Pot smokers in law school

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Vronsky
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby Vronsky » Thu Jan 06, 2011 7:42 pm

JazzOne wrote:
savagedm wrote:
JazzOne wrote:
lisjjen wrote:The more interesting question pertains to how dangerous marijuana is. Smoking marijuana is certainly bad for your health. Inhaling smoke is known to cause emphysema and lung cancer, yet I still know weed smokers who contend that smoking weed has no health consequences whatsoever. This is an absurd conclusion from some fairly intelligent individuals. Smoking can cause lung cancer, and marijuana itself may predispose individuals to psychological problems such as depression. Also, an individual's capacity to drive is probably diminished by marijuana. I don't think those risks are extreme, but what makes them so problematic is the societal perception that marijuana is harmless. There seems to be a counter belief among some circles (or willful ignorance) that you can smoke day after day, year after year, and it's never going to affect your health, your family relationships, your professional potential, etc. I wish smokers would own up to the detriments of marijuana use so we can get some sensible legislation in place. The current model is preposterous, but it is difficult to argue for change when smokers are denying the dangers of the substance. That position hurts the credibility of the legitimate arguments for legalization.


I don't post here much but saw this and felt like responding. I know you are a vehement anti-smoking dude, so I think you're a little off-track just as you point to pot-smokers who are a little off-track as well.

1. It has been said again and again here and elsewhere that alcohol is a more dangerous drug - both inherently and in terms of social effects - than marijuana. Personally I enjoy both smoking and drinking, sometimes in moderation and sometimes not. I'm just telling you the same thing anyone else could, but you can't die from getting too high. You don't get a hangover after smoking the night before, or choke on vomit. etc. etc. etc.

2. The dangers inherent in marijuana are present, but are IMO insubstantial. It is my firm belief that smoking marijuana is no more harmful than smoking paper... both are inhaling smoke, and over time exposure is not healthy for the lungs. But there is little tar in marijuana like there is in cigarettes. Furthermore, smoking out of a vaporizer reduces almost all the negative effects of inhaling smoke, since there is no smoke but only vapor. Smoking marijuana is unhealthy only because you are smoking SOMETHING, not because you are smoking marijuana itself. It would be just as unhealthy to smoke you casebook, and it is much more unhealthy to smoke cigarettes.

ETA - smoking your casebook is actually probably worse than marijuana because of the ink. my point got a little lost there....lol

3. Regarding psychological issues, there is no causal proof that marijuana induces something like depression or schizophrenia, but marijuana may speed up whatever a person is pre-disposed to, or there may merely be a correlational effect. I'm sure you're familiar with this by now - sky-diving does not make someone prone to taking risks. rather people who go skydiving are already willing risk-takers. Likewise, marijuana likely attracts individuals prone to psychological disorders such as depression, and it may exacerbate whatever is already happening. But I do not believe that marijuana is a source of psychological disorders in otherwise healthy individuals.

OTOH, I believe that alcohol can turn otherwise law-abiding individuals into harmful people. They harm others in a million ways that pot-smokers just don't do. How many stoned-driving deaths have you heard of? I'm sure there are some, but a fraction of alcohol related deaths. How about marijuana-induced domestic violence? Child-molestation or child-abuse? Date rape? the list goes on an on.

The most that can be said for marijuana is that it makes people less ambitious/more lazy. I believe this to be true.

4. the other dangers associated with marijuana are a by-product of it's criminality. I was surprised that this issue did not get more pub during the california legalization campaign. The fact is a large amount of money eventually goes to mexican drugs lords, and this contributes to social problems on both sides of the border, including illegal immigration, gun trade, and organized crime in general.

5. IMO marijuana probably does affect your ability to drive, but not in the same way that alcohol does. alcohol makes your body physically incapable of doing what it can when sober, whereas driving stoned is like talking on a phone while driving. it is a distraction, but does not affect risk-calculation or body movement significantly. in general, however, we can agree that driving stoned is not a great idea.

All this adds up to make your statement - "marijuana is one of the most dangers drugs available" - really absurd. inherently there are several drugs more dangerous... heroine, cocaine, crack, meth, oxy, LSD, ecstasy.... pretty much any other drug you can think off. including alcohol and tobacco. marijuana does not kill people from overdose.

marijuana MIGHT be the most dangerous drug because of its criminality simple because it is the most popular illegal drug, thus a huge demand, thus huge criminal networks that supply it. but this was also true during prohibition - which made an already inherently dangerous drug more dangerous because of organized crime. Marijuana is NOT dangerous - illegal marijuana is dangerous.

Finally, I'm sure this has been said before but I just wanted to say it again. Medical marijuana is absurd. I'm sure there are people who actually have advanced cancer, etc. and it does serve a purpose. but for 97% of users, "medical" is totally bogus. This is absolutely crazy because I don't need to go to my doctor with a fake back pain issue to get a presciption to buy a bottle of liquor, nor should I.

/diatribe

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mrmangs
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby mrmangs » Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:14 pm

Vronsky wrote:
I don't post here much but saw this and felt like responding. I know you are a vehement anti-smoking dude, so I think you're a little off-track just as you point to pot-smokers who are a little off-track as well.

1. It has been said again and again here and elsewhere that alcohol is a more dangerous drug - both inherently and in terms of social effects - than marijuana. Personally I enjoy both smoking and drinking, sometimes in moderation and sometimes not. I'm just telling you the same thing anyone else could, but you can't die from getting too high. You don't get a hangover after smoking the night before, or choke on vomit. etc. etc. etc.

2. The dangers inherent in marijuana are present, but are IMO insubstantial. It is my firm belief that smoking marijuana is no more harmful than smoking paper... both are inhaling smoke, and over time exposure is not healthy for the lungs. But there is little tar in marijuana like there is in cigarettes. Furthermore, smoking out of a vaporizer reduces almost all the negative effects of inhaling smoke, since there is no smoke but only vapor. Smoking marijuana is unhealthy only because you are smoking SOMETHING, not because you are smoking marijuana itself. It would be just as unhealthy to smoke you casebook, and it is much more unhealthy to smoke cigarettes.

ETA - smoking your casebook is actually probably worse than marijuana because of the ink. my point got a little lost there....lol

3. Regarding psychological issues, there is no causal proof that marijuana induces something like depression or schizophrenia, but marijuana may speed up whatever a person is pre-disposed to, or there may merely be a correlational effect. I'm sure you're familiar with this by now - sky-diving does not make someone prone to taking risks. rather people who go skydiving are already willing risk-takers. Likewise, marijuana likely attracts individuals prone to psychological disorders such as depression, and it may exacerbate whatever is already happening. But I do not believe that marijuana is a source of psychological disorders in otherwise healthy individuals.

OTOH, I believe that alcohol can turn otherwise law-abiding individuals into harmful people. They harm others in a million ways that pot-smokers just don't do. How many stoned-driving deaths have you heard of? I'm sure there are some, but a fraction of alcohol related deaths. How about marijuana-induced domestic violence? Child-molestation or child-abuse? Date rape? the list goes on an on.

The most that can be said for marijuana is that it makes people less ambitious/more lazy. I believe this to be true.

