A quiz to test whether you are politically left or right

It should be noted that Catallaxy is not solely a libertarian blog but “libertarian and centre-right”. This seemed to matter, indeed irritate some people, when I expressed my own serious misgivings about the legalisation of marijuana in Colorado. My main point, although not expressed as well as it might – but it is an old point of mine – was that the media will throw the book at someone depending on their politics. It has nothing to do with the issue itself, only the person involved. Rob Ford they don’t like so the book gets thrown. Nigella Lawson they do like so she is given a free pass.

In an era of possibly the most blatant and disturbing presidential malfeasance in history, it is Chris Christie, an almost-Democrat in every respect other than brand name, who was pilloried for what is a minor misdemeanor but not for a Republican. As I used to point out in 2012, it was a miracle that Mitt Romney had led such a blameless life that the normal slangs and arrows of American politics could generally evade him. Christie should be a reminder just how hard it will be to get a non-Democrat elected anytime soon. Not absolutely impossible, but unbelievably and unnecessarily hard.

As far as illegal drugs go, there is a case to be made on both sides but it is hardly cut and dried. And whatever you might say about grass and hash, to use the terms of my youth, you would be a lot more reluctant to say the same about heroin and cocaine, or at least you should be but who knows. LSD anyone? Any or all of these sold in high school tuck shops or across the road? No lines anywhere laid down by the community? Not for me, but maybe for you.

Anyway, here is a quiz that says it can assess your political orientation between left and right. It’s been put together by Time Magazine and who knows how normalised. But I worked out at 89% conservative based on questions, some of which I found perfectly transparent but answered them as I would in any case have done, and some for which I was surprised about the way the system gauged my left-right orientation. It’s not serious, just for fun and no one’s going to know except for you.

This entry was posted in Cultural Issues. Bookmark the permalink.

478 Responses to A quiz to test whether you are politically left or right

  1. “Because it is no more risky than alcohol. Because it is a personal risk. Predicating cost on socialised medicine invokes the precautionary principle and assumes we’re not free. Because the costs will be less than the costs of the drug war now.”

    You’re assumption is based on the idea that alcohol is a low risk substance, which simply isn’t true, the damage alcohol can do to the human body is enormous. Second to that, no risk is purely personal, the incredible harm done to others in society by those using legal and illicit drugs is not only dreadful but quantifiable and impossible to ignore.

    Also, whatever gave you the impression we are free? There is no such thing, freedom itself comes with a responsibility, the responsibility to defend that freedom for yourself, making the very idea of freedom as illusionary as it is unobtainable. All philosophically based argument aside, the fact that we have things such as socialised medicine and collective taxes to fund them require all of us to act in the better interests of self and others as whole. It also gives the others as a whole the right to say what they will and will not tolerate in regards to what the others as a whole are paying for.

    Also, the medical bills for tobacco and alcohol far exceed the pittance we’re paying to execute the war on illicit drugs, in-fact, the cost in police and judicial man-hours dealing with alcohol, domestic violence and mental illness far out-weighs the cost of the illusionary “War on Drugs”.

  2. jupes

    There is no such thing, freedom itself comes with a responsibility, the responsibility to defend that freedom for yourself, making the very idea of freedom as illusionary as it is unobtainable.

    LOL. You’re going to go well here Sed.

  3. Dan

    jupes
    #1154538, posted on January 17, 2014 at 8:31 am
    It’s asymmetric, for the three reasons outlined above – quality, inelasticity and the profit motive in the black market.

    Dot you may have a point if there is only a small difference in the price, however if the price drops to 1% of the current price, then more people would take drugs. Even more so if they made legal.

    Bullshit. Glaxo-Smith Kline aren’t going to sell a gram of coke for $3. And I would expect that if any government legalised drugs it would be so heavily regulated, including price, that such a scenario would never happen. The importation of currently illicit drugs would still remain illegal, so the black market could never compete on price.

    Maybe you would in end in a situation of ethical Vs unethical drugs. Fairtrade drugs for the downtrodden South American farmer!

    However, your basic assertion that cheap, licit drugs will lead to masses of people getting high is alarmist bullshit. High at work, illegal. Operation of a motor vehicle under the influence, illegal. People will make the same choices available to them now if drugs were legalised and suffer the consequences for bad decisions.

  4. .

    Risk is not defined by damage alone. Risk is damage as a function of chance.

    It isn’t a one shot, deterministic process. People can choose to stop drinking so much.

    Second to that, no risk is purely personal, the incredible harm done to others in society by those using legal and illicit drugs is not only dreadful but quantifiable and impossible to ignore.

    Yes it is. Whatabout skin cancer? Should I be fined for not wearing sunscreen? I know I should but I hate the shit. What about the cost of that – highest rate of that int he world. Not even a warning?

    Also, whatever gave you the impression we are free?

    We’re not, we should be.

    the responsibility to defend that freedom for yourself, making the very idea of freedom as illusionary as it is unobtainable

    Marxist bullshit.

    the fact that we have things such as socialised medicine and collective taxes to fund them require all of us to act in the better interests of self and others as whole

    No, it gives me an incentive to have private healthcare and to legally minimise my taxes to the fullest extent possible.

    In fact it is immoral for anyone who realises how paying taxes enables such inefficiency and violation of human rights, to err in their duty by failing to minimise their tax bill.

    Also, the medical bills for tobacco and alcohol far exceed the pittance we’re paying to execute the war on illicit drugs

    False. They are paid by their users many times over.

    You are only counting Government expenditure as a cost – this is simply incorrect.

    If the War on Drugs is “illusory” please give a memo to Kevin Andrews – as a Shadow Minister, released a report “The Winnable War on Drugs”

  5. Empire Strikes Back

    Also, the medical bills for tobacco and alcohol far exceed the pittance we’re paying to execute the war on illicit drugs

    The taxes collected from the legal sale of tobacco far exceed the medical costs. Even arch enemy of freedom and nanny statist, Professor Simon Chapman, confirmed this in 1997. It’s old news. Legal drug taxes are a net gain to the state.

    Higgins estimated the cost of illicit drug law enforcement in 1998 was $720M.

    That’s a novel form of mathematics you practice. The unkind would simply call it bullshit.

  6. jupes

    Bullshit. Glaxo-Smith Kline aren’t going to sell a gram of coke for $3.

    Yeah but Abdul’s Drug Emporium in the future libertarian drug wonderland will lower the price of smack for first time users. It makes good business sense.

    And I would expect that if any government legalised drugs it would be so heavily regulated, including price,

    So you’re advocating that big government insert itself into the market? Not very libertarian of you Dan.

    The importation of currently illicit drugs would still remain illegal, so the black market could never compete on price.

    So drugs not manufactured in Australia will remain illegal? Again, not very libertarian is it?

    However, your basic assertion that cheap, licit drugs will lead to masses of people getting high is alarmist bullshit.

    So on Friday night you can pay $15 for a six pack of beer or $3 for Abdul’s Friday night special on crack cocaine. Do you really believe that everyone who now goes for the beer won’t check out the crack? Young people especially will be drawn toward the low price.

    High at work, illegal. Operation of a motor vehicle under the influence, illegal.

    Junkies have no choice but to use at work. If they didn’t they would be even worse off. Marijuana use is able to be detected for days or even weeks after use, long after the effect has worn off. The choice for the government is to ban people from driving for weeks after use or not test at all.

  7. Dan

    Maybe I was’t clear enough, but I would strongly expect any government that legalised drugs to so heavily regulate it that many of the outcomes you fantasies about would simply not happen. That isn’t a Libertarian wonderland, it is reality.

  8. Yes, everything has an inherent risk, we all live with the risk that each breath may be our last. That should not however be a rationale to avoid risk where risk can be avoided.

    And yes, people can choose to drink less, the problem is, that isn’t what people are choosing to do, and in choosing to drink more they’re expecting the rest of us to foot the inevitable bill for their choices.

    Sun-protective clothing and sunscreen are considered personal protective equipment and all out-door workers can be sanctioned for not wearing it. This is in-part because of the cost to the public purse of treating skin-cancer.

    Hardly, that rationale is what lead to the 2nd amendment being written into the US Bill of Rights. (It goes back to classical Greece an possibly older where every male citizen was a soldier first and foremost tasked with defending themselves and their civilisation, in Athens, a society far more liberal than our own it was the law that each citizen who could afford it must equip themselves with weapon and armour, if a citizen could not, they rowed the boat)

    Then that is a fault of your own creation, as one can not live excised from the collective, humans are a natural herd animal. Plus, you can only minimise, not avoid and a portion of what you do pay will be used to fund common services, which means you do have a stake in how their run. Thus, to truly minimise your tax bill you should support the criminalisation of drugs because it will save you money, in the truly selfish sense.

    Nonsense, even he taxes on cigarettes don’t even come close to paying the annual medical bill they’re responsible for, and that gap widens when you consider the lost taxes involved by having so many people unable to work as a result of their tobacco induced illness. And the same is true for alcohol, if everyone got a bill for the police and judicial man-hours they cost the state by their drinking people may be inclined to take it more seriously.

  9. .

    The choice for the government is to ban people from driving for weeks after use or not test at all.

    No.

  10. .

    Sedtionary – not only is your history concocted (notably so that the US Government has not been able to enforce conscription based on the 2nd amendment), you have ignored the actual costs of drug prohibition and confused OH&S liability created to protect unionists in low productivity jobs as some sort of externality.

    You are straight up misinformed about tobacco and alcohol excise. You are then counting the taxes lost as another cost.

    You are a fascist.

  11. The US Government has forced conscription, and more than once I might ad. The 2nd amendment is based on the responsibility of the citizen to protect their liberties. Also, my history regarding Greek norm and law is accurate.

    As a former out-door worker in a non-unionised industry I would like to think that being forced to wear protective clothing may have saved you money by not having your taxes pay for my treatment.

    I am well aware of the enormous health care costs in Australia, from primary emergency costs, long term treatment costs and the high cost of caring for people rendered unable to work because of their illness. In-fact most people who use the rationale that tobacco and alcohol excise pays for all of that is based on listing only a very narrow range of illness’ they determine are the result of one or the other, which simply isn’t accurate. Yes, lost taxes are a legitimate cost, because those lost taxes are covered by the rest of society, and unfairly so.

    A fascist? It was quite legal to drink and smoke in fascist Italy and Germany…

  12. Greece […] where every [!] male citizen was a soldier first and foremost tasked with defending themselves and their civilisation, in Athens, a society far more liberal [!] than our own

    Far more liberal? Yes, we treat our slaves and non-citizens so much worse than Athenians ever did.

    Also, my history regarding Greek norm and law is accurate.

    Tee hee.

  13. .

    The US does not justify conscription on the second amendment. The United States can Federalise the militia. Conscription is either blanket or random.

    I would like to think that being forced to wear protective clothing may have saved you money by not having your taxes pay for my treatment.

    No, what would save us money is if people:

    - Had checkups and otherwise took responsibility for their care, which would treat skin cancer anyway – not always caused by skin exposure.
    - Paid for their own PHI

    In-fact most people who use the rationale that tobacco and alcohol excise pays for all of that is based on listing only a very narrow range of illness’ they determine are the result of one or the other, which simply isn’t accurate.

