Full article I am refuting here: Stupid Arguments for Drug Legalisation Examined and Refuted
“Only if you do it on a desert island, quite alone, and nobody loves you. In all other cases, the user runs the risk of doing himself serious harm ( see below on correlation between cannabis use and mental illness). And if he does, his family will be terribly grieved and quite possibly forced to look after him, and pay for his upkeep for the rest of this natural life. They are victims. Alternatively, the user may end up in a mental hospital, expensively cared for at the charge of the taxpayer, who is also his victim. Even so, his family’s grief and distress will last for as long as they live.”
Correlation does not imply causation. This is a careless common flaw and I would expect better from a professional such as Peter.
To claim that indirect “harms” justify authoritarian action by the state is mind boggling.
Why don’t we criminalize red meat, sugar, TV, social media, Movie theaters, cars, rollerblades, hell getting a divorce can cause indirect harm and possibly lead to psychosis or mental illnesses. I’m sure there is probably a study out there that shows a correlation between mental illness and divorce. Does that mean we should make it illegal?
All of these things have potential for causing both direct and indirect harm. In fact, some of them are contributors to the leading causes of death. Heart Disease, cancer, diabetes, etc.
Car crashes in America average 30,000 a year. So by his logic, why not criminalize all these things?
The fundamental moral question you have to ask yourself is:
When is ok to use the threat of violence against someone for voluntarily choosing to engage in activities that cause no direct physical harm to others?
When is it ok to lock another human being in cage and treat them like an animal?
When is it ok to garner public support for policies that use taxpayer money in an attempt to shape society according to a possible indirect effect of exercising ones right to personal liberty and freedom?
This kind of lawmaking inevitably leads to a rise in black markets, criminal activity, gangs, gun violence, increased prison populations and increased police forces, and more which puts an extra burden on taxpayers.
Eventually, if we walk down the road of shaping society according to unintended or indirect dangers that may come about, then naturally totalitarianism will rise, and we will wind up living in Nazi Germany.
We have seen this happen time and time again throughout history. The common excuse for such vile, disgusting behavior is always sold to us as “for the better of society” or “for the common good ” Sadly those experiments have not ended well. How many piles of wasted human carcasses do we have to see before we get it?
Today we see a similar almost more sinister plot to imprison those who wish to put certain things the state deems inappropriate. What is the difference between our policies and the policies of Stalin or Hitler?
I personally suffer from chronic depression. It runs in my family. It is genetic. Smoking Cannabis makes me feel happier, lighter and less depressed. That is a fact for me. The validity of my direct experience supersedes what any authority has to tell me. In the words of Peters brother Christopher who I admire very much, and I paraphrase here: ” I am a my own moral majority of one, I don’t need to conform to the tyranny of the majority. I can be my one majority because I stand for myself.”
I think that people who are more inclined to try cannabis may also have a higher proclivity for what we would define as “mental illness.”
It is widely known that many high IQ people and creative people tend to be more prone to mental problems. They may choose to use cannabis to alleviate these problems, and in some cases, for some people, it can enhance their problems but not all. In the specific case of depression, the Mayo Clinic says this
There is no data that proves the ingesting Cannabis in any of its forms causes mental illness.There is only a correlation. Correlation does not imply causation. To suggest otherwise is a bold faced lie built off false stats.
In many cases, cannabis has shown to alleviate, and sometimes totally cure depression, PTSD, and children with seizures, other kinds of disorders, diseases, and sicknesses.
More research needs to be done and the freedom to conduct this kind of research needs to be granted so we can fully study all the benefits. Luckily we are seeing some loosening on this matter
Children suffering from seizures is not a mental disorder, but it is worthy here to note that cannabis has proven to be a net benefit, not a harm. The suffering individual is thus helped by this wonderful plant and suffer no more because of it . not the other way around. and that is a very important note to keep in mind.
Anyone trying to prevent children from suffering is vicious, disgusting, ignorant, vile, wretched piece of vampiric garbage.
Many factors play into why people suffer from mental illness. The exact cause is not known, it is clear that many of these conditions are caused by a combination of genetic, biological, psychological, and environmental factors, and not from being dumb, or weak, or from consuming certain kinds of substances. i.e. alcohol coffee, red meat, sugar, etc.
Mental illness is also a semi-about the culture one lives in. Our culture has a very dogmatic narrow-minded view of this subject. I feel it is a primitive old world model of materialist reductionist thinking and suffers from the lack of connection between the spiritual/mystical and the scientific. There is a connection, and there is a greater understanding we can have. One with compassion, empathy, and respect.
