Legalisation of Cannabis

dsmythy

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Conor said:
dsmythy said:
Those who dealt solely in cannabis would also turn to harder drugs to continue their lifestyles.
Or they could sell it legally.
Fair point. Although i presume they would get less money for it than they do today since it would be even more readily available. They would also face bigger competition for their services which would reduce their income from it again. Obviously as was written earlier its sale would have to be regulated. Those of a harder criminal disposition still might well abandon it because of regulations and drop in income and turn to harder stuff.
 


Coles

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dsmythy said:
A quick argument that comes from this question is that cannabis funds crime gangs and its legalisation will take that money from them. Is it not a danger though that the gangs will attempt to make up for that loss in sales?
Those who had included cannabis with with cocaine and heroin dealing would increase their hard drug importations and manufacture. Those who dealt solely in cannabis would also turn to harder drugs to continue their lifestyles.
Overall the legalisation of cannabis might increase the supply and sale of harder drugs.
I honestly can't see that happening. The profits from hard drugs are vastly greater than the profit from cannabis (by volume, risk etc.). If a criminal wants to seriously profit from the drugs trade then they're already selling hard drugs.

Cannabis is widely available through contact with criminals who might also provide hard drugs, and it would seem to me to be more beneficial to break that chain of contact by legalising the cultivation of cannabis for personal use.
 

feargach

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Those of a harder criminal disposition still might well abandon it because of regulations and drop in income and turn to harder stuff.
If all drugs were legalised, would the criminals become law-abiding members of society?

My guess is no, they would become kidnappers or extortionists primarily, and would plan large-scale heists (as the folks in Goodfellas and the General did) to fund their lifestyles.

Notably, such activities have mostly become a thing of the past with the advent of a drugs-based underworld economy. Presumably a large part of the refusal to legalise comes, in some nations, from a fear that the privileged sectors of society would be forced to shoulder the burden from the criminal classes in a way that does not happen with a prohibitionist system. The prohibitionist system guarantees a large income for the dealer class and places the burden of their criminality away from the rich.

Cannabis is widely available through contact with criminals who might also provide hard drugs, and it would seem to me to be more beneficial to break that chain of contact by legalising the cultivation of cannabis for personal use
That would endanger the economic foundation of the dealer class, and deny them a huge portion of their income.

If the theory of the prohibitionist system is correct, a prohibitionist State will fiercely clamp down on anyone trying to weaken the monopoly of the dealer class, because the objective of the hypothetical prohibitionist State is to protect and nurture the illegal-drugs monopoly of the dealer class.
 

Coles

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feargach said:
Cannabis is widely available through contact with criminals who might also provide hard drugs, and it would seem to me to be more beneficial to break that chain of contact by legalising the cultivation of cannabis for personal use
That would endanger the economic foundation of the dealer class, and deny them a huge portion of their income.

If the theory of the prohibitionist system is correct, a prohibitionist State will fiercely clamp down on anyone trying to weaken the monopoly of the dealer class, because the objective of the hypothetical prohibitionist State is to protect and nurture the illegal-drugs monopoly of the dealer class.
Right... ?

So our 'prohibitionist State' is nurturing the 'illegal-drugs monopoly of the dealer class'...? That sounds like a bad thing...
 

ailish

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I went to Amsterdam last month and I was gob smacked by the amount of junkies dancing about the streets out of their minds with drugs. Will we ever see this in Dublin?
 

A girl called Kate

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ailish said:
I went to Amsterdam last month and I was gob smacked by the amount of junkies dancing about the streets out of their minds with drugs. Will we ever see this in Dublin?
I haven't been to Amsterdam for a few years so I don't know how bad it is there, but there are certainly a fair few scary individuals round Dublin these days! I'm probably not telling many people anything new here but even on busses in the middle of the day I've seen people clearly off their head on drugs acting in an agressive and intimidating manner towards other passengers. As I say, maybe it's worse elsewhere and maybe it will get even worse in future, but I think it already is a very serious problem.
 

