Thursday, February 24, 2005

Is your pain legal?

I was doing some research on the DEA Pain FAQ[pdf] and why the DEA pulled it. The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons has some thoughts on the matter.

Now the DEA document is very interesting. It says that you can't tell objectively by behavior the difference between a legit pain patient and a "drug addict". Now the question is why?

My theory? Supported by at least a few facts as I have documented before: people in pain and "drug addicts" are trying to fill the same receptors with the same medicine. Which is why the war on people in pain documented here and here is so unremarkable. Once you start the attacks on people in pain there is no way to objectively tell legitimate pain from the illegal kind. Because when the pain receptors are empty they send a signal to the body - fill me. It makes no difference - PTSD or a broken leg. Those receptors want to be filled.

Now of course if you have PTSD and fill those receptors with opiates you are an evil drug addict. If your leg is broken and you wish to fill those receptors with opiates. Well no problem. Now if you were at one time or now still are one of those evil addicts who breaks your leg and it heals poorly leaving you in chronic pain good luck to you. Not even signing a pain treatment agreement will be enough.

Which brings me to the story of Hunter S. Thompson's death. Let me quote you from an AP story that I think gives a lot of insight into why the good doctor might have blown his brains out.

ASPEN, Colo. - While Hunter S. Thompson's suicide shocked many in his out-of-the-way neighborhood, one of his closest friends said Monday the writer had been in a lot of pain after a broken leg and hip surgery.
Now why in this age of miracles and Oxycontin would Dr. Gonzo be in pain? A pill every 12 hours would solve the problem. Pretty simple, the DEA is at war with pain doctors. And woe be unto a pain doctor who prescribes pain relievers to a current or former addict. This is what is currently called diversion and can get you 30 to life. Because, obviously, addicts do not deserve pain relief. Drug abusers deserve to suffer. It is their lot in life. As decreed by law.

And if you have never been a drug abuser, but your pain is long lasting? Well who can be sure you are not just one of those evil addicts conning doctors for the next fix? So the pain goes untreated. And the suicides (unless of the Thompson kind) are recorded as accidents. That way the insurance money gets paid, no questions asked.

This whole effort at drug control seems pretty unAmerican to me. If any body asks me I tell them flat out: persecuting people in pain is wrong. And it makes no difference to me if the pain is legal or illegal.

Sadly, we might have had a few more years of the Good Doctor's presence if we didn't have an ongoing war in America on people in pain.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Don't trust anyone under 60

As you all know by now Hunter Thompson is gone. Here is a bit of Thompson memorabilia. I really liked the guy. And one day way back when I must have amused him. See you in hell big guy.


I used to write stuff to the Thompson usenet group way back.

Hunter once e-mailed me that he liked my writing style.

Damn, he will be missed.

I'm 60 these days (and I remember when I didn't trust any one over 30). It is sad watching the lights of my generation go out. I only hope the kids of today have 1/2 as much fun. Well as Hunter pointed out. Sex, drugs, rock 'n roll. Still works for me. As the 'Dead say "if unable to dance I will crawl..."

Monday, February 21, 2005


Today I'd like to discuss tolerance. Oh, not the kind where we leave our neighbors alone no matter how disgusting their beliefs. You know. What Jefferson said. " does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no God. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg."

The tolerance I want to speak to is tolerance to drugs. The kind of tolerance where it takes more and more of a drug to get a "rush". That good feeling you get when you first start using. This fact is used to explain why drugs are bad. Because there comes a time when no amount will make you feel better. Why is this?

As far as I know this fact has never been put on a scientific basis. I'm going to give it a go.

Let us start with the fact that drugs have their effect when they bind with receptors in the body. In the brain to be specific for psychoactive drugs. I believe the "rush" is caused by the reduction in pain as the receptors are filled. The going from the pain state to the no pain state makes a person feel really good. Pain empties receptors, creating chemicals in the body or getting them from the outside world fills the receptors relieving pain.

Once the receptors are filled no amout of drugs will give the "rush". Because pouring more water into a full bucket does not fill it any further.

This is all "drug tolerance" is about.

Pretty obvious, huh?

Yet in 90+ years of the study of drugs very little scientific thinking has gone into the subject. Oh, we get a lot of hysterics. Drugs are bad because once you start it takes more and more to get that good feeling until no matter how much you take the "rush" never comes back. And this is called drug tolerance. Which is bad.

What it really means is that once you are no longer in pain you cannot feel less than no pain. Doh. Well you know. In Calvinist America to be pain free is bad. If your addiction is to the "rush" obviously to be pain free is very bad.

In S&M practices pain is inflicted to empty the receptors. Then sexual stimulation is applied to fill them. Big rush. And sex is not the only place this applies.

In the food system a lack of food empties the endorphin receptors associated with food. You get that hungry feeling. The longer you let that hunger feeling build up the bigger the rush food causes. And the better the food tastes.

This might in fact explain the binge purge system we see in some food addicts.

There are probably lots of other body systems where emptying/filling receptors leads to compulsive behaviors. Because some people are not addicted to the drugs. They are addicted to the "rushes".


Somebody (me) pointed out that this article Big Mac - heroin attack might give a firmer foundation to the above points.

Friday, February 18, 2005

A Dirty Story: Dirt Bag Gets Kid in Trouble

Now you are probably wondering what kind of miscreant is harming some poor innocent kid. This was no miscreant. This was an actual bag of dirt. Really, a kid got in trouble at school for putting some dirt in a bag and giving the dirt to another kid.

Why? There in lies a tale.

It starts out with a kid on a playground. The kid finds a baggie on the playground. An empty baggie. The kid fills the baggie with dirt, rocks, and some clover. The kid (female) takes a ribbon from her hair and puts it around the bag to make a present. And gives it to another kid.

Now the kid recieving the present shows it to a teacher. Naturally the teacher goes ballistic. Obviously the bag is full of fake drugs. And we have laws against fake drugs. The girl who made up the bag got a two day suspension. And what did this six year old dope fiend have to say about giving away fake drugs to another six year old?

"They said it was kind of a drug," Michaela said. "I don't know what those are. I only see cigarettes. That's all I say."
Zero tolerance has turned into infinite stupidity. Well what did you expect? Here is what you expect from law enforcement. Sikeston Police Sgt. Shirley Porter has an opinion:
In Porter's eyes, 6-year-old Michaela Boyd was dealing fake drugs, and that's a crime. "If she would have been 14, we would have been arrested her and taken her to jail," Porter said.
So there you are folks. You can now be put in jail if you are over 14 for a bag of dirt. Because some people put drugs in those bags. Of course some people put sandwiches in such bags.

Is this beginning to make sense? No? Welcome to the drug war. Where dirt is drugs and weeds are worth their weight in gold.

You can get more of the ugly details of this dirty story here.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Smut test

I'm reading over at Jeff Jarvis' place about the new indecency fines. So I looked up what some really cool guy had to say about this a year or so ago in the comments section of this place. Me. Here it is a little more coherent and possibly easier to read.


This little bit was in response to something a guy saw that he felt was wrong on TV:

A great majority of Americans are offended?

As I recall a recent porno prosecution in Ashcroft's home state couldn't get a conviction from a jury. Ya gotta wonder why?

There is as much $$$ spent on commercial Hollywood videos as is spent on porn videos. Some body is watching that stuff. Do you suppose any of them will be on the jury?

My answer to the smut on TV problem? Don't watch. Don't go where others watch.

And if thine eye still offends thee? Pluck it out.
Well Ashcroft was devoting quite a bit of government time in an age of terrorism to an office devoted to researching smut. Evidently some people are so strong that looking at smut 8 hours a day will not harm them. We should clone them. If cloning was legal.

By going after all kinds of smut in every venue Ashcroft may be destroying his own campaign. He is a very clever Attorney General.

Video tapes? Don't you have to buy or rent them? Pay per view? etc. If he just stuck to over the air TV he might have gotten some traction.

Janet Reno got results from a targeted campaign and no opposition. Ashcroft's campaign is not designed for any results other than headlines.

It would be truly pathetic if so many weren't falling for it.


As for smut being pushed into the home? You must be a liberal who needs the government to show you where the power switch is on your own TV. My condolences.

BTW there is this really neat new invention that might solve your problem. I mentioned it earlier but perhaps you haven't heard of it. It is called the video tape. You buy or rent these things called tapes and you can actually preview what your kids watch before you let them watch it. I hear that the tape machines are not too expensive especially if you already have a TV. I'm also told there is a rating system than can advise on the general nature of the content of a tape. You might want to look into it.

Of course if you can't find out how to turn off your set hooking up a tape machine is probably beyond your competence. I'd call in professional help in that case.
You got to wonder about Republicans. They get to talk about and effectively promote smut (the Starr Report?) while pretending to fight it. I heard more talk about BJs and semen at work than I ever had before. It was on the tip of every tounge (if you will pardon the expression).

