Canvassing for Opinion - aka "Blairs Brain on Cannabis"

IMHO prohibition sentiment requires inherent addiction to status quo, an incapacity to visualise beyond the here and now and a desperate desire to know others might feel the same... Reform is not revolutionary, rather it is evolutionary. Having survived banging your head against a brick wall the evolutionist relishes having stopped. / Blair

Monday, November 08, 2004

Recidivist Rhetoric and the Race Card

Today's Prison Report is so much hubris and rhetoric. But I thank RadioNZ for obtaining it.

There are barriers to openly discussing what is the engine behind the burgeoning prison industrial complex.

The report perpetuates the systemic social conditions that reward and foster 'our worst fears' so evident in sensible sentencing and the '99' referendum.

However, this matrix of dysfunction and this report serves to preserve itself by distracting the observer with everything but what is broken. This prison report doesn't even allude to the recidivist 'drug problem' or the contribution 'drugs' make to incarceration budgets. Drug issues are either a problem or they are not.

There is acute selective myopia when it comes to evaluating prohibition's contribution to this endless social disharmony.

"Drug War" conventions have countries obliged to pursue growers, dealers and users in an expensive attempt to hold back an unstoppable tide. The drug war, a metaphor for a war on people, does this by 'othering'. The reports highlights "othering', in this case it is 'them - those Maori's.."

History shows such labeling to be a beguiling feature of the amoral 'divide and rule' agenda behind AmeriKKKa's UN endorsed anti-drug programmes. Prohibition has bred crime on an unimaginable global scale. It is a TRILLION DOLLAR industry incentivising 'crime', perversely circular in that we must have 'crime' in order to maintain prohibition.

Bravely, most countries pretend that they are winning 'against crime' - when it is painfully obvious there are only losers. New Zealand is one such case.

When the Ministry of Justice can explain why NZ is number One in the OECD for cannabis consumption and why young Maori are seven times more likely to "offend" (who for gods sake?), then waxing lyrical about early intervention in a disproportionately represented 'Maori' is a gross obsfucation.

This report perpetuates the unspoken myth that crime is genetic, that its a Maori problem, Maori can't help themselves, that Maori are inferior, Maori cant handle liquor, cannabis or what ever (but non-Maori can?) when at the heart of this report is the 'race card'. We just can't bring ourselves to say it. And that should scare the bejezzus out of us all.

The "early intervention" required is not 'ever younger', or more treatment advocates who are quick to clamor for more resources... As Ray Kendal (Hon Secretary Interpol) recently said . Give all addicts a prescription, and they can lead reasonably normal lives, with no need to commit crime. A rational, evidence-based policy would seek to kill the market, put dealers out of business and put control of these drugs into the safe hands of pharmacists."

Now that's "early intervention" !

cc: Clifford Wallace Thornton Jr.

sig. Blair Anderson
cell phone 025 2657219 ph (643) 389 4065
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