    No they are not. The anti smoking lobby lies, lies and lies. “There is no such thing as safe smoking” – yes there is – it is very low but they lie and treat the public like children. They lie about what smokers actually cost – a pack a day smoker for 15 years pay nearly 33k in excise tax. They’d pay about 6.6k in GST on ciggies.

    If you smoked for 30 years you’d pay double and probably die quickly once you were diagnosed of cancer or heart disease. These people do not cost much. Geriatric care and long lived cancer patients do.

    Yes, lost taxes are a legitimate cost, because those lost taxes are covered by the rest of society, and unfairly so.

    No, they are not. You are claiming the wages of dead people. Wake up to yourself.

  14. Empire Strikes Back

    Nonsense, even he taxes on cigarettes don’t even come close to paying the annual medical bill they’re responsible for

    Pure fantasy.

    The first externality used to justify anti-smoking intolerance is the health costs of smoking that fall on the taxpayers because of our socialist health system. Again, there is truth in this claim. The most obvious solution would be to introduce a smokers-premium on health insurance, but that would require health policy reform, which is always difficult in our modern welfare-democracy (note, private health providers already have a smokers premium).

    So the next best thing might be to set the tax rate to cover the marginal health costs of smokers. The logic seems fool-proof… until you realise that smokers already pay over 16 times their marginal health costs in tobacco tax. The government’s National Drug Strategy report estimated net health costs of $318.4 million per year in 2004/05 (this may be an overestimate as it does not count the savings from dead smokers not getting the pension). In the same year the tobacco excise was $5,237 million.

    (John Humphreys)

  15. I think many may consider our treatment of asylum seekers who arrive by boat to be just as egregious as what the classical Athenians did to their slaves.

    But the truth still remains, they accepted homosexuality, paedophilia, the consumption of alcohol, nudity, sex and a whole host of things we’re yet to fully accept or consider normal. Not just the Greeks, a criticism of Julius Caesar was that he wasn’t homosexual enough, and I think we’re a long way of ever accusing anyone of that in Australia…

    Just because they were liberal didn’t stop them from accepting the responsibilities of the citizen, regardless of the inconsistencies and hypocrisies involved.

  16. .

    I think many may consider our treatment of asylum seekers who arrive by boat to be just as egregious as what the classical Athenians did to their slaves.

    I don’t like what we do now, but that analogy is incorrect and hyperbole.

  17. Pedro

    Cigarette taxes were more than covering the health costs of smoking back in the 80s when the tax was much lower. Tax on grog is very high too.

    But it is certainly true that the public health system is used as a justification for state controls on behaviour. You hear it all the time. It’s nearly as pernicious as the general claim about costs to the economy from various things, which is a long was of trying to implement the socialist slogan of “from each according …”

  18. Mater

    Maybe I was’t clear enough, but I would strongly expect any government that legalised drugs to so heavily regulate it that many of the outcomes you fantasies about would simply not happen. That isn’t a Libertarian wonderland, it is reality.

    Either it’s legal and you are free to grow and produce your own or you end up going around in circles.
    We can progress from a war-on-drugs to a war-on-illegal-drugs.

  19. Pedro

    “I think many may consider our treatment of asylum seekers who arrive by boat to be just as egregious as what the classical Athenians did to their slaves. ”

    The proper comparison is what they did to the Spartans. Slaves don’t invade, though invaders might have become slaves. Clearly we are not enslaving the boat people and we’re not ramming them with triremes either.

  20. Plutarch was famed for being a moral man; Aulus Gellius in his Noctes Atticae relates this story:

    “Plutarch,” said [the philosopher Taurus], “once gave orders that one of his slaves, a worthless and insolent fellow, but one whose ears had been filled with the teachings and arguments of philosophy, should be stripped of his tunic for some offence or other and flogged. They had begun to beat him, and the slave kept protesting that he did not deserve the flogging; that he was guilty of no wrong, no crime. Finally, while the lashing still went on, he began to shout, no longer uttering complaints or shrieks and groans, but serious reproaches. Plutarch’s conduct, he said, was unworthy of a philosopher; to be angry was shameful: his master had often descanted on the evil of anger and had even written an excellent treatise Περὶ Ἀοργησίας [On Freedom from Anger (which, sadly, is lost to us)]; it was in no way consistent with all that was written in that book that its author should fall into a fit of violent rage and punish his slave with many stripes. Then Plutarch calmly and mildly made answer: ‘What makes you think, scoundrel, that I am now angry with you. Is it from my expression, my voice, my colour, or even my words, that you believe me to be in the grasp of anger? In my opinion my eyes are not fierce, my expression is not disturbed, I am neither shouting madly nor foaming at the mouth nor getting red in the face; I am saying nothing to cause me shame or regret; I am not trembling at all from anger or making violent gestures. For all these actions, if you did but know it, are the usual signs of angry passions.’ And with these words, turning to the man who was plying the lash, he said: ‘In the meantime, while this fellow and I are arguing, do you keep at it.’ ”
    [I. xxvi, 5-9 , translated by John C. Rolfe]

    Such was the liberality of even the most liberal of Greeks.
    Tu hoc age.

  21. jupes

    That isn’t a Libertarian wonderland, it is reality.

    Probably, however it is not what the majority of libertarian zealots are advocating.

  22. jupes

    No.

    Feel free to elaborate Dot.

  23. The 2nd amendment exists as means of the citizen being able to protect themselves from the state, it has nothing to do with the state using any citizen of the militia there-in as means of its own defence. As stated previously, a means by which is responsible for the defence of their own liberty, even if that meant defending those liberties against the state, which is what the American Revolution entailed, the citizens defending their liberties from a tyrannical state. The 2nd amendment embodies the desire of the Founding Fathers that the state they created not mirror the state they were revolting against.

    Do you know how much one course of chemotherapy costs? Lucas Heights exists only in part to provide nuclear medicine with the public footing the bill. The cost of having a limb removed because of smoking related constrictions in blood supply? $60,000 excise collected over 30 years wouldn’t even come close to paying for the costs of a lung-cancer sufferer, from diagnosis through to treatment and then if that fails, end of life care.

    It isn’t the missing taxes from dead people, it is the taxes missing from the many tens of thousands of people left lingering on the disability pension as a result of their illness that becomes a real cost, that and paying the disability pension, which now extends to over 800,000 people.

    If everyone had private health insurance the costs would be enormous, and would require large government subsidies to function.

  24. jupes

    I think many may consider our treatment of asylum seekers who arrive by boat to be just as egregious as what the classical Athenians did to their slaves.

    Now you’re just being stupid Sed.

  25. .

    Sed – you are conflating your own history now.

    As for the costs of medicine – you are saying the above costs way over $66,000 of excise, which is being increased every year in real terms. Please quantify.

    You are also confusing chemotherapy with nuclear medicine.

    It isn’t the missing taxes from dead people, it is the taxes missing from the many tens of thousands of people left lingering on the disability pension as a result of their illness that becomes a real cost, that and paying the disability pension, which now extends to over 800,000 people.

    No, most of these people are frauds, actually shifted to the DSP from Newstart by Centrelink.

    If everyone had private health insurance the costs would be enormous, and would require large government subsidies to function.

    Stupid and incorrect.

  26. jupes

    You are incorrect, jupes.

    Translation: I cannot rebut your argument with either fact or opinon.

  27. the truth still remains, [ancient Athenians] accepted homosexuality

    Really? So modern people say, because the upper class writers of ancient Greece say so; but what of the laws? Aeschines, an Athenian, in Against Timarchus 21:

    If any Athenian shall have [homosexually] debauched his person, he shall not be permitted to become one of the nine archons, nor to discharge the office of priest, nor to act as an advocate for the state, nor shall he hold any office whatsoever, at home or abroad, whether filled by lot or by election; he shall not be sent as a herald; he shall not take part in debate, nor be present at public sacrifices; when the citizens are wearing garlands, he shall wear none; and he shall not enter within the limits of the place that has been purified for the assembling of the people. If any man who has been convicted of debauchery act contrary to these prohibitions, he shall be put to death.

  28. Empire Strikes Back

    Do you know how much one course of chemotherapy costs? Lucas Heights exists only in part to provide nuclear medicine with the public footing the bill. The cost of having a limb removed because of smoking related constrictions in blood supply? $60,000 excise collected over 30 years wouldn’t even come close to paying for the costs of a lung-cancer sufferer, from diagnosis through to treatment and then if that fails, end of life care.

    You assume all smokers contract lung cancer, a fallacy. You also assume that radiotherapy is used exclusively for smoking induced illness, also a fallacy.

    The costs have been quantified and accounted for. The tax collected exclusively from smokers exceeds the societal cost. You are wrong.

  29. .

    There are saliva tests and then there are blood/urine tests.

    Driving a couple of days after a joint would mean no fine and even if you were tested without probable cause, they could do little.

  30. Empire Strikes Back

    The choice for the government is to ban people from driving for weeks after use or not test at all.

    I don’t get where you’re coming from Jupes. That choice has already been made.

    In Victoria, roadside saliva tests detect drugs that contain:

    - THC (Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol), the active component in cannabis
    methamphetamine, which is found in drugs such as “speed”, “base”, “ice”, and “crystal meth”
    - MDMA (Methylenedioxymethamphetamine), which is known as ecstasy.

    These tests do not detect the presence of legally prescribed drugs or common over-the-counter medications.

    How long can they be detected?

    Cannabis: Random roadside drug testing can detect cannabis for at least several hours after use. Even after a small amount of cannabis you should not drive for at least five hours. Even though you may not feel the effects, the drug may still be detected in a test.

    Methamphetamine (“speed”, “ice”) may be detected for at least 24 hours after use by random roadside drug testing. Note that the withdrawal effects of methamphetamine, such as fatigue, anxiety and irritability, can also lead to unsafe driving.

    MDMA (ecstasy) may be detected for at least 24 hours after use by random roadside drug testing. Taking large doses, using other drugs at the same time, and even your own particular metabolism, can affect the length of time you will feel the effects of ecstasy.

    I’m astounded that prescription and OTC drugs are not tested. The risks are well understood.

  31. Grumbles

    Jupes, imagine it is the day weed is legalized and you are in a room with 99 others all of you have never tried drugs of any kind. You seem convinced that some of these 99 others are going to now use this substance, but what right do you have to tell them not to? What do you imagine the consequences to be for these people. Other than pathetic Social Welfare and Healthcare arguments what reason do you have from insulating any of these people from their decisions and consequences?

  32. Elephant Stone

    “So on Friday night you can pay $15 for a six pack of beer or $3 for Abdul’s Friday night special on crack cocaine. Do you really believe that everyone who now goes for the beer won’t check out the crack? Young people especially will be drawn toward the low price.”

    So what if they do? Most people who try alcohol don’t turn into raging alcoholics. It’s the same for drugs: the vast majority of people who try drugs either decide that it’s not for them or become casual users.

  33. jupes

    There are saliva tests and then there are blood/urine tests.

    To what degree of accuracy can these tests detect the time of the last toke?

    I suspect not accurate enough to detect whether the stoner is still stoned.

