Helping people buy drug decriminalization as a solution.
Drew Cook " The Clean Libertarian" joins Jeremy Todd on today's episode of Sell Liberty to discuss effective strategies on winning "normies" on drug decriminalization.
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Hey, what's up, man? I can't hear you.
Oh, you can't hear me. Okay,
you go. There you go.
Excellent. There we go. All right. Well edited in post right, edited in post. That's right. Well I was introducing you and giving you all the kudos and the love so let me do it again. Tonight on the show we are fortunate enough to have my good friend Drew cook. He is better known as the clean libertarian Chair of the sober called LP sober caucus and host of the clean libertarian podcast. So give your warmest welcome to my good friend Drew cook. Yeah. Whoo. Drew, how're you doing tonight?
Man? I'm great. Thanks a lot for having me on brother.
Absolutely, brother. Well, let's, since since we've done intros twice, I think it might be time to go ahead and talk some shops. So let's get in to it.
All right, Drew, where on earth do we even start after a week like this? Man, it's been it's been a fun one and a crazy one. Now, here's what I like to do here that sort of sets us apart here on cell liberty and as a group, and that is that I we can we can as libertarians fight over just about every issue, the nuances, the theory, I hate all that stuff, man. I really like to be out in the real world and just take kind of very simple libertarian solutions and approaches and talk to real people rather than other to libertarians. And so I have had several conversations on the topic. We're going to talk about tonight that your expertise is in, you know, sort of drug policy and decriminalization and having those conversations with other people. So You know, maybe towards the end, we'll talk a little bit about the the nonsense, but let's, let's stay on track here. Okay, so Drew, you go up to a Normie, let's say a co worker who doesn't know your past your history or anything like that, and it comes up, you know, I like those libertarians, but don't they want to, like legalize heroin for CHIP five year olds and stuff like that? How do you what are your techniques and walk us through kind of how you guide that conversation to change their perception?
Well, the first thing to point out in that particular conversation is that children can't consent, you know, below 18. Now, not even in an Capistan would that be something that would be permitted or allowed. But beyond that, I think the most potent thing that any of us could present to a Normie in this day and age is the 100,000 Dead addicts from last year. Okay. Fentanyl is on the rise. These drug policies that we currently have, give cover to bad actors. You know, your you don't see that type of stuff happening at your liquor store or CVS. You know, and these, these are things that, uh, that I feel like are the best selling point that we have in the current climate.
Yeah, so it sort of gives in lends credence to the idea among normies and I know how long you've been a libertarian
a bout 10 years now.
10 years. Okay, so I'm a I'm a Gary, John and I, I gotta frame this, I came in during the Gary, the second Gary Johnson campaign, actually, I was disgusted with the GOP, I'd watched enough Jon Stewart to realize that both of them kind of suck and are hypocrites. And so I took off. And you know, Gary was a nice soft place to land is what I like to tell people for those of us who were lost, but so it when, when we were sort of pre libertarian, little trigger there. When we were pre libertarian, the the idea was that if you legalize something, it will become more prevalent, people will be encouraged to do it. And it's pretty counterintuitive when you tell people, no, actually legalizing something doesn't stop people are making something illegal doesn't necessarily stop people from doing it. How? And what do you say in that conversation? When people say, Well, if we legalize it, we're just gonna have heroin addicts on the street.
I think what's really cool about American history, and the documented history that we have is that we have the prohibition era, we have the the run of a few years where, you know, they outlawed alcohol. And the cool thing also is we have stats from before and after that shows the overall alcohol consumption of the American population. The the best thing to point out is back in the 1800s, was the booziest years on record, I think it was like 1830s. That was that was when America was just drinking corn ethanol, like getting it man. And it was the hard stuff, you know, right. It's
cleaner than water. Right? Yeah. I
mean, you know, it was rocket fuel. And that number, you know, the the per capita usage had dropped by half by the time prohibition came into effect. And if you look at the five years before and five years after Prohibition, it's the noticeable difference in alcohol consumption, and America's is negligent. It doesn't exist. Interesting. Okay. So you know, and you take that to modern day, and we've increased a little bit since the end of prohibition, but but not a whole lot, certainly nowhere near where we were in the 1800s. So by does by, you know, our own historical records and data, we can see that, you know, we have the ability to determine what's good for us and what's not. There was never a need for government intervention. And I would say the same would hold true for heroin, methamphetamine, any type of, you know, black market narcotic that's out there right now. My 60 year old neighbor isn't going to go out and buy black tar heroin because it became legal tomorrow, right. And that's just that the likelihood of that happening is very little but the pro side to having that legal black tar heroin is that that loved one that you've been trying to get to go to rehab for, you know, the last few years who just refuses to go, maybe they'll actually live until their opportunity to get clean presents itself. Because right now what they're having to do is they're buying an illicit substance and they have no idea the potency or the strength or even what's in it. And yeah, so So that's, that's the deal on that,
okay, very cool. So, when you when you are selling, and this, this is my daytime profession is to, to make sales. So the process goes people got to like you, then they got to trust you, and then you create a problem or you you illustrate the problem before you provide the solution. So to a lot of people, they believe the problem to be the addict, or the, you know, addiction leads to poverty leads to crime and that sort of thing. If we are, if we present that the addict is the problem, then the solution would be to punish the addict, right? But that's not the actual problem. What is the actual problem behind addiction that we need to solve in order to improve Liberty freedom for everybody?