4. the other dangers associated with marijuana are a by-product of it's criminality. I was surprised that this issue did not get more pub during the california legalization campaign. The fact is a large amount of money eventually goes to mexican drugs lords, and this contributes to social problems on both sides of the border, including illegal immigration, gun trade, and organized crime in general.

5. IMO marijuana probably does affect your ability to drive, but not in the same way that alcohol does. alcohol makes your body physically incapable of doing what it can when sober, whereas driving stoned is like talking on a phone while driving. it is a distraction, but does not affect risk-calculation or body movement significantly. in general, however, we can agree that driving stoned is not a great idea.

All this adds up to make your statement - "marijuana is one of the most dangers drugs available" - really absurd. inherently there are several drugs more dangerous... heroine, cocaine, crack, meth, oxy, LSD, ecstasy.... pretty much any other drug you can think off. including alcohol and tobacco. marijuana does not kill people from overdose.

marijuana MIGHT be the most dangerous drug because of its criminality simple because it is the most popular illegal drug, thus a huge demand, thus huge criminal networks that supply it. but this was also true during prohibition - which made an already inherently dangerous drug more dangerous because of organized crime. Marijuana is NOT dangerous - illegal marijuana is dangerous.

Finally, I'm sure this has been said before but I just wanted to say it again. Medical marijuana is absurd. I'm sure there are people who actually have advanced cancer, etc. and it does serve a purpose. but for 97% of users, "medical" is totally bogus. This is absolutely crazy because I don't need to go to my doctor with a fake back pain issue to get a presciption to buy a bottle of liquor, nor should I.

/diatribe


+1000

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JazzOne
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby JazzOne » Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:20 pm

Vronsky wrote:I don't post here much but saw this and felt like responding. I know you are a vehement anti-smoking dude, so I think you're a little off-track just as you point to pot-smokers who are a little off-track as well.

You have misrepresented nearly everything I have ever posted in this thread. That's why people don't take your position seriously. Smokers refuse to address the arguments head on. I am not a "vehement anti-smoking dude." If you scroll back a page or two, you'll see that one of my stated reasons for attending law school was to advocate for the decriminalization of marijuana.


Vronsky wrote:1. It has been said again and again here and elsewhere that alcohol is a more dangerous drug - both inherently and in terms of social effects - than marijuana. Personally I enjoy both smoking and drinking, sometimes in moderation and sometimes not. I'm just telling you the same thing anyone else could, but you can't die from getting too high. You don't get a hangover after smoking the night before, or choke on vomit. etc. etc. etc.

My position does not rely on a comparison of marijuana to anything else. I will concede that alcohol is more dangerous than marijuana, and every one of my points still stands.


Vronsky wrote:2. The dangers inherent in marijuana are present, but are IMO insubstantial. It is my firm belief that smoking marijuana is no more harmful than smoking paper... both are inhaling smoke, and over time exposure is not healthy for the lungs. But there is little tar in marijuana like there is in cigarettes. Furthermore, smoking out of a vaporizer reduces almost all the negative effects of inhaling smoke, since there is no smoke but only vapor. Smoking marijuana is unhealthy only because you are smoking SOMETHING, not because you are smoking marijuana itself. It would be just as unhealthy to smoke you casebook, and it is much more unhealthy to smoke cigarettes.

ETA - smoking your casebook is actually probably worse than marijuana because of the ink. my point got a little lost there....lol

Your facts are slightly incorrect. There is far more tar in a marijuana cigarette than a tobacco cigarette, in part because joints are typically not filtered. It doesn't take a genius, though, to see the enormous amounts of resin on a used weed pipe and conclude that those resins are getting your lungs too. Regardless of whether you're inhaling smoke or vapor or any other odd chemical into your lungs, you are exposing those cells to potential carcinogens and toxins. Plus, weed smokers inhale more deeply and hold the smoke in longer, so the tar has more time to accumulate in your lungs. Regardless of whether cigarettes are worse than weed, smoking weed is harmful to your lungs and probably causative of blood cancers as well.


Vronsky wrote:3. Regarding psychological issues, there is no causal proof that marijuana induces something like depression or schizophrenia, but marijuana may speed up whatever a person is pre-disposed to, or there may merely be a correlational effect. I'm sure you're familiar with this by now - sky-diving does not make someone prone to taking risks. rather people who go skydiving are already willing risk-takers. Likewise, marijuana likely attracts individuals prone to psychological disorders such as depression, and it may exacerbate whatever is already happening. But I do not believe that marijuana is a source of psychological disorders in otherwise healthy individuals.

OTOH, I believe that alcohol can turn otherwise law-abiding individuals into harmful people. They harm others in a million ways that pot-smokers just don't do. How many stoned-driving deaths have you heard of? I'm sure there are some, but a fraction of alcohol related deaths. How about marijuana-induced domestic violence? Child-molestation or child-abuse? Date rape? the list goes on an on.

The most that can be said for marijuana is that it makes people less ambitious/more lazy. I believe this to be true.

There is no causal proof, but as you have alluded to, there is definitely a correlation. My personal experience tells me that drugs affect people's moods in significant ways, so it is not hard for me to imagine that chronic marijuana use can cause depression (or lethargy, as you concede above). That may not be a debilitating disorder, but it is a psychological detriment to using. It's also one that people, such as yourself, downplay in an effort to make marijuana seem absolutely harmless.


Vronsky wrote:4. the other dangers associated with marijuana are a by-product of it's criminality. I was surprised that this issue did not get more pub during the california legalization campaign. The fact is a large amount of money eventually goes to mexican drugs lords, and this contributes to social problems on both sides of the border, including illegal immigration, gun trade, and organized crime in general.

Agreed


Vronsky wrote:5. IMO marijuana probably does affect your ability to drive, but not in the same way that alcohol does. alcohol makes your body physically incapable of doing what it can when sober, whereas driving stoned is like talking on a phone while driving. it is a distraction, but does not affect risk-calculation or body movement significantly. in general, however, we can agree that driving stoned is not a great idea.

But how many smokers would not even concede this much? How many contend that smoking has no effect whatsoever on their operation of a two-ton weapon? That is the type of argument that bothers me because it weakens my reasonable position.


Vronsky wrote:All this adds up to make your statement - "marijuana is one of the most dangers drugs available" - really absurd. inherently there are several drugs more dangerous... heroine, cocaine, crack, meth, oxy, LSD, ecstasy.... pretty much any other drug you can think off. including alcohol and tobacco. marijuana does not kill people from overdose.

My assertion is not absurd at all, and your post actually strengthens my point. Everyone knows meth is dangerous. No on is surprised when meth leads to catastrophe. But the public perception among the youth is that those dangers don't apply at all to marijuana. They claim that it's not addictive; it's not debilitating to their reflexes; it doesn't cloud their judgment in any way; etc. That's absurd. And that mindset is widely held and perpetuated by the hip hop culture. You took my argument entirely out of context in your rebuttal. The individual harms of smoking weed may be negligible, but many people fail to acknowledge the potential long-term consequences. In my opinion, that is far more dangerous than substances which are widely known to be dangerous.


Vronsky wrote:marijuana MIGHT be the most dangerous drug because of its criminality simple because it is the most popular illegal drug, thus a huge demand, thus huge criminal networks that supply it. but this was also true during prohibition - which made an already inherently dangerous drug more dangerous because of organized crime. Marijuana is NOT dangerous - illegal marijuana is dangerous.

