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[P]
UK to relax marijuana restrictions

By Signal 11 in News
Sat Jun 16, 2001 at 06:51:36 AM EST
Tags: Freedom (all tags)
Freedom

UK citizens may get relaxed penalties for maijuana possession, the BBC reports. Users would have their illegal drugs confinscated, but be let off with a warning after signing a form -- no charges would be pressed. Main reason for this? Frees officers' time to go after more serious crimes.


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UK to relax marijuana restrictions | 30 comments (23 topical, 7 editorial, 0 hidden)
Maybe with the UK and Canada... (4.00 / 5) (#1)
by Xeriar on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 04:06:58 PM EST

Doing stuff like this the US can appear backwards enough to convince Congress that hemp regulation is moronic.

I'm feeling optimistic today :-)

----
When I'm feeling blue, I start breathing again.

I'll believe that... (2.00 / 2) (#2)
by jd on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 04:22:05 PM EST

...when GWB advocates the abolition of the DP for the same reason, or gives California the resources it needs to actually run, even if it did vote against him.

[ Parent ]
california (3.00 / 1) (#10)
by Delirium on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 04:49:51 PM EST

I was with you up until the California comment. We fucked it up in California, and I don't think it's necessarily the rest of the country's job to bail us out. Price controls have never worked either; Nixon's disastrous attempt at them proved that.

[ Parent ]
incoming telegraph from Planet Earth (2.00 / 1) (#19)
by anonymous cowerd on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 09:51:21 PM EST

Price controls have never worked either...

Where do you get this, um, stuff? The electric power industry in the U.S.A. has been heavily regulated and price controlled from coast to coast for half a century now. Are you telling me that it has been a failure? That citizens can't get reliable power? or that it costs too much? or that the long-suffering power companies have been going broke right and left for the last few decades?

California's power supply got screwed up only after deregulation. And that was as a result of sheer blatant banditry. If the people of California had any sense, which of course they don't (hey, it's the U.S.A.) they'd demand that their government revoke the corporate charters of the power generation companies and they'd nationalize them.

Yours WDK - WKiernan@concentric.net

stint grits
darts file
gratis ways to fit tins
dapper angle
ill apple
-Barbara Baracks

[ Parent ]

price caps (3.00 / 1) (#20)
by Delirium on Sat Jun 16, 2001 at 02:26:28 AM EST

I did not mean an entire system of regulated prices is unworkable; I meant temporary price caps in response to high market prices does not work. Reimplementing the entire regulated energy system might well work (albeit be inefficient, as previously), but just imposing price caps will not. The last time price caps were imposed due to high energy prices was in the 1970s, when Richard Nixon imposed them due to high oil prices; all they led to was more shortages due to artificially low prices. What should be done is pricing at market levels - when cost goes up, pass that on. As consumers realize their electricity is no longer dirty-cheap, maybe they won't air condition their house down to 72 or some other such irresponsible waste of electricity. If prices are kept artificially low, demand will not decrease, and more detrimentally, supply will not increase either.

[ Parent ]
You do need to watch your semantics... (2.00 / 1) (#24)
by Xeriar on Sat Jun 16, 2001 at 12:26:12 PM EST

For down the other path lies madness.

Oh wait, didn't notice your handle.

I'm sorry, I just could not resist that. :-)

----
When I'm feeling blue, I start breathing again.
[ Parent ]

Nah... what about the economic impact? (3.60 / 5) (#3)
by Nafai on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 04:26:18 PM EST

Ending hemp regulation would kill (tens of?) thousands of law enforcement jobs, not to mention eliminate the millions of dollars paid in fines each year.

In addition, half of all those incredibly expensive federal prison's would get shut down. Prison guards need to put food on the table, too! And the workers that USGov hires to keep tabs on the pot users.

And the worst part, our US government would no longer have $billions to spend on buying influence in other countries.

-----------

I could go on and on, but I think our US stupidity is already readily apparent... here's to hoping your optimism becomes reality




[ Parent ]
hemp != marijuana (3.00 / 1) (#8)
by YelM3 on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 04:44:17 PM EST

I don't think there are really that many law enforcement officers who deal with hemp, nor many people in prison for hemp-related "crimes." Marijuana-related crimes, yes. Of course, your original premise was correct: the primary reason hemp is illegal is because of economic reasons. The cotton industry would potentially have some serious competition, for example. Hemp has all sorts of uses that have advantages over the things we currently use to make clothes and rope and whatnot. I'm not sure if the original poster was also using the term "hemp" to mean marijuana or not...

