open thread


Erik Kain

Erik writes about video games at Forbes and politics at Mother Jones. He's the contributor of The League though he hasn't written much here lately. He can be found occasionally composing 140 character cultural analysis on Twitter.

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10 Responses

  1. Avatar Patrick says:

    The proper question is whether, if a competent adult wants to consume cosadein without hurting others, he should be imprisoned for doing so. If the market for cosadein is there, it will be served legally or illegally.

    Haven’t enough non-violent criminals been imprisoned for victimless possession of cosadein? Haven’t enough innocent users died from being forced to consume dangerous street cosadein? Haven’t we wasted enough billions of the public treasury fighting our futile War on Cosadein?Report

    • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Patrick says:

      When your child is found dead, DEAD, in the gutter because of a bag of meth, maybe you’ll change your tune.Report

      • Avatar E.D. Kain in reply to Jaybird says:

        Not sure what you mean by this, Jaybird (or has the suddenly serious Jaybird replaced the typically flippant Jaybird?)

        What is your solution to the meth problem?Report

        • Avatar Jaybird in reply to E.D. Kain says:

          I was being typically flippant.

          A lifetime ago, I was arguing for an end to drug prohibition and got, pretty much verbatim, that response. I figured it fit here too.Report

        • Avatar Jaybird in reply to E.D. Kain says:

          “What is your solution to the meth problem?”

          I will make an analogy to Prohibition (the 18th Amendment one) to deal with this question.

          I see it as perfectly analagous to you asking me “What is your solution to the bathtub gin problem?”

          I find it difficult to believe that people drank bathtub gin because they had a choice. They drank bathtub gin because they didn’t.

          When your suppliers are erratic and you don’t know when you’re going to get another shot at getting your buzz on, you are more likely to binge when you can because you know you might be dry for god knows how long (think back to when you were a freshman at college).

          Additionally, when the law comes down as hard on a beer drinker as on a wine drinker as on a hard whiskey drinker… and when you can sell 1 1/2 ounces of booze for the same price as 12 ounces of beer, then a 12 ounce bottle of beer is 7/8ths wasted profit… and since you’re purchasing from criminals anyway, it’s not surprising that they’d take the attitude “may as well be hung for a sheep as a lamb” and work primarily with the hard, hard stuff. And if the hard, hard stuff is easier to get than beer and it costs more or less the same… why not drink the hard stuff?

          And that’s not even talking about stuff like “turf wars” and without really delving into the topic of “organized crime” or anything like that.

          So how would I deal with the bathtub gin problem?

          I’d make it legal to drink beer and wine again. And, sure, gin… but nobody drinks that unless they’re forced at gunpoint. It’s like drinking a dang christmas tree.Report

          • Avatar Mark Thompson in reply to Jaybird says:

            Hey! I drink gin!

            Anyhow, what you definitely would not do is go out and place restrictions on the over the counter sale of junipers. Nor would you require every nursery that sold junipers or property owner with junipers on his lot to register with the Department of Agriculture and provide reports on the disposition of said junipers.

            And it would be pretty unfair to Scandinavian-Americans if you just forced every grocer to record the names and addresses of everyone who purchased juniper berries, or limited the number of juniper berries one could buy in a single trip to the store.Report

  2. Avatar E.D. Kain says:

    Too true, Patrick. Too true. (Isn’t there a Tom Petty song – or was it Bob Marley – to that effect?)Report

  3. Avatar Jaybird says:

    My personal take is that the job of the FDA ought to be to make sure that Uncle Slither’s 100% Snake Oil contains, in fact, 100% Snake Oil.

    If Uncle Slither wants to pay to have a sticker on his box that says “The FDA has determined that Snake Oil will lubricate your Q Zone!”, he can hammer out the Q Zone with the FDA, have tests, and demonstrate to the FDA’s satisfaction that the Q Zone is, in fact, lubricated in a significant number over those who lubricated with placebo.

    If, on top of *THAT*, they want a sticker that says “The FDA has determined that Snake Oil, as part of a balanced diet, reduces cholesterol”, they can pay for that too.

    But the only thing that should allow the FDA to say “you can’t sell that!” is if, in fact, it’s not 100% Snake Oil.Report

  4. Avatar Dan Summers says:

    I don’t prescribe it for my patients, but I do take it myself.Report