I suppose if you keep the kids from watching the news you might be safe. Maybe.

The Democrats at least prefer don't ask, don't tell. A modicum of discression. The Republicans want smut on the front pages.


Way cool.
It seems rather simple to me. If you don't want kids to observe sex keep them out of the barnyard and don't keep pets.

Don't want sex intruding in your home? The Amish have it down. Don't own a TV.

Ladies and gentlemen. If you are incapable of protecting yourselves from a television how do you expect to be trusted with guns?

This is a bunch of whining no better than what I hear from liberals. The objects of the whine are different but the whine is the same: "I need a government program...."

Next time a liberal asks for a government program instead of complaining you ought to do some log rolling.

I got it. You guys work on sex speech and the libs can do hate speech. I'm sure you can work something out.

Here is my best shot. To pass muster porn will turn Biblical:

You realize that if you get your wish porn will have to turn biblical to pass muster (socially redeeming value).

"Lot's Daughters". "Don't Marry Foreign Donkey Dicks". "David and the Concubines". "Abraham's Wives". "Stoned for Adultry". "I was King David's Sex Slave". "Uriah's Wife". etc.

And of course once you start prosecuting these cases kids will get more interested in the Bible. Not necessisarily in the sections you had hoped.

My advice: If thine eye offend thee pluck it out. I believe that is Biblical too and will permanently solve the problem. Of course we will need laws allowing the moral to blind their own children but it would be a small sacrifice to prevent the transmission of corruption.

Ascroft was right to drape naked justice. Think of what seeing that could do to poor innocent children.

You know all this sex hysteria comes about because we are separated from the source of our food. The barn yard. In the past it was much harder to separate kids from the facts of life.
This is like campaign finance "reform". There will be unintended consequences re: free speech.

Then there is the internet.

How we gonna enforce American laws on the Dutch? Or in places where the age of consent is 14?

BTW how do you plan to handle breast feeding?

What ever happened to the good old Republican idea of personal responsibility. i.e. only do business with people whose judgement you trust.

What happens when the men with guns (government) that you have asked to solve your personal problems turn their guns on you?

What happens when Howard Stern starts reading and commenting on the "good parts" of the Bible? It would be a real yuck fest to see Ashcroft & Co. banning Bible reading on the radio or TV.

And just think that because all this is political the lefty anti-violence folks (you know violence is addictive and as the tolerance goes up ever more is required) ask for a quid pro quo.

You see once we breech the Constitutional "no law" barrier there is no end of good we can do. We can end hate speech, sex speech, violence speech, hurtful speech, etc. etc. etc. Think of how much better off we will be when all this bad speech is banned. We can finnaly put an end to sex pornography, war pornography, violence pornography, hate pornography, gun pornography, etc. etc. etc.

This will be better than the New Soviet Man. We will have the New Free Man. Free of all things evil. Won't that be good? We will finally be able to compete with Islam on an equal basis.
A fundamental mistake is to think that the laws will be enforced only to your satisfaction.

There are peole who consider "gun love" pornographic. What makes you think they will not get their say and influence? You have already alluded to that. You call their definitions false. Which may be true but it doesn't matter once you give them political power by breaching the "no law" barrier.

You will not be in charge of defining pornography. Some government agent you have no control over will be in charge. Which is why all this is so dangerous. Which is why making a Federal case out of your personal problems is not ever very wise.

Once you allow regulation of speech (just like regulation of guns) government will want more and more powers. The end result is that you will not stop the flow of pornography but you will put a big damper on free speech.

Ah. Well. There is never any holding back the people who want to help us at gun point. The left and right each have their own causes where they cannot get voluntary compliance and need violence and the threat of violence to get their way.

The sickness is in thinking the guns of the state can get you the world you want. It is a sickness of the left and the right. As long as the left and the right are in cahoots to avoid looking at the real nature of government (goverrnment is violence) liberty lovers in the land of the free are going to have a hard time.

What ever happened to Democracy, Whiskey, Sexy? Did that Iraqi individual understand Liberty better than we do?

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Immigrants depress wages or: capitalism is hard

Michele Malkin is complaining about immigrants depressing wages in Arkansas. Here is my (edited and improved) answer (rant):

So is this better or worse than outsourcing the jobs?

BTW who guaranteed the tool maker a job at a given wage?

And don't you feel sorry for all the unemployed buggy whip makers?

What is needed is to Europeanize the economy. Protect our jobs. Until there are none. It is working well for the Euros it can work here. French and German unemployment is running greater than 10% ours is close to 5%. Obviously we are doing something wrong by not protecting American jobs the way the Euros protect theirs.

Two choices: Raise the immigrant wages by either employing them in America or outsourcing the jobs to Mexico.

There is no way to stay in business if what you supply is not the best for the price. And even then that may not be enough if the market decides it can get greater quality at a lower price elsewhere. Remember the attack of the Japanese cars? Capitalism is relentless.

Are you a capitalist or not? You might like to read a bit I did on the subject:


Closing the borders provides zero help for the problem.

The best thing to do is to learn to compete. It will make us stronger. Think of what it would be worth to us to make better products at lower costs with $20 an hour labor than the Chinese can do with $1 an hour labor. Is it going to be easy? Who said capitalism was easy? It is hard. Socialism is easy. Are you an easy socialist or a hard capitalist?

BTW do you remember when America had to compete with cheap Japanese offshore labor? Heck at one time we had to compete with cheap Chinese labor (railroad workers), cheap Irish labor (during the Irish immigration wave), cheap Eastern European labor (early 1900s) etc.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Multiple choice test

My friend Triticale alerted me to this piece on pebble bed reactors a few days ago and now I see Instapundit has it up as "the answer" to America's energy problems. As a former Naval Reactor Operator I might have a thing or two to say about the radiation and safety questions. As a student of energy systems I might ask how much net energy can be gotten out of such a device net manufacturing and mining energy. Which includes the cost of enriching the uranium. But I'm not going to deal with any of those questions.

Which brings me to my multiple choice test.

Is there enough plutonium in the world?

a. just enough
b. too much
c. more is needed

Friday, February 11, 2005

Who gains from torturing sick people?

There is an interesting discussion going on over at Michael Totten's about torture. And as usual there is the left/right divide. And as usual I have a few words to say:

Here is where I am on it.

I have no problem doing no worse to the insurgents than is done to Americans on a regular basis.

Personally I do not think either side in this debate can stand that much morality.

Is there enough morality here to get the government to stop arresting sick people who use pot for relief?

Can we all agree that putting sick Americans in jail for wanting to feel better is wrong?

Any one with me on this? Anyone at all?

OK lots of you. Or some any way. So where are your voices? Why aren't you forcing this change down the government's throat?

Every day.

So there it is lefties - I won't believe you are serious about morality until you are serious about it at home. For simple obvious cases.

No one gains from torturing sick people.

And righties - no one is going to believe the bit about torture as necessity until you end torture as policy in a situation where there can be no benifit.

Who benefits from torturing sick people?


Dick Cowan covered this in May of '04. His angle was "Prisons R Us" and prison rape. The Land of the Free indeed. Not exactly America but it has happened here (DC I believe - the prisoner - Jonathan Magbie - died). What keeps the drug war in America going? Dick says that neither the public nor the media demands the truth. Not the left. Not the right. Not the blogs. Not MSM. I guess we can't handle the truth.

A Man For All Seasons

I'm having a discussion over at Belmont Club with Buddy.

It was started by this comment of mine:

All our constitutional protections have been flattened in the name of fighting drugs. Now that the laws no longer protect users of the wrong drugs there really is nothing standing between the American government and its citizens except inertia.

The right is more than willing to give up its traditional protections to fight drugs. There is nothing to stop the left when they regain power from using this machinery for their own purposes.

Every time we weaken the protections on the least favored we open the way for the precident to be applied to the rest of us.

It dosn't seem to scare most people. It scares me.

The machinery is in place. It just needs the right marching orders.
Buddy so kindly explains to me why the laws for taking property of people accused of drug crimes is a good idea. You see those devils will give the property to realatives or friends and horror of horors crime will pay. As if the Government Cocaine Price Support and Gang Finance Program was not designed for that very purpose.

Robert Bolt wrote a play about it which I will quote here. Thomas More is arguing with Roper about the seriousness of swearing an oath:

More: There is no law against that.

Roper: There is! God's law!

More: Then God can arrest him.

Roper: Sophistication upon sophistication.

More: No, sheer simplicity. The law, Roper, the law. I know what's legal not what's right. And I'll stick to what's legal.

Roper: Then you set man's law above God's!

