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Old 12-18-2008, 08:33 AM
 
Location: Exit 14C
1,555 posts, read 3,479,131 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Noahma View Post
within Holland, the drug users directly effect all citizens.
I have a specific way that I define the issues here, based on being directly involved in particular actions, where "action" has the standard sense used in academic philosophy, so that it's referring to people who are doing whatever they're doing with intentionality, goal-directedness, etc. The definition of this on Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Action_(philosophy)) gives a good example: "For example, throwing a ball is an instance of action; it involves an intention, a goal, and a bodily movement guided by the agent. On the other hand, catching a cold is not considered an action because it is something which happens to a person, not something done by one."
Quote:
they have universal health care, I can see that the related health problems from drug use would start to cost them a small fortune to treat, thus causing the raising of taxes to compensate for the increased medical treatments.
I'd have socialized health care, but not a monetary system . . . but that's a long discussion.
Quote:
This could be a major reason why they are rethinking the legality of drugs that have an adverse effect on ones health.
One other option would be a law that if one chooses to engage in drug use, and one requires medical assistance for a problem that is believed by the scientific community to be a result of the drug use, then one effectively opts out of receiving tax-payer funded medical assistance for that problem. One must either rely on voluntary care or pay for it through some other means.
Quote:
How would this same principal affect us here? Well, when you have members in a health insurance policy that may be heavy drug users, the medical bills get paid out of a huge pot of money that is collected from the membership in that group policy. The ending result for this would be increased payment from members since more money is needed from the group policy to cover the health care of people that are knowingly putting their health at risk and expecting others in the group policy to pay for that health care.
In that situation, the private insurers can decide whether they should have similar polices to that described above (where coverage would be denied for those issues), and individuals can pick which insurer they'd like to go with based on their stance on this.

And by the way, these issues do not go away if drugs are illegal. It's not the case that no one does drugs just in case they're illegal. With drugs being illegal, there may also be additional problems putting those kinds of laws and policies in place--where tax-payer funded medical care or insurer-covered medical care hinges on whether one has chosen to engage in drug use. Meanwhile, drugs are illegal, and socialized health care and private insurance companies end up paying for drug-related health issues anyway.
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Old 12-18-2008, 01:43 PM
 
Location: The Netherlands
8,531 posts, read 13,773,722 times
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Originally Posted by Tungsten_Udder
Quote:
Any idea what the reasoning was behind that? Seems to me like it should have seemed ridiculous to them when they were enacting the laws about this.
If I'm not mistaken we, the Dutch, created coffee shops to get rid of the heroine houses (or as you in America would call: crack houses) and this policy worked.
In fact it works too well; our coffee shops, the place where we can buy soft drugs legally, not only distributes soft drugs to 1000's of people in the region, but also to the many drug tourists.
Nowadays the 'recreational' small time grower who supplied the coffee shops at the beginning can't handle the demand anymore (our coffee shops should now be called Mega Mall Coffee Shops).
And organised crime, the opportunists that they are, immediately recognised the opportunity and switched from hard drug trafficking to growing soft drugs.
So the coffee shops may be legit, the suppliers still aren't.
Now some mayors are looking into the possibility if their county can grow their own soft drugs to keep their coffee shops out of the hands of organised crime.
And because we also have problems with drug tourism we're also looking into a pass system so only Dutch citizens are able to buy soft drugs at our coffee shops.
This way we're able to regulate our soft drug problem and still be able to keep it out of the hands of organised crime.
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Old 12-18-2008, 02:23 PM
 
Location: Exit 14C
1,555 posts, read 3,479,131 times
Reputation: 390
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tricky D View Post
If I'm not mistaken we, the Dutch, created coffee shops to get rid of the heroine houses (or as you in America would call: crack houses) and this policy worked . . .
Wait, the idea wasn't that drugs should be a legal consensual activity, but folks thought that somehow legalizing drugs would get people off of drugs??

