Recreational drugs

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reohn2
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Recreational drugs

Postby reohn2 » 2 Aug 2019, 11:02am

Given that gangsters are running a very lucrative business with all the downsides that entails,should the UK be thinking about legalising(not decriminalising which a different thing altogether)recreation drug use,so they can be regulated and taxed therbye disarming(literally) the drug dealers?
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Mike Sales
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby Mike Sales » 2 Aug 2019, 11:13am

reohn2 wrote:Given that gangsters are running a very lucrative business with all the downsides that entails,should the UK be thinking about legalising(not decriminalising which a different thing altogether)recreation drug use,so they can be regulated and taxed therbye disarming(literally) the drug dealers?


Yes. Prohibition of alcohol in Amerika failed, but they are still great enthusiasts for criminalising drug use.

Carlton green
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby Carlton green » 2 Aug 2019, 12:00pm

reohn2 wrote:Given that gangsters are running a very lucrative business with all the downsides that entails,should the UK be thinking about legalising(not decriminalising which a different thing altogether)recreation drug use,so they can be regulated and taxed therbye disarming(literally) the drug dealers?


If we decriminalised everything that the law couldn’t perfectly control then there would be many less laws and adverse social consequences to pay for the change. However I’m inclined to watch what is happening in North America (re legalisation of some drugs) with interest. That some form of control on drugs (including tobacco and alcohol) is a good thing for society is, I believe, absolutely true. However the current laws on recreational drugs aren’t as successful in control of their use as they might be and there are adverse social consequences due to significant amounts of illegal activities; seeking alternatives seems like a good idea to me and licensed sale of tobacco and alcohol works.
Last edited by Carlton green on 2 Aug 2019, 12:07pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Spinners
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby Spinners » 2 Aug 2019, 12:04pm

reohn2 wrote:Given that gangsters are running a very lucrative business with all the downsides that entails,should the UK be thinking about legalising(not decriminalising which a different thing altogether)recreation drug use,so they can be regulated and taxed therbye disarming(literally) the drug dealers?


I've been thinking along these lines for a while but I don't think that we can truly accurately predict how it would all play out. I like the thought of the gangsters and drug dealers suddenly being out of a job (perhaps they could volunteer to work in charity shops or litter-picking along cycle paths) but what would happen at the 'growers' end of the supply line? Would the likes of Amazon and eBay take over the market? Good luck getting your tax out of that lot!

Or should we spend more on fighting drug crime? More police and more prisons?

Once we get Brexit out of the way :wink: perhaps our politicians should examine and debate this in detail.
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661-Pete
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby 661-Pete » 2 Aug 2019, 2:10pm

I'm inclined, albeit reluctantly, to agree about decriminalising.

I say "reluctantly" because in my student days, I once saw what result over-use of cannabis had on another student. In effect he progressively turned into a "zombie" and had to be hospitalised. I know this may be an exceptional case, but it has biased me against recreational drugs ever since.

So no-one will be surprised if I say, I want decriminalising to go hand in hand with a concerted drive to virtually eliminate recreational drug use altogether from the population. After all, there has been significant success in reducing tobacco use (a perfectly legal drug - if smoked in the right places) over the past few decades. Alcohol abuse (another legal drug) is another thing that needs to be tackled - and steps are being taken. Certainly outlawing these two drugs entirely, wouldn't work, as the American Volstead Act showed only too clearly.

But there must be better ways to deal with it.
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peetee
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby peetee » 2 Aug 2019, 5:18pm

Would that really make a difference? I can see that would introduce a section of society who previously abstained because it was drilled into them that it was a bad thing. Also, what about the continued supply of black market trade by individuals (as opposed to a profit sharing network of gang controlled 'runners') sourcing cheaper from abroad in much the same way as cigarettes and booze have been ferried over for decades?
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Mike Sales
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby Mike Sales » 2 Aug 2019, 5:46pm

We might look at the example of other countries which have tried decriminalisation. Of course Britain is always averse to this course, as with the Netherlands and cycle provision. We ought to look at Portugal, for instance.

Among Portuguese adults, there are 3 drug overdose deaths for every 1,000,000 citizens. Comparable numbers in other countries range from 10.2 per million in the Netherlands to 44.6 per million in the UK, all the way up to 126.8 per million in Estonia. The EU average is 17.3 per million.

Perhaps more significantly, the report notes that the use of "legal highs" – like so-called "synthetic" marijuana, "bath salts" and the like – is lower in Portugal than in any of the other countries for which reliable data exists. This makes a lot of intuitive sense: why bother with fake weed or dangerous designer drugs when you can get the real stuff? This is arguably a positive development for public health in the sense that many of the designer drugs that people develop to skirt existing drug laws have terrible and often deadly side effects.


https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/portugal-decriminalised-drugs-14-years-ago-and-now-hardly-anyone-dies-from-overdosing-10301780.html

Instead we tend to follow the USA into prohibition, and there drug laws result in a high proportion of the poor and black being thrown into private gaols for drug charges.
Of course their worst drugs problem is the synthetic opioids pushed by "respectable" drug companies via doctors.
Their illegal drugs problems are also huge too.

skyhawk
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby skyhawk » 2 Aug 2019, 5:59pm

reohn2 wrote:Given that gangsters are running a very lucrative business with all the downsides that entails,should the UK be thinking about legalising(not decriminalising which a different thing altogether)recreation drug use,so they can be regulated and taxed therbye disarming(literally) the drug dealers?