More: No, far below; but let me draw your attention to a fact - I'm not God. The currents and eddies of right and wrong, which you find such plain sailing, I can't navigate. I'm no voyager. But in the thickets of the law, oh, there I'm a forrester. I doubt if there's a man alive who could follow me there, thank God....

Alice: While you talk, he's gone!

More: And go he should, if he was the Devil himself, until he broke the law!

Roper: So now you'd give the Devil benefit of law!

More: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?

Roper: I'd cut down every law in England to do that!

More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you - where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country's planted thick with laws from coast to coast - man's laws, not God's - and if you cut them down - and you're just the man to do it - d'you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake.

Cross Posted at Classical Values

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Hopin' for the return of the 60s

Howard Dean is back. He promises to lead the Dems back to power. I don't see how.

Dean is at the top of his game and over at the DU they are hoping for the return of the 60s.

Now personally I'm rather fond of the 60s. Sex, drugs, rock 'n roll and all that. However, politically it was a time of mass delusions. Economics was a dimly understood discipline by most people. Until the advent of De Soto there was really no historical social science that explained the economic nature of man. Now we have it. Man is a property acquiring animal. DeSoto found that when every one was allowed to participate in the property system wealth multiplied. The ability to trade property makes people rich. The Democrats don't get it. Bush so obviously does.

That is one strike against them. The second strike against them is not understanding the nature of the war we are in. Or else they are on the other side. As they were in the 60s. It is a reversion to form. Except for one little problem. The filters are coming off the news machine. I think this is in many ways explained by these two pieces: The first by Nelson Ascher. It talks about the revenge of the leftys. Trouble is 9/11 like the fall of the Berlin Wall changed the terms of the debate. Over at the Belmont Club they are discussing the same issues.

So what does that leave the Dems to do as a viable opposition party? Civil liberties. It is time we restored the Constitution shredded by the drug war. I discussed the problem for the Dems originally about two years ago.

So far the silence from the left is deafening.

In other words they are going to lose bigger for a while longer. Maybe 20 or 50 years longer.

Sad. Just when a viable opposition is so important.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Russia vs America

Glenn Reynolds is looking into the currenrt situation in Russia with abhorence.

He quotes an article by Gary Kasparov on how bad things are:

Illegal expropriation is becoming institutional policy. The Duma rubberstamps Putin decrees. In the criminal courts they have brought back an old Soviet law allowing the state to confiscate the property of the convicted. Not to be outdone, tax authorities can now seize money and property from corporations or individuals without a court decision.
The article then goes on to complain about how little the European protectors of civil society care:
What is remarkable is how little official reaction there has been to Russia's slide into despotism, while institutions such as the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) and human rights organizations are openly critical of Mr. Putin. It's hard to think of a time and place in which there has been such a disconnect between NGO outrage and governmental silence.
Glen of course thinks this is very bad. He says:
Sigh. Europe has other priorities.
Well how bad could it be? Let us compare it with what goes on in America. Let us start with Glenn's own State of Tennessee.

Here is a case where officers take stuff at the side of the road from motorists suspected of a drug crime. Nothing illegal about that. No need for a conviction in Tennessee. What the officers did that was illegal was to just take the money and avoid doing the paperwork. That is bad. Let's see what the Knoxville News-Sentinel has to say about a stop done to Soddy-Daisy resident Eddie W. Witt:
Officers worked out a deal for Witt to contribute $9,649.25 to the sheriff's office drug fund in exchange for keeping his vehicle and the remaining $10,000. The Department of Safety has no record of the Witt seizure, spokeswoman Beth Denton said.

"That's nothing out of the ordinary," Jones said. "It's done every day." Ordinary or not, the practice doesn't conform to state law, a Tennessee Department of Safety lawyer said.
Nothing out of the ordinary. Russia is not looking so bad.

In another article on the case the Knoxville News-Sentinel had this to say:

"([9th District Attorney General.ed] McCluen ) made it clear he was just getting out of our way and letting us present our case," Beard said. "He could have made (it difficult for us) if he had wanted too."

"My goal and Eddie's goal, was to get ( Aikens and Curtis ) criminally charged," Beard said. "I want to see them in prison, and so does Eddie. We would also like to see the law changed. The forfeiture and seizure laws not only allow law enforcement to shake folks down, they encourage it, and it is perfectly legal."
Perfectly legal. Take that you Russians.

But wait, as the man in the infomercial says, there is more. Let us look at the case of a Doctor writing too many of the wrong kind of drugs to patients supposedly in pain:
A local doctor investigated for his prescription-writing practices has settled a forfeiture case brought against him by the federal government. Dr. Ghassan Haj-Hamed's attorney, Bob Carran, said he hopes the settlement will end any questions about the doctor's practice.
Seems perfectly normal. Why does this even merit the slightest bit of attention. Nothing unusual here at all. Well let's see what the doctor says about why he settled:
The doctor settled the case because he felt compelled to, Carran said. When the government can take away or seize everything someone has even before bringing a criminal charge against him, and then follow up by sending him tax bills he can't pay because the government has his property, it "inevitably puts the person in a position where they have to settle," Carran said. "Dr. Haj-Hamed settled. He's giving up some of the property, but he's getting back enough to pay his tax bills and the debts he incurred while his property was seized."
So much easier than a regular prosecution. More profitable too. I could go on and on. But let me just give you a very short precis of a few more cases.

Here is one about a Colorado Attorney General who was against requiring a conviction before siezing property. There was some worry that he might just pass cases on to the Feds whose rules are very easy and give kickbacks to the locals who bring them fresh meat.

Here is one where the Feds do local policing along the border not to catch border jumpers or contraband coming across the borders but in order to get the proceeds of, ta da, forfeiture. You see protecting the borders is not their most important job. Collecting money is.

Well it seems like a pretty good deal. For the government. I call it a new form of taxation. The roadside tax. You know. Give us all your money or you are walking home. Ha. Ha. Ha.

Another good thing about all this money is that the police become at least a partially self funding agency. If the government which is supposed to control the purse strings of its police doesn't give the police enough money they can just go out and take it. Here is a look at how this functions in Tennessee.

Here is a look at how the siezures range from Chevys to gold teeth. Say. Weren't the Nazis big on gold teeth? Them is some very hungry police. Very efficient. Nothing escapes their eagle eyed attention. Vacuum cleaners should make such a clean sweep.

Well some sanity may be returning. Misdemeanor amounts of drugs can no longer trigger siezures. But wait the twitching has not stopped. One police office complains that this will mean a significant cut in revenue. Truly a man who is in some serious pain. His siezures have been reduced.

Over in Kentucky they gave out plaques and $329,843.60 to the police agencies who had collected $1.95 million. I guess the Feds got the rest.

Well I could go on. But you get the idea. America has set the tone and Russia is not doing anything that "the freest most liberal country in the world" is not doing. Why should any body let alone the Europeans be concerned?

Now I have written to Glenn asking him to bring a spotlight on these cases so we can clean up the root cause, the drug war exception to the Constitution. So far no response. Zero. Nada. All I can say is:

Sigh. Glenn has other priorities.

Monday, February 07, 2005

The Biggest Cover Up of All

Lots of folks are covering the media cover up of Eason Jordan and his remarks made at Davos about American troops supposedly targeting journalists in Iraq.

Here ** Here ** Here ** Here ** Here ** Here ** Here

However that is not the biggest coverup going on in the media.

The biggest cover up is the nature of the drug war in America.

Take this story. A sick man grows medical pot in compliance with California law. In response to that the Federal Government is taking his house and land. Any outrage in the major media? Left/right/bloggers? Silence.

Well all is not completely quiet on the American front. Here is a report on a National Review article published in July of 2004:

It's National Review, the small but revered and still influential conservative journal of political ideas that made the Reagan Revolution possible.

Don't worry, Grandpap. National Review — founded 49 years ago by William F. Buckley Jr. to do intellectual battle with New Deal liberals and soft-on-communism types — has not had its offices taken over by a bunch of pot-headed hippies.

But its cover story, written by drug policy reformer Ethan Nadelmann, makes a strong case to National Review's faithful that our $15-billion-a-year federal war against marijuana is "costly, foolish and destructive" to society.

Calling for the decriminalization of loco weed will shock and annoy many conservatives and Republicans, especially among the anti-drug-crazed warriors in the Bush White House. But it is nothing new.
The article is very important says Rich Lowry despite its author being funded by the current bete noir of the right George Soros:
To prove how important Lowry thinks it was to publish "An End to Marijuana Prohibition," he was not afraid to use Nadelmann, whose Drug Policy Alliance is heavily funded by George Soros, the conservative-bashing billionaire.
You can read the article here.

The difficulty with a piece like this is that it never rises to the level of a concerted effort. Eason Jordan slanders the troops? An outrage. The government is stealing a sick mans house. Business as usual. No big deal. Happens all the time.

