CBS Censors ads

CBS Censors ads

McFrugal
McFrugal

January 28th, 2004, 10:43 am #1

This is a little something I got in my email. I'm wondering how the people in here will react...

>>>>>
During this year's Super Bowl, you'll see ads sponsored by beer companies, tobacco companies, and the Bush White House.<font color=blue>1</font> But you won't see the winning ad in MoveOn.org Voter Fund's Bush in 30 Seconds ad contest. CBS refuses to air it.<font color=blue>2</font>

Meanwhile, the White House is on the verge of signing into law a deal which Senator John McCain (R-AZ) says is custom-tailored for CBS and Fox,<font color=blue>3</font> allowing the two networks to grow much bigger. CBS lobbied hard for this rule change; MoveOn.org members across the country lobbied against it; and now our ad has been rejected while the White House ad will be played. It looks an awful lot like CBS is playing politics with the right to free speech.

Over the last year, you've been a part of our incredible campaign against media consolidation. CBS's censorship demonstrates why this issue is so important: a few big media companies can effectively stop political speech. If we can successfully highlight CBS's unfairness in the media, we'll be able to push forward our FCC campaign as well.

To watch the ad that CBS won't air and sign our petition to CBS, go to:
http://www.moveon.org/cbs/ad/

(If you want to skip the ad and just sign the petition, click here.)

We'll deliver the petition by email directly to CBS headquarters.

You also may want to let your local CBS affiliate know you're unhappy about this decision. We've attached a list of the CBS affiliates in your state at the bottom of this email. Remember, a polite, friendly call will be most effective -- just explain to them why you believe CBS' decision hurts our democracy.

Of course, this is bigger than just the MoveOn.org Voter Fund. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) submitted an ad that was also rejected.(<font color=blue>4</font>) But this isn't even a progressive-vs.-conservative issue. The airwaves are publicly owned, so we have a fundamental right to hear viewpoints from across the ideological spectrum. That's why we need to let CBS know that this practice of arbitrarily turning down ads that may be "controversial" -- especially if they're controversial simply because they take on the President -- just isn't right.

CBS will claim that the ad is too controversial to air. But the message of the ad is a simple statement of fact, supported by the President's own figures. Compared with 2002's White House ad which claimed that drug users are supporting terrorism,<font color=blue>5</font> it hardly even registers.

CBS will also claim that this decision isn't an indication of political bias. But given the facts, that's hard to believe. CBS overwhelmingly favored Republicans in its political giving, and the company spent millions courting the White House to stop FCC reform.<font color=blue>6</font> According to a well-respected study, CBS News was second only to Fox in failing to correct common misconceptions about the Iraq war which benefited the Bush Administration -- for example, the idea that Saddam Hussein was involved with 9/11.<font color=blue>7</font>

This is not a partisan issue. It's critical that our media institutions be fair and open to all speakers. CBS is setting a dangerous precedent, and unless we speak up, the pattern may continue. Please call on CBS to air ads which address issues of public importance today.

Sincerely,
--Adam, Carrie, Eli, James, Joan, Laura, Noah, Peter, Wes, and Zack
The MoveOn.org Team
January 23rd, 2003

P.S. Our friends at Free Press have put together a page which explains simply how CBS and the FCC rule change are integrally linked. Check it out at:
http://www.mediareform.net/media/

P.P.S Here are the CBS affiliates in your state:

WWL-TV, New Orleans: (504) 529-4444
KLFY-TV, Lafayette: (337) 981-4823
KSLA-TV, Shreveport: (318) 222-1212
KNOE-TV, Monroe: (318) 388-8888


Footnotes:

1. "Who's Buying What At the Super Bowl," Ad Age, 1/20/04

2. CBS fax to MoveOn.org Voter Fund, 1/14/04

3. "Democrats Fold on 39% TV Cap Fight", Broadcasting and Cable, 1/21/04

4. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

5. "New Media Campaign Stresses Link between Drugs and Terrorism," U.S. Dept. of State

6. "CBS Television Network Soft Money Donations," Opensecrets.org

7. "Misperceptions, the Media and the Iraq War," PIPA/Knowledge Networks Poll
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Ozymandous
Ozymandous

January 28th, 2004, 12:15 pm #2

Let's see... A lot of folks loved the "Campaign Finanace Reform" bill that totally kills the ability for some people/groups to air ad's for and against people during the last, (what, 60?) days before an election, yet I don't think I heard anyone at Moveon.org complaining about this official BILL sponsored and passed by CONGRESS that REALLY does hinder the First Amendment, unlike this PC BS they are claiming CBS is doing.

In fact Moveon.Org was founded to get around the limitations of the new 'bill' instead of using the time and energy to get the bill overturned, which anyone who REALLY is concerned about the first amendment SHOULD do.

The fact is that CBS is a privately owned and run corporation that can air what it wants and choose to NOT air what it wants as well, the same holds true of all broadcast networks. If you want to complain about censorship, ask yourself why the network morning talk shows have given the Democratic cantidates MUCH more free air time, in the form of 'interviews', than happened with the Republician cantidates back in 1999/2000.

