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FiredrakeRAGE
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gruevy said:
quote:
The farce of government is that it is, by its very nature, a way to get other people to do what we want them to do. Since our government is in the business of regulating behavior, punishing theft and drug dealing and the like, it seems to me a bit disingenious to make the argument that in THIS particular area of questionable behavior, or that other one, or some other thing altogether, people ought to just leave me alone.
Are you kidding me?

The Constitution says:
quote:
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
Government is indeed a means to an end. We use government to establish justice, to provide for the common defense, to promote the general welfare, and to ensure liberty for ourselves and our progeny. The government does so (or should do so) within the bounds of a contract between the government and the people. We are a Republic. We enjoy the bounty that is Federalism. The several States have the ability to enact prohibition. There are many varied State alcohol laws. The Federal government does not have the ability to enact an alcohol prohibition; in fact that was why a Constitutional amendment was required in the first place.

You may argue that in this day and age, the bounds of the Bill of Rights are often ignored, and that the Federal government is not meaningfully constrained by the first 10 amendments. You would be correct. Nonetheless, is it right to claim that because you shot a man and were not caught, robbing his cousin was a righteous act? Of course not!

'Direct harm' is the burden you have placed upon yourself. Alcohol does not do direct harm to society: I've had a drink before and I've yet to drive drunk. If you can believe it, I've not even killed anyone in a drunken rage! People are at the heart of the matter. It is unconscionable to enact a blanket prohibition that willfully ignores the obvious intention of the several generations before us and the very Constitution itself to curb a few low and criminal actions by various individuals.

If you're asking that we amend the Constitution to enact prohibition, I would say that you were acting in a rash, but Constitutionally correct fashion. Alcohol should be around for the same reason that we allow you to walk the streets after 10PM. You should be able to walk the streets, buy alcohol, and associate with who you will because you are doing direct harm to no one. It is not the business of the Federal government to meddle in the lives of its citizens.

--Firedrake

[ August 14, 2006, 08:49 PM: Message edited by: FiredrakeRAGE ]

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gruevy
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I don't care if its the federal government that bans it or if all 50 states do, the end result is the same.

Letting people walk the streets after 10 is not the same as letting people get drunk. Alcohol can harm me as soon as someone decides to drive while drunk, or to hold up a convenience store, or break into my house. The amount of petty crime directly related to stupid people drinking and getting stupider is more or less staggering. That creates an unnecessary potential for harm.

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FiredrakeRAGE
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gruevy said:
quote:
Letting people walk the streets after 10 is not the same as letting people get drunk. Alcohol can harm me as soon as someone decides to drive while drunk, or to hold up a convenience store, or break into my house. The amount of petty crime directly related to stupid people drinking and getting stupider is more or less staggering. That creates an unnecessary potential for harm.
The amount of petty crime related to people drinking? I'm willing to bet that most crime happens after 10PM. Meanwhile, are you sure that there is a direct link between alcohol and crime? Perhaps those who are inclined to commit petty crimes are more likely to drink alcohol. I'm willing to bet that those who drive drunk are far more likely to imbibe to excess.

As for all 50 states banning alcohol, the entire point is that it will not happen. State taxes stay low for several reasons. One of the major reasons is simply that if they become too high, businesses will begin to leave.

--Firedrake

Edited to remove petty verbal jab.

[ August 14, 2006, 09:22 PM: Message edited by: FiredrakeRAGE ]

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gruevy
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I never said anything about how the law would be made, I am arguing that alcohol is something our society needs to outgrow.
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FiredrakeRAGE
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gruevy -

You argued that government should act to force us to outgrow alcohol.

I don't drink much. It's been a few weeks since I've had any alcohol at all. There's a huge difference between frowning on heavy drinking and using the government to force the issue.

--Firedrake

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gruevy
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A majority of people should decide that it would be appropriate to use government to force you, and do so. Would you still for alcohol if 70% of Americans wanted it banned?
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canadian
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still-ing for alcohol is one way, yes.
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FiredrakeRAGE
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No, barring a Constitutional amendment.

--Firedrake

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hobsen
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kenmeer livermaile: "Dang. I'm old enough I should remember the theme music to Mod Squad. All I can remember is that the girl's name in real life was Peggy Lipton and the character of the darker-skinned fella, from back in the day when it was hip to call a spade a spade, was named Link.

'Link'. A not so subtle sop to the prevailing bigotry of the day? As in 'Missing'?"

The Mod Squad tried to show positive examples of cooperation between people of different races; it was very politically correct. As for Link, I would bet his parents named him Lincoln, for Abraham Lincoln.

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kenmeer livermaile
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Oh, I know. But it's intriguing. I think it's hip when a mystery swings both ways.
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TommySama
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Gruevy,

I think if you do a little research, you might find driving drunk isn't the worst thing you can do. Driving tired is supposed to be just as dangerous.

