Home Affairs Committee - Drugs: Breaking the CycleWritten evidence submitted by Berkshire Cannabis Community (DP122)

The content of this document exclusively discusses cannabis, and the urgent reclassification system that our government will need to implement.

Other substances that are currently prohibited, are not discussed in this contribution, it could be the duty of the recipient to acknowledge whether any of these principles are applicable to other substances.

Detailed responses to each point have been provided, whilst reading please remain aware of our core purposes for writing this:

To help and support our government, in bringing forward a more responsible strategy towards cannabis use in the UK.

To re-affirm that the truth about our natural cure, and the harm caused by its suppression, will become an exponentially increasing burden on our politicians who reject honest help and continue to propagate unfounded lies.

Further information can be provided upon request.

1. The extent to which the Government’s 2010 drug strategy is a “fiscally responsible policy with strategies grounded in science, health, security and human rights” in line with the recent recommendation by the Global Commission on Drug Policy

Fiscal responsibility

It is not fiscally responsible for anyone deemed a decision maker in this country, especially when making enforced legal acts and statutes, that could (and do) ruin peoples futures, to continue to push a multi billion pound industry into criminal markets, this is not fiscally responsible.

Allow true fiscal responsibility, create honest, regulated industry and tax contributions from an inevitable and continuous activity.

Grounded in science or health?

The evidence has been and will be presented, time and time again, to prove that cannabis is a highly capable medical substance.

The issues at hand seem to reside in how accurately that information is portrayed to the public. Those who are fighting to maintain the status quo, seek to suppress and bias any true science that is found. Experiments are only funded if they seek to prove harm from cannabis, instead of benefit. Cannabis cures cancer, helps with AIDS, MS, Alzheimers, Bipolar disorder, and countless other conditions.

The current limitations imposed on the lives of medical cannabis patients in the UK, is unacceptable, and must be changed this year.

The citizens of this country deserve to be told the truth about cannabis, they deserve to be told publicly by our authorities, that the cure and benefit to cancer amongst numerous other illnesses and disabilities. These people deserve, and demand to be told the truth about the science rather than supporting blatantly biased, if not completely false information.

Human rights and Security

The UK government and it’s current drug strategy, does not consider the true damage that is a result of substance prohibition, once the policies are amended accordingly to embrace the population as a whole, and not stigmatise groups of individuals that they do not agree with. Only then will they realise true fiscal responsibility. With the new regulated cannabis policy, they will see new contributions to the system, from the very groups of people they were imprisoning previously.

What is the true cost of the war on drugs? Peoples futures, you choose to turn them into a prisoner, and use taxpayers money to keep them out of society. We would choose for them to become taxpayers. We would allow them to meet the demands for such an obvious and prevalent market.

The consideration by the government for our public security and human rights, currently seems ignored.

With regard to our human rights, the government has a lot of work to do to repair the damage to real human beings, which they are creating and advocating by supporting prohibition. It is disgusting how the police could be instructed in such a manner against human rights.

In conclusion, and in answer to the first point, the governments current drug prohibition strategy fails on all accounts.

The unjust prohibition of my medicine, forces me to be a criminal, the financial implications of obtaining this medicine causes huge problems, anxieties and pressures in my life.

2. The criteria used by the Government to measure the efficacy of its drug policies

The drug policy for cannabis prohibition does not work, we are told lies by our government in order to maintain a justification for this unjust discrimination. The reasons that we are given for keeping cannabis illegal are wildly exaggerated and falsified, as the real reasons for prohibition would expose the real perpetrators.

Pharmaceutical (patent for profit meds).

Alcohol (industry for escapism—altering consciousness).

Balance of wealth amongst industry sectors/investors.

Tobacco

If someone chose to smoke, what would they choose to smoke?

Something that causes cancer, or something that cures cancer?

Something that kills, or something that doesn’t kill?

Tobacco causes serious health implications, and yet our government let it through, poisons are intentionally added.

In conclusion to the point, the government does not convey a transparent reasoning for its drug policy. As the policies cause more harm than good, it is also not clear how or why the efficacy of this policy could be measured or proven in any way successful.

