Thursday, July 19, 2007

The Drug Taking Witchhunt Must Stop

While I've been packing my case this morning I have had Sky News on in the background. Their coverage of the admission by Jacqui Smith that she tried cannabis 25 years ago has been so over the top that I have had to switch over. They also collared Tony McNulty who admitted he had had the odd puff at university.

I don't exactly have a liberal view on drug taking but even I have to give a massive shrug of the shoulders at this so-called revelation. Sky have had a series of interviews with various political commentators about whether politicians should resign if they admit to breaking the law by having taken drugs at university.

The only relevant question here is this. Does having smoked a joint at university impair a politician's judgement 25 years later. Of course not. Tony McNulty's abilities as Police Minister can be judged on his performance today - not by what he may have done 25 years ago.

No politician should feel compelled to answer the cannabis question. If they want to, then fine, but the sort of witchhunt which is underway this morning is unedifying in the extreme.

Footnote: Just for the record, I have never taken an illegal drug for fear that I might actually enjoy it if I did. What you have never had, you don't miss. Indeed, I can honestly say I have never been offered a drug and if I was, I wouldn't have a clue what to do with it.

122 comments:

Anonymous said...

Is this all part of browns plan to discredit cameron? why else would these labour ministers choose now to fess up? All a bit transparent isnt it? election is coming sooner than we think.

zeno said...

I just can't see why the media think this sort of story is newsworthy.

Mind you, we don't see many headlines like "Newspaper Editor Says: I Took Cocaine" or "Journalist Admits: I Quite Like A Drink", do we?

Chris Paul said...

Oh go on Iain, you know you want to, grows by the roadside in Kigali you know, Dave-id will look after you, yes he will.

Brown's plan to discredit Cameron? Is that you Iain, writing anonymously on your own posts, again?

Iain Dale said...

Christ you are a bore, Chris Paul. You are so blinkered you can;t even see when I am defending Labour ministers can you? No doubt this post will provoke another IAIN DALE IN DRUGS RIDDLE post on your porr little blog.

As to posting anonymously on my own blog, unlike you, I do have a life. If I have something to say I say it under my own name, which, to your credit, so do you. Or do you?

Wrinkled Weasel said...

"Tony McNulty who admitted he had had the odd PUFF at university."

Try and get the facts right Iain. Is this a drugs witch hunt story or a gay witch hunt story?

Hughes Views said...

Well said Iain. The hypocrisy of some in the media is breath taking. I bet most of them have had the odd puff or more and certainly many of them regularly take on board more than a sensible quota of legal drugs. As you imply, most of us did daft things when we were young and it doesn't matter now.

Actually when I was at university (in pre-historic times since you ask) it was almost impossible not to breathe the stuff in so heavy was the air with it at any student do...

jailhouselawyer said...

I agree that the media are blowing this up out of all proportion.

On the other hand, I do remember the case of a solicitor who smuggled cannabis into Brixton Prison for one of his clients, and was caught by prison staff, but it did not affect his career as a Labour MP because he became Prisons Minister.

Anonymous said...

Does having smoked a joint at university impair a politician's judgement 25 years later.


Yes - it displays a lack of self control, and ease of temptation, which are clearly weaknesses.

As a parent I don't want my son to dabble in drugs, or associate with those that do. The middle class forgiveness of what is an unacceptable failing is one reason drugs culture, with all its consequences - family breakdown, crime, prostitution, murder - are rising.

Lawmakers should not be lawbreakers and if you want to know the man, look At the boy.

Cameron's position is more difficult as the issue is not spfills at school/college but if he took class A drugs, and whether he did so as a special advisor. He has refused to deny doing so.

Anatole said...

This Chris Paul character is precisely the type of troll I was complaining about a few thread down, Iain. I really feel that until you do something about this, your blog comments will never be the kind of "must read" that PB.com (and to a lesser extent ConHome) are. I don't think having a good blog in itself is enough - the comments are essential for a wider audience.

Boris Johnson said...

Being totally out of my head on a cocktail of drink and drugs is the only way I know of keeping my job.

Blogfan said...

Wouldn't it be nice if a politician said... yes I did and I had a great time, me and about ten million other people have all tried drugs, next question?

Danny the hippy said...

Look, man, stay cool. If somebody smoked a joint 25 years ago it probably had more John Innes no3 than THC. You guys, coming on all suit and ties over this. It's not the right Karma.

Change down, man. Find your neutral space. You gotta rush. It'll pass. Be seated.

Lord Straf-Bilderberg said...

Too ridiculous for words.

Anonymous said...

OOh you liar Iain, I've seen you at West Ham having a sly puff on your hash pipe!

Koba said...

anon 11:13,
I fully agree with what you say. She should resign now that she has effectively admitted that she thinks the laws of this country don't apply to oneself if its inconvenient.

C4' said...

