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Internet Drug Game Could Save Lives and Money

Roblimo posted more than 13 years ago | from the modest-proposal-in-the-tradition-of-Jonathan-Swift dept.

It's funny.  Laugh. 401

The war on drugs is expensive, and, like most wars, deadly. But it looks like it isn't going to go away any time soon. With that as a given, why not let those who want to wage war on drugs do it in an online gaming environment? The cost of setting up the servers for "Drug Czar" would be lots less than the cost of all those street arrests, border interdictions, and air intercept missions in Peru and Colombia. And, best of all, no one would get hurt.

It could be a wonderful game, with shoot-em-up segments, sim-style strategy, morbid scenes of decayed inner-city neighborhoods, jut-jawed cops and Federal agents, droopy-drawered street drug vendors, and plenty of other colorful characters. Add in politicians, TV preachers, Colombian kingpins, middle-aged parents trying to keep their kids on the straight and narrow plus a bunch of furtive teenage drug experimenters, and you'd have roles in this MUD-variant for everyone who is interested in the drug war -- from either side.

Some players' roles would be predetermined. The U.S. government's drug policy chief would obviously get the Drug Czar role. George W. Bush would play the President. Congressmen, Senators, and agency heads could also mirror their real-life selves. A few taxpayers might whine about these officials getting paid to play games, but isn't the drug war nothing but a silly game anyway? And if it must be played, shouldn't it be played in a virtual environment where keeping a non-violent drug offender in prison doesn't cost taxpayers $20,000 or more per year, and lives aren't ruined or lost?

You can even argue that this game would be the most effective anti-drug policy the government could possibly have. If, indeed, video games have the potential to turn young people into killers, then hollow-faced, chronically sick game avatar junkies constantly searching for a high "by any means necessary" should steer plenty of kids onto the straight and narrow.

There are other drug-dealing games out there, but they don't have the scope, power, and visual ingenuity it will take to wean government drug warriors (not to mention people on the lucrative "dark side" of the fight) away from the non-virtual version. "Drug Czar" needs to be truly overwhelming, a game so vast that only the government can afford to produce it and make it freely available to players all over the world.

How much would all this cost to design and set up? $10 million? $20 million? Even a billion dollars would be a trifle compared to the cost of the offline version. And if it was an Open Source project (I'm sure SourceForge would be happy to host it, especially if the government kicked in a little pocket change to help with server maintenance), I'll bet volunteers from all over the world would help with development.

But remember, U.S.government is of the people, by the people, and for the people, so this isn't going to happen unless you write your elected representatives to tell them that you understand how much fun they are having with their war on drugs, and that you don't want want to take that pleasure away from them but would like them to stop playing it in real life and move it onto the Internet, where it would be less dangerous and more fun than the current version -- and probably at least as effective.

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Boy am I glad I live in Europe (1)

hurin (63) | more than 13 years ago | (#271748)

Here we don't have a war on drugs. I wouldn't even know how to get arrestet for smoking pot (I don't). But so what. Even without a war on drugs our drug related problems are no bigger than yours.

I don't know if you guys in the US realice this. But over here your justice system is the subject of ridicule, not respect.

Re:"Modest" is hardly the word (2)

Enry (630) | more than 13 years ago | (#271751)

At least he's not Jon Katz.

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (1)

singularity (2031) | more than 13 years ago | (#271758)

As others on this thread have pointed out, things like tobacco, alcohol, and skydiving all fit the category that you have described.

As with anything, drugs *in moderation* can be a socially acceptable thing.

I am sure that drugs have torn many a family apart, but I am also just as sure that alcohol has torn even more apart.

Legalize, tax, and regulate.

Make it illegal to do stupid things while under the influence.

There are examples out there of how legalized drugs can work.

It already exists. (1)

MoOsEb0y (2177) | more than 13 years ago | (#271759)

www.edrugtrader.com

The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes sens (1)

Kha0S (5753) | more than 13 years ago | (#271765)

What on Earth have you been smoking Roblimo? What makes you think that the War on Drugs is nothing more than a silly game? For the millions of people whose families have been torn apart through the destructive nature of drugs, trivializing their plight is hardly sensitive is it?

Yes, the War on Drugs is expensive, but that's because drugs are so addictive that people can't seem to stop taking them. It takes a firm commitment on the part of the US for us to make any progress, and indeed progress has been made over the last few years, with the rates of drug use amongst high schoolers dropping each year. Suggesting that this is is a waste of time is tantamount to saying that these children should be taking drugs!

If we let up in any way, the rampant use of drugs will be seen to be accepted, and children, always willing to try new things, will invariably become addicted to the filthy wares peddled by the drugmongers outside schools and playgrounds. And if you think this would never happen in your lovely suberb, think again. Already the latest drug to hit our youth, ecstacy, is striking hardest in white, middle class areas where drug addiction and the downwards spiral was previously unknown.

The only danger is sending out the wrong message. Drugs kill, and anyone advocating their use is little better than a killer.

Oh come on (4)

Kha0S (5753) | more than 13 years ago | (#271767)

No, the war on drugs is expensive because there's money to be made off of it by our nations politicians and their croneys. This nation has a habit of declaring "war" on the most mindless shit in order to drum up public support. Since drugs are an emotionaly charged topic they get draged up around election time every year.

Are you really this paranoid about your Government? Whilst the X-Files was fairly enjoyable to watch, it has to be remembered that it was a work of fiction, and not a documentary on the secret workings of those in power.

Drugs are an emotionally charged subject because they kill people. It's as simple as that. Guns are also an emotionally charged subject because they kill people.

Fundamentaly the Drug problem represents a choice that this country must make. The people clamor for the government to "protect" them from this menace, but how?

Quite simply by ensuring that sentances are tough enough to make people think twice. People like Rockerfeller tried, but various liberals have been attempting to thwart such valiant efforts, making the penalties disproportional to the crime.

Singapore doesn't have hardly any drug use after all. So much for those that say harsh punishments don't work.

In short, you must choose between your freedom as it currently exists, or a drug free society.

I want to be free to raise my children without having to have them exposed to drugs. Simple as that.

Someone's already doing it... (1)

Magus311X (5823) | more than 13 years ago | (#271768)

in an online gaming environment

pr0paganda is supposedly releasing this with their site debut.
-----

almost offensive (1)

galore (6403) | more than 13 years ago | (#271769)

this story is almost offensive. maybe instead of making fun of america's "war on drugs" as a journalist you should take the time to educate your readers. if the kids who are here are told the truth and given facts about drug use, then they will grow up and elect officials who will pass fair legislation. by the way, here's a really interesting letter by john gilmore (of the EFF) on the "emergency re-sentencing of ecstasy" called for in february: http://www.toad.com/gnu/ecstacy-sentencing.html [toad.com]

are you fucking kidding? (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 13 years ago | (#271771)

this is NO way to stop the drug war in the US (or anywhere).

I honestly believe that the best way to tackle the drug war would be to legalize it.. Put strict taxes on all drugs (except Marijuana) and sell them OTC.

The fairy tale that if it were legalized everyone would do it is false. People are going to do it one way or the other, just b/c it would be decrimilized does not mean it will be used more often!

