Breaking News:EVENT: No Time Like the Present: Drug Policy Reform is More Urgent Than Ever

Goodbye To a Drug Warrior; Australian Prime Minister John Howard Set to Lose Power in Saturday's Elections

The Australian Labor Party and its leader, Kevin Rudd, appear poised to drive drug warrior Prime Minister John Howard and his Liberal/National Party coalition from office in elections coming this Saturday. Labor needs to pick up 16 seeks to take over, and according to recent polls, it should do so. Those same polls show Rudd and Labor defeating Howard and the coalitionby a margin of 54% to 46% in the popular vote. Howard could even lose his own district, something that hasn’t happened to a sitting Australian prime minister since 1929. It couldn’t happen to a nicer guy. Howard is a rigid foe of drug reform who in this most recent campaign has debased the discourse by reducing it to the level of "drugs are evil" and who over the weekend vowed to have the federal government take control of welfare payments for people who are drug offenders (look for a news brief on that on Friday). Although Howard was forced to accept the existence of the safe injection site at Kings Cross in Sydney, he is a fervent anti-harm reductionist. Here's just a short, and doubtless incomplete, catalog of his sins: He tried to narrow the drug policy debate by purging the federal drug advisory panel of harm reduction advocates, he opposed heroin prescription trials in Western Australia, the following year, he threatened to prosecute under federal law anyone using a safe injection site if any other states tried to open one, he tried to pressure states to roll back marijuana decriminalization laws, and last year, his government announced plans to ban bongs. Drug policy is not playing a major role in the campaign, although Howard has tried to make it one in recent days. If, as appears increasingly certain, he actually goes down to defeat on Saturday, it will be because of his support of the Iraq war, his disdain for environmental concerns, and, last but not least, because, after 11 years of Howard rule, Australians are ready for a new face. An added bonus in the election could be the rise of the Green Party to role of power broker in the Senate. Under Australia's system of proportional representation, the Greens could end up holding the balance of power in the Senate. While the Greens have retreated somewhat in their drug policy platform in the last couple of years, it is still light years ahead of either Labor or Howard's coalition.
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Howard thinks drugs are evil and alcohol isn't a drug

But alcohol is a far more dangerous drug that marijuana. Any serious person knows that.

sorry, sorry, another typo

sigh, giving a bit of aid and comfort to the drug war jihadis with my ignorant spelling. Well, at least I'm not a hypocritical thug like the alcohol supremacist bigots.

Election day today down here

Election day today down here in oz and I'm praying there are enough decent Australians left to vote the deceitful and pathetic little war criminal out of office.

Howard doesn't just hate drugs, he despises anything that isn't white, rich, and looks like Winston Churchill

As Shaun Micallef recently mused.....

-Howard. ..Tough on drugs?
- Yes
-But what's he like off them?

Cheers
Bill
Adelaide

Enjoy the celebrations in oz, Bill

If Howard likes alcohol, that's an awesome joke. Long past time for Howard to lose the drug of power. Maybe Harper will be next. I hope Kevin Rudd thinks drug policy through and comes up with something reality based, trying to regulate what can't be stopped and recognizing that alcohol is far more destructive and deadly than cannabis.

Howard did lose the drug of power

Saw it in today's news, he lost his bid for re-election.

I advocate legalization but; beware to underplay marajuana risk

There is little doubt that marajuana can have adverse effects on some individuals mental health. Alcohol is a societal scourge that breeds violence. Opioid substances can be devasting, as can the miss use of amphetimines. It's all about 'misuse'. Thats where the problems start. Outlawing drugs merely makes people more vulnerable to misuse

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