There are enough problems now dealing with drink drivers and the existing DRUG drivers how do you plan on legalising drugs on one hand and making them illegal to drive when used and who supports families devastated by killers behind the wheel on drugs

I am curious, My parents never used illegal drugs, I never used drugs, MY SONS have never used drugs ?
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Mike Sales
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby Mike Sales » 2 Aug 2019, 6:03pm

skyhawk wrote:
There are enough problems now dealing with drink drivers and the existing DRUG drivers how do you plan on legalising drugs on one hand and making them illegal to drive when used and who supports families devastated by killers behind the wheel on drugs


Has the decriminalisation in Portugal resulted in an new outbreak of killer drivers? I don't think so. I expect this sort of alarmism from the Daily Heil.

Mike Sales
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby Mike Sales » 2 Aug 2019, 6:27pm

The way our legal system looks at different drugs is arbitrary and illogical.
To distinguish "drugs", alcohol, and prescribed drugs in the way we do is not very useful.
Cannabis was made illegal in this country in the twenties at the insistence of the USA although it was scarcely known here. It is safer for users and society than tobacco and alcohol.


Danger list: Drugs as ranked by the experts

The UK government commissioned psycho pharmacologist Professor David Nutt and neuroscientist Professor Colin Blakemore to rank drugs according to their danger.
The list was published in The Guardian and gives some surprising results. Unusually, the list contains both legal and illegal drugs.
The drugs were ranked by ratings which took into account a combination of their physical damage, social harm and addictive properties.
In rank order of harmfulness:
Heroin– highly addictive opium derivative. Causes liver disease and infections from injecting when used long-term. Deaths: 897

Cocaine – stimulant which can increase the risks of heart attack or stroke in users. Deaths from cocaine rose sharply in 2008. Deaths: 235

Barbiturates– synthetic sedatives used for anaesthetic purposes. Users develop physical and psychological dependence. Large doses can lead to coma or death. Death: 13

Street methadone– a synthetic opioid commonly used as a substitute for treating heroin patients. Can lead to addiction and result in damage to lungs. Deaths: 378

Alcohol– medical profession increasingly concerned about damaging effects of alcohol. Some claim true death toll is higher than recorded. Excessive use results in liver damage and cirrhosis. Deaths: 8,724

Ketamine– a hallucinogenic sometimes used as a dance drug by clubbers. Causes memory problems and urinary tract diseases. Deaths: 23

Benzodiazepines– hypnotic relaxant used to treat anxiety and insomnia. Prolonged use leads to addiction. Withdrawal symptoms include nausea, dizziness and pounding heart beat. Includes drugs such as Diazepam, Tamazepam and Nitrazepam.Deaths: 230
Amphetamines– psychostimulant that combats fatigue and hunger. Increases blood pressure and temperature; can cause strokes in hot weather. Can lead to psychological dependence. Deaths: 99 (includes some ecstasy deaths)

Tobacco – highly addictive due to its nicotine content. Tobacco-related illnesses include cancer, respiratory diseases and heart disease. Deaths: 100,000

Buprenorphine – opiate used for pain control, also sometimes used as a substitute to wean addicts off heroin. Side effects include nausea, vomiting and dizziness. Danger of overdose. Deaths: 43

Cannabis – psychoactive drug; stronger forms known colloquially as ‘skunk’. Intense controversy over its long-term effects and capacity for inducing schizophrenia. Has been linked to miscarriages in women. Deaths: 19

Solvents – users inhale solvents to produce a sense of intoxication. Usually abused by teenagers. Can lead to choking, vomiting and suffocation. Derived from commonly available products such as glue and aerosol sprays. Deaths: 50

4-MTA – class A. Originally designed for laboratory research. Releases serotonin in the body. Deaths: 43

LSD – hallucinogenic drug synthesised by German chemist in 1938. Its dangers have been disputed. Can raise heart rate and blood pressure. May also lead to loss of appetite. Very few deaths recorded.

Methylphenidate (Ritalin) – a psycho stimulant sometimes used in the treatment of attention deficit disorders. Suppression of growth in some children who have been long term users. Can lead to psychological dependence.

Anabolic steroids – used to develop muscles, notably in competitive sports. Increased risk of heart attacks. Also alleged to induce aggression. Withdrawal has been linked to depression. Has been blamed for causing deaths among bodybuilders.