I think this stigma around it, you know, as the as the big part, and that's, that's a cultural thing. So that's not really a political line that we can cross you got to get society looking at drug addiction in a different light than they currently do. And, you know, just like with political parties, the country is split, you know, you got half the people thinking that we need to coddle addicts and you got the other half thinking we need to cage them for the rest of their lives. I think an important thing to point out is that we have tried the punish the addict routine, and especially back when Narcotics Anonymous formulated back in back in the 70s 60s and 70s. There were these things called Rockefeller laws in New York, I'm not sure if you've ever heard of them before. No, no, I haven't. But um, these laws made it illegal for more than one addict to occupy a space at a given time now, how they determine who was an addict and who wasn't? I'm not sure. But with this legislation, they effectively outlawed any type of 12 step recovery meeting from taking place. Wow. Interesting. Yes. And there's if anybody is, you know, inclined in the audience to look them up, I would highly recommend reading up about a man named Father Dan Egan, otherwise known as the junky priest. This guy was a Catholic priest, who went out of his way tarnished his reputation during the time to help overcome those Rockefeller laws to help provide a place for addicts to get clean. And so all that to say is that the 12, step recovery started to work, right? Yes, these laws got abolished, and it started to work. So you fast forward to modern day. And at the end of the day, government's saying, hey, you need to go to these 12 step meetings. That's what it is, the government is openly admitting, like, we do not have a solution for this problem. You know, I'm sorry, I'm
rambling. Oh, no, no, no, this is perfect. Because it highlights when we engage in these conversations, what are the actual problems we need to talk about? Because the problem that is seen by our normies is that addicts cause all of these other things. And that isn't necessarily deep enough to so in sales, we talk about peeling the onion, right? So you ask a question, and the customer client will give you a response. And you can kind of tell like, okay, we're that that's that while it might be correct. We're still not at the why, at the center of all this. And I think I think that's really important to illustrate the why. So thank you for going through that. The so when we are discussing those problems, let's go let's peel that onion back even a little further and the things we can talk about, what are what are, what are the things that are at the core root cause of addiction itself?
Man, that's I wish there was a one size fits all answer for that, but there simply isn't. I say there's a number of things that lead someone to have substance abuse issues. I do believe that there are certain you know, markers that are present long before a substance is entered due to the person's body. But overall, man, you know, you got a lot of people who had certain traumas. You got some people who they got addicted because their doctor prescribed him opiates for some sports industry. injury. Yeah. There's so many different types of stories. But overall, if I were to paint it, I would say that a lack of healthy coping skills would be the root cause of and that's that's such a hamfest hamfisted answer to that. It really
is. Yeah, but But no, no, I think I think not being able to answer the question you actually didn't answer the question because what what I find is effective when I'm selling people on these ideas of liberty that might seem a little outlandish is to find a story that they even if it's not necessarily a true story, it's true somewhere it's not, but that somebody can connect with. So I'll give you a great example when, and I've mentioned this before, shortly after the Parkland shooting, because the kid was under 21, they said, You have to be 21 to buy alcohol, you should have to be 21 to buy a gun. And so the story that I use to overcome that was okay, do you hate single mothers who like teenage single mothers, because if a single mother is 19, working living on her own, and you are going to tell her she doesn't have a right to defend herself in her home with a firearm, she you're gonna make her have basically a sitting target and vulnerable only because she wasn't born in the right year. And that, so that is a situation where somebody can go, yeah, I could see that in that situation. ham fisted solutions from the government are not a good thing. So then, the same can apply to drugs. Not every addict is somebody who was, you know, poverty or a thief and just a junkie or whatever. A lot of times, this comes from somebody who was a high school superstar athlete, blew out a knee, a shitty doctor prescribed him opiates for too in too heavy of a dose and for too long, and it's completely wrecked their life. Because once addiction takes hold, you are sort of at its mercy in a lot of ways. So that that sort of storytelling is really, really powerful. So I love that. Okay, so what about the idea? And what do you say to the folks who say, Oh, well, we're just going to have heroin in the gas station. And anybody can go in and buy it, shoot it up in their car, we'll get to the car in a minute, but let's just talk about heroin stores. Okay. How do you respond to people who talk about heroin stores?
