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RainDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 05:29 PM
Original message
Drug Testing
Gibbs offers a "teachable moment" in the recent remarks he made.

"Those people" should be drug tested, he noted.

What's interesting is that Gibbs openly notes the way that drug testing may be used as a political tool, or as a way to shut down debate on issues like civil liberties or human rights (or shilling for pharmaceutical companies) by invoking stereotypes. It's a Sister Souljah moment for yet another Democrat.

A Sister Souljah moment is a politician's public repudiation of an allegedly extremist person or group, statement, or position perceived to have some association with the politician or their party. Such an act of repudiation is designed to signal to centrist voters that the politician is not beholden to traditional, and sometimes unpopular, interest groups associated with the party(via Wiki)


What does the Obama administration want to signal to centrists with this remark?

Does this administration want to continue a regressive and punitive approach to issues of drug use and addiction, rather than address the problem of addiction as the health issue that it is?

Is this administration signaling its support for continued drug cartel wars that have ravaged Mexican society, in opposition to calls to end the drug war by current and past presidents of Mexico?

Is this administration signaling its support for continuing a prison-economy, rather than a "free" market one? Is this administration signaling its support for continued voter suppression of African-Americans that is the result of current racist drug policies and practices?

The NAACP in California has come out in support of Proposition 19, the current initiative to legalize cannabis, in recognition of the racist ways in which the law is applied.

The racist application of drug laws interferes with student loans, voting, jobs... while people who are connected but inhaled (Obama, Bush, Clinton) are never punished for some past indulgence.

Is this really a centrist position? Is it centrist to want to perpetuate failed policies that also demonstrate the racist bias in law enforcement?

Maybe it's centrist to support the bids of pharmaceutical companies to control what substances you use for medication. This is another issue concerning "drug testing."

Do you know why pharmaceutical companies have not been interested in studying the many medicinal applications of cannabis? Because cannabis itself cannot be copyrighted. Molecules may be copyrighted, and the way that they are delivered to a patient may be copyrighted, but not the substance itself. Must be the money that supports the continued prohibition of cannabis. Can't make a medicine available to Americans that is cheap, effective and easy to access - that's something the left would support.

Would the center really not support cost-cutting for pain relief from arthritis, MS, Cerebral Palsy, for wasting from HIV and chemotherapy, for the psychic shocks of PTSD? Not according to polls. Here is a list of polls aggregated via NORML:

Nationwide Public Opinion Polls

72 percent of respondents agreed with the statement, "Adults should be allowed to legally use marijuana for medical purposes if a physician recommends it."
POLL: AARP
DATE: November 2004
Sample Size: 1,706

80 percent of respondents supported allowing adults to "legally use marijuana for medical purposes."
POLL: Time Magazine/CNN Poll
DATE: October 2002
Sample Size: 1,007

70 percent of respondents answered affirmatively to the question, "Should the use of medical marijuana be allowed?"
POLL: Center for Substance Abuse Research
DATE: January 2002
Sample Size: N/A

73 percent of respondents supported allowing doctors "to prescribe marijuana."
POLL: Pew Research Center Poll
DATE: March 2001
Sample Size: 1,513

73 percent of respondents said they "would vote for making marijuana legally available for doctors to prescribe."
POLL: Gallup
DATE: March 1999
Sample size: 1,018


For over a decade, a HUGE majority of Americans have favored moving cannabis from its Schedule 1 designation to indicate its valid use as medicine in this society.

What Gibbs also failed to inform you about is that your boss can be a junkie and if he were drug tested by the most-often used method, you wouldn't necessarily know it. Your boss could be a cocaine twitch. Your boss could be a meth head. Your boss could be a raging alcoholic...

and you'd never know it based upon the most common form of drug testing in the marketplace, which is urine testing.

Your boss also could have smoked a joint with friends a couple of weekends ago out at the lake and he would be tagged as currently under the influence of drugs, which is a lie.

Of course, it is not your boss that will necessarily be tested.

In fact, the most common drug testing for cannabis does not reveal if someone is under the influence of the same because the test for cannabis checks for waste products, or metabolites, from marijuana, not the presence of the intoxicating substance (THC) itself.