"Just for the record, I have never taken an illegal drug for fear that I might actually enjoy it if I did. What you have never had, you don't miss."

I'm glad that I'm not the only one who is 100% DRUG FREE!

ChrisC said...

Alcohol is a (very dangerous) drug as you know.
So your (unusually!) rather ill-thought-out position seems to be that whatever *happens* to be legal is OK...
Though I agree that what drugs I have taken haven't been especially enjoyable, the obvious position is to let people f*ck up their own lives if they want to, and let's get rid of the violent crime which the *illegal* drugs trade promotes.

true blue said...

Who cares what these pathetic so called "government ministers" did twenty five years ago. They would be more gainfully employed by doing the jobs that they are paid to do, by the hard pressed "tax payers" of this country !

No spin indeed ! Humbug !
I thought Chris Paul had been barred from posting on this site Iain ? He really does talk a load of drivel ! You are correct in suggesting he uses other pseudonyms
and is easily detected. Have you noticed that when he`s challenged about his warped views, he becomes all "girly" and hurls abuse at anyone who dares question his vacuous comments? What does he do for a living? No doubt we pay his salary !

Ian McKellar said...

I always thought the best answer on this question came from Alex Salmond-
He replied that "if you admit taking drugs, you're called a drug sodden junkie but if you say you didn't you're called a prig."
I knew of him at school days (going to the secondary in the next town) and equally of him in the small Scottish world of universities (he was at St.Andrews: I was at Strathclyde) and no one equated his name with drugs so I guess he must be a prig

Anonymous said...

Iain - you packing anything nice for your trip? Any Cocktails with Cameron in Kigali?

Anonymous said...
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Man in a shed said...

I suspect the public will be forgiving of those who do as Jqacqui Smith has done.

However, I would suggest there is an issue about those who descide public policy who perhaps are influenced by their own short experimentation ( which they kept quiet about at the time ), rather than medical advice.

Perhaps this helps to explain why Cannabis was downgraded as a drug by Labour.

bebopper said...

Anon at 12.57 was absolutely right.

Nick Robinson said yesterday on The Daily Politics that Brown wants to draw attention to Cameron's association with drugs.
Far from being hounded, Smith and McNulty are happy to give the excuse for "friendly" journalists to start questioning the Tory leader again.
Predictably the BBC TV presenter on the One O'Clock News felt she had to mention that unlike the Home Office Two, Cameron IN MARKED CONTRAST hadn't admitted using anything.
Who said this regime didn't do spin?

troymolloy said...

Thankfully I missed the TV footage, but when I read about it in the papers I did wonder what kind of sad **** of a journalist still gets a thrill out of asking that question of policitians. Sorry guys but it just isn't 'news' any more! But the stock politicians' answer of having tried weed 'once or twice' gets my heckles up too - it's about as believable as Clinton's "I didn't inhale".

I must confess I have no problems with the question being asked in reference to Class A drugs, but it never really is (except when they were trying to get Cameron) - for some reason journalists still seem to think smoking cannabis is 'rebellious'.

a social libertarian said...

Does having smoked a joint at university impair a politician's judgement 25 years later.


Yes - it displays a lack of self control, and ease of temptation, which are clearly weaknesses.


Drivel. Does having a drink display those things? Does having a cigarette? Or eating a chocolate? Narcotics were perfectly legal to own consume and distribute until the early 20th century; the fact that the legal establishment turned against one specific vein of intoxicants in no way affects the motivations of those who choose to ingest them, nor colour the morality of that choice.

As a parent I don't want my son to dabble in drugs, or associate with those that do. The middle class forgiveness of what is an unacceptable failing is one reason drugs culture, with all its consequences - family breakdown, crime, prostitution, murder - are rising.


Arrant drivel. The consequences are a consequence of their legal status. Cf prohibition in America. The link with crime is caused by the law making that self-same link.

The higher the penalty for distributing a controlled substance the higher the risk. The higher the risk, the greater the price commanded. And the greater the incentive to control the market and not get caught. Every time someone instigates harsher penalties for drug dealing, they make the dealers richer, more violent and more determined never to be arrested.


And whilst you - and I don't doubt some others - may view it as an 'unacceptable failing' to use drugs recreationally there are many people who simply do not regard it as a point of criticism.

There is something extremely delusional about attempting to blame society's ills on a chemical.

The Hitch said...

Odd how they all "tried it" and didnt like it ,lying hypocrites.
Boris is the only honest one , he tried cocaie and didnt notice any effect so thought why bother, very wise ,because that is how cocaine gets its hooks into you, its very subtle. But he coughed the job.
more points in the great mans favour , unlike slippery dave.

Anonymous said...

The media have to pretend to make a fuss, whilst not really caring as I'm sure quite of few of them are no strangers to even harder substance abuse, as it is very obvious that new revelations of Dave's alleged past misdeeds will be dragged up in the next election campaign, when the usual suspects led by BBC will go in all guns blazing.

machiavelli said...