To sum this whole post up, I have one word for Moveon.org, and it's complaint:

*Wah*
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Occhi
Occhi

January 29th, 2004, 2:56 pm #3

This is a little something I got in my email. I'm wondering how the people in here will react...

>>>>>
During this year's Super Bowl, you'll see ads sponsored by beer companies, tobacco companies, and the Bush White House.<font color=blue>1</font> But you won't see the winning ad in MoveOn.org Voter Fund's Bush in 30 Seconds ad contest. CBS refuses to air it.<font color=blue>2</font>

Meanwhile, the White House is on the verge of signing into law a deal which Senator John McCain (R-AZ) says is custom-tailored for CBS and Fox,<font color=blue>3</font> allowing the two networks to grow much bigger. CBS lobbied hard for this rule change; MoveOn.org members across the country lobbied against it; and now our ad has been rejected while the White House ad will be played. It looks an awful lot like CBS is playing politics with the right to free speech.

Over the last year, you've been a part of our incredible campaign against media consolidation. CBS's censorship demonstrates why this issue is so important: a few big media companies can effectively stop political speech. If we can successfully highlight CBS's unfairness in the media, we'll be able to push forward our FCC campaign as well.

To watch the ad that CBS won't air and sign our petition to CBS, go to:
http://www.moveon.org/cbs/ad/

(If you want to skip the ad and just sign the petition, click here.)

We'll deliver the petition by email directly to CBS headquarters.

You also may want to let your local CBS affiliate know you're unhappy about this decision. We've attached a list of the CBS affiliates in your state at the bottom of this email. Remember, a polite, friendly call will be most effective -- just explain to them why you believe CBS' decision hurts our democracy.

Of course, this is bigger than just the MoveOn.org Voter Fund. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) submitted an ad that was also rejected.(<font color=blue>4</font>) But this isn't even a progressive-vs.-conservative issue. The airwaves are publicly owned, so we have a fundamental right to hear viewpoints from across the ideological spectrum. That's why we need to let CBS know that this practice of arbitrarily turning down ads that may be "controversial" -- especially if they're controversial simply because they take on the President -- just isn't right.

CBS will claim that the ad is too controversial to air. But the message of the ad is a simple statement of fact, supported by the President's own figures. Compared with 2002's White House ad which claimed that drug users are supporting terrorism,<font color=blue>5</font> it hardly even registers.

CBS will also claim that this decision isn't an indication of political bias. But given the facts, that's hard to believe. CBS overwhelmingly favored Republicans in its political giving, and the company spent millions courting the White House to stop FCC reform.<font color=blue>6</font> According to a well-respected study, CBS News was second only to Fox in failing to correct common misconceptions about the Iraq war which benefited the Bush Administration -- for example, the idea that Saddam Hussein was involved with 9/11.<font color=blue>7</font>

This is not a partisan issue. It's critical that our media institutions be fair and open to all speakers. CBS is setting a dangerous precedent, and unless we speak up, the pattern may continue. Please call on CBS to air ads which address issues of public importance today.

Sincerely,
--Adam, Carrie, Eli, James, Joan, Laura, Noah, Peter, Wes, and Zack
The MoveOn.org Team
January 23rd, 2003

P.S. Our friends at Free Press have put together a page which explains simply how CBS and the FCC rule change are integrally linked. Check it out at:
http://www.mediareform.net/media/

P.P.S Here are the CBS affiliates in your state:

WWL-TV, New Orleans: (504) 529-4444
KLFY-TV, Lafayette: (337) 981-4823
KSLA-TV, Shreveport: (318) 222-1212
KNOE-TV, Monroe: (318) 388-8888


Footnotes:

1. "Who's Buying What At the Super Bowl," Ad Age, 1/20/04

2. CBS fax to MoveOn.org Voter Fund, 1/14/04

3. "Democrats Fold on 39% TV Cap Fight", Broadcasting and Cable, 1/21/04

4. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

5. "New Media Campaign Stresses Link between Drugs and Terrorism," U.S. Dept. of State

6. "CBS Television Network Soft Money Donations," Opensecrets.org

7. "Misperceptions, the Media and the Iraq War," PIPA/Knowledge Networks Poll
1. Did they put up the money? Something like a "million dollars per 30 second" commercial. Were they outbid? CBS pays its bills with advertising. It is not a government sponsored network.

2. CBS has demographics on who watches ads, when and why. They try, like any TV network, to cater to a given audience's needs. Is the standard Super Bowl audience who the ad is aimed at?

3. If this were NPR not reading a public service announcement, I'd be worried: that is a government sponsored network. Their censorship of the conservative
viewpoint is troubling to some. Why do you not comment on that? Do you want the government telling networks what they can and can't air? I don't, and don't think you do. That takes us to editorial perspective. Given the considerably left of center slant to most news organs, why is CBS allegedly moving a bit right of center be bad? Their 60 minutes muckraking is anti establishment, anti damn near everyone. CBS doesn't get the Super Bowl every year: that cash cow rotates between three networks.

