent or immoral, but these bans are hardly ever effective (and long-lasting, since our cultural standards are pretty rock-bottom already). Germany, however, remains a hotbed of free speech regardless.

As for the cannabis thing: my mother lives in the netherlands, and, visiting her over the years, i have noticed some changes. Overall, there haven't been terrible changes to society; the expected end of civilization hasn't materialized yet. Tourism (of a less savory kind) has increased, as have property crimes (pickpocketing, bag and luggage theft, burglaries). Holland has its usual share of homeless people, although it seems to me that a much higher percentage of them are young people who are quite obviously involved with drugs (no, i didn't take random drug tests, but if you're swaying back and forth and don't smell like booze....). A lot of the young homeless/bums seem to be from other countries, because they will hit you up for money in english.

I won't go into the medical aspects of smoking pot, but it's not too dissimilar to smoking cigarettes, which is still legal. I would push to outlaw operating machinery/driving under the influence of pot, same as drinking.

Overall, I would say i'd feel a lot safer around people that have smoked a doobie rather than a bunch of kids that have been drinking.

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Posts: 647 | Registered: Wednesday, February 19 2003 08:00
Babelicious
Member # 39
Profile Homepage #33
Wow, ADoS's argument was even more specious than I imagined. I thought I might have to pull out some stats about addiction, etc., but it doesn't look like it.

You don't have to smoke marijuana. You can eat it. You can grind it up and drink it. You can vaporize the volatile THC with a special machine and suck it up. You can extract the resin with a solvent and add it to food or "smoke" it (no known carcinogens in pure hemp resin). Heck, you could extract the THC and other cannibinoids and put it into pill form (Marinol is sort of like this, but it's specially designed to not get you high), just like you suggest with capascin.

The basic effect of THC and capascin are the same -- release of endorphins, dopamine, etc.

Oh, and pollution? Don't make me laugh. Most plant products pollute roughly the same amount based on volume. This means that two Jerry Garcias in one year would contribute less to CO2 and ash production than a nice good wood fire.

So it's possible to consume THC with minimal negative effect to the user and to the environment... why, then, is it illegal?

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desperance.net - honestly, no biting.
Posts: 1074 | Registered: Wednesday, October 3 2001 07:00
Shaper
Member # 496
Profile #34
On banning books on cannabis particularly, you'll find those published carry a disclaimer nominally discouraging people from using it, reminding people it's illegal, and generally insisting the text is 'for reserarch purposes only', etc. If they don't run the disclaimer, they can get prosecuted. It's happened, certainly in UK.

A lot of effort's gone into finding negatrive health effects of cannabis, typically ineffectually, but there's also been some on positive effects. One of the nurses I used to work with moved on to help with a government trial in Reading a couple of years back and soon capsulised THC will be available on the NHS, I think mainly for palliating MS (yes, the UK govt. does have it's own greenhouse!). It's certainly a lot less unpleasant to use than other MS treatments currently available, sufferers tell me. I've heard it' pretty effective in countering glaucoma too, though that's anecdotal.

BTW, another friend of mine grows cannabis sativa under government license here for paper-making purposes. Of course, it has minimal THC content but the location has to be kept secret in case the pot heads don't get it and run off with all his crop in rucksacks one night! Hemp paper is better quality and was traditional in paper-making before wood pulp (even rag paper often consisted of hemp fibre). This sort of thing was introduced from France, where they've been doing it for decades.

On censorship, the difficulty distinguishing between words and acts is that some words are 'fighting talk' which seem to automatically incite violence in some quarters. I incline to accepting this as inevitable (potentially any words are going to incite someone crazy enough) rather than trusting governments not to abuse powers of censorship. The Race Relations Act in UK has actually been used to prosecute more people from ethnic minorities than (White) racists. Incidentyally--but it illustrates the same principle of unintended consequences--the now rather mouldering 1936 Public Order Act--originally passed to stop Oswald Moseley's blackshirts (British Union of Fascists) and their paramilitary parades--was used more against anti-fascists protesting such groups, albeit usually not very peacefully.
Posts: 2333 | Registered: Monday, January 7 2002 08:00
Infiltrator
Member # 2669
Profile Homepage #35
When exactly was marijuana outlawed in the US anyways? I believe it was in the 30s (because of those EVOL jazz musicians), but have been unable to confirm that.

