The Drug War Philosopher essays against the bloody Drug War
Essay date: May 11, 2020

In the Realm of Hungry Drug Warriors

by the Drug War Philosopher
DRUG WAR BLOG

How the Drug War has blinded Gabor Maté to the great addiction crisis of our time





Gabor Mate is blind to the great addiction of our time thanks to drug war propaganda and Big Pharma PR which demonizes plants while touting antidepressant pills that addict 1 in 4 American women and are more addictive than heroin

I began reading Gabor Maté's popular book on addiction yesterday ("In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts") but gave it up in disappointment after the first 20 pages convinced me that the author was in the thrall of not only Drug War propaganda, but also of the propaganda of Big Pharma as well. My original interest in the book was prompted by the story of his use of ayahuasca to treat addicts and the predictable state suppression that it brought about as Canada attempts to keep in lockstep with America's anti-patient war on mother nature's plants, more commonly (and misleadingly) referred to as the Drug War. But if we want countries like Canada to change their policies on these topics, we have to see through the Drug Warrior lies and assumptions to what's really going on, and Maté seems to be just as blinded on this topic as virtually everyone else in mainstream Western society.

First of all, the very use of the term "addiction" invites us to moralize and pry into a user's past to investigate their inner demons. But this judgmental word, "addiction," only came into fashion with the Drug War itself, before which opium enthusiasts, for instance, were merely designated neutrally as "habitues" when they used the drug with a frequency that rendered withdrawal difficult. The judgemental term "addiction" is attractive to Westerners because it helps us Medicalize what we consider to be "the drug problem" - but Gabor's notion that virtually all addiction (i.e. habituation) can be traced to inner pain is just plain wrong. Was Benjamin Franklin dealing with inner pain when he liberally availed himself of opium? Was Sigmund Freud dealing with inner pain when he used massive amounts of cocaine? Was Richard Feynman dealing with inner pain when he casually popped pills that we would derisively refer to today as "speed"? Is a blues musician, for that matter, dealing with inner pain when he or she uses daily marijuana in order to "keep in the groove"?

Let's be honest: the real crime of folks like Franklin, Freud and Feynman is that they self-medicated. They had the gall to bypass the medical establishment which claims to have a monopoly on deciding when and how a human being should adjust their mood.

So this is the first mistake that Gabor makes: he is simply wrong that all (or even most) addiction can be explained by a person's inner pain.

But Gabor compounds this error by his apparent blindness to the great addiction crisis of our time. I say "apparent blindness" because the first 20 pages of his highly praised book on addiction says absolutely NOTHING about this massive addiction: namely, the fact that one in eight American males (and one in four American females) are addicted to Big Pharma medications, antidepressants and benzodiazepines (and I'm sure there are comparably egregious statistics among Maté's fellow Canadians). Is the take-home message from this stealth drug crisis merely that large segments of the American population are dealing with inner pain? No. The take-home message is that Big Pharma is cranking out highly addictive medications while simultaneously suborning the medical world into remaining silent about the overmedicated dystopia that it is thereby creating.


On the disingenuous distinction between addiction and chemical dependency.

The problem is that Maté, like most Western academics, seems to think that there's a meaningful difference between "addiction" and "chemical dependency." According to this line of reasoning, substances like heroin truly addict you and are therefore "drugs," while substances like antidepressants merely render you chemically dependent and are therefore "medications." But the supposed differences here are largely illusory, especially from a user point of view. To see why, let's examine Webster's definition of the term "addiction":

Addiction: The compulsive uncontrolled use of habit-forming drugs beyond the period of medical need or under conditions harmful to society.

One could argue that the antidepressant user is not compulsive and does not behave in an uncontrolled fashion. Yes, but why is that so? That is so because the supply of medication is always forthcoming. A patient in need of an SSRI is never told by the pharmacist that the supply will be delayed due to the recent arrest of a drug runner. Nor does a pharmacist ever "top off" the contents of an SSRI capsule with boric acid or baby powder as a cost-saving measure. And so we're unlikely to see ragged-out white collar workers, sweating and puking on the streets because they're going cold turkey on an anti-depressant or have consumed tainted product. The safe and pristine supply of their go-to drug is guaranteed and, as they're admonished by their own doctor to take the drug for life, withdrawal symptoms never have a chance to occur, least of all in public venues where we can see the cramping and vomiting and think to ourselves, as we do of the strung-out heroin addict: "Tsk-tsk, that poor SSRI addict!"

