Archive for April, 2010

Cameron Douglas – Making People Smile

Posted in Current Events, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on April 24, 2010 by corecompany

The Hollywood kid problem. I have often thought that children of famous people are like marriage or communism; better in theory than practice. I think my favorite part of the Cameron Douglas case is his numerous quotes about how he lives to entertain and make people smile. By that logic, selling Crystal meth out of the Gansevoort hotel fulfilled his dream.  I am sure that made many people happy, at least for their night of clubbing in the meatpacking district.

The Douglas family had been plagued by addictive disease. Eric the much lesser known brother of Michael died after years of smoking crack.  I don’t know the man but I’ll take a wild guess and say Michael Douglas is no stranger to booze, who knows. In other words, Cameron comes by it honestly. His rich and powerful family pleaded with the judge to cut Cameron a break, I guess the judge listened because he got five years for a “10 year minimum sentence”. That makes no sense at all. If the minimum sentence is 10 years how did he get 5? The Judge scolded Cameron’s parents, which they may or may not deserve.

So many issues jump out at me from this. Is he a Hollywood brat, the product of poor parenting, a narcissistic culture? Yes, I am quite sure he is a less than pleasant human. Is he a criminal? I guess, he did break the law. Can he be rehabilitated? It doesn’t seem likely. He is 31 years old and has been this way for a very long time. It is possible that spending 5 years in jail will give him the motivation to create sustainable change but it won’t teach him any lessons. More than likely, he will manipulate his parents and blame them for the way he turned out. They will cave in to their guilt and provide him with some stupid life where he is invested in blame and scapegoating, which, by the way, will NEVER support a person in recovery.

This is a very difficult problem. Does he deserve a prison term? He might. Let’s not pull any punches. My general rule of thumb is to side with the kid, dog, or addict but often addicts not only deserve the mess they create, it may in fact be the best way to help them. Certainly, if they are going to get better, they need to take responsibility for their actions, and be held accountable.

Who knows, maybe Cameron Douglas will speak when he has five years sober and begin it by saying “my bottom was when I was sentenced to prison”.

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Ron Nehring is Shocking on So Many Levels!

Posted in Current Events with tags , , , on April 8, 2010 by corecompany

When will I learn? Where do I live in this drug world? Sometimes I think that the culture is shifting and we are beginning to treat drug use and/or misuse with some honesty and then I suddenly realize that I am really out of touch with the rest of the world.

California Republican Chairman, Ron Nehring issued a statement on where the party stands on the legalization issue on the November 2nd California ballot. Shockingly, they oppose it. Why am I shocked?  I thought Republicans were opposed to big wasteful government and nothing is more wasteful than arresting, processing, and incarcerating nonviolent Marijuana users. Nehring goes on to state unsubstantiated opinions about cost and, apparently he is clairvoyant because he seems to know what will happen should the measure pass.  He goes on to state that California Republicans will fight this and anything else to expand drug use. Does he really believe that there are people out there writing and sponsoring legislation to expand drug use? One of my favorite parts of the statement is that he calls Marijuana “dope” throughout and then draws the obvious conclusion that only “dopes” would vote for “dope”, get it? Aren’t Republicans funny?  I personally think that anyone who commits acts of domestic violence against women, as Nehring has been accused of, is a dope!

Nehring argues that whatever “taxes” are paid (why taxes is in quotes, I don’t know), they won’t cover the societal costs. Again, what is he basing this on other than his misguided opinion? Who does he think pays the cost now? YOUR taxes pay for whatever damage is done not to mention the cost of draining the police, courts and prisons.  Nehring states that the proponents are masking their effort as a revenue generator for the state. I wonder what he thinks is the hidden agenda, what are they masking exactly? Does Nehring and the Republican party think there are people out there thinking,” Wait until this is legal, boy am I going to smoke some weed, I can’t wait until it’s legal, oh boy oh boy!”

Drug misuse is very costly to society; nobody will argue that. What the legalization movement is about is not adding insult to injury. Why have layers and layers of damage to society when we can have less damage? How could I have ever thought it would be the Republicans to see this as an opportunity? I’ll bet Nehring has a crystal Scotch decanter in his office. What do you want to bet?

Voting to Legalize Marijuana in California.

Posted in Current Events with tags , , , , on April 5, 2010 by corecompany

Ahh, California, my homeland. It’s the state that nurtured me and made me the cynic I am today. Thankfully, for me and for Californians I live in New York but having spent the first 22 years there, I feel qualified to comment on the culture and of course their drug policy. I know what you are saying, “feelings aren’t facts” meaning perhaps I am not qualified but isn’t that what a blog is for? Unsubstantiated rantings about whatever? That’s what mine is for anyway.

