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Running with the DEA -- er, I mean the Devil

Review of Running with the Devil, starring Nicolas Cage, Laurence Fishburne and Natalie Reyes

by Ballard Quass, the Drug War Philosopher






October 30, 2019

"Running with the Devil" is the latest Hollywood film to glamorize the perverse logic of America's Drug War, to celebrate the trampling of the U.S. Constitution and to glorify inquisitorial torture, all in the name of keeping Americans -- and the world -- safe from Mother Nature's plants.

Notice how the hypocritical DEA agent "hero" happily TORTURES her witness, and then has the nerve to tell a man who's selling NATURALLY-OCCURRING SUBSTANCES that he's "dirt."

Is this what American values have come to? Why is Leslie Bibb's character on a high horse when the Drug War is quashing research on valuable drugs for depression -- and single-handedly creating the violence that the DEA sets out to fight?

Hey, here's an idea: re-legalize MOTHER NATURE and then fight BAD BEHAVIOR, NOT PLANTS.

Don't Laurence Fishburne and Nicolas Cage have better things to do in Hollywood than produce propaganda for the DEA - an agency which steals elections for conservatives every year by locking up a million liberals for possessing naturally occurring substances and then taking those liberals off the voting rolls by turning them into felons?

U.S. elections aren't being swayed by the Russians, they're being stolen by American movie producers, including companies like Jaguar Bite and so-called Patriotic Pictures, who have done everything they can with this movie to bequeath DEA tyranny to their great grandchildren, by celebrating the perverse torture-friendly values of today's Drug Warriors.

The minister in the film laments that the fascist DEA agents' kin were lost to "this drug epidemic."

What drug epidemic? There is no more of a drug epidemic in America now than there was a drinking epidemic during prohibition. The drug impurities and violence that we wring our hands over are not a result of a drug epidemic -- they are a result of the Drug War itself, which drives the price of drugs through the roof, makes it impossible to ensure the purity of purchased substances, refuses to teach how to use drugs safely, and by criminalizing non-addictive psychoactive plants, the DEA makes it inevitable that those seeking medicines for their conscious state will end up on hard stuff.

Besides, the DEA has no right to talk about a drug epidemic since they completely ignore the great addiction of our time: the fact that 1 in 8 Americans are addicted FOR LIFE to Big Pharma antidepressants.

The Drug Warrior doesn't give a good GD about addiction -- they just want the user to be paying their drug money to big pharma -- using their addictive meds rather than using non-addictive psychedelics that could improve one's life in just a few uses.

Hello? This is the DEA. How may I ruin your life and destroy your human potential by deliberately withholding plant medicines that are well-known to provide insight and a fresh way of thinking about the world?


And at the end of the film -- SPOILER ALERT -- the fascist DEA agent shoots the bad guy. This is what the war on patients -- the war on mother nature -- has done: it has turned Americans into supporters of torture and extra judicial killing. Why? Because we refuse to get the message that the Drug War itself is creating the violence that we're fighting.

It's time for the fascist DEA to step down -- to stop criminalizing Mother Nature's godsend medications -- to start showing a little compassion for the millions that have gone without godsend medicines for the last 50 years thanks to DEA lies about psychoactive substances.

The first step is for Hollywood to stop releasing Drug War propaganda like "Running with the Devil."

Oh, by the way: Agent Natalie was smoking a cigarette just before she "offed" the bad guy. Talk about hypocrisy.

One of the most deadly drugs in history -- she's sitting there smoking it! And yet she's in such a self-righteous state that she's ready to kill an unarmed suspect???

Please. We should make cigarette possession a felony and let Agent Natalie see what others go through when their go-to natural substance is criminalized.

In fact, if we must have a Drug War, then let's start by throwing callous Drug War hypocrites like William Bennett in the pokey indefinitely. Chimney pots like Billy kill countless people every year by second-hand smoke. Oh, and let's not neglect to take away his voting rights and forbid him from running for public office.

If he so much as desires a job at Dollar General, I want William Bennett to submit to a urine and saliva test for the presence of the slightest bit of tobacco in his system before he earns a cent.

Mind you, I'd prefer to end the anti-patient Drug War scam entirely, but if we're going to have one, let's start by running roughshod over the rights of the myriad hypocritical smokers and drinkers among the Drug War zealots.

But back to the disgraceful DEA propaganda film aka Running with the Devil.

This is a particularly disappointing movie, by the way, because it seems to show how little we've learned. There's been a psychedelic renaissance of sorts in the last 20 years, as science has actually been given at least a teensy bit of leeway to study psychedelics and show how incredibly useful they can be for depression and other mental conditions. Yet here we have a Hollywood movie doing its best to reinforce the Drug War superstition that a plant becomes evil incarnate just because we had the chutzpah to criminalize it. It's about time we faced facts and stop letting politicians decide for their own selfish reasons what we should feel about nature's plants.

CHECK OUT THE horrible anti-American message of this movie. It is as follows:

The Drug War is still not working, so we need to crack down even harder?!

Still harder? We've already signed off on torture and murder and gotten rid of the first and fourth amendments to the US Constitution. Meanwhile, we're locking up so many leftists that conservatives now are stealing our elections. What is the end game here: total dictatorship?