[ Parent ]
In this case, hemp==marijuana (5.00 / 1) (#12)
by Nafai on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 04:57:56 PM EST

I was just being very sarcastic.

If marijuana was (at least partially) legalized, we could eliminate tens of thousands of (law enforcement) jobs, half our prisons, and save $billions rather than trying to "save" people from smoking a (naturally occuring) weed.

[ Parent ]
W. (3.60 / 5) (#7)
by Refrag on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 04:42:59 PM EST

George already has a bold new drug policy. He's going to take all of the drugs so that the people don't have to/can't.

Refrag

Kuro5hin: ...and culture, from the trenches
[ Parent ]

w & drugs.. (1.00 / 1) (#13)
by Platy on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 05:27:39 PM EST

He's going to take all of the drugs so that...
he has them for himself and his daughters ;)
J.
--
Tongue-tied and twisted, just an earthbound misfit, I.
[ Parent ]
Mm. Nothing to seeee heeeere. (4.40 / 5) (#6)
by _cbj on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 04:42:46 PM EST

It isn't UK, it's a scheme by the police in Brixton, and after six months "may be extended for the entire Metropolitan area". Note that mere possession has been unofficially tolerated throughout the hierarchies of UK police for quite a while. Actually, if they start confiscating, that'll be something of a backwards step in my experience.

Slight exaggeration (4.00 / 3) (#9)
by TheophileEscargot on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 04:48:21 PM EST

The story says police in one small area of London are to try a six-month experiment in not bothering to prosecute Cannabis smokers.

In practice a lot of the time the police don't bother anyway: this seems to be an attempt to make an unofficial policy official.
----
Support the nascent Mad Open Science movement... when we talk about "hundreds of eyeballs," we really mean it. Lagged2Death

The Guardian on drug policy in the UK (4.83 / 6) (#11)
by tforce76 on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 04:56:36 PM EST

i was considering posting this link earlier. it's sort of an op-ed piece on drug policy in the UK and why no sane politician would dare make any changes to it. there's a lot of opinion in it, but quite a few illuminating facts as well.



Hopefully.... (4.00 / 1) (#22)
by TuRRIcaNEd on Sat Jun 16, 2001 at 10:29:58 AM EST

....we are (albeit very slowly) noting a change in attitude in this country (the UK). I could ramble on for hours about why I think this is the case, but if it was a purely political problem, then the Lib-Dems* would have got no votes at all if the old attitude still held.

There are quite a lot of pot smokers in the UK these days, from all walks of life, and people are realising this. It's going to take a while, but we can hope. It's quite important to remember at this point that the people most vocally opposed to the relaxing of laws governing drugs in general (and cannabis in particular) are the large brewing firms. Can't say I blame them, 'cos it'll eat their profits alive, but that doesn't make it right.

Tc.

*Lib-Dems - Liberal Democrats, third mainstream party in UK politics, whose policies do include a massive rethink on the laws governing hemp (and cannabis, by extension).

"We're all f**ked. You're f**ked. I'm f**ked. The whole department's f**ked. It's been the biggest cock-up ever and we're all completely f**ked. - Sir Richard Mottram expounds the limits of spin
[ Parent ]

Brewing Industry (none / 0) (#27)
by keyeto on Mon Jun 18, 2001 at 10:41:35 AM EST

You're right when you say that there is a fear within the brewing industry. This became quite a serious problem for the Exodus Collective, a group of pepole that put on free parties, in the early to mid '90s. When they put on a free party, there was omsethinglike a 40% drop in profits made by the local breweries. There was also a 6% drop in violent crime.

The local newspaper was dependent on the brewing industry for adverts, and were encouraged to smear the group, accusing them of drug dealing, and all that kind of thing. The police in the region used these reports, alongside the written encouragement of the local MP, to sustain an astonishing campaign of harrassment on the group. This went right up to planting drugs on them, and forcing them into a year long court case. They presented no defense, and the jury, having only seen the inconstincy of the police evidence, aquitted them.