I would suspect people driving drunk are usually paying as much attention as possible, as opposed to someone who is asleep, not thinking about how dangerous they are, and nodding off while driving (which has happened to me during rush hour traffic, scary stuff.)


I'm not saying that we should tolerate drunk driving, I'm just pointing out that other things can lead to this danger. The difference is that getting drunk and driving is punishable under the law.

[ August 15, 2006, 01:01 AM: Message edited by: TommySama ]

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Pete at Home
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Doing testing to determine who is too tired to drive would be intolerably intrusive. Or what if we found that people who were angry or slightly depressed, or guys with blue balls 'cause they just thought they were going to get laid, but didn't, made bad drivers? There's some stuff you can check up on in a free society, and some stuff that any free society just hast to let go.
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Pete at Home
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Note that I don't drink alcohol, but even I'm deeply concerned with checkpoints
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TinMan
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I'd make everything legal. People who are stupid enough to drink/whatever enough to harm themselves or others deserve what they get.

Hmm, but then, doesn't the society that allows such freedoms as harming others because you want to feel good deserve what it gets?

Oh, btw, Sex is good for you, if done sfaely. Drinking/drugs are bad for you, even if done safely. Paralleling the two is a logical fallacy.

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scifibum
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quote:
Drinking/drugs are bad for you, even if done safely
That doesn't make any sense.
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TommySama
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"Oh, btw, Sex is good for you, if done sfaely. Drinking/drugs are bad for you, even if done safely. Paralleling the two is a logical fallacy."

Sex is good for you? I thought it just spread disease, hurt feelings, and (often times unwanted) babies.

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Adam Lassek
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quote:
Drinking/drugs are bad for you, even if done safely.
This is utter nonsense. Moderate alcohol use has been found to greatly decrease risk of heart disease, and there are plenty of medicinal uses for other drugs. As with most other things, the dose makes the poison. There are very few things for which even the smallest amount is harmful.
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hobsen
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"This is utter nonsense. Moderate alcohol use has been found to greatly decrease risk of heart disease, and there are plenty of medicinal uses for other drugs. As with most other things, the dose makes the poison. There are very few things for which even the smallest amount is harmful."

Never have I seen a statement combining so much good sense, and so many inaccuracies, in so few words.

1) Nonsense, literally. The term "bad for you" creates a logical contradiction with "safely."

2) So far as I know, moderate alcohol use - particularly red wine - will slightly decrease heart attack risk, by less than taking a baby aspirin every day.

3) The word "drugs" is ambiguous in the United States, including both recreational drugs and what most other English speakers call medicines like penicillin. The possible benefits of recreational drugs are presumed to be small, but some like caffeine may not be very harmful either.

4) Actually there are no things for which the smallest dose is harmful. I will eat a molecule of sodium cyanide any day.

Since I am sleepy, this may be wrong...

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Larfoutloud
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quote:
Originally posted by hobsen:
"This is utter nonsense. Moderate alcohol use has been found to greatly decrease risk of heart disease, and there are plenty of medicinal uses for other drugs. As with most other things, the dose makes the poison. There are very few things for which even the smallest amount is harmful."

Never have I seen a statement combining so much good sense, and so many inaccuracies, in so few words.

1) Nonsense, literally. The term "bad for you" creates a logical contradiction with "safely."

2) So far as I know, moderate alcohol use - particularly red wine - will slightly decrease heart attack risk, by less than taking a baby aspirin every day.

3) The word "drugs" is ambiguous in the United States, including both recreational drugs and what most other English speakers call medicines like penicillin. The possible benefits of recreational drugs are presumed to be small, but some like caffeine may not be very harmful either.

4) Actually there are no things for which the smallest dose is harmful. I will eat a molecule of sodium cyanide any day.

Since I am sleepy, this may be wrong...

Welcome to Ornery...
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gruevy
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As far as the alcohol making you healthy, it's not the alcohol itself, it's the antioxidants in the beverage. You get just as much benefit from grape juice as you do from wine, and grape juice doesn't kill brain cells.
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scifibum
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But grape juice is more likely to lead to tooth decay.
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TommySama
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Maybe if we didn't spend so much time putting chemical crap into our bodies, we could focus more on loving one another... [Smile]
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Tezcatlipoca
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quote:
Maybe if we didn't spend so much time putting chemical crap into our bodies, we could focus more on loving one another...
Remove the cause and you won't get the effect. [Wink]
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gruevy
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lol @ both of you
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Anglachel
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I would cite all the libertarian arguments, and cost/benefit arguments about crime in black markets, but those seem to have been covered, so I'll make the argument nobody is saying; and I'll make it for drugs in general, not just for alcohol.

The experience of using drugs can be very positive and unique experience for an individual. It can be an intense experience between friends that draws people together. For example, I once danced with my brother in utter euphoria for six hours; its an experience that drew us together and we both look back on fondly. In the vast majority of cases where people use drugs they judge the physical risks worth the positive experience. That's probably not a convincing reason for you, but that's convincing enough for a lot of people.

