The Drug War is a war on Alzheimer's patients. Stanislav Grof has performed hundreds of research trials suggesting that LSD-assisted psychotherapy can bring back memories of infancy. Cliff Hamrick writes about how MDMA reinvigorates the brain synapses. Amanda Feilding tells how ayahuasca regenerates the brain and helps it learn in new neuronal ways. It is surely a scandal of the highest order that America criminalizes substances like these that hint so tantalizingly at such curative power for scourges like Alzheimer's. If only someone would convincingly connect the dots in the minds of Americans who currently consider Alzheimer's and the Drug War to be completely unrelated phenomena. If Americans understood what was really going on, they would curse the drug war every time they entered a "memory unit" to visit their increasingly befuddled elderly parents.
It is typical of our morally challenged and hypocritical drug warrior government that it selectively greenlights such godsend medicines today, not as potential cures for Alzheimer's disease but rather as possible truth serums for use against our enemies.
America turns the fate of all supposed "drug abusers" into a morality tale about the evil of "drugs" and, by implication, the moral weakness of those who use them. In a sane world, we would stop blaming the Amys of the world (or asking psycho-historically naive questions about them, such as, "Why did she feel the need for 'drugs'?") and look in the mirror instead, asking, "Why did WE not bother to teach her how to use her drugs of choice wisely?" Then we would see that the villain of the piece is not "drugs," but rather the drug war itself, for it outlaws the very research that could have created safe usage guidelines for folks like Amy.
Of course, Amy's fate was especially easy for Christian Science America to spin into a drug war morality tale in which "drugs" were the bad guy. One of the last songs that Amy sang contained the heretical lyrics: "He's tried to make me go to rehab, but I won't go, go, go." And at the Oscars, she was quoted as telling her friend Juliette that, "This is so boring without drugs."
When these facts were shown to contestants on Gogglebox in 2014, there was plenty of backhanded sympathy for Amy from the reality-show couch potatoes, with the general consensus being that she had unfortunately caved before the evil temptress known as "drugs."
No one ever asked the apparently heretical question: "What if we had researched all drugs that provided personal transcendence and educated Amy about how to choose among them and use them wisely?"
But drug-war America doesn't think this way because it completely ignores the motivation for drug use, which is self-transcendence. Even if it does recognize the impulse, it insists that self-transcendence must come only from supposedly "natural" sources, such as church, yoga, meditation, jogging, and the like. (The drug warrior might even suggest stoicism as an alternative to drugs, failing to realize that the paragon of that discipline, Marcus Aurelius, was himself a big fan of opium.) But this notion about "drugs" being unnatural or a "copout" is a mere Christian Science prejudice and not an ineluctable truth to which all intelligent humans are led upon rational reflection. It's certainly not a "truth" that would naturally occur to someone who grew up in a botanically rich rainforest.
In point of fact, the mind truly boggles at the plethora of treatment possibilities that would have been open to Amy had she been able to meet with a pharmacologically savvy empath who had unrestricted access to every psychoactive plant in the entire world. Amy might have been led through an emotionally restorative journey on psylocibin to see the world in a new way, been given something to look forward to in the form of weekly cocaine or opium use, or provided with morphine on special mental "holidays," whereby she could see the natural world in exquisite detail a la August Bedloe in "A Tale of the Ragged Mountains" by Edgar Allan Poe. She could have had her head screwed back on straight with the strategic use of the drugs which Americans have been taught to scorn.
But such cures run counter to the Christian Science notion that "drugs" are evil. And so drug war society could only sit back impotently and watch Amy's decline, as one watches a slow-motion car crash, unable to offer her anything more enticing than pious suggestions that she renounce her desire for self-transcendence and join a 12-step program instead
Asperger's syndrome imposes limitations on what the sufferer can imagine as possible. Psychoactive plant medicine demonstrates the ability to open the mind to new possibilities. In a sane and scientific world, therefore, we would be testing all manner of empathic treatment protocols around the clock to overcome Asperger-induced mental blocks with psychoactive medicine. Instead, we superstitiously claim that all natural psychoactive medicine is "junk," thereby condemning millions to needless suffering. The Hippocratic Oath says, "First, do no evil." The Hippocratic Drug Warrior Oath says, "First, do nothing."
Imagine a Rhodes Scholar telling us that we need to fear and criminalize Mother Nature's psychoactive medicines rather than to understand them, that it's better to cause wars in South America and create a Drug War Hitler in the Philippines than to learn how to use psychoactive medicine wisely for the benefit of humankind. Imagine a Rhodes Scholar who would rather that my mother suffer from Dementia than allow researchers to leverage psychoactive medicine to cure Alzheimer's disease, a Rhodes Scholar who would rather that we treat the severely depressed with brain-damaging electroshock therapy than with the godsend psychoactive plant medicine that grows at our very feet. Imagine a Rhodes Scholar who thinks that we need to go around the world burning plants instead of rationally studying them to learn how they can be used as wisely and as profitably as possible.
That Rhodes Scholar is Bill Clinton, a typical example of Drug War liberal, who believes that a free country should fear substances rather than learn about them.
Why? Because Clinton claimed at one point that without the drug war, his brother would be dead.
What? It is lack of knowledge about safe use that leads to death, Bill, and your Drug War makes ignorance the law of the land when it comes to psychoactive substances -- meanwhile turning America, and increasingly the world, into a police state.
Blowing up Arkansas
In 1980, the Air Force almost blew up 1/3 of the country with a thermonuclear weapon, a weapon created because the US and Russia were committed to hating each other. Today, the US nuclear weapon stockpile still contains 7,000 warheads, many of them insufficiently monitored according to Eric Schlosser, author of "Command and Control." Yet this same country outlaws all entheogenic medicines, psychoactive substances such as MDMA and psilocybin, that could bring the world together in universal love.
