Should we be threatening cocaine addicts with execution?

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Re: Should we be threatening cocaine addicts with execution?

Postby Paul » 10 Dec 2013, 22:40

Thanks Rachel, good post.

Its' not for me to talk about tranquiliser addiction or withdrawal, knowing nothing about it. You are better placed, having the experience. You've been poorly served by the medical authorities, if you don't mind me saying.

On a similar basis it's not really for me to talk about opiate or cocaine addiction & withdrawal, and further to that it's not really for TD to talk about it either! But, if the world was run so that only those with direct experience could ever have a valid opinion, then you can see the problems straightaway. Expert opinion is what we tend to trust and TD is surely an expert in all ways ........ other than ever living that life.

You would really have to read his book to get more information. There are reams of anecdotes and skilled observation.

I didn't actually buy the book myself and probably would never have got around to doing so, but someone I 'put onto' TD, via articles on the web was so taken by his writing (though so was I) that on his next visit to Manchester city centre he took the time to visit a large bookstore where he found 'Life at the Bottom' and 'Junk Medicine' in stock and so purchased them there and then. He subsequently lent both of then to me and of course I avidly read them.

The Junk Medicine book was particularly resonant for anyone who has lived in an urban (or maybe anywhere) region of the UK over the last twenty years. Who hasn't been burgled, robbed or otherwise dispossessed in some way by a drug addict? Very few people I'll be bound. Who hasn't read endless crime reports (local) where the bottom line is always a drug-treatment order (linked to non-imprisonment of course) and who hasn't personally known (or knows someone who directly knows - that's the furthest it goes) someone else who has drug problems?

But at the same time, I always glimpsed, and suspected, there was more to the story than met the eye. I'm now very cynical and that's been growing for - well thirty years or so, more or less all my adulthood. I've lived in England after all for those thirty years. How could it not be so?

I've also known two or three prison officers over the years and in fact my brother once dated a woman who was a prison officer at the famous (or infamous) Strangeways jail in Manchester. So there's been a bit of information there too.

The information and further observations are, that a lot of the opiate addiction 'industry' is a myth. At the very least it's massively overblown. At the same time it is employment opportunities for a now very large number of people and the recipient of much funding, probably colossal funding. There's probably as much spent on the whole industry as on many a notable public need that is doubtless lacking. It's yet more make-work and bureaucracy and 'care' for a crisis that doesn't really exist but everybody pretends does.

Is that too utterly conspiratorial? Well TD thinks not, at least on this subject and he of course has information on, or can discern matters from the structural and economic side of the health services also. Then he sees the 'patients' and furthermore TD has also worked in health care in prisons where the 'problem' is so much worse, so it is said. There couldn't possibly be someone better placed .......... other than all the other doctors - as long as they tell the truth!

Prison officers will often say that a person will insist they are a heroin addict, when, after months of incarceration with little or no heroin, they couldn't possibly be, physically speaking. There is then inevitably something mental occurring but really, what this amounts to is a craving for attention, a longing for victimology and, more practically, an easier route through the process of benefit-claiming, criminology, shoddy living, hood-winking the probation services and so on.

Despite popular public opinion, reinforced by the likes of the Daily Mail, there are not 'more drugs in prisons than there are on the outside world'. That is obviously a ludicrous statement. Neither are prisons 'overflowing with drugs' and all the other usual assertions. There will be drugs in prisons but relative to the population there and the fact that the population is static and permanent, 24 hours a day, every day, the actual amount of drugs will be miniscule. Prisons aren't that dumb and they obviously have security, which these days will include some high-tech equipment.
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