Hard News by Russell Brown

Read Post

Hard News: The Perfect Drug

73 Responses

First ←Older Page 1 2 3 Newer→ Last

  • Richard Stewart, in reply to BenWilson,

    "yeah, we have to put a stop to all this horse-riding"

    Especially if the horse in on Ketamine

    Pt Chev • Since Feb 2012 • 51 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Something I notice about the drug regulation debate is that there are many people who believe that if they marshal their arguments well enough and make a sound case for a science-based policy, government will change. It doesn’t work like that – illegal drugs are illegal in order to enable government to pose as the friend and protector of the non-drug-taking majority.

    I think it's a little more nuanced than that -- and more to do with the unshakeable political wisdom that there's not enough political upside to taking an evidence-based approach to drug policy.

    I've written a piece for the Drug Foundation newsletter looking at the multiple instances of politicians who betray (or at least forget about) their apparently sincere views on drug reform as they get close to power: Obama spoke repeatedly on the need for more enlightened drug policy even as a senator -- and is now overseeing a ridiculous crackdown on medical marijuana. David Cameron proposed legalisation of all drugs while he was contesting the party leadership -- and has gone completely the other way.

    And there was a point when Helen Clark just stopped talking about treating drug use as a medical issue. Although, to be fair, when she did talk about it in the early 90s she reaped an utterly hysterical media response.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18712 posts Report Reply

  • Richard Stewart, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    The wider public perception on this debate is the biggest hurdle IMHO. It's a poisoned chalice for any politician brave enough to take an evidence-based position on the legal status of recreational drugs. Just look at what happened to Don Brash - even though his Marijuana decriminalization comment was probably the most sensible thing he's ever said.
    The way it's portrayed in the mainstream media is that ANY consumption of illicit drugs constitutes drug abuse; this is simply untrue.

    Pt Chev • Since Feb 2012 • 51 posts Report Reply

  • Morgan Nichol,

    Last year I had a little bit of back pain and my doctor gave me diazepam (valium) and tramadol. I'll tell you what, I went from extremely unhappy to really, really, really comfortable on the sofa with just a couple of pills and a nice glass of beer.

    (Beer contraindicated with the pills, but erowid said it was alright as long as you paid close attention to your breathing and didn't have much of either pills or beer.)

    I wish more people could have the same sort of lovely, easy, harmless experience. And coming on the tails of extraordinary pain, well, golly.

    Wish I had more, A++++ WOULD FLOAT AGAIN.

    Auckland CBD • Since Nov 2006 • 296 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark,

    I have read nothing here that mentions that, for a still sizeable portion of the drinking demographic, the very idea of it is to get shitfaced. Whether, as with Robyn's friend, to give themselves the illusion of escaping from their problems, or just because that's what they are habituated to.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3123 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle, in reply to Morgan Nichol,

    I had a little bit of back pain and my doctor gave me diazepam (valium) and tramadol

    Hey! How come I only got a bit of tramadol and mostly boring old paracetamol/ibuprofen at home when recovering from a c-section? That's major surgery! *I* wanted to float, dammit! Where was my floating?

    Harumph. :)

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3628 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Danielle,

    Where was my floating?

    what, Tramadol didn't do that for you? #crikey

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16493 posts Report Reply

  • chris,

    Oddly enough, I was thinking just a couple of nights ago that it was a shame there was not an evening tipple that might make me feel nice and warm and relaxed after dinner without the implications for personal health involved in few single malts.

    Bhang may go nicely with your curry habit Russell. Indica (Lamarck) rather than Sativa for the mellow buzz. Don't forget the milk.

    中国 • Since Jan 2010 • 900 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle, in reply to Sacha,

    I mean, it was *fine*, things were a wee bit fuzzy round the edges and whatnot, but... I expected more. Opiate, schmopiate.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3628 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Danielle,

    My doctor was bragging to me a few weeks ago about how he denies pain medication to people all the time, because people can get addicted. Considering how fast he was to suggest escitalopram to my wife for anxiety, a mood altering SSRI with quite far reaching effects, I nearly choked on the hypocrisy of the guy. Then he gave me a broadcast on behalf of the National party about the evils of living on the government tit, before sending me home without a bill because the government pays for child doctor visits. Thinking about changing doctors, just to give him some market discipline (and save myself the teeth grinding).

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8317 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Bell, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    I think you'll find it will get past Dunne considering he was the one who directed the Ministry to do that work. It's part of the Law Commission drug law reform work that the Government agreed to prior to the last election (Dunne rejected the commission's advice on medical cannabis at the same time). The NZ govt also sponsored a resolution at this year's UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs that said governments should consider alternatives to prohibition for new substances. credit where it's due.