  34. jupes

    I don’t get where you’re coming from Jupes. That choice has already been made.

    Fair enough ESB. I should have read this before writing the post above.

  35. .

    They don’t do that, but the saliva tests work for at least five hours after the last puff.

    If you were still stoned, they’d have probable cause and you’d fail a urine test. You might also fail the saliva test which would probably be redundant.

  36. Philip II of Macedon certainly didn’t have issue with homosexuality, erecting a monument to the Sacred Band of Thebes, and his homosexual proclivities certainly didn’t hinder Socrates’ career. And he was certainly treated better in classical Greece than he would have been than in any place in Europe for the 2,000 years after his death.

    Now back to the issue at hand.

    No, not all smokers will get cancer, that is true, but that is not to say they will not fall foul of the numerous other diseases and conditions associated with smoking. Heart-Disease is Australia’s biggest cause of early death, and a significant portion of people who contract heart disease are smokers. As for tobacco excise, $5,000,000,000 is a drop in the bucket compared to the $130,000,000,000 we now spend on health-care. And it represents 1/7th of the cost of treating smoking related illness (using the government’s numbers, which may not include direct and indirect welfare payments to the sick and those caring for them, nor research into cancers caused by smoking, or include taxes lost by those no longer able to work due to smoking related illness).

    Alcohol taxes at a Federal level are at the least closer to the mark, they raise only half the related societal costs of alcohol misuse according to the Australian Institute of Criminology.

  37. Pedro

    “I’m astounded that prescription and OTC drugs are not tested. The risks are well understood.”

    Maybe because it’s mainly oldsters, who seem to have lots of voting power.

  38. jupes

    Jupes, imagine it is the day weed is legalized and you are in a room with 99 others all of you have never tried drugs of any kind.

    You only want weed legalised Grumbles? What about smack and crack? What are you some sort of nanny-statist?

    Other than pathetic Social Welfare and Healthcare arguments what reason do you have from insulating any of these people from their decisions and consequences?

    Good social welfare and healthcare arguments.

  39. Empire Strikes Back

    Australia’s biggest cause of early death, and a significant portion of people who contract heart disease are smokers.

    The costs have been quantified and accounted for. The tax collected exclusively from smokers exceeds the societal cost. You can’t change the facts to suit your fantasy, but you are free to fantasise.

    You are wrong. BIRM.

  40. jupes

    So what if they do? Most people who try alcohol don’t turn into raging alcoholics.

    Alcohol isn’t as addictive as smack and crack.

    It’s the same for drugs: the vast majority of people who try drugs either decide that it’s not for them or become casual users.

    Maybe. Plenty of others die, have their live ruined, ruin other peoples lives or give birth to addicted babies.

  41. jupes

    Answer the question, jupes.

    If you ask me one, I will try answer it Dot.

    You’re not stoned are you?

  42. Empire Strikes Back

    You’re not stoned are you?

    Steady on Jupes. We’re civilised folk here. Never before 5 :)

  43. .

    No, very few die.

    There were always more alcoholics than drug addicts, even when drugs were legal.

    Alcohol is for the masses.

    —————————————————————————–

    Sed asserts that treatment for cancer costs more than 66k per patient. The sum of $66k is like 95 days in a private hosptial.

    Which is only 1/7 of the “total cost”.

    So being treated for cancer is financially like a 28-30 month stay in a private hosptial?

    This is utter nonsense.

    He also cost shifting. What about the care of geriatrics? If you live long enough – you will need a carer anyway.

  44. .

    You could try to answer the questions, Jupes.

    GO!!!

  45. Elephant Stone

    “Plenty of others die, have their live ruined, ruin other peoples lives or give birth to addicted babies.”

    So you’re up for a ban on alcohol too I take it.

  46. I am going to take the Australian Institute of Criminology at their word regarding the costs of alcohol to society versus the taxes raised.

    http://aic.gov.au/publications/current%20series/tandi/441-460/tandi454.html

  47. Philip II of Macedon certainly didn’t have issue with homosexuality, erecting a monument to the Sacred Band of Thebes, and his homosexual proclivities certainly didn’t hinder Socrates’ career. And he was certainly treated better in classical Greece than he would have been than in any place in Europe for the 2,000 years after his death.

    So, having read some classics you’re aware of logical fallacies, right?
    Socrates, of course, was executed for having corrupted the young. According to another chlamys-lifter, Plato, Socrates was famed for not indulging in physical acts with the men he fancied. Would he have been better treated anywhere in Europe between 400 BC and AD 1600? Really? Better than the courts of European royals who openly had affairs with same-sex partners? Better than renaissance Italy wherein the artist Giovanni Antonio Bazzi, who was nicknamed Il Sodoma by his friends because of his proclivities, could paint for a couple of popes?
    Yes, the ancient world did approve of same-sex sex—particularly that which involved a free adult and an enslaved child*; how we moderns have fallen!

    * even the famed Sappho, rôle model of modern tribades, fancied—if we may interpret her lyrics autobiographically—barely pubescent girls.

  48. In 2004 the estimated societal cost of tobacco eclipsed $31,000,000 with tangible costs exceeding $19,000,000.

    It’s not like this stuff hasn’t been studied ad nauseam…

    http://www.tobaccoinaustralia.org.au/17-2-the-costs-of-smoking

  49. .

    You said treating smoking was 35 bn, but totalled the societal cost at 31 bn – and the benefits are only tanglible, but the costs are also intangible.

    You have been lied to.

  50. jupes

    You could try to answer the questions, Jupes.

    What fucking question dot you drug-addled buffoon?

  51. .

    So what if they do? Most people who try alcohol don’t turn into raging alcoholics.

    You did not answer this, you deflected.

    I don’t take drugs mate. I know prohibition is a stupid law.

  52. Gab

    Does the Doomlord pay Dot and Jupes to perform their comedy routine here?

    :)

  53. None of the charges against Socrates related to his homosexuality, the first charge of corrupting the youth stemmed from his philosophical questioning, and the later impiety (the charge that was actually argued against him at trial) was due to his failure to follow the Gods of Athens, essentially he was executed for being an atheist, not a homosexual. (In-fact, Plato’s lack of reverence for democracy is based on his assertion that Socrates’ execution was revenge for Socrates taking part in a dictatorship that ruled over Athens after they lost to the Spartans)

    People may have been homosexual during the 2,000 years since Socrates’ death, however, at risk of being executed as many were once their homosexuality was uncovered.

  54. I quoted the then Prime Minister K Rudd who stated that the cost of treatment had reached $35,000,000,000 which given that a decade had passed since the report I just posted is entirely possible. Not only that, the report I posted states that even in 2004 the attributable costs (costs that can be accurately measured through receipt) were already 4x what we collect in excise today.

    So yes, the argument that government is some way is profiting from excise on tobacco is bunkum, pure unadulterated bunkum.

  55. Empire Strikes Back

    I quoted the then Prime Minister K Rudd

    Are you serious?

  56. None of the charges against Socrates related to his homosexuality

    Who said they were?
    “Dictatorship,” by the way, is hardly the right term for the oligarchy of the Thirty.

  57. .

    None of the charges against Socrates…

    Irrelevant.

    So yes, the argument that government is some way is profiting from excise on tobacco is bunkum, pure unadulterated bunkum.

    No, it is entirely true.

    The figures you quote are garbage and have been deconstructed amply.

  58. jupes

    So what if they do? Most people who try alcohol don’t turn into raging alcoholics.

    You did not answer this, you deflected.

    Right. Considering that I did actually answer it, the post was way up-thread, I have answered dozens of questions on the subject and the question wasn’t asked by you, what made you think I would have the faintest clue what the fuck you were talking about? If this is your brain off drugs, don’t ever visit Abdul’s Drug Emporium for all our sake. Here is my answer posted up-thread:

    Alcohol isn’t as addictive as smack and crack.

    To elaborate for your non-drug-addled brain: If the young people take the cheap drug option rather than the booze, it is far more likely they will become addicted.

  59. Dan

    Abdul’s Drug Emporium

    I believe it would be The Heisenberg Apothecary

  60. Pedro

    “I quoted the then Prime Minister K Rudd ”

    There’s your problem. The healthcare costs are way lower than the tax take. If you’d read the study you linked then you’d have seen that 2/3s is “intangible costs”. That’s code for pulled out of someone’s arse.

  61. The Catallaxy post samples the same report I posted in full, and relies on a very narrow illness range for determining health care costs, also, it left of the total demonstrable attributed cost to society, and then left of the additional costs that aren’t directly attributable. If you’re going to cherry-pick, at the least try not to cherry-pick from something already posted. As for the IPA, I’d take the government’s word over theirs, even if it is K Rudd.

    Not to mention, the Australian Institute of Criminology report I posted was also comprehensive and in part based on the other report. It also clearly shows, alcohol costs society more than it raises in taxes, even police and judicial/incarceration expenditure ate through most of the taxes raised, before health care is even considered.

  62. jupes

    No, you didn’t answer it.

    Ummm … OK … If you say so Dot.

  63. jupes

    As for the IPA, I’d take the government’s word over theirs, even if it is K Rudd.

    What if it’s Julia Gillard?

  64. “What if it’s Julia Gillard?”

    I wouldn’t go that far, a man must have his limits.

  65. Elephant Stone

    Jupes,

    Do you want to ban alcohol?

    If you think that substances should be made illegal according to their addictiveness and potential to ruin lives where do you stand on pot and ecstasy? These drugs are less harmful than alcohol.

    Should we ban alcohol or should we legalize these drugs?

  66. .

    The Catallaxy post samples the same report I posted in full, and relies on a very narrow illness range for determining health care costs, also, it left of the total demonstrable attributed cost to society, and then left of the additional costs that aren’t directly attributable. If you’re going to cherry-pick, at the least try not to cherry-pick from something already posted. As for the IPA, I’d take the government’s word over theirs, even if it is K Rudd.

    Who cares? You tried to tell us the cost of treating terminal lung cancer was more than 30 years of excise tax and GST paid on a pack a day.

    Seven times that cost.

    You are telling us that an effective tax rate of 60% is not enough, and instead should be 420%, just to break even.

    You are telling us it costs 505k to treat a terminal lung cancer patient.

    You have been lied to.

    At least you are no longer ghoulishly claiming the wages of the dead as a cost.

  67. Pedro

    “it left of the total demonstrable attributed cost to society”
    There is no such thing. You not working doesn’t cost me anything except your dole.

    One of the funny things about smoking is that health care costs are not that bad because smokers die young. http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJM199710093371506

  68. .

    If you think that substances should be made illegal according to their addictiveness and potential to ruin lives where do you stand on pot and ecstasy? These drugs are less harmful than alcohol.

    Entirely true.

    Do a couple of shifts as a security gorilla and you pray for stoners and lovey dovey clubbers.

  69. jupes

    Do you want to ban alcohol?

    No way. Prohibition doesn’t work.

    If you think that substances should be made illegal according to their addictiveness and potential to ruin lives …

    That’s not my position.

    … where do you stand on pot and ecstasy? These drugs are less harmful than alcohol

    I support their banning. A society can only handle a couple of drugs. Ours copes with alcohol. Adding to the list of harmful drugs won’t be good for anyone.

