Breaking News:Dangerous Delays: What Washington State (Re)Teaches Us About Cash and Cannabis Store Robberies [REPORT]

Drug Czar Sets New Standard for Stoner Stereotyping

Just when you thought anti-marijuana propaganda couldn't get any more frivolous and shallow, the drug czar arrives with a new slogan: "Hey, not trying to be your mom, but there aren’t many jobs out there for potheads."

The whole thing is just absurd on its face, released days after a former marijuana user was elected president and weeks after the drug czar’s own blog observed that 75% of illicit drug users have jobs.

These new ads read like a mockery of typical drug czar propaganda, devoid of facts and premised on the self-evidently false proposition that marijuana use is some kind of physical handicap. It is just so over-the-top crazy and childish that I must keep reminding myself that it is the nation’s top drug policy official who is responsible for this.
Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
Looking for the easiest way to join the anti-drug war movement? You've found it!

target audience?

I'm having trouble deciding who the target audience is for this new campaign.

I don't think it's a serious attempt to dissuade young people from getting high. If so, it would fall too far from the mark. Nor do I think it really qualifies as "wartime propaganda," drumming up support for the War on Drugs.

Maybe I'm wrong, but I tend to think it's the work of some creative ad-agency types, in competition with each other for the stupidest possible ad. Not just stupid, but stupid in a funny, ironic, postmodern kind of way.


Malkavian's picture

Preaching to the choir

I think you're right. Those interested in trying cannabis and those currently doing it aren't going to listen to these ads. They will orient themselves by observing their peer and their own experiences with cannabis.

Here they will see what everybody else _in_ the subculture sees and experiences: that pot isn't really particularly addictive, that most of the pot smokers actually do quite well in school or on the job, and they don't feel particularly "unmotivated".

And quite frankly - those adds ARE trying to be the pot smoker's mom with the hyperbole and raised fingers.

So the ads only act to reinforce those already abstaining, and it tells them the same dreadful story of a youth on pot that's "completely unproductive" (although that's a blatant lie).


>Maybe I'm wrong, but I tend to think it's the work of some creative ad-agency types, in competition with each other for the stupidest possible ad.

rachelrachel, I think you've cracked it! THAT'S how the latest slew of prohibition ads have been created! Brilliant!

>Not just stupid, but stupid in a funny, ironic, postmodern kind of way.

Yeah, that's about it.


Target Audience

Perhaps "Post-Mortum" would better describe it.


dear drug zar

this letter is to inform you there will be no job for marijuana phobics.thank you for your misguided efforts .the new president

These ads are a hoot!

I actually would love to have a poster of this ad that Scott posted. Who better to make a mockery of the anti-marijuana campaign than the drug czar and his ONDCP clan?

Ads Destined to Grace Walls Everywhere

I've already had the three ads blown up at Kinkos and have frames on order. They will look great next to my reefer madness posters -- my guests will laugh their asses off. The law of unintentional consequences will undoubtedly come into play with these -- come on, what college kid or 20- or 30-something cannabis consumer could turn these down? They are already classic in my book...

More of ONDCP's "kitchen sink" "hail mary" desperation

Love the ad though.

dum adzes

my favorite one is the one that says kids who take drug r 4 time more likely to have sex. as a former teen age horn dog that was one of the reasons to smoke dope with girls. i think reverse engineering their slogans will give them cause to think about how stupid their lies really are. anybody see the commercials for MI's prop 1 , the dudes in there were so shady and keystone copish where do they get there money from?.... satan..... no he likes to party;)

Back to cannabis prohibition's racist roots?

As you probably already know, migrant Mexican workers were a main source of cannabis at the turn of the 20th century and much of the early cannabis prohibition sentiment related to squashing marijuana because it was Mexican. The lawmakers at the time were openly racist, regarding Mexicans as dirty and undesirable. Marijuana was regarded as a dangerous exotic intoxicant that drove Mexicans homicidally crazy. So is the "burrito taster" ad a coincidence?

