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Monday, March 31, 2008

Drug Foundation mouthpiece for Anderton’s morality

After years of being a progressive drug proponent with a harm minimization policy, the Drug Foundation is now the moralizing mouthpiece of Jim Anderton, watching Ross Bell on Breakfast this morning, the Executive Director of the NZ Drug Foundation bleated about new ingredients in party pills without BZP, he claimed that we don’t have any regulation over the industry, which is an understatement now because this prohibition has simply pushed the whole issue underground. It was here that I wrote that this was because he had backed the call to ban BZP's, that's not the case, the Drug Foundation did point out the pointlessness of this ban, my beef is more to do with the timid interview he did on Breakfast, because based on his interview where Ross didn't challenge the prohibition but was meekly taking it made the good work of the Drug Foundation in the past pale significantly, his almost apologetic response ended up making him look like just another nodding head from the 'something must do something brigade' which led me to conclude that The Drug Foundation should be called the Prohibition Foundation, they are the new Wellington based Temperance Union, and are as relevant to the drug debate as the Sensible Sentencing Trust is to the prison debate. Where once liberal ideas and thinking were espoused, there now reeks an acceptance that the conservative morality of the day blankets the mainstream debate, which seems to be a boat the Drug Foundation have given up rocking.

PLEASE NOTE: I've had an angry email from Ross Bell pointing out that they didn't support the BZP ban - this is a fair cop, I wrote that he did based on his very poor performance on Breakfast where Ross didn't fight the prohibition issue whatsoever and ended up looking like a nodding head to the 'something must be done' brigade. I've re-written the above to reflect my concern.


At 31/3/08 10:50 am, Anonymous David Farrar said...

Are you sure they backed prohibition? I thought their positon was regulation but not a total ban.

At 31/3/08 5:11 pm, Blogger Bomber said...

Well they did nothing to attack prohibition on Breakfast this morning

At 3/4/08 4:55 pm, Anonymous Ross Bell said...

Bomber, you must have been half-asleep when you watched Breakfast. Or you didn't read our press release clearly, or our many releases over the past 4 years on party pills, or our submission on party pills, or the 95bfm interview.

You may have noticed some retailers, like Chris Fowlie at the Hemp Store agree pills shouldn't be sold until people know what's in them and their likely effects.

For background reading on our position on party pills, bzp or otherwise, I suggest you go here:

Nice little rant Bomber, but without substance. I expect better (and a retraction)

At 4/4/08 6:10 am, Blogger Bomber said...

Gosh Ross, I must have been half asleep, because my perception of your pitiful appearance on Breakfast where you didn't once challenge the prohibition of BZP and came across as just another nodding head to the 'moral crises against drugs' may just be because you talk the talk on media you know won't get huffy, hey we can all say stuff on bfm mate but it takes a little more when you are interviewed on TVNZ.

At 4/4/08 6:49 am, Anonymous Ross Bell said...

Oh Bomber - I've previously been on Breakfast about bzp and our support for regulations.

And more recently on Nine to Noon, with Kathryn Ryan.

There's been no secret about our opposition to the bzp ban. It wasn't worth repeating myself on an issue that's been over and done with.

So my comments on Breakfast and elsewhere is we need to put regulations around the new products (whatever they are - and it is a strange situation that products can hit the market without any requirement to let punters know what the possible health effects, if any, there are; surely even you can concede that), and ensure those regulations work (which didn't happen with bzp, where the regs were set up to fail), so we don't need to ban them.

The way the industry is going with these new products, because they've been cagey about what's in them, is that there's greater likelyhood they'll get banned rather than regulated.

And also, not all our work is through the media: we have been working with relevant people to ensure the regulations, which still operate in the Misuse of Drugs Act (although nothing's categorised under them at present, since the bzp ban) are effective for any new substances.

Once again, your ranting is not supported by evidence.

p.s. a key principle of harm minimisation is that drug users should be supplied the best information about drugs and how to use them safely: wtf can these new products, and others in the pipeline, be sold without that information? If you ever want to debate harm minimisation in a forum other than this blog, bring it on.

At 11/4/08 4:54 pm, Anonymous bzpresearch said...

Taking BZP pills are health hazards.Many people take it in party.I think it is not good.there should be more researchon this BZP.My site sells BZP and TFMPP powder for research purpose.NZ Drug Foundation bleated about new ingredients in party pills without BZP, he claimed that we don’t have any regulation over the industry.


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