Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: The Perfect Drug

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  • Danielle, in reply to Scott Chris,

    Poor Gore.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report

  • Lilith __, in reply to Scott Chris,

    SSRIs have about as much appeal as a weekend in Gore

    There's a lot of citalopram being prescribed in post-quake Chch. I've been taking it since the Dec 23rd shakes, and it's made life possible again.

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3895 posts Report

  • Richard Aston, in reply to Scott Chris,

    SSRIs have about as much appeal as a weekend in Gore.

    Unless your in Gore And on SSRIs, then who cares..

    But hey what about the John Money Collection in Gore

    Northland • Since Nov 2006 • 510 posts Report

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Lilith __,

    Morphine makes me vomit.

    That's right. So it worked then. Thing is ,instead of the discomfort of spewing, one must then get out and enjoy it because if nothing else you will be Queen for the day.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Lilith __,


    since the Dec 23rd shakes,

    credit: Felix Bowker.

    How are ya feeling? Even if there is a bit of psycho active thing going on, it can be an interesting drive and some even help the ol' sex drive but what I found on some of the shit I took in hospital with all the hallucinogenic images, was that they have stuck with me but it was all good fun. So gowiththeflowwoman.:)
    I feel one should go into taking any drugs with a degree of high expectation.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report

  • richard thomson,

    owhiro bay • Since Mar 2008 • 9 posts Report

  • chris, in reply to richard thomson,

    Thanks for posting that Herald article, In the interests of public health it’s possibly worth elaborating on a number of points, as it did touch on some useful info:

    linking it to respiratory, circulatory and psychiatric problems.

    Although direct links to cancer and psychiatric problems are still contended, there’s no harm in spreading awareness of this (as with any drug) in the interests of enabling users to better moderate usage.

    is thought to be related to the way it is smoked. ….As a result, the cannabis smoker inhales four times as much tar and five times as much carbon monoxide

    Personally I think it’s not a bad thing that people are aware of this i.e.

    More pot smoking was associated with increases in lung capacity up to a level equivalent to about one joint per day for seven years or one joint per week for up to 49 years…

    it could be that marijuana users inadvertently train themselves to be good at the inhalation and exhalation test because they “practice” deep breathing when they smoke pot

    Useful if you’re in the brass section but…

    with marijuana the inhalation, or “puff,” volume is about two-thirds larger, the depth of smoke inhalation about 40% greater, and breath holding about four times longer than those characteristics of tobacco smoking. These differences in filtration and smoking technique can result in about a fourfold greater amount of tar delivered to and retained in the lungs from the smoking of marijuana than from a comparable amount of tobacco, thus potentially amplifying the harmful effects of marijuana on the lungs."

    That immediate benefit of holding the smoke longer than about 10 seconds being merely asphyxiation

    So yes, and yet, the crux being not so much:

    “Cannabis more dangerous than tobacco, says report”

    But more

    Inhaling much tar and carbon monoxide is hazardous to your health


    Unlike tobacco, cannabis does not contain nicotine and so is not addictive.

    And furthermore:

    the concentration of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – the drug’s psychoactive ingredient – has doubled since the 1990s

    meaning less ‘bush weed’ and a prevalence of better strains, the same high for less tar and carbon monoxide.

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Richard Aston,

    But hey what about the John Money Collection in Gore

    Our Prime Minister has a collection in Gore?
    Oh, hang on... What was his name again?.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report

  • chris, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report

  • Stewart,

    Is the 'tar' inhaled from marijuana the same chemical compound as that inhaled from tobacco? You see these comments about 'tar' in reports, but to me 'tar' is a generic term for dark, sticky stuff and I wonder if apples are being compared with apples when such comparisons as Chris mentions above are made.

    Given that the 2 products (tobacco & marijuana) are quite different in their chemical make-up, I suspect that the tar from tobacco is not the same as tar from marijuana.

    Te Ika A Maui - Whakatane… • Since Oct 2008 • 577 posts Report

  • Pete,

    Out of curiosity, did the cops send you pics of the firearms as well?

    Since Apr 2008 • 106 posts Report

  • Russell Brown, in reply to richard thomson,

    needs to quickly read this

    Amazing. Worth noting that one of commenters congratulating Nutt on his debunking is a former head of UK Action on Smoking and Health .

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22850 posts Report

  • Lilith __, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    How are ya feeling?

    Oh pretty good now, thanks Sof. Just wanted to wave a flag for the good things SSRIs can do for some people. I wish I'd asked for them a lot earlier instead of being all stoical. Looking back I can't think what I was trying to prove!

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3895 posts Report

  • Islander, in reply to Lilith __,

    Just wanted to wave a flag for the good things SSRIs can do for some people. I wish I’d asked for them a lot

    2 of my sisters and - especially- my mother - live normal lives BECAUSE of SSRIs.
    They work, for a lot of people.

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report

  • chris, in reply to Stewart,

    I suspect that the tar from tobacco is not the same as tar from marijuana.

    That is exactly right, when attempting to find conclusive info on the respective composition and residual effects of these tars I stumbled on a minefield of conflicting (mis)information/ opinions. Whichever way it’s spun, inhaling smoke of any kind is undesirable, and less tar would seem preferable: vaporizers minimize the amount of tar considerably, as does the culinary approach.

