Web Companies Want Easier Drug Ads

WASHINGTON — Google, Yahoo and other Web companies joined the pharmaceutical industry Thursday in urging federal regulators to make it easier to pitch drugs in online advertisements.

That way, people will see the ads and the sites will get revenue get healthier.

Don’t Smoke Pot…

Haha, ohh those wacky turtles, wacky like the federal government. All hyporcrites, cause the turtles get super baked, hence all the munching on pizza and the feds don’t give a shit about the top two drug killers: Tobacco and Alcohol, yet pot, which kills no one is illegal. Wacky indeed. This is funny propaganda though.


The Freeway is Free!

Has Been Free I should say. I guess in March of 2009, former drug kingpin, “Freeway” Ricky Ross was released from prison for being a “model prisoner.” He was then sent to a halfway house and finally on September 29, 2009, he was completely released. How did I miss this?! Why didn’t anyone tell me? Here’s his Facebook page:


How Weed Won the West…

This is a trailer for the new Kevin Booth documentary. This time he focues specifcally on Marijuana (as the title clearly indicates) as opposed to his last film, American Drug War, which evaluated all or most drugs related to the drug war. I hope he include the reality of Obama’s (at least so far) abandoment of his campaign promises concerning law enforcement’s handling of drugs. Anyway, I’ll be seeing this soon.


Idiot’s Guide To Swallowing Pills

So yesterday was the first time in 18.5+ years that I swallowed a pill. I actually never attempted to swallow a pill until a couple of weeks because I was afraid of choking. I tried out a big multi-vitamin a couple of weeks ago and I simply couldn’t get the damn thing down my throat. That’s because my method was logically retarded. You can’t just put the thing any where on your tongue and expect to swallow it. You will probably get a reflex, like I did, that will prohibit it from ever going down. The best and easiest way (I am 2 for 2) is to just place it on the way way way way back of your tongue, almost down your throat. Take one average sip of water and it will go down. If you can’t swallow it like that, you are an idiot.

Puff Daddy

In fact, a statistical trace of what I’ve taken to calling the “puff daddy” movement emerged a few years ago, when researchers at the National Institutes of Health compared national drug surveys conducted over two-year periods beginning in 1991 and 2001. Their analysis, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, found that the percentage of people who say they smoked marijuana in the past year had remained fairly stable over the 10-year stretch. (That is to say, it ended where it started.) But they found a very different pattern among those between the ages of 45 and 64: As my parents’ generation matured, the number of smokers in that group had nearly tripled.

The baby boomer drug uptick turns up again in the recent data. According to the 2007 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, almost 6 percent of all adults between the ages of 50 and 59 reported smoking marijuana in the past year. That’s up from about 3 percent five years earlier. Meanwhile, the number of recent users over the age of 50 has climbed to 2.65 million people nationwide (and we can assume the real prevalence is somewhat higher, since these figures are based on self-reported drug use). Here’s something to think about: There are about as many boomers using cannabis today as there are high-school students doing the same.//

Still, it’s not easy to get an accurate picture of who these puffing oldsters are and how their drug habits have evolved over the last few decades. (It’s also not clear to what extent the legalization of medical marijuana has been a factor.)


US Funds Colombian Deaths Over Drugs

In her new book, Blood & Capital: The Paramilitarization of Colombia, author Jasmin Hristov writes: “For roughly forty years, the Colombian state has been playing a double game: prohibiting the formation of paramilitary groups with one law and facilitating their existence with another; condemning their barbarities and at the same time assisting their operations; promising to bring perpetrators of crime to justice, while opening the door to perpetual immunity; convicting them of narco-trafficking, yet profiting from their drug deals; announcing to the world the government’s persecution of paramilitary organizations, even though in reality these ‘illegal armed groups’ have been carrying out the dirty work unseemly for a state that claims to be democratic and worthy of billions of dollars in US military aid.”

As the largest recipient of US military aid in the hemisphere, Colombia has long been the US’ most important ally in Latin America. Simultaneously, Colombia has also become the hemisphere’s worst human rights violator, with Colombia’s numerous paramilitary organizations recently taking center stage, as they’ve gradually become directly responsible for more human rights atrocities than the formal military and police. In the name of fighting “narco-terrorism,” poor people and dissidents are massacred, assassinated, tortured, and disappeared, among other atrocities—done to eliminate particular individuals and to “set an example” by intimidating others in the community. 97 percent of human rights abuses remain unpunished.

In recent years, a variety of human rights organizations, as well as mainstream academics and journalists have found it impossible to ignore the astronomical human rights violations. However, even though these groups have accurately reported on the actual atrocities, Jasmin Hristov argues that in their reports, the atrocities are largely de-contextualized from the powerful forces in Colombia and the US that directly benefit from this repression. According to Hristov, this mainstream presentation serves to mask the fact that US and Colombian elites directly support (via funding, training, supervising, and providing legal immunity for) state repression carried out by the police and military, as well as illegal paramilitary groups that are unofficially sanctioned by the government. Whether it is murdering labor organizers or displacing an indigenous community because a US corporation wants to drill for oil on their land, Hristov passionately asserts that death squad violence is purposefully directed towards sectors of society that stand in the way of the ruling class’ efforts to maintain economic dominance and acquire more resources to make even more profit.

In her book, Hristov does make a convincing argument that Colombia’s notorious death squads are inherently linked to maintenance of the country’s extreme economic inequality. Particularly since the neoliberal reforms of the 1990s that have increased poverty, Colombia’s poor continue to resist their oppression in many different ways. In response, state repression on a variety of levels is needed to terrorize unarmed social movements and other community groups and activists.

Throughout Blood & Capital, Hristov seeks to expose the rational motivations behind state violence for capitalism’s economic elites in the US and Colombia. In meticulous detail, Hristov shows how the super-rich benefit from state repression and how the violators of human rights have essentially become immune from any consequences for their actions. If death squads are truly to be abolished in Colombia, we must look honestly at how and why they exist today. Hristov’s new book is a powerful tool for exposing who truly calls the shots.

Neoliberalism or neopoverty?

Hristov asserts that “it is not a mere coincidence that during the era of accelerated neoliberal restructuring, the deterioration in the living conditions of the working majority has been accompanied by an increase in the capabilities and activities of military, police, and paramilitary groups, as well as the portrayal of social movements as forces that must be monitored, silenced, and eventually dismantled.”

I don’t know if it’s fair to blame this atrocity on neoliberal ideology. But surely this helps make the case against prohibiting drugs. You’re only creating crime instead of discouraging it.