Well that is just it, isn't it. It happens all the time. It may be cruel. It is not unusual. So many people have wondered how the Germans could not know of the death camps and the mass murder being done by the German Government. All you have to do is look at what our pot police are doing to America right out in the open.

At its heart is a culture war. Say was't the German destruction of the Eurpean Jews a culture war? I have a bit to say about that here.But don't take my word for it. Let us see what Washington State Lt Governor Brad Owen said to the Washington State Narcotics Investigators Association in their magazine The Educator. He is discussing Dennis Peron who helped pass the California Proposition 215 making medical marijuana legal in California:
If you think Dennis Peron has smoked too much medical marijuana and will never make sense again; hold on. He went on to say, “This is not about marijuana as medicine. This is a cultural war.”

Oddly enough, I couldn’t agree with him more.
So there it is in black and white. It is not about violence, theft, or fraud. It is not about punishing harm to orthers. It is about punishing a culture.

Every one by now knows this. It is well understood. Why the silence? For the same reason there was silence about the Jews. It is not my culture. And if I speak out I could get branded. Oh the brave do speak out. Once or twice a year. But is there a concerted effort? Why no. That might attract unwanted attentiion. Besides who wants people with the power to take your property on suspicion looking in to your affairs. Once or twice a year. The moral duty is done. We spoke out. Our concience is clear. We are good Germans.

You don't believe they can take your property on suspicion? It is done all the time. In fact some police from Tennessee have turned it into a racket:
Officers worked out a deal for Witt to contribute $9,649.25 to the sheriff's office drug fund in exchange for keeping his vehicle and the remaining $10,000. The Department of Safety has no record of the Witt seizure, spokeswoman Beth Denton said.

"That's nothing out of the ordinary," Jones said. "It's done every day." Ordinary or not, the practice doesn't conform to state law, a Tennessee Department of Safety lawyer said.
See this is no big deal. It is done every day. Every day. Every day. It may be cruel but it is not unusual. Not unusual at all.

And no record? Of what the police are up to? Paperwork is just such a bother. Plus it can cause problems down the road. Eliminate the paper work, eliminate the problems. I guess this is all part of some paper work reduction act to make government more efficient. The Germans were very efficient. To prove it they kept records. In America we have a better idea. Evidently it is working except in a few isolated cases. Which will be cleared up shortly.

Wel why stop at robbery on the highway? Why indeed. You think torture in Iraq is a big deal? Well it is no big deal in America. It is standard operating procedure in drug cases.

As long as it is done to the torturable class. Who is in the torturable class? It never changes. Here is what Graham Greene has to say about it in his novel of the cold war "Our Man In Havana":
"The poor in my own country, in any Latin American country. The poor of Central Europe and the Orient. Of course in your welfare states you have no poor, so you are untorturable. In Cuba the police can deal as harshly as they like with emigres from Latin America and the Baltic States, but not with visitors from your country or Scandinavia. It is an instinctive matter on both sides. Catholics are more torturable than Protestants, just as they are more criminal.
Well that is not quite true in America. You see Mr. Greene had not yet heard of the drug war when he wrote the novel. Let us look at a poor man tortured by the police in the state of Tennessee:
In those documents, Atchley details a plot by the former lawmen to force Siler to put his signature on a form they could use in court as proof the convicted drug dealer agreed to let them search his home in the White Oak community in search of drugs and money.
You see he was guilty. All they needed was a confession. Signed and sealed. Saves so much trouble and eliminates the cost of a trial in most cases making justice more efficient. How German.
Atchley lists in the documents disturbing examples of the lengths he alleges these former lawmen were willing to go: threats to electrocute Siler, drown him and break his fingers, beatings and gunplay.

But as shocking as those allegations are, they pale in comparison to the bone-chilling account of Siler's ordeal captured on a secret recording and laid out in a 59-page FBI transcript.

On these pages, it is the ex-officers' own words that tell the tale of a drug war where the rules of engagement are written in Siler's blood.

"We're going to take every dime you have today and if we don't walk out of here with every piece of dope you got and every dime you got, you're (expletive) ass is not going to make it to the jail," Webber warned in the transcript.
Such nice police we have. Protecting America. From the evils of drugs.
"Eugene, let me tell you how this is gonna work, OK?" Webber said in the transcript. "We got here and guess what you did? You ran out the back door. We chased you, OK? You fought with us, OK? We end up fighting with you. You 'bout whupped all our asses, so we had to fight back, OK?"

But neither Siler nor these deputies knew that Siler's wife had a secret weapon that would produce evidence against the five lawmen so strong that McClellan would fire them, a state grand jury would indict four of them and the FBI would come after all of them.
Beaten while resisting arrest. How cliched. How ordinary. It may be cruel but it is not unusual. Every day. In America. While we Americans like good Germans sleep. Not our kind after all. Now you might wonder why Siler's wife was prepared with a tape recorder? Is it possible it had happened this way before. Of course not. It can't happen here.
The lawmen demand information from Siler, why he hasn't been in touch with them, who supplies him drugs and where he has stashed his cash. Webber reminds Siler that he is alone and outnumbered.

"There's nobody knows we're ( expletive ) here," Webber says. "We're doing this on our own."

The transcript indicates that Webber produces a form that, once signed, will state that Siler gave his consent for the officers to search his home. Siler apparently refuses to sign it. The beating resumes.

Moaning, Siler apparently tries to say something to the lawmen, but Webber is not in the mood for conversation.

"You're not ( expletive ) listening," Webber says. "You hear what I told you? I told you not to be talking. ? This ( expletive ) right here, he loves seeing blood. He loves it. He loves seeing blood. You're talking too much. ? He loves ( expletive ) seeing blood. He'll beat your ass and lick it off of you."

Franklin orders another officer to remove Siler's handcuffs so he can sign. Siler, who cannot read or write, asks one of them to read it to him.

Monday refuses.

"Just sign it," Monday orders Siler.

Siler refuses.

"Git ( sic ) up," Monday responds. "Git ( sic ) up. I said get the ( expletive ) up."

Beating sounds follow.
Who writes these scripts? This is straight out of a B grade movie. This isn't Germany it is America. It can't happen here. It can't happen here.
Slaps and blows are again documented on the transcript, with Monday continuing to order Siler to sign.

By now, Siler is crying.

Threats come next. The lawmen tell Siler they will jail his wife and have his children taken away from him. The transcript details more beating sounds, more moaning from Siler, who repeatedly asks to talk to Webber.

"You ain't talking to nobody," Green responds. "You're gonna sign this ( expletive ) paper."

Siler screams. More blows are heard. The lawmen continue to order Siler to sign. He responds with moans and more screams. But there would be no reprieve.
Well it may be cruel. It is not unusual. Anything to get those damn druggies. Anything. Hadn't you heard? There is a war on.

Well why stop at torture? Why indeed. How 'bout a little murder to enliven the mix. Nothing like a murder to improve a story:
In October, a federal jury awarded $2.85 million to the family of Robinson, a 41-year-old gravedigger and caretaker at Baron Hirsch Cemetery.

Testimony convinced jurors that three officers -- Lucas, Bonner and Simcox -- wrongly killed Robinson and tried to cover it up. Jurors found that Berryhill wasn't at fault.

Meanwhile, City Atty. Sara Hall said the city has tentatively reached a $1.1 million settlement with Robinson's son, Jarvis Robinson, who filed the wrongful death lawsuit.

In the 21/2 years since the shooting, the officers were never disciplined and remained on the force even after the jury found the three officers personally liable.
You see it is just like O.J. liability is no proof of a crime. But you know how it is. Some one famous gets away with murder it is the crime of the century. The police get away with one and it may be cruel but it is not unusual. Why? Well drugs were involved don't you know.
Two-and-a-half years after a botched drug raid that led to a deadly shooting, eight Memphis police officers have been suspended.

Narcotics officers Mark Lucas, Albert Bonner, Jeffrey Simcox, Felipe Boyce, Veronica Crutchfield, Juan Gonzalez, Dariet Wallace and Lt. Anthony Berryhill were put on paid leave Friday, police said.
Paid leave? Why that is an even better deal than O.J. got. Why? Well drugs were involved don't you know. These botched drug raids may be cruel. They are hardly unususal. Let us look at the typical tactics of the drug gestapo in America. Gestapo too harsh? Well you read it and decide. Remember this is happening in America. Not Nazi Germany.
"It sounded like a bomb," said Jennifer Dunphy, who lives down the block. "We heard them say, 'If you don't let us in, we will use force,' but we didn't hear any gunshots."

Dunphy said that police officers went door to door about 9 a.m. to tell residents what had happened, Dunphy said.