I truly believe that a good majority of drug use is harmless. I really believe that if we were to put it under govt control a lot of the gangs, violence, etc would diminish..

DISCLAIMER:
If you don't agree w/me, please do not reply to this message. I know that plenty of people do not share my opinion on this subject, and I don't share yours, so don't bother.

Let's hope for a better America.

Re:It's easy to stop the war on drugs (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 13 years ago | (#271772)

I'm sorry but that is just false.

just b/c the media portrays REAL LIFE (even if you don't like to believe it) does NOT mean it will impact the rest of the population.

Did people in the 60s take drugs b/c they watched movies or TV shows about it? NO!

I did not start smoking pot b/c I watched someone else do it, or b/c I was pressured by my peers. I did it b/c I wanted to try it and see what it was like.

Plus, I could name tons of movies and tons of video games that have absolutely nothing to do w/drugs, does it matter? NO!

Re:are you fucking kidding? (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 13 years ago | (#271773)

nope, b/c it isn't a drug that I deem harmful enough (moreso than tobacco or alcohol) to be heavily taxed.

Re:are you fucking kidding? (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 13 years ago | (#271774)

yep, take a look at marijuana, lsd, and ecstacy. Three VERY inexpensive drugs to manufacture (ecstacy being like .04 a pill to produce, $10 -> $30 to purchase)

Re:are you fucking kidding? (1)

Si (9816) | more than 13 years ago | (#271787)

If you don't agree w/me, please do not reply to this message. I know that plenty of people do not share my opinion on this subject, and I don't share yours, so don't bother.

Translation: I am totally closed-minded, and do not wish to enter into debate. I am right and you are wrong.

Re:What? (1)

JohnnyX (11429) | more than 13 years ago | (#271790)

Is this new for nerds? Stuff that matters? Is it in any way new? If anything I think this article will only illustrate the ENORMOUS divide in techie culture between the pro-drug and strictly businesss geeks. See flaming replies to this for more details . . .

News for nerds may be dubious, but stuff that matters is definite. When free speech is curbed in the name of the Drug War, when privacy is being eroded in the name of the drug war, and when your stuff can be taken, without due process, in the name of the Drug War, it becomes Stuff that Matters.

Yours truly,
Mr. X

...bah...

Re:Bias on Slahdot yet again . . . (1)

JohnnyX (11429) | more than 13 years ago | (#271791)

I'm sorry, I guess I must have halucinated all those Nancy Reagan commercials where she had some slogan or other like just "Just say 'no' to drugs. Yeah, It couldn't possibly have started during the Reagan/Bush administration in response to the dramatic increase in Coke traffic during the eighties. The first drug czar couldn't possibly have been appointed before Clinton took office. And a politician must be on drugs, and/or liberal to support the policies in place when they took office if the majority of the public supports them, for good or for ill.

Next time you use a word like Bias, look up the definition first.


The Reagan-era commercials were annoying as hell, but the "War on Drugs" started with Nixon's re?-election campaign. Drugs were actually getting a lot of societal acceptance, but Nixon was able to strike some fear into the soccer Mom set and get elected.

The boondoggle has spiraled out of control under all subsequent administrations, regardless of party.

Yours truly,
Mr. X

...and they wonder why I'm a Libertarian [lp.org] ...

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (2)

elmegil (12001) | more than 13 years ago | (#271800)

Let me get this straight.

Cops killing and destroying the lives of innocent people (aka "asset forfeiture", see http://www.november.org/essay1.html [november.org] for some more along these lines), drug dealers killing each other and other innocent people, insane amounts of money corrupting government and law enforcement, is all justifiable "collateral damage" to prevent a relative handful of abusers from killing themselves?

Oh, wait, I forgot. Since our justice system is so overburdened that it can't provide justice (and actually punish people who hurt/maim/kill other people, drunk drivers for example), we have to assume that it never would work even with the source of the overburden (nonviolent crimes being prosecuted with higher priority than typical murder and assault cases) removed.

I really suspect this is a Troll, too bad it's moderated up as "insightful", given that it's SO un-insightful.

All you have to do is look at our attempt to prohibit alcohol consumption for a beautiful example of what is wrong with "the War on Drugs". Deaths due to poisoned product and gang war, as well as corruption of all kinds, escalated amazingly during prohibition, and most of those factors faded out after re-legalization of alcohol. People who just wanted to provide a product and make money became legitimate businessmen, in a regulated industry. Deaths still occur due to alcohol, but they are a significantly smaller percentage of the population than during prohibition, and reforms to have mandatory sentencing for things like alcoholic manslaughter would do a lot more to keep us safe than mandatory sentencing for a pot smoker caught in his own home.

The primary thing that was left over after the end of prohibition, unfortunately, was the money and corruption, and if you don't think that money helped buy prohibitions of other things to keep the money flowing to the mob and such, you're the one smoking something you shouldn't.

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (2)

elmegil (12001) | more than 13 years ago | (#271801)

Hell, families are torn apart because Daddy's doing the college-age babysitter, but that doesn't mean we're going to make sex illegal any time soon.

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (1)

ethereal (13958) | more than 13 years ago | (#271814)

The only danger is sending out the wrong message. Drugs kill, and anyone advocating their use is little better than a killer.

Well, tobacco, alcohol, sex, skydiving, and driving too fast can kill you too - are all proponents of those things "killers"? It's a little simplistic to say "Drugs are bad, you shouldn't do drugs, mmmmkay?". Like any other choice in your life, drugs can have bad or good consequences.

I agree that kids shouldn't be doing drugs, but that's because

  • as with many other choices, society generally feels that kids aren't capable of making fully-considered choices about drugs (plenty of adults are like this too, but I digress)
  • drugs could harm kids developmentally

But I really don't care at all if the adults next door choose to partake in drugs in the privacy of their own home. Now if they're mugging people to support their habits, then that mugging should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law, but that's a separate issue. It's true that families are torn apart by drugs, but on the other hand many of those families are torn apart because Daddy's in prison on drug charges, not because of any real breakdown of the family. If there were sufficient education and support services for drug addicts in the U.S., most of those broken families wouldn't have to be broken. The quickest way to decrease demand in the U.S. would be to spend half of the "war on drugs" money on treatment rather than prisons, police property seizures (oh wait, that's revenue not an expense :), and shooting down missionaries in Peru.

Children won't automatically get addicted to drugs any more than they automatically get addicted to alcohol, cigarettes, or sex. The rampant use of alcohol is widely accepted in our society, but people still don't let kids drink, do they? (OK, some do, but we've already got laws about that.)

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (1)

Zico (14255) | more than 13 years ago | (#271819)

I believe that X is not physically addictive, but it can be psychologically addictive. It's very physically harmful, at least if you consider having the neurons in your brain destroyed to be harmful, which I would think and hope most people at Slashdot would.


Cheers,

Dope Wars (3)

Jethro73 (14686) | more than 13 years ago | (#271822)

Dope Wars [dopewars.com] : The ultimate drug game. Buy and sell, make a profit. Nobody has to die (you can run from the police rather than shooting), and you can even play it on a Palm Pilot [cnet.com] .