Or is it just that folks realized that people are going to do drugs if they want to anyway, so rather than making it criminal and in environments where a lot of other nonconsensual stuff happened, it would be better to allow it and regulate it?

What still doesn't make sense to me is why supplying the drugs to the "coffee shops" would have been kept illegal? If it's legal to do the drugs, then obviously folks need to get the drugs from somewhere, and for whatever reason the drug use was legalized, the same arguments should have suggested that drug supplying (and growing, manufacturing, etc.) would need to be legalized, too.
Quote:
Now some mayors are looking into the possibility if their county can grow their own soft drugs to keep their coffee shops out of the hands of organised crime.
Certainly sounds like what needs to be done is the suppliers need to be considered legal and the country should capitalize on that revenue opportunity.
Quote:
And because we also have problems with drug tourism we're also looking into a pass system so only Dutch citizens are able to buy soft drugs at our coffee shops.
Why? What problems are you having? That should be bringing in a ton of money to your economy.
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Old 12-18-2008, 11:34 PM
 
Location: The Netherlands
8,531 posts, read 13,773,722 times
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Originally Posted by Tungsten_Udder
Quote:
Wait, the idea wasn't that drugs should be a legal consensual activity, but folks thought that somehow legalizing drugs would get people off of drugs??
At the beginning we only condoned soft drugs, because people who use soft drugs are still able to function in society.
If I'm not mistaken everyone in The Netherlands can now legally posses a small amount of soft drugs (but still no hard drugs).
This way lotsa criminal activities connected with illegal drug use decreased and sometimes even vanished from the inner cities.

Quote:
What still doesn't make sense to me is why supplying the drugs to the "coffee shops" would have been kept illegal?
Because we only condoned sofdrugs.
The growing of soft drugs still is illegal and only coffee shops are able to sell them legally. I guess that nowadays certain patients can also get weed as a doctor's prescription but I'm not sure of that.

Quote:
If it's legal to do the drugs, then obviously folks need to get the drugs from somewhere, and for whatever reason the drug use was legalized, the same arguments should have suggested that drug supplying (and growing, manufacturing, etc.) would need to be legalized, too.
And after 20+ years of condoning soft drugs we're finally trying to accomplish just that.
The thing is that the Dutch government doesn't want to become the soft drug supplier of Europe. Our strategy was that more (European) nations would follow us so this scenario could be avoided, but unfortunately that hasnít happened yet.

Quote:
Certainly sounds like what needs to be done is the suppliers need to be considered legal and the country should capitalize on that revenue opportunity.
We're not in it for the money (which would require for the soft drug business to keep growing), we only wanna be able to regulate it.
We want to regulate (soft) drugs because regulation is better than prohibiting which would only encourage crime, which in the end would only make organised crime more powerful.

Quote:
Why? What problems are you having?
- The drug runners have become more aggressive.
- The competition between small-time growers and organised crime has become fierce.
- Organised crime pay young punks to be stationed near the border crossings so they can 'persuade' foreign drug tourists to only buy their soft drugs at the coffee shops they're supplying etc.
- Often abandoned houses and farmer's cornfields etc are used for growing weed without the consent of the owners.
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Old 12-19-2008, 04:18 AM
 
Location: Exit 14C
1,555 posts, read 3,479,131 times
Reputation: 390
Interesting comments . . . I'll try to make this a bit shorter, lol . . . I still don't get how it didn't seem to be a bad idea to legalize some drugs and not legalize supplying them. Re, "Our strategy was that more (European) nations would follow us so this scenario could be avoided," Obviously, (1) Other countries wouldn't follow immediately if they ever did (and I would never bank on something that can't be predicted like that), and (2) Even if they did follow with the same policies, those policies do not legalize supplying drugs, and it's still the same conundrum--someone has to supply them if people can use them.