Dunphy, who has lived on Del Haven Road for the past year, said she was surprised by the raid, as was her mother, Deborah Lupton, a Baltimore resident who hurried over to her daughter's home after hearing about the shooting on the news.

"This stuff doesn't happen here," Lupton said.
The bomb was a flash bang grenade used to stun the people inside a room to make entry easier for police. They typically arrive at 5 am when every one is sleeping. It reduces resistance. Then they smash the doors down throw in the grenade and rush in with guns drawn. Rush indeed. In this case the woman killed pulled a gun from her bedside because she thought her home was under attack. It happens all the time in America in the neighborhoods of those "other people". It doesn't happen here. Why no. And is this kind of raid illegal in America? This is not Nazi Germany after all. Why yes. The Supreme Court says your home is your castle. Except if the police are looking for drugs. And aren't they always looking for drugs to make us safe? It is all for our own good after all.

Here is what a citizen of Baltimore had to say about the raid in a letter published in the Baltimore Sun:
This weekend's police killing of Cheryl Lynn Noel is yet another tragic death attributable to the police decision to clamp down on the drug trade ("Baltimore Co. officer fatally shoots woman during narcotics raid," Jan. 22).

While I am neither a gun owner nor an advocate for the gun lobby, I certainly understand Ms. Noel's decision to own a handgun for personal protection.

Who can blame her for grabbing her handgun when undercover police bombed her home and broke down her bedroom door at 5 a.m.? How many of us would have responded otherwise?

Ms. Noel was a loving wife and mother and a hard-working member of the community, not a drug dealer.
Where is the national outrage? No need to wonder why the good Germans didn't know. In America the news is in the paper every day. We don't want to know.
"Find out just what the people will submit to, and you have found out the exact amount of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them; and these will continue until they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress." Frederick Douglas (1857)
Any one with me on a campaign to end this crap? Any one at all?

Update: 01 June '06 1032z

You can listen to the Siler tape here(mp3) or you can read the transcript here(pdf).

Hat tip: Hammer of Truth.

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You can't say that

It occurs to me that one of my recent posts on the drug war is probably getting killed by spam filters.

It deals with a certain subject (as well as drugs) often censored by the FCC.

So I'm making a re-direct post that will probably get through the filters.

The original topic deals with:

The Istook Amendment. Free speech. The DC Metro. And a certain oh so sensitive subject.

Here is the re-direct. Which I will not be sending if I e-mail this post to you. You can find it at the link below.

For those whose filters are not so tight - my apologies.

Better than Viagra

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Better than Viagra

Change the Climate recently won it's case against the Istook Ammendment forbidding pro pot ads on publically funded transportation.

Here is the anecdote that got the whole thing started:

“That ad actually came from a conversation I had with one of the executives who fund our campaigns,” White recounts. “He told me marijuana works much better than Viagra, that people should really try it.”

Ernest Istook, a Republican congressman from Oklahoma, declined this suggestion, instead labeling the ad “shocking” and pushing legislation that stripped $92,500 in federal appropriations from the Metro "as a warning to other transit agencies."
Better than Viagra.

Sex and Pot win. Istook loses.

Update: 09 April 2009 1233z

And how about the sociology of Viagra? There is a book with a cute title, The Rise of Viagra that goes into details. The subtitle is How the Little Blue Pill Changed Sex in America. I wonder when we will see a comparable book on marijuana?

A sure sign of desperation

So i'm over at DU again - I know It is beyond sickness. It is an addiction. Such a target rich environment.

Well any way. I come across this piece:


We have to do something or we are done for a long time.

That is the way I feel. At every turn they kill us. I know you say don`t listen to Hannity Limbaugh and the others but I believe they are killing us. We can`t get anything out to the media without them piling on one after the other. They not only use the radio but Hannity is going out around the country to help sell the S.S. program. My be we should find out who is paying for this shit. I know you think that he is only preaching to the choir, but I think people who want information will listen to someone who has it. Unfortunately, it`s the republicans.

AirAmerica is OK but we need some overwhelming force to go up against these assholes. They lie and use partial quotes in their sound bites to destroy us and no is fighting back. We have no message to get out. No alternative plans. Only obstruction which is OK but we need an answer also.

We know their goal is to have this country a one party power and they will do it if we keep fucking around. We as a party better get our shit together or we are done. Quit the pissing and moaning and get organized. Until there are some solid responses with plans in them they will beat our asses like a step child. Hannity and the rest of them will continue to laugh at use until we find someone who can get a voice out in allot of radio stations and say Hannity, your a fucking lier, and here is proof. That is my rant. Thank you.

A sure sign of desperation

I think Bush has read DeSoto and they have not. Bush is appealing to human's natural desire for property. They do not understand that he is appealing to a much deeper level than the Democrats can deal with. Their first problem is that a large part of the left doesn't believe in private property.

Every one wants to get back something from their "investment" in government. In effect he has designed a bigger give away, with the long term effect of increasing wealth. Which will over time allow the government tax and spend program to be phased out.

This man is a bigger political genius than FDR.

Watch out for the French label

Well I'm over at DU again (I know, its a sickness) and guess what? They have found some subversive information on a clothing care label in French. Damn.

Here is a translation of the label:

Wash with warm water.
Use mild soap.
Dry Flat.
Do not use bleach.
Do not dry in the dryer.
Do not iron.
We are sorry our president is an idiot.
We did not vote for him.

A picture of the original French can be found at the above link. Given my rusty French it looks like a pretty fair translation. Note that the English version on the tag omits the last two lines.

Here is a link to the company that made the label. They claim it refered to the president of their company. Who can say? They have a blog. You can vent here or go there.

I think they did it to get a buzz. They have a T-shirt with the label writ large.

Well, any publicity is good publicity as long as you get the link right.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Alan Keyes' Daughter - Thrown out of the house

Alan ran for Senator against Barak Obama in Illinois. Am I ever glad I voted against this miserable excuse for a human. What is it about the oh so religious that they can hate their own children? I suppose it is a step up from the murders Arabs do when their daughters "humiliate" them. Still. It seems rather unChristian to me. But, what do I know? I'm Jewish.

Well now that that is off my chest, let us look into the details. BTW I found the initial item at the DU. I was trolling for stuff to use against the Dems and found this. Kind of makes me ashamed to be associated with some Republicans. Did I mention I voted against Keyes?

Well here at an almost unreadable site is the daughter's side of the story. If it is true. Could be a hoax for all I know. But it does sound in character for Mr. Keyes.

Well any way let me quote the whole thing so it is easier to read:

I tried to love you and I failed...

Well, it's happened. Finally and officially.

A couple days ago I got my official two-week warning that I have to be out of this apartment; so finally for real I'm getting cut off. I got no severance or anything like that from my sudden termination of employment (don't I have freedom of speech? the right to protest Bush without losing my job? Hehe... most people would think that working under a parent would be security but for me it's quite the opposite.) and so I definitely don't have anywhere near enough cash to find a new apartment; not even one room rented from someone anywhere. I've been searching craigslist but even places where I'd have enough to pay the first month's rent on some room I never have enough for the deposit as well, so so far I've had no luck at all finding a new home, since shelter requires money. Sad boo.

After all the arguments and tension over the years, I always hoped it would never actually get to this point, although I suppose given our vastly divergent political beliefs it was inevitable.

My A n j u l s say no, no, it was not inevitable at all and this should never have happened. They say that parents have some modicum of responsibility to their kids - at least so far as making sure they are not homeless and starving - especially if their kids have done nothing aside from thinking for themselves. They say that different political beliefs should not lead to parents kicking kids out of the house. They say most parents would be thrilled to have a child who doesn't smoke, have sex, do drugs, hardly drinks; more thrilled to have a child who additionally does well in school, is active on all sorts of extracurriculars, gets good grades, gets into the Ivy League; even more thrilled to have a child who on top of that goes regularly to church, spends free time mentoring kids and serving food to homeless people; even more thrilled to have a child to on top of that is not only politically aware but actively going out to try and fight for the causes she believes in, considering the political apathy of most teenagers. They say that if all the above didn't cause parents to be thanking God every day for the child they were blessed with, that they certainly would be after the child puts off college for a year (wait, no, for ANOTHER year, since said child already deferred one year to go teach in India) to go support her father in his work. They say that I'm a good daughter, that I changed around my whole plans just because I thought it would be nicer for my dad if after the end of working all the time on the campaign trail he could come back to someone who loves him rather than an empty house. They say that it should be a source of pride, not of shame, for my parents that I'm so passionate about my beliefs, and work for what I believe in; even if they are not the beliefs my parents hold. They say that the only possible cause for shame anywhere in the whole situation is in the fact that after all this I am being cut off, jobless, soon to be homeless, and that although I have intelligence and motivation I won't be able to go to Brown after all because I have no money.

So my Anjuls say.