Something is wrong with this picture.
Will it take a thermonuclear bomb blast in America, accidental or otherwise, to teach us that psychoactive medicine should not be feared but rather used to take the world off its one-way trip to Armageddon? In a sane world, we would not be outlawing drugs like MDMA but rather prescribing them for leaders of countries in advance of summit meetings -- and using them as therapy to treat all the crazed hot-heads of the world who might otherwise shoot up a grade-school.
It's telling that the decade that followed the near obliteration of the American Midwest was highlighted, not by a campaign to outlaw (or even better secure) nuclear weapons, but rather by a campaign to demonize plant medicines of which war-mongering politicians disapproved. In a decade when Americans had every reason to "freak out" about the threat posed by nuclear weapons, they were taught by Reagan and Bush to "freak out" instead about the supposed threat posed by mother nature's psychoactive plant medicine, to the point that they agreed that their urine had to be checked to guarantee the absence of these apparently evil substances. One might have thought they'd be checking employees for radiation levels rather than for the plant medicine of which Christian Science politicians disapprove.
New form of barbarism, replacing the outdated practice of burning books. Ambitious tyrants realized in the 20th century that burning books merely affected WHAT people can think, while burning plants impacted HOW they can think and HOW MUCH (by denying them access to consciousness improving medicines).
How do prison guards search for politically demonized substances (aka "drugs") in the prison in Randall County, Texas? Here's what the Sheriff says in the BBC documentary entitled "Dom Does America":
We're gonna make sure, pull their testicles and we're gonna check their butt cheeks as well.
Be thankful that you only have to urinate for the government. This is what happens when a country demonizes natural substances rather than learning about them to encourage safe use: our prisons become not only massively overcrowded, but Nazified as well, taking a human being's last scrap of decency in the name of an unprecedented war on godsend plant medicine.
One can envision an ad for sheriffs in Texas: "Previous experience in spreading prisoner butt cheeks is a plus."
NOTE: The Gogglebox viewing families looked at this procedure as entertainment. That's just how blind the Drug War has made us to inhumanity. Such entertainment is philosophically identical to the Gladiator battles in the Roman arena. As Juvenal said: "Give them bread and circuses (and a drug war) and they will never revolt."
Another unnoticed problem of the drug war is the way that it forces everyday people to self-censor themselves. Thirty years ago, you could oppose the drug war and still have a great job. Today, any attempt to protest the drug war will become part of your online record and potentially held against you by an actual or potential employer. The ability to protest popular tyrannies is thus vastly diminished. Another form of drug war self-censorship is practiced by authors and academics, who dutifully ignore the role that psychoactive substances might have played in altering their published conclusions about things like depression, addiction, the nature of human consciousness, or even the ability of the human being to appreciate great music. As a sort of meta-example of drug war censorship, one can read hundreds of self-help books before running across one that admits that the mindsets that the author is attempting to inculcate in the reader could be provided more or less instantly with the informed use of various criminalized plant medicines. The Christian Science Drug War premises, however, are so ingrained in modern thinking that authors do not even realize they are censoring themselves, as can be clearly seen by their routine failure to protest laws that limit scientific research in the same spirit as the Church once limited the cosmological investigations of Galileo.
Christian Science Sharia
Another name for the Drug War. Christian Science is the religion that holds that we do not need drugs (only prayer) to get by in life, whereas the term "Sharia" denotes a set of strict religiously based laws. The Drug War is Christian Science Sharia since it involves a strict government initiative to force Americans to take a jaundiced Christian Science view of drugs, at least when it comes to those that exhibit psychoactive properties.
Clean. Refers to a human body that contains only substances of which American politicians approve. One is clean if they only drink alcohol and smoke cigarettes. You can even be clean if you're an addict -- as long as you are addicted to Big Pharma antidepressants. In the old days, Benjamin Franklin used opium but he was considered clean, as was Freud when he used coke. In today's superstitious drug war era, where we judge people by the substances that they imbibe, neither of them would be considered clean. They wouldn't be considered clean because drug warriors have a dirty mind and can only see hedonism and licentiousness in drug-taking, refusing to realize the obvious truth that 'drugs' have improved creativity and productivity throughout the ages -- not to mention inspired the creation of entire new religions.
Word used to describe all those Americans who were not the least bit bothered by the fact that the DEA barged onto Jefferson's Monticello in 1987 to confiscate the Founding Father's poppy plants.
Go-to drug for Sigmund Freud, which has subsequently been demonized with a full-court press of drug war propaganda associating cocaine with bloody money and handguns -- all the time failing to point out that it is the drug war itself which brought the bloody money and the handguns into the picture in the first place. Why is cocaine so demonized in America that merely to name it raises eyebrows? Because the criminalized status of cocaine gives US troops the ability to invade South American countries at will under the pretext that they're poisoning us -- poisoning us with a substance that has been used responsibly for millennia by non-western cultures. The result of thus demonizing cocaine: Inner-city gunfire, overcrowded prisons, Civil war in Mexico, and the empowerment of a self-proclaimed Drug War Hitler in the Philippines.
A variety of British politicians, including Michael Gove, have recently knelt down and kissed the ring of public opinion, admitting penitently that they had used cocaine in their misspent youths. The question then on the lips of the British public was: "Are these politicians still able to lead the country?" A better question might have been: "How is it that all these politicians are not now abject junkies, given the drug war's demonization of the substance in question?" The only prominent honest cocaine user in Britain seems to be the comedian Graham Norton, who admitted to cocaine use long ago without prodding, -- but who then committed the heresy of praising the drug rather than dutifully denouncing it in the name of the Christian Science drug war.
