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

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Drug Foundation Welcomes BZP Party Pill Ban


The New Zealand Drug Foundation is extremely pleased that BZP-party pills will be banned from the end of the year. see New Zealand Drug Foundation Welcomes BZP Party Pill Ban

(This is IMHO an inexplicable position by the NZDF and contrary in principle to its membership of international organisations ie: The International Drug Policy Consortium (IDPC), a global network of 24 national and international NGOs that specialise in issues related to illegal drug use. )

Associate Health Minister Jim Anderton announced yesterday (26June?) that BZP will be reclassified as a C-class drug from Christmas, and will carry the same penalties as marijuana.

Users will be given a six month amnesty period after the law change to avoid criminalisation. "The introduction of party pills exposed the weaknesses of our current law. There was nowhere in the schedule to place party pills, and even though they'll now be scheduled, we're still left unable to deal with any new substances cooked up by clever chemists," said Mr Bell. (Wrong, Jim A created Class-D, as advocated by the MildGreens as a non-punitive research, management and monitoring regulatory model)

The Government also announced a complete review of the Misuse of Drugs Act.

Drug Foundation Executive Director Ross Bell said the review of this 30-plus-year old law is great news and overshadows the announcement to ban BZP-pills.

"The Misuse of Drugs Act is a patchwork of amendments, many of which were ad hoc responses to short-term public or political concerns. This has led to inconsistent legal treatment of substances, and has limited the options available for control, especially for emerging new substances," Mr Bell said.

The Drug Foundation has long recommended a review of the drug law, saying that New Zealand's current law is obsolete and should be replaced with a framework that can more effectively tackle existing and new drugs. (yes, but that is not the only or most significant reason the framework should be reviewed. THe writer agrees in a review of the ACT, not just the Law. Nor should it be reviewed without a full and unfettered resolution of the law, as it applies to cannabis as recommended by two select committees , including the completion of the 'highly indicated' cost benefit analysis. Anything else is perpetuating the sham. /Blair)

Jim Anderton, Associate Minister of Health said the review of the Misuse of Drugs Act had been advocated by many in the sector for some time. (including the MildGreens)

"This [review] is to be completed by December 2008 and will be aimed at providing a better, more coherent and rational legal framework for the law surrounding the implementation of, and penalties for, the misuse of drugs," he said. (Wrong!!!, Its about health and harm reduction... not the law, penalties or pejoratively mischaracterising all use as misuse./Blair)

Party Pill Association spokesman Matt Bowden was the first person to import party pills and helped to establish the $35 million industry in New Zealand. He said party pills are a lot safer than alcohol.

"Nobody has died, there are no significant lasting injuries, it should not really be made illegal," he said.
People found in possession of BZP after the six month amnesty ends will face a maximum of three months imprisonment and/or a maximum $500 fine

(The Gangs will be cheering this decision, all the way to the bank. More prohibition - like it will fix anything is handing control to criminal networks with all the contingent downsides. It is political expediency and obsfucation - fix what is really broken. The more dangerous a drug is, the less responsible it is of authority to abrogate control. We should aim to ring fence problems, where they occur, to those who do indulge. /Blair)

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