Odds and Ends

bullet image Andres Oppenheimer A turning point in the U.S. drug war

“This puts the United States in an awkward position in respect to its drug war export policy,” says John Walsh, a drug expert with the Washington Office on Latin America, a group that supports pot legalization. “The United States is going ahead with a policy that is quite different from what it tells other countries to do.”

It’s a policy decision that is likely to have a big impact in Latin America, where many countries are debating their own drug legalization laws.

bullet image Drug Agents Use Vast Phone Trove, Eclipsing N.S.A’s – NY Times

The government pays AT&T to place its employees in drug-fighting units around the country. Those employees sit alongside Drug Enforcement Administration agents and local detectives and supply them with the phone data from as far back as 1987.

bullet image Andrea Barthwell Watch — Here she sells her misguided and wrong-headed advice to grieving parents.

Barthwell said families must focus on raising drug-free children, not managing drug use. She advocates families using random drug testing to prevent use.

“It comes to your taking a look at exactly how you set up your household to support a non-drug using norm,” she said, “because you have the most efficacy with your young people, more than any other institution of society, in helping them reach the age of 18 without ever having used tobacco, alcohol or any other drug, based upon the behaviors that you support and allow in your own household.

“If you have a liquor cabinet at home, and you are worrying about whether your child will die of a heroin overdose, pour the liquor down the drain tonight, and don’t bring another bottle home.”

Barthwell lashed out at Gov. Pat Quinn about recent medical marijuana legislation and linked marijuana use with other drugs.

“While I think that heroin is the problem that’s killing your young people, marijuana is the problem that the state … that’s creating an expansion of this epidemic, and I’m so, so terribly ashamed of and angry with our governor for not having had the courage to turn aside the medical marijuana bill.”

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