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goldmonkee

Is Objectivism against drugs?

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Drugs impair your ability to reason. Deliberately impairing your ability to reason - to THINK - seems to me to be one of the absolute worst things you can do to yourself. It is wrong. Simply wrong.

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My brother is dyslexic and dysgraphic. In two years there his reading was brought up 10-11 grade levels. That's something the grade schools, middle schools, high schools and private tutor's were not able to help him accomplish. He went to school there around ten years ago, and has since completed a two year electrical program at a technical college.

It really surprises me that lots of Landmark students use drugs. I'll have to ask my brother if he witnessed it there. I thought the school was very strict, and since it is a boarding school, I wonder how many kids get away with that. By "stoner" do you mean someone who gets high once in a while on the weekend, or someone who gets high all day, every day?

Edited by FeatherFall

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Landmark has changed a lot in ten years. It used to be people between the ages of 25 to 35 with reading problems. Now, most of the people come right out of highschool and have ADD or ADHD. There are still a lot of kids with Dyslexia and the like but the population of the school has changed a lot.

By stoner I mean anyone who uses pot on a regular baises or there is a pattern to there uses. So if you get stoned everyday, once every three weeks, just on hoildays, only on your birthday ect. Than to me you are a stoner.

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I have thought about this myself, and I agree with you that the dangers of smoking simply were not understood (by the general public) at the time.

From The Objectivist Ethics in The Virtue of Selfishness:

Obviously when stoned, you are not in a state of full conscious awareness, and by making the choice to get stoned you are placing something above your commitment to the perception of reality. And this is not just a temporary condition; chronic pot smokers are in a permanent "haze" even when they are not stoned. You said that smoking pot "stimulates thought and action,” but then gave the example of doing the dishes. How much "thought" is involved in washing dishes? Does it really stimulate thought or just dumb everything down, where you find even the most mundane of tasks enjoyable?

Objectivism allows for personal interpretation of of what's good for you outside what others think: drugs may be good for some and not good for others.

Its my opinion that drugs are good because I don't use them as a way to get away from something, I use them to enhance what is.

And as far as someone not doing drugs because they said they don't want to become fodder for the war on drugs... so a man pointing a gun at you will get your freedoms rather than your resistance? That doesn't sound objectivist at all.

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Experienced Marijuana Consumers Exhibit Virtually No Change In Cognitive Task Performance After Smoking, Study Says

http://norml.org/index.cfm?Group_ID=8247

As for drug use, its completely illogical since it detacts from enjoyment of life,

This comment is absolutely ridiculous.

Its my opinion that drugs are good because I don't use them as a way to get away from something, I use them to enhance what is.

Agreed, the use of drugs is highly contextual and it is up for the individual to decide whether or not it is appropriate and if it is detrimental to themselves.

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One other factor... the illegality of drugs like cannabis and cocaine has given dealers and users an incentive to go after stronger and stronger formulations.... were cigarettes illegal I guarntee you'd start seeing nicotine as a really concentrated white powder.... with as many nasty consequences as snorting cocaine.

Cocaine used to be an additive in Coca cola (that's where the name came from) and caused few to no problems that way. Only after it became illegal did it become a problem.

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were cigarettes illegal I guarntee you'd start seeing nicotine as a really concentrated white powder.... with as many nasty consequences as snorting cocaine.

- Probably would not work, as there is much more to smoking cigarettes then just the nicotine that your body and mind gets used to.

You already have a bunch of alternative methods of getting nicotine, but not alot of people use them frequently.

and caused few to no problems that way. Only after it became illegal did it become a problem.

- Im fairly certain cocain did not get illegal in 1902.

In fact im pretty sure nobody in the west even particularly used it prior to the seventies, but may have been as early as the sixties.

Edited by Lasse K. Lien

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- Im fairly certain cocain did not get illegal in 1902.

In fact im pretty sure nobody in the west even particularly used it prior to the seventies, but may have been as early as the sixties.

Cocaine was outlawed in 1914, and was widely used in the west, in the latter half of the 19th century (it was sold by Parke-Davis). I don't think Steve was claiming that Coca Cola switched to decocanated leaves for legal reasons. The point is that what makes cocaine be such a large "problem" is the very fact that it is illegal.

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Last week I read mind-blowing article about cocaine smuggled in canvas dye-stuff. This is the only one from long list of horrors caused by prohibition. On the other hand, I can't imagine legalization because we all are doomed to government-provided medical care, what means in practice I am responsible for each other and my money (without my permission) would be allocated for drugs-addict cure. There are too many things to change [not only in my country] before legalize drugs.

As for me - I am waiting for the moment I'll go to the chemist's and find melatonin on shelf. If I see reason in using "drugs", it is stimulation and overcoming your limits. I can't see nothig wrong about substances that are proving your efficiency and make some kind of grease for your brain. But I smoked opium once and I hate it the same way I hate alcohol - you feel like a crowd of people (that's you!) is throwing stones into your information-from-reality stream.