I mean, where are we already have heroin stores there's a CVS and Walgreens multiple, you know, across your, Ah, it's so good exist, man. I mean, they're already there. There really is a counterpart for every street level narcotic that can be found in your local pharmacy. You know, okay, with the exception of certain psychedelics and ecstasy. Yeah, but you have derivatives of cocaine, methamphetamine of opiates, heroin, that litany of opiates, you know, so yeah, this is it won't be anything new. It's just, you know, that dirty, grungy image you have in your mind, you might have to see that person a little bit more often. And if that's the case, you still go to that store, like what is wrong with these people?
In that, I wrote that down and that that floored me, we already have here one stores, they're called CVS, holy crap. Sorry, I'm taking the back for a minute. That's such a good line. Okay, so we highlight. So in the sales process, we peel the onion, and we ask these normies, sort of, what are your fears and concerns? We've hit on a couple? Are there any when you're engaging with people, what are their fears, problems and concerns with the idea of drug decriminalization that we haven't quite touched on?
I think the biggest one, and the toughest to approach is talking to someone who has lost a loved one to overdose. That has to be done in a way I heard this the other day is that honesty without compassion is cruelty. So what we are selling here is honest, factual information. Okay, but we have to be compassionate in the way we approach it. Especially in modern day America, there's a very high likelihood that the person you're talking to has been negatively affected by addiction in one way, shape, or form. And so approaching that, you know, with caution, is the way to go. And really, in that particular situation, you know, the way that we talk about it is, you know, with these drug laws being what they are with, with drug addicts who utilize street level narcotics, there is a stigma that keeps them in active addiction for far longer than if we if these laws weren't in place. You know, if you had less regulations, as far as you know, the barrier to entry into the rehabilitation programs, if you had more of an open opportunity to approach your employer and say, Look, I'm having a hard time right now like this, I need some help. We would see less deaths overall.
Okay, that that that I think is huge and empathy is best done, when approached from a place of curiosity. So if you do encounter someone who says I've lost a loved one to these drugs, the correct approach is to, you know, kind of get in that session. bring with them a little bit and say, oh my goodness, I'm so sorry. Tell me about them. What did they, you know, struggle with what what what was their life like what were they great at really do show interest in that person. But when it comes down to eventually making your pitch and providing that solution, I think this is one of the ones that Gary Johnson kind of nailed out of the park. He was asked by a woman whose son died of a heroin overdose. And he goes, Man, I don't like to point this out. But he died. While it was as illegal as it can be, you know, we can't make heroin more illegal and your son still passed away from an overdose. So obviously, the laws aren't working. And they're certainly not working to benefit your son. In this case, we're offering an alternative to where potentially they could get that sort of service. Okay, phenomenal. We got some folks in the chat. Let's take a look. So Brian says I have a 75 year old friend living in a major wanna legal state that has been so brainwashed that he is more afraid of MMJ than his cancer? What do you find? Obviously, there's been a lot of propaganda around these products, but what, you know, how do we help? How do we help people kind of overcome the stigma, if not for themselves, but for at least, you know, not not not being so critical. Others,
I think, you know, more than anything is just, you know, showing the hard evidence of the net positives that these substances can have in somebody's life. Now, that's not to sell a normalization of going out and buying black tar heroin and shooting it up in your car outside the CVS. Not saying that at all. What I am saying is, a lot of data that is out there for every one of these substances is geared towards a certain pinpoint, and that pinpoint is typically keeping prohibition alive and well. Very little has been done to, you know, show the actual positives or what these substances are used for. For instance, there was that story out of LA County about the sheriff like getting contact high off of fentanyl and having an overdose. That was complete nonsense. Yeah. That's the type of stories that we need to go out of our way to really poke holes in to show that like, this is not real. That is not the way this stuff works. And the other part of it, too, is that like, you know, and I keep going back to fentanyl, because that's the Hot Topic item. Yeah. Right. Like, they're, they're, they're wanting to keep it schedule one. The DEA is like, you know, being the DEA. And the thing about it is is fentanyl has been around for a long time. It's only when it started showing up and drugs that were not sold as fentanyl laced drugs that it became a problem. Right. When fentanyl was sold as fentanyl, that wasn't an issue. You know, that tells you that, you know, the the the market being what it is because of government policies is the reason we're having a problem with this particular substance. Yeah, it's not the substance itself.
Right. Yeah. 100%. So, okay, I love that. Let's talk a little bit. Well, let's go into one or two more problems. And Greg here brings up one, the problem of feeding the prison industrial complex. And Aaron a here says like Larry Sharpe pointed out the war on poverty, as made more impoverished in the War on Drugs has made more drug addicts. So and I think those two go hand in hand because a lot of people talk about crime. And you see it increase in areas of poverty and addiction and poverty tend to kind of go hand in hand in those neighborhoods. So what how have you seen and learned that those two are correlated when it comes to poverty, and criminalizing poverty, to the point where people have one place to turn?
