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Peter Reynolds

The life and times of Peter Reynolds

Posts Tagged ‘regressive

Young Jimmy’s Jolly In Peru

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There’s all sorts of perks to being a government minister you know.  If you’re young Jimmy Brokenshire then as part of your courageous “war on drugs” you get an all-expenses paid trip to Peru to have a good laff at the poor sods who’ve got themselves jailed chasing the white lady.

Jimmy's Holiday Snaps

Apparently, most cocaine in Britain now comes from Peru rather than Columbia so, of course,  it was vital for young Jimmy to get on a plane and do some fact finding.   What I’d like to know is did he find anything of decent quality or is it all crap like it is on the mean streets of Britain?  Did he rub it on his gums, sniff a few lines and get partying or was it bubbling in a spoon and blazed on a big glass pipe to get him rampant and raving and even more dangerous than he is at home?

The terrible story of Nick Jones from West London can be seen here.  He was caught trying to bring back two kilos of Peruvian Flake.  Sure, I feel sorry for him but it’s an extremely high stakes game.  He knew full well what he was doing and chose to take the risk.   Jimmy went along to gloat and use the opportunity for some easy propaganda.  I think he must have still been cracked out though because he told the BBC,  “The liability that you will be caught is very, very high”.  Now that’s some malapropism.  Maybe he’s got some other “liability” or likelihood on his mind or maybe he really was “very, very high”.

It makes me sick that this vile, baby faced punk is frittering our money away on his unjustified jollies.  The Minister for Crime Prevention is a disgrace, a prohibitionist,  a propagandist and a dissembler.  Probably the most dangerous man in British politics, I’d rather see Nick Griffin at the Home Office than young Jimmy.   He couldn’t be worse.  He couldn’t be more poorly informed.  He couldn’t be more regressive or oppressive or smug and self-satisfied.

Jimmy Visits A Peruvian Prison

In my wildest fantasies, maybe someone will slip a couple of wraps in Jimmy’s pocket and he’ll get busted at Heathrow.  A few weeks in Brixton would do him the world of good before his chums pull strings to get him off.  He’d be a better person for it.  He might have to face up to some realities rather than the deluded, fantasy world in which he lives.

Alternatively, maybe he could do the decent thing and swop places with Nick Jones?  Now that would be truly useful.  I’d be the first to recommend him for a medal.  Then, in a few years time we could send someone out to gloat over him!

Well I can dream!

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Is Prof Pertwee A Home Office Plant?

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Is He A Plant?

As they say, with friends like these, who needs enemies?

Is It A Professor?

Seriously, or not so seriously, who is this bumbling old duffer wheeled out by the BBC for some terribly weak story that cannabis sales should be licensed?  See here.  If the BBC wants to cover this story there are at least a dozen far more expert, more eloquent, more telegenic, better informed, more sensible commentators.

Frankly, I’d rather have someone who can put a coherent argument against instead of this pathetic performance by Prof Pertwee.  Seldom have I seen any argument for any idea advanced so weakly.  I mean, who starts off talking about their proposal by saying “I don’t think it would work”!

It does raise the suspicion that the only people that want the cannabis argument put so badly is the Home Office.  There is, quite literally, no other organisation, connected with a democratic government anywhere in the civilised world that is so backwards, regressive and out of touch with the facts than the UK Home Office.  A cannabis plant would have been a more exciting interviewee than Prof Pertwee.  He must surely be a plant for what Prof. Les Iversen, the government’s most senior official drugs adviser calls “the anti-cannabis brigade”.

Maybe this is a sign that common sense has got the Home Office on the run. Its tired, inaccurate, unscientific, prejudiced  and short sighted attitude is on its very last legs.  This is either an embarrassingly bad effort by Prof Pertwee (thanks for trying) or a desperate attempt to discredit the truth.

The fact is that the argument has already been won.  I’d like to know what the “harms” are that the Professor was talking about in his interview.   There’s the tired old chitchat about mental health problems.   It’s just propaganda.  In Israel, cannabis is now recommended by doctors to help veterans deal with PTSD.  This is fact, reality, what’s actually happening, not what James Brokenshire and his cronies dream up in some bunker in Marsham Street.

I see that the story is also running in the Daily Mail.  It’s remarkable how even it, the home of hysteria, has changed its attitude on cannabis in the last year or so.  This is perhaps a better barometer of  public opinion than anything else.  When the Daily Mail starts talking common sense it must be very obvious indeed!

Even the FT is running the story.  Who knows maybe it will develop into something a bit more sensible.  The BBC just did a particularly bad job of covering it!

I do like Prof Pertwee’s recommendation of the Volcano vapouriser though.  I concur with the Professor on this.  I can tell you that after extensive personal testing I have concluded that it works very well indeed!

“Outrageous Scaremongering” Over Cannabis

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Last October,  36-year old Julie Ryan was found dead in bed by her three children, now aged 14, 13 and 8.  At a coroner’s inquest in Oldham last week, pathologist Dr Sami Titi said “The direct cause of her death was cardiac arrest because of a history of smoking cannabis”.

Dr Sami Titi

Julie’s family claims that this is not true, that Julie’s cannabis use has been blamed because the Royal Oldham hospital failed to treat her properly. In Britain, there has only been one previous occasion when a death has been attributed to cannabis. In 2004, Lee Maisey, 36 of Pembrokeshire, who smoked half a dozen “joints” a day, was found dead on his living room floor after complaining of a headache.

At the inquest in Oldham, the coroner, Simon Nelson, was said to be surprised at the pathologist’s story and questioned him closely. Dr Titi insisted that “smoking of cannabis is well known to have a negative impact on the heart and can cause heart attacks in young people”. The coroner said that in 15 years he had never heard a pathologist so confident that cannabis could be fatal. He recorded a narrative verdict of “death from cardiovascular complications induced by cannabis smoking”.