    Wellington, NZ • Since Nov 2006 • 90 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Bell, in reply to Ross Bell,

    Wellington, NZ • Since Nov 2006 • 90 posts Report Reply

  • chris, in reply to BenWilson,

    he denies pain medication to people all the time

    A hallmark of the failed dentist....

    中国 • Since Jan 2010 • 900 posts Report Reply

  • andin, in reply to Russell Brown,

    and more to do with the unshakeable political wisdom that there’s not enough political upside to taking an evidence-based approach to drug policy.

    Ah yes pandering to peoples ignorance. Anyway why baffle with science when you can scare the crap outta people with horror tittletattle.
    Sounds familiar

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1175 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Ross Bell,

    (Dunne rejected the commission’s advice on medical cannabis at the same time).

    Which, to be fair, he’s perfectly entitled to do. I just wish that, like Jim Anderton on suicide prevention policy (a subject he was understandably highly emotional about), Dunne wasn’t so prone to being dismissive, condescending or downright toxic towards other points of view. It’s not a particularly useful starting point to presume those you disagree with are acting in bad faith or with ulterior motives.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11867 posts Report Reply

  • richard,

    Guns and drugs -- Omar comin'

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 258 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    One of the things about the drug alcohol (which I dearly love, whether single malts,
    champane (not a spelling error – I dont especially relish champagne) or good ANZ whites- is – it’s a pain killer also!
    I have osteoarthritis and *very bad (as in ‘broken & decayed’) teeth* – pain is a constantancy. I react badly to any opiate and stuff like paracetamol. So – I drink-
    and appreciate the benefice/benefits-all round!

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Stewart,

    If the reactionary ol' media took a principled line with the evidence and ditched the moralistic, hysterical "all use is abuse" line we might get a more reasoned debate around recreational drug use.

    But the line they take (& the scare headlines) sell more copies/page-hits/whatever and keeps the advertising revenue stream on line, so I'm not holding my breath - unless my lungs are full of something I want absorbed into my bloodstream (allegedly).

    #drugusenotabuse

    Te Ika A Maui - Waitakere… • Since Oct 2008 • 563 posts Report Reply

  • Richard Aston,

    I don't understand the public hysteria about recreational drugs and the passive silence around "medications" , the medical profession's spin for their drugs.
    I know too many people recovering from addictions to medically prescribed drugs ( medications)
    Tramadol - a scary bitch to get off for one freind
    Morphine - post hospital surgery , one woman still on methadone 7 years after hospital generated morphine addiction.
    Anti depressants - ever seen someone try to get off those, they seriously mess with your brain chemistry.
    Ritalin - seen too many young boys in my work who are "settled" but vacant with hollowed out souls.

    To name a few.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 474 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to BenWilson,

    a mood altering SSRI

    no market for one that didn't :)

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16493 posts Report Reply

  • Hebe, in reply to Richard Aston,

    Codeine too. After 10 days on codeine post emergency surgery, I knew it was time to stop when I found myself giving the charge nurse a convincing (and successful) rendition of "why it's too soon to stop giving me those pills".

    Christchurch • Since May 2011 • 2578 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart, in reply to Hebe,

    I spent weeks on codeine post-surgery, mostly to come down off the morphine. Which I had very much needed for the pain, I'm just slightly disappointed opiate addiction wasn't more fun.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4340 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __,

    Morphine makes me vomit. Codeine makes me keep falling asleep and only vomit occasionally. Both helpful with bad pain but wouldn't want to put myself through the side-effects otherwise. :-)

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3419 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Young,

    And here I have some problems with either portmanteau, universal prohibition or laissez-faire legalisation of drugs alike. I'm okay with simple euphoriant drug decriminalisation when it comes to E and whatever recreational equivalent highs are not currently illegal, given that it will encourage harm minimisation and risk reduction.

    And again, I have problems with applying that to P/crystal meth, which doesn't fit the harm minimisation and risk reduction model. However, that caveat doesn't mean that I wouldn't welcome some evidence-based reform when it comes to drugs that can and should be more readily handled through medical or non-criminal and commercial access.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 370 posts Report Reply

  • Scott Chris, in reply to BenWilson,

    Considering how fast he was to suggest escitalopram to my wife for anxiety, a mood altering SSRI with quite far reaching effects, I nearly choked on the hypocrisy of the guy.

    You may be being a little hard on him. Speaking as an abstainer with an unhealthy predilection for psychoactive substances, SSRIs have about as much appeal as a weekend in Gore.

    Auckland • Since Feb 2012 • 167 posts Report Reply

First ←Older Page 1 2 3 Newer→ Last

Post your response…

Please sign in using your Public Address credentials…

Login

You may also create an account or retrieve your password.