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Drugs - Time to legalise - The Economist


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Says the bloke who spends every single day hoying lumps of iron around in a room full of sweaty men :lol:

Hold the phone, you can't have a pop at me for that given you posted your before and after body transformation pictures :lol:

Edited by Dr Gloom
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Am wondering how much you've got done this morning....and am also wondering how much sleep toontl has got too? :D

 

Got loads done, been doing an article for True Faith this morning :D Baby due in less than a fornight and I'll be off for 5 weeks once it arrives so I'm keeping my head down and avoiding getting involved with any new work right now.

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Even when I've had good stuff I still thought the same. It's only any good if you combine it with other substances

 

Chez is now running around his work like a pharmaceutical willy wonka

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Of course drugs should be legalised/regulated. It's the most frustrating topic in the world to debate. No matter how much empirical, logical or medical evidence you put forward, you'll get shouted down with abuse/emotive blackmail/told you're wrong just 'because'.

 

It's not because I think drugs are cool, or because of any underlying psuedo-libertarian ideals that 'the state shouldn't tell me what I can and can't put in my body!!!!' (although I do agree with that somewhat). It's because I want less people to die.

 

Drug policy within a nation should focus on what has the best possible outcomes for society. Now quite clearly, the best possible health outcomes for society would be if nobody at all touched any drugs (alcohol and tobacco included), but unless your name is Peter Hitchens, I think most people will admit that it's just not feasible, and people that want drugs will get drugs. So what is the next best possible outcome for society? Harm minimization/death reduction due to a policy of education and regulation.

 

Let's take MDMA as an example, but it's a similar story for pretty much any prohibited drug (other than very soft i.e. weed or very hard i.e. crank/crack/smack):

 

MDMA itself, the stuff you get in 'ecstasy' tablets, is no where near as unsafe as the media make out (it's not risk free either like as some online would have you believe). Potential death from MDMA can occur in the following ways:

 

1. Approximately 2/100000 people simply cannot properly process MDMA, and even small amounts can be toxic, it's comparable to an allergy, and unless immediate medical attention is sought then death is likely. If MDMA was a regulated substance, then anyone wishing to use it would be able to get a simple 'allergy test' prior to using it, to see whether it will be deadly for them. Easily avoidable.

 

2. Too much water. I think everyone's heard of the case of Leah Bett's - hell it was brought up on a debate I saw on TV last week. But what most people fail to mention is that her death was a result of her taking an ecstasy pill, and then consuming 7 and a half litres of water in the space of 90 minutes. A lack of education killed Leah Betts. Her friends were under the impression that you need to drink bucket loads of water if you consume MDMA - but in face it increases water retention in the body, and too much water will dilute sodium levels to the point permanent brain damage as a result of swelling occurs. Tragic, and preventable.

 

3. Heatstroke. Once again preventable with basic education. The substance raises body temperature and blood pressure while active, and as a result it's important to take breaks from dancing and consume sensible amounts of water.

 

Now for the more common, and easily preventable ones:

 

4. Overdose due to purity. When someone consumes MDMA unless they have a testing kit at home (sort of an admission of guilt) they have no idea what they're putting in their body. They might be used to really 'weak' stuff, but if by chance they get their hands on much higher purity drugs than usual without realising, then taking their 'usual' dose could be fatal, as their body just isn't used to it. It's like accidentally drinking a 70cl instead of 3 double vodkas, which is easy in tablet form. A regulated market allows you to identify your purity, and choose your dose safely.

 

5. This is the one that's responsible for the overwhelming majority of ecstasy related deaths - overdose due to different chemical. MDMA has a toxic LD50 dose (the median dose which will kill 50% of the population) of over 1 gram (although obviously consuming that much anyway would be absurd due to risks of neurotoxicity which would cause potential loss of concentration/memory in future). Chemicals which can produce almost identical 'euphoric' effects such as PMA/PMMA have a lethal dose of less than 1/10 of that, (anything over 60mg can be deadly). Just one of these can kill, and would once again be avoided if the product was regulated.

 

The same is true for almost any drug, although I recognise the horrendously addictive nature of the likes of heroin, crack, and methamphetamine means those 'hard' substances are best decriminalised, as opposed to the legalisation and regulation I support of the likes of Weed/speed/MDMA/coke/LSD etc.

 

And if you're worried about the effects of such a policy move on society as a whole - look no further than Portugal.

 

Prohibition of drugs is resulting in 1000's of needless deaths each year.

