It's Wrong To Make Drug War a Religion

  It's Wrong To Make Drug War a Religion

Posted by CN Staff on December 10, 2006 at 20:30:41 PT
By William A. Collins 
Source: Greenwich Time  

Connecticut -- Cliff Thornton, the recent Green Party candidate for governor, is a man of commendable substance and character. One of his seminal comments during the campaign was, "We've got to understand that the drug war is meant to be waged, not won."Others have said much the same about the war on terror, and all are right, but the election showed that the public might at least have caught the drift about terrorism. Not so about drugs. Voters still seem ready to punish politicians who seem to be "soft." This faulty faith in an incarceration ideology, promoted especially by the prison-industrial complex, is painfully damaging to society.
Take Hartford. New research has found that one child in six there has a parent in jail. Very few of these got sentenced for stock fraud or embezzlement. White-collar criminals are from the suburbs, and mostly they just get fines and probation. The heavy sentences are reserved for drugs and related crimes. Indeed, there exists a kind of puritanical belief that those of us who maintain freedom from such substances will vouchsafe a place for ourselves in heaven, as long as we persecute those who have fallen.Fortunately, our own purity is not considered smirched by occasional recourse to alcohol. This distinction between the two substances was clarified during the great temperance reformation in the 1930s. That's when Prohibition was finally repealed.But while the glass of wine and the martini have long been welcomed back into the Kingdom of Heaven, not so the joint. Not even if you're deathly ill and cannabis is the only pharmaceutical that can bring relief. It carries the stigma of Subsequent Sin. Even baptism by incarceration cannot fully erase its stain.The cost to society of this anti-drug religion has been enormous. And not just to hopeless junkies either. It's racial too. Drug laws purposely are drawn to punish blacks and Latinos with especial harshness. Not coincidentally, we also tie in restrictions on their right to vote. In some states, there is a lifetime prohibition.But for the rich, the rules are somewhat milder. The New York Times reports that in Manhattan that polite and well-groomed dealers will now deliver pleasantly packaged, high-quality marijuana to your door. No more murky street corners with lurking cops and bullets.In Europe, this Reformation is much further along. Very few people over there go to jail for drugs these days. Users of pot are ignored, and addicts of the harder stuff are offered treatment. In some places, hopeless heroin victims even are given controlled amounts of it, often stabilizing them and sometimes straightening them out.In this country, we're much more ideological. We deny pot to the desperately ill for fear it will "send the wrong message." We send mercenaries onto Afghan farms to tear out poppies, thereby fomenting a resurgence of the Taliban. We jail harmless drug users, isolating them from education, employment, family and treatment, thus driving more and more citizens onto welfare and into crime.Yes, there have been improvements. While our state still over-punishes for cocaine possession, at least it's now equal for blacks and whites. Penalties used to differ greatly for possession of crack cocaine (cheaper to buy) and the powder (expensive). Eleven states - not us - also allow medical marijuana use, though the feds are thrilled to jump in and arrest sufferers anyway. And California widely offers treatment instead of jail. Still, the drug war nationally continues to fuel crime syndicates, destroy families, and breed corruption here and in Mexico. That's a heavy price to pay for a false religion.Syndicated columnist William A. Collins is a former state representative and a former mayor of Norwalk. The piece was distributed by Source: Greenwich Time (CT)Author: William A. CollinsPublished: December 10, 2006Copyright: 2006, Southern Connecticut Newspapers, Inc.Contact: mike.sweeney scni.comWebsite: Justice Archives