Edited by Ylva

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On the other hand, I can't imagine legalization because we all are doomed to government-provided medical care, what means in practice I am responsible for each other and my money (without my permission) would be allocated for drugs-addict cure. There are too many things to change [not only in my country] before legalize drugs.

- If you look on it from an economic perspective within the frameworks of the welfare state, you'd still be making a good decition to legalize drugs.

First of all the drug addicts at present are already being treated by the public health care anyways - and there is no reason to think the numbers would go up that much if you legalize it.

Secondly your spendings on police and prisons would be drastically reduces, surely to a point where it would be a profitable solution compared to the potential new "drug-offenders".

And then there is the principal of inprisoning the innocent. I could hardly justify to myself putting people whom have done no harm in prison for several years in the hopes that it will keep my taxburden lower..

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- If you look on it from an economic perspective within the frameworks of the welfare state, you'd still be making a good decition to legalize drugs.

First of all the drug addicts at present are already being treated by the public health care anyways - and there is no reason to think the numbers would go up that much if you legalize it.

What's more - many measured drug-addicts have health complications because of cargo they get outside the law (see these canvas). Look at marihuana - if it's grow in hidden laboratories, without sunlight and clear air, fertilized with chemicals - what you'll get as a final product is not these marijuana using in Multiple Sclerosis treatment - there is such a great possibility you'll get sth. we called here "skun" and it's sometimes mixed with rat poison...

Secondly your spendings on police and prisons would be drastically reduces, surely to a point where it would be a profitable solution compared to the potential new "drug-offenders".

And then there is the principal of inprisoning the innocent. I could hardly justify to myself putting people whom have done no harm in prison for several years in the hopes that it will keep my taxburden lower..

I get it, I am aware of all what you've said. But thing I'm afraid of is the way government could use this margin of freedom given to citizens. I don't believe there is a chance to resolve problems by government, because I consider government as the only problem. Politics will loosen your collar, but next they'll wrench the leash and that what's going around all the time. My view here is from Liberatrian standpoint. I see no morality in accepting state's standarts to restriction its power, because it's ill circle.

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I get it, I am aware of all what you've said. But thing I'm afraid of is the way government could use this margin of freedom given to citizens. I don't believe there is a chance to resolve problems by government, because I consider government as the only problem.

- But was not your original argument that a legalization would lead to higher government healthcare costs, which again would lead to higher taxes for you and therefor it would be impractical?

Or maybe I misunderstood, I have a tendency to do that it would seem :P

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I think the answer to this is pretty simple, I am surprised anyone has to think about it that long:

Objectivism supports the freedom of usage for your own body, to prevent substance use legally is immoral- people have the freedom to nurture or destroy their bodies.

However, drug usage is unequivocally a hedonistic action-- those who experiment with recreational drugs are doing so merely to chase the particular sensation that they achieve- a hedonistic pursuit through, essentially, shorting out the brain. Recreational drug usage is an immoral endeavor since it is pursuit of sensation for the sensation itself.

Minor drugs that do not have mind-warping effects (in normal doses) such as caffeine don't enter into that consideration as much, though it like alcohol (a more potentially severe drug when not used in moderation) can cause disastrous effects when abused.

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However, drug usage is unequivocally a hedonistic action-- those who experiment with recreational drugs are doing so merely to chase the particular sensation that they achieve- a hedonistic pursuit through, essentially, shorting out the brain. Recreational drug usage is an immoral endeavor since it is pursuit of sensation for the sensation itself.

Wrong, wrong, wrong.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with pursuing a feeling itself, so long as you take into account the rest of your life. Feelings themselves, assuming they feel good, are a wonderful, pleasurable aspect of life, and thus part of happiness -- again, while keeping in mind the rest of your life.

It pains me to see Objectivists claiming that pleasure is wrong, backing up the claim by calling it "hedonism." Hedonism is the pursuit of pleasure without referencing the rest of your life, it is not the pursuit of pleasure alone. Wikipedia calls Hedonism "a school of ethics which argues that pleasure is the only intrinsic good." It's the intrinsic part that isn't compatible with the Objectivist philosophy, as Objectivism calls for pleasure-checking with reason applied to all aspects of one's life, not just the using-drugs pleasure-part.

I do not use drugs because I'm not a fan of the side-effects. The few times when I smoked pot (drug with minimal side effects) were great because it forced me to relax, which I had difficulty doing at the time. But I didn't want to have to rely on pot to relax. I can imagine plenty of personal circumstances where the pleasure of a drug with minimal side-effects can be implemented in a person's life. This is for each person to decide, as I can't live someone else's life for him and decide where the pleasure fits in, and neither can you.

Edited by JASKN

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However, drug usage is unequivocally a hedonistic action-

Absolutely and completely false and I myself am a perfect example of why that statement is false. There is a difference between using drugs for medical or health purposes and recreational use. Further, you are greatly oversimplifying and incorrectly evaluating recreational use as JASKN points out.

Minor drugs that do not have mind-warping effects (in normal doses) such as caffeine don't enter into that consideration as much

http://lifehacker.com/5585217/what-caffeine-actually-does-to-your-brain

Edited by CapitalistSwine

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