3. The independence and quality of expert advice which is being given to the government

The patient or participant will tell you what is right for them, thousands of people are giving testimonials for the medical efficacy of cannabis. So, to what extent is qualification and certification of medical expertise even relevant? These people live with their conditions every day, allow them autonomy of choice with their symptom management, and allow their results and studies to form the “expert” findings of tomorrow.

In respecting the autonomy of patients healing methods, refer to Paragraph 5.9—House of Lords report:
http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld199798/ldselect/ldsctech/151/15106.htm

Money talks

Information bias exists exponentially within today’s corporate society, the side with the economic voice to protect strives to suppress truth in favour of its own practices and interests. The population of each and every country can clearly see where our government supports such misinformation. We see clearly the lies that get propagated about drugs in order to control our actions, to sway us from cannabis to alcohol. To sway us from cannabis to tobacco. We see where the harm really lies, and we consistently lose respect for any government that lies to us in order to maintain existing and more harmful industries.

We lose respect for any government that acts with injustice against the people because of what they have been told by an economic voice.

Independent and Expert Drug Advice (don’t talk to frank)

1. Treat cannabis as a medicine, and from those willing to take it, review objectively its ratio of benefit to harm.

2. Always read the label. Due to the variety amongst cannabis plants and cultivation environments, understanding which strain type works well for you or will give a desired and predicted effect, is essential to guarantee the safety of the educated and autonomous public.

It is the government’s responsibility to allow the safest possible access to chosen medication methods.

The new, legal and taxable cannabis markets, will guarentee their market share, by implementing a substance categorisation system (and guaranteed public safety) that the illegal market cannot match.

Label effects (sativa and indica for example, could have very opposite effects).

3. For those wishing to take part in the cannabis industry at any level, even just occasionally, recreationally or socially, or even growing their own plants to provide for themselves, they do so through personal choice, and can opt out at any time.

4. To reduce “public harm” the government should perhaps address the peer pressures involved in all social consumption of consciousness altering substances. This is extremely problematic for working people who go out drinking together, and see competition in their drinking efforts.

4. Whether drug-related policing and expenditure is likely to decrease in line with police budgets and what impact this may have

If police were in fact keeping people safe as a primary function, rather than trying to profit from loopholes in substance management. They wouldn’t need to give their time to 99–100 people using cannabis because cannabis promotes peace. If the police sought to keep the peace, rather than impose unnecessary force, the world would become a much better, safer place. Police time can easily be applied elsewhere. Re-allocate police time to supporting the peace of the community, instead of profiting from ruining peaceful peoples lives.

5. The cost effectiveness of different policies to reduce drug usage

What if decriminalisation, legalisation and free choice was the best strategy to reduce usage? As was seen in Portugal? Why would you seek to implement policies of reducing a market? Most markets aim to increase consumption of goods.

Because of the perceived ratio of harm to benefit, on health?

Because of the subsequent impact on the public health service as a result?

The government does not need to control by force a reduction in substance use, it just needs to educate honestly about all substances. Honesty will build respect from the people, and they are more likely to make decisions based on the advice given to them if they know it to be true and untainted by profit incentive.

The cost effectiveness of any policy that seeks to suppress the inevitable, is an empty game and definitely wasteful.

Divert all costs spent on the war on drugs, to offer real education.

Do not seek to reduce drug usage, seek to repair the environment and societal structure that causes escapism to be such a prevalent aspect of life.

Seek to repair the damage that surrounds the war on drugs, seek to remove all criminal funding by making all substances available.

Reduce crime by reducing scarcity.

Allow people to grow their own medication.

6. The extent to which public health considerations should play a leading role in developing drugs policy

Urgent medical access for patients, matter for immediate regulation change.

Stop making patients criminals, give them a choice to heal.

Currently the truth about cannabis and its health benefits, is being hidden by mainstream media sources, yet everybody knows it heals.

The lies that have been paid for, become ever more apparent.

Public health considerations should be the leading role in developing all policy.

The negative impact on public health when our government stigmatises and lies about groups within its own country.

The negative impact on public health and national stability when we feel we can no longer trust our government because we see them openly lie to us.

