THE DRUG WAR PHILOSOPHER: essays against the bloody Drug War DRUG WAR BLOG updated
Essay date: June 24, 2020

'Good Chemistry' is a good Covid read

by Ballard Quass

Though the author is showing symptoms of the Drug War Virus





The lies of the Drug War have biased almost every author who writes on the subject. I have yet to read one single pundit on this topic (with the notable exception of the much maligned Thomas Szasz) who, in my view, has not been duped into believing at least one major Drug Warrior lie, no matter how reasonable the rest of their argumentation may seem when it comes to castigating the many sins of the so-called Drug War. One Drug War lie that the leftists always seem to "swallow whole" is the idea that there is this bad thing out there called "drugs" which must be stopped, since these substances are only used by psychologically flawed people as crutches. This is certainly the tone that Julie Holland strikes in the opening to her new book entitled "Good Chemistry: the science of connection from soul to psychedelics," though she obviously does not class psychedelics as drugs in this strictly negative sense.


Holland points out, correctly enough, that human beings are obliged to be gregarious by their very nature. But she then proceeds to imply that people who use these, quote unquote, "drugs" are simply trying to get the "high" that comes from social interaction without actually interacting, thereby avoiding real life and the full emotions that it can bring.


Now, don't get me wrong: there are many people who commit the mistake highlighted by Holland, especially when we class excessive cell phone use as a kind of "drug abuse," as the author does.


Holland's mistake is to suggest that this is the only possible use of these substances that we call "drugs." The author would certainly agree that cell phones can be used responsibly, but she implies that there is a class of drugs whose use is prima facie evidence of pathology. This is plain wrong. Gabor Mate makes the same mistake. In this way, both of these authors turn one particular problem into "the" problem par excellence, thereby confirming the Drug Warrior's superstitious creation of a bugaboo known as "drugs" that is all-powerful in creating suffering and mischief - meanwhile jettisoning the previous scientific understanding that good and bad must be attributed to people, not to substances.


Sigmund Freud relied heavily on cocaine to help him achieve self-actualization, both by publishing prolifically and interacting regularly with the folks around him. To imply therefore that cocaine use and responsible living are somehow mutually exclusive is just a Drug Warrior lie, one to which leftists frequently succumb in their unthinking desire to pathologize all human behavior and thus render it amenable to their professional medical ministrations.


Benjamin Franklin was a regular user of opium, but no one ever suspected that socialite par excellence of attempting to avoid social encounters. Franklin's use of opium seems particularly odd to Drug War Americans, who diligently censor that use from Franklin's bio, because they have forgotten that there was a time when Americans still judged people by how they actually behaved, rather than by the substances that they may or may not have had in their bloodstream.


It is really just a kind of Christian Science slander to say that certain of mother nature's substances can be evil without regard for the way that they are used, or else to imply that such substances can only be used in one way, and that is irresponsibly. This lying Drug Warrior mentality reached its apotheosis in the 1980s with the highly mendacious ad claiming that "drugs" fry your brain, an anti-nature piece of propaganda that is actually the opposite of the truth in the case of most so-called "drugs." Cocaine sharpened Freud's brain, it did not fry it. Opium increased Benjamin Franklin's creativity, it did not dull it. Richard Feynman kept alert with what the Drug Warrior might today deride as "speed," but today he is considered the very type of genius, not some druggie who "wasted his talents," as the Drug Warrior likes to say in moralizing about those Americans who dare to use substances of which politicians do not approve.


Both the left and the right have fallen for the Drug War lie that certain plant medicines can only be regarded as "crutches." This idea can be maintained only by purposefully ignoring the facts. I'm not just talking about the fact that great people in history "used drugs," but that whole religions were founded based on the worship of psychoactive plants and the insights that they provided. The Vedic religion was founded in order to worship the highly psychoactive natural medicine known as soma. The Eleusinian mysteries involved the use of psychoactive medicine and inspired such Western luminaries as Plato and Aristotle. The MesoAmericans claimed great insights from the ritual use of plant medicines prior to the devastating arrival of the Conquistadors (who, unlike today's disingenuous Drug Warrior, made no secret of their contempt for what they considered quite literally to be devil plants and fungi). The idea, therefore, that most psychoactive substances are "crutches" is merely a provincial bias of American authors, authors who have been duped into thinking that America's peculiar and socially determined attitudes toward drugs tells us something about the drugs themselves, when all they tell us about is American society in the time that it is under observation.