This post has confused me, Iain. Your view is that it's not a serious offence to have taken drugs, or that it doesn't matter that the Home Secretary has committed a serious criminal offence in the past?

Ed said...

The law is an ass - change the law.

Brown is a joyless puritan who wouldn't know how to enjoy himself even if he was on drugs.

Legalise the lot, stop kids from getting hold of them, educate people to the dangers and LET THEM DECIDE FOR THEMSELVES.

David Boothroyd said...

I agree, the coverage of this is ludicrous and precisely nobody actually cares. It's got to a stage that I don't want people to ask me whether I have taken an illegal drug, because when I give the truthful answer "No, never, disagree with the whole idea, always said no" no-one will believe me.

Anonymous said...

Why would seven government ministers choose today for a simultaneous confession? It could only happen in our fair land. And I mean that literally - could one imagine this happening in any other country, if so, where?

I tend to concur with commentators who think this is about nailing the Tories. It's also a pretty good day to release the news, what with the Russians and the BBC.

Anonymous said...
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Commissar said...
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Butser said...

"Ooh look sir, look what HE's done sir" "Miss, miss, Jacqui's tried drugs miss", "Sir, sir, did you do drugs when you were at uni sir?". Takes me back to my primary school days, let alone uni.

Anyone would think GB was inspecting all the cupboards for skeletons all of a sudden. Now why would that be?

No smoke without fire said...

How did this story break? It does seem to be convenient for the BBC to highlight this 'failing', or am I being a tired old cynic.

In any case, what would be damning, is whether a politician is continuing to take drugs. It is one thing owning up to adolescent experiments, but if there is a continued history of use the matter becomes more politically contensious. On the other hand, is it ethical for leading figures of a political party, and cronies in the media to remain silent about a former leader's little drink problem. Imagine what might have happened to the LimpDem vote if CK's little weakness was 'exposed' before the last election.

The big political question may be when did you last take drugs?

Anonymous said...

From the Daily Mail Article "...But the Daily Mail's sister paper, the Evening Standard, has learned that Ms Smith informed Gordon Brown before speaking out and was told it was up to her to decide how to handle the issue."

So Brown is behind this. No doubt cooked up with his best pal Paul Dacre at The Mail.

It's a non-issue, clearly designed to dominate today's and tomorow's news agenda, and distract from potentially damaging South ealing by-election results for Labour.

Plus it puts pressure on David Cameron to 'come clean' about his 'past'.

Same old Labour, just a different spin-cycle

general custard said...

Does having smoked a joint at university impair a politician's judgement 25 years later?

If it does, it must have been a hell of a joint.

Seriously, though, kids, at least one poster on here ought to be made to take drugs, lots of them, to stop him being such a chippy little f##ker.

sniper said...

Aah! The old days. Remember when Old Widders mentioned it at conference and half the PCP browned their trousers - great days.

Talking of Old Annie (Top Bird by the way even with the weirdness tendency) anyone know the fate of Samar Razavi? Or is the Home Sec putting up a more than usually fragrant smokescreen?

tapestry said...

Are you or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?
rings a bell.

What did Boris say to the drugs question?

Piers Morgan to Boris: What did you think of Cameron standing his ground over the drugs issue and refusing to say whether he had taken them?

Boris. I thought he was right. I'm not a great drugs man myself.

PM: Some of it did creep into your big hooter then, despite the sneeze?

Boris: It must have done. yes. but it didn't do much for me, I can tell you.

PM (displaying rather a lot of detailed knowledge on the subject): I can't even imagine what you'd be like on cocoaine. I think valium would be a better choice for you, Boris. You're hyper enough as it is.

Boris: I feel rather tranquil in this interview actually.

PM: You have been ranquil to the point of soporific. It's as if the battering you've received from the media since becoming a politician has sucked the life out of you; very sad. And it's entirely your own fault, because you broke the major rule of being a politician.

Boris: Which is?

PM: Keep your trousers up. have you ever tried any other drugs? any dope?

Boris: Cannabis, you mean. Yes I have.

PM (again sounding rather too familiar with the subject): How many spliffs?

Boris: There was aperiod before university when I had quite afew. But funnily enough not much at university.

PM: Did it do much for you?

Boris: Ummmmm. Yeah it was jolly nice. But apparently it is very different these days. Much stronger. I don't want my kids to take drugs.

PM: Would you take drugs now?

Boris: I have quite strong enough drugs in my own system. Adrenaline and so on. You need some more juicy chunks for your interview, don't you.

PM: Yes. When did you lose your virginity?

Thanks to GQ magazine July 2007 edition.

Anonymous said...

But why is taking Drugs when attending a University considered Harmless but against the law in other places?

