March 6th, 2012

distraction

Porn and drugs, together at last.

My brain is unaccustomed to having nothing to do. Last night after dinner I allowed myself a sneaky look at assignment 1 for this course but promised myself I wouldn't actually start working on it. But you know how it is.. this one is a bunch of case studies in which we have to discuss the legal ramifications of various drug-related scenarios.

I.Will.Not.Start.This.Now.I.Will.Not.Start.This.Now.

So instead I made my brain go and bake cookies and make some apple crumble, then went to bed and finished Silver on the Tree. Even though I've read these books many times, I've never read them in sequence before - not that it makes a lot of difference as long as you read the last two last.

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Also, WTF is with every single person she meets reflecting about her accent? We get it. She's not from there. Can we drop it now?

And after that, I'll finish Revelation Space, which was actually pretty good but was suffering somewhat from making the tedium and sameness of intergalactic spaceflight feel too real. But hey, descriptions of ten light years' worth of frozen sleep in 2567 might seem quite exciting after an infinity of painted caves in 14,000 BC, eh?

Anyway, yesterday's lecture was an intro to the topic and didn't introduce any new information to me. I kind of expected that, but it seems that this is going to be a course that's active in discussion online and the lecturer is a mine of links and references to interesting stuff. Like for example, advertising with distressing imagery doesn't work to prevent people using drugs. Of course, this has been known about smokers for a while, but hey - we can't let evidence get in the way of our drug war, can we?.

Apparently we can. Switzerland's people voted for policy to provide free prescription heroin to addicts in 2009 based on observed harm reduction in trials over 15 years. While it's a bit soon for research on the effectiveness of this approach as policy rather than trial to be available, other countries are adopting it. Can I just say about bloody time?

Finally, I know of at least one person who would still be alive if Naloxone were widely available. Mind you, if abstinence-and-testing based probation weren't the norm she'd probably still be alive too. But that's another story.

Warning: I may rant about drugs a bit over the next little while.