Jethro

Reminds me of the Star Trek episode... (4)

CokeBear (16811) | more than 13 years ago | (#271827)

Reminds me of the Star Trek episode where two planets are fighting a virtual war, and the "casualties" have to report to places to be neatly killed. Would this be the same idea? Would people killed in the game have to die?

Smokedot.org (4)

CokeBear (16811) | more than 13 years ago | (#271828)

Really good implimentation of SlashCode, and really good stories about the drug war at SmokeDot [smokedot.org]

(sigh) (2)

BilldaCat (19181) | more than 13 years ago | (#271833)

This isn't even funny. Work on it.

The Dark Side of the War on Drugs (1)

SEWilco (27983) | more than 13 years ago | (#271843)

A game is fine, but after webcams in real drug-dealing areas start getting fed into sims the next step would be to have gun-toting waldoes with "DEA" painted across their torso running around in real life.

SimChicago (1)

SEWilco (27983) | more than 13 years ago | (#271844)

So feed South Chicago [msn.com] into a map generator and start playing.

Will I be allowed to sell my BFG on eBay?

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (5)

ajs (35943) | more than 13 years ago | (#271866)

Yes, the War on Drugs is expensive, but that's because drugs are so addictive that people can't seem to stop taking them.

The only danger is sending out the wrong message. Drugs kill, and anyone advocating their use is little better than a killer.

Let's just get this clear: drugs kill. Drugs like alcohol kill every day. We don't make alcohol illegal (thus forcing the creation of a shadowy underworld and black market), we punish those who use it irresponsibly. Is alcohol addictive? Oh yeah! Just ask anyone who's gone through alcohol DTs....

Now, what would happen if we implemented restrictions on drugs (turning your back and saying, "you can never do this" is hardly an effective restriction)? Well, look at the Netherlands. Look at Belgium.

These are countries with a crime rate that make most 4-person midwest towns seem like downtown L.A. Why? Are these deeply moral people who cannot be tempted by the evils of marajuana and psychadelic mushrooms? Nope. They are simply, creating a legal vehicle for recreational drug use. What a shock. It turns out that the Netherlands (which has allowed Marajuana in "coffee shops" since the 70s) actually has a lower cocain and heroin addiction rate than the rest of Europe as well. After all, if you can get some recreational drugs legally, why would you go off and use something that makes you a criminal?

The "advocating their use is little better than a killer" line is just a little too over-the-top. Advocating the use of ANY substance without appropriate warnings is irresponsible, but certainly not "little better than a killer".

A friend of mine once suggested (not offered) that I try raw opium. He told me the risks, and I opted out. I think he's a heck of a lot better than a killer.

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (1)

Steve B (42864) | more than 13 years ago | (#271873)

The fact that this is showing up as "(Score:4, Interesting)" rather than "(Score:-1, Troll)" suggests that the drug problem is worse that we thought.
/.

Innocent people die all the time in the WoD (2)

xtal (49134) | more than 13 years ago | (#271874)

Nobody has ever published (that I know of) any statistics on the number of people killed as a direct result of WoD enforcement (Cops, Dealers, your mistaken guy on the freeway, the bad raids, etc), and indirectly (the pothead that gets stabbed doing his time) relative to the actual number of people that die because of drug consumption. The way the WoD goes on, drugs are a huge scourge on the face of humanity, but the last time I looked, even the most evil of drugs (crack) killed only a few thousand people in the entire USA (Pop ~ 300e6). (Pot has killed nobody, ever) (Deaths from driving under the influence excluded, alcohol IS legal, so this is indirectly condoned by the state). Cigarette deaths number in the hundreds of thousands.

My point is this: Why is this such a international incident when I suspect this is a much more common occurance than you might expect?

Freedom isn't without responisbility. That means responsibility for your own actions - in a truely free society, you should be allowed to destroy your own life just as you should be allowed to better it. If you want the state to run your life, then be up front with it rather than beating around the bush like the USA is doing - I'm sure you could more efficiently manage a prison or police state if you're up front about it.

(for the sarcasm impared, you should have on your peril-sensitive sunglasses)

Cmon Katz, (2)

Illserve (56215) | more than 13 years ago | (#271882)

This was a Star Trek episode. :)

errrr oops, sorry Rob :) (2)

Illserve (56215) | more than 13 years ago | (#271883)

I skimmed it quickly and my brain must have automatically filled in the word Jon Katz for the author slot. I must have forgotten to disble the paperclip.

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (2)

Spyky (58290) | more than 13 years ago | (#271884)

rant() {

You have travelled down the slippery slope to reach the conclusion that "the drug war is a waste of time" equals "children should be taking drugs".

I for one, think that the war against drugs has been incredibly ineffective at its stated purpose (keeping people from using drugs) and incredibly effective at killing lots of people and generally being an economic drain. Billions of dollars are spent on the drug war, and the result is artifially raising the price of illegal drugs, and therefore creating periphery crime! (drug users/sellers commiting other crimes). I'd rather see a greater emphasis (more money spent) on educating people about the dangers of drugs and helping people who are addicted (rather then criminalizing them) then stopping drugs at the source. Even if the government could spend all its revenue collected from taxes on the drug war it would just have the effect of making it that much more profitable for the drug manufacturers/dealers and that much more desirable for rebellious individuals

"The only danger is sending out the wrong message." I argue that people aren't getting the message now. My friends that use drugs truly aren't aware of the dangers. The immediate effects of using a drug like ecstasy aren't visible thus they don't seem to realize the consequences. The drug war has misfocused its efforts on keeping these drugs out of their hands and not at making these drugs undesirable.

The problem is not "the drug war" but the way it is being waged.
}

Spyky

Maybe it's just me... (1)

mbroggy (58548) | more than 13 years ago | (#271885)

(And I know this is likely to be modded down...not something I'm looking for but also not a huge blow to my life in any sense)

...but how is this news?

This is little more than a tirade, neither "News for Nerds" nor "Stuff that matters". Yes, drugs are a problem and yes, the war on drugs does suck large amounts of money for little perceived benefit. So what's the article about? Making a game of the whole situation?


And how would that help? It's not as if something constructive was posted, or any real facts or figures were quoted. No nod was given to the strides that have been made in this 'war', including money spent and even lives lost. It's not that much of a game that it can be reduced so simply.

I don't know if this was a personal article or based on some real news item, but I guess I assumed the main stories on Slashdot were a little more relevant as the byline "News for Nerds. Stuff that matters." attests. This article makes me wonder if we'll start seeing stories like "Humans should eat food to survive", "Driving over the speed limit is dangerous and illegal" or "Lying is bad".

Yeah, I'm over-generalizing, but I figured the article deserved it. Nothing against Roblimo (believe me), but there's a difference between news and musing opinions.

You just watched... (1)

jakeblue (62815) | more than 13 years ago | (#271887)

...Traffic, didn't you?

It's all a game and the gov't is losing.

Personally I think we should be treating addicts, not locking them up.

Re:are you fucking kidding? (2)

BorgDrone (64343) | more than 13 years ago | (#271888)

I completely agree with you, The US isn't a free country if you can't even decide for yourself if you want to poison your body.
---

It's easy to stop the war on drugs (4)

iceT (68610) | more than 13 years ago | (#271891)

Appearently, we need to create a video games and a movies about people NOT taking drugs, and we'll be all set.