Tempest in a teapot, really, and no, it's not a plot. The NFL and the networks set this crap up years in advance. CBS would have this year's Super Bowl even if Mr. Gore were president at the moment.

Thanks for the links in any case.
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Occhi
Occhi

January 29th, 2004, 4:23 pm #4

This is a little something I got in my email. I'm wondering how the people in here will react...

>>>>>
During this year's Super Bowl, you'll see ads sponsored by beer companies, tobacco companies, and the Bush White House.<font color=blue>1</font> But you won't see the winning ad in MoveOn.org Voter Fund's Bush in 30 Seconds ad contest. CBS refuses to air it.<font color=blue>2</font>

Meanwhile, the White House is on the verge of signing into law a deal which Senator John McCain (R-AZ) says is custom-tailored for CBS and Fox,<font color=blue>3</font> allowing the two networks to grow much bigger. CBS lobbied hard for this rule change; MoveOn.org members across the country lobbied against it; and now our ad has been rejected while the White House ad will be played. It looks an awful lot like CBS is playing politics with the right to free speech.

Over the last year, you've been a part of our incredible campaign against media consolidation. CBS's censorship demonstrates why this issue is so important: a few big media companies can effectively stop political speech. If we can successfully highlight CBS's unfairness in the media, we'll be able to push forward our FCC campaign as well.

To watch the ad that CBS won't air and sign our petition to CBS, go to:
http://www.moveon.org/cbs/ad/

(If you want to skip the ad and just sign the petition, click here.)

We'll deliver the petition by email directly to CBS headquarters.

You also may want to let your local CBS affiliate know you're unhappy about this decision. We've attached a list of the CBS affiliates in your state at the bottom of this email. Remember, a polite, friendly call will be most effective -- just explain to them why you believe CBS' decision hurts our democracy.

Of course, this is bigger than just the MoveOn.org Voter Fund. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) submitted an ad that was also rejected.(<font color=blue>4</font>) But this isn't even a progressive-vs.-conservative issue. The airwaves are publicly owned, so we have a fundamental right to hear viewpoints from across the ideological spectrum. That's why we need to let CBS know that this practice of arbitrarily turning down ads that may be "controversial" -- especially if they're controversial simply because they take on the President -- just isn't right.

CBS will claim that the ad is too controversial to air. But the message of the ad is a simple statement of fact, supported by the President's own figures. Compared with 2002's White House ad which claimed that drug users are supporting terrorism,<font color=blue>5</font> it hardly even registers.

CBS will also claim that this decision isn't an indication of political bias. But given the facts, that's hard to believe. CBS overwhelmingly favored Republicans in its political giving, and the company spent millions courting the White House to stop FCC reform.<font color=blue>6</font> According to a well-respected study, CBS News was second only to Fox in failing to correct common misconceptions about the Iraq war which benefited the Bush Administration -- for example, the idea that Saddam Hussein was involved with 9/11.<font color=blue>7</font>

This is not a partisan issue. It's critical that our media institutions be fair and open to all speakers. CBS is setting a dangerous precedent, and unless we speak up, the pattern may continue. Please call on CBS to air ads which address issues of public importance today.

Sincerely,
--Adam, Carrie, Eli, James, Joan, Laura, Noah, Peter, Wes, and Zack
The MoveOn.org Team
January 23rd, 2003

P.S. Our friends at Free Press have put together a page which explains simply how CBS and the FCC rule change are integrally linked. Check it out at:
http://www.mediareform.net/media/

P.P.S Here are the CBS affiliates in your state:

WWL-TV, New Orleans: (504) 529-4444
KLFY-TV, Lafayette: (337) 981-4823
KSLA-TV, Shreveport: (318) 222-1212
KNOE-TV, Monroe: (318) 388-8888


Footnotes:

1. "Who's Buying What At the Super Bowl," Ad Age, 1/20/04

2. CBS fax to MoveOn.org Voter Fund, 1/14/04

3. "Democrats Fold on 39% TV Cap Fight", Broadcasting and Cable, 1/21/04

4. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

5. "New Media Campaign Stresses Link between Drugs and Terrorism," U.S. Dept. of State

6. "CBS Television Network Soft Money Donations," Opensecrets.org

7. "Misperceptions, the Media and the Iraq War," PIPA/Knowledge Networks Poll
From the State Department link.

Drug use hurts our families and our communities. It also finances our enemies. To fight the terror inflicted by killers, thugs, and terrorists around the world who depend on American drug purchases to fund their violence, we must stop paying for our own destruction and the destruction of others," said ONDCP Director John Walters. "As the President has said, 'When you quit using drugs, you join the fight against terror in America.'

Quite a different message than "Just Say No!"

What the recreational drug user does in pursuit of a buzz is allow crooks to make money. The same was true in the 20's: the recreational drinker helped make the Mob and rum runners like Joe Kennedy rich.

The war on drugs is still an attempt to undo the fascination of the American population with recreational drugs. America has been a heavy drinking nation since its inception, which led to the temperance movement. Prohibition, however, was a bust.