I am a little amazed that the entire hemp industry went out of business when marijuana became illegal. New England has a long tradition of making ropes and sails from the stuff, and there are still a lot of old rope factories around in coastal towns. You can make all sorts of useful items from the stuff and it grows extremely fast.

I somehow do not foresee the legalization of pot for a while (if ever, in my lifetime), however. This current conservative backsliding atmosphere and other pressing concerns (war, war, and soon, more war) make this an ephemeral concern. Also the pro-hemp people always come across as dirty hippies with the Santana blaring in the background, which definitely hinders their cause. There's a pro-hemp rally on the Boston Common every year, and it's just an excuse for thousands of college students to get high as hades while some *****in' bands are playing, man. The political results of the rally are practically nil, every year.

A much more pressing issue to me is mandatory sentencing, which is positively evil; and the DEA (a giant useless money sucking vortex of bureaucracy).

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Posts: 647 | Registered: Wednesday, February 19 2003 08:00
Babelicious
Member # 39
Profile Homepage #36
Yes. 1930s. Arguments against it were that it made Mexicans lazy, black men rape white women, and innocent virginal white ladies look twice at black men.
Real reasons? Racism, liquor companies, mostly.

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desperance.net - honestly, no biting.
Posts: 1074 | Registered: Wednesday, October 3 2001 07:00
Triad Mage Banned Veteran
Member # 165
Profile Homepage #37
William Randolph Hearst helped push for its illegalization because he saw hemp processing as a threat to his substantial business in the paper industry. Like the good media man he was, he got the people whipped into a spitting frenzy about marijuana's mostly falsified harmful effects, among them ludicrous claims that it was used by blacks and mexicans to lure white women to ruin [ruin here being "screwing black men and mexicans"].
It was principally an attempt to disarm the budding hemp industry by a man who would go on to chase halfway across Europe to shake hands with the Führer.
Oh, and a blatant attack on Mexican immigrant culture and jazz counterculture, but that's neither here nor there.

[ Wednesday, April 23, 2003 17:27: Message edited by: J'Ondule La Banniere Noire ]

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desperance -- je me souviens
arena -- et je me souviens de vous
Posts: 2449 | Registered: Monday, October 15 2001 07:00
Shaper
Member # 496
Profile #38
The 'reefer madness' moral panic (not that they called it that then, more an early-1960s thing) drew on stereotypes first mobilised against cocaine, often used to motivate Black field hands in the interWar period, and wholly legal for ages and ages.

In fact, drug prohibition generally is historically recent. I think we can thank the League of Nations, keen to stigmatise Japan that ran the occupation of Korea and later China on opium trading - a British legacy) who'd stepperd outside it. Cannabis was added to the banned list only as an afterthought at the insistence of an Egyptian delegate concerned about "hashishism", a supposed condition that was making his peons feckless (i.e. same stereotypes as with the Mexicans).

Will cannabis be legalised? Well, it's effectively been decriminalised for personal use here (UK) because big city police forces have better uses for their time (e.g. avoiding getting shot at) and such a disrespected law rather opened a door to gross corruption (e.g. the Stoke Newington cop shop evidence / dealing room). Rural police forces aren't too happy just dishing out BS 'warnings' though - they'll have to make up arrest quotas nicking drunk drivers--including their own colleagues--at this rate!

Should t be legalised? Rather more the nub of any potential debate. My basic position is that if people are legally allowed to harm themselves up to and including suicide in this society, then they have a right to use intoxicants that may or may not be harmful too. (IMHO, cannabis seems pretty harmless compared to already legalised intoxicants, BTW.) Intoxication is a permenant feature of human history and probably human character, so it should be celebrated rather than banned as far as I'm concerned. For dourer souls, I'd suggest harm reduction rather than prohibition seems the most sensible course to me.
Posts: 2333 | Registered: Monday, January 7 2002 08:00
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #39
Criminalizing marijuana hasn't stopped large numbers of people from smoking it, but it has cost millions of dollars in court fees and prison expenses. Legalizing it would free up more money and even bring in more from sales tax and maybe a special drug tax. And then there could be quality controls and other consumer protection mechanisms and marijuana wouldn't lead to purchase harder drugs from the same dealers.