    Should we ban alcohol or should we legalize these drugs?

    None of the above.

  70. Not to mention, the Australian Institute of Criminology report I posted was also comprehensive and in part based on the other report. It also clearly shows, alcohol costs society more than it raises in taxes, even police and judicial/incarceration expenditure ate through most of the taxes raised, before health care is even considered.

    SeditionaryI, do you think it’s just possible that the public servants in charge of producing the AIC report were charged – directly or indirectly – to find exactly this link? I’m a public servant myself, and am familiar with this type of process.

    This report can then be used to help justify government increases in the excise taxes on alcohol.

    They call it ‘decision support’ these days, which is at least a partial acknowledgment that a document like this is not nearly as impartial and objective as it pretends to be.

  71. JC

    Dot

    Where did this moron show up from? How long has he been here?

    @SeditionaryI

    So yes, the argument that government is some way is profiting from excise on tobacco is bunkum, pure unadulterated bunkum.

  72. .

    They call it ‘decision support’ these days, which is at least a partial acknowledgment that a document like this is not nearly as impartial and objective as it pretends to be.

    Disgusting.

  73. jupes
    They call it ‘decision support’ these days, which is at least a partial acknowledgment that a document like this is not nearly as impartial and objective as it pretends to be.

    Disgusting.

    Does the same moniker apply to the cato institute’s report on drug legalisation in Portugal?

  74. Follow the money trail, jupes. Who commissioned and paid for the report and the research? You can betcha life there were decisions made long beforehand about the broad intention of the report, and directions given to the staff working on it, and a long editing process to make sure nothing ‘wrong’ got in there, or was hidden on page 142 in a footnote.

  75. dd

    Elephant Stone: “Do you want to ban alcohol?”

    jupes: “No way. Prohibition doesn’t work.”

    LOL, no it doesn’t work. That’s the whole point.
    I think we’re done here.

  76. Pedro

    “Does the same moniker apply to the cato institute’s report on drug legalisation in Portugal.”

    The mongols paid for that

  77. The people at the top levels of the public service (in all its manifestations – most of us in this country are on the government payroll, one way or another) who sponsor projects like this always have agendas, and they are almost uniformly informed by leftist principles, whether they realise it or not.

    They really do think they’re objective, rather like the ABC, and that the rest of us are brainwashed howler monkeys.

    Noblesse oblige.

    So you can find as much research to the contrary as you like; it’s going to be explained away in the final report.

  78. jupes

    Follow the money trail, jupes.

    I’m onto it Philippa. Just interested to see if Dot is as well.

  79. jupes

    That’s the whole point.

    Prohibition of alcohol doesn’t work.

    Banning drugs is far better than the alternative.

  80. Infidel Tiger

    Prohibition of alcohol doesn’t work.

    Banning drugs is far better than the alternative.

    Crazy stuff. Entertaining logic though.

    Nearly every drug you can think of was legally obtainable 2 generations ago. It’s only because the Americans went on a purity campaign and pressured the rest of the world that we are even in this bizarro world situation.

    Despite the law, millions of Australians will illegally use drugs this weekend.

    I know plenty of people who have used drugs in Singapore, Malaysia and the Middle East. Prohibition doesn’t work, full stop.

  81. “The mission of the Cato Institute is to originate, disseminate, and increase understanding of public policies based on the principles of individual liberty, limited government, free markets, and peace.”

    There you go. It would be nice to think that they would produce really objective findings, but we’re all arguing our corners here. Will they go back in 10 years and re-evaluate the impact of the policy then? Even Time magazine noted that the Cato Institute had to consider that:

    However, he notes that Portugal is a small country and that the cyclical nature of drug epidemics — which tends to occur no matter what policies are in place — may account for the declines in heroin use and deaths.

    Read more: Decriminalizing Drugs in Portugal a Success, Says Report – TIME http://content.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1893946,00.html#ixzz2qcQjSA58

    One of the reasons I support the IPA is because they produce the research that you WON’T see anywhere else, due to the stranglehold of leftism on so many publishing outlets and other meeja. The Cato Institute serves a similar purpose.

    Portugal’s mental health data is very fragmentary, so it will be hard to track any increase in psychosis due to decriminalisation usage.

  82. $500,000 to treat terminal lung cancer?

    Are you going to ignore the life-time medical costs that may be incurred up to that point which may have been due to smoking? What if you get emphysema as well? What if you require a lung transplant? What if you require a chemotherapy then a partial lung removal? What if you did that and still got recurring bone-cancer (a common way for cancer patients to die) or have the cancer return else-where? Seriously, $500,000 is drop in the bucket.

    Then there is, people going blind, having repeat heart attacks, strokes, repeat tumours, limbs removed and on the list goes. Then there is the cost of autopsies, clinical training, research, counselling, welfare and education all billed largely to the tax-payer.

  83. dd

    Prohibition of alcohol doesn’t work.

    Prohibition of any widely used drug doesn’t work. Look around.

    Anyway, the basic logic is just flawed.

    Inspector Jupes: “Smoking pot is bad for you, I don’t think you should do it.”
    Pothead Dave: “It’s fun and I enjoy it.”
    Inspector Jupes: “It could potentially shorten your life and reduce your health.”
    Pothead Dave: “I’m prepared to accept the health problems because I like it so much. If I die a couple of years earlier but get to enjoy weed in the meantime, so be it.”
    Inspector Jupes. “Nope, you must not smoke pot.”
    Pothead Dave: “Screw you, I don’t care what you think, I’m going to do it anyway.”
    (pothead Dave runs off and lights a joint)
    Pothead Dave: “ahh… that’s a nice feeling.”
    Inspector Jupes (marching over to Pothead). “To teach you a lesson, I think it’s best if we arrest you.”
    Pothead Dave: “But I didn’t hurt anyone else!”
    Inspector Jupes: “You jeopardised your own health and possibly reduced your own life expectancy. constables, arrest him.”
    (constables appear and surround Pothead Dave)
    Pothead Dave: “Arrest me? why?”
    Inspector Jupes: “to teach you a lesson. To teach you to have a nice, clean, healthy life rather than an unhealthy, dirty, habit.”
    Pothead Dave: “Why do you care what I do with my lungs?
    Inspector Jupes: “I don’t care. Couldn’t care less.”
    Pothead Dave (as he is led away in handcuffs). “You could have fucking fooled me.”

  84. stackja

    Infidel Tiger
    #1154959, posted on January 17, 2014 at 1:28 pm

    Drug users should all OD. End of need for prohibition.

  85. The AIC report is merely a convergence of the required statistics that have to be provided to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, which collect all arrest data along with incarceration data from the judiciary, its results aren’t skewed in that department, unless you’re suggesting a multi-level inter-governmental conspiracy to alter the data they’re legally obliged to provide?

    Some very well-educated people examine these reports, it is safe to think that they’ve at the very least got the math right.

  86. .

    Does the same moniker apply to the cato institute’s report on drug legalisation in Portugal?

    Since legalisation would mean far less money for drug dealers…please hypothesise who funded that…which left wing, criminal group funded that?

  87. Infidel Tiger

    Drug users should all OD. End of need for prohibition.

    But they don’t and besides being a cnut of a thing to say, it also shows you have as much knowledge of drugs as you do of basic human decency.

    Millions of Australians will use drugs this weekend without any harm, have a great time and return to work on Monday without so much as skipping a beat. They’ll most likely be in better shape than those who got stuck into the booze.

    Being an old cnut Stackja there’s a fair chance your mater was given heroin to help birthing you. Should she have died for consuming what was then a perfectly legal drug?

  88. jupes

    Prohibition doesn’t work, full stop.

    Prohibition of drugs is better than legalising them.

  89. Dan

    Drug users should all OD…

    Cripes!

    What about alcoholic tobacco smokers who beat their wives?

  90. Then there is, people going blind, having repeat heart attacks, strokes, repeat tumours, limbs removed and on the list goes. Then there is the cost of autopsies, clinical training, research, counselling, welfare and education all billed largely to the tax-payer.

    So let’s stop paying for the health care treatment, then.

    If we are going to demonise particular groups of sufferers – drug addicts with broken livers, smokers with defunct lungs, gay men with HIV/AIDS – and declare some ‘guilty’ and others ‘innocent’, who gets to make that call?

    If it’s user-pays, then the problem largely disappears. No more excise tax, but no more ‘free’ lung transplants for the smoker.

  91. jupes

    Answer the question Dot.

  92. Infidel Tiger

    Prohibition of drugs is better than legalising them.

    I agree. Decriminalization is much better.

    Having the government involved in legally dispensing anything is a nightmare. Keep it private.

  93. stackja

    Dan
    #1154982, posted on January 17, 2014 at 1:42 pm
    Drug users should all OD…
    Cripes!
    What about alcoholic tobacco smokers who beat their wives?

    Hang them!

  94. JC

    If we are going to demonise particular groups of sufferers – drug addicts with broken livers, smokers with defunct lungs, gay men with HIV/AIDS – and declare some ‘guilty’ and others ‘innocent’, who gets to make that call?

    If it’s user-pays, then the problem largely disappears. No more excise tax, but no more ‘free’ lung transplants for the smoker.

    Yes, it needs to be consequentialist.

  95. jupes

    Keep it private.

    Yay for Abdul’s Drug Emporium. Special deals on crack this weekend – we’ll even throw in the pipe.

  96. jupes

    Answer the question Dot.

    GO!

  97. There are far fewer smokers to day than there were a decade ago, as a thing to do it is slowly fading in irrelevance, and once our health systems over-comes the baby-boomer/smoker spike in the next decade or so it may not be a significant issue in the future.

    Prohibition doesn’t work, however, it can make things more manageable, banning smoking for instance would not stop people from smoking but would drive the vast majority of smokers to quit leaving a smaller more manageable sub-culture of smokers who’d in all likely-hood not be replaced once they’re gone.

    It’s an option, not saying it’s right or wrong, merely an option, We’ve largely ignored marijuana possession, and we could certainly follow decriminalisation path, such as the United Kingdom where the police simply refuse/neglect/have been instructed not to enforce the law in that regard. Make it a confiscate and fine offence like drinking in certain public places and allow the police man=power to be directed elsewhere.

  98. Infidel Tiger

    Yay for Abdul’s Drug Emporium. Special deals on crack this weekend – we’ll even throw in the pipe.

    Abdul is doing that already without a care in the world.

    p.s No one uses crack in Australia.

  99. Infidel Tiger

    Seditionary are you on the right site? We kind of believe in liberty here or at least used to.

    I can redirect you to Roxon or Plibersek’s email address. Your Hitlerian hatred of smoking will get a great hearing to by those goose stepping molls.

  100. .

    Sed – you are grabbing every possible condition smoking can give you to come up with an average figure of 505,000 AUD to treat everyone who smokes.

    This is nonsense. Why you allow yourself to be deluded with this pap is inexplicable.

    Seriously, $500,000 is drop in the bucket.

    No, it isn’t.

    You are actually arguing now that their treatment costs more than seven times the tax they will pay over 30 years…many times more…’drop in the ocean’.