America has been a dope smoking nation for maybe a generation or two, a coke snorting nation for one generation. (Of course, Coca Cola used to have cocaine in it back in the 20's, but I think FDA or FDR made them get rid of it.) The heavy trank addiction (morphine, heroin, laudanum) goes back at least as far as the Civil War.)

The anti-drug war is a lot like the environmental movement, or the major anti-litter campaigns that I grew up with. ('Every litter bit hurts,' 'Don't be a litter bug', and even 'Don't Mess With Texas' ads of the mid 80's.) They are part of the Progressive strain of American politics, which includes the Environmental and Conservationist movements: if we all work to gether to 'do the right thing,' (be it use hybrid cars, use bio degradable soaps, recycle our oil changes and aluminum, etc) we can make our country a better, cleaner, healthier, place.

This anti-drug message needs one more element: America's drug addiction enriches crime families in Columbia, which is an obstacle to liberalizing that country. Ain't no arch conservative, anti-liberal, anti-freedom, like a mob boss. :-P Mob bosses in Croatia, Serbia, and Bosnia gave us some recent blood shed. (Book called "War is a Force That Gives us Meaning" is worth a read. Can't remember author's name at the moment.) So, there is some merit to pointing out that America's drug problem poisons other nations, just as America's and the industrial world's oil addiction poisons the air.
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Joined: March 5th, 2001, 7:01 pm

January 29th, 2004, 6:33 pm #5

Hi,

What the recreational drug user does in pursuit of a buzz is allow crooks to make money.

If bread were made illegal, then hunger would make crooks of us all. And bakers would be rich.

There are two questions that need answering if the drug issue is to be taken out of the arena of ignorant fundamentalist reaction and considered in a rational manner. The first is just how much effort (read that as tax money) should be used to curb drug usage. The second is whether law or marketing is the better means of achieving the objective.

The first question is a simple one: what would unlimited legal drug usage cost society? If more is spent to reduce the drug usage than the usage costs in the first place, then that money is wasted. The only "justification" for that waste is the offended moral outlook of nosy Nells.

The second question is a bit more difficult. But an observant person might just consider how poorly Prohibition worked and how well the advertising campaign against smoking worked. Rum runners got rich. Drug dealers are getting rich. Tobacco companies are losing customers and civil suits.

What was that saying? Something about insanity being the repetition of an ineffective action and expecting a better outcome?

Now, what gets to be really interesting is to consider the potential feedback from those two questions. If a rational approach is taken, the desire for drugs goes down, the cost of drugs to society goes down. The amount that society can (and needs) to spend to improve the situation goes down. Everybody wins. Under the present idiotic approach the cost to enforce the laws goes up, the cost to incarcerate individuals goes up. The usage of drugs isn't going down. Everybody except some politicians lose. And a bunch of rural folks feel real good about themselves for imposing their fundamentalist superstitions on the rest of the country.

America has been a dope smoking nation for maybe a generation or two

Try from the start. Smoking hemp goes back to before colonial times.

The anti-drug war is a lot like the environmental movement, or the major anti-litter campaigns that I grew up with.

In some ways, maybe. However, the environment and litter are damage that is caused by one person (or organization) to society in general. Drug usage is only self-destructive. Crossing the line from protecting me from you to protecting me from me is crossing the line from government to parenthood -- or religion.

So, there is some merit to pointing out that America's drug problem poisons other nations,

BS. The fact that most drug using nations are hypocritical: the population demands drugs and yet have made the use of those drugs illegal is what is causing the problem. A legal drug trade would no more help crime bosses anywhere than does the legal alcohol trade. Or the legal nicotine trade. Once the risks of breaking the law are removed, then the profits of doing so are also removed. The "drug lords" simply become wealthy businessmen. Their offspring will serve in the government as senators, governors, even presidents. And that is simple prediction based on repetition.

--Pete
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Lissa
Lissa

January 29th, 2004, 7:10 pm #6

From the State Department link.

Drug use hurts our families and our communities. It also finances our enemies. To fight the terror inflicted by killers, thugs, and terrorists around the world who depend on American drug purchases to fund their violence, we must stop paying for our own destruction and the destruction of others," said ONDCP Director John Walters. "As the President has said, 'When you quit using drugs, you join the fight against terror in America.'

Quite a different message than "Just Say No!"

What the recreational drug user does in pursuit of a buzz is allow crooks to make money. The same was true in the 20's: the recreational drinker helped make the Mob and rum runners like Joe Kennedy rich.

The war on drugs is still an attempt to undo the fascination of the American population with recreational drugs. America has been a heavy drinking nation since its inception, which led to the temperance movement. Prohibition, however, was a bust.

America has been a dope smoking nation for maybe a generation or two, a coke snorting nation for one generation. (Of course, Coca Cola used to have cocaine in it back in the 20's, but I think FDA or FDR made them get rid of it.) The heavy trank addiction (morphine, heroin, laudanum) goes back at least as far as the Civil War.)