California has a reputation of being a liberal bastion; groundbreaking culture where oddballs cast out of their home environment can feel safe. To some extent this is true, the epicenter of the gay culture found a home in an Irish Catholic neighborhood in San Francisco. Angela Davis shouted from the hills of Westwood at UCLA. Berkeley has long been a community and University of intellectual inquiry and liberal politics. The thing to remember about California is that it is huge and diverse and except for these pockets it might as well be Texas. Californians love the death penalty, guns, the Klan has a strong yet more subdued presence there. Ironically Californians love almost all things Mexican, the food (which by the way is one of the best things about the state), the architecture, as well as naming their cities and streets Spanish names. What they don’t love about Mexican culture are the people. They have staunch opinions about being bilingual and immigration. They vote to exclude immigrants from health care and education. This seems to be institutionalized racism because they all seem to love their individual Lupe, Maria, or Consuela whom they treat as an indentured servant. So in other words the message is: “Mexicans keep out; unless you will mow my lawn, care for my child, grow my food, bus my table, clean my house, then we welcome you North, amigo”. In a sense California is liberal but in a really militant way especially in the Bay area. There is a high expectation of political correctness in the social circles in the Bay area. A smugness that is off-putting, exclusive, as well as mystifying. What is it that makes them feel they have found the secret to happiness? It is a quaint place, aesthetically pleasing and the food is good but is it important? No, it is not. Certainly not to the degree it feels it is. For a place that celebrates diversity it is oddly rigid. If you didn’t go to UCLA or Stanford, live in the Marina and drive an Audi A4 you will never be a cool kid, not ever. Los Angeles? Not enough time to comment on that quagmire of vapid dudeosity they call a city. Oh what to do about the California problem? Get a burrito and a surfboard and join them? Hardly an option. Stay in Brooklyn and make fun of them? Watch their political climate closely? Yes, this will be a better plan.

Why California on the brain? The measure that will be on the November 2nd ballot to legalize marijuana. I have never made any secret about my position on marijuana: I consider it a dangerous psycho reactive drug and I encourage people to steer clear of it. I hate the culture that surrounds it; the complacency, the stupidity, the dirty hacky sack playing white kids with Dred locks that look like they need parenting and a bath. I really do not like hippies or their hypocrisy. With that said, I am a supporter of taxing and regulating a substance that clearly the people want and consume. Additionally, I would never support the government having the right to choose an individuals intoxicant, especially when the one they choose is one of the most dangerous ones out there.  California has clued in, or maybe they are thrust into this by their fiscal crisis. Whatever the motivation, California could be the first state to reduce illicit drug use by more than half, generate revenue and a tax base for something that already goes on, and allow a personal liberty that the government has no right to intercept. Where is the downside of this? Additionally, it would seem to merge various cultures in California. The Hollywood limousine liberals could feel good about themselves (although what would stop them?), the San Francisco smugness would be justified (in their minds) and the gun-toting Mexican hating, tract housing living conservatives should be happy that big wasteful government would be turning a loss into a profit. Will they be? Will these cultures align and be the first domino to fall in America? Who knows? Anyone who has ever tried to organize drug users to do much of anything knows, addicts don’t vote. They are too self-centered, often high and unaware of any civic responsibility. Addicts in recovery are of course a different breed of cat. Will they put the bong aside, the Doritos away and turn the Xbox off long enough to vote on an issue that impacts them? Maybe they won’t. Their weed could increase in price and dealers will deliver. It takes minimal effort to get high at the moment so maybe they won’t do it.

The polls suggest most voters favor the move to make marijuana legal. There are voices out there dissenting. One is Pastor Ron Allen, a crack smoker turned cleric, (really is there any better kind?) who is one of those “Just say no” evangelicals voicing bizarre opinions based on his sample of one of what to do about the drug problem.  Other’s are surely to surface opposing this issue, likely they swill scotch and hate Mexicans but culturally stereotyping people is really not part of my bag of tricks so I will leave them alone.

Which California will emerge on November 2nd?  I hope it’s the one that will approve this and end a piece of the senseless, bloody drug war. I say either end the prohibition of Cannabis or reinstate the prohibition of alcohol. Ok, California, its, like, you know, up to you to lead the nation on this one.