Can Students get away with other crimes? "I only robbed Banks when I was at University, it was a long time ago, I didn't do it often and to be honnest I didnt really enjoy it."

simon said...

Given the announcement that's coming up on the reclassification of cannabis, it's no great surprise that the Home Sec felt she had to come clean about her youthful misdemeanour. Otherwise a paper might have dug into her past, uncovered it and she would have ended up looking shifty. Much better to get it out of the way.

Nick Robinson's line about encouraging the press to question Cameron seems too convoluted to take seriously, but then he is a Tory (Robinson, not Cameron, obviously).

tapestry said...

smoking cannabis was not illegal. selling it was illegal.

sir bentley pauncefoot said...

So, what bad news is being buried in this haze of historical substance abuse?

Rising crime figures, by any chance?

Anonymous said...

What the hell? Cannabis is less addictive than cigarettes, alcohol, far less dangerous.. in all seriousness who hasn't tried it?

Let's just legalise it for crying out loud!

Anonymous said...

"The Drug Taking Witchhunt"

Is Jacqui Smith REALLY a Witch, and would anybody really hunt her?

Jonathan Sheppard said...

What will be annoying will be all those MPs who voted to downgrade it - suddenly agreeing with Brown and saying 4 years later the decision needs to be reversed! They will come out with the crap that its all about a stronger form of cannabis - and four years ago it didn't have the same effect. Yeah... right!

Fidothedog said...

Re your comment: I wouldn't have a clue what to do with it.

You could always ask Paul Flynn MP, as that is one of his fave subjects, er just for advise I am sure!

tapestry said...

Cannabis is a Class C substance. It's illegal to own it and it's illegal to supply it. It's also an offence to grow cannabis.

Possession can get you up to two years in prison and an unlimited fine, although most people are either cautioned or fined. Serious offences of supplying cannabis can get you up to 14 years in prison and an unlimited fine.

Supplying includes passing a joint to a mate. If you're convicted, the court has discretion to take account of the circumstances of the offender and the offence before passing sentence.

WIKIPEDIA.

Possession does not mean being passed a spliff and smoking it presumably.

Or breathing in the fumes from another smoker.

You need to ask more detailed questions to be able to decide whether a law has been broken other than did the person smoke it.

It is possible to smoke cannabis without breaking the law, and many probably have only smoked a joint that was passed to them and never actually possessed the drug, or supplied it. Is that correct?

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

anon. Gives a new meaning to 'Hunting with Hounds'

Anonymous said...

wrinkled weasel - you were doing so well yesterday, but your standards are dropping today.

Iain - like you I can't understand what all the fuss is about. It is good for her that she has gotten it off her chest - and a very fine chest..[That's enough..Ed..]

Anonymous said...
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Iain Dale said...

Anonymous trolls are trying to take over this thread. If you want to make accusations about people put your name to them. Anonymous comments will be deleted. Just don't bother.

Anonymous said...

"Indeed, I can honestly say I have never been offered a drug and if I was, I wouldn't have a clue what to do with it."

I'm sorry Iain I have to pick you up on this. Are you saying no-one ever offered you a pint? Or are you saying Alcohol isn't a drug?

Please define the characteristic of illegal drugs which makes them worse than legal drugs!?

Zorro

Anonymous said...

"in all seriousness who hasn't tried it?"

I was discussing this with my daughter yeaterday. her view co-incided with mine, which is: "there is dog-dirt in the street. have you tried rubbing it all over your body?" Why should any sane person fill their lungs with a smelly smoke for whatever purpose? But then apparently a laod of purportedly sane people believe in some form or other of deity.

stargazer said...

Anonymous 3:58

Hey man, your daughter is into some serious shit. That's pretty far out. I never saw anyone do that, even at Glastonbury.

Anonymous said...

Pretty rum trick from McBroon and Dacre to try and 'smoke out' Dave.

Rum because Broon spent a long time doped up for his mental problems.

But perhaps we shouldn't talk about the PM being on the edge of sanity.

Remember the Blairite No10's quote. Brown will be the first PM to removed from office by the men in white coats.

Watch that hesitation at PMQs..and the glazed look during car bombing statement from No10.

Not a well man.

morrocanroll

Gary Elsby stoke-on-trent said...

I think you know as well as I do Ian, that this is about Cocaine.

There is at least one senior politician who has been fingered regarding a Cocaine habit and I'm told it was 'some' habit indeed.

Cannabis is basically baby talk.

You are a very worried party tonight. A very worried party indeed. All we need is for him to admit to a bit of cannabis inhaling and then all hell will let loose.

ps. I've never smoked and never taken drugs. I don't particularly look down on politicians for doing so. I do feel a certain sorryness for him tonight though.

Charlotte Corday said...

As politicians seem to be in a confessing mode at present, has anyone asked Gordon Brown what prescription drugs he is taking or has taken since he's been an MP?