I mean, it's a multitude of issues. Of course, she always look at like criminal organization and enterprise, they take a foothold and they're always going to use the vise right like they're always going to go for the thing that's been outlawed and that's how it's going to continue going. You see it happening with not only cartels down south like I don't know if you follow like any kind of Narco news but man what is happening south of the border does not get enough attention entirely if you think like the footage that you see from like Iraq and Afghanistan like from those wars were bad like that's still happening but South of the Border man like I'm talking like kids soccer games being you know, completely interrupted by gunfire and this and that, but so that's impoverishment you know, abroad but impoverishment here looks a lot like you know the felony conviction rate in both What that entails for a member of society it's it's insane and it's ridiculous. Drug Court is sold as some like golden idea. I if there's anything that y'all take away from this it is that drug court should be fought tooth and nail and commensurately up ended. Yeah, what what drug court does is it creates it's a trick off, it gets you enrolled in these programs that you have to pay for by yourself. Interesting. Yeah. So what it is, is a lot of different counseling therapy, drug test all of it you got to pay out of pocket for and hold down a job at the same time. A lot of people are unable to complete it unless they have some like overwhelming support. And the majority of people going into the system, they don't have a support system, man. Like their support system was the drug game that like that was then you know, that's what they did. And then you're telling them to be good and pay for it in the process. Like how does that work? You know, you're not teaching anything new here. You're just using a gun and you're not Robin Hood in the process. Like you're you're actually the villain here. You know what I'm saying? Like it's not good.
Yeah. And would they do it under the guise of we're helping these these people right by Yeah, by putting them in a cage and locking them in a cage and I think you know, framing it, I've always found a ton of success framing it against guns, because typically, and obviously there's plenty of people on the left who are big government cronies, and they're gonna support a police state and all that sort stuff. They hate this just as much. But right wingers are the ones who clutch their pearls about oh, yeah, what's ation if we're being honest? Right. So but right wingers love their guns. And so I find a lot of the same principles are comparable, when they talk about their guns as what they are hypocritical on when they talk about their, you know, legalizing drugs, and I go, So do people die at the hands of guns? Do people abuse guns and use it to harm other people? Do people use guns to rob other people do? Now, does that mean that if you have guns in your house safely, and that you are going to do those things? No. Okay, so it's the same thing with drugs, there are going to be individuals who are struggling, who are going to abuse it, they are going to do but until harm happens, no crime should have happened, right? Until you until you murder somebody having a gun should not lock you in a cage. So until you harm somebody else, why should you be locked in a cage for drugs? I love that comparison. It starts to sink in with them a little bit. And then they move into the Why don't want heroin stores. And you know, but but that is sort of the core issue is that our drug users who are drug users harming who are addicts harming the punishment of addiction is addiction. They're already being punished significantly. So it should be approached from a place of empathy and support. So I'm curious what is since drug court is not one of the solutions, let's talk a little bit about how solutions could be implemented and what decriminalization might look like.
I will tell you right now, and this is this is no lie, the coffee pot at your local na or a meeting has done more to combat drug addiction than every federal, state and municipal government combined. Just that coffee pot alone, okay. holding a gun to an addicts head and telling them not to ever use again is the same as holding a gun to a homeless person's head and say just buy a house? Yes. Yeah. A lot. A lot more that goes into it than just don't use if just don't use work, dare Would it work for all of us? Right? Yeah. So we have to look at this. You know, and you don't not I'm not saying anybody has to have empathy. You can feel however you want to feel about it. But the fact of the matter is, every time government gets involved in these policies, it creates more addicts. Most recently, we heard about the scary opioid epidemic. Well, what ended up happening is doctors stopped prescribing as many painkillers. Yeah, patients were addicted to painkillers. So what did they do when they couldn't get the prescription? They went to street level narcotics? Yeah, it's crazy. I mean, I mean, anybody with the two brain cells rub together could see that happening from a mile away. And then they close their polls, and I like how did this fentanyl epidemic happen? Like, why is there 100,000 Dead addicts? And it's like, the way to approach these things. As far as like, you know, looking at decriminalization, and I hate to point to another country but you know, Portugal has done really well. Portugal has done really well with their approach not only have they had more people like actually finding recovery and and actually getting freedom from addiction by taking that type of stance and I I think it's what can As far as the chicken or the egg argument, you know what changes first is a public perception or policy. But I think in this case, changing policy would have a good chance of changing public perception. Right. And with a policy change as vast and wide as full on decriminalization, and I really do think we'd see a lot less people dying from addiction and finding some help. More people find out plus people dying is one thing.