A_man_about_a_dog

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A girl called Kate said:
I haven't been to Amsterdam for a few years so I don't know how bad it is there, but there are certainly a fair few scary individuals round Dublin these days! I'm probably not telling many people anything new here but even on busses in the middle of the day I've seen people clearly off their head on drugs acting in an agressive and intimidating manner towards other passengers. As I say, maybe it's worse elsewhere and maybe it will get even worse in future, but I think it already is a very serious problem.
Did you not consider the possibility that the "aggressive and intimidating" people were actually drunk and not on drugs? That is a way more likely explanation for "aggressive" behaviour. I have yet to hear of someone who was stoned being charged with behaving in a violent manner, or any other charge along those lines.
 

A girl called Kate

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I have experience working with addicts so the anser to your question is yes, I'm pretty sure I can reasonably accurately tell the difference between alchohol and illegal substance abusers.
 

feargach

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Coles, you'll note I was speaking hypotheitcally. I would never criticise this State or its flawless policies.

As for Amsterdam, I'm told that the vast majority of heroin addicts are older men who got addicted in the early 80s. Since then, Dublin has, if I recall my figures correctly, been far more productive in creating a new generation of addicts.

Remeber, junkies are coralled by Amsterdam police into the few square miles of the red light district, I am told. You can live a lifetime in the smaller towns of Holland and never see a junkie. In Dublin, our 15,000 registered junkies are spread out over a sprawling city, so it can seem as if we don't have many.
 

realityczech

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A_man_about_a_dog said:
[quote="A girl called Kate":24d5m6d3]
I haven't been to Amsterdam for a few years so I don't know how bad it is there, but there are certainly a fair few scary individuals round Dublin these days! I'm probably not telling many people anything new here but even on busses in the middle of the day I've seen people clearly off their head on drugs acting in an agressive and intimidating manner towards other passengers. As I say, maybe it's worse elsewhere and maybe it will get even worse in future, but I think it already is a very serious problem.
Did you not consider the possibility that the "aggressive and intimidating" people were actually drunk and not on drugs? That is a way more likely explanation for "aggressive" behaviour. I have yet to hear of someone who was stoned being charged with behaving in a violent manner, or any other charge along those lines.[/quote:24d5m6d3]

Actually, thers a lot of druggies around Dublin city centre at night. Last night, while i was walking along the quays of the Liffey I counted a total of 8 hard core druggies. The difference between a druggie and a drunk is easily distinguishable.
 

feargach

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"The number of addicts in the Netherlands has been stable - at 25,000 - for many years. Expressed as a percentage of the population, this number is approximately the same as in Germany, Sweden and Belgium. There are very few young heroin addicts in the Netherlands, largely thanks to the policy of separating the users markets for hard and soft drugs. The average age of heroin addicts is now 36."

http://www.drugwarfacts.org/thenethe.htm

Wow, the entire Netherlands has triple the polulation of Ireland, but Dublin alone has 60% of the Netherlands' entire junkie populace.

I think that it may be a very bad idea for pro-prohibition people on here to use Amsterdam as a negative example.
 

A_man_about_a_dog

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realityczech said:
A_man_about_a_dog said:
[quote="A girl called Kate":2gzp9tz3]
I haven't been to Amsterdam for a few years so I don't know how bad it is there, but there are certainly a fair few scary individuals round Dublin these days! I'm probably not telling many people anything new here but even on busses in the middle of the day I've seen people clearly off their head on drugs acting in an agressive and intimidating manner towards other passengers. As I say, maybe it's worse elsewhere and maybe it will get even worse in future, but I think it already is a very serious problem.
Did you not consider the possibility that the "aggressive and intimidating" people were actually drunk and not on drugs? That is a way more likely explanation for "aggressive" behaviour. I have yet to hear of someone who was stoned being charged with behaving in a violent manner, or any other charge along those lines.
Actually, thers a lot of druggies around Dublin city centre at night. Last night, while i was walking along the quays of the Liffey I counted a total of 8 hard core druggies. The difference between a druggie and a drunk is easily distinguishable.[/quote:2gzp9tz3]

