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Check this out.  It's from yesterday's Drew Pinsky show. Go about 14:45 in and listen for a minute or so.

Turns out that Joe Biden wrote the drug law that snared Tommy Chong in that travesty of justice a few years ago.  No worries though; Chong still supports Obama-Biden.  

I wonder if the Drug War will even come up in this fall's campaign.  

Originally posted to Cooley on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 01:41 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Hell, Joe prolly wrote the laws that would've (11+ / 0-)

    snared a young Barack Obama. He's been a Senator since Obama was 11.

    •  Pet peeve (0+ / 0-)

      The word is 'probably'.

      McCain's 3AM ad is really a Flomax commercial.

      by jhecht on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 02:27:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  but of course (0+ / 0-)

      Harvard law grads don't go to jail for drug laws anyway.  That's reserved overwhelmingly for poor, less-educated folks.

      If the Bushes and Clintons and Obamas of the country were subject to our drug laws, the war on drugs would end immediately.

      Specifically, Obama has admitted to inhaling a Schedule I drug, the most dangerous and highly controlled kind.

      Scroll down that list a bit, the DEA has a lot of Schedule I drugs, but marijuana's on there.

      Interestingly, Obama's 'little blow', cocaine, is only a Schedule II drug, mixed in there with other dangerous-for-the-kiddies chemicals like Ritalin and codeine.

      Scroll down even farther for that.

      •  drug schedule (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sxwarren

        Specifically, Obama has admitted to inhaling a Schedule I drug, the most dangerous and highly controlled kind.

        Scroll down that list a bit, the DEA has a lot of Schedule I drugs, but marijuana's on there.

        There is an interesting debate an the issue of Marijuana scheduling. Schedule I drugs are those which have no accepted medical use, and can't be prescribed. It has been noted that marijuana would likely be placed in schedule III or IV if it were taken off of schedule I as it has less potential for abuse than the schedule II drugs. The debate has been over whether the drug schedule law should be interpreted to mean that a drug is placed in schedule I when it has a potential for abuse on par with drugs on schedule II and no medical use (in which can Marijuana wouldn't be on schedule I as it has a lower potential for abuse than schedule II drugs) or it should be interpreted to mean that a drug is placed on schedule I when it has any potential for abuse (ie would be on any schedule II-V) and no medical use (in which case assuming no medical use Marijuana would be placed on schedule I). Some argue that without even proving medical use Marijuana should be moved off of schedule I on the bases of the first interpretation (which would allow its prescription).

        From wikipedia on the current interpretation:

        When it comes to a drug that is currently listed in schedule I, if it is undisputed that such drug has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States and a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision, and it is further undisputed that the drug has at least some potential for abuse sufficient to warrant control under the CSA, the drug must remain in schedule I. In such circumstances, placement of the drug in schedules II through V would conflict with the CSA since such drug would not meet the criterion of "a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States." 21 USC 812(b).

        Thus, Marijuana's placement on Schedule I does not indicate that it is considered more dangerous than the schedule II, but rather it is on this schedule because of the lack of an accepted medicinal use and would likely be on schedule III or IV if it was removed.

        •  I agree to some extent (0+ / 0-)

          An 'orange' terror alert isn't actually more dangerous than a 'yellow' one because the whole system is absurd, even though orange comes above yellow and so is a more 'heightened' alert, whatever that means.  Similarly, drugs listed in Schedule I are 'more bad' in the just-say-no hierarchy in the sense they don't have 'approved' medical uses. You're right that dangerous, strictly speaking, is too strong a pejorative; if you take the drug war seriously, it only means that 'they' haven't deemed Schedule I to have medicinal uses.  Which category is alcohol in again? Do people drink coffee for caffeine's medicinal purposes?

          My critique is of the whole system.  It doesn't make any sense.  Science has nothing to do with which drugs are 'controlled' or which category they fall into.  That's the core problem with the Controlled Substances Act, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Office of National Drug Control Policy, and so forth.

          I agree the marijuana debate is interesting.  Care to share your opinion?  Personally, I think the debacle surrounding the 18th amendment provides the most thorough case study in all of public policy, and the lesson is pretty clear.  Even a Constitutional amendment can't make prohibition work.

          •  marijuana (0+ / 0-)

            I agree the marijuana debate is interesting.  Care to share your opinion?