Yeah, I completely agree. So we're so let's do a little recap. And then let's get into some some more hot, fun topics. So when we're talking to normies, first thing we've got to do is is build some rapport, try to find out what it is that they are concerned about with drug decriminalization, what are those issues, get to the root cause of what their fears are? Then humanize addicts it by telling stories about how basically, there is no specific type of addict. It's not like what you see in movies, housewives can be addicts, former athletes can be addicts and addicts oftentimes don't. They're not all in the gutter there, they're struggling at home and all this and then show how a policy that criminalizes that when they don't harm other people could potentially take that housewife away from her kids lock her in jail for years and harm that family rather than getting her treatment. Good, you know, punished. We're basically punishing people for being victims. And that that is sort of the pitch and the approach. And then finally, if you need any comparisons, feel free to use the guns and the fun and all that. And don't forget talk about the real problem. That is that the prevalence of dark drugs like fentanyl, come about because people can't get access to the things that sort of started the addiction to a better process. They don't have access to something that is lighter. Do you Did Did Did I do a good pitch? They're dry and effective. That's what I'm talking about. Man. One
other little little thing though, that to point out, okay, this, this is applicable across the board, whether Normie or an Capistan and standing, whoever you're talking to 12 step recovery is nonprofit completely organic, it is self sustaining for their own contributions, they have no out no ties to any government, right? These started as a need in the community because addicts and alcoholics were like we need to get well and they banded together and they get well so now we have something that already works. That's not government involved at all. So that's the thing I really think we need to prop up and I think that that's the selling point.
Okay, talk about getting people in 12 step recovery program and that that's going to solve the problem more than locking them in a cage and making them live with dire consequences. I think the other thing and we'll we'll This is a great we don't have to go into our hot topics yet because I forgot about this is a segue so people ask all the time well what if they get high and robbed a liquor store? What if they get high and drive and kill someone? What if they get high and then go do XYZ The important part of that conversation is you go okay, all of those things are illegal and should stay illegal probably if you're harming somebody else Yes, you don't get a pass on shooting up here and driving a car and killing somebody you probably need to be punished for the killing somebody part but if you are not harming somebody addiction is not a crime utilizing drugs is not a crime so we can keep the crimes of the things that you're scared that drug addicts are going to do but that all we're asking to do is remove the punishment the criminalization of in in essentially the stigma around addiction that any thoughts to add on that that's what I always deal with. What do they get what if they get in a car and drive you know?
Yeah, I mean it's that we already have situations like this you know with with alcohol you know, you worry about those things but you prosecute those things you anytime that the NAP is violated anytime somebody and I know if you're talking to normal, you're probably not talking about the net. But anytime there is a victim created by the actions of someone whether under the influence or not, those crimes are still going to stay in effect, regardless of the legality of a substance.
Yeah, you don't need to ban guns to make murder illegal. You don't need to ban drugs to make, you know driving while high illegal, right? So I think that's a great one. Okay. Let's shift to some hot topics. We're talking about things being illegal. Let's talk about pollution. because it came up today and or this week in in just an absolute nightmare of week on Twitter. I know. So, essentially, what is it? Is it an old Rothbard? Quote? Was it Rothbard? That said unleashed the cow? Who was that hopper? I'm not I don't read theory,
the only theory I read a Star Wars. So if like the pocket overpowered, like we can get into that, but
I avoid theory for that very reason is that some of the newest, the some of the newest theories 30 years old, and they were and what happened is we got a lot of good libertarian theory, like in the early to mid 1900s. And then they kind of ran out of stuff to talk about because libertarianism is pretty simple. So what did they do? They start going deeper and trying to apply it to today's problems and issues. So if you're reading this theory, that was 35 years ago, and they go, Well, we should do this. Well, we've grown and learned a lot since then. So when a theorist says we should unleash the cops on the homeless, and take back the architecture, that I think that's clearly a guise for bonds, vagrants and addicts, right. And I think we've learned a lot about what an addict is, and how people end up in homelessness situation. So we don't necessarily have to get into all that we all know, the perception of a homeless person in 2020, we have a much better understanding of how they ended up there, then versus 1992, when that quote might have been written, so maybe we should take it with a grain of salt. But my, my real question was interaction with the police, and what the drug war, the war on drugs actually does to empower the police? What are what are your experiences on that? And what have you seen?
I have seen a bit of jail quite a few times, I have seen the Stanford Prison experience play out on a full scale, time and time and time again. Out in, you know, the world is seeing cops that are just as dirty, dirty, dirty cops. I've seen some that seem to do okay for their job. You know, I don't know, I've had multiple interactions with cops. I've only been beat up a couple of times by and so that's pretty good. I think those are pretty good odds for me. But yeah, I think ultimately, this this war on drugs, and you said it best. I mean, it gives cause way for these police to do things like civil asset forfeiture, no knock raids, just the militarization of police is all in the name of those crazy cartel members. And those, you know, drug dens that we have to go kick the door in on. Yeah, that the reason we have the police state that we do is directly because of drugs, you know, and the policy, not drugs themselves, but the policies surrounding them.