    What you are telling me is that treating someone for medical problems related to smoking costs the equivalent at least of a decade in a private hospital as a patient.

    Now you want a tax increase of 1680% to 2100%. Let’s say there are 300,000 pack a day smokers.

    You want a pack of cigarettes to cost about $135.Now that might only raise 24 bn dollars.

    For 35 bn, we’d need a 40% increase.

    So a 2940% increase, or 29.4 times the excise levied.

    So…you want a pack of cgggies to cost…$185 a pack.

    You don’t have any idea how high excise already is.

    Over ten years ago, a farmer would recieve $850 for a bale, after tax, it would be ‘priced’ at 29k.

    You want tax upped by 29 times or more, about 182k per bale.

    You would create a massive black market and many innocent deaths from murder and criminal enterprise to make Mokbel, Romeo or Freeman look like innocent babes. Your advice on public policy is undeniably foolish. You want a 96000% increase on the farm gate price.

  101. Sid – let me get this straight -

    1) We need to ban/criminalise smoking, to create a manageable subgroup of users who will die out naturally and not be replaced;

    2) We need to decriminalise marijuana, to create a larger group of people using a drug whose long-term consequences are not fully known, but whose known health risks currently include an increased risk of lung and other cancers and an increased risk of psychosis?

  102. stackja

    @SeditionaryI is stirring.

  103. jupes

    p.s No one uses crack in Australia …

    …Yet

    They certainly will in the libertarian legal drug paradise.

  104. jupes

    You’re avoiding the question Dot.

    Why would that be?

  105. .

    Prohibition doesn’t work, however, it can make things more manageable, banning smoking for instance would not stop people from smoking but would drive the vast majority of smokers to quit leaving a smaller more manageable sub-culture of smokers who’d in all likely-hood not be replaced once they’re gone.

    Bullshit.

    The reason why people don’t grow their own:

    http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/consol_act/ea190180/s28.html

    EXCISE ACT 1901 – SECT 28
    Only licensed producers to produce tobacco leaf etc.
    (1) A person who does not hold a producer licence must not intentionally produce material that is tobacco seed, tobacco plant or tobacco leaf knowing, or being reckless as to whether, the material is tobacco seed, tobacco plant or tobacco leaf.

    Penalty:

    (a) for tobacco seed or tobacco plant–2 years imprisonment or 500 penalty units; and

    (b) for tobacco leaf–2 years imprisonment or the greater of:

    (i) 500 penalty units; and

    (ii) 5 times the amount of duty, worked out under the regulations, being the duty that would be payable if the tobacco leaf had been manufactured into excisable goods and entered for home consumption on the penalty day.

    Note: See section 4AA of the Crimes Act 1914 for the current value of a penalty unit.

    (2) A person who does not hold a producer licence must not produce tobacco seed, tobacco plant or tobacco leaf.

    Penalty: 100 penalty units.

    A penalty unit was $170 the last time it was chanmged nearly a year ago.

    So…if you grow your own tobacco…you can get two years in gaol and a fine of $85,000.

    This means, being a sentence over one year, growing your own is a ‘serious indictable ofence’ – like rape, murder or robbery.

    We’re oppressed.

  106. Liberty? Sure, you are free to kill yourself in any manner you choose, but the rest of us shouldn’t be footing the bill.

    It isn’t that I hate smoking, I simply am aware of the incredible harm smoking does, yes, I would like people to stop smoking, but I wouldn’t force them to. But that said, if we discovered tobacco today and knew of its harm like we do today there is no way known it would ever be made legal. Tobacco remains the only legal product in the world that if used as directed and intended will kill you.

    Alcohol, although dangerous, isn’t when used as intended or other-wise directed, the problem is, far too many people aren’t doing either of those things. And once more, the rest of us are footing the bill in one way or another.

    Smoking and drinking weren’t illegal in Hitler’s Germany, although, if you got terminally ill, they had a unique way of saving the state the expense of your health-care.

  107. Elephant Stone

    Jupes how do you know that “A society can only handle a couple of drugs” exactly?

    You say that legalizing drugs “wouldn’t be good for anyone”. That’s not true; it would be very good for people who like to take drugs for fun in their spare time not have to worry about getting locked up.

  108. .

    The answer is no, jupes.

    You may wish to hypoethsise as to which left wing, criminal group has funded them – oh that’s right, the Koch Brothers.

    You’re parodying yourself now, jupes.

  109. Infidel Tiger

    “A society can only handle a couple of drugs”

    Jupes seems to live in this white picket fence bubble and believes that only a few hundred gangsters are taking drugs in Australia.

  110. Liberty? Sure, you are free to kill yourself in any manner you choose, but the rest of us shouldn’t be footing the bill.

    Yes. So we stop paying for the health care.

    But that said, if we discovered tobacco today and knew of its harm like we do today there is no way known it would ever be made legal. Tobacco remains the only legal product in the world that if used as directed and intended will kill you.

    But you think we should decriminalise the use of a product about which we still know comparatively little, except that it can also give you lung and other cancers and increase your risk of psychosis?

    Tobacco smoking is actually protective against Parkinson’s Disease, by the way.

  111. Tobacco remains the only legal product in the world that if used as directed and intended will kill you.

    By the same logic, eating tomatoes will kill you. Doing anything will kill you. We are actually all going to die of something.

    Tobacco didn’t kill either of my grandmothers, both of whom smoked well into their old age. They both died of other non-tobacco related causes. My (now elderly) mother grew up in a house and workplace and society full of cigarette smoke, but never smoked herself. She has no signs whatsoever of any passive smoking diseases.

    ‘Data’ is not the plural of ‘anecdote’, but I think you are overstating the evils of tobacco here. There are more harmful products readily available on this earth, and tobacco never made anyone go home and beat their wife, or crash their car at high speed.

  112. I said, based on your argument, that the average smoker will contribute $60,000 over 30 years in taxes, you then extrapolated that by my claim that the cost in to cost out ratio is 7:1 or there about, and then claimed that a smoker’s treatment must cost more than $500,000 in order for it to be an accurate claim. Not withstanding the fact that a 7:1 cost ratio would require a smoker’s treatment to cost only $420,000 for that to be so, I came up with a number of ways in which such treatments could quite easily exceed $500,000.

    Not every smoker is going to get ill, not every smoker is going to contribute $60,000 either, nor does everyone who gets ill from smoking contribute to the tobacco excise either.

    As for growing tobacco, I am sure some will try their hand, and probably be quite unsuccessful.

    My argument to decriminalise marijuana isn’t based on the idea that it is in some way good for you, merely, we aren’t prosecuting people to any significant degree for it now, so why continue wasting police and judicial time in dealing with the matter, a simple confiscate and fine would be of the same effect. And yes, smoking is dying out all the same as a result of current policy, making it criminal would only speed up the process. In-fact it would be far easier to stop people from smoking than taking ecstasy.

  113. dover_beach

    Deadman, well played, but I fear your talents are wasted on this Seditionary fellow.

  114. My argument to decriminalise marijuana isn’t based on the idea that it is in some way good for you, merely, we aren’t prosecuting people to any significant degree for it now, so why continue wasting police and judicial time in dealing with the matter, a simple confiscate and fine would be of the same effect.

    Like breaking and entering in some suburbs in Perth, actually. I’m sure many people living in many cities in Australia could tell you of the wonderful response they’ve had from the police when they’ve been burgled or had their car stolen. No interest, and very little follow up. Magistrate delivers a slap on the wrist. ‘Oh, he was abused as a child’, ‘oh, he’s Aboriginal’, etc etc etc.

    So by the same logic, we should encourage the police to stop wasting their time on things like small-scale property theft, and just put up with it. That way, the police can concentrate on the real criminals (people driving at 5km over the speed limit on deserted streets).

    And yes, smoking is dying out all the same as a result of current policy, making it criminal would only speed up the process.

    Ahh, I see. So we decriminalise marijuana use. And then we tax the living daylights out of it, and run ads showing people dying of lung cancer and sentenced to life in the mental health system (very expensive, this), and produce reports showing the huge cost to society of cannabis use. And then we criminalise it, and clean up the few remaining pot users.

  115. .

    Well, Sed has more or less conceded he was torturing figures to get the answer he wanted.

    Tobacco smoking is actually protective against Parkinson’s Disease, by the way.

    Mental illness (paticularly schizophrenia), stress (which can cause cancer) and it helps with asthma – in very small doses.

    A mental health ward without cigarattes would be crazy.

    They are the cheap, everyman’s clonazepam, thorazine and prozac.

  116. It is a criminal offence to posses marijuana, but if you’re caught with it you’re not likely to receive a court imposed fine for it, so why continue to waste the court’s time? Obviously there has already been the decision made to have marijuana an unofficially decriminalised drug. Sure, taxing it would be a handy way of recouping some of the cost society is already incurring but that would require the legalisation of trafficking or sales, which really isn’t the same as decriminalising its possession and use. The current laws that surround the use of vehicles whilst being under the influence of an illicit drug don’t contain provision for the punishment of being in possession and usage of the drug you’ve been found guilty of being under the influence of.

    As for property offences, most property offences and even minor/common assaults go unreported because the courts have essentially stopped punishing people for those offences. In Queensland for instance under the Penalties and Sentences Act 1992 actually directs judges to make imprisonment an absolute last resort.

    I do like the last part of your comment Martyr, it is so crazy it just might work.

  117. John Mc

    Smoking tobacco is never going to die out. It’s just going to reduce as people realise they’re capable of living longer; they’ll still enjoy an occasional smoke and it will be in the order of 15-20% of the population that indulges in this little pleasure from time to time.

    Furthermore, the current tobacco regulation regime means the products that are pushed in the marketplace are largely sub-standard, designed primarily for quick nicotine delivery and to make the product available to the wider population under oppressive taxation and regulation regimes. The emphasis is not on quality and pleasure. The premium tobacco market has been priced out of existence, so the middle class who want to moderate their smoking and be sensible, don’t use it. As people can afford to travel more and have a shopping layover in Abu Dhabi or whatever, you’ll see more people enjoying premium tobacco in moderation.

  118. John Mc

    Hey Sedition, are you authoritarian-left or authoritarian-right? (a or b, if you’re not sure just tell me should we lower taxes and deregulate the labour market further, yes or no?)

  119. .

    It is a criminal offence to posses marijuana, but if you’re caught with it you’re not likely to receive a court imposed fine for it, so why continue to waste the court’s time?

    Why do I need two years in gaol and an $85,000 fine if I grow my own tobacco?

  120. Helen

    real costs of drinking grog
    real costs of smoking cigarettes

    Moreover, what evidence there is suggests that to the extent smoking induces a “fiscal externality,” the sign of the effect is wrong: smokers pay more in cigarette taxes than they ever cost the public purse. They die earlier of cheaper diseases and collect less in superannuation than do non-smokers.4 And, as a 10% increase in cigarette taxes correlates with a 2% increase in obesity,5 one wonders whether increased cigarette taxes consequently require further increases in taxes on fatty foods.