Legal marijuana would still be dangerous. I don't really blame conservatives for arguing against legalization because they see arguments such as "marijuana is NOT dangerous" as being entirely disingenuous. I disagree. I think smokers actually believe that nonsense.


Vronsky wrote:Finally, I'm sure this has been said before but I just wanted to say it again. Medical marijuana is absurd. I'm sure there are people who actually have advanced cancer, etc. and it does serve a purpose. but for 97% of users, "medical" is totally bogus. This is absolutely crazy because I don't need to go to my doctor with a fake back pain issue to get a presciption to buy a bottle of liquor, nor should I.

For the most part, I agree that medical marijuana is a sham. However, if it helps to remove the stigma of using marijuana, then it's probably a good thing.
Last edited by JazzOne on Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:25 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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JazzOne
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby JazzOne » Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:22 pm

mrmangs wrote:
Vronsky wrote:
I don't post here much but saw this and felt like responding. I know you are a vehement anti-smoking dude, so I think you're a little off-track just as you point to pot-smokers who are a little off-track as well.

1. It has been said again and again here and elsewhere that alcohol is a more dangerous drug - both inherently and in terms of social effects - than marijuana. Personally I enjoy both smoking and drinking, sometimes in moderation and sometimes not. I'm just telling you the same thing anyone else could, but you can't die from getting too high. You don't get a hangover after smoking the night before, or choke on vomit. etc. etc. etc.

2. The dangers inherent in marijuana are present, but are IMO insubstantial. It is my firm belief that smoking marijuana is no more harmful than smoking paper... both are inhaling smoke, and over time exposure is not healthy for the lungs. But there is little tar in marijuana like there is in cigarettes. Furthermore, smoking out of a vaporizer reduces almost all the negative effects of inhaling smoke, since there is no smoke but only vapor. Smoking marijuana is unhealthy only because you are smoking SOMETHING, not because you are smoking marijuana itself. It would be just as unhealthy to smoke you casebook, and it is much more unhealthy to smoke cigarettes.

ETA - smoking your casebook is actually probably worse than marijuana because of the ink. my point got a little lost there....lol

3. Regarding psychological issues, there is no causal proof that marijuana induces something like depression or schizophrenia, but marijuana may speed up whatever a person is pre-disposed to, or there may merely be a correlational effect. I'm sure you're familiar with this by now - sky-diving does not make someone prone to taking risks. rather people who go skydiving are already willing risk-takers. Likewise, marijuana likely attracts individuals prone to psychological disorders such as depression, and it may exacerbate whatever is already happening. But I do not believe that marijuana is a source of psychological disorders in otherwise healthy individuals.

OTOH, I believe that alcohol can turn otherwise law-abiding individuals into harmful people. They harm others in a million ways that pot-smokers just don't do. How many stoned-driving deaths have you heard of? I'm sure there are some, but a fraction of alcohol related deaths. How about marijuana-induced domestic violence? Child-molestation or child-abuse? Date rape? the list goes on an on.

The most that can be said for marijuana is that it makes people less ambitious/more lazy. I believe this to be true.

4. the other dangers associated with marijuana are a by-product of it's criminality. I was surprised that this issue did not get more pub during the california legalization campaign. The fact is a large amount of money eventually goes to mexican drugs lords, and this contributes to social problems on both sides of the border, including illegal immigration, gun trade, and organized crime in general.

5. IMO marijuana probably does affect your ability to drive, but not in the same way that alcohol does. alcohol makes your body physically incapable of doing what it can when sober, whereas driving stoned is like talking on a phone while driving. it is a distraction, but does not affect risk-calculation or body movement significantly. in general, however, we can agree that driving stoned is not a great idea.

All this adds up to make your statement - "marijuana is one of the most dangers drugs available" - really absurd. inherently there are several drugs more dangerous... heroine, cocaine, crack, meth, oxy, LSD, ecstasy.... pretty much any other drug you can think off. including alcohol and tobacco. marijuana does not kill people from overdose.

marijuana MIGHT be the most dangerous drug because of its criminality simple because it is the most popular illegal drug, thus a huge demand, thus huge criminal networks that supply it. but this was also true during prohibition - which made an already inherently dangerous drug more dangerous because of organized crime. Marijuana is NOT dangerous - illegal marijuana is dangerous.

Finally, I'm sure this has been said before but I just wanted to say it again. Medical marijuana is absurd. I'm sure there are people who actually have advanced cancer, etc. and it does serve a purpose. but for 97% of users, "medical" is totally bogus. This is absolutely crazy because I don't need to go to my doctor with a fake back pain issue to get a presciption to buy a bottle of liquor, nor should I.

/diatribe


+1000

If you really want to see marijuana legalized, we need arguments with more intellectual force. Just screaming, "but alcohol and cigarettes are worse!!!!," isn't going to cut it.

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mrmangs
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby mrmangs » Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:31 pm

JazzOne wrote:
mrmangs wrote:
Vronsky wrote:
I don't post here much but saw this and felt like responding. I know you are a vehement anti-smoking dude, so I think you're a little off-track just as you point to pot-smokers who are a little off-track as well.

1. It has been said again and again here and elsewhere that alcohol is a more dangerous drug - both inherently and in terms of social effects - than marijuana. Personally I enjoy both smoking and drinking, sometimes in moderation and sometimes not. I'm just telling you the same thing anyone else could, but you can't die from getting too high. You don't get a hangover after smoking the night before, or choke on vomit. etc. etc. etc.

2. The dangers inherent in marijuana are present, but are IMO insubstantial. It is my firm belief that smoking marijuana is no more harmful than smoking paper... both are inhaling smoke, and over time exposure is not healthy for the lungs. But there is little tar in marijuana like there is in cigarettes. Furthermore, smoking out of a vaporizer reduces almost all the negative effects of inhaling smoke, since there is no smoke but only vapor. Smoking marijuana is unhealthy only because you are smoking SOMETHING, not because you are smoking marijuana itself. It would be just as unhealthy to smoke you casebook, and it is much more unhealthy to smoke cigarettes.

ETA - smoking your casebook is actually probably worse than marijuana because of the ink. my point got a little lost there....lol

3. Regarding psychological issues, there is no causal proof that marijuana induces something like depression or schizophrenia, but marijuana may speed up whatever a person is pre-disposed to, or there may merely be a correlational effect. I'm sure you're familiar with this by now - sky-diving does not make someone prone to taking risks. rather people who go skydiving are already willing risk-takers. Likewise, marijuana likely attracts individuals prone to psychological disorders such as depression, and it may exacerbate whatever is already happening. But I do not believe that marijuana is a source of psychological disorders in otherwise healthy individuals.

OTOH, I believe that alcohol can turn otherwise law-abiding individuals into harmful people. They harm others in a million ways that pot-smokers just don't do. How many stoned-driving deaths have you heard of? I'm sure there are some, but a fraction of alcohol related deaths. How about marijuana-induced domestic violence? Child-molestation or child-abuse? Date rape? the list goes on an on.

The most that can be said for marijuana is that it makes people less ambitious/more lazy. I believe this to be true.