Put "Whitbread" and "Exodus Collective" into Google. I can't find any of the local MP's involvement in the pages linked to, so I guess you'll have to take my word on that. This makes a kind of sense, since what he wrote was inadmissable as evidence in the trial, because it was written on House of Commons notepaper.


--
"This is the Space Age, and we are Here To Go"
William S. Burroughs
[ Parent ]
Exodus (none / 0) (#28)
by spiralx on Mon Jun 18, 2001 at 11:16:32 AM EST

Yeah, I've been to one of their parties before (I have friends who have the misfortune to live in Dunstable) and they are always packed with tons of people - there's very little to do in L&D usually, hence the general nastiness of the area IMHO.

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

query (3.00 / 1) (#16)
by ignition on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 08:27:21 PM EST

whilst in generaliwas pro the article, I did have one issue. It does mention that after the DTTO program, addicts had cut their expenditure down to a minimum and this was down to them circum-navigating the agreement and thus on paper the stats are false. By the same argument is it not strange that there were only 500 addicts in the UK in the 70s.Surely this is only registered addicts, which would only be a samll percentage?

Not the main reason. (4.50 / 6) (#18)
by fury on Fri Jun 15, 2001 at 09:21:46 PM EST

I was in London last year, when the Chief of Police came forward as for the legalization of marijuana, not because of enforcement issues, but because the vast majority of marijuana abusers who landed in jail came out of jail addicted to much harsher substances.

A non-threatening pot user would go to jail, get introduced to heroin and crack, and come out of jail addicted, and a more violent individual, stealing to keep the habit or otherwise turning their life to shit.

The official was supporting the radical concept that the best way to keep people off drugs is to keep them away from the place where they pick up the habit, inthis case, prison.

Kevin Fox - fury.com

Smoke and Mirrors (4.00 / 3) (#23)
by tumeric on Sat Jun 16, 2001 at 12:06:21 PM EST

Just 2 weeks ago on the edge of Brixton (Balham) there were police with sniffer dogs greeting commuters as they got off trains. If the police really wanted to free officers time they could cut down on these Gestapo like tactics.

I expect nothing good will come of this. It may even be a ploy to show that relaxation on cannabis is a bad thing. I'm waiting for the horror stories to start coming in and the status quo to be restored swiftly.

Other Cannabis News (4.00 / 1) (#25)
by jynx on Mon Jun 18, 2001 at 05:29:35 AM EST

I am quite saddened that, although many of the news outlets have reported this, none have mentioned the "Legalise Cannabis" event that happened on Saturday.

Thousands of people from across the country turned up in London, despite the rain, and attended a march followed by a festival.

As far as I know, there was no violence and no arrests. I guess the media would have been more interested if there had been. This is a shame, as a few thousand caners turning up and NOT causing trouble is the kind of images the public needs to see, IMHO, as so many people are still so uninformed about cannabis and it's users.

--

Made me sad too. (4.00 / 1) (#26)
by priestess on Mon Jun 18, 2001 at 09:55:44 AM EST

The fact the conspiracy media all ignored that evet made me sad too, especially seeing BBC take hours and hours to cover the damn queens burfdee or whatever all those soldiers were trouping through the rain in their silly hats was about.

Carlton's (ITV London) local news spent about one minute on it at lunchtime, that's it. Just time to say that it was happening and barely even mention why. The bias in the Man's news companies is incredable.

It's almost enough to make me recomend a few fights next year. Hey, if we smash up a McDonalds we'll get half the day's news coverage.
Pre............

----
My Mobile Phone Comic-books business
Robots!
[ Parent ]
Meanwhile, in the U.S.,... (4.00 / 1) (#29)
by dennis on Mon Jun 18, 2001 at 02:30:39 PM EST

...the DEA is attempting to ban hemp seed and hemp oil, on the grounds that it can cause people who've never smoked marijuana to test positive. The stuff is sold in healthfood stores, because hemp has the healthiest fatty acid balance you can get.

The DEA's worry is that if it's not illegal, the courts will throw out marijuana testing evidence. Hmm. So since their test can't distinguish between legal and illegal substances, all the legal substances should just be outlawed, no matter how beneficial they are. I guess if the cops don't have accurate radar guns, it should be illegal to drive a car.

UK to relax marijuana restrictions | 30 comments (23 topical, 7 editorial, 0 hidden)
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