Essay date: May 24, 2023

Another Cry in the Wilderness

open letter to US Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine

May 24, 2023

The following screed was rapped out in double-time by a dude who by rights should be working on his freelance assignment right now (the nature of which work, however, shall remain a secret here in deference to the time sensitivities of the no-doubt harried reader). Brian couldn't stop himself, so pissed was he with the ongoing attempt by the US government to blame every imaginable earthly ill on the politically created boogieman called "drugs." These comments, by the way, were sent directly to the esteemed representatives via their websites, despite the nagging suspicion by the author that the duo in question have been hopelessly brainwashed by the Christian Science ideology of the war on Americans, AKA the War on Drugs.

By the way, the efficient causes of this harangue (if one might wax philosophical for just a moment) were the superstitious tweets of one Alex Berenson which Brian, alas, read this morning, in which the prohibitionist author tweaked reformers for the problems that he blamed on marijuana legalization. As usual, all the problems that he cited (to the extent that they were not just the figments of a nature-fearing imagination) were actually the result of the ongoing prohibition of all of marijuana's competitors. With this niggling impetus then -- and with the anxious knowledge of tomorrow's US Senate vote on the troglodytic HALT Act -- Brian could do nought else but expostulate, even if it meant that the poor guy would be up past midnight tonight catching up on that undefined freelancing work of his that I alluded to above.

Dear Senators

Prohibition has been the biggest mistake in American history. It is wrong root and branch. Our attitude towards "drugs" is prehistoric and anti-scientific. We come at the issue from the wrong direction. We should be awestruck at Nature's healing power (which God said was good) and be seeking all sorts of ways to use it safely and wisely. Instead, we believe that all psychoactive substances are bad -- without even asking for proof.

It is a self-fulfilling prophecy, which leads to folks seeking transcendence from a corrupted drug supply furnished by dealers interested in the bottom line.

Please end this folly. We need an amendment that prohibits prohibition -- which causes death and sorrow and denies godsend medicines to the distressed. Even now, in America's hysterical attempt to blame opioids for every evil under the sun, we are denying godsend pain medicine to kids in hospice --based on our superstitious belief in the evil of opiates. Opium was considered a godsend by Avicenna, Galen and Paracelsus. It is not evil. Bad social policies are evil.

FREE SCIENCE. Stop the NIDA campaign to make us think that drugs can only be used for evil. It is propaganda, not science, because they completely ignore the reason people use "drugs": in order to transcend self and improve their lives. That is the truth. NIDA is all about ignoring that fact.

The Drug War has led to the election of Drug Warriors like Trump by jailing hundreds of thousands of blacks. If unchecked, the Drug War will completely destroy America. It is not wrong in parts -- it is wrong ROOT AND BRANCH. It is a WRONG WAY OF LOOKING AT THE WORLD!!!!!!!!!!!!

No wonder it leads to chaos, inner-city deaths, and the end of the rule of law in Latin America!!!!

Please vote NO ON HALT!

May 24, 2023
"The biggest mistake in American history." Well, slavery was worse. (Remember, the old boy wrote this in a hurry.) That said, however, the Drug War can be seen as the extension of slavery by other means, as the book Whiteout makes abundantly clear.

Next essay: How the Jefferson Foundation Betrayed Thomas Jefferson
Previous essay: What Carl Hart Missed

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You have been reading essays by the Drug War Philosopher, Brian Quass, at Brian is the founder of The Drug War Gift Shop, where artists can feature and sell their protest artwork online. He has also written for Sociodelic and is the author of The Drug War Comic Book, which contains 150 political cartoons illustrating some of the seemingly endless problems with the war on drugs -- many of which only Brian seems to have noticed, by the way, judging by the recycled pieties that pass for analysis these days when it comes to "drugs." That's not surprising, considering the fact that the category of "drugs" is a political category, not a medical or scientific one.

A "drug," as the world defines the term today, is "a substance that has no good uses for anyone, ever, at any time, under any circumstances" -- and, of course, there are no substances of that kind: even cyanide and the deadly botox toxin have positive uses: a war on drugs is therefore unscientific at heart, to the point that it truly qualifies as a superstition, one in which we turn inanimate substances into boogie-men and scapegoats for all our social problems.

The Drug War is, in fact, the philosophical problem par excellence of our time, premised as it is on a raft of faulty assumptions (notwithstanding the fact that most philosophers today pretend as if the drug war does not exist). It is a war against the poor, against minorities, against religion, against science, against the elderly, against the depressed, against those in pain, against children in hospice care, and against philosophy itself. It outlaws substances that have inspired entire religions, Nazifies the English language and militarizes police forces nationwide.