7. The relationship between drug and alcohol abuse

Alcohol is a drug, people don’t like to admit it, but it clearly is.

A more appropriate question would be, the relationship between prohibited and legal methods of drug abuse.

Escapism (to the extent of abuse) in any form is the result of an environment that has been based on an inferior social/economic/political/legal structure. If we fixed the fundamental environmental imbalances within our systems, problematic abuse would be limited and completely chosen.

Drug abuse in the form of alcohol abuse often results in abhorrent behavior and arrests being made. The city centers and weekend nightlife cause a huge amount more public harm than public cannabis evenings. Drug abuse in the form of cannabis abuse, can often result in a more peaceful state, the only arrests are caused by prohibition and not by resulting intoxicated behavior.

Abuse of a substance may be the result of free choice or some type of dependance/addiction. The addictiveness of a substance can only ever be measured with the addiction susceptibility of the person. Our current system stigmatises people who are different, if instead it offered unconditional support, then these people could be helped, and work with others to resolve their problems. When we can work together in solving the problems that society gives us, we will reduce problematic behaviour.

Caffiene is also a drug which people abuse daily…

Tobacco is also a drug which people abuse daily…

8. The comparative harm and cost of legal and illegal drugs

197,000 EU patients die from ADR’s each year (adverse drug reactions) to prescription medications.

0 EU patients (or global patients) die of an ADR to cannabis.

The cost of the never ending drug war, is greater than money, it is people’s lives and futures. The cost of suffering through illness when a beneficial, natural cure could be available, is a cost that every pro drug war politician should be ashamed of charging to the public.

Politicians who support the prohibition of cannabis, are imposing a cost that they cannot afford to pay. The amount of suffering that our communities of disabled, sick or simply autonomous people are forced to endure because of our governments outdated regulations, puts strain not only on their risks in criminality, but also causes rifts and arguments in family relationships due to the dishonesty propagated by “war on drugs” prohibitionists.

The negative impact on the coherence and well being of our families, as we experience prejudice, opposition and argument amongst our otherwise agreeable peaceful groups, as some still blindly accept the governments lies about cannabis, and others know the truth.

9. The impact of the transfer of functions of the National Treatment Agency for Substance Misuse to Public Health England and how this will affect the provision of treatment

Further funding for substance misuse workshops, education or clinics would be made available through taxing and regulating those very substances, rather than letting the billions go to criminal markets.

10. The availability of “legal highs” and the challenges associated with adapting the legal framework to deal with new substances

Are you seeking to control legal access to substances or drugs? To what extent do the authorities have to enforce health decisions, and to what extent should they just advise?

Adapting legal frameworks to cover every substance apart from alcohol and pharmaceutical?

Alcohol is the biggest legal high, the only rule seems to be supply and demand. All other drugs are also bound by the laws of supply and demand, these laws over-rule legal acts and statutes.

The war on drugs, will never be won by force. It will be won by freedom of choice, compassion, and education.

If our government adopts the attitude of racing to prohibit substances, before they race to educate everybody impartially, then nobody listens to them when they talk about drugs anyway.

11. The links between drugs, organised crime and terrorism

The only link between the drug industry and crime/terrorism, is PROHIBITION.

Politicians force this commerce to take place in illegal and unregulated markets. The activities that this commerce has the potential to fund, is limitless in variety. Making all drugs safely and legally accessible, purchasable through taxed systems, would regulate which registered businesses were operating, and how they operate. If the project was for distribution, what the money was for, only so far as anybody earning money has the potential to fund terrorism?

12. Whether the UK is supporting its global partners effectively and what changes may occur with the introduction of the national crime agency

The responsibility that “the UK” give to their political spokesmen, is one of maintaining a manageable situation for all its members, while also supporting global partners second.

The term “crime” has become distorted, and the focus of police time should be given to reducing public harm rather than penalising individuals for their consumption choices. Organised crime will occur for as long as it is deemed a crime to grow a plant of a certain species, and choose to benefit from its attributes.

If the primary intent of our system of legal force is to reduce harmful behavior, rather than to maintain a market for it, at the taxpayers expenditure, then the legal system should seek to educate rather than simply cause further suffering.