My parents say otherwise.

{{--{spinning}--{{Lostprophets - Last Train Home}}--{spinning}--}}
Posted 1/30/2005 at 2:33 AM
Well if she is going to have to work for a living she will have to improve her spelling. Still if all this is true it just totally sux. (bad spelling to get into the spirit).

Oliver Willis has a few things to say and some links I have cribbed.

Here is a Feb. 14th rally featuring among others - Maya Marcel Keyes. Here is the blurb for her segment of the rally:
March to Lawyer’s Mall (in front of the State House) for the rally, featuring community leaders, Judy Shepard, and Maya Marcel Keyes, the self-described queer activist who is also daughter of ultra-conservative Alan Keyes, whose recent campaign for senator from Illinois included his calling Mary Cheney a “hedonist.” Maya group up in Montgomery County and will certainly have some interesting things to say about living with someone who is so outspoken in his opposition to gay rights.
Did I mention I voted for Bush and Obama?

Well I suppose this will be a great service to the "family values" crowd.

I wonder if Keyes' objection was to her sexual orientation or her politics? I wonder if Dick Cheney will have anything to say about this?


Welcome Roger Simon readers.

Gary North

I was reading over at Reason about Gary North. I subscribe to a newsletter he writes about economics. Or at least the newsletter goes out under his name.

The Reason article describes Gary and his relationship to "libertarianism" thusly:

But a second part of the story, of particular interest to readers of this magazine, is the degree to which Reconstructionists have gained prominence in libertarian causes, ranging from hard-money economics to the defense of home schooling. "Christian economist" Gary North, Rushdoony's son-in-law and star polemicist of the Reconstructionist movement, is widely cited as a spokesman for free markets, if not exactly free minds; he even served for a brief time on the House staff of Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), the Libertarian Party presidential nominee in 1988, when Paul was a member of Congress in the '70s. For his part, Rushdoony has blandly described himself to the press as a critic of "statism" and even as a "Christian libertarian." Say what?

An outgrowth of Calvinism, modern Reconstructionism can be traced to Rushdoony's 1973 magnum opus, Institutes of Biblical Law. (Many leading Reconstructionists emerged from conservative Presbyterianism, but as with so much of today's religious ferment, the movement cuts across denominational lines.) Not one to pursue a high public profile, Rushdoony has set up his Chalcedon Institute in off-the-beaten-path Vallecito, California, while North runs his Institute for Christian Economics out of Tyler, Texas.
Now that doesn't seem so bad. But wait there is more:
As a "post-millennialist" school of thought, Reconstructionism holds that believers should work toward achieving God's kingdom on earth in the here and now, rather than expect its advent only after a second coming of Christ. Some are in a bit of a hurry about it, too. "World conquest," proclaims George Grant, in what by Reconstructionist standards is not an especially breathless formulation. "It is dominion we are after. Not just a voice... not just influence...not just equal time. It is dominion we are after."
Well lots of people want power and control, but not just over the material world. Some want power and control over people. There may be some problems. Maybe more than some.
Among other ideas Reconstructionists have helped popularize is that state neutrality on the subject of religion is meaningless. Any legal order is bound to "establish" one religious order or another, the argument runs, and the only question is whose. Put the question that way, and watch your polemical troubles disappear. If we're getting a religious establishment anyway, why not mine?

"The Christian goal for the world," Recon theologian David Chilton has explained, is "the universal development of Biblical theocratic republics." Scripturally based law would be enforced by the state with a stern rod in these republics. And not just any scriptural law, either, but a hardline-originalist version of Old Testament law--the point at which even most fundamentalists agree things start to get "scary." American evangelicals have tended to hold that the bloodthirsty pre-Talmudic Mosaic code, with its quick resort to capital punishment, its flogging and stoning and countenancing of slavery, was mostly if not entirely superseded by the milder precepts of the New Testament (the "dispensationalist" view, as it's called). Not so, say the Reconstructionists. They reckon only a relative few dietary and ritualistic observances were overthrown.

So when Exodus 21:15-17 prescribes that cursing or striking a parent is to be punished by execution, that's fine with Gary North. "When people curse their parents, it unquestionably is a capital crime," he writes. "The integrity of the family must be maintained by the threat of death." Likewise with blasphemy, dealt with summarily in Leviticus 24:16: "And he that blasphemeth the name of the Lord, he shall surely be put to death, and all the congregation shall certainly stone him."
Say have these guys been taking notes from the Taliban? Sure looks like it.

Well I wrote a letter back to the newsletter guys who are very vocally anti-Bush and anti-war. Here is what I had to say:
I just read a Reason article on Gary North. To tell the truth I had no idea about his background. I was attracted to his "libertarian" economic ideas.

Now based on his agenda as explained in Reason I do not get why you guys are anti-war.

Bush conquers the world. Then you conquer America.

I don't see why as long as your plans are so grandiose you don't shoot the moon.

I mean Bush is putting the world within your grasp. All you have to do is reach out a little farther for the gold ring.

BTW how do you intend to prevent a religious war such as those that convulsed Europe in the 1600s? Suppose the Pope doesn't agree with your plan. Those memories were still fresh when the 1st Amdmt. was written. How soon we forget.

Well nothing like a good fight I always say.

BTW any dispensation for Jews?

I'm just askin'. I'm trying to figure out which side to back. Gary's or the Pope's. Normally I'd side with the humanists but they don't know anything about guns. No good in a fight.
Well I'm now thinking to myself:

By claiming they need the authority of government to institute their regime they are saying that their ideas can't compete.

No surprise there.

Via Instapundit.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Your alliances and allies are crumbling

My friend Faust has been saying that the supporters of the status quo on the left and in the Muslim world are declining in relevance. He says things are going to get harder for the left and the supporters of dictators.

One of the leftys - amusedtodeath - replies that things are going to get easier for him.

My response:

Having more events to criticize or making the criticism stick?

I 'm betting more of the former and less of the latter.


Killed 5, Wounded 8, and burned their cars.

Get a clue kid.

These people are standing up for themselves and earning their self respect. You know Faust, Yolee, myself and a number of others here (Maon, Muslims for Israel etc) admire that kind of behavior.

Men no longer willing to live in fear.

Who planted the seeds that turned into Iraqi courage? You amused by death?

Who has helped them more? The culturally sensitive amused? Or the culturally insensitive Marines?

The brutal American right or the progressive multicultural left?

You're a loser kid. Time to change sides. My criticism is taken seriously because I am on side. Yours is just laughed out the door.

The Dems in America are totally tone deaf. They are electing anti-war Dean to be their leader. That ought to cost them at least 5 points in the polls. What with Iraqi elections and all.

Then add in the fear expressed on the lefty show 60 Minutes Wednesday of Iranian nukes. The main reporter on the story asked why we didn't just go into Iran and take them. A lefty, amused.

Your alliances and allies are crumbling.

I think Faust is right. In a year it will be just you howling into the wind. And maybe not even you.

Back in September, I think it was, I wrote Faust a note saying how much I enjoyed his writing. A rare pleasure. He told me he was in need of reinforcements as he was feeling lonely against all the brave supporters of the oh so brave throat slitters.

Like any good Navy man who hears of a Marine in trouble I signed up at once.

And look at what we have now. A very good crew of commenters burning your asses with words day and night. 24/7.

Faust raised the flag and said follow me. And here we are. I'd follow that man to hell if he said it was necessary.

And your side Amused? Dwindling. Weak. Reduced to incoherence.

You say you are against the throat slitters. And against the Americans. You have at last figured out who is wrong. In time you may figure out who is right. The ground you can honorably hold is getting smaller.

Enjoy your enfebled grip while you still have some strength left. It won't last.

It can't be done

I'm involved in a little discussion of the Iranian situation over at Regime Change Iran. A lot of the discussion revolves around the likely hood and the capability of armed intervention. Let's take a look at a sign post on the likelyhood issue first.

You must have missed 60 Minutes last night. They did a bit on nuclear materials around the world. The report focused on Iran. The reporter - a lefty - asked why the US didn't just go around with its military forces and collect the stuff.

I do not think military action is off the table.
At this point some people go into the "it can't be done mode, blah, blah,blah,". I reply as follows:
Will some one please tell my why taking Iran militarily is not possible?

Didn't we hear the same about Afghanistan? Iraq was going to be a quagmire and the city problem was going to cost tremendous casualties. Then it happens and the line is: "no one can stand up to the strongest military in the world". Actually the truth is a little more complicated but not by much: "no one can stand up to the strongest and smartest military in the world".

Why strike only at nuclear facilities even if those are your ultimate target? Maybe all the US has to do is to strike the police stations. A popular uprising then does the rest.

Think outside the box. The US military does.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Counter Measures

I have been following the Supreme Court case that says that dog sniffs are not illegal searches.