Another term for television cop shows, since they always associate illicit drug use with crime and sorrow, completely ignoring folks like Freud and Ben Franklin, who used coke and opium respectively in order to live more fully, not to fry their brains. But drug war propaganda insists that substances can only cause problems once they have been demonized by politicians. Of course, most of the problems arise because prohibition places the distribution of plant medicines in the hands of the underworld.
Cops: the TV show
The gladiator games of the Drug War era, in which heavily armed police officers badger and then bust the poor and uneducated because they dare to use plant medicines of which politicians disapprove, a show for which Richard Nixon is owed a posthumous Oscar for creating the drug war in the first place without which the show could not exist. Typical dialogue showing the police officer's absolute obsession with evil "drugs": "Do you have any drugs on you? Have you been using drugs? Are there any drugs in the car? Were your friends using drugs? Are you sure you haven't been using any drugs"?
The show relies so heavily on so-called "drug" arrests that one wonders what police officers did before the drug war, back in the days when they did not go looking for trouble and they had to punish actual crime, rather than the pre-crime of possessing substances that were superstitiously supposed to bring about nothing but heartache and sorrow.
Christian Science enforcement agency, tasked with enforcing Drug War Sharia, which is the outlawing of all naturally occurring psychopharmacological therapies. (Christian Science is the religion that tells us we should not use 'drugs', but have faith in God instead, preferably in Jesus Christ, of course.) When it's not busy demonizing and outlawing godsend plant medicines that could bring psychological relief to billions, the D E A is poisoning the American people by spraying marijuana plants with paraquat, a weed killer that has been shown to cause Parkinson's disease. The D E A is depicted in films torturing and murdering suspects at will (especially Mexican and Russian suspects) and snickering at the personal legal protections provided by the US Constitution. Although these events take place in movies, the D E A is in no hurry to denounce such films as slander. And the producers of the films make it clear that the heroes of such fascist propaganda are the anti-American D E A agents who string up suspects on meat hooks. Why? Because they dared to sell plant medicines of which politicians disapprove.
The M.O. of the Drug War. We demonize psychoactive medicine rather than study it objectively to find ways that human beings can profit from it safely, whether to beat depression, inspire music appreciation or cure Alzheimer's disease.
The United States is under a kind of Christian Science sharia that has placed an unprecedented ban, not merely on using psychoactive plant medicines, but even on studying them. We call it the War on Drugs. In light of this wholesale ban on the use of nature's pharmacopeia, we can draw no conclusions about the supposed intractability of depression. That would be like discussing the seeming intractability of headaches in a country that outlaws aspirin. How do we know what the thousands of outlawed psychoactive plant varieties could actually do for humanity were they free for use and placed in the hands of a psychopharmacologically savvy empath?
Detox is a drug war-inspired idea, because it implies that the cure for addictions must involve a complete withdrawal from all psychoactive substances. In other words, "detox" is the Christian Science answer to addiction. It celebrates sobriety in the abstract, as if being "drug-free" were somehow good in and of itself. But that latter claim is an article of faith, not a self-evident truth. For many of us, the good result in life is one in which the "patient" attains personal self-fulfillment, whether with the use of so-called "drugs" or not. Meanwhile, what detox proponents forget (or rather ignore completely) is that we know almost nothing about treating addiction thanks to the drug war -- simply because we've outlawed all the psychoactive substances that show real promise in this area.
LSD, ibogaine, psylocybin and ayahuasca all show promise in treating alcoholism, and these are just the relatively publicized tips of the pharmacological iceberg when it comes to treating mental conditions. There is a whole world of psychoactive medicine out there that researchers are dogmatically ignoring in the name of America's drug war. For all we know, "getting off" certain substances might even prove to be fun in the future -- yes, fun! -- when we stop seeking to enforce a gloomy but pious sobriety on our "patients" and guide them instead on a pharmacologically informed journey in search of alternative ways of seeing and thinking about the world.
In the movie "Four Good Days," the "treatment" for heroin addiction is to toss the "addict" on a cot for three days of cold turkey, followed up by regular injections of Naltrexone, the Christian Science drug par excellence, to make it chemically impossible for the addict to tolerate opioids. (Not happy with merely burning the poppy overseas, we must change human chemistry stateside to ensure that any surviving plants cannot be put to use by Americans.) We thus force the "patient" to undergo barbarous cold turkey (for a $3,000 price tag in the movie) while ignoring a whole arsenal of psychoactive plant medicine that could have been used empathically to steer the "user" to another safer medicine -- and of course we never once consider the idea of simply giving the user the heroin that they desire -- even though the psychiatric pill mill is never stinting in giving out their tranquilizing "cures" for depression and anxiety -- and even chiding their "patients" should they miss a dose.
American drug warriors have yet to get their mind around the following so-far ignored truth: that the best treatment of an addiction to psychoactive substance A, might be interesting the patient in psychoactive substances B and C, not in forcing them to forswear all psychoactive substances whatsoever in the name of the stealth Christian Science of the drug war.
Someone who is so hideously evil that they will actually sell... wait for it, folks... MOTHER NATURE'S PLANT MEDICINES... in violation of America's Christian Science Sharia and in defiance of Big Pharma's monopoly on providing mood medicine.
The extra-judicial enforcement of Christian Science Sharia, to ensure the starvation of those heretic job seekers who dare to use Mother Nature's bounty for psychological improvement and healing. The political nature of such testing is made clear by the fact that its goal is never to establish that a worker is impaired -- rather, a drug test searches for the mere use of any mind-expanding substance of which politicians disapprove. Drug Testing is thus the process whereby the government delegates to the business community the task of finding and punishing Christian Science heretics. And so in a drug warrior country, we are judged not by the color of our skin, but by the contents of our digestive system.
Drug war. Make-work program for law enforcement. It's a project to demonize plant medicines, a Quixotic crusade against Mother Nature, which actually causes all of the problems that it purports to be solving.