That's the problem with the Drug War, in general: it leads us to ignore pathological social arrangements when diagnosing problems and to focus instead on the one-size-fits-all cause known as "drugs". Thus social arrangements never get fixed - cities lie forever in disrepair and children fail to get properly educated -- much to the glee of conservatives and to the consternation of liberals.



The fact is that there is no such thing as "drugs," as defined by the Drug Warrior, just as there were never any "devil plants" in MesoAmerica, despite the Conquistadors religious belief to the contrary. There are no plant medicines that are bad in and of themselves, without regard for the way that they are used: by whom, and when, under what circumstances, for what reasons, etc.

When authors imply otherwise, they pave the way for despots and officious do-gooders to punish Americans, not based on how they actually behave, but on what plant medicines they choose to use, thereby violating the natural law upon which America was founded and simultaneously establishing Christian Science as the state religion, insomuch as the theology of that sect insists that its votaries use prayer rather than "drugs" to combat whatever ails them.


Unfortunately, Julie Holland ignores this despotism in the opening of her new book by falsely claiming that a whole raft of psychoactive drugs were criminalized in the early 1970s because they were being misused by young people. That's just plain wrong. Richard Nixon criminalized those drugs in order to destroy his enemies, period, full stop. That's why the Drug War did not simply educate or remonstrate with substance abusers, as it would surely have done if it was interested in public health: it removed those "abusers" from the voting rolls by charging them with a felony. The antics of the anti-war Flower Children were just an excuse for this vicious and anti-scientific crackdown on so many therapeutic godsends of mother nature. Had Nixon cared about the country's health, he would have launched a war on tobacco and alcohol, two drugs which kill thousands every year-- unlike the so-called epidemic of drug abuse in the late 1960s and early 70s, which injured very few but committed the much greater sin of unnerving the political establishment.


The evidence is clear: the term "drugs" is a political term, designed to cast infamy on plant medicines of which politicians disapprove, often for sinister strategic reasons, as in the case of Richard Nixon. So we're bound to go wrong when we write books in which we imply that these evil "drug" substances really exist, just waiting to snare the unwary American -- especially when we claim that these thoroughly evil bugaboos exist as an evil category in contradistinction to a group of emphatically blessed substances known as "medicines," meaning drugs from big pharma that we're obliged to take daily for a lifetime if we're good Americans and obedient patients: substances which are somehow immune from the moral censure of the Drug Warrior. It's this make-believe distinction between evil drugs and blessed medicines that dupes today's Drug Warrior (and indeed the vast majority of the American population) into totally ignoring the great American addiction crisis of our time: the fact that 1 in 8 American men and 1 in 4 American women are addicted to Big Pharma antidepressants.


To do her credit, this is one Drug War injustice of which Julie Holland is clearly aware, as revealed by her discussion on this topic with Dr. Richard Louis Miller in the book "Psychedelic Medicine." That's why I purchased "Good Chemistry" in the first place, because the former book had revealed Julie Holland to be one of the rare psychiatrists who had both acknowledged and denounced the addictive status quo of her profession. I'm still hoping that the author's new book will provide useful insights on how the psychiatric pill-mill can be shut down and replaced with psychedelic therapy, even though her opening pages, in my opinion, doffed one too many hats in the direction of Drug Warrior sensibilities and presumptions. Still, as Julie herself acknowledges, psychedelic therapy seems to be on the way in America now, even sooner than later, which is not only fantastic, but amazing considering the extent to which the Drug Warrior virus has spread across America, causing muddled thinking everywhere it goes.




Let us know what you think. Send your comments to me, Brian Quass, at quass@quass.com. Thanks! Please be sure to mention the title of the essay to which you are responding.