4. the other dangers associated with marijuana are a by-product of it's criminality. I was surprised that this issue did not get more pub during the california legalization campaign. The fact is a large amount of money eventually goes to mexican drugs lords, and this contributes to social problems on both sides of the border, including illegal immigration, gun trade, and organized crime in general.

5. IMO marijuana probably does affect your ability to drive, but not in the same way that alcohol does. alcohol makes your body physically incapable of doing what it can when sober, whereas driving stoned is like talking on a phone while driving. it is a distraction, but does not affect risk-calculation or body movement significantly. in general, however, we can agree that driving stoned is not a great idea.

All this adds up to make your statement - "marijuana is one of the most dangers drugs available" - really absurd. inherently there are several drugs more dangerous... heroine, cocaine, crack, meth, oxy, LSD, ecstasy.... pretty much any other drug you can think off. including alcohol and tobacco. marijuana does not kill people from overdose.

marijuana MIGHT be the most dangerous drug because of its criminality simple because it is the most popular illegal drug, thus a huge demand, thus huge criminal networks that supply it. but this was also true during prohibition - which made an already inherently dangerous drug more dangerous because of organized crime. Marijuana is NOT dangerous - illegal marijuana is dangerous.

Finally, I'm sure this has been said before but I just wanted to say it again. Medical marijuana is absurd. I'm sure there are people who actually have advanced cancer, etc. and it does serve a purpose. but for 97% of users, "medical" is totally bogus. This is absolutely crazy because I don't need to go to my doctor with a fake back pain issue to get a presciption to buy a bottle of liquor, nor should I.

/diatribe


+1000

If you really want to see marijuana legalized, we need arguments with more intellectual force. Just screaming, "but alcohol and cigarettes are worse!!!!," isn't going to cut it.


I was more just agreeing with his post than screaming, "but alcohol and cigarettes are worse!" I also agree with many of the points you have brought up, including that marijuana isn't exactly harmless. I don't know, however, if I agree with you that "we need arguments with more intellectual force." It seems to me that both sides of the debate are enamored with their pretheoretic intuitions on the matter. I think if marijuana is going to be legalized, it has to come with a change in public perception which exposes people to the idea that you can have a vibrant, successful society that is comprised of people who smoke pot.

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Borhas
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby Borhas » Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:32 pm

JazzOne wrote:
Borhas wrote:the thing about copyright infringement is that it is a potentially victimless crime (well, I actually wouldn't even call it a crime, more like a civil property dispute.... more like trespass than theft), I can imagine many realistic scenarios where a copyright infringement does no damage whatsoever, because the infringer was never going to purchase the product anyway. These copyright holders sue some teenager for 100 g's for having a few gigs of music on their computer.... was that teenager really going to spend 10's of thousands of dollars buying Furgi and Fifty Cent albums? course not

I don't like the current state of IP law, but your hypothetical is a complete straw man. The theft of music is not victimless even in the scenario you described. Sure, the kid wasn't going to drop $10K on music, but he might have tuned into the radio (contributing to the stations' advertising potential). Or maybe he would have paid $10 to get into a club (giving the club $10 more to hire DJs and buy music). There doesn't have to be a 1:1 correlation between the pirated music and the expected benefit to the copyright holder for there to be a victim of the theft. Pirating music makes it less likely that an individual will pay to hear that music in any context. That detracts from the profits of the copyright holder, even if the lost profit is not exactly equal to the sales price of the pirated material. The overall market for the music is damaged by unlicensed proliferation. Also, under certain circumstances, copyright infringement is a crime subject to federal prosecution. I cannot think of a single scenario wherein there is no victim to copyright infringement. Even if the there are no monetary damages, the owner of the copyright (think Gary Larson) might have a psychological aversion to the infringing use. The copyright holder might value the context in which his creation is presented more than money. You cannot claim that the copyright holder is not victimized by unlicensed use just because he could not have reaped a financial benefit for agreeing to license.



might and maybe are not actual, also, nobody changes their mind about going to a club if they have listened to the music before, in fact, I'd say that it actually increases the odds of them going to the club (or concert, show whatever) if there is more access. Live music is more about atmosphere... the more access there is the more people know what sort of shows they want to spend money on... but I digress

hypothetically speaking, there are lots of people that pay what they would on music and download music they wouldn't have paid for. There's nothing absurd about the hypo. You cannot claim a list of might or maybes are actual damages inflicted by an individual criminal. From the "victim's" perspective large numbers mean inevitable harm, but crime is (or at least ought to be) focused on the alleged criminals intentions, not the harm to the alleged victim.
Last edited by Borhas on Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby JazzOne » Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:36 pm

mrmangs wrote:I was more just agreeing with his post than screaming, "but alcohol and cigarettes are worse!"

That seemed to me to be the gist of his post.

mrmangs wrote:I also agree with many of the points you have brought up, including that marijuana isn't exactly harmless. I don't know, however, if I agree with you that "we need arguments with more intellectual force." It seems to me that both sides of the debate are enamored with their pretheoretic intuitions on the matter. I think if marijuana is going to be legalized, it has to come with a change in public perception which exposes people to the idea that you can have a vibrant, successful society that is comprised of people who smoke pot.

I agree that public perceptions have to change, but the law is often an effective vehicle for changing public perceptions. That is why I think we need more intellectual honesty in this debate. Arguing unsustainable points makes our position look weak. I would like to see targeted law suits taken up (similar to Thurgood Marshall's strategy in bringing down the segregation laws).

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lisjjen
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby lisjjen » Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:43 pm

a) are we talking about IPR or THC?
b) is there a way to condense our ideas into shorter posts? I get lost in the long posts
c) I think we're all yelling that we agree, very loudly. Weed is unhealthy - this is an accepted and acceptable risk. It's criminalization is stupid.

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JazzOne
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby JazzOne » Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:43 pm

Borhas wrote:
JazzOne wrote:
Borhas wrote:the thing about copyright infringement is that it is a potentially victimless crime (well, I actually wouldn't even call it a crime, more like a civil property dispute.... more like trespass than theft), I can imagine many realistic scenarios where a copyright infringement does no damage whatsoever, because the infringer was never going to purchase the product anyway. These copyright holders sue some teenager for 100 g's for having a few gigs of music on their computer.... was that teenager really going to spend 10's of thousands of dollars buying Furgi and Fifty Cent albums? course not

I don't like the current state of IP law, but your hypothetical is a complete straw man. The theft of music is not victimless even in the scenario you described. Sure, the kid wasn't going to drop $10K on music, but he might have tuned into the radio (contributing to the stations' advertising potential). Or maybe he would have paid $10 to get into a club (giving the club $10 more to hire DJs and buy music). There doesn't have to be a 1:1 correlation between the pirated music and the expected benefit to the copyright holder for there to be a victim of the theft. Pirating music makes it less likely that an individual will pay to hear that music in any context. That detracts from the profits of the copyright holder, even if the lost profit is not exactly equal to the sales price of the pirated material. The overall market for the music is damaged by unlicensed proliferation. Also, under certain circumstances, copyright infringement is a crime subject to federal prosecution. I cannot think of a single scenario wherein there is no victim to copyright infringement. Even if the there are no monetary damages, the owner of the copyright (think Gary Larson) might have a psychological aversion to the infringing use. The copyright holder might value the context in which his creation is presented more than money. You cannot claim that the copyright holder is not victimized by unlicensed use just because he could not have reaped a financial benefit for agreeing to license.


might and maybe are not actual, also, nobody goes to a club to buy music

hypothetically speaking, there are lots of people that pay what they would on music and download music they wouldn't have paid for. There's nothing absurd about the hypo. You cannot claim a list of might or maybes are actual damages inflicted by an individual criminal. From the "victim's" perspective large numbers mean inevitable harm, but crime is (or at least ought to be) focused on the alleged criminals intentions, not the harm to the alleged victim.

