All Rights Reserved © 2004 Thomas W. Day
The current federal administration and Minnesota's state governor and big fans of Reagan's War on Drugs. The argument seems to be that any drug that doesn't make a drug company exec (political contributor) rich causes irreparable damage to society. Once upon a time, I thought the conservatives' anti-drug case was based on the conservative terror that somewhere someone might be having fun. Not anymore. As long as the people having fun are rich, old, white and fat, we're likely to promote their case with an advertising campaign.
Today it's obvious that money is the core to the War on Drugs. Recreational drugs are the hot sellers in several drug companies' product lines. If Viagra isn't a free-from-social-value recreational drug, marijuana has to be one of the most beneficial medicines ever discovered. Pfizer's Viagra (and it's recreational buddies Celextra, Lilly's Cialis, Senetek's Invicorp, Bayer's Levitra, Propecia, Alprostadil, Uprima, and the never ending, constantly growing list of male erectile enhancement drugs) have only one function; to help old fat white men get a hard-on so that they can engage in recreational sex. If that isn't a meaningless recreational drug, I can't imagine what kind of definition you would use for "recreational drugs." No activity on this planet could be much less critical to the quality of life on this planet than old fat white guys wallowing on top of their trophy wives.
It's interesting that the Bushies' argument to protect the income of their drug peddler buddies isn't doing the job they claim it will do. All those profits were supposed to inspire drug companies to create more lifesaving drugs, but new drugs are not happening at the speed that they were developed before the current medicine=money culture. In fact, the creation of new drugs is slowly coming to a halt in the US. After an incredibly slow start, European medical-use drug development is cranking up in capacity and quality. In a few years, American drug companies are going to want to have their new "intellectual property" laws defanged so that they can steal the patented work of their European competitors.
A few years later, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, and Korea will join the competition. Those nations are already providing much of the US manufacturing capacity. Our lazy, greedy executive class gave away the computer business by "teaching" those countries how to manufacturer, design, and market personal computers. Those same fools are repeating their mismanagement foolishness with drugs. The upside is, since US manufacturers have dedicated themselves to creating and selling recreational drugs, we have to hope that the rest of the world will take up their slack and develop drugs for medical purposes.
In the meantime, American dope peddlers are pumping out recreational sex drugs, spending millions on television ads promoting their dope, and spending millions bribing docs and politicians to keep the pipeline open between their dope-peddling docs and the dope-abusing, impotent, fat, old white men. You have to suspect that the Mafia is getting jealous. In the past, when the Mob gets jealous they get political and violent (as if there is a difference). I wonder if we're about to be entertained by gang wars between drug companies and street dope peddlers? That would be fun.
What's the beef about recreational drugs? Don't ask me. I dislike all of our "victimless crime" laws. If people want to dope themselves into oblivion, even death, as long as they don't take anyone else down with them, I could care less. Life is hard, humans are grossly over-represented in the world's animal population, resources are dwindling, and you could make about 4 billion arguments as to why people should be allowed to dope themselves into oblivion. The world economy is such a mess that most people have two choices, sell themselves to the highest bidder or die. Prostitution is only a crime when a rich man doesn't make a profit from it. Employees are prostituting themselves to the employers every day. Men and women have been sacrificing their health and time to employers for hundreds of years but nobody seems to think that is a moral crime. It's only a crime when someone makes the sale without an employer middleman taking most of the profit. The ultimate prostitute is a soldier. Not only does a soldier offer his own life for money, but he'll take other, often innocent, lives for the same hard cash. But that well populated with victims occupation is often honored in our cultures. In our current "war," which is waged to steal the oil resources of North Africa, we're forcing National Guard members (who, mostly, got into the guard as a way to get to play with expensive toys, pretending to be soldiers, for extra cash, as a pointless part-time job) to kill and die for money. A little recreational drug use, in comparison to that activity, has to be qualified as harmless.
My complaint about the Viagra-strain of recreational drugs is the inconsistency displayed by a culture that allows its ruling class legal access to recreational drugs and turns violent when the working class expects the same courtesy. The rich can drink and drive without expecting serious consequences when they kill bystanders. They can have meaningless―and conceptually disgusting―old man sex and have their dope choices sanctified by national televised advertising campaigns. If someone grows a single marijuana plant in his backyard, federal and state SWAT teams will descend from black, noiseless helicopters to burn the crop, confiscate the grower's property, and imprison everyone in the neighborhood who might have "profited" by the illegal substance. If we actually set out to create an irrational society with an incomprehensible Through the Looking Glass legal system, we couldn't have done a better job.