            I think that the classification of marijuana on schedule I is a huge problem. It can't be prescribed because it has no accepted medicinal use and it can't be studied to establish a medicinal use because it can't be prescribed! This is made even worse by the perception that its presence on schedule I means that it is more addictive and/or a threat to society that those drugs on schedule II, when if it had an accepted medicinal use it wouldn't be on schedule II at all (but rather likely on Schedule III or IV).. Thus, people are less likely to consider its removal.

            Schedule I is an odd example in the system. Schedules II-V are drugs that can be prescribed with the most addictive and most tightly controlled classified as schedule II and the least as schedule V. (A drug such as caffein is not considered to have enough potential for abuse and/or addictiveness) I don't believe that this system is inherently unscientific.  To me it does make sense to more tightly control the distribution of certain drugs that are highly addictive. The wikipedia page explains the criteria used.

            Perhaps outright legalization of Marijuana for all uses might be most appropriate. The case could be made that it is less a risk to society than alcohol. People argue Marijuana is a gateway drug, I would argue that perhaps that is because it is associated with other very dangerous drugs. Once someone crosses the line into trying an illegal drug, it is probably less of a leap to something far more dangerous. If the line were on the other side of Marijuana, perhaps people would choose to limit themselves to that rather than assuming the huge legal and physical risks associated with some of the more addictive drugs.

            I would argue that tight controls on other schedule II and and schedule I drugs are appropriate as these drugs are addictive and do pose a risk to society. I would like to see the focus for those addicted to be one rehabilitation and rejoining society rather than criminal prosecution. This should be treated as a health problem rather than a criminal problem as it pertains to the addicts.

            I believe that the way to reduce this health problem of addiction to drugs is through treatment as mentioned above and through and effort to provide other options for those engaged in the production and distribution of illegal drugs. Help the farmers find something new to farm, help those that sell drugs find other opportunities to build a career that contributes something positive to society. Imprisoning large numbers of people for longer and longer periods of time is clearly not the solution. I also strongly oppose laws that limit availability of eduction (for instance loans) for those convicted of drug crimes. This is the absolute worst thing we can do, we want them to go to school, it is the most effective way of helping them to become a productive member of society.

             Personally, I think the debacle surrounding the 18th amendment provides the most thorough case study in all of public policy, and the lesson is pretty clear.  Even a Constitutional amendment can't make prohibition work.

            Though I would argue that doesn't automatically lead to the conclusion that no drugs could be successfully controlled. Alcohol was a very important part of the culture of many particularly of the immigrants of the time period. It is hard to put an end to something so deeply a part of many peoples culture for generations. Also, many are able to consume alcohol in small quantities without the threat of addiction. Perhaps a similar conclusion can be drawn about something such as Marijuana. However, the same arguments can't be made for drugs such Cocain and Heroin which aren't a part of anyones culture and are much more damaging to society. Perhaps it is possible to control availability of those drugs.

            An 'orange' terror alert isn't actually more dangerous than a 'yellow' one because the whole system is absurd, even though orange comes above yellow and so is a more 'heightened' alert, whatever that means.

            I would argue that a terror alert system with different levels indicating threats is not inherently absurd. For instance, the national weather service has a similar system in which they issue watches and warnings for various events, which correspond to likeliness, timeframe and severity of the event. The problem is in part with the three words I emboldened above... whatever the means... Those in power have not informed the general public what the threat levels actually mean. With a weather warning, we get instructions as to what we should do to prepare. With the terror alert system we get nothing. If we ask what we should do we hear something like "well.... we'll take care of it... go about your business... buy lots of stuff!".  Also by keeping this information secret the credibility is damaged. It appears as though those in power raise and lower the terror alert for political purposes, keeping it high even when they know the threat has been resolved. The terror alert system could be useful, but that would require an administration more interested in helping us prevent terror than scaring us into submission.

            •  In my mind (0+ / 0-)

              a core distinction I make is between drug use and drug abuse.  I agree with what you're saying about treating drug abuse like a public health issue. But I think the question of abuse, just like most other human weaknesses of excess, is one for the individual, not the state.  Private individuals should determine what is moderation and what is too much. I believe there is a strong burden of proof on those who claim government power is the answer to demonstrate that prohibition actually makes the country better off.  I think the evidence is pretty clear that drug laws prohibiting recreational drugs have far worse consequences than the usage of those drugs. I would point to places like the Drug Policy Alliance Network on the left and the CATO Institute on the right for detailed discussion of the many ways well-intentioned laws nonetheless make things worse.

