Thursday, September 30, 2004

I love opium poppies as an ornamental flower. Every grandmother in the 1950s had a row of them growing in the flower beds around the house. Heck, we had a starter plot of them ourselves at the family home in Connecticut. They spread you know and actually have gorgeous blooms, the petals look like crinkled crepe paper. I believe they are the color Crayola once called Oriental Red.

Thanks to having hosted the Carnival, I received a story about this regal weed. Tim Worstall sent a splendid idea he had last spring on how to beat the prohibitionists at their own game and spread a little beauty in the process. He had me hooked from the second sentence.

Whatever good may be done by reduction in consumption is being completely overpowered by the restrictions on freedoms and outright thuggery of those prosecuting the war.

Read the whole post for his excellent argument on the folly of forfeiture. I love his idea to make the point. You can still buy the seeds to grow these poppies in any grocery store during sowing season. He recommends you buy some but don't plant them in your own yard. The DEA could take your house. He thinks you should share instead.

Yes, you've got it. Find out who your local police chief is. Who's the head of the local D.A.R.E unit? Perhaps the local DA is being a little extreme in his prosecution of drugs cases? What about that judge who gave a life sentence to the guy with ten joints on his third strike?

Tossing a few legally procured seeds over a fence is probably not even a crime yet. He goes on to take a more serious look at the use of this opioid in a subsequent post and his further ruminations on the subject are most illuminating. He remarks that a derivative was commonly available within the last century and society thrived.

I would note that the average dosage of narcotics in mid 19 th century Britain was 127 doses per head per year. That's man, woman and child. One can have all sorts of arguments about the Victorians and colonialism but it is worth noting that the basis for modern society, the huge explosion of wealth of the industrial revolution and the Empire were all built by those who we would today consider hopeless drug addicts.

I have nothing to add to that.


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