Yeah, you know, you if you go back and you watch like, and I know, this isn't necessarily real life, but you watch like, Andy Griffith and Mayberry and all that. That is, is sort of more of what I think a lot of right wingers think police officers are, they're sort of there to help the community and you know, assist and do all that when in reality, these are like they the drug war has turned them into essentially like door to door use car salespeople. And I know I say this as a salesperson, we're teaching you how to do sales and persuasion right here. They are looking for any opportunity to boost their numbers, essentially. And like you said, for those of you who don't know, the Stanford Prison Experiment, experiment, let me give you kind of a quick guides of it. At Stanford psychology, they took a bunch of students and put them in an experiment, a roll sort of deal. And they made some of them the prisoners, and some of them the guards, and they told them basically nothing else. You're the guards are the prisoners. And over time, the the guards started treating the prisoners, which are just their classmates, like actual prisoners, beating them, like doing all of this sadistic stuff. It's one of the most controversial experiments of all time, but basically what it is it what it proves is that when you put on that uniform as a cop, you become an authoritarian in that way. And so you go looking for these problems. And the drug war enables you cover it provides you cover for it. And so when they pull it, and this is where it started with like, so what is probable cause mean? Well, if somebody swerves a little bit on the road, I can pull them over and they what's the likelihood they're going to have drugs? 5% 10% Maybe, well, now I've got a bust if I can smell marijuana in the car, right? And then that leads to very tense interactions with the police where, okay, if you do have drugs, I'm going to bet You're not somebody who doesn't carry. So now, you've you've essentially forced a situation where an individual is faced with going to jail they're carrying. And then you have another man who is there, also carrying and now you've created a gunfight where nobody was being harmed to begin with. So that that that's always sort of my and I go, wouldn't it be better if that cop said, Okay, have a great day. And that guy drove off with nothing to be concerned about? And everybody went home at the end of the day happy? Why do we have to force these interactions that that lead to a lot of deaths? Your thoughts as I ramble,
now, I mean, that's I'm in total agreement with you. A lot of these interactions and high speed pursuits where, you know, innocent bystanders get harmed because the person from the gods because they have like, a baggy scrape worth of cocaine. Yeah, there are like, yeah, it's insane, man, you know, the the force is not proportional to the crime, and a lot of cases and not to bring I mean, but that's, I think that's police interaction overall. I mean, look, the handicap guy in the wheelchair, it just got gunned down.
Just Right, right down the road for me in Tucson. Oh, really? So that was local. Yeah, I'm in Phoenix that happened in Tucson.
Oh, my God. Yeah. Yeah, that was a horrific, you know, horrific. But when all you have is a hammer, everything's a nail.
Yes. Yeah. And that
you're trying to solve a problem that's so much more nuanced than, you know, somebody whose rights being violated with this armed agent of the state. And addiction is just so much more complex than anything that that officer is able to maintain, or handle.
So that brings up a good point. The the term defund the police is is tossed around, and everybody can kind of take it as they mean, but the approach what, how could we better police these issues and problems. So for example, last year, there was that kid in Atlanta, who was drunk, he was he was driving, he was driving drunk, and he fell asleep in the Wendy's drive thru. So he is yet to harm anybody. But he passed out in the Wendy's drive thru. Wendy's called the Wendy's had one option called the police, the police came knocked on the door kid freaks run, like he sort of grapples with the police while they try to arrest him, starts running, they shoot him in the back and kill him. Just just an outlet. So what are in your mind some better approaches to who we can call besides hammers,
I have a friend of mine, Christopher Dreisbach, he is the founder of second chance in Pennsylvania. And they've done some wonderful work, what they have done is is that they've created a program to where when an officer responds to a crime, that the obvious next is, is drug related. They instead of taking this person to jail, they call a member of the local recovery community, that member comes out. And they do what we call a 12 step call, that's where you sit down, you have a heart to heart with a person, you share a little bit of your story. And then you ask them, you know, if they're ready to get some help, and then from there, they take them to rehab. Nobody goes to jail. And the benefit of that program is that they actually any kind of evidence that the officer may have found drugs, whatever gets destroyed, no charges filed whatsoever, the person has a completely clean slate so long as they follow through on their end of the deal and actually go to detox or rehab. That is the approach. Splitting. Go ahead.
Oh, go ahead. Go ahead. Sending
people who are actually educated on addiction and recovery, that's who you want. They're not the person who views every person with you know, a little bit of dope as the enemy. Yeah.
So if they, so they destroy the drugs, what about cash? And that situation? Do you know?
I have no idea. I did not know that's,
that's always kind of a scary part about civil asset forfeiture. Man, I'm gonna lose my entire livelihood. Yeah, I can go to rehab, but I'm going to come out broke and end up in the same position. So I think we also have to get away from this. Do. Man, okay, so in in, what about in? So would it be the same in a situation with alcohol like that? In Atlanta, would they call and so is this somebody there with the police?