Drug War Journalism
Newspaper articles that seek to demonize psychoactive substances on the grounds that they can be used inappropriately by one single solitary juvenile -- meanwhile ignoring the fact that alcohol kills every day, that 1 in 4 American women are addicted to Big Pharma meds, that the criminalization of plant medicine has created a civil war in Mexico and empowered a self-proclaimed Drug War Hitler in the Philippines. Such articles always imply that there's a crisis afoot that lawmakers need to tend to -- completely ignoring the fact that substance misuse is a result of the drug war's suppression of calm objective research about safe use practices. One typical piece of Drug War Journalism, which encourages us to fear cocaine rather than to understand it and use it wisely.
Drug warriors. Those who superstitiously believe that ostracized plant medicines can be bad without regard for the way that they are used or by whom. Anti-scientific Chicken Littles who scapegoat substances and hold them responsible for all social problems, big and small.
Psychoactive medicine of which Christian Science politicians disapprove, especially plant medicines.
The term "drugs" is a Christian Science epithet designed to demonize psychoactive medicine, with the hypocritical exception of the tranquilizing and habit-forming pills of Big Pharma. In reality, there are no such things as "drugs," only amoral substances that can be used for good or ill. Thus America's drug war is a superstition. It's based on propaganda, lies, and mischaracterizations, with rational research actually outlawed by absurd anti-scientific laws that make ignorance the law of the land, in the exact same way that the Church shut down free thought about cosmology in Galileo's time. In reality, the term "drugs" is just a scapegoat, giving politicians a way to ignore true social problems such as poor education and poverty, those social conditions that naturally lead to bad decisions in life, of which substance misuse is just one of many examples. Moreover, this wholesale demonization of psychoactive substances is premised on a lie: namely, that the substances that we have been taught to hate have no value for human beings when, to the contrary, such substances have launched entire religions in the past and given philosophers like Plato glimpses of an afterlife. Cocaine has been used responsibly by non-Western cultures for millennia and Sigmund Freud himself considered it a godsend for his own depression, but to the simplistic, politically and racially motivated drug warriors, cocaine is just another "drug," something we need to fear rather than to learn how to use safely and for rational purposes.
By using the loaded term "drugs," we suggest that there are two kinds of substances in the world: blessed meds provided by Big Pharma and evil drugs provided by mother nature. But this is an anti-scientific lie, a modern-day superstition. Substances are just substances. They are neither good nor bad, but can be put to good or bad uses. To think otherwise is to think like cavemen, people who demonize what they cannot understand (or which they refuse to understand). The drug war actually "goes the caveman one better" by making fear-causing ignorance the law of the land. Drug warriors have to outlaw objective research, for fear that free and objective study would put the lie to their unprecedented and superstitious project of wholesale substance demonization.
DSM: the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
It's worth asking how many of this manual's seemingly "real" and discrete psychological "diseases" psychiatry would have "discovered" had Americans been free (if not actively encouraged) to use psychoactive plant medicine for therapeutic purposes. For when we attempt to discuss mental health issues without acknowledging the role of the drug war, it's like trying to discuss the economy without acknowledging the role of the Chinese. In each case, our analysis would be very different had we taken into account the 6,000-pound gorilla in the room. The drug war has empowered reductionists to create habit-forming, one-size-fits-all "meds" without regard for the precise spiritual makeup or attitude of any particular "user," a market-oriented solution that brings huge returns for the pharmaceutical companies. Yet this market would scarcely even exist if plant medicines were legal and knowledge about their safe use was available to all Americans.
Depression would then be treated in a variety of holistic ways (with drugs from psychedelics to cocaine) and we would not feel the need to minutely fit patients into human-created categories like OCD and ADHD, thereby scientistically suggesting that each represents a sort of chemically discrete "illness" that humans will eventually conquer with some one-size-fits-all pill. Freud knew better. He didn't want a one-size-fits-all cure that would only "theoretically" cure his depression to the satisfaction of scientific materialists: he wanted actual results. He wanted cocaine. (The very idea of "patient" would disappear when the self-same shaman who helps combat one person's depression, helps another to self-actualize and yet another to transcend physical pain.)
Barbaric brain-damaging treatment for severe depression rendered necessary by the DEA's outlawing of godsend plant medicines such as psilocybin.
Elon Musk and Neuralink
Neuralink has sinister overtones in the age of the drug war. We have outlawed all manner of psychoactive medicines that could create new neural pathways in the brain, including ayahuasca, ibogaine, peyote and psilocybin, and yet we have no problem with inserting devices in the brain to "fix" problems. How scientific of us (or rather scientistic). Neuralink should be banned until we've freed science to first investigate the thousands of psychoactive plant medicines regarding their ability to fight things like addiction, Alzheimer's, autism and alcoholism. To use Neuralink to "fix" brain problems mechanically while outlawing plant medicine is like using brain surgery to fix headaches while outlawing aspirin. It makes no sense, except in the scientistic minds of digital billionaires and their materialistic cronies, who think of human beings as robots just waiting to be reprogrammed -- and for what? To make them willing participants in a "free" market system that has so disproportionately benefited the Elon Musks of the world?
Many opponents of the drug war seem to think that the FDA should be given the last word on drug legalization, guided by "the science." But psychoactive substances are different from other medicines. They cannot be adequately judged on safety in the abstract without regard for the reasons for use. Suppose that a person (let's call him Freud) considered his life to be not worth living unless he made his mark on psychotherapeutic science, and suppose that this "Freud" found a drug that would goad him on (psychologically speaking) to attain his deeply desired goal. For the sake of argument, let's suppose that this drug was cocaine. It would then be folly to prohibit Freud's use of cocaine based merely on the abstract evaluation of the physical risks of doing so. For when it comes to the use of psychotherapeutic drugs, there are crucial philosophical questions involved that the FDA cannot answer: what is the point of the user's life? Is it to maximize safety? or is it rather to maximize one's feeling of self-actualization and meaning? Even if the use of the drug in question could be shown, on average, to lead to a shorter life span, that would not be a knock-down argument against the use of the drug, for in the eyes of the user, life without the drug-enhanced self-actualization may be deemed to be not worth living.