Some people go to bars or clubs to hear the music. Perhaps you do not, but some do. That's a way for them to not pay for it.

Hypothetically speaking, those people who currently download music but wouldn't pay for it, might support other venues that do pay for the music, but there is no need for them to do so because it's so easy to violate the copyright. Sure, it's all hypothetical; welcome to IP law. My point is that infringing a copyright has a harmful effect on the market for that material. Perhaps the individual effect is small, but the aggregate effect can be substantial. Also, it is really a stretch to say that harm to the victim should not be a focus of criminal law. If you shoot someone, it matters a whole bunch whether he/she dies. I understand that intention is important, but so is the harm that actually occurs. And since copyright is largely a civil issue anyway, the actual harm is really the only thing that matters.

I think the real problem is that monopoly rights should not be awarded so freely. But if our law is going to protect monopoly rights, then it is a pretty clear harm (economic or psychological) for the material to be reproduced without license.

After reading your post again, I think you're contention is mostly with statutory damages. I don't think you're really arguing that there is no harm at all to copyright infringement. If you're simply arguing that statutory damages are inequitable, then I agree completely.
Last edited by JazzOne on Thu Jan 06, 2011 9:12 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Vronsky
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby Vronsky » Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:48 pm

But comparison to alcohol and tobacco is useful. Not every potentially dangerous substance or activity is illegal. there is an undefined line that society has marked between acceptably-dangerous substances and activities and those that an unacceptably-dangerous.

alcohol and tobacco serve as markers, so by categorizing marijuana as either less or more harmful, it gives us an idea of whether or not it should be legal. If, on the other hand, marijuana were substantially MORE dangerous than those two, that would be a compelling argument against legalization.

To address a few of your points - I apologize if I mischaracterized your stance, i haven't read the whole 20 pages of this thread but thought I remembered you previously stating how harmful you think marijuana is to other people and why you would never ever do it.

As for not addressing the arguments head on, that's what i thought i was doing. I will concede your point that marijuana has more tar than tobacco by weight or volume. a quick google search led to something like 33% more tar. But this doesn't tell the whole story because no one smokes the equiv. of 4 packs of weed a day. for 1, its not economical but even if prices were lower it just doesn't make sense. getting high a second time soon thereafter the first time doesn't really do much to the user - you feel about the same. in contrast, cigarettes are a quick-hitting buzz that fades after 15 minutes. this, plus the fact that cigs are concocted to be as addictive as possible leads to chain smoking. the same cannot be said about marijuana.

if you measured the total mass or volume of tobacco vs. marijuana consumed by heavy users in the 90th percentile of their respective drug-users, i would wager that the tobacco smoker will inhale a greater mass or volume of tar than the marijuana smoker.

Also I will fully admit the effects marijuana has on my level of activity. If i get high in the morning, i'm not going to get much done that day. but the same could be said if I took 4 shots at 9 am. the fact is that almost any non-addictive drug can be used moderately or to excess. in this respect i find marijuana no better or worse than alcohol - ultimately it comes down to the self-control of the user.

but the fact that some users cannot control their alcohol use does not make alcohol illegal for everyone who enjoys to drink.

as for driving, every smoker should admit that driving high is an impairment, but i do not think it is more so than talking on the phone or eating while driving. they are all distractions - driving drunk is much more than a distraction. this is not really an argument against marijuana however - just against stoned driving.

finally, i do some of my best studying when high. it is particularly helpful if you've already covered material from a few angles, and then studying high can give you a fresh perspective or encourage arguments you hadn't though of previously. obviously all such work should be reviewed the next day sober (spelling and grammar usually suck!).

in the end i simply don't believe many of the things you say to the extent that you try to color it - ie, i can admit that it has potentially negative effects, but i dont think that there is much inherently negative about it.

Finally i do not understand your point about why legal marijuana would still be dangerous. i guess it's too much of stretch to say marijuana would not be dangerous if legalized - after all, water, vitamins, and cold medicine are obviously dangerous. but i firmly believe that 95% of the danger of marijuana comes from its criminal status.

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lisjjen
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby lisjjen » Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:56 pm

Vronsky wrote:Finally i do not understand your point about why legal marijuana would still be dangerous. i guess it's too much of stretch to say marijuana would not be dangerous if legalized - after all, water, vitamins, and cold medicine are obviously dangerous. but i firmly believe that 95% of the danger of marijuana comes from its criminal status.


OK. I guess we don't all agree. Ahem. How do I put this? Water is not an analogue to marijuana.

But cough syrup is a great example of what we're trying to say, you just used it wrong. Cough syrup is a drug, and it is dangerous. It would be dangerous rather it was legal or not. This is why we regulate it. There are, however benefits to using it, so we allow it. Kinda what we should be doing with marijuana.

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JazzOne
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby JazzOne » Thu Jan 06, 2011 9:23 pm

Vronsky wrote:But comparison to alcohol and tobacco is useful. Not every potentially dangerous substance or activity is illegal. there is an undefined line that society has marked between acceptably-dangerous substances and activities and those that an unacceptably-dangerous.

alcohol and tobacco serve as markers, so by categorizing marijuana as either less or more harmful, it gives us an idea of whether or not it should be legal. If, on the other hand, marijuana were substantially MORE dangerous than those two, that would be a compelling argument against legalization.

To address a few of your points - I apologize if I mischaracterized your stance, i haven't read the whole 20 pages of this thread but thought I remembered you previously stating how harmful you think marijuana is to other people and why you would never ever do it.

As for not addressing the arguments head on, that's what i thought i was doing. I will concede your point that marijuana has more tar than tobacco by weight or volume. a quick google search led to something like 33% more tar. But this doesn't tell the whole story because no one smokes the equiv. of 4 packs of weed a day. for 1, its not economical but even if prices were lower it just doesn't make sense. getting high a second time soon thereafter the first time doesn't really do much to the user - you feel about the same. in contrast, cigarettes are a quick-hitting buzz that fades after 15 minutes. this, plus the fact that cigs are concocted to be as addictive as possible leads to chain smoking. the same cannot be said about marijuana.

if you measured the total mass or volume of tobacco vs. marijuana consumed by heavy users in the 90th percentile of their respective drug-users, i would wager that the tobacco smoker will inhale a greater mass or volume of tar than the marijuana smoker.