And so SSRIs do not meet the criterion of "addiction" according to which they must be used "beyond the period of medical need," but this is only because the doctors who prescribe them claim that the period of medical need never ends, which is a very convenient claim indeed, considering that these drugs, which were originally meant for short-term use only, have since proven to be highly habit-forming.

And so, nit-picking aside, the daily use of antidepressants seems to qualify as an addiction according to Webster's Dictionary - until, that is, we read the final subjective criterion of the definition, namely that addiction occurs "under conditions harmful to society."

Here we come to the truth about addiction: it's a pejorative and subjective term, used only in connection with substances that we as a drug-warrior society have decided to denigrate and demonize as harmful. There is therefore a kind of political agenda behind the use of the term "addiction," that is, to implicitly demonize certain plant medicines (namely the illegal ones) while implicitly canonizing others (legally synthesized antidepressants and benzodiazepines). A society that is free of drug-war presuppositions, however, would simply class all psychoactive substances as psychoactive substances and treat them all equally according to the objective and statistical threats that they pose to an unwary user. Instead, we give Big Pharma a free pass to wreak damage with its "medicines," while we wave a disapprobatory finger in the face of those who use "drugs" like heroin. Meanwhile, we fail to register the fact that many of the latter "drug" users could live just as happily in society as their antidepressant-using neighbors, were their drug supply rendered as safe and reliable as that of their law-abiding fellows.

Of course, many people are fed up with being dependent on a given psychoactive substance, precisely because of the dependency itself. But here we encounter another drug-war bias in the way that we think about such topics. Drug Warriors will loudly decry the mere potential of addiction that certain illegal substances might seem to pose, but, like Maté himself in the opening of his book on this subject, they say absolutely nothing about the great dependency of our time: the fact that 1 in 8 American males and 1 in 4 American females are addicted to legal antidepressants, with similar numbers around the globe, at least in Western countries.

For my part, I've always thought that the worst part about an addiction was that it forced me to rely on other people. Yet I find that almost no one -- neither Drug Warriors nor psychiatrists - has a problem with the fact that my addiction to Effexor has made me reliant on prescribing psychiatrists and has thus turned me into an eternal patient and a ward of the state. Talk about disempowering. I have to travel 40 miles every three months to meet with a psychiatrist in a mental health clinic for a half-hour in order to tell him how I feel. God, I've been a patient for 40 years, what business is it of his???

This is why I make the following otherwise unheard-of claim: that not only can a so-called "drug user" be said to be "self-medicating," but he or she is often right to do so. Consider the options, after all, for someone who desires psychological healing. They can...

One: take the legal route, and become addicted for life to a drug that conduces to anhedonia, for which they will have to make regular pilgrimages to a mental health clinic, in order to receive a three-month drug supply for which they will have to pay dearly, all the time being reminded by this time-consuming rigamarole that they are an eternal patient and a ward of the state...

Or they can...

Two: Buy a psychoactive plant medicine on the black market and, if they've done their research and been lucky, get their head screwed back on straight inexpensively and without having been turned into an eternal patient by doing so.

Ironically, under the Drug War's starkly limited psychoactive pharmacopoeia of addictive pills, it almost seems like going the legal route would itself be a sign of mental illness, or at least of pathologically poor judgment.

My goal here is not to slam talk therapy per se, nor to deny that Gabor makes great progress with his patients. But the fact that he's been stymied in that goal by the Drug War itself means that it's imperative for him and other professionals like him to start seeing through the mist of Drug Warrior lies (the hypocrisy, the newspeak, and the hidden premises) and see clearly what is going on in the world with respect to psychoactive substances, their regulation, and the dilemmas that these legal circumstances pose for well-intentioned people who just want peace of mind without being treated like criminals by law enforcement (or being derisively dismissed as self-medicators by psychiatrists). Only by divining and then shunning the many false Drug War assumptions can we disenchant the world from the spell of that anti-patient and violence-causing crusade.

Meanwhile, we should stop imputing pathology to drug users merely because they have chosen to buy plant medicines that have been unjustly proscribed by politicians, and in violation of natural law at that, especially when the drug user's alternative was to turn his or herself into an eternal patient, forced to visit a therapist every three months of their life and, like the Ancient Mariner, recite the same old personal narrative on every demoralizing visit.