This deep yearning for meaning is something which materialist science cannot by its very nature take properly into account.
Americans look back with disdain upon the Church which limited scientific research in Galileo's time, failing to realize that scientists live under the same kind of scientific proscriptions today. The difference is that Galileo's opponents were honest about their religious motivations in limiting Galileo's research; whereas the drug warrior limits the study of psychopharmacological plants based on Christian Science religious assumptions that it refuses to own up to, realizing that to do so would be to acknowledge that the drug war is the enforcement of a religion.
Book of the Bible that claims that God made plants for everyone and that these plants were good.
The Siddiqui brothers said the following after seeing the story of a British teacher who died of a brain tumor:
UMAR: If somebody could tell you that you can do something to stop that from happening, there is not a force on earth
BAASIT: Stop you from doing it.
They should have added: "except for the drug war, which outlaws the mere study of plant medicine that could cure Alzheimer's patients and give the depressed a new reason for living and which for all we know could help cure cancer."
It's interesting to note that most dedicated drug warriors are booze-loving Christians who are fiercely protective of their right to guns, even in the wake of the mass shootings of grade schoolers. Yet more evidence that the drug war is not about health, but rather about the enforcement of Christian Science as the national (and indeed worldwide) religion. (Christian Science, the RELIGION that holds that we should just say no to drugs.)
Christian Science pejorative for the state of self-transcendence induced by psychoactive medicine.
Propaganda arm of the drug war, creating motion pictures in which the murder- and torture-friendly DEA are the heroes. See, for instance, "Running with the Devil," in which a hypocritical cigarette smoking DEA agent played by Natalie Reyes tortures and murders Americans because they attempted to sell naturally occurring plant medicines.
John C. Lawn
DEA Chief who poisoned American pot smokers in 1980 by lacing marijuana crops with paraquat, a deadly weed killer that has since been shown to cause Parkinson's disease.
The subtitle of John Halpern's book "Opium" is: "How an ancient flower shaped and poisoned our world." The title reveals Halpern to be a card-carrying drug warrior, one who blames substances for the evil things that men do with them, as if moral attributes could be reasonably ascribed to mere plants. In so doing, the author gives a free pass to the racist British merchants who sought to create addiction for profit -- or the racist American politicians who sought to criminalize opium for the express purpose of marginalizing the hated Chinese and their supposed negative influence on American society.
Pejorative Christian Science term for time-honored psychoactive plant medicine of which botanically clueless politicians disapprove.
This term "junkie" betrays the western world's Christian Science disdain for plant medicine. Big Pharma's psychoactive substances are called medicines while mother nature's psychoactive substances are called "junk" and those who use them are "junkies." It is just one of many philosophically loaded drug warrior terms that make it impossible for most people to talk rationally about drugs, since the very words we use to discuss the issue carry their own baggage of Christian Science value judgments. Other such philosophically loaded terms include "wasted," "clean," and "dope."
Poisoning your enemy with weed killer. This term derives from the fact that DEA Commissioner John C. Lawn laced marijuana plants with paraquat in the 1980s, a weed killer that was subsequently found to cause Parkinson's Disease. SAMPLE SENTENCE: "You better watch out, Bill: I think that wife of yours is trying to lawn you!"
Americans who fret about the supposed dangers of re-legalizing drugs, selfishly failing to recognize the thousands that are needlessly killed, injured and arrested every year thanks to America's unprecedented scapegoating of psychoactive substances. If the drug warrior was really worried about young people, he or she would denounce the drug war, for it has created so much violence that it originated the whole cop show TV genre and the drug-war movie genre, in which cops laugh at Jeffersonian rights, scorn natural law, and refer to otherwise law-abiding substance users as scumbags, that language of dehumanization that we haven't heard since the fall of the Nazis in World War Two.
Listening to the Drug War
When we listen to the Drug War, we discover that...
A Drug War Society would rather fight drugs than cure Alzheimer's (see entry about the drug war's suppression of promising cures for Alzheimer's)
A Drug War Society would rather fight drugs than have world peace (see entry about the drug war's disdain for the peaceful rave scene)
A Drug War Society would rather fight drugs than help troubled people succeed in life. (see entry about the Imp of the Perverse)
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King asked that we be judged by the content of our character. The Drug war asks that we be judge on the contents of our digestive systems.
America wrings its hands over mass shootings and yet ignores the power of substances like MDMA to soften the hearts of potential perpetrators. The use of MDMA brought together all races and ethnicities on the British dance floor in peace and harmony, an unprecedented phenomena in world history. But since the drug war tells us to fear psychoactive medicine rather than to understand it, we completely ignore that lesson, thereby ignoring a treatment modality that could actually do something to decrease mass shootings (and to decrease alcoholism and depression for that matter). Thus in addressing mass shootings, America is like a nation which is trying to end the scourge of headaches but which has dogmatically renounced the use of aspirin as a means of doing so.
Holy Big Pharma substances prescribed by doctors. Typically addictive, and considered a moral duty to take every day of one's life. (compare with evil drugs)
Any foreign politician of whom the American president does not approve. This label is generally applied in order to shore up stateside support for an invasion, since there's nothing that Americans love to hate quite so much as a drug dealer -- one of those evil people who has the gall to actually sell plant medicines to consenting adults.
The idea that there are basic rights that government cannot abridge, like the right to access the plants and fungi that grow at our very feet. America was under natural law from the writing of the Declaration of Independence until 1914, when the Harrison Narcotics Act first criminalized a plant.