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Comment #53 posted by paulpeterson on December 20, 2006 at 14:35:17 PT
ekim-Iowablog-reporting for duty
Thanks for the post-I went there, saw that, like it, I will follow up on this site. Gotta go today, since I only came into town to throw a 41 page motion in the water-regarding the fact that the chief of police in this town is a Catholic elder or deacon-which makes his recent arrest of me for attending a Unitarian Church suspect per se.This religious intolerance for minority religious fringe groups has just gotta stop. I am demanding that the Stasi disclose all records and notes made from interviews of Unitarian members-in their "Inquisition" to find something to charge me with. This represents "political defendant" status, and I am asking to enjoin the police for this onerous and "pernicious" violation of the First Amendment rights of myself and the Church members.This "University" that allows the Unitarians to meet there has received federal moneys of late-automatically triggering the First Amendment-which must protect the church if not me-from this egregious violation.Based upon the facts here, I am asking for an injunction barring the Chief of Police from being both chief & office holder in the church. Recently he let a Catholic off the hook for an "endangerment of police officer" charge-without the guy ever going to court. I want a copy of the records from that case-if they haven't destroyed all evidence of that bust. That would be a felony, I think-they call it destruction of evidence-that I need to prove "selective prosecution" as one of the elements of my defense to this religious intolerance claim.Its got "equal protection" all over it-plus seperation of church and state. Also please recall Michael Servetes, the patron saint of Unitarians, was burned at the stake in 1553. It's a good motion at 41 pages, and I made it read like a book. Gotta get outa town right now-before they come after me with the torch. (Just kidding, of course).I'll check on that blog tomorrow. And thanks for noticing. PAUL PETERSON
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Comment #52 posted by ekim on December 19, 2006 at 17:51:28 PT
paul -- nice if this Iowa blog would print you
Sen Harken is pushen for bio-fuels so is Grassley but who is for Cannabis, for the Farmers.Senator Chuck Grassley's concerns of taxpayer funds being used by the current administration to disseminate propaganda
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Comment #51 posted by ekim on December 19, 2006 at 12:57:45 PT
millions to be made on enzymes
Paul if you are good at researching information then please look up the cellulose enzyme contract with Genencore IN. in which the Feds spent 17 million finding out how to make the industrial enzymes far cheaper. In fact Sen. Grasley has just asked to have all the information on these enzymes as to how much they will cost -- how long it will take to get plants up and running. 
This is the big tech that will transform the bio-fuels industry in this country and abroad.
The National Renewable Energy Lab in Golden CO is where the testing on feedstock's are being done. It has been reported there that Switch Grass will yield 1,150 gals per acre at a cost of 25cents per acre for the industrial enzymes. On Last Fri night on the History or NGC at 9pm the show 
The State of the Earth was on. It showed the largest ethanol plant built in China. But it left out the feedstock ----
one wonders why China would grow anything but Cannabis as it has for thousands of years. now that N.D. State is going to grow Hemp we will see how much Hemp will yield per acre as it has 77% cellulose and i still have seen no numbers on how much cellulose Switch Grass of luck and happy new year.Biomass and Solar Technologies Lauded Monday, July 12, 2004Golden, Colo. - Two technologies developed by the U.S. Department of
Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory are among this year's most
significant innovations, as judged by Research & Development (R&D)
Magazine.The Laboratory's two R&D 100 Awards for 2004 are for an innovative,
lower-cost method for transforming plant material into the sugars that
can be used to make fuels and chemicals, and a thin-film solar cell that
produces electricity directly from sunlight, which has greater
efficiency, and is lighter weight and more flexible than previous
devices.This year's announcement brings to 37 the number of R&D 100 Awards
garnered by NREL."Once again, the technologies developed by our Laboratory's researchers
are being acknowledged for their importance to the nation," said Stan
Bull, NREL associate director for science and technology. "It's
particularly gratifying that the R&D 100 Awards this year include two
NREL technologies that can enhance our nation's energy security and
reduce our reliance on foreign sources of oil."The Enzymatic Hydrolysis of Biomass Cellulose to Sugars technology is
expected to allow a wide range of biomass resources to be used to
produce energy and chemicals. It is an important step toward realizing
the potential of bio-refineries-in which plant and waste materials are
used to produce an array of fuels and chemicals, analogous to an oil
refinery today.Through this technology, the cost of converting cellulosic biomass into
usable sugars can be reduced by more than 20 times per gallon of ethanol
produced.The award is shared by NREL, Genencor International and Novozymes
Biotech, Inc. NREL researchers who worked on this project included
Michael Himmel, Jim McMillan, Dan Schell, Jody Farmer, Nancy Dowe and
Rafael Nieves.Also recognized for 2004 are light and flexible thin-film copper indium
gallium diselenide (CIGS) photovoltaic modules, which can be
manufactured in various sizes and have a compact, foldable design that
allows for easy deployment, transport and storage.As a result, the modules have twice the power-to-weight ratio, and three
times the power-to-size ratio as competing products. Because of this,
they are especially suited for military applications, portable power for
consumer and public use, boating and other marine applications and
building-related uses, such as for bus shelters and in PV-integrated
roofing.The award is shared by NREL, Global Solar Energy and ITN Energy Systems.
NREL researchers who worked on this project included Harin Ullal, Ken
Zweibel and Bolko von Roedern.NREL is the U.S. Department of Energy's premier laboratory for renewable
energy research and development and a leading laboratory for energy
efficiency R&D. NREL is operated for DOE by Midwest Research Institute
and Battelle.For further information contact NREL Public Affairs at (303) 275-4090.
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Comment #50 posted by FoM on December 18, 2006 at 11:48:43 PT
It's ok. I figured you were frustrated. We all try to do the best we can.
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Comment #49 posted by paulpeterson on December 18, 2006 at 11:48:41 PT
Sorry, if I try to advocate for the rights of ANY PERSON, I will be busted for practicing law without a ticket. Why do you think they took my ticket in the first place, eh?I corresponded with a LEAP guy in Illinois, James Gerach, a lawyer guy. But I am not there now, and they took his public position away, to silence him also. The goon squads don't like their own "people" talking heresy.What is a blog? I will have to check that out. Thanks for noticiing. PAUL
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Comment #48 posted by paulpeterson on December 18, 2006 at 11:45:57 PT
No chance I can grow hemp, if you get my drift here. And they will be buying mostly corn, which I abhore, because of what I know about that plant, from a nutritional standpoint, and regarding the tremendous level of chemicals most people put on their ground to support the nutrient leaching, etc.Plus, I am hoping to dig two large ponds there, and transfer the top soil to a local landfill to cover same, maybe they will let us grow corn on top of the landfill, but we don't have enough ground to make it pay anyway. Good thought though, and I am supportive of these ideas. PAUL
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Comment #47 posted by paulpeterson on December 18, 2006 at 11:41:39 PT