If your boss snorted some heroin, coke or meth a few days before a drug test, no one would ever know. The only substance that is targeted when someone is not currently under the influence is cannabis.

It's not just the workplace that presents a problem for drug testing, however. As a recent case in Florida demonstrated, the most commonly used test for the presence of cannabis used by law enforcement supplies false positives for 25 other substances.

A woman who had taken a walk in the woods ended up arrested and handcuffed in front of her employer and customers, had to strip naked while on her period and cough over a grate in a jail cell - because she took sage with her on her walk to mimic a Native American form of communion with nature.

http://www.alternet.org/story/147613/has_the_most_commo...

I hope it's not centrist to support the harassment of Americans who chose to take a walk in the woods. It doesn't sound like the center, to me. It sounds like the mean, tho not in statistical terms.

However, it's not the majority opinion on the issue of the value of cannabis in American society and has not been for more than a decade.

Consider this a drug test that Gibbs has failed.

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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 05:35 PM
Response to Original message
1. Considering how often Gibbs is shooting from the lip these days
perhaps the White House should consider getting him tested. Seriously.

Press secretaries are supposed to be colorless men who distribute press releases and answer simple questions, not demagogues.
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Ezlivin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 05:35 PM
Response to Original message
2. I'm going to be testing some drugs in about 15 minutes
But before I do, let me say that you made some excellent points.

The Drug War has never really gotten past its racist roots. At first the prohibition against marijuana was seen as a way of "controlling" the Mexican "threat." Later it was seen as tool to be used against any counter-culture group. Now we have a press secretary using drug testing as an implicit degradation of a class of people.

Perhaps the ongoing debacle in Mexico will finally awaken our policy makers to the fact that the War on Drugs is a multi-billion dollar failure.

We can only hope....

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NoSheep Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 05:50 PM
Response to Reply #2
8. pft!
:rofl:
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patrice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 05:35 PM
Response to Original message
3. So, anyone who has made anykind of progress on local stuff is supposed to throw that away for
legalization?
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RainDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 05:41 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. I have no idea what your comment means
care to elaborate? otherwise it makes no sense to me.
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patrice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 05:52 PM
Response to Reply #6
9. The Professional "Left" needs to step up and COMMIT to November, because there's a bunch
of the rest of the Left who will not be throwing in with those who have a publicly avowed intent to see the President lose in November and in 2012.

Why the Hell should anyone support those who do not support them?

If you don't make a commitment to winning this November, you all can run Al Gore himself and I, for one, will work against him.
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RainDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 06:03 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. so you assume I am the "professional left?"
Edited on Wed Aug-11-10 06:55 PM by RainDog
why don't you read the OP and consider the merits of the information that is being shared.

I posted a poll about the whole Gibbs thing yesterday. My poll was a joke - the point being that insinuating someone is "on drugs" is a way to stereotype - but the poll also was to say... is it just that you (not you, personally, the poll-taker you) are pissed off?

I also support getting out the vote on issues of importance. And support for candidates whose stance on these issues matters... such as the California Attorney General's Race - if the Democrat does not win, California will deal with a right winger who may very well try to halt implementation of the law.

Do you know that the District of Columbia has had a medical marijuana law on the books for more than a decade, while the Congress has used its power, that whole time, to stop the implementation of this policy?

Under the Democratic Congress and the Obama administration, this attempt to deny people the right to implement the law (edit for clarity) was bypassed and, finally, the vote of the majority of the people came to pass.


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RandomThoughts Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 05:37 PM
Response to Original message
4. Could have been about steroids also.
Edited on Wed Aug-11-10 05:38 PM by RandomThoughts
There is a way of talking about 'thought' where some people that use a form of thought as steroids. Like when a person is on the juice, from Thunderdome. "Those with the Juice Trek with me" Was the exact quote.


I think it was in a Dr Who episode, Pompae episode, also.

Also there is a long conversation about pipe between consious and subconsious that some think can be reached by drugs, that is a 60s thing. I wouldn't think drugs would help such things, since it would hamper rational thinking.