And why? So that we can stop Americans from using natural plants to change their minds safely.

I hate to say it, but there's a kind of terrible poetic justice every time an ex-DEA agent starts moldering away in a retirement home, wishing they were dead. Too bad for them, because they have spent their lives keeping mind-easing medicines away from the American public -- so I don't want to hear one groan from them as they go miserably to their fate. They have worked all their lives to prevent minds from healing -- by outlawing Mother Nature. Now they must live with the consequences of their blind patient-hating ethics.

And even if they decide to end it all, they will not be able to gently nod off with the help of an immoderate dose of morphine, because guess what, kids? They themselves have demonized morphine so thoroughly that many hospitals no longer even carry the drug. And even if they do, it's the government that will ultimately decide whether such moribund DEA agents will be allowed to die, not the agents themselves. Good job, dimwit. You have forced your own self to go without the godsends of mother nature and put your very fate in the hands of faceless bureaucrats. Well done indeed.

Fortunately my better angels will never let me actually be as evil toward DEA agents as they have been toward the American public, especially minorities. But what can I say? If those DEA agents persecute drugs that can grow new neurons, what right do they have to complain when they or their loved ones start needlessly suffering from Alzheimer's and dementia? They've lied about the substances for five decades and prohibited research and now they're going to lament the lack of progress in fighting brain diseases?

Well, if they want to stop and ask themselves why more hasn't been done in this area, I've got news for them: all they have to do is look in the mirror.


Author's Follow-up: August 30, 2022



What a fine, upstanding movie. Gotta love the part where the DEA agent gets on her high horse and spits on the local agent. He should have spit right back: "Hey, the stuff I'm sellin' is far less lethal than the alcohol and tobacco of which you so freely avail yourself."

Author's Follow-up: February 10, 2024

picture of clock metaphorically suggesting a follow-up


Coca, in fact, is a godsend from Mother Nature. The self-righteous DEA agent better re-read the Book of Genesis. The absurd outlawing of the mere coca leaf in Europe, UK and America has outlawed a godsend for depression. But being a prohibitionist means you never have to say you're sorry, you never have to take responsibility for the downsides of your anti-scientific policy: like the mass incarceration of the young people around the globe that you have lured into lucrative drug dealing, the destruction of the rule of law in Latin America -- the fact that billions have to go without a godsend like the coca leaf because you insist that the coca plant must be judged by one single product derived from one single alkaloid of the plant -- and that therefore all other benefits of coca must be completely ignored until the end of time, even if this means that the depressed commit suicide for want of the buoying powers of coca.

Meanwhile, the one and only company that gets to profit from the coca leaf in the states is Coca-Cola, which has flooded the Mexican market with its sugary product, thereby causing a diabetes-crisis that has taken tens of thousands of lives.




Next essay: The REAL Lesson of the Opium Wars
Previous essay: How Drug Warriors Steal American Elections

More Essays Here




Some Tweets against the hateful war on drugs

If politicians wanted to outlaw coffee, a bunch of Kevin Sabets would come forward and start writing books designed to scare us off the drink by cherry-picking negative facts from scientific studies.
Today's Washington Post reports that "opioid pills shipped" DROPPED 45% between 2011 and 2019..... while fatal overdoses ROSE TO RECORD LEVELS! Prohibition is PUBLIC ENEMY NUMBER ONE.
That's another problem with "following the science." Science downplays personal testimony as subjective. But psychoactive experiences are all ABOUT subjectivity. With such drugs, users are not widgets susceptible to the one-size-fits-all pills of reductionism.
ECT is like euthanasia. Neither make sense in the age of prohibition.
The search for SSRIs has always been based on a flawed materialist premise that human consciousness is nothing but a mix of brain chemicals and so depression can be treated medically like any other physical condition.
The DEA outlawed MDMA in 1985, thereby depriving soldiers of a godsend treatment for PTSD. Apparently, the DEA staff slept well at night in the early 2000s as American soldiers were having their lives destroyed by IEDs.
Immanuel Kant wrote that scientists are scornful about metaphysics yet they rely on it themselves without realizing it. This is a case in point, for the idea that euphoria and visions are unhelpful in life is a metaphysical viewpoint, not a scientific one.
If we let "science" decide about drugs, i.e. base freedom on health concerns, then tea can be as easily outlawed as beer. The fact that horses are not illegal shows that prohibition is not about health. It's about the power to outlaw certain "ways of being in the world."
If the depressed patient laughs, that means nothing. Materialists have to see results under a microscopic or they will never sign off on a therapy.
That's why we damage the brains of the depressed with shock therapy rather than let them use coca or opium. That's why many regions allow folks to kill themselves but not to take drugs that would make them want to live. The Drug War is a perversion of social priorities.
More Tweets


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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, Running with the DEA -- er, I mean the Devil: Review of Running with the Devil, starring Nicolas Cage, Laurence Fishburne and Natalie Reyes, published on October 30, 2019 on AbolishTheDEA.com. 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 abolishTheDEA.com. (philosopher's bio; go to top of this page)