Sorry I got so hot under the collar the other day. Just frustrated, that's all-For the same reasons you wish to narrow bandwidth-because everybody involved in this battle gets tired, and alone, with limited resources left, specifically because the goons WANT us to get disenchanted with the fight and give up, which means they win and we lose.And what frustrates me most of all is that the more other people need help, the less people there are to help, and the less corporal power I find myself with every day.On top of that, because I must remain compassionate towards even the goons that fight me almost to the death, even when I have stunning elements of surprise I can use against them, that merely means I MUST contact them and try to discuss fully and to allow them a way out before I use my tactics against them-meaning that I am fighting with ALL hands tied behind my back-at ever turn.Oh well, it is par for the course. PAUL
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Comment #46 posted by ekim on December 16, 2006 at 21:53:27 PT
Paul any chance you can grow for the plant
One of them is the lead investor in a new ethanol plant to be sited two miles North of my mom's farm-at the North end of the watershed area that feeds our creek.or rent your land-- better yet form a co-op with others and make your own.i was watching NGC they had a show called State of Earth 2006 tonight and they showed a brand new ethanol plant the biggest ever just comming on line in China -- the story never gave the feed stock -- i suspect Hemp as what else could they grow in fast numbers like they can Hemp which they have been growing for thousands of year. Paul have you read the comment by Hope about Kay Lee.
She needs help do you have any suggestions or help in Wisconson with med help for a card holding 215 CA supporter.
She is doing needed help and is very compassionate.all the bestPaul have you ever had any contact with Leap -- Howard Wooldridge or 817-975-1110 ck out the speakers are all over the country, maybe they can visit near you.
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Comment #45 posted by whig on December 16, 2006 at 13:14:35 PT
Paul Peterson
Why don't you get a blog on Wordpress or something? It's free and you can post your articles there.
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Comment #44 posted by FoM on December 16, 2006 at 11:51:45 PT
I am trying not to post much because of bandwidth issues to save Mapinc. some money and I figured Mapinc. covers all the news. We are basically a discussion forum more now then before. Not to mention I get tired. 
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Comment #43 posted by paulpeterson on December 16, 2006 at 11:23:10 PT
I am rather frustrated. I have submitted some 100 letters to the local paper, some 50 have been published, but I am absolutely unable to gain any penetration in media outside of Storm Lake, Iowa (I did get a few in the Des Moines Register, last one 9/27/06 about marijuana and 10 cancers-why didn't you pick that one up from and publish it here?).If you continue to only publish things that the mainstream media prints, aren't you just as guilty of content based censorship as the mainline boys are?How do writers like me get any press unless censors like you start to be more inclusive-which side are you on here?I do not demand that my work be "snipped" like some of those other papers do. Why won't you print things that people like me would be happy to disseminate to the public?If you are concerned about the slow pace of change, why not jump out of the rigid conformity & control dictates that media types seem to adhere to. And I also tell my local editor, Dana Larsen, of the Pilot Tribune, that any editing of my work he does is just fine with me. Check with him-I have never had any complaints how he snips my work. He always tries to maintain at least the main idea and flow.Let's get cooking for some more open advocacy efforts here. Telling readers they have my email and can ask me for copies of articles does not work. People are so afraid of having ANY contact with me, because I have proven to be soo obtuse, they are afraid of having their contacts traced back by some government goons. That is why a first amendment source like is so necessary as a go-between.How can I hope, as a broke, unemployed, untrained writer to gain any penetration if my friends won't even print my best work? Every time I contact any other media source, including High Times Magazine, I never hear back with even a confirmation they got my told me twice to never contact them again. Norml won't even acknowledge me at all. No other web site based organization has ever given me the time of day.What give here, anyway?You can tell I am frustrated, right? PAUL PETERSON, Lost in space.
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Comment #42 posted by paulpeterson on December 16, 2006 at 11:10:36 PT
ekim-ethanol is big here
Ethanol is big business here already. We have three new county supervisors coming in in January-the newbies will be a majority of the 5 total.One of them is the lead investor in a new ethanol plant to be sited two miles North of my mom's farm-at the North end of the watershed area that feeds our creek. I wonder what the runoff toxicity will be. But of course, I embrace new technologies. Dale Arents is a good listener, as well. I talked with him about decriminalization already. He told me to get some university talent in to help convince (them) that decrim. is a good idea.I have a potential candidate for the expert-at University of Iowa, that has been doing pet scans of potheads for 7 years. No permanent brain changes, he told me in 2001. But he won't return my calls now, since the climate has become even more rigidly opposed to new ideas, especially since meth-amphetamines have ravaged our rural area, giving pot even a worse reputation than in 2001.Sorry, no way I can get in on the "ground floor" since I am broke now with no pot to piss in (or no pot in my piss, either).I told him I need a decriminalization ordinance to convince the local university to research my meat invention, with a palpable buzz factor. Since I am now convinced my inventive diet contains a palpable level of either Oleomide (the endocannabinoid which is produced from Omega 9), Anandamide (from Omega 6) or perhaps small amounts of Stearimide (the almost unknown endocannabinoid produced from Omega 3, never researched yet because it is almost non-existent in nature now), I definately need an ordinance to get any superstitious and scared researcher to even return my many emails!And now, my best candidate for research opportunities locally, BV University, is my nemesis because they just had me arrested for trespass on campus-because I attended a Unitarian Church service announced as "open to the public".They are claiming they are exempt from the protections of the First Amendment Freedoms of Religion because they are a "private" institution-but they have accepted federal &/or state funds so I should be able to blow them out of the water on that!Plus, our local Democratic US Senator Tom Harkin, a nice man, will probably be asked to testify as to the 3 million federal dollars he got for them in a recent grant.I have already told the college's attorney I want an apology & a job or the security guard that dissed me at the Presbyterian conference this summer because I was talking about what Presbyterian Church USA is doing to support medical marijuana-that means I may have to bring in the chief priest of the P USA Church to testify that this is, in fact, a valid "plank" of the whole church. Rather funny, that this grown up college is Presbyterian affiliated, yet they won't let a Presbyterian talk about Presbyterian issues because they won't support free speech.And then, because they invite the Unitarians on campus, they diss me again because I went to church there.Is this getting too wierd, or is it just me?I have tried to get the Democratic governor here, Vilsack, to intervene, because he is close to the college folks.Last Saturday, I went to his transition party in Des Moines, the capitol-and talked with bunches of people in his Presidential campaign office. They seem reefer sensitive, many of them do, but of course they all know it is taboo to publicly support what I am working for.They must be holding their breath right now. So no, I have not even tried to "splain to them that hemp could do much more than this bathtub gin rummy game with ethanol.Sounds like my new target for help will be Obama. I'll get on my horse and get moving East to contact him once I am convinced the locals won't help. But I plan to get some press on this religious intolerance game in this little town first. Thanks for noticing. PAUL PETERSON 