?Alorael, whose main complaint against marijuana is that it actually does slow reflexes. A few laws against driving while intoxicated with any substance would solve that nicely. And of course the smoking of anything should be illegal in public, but that's a separate issue.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Fire! Fire! Fire! Fire!
Member # 919
Profile #40
The main thing isn't money, in my opinion; it's how widespread the use is. People tell me that legalizing pot would make less people smoke it, because there are always people who do stuff just to break the law, but I don't know about that. I know of several people, friends, who would most likely smoke pot, except for the fact that it's illegal and they don't want to be on the wrong side of the law. So... what do you all think about that?

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And though the musicians would die, the music would live on in the imaginations of all who heard it.
-The Last Pendragon

TEH CONSPIRACY IZ ALL

In case of emergency, break glass.
Posts: 3351 | Registered: Saturday, April 6 2002 08:00
Triad Mage Banned Veteran
Member # 165
Profile Homepage #41
I personally think that marijuana has not been proven to have any long-term harmful effects in any sane study.
As a result, it's not sane to waste as much money and time as we have opining that it is The Devil? and acting on such an opinion.

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desperance -- je me souviens
arena -- et je me souviens de vous
Posts: 2449 | Registered: Monday, October 15 2001 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #42
I think I've seen reputable studies showing that smoked marijuana is carcinogenic, and one joint is about as bad as a pack of cigarettes. Again, I think this could actually be lowered somewhat by government-imposed standards and filters. Then there's the pesky way THC can be extracted and turned into pills, liquids, or other things without all the inherent problems of inhaling burning glop.

?Alorael, who does think that marijuana use might rise if it were legalized. But cigarette and alcohol use might drop because people would have another drug to use. Granted, that's a stretch, but what's the harm if people decide to risk cancer? As long as there is sufficient education about the harmful effects of marijuana, it's not your problem.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Infiltrator
Member # 2669
Profile Homepage #43
I'm all for the decriminalization of marijuana, but i think it would have a pretty devastating effect on the national high school populace. Drinking is bad enough, but at least most people only do that on the weekends. Sneaking a jibber before class is surprisingly easy, and even easier if the stuff would be made available in pill or liquid form.
The quotient of smiling idiots in class would most certainly rise, and inevitably some minds
worth saving would fall by the wayside.

So, is anyone going to pick up the gauntlet and argue to keep it criminalized, or is it time for the next subject?

(Edit: I had some point about the main problem in the US being persecution instead of education and outreach, but...yeah. That.)

[ Thursday, April 24, 2003 17:35: Message edited by: Ooklah the Moc ]

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Posts: 647 | Registered: Wednesday, February 19 2003 08:00
SCORPIUS HAS LEFT THE BUILDING!!!
Member # 314
Profile Homepage #44
quote:
Originally posted by Ooklah the Moc:
So, is anyone going to pick up the gauntlet and argue to keep it criminalized, or is it time for the next subject?
Next subject I guess. Morality.

Would someone mind explaining to me why it's moral to live expensive lifestyles, rather than giving your money to the poor and living an agrarian life?

:banana:

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CLICK HERE IF YOU LOVE JESUS

ADoS is like a magical punching bag that swings into your fist even when you're not trying to hit it. -Djur
Posts: 554 | Registered: Sunday, November 25 2001 08:00
Infiltrator
Member # 2669
Profile Homepage #45
Didn't you already do a topic on that one?
Because we're selfish.
Morality ain't gonna buy you that big screen TV.