Just a note... (2)

selectspec (74651) | more than 13 years ago | (#271895)

While am ethically in favor of legalization under the principle that it's my right to do what I wish with my own body, all of the statistics prove that the government's legal crack down on drugs has reduced drug consumption. In otherwords, while it is no solution, the war on drugs does appear to be reducing the roles of drug users.

YOU can't even believe that comparison. (3)

pete-classic (75983) | more than 13 years ago | (#271901)

Of course the difference is that murder has a victim.

You seem to believe (as I do) that a secondary effect of drug use is crime (that is, crime with victims, like burglary.)

My question to you is: when has legislation EVER been effective at controlling secondary effects? EVER!?

I would speculate that prohibition on drugs has caused as much secondary crime as legalization ever could. The "war on drugs" basically created gangs. It turned safe (if depressed) housing projects into battlefields.

Money currently spent on interdiction, incarceration, and prosecution could be spent on treatment and education.

What we have to face, if we ever want to improve this problem, is that the only way to make a difference is ON THE DEMAND SIDE. We can?t stop EVERY drug sale. EVERY smuggler. In the end laws and law enforcement is a waste of effort. The drug war can only be won in the hearts and minds of potential drug users.

Now that I have said all of that, let me tell you how this affects me.

I don?t use any illegal drugs. I never have. I don?t have any reason to lie about this.

The reason that I care about this is freedom. Not the freedom to use drugs (which I think we have the right to, but as I said, this is not a right I choose to exercise) but more fundamental freedoms.

Before the ?war on drugs? the police didn?t kick the doors of private citizens? doors in on a DAILY basis. There weren?t places (like airports) where simply by being there your gave up your freedom from unreasonable search and seizure. It wasn?t okay for law enforcement agencies to confiscate your property, liquidate it, and add that money to their treasuries WITHOUT DUE PROCESS.

Ask your grandparents if, when they were your age, a police officer or sheriff?s deputy could pull you over, throw all your possessions in the street and still have his job the next day if he didn?t find anything.

We are going down the road of trading freedom for safety. It seems we might end up with neither. Do you think the streets are safer than they were forty years ago?

-Peter


Re:Hello Roblimo (1)

fprintf (82740) | more than 13 years ago | (#271905)

Nah, better if it showed up at 4:20 pm last Friday, 4/20.

:-)

Perhaps this is troll, but... (1)

Gorbie (101704) | more than 13 years ago | (#271926)

Where is the sense in this?

This is like saying that stricter gun laws is going to get guns out of the hands of criminals. By definition, a criminal is one that BREAKS the law. And it's not like Joe criminal hangs out, picks up a law book, reads through it and decides which law to break today. They have no regard for law and do what they please, like illegally owning a weapon and using it on someone.

If I were a drug dealer, why on earth would I participate in a computer game that adds to my chance of getting caught. I want to stay as anonymous as possible. I also wouldn't CARE if someone was getting hurt or if the war on drugs was costing taxpayers millions of dollars, because I am a criminal and am not paying taxes on my lucrative drug sales.

Sorry...alternative solutions to problems are always great, but how about something that would actually catch a bad guy and get them off the street.

War On Drugs is A Failure In Every Sense (2)

Carnage4Life (106069) | more than 13 years ago | (#271927)

The only danger is sending out the wrong message. Drugs kill, and anyone advocating their use is little better than a killer.

Yet another person who is venomously opposed to drugs without getting the facts. I don't know about LSD but I know for a fact that after decades of study the health risks of marijuana are still debatable and there are few if any documented fatalities related to marijuana abuse.

The same goes for MDMA which is the primary ingredient of Ecstacy which has practically no ill after effects either in the short term or in the long term. Ecstacy is one place where regulation can help because the major problem with it is that most sellers cut it with harmful drugs to either enhance its effects or to short change buyers. Pure MDMA is thus hard to find so the Ecstacy consumed by most of the raver culture is actually more harmful than it has to be.

On the other hand, alcohol and cigarettes which are legal are amongst the leading causes of death in the U.S. either directly (lung and liver related diseases) or indirectly (drunk driving and second hand smoke).

Anyway, the War On Drugs is an acknowledged failure. As large a percentage of the U.S. population uses drugs [infoplease.com] as those in countries where the usage of certain drugs is not as frowned upon [frw.uva.nl] . The only successful thing about the war on drugs is that it has enabled the government to pass laws abridging due process (various seizure laws) and circumvent the 4th Ammendment [findlaw.com] .

This response is paraphrased from an earlier response on kuro5hin.

PS: If you want to read insightful discussion on the War On Drugs, I suggest reading one of the following articles and a few of the comments posted, Why Drugs Should Be Illegal [kuro5hin.org] or More Cluelessness In The War On Drugs [kuro5hin.org] .

--

Eating Irish Babies (1)

jacks0n (112153) | more than 13 years ago | (#271931)

A modest proposal? Well, I suppose that both are satire. But Roblimo's proposal doesn't have nearly enough bite to it. (ouch).

yeah this would rock untill... (1)

Sarin (112173) | more than 13 years ago | (#271933)

some people start dealing "snow-crash".

Don't say you haven't been warned.

april's fool? (1)

Kwelstr (114389) | more than 13 years ago | (#271934)

Is this another apri's fool joke? huh

Hello Roblimo (2)

Smitty825 (114634) | more than 13 years ago | (#271935)

Hello Roblimo,

Today is April 23, 2001. This article should have appeared on April 1, 2001. Please change the timestamp.


Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (1)

pallex (126468) | more than 13 years ago | (#271951)

"What makes you think that the War on Drugs is nothing more than a silly game? "

Common sense.

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (2)

Mathetes (132911) | more than 13 years ago | (#271955)

In short, you must choose between your freedom as it currently exists, or a drug free society.

Actually, that's not really the choice either, because regardless of how the drug war is escalated, it still is not going to create a drug free society. The real choice is between having your freedom, or giving up your freedom for the warm and fuzzy feeling that you are "doing something" to stop illegal drugs.

I'll take my freedom, thank you.

Re:Reminds me of the Star Trek episode... (1)

crazy_swimmer (136348) | more than 13 years ago | (#271958)

Maybe people who get high in this game would have to be killed (or maybe taken to some central location where they can do their drugs safely and with the supervision of medical personel). Seems like a good way to round up a lot of drug users, or something...

Re:Boy am I glad I live in Europe (1)

Andonyx (137291) | more than 13 years ago | (#271959)

Don't worry pal, It's the subject of ridicule over here too. Trust Me. -Andonyx www.Andonyx.com

Re:Bias on Slahdot yet again . . . (1)

Andonyx (137291) | more than 13 years ago | (#271960)

I'm sorry, I guess I must have halucinated all those Nancy Reagan commercials where she had some slogan or other like just "Just say 'no' to drugs. Yeah, It couldn't possibly have started during the Reagan/Bush administration in response to the dramatic increase in Coke traffic during the eighties. The first drug czar couldn't possibly have been appointed before Clinton took office. And a politician must be on drugs, and/or liberal to support the policies in place when they took office if the majority of the public supports them, for good or for ill. Next time you use a word like Bias, look up the definition first. -Andonyx www.andonyx.com

Re:are you fucking kidding? (No, but you are) (2)

cosmol (143886) | more than 13 years ago | (#271976)

You can stop any crime by legalizing it. I honestly believe that the best way to tackle the war on homicide would be to legalize it.. Put strict taxes on all murder-for-hire operations and sell services at gun shops.