    Or surfing

  121. Me, authoritarian? Labour markets? What does that have to do with smoking?

    As silly as smoking is, and it is silly, most people don’t smoke anymore because there are other things to do, why would young people smoke when its cooler to go to dance parties and take pills? Ultimately smoking has been priced out of the younger age groups and older people just aren’t inclined to be silly enough to start smoking.

  122. .

    And, as a 10% increase in cigarette taxes correlates with a 2% increase in obesity,5 one wonders whether increased cigarette taxes consequently require further increases in taxes on fatty foods.

    Our friend cross elasticity comes into play.

  123. .

    Sed

    Do you want to answer this, considering how wasteful it is to prosecute marijuana use…

    Why do I need two years in gaol and an $85,000 fine if I grow my own tobacco?

  124. “Why do I need two years in gaol and an $85,000 fine if I grow my own tobacco?”

    I don’t know why, I didn’t write the law, nor do I necessarily agree with it. I suspect the rationale behind the law is to protect the government rather than the populace.

  125. .

    I suspect the rationale behind the law is to protect the government rather than the populace.

    The penny drops.

  126. John Mc

    Just curious where you sit in the political spectrum and what your beef is (and why you hate freedom!), do you consider yourself on the right or left?

  127. John Mc

    17% of the population smokes. That’s a lot of people, and considering the current expense, difficulty and efforts to socially snub smokers, it’s clear people want to smoke.

  128. My beef with freedom? Hardly, my beef is with people being free on other-people’s money, or exercising their liberty whilst expecting others to foot the bill. And I object most strenuously having to foot the bill for people who can’t hold their liquor.

    As for where I sit? On my comfortable couch :)

  129. Aristogeiton

    Sounds like a bolshie to me…

  130. John Mc

    So, Sedition, if the usual situation was for smokers to have private health insurance with an associated ‘smoking’ premium, and the tobacco excise was reasonably based on the direct medical and end-of-life costs of smokers on the public health system, you’d be largely happy to leave tobacco alone for adults?

  131. Sounds interesting, but wouldn’t a private health premium on smokers likely lead to the cost being prohibitive anyway? Much in the same way taxes are used now?

  132. John Mc

    I don’t believe so. I think in a proper market environment any number of risky activities such as playing contact sports, cycling on the road, horse riding may involve higher premiums. I think smoking would end up in this category and there would be an affordable higher premium.

    But it wouldn’t matter anyway. That is the real cost of smoking determined in a market environment. You can either afford to do it or you can’t.

  133. John Mc

    So, I’m assuming you’re a bit of the authoritarian-left now.

  134. Dan

    crack cocaine….

    They certainly will in the libertarian legal drug paradise.

    Why debase your self smoking crack when you can snort Pfizer brand 95% pure cocaine?

    why would young people smoke when its cooler to go to dance parties and take pills?

    Those cool motherfuckers at raves are smoking like chimneys. And on the down side smoking pot. Read less classics and get out into the real world

  135. stackja

    Infidel Tiger
    #1154979, posted on January 17, 2014 at 1:40 pm
    Drug users should all OD. End of need for prohibition.

    But they don’t and besides being a cnut of a thing to say, it also shows you have as much knowledge of drugs as you do of basic human decency.

    Millions of Australians will use drugs this weekend without any harm, have a great time and return to work on Monday without so much as skipping a beat. They’ll most likely be in better shape than those who got stuck into the booze.

    Being an old cnut Stackja there’s a fair chance your mater was given heroin to help birthing you. Should she have died for consuming what was then a perfectly legal drug?

    My, what language skills!

  136. .

    Hardly, my beef is with people being free on other-people’s money, or exercising their liberty whilst expecting others to foot the bill.

    So do we.

    Before you also said freedom was illusory and that for private health insurance to work, it would have to be subsidised or “outrageously expensive.

    You’re a far leftist, aren’t you?

    Basically you’re Roxon on steroids.

  137. Infidel Tiger

    My, what language skills!

    Thanks. I was impressed I didn’t wish death on millions of people too.

  138. We are subsidising private health cover now, moving smokers as John suggested to a private health model would increase that subsidy requirement. It isn’t a matter of being left or right or authoritarian or other-wise, it’s being realistic.

    If we asked private companies to set a premium for smokers that adequately covered the risk to their balance sheet there is a fair chance they’re going to make that premium steep. And since smokers already pay a taxation premium to smoke they will ask that the tax-payer transfer some of that in order to cover their health insurance costs, and rightly so.

    As for those who endanger themselves with other activities, maybe they should fall into that same category, I just don’t see that happening.

    By the way, from a purely philosophical stand-point, freedom is illusionary, as unobtainable as perfection, it doesn’t mean we stop trying though.

  139. stackja

    Infidel Tiger
    #1155203, posted on January 17, 2014 at 3:38 pm
    My, what language skills!
    Thanks. I was impressed I didn’t wish death on millions of people too.

    Humanitarian!

  140. John Mc

    I’m not talking about subsidising private health insurance, I’m talking about a system of totally private health insurance (think the Swiss system perhaps), and a private safety net used by a minority of the population who are otherwise unable to take out private health insurance (again, perhaps like the Swiss).

  141. John Mc

    I can certainly see a situation where cyclists may be required to take out private insurance, and get a premium reduction on whether they wear safety gear or not.

    Sports clubs already have to have insurance, don’t they? I imagine the premium for a rugby club is more than a badminton club.

  142. “I’m not talking about subsidising private health insurance, I’m talking about a system of totally private health insurance (think the Swiss system perhaps), and a private safety net used by a minority of the population who are otherwise unable to take out private health insurance (again, perhaps like the Swiss).”

    That is something different, perhaps worth-while looking into.

  143. “I can certainly see a situation where cyclists may be required to take out private insurance, and get a premium reduction on whether they wear safety gear or not.

    Sports clubs already have to have insurance, don’t they? I imagine the premium for a rugby club is more than a badminton club.”

    I would like to think so, though, insurances are often bundled in order to spread risk and to ensure the product remains affordable, insurers know that they’re likely to win on some, lose on others, but work on averages to ensure a profit. So, taking the idea further, it may be possible to reduce the premium on smokers if you for instance created a much larger pool of “at risk” groups who needed the same cover. I doubt it would be cheap, but perhaps not as prohibitive as other-wise would be the case.

  144. Aristogeiton

    This dipshit just invented Obamacare. Good job!

  145. .

    By the way, from a purely philosophical stand-point, freedom is illusionary, as unobtainable as perfection, it doesn’t mean we stop trying though.

    No, you’re a statist. You’ve been fed bullshit and you liked it.

  146. .

    We are subsidising private health cover now, moving smokers as John suggested to a private health model would increase that subsidy requirement. It isn’t a matter of being left or right or authoritarian or other-wise, it’s being realistic.

    Absolute bullshit.

    If we asked private companies to set a premium for smokers that adequately covered the risk to their balance sheet there is a fair chance they’re going to make that premium steep. And since smokers already pay a taxation premium to smoke they will ask that the tax-payer transfer some of that in order to cover their health insurance costs, and rightly so.

    They already pay an additional premium.

    You have NFI.

  147. stackja

    Aristogeiton
    #1155252, posted on January 17, 2014 at 4:02 pm
    This dipshit just invented Obamacare. Good job!

    He probably works for Denis McDonough.

  148. jupes

    Jupes how do you know that “A society can only handle a couple of drugs” exactly?

    Well I don’t know that any more than you know it can’t. I suspect it is the case from a couple of examples close to home. In PNG the drug of choice was bettle nut which their society had learnt to handle. Now that booze has been introduced they are struggling with that. In Aboriginal society that initially struggled with booze but now that dope and petrol has been introduced it has only added to their problems.

    Beware the law of unintended consequences.

    You say that legalizing drugs “wouldn’t be good for anyone”. That’s not true; it would be very good for people who like to take drugs for fun in their spare time not have to worry about getting locked up.

    Then they over-indulge because they no longer have to hide their drug taking and become addicts. Woops!

  149. Actually, Obamacare doesn’t rate premiums by risk, in-fact it legally nullifies risk by ensuring insurers can’t refuse you’re coverage based on prior history or illness. Which ensures those who are likely to get sick in the future are not subject to being charged according to risk, the complete opposite to what has been mentioned here.

    Obomacare only makes it the law that you have to purchase private health insurance, and penalises you if you don’t. Something we already do via the medicare levy, we also regulate premiums far more stringently than the American model and no-one has suggested that change, in-fact, creating a premium pool for smokers would require a form of legal discrimination and the increase of controls over the issuing of private health cover.

    Freedom is illusionary, get over it. Nor is it statist.

    We do subsidise private health cover via the rebate mechanism, it allows premiums to other-wise be higher than the market would sustain by virtue of government footing some of the bill. And the government is willing to foot some of that bill because anyone taking out private health insurance has been or is likely to be paying money into the tax pool which other-wise go into public health.

    Yes, a smoker today pays a marginal additional cost, which isn’t in any way reflective of the risk to the insurer, it is only by virtue of pool-average and the fact that the insurer can’t increase your premium beyond certain limits that prevents the insurer charging you the real cost.

    Again, completely separate from your idea of creating a completely separate private insurance mechanism for smokers.

  150. jupes

    The answer is no, jupes.

    Not that question Dot. JC’s question at 1:07

    You’re parodying yourself now, jupes.

    No, I’m parodying you.

  151. jupes

    Why debase your self smoking crack when you can snort Pfizer brand 95% pure cocaine?

    Because it’s more addictive so Abdul’s Drug Emporium has a Friday night special with a free crack pipe thrown in. Takes a loss on Fridays, cleans up the rest of the week.

  152. Aristogeiton

    Seditionary, you are a dumb shit statist. Where’d the tobbacco excise go in your stupid formula? Insurers do charge extra for smokers for relevant cover. But you’re smarter than their actuaries? Let me outline your argument: I like smoking pot and have never smoked cigarettes as I don’t understand why one would smoke a substance that doesn’t get me ‘high’. The rest is just your bigotry.

  153. Empire Strikes Back

    Because it’s more addictive

    Few people, given a choice, would choose crack. It’s like choosing Joan Kirner over Scarlett Johansson.

    No doubt there are blokes who lust for the full Mother Russia TFTF caper, but you wouldn’t admit to knowing one.

  154. Pedro

    Seds is correct about health insurance and community rating. It’s only life and income insurance that gets pinged for smoking or whatever.

  155. John Mc

    Freedom is illusionary, get over it. Nor is it statist.

    I think we largely agree on the nature of freedom but this is a silly statement.

    Ask someone in a North Korean labour camp whether freedom is illusionary. I suppose they can dream at night as good as anyone else, eh?

    If a solution involves regulating your actions via threat of fine or force via the government, it’s statist. If the solution is you solving a problem by voluntarily going to the shop and buying an alternative product it’s not statist. Regardless of your personal soy latte metaphysical diabetic preference, the difference is real, obvious and understood by every sensible person.

  156. Grumbles

    Jupes, there are no GOOD Social Welfare and healthcare arguments. Both of these have destroyed personal charity, a calling from God, and the spiritual fulfillment that comes with it. Both advocate taking from others against their will and by force to be spent on things they don’t want because they apparently don’t know any better. Personal Charity allows the freedom of choice and the contributions to worthy and grateful schemes that mean something to the person who owns the money.