The anti-drug war is a lot like the environmental movement, or the major anti-litter campaigns that I grew up with. ('Every litter bit hurts,' 'Don't be a litter bug', and even 'Don't Mess With Texas' ads of the mid 80's.) They are part of the Progressive strain of American politics, which includes the Environmental and Conservationist movements: if we all work to gether to 'do the right thing,' (be it use hybrid cars, use bio degradable soaps, recycle our oil changes and aluminum, etc) we can make our country a better, cleaner, healthier, place.

This anti-drug message needs one more element: America's drug addiction enriches crime families in Columbia, which is an obstacle to liberalizing that country. Ain't no arch conservative, anti-liberal, anti-freedom, like a mob boss. :-P Mob bosses in Croatia, Serbia, and Bosnia gave us some recent blood shed. (Book called "War is a Force That Gives us Meaning" is worth a read. Can't remember author's name at the moment.) So, there is some merit to pointing out that America's drug problem poisons other nations, just as America's and the industrial world's oil addiction poisons the air.
Astor was the most profitable drug smuggler of all time and made his money off of shipping illegal drugs around the world, and he is late 18th century/early 19th century. Someone did a figure on the money his family ended up with because of his shipping of drugs and when inflated to today's value, he eclipsed Bill Gates (seem to remember that that money would have been worth close to 1/2 Trillion dollars of today's money).

As Pete noted, Hemp smoking has been around for a quite a long time. Also, the Conquistadors have been noted to have used Peyote during their time in Mexico during the early 16th century. If you want to look at the world at large, drugs, both for recreational and religious use, have been around say pre-fertile cresent/mesopotamia.

Best way to deal with drugs is to legalize them and then enforce harsh penalties for doing dangerous things while impared (such as driving). (I'm hoping that people in the US start dealing more harshly with drunk driving that what it is now, most the time it's just a slap on the wrist and a finger wave while saying, "don't do that again".)
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Ozymandous
Ozymandous

January 29th, 2004, 8:40 pm #7

Hi,

What the recreational drug user does in pursuit of a buzz is allow crooks to make money.

If bread were made illegal, then hunger would make crooks of us all. And bakers would be rich.

There are two questions that need answering if the drug issue is to be taken out of the arena of ignorant fundamentalist reaction and considered in a rational manner. The first is just how much effort (read that as tax money) should be used to curb drug usage. The second is whether law or marketing is the better means of achieving the objective.

The first question is a simple one: what would unlimited legal drug usage cost society? If more is spent to reduce the drug usage than the usage costs in the first place, then that money is wasted. The only "justification" for that waste is the offended moral outlook of nosy Nells.

The second question is a bit more difficult. But an observant person might just consider how poorly Prohibition worked and how well the advertising campaign against smoking worked. Rum runners got rich. Drug dealers are getting rich. Tobacco companies are losing customers and civil suits.

What was that saying? Something about insanity being the repetition of an ineffective action and expecting a better outcome?

Now, what gets to be really interesting is to consider the potential feedback from those two questions. If a rational approach is taken, the desire for drugs goes down, the cost of drugs to society goes down. The amount that society can (and needs) to spend to improve the situation goes down. Everybody wins. Under the present idiotic approach the cost to enforce the laws goes up, the cost to incarcerate individuals goes up. The usage of drugs isn't going down. Everybody except some politicians lose. And a bunch of rural folks feel real good about themselves for imposing their fundamentalist superstitions on the rest of the country.

America has been a dope smoking nation for maybe a generation or two

Try from the start. Smoking hemp goes back to before colonial times.

The anti-drug war is a lot like the environmental movement, or the major anti-litter campaigns that I grew up with.

In some ways, maybe. However, the environment and litter are damage that is caused by one person (or organization) to society in general. Drug usage is only self-destructive. Crossing the line from protecting me from you to protecting me from me is crossing the line from government to parenthood -- or religion.

So, there is some merit to pointing out that America's drug problem poisons other nations,

BS. The fact that most drug using nations are hypocritical: the population demands drugs and yet have made the use of those drugs illegal is what is causing the problem. A legal drug trade would no more help crime bosses anywhere than does the legal alcohol trade. Or the legal nicotine trade. Once the risks of breaking the law are removed, then the profits of doing so are also removed. The "drug lords" simply become wealthy businessmen. Their offspring will serve in the government as senators, governors, even presidents. And that is simple prediction based on repetition.

--Pete
The first question is a simple one: what would unlimited legal drug usage cost society? If more is spent to reduce the drug usage than the usage costs in the first place, then that money is wasted. The only "justification" for that waste is the offended moral outlook of nosy Nells.

So, if drugs are made illegal their usage would go down because the "thrill" of doing something bad would go down?

Tell me, did the drug usage in Amsterdam go down when drugs were legalized? Did the costs associated with their medical system having to treat the people who OD or harm others while under the influence go down or up? Did the number of people using said drugs go down or up?

Before you think I am on some moral or religious crusade to outlaw these things, I'll say this:

I don't care what people do to themselves as long as: 1) I don't have to pay more taxes to pay for their stupidity in hoipital bills from OD'ing or 2) have anyone else hurt of killed because they were driving, walking, attacking someone else while the first person was 'high' on drugs.