Also I will fully admit the effects marijuana has on my level of activity. If i get high in the morning, i'm not going to get much done that day. but the same could be said if I took 4 shots at 9 am. the fact is that almost any non-addictive drug can be used moderately or to excess. in this respect i find marijuana no better or worse than alcohol - ultimately it comes down to the self-control of the user.

but the fact that some users cannot control their alcohol use does not make alcohol illegal for everyone who enjoys to drink.

as for driving, every smoker should admit that driving high is an impairment, but i do not think it is more so than talking on the phone or eating while driving. they are all distractions - driving drunk is much more than a distraction. this is not really an argument against marijuana however - just against stoned driving.

finally, i do some of my best studying when high. it is particularly helpful if you've already covered material from a few angles, and then studying high can give you a fresh perspective or encourage arguments you hadn't though of previously. obviously all such work should be reviewed the next day sober (spelling and grammar usually suck!).

in the end i simply don't believe many of the things you say to the extent that you try to color it - ie, i can admit that it has potentially negative effects, but i dont think that there is much inherently negative about it.

Finally i do not understand your point about why legal marijuana would still be dangerous. i guess it's too much of stretch to say marijuana would not be dangerous if legalized - after all, water, vitamins, and cold medicine are obviously dangerous. but i firmly believe that 95% of the danger of marijuana comes from its criminal status.

I agree completely with your assessment of marijuana in comparison to alcohol and cigarettes. However, that comparison was presented as a rebuttal to my position, which had nothing to do with relative harm. Instead, I was attempting to define and decipher exactly what the harms of marijuana are. As long as you're willing to admit that those harms are real, then I have no problem with your position. But I have noticed that weed smokers are rarely able to discuss the issue objectively. They usually make claims about how weed is entirely safe, and some will even argue that it's good for your body. It's as if their desire to smoke completely clouds their reason. They don't seem to be secure enough in their position to acknowledge its weaknesses.

I think the lack of information is the biggest problem. There is very little reliable data on the long-term effects of marijuana use. As long as that information is lacking, I think marijuana will be dangerous regardless of its legal status. Perhaps legalization will lead to further studies and more dissemination of information, but we're currently getting our information from MTV. I'm willing to bet that there are unknown dangers of smoking weed, particularly the type of enhanced-potency marijuana that is currently available.

lola23
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby lola23 » Thu Jan 06, 2011 9:47 pm

Definitely a lurker here but found this site on stumbleupon (the best procrastination tool ever) and thought it might be relevant. I didn't really read too many pages back but:

http://www.moleculewear.com/420-10-studies.php

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Borhas
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby Borhas » Thu Jan 06, 2011 10:33 pm

JazzOne wrote:Some people go to bars or clubs to hear the music. Perhaps you do not, but some do. That's a way for them to not pay for it.

Hypothetically speaking, those people who currently download music but wouldn't pay for it, might support other venues that do pay for the music, but there is no need for them to do so because it's so easy to violate the copyright. Sure, it's all hypothetical; welcome to IP law. My point is that infringing a copyright has a harmful effect on the market for that material. Perhaps the individual effect is small, but the aggregate effect can be substantial. Also, it is really a stretch to say that harm to the victim should not be a focus of criminal law. If you shoot someone, it matters a whole bunch whether he/she dies. I understand that intention is important, but so is the harm that actually occurs. And since copyright is largely a civil issue anyway, the actual harm is really the only thing that matters.

I think the real problem is that monopoly rights should not be awarded so freely. But if our law is going to protect monopoly rights, then it is a pretty clear harm (economic or psychological) for the material to be reproduced without license.

After reading your post again, I think you're contention is mostly with statutory damages. I don't think you're really arguing that there is no harm at all to copyright infringement. If you're simply arguing that statutory damages are inequitable, then I agree completely.


Yes to all of this

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lisjjen
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby lisjjen » Thu Jan 06, 2011 10:43 pm

JazzOne wrote:Some people go to bars or clubs to hear the music. Perhaps you do not, but some do. That's a way for them to not pay for it.

Hypothetically speaking, those people who currently download music but wouldn't pay for it, might support other venues that do pay for the music, but there is no need for them to do so because it's so easy to violate the copyright. Sure, it's all hypothetical; welcome to IP law. My point is that infringing a copyright has a harmful effect on the market for that material. Perhaps the individual effect is small, but the aggregate effect can be substantial. Also, it is really a stretch to say that harm to the victim should not be a focus of criminal law. If you shoot someone, it matters a whole bunch whether he/she dies. I understand that intention is important, but so is the harm that actually occurs. And since copyright is largely a civil issue anyway, the actual harm is really the only thing that matters.

I think the real problem is that monopoly rights should not be awarded so freely. But if our law is going to protect monopoly rights, then it is a pretty clear harm (economic or psychological) for the material to be reproduced without license.

After reading your post again, I think you're contention is mostly with statutory damages. I don't think you're really arguing that there is no harm at all to copyright infringement. If you're simply arguing that statutory damages are inequitable, then I agree completely.


+1

No such thing as a free lunch.

MSUPHL
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby MSUPHL » Sat Jan 08, 2011 12:57 am

i think this can help the "weed has more tar than tobacco argument"

http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&keywor ... ujmno10r_b

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invisiblesun
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby invisiblesun » Mon Jan 10, 2011 4:56 am

JazzOne wrote:
mrmangs wrote:
Vronsky wrote:
I don't post here much but saw this and felt like responding. I know you are a vehement anti-smoking dude, so I think you're a little off-track just as you point to pot-smokers who are a little off-track as well.

1. It has been said again and again here and elsewhere that alcohol is a more dangerous drug - both inherently and in terms of social effects - than marijuana. Personally I enjoy both smoking and drinking, sometimes in moderation and sometimes not. I'm just telling you the same thing anyone else could, but you can't die from getting too high. You don't get a hangover after smoking the night before, or choke on vomit. etc. etc. etc.

2. The dangers inherent in marijuana are present, but are IMO insubstantial. It is my firm belief that smoking marijuana is no more harmful than smoking paper... both are inhaling smoke, and over time exposure is not healthy for the lungs. But there is little tar in marijuana like there is in cigarettes. Furthermore, smoking out of a vaporizer reduces almost all the negative effects of inhaling smoke, since there is no smoke but only vapor. Smoking marijuana is unhealthy only because you are smoking SOMETHING, not because you are smoking marijuana itself. It would be just as unhealthy to smoke you casebook, and it is much more unhealthy to smoke cigarettes.

ETA - smoking your casebook is actually probably worse than marijuana because of the ink. my point got a little lost there....lol

3. Regarding psychological issues, there is no causal proof that marijuana induces something like depression or schizophrenia, but marijuana may speed up whatever a person is pre-disposed to, or there may merely be a correlational effect. I'm sure you're familiar with this by now - sky-diving does not make someone prone to taking risks. rather people who go skydiving are already willing risk-takers. Likewise, marijuana likely attracts individuals prone to psychological disorders such as depression, and it may exacerbate whatever is already happening. But I do not believe that marijuana is a source of psychological disorders in otherwise healthy individuals.

OTOH, I believe that alcohol can turn otherwise law-abiding individuals into harmful people. They harm others in a million ways that pot-smokers just don't do. How many stoned-driving deaths have you heard of? I'm sure there are some, but a fraction of alcohol related deaths. How about marijuana-induced domestic violence? Child-molestation or child-abuse? Date rape? the list goes on an on.

The most that can be said for marijuana is that it makes people less ambitious/more lazy. I believe this to be true.