Richard Cowan. reports on this story.

He also reports that dogs do not actually alert to marijuana. They alert to something called caryophyllene oxide. Which is available from Sigma-Aldrich a supplier of fine organic chemicals.

A report Richard quotes says that this chemical is produced by oxidised hops and is an additive in cigarettes. Richard comments:

Finally, one may wonder how could a search take place after what Stevens called “a well-trained narcotics-detection dog” had alerted on the vehicle? Well, it seems that the dogs are often wrong. Unless the dog has a high degree of accuracy, the police might as well claim that a magic frog told them to search the vehicle. Expect to see many more challenges to the accuracy of the dogs.
In fact Justice Souter brought up this very point in his dissent which Richard quotes.

Souter says the decision in this case depends on the fact that the dogs are infallible. Thus only illegal goods would cause an alert. Well we already know this isn't true. So we have another Fourth Amemdment Drug War Exception built on sand.

So what else is new?

The reporter lied - CNN slept

Here is a story about a shooting that didn't happen that CNN didn't cover.

Sound confusing?

Read the story. Telling the truth on this one would have ruined the "narrative".

CNN did originally report on the death. Unfortunately they didn't report that the Israelis may have lied. They did report that the "killing" may have been intentional. Why isn't it news? Well proving the Israelis lied would have ruined the narrative.

Of course CNN had some critics on this. One of the reporters of the story [Dec 30,04 report] admitted he lied. Of course this isn't news. Especially if it would ruin the narrative.

These folks are calling the television organization that originally reported the story a preview of what a "French CNN" might be like. Now there is a low blow. Could be true.

How is that for a narrative?

Is pot legal in Canada?

There have been an ongoing number of Constitutional challenges to the marijuana laws in Canada. Richard Cowan of Marijuana News reports:

The prohibitionists may not realize it yet, but this challenge is a mortal threat to cannabis prohibition. If the courts rule that the laws are invalid, the Canadian government would certainly try to rush through a new law, probably along the lines of the phony decrim bill currently tabled in the House, but it is extremely doubtful that it would pass in the Senate in its present form, and nothing would happen in the Senate for several months, at the soonest.
In fact there has been a dance going on in Canadian Courts. First the laws were declared invalid and then the Court re-instated them. Judge made law? Evidently it is not just a USA problem.
Have the laws against marijuana already fallen? In a motion filed in BC Supreme Court and scheduled today to be heard on March 3rd, Michele Kubby will ask the court a simple question: "On what authority can any court in Canada enact a law so as to replace a law that has officially been declared unconstitutional and of no force and effect?"

According to documents filed with her motion, Mrs. Kubby is arguing that the Canadian government has already agreed in Parker and other cases that the laws against cannabis have fallen, but insists that the new medical cannabis regulations "fix" the unconstitutional laws against cannabis. In fact, the Crown has dismissed over 4000 cases as a result of the Parker decision. Mrs. Kubby asserts that in the absence of a valid law prohibiting the possession of marihuana, the various "fixes" of the Medical Marihuana Access Regulations promulgated in 2001-2003 & 2004 are null, void and without underpinning.
Marijuana news has more with a whole series of links to previous court documents on the subject.

BTW the Michelle Kubby mentioned in the article is a fugitive from American injustice. Her husband Steve ran for Governor of California on the Libertarian ticket in 1998. I think his prosecution was politically motivated.

Go read the whole thing.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

"I think it's a scream," Mr. Bond said.

From Here

Via: The Link Master.


And for those of you wondering: I couldn't help myself.


Recent reports from Israel in a Ma'ariv article (excerpts and further commentary can be read here) indicate that the Israeli Army has an ongoing problem in even its most elite units. In a war against guerilla operations, as in fact the Palestinian operations against Israeli civilians are, civilians take the brunt of the counter offensive. The guerillas depend on this counter reaction to maintain sympathy for their cause among the general population in which they hide. In fact the crack down on civilians is one of the desired results of guerilla operations from at least the time of the Spanish guerilla operations against the troops of Napoleon.

This necessity for cracking down on the civilians has caused a lot of pain and suffering among even the elite of the Israeli soldiers. No doubt causing the opposing soldiers to lose their humanity is also one of the desired results of guerilla operations. As the opposing soldiers lose their humanity once they are removed from the battle situations they lose their self respect. On the other side of the coin, as chronicled by B.H.L.Hart in his book "Strategy", the countries where guerilla operations by outlaw segments of the population are extensive become ungovernable for long periods of time after the war. This is because guerrillas are under no command and are recruited mainly from outlaw segments of the population. In fact Spain is still suffering from the results of the fighting of the wars against Napoleon by guerilla operations. So the aftermath of the War in Israel is likely to be bad for all concerned for at least decades to come, no matter who wins.

The Ma'ariv article, though, is concerned not with the long term aftermath but the immediate hurt of the Israeli soldiers. The hurt of "shell shock". The hurt of doing unspeakable things to fellow humans in order to fight a war. In America today we have a name for this condition. We call it PTSD and we know that it affects not only soldiers but victims of rape and severe child abuse among others. We also know that one of the symptoms of this problem is substance abuse. People will take anything to numb the pain. Heroin, alcohol, pot, MDMA, LSD. Any thing in the hope of relief.

Israeli soldiers visiting Thailand often come back with severe cases of heroin abuse. Other soldiers take other drugs in an effort to clear their minds of distressing memories. So many have these problems that there is a village in Israel specifically designed to help those suffering from the effects of war. That Village is called Izun. Ma'ariv stated "Israeli army reserve lieutenant-colonel Omri Frish, a social worker by training, organized the village. ' We were staggered by the number of calls we got. We got more then 900 calls from parents with very painful stories of sons becoming drug addicts, trying to commit suicide and generally emotionally distressed.' "

America has embarked on a war which I hope will free the suffering citizens of Iraq from the terror of Saddam Hussein. But, whatever happens, we know that we are going to get back a lot of soldiers wounded in the mind as well as the body. After every war we have the stereotypical stories of the returned soldiers becoming addicted to alcohol and/or illegal drugs. We need to look on these addictions as symptoms of deeper problems not their causes. We need to heal these men and women who fought in our name, not discard or persecute them because of their symptoms.

In fact, we need to treat all so called "victims of addiction" as the victims of pain they actually are.

If the current war teaches us nothing else it will have gone a very long way towards the healing of America and, in addition, the world. Then those who have died on either side of the battle will not have died in vain

The Pain Enforcement Administration

America's Puritan heritage is described by H.L. Mencken as a person who is constantly worried that somewhere, sometime, someone might be having a good time. This is the fundamental nature of our government morality bureau: the Drug Enforcement Administration. As a morality bureau it does not enforce the taking of drugs, but merely the kind of drugs that can be taken, by whom, when, and in what amounts.

If you have been following my previous columns you know that people take drugs to relieve pain. They take the kind of drug and amount that allows them to function given their level of pain. This is true of legal and illegal drugs. We know that opiate patients in hospitals have very little problem giving up opiates when their pain is gone. We know that given the chance to self regulate opiate delivery that people take no more than is necessary to relieve their pain. This is as true of illegal drugs as it is of legal drugs. Drugs do not cause drug taking. Pain causes drug taking.

There are no addicts. Only people in pain. What we call addiction is self medication for undiagnosed pain such as PTSD or other severe emotional or physical trauma. Cure the pain and the desire for the drugs vanishes. This is true not only of drug addicts but also alcohol addicts and food addicts as well. In fact it is my belief that it is true of all so called addictions. This is made quite clear by the title of the popular book on food addictions called "It's Not What You Eat, But What's Eating You" by Jack Schwartz.

What does all this have to do with the DEA? It is quite simple. The purpose of the DEA is the enforcement of pain. Or as they would prefer the prevention of the use of drugs to help people feel better. They make this quite clear in the recent series of prosecutions of doctors who treat patients with intractable pain. A case in point is Dr. Marlou Davis a pain management specialist in Missouri who was recently arrested for prescribing "excessive" doses of opiods to his patients despite the fact that the original case was dropped in October of 2000. Another case is that of Doctor William E. Hurwitz of Northern Virginia who had his clinic shut down by the DEA for prescribing "excessive" amounts of OxyContin. Dr. Hurwitz writes "While spokesmen for the DEA give lip service to the idea of a balanced enforcement policy that preserves the access of deserving patients to needed medications, these aggressive and ill informed prosecutions convey a message of intimidation to doctors and of indifference to the plight of patients in pain." You can read the rest of the Doctor's message to his patients. The Doctor also has given a talk on "The Police State of Medicine".

America is a Judeo-Christian nation culturally, dedicated to the relief of suffering. We have direct proof of this in recent surveys about the acceptance of medical marijuana. Eighty percent of the American people believe that is OK to use marijuana for the relief of suffering in medical situations, despite the efforts of Federal and State law enforcement bodies to discourage this point of view.