Yeah, yeah. So like the, the police will just kind of like hang out with the person while that member of recovery is on their way to the scene. In an ideal world, maybe the Wendy's employee could have called somebody from recovery instead of the officer. But those types of things aren't made widely available. Yeah, I think the more and more we see programs like second chance, pop up. We have positive, you know, testimonies and stories to share from those interactions. Maybe we can get the general public on board with taking that route instead of calling the cops.
I like that. So then, how, how can we and what and should we separate? Sort of the dealers, the street level dealers? And because if we go D cram, right, the Crim is sort of the natural first step, it's not going to be sold in your grocery store, right? You're not gonna be able to buy crack on aisle three. But so so dealers will ultimately persist, right? Is that the case as you see it with D Krim.
See, the here's, here's where it gets weird. So like, decriminalization as libertarian? See, it would be a total free market in the narcotics world. Free Market. Here's the thing, there is not a single substance in this country in any of the markets that are that the it's regulated, it's taxed to some degree. I would love for the libertarian viewpoint of decriminalization, and that's what I will always push for. But I think our better bet would be as far as getting these drugs out of the back alleyways and black markets would be to give it full pass legalization, like allow it to be sold in brick and mortar stores. You know, what you end up doing with that the net positive for the overall society community is that if you do have a dealer who was maliciously spiking drugs with fentanyl, there is recourse. You know, there is somebody that they can follow up with in the court system. I don't see that happening with D Krim. Alone. The other part of it too, is that you can and I know us libertarians hate regulations, but I mean, let's just be honest, man, like you would have regulations, you know, 21 and up only in a D cram, you'd have stories of all this person sold a 16 year old heroin, you know, or something like that. Yeah.
Yeah. No, I think that makes a ton of sense. And so I think there are especially and this is, this is what I tell people, so if you interact with me on on Facebook, or Twitter or whatever I come across very much is like a monarchist where I'm like, Yeah, deep down, like, I want it all to go away, of course, right. The more you learn, you're like, now To hell with this ended all but this is about having conversations with normies. So sometimes it's important to let them sort of get some wins in there. And I think what you just mentioned are some important things to give them as wins look, it can be regulated, so that we know it's safer and it's part and then there are repercussions for people who do if we put it in brick and mortar stores, we can eliminate street level dealers so that it can be regulated. This is much safer if we go if we if we even oh god forbid use us money that was fed into prison systems to fund rehab look you're getting the money's being stolen anyways, I know the best thing to do would be not tax people, but you've got to sort of paint a picture in order because and and and that is why it's important to be able to play Monarcas sometimes is what I like to say I'll pretend to be monarchist when it when it really helps get the point across you know what I mean? Yeah, that's very good. Let's get to some some comments man people are people want to hear from you. So Brian policy changing is what started the drug war in the first place. Yeah, yeah, Jared. The best way to convince politicians to legalize anything is to convince them they can make bigger profits if they get in early than the kickbacks from big pharma shots fired not wrong though. If I hear gateway drug one more time, I'm gonna lose my shit. Let's let's get into that. Um, what are actual gateway drugs and what are not gateway drugs?
I think it's a gateway culture. I don't think gateway drug is real. I think that you know, here's it for my I can only go off on my personal experience of mine was hearing in school that pot was the same as heroin, you know, from the dare officer. Yeah. Trying pot just having a bad case the munchies a little paranoia. I was like, well, they lied about this. They probably lied about everything. Yeah. You create a gateway culture because you've lied about what these substances actually are. Do have it you know, with with aboveboard, honest dialogue about these substances You wouldn't have things like a gateway drug or anything like that you wouldn't have people trying something they had no business trying to begin with, you know? Yeah. If you're honest about these substances?
Yeah, yeah. What, what that made me think of is, so if you're right in there, they said marijuana and heroin are basically the same thing. So you go to so you finally turned 20, you go off to college, you're good, good guy. And then they're like six people at the college party, you know, smoking weed, or whatever. And you realize, like, oh, man, I guess it isn't what they told me it was. So then the other things must not be what they told me it was. So you're, you're actually more if you lie under this honest with people, you're more likely to lead them into addiction and the substances they should avoid. I think this is a really good point from Aaron, what normies need to be made aware of is that the drugs do not make the addict an addict can get off on what they can find in a hardware store. Many fall for the drug of choice fallacies that what you've experienced, because even on like, a TV shows about addiction, they do have their drug of choice. They're like, I'm a crack girl, or, you know, yeah, has math or whatever, you know, is that the case? Or do they just do what they can find when it comes to addiction?