In our modern western civilization, we would categorize blanket mental illness as anyone who deviates from the normal approved opinion on the general consensus of reality.
It is worth taking note that mental illnesses in pre-Columbian hunter-gatherer tribes that were built upon small local communities. A person going through what we now label as “mental illness” was seen by the community as a right of passage or a calling to become a shaman. A shaman is someone who can walk in both worlds. One is the world of the rational, normal what we call modern normal society and the other is the world of the metaphysical, the mystical, the spiritual or divine. Whatever you wish to call it. The entire community helps this individual come tot terms with their chosen ability as they see great value in this call to shaman. They help the individual get through the ordeal, and if he can make it to the other side, he/ she will be a great asset and service to the tribe.
Joseph Campbell says: “The mad man and the mystic swim in the same waters. However the madman drowns, and the mystic comes back with gifts from beyond in order to enrich the society.”
This is a fantastic article that can expound on the definition of mental illness from a shamanistic perspective. What A Shaman Sees In A Mental Hospital
I think some segments of our western culture as we have defined it, are in direct contradiction to our natural human state. They are in direct opposition to what makes us human beings.
Simply having someone’s parents take care of them or throwing them in cage or a mental hospital like an animal is primitive and grotesque. Is this really the best we can do?
I think we need to reexamine what mental illness is, and how we can do a better job of helping people who are suffering become valuable members of our society, but that would mean excavating deeply into who we really are, how we relate to our fellow man and the world, the role of religion and government and the best way to organize society for human beings.
Peter Hitchens is an ignorant fool who is causing harm and spreading lies. He should be ashamed of himself.
Peter says: Dictators love having stupefied subjects. They’re easier to fool, and to push around
“Self-stupefaction is not some mighty freedom, like the freedoms of speech, thought and assembly. It is rather the opposite. Any tyrant would be glad to have a stupefied, compliant and credulous population, accepting what it was told and too passive and flaccid to resist. See Huxley’s ‘Brave New World’, inn which the masses are controlled by the pleasure-drug Soma.”
There is no evidence that shows any link between cannabis and what this ignoramus calls “stupefaction”
Read Peter! its called science, facts, evidence and proof.
Getting back to the theory of doctors wanting the public to be dumb from marijuana. I mean, its just laughable. Where do I begin?
First I would say, there are many ways in which we are currently being dumbed down.
“Consistent with an increase in anxiety and depression, brain-altering antidepressants are also being prescribed more than ever. As America increasingly becomes a culture of mind-altered, psychoactive drug users, prescription rates dramatically increasing over recent years. Ironically, hostility, violence, depression and suicide have been found to be common side-effects of antidepressant drugs. (See: SSRI Antidepressants Put Patients at Clear Risk of Suicide.”
Then there are those who have had to pick up the pieces from the consequences of the awful side-effects of these drugs… Sadly, according to a study in the Journal of Psychopharmacology, as many as 247 out of every 100,000 military personnel commit suicide while taking antidepressants – that’s more than those who have died fighting in wars.” More info here
The Government doesn’t want this to be legal. As the intro music of my podcast Mikedelic says:
“Psychedelics are illegal not because a loving government is concerned that you may jump out of a third-story window. Psychedelics are illegal because they dissolve opinion structures and culturally laid down models of behavior and information processing. They open you up to the possibility that everything you know is wrong.”― Terence McKenna
Power structures such as the Church and the State would benefit greatly from a population of people kept fearful of enemies that only they could protect them from while simultaneously preventing the individual from attaining any direct experiences of their own. All experiences must be mediated by the state or the church.
The population that is ruled over must be controlled to think what the rulers want them to think. Any sort of true direct experience is thus criminalized, and in its place, cheap substitutions are manufactured and sold back to us for mass consumption.
Substances that dissolve boundaries and provoke unconventional thought are seen as evil because they could lead to the people who are bing ruled over to start to question the order of things and thus challenge the status quo and bring about change that threatens to take power away from the current power holders.
Peter: ‘WOT ABAHT ALCOHOL AND TOBACCO, THEN, EH ?’ – (this is just the dumbest subtitle I’ve ever seen in my life.)
How many deaths have been caused as a direct result of smoking marijuana? How many deaths from Alcohol?
better yet, how many deaths have been reported from people who have taken natural “drugs” or (plants as I call them) like marijuana and those in the psychedelic camp? compared to perspiration pills and alcohol?