I think it is time to prevail on our law makers to put an end to the Pain Enforcement Administration other wise known as the DEA. It is time to stop making criminals out of people in pain and the doctors who treat them.

Write your Senators and Congress persons and let them know how you feel. The pain you relieve may one day be your own. Try one of these Web Sites for contact information:

U.S. House of Representatives Write Your Representative Service

Contact Senators

Contacting Congress (& Other US Policymakers)

The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws

Police and PTSD

All too many police officers are victims of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. PTSD. This disorder is a response to traumatic stress. Seeing victims of violence. Having to kill some one in the line of duty. Being hurt in the line of duty. Seeing the death of a child.

This disorder was first identified as "shell shock" and soldiers were it's first identified victims. As time has gone on and further work has been done in the field; we have learned more. In the aftermath of the Viet Nam War we learned more about "shell shock" and stated calling it PTSD. With more research we found that soldiers were not it's only victims. We found out that police and firemen also "got" PTSD. Then we found that victims of severe child abuse and childhood sexual assault also got PTSD.

Now we know even more. The drunken cop who abuses his wife is a regular stereotype. Drinking alcohol to numb the pain and taking your pain out on those close to you are two recognized symptoms of PTSD. Alcoholism may not be a "disease" but a response to pain.

In fact we now know even more. Police in some jurisdictions are being trained to look for signs of PTSD in the populace they police in order to better help keep the peace. Some markers that stand out in children are abuse of legal and illegal drugs. Cocaine. Alcohol. Heroin. Pot.

The Western New York Rural Mental Health Partnership advises police that " 'self medication' with alcohol or illegal drugs is a common complication found in adolescents with mental health problems."

The Massachusetts Department of Mental Health says "Youths who suffer from PTSD frequently use alcohol or other drugs to 'self-medicate' in an attempt to dull painful memories or psychological torment."

Police in the above mentioned jurisdictions are given booklets with the above guidelines in them. The only thing left out of the guides is that what afflicts children can also afflict adults. In fact not even the police are immune.

Just as we should have compassion for children with PTSD problems so we should also have compassion for the police and all other adults whose pain is still all too real. Running a steam roller over those already hit by a truck does not live up to the American ideal of justice or compassion.

An online health guide to PTSD advises:

"It is important to be gentle on yourself and to give yourself time to heal."

Just as it is true of the individual so it also ought to be true of society in general. Once we see that what we have been doing for so long is inappropriate we will need to change our behavior at once. After changing our ways we are also going to need time to heal. Because hurting those who didn't deserve it is a stressor. And stress can lead to PTSD.

Why We Must Not End Prohibition

This came out about 16 July 2003 on Winds of Change and about the same Time on Sierra Times and The Rock River Times (dead trees).


"The Latin American drug cartels have stretched their tentacles much deeper into our lives than most people believe. It's possible they are calling the shots at all levels of government."
- William Colby, former CIA Director, 1995

I know that enforcing prohibition sounds just like the opposite of what I have been preaching for years in my personal life, and for the last year in my blog posts and writings. There is a very sound reason for this new attitude. It is a very old reason: money. If we end the drug war, a lot of people whose livelihoods depend on it will get hurt. You might even be one of them...

I'm not talking your average street level drug dealer here, or the police officer who might not find a job because of reduced crime. I'm not even talking about the lawyers who will be looking for a new set of clients when the million or so people arrested for drug possession every year become rather ordinary citizens again.

I'm talking about your mother or grandmother whose stocks will drop like rocks when drug money no longer supports the stock market. Let us do what Deep Throat suggested and follow the money. The kind of money we are talking about is not your billion here and hundred million there. I'm talking big money. A trillion dollars a year. Or more. This is not your Cayman Island Bank type money or even Swiss Bank type money. This requires some place to dump the money where it won't be noticed. The biggest money laundering island in the world. Manhattan.

Why are stocks still selling at outrageous multiples despite a recession? Boom or bust the hot money has to go somewhere. The US of A has two things the hot money people desire, a stable currency and the ability to enforce its laws around the world. Think of what the hot money means to the American economy. A lot of ill thought out projects that turn out to be resource wasters get funded. But to the hot money people a decline of fifty percent means they still have laundered half their money. What a disaster for an honest business. What a great deal for hot money.

But America is addicted to this hot money. The ability to tolerate so much failure means America has to advance economically faster than any where else because we get efficient faster. This is one great American advantage over the rest of the world. We can let go of our failures. This is what bankruptcies and hot money do for the economy.

So we have this great engine for economic progress but it is fueled at its core by narco dollars. Do we root out the drug business by legalizing all drugs (with certain ones still under a doctors supervision) or do we keep prohibition with all its attendant miseries and racism going so our stock market and economic system doesn't collapse? Does the money mean more to us than doing the right thing? Is our world power so important that we need to keep this vicious game going? Would giving up this game hurt our enemies more than it would hurt us?

I first got turned on to these questions by reading a series of articles written by Catherine Austin Fitts. She is a former Assistant Secretary of the Federal Housing Commissioner under Bush 1, a former managing director and member of the board of directors of Dillon Read & Co, Inc. She is currently the President of an investment advisory firm Solari, Inc. The articles can be read here:

1. Narco Dollars 1
2. Narco Dollars 2
3. Narco Dollars 3

This week's saying: If the 1920s plus the 1990s teaches one thing it is this: "It's not the drugs stupid, its the prohibition." If the 2000s teach us nothing else, they will teach us: "Its not the drugs stupid, its the money."

Maybe it's time to start asking politicians:

"Do you support drug prohibition because it finances criminals at home, or because it finances terrorists abroad?"

This week's politician:

Senator Arlen Specter (Rep.)
PA Tel: 202-224-4254
fax: 202-228-1229

he also has an obnoxious web form instead of an e-mail.

Cross Posted at Classical Values

Get ready for global cooling

AP is reporting that two volcanos is Alaska seem to be getting ready to blow. This is code yellow folks.

ANCHORAGE (AP) - Scientists continue to monitor two volcanoes that the Alaska Volcano Observatory says could send dangerous ash into the air at any time.

Mount Spurr, 80 miles west of Anchorage across Cook Inlet, shook itself from a 12-year sleep in early July and has been in Code Yellow status ever since, with daily small earthquakes.

Code Yellow indicates an eruption is possible and could occur with no warning, according to the Alaska Volcano Observatory.
I wonder if volcanic action is included in the climate models that are predicting global warming. Vocanos spew a LOT of CO2. They also put a lot of ash in the atmosphere. Krakatoa blew in 1883. Global temperatures dropped 1.2 deg. C a year after the eruption and did not return to normal until 1888.

The AP report continues with this:
Mount Veniaminof, about 500 miles southwest of Anchorage on the Alaska Peninsula, changed from Code Green, or ``dormant,'' to Code Yellow about Jan. 1. On Jan. 10, the observatory upgraded its activity to Code Orange, indicating the volcano is ``in eruption.''

Ash plumes from Veniaminof can be seen on sunny days and have been photographed from planes. Even when clouds obscure the summit, seismic records indicate the eruption is continuing, said John Power, a geophysicist at the observatory.
The eruption may not have a lot of effect on the climate. But it could. I think what this shows is that we know a lot less about what actually drives the cilmate than we are lead to believe.

Certainly not enough to cripple the world's economy based on what amounts to speculation.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

KOS can't read

KOS is quoting this GAO Report [pdf] on the long term trends in America.

Here is a little snip from the report that KOS has extracted:

As long-term budget simulations by GAO, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), and others show, over the long term we face a large and growing structural deficit due primarily to known demographic trends and rising health care costs.
Now of course none of this is unexpected. The demographic and health care trends were predicted over a decade ago. So what does KOS (rhymes with hoss) have to say about this? He changes the subject.
This wasn't the case last time we had a Democratic president. We had a nation on sound fiscal footing, running hundreds of billions of dollars in surpluses, paying down debt. Bush has given us trillions in debt, deficits as far as the eye can see, costly tax cuts, an expensive elective war, and a domestic agenda that promises nothing more than additional red ink.
Now I will admit Bush is a big spender. But he has had a few problems along the way like 9/11. And really our debt burden as a % of GDP is lower than France, Germany, or Canada! But the deal is this report isn't discussing current problems. It is discussing the long term trends. Mainly caused by the aging and retirement of the boomers (who? moi?). Now what I want to know is how did Bush significantly change the demographics of the nation when he got into office? Man that guy is more powerful than I ever imagined. At least in KOS's mind.

Well KOS has struck another blow for the Absence of Reality Community. Some days I really wonder what these people are thinking. Other days I'd rather not.