The GQ interview with Boris seemed entertaining. I would have liked to have seen his answer to the last question.

Good luck in Rwanda, Iain.

Anonymous said...

Iain, the only reason you object to this questioning is to protect Cameron.

Many forntline politicians (including Tories) have been able to say that they have not taken class A drugs. Why can't Cameron answer this question?

Anonymous said...

Question: David Cameron, have you ever taken class A drugs?

Answer: No

See how simple it is - why hasn't it happened??

Anonymous said...

Question: David Cameron, have you ever taken class A drugs?

Answer: No

See how simple it is - why hasn't it happened??

James said...

I agree with what your saying Iain, but I would love to know what you and others aligned to the Tories would be saying if Brown flatly refused to answer questions about his drug use.

If it really doesn't matter why doesn't Cameron reveal all and let the public decide whether it matters. It wouldn't to me as long as it is in the past.

Ed said...

Anony, because it doesn't matter. There is no point in going after "demand" because people will take drugs whether they are legal or not. Little point in going after "supply" because for every tonne the police intercept hundreds get through.

Legalise it and let the police get on with the real criminals like burglars, rapists, murderers or even get back onto the beat!

C4' said...

Iain Dale is my hero because he is Straight Edge!

Anonymous said...

No, of course it doesn't matter (much) and witchunts are unedifying to say the least. I'm with Iain - I was in my late teens / early twenties in the 60's - admittedly in the army then, so never came accross any class of drugs. Later, in LA I was offered something at a party and my line was pretty close to Iain's - I declined, and when asked why, simply said 'In case I like it'. And of course none of us want our children to partake - but we know they will come across it, at which point you simply fall back on how you brought them up.

Newmania said...

With the quite vertiginous levels of perfection required of you in private life its amazing that we ended up with a crook like Blair and maniac accomplice like Brown.

Should we insist in more drug taking ?

Anonymous said...

There are likely to be further allegations about Cameron.

Iain is putting out the CCHQ line now in case of further rumour and innuendo - if not worse.

It's not a dishonourable position - but it is partisan. Would Iain hold back if a leading Labour Minister admitted to drug use? Did people hold back over Jack Straw's son?

Anonymous said...

Ohhhh...I'm the kinda guy to take on Gordon Brown,

In the Telegraph and Express you'll always see me round,

They call me a dope peddler cos my chauffer follows me;

With my suit to swop my bike for when I hide behind a tree,

I'm a R'wandarer, I'm a R'wandarer,

I groove around around around around around.....

I say I've a green message that I must get home to you,

By flying off to Lappland burning tonnes of CO2,

I believe in family values but back Boris to be Mayor,

For Shagger was much uglier than even Tony Blair,

I think that former cokeheads should be kept right out of Jail,

Especially if Etonian, balding rich and male,

I'm a R'wandarer, I'm a R'wandarer,

I groove around around around around around.....

Anonymous said...

"let the police get on with the real criminals like burglars, rapists, murderers. . . "

i think some in the police get on too well with them already. And don't forget fraudsters, electoral roll fiddlers and perverters of justice!

Madasafish said...

I've never taken drugs.

BUT:
what is the point of criminalising canabis?

Jail the offenders? jails are full.

Catch the offenders? Joke in bad taste.
The numbers are too big, the police are undermanned and have more and better things to do.. AND

if you search the UK internet there are 100s of blogs/forums devoted to growing cannabis and lots of internet sites selling growlamps and all the equipment needed to grow it.

So you have to conclude it's all PR and spin..

Oh and I forgot. We are fighting in the drug capital of the world for opium (Afghanistan ). And it is havinga record harvest this year - output up by 40%.

So the British taxpayer is fighting a war to protect opium poppy farmers.

Hypocrisy and cant. It's all bullshit .. by both main parties.

Why are the Conservatives not raising this in Parliament and embarrassing Des Browne?

Answer: cos they are useless in opposition..:-((((

David Lindsay said...

It has long baffled me (with two degrees, and about to resume employment by a university) that universities are effectively regarded as exempt from the drug laws, and that illegal drug use is regarded as wholly excusable if it took place while one was at university.

That is certainly not how these matters are addressed with regard to people the same age who, moreover, are expected to get up in the small hours in order to pay for heavily subsidised student bars that they may not enter. I find that baffling, too.

Anonymous said...

Iain, to the best of your knowledge, has David Cameron taken class A drugs or not?

You seem to be throwing up a bit of a smokescreen on this issue which may lead some people to think that you know more about this than you are letting on.

sockpuppet said...

well I, for one, would far rather the country was being run by a sensible drug-taker than an insensible puritan.

Not suggesting that anyone in the running for the top job is a drug-taker, merely an observation.

Madasafish said...

The observation I have is that either most politicians act as if they are on drugs.. or they are just total muppets..