              What I don't understand about the Controlled Substances Act is why recreational activities are an issue of public concern.  I'm lukewarm about the prescription drug model and the FDA; on balance, it's probably a good thing, and I'm willing to go along with controlling access for the purpose of improving public health through a reasonably responsible and trustworthy mechanism for delivering medications.

              Recreational uses, however, are completely different.  There is no medicinal purpose; applying an unrelated standard is simply an arbitrary method for making something illegal. It's like making a new restaurant prove it's an educational institution in order to get a permit to open.  I support some regulations for public health and consumer protection, but criminalizing the underlying consumption of cheeseburgers isn't the way to get people to eat healthier.

              Specifically to some comments you offer:

              I don't believe that this system is inherently unscientific.  To me it does make sense to more tightly control the distribution of certain drugs that are highly addictive.

              A scientific system would allow one to remove the names of the drugs, insert their characteristics (addictiveness, withdrawal symptons, tolerance, etc), and predict where on the schedule they would fall. If you did that with the major recreational drugs in this country (caffeine, nicotine, THC, alcohol, meth/amphetamines, cocaine, heroin/opium, ecstasy, and so forth) you would predict very poorly where those drugs are actually labeled. To me, that seems a pretty clear indication that factors other than the properties of the drugs are determining how they're treated by public policy.

              I would argue that tight controls on other schedule II and and schedule I drugs are appropriate as these drugs are addictive and do pose a risk to society.

              I don't really follow what that means.  It sounds to me like the standard fear-mongering you hear from the puritan wing of the war on drugs, but you otherwise don't come off that way.  We seem to agree that addiction is a public health issue, not a law enforcement issue, yet you're also arguing that these drugs pose a risk to society. Drugs themselves don't cause many problems for society, and if this is the standard, then there are lots of other things that pose a risk to society, from power plants to cars to donuts.

              Though I would argue that doesn't automatically lead to the conclusion that no drugs could be successfully controlled. Alcohol was a very important part of the culture of many particularly of the immigrants of the time period. It is hard to put an end to something so deeply a part of many peoples culture for generations. Also, many are able to consume alcohol in small quantities without the threat of addiction. Perhaps a similar conclusion can be drawn about something such as Marijuana. However, the same arguments can't be made for drugs such Cocain and Heroin which aren't a part of anyones culture and are much more damaging to society. Perhaps it is possible to control availability of those drugs.

              I think this is our core disagreement about the history and present condition of drug laws in our country. You're right, case studies don't necessarily say how something will happen today or in the future. They're a guide, a starting point, the base hypothesis. This rather casual dismissal of years of experience makes it seem like you're not familiar with what happened during prohibition. Prohibition itself is what created the lawlessness, unsafe concoctions, and general danger to society. Furthermore, the current drug war is noticeably worse precisely because it's unconstitutional. Lacking an amendment defining prohibition, the government has instead focused on finding 'drug war exceptions' to the parts of the Constitution that otherwise protect people. In order to fight a war against your own citizens, you have to throw off the rights of those citizens and embrace a more authoritarian viewpoint, particularly when it comes to the 1st, 4th, 5th, 6th, 8th, 9th, and 14th amendments.

              I don't follow the cultural comments at all. Drugs have been present in human civilization since before recorded history. Alcohol, meanwhile, is one of the most abused drugs in our country.  Hundreds of people die each year from overdosing, let alone the related causes like car crashes. Alcohol is perhaps the quintessential addiction. Then there's nicotine, with the oft-sited quote of a cigarette taking 7 minutes off your life and killing 400,000 people each year. Are you advocating that drunks should be imprisoned or fined or something?

              The number of Americans who have used an illicit drug is something like 100 million; the ONDCP itself acknowledges an astonishing 'failure' rate of over 40% of the population, and that's in a self-reported study. Of course the percentages fluctuate over time, but within a pretty stable band around 1/3 of the population reporting having used illicit drugs. Tens of millions of Americans report using illicit drugs in the past year. Drugs are a deep part of our culture, despite an entire generation now of demeaning them and disseminating purposefully misleading and incomplete information about drug use. Most drug users are moderate, responsible users, consuming their drug of choice in 'small quantities'.