AUTHOR'S NOTE: Of course, Gabor has grabbed onto part of the truth. The Drug War does stop us from dealing with the underlying conditions that often lead to dysfunctional behavior. This makes it a godsend for conservatives, because if we weren't seeing everything through the lens of the Drug War, we'd have to deal with the great inequities of modern social life in terms of education and opportunities. And the Drug War has worked incredibly well for conservatives in this regard. It's no coincidence that the death of '60s idealism coincided with the creation of the DEA and the ascendancy of Drug War conservatives like Ronald Reagan, folks who wanted guns and business to be as unregulated as possible while they yet prosecuted an unprecedented crack down on mere possession of psychoactive plants. They wanted capitalism that was unfettered by the idealistic visions that tended to arise from expanded consciousness. So they simply made expanded consciousness a felony, to ensure their political hegemony by force of law.

Nor do I scorn Gabor's psychotherapeutic approach, an approach which I trust will be infinitely more fruitful in the future when it is aided by some of the psychoactive plant medicines that modern psychiatrists have dutifully ignored to date in deference to the Christian Science imperative of the Drug War.

Gabor's mistake, I believe, is to automatically associate illicit drug use with pathology -- when, as I've attempted to show above, there are many rational reasons why a thoughtful human being in search of mood medicine would seek a black-market alternative to the psychiatric status quo, a status quo that would otherwise turn him or her into an eternal patient and thus a ward of the health care state, destined to spend a life-time being emotionally catechized by strangers in order to receive yet another "fix" from Big Pharma's expensive, limited, and highly addictive pharmacopoeia. Indeed, if Gabor is in search of pathology, he may well find more of it in Americans who placidly submit themselves to such a life-sapping and disempowering status quo, since the ready acceptance of such a scheme, as legal as it might be, would seem to signal a poor self-image and masochism -- or at very least an inability to clearly see how the Drug War is depriving him or her of chemical godsends that might otherwise have afforded emotional salvation.

The Links Police



Do you know why I stopped you? That's right, I profiled you as a probable druggie. Pardon me while I search for some plausible reason to rifle through your car. Sadly, your tail lights all seem to be in order... While I'm nosing about like a noxious busybody, do me a solid and check out these additional essays on the topic of addiction...'

Addicted to Addiction
Addicted to Ignorance
America's Invisible Addiction Crisis
The Myth of the Addictive Personality
Why Louis Theroux is Clueless about Addiction and Alcoholism







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.




Newest Essay: Suicide and the Drug War




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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 facts not fear, education not demonization.

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Tell advertisers to stop putting ads on Fox News. Sign the petition at Change.org.

The Drug War is a bipartisan effort, hence its staying power, but if the Republicans have their way, we will have an insurrection to install a president who wants to carry out "the final solution" for the drug war, by executing those who dare to traffic in botanical godsends of which racist politicians disapprove. Yes, Joe Biden himself is part of the problem with his belief in prioritizing fear over facts and incarceration over education. Moreover, he just doesn't "get" the simple fact that prohibition causes violence, it's as simple as that. But the openly traitorous republicans, with the help of Fox News, want to take the drug war to "a whole new level" -- while turning America into a Banana Republic, by getting rid of free elections and installing demagogues by force. Surely the least we can ask of American corporations is that they do not attempt to profit from the peddling of the lies that support this ongoing effort at insurrection. Sign the petition today to tell American businesses that they will be held responsible for supporting networks that openly support insurrection.








old time radio playing Drug War comedy sketches


Top 10
1: How Ecstasy could end mass shootings
2: The Drug War as a Litmus Test for Philosophical Wisdom
3: How the Drug War killed Leah Betts
4: Addicted to Addiction
5: How the Monticello Foundation betrayed Jefferson's Legacy in 1987
6: Open Letter to Francis Fukuyama
7: The Drug War Board Game
8: Common Nonsense from Common Sense Media
9: Ten Reasons why the Drug War is Nonsense
10: Time to ACT UP about the racist drug war
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. Philadelphia: 501
  3. New York City: 485
  4. Los Angeles: 397
  5. Memphis: 346
  6. Indianapolis: 247
  7. Kansas City (MO): 244
  8. New Orleans: 218
  9. Columbus: 179
  10. Louisville: 175
  11. Baton Rouge: 137



*"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 above numbers may represent undercounts since some of these totals were compiled in late 2021.