Frankly the general level of inanity suggests large scale drug taking by politicians would be a blessing in disguise....

RacerDon said...

Never taken drugs myself but given the increasing list of Ministers who took them "once or twice" and didn't like it, it's hard to understand how we have any form of drug problem in this country at all

Unity said...

Hey Iain, when did you come over to our side?

"Doughty Street has a distinct liberal left bias; however its founders have gone on to establish two similar sites, Centre Right and Britain and America, both of which espouse highly conservative positions. Do not believe for one second that these sites are some noble attempt to redress the balance. They exist because Doughty Street leftist polemic has proven to be both popular and profitable, so if it works for the left then why not for the right? I get the slightly scary feeling that someday soon all news may look this way."

(link)

chris said...

It is about time that the British Establishment took the drugs problem seriously. The recent tragic events at Harrow School are a terrible warning of the outcome of the half-hearted response to middle class drug taking. Until Cameron can state in a forthright way that he has not taken class A drugs one can only assume he has something to hide.

All of this reminds me of why Cameron is totally unsuitable to be Prime Minister.

Little Nicky Machiavelli said...

Its pathetic when the media cannot resist these pseudoscandals. We all do things when young we would rather forget.

CCTV said...

Come off it Iain...this is a media red-herring. Blunkett screwed around on the party circuit and listened to salon gossip about cannabis and plunged in and downgraded it.

The Labour Government is now trying to effect a U-Turn and the media dopeheads don't like it so they try to turn it onto the politicians as if to say when they were young they used it - they are just trying to stop you young things from doing what they did.

It is cynical but it is Britain's sleazy media trying to undermine public policy....

John Marston said...

Today's revelations by Cabinet Ministers conjures up a delightful picture of everyone puffing away around the Cabinet table.

More seriously, the present Government has introduced a large number of new offences over the last 10 years...so it's OK for Ministers to have broken the law 20 years ago? They give the impression that the law applies to other people.

Subtle as a house brick said...

Whilst government ministers are in "confess" mode why not ask them;

1 Who thought the Iraq war morally wrong but went along with it anyway?

2 Who knew cash-for-peerages was going on and went along with it?

3 Who thought that David Kelly was treated disgracefully and said nothing

4 Who knows about blatant government corruption but chooses to keep quiet?

5 Who thought super casinos morally wrong but voted for it anyway?

6 Who knows the government are reneging on the EU referendum promise but are happy to perpetrate the deception its not the constitution?

Come on you spineless, power obsessed morally bankrupt rubbish....

Anonymous said...

subtle, I reckon Tories 5/6, labour 6/6.

Am I right?

Roger Thornhill said...

It is not their taking pot when younger that annoys me, but allowing this country to go to pot when in office!

Decriminalise while supplying for free, to break the drug cartels and so reduce crime.

The Domestos is under the sink if you want to kill yourself...DEAD.

Anonymous said...

So

Which Government ministers took Drugs outside of University? Seems to be the norm now among MPs that criminal acts inside university are not really criminal acts.

And

Which Government ministers enjoyed the experience? Probably those still taking Drugs.

Then there is the outstanding Question of which champagne Davey coke head opposition Leader won't admit to doing F all?

Truth is They ALL knowingly broke the Law and should NOT be in Places of Power!!

Anonymous said...

6 cabinet ministers confess they took illegal drugs.

What does Her Majesty's Goverment's official opposition leader say?

Nothing, absolutely Nothing!!!!

Why Dave?????

spinning spliff-tastic said...

Iain

The witch hunt is nothing more than a cheap political stunt. You should come out and condemn it. Same old NuLab scum spin. If they had been honestley fessing up fair enough. Instead they are trying to con the country into thinking THEY are the honest ones. What utter, utter cheap scum they are.

Chris paul i accept your apology as anon 1 st post.

Anonymous said...

Ian

You just haven't got a clue.

People DO NOT WANT drug taking Politicians. They do not want politicians that admit they once broke the law but they are now reformed characters.

Even worse they hardly admit they broke any law and if they did it was only a flaw in their younger characters and they really did not intend to do criminal acts. As if Age produces a more honest Mind.

YOU may think it old fashioned but that is the reality.

Bespoke said...

Anonymous said...

What does Her Majesty's Goverment's official opposition leader say?

Nothing, absolutely Nothing!!!!

Why Dave?????

Maybe the drug history that Dave pointedly doesn't want to talk about may have something to do with it!

magnacarta said...

If you think this is a problem then think again.

MAY I REMIND YOU ALL

The government have just brought in a smoking prohabition in all, non-private residential enclosed spaces, covering the entire country!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

One high profile politician has already been caught BREAKING THIS LAW. A law that can result in a fine greater then does the'possesion of cannabis.'

At least the laws on cannabis were brought in by people that are now mostly dead. This smoking ban is already been broken by the very politicians that voted it in.