4. the other dangers associated with marijuana are a by-product of it's criminality. I was surprised that this issue did not get more pub during the california legalization campaign. The fact is a large amount of money eventually goes to mexican drugs lords, and this contributes to social problems on both sides of the border, including illegal immigration, gun trade, and organized crime in general.

5. IMO marijuana probably does affect your ability to drive, but not in the same way that alcohol does. alcohol makes your body physically incapable of doing what it can when sober, whereas driving stoned is like talking on a phone while driving. it is a distraction, but does not affect risk-calculation or body movement significantly. in general, however, we can agree that driving stoned is not a great idea.

All this adds up to make your statement - "marijuana is one of the most dangers drugs available" - really absurd. inherently there are several drugs more dangerous... heroine, cocaine, crack, meth, oxy, LSD, ecstasy.... pretty much any other drug you can think off. including alcohol and tobacco. marijuana does not kill people from overdose.

marijuana MIGHT be the most dangerous drug because of its criminality simple because it is the most popular illegal drug, thus a huge demand, thus huge criminal networks that supply it. but this was also true during prohibition - which made an already inherently dangerous drug more dangerous because of organized crime. Marijuana is NOT dangerous - illegal marijuana is dangerous.

Finally, I'm sure this has been said before but I just wanted to say it again. Medical marijuana is absurd. I'm sure there are people who actually have advanced cancer, etc. and it does serve a purpose. but for 97% of users, "medical" is totally bogus. This is absolutely crazy because I don't need to go to my doctor with a fake back pain issue to get a presciption to buy a bottle of liquor, nor should I.

/diatribe


+1000

If you really want to see marijuana legalized, we need arguments with more intellectual force. Just screaming, "but alcohol and cigarettes are worse!!!!," isn't going to cut it.


IMO the government should err on the side of increased freedom, so the burden of justification should be placed on those wanting to outlaw something, not those wanting to legalize it. Marijuana prohibition was not in effect for the majority of human history, and marijuana was a widely used drug historically (largely for painkiller/anti-anxiety purposes). It was also outlawed for pretty poor reasons. A justifiable reason to outlaw a drug is that access to the drug causes substantial harm to the individual and/or causes substantial negative externalities, either of which outweigh any benefit derived from allowing people access to the drug. It's a perfectly reasonable and "intellectually forceful" argument to compare the harm/externalities of a drug to other drugs that our government has chosen to allow. Since research has shown that marijuana is inherently less harmful and has fewer negative externalities than both tobacco and alcohol, the onus to provide a justification is on those who want to keep it illegal.

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ResolutePear
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby ResolutePear » Mon Jan 10, 2011 7:14 am

invisiblesun wrote:
JazzOne wrote:
mrmangs wrote:
Vronsky wrote:
I don't post here much but saw this and felt like responding. I know you are a vehement anti-smoking dude, so I think you're a little off-track just as you point to pot-smokers who are a little off-track as well.

1. It has been said again and again here and elsewhere that alcohol is a more dangerous drug - both inherently and in terms of social effects - than marijuana. Personally I enjoy both smoking and drinking, sometimes in moderation and sometimes not. I'm just telling you the same thing anyone else could, but you can't die from getting too high. You don't get a hangover after smoking the night before, or choke on vomit. etc. etc. etc.

2. The dangers inherent in marijuana are present, but are IMO insubstantial. It is my firm belief that smoking marijuana is no more harmful than smoking paper... both are inhaling smoke, and over time exposure is not healthy for the lungs. But there is little tar in marijuana like there is in cigarettes. Furthermore, smoking out of a vaporizer reduces almost all the negative effects of inhaling smoke, since there is no smoke but only vapor. Smoking marijuana is unhealthy only because you are smoking SOMETHING, not because you are smoking marijuana itself. It would be just as unhealthy to smoke you casebook, and it is much more unhealthy to smoke cigarettes.

ETA - smoking your casebook is actually probably worse than marijuana because of the ink. my point got a little lost there....lol

3. Regarding psychological issues, there is no causal proof that marijuana induces something like depression or schizophrenia, but marijuana may speed up whatever a person is pre-disposed to, or there may merely be a correlational effect. I'm sure you're familiar with this by now - sky-diving does not make someone prone to taking risks. rather people who go skydiving are already willing risk-takers. Likewise, marijuana likely attracts individuals prone to psychological disorders such as depression, and it may exacerbate whatever is already happening. But I do not believe that marijuana is a source of psychological disorders in otherwise healthy individuals.

OTOH, I believe that alcohol can turn otherwise law-abiding individuals into harmful people. They harm others in a million ways that pot-smokers just don't do. How many stoned-driving deaths have you heard of? I'm sure there are some, but a fraction of alcohol related deaths. How about marijuana-induced domestic violence? Child-molestation or child-abuse? Date rape? the list goes on an on.

The most that can be said for marijuana is that it makes people less ambitious/more lazy. I believe this to be true.

4. the other dangers associated with marijuana are a by-product of it's criminality. I was surprised that this issue did not get more pub during the california legalization campaign. The fact is a large amount of money eventually goes to mexican drugs lords, and this contributes to social problems on both sides of the border, including illegal immigration, gun trade, and organized crime in general.

5. IMO marijuana probably does affect your ability to drive, but not in the same way that alcohol does. alcohol makes your body physically incapable of doing what it can when sober, whereas driving stoned is like talking on a phone while driving. it is a distraction, but does not affect risk-calculation or body movement significantly. in general, however, we can agree that driving stoned is not a great idea.

All this adds up to make your statement - "marijuana is one of the most dangers drugs available" - really absurd. inherently there are several drugs more dangerous... heroine, cocaine, crack, meth, oxy, LSD, ecstasy.... pretty much any other drug you can think off. including alcohol and tobacco. marijuana does not kill people from overdose.

marijuana MIGHT be the most dangerous drug because of its criminality simple because it is the most popular illegal drug, thus a huge demand, thus huge criminal networks that supply it. but this was also true during prohibition - which made an already inherently dangerous drug more dangerous because of organized crime. Marijuana is NOT dangerous - illegal marijuana is dangerous.

Finally, I'm sure this has been said before but I just wanted to say it again. Medical marijuana is absurd. I'm sure there are people who actually have advanced cancer, etc. and it does serve a purpose. but for 97% of users, "medical" is totally bogus. This is absolutely crazy because I don't need to go to my doctor with a fake back pain issue to get a presciption to buy a bottle of liquor, nor should I.

/diatribe


+1000

If you really want to see marijuana legalized, we need arguments with more intellectual force. Just screaming, "but alcohol and cigarettes are worse!!!!," isn't going to cut it.


IMO the government should err on the side of increased freedom, so the burden of justification should be placed on those wanting to outlaw something, not those wanting to legalize it. Marijuana prohibition was not in effect for the majority of human history, and marijuana was a widely used drug historically (largely for painkiller/anti-anxiety purposes). It was also outlawed for pretty poor reasons. A justifiable reason to outlaw a drug is that access to the drug causes substantial harm to the individual and/or causes substantial negative externalities, either of which outweigh any benefit derived from allowing people access to the drug. It's a perfectly reasonable and "intellectually forceful" argument to compare the harm/externalities of a drug to other drugs that our government has chosen to allow. Since research has shown that marijuana is inherently less harmful and has fewer negative externalities than both tobacco and alcohol, the onus to provide a justification is on those who want to keep it illegal.