Drug War Author Blog

5-21-22





I hate to flatter myself, but sometimes I think I am one of only a handful of people who recognize the full scope of Drug War evil. (Actually, there are probably a lot more than that, but most of them apparently know better than to speak up about their misgivings -- hence the culture of silence one encounters when attempting to get modern philosophers to even discuss the topic: see Speaking Truth to Academia"). Who, for instance, talks about the censorship that drug war ideology causes in "free America"? And yet this censorship is all around us in any bookstore. Francis Fukuyama has written a wonderful new book about the current trend toward illiberal thinking (Liberalism and its Discontents), and yet in the opening chapters, he mentions "the right to drugs" with implied derision, failing to recognize that the word "drugs" is a modern term created by drug warriors to denigrate certainly politically demonized substances -- a pejorative description that drug warriors hypocritically adopted for psychoactive plant medicine after passing a constitutional amendment to let their beloved alcohol completely off the hook for the 95,000 deaths that it causes in America every single year.

But Francis is hardly alone when it comes to authors who are "reckoning without their host" on this topic. Almost every author and academic who writes today on modern cultural and legal issues seems to consider that the drug-war provides a natural baseline for analysis, as if it's normal to criminalize godsend plant medicine and as if that criminalization in no way affects their analyses of the topics that they cover.

1) Take the late Father Joseph Koterski. He produced an otherwise wonderful 24-lecture series for Great Courses entitled Natural Law and Human Nature in which he never once mentioned the DRUG WAR! Not once. And yet we live in a country in which there was a coup against natural law in 1987 when Reagan's DEA stomped onto Monticello and confiscated Thomas Jefferson's poppy plants in violation of the natural law upon which Jefferson founded America. For those who don't see the connection here, it was John Locke himself (TJ's "go-to man" on natural law) who wrote that human beings have a natural right to the land "and all that lies therein." To put it another way, human beings have a natural right to access the plants and fungi that grow all around them. And yet the good father has nothing to say on this score.

2) In his unfortunately very popular book on addiction, In the Realm of the Hungry Ghosts, Gabriel Maté writes extensively about "drug problems" like addiction, but he claims that they are almost always the cause of "inner pain." What? Was Benjamin Franklin suffering inner pain because he was an habitue of opium? Were HG Wells and Jules Verne suffering "inner pain" because they took regular hits of coca wine to help them focus and write great stories? Sure, there's plenty of inner pain to go around in the world, but we should not blame that pain for all the trouble that the drug war has caused by outlawing all the godsend medicine that folks relied on in the past to carry on despite said inner pain.

3) In Blue Dreams by Lauren Slater, the author seems to be making one long implicit argument against the drug war -- and yet she does not seem to realize that the drug war created the psychiatric pill mill upon which, according to her own testimony, she appears to be hooked. Instead of recognizing the fact that the drug war has limited her to a ridiculously small and addictive pharmacopoeia for mood treatment, she embraces modern SSRIs as a worthy part of her own mood therapy program, even though she readily admits that it has led to unwanted weight gain and a variety of other personal side effects (including, I might add, the demoralizing fact that the expensive dependence-causing pills has turned her into a "patient for life"). If only drug warriors would cut psychoactive plant medicine the same kind of slack that Slater cuts for Big Pharma meds. Instead, Slater embraces the assumption of many researchers today (a view held by the Heffter Research Institute and MAPS: the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies) that Big Pharma anti-depressants are just fine, thank you very much. It's just that some users don't respond to them. In other words, folks like Laura essentially blame the failure of antidepressants not on the drugs, but on the users, in the same way that the dairy industry taught us to blame intolerant milk drinkers for their own gastroenteritis, rather than the milk itself.

If Slater really understood drug war injustice, she would be pushing back with all her might against the psychiatric pill mill. Instead, her book reads like a peon to Big Pharma, essentially saying, "You're doing great, but maybe we can eke out your assistance by tweaking the drug war here and there." Like most authors today, she fails to realize that the drug war is wrong root and branch, that it represents a wrong way of looking at the world.