              Finally, drugs are available everywhere.  In fact, illicit drugs are often easier for minors to get than regulated drugs like alcohol because there's a financial marketplace that exists pushing illicit drugs that doesn't exist in the market for alcohol that is dominated by reasonably law-abiding companies. You float this possibility, that perhaps we can control availability? I don't understand. The evidence is overwhelming that we can't repeal the laws of the supply and demand.  Are you making a claim here?

              I would argue that a terror alert system with different levels indicating threats is not inherently absurd.

              We agree here, that's exactly my point. The basic premise of providing information about drugs to people is quite reasonable. Drugs are bad, they are dangerous, and people should have information about them so that informed choices may be made. My point is that the DEA, the ONDCP, and more generally our political discourse have very little to do with objective science and evidence analysis and weighing costs and benefits and so forth, just like our terror alert system has little to do with actual information and analysis and so such. This is extremely costly in terms of the budget, the wasted lives in prison, the families broken up, the jobs lost, the compromises in foreign policy, the undermining of the Constitution, the decay of poor urban communities, the funding of criminal and terrorist organizations, and so forth.

  •  Uh, not exactly a winning issue n/t (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PeterHug, citizenx, Bouwerie Boy
  •  Oh no! (12+ / 0-)

    The Democratic VP candidate is strong on drugs!

    Now all McCain has to do is come out in legalization of marijuana and the election will be over!

    Oh, wait...

    it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses

    by Addison on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 01:46:50 PM PDT

  •  unfortunately, drug law reform takes a back seat (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    trashablanca, joehoevah

    as long as we have national security issues and a real war to address

  •  The pathetic Jeralyn at TalkLeft cites Chong, too (3+ / 0-)

    ... in yet another feeble effort to undermine Obama.

    Tommy Chong: Biden Authored Bill that Put Him in Jail

    Yeah, I'm not going to back Obama/Biden because Biden somehow put Tommy Chong behind bars.

    Good lord, these Hillary dead-enders are a sad and pathetic lot.

    Next up from Jeralyn and BigTentDemocrat at TalkLeft: Pauly Shore slams Obama's Biden pick.

  •  We had better hope it doesn't (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    musicalhair, Jyrinx

    Obama is very quietly progressive on the drug war, but he WILL throw that under the bus the second it becomes politically necessary.

  •  Free Tommy Chong, Free Tommy Chong (3+ / 0-)

    and Vote McCain/Some other White Guy '08.

    Because Tommy Chong is the symbol why Obama/Biden is wrong for American.  

    snark

  •  Tommy certainly sounds very forgiving about the (5+ / 0-)

    whole thing, the man is one of North America's finest citizens.  We should make him the next Drug Czar, and let the healing begin.

    A motorbike has got two wheels and handlebars to steer it, you sit astride, its fun to ride, and everyone can hear it.

    by qi motuoche on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 02:20:06 PM PDT

  •  Where's Dave? (2+ / 0-)

    I'm a progressive man, and I love progressive people - Tosh

    by VeganMilitia on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 02:21:23 PM PDT

  •  Biden has been "strong on crime" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    trashablanca

    (of course big business in Delaware cannot commit crimes)

    He has been quite the crime fighter. Of course it can be used to make him look good, but the policy itself is a failure. Of course Obama is the main guy and his experience as a community organizer..he must understand how damaging some of these draconian laws are.

  •  But it was the Bush Administration (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    highacidity, trashablanca

    who chose to devote resources to enforcing it, instead of devoting them to terrorist activity.

    McCain's 3AM ad is really a Flomax commercial.

    by jhecht on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 02:26:18 PM PDT

    •  Key phrase: Devote Resources (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      highacidity

      AKA divert from Treasury to cronies, bypassing the American people.

      "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans." John Lennon

      by trashablanca on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 02:30:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  It was the big Aschcroft crusade, wasn't it? (3+ / 0-)

      And they got their high profile case, because it was all about propoganda anyway. Protecting Americas children from reefers so they fight the war on terror instead and stay up all night flying planes taking government supplied speeders for the good and glory of America soaring like an Eagle with breasts covered. Yeah.

