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Comment Re:Mods (Score 1) 626

How does recreational use imply abuse? I abused adderall my last year of college and first year of full-time work for entirely non-recreational purposes and it pretty much ruined 2 years of my life. My recreational usage of psychedelics on the other hand has been entirely positive. I don't think that recreational drug use is inherently either good or bad. Drugs are tools. And like all tools, it's all depends what you do with them.

And why do people think that drug use is the result of some problem in people's lives or a vain attempt to be "cool"? Maybe people do drugs for the same reason they do anything else with their free time: simply because it's enjoyable.

"Drugs" are a hard thing to generalize. Remember, everything from caffeine and weed up to alcohol and heroin are labeled "drugs". Some are much more inherently dangerous than others, but to generalize "drugs are bad" is as naive as generalizing "food is bad" after walking through the candy aisle. And as far weed is concerned, it's far more benign than America's socially acceptable intoxicant, alcohol.

Comment Re:Mods (Score 1) 626

As a 24 year old software engineer who has smoked weed daily for the past 5 years and, as an individual, earns more than the average household income, I disagree with your statement. I know many other people who smoke as often as I do and are also arguably successful people for their age.

Yes, most stoners I know work near-minimum-wage jobs, but from what I've seen, this is because underachievers and unmotivated people are drawn to weed, not because weed necessarily makes you an underachiever or unmotivated. It does make you relax and more at peace with the world, which can lead to lower motivation (why exert yourself when you're already content with things?) and just wanting to chill, but it doesn't take much effort to keep yourself motivated and on track while maintaining a weed habit. In fact, smoking some weed after work is a great way to unwind, release stress, and prevent burnout.

Smoking weed doesn't make you stupid any more than drinking alcohol will make you abusive or drinking caffeine will make you a tweaker. Which is to say, it can if you let it, but it's pretty easy to avoid it with a little effort.

That said, I can certainly believe that smoking weed isn't a good thing for kids since they (in general) don't have the maturity to use responsibly nor the established lifestyle habits to prevent complacency in the face of weed's tranquility.

Comment Re:ok, c'mon... (Score 1) 459

That's the whole point most people have been making against the gateway theory to begin with: Of course most people who shoot heroin used marijuana first, marijuana is much easier to get than heroin (and more acceptable). This study just takes it one step further and says "before most people started using even weed, they started with alcohol." I bet if they studied further, they would find that caffeine is the real "gateway drug".

Comment Re:It is obvious to the educated (Score 2) 459

Pedantically speaking, the sun causes cancer, the air around busy roads contains many times as many toxic particulates as air in the woods, and drinking well water could expose you to radioactive Radon.

Marijuana has not been shown to cause cancer, and has a much lower correlation with lung disease than cigarettes. While you are correct that there are some potential harms in smoking weed, they are no where near significant enough to demonize marijuana over. No one brings up the fact that car exhaust can cause lung damage when discussing transportation. In both cases, the harm is there in theory, but isn't significant enough to be of concern in normal circumstances.

Comment People need cash for their drugs (Score 1) 292

As long as illegal drugs remain a multi-billion dollar market, cash isn't going anywhere. Besides, think about what cash really is. It's just the most liquid monetary vehicle available due to government decree that everyone accept it. If the government were to do away with cash there will still be other highly liquid goods for people to trade with similar efficacy as cash.

Comment Re:I stopped reading the responses after... (Score 1) 920

I hate the implication that people who don't have a problem with marijuana should stop using it just to prove to the world they are not addicted. Then even if someone quits for a month or two and then starts using again, people argue that starting back up is proof of addiction. I'll stop smoking marijuana to prove I'm not an addict after you prove to me you're not addicted to eating sugary foods, driving your car, watching TV, and reading Slashdot. Doing something repetitively makes it a habit. Doing something despite desperately wanting to quit makes it an addiction. I have known people who have wanted to quit marijuana for various reasons... and then they did so with no problem. That's more than I can say for cigarette smokers or regular Adderall users.

Comment Re:War is power. (Score 1) 472

I don't know where you get the idea that someone in control of an army of amoral autonomous killing machines would have your liberty in mind.

The only thing stopping a government from using it's army to oppress its people is the fact that the army is made up of its people, and even that isn't always enough.

Comment Luddites Everywhere (Score 2) 835

Next up, why do when continue to use wheels when we have jet engines? Why do so many people still use fire to heat their homes (gas furnace) when they can use electricity as a modern replacement? Why do people eat food when it would be more convenient to just get your nutrients pumped into you through an IV? I guess some people just don't want to keep up with the times...

Comment Re:hmm... (Score 1) 518

My point is that even if there are observable problems with a system, that doesn't necessarily mean the whole thing needs to be done away with. You have to look at the bigger picture. You have to compare the costs with the benefits rather than just point out the costs and freak out. I do think that there is a thin line between helping people who are down on their luck and enabling people who just don't want to work though.

And regarding locking people up after they've committed the crime: No one who died on 9/11 came back after Osama was killed. There is something to be said for being proactive about crime rather than simply reactive.

Comment Re:hmm... (Score 1) 518

I'm just saying there's more to the situation than just helping someone who's lost their job. Society as a whole benefits from the stability these social programs provide. And I figured that since your compassionate side appears to be lacking I would appeal to your selfish side.

Comment Re:hmm... (Score 5, Insightful) 518

If compassion isn't enough to make you support unemployment, think about it this way: The most dangerous people are those with nothing to lose. When a man has to put a gun to your head to pay his rent I doubt you'll be lecturing him on how he could have avoided the whole situation if only he had saved.

Comment Re:It is always strange for me... (Score 1) 409

This exact thing has been my biggest problem with Pandora. With all that information about what songs relate to each other, you would think they would know that going from "Brain Damage" to any song other than "Eclipse" is going to sound very off. On a related note, whenever a song from Dark Side of the Moon starts playing on Pandora, a lot of times I'll just stop it and play the whole album off my phone to hear it in all it's glory.

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