4) Sometimes authors do not simply ignore the drug war, but they implicitly support it. John Halpern's support for the drug war policy of substance demonization is clear in the title of his 2019 book: Opium: How an Ancient Flower Shaped and Poisoned our World. Here Halpern blames a flower for the evil that was actually caused by immoral British agents who sought to create addictions in China in order to earn money. Flowers do not poison the world, John. People do. But by demonizing the flower instead of the evil men who used it, Halpern gives a free pass to greed and ignorance. Had greed not been at play in 19th century and if honest and non-hypocritical substance education had been universal, there would have been no problems with opium use -- except in the minds of sinophobes and WASP prudes, who prefer alcoholic stupor to dream-rich opiate imagery.

5) Then there are authors who support the drug war perhaps unintentionally by coming up with good reasons why drug warriors do bad things. Thus in Good Chemistry by Julie Holland, the author tells us that Richard Nixon outlawed psychedelics because he was worried about the nation's health. In How to Change Your Mind, Michael Pollan comes up with his own justification for Nixon's actions, the slightly more plausible notion that Nixon wanted to make sure that young people were physically ready to join the fight in Vietnam.

With all due respect to Julie Holland, if Nixon were truly worried about health, he would have cracked down on cigarette smoking and drinking which kills half a million Americans a year -- as compared to the nearly zero deaths via psychedelics. Moreover he would have sought to educate users, not charge them with felonies that would ruin their lives. It's not impossible that Nixon, like a 20th-century Chicken Little, had been fretting that psychedelics would render young people unfit for military service (although Nixon was trying to end the Vietnam War at the time), but even if true, his fears were informed by total ignorance of the substances involved, which he sought, like all drug warriors, to demonize a priori rather than to understand.

For as I learned at the dinner table as a teenager who naively broached the subject of marijuana facts, Americans (and my parents) prefer to fear "drugs" rather than to discuss and evaluate them honestly. That message was eloquently communicated to me by the pin-drop silence that followed my well-intentioned faux pas.


Newest Essay: Elderly Victims of Drug War Ideology




Next essay: What Liberals ALWAYS get wrong about the drug war
Previous essay: There are no such things as drugs



AbolishTheDea.com: Page one Essay List


Welcome to The Drug War Philosopher: Philosophical essays against America's bloody war on plant medicine, aka the drug war, which is anti-patient, anti-minority, anti-science, anti-mother nature, imperialistic, the establishment of the Christian Science religion, a violation of the natural law upon which America was founded, and a childish and counterproductive way of looking at the world, one which causes all of the problems that it purports to solve, and then some. Calling for fear not fact, education not demonization.

Deviant Art You Tube









old time radio playing Drug War comedy sketches


Stop Audio


Top 10
1: How Ecstasy could end mass shootings
2: The Drug War as a Litmus Test for Philosophical Wisdom
3: Addicted to Addiction
4: Why the Holocaust Museum must denounce the Drug War
5: Open Letter to Francis Fukuyama
6: Ten Reasons why the Drug War is Nonsense
7: Forbes Magazine's Laughable Article about Nitrous Oxide
8: How the Monticello Foundation betrayed Jefferson's Legacy in 1987
9: Time to ACT UP about the racist drug war
10: John Locke on Drugs
Click here for more essays against America's disgraceful drug war, which is anti-patient, anti-minority, anti-nature, imperialistic, a violation of the Natural Law upon which Jefferson founded America, and the establishment of drug-hating Christian Science as a state religion.





2021 Deaths Caused by the Drug War*

  1. Chicago:797
  2. New York City: 485
  3. Los Angeles: 397
  4. Memphis: 346
  5. New Orleans: 218




*"Without the War on Drugs, the level of gun violence that plagues so many poor inner-city neighborhoods today simply would not exist." -- Heather Ann Thompson, The Atlantic, 2014.



The news media just doesn't get it -- or doesn't want to get it. Most stories about the deaths of blacks in inner cities never mention the drug war, as if the fact that prohibition led to armed gangs had nothing to do with the skyrocketing gun deaths that they're reporting on today. For a case in point, check out the article by Micaela A Watts in CommercialAppeal with the headline: "Following 346 homicides in Memphis in 2021, officials consider what's driving the violence."