Essentially if we could 100% guarentee that the people who do drugs won't steal more to get the money for their habit, and use drugs in their house and pay for their own doctor bills and not hurt others I'd be all for it. The simple fact that we have to deal with the consequences of less harsh drugs like alcohol and niccotine already and those hit me in my wallet even if I rarely/never partake of them already pisses me off.
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Joined: March 5th, 2001, 7:01 pm

January 29th, 2004, 10:05 pm #8

Hi,

The first question is a simple one: what would unlimited legal drug usage cost society? If more is spent to reduce the drug usage than the usage costs in the first place, then that money is wasted. The only "justification" for that waste is the offended moral outlook of nosy Nells.

So, if drugs are made illegal their usage would go down because the "thrill" of doing something bad would go down?


Since I didn't say that, I think it is (typically) unfair of you to ask me to support it. Burn your own straw men.

What I did say was that (1) there is a cost to society associated with the legal usage of drugs; (2) there is a cost to society to have and enforce laws against the usage of drugs; (3) if the second cost is higher than the first, then anti-drug laws are a waste of money.

Tell me, did the drug usage in Amsterdam go down when drugs were legalized? Did the costs associated with their medical system having to treat the people who OD or harm others while under the influence go down or up? Did the number of people using said drugs go down or up?

Tell me, was there an influx into Amsterdam when they decriminalized the use of drugs? Had the whole world done so (or even just Europe), would there have been that influx? Did the cost to all of Europe go down (even factoring in the increase in Amsterdam) because many of the most serious drug users left? And how much has been saved in Amsterdam in terms of police costs and the incarceration of those who, under a less intelligent policy, would be deemed criminals?

I don't care what people do to themselves as long as: 1) I don't have to pay more taxes to pay for their stupidity in hoipital bills from OD'ing or

No, you'd rather pay for the most expensive police force (per capita) and the largest jail population (again per capita) in the world. Mostly driven because of the attitude of mindless prigs about drugs.

2) have anyone else hurt of killed because they were driving, walking, attacking someone else while the first person was 'high' on drugs.

Crap. Complete red herring. Legalizing drugs would not legalize their use while driving, etc., just as legalized alcohol did not do away with DWI laws. The "not responsible because of drugs/alcohol/religious frenzy" excuse is a separate issue, brought in by people defending the present drug policy with bankrupt arguments.

Essentially if we could 100% guarentee that the people who do drugs won't steal more to get the money for their habit, and use drugs in their house and pay for their own doctor bills and not hurt others I'd be all for it.

Again, crap. First, those who use drugs would be much less likely to have to steal to buy legal drugs since the cost of those legal drugs would be a small fraction of what they are now. Second, since you are already paying a whole shitload more to arrest, convict, and incarcerate those people, it would be to your economic advantage to take the least costly alternative. Third, drug users already use the ERs and already hurt people, so legalized or not that wouldn't change. However, controlled, clean drugs would probably reduce many of the medical effects, thus probably ameliorating even the medical part of the cost.

The simple fact that we have to deal with the consequences of less harsh drugs like alcohol and niccotine already and those hit me in my wallet even if I rarely/never partake of them already pisses me off.

Yeah. But the stupidity of your argument is that the present policy is probably many times more expensive than legalization would be. And while making drugs illegal hasn't done squat to seriously reduce the usage of drugs, making nicotine unpopular has reduced its usage by a large amount.

So, while you hid behind a (illogical and ignorant) financial argument, in the end all you are saying is "I don't do drugs, so all those who do should be punished. And I don't give a damn if that really address the problem or not, because I'm more interested in retribution than solution."

--Pete
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Ozymandous
Ozymandous

January 30th, 2004, 12:55 pm #9

So, if drugs are made illegal their usage would go down because the "thrill" of doing something bad would go down?

Since I didn't say that, I think it is (typically) unfair of you to ask me to support it. Burn your own straw men.

What I did say was that (1) there is a cost to society associated with the legal usage of drugs; (2) there is a cost to society to have and enforce laws against the usage of drugs; (3) if the second cost is higher than the first, then anti-drug laws are a waste of money.


I didn't quote all of what led me to ask my question, but here's what you said, which when tied to the part I quoted does seem to imply my point:

Now, what gets to be really interesting is to consider the potential feedback from those two questions. If a rational approach is taken, the desire for drugs goes down, the cost of drugs to society goes down. The amount that society can (and needs) to spend to improve the situation goes down. Everybody wins. Under the present idiotic approach the cost to enforce the laws goes up, the cost to incarcerate individuals goes up. The usage of drugs isn't going down. Everybody except some politicians lose. And a bunch of rural folks feel real good about themselves for imposing their fundamentalist superstitions on the rest of the country.

According to this statement you did say that if drugs were legalized then there would be less demand for them with the "if a rational approach is taken..." bit, hence my questioning if legalizing drugs would make their use go down or grow. You seem to think it would, I don't, difference in opinion and when opinions differ the only thing that can be done is look for real life examples of what each proposes. Hence my Amsterdam comment, since that is one of the few places in the world that legalized a wide variety drug usage, and we can look to the stat's of that city/region to see the impact.