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Comment #41 posted by FoM on December 15, 2006 at 20:57:14 PT
Ekim and Paul
I didn't see it but we have been busy and I haven't been watching much tv. When Christmas is over I expect that the New Year will be another difficult year but maybe we will see some changes in the course we have been on since this administration took power. Many people are waking up and realizing how bad things are. I hope the both of you are having a nice holiday season. 
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Comment #40 posted by ekim on December 15, 2006 at 20:46:38 PT
did anyone see Amy
i could not -----Paul here is a show on ethanol conversion in cars.
Is Ethanol getting big where you are or can you still get in on the ground floor.I am still trying to find out how much cellulose is in Switchgrass.. as Hemp has 77% Archive: Details: Monday Night Live: Great Lakes Labs 
> 11-13-06Recent community access show on converting cars -
make that
fuel injected ones 4-8 cyl to be able to run on E85--
85% Ethanol
15% Gasor just run on Gas alone----------------on the show it was said that Sen.Obama has been helpful in getting
switchgrass growing along the freeways in Ill. which is cut and collected to
make Ethanol from its Cellulose content. Which has been reported by the
National Renewable Energy Lab in Golden Co. to contain 1,150 gallons of
Ethanol from one acre. It has also been reported that the enzymes that break
down the cellulose will run around 25 cents per gallon.
(History Ch -- Sept 20- 06 Show called
Renewables--)At a time when GM and Ford are scrambling -- new hybreds will lead the way.
Running on Ethanol --
Farmers--Jobs--cleaner air
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Comment #39 posted by paulpeterson on December 15, 2006 at 12:45:22 PT
Ekim & FoM
Last time I watched C-Span by accident I saw my friend Dick Durbin, Democratic Senator from Illinois wave my copy of the 1999 IOM report into evidence into the Senate record during his crossexam of Karen Tandy for DEAth goonsquad leader-he asked if she would support medical marijuana research (not).Now three years later he is the lead sponsor of Senate MM bill.I will have to watch this Amy Goodman person Friday night at a friend's house.Good ideas. However, I am mostly a print person. Now I am trying to get CNN to pickup on the religious intolerance actions locally-since I was arrested and booked yesterday for attending a church service-and Anderson Cooper just had a really good show on last night on 360 about different Christian "sects", including those Unitarians.Yesterday, my local NBC affiliate (KTIV, Sioux City, Iowa) responded to me with this question: "You were arrested for attending a church?" Yep. And I downloaded to her that I regularly sing in the local Presbyterian franchise-the county attorney I bounced out of office used to sing in the same choir-boy, was that wierd-to sing lofty songs about love and redemption with this guy right behind me-wanting to stab me in the back-but now he quit after he lost the election. My friend, who was voted in, used to be an usher there-Now he has joined the Unitarian church.And the police goons have been demanding that the Unitarians surrender the sing-in book as evidence against me-that I appeared on 12/3. The new county attorney told them he would not want to belong to a church that would surrender that information to the police state.He will be sworn in 1/2/07. My trial is 1/3/07. That means he will be my prosecutor that day. I plan to have some cameras in town before that, of course, to make sure and get shots of me in my choir robe singing Presbyterian songs.I can just see the headlines: "Choirboy arrested when he visited another church".I am also trying to get ACLU riders into town. When the KKK distributed flyers here, the ACLU galloped in to protect their first amendment rights. But when I complained about a pattern of minority abuses here, no response. What gives-do they only want to seem like patriots when they are defending SAFE and popular rights, like the KKK? We are in KKK country right now.I believe a long time ago, some patriot stated that being a patriot only counts when it is dangerous to hold certain beliefs-once the paradigm changes, it is no longer true patriotism to join the band wagon. Then it is only joining the crowd.I charge, in this regard, that the ACLU only wants to take on safe causes. That makes them really just goons for the status quo. Of course, my coming efforts to gain support from the Department of Justice, in my civil rights and constitutional claims, will probably not work as well. But it will make them realize just how hackish they are-not really wanting to work for freedom and justice, just the tired old rhetoric of conformity.That will require publicity to gain any help from the establishment. I'll keep working, of course, and maybe C-span will read my email, thanks for trying.FoM: This battle takes all types. The mere fact I "jump in front of buses" is because that is the only vehicle I have left for change. You are doing much more, more effectively than I, by being the first amendment vehicle that you are, by keeping this very vehicle equipped, gassed up, running and disseminating information and providing the communications network for the operatives on the street, many of us whom have no other real channel to report into and through, in which case, I am glad that you can continue in the same way, so no, I do not suggest that you ever get as obtuse as I appear to be in my efforts out here on the prairie.By the way, everybody should give a little thought to what is going on right now, way down in Florida, where the DEA Gonzales person that was a whistleblower about the ICE House of Death got Tandy to bow out of testifying in a discrimination lawsuit because of her fear of being cross-examined on the stand.There may be a major money verdict against DEA soon-which should get some good news to the airwaves-to keep hammering through about endemic police brutality, another wave of publicity about DEA deaths, right on the heals of the New York & Atlanta debackles.And thanks for noticing. Over and out. PAUL PETERSON
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Comment #38 posted by ekim on December 14, 2006 at 20:08:52 PT
Amy Goodman on C-span on fri 
dir tv 350 7-10am  amy had show on Mr Bell today --- showed film of security camera footage half block from where 50 rounds were pumped out-- where bullet slams thru a lobby nearly hitting one all while on the second story a half a block away.hope someone gets on to ask about doing a show on the
 drug warPaul maybe you can get on and pitch the good fight. 
Amy might just listen----along with million others--\
good luck -- are you far from sundance.
on dir tv a ch nammed current ch is 3oo something- asking for short videos and pays 500$ i think the fone no for dems is 202-37300002
 amys show ch 375 6:pm demc now
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Comment #37 posted by FoM on December 14, 2006 at 16:32:28 PT
I understand what you are saying. The way I look at life these days is CNews is what I do. I look at it as a special time in my life to try to do something for all the right reasons. I have strong opinions and most people here know how I feel but I know my way is only my way and it is only right for me.
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Comment #36 posted by paulpeterson on December 14, 2006 at 16:05:40 PT
