The emails *are* available on the 5 eyes network...
Appreciate the reply and link Russell – I hadn’t come across that report or article before and now see at least Gluckman’s attempted some dialogue on the subject using evidence. It does make a mockery of the role of science advisor when evidence that goes against National’s agenda is ignored.
It was ignored, just as the Law Commission’s thoughtful review of the Misuse of Drugs Act was ignored.
I’m not sure if there’s a ministry, department, society or foundation in NZ that hasn’t written about the cannabis law being a disaster. If only it was illegal for politicians to ignore all that evidence which continues to criminalise people…
No wonder there’s no chance of a referendum. Dirty politics indeed.
When you say ‘generally’, does that leave a gap for willfully staying out of the cannabis policy disaster?
His voice should be heard, telling NZ – and Key – that the evidence is clear and to stop criminalising people. The costs to society are shocking.
I suspect that what you see as a lens of National ideology over Gluckman's advice is instead Gluckman trying to retain connection and have some influence.
I understand your point and agree entirely - which is the issue. No doubt his past work is admirable, but playing politics and ignoring evidence - and/or not even engaging by ignoring serious questions from the public who expected at least some sort of reply, is not being a scientist - it's being a politician, who by continuing the status quo, criminalises people.
It's not just hypocrisy, or morally wrong, it's passively exacerbating a corrupt political machine by staying quiet when he has the knowledge and experience - and as you say - a respected voice which should be shouting that the evidence is clear.
A couple of years ago, a colleague of mine got in touch with Key's 'science' advisor (I'll explain why I've put that in quotes later) about the beneficial medicine that is cannabis. His email was replied to by an assistant who said he was out of the country and couldn't be contacted (in this age of almost total connectivity everywhere.....). End of story.
The science on cannabis is beyond clear, and peer reviewed up the wazoo, to at least say it is medicinal (- the US govt holds the only patent, "Cannabinoids as antioxidants and neuroprotectants" -http://www.google.com/patents/US6630507) and less harmful than tobacco and alcohol - reports from the NZMA, Law Soc, MoJ, MoH, MSD, NZ Drug, NZHIS, NZ Drug Statistics all say so, but are continually ignored.
Science isn't science when it's muzzled by political agendas that need keep the status quo, in this instance to keep the judicial and corrections systems at full stretch. Who are the real criminals?
Lastly, National's media attack dogs in Slater, Farrar etc are just that, they attack the person with any fact based point of view that disagrees with National's policies - the evidence for this is almost a daily occurence. Dr Lisa Te Morenga and Jarrod Gilbert are just two in the last couple of days.
Also, calling Gluckman a 'scientist' is not something that meets the definition of 'Scientist', when anything he says is filtered by the National machine. Nothing transparent, evidence based or peer reviewed about that. If I was Gluckman, I'd be ashamed of myself for getting involved with National and exacerbating the status quo - not only that, I'd be disgusted at Key for being so dismissive of the proffession and evidence based decision making as a whole.
If you're wondering, this account is a nom de plume, it's kept that way because I've personally been on the receiving end of Slater/Farrars attacks and presume it's on the orders of higher up to silence anyone who pulls National and Key up when they lie - which is more often than not.
To conclude, cannabis is but one subject where the lies are propagated and evidence is ignored by this government, and any dissent is personally attacked by their media attack dogs.