Was my initial reply to the part I quoted a strawman? Not in the context of this further quote and reply, which I should have included to begin with, sorry for that, but since you posted in the first place I thought you'd see where I was going with this without having to spell it out (my fault again, I know no one's a mind-reader, my wife can attest to that, lol).

Tell me, was there an influx into Amsterdam when they decriminalized the use of drugs? Had the whole world done so (or even just Europe), would there have been that influx? Did the cost to all of Europe go down (even factoring in the increase in Amsterdam) because many of the most serious drug users left? And how much has been saved in Amsterdam in terms of police costs and the incarceration of those who, under a less intelligent policy, would be deemed criminals?

1. Was their an influx into Amsterdam? I dunno, but that's besides the point, unless of course, you want to claim that there *wouldn't* be an influx into the US if we legalized drug usage? If you won't claim that, I wouldn't, then how much additional cost would there be to us in the form of having to deal with the additional problems of a world of people coming here to get high? Would the costs equalize what we're spending now? I dunno, but an interesting question, IMHO.

2. Did the cost to Europe go down? Again, I don't know, but I am sure the peple in Amsterdam, who have to pay higher costs, don't really care if the people of Paris have to pay less in taxes. Are you advocating that we should legalize drug usage here so the other countries of the world would pay less taxes while we deal with the clean-up? lol, good idea if they send us the money they are saving..

3. How much is saved from non-incarcerating? Again, I don't know and would be interested to find out. My question is, of course, has any other cost in Amsterdam gone up in response to legalizing drug use, that would mostly or completely off-set the lowered cost of police? Has the cost of enforcing all other laws gone up or down? I had heard (again, no figures to back me up so take this with a grain of salt if you wish) that overall costs had gone UP, and the policy deemed a mistake, but IIRC this was a passing mention in the news awhile back, with no numbers to back it up.

No, you'd rather pay for the most expensive police force (per capita) and the largest jail population (again per capita) in the world. Mostly driven because of the attitude of mindless prigs about drugs.

Now who's usiang a straw man? I explicitly stated this:

Before you think I am on some moral or religious crusade to outlaw these things, I'll say this:

I don't care what people do to themselves as long as: 1) I don't have to pay more taxes to pay for their stupidity in hoipital bills from OD'ing or 2) have anyone else hurt of killed because they were driving, walking, attacking someone else while the first person was 'high' on drugs.

Essentially if we could 100% guarentee that the people who do drugs won't steal more to get the money for their habit, and use drugs in their house and pay for their own doctor bills and not hurt others I'd be all for it.


Again, if people decided to do drugs in their own house without me having to pay for their stupidity when they OD, or suffer some other long term issue, then I say go for it. Of course I am also in favor of letting people commit suicide if they wish as long as they hurt no others. I don't do drugs but if others want to do them, fine, just don't impact anyone else in any way, shape or form, and I really don't care. This is a far cry from "you'd rather pay for the most expensive police force..." you'd like to atribute to me so you can dismiss anything I say.

Crap. Complete red herring. Legalizing drugs would not legalize their use while driving, etc., just as legalized alcohol did not do away with DWI laws. The "not responsible because of drugs/alcohol/religious frenzy" excuse is a separate issue, brought in by people defending the present drug policy with bankrupt arguments.

DId I say I was defending the policy? I DO think the current drug laws are stupid and a waste of time and resources, but without some hard figures to prove that striking down said laws would REALLY improve things in fact, instead of theory, I'm more inclined to leave them as they are. So far the only case I know of to compare to, Amsterdam, has given me the impression that the policy of legalization is a failure and bigger money waste than what we have now.

Again, crap. First, those who use drugs would be much less likely to have to steal to buy legal drugs since the cost of those legal drugs would be a small fraction of what they are now. Second, since you are already paying a whole shitload more to arrest, convict, and incarcerate those people, it would be to your economic advantage to take the least costly alternative. Third, drug users already use the ERs and already hurt people, so legalized or not that wouldn't change. However, controlled, clean drugs would probably reduce many of the medical effects, thus probably ameliorating even the medical part of the cost.

First, are people only stealing to buy drugs or stealing for money for anything and everything? If you have a study that proves that the majority of those arrested for stealing plan to sell their booty for drug money then you have a very good point, otherwise it's just opinion.

Second, again, where are the multiple studies with factual numbers proving that it would be cheaper, in totality, not just law enforcement, to legalize drugs? I am sure this has been studied in Amsterdam, the numbers shouldn't be hard to find.

Third, yes drug user's do use ER's and other facilities now, but what percentage of people who come to the ER are a result of drug use as opposed to drinking for example? Are there more people who come because of legalized drinking than drugs? If so, then would a hypothesis stating that if drugs were legalized there would be a proportional number of alcohol and drug related problems than there may be now? Would legalizing drugs, where anyone and everyone can get them, lower or raise the amount of people having to get hospital treatment because more people are now drunk AND high while driving down the road?