      In God we trust. All others must pay cash.

      by yet another liberal on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 02:30:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I blame Ashcroft (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gsenski

      for pursuing the case, not necessarily Biden for the law.

      Still, it does kind of show what happens when you give the government more power than it had already: somebody will misuse it for political gain.  There is something to be said for limited government...

  •  Diaries that tear down Biden citing imperfection (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    trashablanca

    are not accomplishing anything.   There will be plenty of tear-down opportunities on Fox News, the AP, and other sources without dedicating diaries here to that cause.  

    If you are not moving us forward in the goal of securing the White House for the Democrats -- then you are holding us back.  

    •  Hmmm (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      musicalhair

      So, no criticism allowed? That is the GOP model.

      •  Constructive Criticism is always welcome (0+ / 0-)

        Dredging up the past and wading through it, looking for little stones to throw;  

        I mean... what's the point?   You going to go back in time and change Biden's vote?   You going to convince Obama that he was wrong and get him to pick your choice for VP?  

        It seems self defeating.  

        •  I dont' see this as tearing (0+ / 0-)

          down Biden.  I see it as funny trivia.  Maybe I can't help but think "funny" when Tommy Chong comes up.  Still, this doesn't seem to me to be a big bashing Biden type diary.

          Your concern is duely noted though.

          My political compass: Economic: -7.38 Social: -5.79

          by musicalhair on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 03:03:54 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Just an observation (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      highacidity, strangedemocracy, ruscle

      I've already worked to get Obama the nomination.  I will work harder this fall to see that he wins the Presidency.  I am excited about a candidate for the first time in my life; I want to see him win.

      I totally understand your point of view, in that everything anyone says, writes, or does between now and the election either helps us or hurts us.  In that context alone, this note appears not to help.

      This diary isn't about looking for stones to throw.  I happened to be listening to the podcast and was stunned to hear him mention Joe Biden of all people.  Frankly, I don't think that Biden was the problem in the Chong arrest either.  It seems that it was an abuse of prosecutorial discretion to me; the fault lies with John Ashcroft.

      But the simple fact is that:

      1. Everybody bitches about the Drug War.  
      1. The Drug War hasn't really come up in this campaign.
      1. The Drug War is unlikely to come up in this campaign.

      I think this is a shame, as these laws badly need revisiting.  Drugs are not good or bad; they're just drugs.  They have varying levels of effectiveness and addictive qualities.  And the status quo is killing both addicted Americans and others who live in blighted neighborhoods where dealing is seen as a legitimate economic activity.

      Further, nobody on this board, including the founder, is sycophantic to such a degree as to ignore the faults of any Democrat.  We're not Republicans; we won't just ignore bad policy.  We are a team and will work to elect Barack and Joe.  But we won't pretend that they walk on water.

      Discussions like these are not self defeating.  Discussions like these will help us make new laws or eject bad ones.

      •  You are right that Drug Laws need revision (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        highacidity

        And the War on Drugs is a complete and utter failure.  

        But I think the place for this discussion is in the future -- not tied to the VP pick as if he has some failure in his past that needs to be considered.  

  •  Democratic politicians don't seem to mind (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    strangedemocracy

    locking up lots of other people in prison.  As long as their own friends and family stay out of jail, it's hard to tell the Dem leadership from the GOP leadership. Supporting the drug war beyond all evidence that prohibition doesn't work is unfortunately not unique to Senator Biden.

    In an ideal world, you'd think having back to back presidents who used illicit drugs, combined with an admitted drug user currently running for president, would lend to at least discuss the absurdly comical policies that waste money, deny freedom, support terrorism, destroy families, and undermine the Constitution.

    But hey, why would presidential candidates care about those things? For whatever combination of reasons, the Democratic leadership has decided for years their best strategy is to ignore, and even support, the drug war.  Every (poor) black male in this country could be incarcerated, and I'm not sure the Dem leadership would care.

    Biden isn't really that different from what little attention Obama pays to this incredibly important issue. The drug war isn't even listed as an issue on the website, and when my girlfriend did her Obama house party and the Fellow asked if we had any specific issues we wanted more info on via email, I told her the drug war was one of my pet issues I'd like more details on.  I've received emails asking me for money and telling me who's getting backstage and all that, but nothing about what Obama would do on the drug war.