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report

  • TracyMac,

    I loved the claims from the cops after the big pot bust in Wgtn last week that marijuana is the illicit drug responsible for the most hospital admissions. I suppose if you include psych admissions, it could well be true. NO mention of alcohol-related admissions, or how many of those stoned patients were also drunk. You never see those comparisons in mainstream media here.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 701 posts Report

  • chris, in reply to TracyMac,

    I suppose if you include psych admissions

    TIme has some interesting and well balanced articles:

    The Link Between Marijuana and Schizophrenia

    Marijuana May Both Trigger and Suppress Psychosis

    There's a degree of overlap, the second being briefer. A conclusion that both put forward being:

    If marijuana and similar substances were regulated, a requirement to include a certain level of CBD might be one way to minimize harm

    The key is to replicate the antipsychotic properties of CBD without triggering the risks carried by THC

    That nature has done this to a certain extent is not dwelt on: A Cannabis indica plant may have a CBD/THC ratio 4-5 times that of Cannabis sativa. It would seem that a mature discussion on the relationship between cannabis and neurological issues first requires this distinction be clarified for the general population, again so that people are enabled to make more informed choices. Traits of these two main strains are identifiable both physically and by the high they produce. Regardless of the fact that most Cannabis available will be crossbred these days, with experience/ education one is still able to estimate the CBD/THC ratio from the high/stoning they experience.

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report

  • chris,

    And sorry to go on, I was concerned my syntax was a little vague, obviously many already know this but in the interests of clarity for the uninitiated:
    Indica: more CBD – stoned
    Sativa: more THC – high

    My apologies to anyone offended by my use of Wikipedia as a source. I’ll be the first to admit it’s only a single rung up from the kindergarten politicking being employed by the Wellington Drug Squad and others.

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report

  • chris, in reply to chris,

    This may be a superior rundown on THC:CBD ratios. My apologies for any inaccuracies

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report

  • TracyMac, in reply to chris,

    Thanks, Chris. I personally tend to agree with the thrust of the Times article, in that any association cannabis use has with mental health issues is not going to be a mechanistic cause/effect one. And this is with close personal experience of people who were cannabis-dependent and had associated issues.

    Any arguments about risk reduction from cops are just ludicrous in the context of a state-supported alcohol industry, in any case.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 701 posts Report

  • chris, in reply to TracyMac,

    Indeed Tracy. For the alcohol comparison I found:

    "there were between 2205 and 2512 cannabis-related admissions to publicly-funded hospitals between 2001 and 2005.|there were between 2205 and 2512 cannabis-related admissions to publicly-funded hospitals between 2001 and 2005…

    … But the Drug Harm Index shows cannabis is the most widely used illegal drug in the country, with 373,310 users – well above the next most popular drug, amphetamines, with 95,170 users."

    "A total of 5,413 young people were hospitalised with alcohol-related admissions between 2002 and 2006"

    [Alcohol Harm in New Zealand]

    In fairness to the police they do refrain from specifying direct causality: ‘involved’ ‘related’ are conveniently loose terms, I think there’s something in that:

    "One being the drain on our health system as it is the leading illicit drug involved in hospital admissions"

    Perhaps Detective Sergeant Graham Pitkethley of the Waikato Crime Control Unit sheds some light on elements of this involvement/relationship:

    "Increasingly cannabis growers are taking steps to protect their investment and this may take the form of laying traps, cyanide or arming themselves…

    … And it’s not just rural areas at risk, late last year emergency services were called to properties in Dinsdale and nearby Whatawhata after explosions while offenders were making cannabis oil….

    … Waikato having one of the country’s highest levels of cannabis related hospital admissions”

    Certainly in the cases of Detective Travis Hughes and Christopher Scott, killed when their Cessna 172 crashed in Central Otago while on cannabis reconnaissance, Detective Tony Harrod died falling from a helicopter sling recovering plants in Taranaki and Senior Constable Len Snee killed executing a cannabis search warrant on Jan Molenaar, cannabis decriminalisation would have delivered different outcomes.

    In the Operation Foxy report the last paragraph in particular stood out for me:

    "Operation Foxy should send a clear message to those involved in such activity that if you are accumulating wealth, we will pursue all possible avenues in holding you to account and seize any assets gained from that activity.”

    After all, of any group in New Zealand, it is the police who are most acutely aware of the fact that despite inflated street values, the proliferation of this abundant wind-pollinated flowering plant with no actual monetary value is not merely unstoppable, but in concert with unfeasible legislation – potentially lethal.

    In this way:

    “purchasers often divert income from other every day necessities required to support their families.”

    could be taken as a veiled comment on the social toll of prohibition. I would hazard a guess that a decent number of police would support the decriminalisation of cannabis and I feel it’s perhaps unfair to lay much on officers whose hands are professionally tied, when culpability lies squarely and quite clearly with successive Governments.

    New Zealand Governments have stood back and watched billions of New Zealand dollars squandered on the black market. They have allowed gangs to expand and multiply. These respective individuals and parties have stood idly by while police and members of the community have been senselessly injured and killed. It’s high time they owned this.

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report

  • merc,

    Cannabis, cars and cops, the Govt's holy trinity for keeping you and me in check.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report

  • B Jones,

    For many people, part of the appeal of alcoholic drinks -- and cannabis for that matter -- is that it has come from the earth, with all the mystery and variety that reflects into the end product. I currently have a bottle of the Bruichladdich Rocks, which the label says is "an innovative single malt ... [that] uses water that has filtered up throygh the oldest rocks in the whisky world -- the curious 1.8 billion year-old geology of the Rhinns of Islay."

    You're not going to get that out of a lab, are you?

    Yes, but I bet someone in a lab tested your single malt to make sure it was the proof it said it was, and wasn't full of methanol. The mystery and variety of the earth is a bit mythological when you're talking about cultivated plants, distilling and so on, and there's a tension between safe consumption and making things earthily variable.

    It would be interesting to see what the effect of regulated mood-altering drugs would be on the subculture of folks who dislike the evils of big pharma but are happy to take their chances with the pills their mate's mate sells them.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 976 posts Report

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