One little difference, drug use doen't have a non-consenting victim.

It doesn't matter whether that gang member is car-jacking me for money to buy dope from the street dealer or for money to buy dope from the neighborhood pharmacy--people under the influence of drugs are dangerous and stupid.

So are people under the influence of alcohol. People get addicted to that stuff too. Have you ever been carjacked for money to buy alcohol or tobacco? No. It's so cheap and widely available that it would make more sense to simply beg/buy some at the store.

Far out (1)

CakerX (149266) | more than 13 years ago | (#271978)

Damn, I think the dude who wrote this artitical is either a)stoned b)bummed out cause his dealer is in jail. Its a good idea for a game anyway. It won't win the war on drugs which is as usless as the prohibition. The war on drugs won't be won because there is too much money involved. Making a game out of it with all major factors included, sounds fun though. yeah and make it a bit funny too. make dealers a bit dopey, the cops fat bastards...etc...etc

It Really is a Game... (2)

vergil (153818) | more than 13 years ago | (#271980)

The war on drugs (at least in my mind) is the worst sort of self-perpetuating, interminable game.

Roblimo's game metaphor adequately describes many of the absurdities of the drug war. But let's reflect for a moment. If the war on drugs is a game, who are the winners?

- Short-sighted legislators who willingly swap constitutional liberties for "hard on crime" rhetorical jingoes such as "zero tolerance" and "mandatory minimums."

- The increasingly privatized and profitable prison industry. In some states, new prisons are welcomed with open arms as "growth industries" requiring lucrative construction contracts and hundreds of jobs for correctional staff and support personnel.

- The tabloid media, including such glossy shitrags as TIME magazine and superficial "in-depth" reporting shows like 20/20. Just think about how many hysterical articles/broadcasts these paragons of journalistic objectivity have devoted to perils of Ecstacy tainting the purity of our nation's red-blooded youth.

Sincerely,
Vergil
Vergil Bushnell

It already exists!! (1)

KaiserSoze (154044) | more than 13 years ago | (#271981)


What's up, punkazz? You wanna be l33t by selling shrooms online to other crackers (and -heads)? eDrugTrader [edrugtrader.com] is the way to go (They'll also p1mp your mom)
peace

Think of YOUR kids (2)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 13 years ago | (#271982)

Roblimo, think, if you had a daughter, and we stopped the war on drugs, as you would like to see happen. Now they are everywhere. Easy to get. All her friends do them, and despite you teaching her that they are bad for her, when she is 14 years old she cares about what her friends say, not what you say. She starts doing drugs with her friends, and they do them a lot since they are so easy to get. One night she gets high enough that she doesn't know what she is doing. She starts to have a seziure. Her friends are all high too, and they don't know what to do. They are afriad to take her to the hospital because they would get in big trouble and are in no position to drive. It doesn't matter because she is dead right there on the floor in her own vomit before they could have made it there.

And you want to make scenes like this common by making it easy for kids to get drugs? I hate you.

What you don't seem to understand is that although you were a lot smarter than most when you were in middle school, there are manny, manny kids that age who are much less intelligent. Young kids can NOT make the right decisions on their own. Thats why their parents need to keep them away from situations that could be bad for them by doing things like funding programs that make it hard for kids to get drugs.

Someday, when you have middle school age kids who aren't as smart as you were at that age, you will look back on what you wrote and realize how short-sighted you were.

Re:are you fucking kidding? (1)

dada21 (163177) | more than 13 years ago | (#271985)

Don't legalize drugs, decriminalize drugs. Don't tax drugs, because anything taxed eventually finds its way to the black market. Just let people do what they want to do to their bodies. Oh, yeah. http://www.lp.org/issues/relegalize.html

"Modest" is hardly the word (1)

streetlawyer (169828) | more than 13 years ago | (#271986)

from the modest-proposal-in-the-tradition-of-Jonathan-Swift dept.

I know Jonathan Swift. Jonathan Swift was a friend of mine. Roblimo, you're no Jonathan Swift.

LSD (1)

Fros1y (179059) | more than 13 years ago | (#271993)

The magic of a game is believing in it, so we'd better make it a convincing and stressful experience for them. Maybe some LSD before the sesssion to make them abit more impressionable ?

And why not have some random character flipping so the people in power could experience some of the reality of a columbian citizen or inner-city school teacher? I'm sure that would be enlightening for all concerned.

funny quote re: drugs (1)

enrico_suave (179651) | more than 13 years ago | (#271994)

Not sure where to attribute this (or if it's accurately reproduced...)

"The government could take away all the drugs in the world and people would spin around on their lawns until they fell down and saw God.
"

E.

Mandatory Gaming (2)

Alien54 (180860) | more than 13 years ago | (#271996)

Well, alot of these folks are not Gamers. Heck GWB even got rid of Email from the Whitehouse because of the legal ramifications.

So the only way to make this work is to make Gaming mandatory. You will put in 4 hours per day gaming. Maybe we could do it as doctors orders.

Doctor: "Here's your prescription for 4 hours of Doom per day. Later on, we'll move you up to Quake"

Check out the Vinny the Vampire [eplugz.com] comic strip

Re:politicians would be outraged... (1)

gwjc (181552) | more than 13 years ago | (#271997)

Killing the Coca plants is silly and just as deranged as the 'war on drugs'. It's as deluded as when the Americans drop paraquat on harmless pot plants. Methamphetimine and Methcathinone would just jump in to fill the void that the dead coca plants left behind.
sic semper tyrranis

Re:Bias on Slahdot yet again . . . (1)

gwjc (181552) | more than 13 years ago | (#271998)

re: "The "Drug War" is a creature of the Democratic Party, and always was, so let's skip the propaganda for once. "

That is so deluded.. how old are you?
During the Reagan/Bush Sr. years all you ever heard of was the war on drugs.. "Just say no" was brought to you by Nancy.. and as for the dumbass war on drugs - thank Richard M Nixon.. Jesus, I'm Canadian and know more about American Politics than you.. how typical. You are right about one thing though.. Conservatives are supposed to support personal choice/freedom... they just don't believe this applies to drugs/sex/abortion because they're usually really dumb people. Also, since Clinton admitted he used pot.. he should have either done his time or done something about the law.. Same goes for cokehead GWBjr

sic semper tyrannis

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (1)

gwjc (181552) | more than 13 years ago | (#271999)

Whatever idiots mod'd you up should check their brains into a repair depot.
All drugs should be legalized!
*Note! I did not say anything about childern taking drugs!
Are you insane? Alcohol is legal! It is a drug!
Do you see a lot of daycare workers giving it to children?

sic semper tyrranis!

