Sunday 13 May 2012

The re-legalisation of drugs

A few people have asked me to blog about the plain packaging debate held in Bristol last week. I've been rather busy and will be busy for a few more days yet, but I will get round to it. Suffice to say that it was a blast and Taking Liberties has a good account of it.

In the meantime, let me point you to my post about drug (re)legalisation at the IEA blog which is a precursor to my debate with Peter Hitchens on Wednesday.

A pragmatic legal market would allow licensed bars, coffee shops and private members’ clubs to sell opium and cannabis for smoking on the premises. Nightclubs and some bars would be permitted to sell pure MDMA. Pills, powders and tinctures containing amphetamine, cocaine and opium would be available from registered pharmacists with appropriate warnings and directions for use. Specialised licensed shops, equivalent to tobacconists or ‘head shops’, would be permitted to sell cannabis cigarettes, MDMA, smoking opium and hallucinogens for sale off the premises. In all cases, sales would be limited to those over the age of eighteen.

Do have a read.


Anonymous said...

Chris excellent article and I totally agree. But you forgot to mention repealing the smoking bans in it...............Seems every comment placed on the article are sent to moderation,what gives.

Anonymous said...

Good points. We need some reasoned policy. Things were better 100 + years ago when folks could get most any drug they wanted. There was no rampant drug problem. Most people aren't out to become drug fiends. That's why most people are not chronically drunk today. Popular recreational drugs should be available by self-prescription and signing a statement acknowledging risks. I don't want TV ads for "new improved Head Blast Heroin" but I don't want any more War on Drugs either. Prisons are now populated by "drug criminals" as much as anybody else and that should not be. Reasonable access is reasonable.

Mr A said...

Recent events in Mexico should highlight the error of the "war on drugs." As with Tobacco Control policy, which has simply entrenched smoking rates and smokers' attitudes, someone really needs to take stock of the situation and say, "Well, this approach just isn't working. Is there another one we can use?"

The current approach in both areas is pretty much just proving Einstein's definition of insanity.