    On the subject of smack and crack, there is no need to legalize these drugs, if people could access pure controlled doses of ephedrine, these drugs would not exist they are dirty alternatives, designed to make as much profit as possible… a bit like you don’t get bottles of whiskey that are half antifreeze but during prohibition you did.

    In fact by supporting prohibition, you are in fact supporting, both criminal industry and dirty drugs. Decisions, Consequences….

  157. John Mc

    soy latte metaphysical diabetic preference

    That’s ‘soy latte metaphysical dialectic preference’. If you’re diabetic perhaps you should lay off the soy lattes, or at least use artificial sweetener.

  158. Infidel Tiger

    I like smoking pot and have never smoked cigarettes as I don’t understand why one would smoke a substance that doesn’t get me ‘high’.

    A good ciggie will get you to higher places than grass. Especially if you put some Vegemite on it.

  159. Infidel Tiger

    Because it’s more addictive so Abdul’s Drug Emporium has a Friday night special with a free crack pipe thrown in. Takes a loss on Fridays, cleans up the rest of the week.

    The fucker does that or can do that under the current model. You need to start making an argument about why prohibition works.

  160. Jannie

    Freedom is illusionary, get over it.

    And iron bars do not a prison make.

    Seditionary, you are a dumb shit statist.

    I would have said that if I could figure out what he was saying, but it is beyond my attention span.

  161. Jannie

    Where exactly is Abdul’s? Its Friday and I just got paid.

  162. jupes

    Few people, given a choice, would choose crack. It’s like choosing Joan Kirner over Scarlett Johansson.

    No not really. The street price of a gram of coke according to this website is $250. Converted to crack the price increases to $300. If crack is an inferior product then you are right that no one would pay more for it. However crack must have something going for it because users referred to at that website convert cocaine to crack for both selling and their own use. Crack is also a powerfully addictive drug.

    Therefore, as I stated above, it is in Abdul’s best interest to sell crack at a greatly reduced rate, get the young peeps addicted then raise the price for his now regular customers.

  163. Grumbles

    Jupes, Its more valuable because it is cut, a consequence of prohibition, is dirty product, criminal drug dealers cut drugs to make more money. Now, I personally am AGAINST dirty drugs and criminal enterprise so I cannot be for Prohibition, luckily I am also FOR Education and Caring for Others, whilst allowing them to make their own choices .

    You are FOR Prohibition which means you are also FOR dirty drugs and criminal enterprise. I understand that you find this hard to fathom, given that we have grown up in a society that tries to insulate us from the consequences of our decisions, but their are consequences to every decision.

    You rightly argue that there will be consequences to the legalization of drugs but you ignore the current consequences that your decisions make. The only way to change the consequences is to change the decisions.

  164. Infidel Tiger

    Crack is a by product of prohibition.

    It’s the cheapest, nastiest, most adulterated form of cocaine available. No coke head actually wants to do crack.

    Do you think alcos really want to drink Lady In The Boat?

  165. Elephant Stone

    “Then they over-indulge because they no longer have to hide their drug taking and become addicts. ”

    Damn that slope sure is slippery!

  166. Elephant Stone

    I guess to the prohibitionists the term recreational/casual drug users is an oxymoron, when in fact the majority of people who use drugs are just that: casual/recreational.

    But no…they’re all on the slippery slope to being crack addicts pimping themselves on the street….

  167. Mrs Beardsley

    Is it time for a drink? Husband home soon. Champagne cold. Easy dinner planned. Laundry done. Dishes done.

    :-)

  168. “That’s ‘soy latte metaphysical dialectic preference’. If you’re diabetic perhaps you should lay off the soy lattes, or at least use artificial sweetener.”

    Don’t worry, I knew what you meant and chuckled just a little. Yes, we are likely to agree on the “freedom is illusionary” part of the argument, simply because as a philosophical idea it has no counter, doesn’t really make it relevant to the argument however. (also, I prefer tea if you must know, and if it is relevant I also smoked for 12 years, enjoy aged whiskey and though a rare puffer of weed never found the experience all that entertaining, except for this one time…)

    As for statism, even under the private insurance system proposed by yourself here would be a requirement for some state intervention in order to at the very least transfer the taxes paid by those using cigarettes to their private health-cover, which we both can agree is only fair. So, we’re both equally statist if this is what you’re basing that assertion on.

    As for how the insurance industry works, the system in Australia largely prevents insurance companies billing you according to the true nature of the risk, they simply apply rather blanket base fees in order to cover the extremes, seeing as the government is going to cover a good chunk of the bill anyway they’re none too concerned with who is getting shafted in that arrangement.

  169. On a different note, I always though the difference between crack and cocaine was not purely the way in which it is produced but how it is largely used.

    Crack is often smoked, though it can be injected where-as cocaine is predominately snorted.

  170. Aristogeiton

    Seditionary, you are a stupid, pompous asshole. Coming from me, that is a high insult.

  171. .

    Fredom is not illusory. You are a statist, get over it.

    PHI is not subsidised, despite all other Federal taxes, I must pay a Medicare levy.

    Yes, a smoker today pays a marginal additional cost, which isn’t in any way reflective of the risk to the insurer, it is only by virtue of pool-average and the fact that the insurer can’t increase your premium beyond certain limits that prevents the insurer charging you the real cost.

    Again, completely separate from your idea of creating a completely separate private insurance mechanism for smokers.

    You don’t know what you’re talking about. They have non-price mechanisms as well they can use. The limits are imposed by the Government. That rule therefore subsidises smokers in the pool against non smokers – not at the expense of the truly subsidised, those on Medicare.

  172. Dan

    FFS. All we get is

    prohibition works because…

    And

    I don’t know anything about drugs but….

    And

    people take drugs because they are addictive. Think of the children

  173. John Mc

    Sedition, I think you’ll find that most of us – maybe not all – feel that protecting life, liberty, enforcing property rights and upholding voluntary contract is not statism when enforced by the government, or indeed a private entity. Private health insurance is not statism. Paying taxes for a service you (really and directly) use is perhaps not statism. The stuff beyond that is statism, like deciding you’re going to cut the cancer rate by taxing cigarettes beyond reasonable levels.

  174. Freedom is certainly illusionary, we all owe debts, and all debts are bonds, we owe our very existence to the natural world, we owe our very being to our parents and their parents before them. You can’t be free of need, needs are demands that must be met, once hungry your body demands it be fed, your brain complies and orders you to consume, you are not free, only unaware of your chains.

    It is the height of arrogant stupidity to think other-wise.

    Yes, Health Insurance is subsidised, the government pays you a rebate for taking it out, which allows the health insurance industry to charge premiums at a higher rate than the market would other-wise sustain. The means-testing of this rebate was not kept a secret so it is a little unnerving that you neither know of the existence of it or are choosing to remain deliberately ignorant of it and how it works.

  175. .

    I’m not free because I need to eat.

    No. It means I’m alive.

    You are going to try to use this justify every violation of liberties. You’re not clever, you’re dishonest.

    Yes, Health Insurance is subsidised, the government pays you a rebate for taking it out, which allows the health insurance industry to charge premiums at a higher rate than the market would other-wise sustain.

    No. The rebate compensates you for paying for Medicare which you use less of.

  176. In reply to John,

    I never argued for higher taxes on cigarettes, only pointed out that the taxes raised by cigarettes did not cover the cost to society, to which I provided evidence there-of. Taxes do not alter the cancer-rate of smokers, they have however decreased the number of people who currently smoke, in so doing hopefully diminishing over the long term the total number of cancer patients that will require treatment.

    I also pointed out that most young people aren’t interested in smoking, not because of the prohibitive cost but because they know its ill effects and the availability of they have access to cheap drugs which are more fun to use.

    I also advocated the decriminalisation of marijuana.

    So if people think I am a statist, then I assume they think it means something it doesn’t.

  177. Grumbles

    SeditionaryI, it is not arrogance to realize that we are freed by the blood of Christ and the chains you feel are just lack of faith. I choose to serve God, and in that way I am truly free.

  178. No, you’re not free because it is an impulse beyond your control. These are not difficult concepts…

    The rebate was introduced to fund the health insurance sector which would fail without it, it effectively allows premiums to be 30% higher than they other-wise would be. It is also designed to ensure a maximum pool of people, which is absolutely critical in keeping the system viable, no rebate would ensure the system would become to expensive to maintain and everyone would be left with public only. Making both public and private wholly reliant on government to survive.

  179. Aristogeiton

    To enter a debtor/creditor relationship is an exercise of freedom. To meet one’s needs is to exercise freedom. Freedom does not mean that one is free from the consequences of one’s voluntary actions. The theoretical contingency of one’s existence says nothing about one’s freedom in the here and now. You’re a sophist, mate, and a poor one at that.

  180. You were not freed by the blood of Christ, by accepting Christ you can not even be free in death, with the threat of eternal damnation if you stray in your faith as punishment. You are bound by your covenant with God.

  181. Aristogeiton

    Also, you’re fucking wrong about the cost of smoking. I can’t be bothered digging up the evidence from this blog because you’re an asshole.

  182. WhaleHunt Fun

    Weirdly. Was not able to get better than 92% Conservative. I suspect using internet explorer rather than chrome was letting me down.

  183. jupes

    On the subject of smack and crack, there is no need to legalize these drugs, if people could access pure controlled doses of ephedrine, these drugs would not exist they are dirty alternatives, designed to make as much profit as possible…

    Smack is heroin. As its supporters on this site will tell you, in its pure form it has very little detrimental physiological or psychological effects so it is not ‘dirty’. Also those who are partial to smack are unlikely to forgo it for ephedrine which is an upper. Even more so if they are addicted.

    However both smack and crack are both powerfully addictive drugs and I agree that they should be banned.

  184. jupes

    Seditionary, you are a stupid, pompous asshole. Coming from me, that is a high insult.

    LOL. True.

  185. WhaleHunt Fun

    God in heaven, leave off with the blood of Christ stuff. If he lived, he’s dead now and any blood, if it existed, rotted away thousands of years ago. The memes he initiated or perhaps passed on from other earlier thinkers may still have some sway, but his body parts do not.

  186. Aristogeiton

    @SeditionaryI
    #1155553, posted on January 17, 2014 at 7:28 pm
    You were not freed by the blood of Christ, by accepting Christ you can not even be free in death, with the threat of eternal damnation if you stray in your faith as punishment.

    Shut the fuck up. Typical leftie, pronouncing upon matters of faith when you have neither faith nor theology. Not all Christians believe in eternal damnation:

    For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
    (Romans 6:23, KJV)

    You’re a sophist, and not a very good one. One is enslaved by physics and the limit’s of one’s intellect (of which you are a shining example). What of it? The tendency of some state of affairs to maximise or minimise freedom is not contingent upon such pedantry. Now shut up, and fuck off.

  187. Infidel Tiger

    However both smack and crack are both powerfully addictive drugs and I agree that they should be banned.

    Addiction is largely over stated with most drugs. Theodore Dalrymple who I disagree with on the drug issue has some interesting things to say about addiction.