They did prove it was harmful enough to be outlawed. Haven't you ever heard of reefer madness? :D

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JazzOne
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby JazzOne » Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:08 am

invisiblesun wrote:IMO the government should err on the side of increased freedom, so the burden of justification should be placed on those wanting to outlaw something, not those wanting to legalize it. Marijuana prohibition was not in effect for the majority of human history, and marijuana was a widely used drug historically (largely for painkiller/anti-anxiety purposes). It was also outlawed for pretty poor reasons. A justifiable reason to outlaw a drug is that access to the drug causes substantial harm to the individual and/or causes substantial negative externalities, either of which outweigh any benefit derived from allowing people access to the drug. It's a perfectly reasonable and "intellectually forceful" argument to compare the harm/externalities of a drug to other drugs that our government has chosen to allow. Since research has shown that marijuana is inherently less harmful and has fewer negative externalities than both tobacco and alcohol, the onus to provide a justification is on those who want to keep it illegal.

Unfortunately, that's not how our legal system works. The onus is always on the proponents of changing the law. And since marijuana is illegal according to federal law and a majority of states' laws, we have a major burden to overcome. Those who favor prohibition of marijuana have no burden whatsoever since the status quo means they win. The arguments presented here have achieved only limited success in decriminalizing marijuana, which is why I think we need more intellectually forceful arguments. We not only have to convince the legislatures that we're right, but we also have to convince them that this issue is important enough to take action. A simple comparison of the harms of marijuana and other legal drugs will not suffice. We have to go the extra step of showing that the current policy violates civil rights. Thus, I propose targeted law suits on behalf of sympathetic plaintiffs attacking the constitutionality of the current ban on marijuana. A comparison of marijuana's dangers might be a part of that argument, but the comparison alone cannot achieve the goal we desire.

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ResolutePear
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby ResolutePear » Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:13 am

I'm going to start a grassroots campaign to ban cowboy boots because there is a higher instance of gout and it hurts the ponies when you kick them with it.

That's right. Ponies.

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sundance95
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby sundance95 » Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:31 am

ResolutePear wrote:I'm going to start a grassroots campaign to ban cowboy boots because there is a higher instance of gout and it hurts the ponies when you kick them with it.

That's right. Ponies.

And what about the kids? :lol:

Just wanted to respond to a couple points in this thread. First, if one gets a mmj card, that information is protected by doctor-patient confidentiality. The only way that information could 'leak' is if one's doctor decides he doesn't much like his license to practice and blabs anyway, or the cardholder tells people about the card to people outside the privilege (e.g., friends, etc).

Someone was wondering if marijuana was covered under the commerce clause-I understand it is, as a result of Raich v. Gonzales. Raich's argument was that marijuana grown in California to be consumed in California by California patients has no effect on interstate commerce. SCOTUS, in it's infinite wisdom, disagreed. If anyone has too much time on their hands, go read that opinion-its extremely interesting to see the jurisprudential pretzels the justices twist themselves into to arrive at that conclusion. The conservatives voted FOR medical marijuana and the liberals AGAINST it, because the liberal wing was afraid of undermining the expansive view of the commerce clause that they've established, and the conservatives wanted to undermine that view.

EDIT: Typo
Last edited by sundance95 on Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:36 am, edited 1 time in total.

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ResolutePear
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby ResolutePear » Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:35 am

sundance95 wrote:
ResolutePear wrote:I'm going to start a grassroots campaign to ban cowboy boots because there is a higher instance of gout and it hurts the ponies when you kick them with it.

That's right. Ponies.

And what about the kids? :lol:

Just wanted to respond to a couple points in this thread. First, if one gets a mmj card, that information is protected by doctor-patient confidentiality. The only way that information could 'leak' is if one's doctor decides he doesn't much like his license to practice and blabs anyway, or the cardholder tells people about the card to people outside the privilege (e.g., friends, etc).

Someone was wondering if marijuana was covered under the commerce clause-I understand it is, as a result of Raich v. Gonzales Raich's argument was that marijuana grown in California to be consumed in California by California patients has no effect on interstate commerce. SCOTUS, in it's infinite wisdom, disagreed. If anyone has too much time on their hands, go read that opinion-its extremely interesting to see the jurisprudential pretzels the justices twist themselves into to arrive at that conclusion. The conservatives voted FOR medical marijuana and the liberals AGAINST it, because the liberal wing was afraid of undermining the expansive view of the commerce clause that they've established, and the conservatives wanted to undermine that view.


Commerce clause. It's a bitch.

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sundance95
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby sundance95 » Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:38 am

ResolutePear wrote:Commerce clause. It's a bitch.

Indeed. Someone mentioned that regulating marijuana ought to fall under the rights delegated to the states under the 10th Amendment. I agree, but unfortunately the 10th Amendment is as dead as any part of a 'living' document can be.

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JazzOne
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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby JazzOne » Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:41 am

sundance95 wrote:
ResolutePear wrote:I'm going to start a grassroots campaign to ban cowboy boots because there is a higher instance of gout and it hurts the ponies when you kick them with it.

That's right. Ponies.

And what about the kids? :lol:

Just wanted to respond to a couple points in this thread. First, if one gets a mmj card, that information is protected by doctor-patient confidentiality. The only way that information could 'leak' is if one's doctor decides he doesn't much like his license to practice and blabs anyway, or the cardholder tells people about the card to people outside the privilege (e.g., friends, etc).


I think I have raised a credible objection to the doctor-patient privilege in this context. I don't think the law will ever recognize a confidentiality privilege when the purpose of a conversation is to violate the law. That doctrine certainly applies to attorney-client privilege, so I am assuming it applies to the doctor privilege as well. I could be wrong, and I have not taken health law. I'm just throwing it out there that privileges are not iron-clad like they said on LA Law or whatever. Courts can determine when to recognize a privilege.

sundance95 wrote:Someone was wondering if marijuana was covered under the commerce clause-I understand it is, as a result of Raich v. Gonzales Raich's argument was that marijuana grown in California to be consumed in California by California patients has no effect on interstate commerce. SCOTUS, in it's infinite wisdom, disagreed. If anyone has too much time on their hands, go read that opinion-its extremely interesting to see the jurisprudential pretzels the justices twist themselves into to arrive at that conclusion. The conservatives voted FOR medical marijuana and the liberals AGAINST it, because the liberal wing was afraid of undermining the expansive view of the commerce clause that they've established, and the conservatives wanted to undermine that view.

That sounds like a fair reading of Raich from my recollection as well.

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Re: Pot smokers in law school

Postby ResolutePear » Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:42 am

sundance95 wrote:
ResolutePear wrote:Commerce clause. It's a bitch.

Indeed. Someone mentioned that regulating marijuana ought to fall under the rights delegated to the states under the 10th Amendment. I agree, but unfortunately the 10th Amendment is as dead as any part of a 'living' document can be.


That's the thing though,

You can scream states' rights all day and night - but it works both ways. You'll always have state courts willing to strip rights as a cost to the greater good. The feds had to step in and this is the system we have now.

You can't cut the cake and choose your piece, too.




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