 

The war on drugs has failed.

Edited by TheDimpleboy
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Of course drugs should be legalised/regulated. It's the most frustrating topic in the world to debate. No matter how much empirical, logical or medical evidence you put forward, you'll get shouted down with abuse/emotive blackmail/told you're wrong just 'because'.

 

It's not because I think drugs are cool, or because of any underlying psuedo-libertarian that 'the state shouldn't tell me what I can and can't put in my body!!!!' (although I do agree with that somewhat). It's because I want less people to die.

 

Drug policy within a nation should focus on what has the best possible outcomes for society. Now quite clearly, the best possible health outcomes for society would be if nobody at all touched any drugs (alcohol and tobacco included), but unless your name is Peter Hitchens, I think most people will admit that it's just not feasible, and people that want drugs will get drugs. So what is the next best possible outcome for society? Harm minimization/death reduction due to a policy of education and regulation.

 

Let's take MDMA as an example, but it's a similar story for pretty much any prohibited drug (other than very soft i.e. weed or very hard i.e. crank/crack/smack):

 

MDMA itself, the stuff you get in 'ecstasy' tablets, is no where near as unsafe as the media make out (it's not risk free either like as some online would have you believe). Potential death from MDMA can occur in the following ways:

 

1. Approximately 2/100000 people simply cannot properly process MDMA, and even small amounts can be toxic, it's comparable to an allergy, and unless immediate medical attention is sought then death is likely. If MDMA was a regulated substance, then anyone wishing to use it would be able to get a simple 'allergy test' prior to using it, to see whether it will be deadly for them. Easily avoidable.

 

2. Too much water. I think everyone's heard of the case of Leah Bett's - hell it was brought up on a debate I saw on TV last week. But what most people fail to mention is that her death was a result of her taking an ecstasy pill, and then consuming 7 and a half litres of water in the space of 90 minutes. A lack of education killed Leah Betts. Her friends were under the impression that you need to drink bucket loads of water if you consume MDMA - but in face it increases water retention in the body, and too much water will dilute sodium levels to the point permanent brain damage as a result of swelling occurs. Tragic, and preventable.

 

3. Heatstroke. Once again preventable with basic education. The substance raises body temperature and blood pressure while active, and as a result it's important to take breaks from dancing and consume sensible amounts of water.

 

Now for the more common, and easily preventable ones:

 

4. Overdose due to purity. When someone consumes MDMA unless they have a testing kit at home (sort of an admission of guilt) they have no idea what they're putting in their body. They might be used to really 'weak' stuff, but if by chance they get their hands on much higher purity drugs than usual without realising, then taking their 'usual' dose could be fatal, as their body just isn't used to it. It's like accidentally drinking a 70cl instead of 3 double vodkas, which is easy in tablet form. A regulated market allows you to identify your purity, and choose your dose safely.

 

5. This is the one that's responsible for the overwhelming majority of ecstasy related deaths - overdose due to different chemical. MDMA has a toxic LD50 dose (the median dose which will kill 50% of the population) of over 1 gram (although obviously consuming that much anyway would be absurd due to risks of neurotoxicity which would cause potential loss of concentration/memory in future). Chemicals which can produce almost identical 'euphoric' effects such as PMA/PMMA have a lethal dose of less than 1/10 of that, (anything over 60mg can be deadly). Just one of these can kill, and would once again be avoided if the product was regulated.

 

The same is true for almost any drug, although I recognise the horrendously addictive nature of the likes of heroin, crack, and methamphetamine means those 'hard' substances are best decriminalised, as opposed to the legalisation and regulation I support of the likes of Weed/speed/MDMA/coke/LSD etc.

 

And if you're worried about the effects of such a policy move on society as a whole - look no further than Portugal.

 

Prohibition of drugs is resulting in 1000's of needless deaths each year.

 

The war on drugs has failed.

Spot on

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I think theres a good case for legalisation just in terms of diverting funds from criminals to the government and reducing the criminal behaviour of addicts. Thats before you get into the waste of police and prison resources and the opportunity to rehabilitate addicts and educate young people.

 

Without getting into the morality of drug abuse, I think it must be obvious to most people the war on drugs has comprehensively failed and isnt even winnable.

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Nothing tragic about discussing wine, whisky or organic craft beers though.

 

As for the best way to take it, there is no discussion on that topic. As a birthday treat, an ex once gave me a champagne enema and then sniffed a load of gak off my bell-end. Pure Swag. To be fair, i was a right cunt back then.

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