These are all questions I'd like to get answered by hard facts and figures before poo-pooing the entire idea of keeping drugs illegal or making drugs legal.

Yeah. But the stupidity of your argument is that the present policy is probably many times more expensive than legalization would be. And while making drugs illegal hasn't done squat to seriously reduce the usage of drugs, making nicotine unpopular has reduced its usage by a large amount.

Well then provide hard numbers saying what is more expensive or not, over all not just for police and law enforcement. You claim my argument is stupid because I want proof, yet all you have as proof my argument is stupid is your opinion? Pardon me if I still hold my opinion higher than I di your's in relation to me.

So, while you hid behind a (illogical and ignorant) financial argument, in the end all you are saying is "I don't do drugs, so all those who do should be punished. And I don't give a damn if that really address the problem or not, because I'm more interested in retribution than solution."

Another strawman? I never said I wanted retribution. Illogical and ignorant? Then provide PROOF, not opinion, and I'll gladly support making drugs legal. I have NEVER said those who do drugs should be punished, but I DID say that I shouldn't have to pay for the stupidity of those who do drugs when I, myself, don't do them. I understand you don't like anyone disagreeing with what you condiser a superior opinion, but all I am asking for is proof, instead of opinion, when making the claim that any other opinion is stupid, as you have repeatedly done.

As for retribution for those who do drugs, nah, why bother? If they want to do that to themselves, more power to them, just don't expect me to pay for their stupidity, that's all I am saying.
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Occhi
Occhi

January 30th, 2004, 2:19 pm #10

Hi,

What the recreational drug user does in pursuit of a buzz is allow crooks to make money.

If bread were made illegal, then hunger would make crooks of us all. And bakers would be rich.

There are two questions that need answering if the drug issue is to be taken out of the arena of ignorant fundamentalist reaction and considered in a rational manner. The first is just how much effort (read that as tax money) should be used to curb drug usage. The second is whether law or marketing is the better means of achieving the objective.

The first question is a simple one: what would unlimited legal drug usage cost society? If more is spent to reduce the drug usage than the usage costs in the first place, then that money is wasted. The only "justification" for that waste is the offended moral outlook of nosy Nells.

The second question is a bit more difficult. But an observant person might just consider how poorly Prohibition worked and how well the advertising campaign against smoking worked. Rum runners got rich. Drug dealers are getting rich. Tobacco companies are losing customers and civil suits.

What was that saying? Something about insanity being the repetition of an ineffective action and expecting a better outcome?

Now, what gets to be really interesting is to consider the potential feedback from those two questions. If a rational approach is taken, the desire for drugs goes down, the cost of drugs to society goes down. The amount that society can (and needs) to spend to improve the situation goes down. Everybody wins. Under the present idiotic approach the cost to enforce the laws goes up, the cost to incarcerate individuals goes up. The usage of drugs isn't going down. Everybody except some politicians lose. And a bunch of rural folks feel real good about themselves for imposing their fundamentalist superstitions on the rest of the country.

America has been a dope smoking nation for maybe a generation or two

Try from the start. Smoking hemp goes back to before colonial times.

The anti-drug war is a lot like the environmental movement, or the major anti-litter campaigns that I grew up with.

In some ways, maybe. However, the environment and litter are damage that is caused by one person (or organization) to society in general. Drug usage is only self-destructive. Crossing the line from protecting me from you to protecting me from me is crossing the line from government to parenthood -- or religion.

So, there is some merit to pointing out that America's drug problem poisons other nations,

BS. The fact that most drug using nations are hypocritical: the population demands drugs and yet have made the use of those drugs illegal is what is causing the problem. A legal drug trade would no more help crime bosses anywhere than does the legal alcohol trade. Or the legal nicotine trade. Once the risks of breaking the law are removed, then the profits of doing so are also removed. The "drug lords" simply become wealthy businessmen. Their offspring will serve in the government as senators, governors, even presidents. And that is simple prediction based on repetition.

--Pete
Supply and demand.

Crime supporting/cost markups drive prices of "illegal recreational drugs" higher, making the product in question more lucrative to grow and produce than other commodities at the farmer level. Dodging the law creates a zero value added cost center for the drug producer.

For synthetic chemicals such as LSD, production costs are dwarfed by the profit margins based once again on supply and demand, and marketing, and other market choices and costs relative to cacthing a buzz. I used to suggest that a solution to the crack problem was: Make Ice (Crystal Meth) legal. That way, a made in America (crank labs used to abound in East Texas Big Thicket country) would well undersell Crack, keep the money generally in America, and support "the war on drugs" without fighting a war with bullets in Columbia. As for the addicts, I am happy to let them kill themselves smoking Ice if they won't listen to the message.

I find it ridiculous, and I suppose you find it hypocritical, that we spend millions of dollars in Columbia every year "fighting the drug war" when it is the American public's insatiable appetite for recreational drugs that creates the situation. Your suggestion that the money be spent on the information campaign is agreed: but what politician has that kind of patience? :P
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