Saturday, June 23, 2012

Illegal Everything in the US, by John Stossel: A Review

On the same day that I published the post below this one, Mayor Bloomberg Call Off Your Old Tired Ethics, a post where I had this to say: I don't think I know of any other country in the world that legislates about every aspect that governs citizens lives. I later stumbled upon the featured video, which I can only describe as the perfect foil for the post.

But after having watched the thing, and in spite of it being a Fox News presentation, and in spite even more, it being presented in a typical American, whiny voiced, hi-lo manner more suited to addressing children or fucking idiots, it still has a certain, must watch, appeal about it.

I suppose the three most recognisable areas of this forty five minute film, are three traits or characteristics that go hand-in-glove with each other, an interdependent little eco-system, so typically American, they being of course, hypocrisy, the abuse of power and moral crusading.

The hypocrisy becomes immediately apparent as the program gets under way. The time money and resources expended on protecting people from kids selling lemonade, folk selling unpasteurised milk, or lobster tails in plastic bags as opposed to 40Lb boxes, (guns drawn in both the later cases and eight years in the slammer for the lobsterman) would be all very well if only half of those resources went into protecting people from fracking or mountain-top removal. (See below) Both activities constituting a crime against nature, let alone the poor schmucks whose lives are effectively destroyed by such goings on. But as you are probably aware, the only protection going on around these activities, is that of protecting Big Energy by modern day Pinkertons, the cops.

The second item on the agenda, that of police, not just abusing their power, but of being totally out of control, is dealt with quite adequately in the program. Let's face it, we have become almost blasé about cops abusing their power. Blasé I suppose, as long as your not on the receiving end of such activities. As one housewife described a cop; 'high on his own power' or as we would describe it in this country, 'pissed with power.' It rolling off the tongue somewhat easier. As long as you understand that is, that 'pissed' is more commonly used to describe someone who is drunk, rather than pissed, as in pissed off.

Ever America, ever the moral crusader, who, just like the cops protecting the world from kids selling lemonade, want to protect everybody from drugs, soft or hard, and to protect (legal) sex workers from themselves by locking them all up. In fact as you watch two such crusaders, prosecutors in fact, you can almost feel them bristling with (their own) morality.

Incidentally, and I know it will be of interest to some, but Portugal got a few minutes mention over their recent and successful decision to legalise all drugs, soft or hard.

Illegal Everything in the US, by John Stossel

This Fox News documentary shows how crazy the law system in the US became and how police is abusing its’ power. Kids are not allowed to sell lemonade, Taxi drivers get kicked out of the market by regulations implemented through the help of lobbyists, small stores selling natural raw milk get invaded by police squads, hunters can not shoot a dear and sell the meat to their neighbours, housewives get arrested for filming policemen from their own backyard and many more silly laws exist and make it difficult for people in the USA to be really living legal or living their live as freely at is was written down in the constitution many years ago. Now prisons in the US are full of people who broke silly laws, with politicians like Obama in power, that smoked marijuana themselves and didn’t got punished for it at all.

In actual fact, these two short clips are of far more import than the above.


Anonymous said...

Portugal set a good example.

Video John Stossel’s Illegal Everything, from 32:20

People think we’re not for drug laws, drug abuse would be rampant, but Portugal decriminalized all drugs ten years ago and the number of abusers did not skyrocket.

It’s legalization. We have the most liberal model in the world - Dr. Manuel Pinto Coelho

People now take a more responsible attitude towards certain drugs, there’s no police after them to chose for them - Joana Amaral Dias

The numbers of addiction itself decreased a lot. João Goulão

The level of conflicts on the street are reduced. Drug related robberies are reduced. In fact, now the police are not the enemies of the consumers. - João Figueira

Anonymous said...

Decriminalise drug use, say experts after six-year study.

The experience of Portugal and the Czech Republic shows that drug use would not increase and resources can be directed to treating addiction and tackling organised crime.

Anonymous said...

It's drugs politics, not drugs policy, that needs an inquiry.

Anonymous said...

For example, since Portugal abolished all criminal penalties for drug use in 2001, drug use has not exploded, as some predicted, and has even declined among some groups. Moreover, HIV/AIDS among intravenous drug users plunged from 52% of all new cases in 2000 to 16% in 2009.

Given that the US is the biggest backer of the international “War on Drugs,” Colorado and Washington voters’ decision is particularly bold. Regulating marijuana – and the initiatives that could soon follow – has the potential to reduce violence at home and abroad, spare young people from undeserved criminal records, and reduce stigma among vulnerable people. These states’ citizens should be proud.

Himself said...

Anonymous said...

Good evening.

And while we're on the subject of tattoos, I read several pages trying to understand why people get tattoos, but I’m none the wiser. I find tattoos ugly and unattractive, nothing is more beautiful than natural skin, but that’s only my opinion.

I know a couple who tattooed each other’s names and the names of their children on their bodies. They are nice people and there’s a sad but also beautiful story behind those tattoos. They’re very proud of it and in a strange way I’m impressed by their "sacrifice".
Actually, I never really thought about it, but I think it’s not only for aesthetic reasons that I dislike tattoos, it also has something to do with being averse to labelling.

Good night, sleep well (eight hours) xx

Anonymous said...

Himself said...

Tell it to the Feds.

The US policy isn't about drugs, it's about power and control.

Always has been always will be.

Oh! and politics, did I mention politics?