GHB – a clear liquid dance drug said to induce euphoria, also described as a date rape drug. Can trigger comas and suppress breathing. Deaths: 20

Ecstasy – psychoactive dance drug which has been alleged to cause damage to the brain. Associated with dehydration and overheating of the body which can be fatal. Deaths: 44

Alkyl Nitrites (poppers) – inhaled for their role as a muscle relaxant and supposed sexual stimulant. Reduces blood pressure which can cause fainting and I some cases death.

Khat – psychoactive plant. Produces mild psychological dependence. Can lead to liver damage. Withdrawal said to lead to lethargy and nightmares. Its derivatives, Cathinone and Cathine, are Class C drugs in the UK.

Mike Sales
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby Mike Sales » 2 Aug 2019, 6:53pm

skyhawk wrote:I am curious, My parents never used illegal drugs, I never used drugs, MY SONS have never used drugs ?


Alcohol?

landsurfer
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby landsurfer » 2 Aug 2019, 7:10pm

Just a thought ....

Cannaibis .. my Daughter started using weed at 16 with a boyfriend ... they moved to heroin by the time she was 17 ... she started stealing soon after that to support her habit ... from us, her grand parents anyone .....
She has stolen anything she can to get money for drugs ... she has stolen the children's xmas presents on the 2nd of January to get drug money.
Our bank accounts have been emptied .. our pensions hacked ... I empty my sheds into a storage company every time we go on holiday ... or they will mysteriously get broken into again ...
Because someone uses drugs do not think they are stupid ... my daughter would be head of the FCA in another life ...

20 years later ... 16 on methadone, topped up with cannabis, she moved back to heroin .. but only as a downer from crack cocaine ... her children, 3 of them, are in our care .. permanently ... we "love them, take care of them, and keep them safe" is the mantra from CAMS .. our mantra as well ...

I read all this stuff about how legalising various drugs will stop gangs and gangsters, but it won't stop the thin end of the wedge for users and those with addictive personalities from moving on to life changing drug use ...

I remember my daughter so well at 15 ..... nothing like the living skeleton that has supervised contact with her children twice a month ....

There is no such thing as recreational drugs
The Road Goes On Forever ...

Mike Sales
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby Mike Sales » 2 Aug 2019, 7:20pm

landsurfer wrote:Just a thought ....

Cannaibis .. my Daughter started using weed at 16 with a boyfriend ... they moved to heroin by the time she was 17 ... she started stealing soon after that to support her habit ... from us, her grand parents anyone .....
She has stolen anything she can to get money for drugs ... she has stolen the children's xmas presents on the 2nd of January to get drug money.
Our bank accounts have been emptied .. our pensions hacked ... I empty my sheds into a storage company every time we go on holiday ... or they will mysteriously get broken into again ...
20 years later ... 16 on methadone, topped up with cannabis, she moved back to heroin .. but only as a downer from crack cocaine ... her children, 3 of them are in our care .. permanently ... we "love them, take care of them, and keep them safe" is the mantra from CAMS .. our mantra as well ...

I read all this stuff about how legalising various drugs will stop gangs and gangsters, but it won't stop the thin end of the wedge for users and those with addictive personalities from moving on to life changing drug use ...

I remember my daughter so well at 15 ..... nothing like the living skeleton that has supervised contact with her children twice a month ....


Addiction to any drug, including alcohol, is a medical problem and treating it as such is most effective.
Compare prohibition states like the USA which has a huge number imprisoned on drug charges, and still has a huge drug using problem and no doubt many people who could tell stories like yours, and Portugal, ( drug misuse regime described in my ref. above.)
The USA has had a "War on Drugs" for many years, and you have to say that the drugs are winning.

reohn2
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby reohn2 » 2 Aug 2019, 7:25pm

661-Pete wrote:I'm inclined, albeit reluctantly, to agree about decriminalising

Decriminalising recreational drug use simply gives gangsters the nod to carry on in the way they're doing now.Legalising it in a controlled manner,and the tax revenue could be used to wipe out illegal drug dealers and the diabolical way they mix their 'product' with anything from scouring powder to castor sugar,and the deaths as a result of backstreet laboratories mixing all kinds of crap,there's been three deaths this week in Essex as a result of such amateur chemists.
The politicians have been kicking this can down the road for decades meanwhile drug related crime is at epidemic proportions.

You'll never eliminate drug use until you understand why drugs are needed as part of people's lives,particularly in the younger generations.
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Mike Sales
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Re: Recreational drugs

Postby Mike Sales » 2 Aug 2019, 7:53pm

A large proportion of our population, millions probably, from the P.M. down, have used recreational drugs.
Relatively few have descended into the miserable depths of addiction.
The causes of addiction are not so straightforward that it can be treated in the way we are attempting and failing.
The argument is that decriminalisation will remove some of the worst effects of drug use.

If you include alcohol nearly everybody has used a destructive, addictive drug.
In fact alcohol must cause much more misery and debilitation than all the others.
The USA tried Prohibition but it did not work.
But we still persist, in the face of the evidence, in treating some drug problems with the legal route, but not booze.

The prevalence of drug use argues that it there we have a strong tendency to enjoy "getting off our heads."