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Posts: 647 | Registered: Wednesday, February 19 2003 08:00
Cartographer
Member # 2264
Profile Homepage #46
People strive for the expensive lifestyle because that's what we, as a society, are trained to reach for. Me personally, while I'd like to have enough to live on properly, I really wouldn't like to be rich. Growing up in an upper middle class family taught me that money can't buy happiness, but it sure can do a hell of a lot towards making people unhappy. It's all in the perspective, I suppose.

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And the Glory of the Light did shine upon him.
And the Peace of the Light did he give men.
Binding nations to him. Making one of many.
Yet the shards of hearts did give wounds.
And what was once did come again
-in fire and in storm
splitting all in twain.
For his peace...
-for his peace...
... was the peace...
... was the peace...
... of the sword.
And the Glory of the Light did shine upon him.

Meane sol Ahelle

Check out my Avernum 3 site. This one is incomplete, but better than the one here which is complete, sort of.
Posts: 926 | Registered: Tuesday, November 19 2002 08:00
Shaper
Member # 496
Profile #47
Unless you're living off inherited wealth or something, a luxury lifestyle has to be paid for by working and that means stress, very little time for a life outside work, and--as its likely to be managerial--a distorted relationship with others in work about controlling them rather than relating to them authentically as fellow human beings.

Personally, I'm happier earning a lot less for a relatively sane life. Most 'luxuries' strike me as faddish and unnecessary anyway, to do with status / conspicious consumption rituals - e.g. designer clothes that are maybe 10% better but at ten times the price. The affected opulence of celebs like J-Lo, for example, strike me as in very poor taste (last time I checked, only pimps wore fur) and certainly not worth emulating.

I'm not saying poor people don't have stressful, humiliating jobs too - and sometimes physically exhausting and dangerous too (McDonalds is a case in point, combining the worst of customer service and kitchen work!). It's just easier to pick and choose ones that aren't if you set your sights lower. You aren't expected to slave away 100% (or even 30%, some jobs I've done...) of the time by colleagues and the supervisors are lucky to find you. And there usually isn't this totally awful, moronic and embarassing thing about company loyalty where--like a totalitarian state--no one dare say that the company, product or sales strategy is actually garbage and things are going to hell because it it as this is judged 'disloyal', with lackey colleagues running to bosses to report such 'thought crime'. A real 'world of make-believe' that! Where I am now, even the supervisors joke about how second rate the company's products and procedures are.

Anyway, the bottom line is tht there are good, selfish reasons not to crave luxury (as opposed to quality of life), irrespective of relative wealth issues. On that, I'd say that those that flaunt their wealth in from of those that have none invite contempt and likely also its violent redistribution. So they end up living in compounds ('prestigious gated communities' in estate agent-speak) behind attack dogs and razor wire, either with a very insular and slightly mad (crazy) view of the world or justifiably scared.
Posts: 2333 | Registered: Monday, January 7 2002 08:00
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #48
Everything done by everyone is selfish. If you are willing to give up luxury to help those less fortunate than you, fine... but you're getting something out of it. You're paying for the satisfaction of feeling that you are a good person. People who don't feel good when they give simply don't give; they don't want to essentially pay for a service that they don't receive.

?Alorael, who agrees with Khoth. Beyond a certain level of comfort and ability to purchase Spiderweb games, massive amounts of money aren't worth the unhappiness that are sure to be part of the deal. Unless you are working solely to support charitable causes, there's no reason to seek riches if you can't sit back and enjoy them.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #49
quote:
Originally posted by Alorael:

?Alorael, who agrees with Khoth. Beyond a certain level of comfort and ability to purchase Spiderweb games, massive amounts of money aren't worth the unhappiness that are sure to be part of the deal. Unless you are working solely to support charitable causes, there's no reason to seek riches if you can't sit back and enjoy them.

You shouldn't reveal my sock puppets like that! I don't tell people about all your pseudonyms.

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Grammar wenches beware:
This is the house that the malt that the rat that the cat that the dog that the cow that the maiden that the man that the priest that the cock that the farmer kept waked married kissed milked tossed worried killed ate lay in.

My Website
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desperance.net - Leave your sanity at the door
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00

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