Re:apparently... (1)

gwjc (181552) | more than 13 years ago | (#272000)

Yeah, I guess that was your point.... sorry.
Don't know how you got pointing that out mod'd up though ;)
btw antioffline.com rules, g1

Re:Innocent people die all the time in the WoD (1)

gwjc (181552) | more than 13 years ago | (#272001)

Someone mod this 1 up a couple notches..
Well said!

check out a few posts beneath you (1)

metis (181789) | more than 13 years ago | (#272003)

Good idea! Unfortunately, if you make a game called "war on drugs" you will probably be sued for promoting violent, murderous, and plain damn stupid behavior.

Makes sense?! (1)

Akardam (186995) | more than 13 years ago | (#272006)

No, the war on drugs DOESN'T make sense.

Instead of investing billions of dollars tracking down all those "illegal" druggies, let's do something a bit more creative with out money.

Legalize drugs. Every stinkin' one of them. Categorize, classify them (Which the government is good at, no?) Get together a convention of UNBIASED scientists and rate them all. Find out how much at what intervals is safe.

THEN start ladling it out. Make it so that you have to be a registered druggie. That way, you get your weekly fix, and if you start to abuse it, or if you start to fuck up because of the use, the already know where you are! Bob Q. Public, 714 Evergreen Terrace, Springfield, USA: Hasn't shown up for work in three days. Registered coke user. Hmm, we have his address, we know he's a licensed drug user, he hasn't shown up for work in three days! Let's go find him, and if he's OD'd or something, he gets a restriction on his license, or gets it suspended until he's gone through rehab.

Sound familiar? Kinda like driving. And I know from personal experience that a bad driver is just as, if not more, dangerous than a bad drug user!

And surely, for the bean counters out there, this couldn't cost much more than the war on drugs?

Now if only we could get over our ingrained predjucises about these bad, BAD drugs.

Akardam Out

Re:Innocent people die all the time in the WoD (1)

swv3752 (187722) | more than 13 years ago | (#272007)

You do realize that pot is far more cancerous than tobacco? Most pot smokers also smoke tobacco, so likely pot was no the attributed cause of death.

Re:Hello Roblimo (1)

|/rad|/oder (202635) | more than 13 years ago | (#272018)

I think you mean April 20, 2001. But you're forgiven.

Muahah (1)

Gehenna_Gehenna (207096) | more than 13 years ago | (#272022)

soo... how many points do I gett for shooting down unarmed Missionaries?

Sorry. That was tasteless

Seriously, it would be great if we could devote all our drug war resources to some sort of complex game, but we still couldn't eliminate the big drug problem.

Demand.

Until there are no customers for drugs, we will keep on spending billions on keeping the drugs away..

But this will just encourage them. (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 13 years ago | (#272023)

We all know that computer games encourage the same sort of behaviour in outside the game, amongst the players.

Give them a game like this, and the President will see start applying daft like this policies in real life.

French Toast (1)

atrowe (209484) | more than 13 years ago | (#272027)

I couldn't do it if it weren't for the drugs.

Oh sure.... (2)

canning (228134) | more than 13 years ago | (#272041)

Then prepared to get sued by some dim wit for a billion dollars.

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (2)

ReverendGraves (233320) | more than 13 years ago | (#272045)

Of course, we could try something like really implementing some serious social welfare programs to help raise some of these poorer kids out of the squalid neighborhoods that we always identify with the drug problem. Hell, we could siphon the money off of the rich white families in upper class suburbs whos kids are into the exact same stuff. Perhaps elimating the rediculously privilaged and the rediculously underprivilaed would contribute to removing this problem. But then, there's no defence contracts or military bases in that plan to make the politicians popular, rich, and powerfull.

This is half the problem, honestly -- the stereotype used as sarcasm at the beginning of this paragraph shows the true nature of the "War on Drugs." There is no war against Drugs. There is, however, a War on Class. A very large percentage of my current social group uses or abuses some form of drug... and all of us are middle-class white Americans. Sure, some live in the ghetto... college kids live where rent is cheap. Others, like myself, live in the higher-rent suburbs, because we have good, solid, and most importantly well-paying tech jobs. None of us waited until we were established in these settings to start using... the easiest place in this town to get drugs, by the way, is one of the local private universities, where - not surprisingly - the majority of students come from middle or upper class backgrounds.

So what am I ranting about? These aren't the people who get arrested. The people who are arrested en masse are the dealers and users of the slums, those who exist as a portion of the lower class, or even the Underclass -- those who exist off the public dole or completely off the public record. To see this, as well, look at the average jail terms and demographics for two drugs in particular: cocaine, and crack. Cocaine is more pure, more expensive, and generally a drug-of-choice to the upper classes... it's generally too expensive for members of the underclass. However, crack, a cocaine derivative, is dirt cheap -- which makes it attractive as a commodity to sell in the low-income areas of our cities. The last time I checked, the ratio between average jail terms for possession of crack and possession of cocaine was close to 5:1.

Maybe it's left-wing radical propaganda... but maybe it's worth investigation, too. Please don't just believe me. Do the research on your own. My facts might not be exacting... I've not watched this for a while now.

Coming soon: SimDemocracy 2001... (2)

eris_crow (234864) | more than 13 years ago | (#272047)

...Oops. We already have a simulaation of democracy installed and running. Never mind.

Eris Caffee

Yes, he is. (2)

NineNine (235196) | more than 13 years ago | (#272048)

Apparently, you could use with a quick lesson on 'sarcasm'. Here's the defintion:

Main Entry: sarcasm
Pronunciation: 'sär-"ka-z&m
Function: noun
Etymology: French or Late Latin; French sarcasme, from Late Latin sarcasmos, from Greek sarkasmos, from sarkazein to tear flesh, bite the lips in rage, sneer, from sark-, sarx flesh; probably akin to Avestan thwar&s- to cut
Date: 1550
1 : a sharp and often satirical or ironic utterance designed to cut or give pain
2 a : a mode of satirical wit depending for its effect on bitter, caustic, and often ironic language that is usually directed against an individual b : the use or language of sarcasm

Re:Oh come on (2)

NineNine (235196) | more than 13 years ago | (#272049)

I want to be free to raise my children without having to have them exposed to drugs. Simple as that.

And I want to be free to raise my childen without having to expose them to people like you. But I don't suppose that the gov't is going to start a 'War on Fundamentalist Brainwashed Zombies' any time soon. Simple as that.

Re:Just a note... (2)

NineNine (235196) | more than 13 years ago | (#272050)

So? The number of drug users may appear to have been reduced because the gov't is putting pot smokers in prison for a long, long time. You could also reduce the number of drug users by shooting each one of them in the head. I don't think that that's a very good solution, either.

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (4)

NineNine (235196) | more than 13 years ago | (#272051)

Drugs kill

Damn. I didn't know that. I should be dead by now.

Pink Floyd (1)

CyberGarp (242942) | more than 13 years ago | (#272056)

I think they said it best, Lock them away in the Fletcher Memorial and they could appear to themselves on closed circuit tv.

Re:Bias on Slahdot yet again . . . (1)

shyster (245228) | more than 13 years ago | (#272057)

The truth is, the Bush Administration is conservative -- meaning that they support individual rights and freedoms...it's quite obvious that they'll put an end to the "Drug War".