I think I know why he said it and have no problem with it.
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patrice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 05:38 PM
Response to Original message
5. If the Professional "Left" abandons the party in November, I will work against Legalization
until I die.
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RainDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 05:44 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. I don't speak for the professional left - and this OP is not about them.
Edited on Wed Aug-11-10 05:45 PM by RainDog
however, your remark demonstrates as much short-sightedness as any claims made from those who say they will not vote.

actually, your position is worse because you are stating you are willing to hurt the sick and poor b/c you are pissed off with people on an internet forum.

but, we will all make the decisions that we do.

personally, I plan (funny typo removed) on voting for democrats. they've always been the lesser of two evils. but I will never be a "professional" democrat or leftist, etc.

I'm simply a person who was born and lives in this nation and has to make do with what is at this moment while working for better things.
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RainDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 05:52 PM
Response to Reply #5
10. It appears that you think this OP is a call out to not vote. That's a total misreading
Now, I could say... how could you infer such a thing from this post... are you on drugs? but I won't --

--- because the whole point of the post is to provide some information about current issues as they relate to drug testing, as well as a current initiative on state ballots (not just the one in CA) - as well as talking about other states that are currently reconsidering their application of federal scheduling as it relates to cannabis.

this information also demonstrates that the American people are consistently ahead of the pols in DC on many issues. It is not a call to not vote.

So, calm down, step back, and rest assured in the knowledge that sometimes people can use a remark to provide information that is not designed to lead to voter suppression.

As I said... the statement offers a teaching moment.
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patrice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 06:11 PM
Response to Reply #10
12. That's what was going on around here last night.
There's at least some of the Professional so-called "Left" that's trying to leverage this situation for their own agenda, no who matter who gets hurt in November.

................................

We NEED Howard Dean to lead this movement.
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RainDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 06:45 PM
Response to Reply #12
15. after hearing the initial report, seeing the intial outrage, I left for the night
however, I totally agree with you that Dean needs to help organize the left and to find ways to work within the existing ideology to overcome years of propaganda from the right wing in this nation.

Think about it.

Americans have faced decades and decades of propaganda from the right wing. How many hours has Limbaugh spent spewing his bile across the universe? I saw an article about an interesting study recently.

http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/ideas/articles/2010/0... /

People who have been lied to refuse to accept factual information.

...we often base our opinions on our beliefs, which can have an uneasy relationship with facts. And rather than facts driving beliefs, our beliefs can dictate the facts we chose to accept. They can cause us to twist facts so they fit better with our preconceived notions. Worst of all, they can lead us to uncritically accept bad information just because it reinforces our beliefs. This reinforcement makes us more confident were right, and even less likely to listen to any new information.

We all do it to one degree or another about a variety of issues, large and small. Sometimes this can have more impact than others. Right wingers seem to have a harder time accepting truths that prove things that Limbaugh, etc. say are invalid and do not represent the reality of the world we live in, according to that article.

I'm just saying this b/c, again, my initial post had to do with stereotypes and ways that these stereotypes and beliefs do not actually fit reality.

Ryan Grimm wrote an interesting book. "This is Your Country On Drugs" is the name, iirc. He was working as a staffer for the MMP and was lobbying Congress.

While the numbers who favor medical marijuana, above, demonstrate the wide-spread support, across the nation, for rescheduling cannabis and for laws that allow people to use it in the case of illness...

Politicians assumed a minority would be in favor. They estimated maybe 30%... when the truth is their view of support for this issue was upside down.

However, their PERCEPTION was that people did not favor medical cannabis. So, politicians who have a false belief about a subject, like voters, do not like to have to face the truth. I'm not talking about Obama here. I'm talking about every single governor, mayor, senator, and congressperson in this nation, if they assume that Americans do not support rescheduling cannabis and making medical marijuana, at the least, available to people whose medical conditions are alleviated by cannabis.

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TheKentuckian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 06:12 PM
Response to Reply #5
13. and civil liberties and equality and economic justice and labor
Authoritarian evil mongering just like Gibbs pulling the drug test card from the GOP playbook.

Do whatever you please with your life and I hope it is long enough to care about right and wrong.

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Starry Messenger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 06:16 PM
Response to Original message
14. k & r
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RainDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 07:48 PM
Response to Original message
16. New Sacramento Bee poll shows 51% support legalization of cannabis in CA
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RainDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-11-10 09:51 PM
Response to Reply #16
17. a kick for the evening n/t
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