Wednesday, March 16, 2011

coke is it

More Daily Mail drug hysteria hilarity: nothing so very remarkable there, you might say, and you'd be right. But wait: Melanie Phillips and Peter Hitchens writing drug-related articles on the same day? Which is more mental? There's only one way to find out: FIIIGGGGHHHTTTT!!!

Well, that was a lot of fun. But actually, they're both a little bit disappointing - Mel moans for a bit about Stephen Fry not being all remorseful about admitting to snuffling up a boatload of coke back in the day, even though he managed to do it in a quintessentially tweedy and English way: apparently he used to enjoy a nice snort of coke and then the crossword, as it used to calm him down. I suppose during a manic episode it might have that effect, though that's not the normal effect of cocaine; generally it just turns you into a massive arsehole for a couple of hours. Beyond a bit of schoolmarmish tutting Mel didn't really seem to have a point, though, disappointingly. Hitchens' article is even more half-hearted, though - the enticing headline ("I was wrong on cigarettes but believe me, I’m right on cannabis") makes you think there's going to be some really good meaty loopiness within, but actually he never gets round to telling us why he's right about cannabis. In fact he pretty much forgets to mention it at all until the last paragraph, by which time there really isn't room for anything except a pretty bald restatement of the headline. How very disappointing.

There was also a drug theme to this week's edition of On The Ropes on Radio 4 yesterday - John Humphrys' guest was former government drugs advisor David Nutt. Humphrys started off by asking Nutt about his (entirely reasonable) assertion that ecstasy use was no more dangerous than horse-riding, and said: well then, that must mean that if your daughter came to you and said look, Dad, I'm giving up horse-riding and I'm just going to get monged off my tits on disco biscuits once a week instead, you'd be OK with that. Nutt waffled a bit disappointingly at this point, but the correct answer is quite simple: no, I wouldn't be happy, because ecstasy is illegal, you fucking cretin, so therefore she'd be opening herself up to arrest, a spell in prison, damaged career prospects, etc. etc. We might well argue about whether it's right for it to be illegal, but that's an entirely separate argument. So don't be thinking this is some big AHA! moment or anything, 'cos it isn't.

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