Do you honestly believe that? Would you care to wager on that? No politician or political party in their right mind would put an end to the War on Drugs. If they tried, they would be asassinated. The drug wars make a lot of people extremely happy and extremely rich. This is our substitute for large military conflicts.

Not to mention the whole family-values plan, and not wanting to appear soft on crime, etc, etc.

Re:Nonsense. (1)

shyster (245228) | more than 13 years ago | (#272058)

This doesn't even dignify a reply. Your responses are so blatantly biased and naive, that I can think of nothing to say that will change your mind. Regardless, I shall check Slashdot in a year to see the big headline about the War on Drugs coming to an end....

Re:It's easy to stop the war on drugs (2)

shyster (245228) | more than 13 years ago | (#272059)

I did not start smoking pot b/c I watched someone else do it, or b/c I was pressured by my peers. I did it b/c I wanted to try it and see what it was like.

Let me step in and play Devil's Advocate here for a moment...
Exactly how do you become curious about pot? How did you find out about it? Where did you get it? Did you smoke it alone?

Obviously, while perhaps not experiencing "peer-pressure", either cultural influences (Tv, movies, games, media) or your social group(s) were responsible for introducing pot to you. Not in a literal, "here's a joint" sense, but in the sense of letting you know what pot is and where it is available, etc. You also probably got it from a friend or acquaintance, and perhaps even smoked it with them.

Don't be so quick to judge the influencing factors on your decisions. There is (almost) always external forces at work.

Re:are you fucking kidding? (3)

shyster (245228) | more than 13 years ago | (#272062)

Don't legalize drugs, decriminalize drugs. Don't tax drugs, because anything taxed eventually finds its way to the black market.

Not to say that taxed products aren't on the black market somewhere, but tell me which is easier? Finding a black market dealer to buy your carton of cigarettes/bottle of Jack Daniel's/tank of gasoline or just buy it at your local Qwik-E-Mart? Obviously the latter, which is why it's an effective solution. Tax the products heavily (since drugs don't cost that much to actually produce), but not so heavily as to make it unreasonable to purchase. Once there's a smaller profit margin in it, the drug dealers will be put out of business the old fashioned capitalist way. Then use the tax money for rehab and education programs.

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (5)

shyster (245228) | more than 13 years ago | (#272063)

What on Earth have you been smoking Roblimo? What makes you think that the War on Drugs is nothing more than a silly game? For the millions of people whose families have been torn apart through the destructive nature of drugs, trivializing their plight is hardly sensitive is it?

How were these families "torn apart"? Is it because their loved one went to jail (a pretty common occurrence, considering half of the US's prisoners are in for drug-related charges)?
Is it because they were killed in a drug-related crime (once again, all too common. Everything from robbing a store to get money for drugs, innocent bystander shootings, or gang rivalries could fall into here)?
Or is it because they overdosed (surprisingly, not all that common relatively speaking. Especially on the softer drugs such as marijuana, which make up a large percentage of drug use, or Ecstacy, which the only "overdoses" reported so far are from heat exhaustion/dehydration from dancing too long or from other chemicals that purported to be Ecstacy. The harder drugs also cause less deaths than alcohol or tobacco, both of which are legal and noone complains about tearing families apart.)?
Drugs, in most cases, do not kill. Our nation's policies on drugs, however, do kill and cause side effects that leads to killings.

No casualties? (1)

Kj0n (245572) | more than 13 years ago | (#272064)

And, best of all, no one would get hurt.

Unless you had an adequate form of force-feedback!

Re:It is not fun. (5)

the real jeezus (246969) | more than 13 years ago | (#272069)

I blame the media.

Virtually all anti-drug people I have ever had a conversation with will spout an endless litany of lies and half-truths. Most of this 'info' comes straight from the media and is parroted by its reporters/editors on a regular basis.

Case in point: Ecstacy. Last summer a group of four people was arrested here (Gainesville,FL) for selling Ecstacy. The DEA said that the group dealt about 10,000 doses in town over the previous year. We have about 60,000 students and as many regular folks. Every article on the bust and resulting court cases used the phrase "the deadly drug Ecstacy" over and over. Near the end of the saga, towards the bottom of one article, was the total number of deaths in Alachua county due to Ecstacy or imposters: 0. Yep, nobody has died here from Ecstacy. Many people have died in other cities, but due only to imposter drugs--which didn't exist until after Ecstacy was banned--and from intentially overdosing, which people have been known to do on alcohol or their own prescriptions.

Recently there were hearings in Washington on the "Ecstacy problem" (sounds like Germany early last century...). A couple of high-school kids gave patently false testimony about being caught in the grip and it being the worst drug, yada yada. What they said has nothing to do with reality. Sure, some people become psychologically addicted to the feeling, but these kids made it seem like crack, which the user has to score & use constantly. That is 100% impossible with Ecstacy. I've only done it twice, but have been in the company of people who, IMHO, abused the fuck out of it. Their experience was nothing even close to what the kids gave testimony to in Congress. For Congress to get a fair picture, they should have interviewed Dr. Alexander Shulgin, author of PIKHAL: A Chemical Love Story [amazon.com] . Dr. Shulgin synthesized Ecstacy and hundreds of other drugs and tested them in his home with close friends--all with very few negative experiences. The negative experiences with any drug seem to happen when people don't respect the drug's power and fail to take account of their 'set' (mental state) and 'setting' (physical environment). Dr. Shulgin's essays on his life, his relationships, and his experiences are truly beautiful and, unlike the anti-drug propaganda, actually true!

You have been warned. The pols and the media are lying to you. Next time a bunch of thugs in body armor bust in to a home in your city armed with submachine guns and riot shotguns to bust the 'evil drug dealers', pay close attention. The cops always say that they have to out-arm the drug dealers, and the media concurs. Nevermind that the dealers are virtually always unarmed (except street-level crack dealers) and the media will report them as armed if any weapon is found, even locked up in the nightstand. When was the last time the cops got into a gun battle with dealers? Anywhere?

The sole purpose of the media is to write outrageous stories that sell newspapers (sorry Dr. Wilson...).



Ewige Blumenkraft!

Re:(sigh) (1)

nightfire-unique (253895) | more than 13 years ago | (#272080)

This isn't even funny. Work on it.

I don't think it was intended to be.

--
All men are great
before declaring war

Re:The War on Drugs is the only thing that makes s (2)

TGK (262438) | more than 13 years ago | (#272086)

Yes, the War on Drugs is expensive, but that's because drugs are so addictive that people can't seem to stop taking them

No, the war on drugs is expensive because there's money to be made off of it by our nations politicians and their croneys. This nation has a habit of declaring "war" on the most mindless shit in order to drum up public support. Since drugs are an emotionaly charged topic they get draged up around election time every year.

Fundamentaly the Drug problem represents a choice that this country must make. The people clamor for the government to "protect" them from this menace, but how? The United States and thousands of miles of coast line, most of which is totaly undefended. Substances move through our interior with virtualy no check on them. In order to stop the drug trade and "win" this so called "war." The US will have to secure her boarders tightly enough to stop the drug trade and police more stringently inside the boarders to stop internaly grown drugs from moving from place to place.

In short, you must choose between your freedom as it currently exists, or a drug free society.