    In the Civil Rights section, at the bottom:

    Eliminate Sentencing Disparities
    Obama believes the disparity between sentencing crack and powder-based cocaine is wrong and should be completely eliminated.

    Expand Use of Drug Courts
    Obama will give first-time, non-violent offenders a chance to serve their sentence, where appropriate, in the type of drug rehabilitation programs that have proven to work better than a prison term in changing bad behavior.

    In other words, Obama is against the single easiest thing we can do to improve civil rights in this country, getting rid of sentencing and drug courts.

    The drug war isn't mentioned at all in the defense, economy, education, energy & the environment, ethics, faith, family, fiscal, foreign policy, homeland security, immigration, poverty, or urban policy despite the major impact on those areas by the war on drugs.

  •  The perception (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cooley, reflectionsv37

    Held by virtually all washington pols. is that the drug war is hugely popular with the American people. The polling I've seen however is at best ambiguous. Large majorities have been in favor of medical Mj for years now, and the support for decriminalization is approaching 50%.
    Still the perception persisits that even talking about relaxing the draconian drug laws would be the equivalent of stepping on a land mine.
    Challenging the conventional wisdom takes a lot of courage, and though I certainly will support Obama/Biden, it's hardly a ticket that I expect to challenge conventional wisdom on the drug war.

    •  agreed. but who can? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      fat old man

      thought experiment:

      Only Nixon could go to China.

      Only ____ could end the Drug War.

      Who fills in the blank?

      •  Good question (0+ / 0-)

        I'm not sure there is such a person at the national level yet. The battle on this is going to have to come from the ground up. It is going to work it's way through at a state level first, like gay marriage is.
        Perhaps Barney Frank will become a leader on this, he and Ron Paul have legislation in the works right now.

    •  drugs.... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      fat old man

      Held by virtually all washington pols. is that the drug war is hugely popular with the American people. The polling I've seen however is at best ambiguous. Large majorities have been in favor of medical Mj for years now, and the support for decriminalization is approaching 50%.

      I don't understand the opposition to medical use at all... Marijuana has been shown to be less addictive and dangerous than the schedule II drugs such as Cocaine, and Meth which can be prescribed under certain circumstances. Those drugs do actual damage to society when they are abused. Why do we accept the risks or prescribing those drugs and not of prescribing Marijuana? It just doesn't make sense to me.....

      Challenging the conventional wisdom takes a lot of courage, and though I certainly will support Obama/Biden, it's hardly a ticket that I expect to challenge conventional wisdom on the drug war.

      I do see one way in which they might challenge the conventional wisdom. Obama sees it as important to provide the farmers of Afghanistan with opportunities to farm plants other than poppies. In the past destruction of poppy fields has been tried, with less than desired results. Obama's approach could actually reduce drug use while at the same time helping the farmer and drug traders find a good alternative to support themselves. This could be the real way of winning the war on drugs.

      Perhaps as he realized simple destruction of the sources of drugs without providing alternatives to the people producing them isn't a good solution, he'll also realize that treatment is better for addicts than lengthy prison sentences.

      •  I hope (0+ / 0-)

        That Obama (assuming he wins and lives to serve) will be smart enough to at least not stand in the way of meaningful drug law reform, but I surely do not expect it to be raised as a campaign issue.
        Joe Biden has been a drug warrior for some time so I certainly don't expect any such talk from him.
        The prospects for a positive change are better than they have been in years, but the motion seems to be coming from the states and localities.
        I don't really expect Obama/Biden to be leading the charge. In fact I'd lay a decent bet that if questioned on it during the campaign, we'd hear much of the standard Washington speak we always hear during every election from both sides.
        These two just don't strike me as the ones who are going to be out front on this issue.
        That doesn't mean that their policies will suck if they get elected, I'll reserve a judgement on that until I have some reason to make one.

  •  Wha? Like, Biden's face is wobbly an' (0+ / 0-)

    there's so many traces rippling off of it...

    Tommy Chong is so cool. What was this diary about again? Oh, good munchies.

    Children in the U.S... detained [against] intl. & domestic standards." --Amnesty Internati

    by doinaheckuvanutjob on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 03:38:05 PM PDT

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