Nietzsche convinced most philosophers that western culture is subconsciously directed by Christian motives, that our laws, mores and folkways are, to this day, influenced by unacknowledged Christian precepts and impulses. Yet most of these same philosophers are oblivious to the fact that the Drug War is the prime example of what Nietzsche was talking about. For the war only makes sense in light of certain religious presuppositions. It is not a self-evident truth that we should forswear psychoactive plant medicine. It is rather a tenet of faith that we should do so, an idea first maintained in explicitly religious form by Christian Science Founder Mary Baker Eddy, and then foisted on Americans in 1914 by racist politicians in the name of public health. Absent this religious bias, a free and scientific country would surely be motivated to learn everything it can about every psychoactive substance in the world, especially with an eye toward establishing safe use guidelines and suggestions for novel use
Drug demonized by racist American politicians who insist that the world accept alcohol as its one-and-only go-to drug for relaxation and self-transcendence, notwithstanding the fact that the poppy has been used responsibly for millennia by other cultures. Thus Americans travel overseas to burn poppy plants under the cover of preventing American addictions -- failing to realize that by this same logic, the Islamic world could come to America to burn down our grape vines and breweries. Of course, if America really wanted to fight addiction, they would be worried about the 1 in 8 American males and 1 in 4 American females who are addicted to Big Pharma anti-depressants, but such drug use is invisible to Drug Warriors as long as the money it generates is enriching the Fortune 500. Oh, did I mention: Famous opium users included Marcus Aurelius, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson.
Why do drug warriors call it overprescribing when a doctor prescribes daily painkillers, yet have no problem with the daily prescription of so-called "maintenance meds" like antidepressants? It's not out of health concerns, since most of the SSRIs and SNRIs now on offer were never even tested for long-term effects, making their long-term use inherently dangerous. One can only conclude that society has a sort of Christian Science revulsion about the use of painkillers. They seem to violate the "no pain, no gain" ethos of the western world. I say this not in praise of synthetic painkillers, for which nature has many better alternatives, but rather to point out that our judgments about "drug" use are not rational, but rather shaped by the esthetic preferences of a capitalist society, one still unconsciously informed by Christian values despite our conscious rejection of such motivation. And so when the DEA flags a provider for overprescribing, they are in the business of enforcing an esthetic preference about what constitutes the good life (namely, drug-free sobriety and patience with one's lot in life). They are not cracking down on any objectively defined malpractice; they are rather cracking down on a philosophy of life that is at odds with the aesthetics of the stealth Christian Science that informs the drug war.
Partnership for a Drug-Free America
Drug War propaganda agency behind the most mendacious advertisement of all time: the Christian Science ad campaign known as "This is your brain on drugs," which has bamboozled generations of Americans by associating brain damage with the use of plant medicines of which politicians disapprove. The irony of the campaign is that the brain fogging to which the ad refers is most likely to come from the use of Big Pharma's highly addictive anti-depressants and benzodiazepines, whereas many illegal substances, including psychedelics, cocaine and morphine, are well-known for providing mental clarity, so much so, that the Air Force has required its pilots to use what the drug warrior would derisively refer to as "speed" on certain vital missions.
Contemptuous word for police. Conservatives berate radicals for using this term, failing to realize that their own drug war created the contempt that they decry. No one would demonize police for protecting women and orphans from robbery and murder but when the police are put in charge of a vicious drug war sharia that seeks to deprive human beings of mother nature's plant medicines, then it's to be expected that those who enforce such laws will be treated contemptuously. In short, if you want police to be respected, start by ending America's unprecedented war on psychoactive plant medicines.
Enforcement arm of the American Psychiatric Association, to ensure its monopoly in providing psychopharmacological therapies. Its chief enforcement technique: arresting anyone who dares possess the plants of which American politicians disapprove.
Prisons would be the ideal place to "teach empathy" through the strategic therapeutic use of entheogens and pseudo-entheogens such as psilocybin and MDMA respectively. But this is one of the many potential blessings of so-called "drug use" that drug warriors dogmatically ignore in order to keep us fearing such substances rather than learning to use them wisely and for the benefit of humanity. This demonization campaign has the added benefit, from the point of view of racist drug warriors, of disproportionately incarcerating disliked minorities who, for various social and economic reasons, are far more likely to be locked up when we criminalize the substances in question.
In a "Punky Brewster" biography, Punky looks back with half-apologetic fondness on her experiences with mushrooms. It's as if she knows that she should denounce such evil drugs, yet she simply can't bring herself to bad-mouth that wonderful afternoon of using mushrooms with her friends in a meadow full of butterflies. One of her friends from that era of experimentation then makes a telling comment: He explains how the group experimented with a whole host of substances during their early adulthood -- even crack cocaine -- and yet were careful to never use one substance repeatedly for fear of addiction. He then quickly adds that, "That, of course, is no excuse."
Really? Why not?
This shows the power that drug war ideology exerts over Americans. What is Punky's friend apologizing for, after all? He used psychoactive substances rationally. The answer, of course, is that drug warriors want Americans to fear psychoactive substances, not to learn how to use them wisely as Punky's friends did in the nineties. Punky's friend intuits this drug-warrior imperative of demonizing psychoactive plant medicine and so feels compelled to add a disclaimer after his confessions, stating that their drug use was "still wrong" (don't ask him how), despite the fact that they used the substances wisely and so came away only with fond memories of their forbidden escapades.
Christian Science process whereby addicts and alcoholics are taken off of all godsend psychoactive substances, in conformance with the religious doctrines of Mary Baker Eddy -- with hypocritical exceptions made for highly addictive Big Pharma meds like anti-depressants.
Religion of the Drug War
To prove that a mindset constitutes a religion, we need only enumerate the religious tenets that it presupposes: i.e., those beliefs that it holds as a matter of faith rather than of logically or scientifically established fact. The Drug War (along with the 12-Step get-togethers that we may call its church) presupposes the following religious tenets (religious, again, in that they are debatable propositions rather than self-evident truths).