Yes, that's a real poser, Micaela. The city fathers must really be scratching their heads!

The author notes three major theories for the violence, all of which have nothing to do with the drug war: "Lack of conflict resolution skills," a lack of "fair wages," and (get this) poor mental health.

Looks like the city officials failed to ask themselves why city residents were armed to the teeth in the first place. Hello? That was due to the drugs warriors' substance prohibition which incentivized the poor and poorly educated young people to get into the fantastically profitable business of selling drugs!!!

Yes, drug warrior, YOU are responsible for these deaths. You! It's a natural result of your ban on medical godsends, some of which have inspired entire religions and have the potential for treating (if not curing) such diverse conditions as Alzheimer's, autism, and depression.





When They Ask You For a Piss

A Drug War Poem





When they ask you for some pee
Tell them no 'cause you are free
Free to use what nature grows
Both shrooms and plants

Should they ask you for a piss
Tell them no and let them kiss
Kiss your ass because they're full
Of grade-A shit

Being born on plant earth
Shrooms and plants are yours by birth
Show them what your freedom's worth
Refuse to pee




Boom-Chickadee

The Drug War Poem




Boom-chickadee-boom-chickadee
Chick-chick churri
Your drug war is crazy, as crazy can be
It banishes godsends that grow at our feet
Till bad vibes and loneliness slowly accrete
Till bad vibes and loneliness slowly accrete

Boom-chickadee-boom-chickadee
Chick-chick churrod
The coca plant, as per the Incas, is God
It sharpens your prose till your fame is widespread
As Jules Verne would tell you if he were not dead
As Jules Verne would tell you if he were not dead

Boom-chickadee-boom-chickadee
Chick-chick-ka-ripe
I'd like to smoke opium straight from a pipe
To travel to lands seen by Lovecraft and Poe
Though racist drug warriors always say no
Though racist drug warriors always say no

Boom-chickadee-boom-chickadee
Chick-chick-ker-breech
The mushrooms around us have something to teach
They grow in my garden, I'm fain to partake
Though Chimney-Pot Bennet says Put on the Brake
Though Chimney-Pot Bennet says Put on the Brake

Boom-chickadee-boom-chickadee
Chick-chick-hurray
My anger subsides with some MDMA
If only Vlad Putin would follow my lead
There'd be much less bloodshed and cynical greed
There'd be much less bloodshed and cynical greed

Boom-chickadee-boom-chickadee
Chick-chick-ker-ray
I'll use what I want so get out of my way
I'd rather do opium coca and such
Than Big Pharma pills that addict me too much
Than Big Pharma pills that addict me too much

Boom-chickadee-boom-chickadee
Chick-chick-ka-runk
Forgive me for saying your drug war is junk
It's dumbness incarnate to demonize plants
I turn a deaf ear to your 'just say no' chants
I turn a deaf ear to your 'just say no' chants






Check out the latest Drug War News!
Today's story:
It's the Prohbition, Stupid!

Lights, Camera, Drug War

Quotes From TV and movies



Panther

1995
"Against hard drugs in the community."

"Hard" drugs? As defined by whom? The DEA? That agency which ranks psychoactive substances by the degree to which they threaten the WASP establishment?
More TV and movie Quotes at Lights, Camera, Drug War.

DRUG WAR BLOG

by The Drug War Philosopher



6-23-22
Turnip blood as a drug on the market!



If you think it's hard to get blood from a turnip, try finding a positive reference to demonized "drugs" in American TV shows and movies. Search the Script.com database for the word "drugs" and you'll get over 4,000 hits, with nary a one testifying to the life-affirming power of godsend plant medicine. Drugs like coca and psychedelics have inspired entire religions, but you'll see the word "drugs" used only in connection with lowlifes and scumbags, extortionists and murderers. In short, American script writers have been bribed by the DARE organization and the local State Police with far too many "just say no" teddy bears to think rationally on this topic.