Alcohol = 88,000 deaths per year (more than double the amount of gun deaths btw)
Prescription Drugs: between 20-30,000 (according to CDC)
Marijuana = 0
Other Psychedelics: only ego death (which many people could benefit from) it has been said ” Psychedelics have been shown to cause psychotic behavior in people who have NOT taken them.”
let us also take into account the facts of alcohol prohibition on society.
Did it deter people from drinking? No. all it did is make people who want to drink, criminals. The result was one the rise of organized crime like we have never ever seen before and one of the bloodiest battles ever waged on American soil from 1920 to 1933. Not to mention the burden on the economy. At the national level, Prohibition cost the federal government a total of $11 billion in lost tax revenue, while costing over $300 million to enforce.
Compare that to the budget of this massive failure we call “The War On Drugs” today. The U.S. Government spends $15 billion a year criminalizing the behaviors of non-violent human beings.
State and local governments spent at least another 25 billion dollars. Source: Jeffrey A. Miron & Kathrine Waldock: “The Budgetary Impact of Drug Prohibition,” 2010.
Is this a wise use of the confiscation of our tax money. At least if they are going to steal a portion of our income, at least use it on something that yield results and not constant failures. Of course, that is not how the state operates and they, of course, benefit greatly off the illegality of these substances.
I’m not going to go into full detail here but I will in another article. It is a well-known fact that factions of our government, mainly factions of the CIA were involved in massive importing of Crack Cocaine to the United states as uncovered by late great investigate journalist Garry Webb in his book Dark Alliance. and recent revelations by the son of Pablo Escobar confirmed long suspicion that the most notorious drug kingpin of all time was, in fact, working for the CIA.
There is also evidence proving the recent rise in Americans dependency on pain killers and opiates. Begining in the early 2000’s, doctors started prescribing thesis things like hot cakes. It became a billion dollar industry and was normalized by our mass marketing of “acceptable drugs.”
Now, there is substantial evidence linking America’s heroin epidemic and our 15-year military occupation of the worlds largest opiate production in the country of Afghanistan.
They all failed to miss the fundamental principle when it comes to marijuana and all drugs for that matter. Aside from the multitude of studies proving the benefits these drugs can play for medical and therapeutic purposes, there are other issues that are important and need to be brought to the forefront as well.
Follow the money, and the truth shall set you free.
We have been conditioned and manipulated by an onslaught of weaponized propaganda by the omnipresent media and the crony-cooperate state to accept this silly notion that there are ‘good drugs” and bad drugs.”
The good drugs are the ones that are legal, and that bad ones are the ones that are illegal. Any idiot with half a brain knows that legality is not a litmus test for something being beneficial or not, nor is it synonymous with objective truth or morality for that matter. It is the subjective views of the ignorant politicians working together with corporations and the pharmaceutical companies (the cronies) to benefit greatly from the scheme they have going. They have vested interest in doing everything in their power to maintain profits and growth and stay in power.
The truth is the same as everything. Anything can be used to do good or bad. Just because cannabis culture is a culture that you disapprove of or fails to uphold the same norms you consider to bee respectable does mean it is bad.
I stand firmly in the libertarian view of the non-aggression principle, property rights and above all the inherent morality of God given natural human rights.
The belief in liberty extends beyond the physical. It extends into the biological, the mental and so on.. I am an individual human being operating my own life. It is grossly immoral for another human being to impose their will upon my body, mind or soul. The liberty we all enjoy can not be possible without respect to cognitive liberty.
Cognitive Liberty is the the right to mental self-determination. It is the freedom of an individual to control his or her own mental processes, cognition, and consciousness. It is part of free speech and freedom of thought. Since thoughts arise in our minds, our minds transform thoughts into language that we use to communicate our subjective interpersonal experiences, as well as our interpretations of the objective world.
The fear seems to be that our minds will enter a state of alteration under the influence of certain substances such as cannabis that would cause us to communicate our unconventional thoughts with each other, thus destroying the general consensus of reality and approved opinion for those fearful of losing it.
This is a regressive world view and stifles creativity, freedom of thought, expression, language, speech, and ultimately problem solving, empathy, connection, and innovation.
Altered states of consciousness have great vale to society. It was said that the spark of the enlightenment was due to the explosion of Coffee in Europe. Cannabis and Beer were said to influence the founders of the constitution.