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!!!

Substance prohibition created drug gangs and cartels just as surely as liquor prohibition created the Mafia.

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.

Drug War Victim of the Day

Name: Unknown

Age: 40

killed in Prince Georges County, Maryland on August 15, 2022

Southeast Washington DC remains a no-go zone, even for UPS drivers, as this latest shooting incident points out, which is 1 in 6 shootings that have taken place in the last week, two of them fatal. If this were happening in Hollywood, California, it would be a scandal. But movie stars are people, and victims of the drug war, especially when poor and black, are what Noam Chomsky calls 'unpeople.'

Source: WTOP news
More Drug War Deaths




Drug War Poetry

The Drug War Philosopher

Drug War, Black Death

07/05/22





Is this the little boy I carried
Here with a bullet in his head?
Is this his sister right beside him,
Dead?

When did the city get so violent?
When did it turn a bloody mess?
Wasn't this caused by prohibition?
Answer: yes.

Drug War, Black death
Drug War, Black death
Each day grows the link
Street gangs created out of whole cloth
Bringing us death from Murder Inc.

Drug War, Black death
Drug War, Black death
Racists win the day
Packing minorities in hearses
Carting our hopes and dreams away

Is this my homie with a chest wound
Blood pooling slowly on his lap?
Never again will I believe in
Drug War crap

Drug War, Black death
Drug War, Black death
Each day grows the link
Street gangs created out of whole cloth
Bringing us death from Murder Inc.

Drug War, Black death
Drug War, Black death
When will we think twice?
Drug Law incentivizes dealing
Leading to homicide and vice.
More Drug War Poetry






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


Drug War Comics




Lights, Camera, Drug War

Quotes From TV and movies



Jungle Fever

1991
"If you ever use drugs, I'll kill you."

Yes, even the director of "Bamboozled" is bamboozled about drugs. He agrees with the drug warrior lie that there are psychoactive substances in nature that have no positive uses whatsoever, in any place, any time, any context. This superstitious way of thinking has forced me to go without godsend medicine my entire life. Thanks, Spike. Why do you want people to become drug-hating Christian Scientists, exactly? These things that you call "drugs" have inspired entire religions. The conservatives are laughing as they rush to the polls to elect fascists, because they have bamboozled Spike Lee himself to sign off on the drug war which brings death and incarceration to inner city blacks. Throw away that "just say no" teddy bear with which you were bribed in childhood, Spike, and open your eyes.
More TV and movie Quotes at Lights, Camera, Drug War.

DRUG WAR BLOG

by The Drug War Philosopher



8-5-22
Open Letter to Rafael Mangual



Mangual is the author of 'Cities got deadlier in 2020: What's behind the spike in homicides?' in which he never once mentioned the drug war!

Here's my letter to his website:



Hi, Rafael. Just wanted to suggest that you start holding the drug war responsible for inner-city violence -- since substance prohibition incentivized 'dealing' in poor neighborhoods and the guns soon followed. Because no one mentions this 64,000-pound Gorilla, Trump is able to blame the deaths on Democrats, so that, rather than ending the violence-causing drug war, he can begin executing the blacks that drug warriors were previously happy with merely incarcerating.



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.
Johnson, Paul. The Birth of the Modern. New York: Harper Collins, 1991.
Johnson says that opium caused Samuel Taylor Coleridge's problems. Nonsense. Lack of education and irresponsibility causes problems. As Johnson himself says, most Brits used opium as needed without trouble.
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.
Pinchbeck, Daniel. When Plants Dream. New York: Watkins Publishing, 2019.
I find philosophical problems with most of the books that I read on the subject of psychoactive medicine, but Daniel Pinchbeck is one of the few authors who could teach me a few things on this topic.
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-children, anti-elderly, 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."



How America can end inner-city homicides overnight in three easy steps:

  1. Re-legalize Mother Nature's plant medicines
  2. Treat substance abuse as a health problem
  3. Buy back inner-city guns at double their purchase price (even triple the price would be a huge bargain in the long run)

This will, of course, be a huge sacrifice for everyday Americans, who do love their drug war, bless them.






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