True-Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., the Unitarian Supreme Court Justice, came home from the civil war after seeing some 45,000 young men butchered on the battlefield-he was a changed man and said: The war to end slavery became an evil step twin, sister, mother, father, brother, of slavery itself. And I must continually catch myself almost getting as vicious as the goons I am up against. I must continually stop and make some gesture of peace, and cooperation, and redemption, before I allow myself to steel my resolve anew, each time.But, of course, this resiliency is absolutely necessary, because cognitive dissonance requires repetition and obtuse surprise, in order to overcome the inertia of compliance, especially in this supposedly sleepy little Republican corner of the State of Iowa.Steve King is the congressman here-really conservative, of course. But his office manager is a very open and generous listener, that merely keeps telling me that he doubts the voters would ever accept King jumping on the MM bandwagon. However, the read my editorials and look at my articles, and profess to be compassionate about medical rights (if we were in another world).Hopefully enough small lights of insight will light the field so that the light will extend from coast to coast, eventually. And if people start to believe that change is possible, finally, then change can occur. I hope it gets here before long, of course.But after learning how to jump in front of one bus, and being able to pick myself up, brush off the dust, and walk away from the crash, I find it is easier and easier to repeat it and get a little press from it. Hopefully the circle of light will grow. Paul
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Comment #35 posted by FoM on December 14, 2006 at 14:00:35 PT
Hi Paul
Good luck with your case. I am such a quiet reserved person that I can't imagine being outspoken publically like you are but I wish you success.I think that you are right about Nixon and Neil. Neil doesn't believe hate solves any problems. I don't either. I could be out fighting on boards about issues that are important to me but I think when you start fighting you become like the people you are fighting and that isn't how I want to live. I think it's because there just isn't any reason to beat a dead horse. I hope this makes sense.
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Comment #34 posted by paulpeterson on December 14, 2006 at 13:46:47 PT
About Neil Young: I think what he was trying to say is 1) since everybody has a soul, and all people have some good and bad in them, we should try to have at least a little pity for his soul, sort of to rise above disputes when a person dies & at the same time, 2) since he has a soul, that some religions believe will burn in Hell for bad deeds, he'll get his, be sure about that (which is a little bit more sordid, like take that, sucker).I, for one, did not waste a minute thinking good thoughts about Nixon, and now that Shafer has passed, I will think long and hard about the good that Shafer has tried to do-and hope that prayer does help to elevate his soul.By the way-this morning I was awakened by the Sheriff's people at my door-to arrest me for trespassing at a church service, as expected. Since the Sheriff's people are my friends, of course, and good people throughout, I just complemented them and cooperated and we had some good laughs-no hard feelings, because I know they were put up to this by others.My trial is set for 1/3/07. I am trying to get the ACLU to help me defend this trial-not for the legal help, but for the publicity about this farce. The law suggests the charge is for going on campus where I was barred-without justification-but since this was a church service-I claim I was justified to be there under the First Amendment.I expect a decent article to be written which I will update you with in due course. And perhaps in more distant papers, as well, in due course. Thanks for listening. PAUL
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Comment #33 posted by FoM on December 13, 2006 at 16:27:19 PT
Hi Paul
I remember the Shafer Commission report back in the 70s but I am not a political person and I don't know who Friedman was except a person interested in how money works and trying to make that work in our democracy I guess or something like that. About Neil Young. He has done a couple songs that I don't know what he was trying to say and the one with Nixon was one of them. 
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Comment #32 posted by paulpeterson on December 13, 2006 at 16:10:52 PT
Thanks for the post of that alternet story by Zeese. When people like Shafer die, it causes us all to take pause and look back over this long strange trip since the drug war was invented by Richard Nixon. I recall anew the Neil Young song which was released right when Nixon died ie: Even Richard Nixon has a soul.Shafer sacrificed his career by being honest about what he knew to be true-that decrim must happen.Just too bad he had to live out his days fuming about what a lier Nixon was-to promise him a Supreme Court position if he took on this study. Then when Nixon didn't like the findings, he ditched the messenger as well as the message.Hmmm. Sounds just like what Bush II is doing with the commission sent by Bush I to save him from himself. Won't even listen to the experts. And meanwhile, millions of lives have been burned and millions more cancer victims have been disfigured and killed by ignorance.But: Even George Bush has a soul, I hope.Nuff said. PAUL
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Comment #31 posted by FoM on December 13, 2006 at 15:42:18 PT
OT: The Futility of Drug Prohibition
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Comment #30 posted by FoM on December 11, 2006 at 20:45:48 PT
That's must be why it didn't work. One extra / will make it break. 
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Comment #29 posted by ekim on December 11, 2006 at 20:37:07 PT
tooooo many slassssseessss
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Comment #28 posted by ekim on December 11, 2006 at 20:20:51 PT
FoM do you have to have www on site name i copy this and paste it so as to get back here i get a cannabisnews box that says something like no longer do i have to add www to the above site.its at petes site under the drugczar
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Comment #27 posted by FoM on December 11, 2006 at 19:46:47 PT
Paul left his e-mail address if you would like to read it. Whig, New Jersey is such a different state then my state. I think it's even different then NYC. I don't know much about New Jersey actually.
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Comment #26 posted by ekim on December 11, 2006 at 19:31:38 PT
paul gets to have his ed here.please a film maker get pauls life down on film.where are Richard Cowan and Herbdoc the west coast is holding -- the mid and paul need attention.. calling the religion writers come out like spiders and weave the most illegant and wonderous story of the rebirth of a fellow travler that has been lied about.
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Comment #25 posted by whig on December 11, 2006 at 19:21:07 PT
That's good news for New Jersey, but a real shame that it took them so long.
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Comment #24 posted by FoM on December 11, 2006 at 17:29:09 PT
Off Topic: Needle-Exchange Program OKed
By Beth DeFalco,  Associated Press WriterMonday, December 11, 2006TRENTON (AP) -- After years of debate, New Jersey's lawmakers on Monday voted to allow pilot programs that offer intravenous drug users legal access to sterile syringes.Aimed at combatting the spread of HIV, AIDS, hepatitis C and other blood-borne diseases, the measure allows six municipalities to set up programs in which drug users would swap used needles for clean ones. It also provides $10 million for drug treatment and provides those exchanging needles with information and referrals for HIV testing, drug abuse treatment and health and social service programs.Under the bill, the state health commissioner would have to file reports with the governor and Legislature on whether the program has proven effective.It passed 49-27 in the Assembly and 23-16 in the Senate. Both houses are controlled by Democrats. It now heads to the governor for his consideration.Currently, New Jersey is the only state without either a needle exchange program or one that allows syringes to be sold without a prescription. Gov. Jon S. Corzine has expressed support for such measures.Complete Article:
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Comment #23 posted by FoM on December 11, 2006 at 13:12:07 PT