There is more value to be gotten from life than purely from tangible, material, empirically studied and peer reviewed academic journals can provide. Since ever single human being is different and everyone’s physiology, genetics, traits, predispositions and etc are different, should be recognized and to have a general blanket law banning something that helps some and harms others is not morally justifiable for those who experience benefits. The power of direct experience and the dignity of the individual on this matter supersedes any outside authority.
When all you have is hammer, every problem looks like a nail.
It is a well-known fact that in 1930, Harry Anslinger, the first commissioner of the treasury departments Bureau of Federal Narcotics,waged war against cannabis because the of threats to cut funding due to the great depression and the end of alcohol prohibition.
Typical government bureaus.Once they are created, they need a reason to exist. They need to find an enemy otherwise, they serve no purpose, they get no funding, people lose jobs and they could be shut down.
I think that is a fantastic thing. The broken window fallacy mentality our government holds is anti human, anti progress, and anti-freedom. We see the same thing with the every single federal Bureau that has ever been created. They are incentivized to fail. Not to succeed. The more they fail the more money they get, the larger they grown and the more problems they create to keep themselves in business. It is sick and perverse.
The evidence is plenty in showing the increase of violent criminal activity during prohibition of alcohol. We did not learn our lesson from that experiment.
However today the criminal gangs that benefited from the prohibition days are in bed with our government, and they both stand much to gain from the current paradigm.
there are many videos and info. I encourage you to explore
I also like this more humors explanation on the show Adam Ruins Everything.
Peter goes on to say:
“Finally, I have yet to meet a ‘medical marijuana’ campaigner who was not working alongside the general campaign for recreational legalisation. No serious campaign for medical use would do this, as it instantly makes it much less likely that anyone will listen or accede.”
what does he mean by ” no serious campaign for medical use would do this”?
why not? is it impossible to hold these 2 views simultaneously? I think not.
To imply that recreational use is also not as important or serious a matter as medical use it wrong. one does not question the health benefits of hamburgers, pizza, soda, sex, porn, masturbation, television, video games, virtual reality, sky diving, motorcycle riding, alcohol or tobacco, etc.. the list can go on forever. My point is this:
When making a case for these things, no-one tries to sell these things I have listed as beneficial to our health. We know that these things carry dangers and risks and deserve to be treated as such. In a responsible way, with balance and respect. Abuse of any these activities can lead to suffering, pain and even death. But, and this is a big but. They are fun. That is why we do them.
If we are not permitted to take part in activities that simultaneously offer us fun and risk then why are we even alive?
Every single person on this planet who is not a sociopath or psychopath or suffers from some other sort of ailment that causes one to lack the desire for pleasure and fun, aspires to increase their health, wealth, happiness and leisure. We seek thrills and enjoyment. We are human. we are not robots and therefore we do not fit into a cookie cutter mold of sanctioned behaviors and opinions.
Fun is important. Recreation is important. It matters. Ones ideas of fun are subjective. a person like my father gets most of his thrills from reading books. Some would consider this boring, but he does not. I enjoy getting high, it is fun for me and I see great benefit to it. That being said I think its important to treat cannabis with care, respect, balance and to enforce restrictions to the developing minds of children.
so, get this stupid idea that we can not hold both views of marijuana with equal importance. It is childish and pathetic.
I think we have wonderful gifts that we should explore and experiment with, study, research and test to come up with a multitude of different uses. I also think we should be able to espouse the benefits of improving the social fabric of society with the common views of recreation and fun for adults. In an adult world, this is a rational and sensible case to make. In a childish world, this falls on deaf ears and cause people to scream witch and burn you at the stake. Grow up.
I think there are few things in this world that have the potential for such a wide variety of uses and applications. In brief, cannabis can be used in the form of CBD to help people with seizures, and Hemp has been used in a variety of different industrial ways. And this ties into many lobbying and funding against Marijuana, most notably Newspaper Mogul William Randolph Hearst and the Dupont family.
In conclusion, the right to any person to consume anything they wish is their god given right. To restrict their access to that is tragic and criminal.
We need an evolution of consciousness and a change to our old regressive world views that upends and replaces the current paradigm of debt, fear and broken windows with a new one that encourages and incentivizes individuals to walk down the path of voluntary association, respect, property rights (your body is your property) peace, progress and pursuit of happiness for all who wish to abide by these basic codes that have proven to the conditions that allow for human flourishing time and time again.