Silly laws are not these days made by silly people. They are made by people that think that the great mass of people out here, are too thick to run their own lives.

While having no intention of letting the BBC make enough fuss about anytime they completely ignore the silly silly law that they voted for themselves.

They can indeed now get away with just about anything including murder. BECAUSE THE BBC LETS THEM AND OUR POLITICIANS NOW KNOW IT

Cinnamon said...

No-one but a few hysterical people who are working in the media are interested if someone smokes cannabis or not. Most people wouldn't even care if she lit up when she comes home after a hard days' work... ;P

Seriously, it's not even worth dignifying it with a post, Ms. Smith doesn't need defending unless you feel that your personal opinion about cannabis needs some closer scrutiny and logic check. ;)

Anonymous said...

Hughes Views said...

Actually when I was at university (in pre-historic times since you ask) it was almost impossible not to breathe the stuff in so heavy was the air with it at any student do...

July 19, 2007 1:09 PM

That was my only experience too at University and once only. Someone was smoking something in a room at a party and I had a maybe one or two beers and very little sleep. The effect was utterly terrifying. I thought I was flying and was extremely ill the following day. If that is what secondary inhalation can do I dread to think what actually taking it is like. Stay away from thme I would say to anyone - even the supposedly soft ones.

Still, I do not think a witch hunt now is doing anyone any good. It does all seem a bit coordinated announcement - cannot help wondering why. Is there a drugs Bill in the current Parliament?

javelin said...

As most of the readers have been saying for years - the BBC needs cutting in HALF. Crooks and liars.

Anonymous said...

NO CHARGES IN CASH FOR HONOURS!!!!!

BLAIR IN THE CLEAR.

WEEP WEEP WEEP TORY BOYS.

wonderfulforhisage said...

My God.

Magnacarta's 9:13 post has brought a terrible thought to mind. Say Charles Kennedy had been leader of the LibDems when he got caught smoking behind the bicycle sheds, or on the train or wherever it was, whilst he was still in 'office'.

Would the Queen (NOT you Hughes) have had to intervene?

And another thing, perhaps we were lucky that Sir Winston's thing was brandy and not weed. Otherwise, perhaps we'd all be speaking German?

Wrinkled Weasel said...

Whitewash whitewash whitewash. As I predicted some time ago. Strings have been pulled, favours called in, establishment figures have "had a word".

Cash for honours is dead in the water. Sleaze wins. Sleaze works!

Anonymous said...

.................before it gets to Dave!

John Trenchard said...

i took ectasy and smoked doped in my university days.


do i do it now? no, of course not.
did i enjoy it? yes of course.
did i regret it? no. not a chance. it was an experience that i really enjoyed and thankfully i have this "non addictive" gene in me. no crack cocaine for me. i just stopped at "E's and whizz"

do i do it now? not a chance.

politicans really need to get into their heads that voters actually GROW UP. as long as you arent snorting cocaine as an MP , then thats fine - i'll vote for you. this moralising about drugs from the MSM especially, is so utterly hypocritical and downright tiring.z

John Trenchard said...

"anonymous said:
Does having smoked a joint at university impair a politician's judgement 25 years later.
Yes - it displays a lack of self control, and ease of temptation, which are clearly weaknesses.

July 19, 2007 1:13 PM"

it could also imply that the person was just curious. nothing to with self control.

and since the ministers in question (and i am no labour supporter) have reached positions of office, that would imply that it WAS curiosity. one cannot climb that greasy pole in westminster without a degree of self discipline.

but i find it hilarious that its the drug fuelled MSM thats reporting on all this...

Lord Hemlock said...

Anonymous said...

NO CHARGES IN CASH FOR HONOURS!!!!!

BLAIR IN THE CLEAR.

WEEP WEEP WEEP TORY BOYS.


So Blair is "in the clear?"

Says who? Some semi-literate anonymong who has trouble finding the Caps Lock key on his or her computer...

The real weeping will not be done by Tory, Liberal or Labour boys & girls but by anyone who despairs at the ever declining turn out of the British voters at elections (be they parliamentary, council or European.)

Why "ever declining?" - because voters no longer have any faith in the democratic process.

For any of us - of any political persuasion - who believe in the democratic process, this is a Pyrrhic victory for Tony Blair and his corrupt cabal.

But it isn't the end...

Corrupt Britain said...

The day my faith in our system died.

I just voted in my local election today but this whitewash makes me angry.

taking care of your own is a fact of life but not when criminality is involved. politicians should be held to a higher standard anyway. i can't help but think what the Labour ***** would have said if it was a Conservative PM involved in this scandal.

John Trenchard said...

"Truth is They ALL knowingly broke the Law and should NOT be in Places of Power!!

