bird icon for twitter

Nietzsche and the Drug War

by Ballard Quass, the Drug War Philosopher

May 28, 2021

ietzsche brought the western world's attention to its unrecognized and unacknowledged reliance on Christian moral precepts. It's time now for someone to bring the western world's attention to the fact that the Drug War is premised on the exact same religious attitudes. More specifically, the Drug War is premised on the Christian Science precept that it is immoral to use "drugs." Why? According to Christian Science, it is wrong because Jesus is the answer.

Of course, the Drug Warriors cannot rely on that argument in a country that at least gives lip service to the freedom of religion. That's why the Drug War is all about the demonization of plant medicine, a demonization that is practiced by outright lies (like the highly mendacious "frying pan" ad, which claims that a substance fries the brain the moment it is criminalized by a politician) and the censorship of all history and biography that tends to illustrate the responsible use of substances that the Drug Warrior desires us to hate. Thus we suppress Poe's short stories which dare tell us of the perceptual and creative powers of morphine and opium. We hide the fact that Marcus Aurelius and Ben Franklin enjoyed opium. We never -- but never -- mention Freud's conviction that cocaine was a godsend for depression or the fact that HG Wells and Jules Verne both swore by the invigorating power of Coca Wine when writing their stories. And we're completely hush-hush when it comes to politically incorrect histories such as the psychedelic-fueled Eleusinian Mysteries, the Vedic religion's link to the worship of psychoactive plant(s) known as soma, and the widespread Mesoamerican use of mushrooms for religious enlightenment and ritual.

American philosophers have long since "grokked" the general principle that the west is founded and continues to act (subconsciously, as it were) according to Christian precepts... but they have yet to recognize that the Drug War is the prime example of that fact and that it therefore represents the establishment of a state religion, namely the state religion called Christian Science, albeit a hypocritical version that is applied exclusively to psychoactive medicines and makes exceptions for the Drug Warrior's own favorite drugs of alcohol and tobacco. That's why, when in a mischievous mood, I like to imagine a Drug War that cracks down exclusively on those two biggest killers in the drug world, depriving jobs to any American who has so much as sipped alcohol in the last month or who is found to have a crushed cigarette butt in their car. I envision THOSE "drug fiends" tossed into overcrowded jails and removed from the voting rolls, denied public housing, and forced to attend government re-education camps known as "12 step groups." Now that's a Drug War that I could support, if only to give America's Christian Science Drug Warriors a taste of their own violence-spawning and racist medicine.

Author's Follow-up: August 18, 2022

How powerful words can be. The whole Drug War depends on the use of the word "drugs," which is not a subjective or scientific term in the modern world, but rather a political one. To use the word "drugs" without realizing this fact (as almost every writer does today, including Michael Pollan) is like using the word "scabs" to describe workers who fail to take part in a strike. There's nothing objective about such writing. No matter what the conclusions of the author who uses the word "scab," they are making an argument against strike breaking merely by employing said term. In the exact same way, today's authors are advancing an argument in favor of Drug War ideology every time they uncritically use the word "drugs," even if they imagine they are doing otherwise.

Why? Because "drugs" as defined today means:

"Psychoactive medicine for which there is no positive or legitimate use whatsoever: not now, not ever, not here in the United States or in the remotest corners of the globe." Presumably this definition will be broadened to include other planets should life be found in outer space.

Of course, there is no such substance in the world. Even the deadly botox has valid uses. Moreover, valid uses will never be discovered if we determine, a priori, via fiat as it were, that they do not exist.

How do we account for such a palpably false and anti-nature premise? Easy. For Drug War ideology existed over half a century before Congress first criminalized plant medicine. But back then it was honestly acknowledged as the religion that it was, namely Christian Science.

And so the Drug War is a religion, given its faith-driven belief in a dangerous mother nature from which human beings must be protected -- a religion that runs riot over the rights of those of us who consider Mother Nature to be a loving provider rather than a drug kingpin.

It does not just deny me my religious freedom (the freedom to value and rely on Mother Nature), but it does everything it can to convert me to the hypocritically-defined sobriety of mainstream Christian churches. How? First, by arresting me for using plant medicine that has inspired entire religions; then by forcing me into treatment centers where I'm forced to acknowledge my own powerlessness along with my need for a thinly disguised Christian god known as a 'higher power.' The fact is, however, that to the extent that I really feel powerless, it is because the state has denied me access to godsend medicines that could help me feel otherwise.

How many 'good Christians' would feel powerless if we took away their alcohol, their coffee, their tobacco and their anti-depressants cocktails, which 1 in 8 of them take daily?

Next essay: Saying Yes to Drugs
Previous essay: Listening to the Drug War

More Essays Here

essays about

The Drug War as a Litmus Test for Philosophical Wisdom
The Philosophical Idiocy of the Drug War
The Philosophy of Drug Use
The Philosophy of Getting High
Without Philosophy, Science becomes Scientism
Materialism and the Drug War
Calling All Philosophers
Critique of the Philosophy of Happiness
Heidegger on Drugs
In Praise of Thomas Szasz
Join Philosophers Against the Drug War
Libertarians as Closet Christian Scientists
Majoring in Drug War Philosophy
Rationality Uber Alles
Scientism and America's Drug War hypocrisy
Speaking Truth to Academia
What if Arthur Schopenhauer Had Used DMT?
How Scientific Materialism Keeps Godsend Medicines from the Depressed
Psychedelics and Depression
Drug Use as Self-Medication
John Locke on Drugs
Puritanical Assumptions about Drug Use in the Entertainment Field
Why Kevin Sabet is Wrong
I asked 100 American philosophers what they thought about the Drug War
The Great Philosophical Problem of Our Time
What We Mean When We Say 'Drugs'
Whitehead and Psychedelics

front cover of Drug War Comic Book

Buy the Drug War Comic Book by the Drug War Philosopher Brian Quass, featuring 150 hilarious op-ed pics about America's disgraceful war on Americans

You have been reading an article entitled, Nietzsche and the Drug War published on May 28, 2021 on For more information about America's disgraceful drug war, which is anti-patient, anti-minority, anti-scientific, 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, visit the drug war philosopher, at (philosopher's bio; go to top of this page)