Coroner Simon Nelson

Julie’s brother, Kevin Ryan, says that the pathologist’s remarks are “outrageous scaremongering”. Her mother, Linda, is bewildered by events. As planned, Julie’s children had stayed with her while the inquest was taking place. Now they have returned home to the furore of this extraordinary verdict and are extremely distressed.

Julie had visited the Royal Oldham hospital several times complaining of chest pains but been sent away with a diagnosis of heartburn. The post mortem examination revealed she had a severely enlarged heart and had suffered a previous heart attack which had not been diagnosed. Family sources said “It’s a cover up. Cannabis doesn’t kill. They made a big mistake.” Mary Burrows, Julie’s cousin, who was very close to her, said she preferred to smoke cannabis rather than have a drink and that “she was a wonderful mother and her kids miss her so much”.

Dr Mark Eckersley, a local Manchester doctor, said “More and more pressure is being piled on medical professionals to propagate this type of untruth by the powers that be.” He said doctors need to maintain credibility with the community and that “this type of nonsense makes my blood boil”.

A spokesman for the Royal Oldham hospital said “Miss Ryan died from a heart attack and cardiovascular problems. Our thoughts and sympathy go to her family.”

On 2nd November in California, Proposition 19 is expected to permit the personal use of cannabis for the state’s 28 million adults. As a result, new tax revenues of $1.4 billion are anticipated, up to 110,000 new jobs and a boost of up to $18 billion to the state’s economy from spin-offs such as coffee shops and tourism.

In America, any health concerns about the plant are far outweighed by health benefits. Medical cannabis is already regulated in 14 states with another 12 in the planning stage. In Britain, Sativex, a whole plant extract of cannabis, was recently authorised as a treatment for MS. It costs about eight times what medical cannabis costs in America, Holland, Spain, Israel and very shortly Germany, where there is a fully regulated supply chain. In Britain, despite a House Of Lords Scientific Committee recommendation, the government refuses to consider such a move. Many patients whose doctors have prescribed Sativex have been denied funding from their health authority. In some of these cases, criminal prosecutions have been brought against them for cultivating their own plants.

A spokesman for GW Pharmaceuticals, developers of Sativex, said “The therapeutic ratio for cannabis is so high that it is virtually impossible to ingest a fatal dose”.

Prof. David Nutt

Professor David Nutt was sacked as chairman of the Home Office’s Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs last year after claiming that cannabis was less harmful than alcohol and tobacco. His successor, Professor Les Iversen, also maintains that cannabis has been “incorrectly” called dangerous and says it is one of the “safer recreational drugs”.

On Friday, Professor Nutt said cannabis “seems to cause much less harm than alcohol and that banning the plant is “unjust and therefore undemocratic”. He added: “The previous government’s policy to deter cannabis use by forceful policing increased convictions for cannabis possession from 88,000 in 2004 to 160,000 in 2008. As well as ruining many lives through getting a criminal record, this added massive costs to taxpayers in extra policing and prison costs.”

Prof. Les Iversen

Dr Sami Titi, the pathologist, was unavailable for comment and did not respond to emails. It has not been possible to identify any scientific support for his conclusions.

Julie Ryan’s family is left bemused and uncertain by this verdict. Three children are without a mother and confused about contradictory messages. The 13 year old has been posting on websites about her concerns. Meanwhile, the Public Accounts Committee and the National Audit Office have criticised the government for basing drugs policy on opinion rather than evidence. James Brokenshire, the Home Office Minister, in direct contradiction to his own advisers, continues with the story that cannabis is “extremely harmful”.

James Brokenshire

Both David Cameron and Nick Clegg are on record over the last 10 years as consistently calling for reform in drug policy. The Your Freedom website has been overwhelmed with requests for evidence based regulation of drugs and the legalisation of cannabis but the government is riding roughshod over this public outcry. A consultation document on a new drugs strategy was issued just over a week ago but it seems meaningless and dishonest as all the big decisions have already been taken. Cannabis campaigners, working on behalf of six million regular users in the UK, are outraged at what they see as hypocrisy, misinformation and regressive government action.

Dr Mark Eckersley, exasperated and concerned at the pathologist’s evidence said “This is simply not true. Hearing this story is more likely to cause a heart attack than the ingestion of any cannabinoid”.

Written by Peter Reynolds

August 31, 2010 at 2:17 pm

Posted in Health, Politics

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Broken Society. Broken Britain. Brokenshire.

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A Gift To The Opposition

Given his increasingly authoritarian, “big government” stance, his misrepresentation of science and the deeply flawed, dishonest Home Office Drugs Strategy consultation,  James Brokenshire is proving himself to be a very dangerous young man.

If any coalition minister is pursuing policies that will lead to a broken society and a broken Britain, it is Brokenshire.   He is so far out of step with the progressive, liberal and intelligent direction of the government that one wonders has he been put out for sacrifice?   His attitude and ideas are those of a previous generation which had not yet made all the mistakes or suffered all the consequences that we already have.  He needs to study some history.

From Propostion 19 to the changing views of Latin America’s leaders, Brokenshire is way, way behind.  He is also in direct contradiction to the progressive policies which both Cameron and Clegg have supported in the past.

It is vital for the future of millions of British citizens, their health, liberty, freedom from crime and oppression that Brokenshire is stopped.  As a Tory I am also dismayed at the huge damage he is doing to the party.  He is making the coalition government look short sighted, regressive and stupid.   He has got to go.

See here for the story on Nominative Determinism.  What does a man’s name mean?