Of course, we could try something like really implementing some serious social welfare programs to help raise some of these poorer kids out of the squalid neighborhoods that we always identify with the drug problem. Hell, we could siphon the money off of the rich white families in upper class suburbs whos kids are into the exact same stuff. Perhaps elimating the rediculously privilaged and the rediculously underprivilaed would contribute to removing this problem. But then, there's no defence contracts or military bases in that plan to make the politicians popular, rich, and powerfull.

This has been another useless post from....

Could someone get me a new party? (2)

nanojath (265940) | more than 13 years ago | (#272087)

This, uh, "editorial" took me back, oh, all of two days ago as I watched crowds of dirty, disorganized hippies play drums while the powerful forces of capitalism and western politics gathered to insure that as the Global Economy proceeded, Nice Guys would continue to finish last. And I thought, not for the first time, I want a new party. Because dimwits like the author of this fluff trifle are not representing issues that need to be addressed.

The war on drugs, which has been operating under federal control for over seventy years and has been named a war for close to forty, is a serious problem. It has resulted in the strongest, most organized criminal conspiracies the world has ever known, it has resulted in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of completely innocent people (with what the mainstream media seems bent on erroneously referring to as a "plan crash" being the latest example), it has fostered massive corruption in political, civil and military forces worldwide, costs billions annually, pours billions of dollars into corrupt governments and into the pockets of the most vicious, amoral criminals on the planet, promotes a massive, global, illegal small-arms black market, and as its primary effect has created a world where there is a higher per-capita incidence of drug abuse than when powerful stimulants and opieates were available at the retail level essentially without control, and where drugs are in general cheaper, purer, and more available than ever before.

The answers to this problem are available for the asking but they are very difficult and politically loaded. They involve attacking the roots of drug dependency, such as poverty and depression. They involve making public funding available for treatment, under the understanding that in the final analysis this will be more cost-effective than punitive expenditures. They involve allowing doctors to prescribe drugs at maintenance doses for addicts who are unwilling or unable to quit cold turkey. And yes, they involve the selective legalization of drugs, especially drugs such as marijuana, for which the social and literal costs of prohibition so clearly exceed the costs of use.

Like many similar issues a handful of self-serving, self-righteous and bigoted hypocrites (plenty of uppers and tranqs in the medicine cabinets of congress, rest assured) are steering America down an unsustainable path in the war on drugs. The majority of people know that the war on drugs is a failure but they fail to vote for reform in this issue. One reason why is the poorly articulated and badly represented forces on the anti-prohibition movement. Do us all a favor and just keep it shut: you're only making it harder for people doing real work to reform drug laws.

Aw, but all this serious shit is just too boring to bother thinking about, ain't it? Now if you actually came out with a beta version of the game, that would be funny. I always though Superfly would make a great game - gunplay, car chases, kung-fu... and of course the "Superfly" theme song (Pusher Man). Workin' jive jobs for chump change, day after day...

Ugh -- Short OT Rhetorician's rant (2)

dasmegabyte (267018) | more than 13 years ago | (#272089)

I'm sick of surreal and ironic essays written in the vein of "A Modest Proposal." For one thing, they aren't funny as a general rule (definitely not funnier than the original), and since their impact is based in their humour, they're relatively low impact. They're often very smug and tongue in cheek, a type of platform that went out with Oscar Wilde back in the 19th Century. And they never add any true insight into the issue, never clarify arguments or solidify policies and they never solve our problems. At most, they give us a quick, half hearted chuckle between deep analysis of more lurid texts on the same subject. So, in essence, they break beneficial arguments and derail the thought process with the only benefit of making the moderates who think the whole thing is a bit silly feel even more assured in their own superiority, and therefore less likely to consider a truly modest solution to the matter at hand.

But of course, since nobody who matters reads anymore, "modest proposals" really don't have any affect anybody except that said group of odd moderates who think everything is silly anyway...especially Slashdot. Where Geeks Meet to Discuss Utopian Ethics, the Ellusive Freedom of Information, the Excesses of a Free Market Economy and Them Fly Anime Bitches.

politicians would be outraged... (2)

deran9ed (300694) | more than 13 years ago | (#272101)


They'd claim it inspires people to follow the actions of drug dealers, it sends out the wrong messages to kids, etc.

Aside from that Dopewars is somewhat a base for this game, and it was recently on the news out here in NY.

Well its not like the gov is really doing much via their "War on drugs" think about that for a second. War on drugs? We can send people to the moon, rockets across mega distances, the feds can track down the people who bombed the USS Cole, but they can't win this so called "war"?

What about a pesticide to flat out kill coca leaves for the cocaine problem? Or is it because this so called war is a paper game used around election time, where most drug busts are made?

War on Drugs is a slap in the face for those who can see the underlying bs attached to it.

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apparently... (2)

deran9ed (300694) | more than 13 years ago | (#272102)

You've missed the basis of this post, if drugs were such an issue they could eradicate drugs.

Re:Makes sense?! (1)

alcmena (312085) | more than 13 years ago | (#272110)

You forgot an added bonues. If drugs were legal they can be taxed. Think of all the money that could then be poured into inner city schools if drugs were taxed.

New from Maxxis, SimGhetto (1)

tweakt (325224) | more than 13 years ago | (#272118)

Hmm... I can see it now.

Re:are you fucking kidding? (1)

martymar26 (413380) | more than 13 years ago | (#272130)

yeah that's a pretty weak cop out.

How much it would cost? (1)

volleybawler (413815) | more than 13 years ago | (#272131)



> How much would all this cost to design and set up? $10 million? $20 million?


well, add in an extra $5 billion just in case one of the drug dealers goes off on a killing spree after playing the game and some angry parents decide to sue the game company...

Re:are you fucking kidding? (1)

warmiak (444024) | more than 13 years ago | (#272137)

"Put strict taxes on all drugs (except Marijuana) and sell them OTC. "

And why not on Marijuana ? Because you are using it ?

It is not fun. (1)

warmiak (444024) | more than 13 years ago | (#272138)

"that you understand how much fun they are having with their war on drugs"

I agree that "war on drugs" is not very likely to be ever won but there is nothing funny about it.
Drugs do cost lives and for all people like you there are even greater numbers of people who do actually support this war.
Don't blame everything on politicians.

This'll work (1)

Magnum1202 (444308) | more than 13 years ago | (#272142)

Of course real-life drug dealers will want to take part in this. And the Palestinians and Israelis will play a game of Laser Tag for the Western Wall.

Bias on Slahdot yet again . . . (1)

Fearsome Badgers (444920) | more than 13 years ago | (#272143)


Funny, but the Clinton Administration conducted the "Drug War" fast and furious for eight long years -- yet Slashdot only gets around to complaining about it now that there's a conservative in office.

Gee, go figure.

The truth is, the Bush Administration is conservative -- meaning that they support individual rights and freedoms. They've got a lot of messes to clean up right now, but when they have time, it's quite obvious that they'll put an end to the "Drug War". How could they not? The "Drug War" is in violation of all their principles of freedom and individual responsibility.

The "Drug War" is a creature of the Democratic Party, and always was, so let's skip the propaganda for once.


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