The thing that bothers me about it the most, I suppose, is that the policies didn't seem to be adopted because a larger percentage of the Dutch believed that people should be able to consensually do whatever it is they'd like to do, but rather because people were worried about crime and were trying to think of ways to lessen that. It seems like primarily being concerned with the latter over the former is what caused the problems you're now having.
Quote:
We're not in it for the money (which would require for the soft drug business to keep growing), we only wanna be able to regulate it.
Not wanting to bring money into the government, at least, probably isn't helping this. The government needs funding to deal with the various issues this brings up.
Quote:
- The drug runners have become more aggressive.
- The competition between small-time growers and organised crime has become fierce.
- Organised crime pay young punks to be stationed near the border crossings so they can 'persuade' foreign drug tourists to only buy their soft drugs at the coffee shops they're supplying etc.
- Often abandoned houses and farmer's cornfields etc are used for growing weed without the consent of the owners.
As written, none of these things sound particular troublesome to me, but maybe you're writing them in a way that downplays them. Also, none of that is something that I'd say is a problem with the tourists as such, it would be a problem with organized crime in the country where part of the blame is being put on increased demand because of drug tourism.

Re the last point, while I'd normally agree that one should require consent to use another's property in any way, I wouldn't agree with that in cases where the property is abandoned and the property usage isn't in any way damaging the property, but is instead productively using the property. In those cases, I would (1) require that the property owner be given a royalty from profits if the property owner wants it, and (2) require that the property owner can take control of the property again if they wish to change the status so that it's no longer abandoned. However, I would have a problem with it if the property is being damaged instead.

Also, for "aggressive", "fierce", and "persuade", if we're referring to non-consensual violence, then yes, I have a problem with non-consensual violence and prohibit it, but in those cases, that's what directly needs to be dealt with--the violence. Of course, legalizing drug supplying would help these situations a lot.
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Old 12-19-2008, 05:06 AM
 
Location: The Netherlands
8,531 posts, read 13,773,722 times
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Originally Posted by Tungsten_Udder
Quote:
Obviously, (1) Other countries wouldn't follow immediately if they ever did (and I would never bank on something that can't be predicted like that),
Someone has to start with implementing a great idea.

Quote:
The thing that bothers me about it the most, I suppose, is that the policies didn't seem to be adopted because a larger percentage of the Dutch believed that people should be able to consensually do whatever it is they'd like to do, but rather because people were worried about crime and were trying to think of ways to lessen that.
I guess the Dutch are very pragmatic people: we are more concerned about crime than individual freedom.
I mean not that we aren't free and / or that we are intolerant, because we are free and pretty tolerant, but what we definitely don't want is the transference from using soft drugs to hard drugs.
This is why we've separated them and only tolerated soft drugs and try so hard to keep it out of the hands of organised crime.
We even supply 'free' (its government money so each citizen has paid for it) methadone to hard drug addicts so we can keep hard drug related crime to a minimum.

Quote:
Not wanting to bring money into the government, at least, probably isn't helping this. The government needs funding to deal with the various issues this brings up.
The problem is that bringing in money from soft drugs initially means that the government will see the growing & dealing in soft drugs as just business and all businesses will eventually require growth and I guess we're not sure if we want this.

Quote:
Re the last point, while I'd normally agree that one should require consent to use another's property in any way, I wouldn't agree with that in cases where the property is abandoned and the property usage isn't in any way damaging the property, but is instead productively using the property.
The thing is that the weed growers steal electricity from the energy companies and these companies bill their loss of revenue right to us, the Dutch citizens.
Growing weed requires enormous amount of electricity.