Alcohol should be legal for the same reason any other pleasurable but physically risky activity should be. A large percentage of people seek out varied and intense physical sensations, are willing to take risks to have them (look at the number of dead skiers each year), and the vast majority live more fulfilled for having had that experience they sought.

If you are asking why alcohol in particular should be legal, of all physically risky activities, well there's no accounting for taste. And if you don't like the alcohol experience particularly, then in the immortal words of The Dude, "That's just, like, you're opinion, man."

[altered for spelling]

[ August 20, 2006, 09:55 PM: Message edited by: Anglachel ]

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kenmeer livermaile
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Imagine The Duke as The Dude:

"Like, watch yer step, pilgrim. I'm, y'know, only gonna say this, maybe, once. After that, thing're gonna get gnarly fer sure if you, like, don't quit."

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hobsen
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"The experience of using drugs can be very positive and unique experience for an individual. It can be an intense experience between friends that draws people together. For example, I once danced with my brother in utter euphoria for six hours; its an experience that drew us together and we both look back on fondly."

Since I never had the experience, I cannot say. It seems some drugs are so risky, they probably should not be allowed. But for the milder ones the psychological benefits may outweigh the health risks. Nobody lives forever anyway, even if he tries to eliminate every possible danger. And as you point out, people engage in other risky activities; the damage from cars alone is significant. Should everyone stop driving?

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philnotfil
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Why is alcohol legal and other, less harmful, drugs are illegal?
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DonaldD
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Because there is no law against buying and selling alcohol, but there is against those other less harmful drugs. [Smile]
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philnotfil
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[Smile]

So, if the purpose of laws regarding drugs is the general welfare, why is alcohol legal and other, less harmful, drugs are illegal?

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javelin
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Because that's what we've allowed to happen. I'm sure a history lesson isn't needed? Nor the easy extrapolation between what would happen if we made alchohol illegal?

These questions aren't new or original. Feel free to get to your point.

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TommySama
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"Since I never had the experience, I cannot say. It seems some drugs are so risky, they probably should not be allowed."

I'm not sure if your average illegal chemical is that dangerous if not overconsumed, and if a responsible dealer (Tylenol, as opposed to Pat in his moms basement) makes it.


"But for the milder ones the psychological benefits may outweigh the health risks. Nobody lives forever anyway, even if he tries to eliminate every possible danger. And as you point out, people engage in other risky activities; the damage from cars alone is significant. Should everyone stop driving?"

Excellent point. Nobody seems to remark on how little your average person needs (or uses) their brains.

Most of us humans aren't doctors, dentists, lawyers, educators, or politicians (you might argue the last option is for braindeads too, but remember, they need all the mental power they can get so they can lie to us effectively) most of us peoples work in grocery stores, construction, sewers, old folks homes, Wal-Mart, etc. No offense to anyone who has one of these jobs on this forum, however, they aren't the most brain taxing jobs, and a genius isn't required for them.

So someone who does too many drugs might end up like ol' Chris Schroedl, who's carried out groceries since before I was born at the grocery store I work at, but the majority of us won't. All that is needed is proper education and public rehab.

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KnightEnder
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quote:
The experience of using drugs can be very positive and unique experience for an individual. It can be an intense experience between friends that draws people together.--hobsen
The Beatles, nuff said?

KE

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hobsen
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You mean the Beatles made better music because they used drugs? I do not know...

Anyway, please nobody ascribe that quote about using drugs being sometimes a positive experience to me. It comes from Anglachel's superb post earlier on this page. She expressed something which needed to be said in this debate, and we should all be grateful for it. Somebody once said Aldous Huxley remains the only person who ever benefitted from taking LSD; even if true, his experience remains valuable even if others experienced horrific effects like unexpected flashbacks years later making them disoriented while driving down a freeway.

[ August 24, 2006, 02:56 PM: Message edited by: hobsen ]

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philnotfil
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Leonard Cohen attributes much of his creativity to the LSD he was prescribed as a teenager.
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KnightEnder
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Sorry hobson. You really should use the Quote button. It saves confusion. I realize you are on dial up and that it can be frustrating to have to go to the 'Full Reply Form' but you can type in [quote] to begin a quote and [Backslash quote] to end the quote. (type in / not the word backslash.)

And yes, the Beatles made some of the greatest music ever while on drugs. And I dare say they weren't the only ones. Morrison, Joplin, Hendricks, the list goes on and on...

KE

[ August 24, 2006, 03:41 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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hobsen
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KnightEnder:
quote:
You really should use the Quote button.
Thanks, KnightEnder. That seems to work.
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KnightEnder
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NP, some people are just lazy. <turns gaze on Ev> Makes it confusing. [Wink]

KE

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