Hi Paul
You are so much more outspoken then I am. I hope all is well.
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Comment #22 posted by paulpeterson on December 11, 2006 at 12:07:56 PT

Violation of my Freedom of Religion
   Good to see an article talking about the "Religion of the Drug War". You see, now that the Presbyterian Church USA has joined the medical marijuana fight (on the right side, quoting Jesus, about a matter of mercy)-6/30/06 or so, I went to a Presbyterian summer camp they called "synod school" at a Presbyterian college here in Storm Lake, Iowa.   I spoke up at a meeting to discuss the bold steps the church has and will take for medical marijuana issues-because I spoke with people about medical marijuana, the next day I was told TO LEAVE THE UNIVERSITY PROPERTY AND NEVER COME BACK. Wow, talking about a Presbyterian issue, at a Presbyterian conference, with Presbyterians, at a church affiliated institution of higher learning, in fact, I was barred because I was talking about mercy.   I complied, and stated in writing that I would comply, because I did not want to be fractious or divisive. Well, last Sunday, the local "Unitarians" were having their church service at the same university-they were talking about a favorite subject-the subject of whether the virgin mother was actually a virgin bride and mother at all.   I just had to go there to hear the talk and to speak up, in fact. Wonderful time, good people, good discussion. I did an editorial about it-entitled "Unitarians commit heresy, again". I gave a copy to the college's attorney I have gotten to know really well.   I delivered a copy to my counterparts at the local police station. The newspaper printed the editorial in Saturday's paper. Today, in fact, my friend, the new county attorney that I helped to get elected a few weeks ago (an independent beat the long-time Republican after police came out in droves to cajole the locals to put yard signs out for the bad guy-that was his death-knell), just told me that Unitarians are being interviewed for witnesses that I went onto college property-I will be arrested for trespassing or something, I understand!   Imagine, being arrested in the US of A for attending a church service where the newspaper noted that the "public is invited". Blatant violation of my Freedoms of Religion, Assembly, Speech & of course, Freedom of Press (because I did an editorial about the event).   And all because I spoke up in the first place at that college about a Presbyterian issue at a Presbyterian conference. Amazing just what these people will stoop to do merely to retaliate against me for my outspoken free speech activities. They are, of course, just itching to have a federal suit thrown at them for constitutional violations. And right when I am in contact with the carrier for the city of Storm Lake for their police perjuries-Two cops lied under oath at my trial 8/23 where the out of town judge threw out "interference with official acts" charge as soon as the now lame duck county attorney was through with his police lies.   If anybody wants a copy of my editorial, or if you people want me to post it here, let me know here, or via email to omegabeef (So far the local paper has printed some 45 editorials, many about marijuana issues). Over and out, PAUL PETERSON
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Comment #21 posted by whig on December 11, 2006 at 09:55:59 PT

