Our problem of course is that very few of us read or even watch current affairs.
Most people taking drugs don’t consider themsleves as addicts. One study explored the perspectives of low-level drug market users on the availability, purchase and consumption of illicit drugs within the social context of drug prohibition. A snowballing technique was used to recruit 16 participants consisting of nine males and seven females aged between 17 and 43. A semi-structured interview process elicited their views on their use of drugs, where they obtained them, their views on the impact of the criminal justice system on their drug use and finally their views on how drug users were perceived by non-drug users. While some negative consequences of using drugs were reported, no participant considered that their use of drugs made them an addict, a criminal or antisocial. The findings from this study suggest that current punitive drug policy, which links drug use with addiction, crime and antisocial behaviour was inconsistent with the experience of the participants. The rest of us, with ‘television consciousness’ probably do. We need discussion that includes relevant views. I don’t agree with these ‘druggies’ and suspect they don’t see the problems they cause – but I’m hardly bothered if someone wants to ‘skin up’.
I have no wish to see drugs decriminalised – I want to see proper policing and a system that helps our cops and social workers sort out problems the system is in denial about. The links above worked at 6 p.m. Monday.
Decriminalisation really means strengthening administrative law and treating human rights in proportion to decent, law-abiding people ahead of some of the ludicrous abuses we’ve been seeing lately. My worries are mostly concerned with our crap administrative abilities and administrators. NuLabour changed nothing through legislation, so why should we hope for much from the current ‘business-as-usual’ turkeys?
Nothing turns out to be simple (even nothing itself in physics). People still lust after simplicity because they can’t cope with the ambiguity of what goes on around them. Our public debates play on this , whether in courtrooms or what pass as current affairs programmes. Whodunits are usually very simple matters, aimed at what we might categorise as the unbright 12 year old mind set.
It is more or less impossible to find intelligent dialogue. For me, even science programmes are usually annoying re-hashes of O level – and it’s 45 years since I did mine.
What I’ve been looking fir recently is sign that we are governed at this semi-literate-hardly-numerate level and my guess is we are. I’d just ask this question – ‘when did you last catch even a glimmer of anything new in politics’? My answer is I can’t spot anything other than the emphasis on television politics. This is strange, set against all the change I can otherwise see around me, or in the labs I used to work in against those around now.
Anyone else bemused by this?
I’m listening to the clown Robert Peston (who should be a villain in Wallace and Grommet) and his voice reeks patronisation. He’s using glib phrases one after the other with a very strange intonation. He’s even suggesting it would be a good idea to borrow a few bob from the Chinese.
What we need to do has nothing to do with any of our current politics. It is now part of some dire bureaucracy we don’t know how to control. I now believe the answer lies in ridding ourselves of this bureaucracy and the people in it. We have to do this by ignoring it. In the same way that I would like to finish my time in a small village by the sea in ex-patriot style, I believe we should be making this form of shunning ADMASS a reality for all.
The shunning is only stage one, but we need to find ways to do this first. I see this as a replacement for voting and space in which we might develop viable business models that are very different from today’s.
There has to be something better than dumping war criminal Bliar on the Middle East Crisis. Something Blair says is relevant – that we can’t just go on imbued with pessimism – but the key pessimism has long been about our inability to form a decent society. I’m just wondering if there are enough of us to create some enjoyable space that could lead to something new as politics and pay its way without the usual planet-burning or condescension to those who would even fail today’s GCSEs (really – take a look – they keep kids in school 12 years for these hapless certificates) and who are growing by modelling themselves on soap opera. The answer isn’t high culture but a new one that might let us collapse the separation of work and entertainment, whilst making school obsolete.