That's why I hope that "decriminalization" states like Oregon will gradually teach these brainwashed screenwriters that the sky, at least, will not come crashing down the moment that Mother Nature's bounty is legal again, just as it was before Chinese-hating racists outlawed the poppy plant in 1914, thereby elevating common law above the natural law upon which America had been founded. My concern is that without full legalization, however, the otherwise responsible "users" in those states will be forced to choose their psychoactive medicines from the limited and often tainted formulary provided by criminal gangs, gangs whose incentive lies in money-making, not in assuring safe product. Because you know that if problems arise for this reason, the drug warriors will instantly blame them on decriminalization rather than on the way that the drug warrior limits choice and empowers economically minded cartels.



MORE Anti-Drug War Blog

Thoughts? Contact Brian Quass at quass@quass.com.

DRUG WAR BIBLIOGRAPHY

Andrew, Christopher. The Secret World: A History of Intelligence. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2019.
All warfare is based on deception, said Sun Tzu. Yes, but what is all deception based on? A mistrust of one's fellows. And how do you combat that, Chris? With empathogens like MDMA and psilocybin.
Aurelius, Marcus. Meditations. London: East India Publishing Company, 2021.
Pious drug warriors have usually thought of Marcus Aurelius as the perfect replacement for bad evil drugs -- but Marcus had his cake and ate it too. He philosophized under the influence of opium (but don't tell the kids!)
Carroll, Lewis. Alice in Wonderland: The Original 1865 Edition With Complete Illustrations By Sir John Tenniel. New York: Amazon, 2021.
Alice's shroom-powered adventures are a standing reproach to glum-faced drug warriors, who closely resemble the Queen of Hearts, shouting: "Off with their heads, for using godsend medicines of which I disapprove!"
De Quincey, Thomas. Confessions of an English Opium Eater. New York: Dover, 1995.
During De Quincey's informed opium use, he "partook" only weekly in order to better enjoy the opera, making his weekday life happier as well, however, thanks to anticipation of use, a benefit of which materialist science takes no account.
Ellsberg, Daniel. The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner . New York: Bloomsbury Publishing, 2018.
A stark reminder that the world is living under a nuclear sword of Damocles. And why? Because it demonizes all the godsend medicines (like MDMA and shrooms) that could bring humanity together in universal harmony.
Fadiman, James. The Psychedelic Explorer's Guide: Safe, Therapeutic, and Sacred Journeys . New York: Park Street Press, 2011.
First-hand accounts of psychological breakthroughs achieved with the guided use of entheogens, suggesting that one-time givens like "character" and "human nature" are far more susceptible to improvement than we thought.
Fleming, Thomas. A Disease in the Public Mind: Why We Fought the Civil War. New York: Da Capo Press, 2014.
The late historian Fleming cites the popular mob-led public "diseases" of Witch-Hunting, Liquor Prohibition, and Communism -- yet says nothing about the Drug War, which was the great disease in the public mind of his own time!!!
Fukuyama, Francis. Liberalism and Its Discontents. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2022.
Great bipartisan insights, BUT... Francis reckons without the drug war, so, like a good drug warrior, he blames all the ills caused by prohibition on the politically created boogieman called "drugs."
Gottleib, Anthony. The Dream of Enlightenment: the Rise of Modern Philosophy. New York: Liveright Publishing Corporation, 2016.
The author seems unaware of the increasingly clear ability of empathogens like MDMA and shrooms to improve the very human nature which grumps like Hobbes portray as being so irrevocably fixed.
Holland, Julie. Good Chemistry: The Science of Connection, from Soul to Psychedelics. New York: HarperWave, 2020.
Julie claims that Nixon criminalized psychedelics for health reasons. What? That's not the Nixon I know. He said himself that Leary was enemy #1. He was removing "users" from the voting rolls, not protecting them.
Huxley, Aldous. The Doors of Perception / Heaven and Hell. New York: Penguin Books, 1970.
