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08 April 2010 @ 10:57 am
Who needs evidence when you have corporate kickbacks and public outrage?  
Why bother taking the time to carefully craft appropriate legislation regarding a complex technical issue when you can have 60-year-olds with no fucking clue what they're talking about write the law instead? Seems to be the standard for passing new laws these days.

The Digital Economy Bill has apparently been approved thanks to the fact that half the Commons have the BPI's cock deeply embedded in their mouth, and the other half are barely aware of what the internet actually is. It's not like this is a highly technical area where legislation which is poorly written now could have disastrous effects years down the line, now, is it? And it's certainly not like that whole "due process" thing was of any use- why not just cut off the connection of anyone who looks a little bit like they might download something illegally?

The mephedrone ban has been sped through as well, surprisingly backed by the Lib Dems, with a quote from Dr Evan Harris supporting it. Admittedly it's the most reasonable thing I've seen said by an MP on the issue, but it's still saddening to see someone who usually has a usually great record on scientific issues supporting an absurdly reactionary and unnecessary ban on a drug which almost certainly doesn't warrant this level of hysteria. While it's entirely probable that mephedrone has some risks, possibly some fairly serious ones, the fact that there are no unequivocal cases in which users have died from taking only mephedrone indicates that it's probably not some kind of super-scary instant-death chemical that necessitates the entire country running around screaming that the sky is falling. All this ban serves to do is to criminalise tens of thousands of people, mostly young, whose only crime was to desire an enjoyable evening; and to encourage the chemists creating these "legal highs" to explore even more novel, untested psychoactive chemicals (of which there are a great many). Awesome*.

*While I meant that sarcastically, the science behind these new drugs is genuinely pretty awesome indeed. I might not want to take any of these new drugs myself, but I'd be rather interested in helping develop them.
(Anonymous) on April 8th, 2010 11:03 am (UTC)
That image you use makes you look like a lesbian Che Guevara. Sorry Laurie.