I never said there weren't druggies in Dublin, that would be a stupid thing to say. I can tell you of about 8 or 9 spots in town where hardcore drug use can be seen every single day, one is even within the view of the Gardaí on duty outside Leinster House, but I was refering to the people she was on the bus with. How could she tell their "aggressive and intimidating" behaviour was a result of drug use? Did she see any needles, lines or joints?

Anyway, this thread is about the "Legalisation of Cannabis", if you want to discuss hard drug use or the legalisation of such drugs another thread can be started for that.
 

A girl called Kate

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A_man_about_a_dog said:
How could she tell their "aggressive and intimidating" behaviour was a result of drug use? Did she see any needles, lines or joints?

Anyway, this thread is about the "Legalisation of Cannabis", if you want to discuss hard drug use or the legalisation of such drugs another thread can be started for that.
I don't want to be responsible for making this thread drift too far off topic but I'll answer the question directly addressed to me: As someone else said a few posts back, it is possible to tell the difference between drunks and junkies, the effects do manifest themselves in different ways, and I have a certain amount of experience working with people suffering from addictions so I would say I have fairly good judgement there. I've never seen anyone actually consuming hard drugs on public transport (although I have seen it going on elsewhere in public places but that's probably not a startling revelation). I may be wrong but I think I recall someone a while back posting on here saying that they had seen someone injecting themseld on a bus. Luckily I've never been in that situation - I think I'd probably feel compelled to intervene (as I have in some less serious situations where I've had the misfortune to be in a captive audience to individuals under the influence making a nuisance of themselves).
 

feargach

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there may be an argument that the deciminalisation in Amsterdam has led to a rise in the visibility of junkiedom in the Red light district.

But the number of junkies in amsterdam has fallen very dramatically in the Netherlands in conjunction with the rise of legal cannabis.

So let's be very clear about this: if legalisation of cannabis has any affect on the heroin trade, it is to make the number of new junkies fall dramatically.

If legalisation of cannabis happens exactly in Dublin as it did in Amsterdam, the number of junkies will fall massively, new addicts would disappear and old addicts would throng in O'Connell st hassling people.
 

A_man_about_a_dog

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A girl called Kate said:
[quote="A_man_about_a_dog":8880n6vg] How could she tell their "aggressive and intimidating" behaviour was a result of drug use? Did she see any needles, lines or joints?

Anyway, this thread is about the "Legalisation of Cannabis", if you want to discuss hard drug use or the legalisation of such drugs another thread can be started for that.
I don't want to be responsible for making this thread drift too far off topic but I'll answer the question directly addressed to me: As someone else said a few posts back, it is possible to tell the difference between drunks and junkies, the effects do manifest themselves in different ways, and I have a certain amount of experience working with people suffering from addictions so I would say I have fairly good judgement there. I've never seen anyone actually consuming hard drugs on public transport (although I have seen it going on elsewhere in public places but that's probably not a startling revelation). I may be wrong but I think I recall someone a while back posting on here saying that they had seen someone injecting themseld on a bus. Luckily I've never been in that situation - I think I'd probably feel compelled to intervene (as I have in some less serious situations where I've had the misfortune to be in a captive audience to individuals under the influence making a nuisance of themselves).[/quote:8880n6vg]

This is the last off the topic post I'll make on this thread........
I know that it can be quite easy to recognise junkies as opposed to drunks but you have to admit that sometimes even extreme alcoholics or ex-junkies bear a startling resemblance to actual junkies?

I just think that to blame aggression and intimidatory behaviour on drugs is unfair. People are aggressive, not drugs, and unfortunately sometimes aggressive people take drugs (inc. alcohol) which may lead to further exhibitions of their aggressive nature.