The new light dawns first in the west, it appears.
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Comment #20 posted by Truth on December 11, 2006 at 09:46:50 PT

for the insight.
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Comment #19 posted by FoM on December 11, 2006 at 09:44:57 PT

Hope and Truth
Hope I do too. I feel sorry for him because I know how he will be treated if he runs by the right.Truth, I don't like Mrs. Clinton either but I really like Obama. 
Draft Obama Web Site
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Comment #18 posted by nuevo mexican on December 11, 2006 at 09:36:17 PT

Jerry was one day off! 
Jerry Garcia was born with the Moon in Aries, if he was born on the 2nd, he would've had a Taurus Moon too!What is great about Jerrys' chart, is that he was born with a Jupiter/Venus conjunction, in Cancer, one of the best aspects one can be born with, a sign of excellent Karma, where love, music and optimism meet!I'd still vote for Jerry for President though, if he were around!
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Comment #17 posted by Truth on December 11, 2006 at 09:36:00 PT

One thing that Obama has over Hilary is that a whole lot less people dislike him.
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Comment #16 posted by Hope on December 11, 2006 at 09:33:20 PT

FoM comment 11
I have a subtle excitement and a lot of hope growing about Obama. 
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Comment #15 posted by Hope on December 11, 2006 at 09:29:21 PT

Hard, soft, limber, rubbery on crime....
Yuck.Politicians. Leaders. Lawmakers. Law Enforcement. Policy makers. Speech Writers. Media of every form. Columnists. Reporters. Editors. Lawyers. Doctors. Indian Chiefs. Quit the *&^^%$% around and do the right thing. End the war on cannabis and hemp. End the war on people who desire or need to use cannabis or drugs.Do the right thing.When I see that happen...I'll know a new light is dawning on this land.This article has a glimmer of daylight to it.
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Comment #14 posted by Truth on December 11, 2006 at 09:25:21 PT

nuevo mexican
"First, guess who has a similar horoscope to Bill Clinton? Yep! Obama! He is a Leo with a Taurus Moon (Mick Jagger, AND Monica Lewinsky too!)"Would Jerry Garcia be part of this list with an August 1st birthday?
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Comment #13 posted by Hope on December 11, 2006 at 09:20:11 PT

William A. Collins 
Thank you, Sir. For being willing to stand up and tell the truth.Thank you so much.
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Comment #12 posted by Hope on December 11, 2006 at 09:18:11 PT

Potpal comment comment 5
"If drug war is a religion, then it surely is a crusade."Indeed, it has been. It's ok to mistreat people in a crusade.Crusade is a dirty word to me.(FoM, E-mail still out of socket and blinky.)
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Comment #11 posted by FoM on December 11, 2006 at 09:03:50 PT

nuevo mexican 
I sometimes feel like no one thinks like me. Senator Obama has such a fresh outlook on politics that he gives me hope that maybe we can be redeemed in the eyes of the world if he gets elected. I am so sick of our country being run by angry people. I want a little common sense to happen and that is very important to me. I believe that if we move out of the rut we have been in forever it seems we might get at least medical marijuana allowed and that could be for many states not just the few. I believe cannabis should be legal but I have always been capable mentally of taking little steps.
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Comment #10 posted by nuevo mexican on December 11, 2006 at 08:48:43 PT