Quote:
Also, for "aggressive", "fierce", and "persuade", if we're referring to non-consensual violence, then yes, I have a problem with non-consensual violence and prohibit it, but in those cases, that's what directly needs to be dealt with--the violence. Of course, legalizing drug supplying would help these situations a lot.
The problem is the 'criminal lifestyle'.
These young punks believe that they are above the law and that they don't need a formal education.
'Street culture' glamorizes thug life, which is not good for society because as a young culture they don't look at where they'll be when they're 50 (if they even reach that age).
The whole problem with 'street culture' is that it is egocentric, doesn't reflect and only lives in the now.
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Old 12-19-2008, 06:24 AM
 
Location: Exit 14C
1,555 posts, read 3,479,131 times
Reputation: 390
Still trying to keep this shorter, lol . . .

In a nutshell, it sounds to me like more of an "accidentally libertarian" experiment in the midst of "everybody's-best-interest socialism". The problem may be that those two are not compatible.

I happen to be a "libertarian socialist" now (at least that's the best term I can come up with for it so far), but my socialism isn't really an "everybody's best interest" socialism (largely because I think it's presumptuous, I'm a hardcore subjectivist on ethics, etc.). It's more of a "let's figure out a way that we can reorganize so that no one has to worry about how they're going to get and/or retain shelter, food, clothing, health care, an education, etc. socialism" on top of a fairly hardcore "minarchist" brand of libertarianism.
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Old 12-19-2008, 08:19 AM
 
Location: The Netherlands
8,531 posts, read 13,773,722 times
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Originally Posted by Tungsten_Udder
Quote:
I happen to be a "libertarian socialist" now (at least that's the best term I can come up with for it so far), but my socialism isn't really an "everybody's best interest" socialism (largely because I think it's presumptuous, I'm a hardcore subjectivist on ethics, etc.). It's more of a "let's figure out a way that we can reorganize so that no one has to worry about how they're going to get and/or retain shelter, food, clothing, health care, an education, etc. socialism" on top of a fairly hardcore "minarchist" brand of libertarianism.
Even then hard drugs will destroy any society.
Hard drug users do not contribute to society, they only drain our recources so we better make sure nobody chooses that path.
We hope to accomplish this by education and having legalised soft drugs.
So far so good.
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Old 12-19-2008, 09:04 AM
 
Location: Exit 14C
1,555 posts, read 3,479,131 times
Reputation: 390
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tricky D View Post
Originally Posted by Tungsten_Udder Even then hard drugs will destroy any society.
I don't agree with that though (and I'd hardly be a libertarian if I did).
Quote:
Hard drug users do not contribute to society, they only drain our recources so we better make sure nobody chooses that path.
I not only know people who use "hard drugs", I've used them a bit myself in the past. (It might help to remember that I'm a musician, a visual artist, a writer, etc. lol) I do not agree that hard drug use necessarily implies that one can not hold a job, pay taxes, etc.--I've known too many peole who do those things despite drug use.
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Old 12-19-2008, 09:36 AM
 
Location: The Netherlands
8,531 posts, read 13,773,722 times
Reputation: 1560
Originally Posted by Tungsten_Udder
Quote:
I not only know people who use "hard drugs", I've used them a bit myself in the past. (It might help to remember that I'm a musician, a visual artist, a writer, etc. lol) I do not agree that hard drug use necessarily implies that one can not hold a job, pay taxes, etc.--I've known too many peole who do those things despite drug use.
It is simple for me to prove that hard drugs are no good for any society: it is a fact that any animal under the influence of hard drugs will severely lessen his chance of survival.
I mean it is only natural for herbivores to run away from an approaching predator on the prowl, but the animal who is 'high' might mistakenly run to the approaching predator instead of away from him. Therefore there are only human hard drug addicts because only in a human society can a stupid animal survive or pass on his defective genes.
And the same rules that apply to the individual will also apply to societies.

The thing with being a performer is that you don't need to hunt to get food, but the moment you need to hunt for food, using hard drugs will only become a serious problem.
So hard drug users are 'lucky' to live in a society where they can sell their body in order to get high when they have no other talent to make money.
And let me tell ya up front that the majority of the masses can't perform so well to make it their livelihood.
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