Huxley's speculations about perception jibe with modern science, which finds that human beings see what is presumably useful to them, not necessarily what is "really there" in the sensory-rich physical world.
Leary, Timothy. The Psychedelic Experience: A Manual Based on the Tibetan Book of the Dead . New York: University Books, 1964.
Americans have been primed by the drug-war zeitgeist to consider everything Leary writes as nonsense. But he was the first one to announce loudly and clearly that what's really nonsensical is to outlaw plant medicine.
Lovecraft, HP. The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath. New York: Del Rey Books, 1970.
Lovecraft's work is full of opiate imagery that drug warriors want to render impossible for artists to feel: "I would often drift in opiate peace through the valley and the shadowy groves..." (Ex-Oblivione)
Mate, Gabriel. In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction. Toronto: Vintage Canada, 2009.
Gabriel moralizes "addiction." Addiction, however, is a political term. One can use psychoactive Big Pharma meds every day and be a good patient -- use heroin every day, however, and you're just escaping "inner pain." What?
Maupassant, Guy de. Le Horla et autres contes fantastiques - Guy de Maupassant: Les classiques du fantastique . Paris: , 2019.
In "La Horla," Maupassant anticipates Huxley by speculating that our perceptual habits blind us to a world of wonders. Many of today's demonized drugs, it appears, can at least partially open our eyes to that world.
McKenna, Terence. Food of the Gods: The Search for the Original Tree of Knowledge A Radical History of Plants, Drugs, and Human Evolution . New York: Bantam, 1992.
This was the book that reminded me of what I already vaguely knew: that it is tyrannical insanity for a government to outlaw plants. McKenna's philosophical speculations on why we criminalize inspired me to create abolishthedea.com.
Miller, Richard Louis. Psychedelic Medicine: The Healing Powers of LSD, MDMA, Psilocybin, and Ayahuasca Kindle . New York: Park Street Press, 2017.
Informative interviews with movers-and-shakers in the field, including Rick Doblin, Stanislav Grof, James Fadiman, David Nichols and Robert Whitaker. Packed with eye-opening one-liners about godsend meds.
Noe, Alvin. Out of our Heads. New York: HiII&Wang,, 2010.
Noe reveals how patients with "locked-in" syndrome have reported being supremely aware of their surroundings during their supposedly brain-dead coma, a fact that puts in question our materialist assumptions about consciousness.
Poe, Edgar Allan. The Essential Poe. New York: Warbler Classics, 2020.
Because drug warriors never mention the good side of "drugs," we must turn to Poe to learn, for instance, that morphine can bring a surreal appreciation of Mother Nature (see "A Tale of the Ragged Mountains").
Pollan, Michael. How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence . New York: Penguin Books, 2018.
Pollan has yet to realize that the very term "drugs" is just a modern pejorative epithet for "plant medicine of which botanically clueless politicians disapprove. "
Reynolds, David S.. Beneath the American Renaissance: The Subversive Imagination in the Age of Emerson and Melville . New York: Oxford University Press, 1988.
Exhaustively researched account of the 19th-century zeitgeist, and yet the word "drugs" (as defined, or rather derided, by today's drug warrior) is never even used. Last century's boogieman was liquor, it seems, not "drugs."
Richards, William. Sacred Knowledge: Psychedelics and Religious Experiences Hardcover. New York: Columbia University Press, 2015.
The psychedelic experience was once characterized as pharmacologically induced madness. Richards shows how the properly guided experience can lead to sanity instead -- and a way of life that is not self-destructive.
Rosenfeld, Harvey. Diary of a Dirty Little War: The Spanish-American War of 1898 . Connecticut: Praeger, 2000.
The war took place 16 years before anti-Chinese Drug Warriors criminalized the poppy plant, and yet opium is only mentioned with regard to a group of unimaginative volunteers who smoked some and "couldn't see the point."
Russell, Kirk. Edmund Burke: A Genius Reconsidered. New York: Arlington House, 1967.
Burke was a conservative in a sense, but he would not recognize America's Republican party of today. He would surely have seen that prohibition causes all the problems we ascribe to "drugs," and then some.
Schlosser, Erich. Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety. New York: Penguin, 2014.