Burrito tasters have a noble profession

Agreed. I see this add as racist. And, I also see this add as an insult to the middle and lower classes. The government would have you believe that smoking pot makes you a loser. Who is to judge what a person accomplishes in life with regard to money?

The funny thing is that there are tons of jobs out there that wouldn't succeed without the creativity and open-mindedness of the average responsible adult marijuana smoker. Very good paying legitimate work, I might add. Pot smokers have an edge in life in that they don't settle for what they are told to do. It has been my experience that pot smokers are the most likely to think-out-of-the-box. And say grab a burrito instead of the same-old, same-old crummy burger.

Nationalsozialistische Propaganda 101

"All propaganda has to be popular and has to adapt its spiritual level to the perception of the least intelligent of those towards whom it intends to direct itself."

-Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf ("My Struggle"), Vol. I

Pot-Smokers Run this Country

Not only are there jobs out there for "potheads" but some of the most important people in this country have smoked pot at some point in their life. Radley Balko has compiled quite a list to this effect:

Considering the fact that about half of all Americans have smoked pot in their lifetime, I'd say that there must be at least a few successful people in that bunch.

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <i> <blockquote> <p> <address> <pre> <h1> <h2> <h3> <h4> <h5> <h6> <br> <b>

More information about formatting options

This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Drug War Issues

Criminal JusticeAsset Forfeiture, Collateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Court Rulings, Drug Courts, Due Process, Felony Disenfranchisement, Incarceration, Policing (2011 Drug War Killings, 2012 Drug War Killings, 2013 Drug War Killings, 2014 Drug War Killings, 2015 Drug War Killings, 2016 Drug War Killings, 2017 Drug War Killings, Arrests, Eradication, Informants, Interdiction, Lowest Priority Policies, Police Corruption, Police Raids, Profiling, Search and Seizure, SWAT/Paramilitarization, Task Forces, Undercover Work), Probation or Parole, Prosecution, Reentry/Rehabilitation, Sentencing (Alternatives to Incarceration, Clemency and Pardon, Crack/Powder Cocaine Disparity, Death Penalty, Decriminalization, Defelonization, Drug Free Zones, Mandatory Minimums, Rockefeller Drug Laws, Sentencing Guidelines)CultureArt, Celebrities, Counter-Culture, Music, Poetry/Literature, Television, TheaterDrug UseParaphernalia, Vaping, ViolenceIntersecting IssuesCollateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Violence, Border, Budgets/Taxes/Economics, Business, Civil Rights, Driving, Economics, Education (College Aid), Employment, Environment, Families, Free Speech, Gun Policy, Human Rights, Immigration, Militarization, Money Laundering, Pregnancy, Privacy (Search and Seizure, Drug Testing), Race, Religion, Science, Sports, Women's IssuesMarijuana PolicyGateway Theory, Hemp, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Marijuana Industry, Medical MarijuanaMedicineMedical Marijuana, Science of Drugs, Under-treatment of PainPublic HealthAddiction, Addiction Treatment (Science of Drugs), Drug Education, Drug Prevention, Drug-Related AIDS/HIV or Hepatitis C, Harm Reduction (Methadone & Other Opiate Maintenance, Needle Exchange, Overdose Prevention, Pill Testing, Safer Injection Sites)Source and Transit CountriesAndean Drug War, Coca, Hashish, Mexican Drug War, Opium ProductionSpecific DrugsAlcohol, Ayahuasca, Cocaine (Crack Cocaine), Ecstasy, Heroin, Ibogaine, ketamine, Khat, Kratom, Marijuana (Gateway Theory, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Medical Marijuana, Hashish), Methamphetamine, New Synthetic Drugs (Synthetic Cannabinoids, Synthetic Stimulants), Nicotine, Prescription Opiates (Fentanyl, Oxycontin), Psilocybin / Magic Mushrooms, Psychedelics (LSD, Mescaline, Peyote, Salvia Divinorum)YouthGrade School, Post-Secondary School, Raves, Secondary School