It bans the substances that inspired William James' ideas about human consciousness and the nature of ultimate reality. In short, it causes all of the problems that it purports to solve, and then some, meanwhile violating the Natural Law upon which Thomas Jefferson founded America. (Surely, Jefferson was rolling over in his grave when Ronald Reagan's DEA stomped onto Monticello in 1987 and confiscated the founding father's poppy plants.)

If you believe in freedom and democracy, in America and around the world, please stay tuned for more philosophically oriented broadsides against the outrageous war on godsend medicines, AKA the war on drugs.

Brian Quass
The Drug War Philosopher

PS The drug war has not failed: to the contrary, it has succeeded, insofar as its ultimate goal was to militarize police forces around the world and help authorities to ruthlessly eliminate those who stand in the way of global capitalism. For more, see Drug War Capitalism by Dawn Paley. Oh, and did I mention that most Drug Warriors these days would never get elected were it not for the Drug War itself, which threw hundreds of thousands of their political opposition in jail? Trump was right for the wrong reasons: elections are being stolen in America, but the number-one example of that fact is his own narrow victory in 2016, which could never have happened without the existence of laws that were specifically written to keep Blacks and minorities from voting. The Drug War, in short, is a cancer on the body politic.

Rather than apologetically decriminalizing selected plants, we should be demanding the immediate restoration of Natural Law, according to which "The earth, and all that is therein, is given to men for the support and comfort of their being." (John Locke)

Selected Bibliography

  • Bandow, Doug "From Fighting The Drug War To Protecting The Right To Use Drugs"2018
  • Barrett, Damon "Children of the Drug War: Perspectives on the Impact of Drug Polices on Young People"2011 IDEBATE Press
  • Bilton, Anton "DMT Entity Encounters: Dialogues on the Spirit Molecule"2021 Inner Traditions/Bear & Company
  • Boullosa , Carmen "A Narco History: How the United States and Mexico Jointly Created the 'Mexican Drug War'"2016 OR Books
  • Brereton, William "The Truth about Opium / Being a Refutation of the Fallacies of the Anti-Opium Society and a Defence of the Indo-China Opium Trade"2017 Anna Ruggieri
  • Burns, Eric "1920: The year that made the decade roar"2015 Pegasus Books
  • Carpenter, Ted Galen "The Fire Next Door: Mexico's Drug Violence and the Danger to America"2012 Cato Institute
  • Chesterton, GK "Saint Thomas Acquinas"2014 BookBaby
  • Filan, Kenaz "The Power of the Poppy: Harnessing Nature's Most Dangerous Plant Ally"2011 Inner Traditions/Bear & Company
  • Griffiths, William "Psilocybin: A Trip into the World of Magic Mushrooms"2021 William Griffiths
  • Hofmann, Albert "The Encyclopedia of Psychoactive Plants: Ethnopharmacology and Its Applications"2005 Inner Traditions/Bear & Company
  • Irwin-Rogers, Keir "Illicit Drug Markets, Consumer Capitalism and the Rise of Social Media: A Toxic Trap for Young People"2019
  • James, William "The Varieties of Religious Experience"1902 Philosophical Library
  • Mariani, Angelo "Coca and its Therapeutic Application, Third Edition"1896
  • Mortimer MD, W. Golden "Coca: Divine Plant of the Incas"2017 Ronin Publishing
  • Partridge, Chiristopher "Alistair Crowley on Drugs"2021 uploaded by Misael Hernandez
  • Rudgley, Richard "The Encyclopedia of Psychoactive Substances"2014 Macmillan Publishers
  • Shulgin, Alexander "PIHKAL: A Chemical Love Story"1991 Transform Press
  • Shulgin, Alexander "The Nature of Drugs Vol. 1: History, Pharmacology, and Social Impact"2021 Transform Press
  • Smith, Wolfgang "Cosmos and Transcendence: Breaking Through the Barrier of Scientistic Belief"0
  • Smith, Wolfgang "Physics: A Science in Quest of an Ontology"2022
  • St John, Graham "Mystery School in Hyperspace: A Cultural History of DMT"2021
  • Szasz, Thomas "Interview With Thomas Szasz: by Randall C. Wyatt"0
  • Wedel, Janine "Unaccountable: How the Establishment Corrupted Our Finances, Freedom and Politics and Created an Outsider Class"2014 Pegasus Books
  • Weil, Andrew "From Chocolate to Morphine: Everything You Need to Know About Mind-Altering Drugs"2004 Open Road Integrated Media
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