    However deny a true alcoholic a drink and there is a good chance they will die. What an evil drug it must be.

  188. jupes

    Damn that slope sure is slippery!

    Addiction does that.

  189. WhaleHunt Fun

    Entertainingly Pickering on his blog argued recently that smoking is accompanied by longer lifespans. Now while it does probably not cause the longer lifespan, it is an intriguing fact that they go together.
    Perhaps it just seems a longer life because they DON’T WASTE HALF OF IT ARGUING ABOUT SMOKING.

  190. WhaleHunt Fun

    Now shut up, and fuck off.

    With all orifices shut as directed, the second action becomes problematic.

  191. Tel

    Where exactly is Abdul’s? Its Friday and I just got paid.

    Under Mona St bridge near Bangor Park in Auburn. They have been, errr… renovating lately so the service might be a bit choppy.

    I’m told you can get right off your head there, on a good night.

  192. John Mc

    Freedom is certainly illusionary, we all owe debts, and all debts are bonds, we owe our very existence to the natural world, we owe our very being to our parents and their parents before them. You can’t be free of need, needs are demands that must be met, once hungry your body demands it be fed, your brain complies and orders you to consume, you are not free, only unaware of your chains.

    OK, right. Firstly, freedom has nothing to do with being hungry or being cold, or not being able to go outside because it’s raining or whatever. Freedom, in the context we are talking about, is simply to do with our relationships with other people and the extent to which they subject us to violence or coercion.

    Secondly, you borrowed the money on certain terms by your own choice, because you perceive it’s in your interests. The other party lent it to you in exactly the same way because they perceive it’s in their interest. Honouring that voluntary contract is not violating your freedom. Indeed, failing to honour that contract is an affront to a free society.

  193. Aristogeiton

    WhaleHunt Fun
    #1155572, posted on January 17, 2014 at 7:37 pm
    God in heaven, leave off with the blood of Christ stuff. If he lived, he’s dead now and any blood, if it existed, rotted away thousands of years ago. The memes he initiated or perhaps passed on from other earlier thinkers may still have some sway, but his body parts do not.

    Can we stop using ‘meme’ as synonymous with ‘idea’, or ‘philosophy’. The word ‘meme’ has a sense of imitation (µίµηµα, “anything imitated, counterfeit, copy”), and refers to an element of culture passed on, particularly by imitation. ‘Meme’ does not mean ‘any idea which many others have perpetuated with which I disagree’.

  194. John Mc

    Attacking the Christians demeans us all, unless they’ve got their foot in your front door when you’re trying to close it. It’s not a bad value system, ignore the bits you don’t like, but there’s not need to swear at them even for an atheist.

  195. Aristogeiton

    WhaleHunt Fun
    #1155586, posted on January 17, 2014 at 7:43 pm
    Now shut up, and fuck off.

    With all orifices shut as directed, the second action becomes problematic.

    You need a dictionary, dipshit:

    fuck, v.
    (fʌk)
    [...]
    3.3 Const. with various adverbs: fuck about, to fool about, mess about; fuck off, to go away, make off; fuck up: (a) trans., to ruin, spoil, mess up; (b) intr., to blunder, to make a (serious) error; to fail
    (OED)

  196. The importation of currently illicit drugs would still remain illegal, so the black market could never compete on price.

    So drugs not manufactured in Australia will remain illegal? Again, not very libertarian is it?

    Almost exactly as libertarian as our current policy towards fruit and vegetables.

  197. Dan

    FFS.

    This whole thread has been a hypothetical. If any of our current political parties legalised drugs then there is no doubt it would be heavily regulated. FFS. How many times do I need to explain this?

    So what happens at this blog? Do we suspend reality and fantasise about a world and only debate that?

  198. jupes

    So what happens at this blog? Do we suspend reality and fantasise about a world and only debate that?

    Yep. Many libertarians here fantasise about the day the LDP or some other libertarian party actually run the country. Now that David Leyonhjelm has been elected to the Senate, people will become aware of the many sensible policies and ideas of libertarians.

    I agree with the majority of the LDP’s policies, but there are two reasons that libertarians will never get a large share of the vote. One is that they want to legalise drugs, the other is that they advocate for open borders.

    Obviously they haven’t thought this through, because the end result is that the country will become a drug addled cesspit before morphing into the southern franchise of the Caliphate.

  199. .

    Obviously they haven’t thought this through, because the end result is that the country will become a drug addled cesspit before morphing into the southern franchise of the Caliphate.

    You seem to be under the impression your view is a popular one amongst those who would otherwise vote for the LDP.

  200. jupes

    You seem to be under the impression your view is a popular one amongst those who would otherwise vote for the LDP.

    Throw out support for gay marriage as well and you’ve got my vote.

  201. Aristogeiton

    Dan
    #1155922, posted on January 17, 2014 at 11:12 pm
    FFS.

    This whole thread has been a hypothetical. If any of our current political parties legalised drugs then there is no doubt it would be heavily regulated. FFS. How many times do I need to explain this?

    So what happens at this blog? Do we suspend reality and fantasise about a world and only debate that?

    Some are endowed with principles, which allow hypothetical discussion of matters of morality. For example, the fact that successive governments won’t rein in taxation and expenditure doesn’t mean that libertarians on this blog will advocate for profligacy in order to avoid the hypothetical.

  202. Aristogeiton

    jupes
    #1156338, posted on January 18, 2014 at 10:14 am
    [...]
    Obviously they haven’t thought this through, because the end result is that the country will become a drug addled cesspit before morphing into the southern franchise of the Caliphate.

    Better that than the fascist reactionary conservative nightmare which would eventuate if people of your ideological persuasion were running the show. You are profoundly illiberal, and for a so-called conservative have surprisingly little respect for our institutions of government and their respective historical traditions. I imagine that your political views are formed in fits of rage between drunken readings from the Courier Mail.

  203. Dan

    Some are endowed with principles, which allow hypothetical discussion of matters of morality.

    Sure.

    Morality would extend to legalising drugs such that deaths from tainted product don’t occur.

  204. jupes

    Better that than the fascist reactionary conservative nightmare which would eventuate if people of your ideological persuasion were running the show.

    You really think people of my ‘ideological persuasion’ are pining for a conservative ‘fascist’ nightmare Ari? My ideoligical persuasion – if it can be termed as such – is to not follow the dogma of any ideological persuasion. FWIW I like most libertarian positions except legalising drugs, open borders and gay marriage. Do you really think that’s worse than the Caliphate? Principles are fine, but if you are dogmatic about any political or belief system then it will inevitably end badly.

    You are profoundly illiberal, and for a so-called conservative have surprisingly little respect for our institutions of government and their respective historical traditions.

    A bit harsh Ari. I would say I’m somewhat illiberal on some matters, not so much on others and have understandably little respect for some institutions of government. The legal system in particular.

    I imagine that your political views are formed in fits of rage between drunken readings from the Courier Mail.

    No no no. I don’t live in Queensland. My political views are formed from watching A Current Affair.

  205. .

    Really I’d just say drugs.

    The LDP are only a moderate party and the policy is more laissez faire than it used to be, and is actually more accpetable to a nominally conservative person. What people call open borders is variable. I wouldn’t want open borders in Israel.

    What people allow the Liberals to get away with and still vote for them reminds me of Stockholm syndrome.

  206. Dan

    Jupes,

    You object to gay’s getting hitched or the usurping of the term Marriage?

  207. Aristogeiton

    Dan
    #1156560, posted on January 18, 2014 at 1:14 pm
    Some are endowed with principles, which allow hypothetical discussion of matters of morality.

    Sure.

    Morality would extend to legalising drugs such that deaths from tainted product don’t occur.

    I agree with you here. I am comfortable with the extent to which pharmaceuticals are regulated at present. As a previous poster noted, it was only two generations ago when these drugs were taxed and legal. The colonies provided that warning labels be affixed on opium sold. Smokable opium was prohibited in 1908, but laudanum was I think available until 1930. Cocaine I am not sure but I think was outlawed in the 20′s or later?

  208. Aristogeiton

    jupes
    #1156573, posted on January 18, 2014 at 1:24 pm
    [...]
    No no no. I don’t live in Queensland. My political views are formed from watching A Current Affair.

    Touché.

  209. Dan

    I think it was TerjeP who said it should be regulated as it is currently for buying codeine. That is, you have to present you drivers licence and then you go on a register. I’m not entirely sold on this idea as people would, having been denied a purchase, go through the grey market.

  210. Aristogeiton

    Dan
    #1156606, posted on January 18, 2014 at 1:50 pm
    I think it was TerjeP who said it should be regulated as it is currently for buying codeine. That is, you have to present you drivers licence and then you go on a register. I’m not entirely sold on this idea as people would, having been denied a purchase, go through the grey market.

    Heed the cautionary example of ‘legalised’ prostitution. The majority of the market is still illegal prostitution as the regulations are over the top. Also, I resent having to provide my details to buy Codeine. Why should I be inconvenienced because a few junkies want to boot up a pissweak opiate?

  211. Dan

    No no no. I don’t live in Queensland. My political views are formed from watching A Current Affair.

    Of course this means that Jupes hates Lebanese Builders

  212. Dan

    Legalised Prostitution!

    They have their own OH&S laws

    I frown at thee. But while your mouthing a Union official, here are some minimum guidelines girls.

  213. jupes

    I wouldn’t want open borders in Israel.

    We agree Dot. I don’t open borders in Australia either.

  214. jupes

    You object to gay’s getting hitched or the usurping of the term Marriage?

    Doesn’t ‘getting hitched’ mean marriage?

    They can live together but should not be able to get married or adopt children.

  215. Aristogeiton

    jupes
    #1156641, posted on January 18, 2014 at 2:27 pm
    You object to gay’s getting hitched or the usurping of the term Marriage?

    Doesn’t ‘getting hitched’ mean marriage?

    They can live together but should not be able to get married or adopt children.

    So not only do you not support marriage equality, but you don’t support three-cornered gay custody disputes or gay parenting experiments? You’re a monster!

  216. Dan

    Doesn’t ‘getting hitched’ mean marriage?

    Not necessarily

  217. Dan

    Where is Yobbo? He usually has something of worth to say

  218. Richard of OZ

    Tell me, Sed. Since you are so down on some poor bastard (and they usually are, poor that is) having a smoke, and objecting to having to spend “your” money on their health costs – I also dispute your contention re costings – what about AIDS in the homosexual community? In Australia, it is well known that if you have unprotected anal sex, you run the risk of contracting the disease. Because they wield more political clout upon the terminally anxious, they will have more expensive treatments for far longer than the expected life outcome of the smoker. Do you fall back upon the leftard thought process that some wrongs are more forgivable than others, according to the “side” they take?

  219. My ideoligical persuasion – if it can be termed as such – is to not follow the dogma of any ideological persuasion.

    Your stance on drugs is the very definition of ridiculous dogma.

  220. JohnRMcD

    This questionnaire would be better with a mid-range choice: “Couldn’t give a great rat’s ass”. Very useful; would improve one’s ability to respond appropriately; but might make it more difficult for the incompetents at Time to grade the test.
    More rubbish from Time, and from the strange American political obsession.

Comments are closed.