I mean, we've all got our greatest hits, you know, yeah, you I'm sure you like certain music, you know, but if you're in a boring setting, and you only have one station that you can get that's not you know, your preferred music, you're gonna listen to it. And it's the same thing with with anything. It's addiction is a form of escapism, right? So like, just to kind of bring it back to not having healthy coping skills to deal with the world around you. You're going to use whatever you can. And Aaron is absolutely correct. You know, there is nothing. There is no merit to the drug itself. That's one of the things I learned in recovery is that the drugs were just a symptom of an underlying problem, you know, and that problem I had to deal with head on at first, I had to get the drugs out of the way. But still, the drugs were never my problem.
Yeah, no. In fact, they became they they started as the solution to that problem, right? And then addiction is what became the problem. So yes, that that makes a ton of sense. Let's see the next one. In some places, from Jared curry, in some places, all you have to do is drive down the wrong street with an out of state license plate for probable cause. And now you ended up with a an interaction with the police. Yeah, that is a phenomenal point. I think one of the things that sort of Black Lives Matter in the that's sort of criminal justice reform culture missed last year, or at least I didn't talk about enough is that you have to reduce interactions, you have to let the cops be firefighters, that that's exactly what police should do. They should sit around if they're going to exist, by the way. They should sit around make chili at the firehouse or at the police house. And then when they get a call, they go, right, but they don't that's not the culture of police, they are out actively looking for trouble. Because there's this idea that you can prevent bad things from happening. And that's just simply not true. No, and that's been proven. Cops are just human, they take human action. No one wants to purposely put themselves in harm's way. That's a great point. So if you want to do your job as safely as you do, so the fewer interactions that you are forced into because the cops are forced in these situations to their it's either do my job or get fired. And so they you know, it's it's self preservation there. Brian gateway drugs are the results of the drug war, the when one supplier is eliminated, one searches out for another may be convinced to try this. It's just as good. Do you see that? A, a lack of supply. In some cases, like let's say they bust a transport or something. It has sort of a huge impact on an area and ends up being worse
yet. So here's something interesting. One of my I, one of my fault, I was just having this conversation on Twitter recently is that methamphetamine today is not the methamphetamine from 10 years ago. It's an entirely different product with entirely different side effects. psychosis is a lot more wide spread now with this drug. Users report having blurred vision, which is nickel poisoning from the gun blowing they're using in this right. It's every single new regulation they have tried to get ahead of, you know, making it harder to get Sue Sudafed, or, you know, what was the the old trucker pills that you could get at every gas station?
Yeah. The ephedrine, that's, yeah, yep.
Every time one of those regulations sweeping regulations comes along the chemistry just Ain't isn't this drug becomes more dangerous, but it's just as widespread. And just to kind of put a point out there for how laughably ineffective the recent regulations regarding that drug were eight ball of methamphetamine, 10 years ago around here would run you at least 200. And that's if you knew the person really well. Now, it's about 20 bucks, you can get a quarter ounce for $40 cash. So at a fraction of the cost, this truck is widely available, and it's doing damage, you know. And that's another direct result of government action. Right?
Yeah, crack cocaine was born out of the scarcity of cocaine new forms of drugs, essentially, is market innovation. Right, and we're pushing it on the black market. Okay, uh, any final thoughts for stru as we kind of wrap this up, going into time, on having conversations with normies, about police interactions, you know, addiction and how we can be better at opening people's eyes to these issues,
point to your brothers and sisters in the rooms of 12 step recovery, who are actively telling you that we need to end the war on drugs because they do not have a vested interest in it. When I tell you I want the war on drugs to end it's not because I want to use tomorrow I could use today but I choose not to. I'm doing so because the best pathway forward for society and for the future members of recovery is to end this war on drugs give them the best opportunity to find us.
Absolutely. Well give us some plugs. Tell us about the show the caucus and what you got going on.
Okay, so first off and foremost, I you know, the clean libertarian podcast, you can find it on YouTube and Spotify. I do one episode a week and I there's a lot of stories of recovery on there. I've also had a lot of drug activists and other you know, types of conversation. But the main thing I want to plug is the sober caucus the LP suffer caucus, we are a group of people within the party who believe that we have the best possible message for ending the war on drugs there's a ton of nuance to be found. And we know exactly all those talking points. On top of that we want to create spaces at libertarian events to where you know, Libertarians we tend to be kind of crazy, right? We party a lot drink, we do drugs, whatever, you know, some of us, but we want to create a space to where if you are in the rooms or you know just living a abstinent lifestyle. You can come holler at us, man, we can hang out and still have a good time. So yeah, you look the looking for us in Reno and at LP Sobor caucus, you can find all of our updates there.
Absolutely. And I will be running in Reno. So come find me say hello as well. Well, awesome. Drew, thank you so much for being a part tonight. And man, I'm really grateful for it. And you guys go follow the clean libertarian podcast and at your at Liberty Drew 84. That's it. That's the guy all right guys. Have a fantastic evening. This is Jeremy signing off. Have a great night. See ya
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