1) Sobriety is good in and of itself.
Response: Sober individuals kill themselves every day. They are often angry and unkind. They are often victims of a traumatic past that keeps their minds running in tragically confined circles, blinding them to the world of multi-colored possibility outside of their dreary hamster cage. Meanwhile, what we westerners disdainfully dismiss as "inebriation" can bring about 1) mental focus, 2) a vivid appreciation of mother nature, and 3) a sense of oneness with one's former enemies.
2) We don't need "drugs."
Response: This statement is so far from being common sense that it would be unintelligible to many long-time denizens of the medicinally endowed rainforest, had not most of them been driven out of their spiritual and actual homes long ago by the drug-warrior west in the name of material progress. It makes sense only when we presuppose the pejorative definition of "drugs" foisted upon humankind by racist politicians beginning in 1914, according to which there are two kinds of psychoactive substances in the world: blessed scientific meds created by Big Pharma and awful drugs created by Mother Nature.
3) "Drugs" are crutches.
Response: The idea that drugs are crutches presupposes that the medical world has something on offer that is NOT a crutch as psychiatry defines that term, and that claim is demonstrably false, despite the scientistic pretensions of Big Pharma, which claims to have targeted specific brain chemicals to cure depression once and for all. This, as it turns out, is scientifically untrue (see Robert Whitaker), but the very claim raises a philosophical question, for even if it were actually "true" in some limited technical sense, what does the medical community consider to be a "cure" for depression? Am I cured when I stop complaining and get on with a mediocre life as a dutiful capitalist consumer, or am I cured when I begin seeing deep into nature and finding my place in the universe with wide-open eyes? In this connection, we must remember that psychiatric "wonder cures" like lobotomy and lithium were considered wonderful, not because they brought about self-actualization in patients, but because they made patients more "manageable." It was the healthcare industry that was applauding when Antonio Egas Moniz won the Nobel Prize for his use of lobotomy, not the patients.
4) We must trust a higher power.
Response: This supposed "truth," that the troubled mind needs a higher power, may just be the natural result of following the tenets listed above. If a troubled mind renounces all of the medicines that Mother Nature offers for mood therapy, then perhaps there is no solace left for the emotionally frazzled individual other than a "higher power," just as the victim of a bike accident would need to acknowledge the need for a doctor were he or she to renounce the use of Band-Aids. It might even be said that the purpose of the other three religious tenets mentioned above is to make sure that the 12-step participant is FORCED to rely on this higher power, rather than to maximize his or her own powers with the help of plant medicine.
Not that the two approaches are mutually exclusive, of course. Some of us believe in a higher power that actually sanctions the use of the plant medicine that he-she-or-it has created for us. (God himself said it was good, after all, we reason.) Unfortunately for us, the god of the 12-step program is a drug warrior. He-she-or-it tacitly signs off on all of modern America's historically unprecedented prejudices about psychoactive plant medicines and presumably judges us accordingly.
The DEA's attempts over the years to ban the religious use of psychoactive substances makes explicit what has always been implicit in the Drug War: that it is a war of religion. It seeks to outlaw those ways of "being in the world" which make the Christian capitalist uneasy. Those who use such substances in the Pan American Drug War can be tellingly likened to the Catholics of 16th-century England who had to hide their religious practices for fear of having their lives ruined by their religious opponents. This is one reason why the drug war has such staying power: because those who have safely and effectively used criminalized substances, now or in the past, are in no hurry to come forward -- except in disingenuous contrition during an election campaign.
American president whose ultra-violent "Drug War" created the Drug War movie genre and provided the plot for thousands of television cop shows for half a century, meanwhile ruining the lives of minorities and depriving millions around the world of godsend cures by criminalizing and otherwise preventing mere scientific research on the substances of which politicians disapprove.
One of the many Big Pharma meds that the hypocritical drug warrior will never complain about, even though these pills are addictive and targeted at youngsters. See also anti-depressants and benzodiazepines, which the hypocritical drug warrior approves of while yet demonizing plant medicines that were given to humankind by God himself in the Book of Genesis.
Psychiatrists speak of self-medication as the worst possible sin, yet this is a self-serving verdict in the age of the psychiatric pill mill. When Sigmund Freud found himself depressed and unable to perform the prodigious amount of work that would eventually lead to his self-fulfillment in life and his worldwide fame, he did not ask a friend to treat him with the theoretical cures of psychotherapy: he began self-medicating with cocaine, which he found to be a godsend for his depression. What's more, he was later able to give up the drug without feeling the need to write a tell-all narrative in which he blamed cocaine for all the evils in his life. Yet in my personal experience, I can tell you that those who insist on such real cures in the course of psychotherapy will be pegged as "the addictive type." Psychiatry has to label them as such, for to acknowledge their right to such real medicine would be a violation of drug war religious views, which consider sobriety to be the ne plus ultra of emotional states, maintaining the fantasy Christian Science viewpoint that folks like Robin Williams could be even better Robin Williamses had they but foresworn this evil thing called "drugs."
One might think that the drug warriors were put off by the addictive potential of Robin Williams' drug use, but it's surely a hypocritical concern in a country where 1 in 4 American women are required to take Big Pharma's habit-forming meds every single day of their life.
This is why I am always a little disgusted whenever I'm watching TV with a westerner who raves about the great acting of Robin Williams. For nine times out of ten, that same Williams fan is in favor of laws whose goal is to jail any Americans who seek to "go for the gold" in the way that Williams (or Freud) did.