Cannabis by its nature is a drug which is extremely unlikely to cause someone to act in an aggressive manner, in fact it is known to have the polar opposite effect turning normally highly aggressive people into calm and relaxed people. So for anyone to try and play the "drugs cause aggression card" in the case of cannabis would be ridiculous.
 

patslatt

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An economic strategy to undermine the illegal drugs market

When Prohibition was repealed in America in 1932, Al Capone and the speakeasies went out of the alcohol business as legitimate legal businesses took over. This is not to argue that drugs should be fully legalised.

Conceptually,what the government should do is provide enough legal drugs to drastically reduce the demand for drugs supplied illegally and undermine the illegal drugs market.

Such a system of legal supply should not tempt people to become addicts in order to qualify for a legal supply. People should have to pay for their supply,maybe at some percentage of the going street price. Given the high cost of street heroin,this percentage would have to be low to be affordable to low wage earners.

In the case of heroin and crack cocaine, chances are that most people looking for a legal supply would already be severely addicted,as shown by criminal records.

But what about the weekend or occasional recreational user of other illegal drugs which are not very addictive or addictive at all,such as marijuana,cocaine,ecstasy and amphetamines. If the government supplied these, its guarantee of drug quality could induce many people to try them for the first time. The very availability of a vice can propagate its use,so government distribution outlets should be difficult to access.

Given the relatively low levels of addiction for these drugs,the government should sell them at a price a bit less than the street price of illegal drugs. Quantities sold to any one individual in any given week or month should be just enough to last a few hours. The buyer would have to submit to a blood test to demonstrate evidence of previous use of a particular drug befor being allowed to buy it.

If it transpired that the availability of drugs through government outlets was creating demand among new users, the number of distribution outlets would have to be curtailed.
 

feargach

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hee hee, love that pic

Seriously though, time for a values check

It strikes me that it's not wise to impose a requirement that "aggregate demand for cannabis must not rise".

Because there are probably a million people in Ireland alone who have avoided it so far but would experiment with cannabis if it were legalised.

This would have the effect of causing a massive spike in total demand in the hours immediately following decriminalisation.

Here's the values check:

Johnny is a law abiding young person.

Let's assume that Johnny goes on a heavy binge drinking session once each other month. He abides by the law, so he never smokes a joint.

Assumption 2: if cannabis is legalised, he will smoke 1 joint per month and reduce his binge drinking sessions to once per six months on average. I'm no doctor, but I believe the latter course is massively better for his health.

So, have things got better or worse?

His joints-per-annum level has gone from zero to 12.

His heavy-binge-boozing-per-annum level has gone from 6 to 2.

If Johnny's experience were repeated by Irish society at large, would the total increase in cannabis consumption be compensated for by the suggested/alleged/speculated reduction in binge drinking?

Or would you rather watch the children of Ireland drinking as they currently do, as long as they stay away from the non-legal stuff?

I can't prove that people would binge-drink less if canabis was legal, but I think it's possible, even likely.
 

Modisrapid

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feargach said:
I can't prove that people would binge-drink less if canabis was legal, but I think it's possible, even likely.
That is exactly what would happen!. In my experience people who smoke the odd joint tend to drink far less than the average non cannabis smoker in their peer group. If cannabis is legalized consumption of alcohol by people in their late teens to mid twentys would drop sharply .
 

Libero

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feargach said:
Because there are probably a million people in Ireland alone who have avoided it so far but would experiment with cannabis if it were legalised.
:?:
In my experience, the legal status of cannabis deters nobody from trying it. Those who want to, smoke it. Those who don't, don't. Its legal status doesn't enter into it, other than it forces basic precautions to avoid getting caught.

I'd be very interested in seeing any research that shows an army of potential cannabis smokers held back from experimentation because Leinster House says so.
 


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