The Speakeasy Blog

New Anti-Drug Ad is Scary and Ironic

The Partnership at has been putting out outrageous anti-drug propaganda for many years, but this latest spot takes us in a really strange direction…

This thing goes into overdrive instantly, and for a second I thought they were seriously suggesting smashing up your kids' stuff to keep them off drugs (unfortunately, it's only a short trip from the typical nuttiness one can expect from anti-drug zealots like these). But the conclusion reveals a more nuanced message, encouraging parents not to break their kids' crap with a bat, but rather to seek help from sources like if you think your child is involved with drugs.

Now I would never recommend that anyone get drug information from, as you could write several books on what those people don’t know about drugs (those books already exist, in fact), but I suppose I'd have to agree with the ad's central message that going apeshit with an aluminum baseball bat in your own driveway is a bad plan.

I find it amusing, however, that parents are now being warned not to overreact to their kids' drug use by the very same organization that's spend many years and many millions to convince parents to be scared senseless at the thought of their kids doing drugs. Parental panic is a product of the hysteria that's been spread by these very same people, and it's the height of irony that they now dramatize this legacy of confusion and fear in a peculiar attempt at self-promotion. I have a feeling it won't work so well.

Bill O'Reilly Shouts Dumb Stuff About the Drug War Again

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I don't even want to know how many times I've written about the reckless idiocy of this man, but what am I supposed to do, ignore him? The arrogance on display here is so perfectly horrible, I'm afraid I just can’t look away.

You can see the frustration of his guests as they struggle to explain anything at all about our drug policy to a guy who is so determined never to understand it. From his casual slander against medical marijuana laws, to his bizarre inversion of factual vs. theoretical examples, to his ridiculous insistence that any drug sale borders on attempted murder, O'Reilly is the hellish incarnation of every dumb idea anybody ever had about how to deal with drugs.

I can't wait to hear what he has to say when we finally end the drug war and everyone is safer, happier, and healthy. I can only assume he'll complain quite vigorously about it.

Now They're Trying to Ban... Kratom? [FEATURE]

Kratom is a fairly innocuous organic substance that is useful in treating a number of conditions, but that doesn't mean people in power don't want to reflexively ban it. The fight is on in Pinellas County, Florida. Chronicle feature story here.

North Dakota Medical Marijuana Petitions Handed In

North Dakota could be voting on medical marijuana this fall. Initiative campaigners have handed in 150% of the signatures they need to qualify. Now, they have to wait and see if they have enough valid signatures. Chronicle story here.

New Hemp Bill Introduced in US Senate

In a bipartisan effort, four US senators are cosponsoring a bill that would differentiate hemp from marijuana under the Controlled Substance Act. Chronicle story here.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

It never stops, does it? Here's another seven bad apples. Chronicle story here.

Medical Marijuana Update

The end of dispensaries in LA looms, more threat letters in Colorado, and a medical marijuana initiative in North Dakota!? That's just some of the news -- Chronicle update here.

Olympic Athlete's Expulsion for Marijuana Raises Questions

The expulsion of American Olympic judo competitor Nick Delpopolo from the Games after he tested positive for marijuana is raising questions about why pot is on the list of substances banned for athletes in the first place. Chronicle story here.

Arizona SWAT Team Kills Man in Drug Raid Shootout

A kick-the-door-down SWAT team drug raid was met with gunfire at a Phoenix house early Thursday. One man was killed, making him the 39th to die in US domestic drug law enforcement operations so far this year. Chronicle story here.

Springfield (Missouri) Marijuana Decriminalization Initiative Certified

Springfield, Missouri, voters will have a chance to vote for marijuana decriminalization in November -- if the city council doesn't approve it first -- after an initiative there qualified Thursday. Chronicle story here.

Police Kill Miami Man in Marijuana Grow House Shootout

A Miami man is dead after police said he opened fire on them as they investigated a possible marijuana grow house. Still no word if it actually was a marijuana grow house, though. Chronicle story here.

Bipartisan Bill to Fight Overdoses Filed in Congress

A couple of dozen House members have introduced a bill aimed at reducing the steadily climbing toll from drug overdoses, most of them from prescription opioid pain relievers, by providing federal support for state and local prevention and education programs, including expanded use of naloxone. Chronicle story here.

Medical Marijuana Update

What!? No DEA raids? Not this week, but the federal crackdown on dispensaries continues, and cities and localities in medical marijuana states continue to grapple with the issues around it. Chronicle story here.

Handcuffed Marijuana Offender Shot, Killed in Police Car

Police say a young Mississippi man shot himself while cuffed with his hands behind his back in the back sear of a police car with a gun they missed while searching him after arresting him for marijuana. His mother isn't buying it. Chronicle story here.

Lebanon Hash Eradication Hits New Obstacle

Lebanon's annual effort to wipe out hashish production is having a particularly rocky time this year. On Tuesday, eradicators were stuck without bulldozers after locals refused to rent to them. At least no one was shooting at them this week. Chronicle story here.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A crank-dealing sheriff cops a plea, an LA narc gets a case of sticky fingers, an Arkansas narc develops a fondness for dope, and a North Carolina parole officer gets caught forcing his parolees to supply him with dope. Chronicle story here.

DOJ to Sentencing Commission: Fewer Prisoners, Please

The Justice Department is signaling it wants a smaller federal prison population because we can't afford our mass incarceration binge anymore, but it doesn't want to talk about the drug war. Chronicle story here.

Woman Walks After Prosecutorial Perfidy in Tucson [FEATURE]

Aurora Lopez-Avila is back home in Mexico. A mother of three, she struggles daily to rebuild a shattered life that once hung in the balance -- after sitting for more than two years in a Tucson, Arizona, federal jail facing charges that she attempted to transport 10 kilos of cocaine across the Arizona-Mexico border on December 8, 2009. Chronicle feature story here.

Medical Marijuana Rescheduling Lawsuit Moving

Ten years after the Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis filed a petition to remove marijuana from Schedule I and one year after the DEA rejected that petition, a federal appeals court is set to hear the evidence. Chronicle story here.

"You Can't Stop AIDS Without Ending the Drug War" [FEATURE]

The International AIDS Conference in Washington this week saw foreign drug users and sex workers excluded even amidst a rising clamor for ending the drug war to help stop the spread of disease. Chronicle feature story here.

Colombia Coca Cultivation Ticks Upward

Coca production in Colombia ticked upward last year after four straight years of declines, the UNODC said in a new report. It's still way down from its peak, though. Chronicle story here.

Medical Marijuana Update

Harborside fights for its life, LA bans dispensaries, and Oregon transplant hospitals are lightening up on medical marijuana patients. Those are the big stories this week, but there's plenty more, too. Chronicle update here.

Two More US Drug War Killings

One man is dead after swallowing drugs and being hit with a stun gun in Indianapolis as he tried to flee an arrest. Another is dead in Massachusetts after he was shot trying to flee an arrest in his car. Chronicle story here.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

Bad cop, no donut for a Miami sergeant, two more TSA screeners cop pleas in LA, and a Phoenix cop couldn't keep his paws off the evidence room goodies. Chronicle story here.

Washington Marijuana Initiative Has Good Week

Washington state's I-502 marijuana legalization initiative did well in polling this week and even better in fundraising. This thing could win, and it has the money to help make that happen. Chronicle story here.

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