It may be objected that the benefits I ascribe to the use of psychoactive medicines are speculative, but that's the whole point. Drug law has criminalized and otherwise discouraged research in this area, leaving us with nothing but speculation about the way that psychoactive medicines could be used for the benefit of humanity rather than being as scapegoats for every social problem in the books. However, the contemporary research that has been done on drugs like psilocybin, MDMA and LSD -- combined with an uncensored look at the historic use of psychoactive plant medicine by individuals and society -- naturally prompts us to consider tantalizing syllogisms such as the following:
Proposition 1: Ayahuasca creates new neural pathways in the brain.
Proposition 2: Alzheimer's disease involves the blocking or degrading of neural pathways.
Conclusion: Ayahuasca should be investigated as a potential treatment for Alzheimer's patients.
Proposition 1: Psilocybin can inspire a feeling of universal brother and sisterhood in the user.
Proposition 2: The world is on the brink of nuclear disaster because of dogmatic enmity between people of different religions, ethnicities and social systems.
Conclusion: Psilocybin should be investigated for its potential in making the world friendlier.
A recent primer on contemporary research in this area, at least when it comes to psychedelic medicine, may be found in the book Psychedelic Medicine: the healing powers of LSD, MDMA, Psilocybin and Ayahuasca. The book contains a collection of interviews performed by the author, Dr. Richard Louis Miller, with a variety of drug 20th- and 21st-century drug researchers, including Stanislav Grof (LDS), Rick Doblin (MDMA), and Amanda Feilding (ayahuasca).
There are few books on the therapeutic use of cocaine and opium, since materialist science, in lockstep with drug war ideology, tacitly insists that such drugs can have no therapeutic value whatsoever. Yet this assumption only makes sense because materialist science can only envision cures that are "one-size-fits-all" and which do not induce a state of obvious excessive empowerment in the user, thereby violating the Christian Science ethos of "no pain, no gain." Moreover, modern drug warriors completely ignore the positive therapeutic role that the mere anticipation of, say, cocaine or opium use can provide for a soul burdened by excessive introspection or moodiness. Before Thomas de Quincey took up the counterproductive habit of daily opium use to combat physical pain (thereby psychopharmacologically negating much of the medicine's novel uplifting effects), his life was enriched by the non-addictive weekend use of opium to ensure that he derived maximum esthetic pleasure from the opera. It was this anticipation of a weekend filled with esthetic joy that turned the hitherto humdrum weekday life of Thomas into a joyous time, not the drug itself, but the anticipation of its intermittent use.
Americans are aware of the role of Russia in impacting US elections, but they fail to recognize that the Drug War steals elections for law-and-order candidates by charging drug-war opponents (i.e., Christian Science heretics) with felonies that remove them from the voting rolls. This was the undisguised reason for which Nixon called for a war on drugs. He was not interested in educating "users" about safe practices to improve their health; he was interested in removing his political enemies from the voting rolls. That's why he punished mere drug possession as a felony, not a misdemeanor. A misdemeanor charge was pointless since it would leave the troublemaker on the American voting rolls.
This election theft is all the more ominous in an ideologically divided country in which a mere thousand votes can swing a state, perhaps even a presidential, election. Someone should finally ask, how much of the survival of the drug war is down to the strategic sidelining of the drug war opposition thanks to felony statutes that were custom-made for that very purpose, to keep racist "law-and-order" candidates at the helm?
the drug problem
The problem that exists by default when we ignore the causal factors of poverty, ignorance and the black market. By focusing on substances (the hated "drugs") rather than social problems and ignorance, conservatives can avoid fixing social problems while yet being able to demonize their hated opponents as drug users. Meanwhile, liberals can medicalize the problem by insisting that "drug users" get help. Both liberals and conservatives ignore social causes. Both ignore the fact that "drugs" have been used responsibly by other cultures for millennia, many have been crucial in religion, and that many American heroes used substances that we now demonize and criminalize, in violation of the natural law upon which America was founded.
There is no drug problem. Or if there is, it is the problem of Big Pharma addicting 1 in 4 Americans to mind-fogging antidepressants that conduce to anhedonia, many of which are harder to kick than heroin. But we ignore that kind of "drug problem" entirely. What further proof do we need that "drugs" are just a political scapegoat, a whipping boy for politicians who have to blame something -- but are loath to blame social arrangements -- including the drug war itself, which encourages dangerous drug use by criminalizing safe alternatives and by demonizing substances rather than understanding them and teaching about them. Meanwhile it makes a rational understanding of drugs impossible by lying about them in "frying pan" ads and censoring any instances of "drug" use by major religions or by heroes of the past (like Marcus Aurelius, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Sigmund Freud... etc.).
The Overview Effect
In Peter Ward's "The Consequential Frontier," the author regrets the fact that only 1% of the world's population can afford to experience what Frank White called "the overview effect," the humbling epiphany said to be encountered by those who see the earth from outer space. What Ward fails to realize is that, like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, we all have the power to attain this therapeutic state of mind at any time we wish with the use of the psychoactive substances that "scientific" America has outlawed. So, while Americans may claim to desire cosmological transcendence, they have what Richard Lewontin might call "a prior commitment," not to materialism in this case, but rather to the anti-scientific project of substance demonization known as the Drug War.
This is your brain on drugs
Perhaps the most mendacious American ad campaign of all times. It has bamboozled generations of Americans into believing the Christian Science lie that Mother Nature's plant medicines will fry your brain. The irony is that there are drugs out there that will truly fry your brain by changing your brain chemistry for the worse, but those drugs are legal anti-depressants and they are made by Big Pharma, not by Mother Nature. SAMPLE SENTENCE: "I thought Prozac was working great, until I went to my own parents' funeral, that is, and suddenly realized to my horror that I was feeling nothing at all: THAT was my brain on drugs, ladies and gentlemen, Big Pharma drugs -- whereas Benjamin Franklin used opium and Sigmund Freud used cocaine to SHARPEN their intellects, not to dull them."