13. Whether detailed consideration ought to be given to alternative ways of tackling the drugs dilemma, as recommended by the Select Committee in 2002 (The Government’s Drugs Policy: Is It Working?, HC 318, 2001–02) and the Justice Committee’s 2010 Report on justice reinvestment (Cutting crime: the case for justice reinvestment, HC 94, 2009–10).”

The drugs dilemma, is a message.

The public create the demand for any substance they choose to consume.

No amount of enforcement can change free will.

Focus on true, balanced education about the pros:cons of taking drugs, let the public choose, and create safe, crime free environments for them to do so, focusing on reducing unwanted public harm.

Focus on bringing to reality a stable economy for all classes of people, so that our lives and societies don’t revolve on stress and ways to escape from that stress.

The root causes of escapism are what need to be addressed in order to tackle what our governments see as a dilemma.

Ideas for tackling the dilemma of escapism:

Reduction of crime through balancing the economic stresses of society.

Freedom of the population from national debts, caused by an inherently flawed system of interest based and fractional reserve based banking.

Stop propagating messages of competition within working classes, and adapt to new economic models that will help people to work peacefully together, and to serve people as a collective team (globally).

The government’s drug policy is not working, that is a fact, proven in evidence.

The consumption of cannabis across the population, and availability of cannabis in every town or city, proves that the policy does not remove “the problem”.

Under current and unjust prohibition laws, cutting crime is a different purpose to efficiently managing inevitable human behaviours, given the failing economic environment and structure of life for many.

The current drugs policy is based on a monopoly, corporate interests who could not exclusively and greedily control or patent a natural lifeform.

A message to the forces, the pro “war on drugs” campaigners, politicians, and corporate interests.

To get the country to live exclusively by your rules you need to be on the side of true justice. In your close minded proposal of force, and fear of force as a solution to the management of our needs. You will never succeed in your purpose.

Act in peace, teach peace to the world, and the world will follow.

Act with force, teach force as the solution to a problem, and the world will follow.

Practice what you preach—create peaceful and safe societies.

As a police force, and regulatory system of peoples actions within reasonable safety, and social harmony with one another, you create your own market.

Actual solutions that completed your goals of reducing all crime down to zero, would see you out of a job, your true purpose is to create enough peace to be able to liberate yourselves as heroes.

You maintain your own market of crime, by teaching force.

You maintain suffering within peoples lives by maintaining your lies and propaganda, every time you deny the safety and medical efficacy of cannabis.

Key Points

Decriminalisation, Legalisation, Tax and regulate multi billion pound cannabis industry.

Re-assign police efforts to more serious issues, such as actual public safety, maintaining peace, and resorting to force as a last resort.

True justice through education.

Decriminalise drugs, educate honestly, allow people to make their own autonomous choice based on facts not bias.

Operation: Tax and regulate inevitable industry activity. As per supply: demand, with which it is evident that many, many people have already been voting for cannabis as an industry.

Management of Danger/Harm/Risk

A look into how we as a population manage some other potentially dangerous or harmful items/substances, and how we resolve the problems surrounding them.

To what extent do governments need to intervene as they do with cannabis, and to what extent is it their duty to help us by reducing harm and educating us?

After all, cars are dangerous, we don’t ban them. Aeroplanes are dangerous, harmful sometimes fatal, we don’t ban them, we accept the risk, and trust the engineering. Flights of stairs are dangerous, we don’t ban them, we put up a handrail. Fast food is not good for health, we don’t ban it, we try to educate people about food choices. Sex can have undesired consequences, we don’t ban sex.

The prohibition of something such as aeroplanes, cannabis or a flight of stairs, is a ridiculous proposal. We can only aim for honest education and harm reduction, people will make their own choices.

Force vs Education

In all human activity, threat of force is a primitive way to try to obtain order, control and uniformity. Education is the only way to channel us all toward the successes we desire for ourselves, and one another.

We do not need enforcement of control over us for issues such as drugs, we do not need intervention of force into an otherwise peaceful industry.

The authors of this work can be referred to as “Berkshire Cannabis Community” when referencing its content.

January 2012

Prepared 8th December 2012