In 1980, the Air Force nearly blew up Arkansas and irradiated half the country. When Reagan took office the next year, what was his priority? Outlawing plant medicine that could make our species less warlike.
Sewell, Kenneth. Red Star Rogue: The Untold Story of a Soviet Submarine's Nuclear Strike Attempt on the U.S. . New York: Pocket Star, 2006.
On March 7, 1968, a rogue Soviet submarine nearly blew up Pearl Harbor with a thermonuclear bomb. Instead of launching a war on nukes, then-President Nixon launched a war on medicines that could inspire peace, love and understanding.
Shirer, William. The Rise and Fall of Adolf Hitler. New York: RosettaBooks, 2011.
Paraphrase from book: "No one who has not lived for years in a DRUG WAR SOCIETY can possibly conceive how difficult it is to escape the dread consequences of a regime's calculated and incessant propaganda."
Slater, Lauren. Blue Dreams: The Science and the Story of the Drugs that Changed Our Minds. Back Bay Books: Boston, 2019.
Despite griping about the weight she's put on from taking her daily 'meds,' Slater gives Big Pharma a big fat mulligan for consigning 1 in 4 American women like herself to a lifetime of chemical dependency on SSRI antidepressants.
Straussman, Rick. DMT: The Spirit Molecule: A Doctor's Revolutionary Research into the Biology of Near-Death and Mystical Experiences . New York: Park Street Press, 2001.
Rick doubts DMT's therapeutic usefulness, but common sense psychology suggests that any break from full-on introspection would be a treat, notwithstanding materialists who aren't even sure that laughing gas could help the depressed!!!
Szasz, Thomas. Ceremonial Chemistry: the ritual persecution of drugs, addicts, and pushers. New York: Anchor Press/Doubleday, 1974.
Filled with inconvenient truths that critics ignore rather than refute, including how politicized science tells us a la God: "Eat of the fruit and you shall die," ignoring the fact that education tells us how to eat of that fruit safely.
Szasz, Thomas. Our Right to Drugs: The case for a free market. New York: Praeger, 1992.
Chock-a-block with all-too-rare common sense: "Doctors, lawyers and politicians started the War on Drugs and continue to wage it, and they are its real beneficiaries -- the drug war's ostensible beneficiaries... are its victims."
Tyler, George R.. Billionaire Democracy: The Hijacking of the American Political System. Michigan: Pegasus Books, 2016.
Doesn't mention drugs, but illustrates how drug reform can be stymied by just 3% of the public: namely, those holding stock in Big Pharma, etc., especially when these elites can bribe politicians to retain the status quo.
Whitaker, Robert. Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America . New York: Crown, 2010.
Prohibition has facilitated the creation of a psychiatric pill mill upon which 1 in 4 American women are dependent for life. Moreover, these pills cause the chemical imbalances that they purport to fix.
Zuboff , Shoshana. The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power. New York: Public Affairs, 2019.
Surveillance capitalists and drug warriors share the same goal: to keep human beings predictable: one by rendering us more robot-like and the other by denying us the mind-improving blessings of psychoactive medicine


Welcome to THE DRUG WAR PHILOSOPHER: essays against America's bloody war on plant medicine, aka the drug war, which is anti-patient, anti-minority, anti-science, anti-mother nature, imperialistic, the establishment of the Christian Science religion, a violation of the natural law upon which America was founded, and a childish and counterproductive way of looking at the world, one which causes all of the problems that it purports to solve, and then some. Calling for fact not fear, education not demonization.

What You Can Do: Bloody disgusting fact: The Drug War brought almost 800 deaths to Chicago in 2021 by incentivizing the hugely profitable sale of psychoactive medicine in poor communities. And now Trump and his fellow fascist drug warriors want to use that violence as an excuse to KILL drug dealers via execution! Any community leaders supporting the drug war are complicit in this genocide. For as Heather Ann Thompson wrote in The Atlantic in 2014: "Without the War on Drugs, the level of gun violence that plagues so many poor inner-city neighborhoods today simply would not exist."


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