Obama vs. Hillary! Obama wins!
Okay, here I go!First, guess who has a similar horoscope to Bill Clinton?
He is a Leo with a Taurus Moon (Mick Jagger, AND Monica Lewinsky too!)Notice how blatantly supportive of Hillary the formerly MSM is, (no longer viable, the internet has destroyed the corporate media with this last election).The ropugs know Hillary is BEATABLE, as she is divisive, flip-flopped from progressive to total bush supporter, and is most definitely 'reptilian'.Obama has been against the occupation in Iraq, and this will make him President, as Hillary thought kissing bushes ass on Iraq would make her 'presidential', and 'pro-America, NOT!The Clinton's represent the bush agenda well within the Democratic Party, the DLCers, (Bill sure is quiet), and Obama in not a white man of entitlement, as is Bill, a white male, who some mistake for a black man, since he is NOT a racist, though his NAFTA shaft job to the poor worldwide could be construed as such!Regardless of being raised 'poor', somehow he was a Rhodes Scholar, and seems to have embraced the ways of the rich and powerful, NAFTA being his worst achievement, impoverishing millions worldwide, (but with little discussion of his role in its' passing).Anyway, Pinochet is dead, put in office by a U.S. backed coup on 9/11/73, if you still don't believe bush/cheney and the Neo-cons, 'pulled it' off, and here we are, still living in a country whose leaders would sacrifice 3000 lives, and 600,000 to 800,000 Iraqis too!So what is the big deal, bush will kill as many as it takes to hold power, though I see it being a done deal after December 19, the Sag New Moon with 6 
planets in Sag, the sign of 'truth', and passing so close to the Galactic Center, the Heart Chakra of the Universe, that what we are seeing unfold at this time, where the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, will become the screensaver for humanities personal computer!Now for a glimpse into the state of the world!CHILE: PINOCHET DEATH DRAWS MASSIVE CROWDS TO STREETS's death in Mexico puts focus on region
The death of an American filmmaker during recent protests in Oaxaca remains unsolved, and the case may be a test of authority for new Mexican President Felipe Calderón. March in Oaxaca, Demand Release of Protesters Diana was being 'tracked' by the U.S., and she was upsetting the Land Mine Industrial Complex with her exposure of the situation, and thus, had to be taken out!
Simple, don't go against the War Machine!Assasination squads are the norm, this is how business is 'taken care of'. Diana bugged by US protests reach new heightHundreds of thousands of demonstrators poured into the centre of Beirut yesterday as 10 days of protest for a national unity government in the country threatened to come to a head.,,1969171,00.htmlThe Lebanese People are done with bush, Iraq, Israel, being made to pay for the mess in the middle east, that our government has helped create, (if things were bad to begin with, we've made things a thousand times worse)!This is all just the tip of the next Iceberg, the Iceberg the bushes Titanic has hit, and is sinking fast, along with the truth of his idiocy causing worldwide suffering is known to all!Now, if the People of the United States continue to wake up, and decide they are done with the whole enchilada, which they are, the immediate future promises awesome changes for the better, with the NeoCon philosophy put in their graves!Re-elected Chavez to take on big oil in Venezuela
CARACAS, Venezuela, Dec 6 (Reuters) - After trouncing Venezuela's opposition in Sunday's presidential vote, re-elected leftist Hugo Chavez is preparing for a bigger battle in 2007 -- the fight with oil majors for control of the OPEC nation's crude fields. that the Good News for today!
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Comment #9 posted by OverwhelmSam on December 11, 2006 at 07:37:48 PT

It seems to me that several "hard on drugs" representatives were just sent packing in the last election. If anything else, the opposite of the "soft on drugs" mantra is true.
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Comment #8 posted by mayan on December 11, 2006 at 07:20:18 PT

 Voters still seem ready to punish politicians who seem to be "soft."I really beg to differ. Is there any evidence to back up that statement? Just who has been punished? As long as that false perception is continually,mindlessly regurgitated as fact then the media and politicians will fail to work for us and they will continue to have an excuse to work against us. The mainstream media may still parrot that "soft on drugs" crap, but being SMART on drugs is what will win votes.Miscellaneous... Christmas terror attack 'highly likely': rallies held coast to coast: Boston Tea Party for 9/11 Truth going viral:
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Comment #7 posted by FoM on December 11, 2006 at 06:50:39 PT

I wanted to read your link about Senator Obama but it didn't work so I went and found it so others can see. I am hopeful that we might actually have someone who hasn't been all mixed up in politics all his life to run for President. Thanks. Make sure you say a little prayer that he stays safe and decides to run in 08.
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Comment #6 posted by MikeEEEEE on December 11, 2006 at 06:00:55 PT

drug war is born, part II
potpal is right,After a while they realized they could profit from war, whatever form it takes. Before they initiated the Iraq war, a Bush family member invited big businesses to make contacts and likely deals. 
War used to be about power and real estate. They're still about that, but there is more focus on the money.Any war today, whatever form it takes, is about profit$.I don't expect it to change.
The blind suck-ups will do anything to keep the system intact, a system they depend on.
"Neo, the matrix has you..."
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Comment #5 posted by potpal on December 11, 2006 at 05:41:52 PT

living with drug war
The same bonehead mentality that has US bogged down in Iraq and Afghanistan spreading 'freedom' and 'democracy'. All wars fought for the military/prison/industrial complex. The war on cannabis users, the majority American taxpaying citizens, is more of the same. A police state of mind.If drug war is a religion, then it surely is a crusade. To deprieve humanity the use of the cannabis plant for industry, food, medicine, safer alternative, agriculture, is a crime.
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Comment #4 posted by MikeEEEEE on December 11, 2006 at 05:11:37 PT

A drug war is born
The drug war was born out of racism and prejudice.
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Comment #3 posted by global_warming on December 11, 2006 at 05:06:21 PT

so true
i see more and more articles clearing the way for a serious debate about cannabis use, surely clear minded people will see that the cure is worse than the disease..on a side note, Mr. Obama was in NH this weekend, looking good as ever...Obama Takes First Steps in N.H.
Crowds, Media Bolster Speculation On 2008 Ambitionshttp://www.washingtonpost.com
Obama Takes First Steps in N.H.
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Comment #2 posted by kaptinemo on December 11, 2006 at 04:40:18 PT:

An important issue has been brought up
"Drug laws purposely are drawn to punish blacks and Latinos with especial harshness."This is the first time I have seen this outside of a reformer website, in a media outlet, anywhere. It means that someobody has done their homework. I sincerely hope some rube DrugWarrior is foolish enough to challenge the author on his facts; bringing up the deliberately racist aspects of the DrugWar is the surest way to get this issue front-and-center in the public's consciousness.
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Comment #1 posted by OverwhelmSam on December 10, 2006 at 21:50:10 PT

Unfortunately, the state and city law enforcement agencies have unwittingly become the enforcement arm of the DEA which kill, wound and damage more property than simple criminals ever could. They are in fact criminals themselves under color of law.
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