Saturday, August 16, 2003


The students aren't back yet so it was quiet in lovely downtown Noho on this beautiful morning. I was listening to the birds and cleaning out the inbox when the house started to vibrate with the unmistakable sound of an F-14. Jesus they are low I'm thinking, as I throw on a skirt and run outside to check. You see C-5As here a lot but the fighter planes rarely come over downtown.

My neighborhood was being buzzed by the Blue Angels! There's two military air fields in the area and one is having an airshow this weekend. There were four of them, circling in pairs, right over my head. When they came back over the condos, I could practically see the pilot. I read they were in town for the first time in many years. I didn't expect a personal show.

And for those who sneer at my new age belief in the power of the universe, (I'm often mocked for it), I'd just like to mention that I really wanted to see them but didn't want to set foot on a military base to do it. This show was brief, but more intimate than I would have experienced on the field. All I can say is, thanks Spirit for granting my wish.



I'm in discussion list withdrawal today. The Drugwar list is down because of the black-out. The members of the list have come to be a significant presense in my daily life and I'm feeling a little bereft without them. Fortunately, Preston's website is still available for today's ration of news from the front.

The Seattle Weekly published this story on Cops Against the Drug War. Jack Cole, a retired New Jersey State Police officer with 26 years of service, now leads a group of law-enforcement professionals who are disillusioned with the war on drugs called Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, or LEAP, a nationwide organization that declares the war on drugs an abject failure. It's cops like Jack that make me feel safer in the homeland and give me hope that we can yet restore sanity to civilized society in my lifetime.


Meanwhile, across the pond, Stephen Robinson of the UK Telegraph reports on England's new equivalent of the US AG, Director of Public Prosecutions, Kenneth MacDonald. Robinson says MacDonald isn't the first member of the Establishment to admit to 'youthful indiscretions'. As Francis Maude protested, "It was quite hard to go through Cambridge in the Seventies without doing it a few times,". The article is aptly named, 'Didn't everyone do dope at college?'


In our own federal government, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld has suddenly acknowledged that opium production is on the rise in Afghanistan, according to an editorial, Drug war distortions, in today's Boston Globe. The Globe quotes Rumsfeld characterizing drug use as "a whale of a tough problem. And I'm afraid that the ultimate solution for that is going to be probably found by attacking it in all directions, not just the supply side but the education and demand side as well."

Not quite the right answer, which is not to attack but to regulate, but it's a start. Quote of the day however goes to Will Glaspy, Drug Enforcement Administration spokesman, who insists the overall policy is balanced, "combining strong enforcement with education and treatment". Glaspy goes on to say,

"We know we can't arrest our way out of it."

From your mouth to John Walters' ears, Will. It's time DEA policy started reflecting the reality of that statement.



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