Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: The last – and best – parts of the cannabis bill have arrived

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  • BenWilson, in reply to Alfie,

    Possibly, in the way that four big macs equate to one decent restaurant meal

    I think it's more like in the way that a nip of spirits equates to a beer when you're getting breath tested. Many prefer beer. Many like spirits but only if diluted in a mixer. And every type of alcohol has generally better and worse brands in the eye of the tasting public. But all (except home brew) clearly identify their strength and it is not legal to sell for consumption pure alcohol even though you could safely water it down and drink it. A line is drawn and it mostly makes sense. If you must drink 90% pure alcohol it isn't that hard to make or acquire.

    That said I think you could argue the high strength stuff is more like spirits or wine and the "pure" is extracts like hashish. I don't knows really because none of can kill you as easily as alcohol so the analogy breaks down on the actual harm measure.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to BenWilson,

    That said I think you could argue the high strength stuff is more like spirits or wine and the “pure” is extracts like hashish.

    Hash is maybe port, and modern concentrates are the spirits. They're breathtakingly strong.

    I don’t knows really because none of can kill you as easily as alcohol so the analogy breaks down on the actual harm measure.

    TRue.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Hash is maybe port, and modern concentrates are the spirits. They’re breathtakingly strong.

    Does that make bucket bongs the equivalent of the yard glass?

    I'd like to see a range of strengths and varieties available at retail, the same way there is with alcohol. My main point was that a law restricting THC levels to <10% could be counterproductive if it risks excluding users who are used to something better. Whereas a tax on THC levels seems more of a grown-up approach which hopefully achieves a similar control aim in the long term.

    And you're right Ben. With the exception of medical events, the worst effect of a cannabis overdose is a good night's sleep.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1434 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Armstrong,

    Did any body giggle when Jacinda said we all now had to keep spaced out? It wasn't even 4:20.

    New Zealand • Since Jan 2015 • 61 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie, in reply to Simon Armstrong,

    It wasn’t even 4:20.

    It's always 4:2... er, forget that. And yeah... NZ Twitter was sniggering a lot.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1434 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    Some medicinal users must feel like they're in no man's land at the moment. Here's a couple of cases from the top of the South Island -- 20 and 32 plants, no sign of commercial activity.

    I wonder how much "community harm" these prosections have actually saved. Judges are becoming increasingly sympathetic but the trauma of being busted, fined and having your crop destroyed must be a huge disruption to anyone's life. When you factor in the hours of police and court time involved it's hard to see any winners under our current laws.

    Perhaps one day soon in our post-covid, near-future NZ we'll look back on these times and remember them fondly as 'the prohibition years'. Hopefully science trumps misinformation, the referendum passes by a large majority which the incoming Labour/Green government wisely respects and our society becomes a slightly better and fairer place.

    Young people will wonder how our society could have got this issue so wrong for decades. Why we followed the US down the drugs-R-bad rabbit hole for so long when their main motivation was always to punish blacks and mexicans.

    With retail outlets readily available, new generations of kiwis will view drugs primarily as a health problem. The mystery which inevitably accompanies illegality will have gone and we'll be able to look back on our current laws as an anachronism, our enforcement techniques as crude and heavy-handed.

    There will be folk tales... dinner party stories of the kindness of green fairies and all of those little Al Capones who took risks to see people right. "Be kind" becomes the new kiwi mantra and we'll all be able to take a deep breath and wonder why such a common sense approach took so damn long to implement.

    Roll on September.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1434 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie, in reply to Alfie,

    This 1,000 person study of 40 year olds conducted by Otago Uni suggests at best a close result for the reeferendum and probably much worse.

    Joe Boden is quoted on the Stuff story as saying "most were interviewed before the referendum was announced." I'd expect that must make a difference with Helen Clark and others choosing sides, more positive stories in the media and loads of good information being made available by the Drug Foundation.

    What was the timing on this Joe? Do 40 year olds provide a representative sample of the voting population, or are there generational influences which might make that group in any way more conservative, wary or risk averse? I'd appreciate your insight.

    I believe that public perception has moved markedly over the last few months and my gut feeling is around 60/40 in favour, but that's probably because I don't mix enough with the wrong people.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1434 posts Report Reply

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