July 19, 2007 6:45 PM "


go to ibiza matey - you'll find about 500,00 to 1 million british youngsters breaking the "law" every summer.

and this has been going on since 1987.

if you want us to return to some Cromwellian Puritan era, then that is your right. Form a party and see how many votes you get.

I for one am sick to death of statists like you dictating what is "right" or "wrong" in society. And yes, you are a statist, because you believe that you have the right to impose your puritanism on the rest of us plebs. go read up on the wonderful success that is the "U.S. prohibition" before you start pontificating again.

i'm sure the Mullahs of tehran would welcome the likes of you with open arms.

John Trenchard said...

"July 19, 2007 11:22 PM"

the "cash for honours" whitewash has brown's grubby hands all over it.

break from the blair past and all that...

Anonymous said...

HAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

LOTS OF GNASHING TORY TEETH!!!!!

KEEP IT UP!!!!!!

Andy said...

I trust none of the puritans condemning the "law-breakers" on here has ever exceeded the speed limit.

Iain, to be honest I don't often agree with you, but you're spot on here, proving that you don't merely take every chance to diss the opposition (small 'o'). Kudos.

Anonymous said...

July 19, 2007 11:49 PM

Not gnashing anything just sad ,it took 16 months and a million pounds of your's and mine and the rest of the taxpayers,read the middle of Lord Hemlock 11:17 PM
because to me it says all,we've all lost.

tapestry said...

Cash For Honours always was just part of the method used to push Blair from office. A deal was no doubt struck to keep all parties -Blair, Police, Brown - content.

Anonymous said...

Well, it's all gone a bit quiet on here!

You wouldn't believe that the results of a major political investigation is on the verge of being announced and two by-elections are just about to be declared.

I'm interested in hearing from all the tory boys who swore blind that Blair would be locked up and Labour trounced by the tories in both by-elections.

Not so vocal now are we!!!!

Tone made me do it - he's a bad influence said...

Sky news calling Chamberlain's Tories to drop to third in Sedgefield and the BNP possibly retaining their deposit.

Tone made me do it - he's a bad influence said...

BBC calling Chamberlain's tories to come third in Ealing.

England needs another Dowding not another Blair.

Lord Hemlock said...

Anonymous 12.22 am said:

because to me it says all,we've all lost

You are so right. We've all lost...

...as in - we've lost the battle, but not yet the war.

I guess the big question is - where is the next generation of political leaders going to come from?"

Perhaps, for you London voters, it starts with Boris...

Anonymous said...

Will Dennis Skinner attack his fellow Labour Party members as he did David Cameron last year?

Of course not

Anonymous said...

Cameron is toast.

Anonymous said...

I guess the big question is - where is the next generation of political leaders going to come from?"
Perhaps, for you London voters, it starts with Boris...


ROTFLMAO

dr spyn said...

If any politician is still smoking snorting, injecting or inhaling Class A substances they will be toasted. The big drug question is still 'When did you last take drugs?' Politicans know this is the killer question, and try to keep it quiet.

Would you trust anyone who had access to nuclear codes who was still snorting coke? Would you be happy if fund managers were caught taking coke? Power comes with responsibility, it isn't a birthright.

Would you want anyone with a recent history of mental illness or medication for a psychoitc illness to have access to power. The mere admission of such illness usually ends careers -see when Illness Stikes the Leader.

gary elsby said...

The issue of class A B or C drug use by MPs, Ministers or very senior members is probably a step too far or maybe just another diversion of attack dog mentality.

How far do we as a society take this issue with former (current?) drug use and public servants?

What about other 'crimes'? Why stick to drugs and make drugs the big modern no no?

If an MP has commited a violent act prior to promotion and been convicted of that crime, isn't that a more serious crime?

Anonymous said...

Call me an old fuddy duddy (well actually don't, just call me someone who is not running for office) am I the only one to be slightly suspicious by all these politicians having only admitting to have done "a small puff once in my youth" ?

I don't believe them. This distancing from things done long, long ago, stinks of trying to get the pack off the scent - and we all know what side banned foxhunting.

Go on press, dig, dig, I am sure you will find some 'white gold' in a Ministers nostril!

And why were these people doing cannabis? What a dreggers drug! They could have at least done something to stimulate them.

Could not the most spiteful amongst you hacks make a link between cannabis use in the young having a devasting effect on mental health and schizophrenia, and this drug taking by those so important in their youth?

Cato, author of www.toryheaven.com said...

"Does having smoked a joint at university impair a politician's judgement 25 years later. Of course not."

Oh dear, that really isn't the issue. The issue is: if a law has been fragrantly breached by numerous members of the Cabinet, who have confessed to it without any question of prosecution being raised, why should others be punished for it on a daily basis in the courts? And on what basis does a Government, replete with unpunished but self-confessed criminals, have to expect other laws to be obeyed? This is a fairly fundamental issue about whether we are ruled by law or not. I'm surprised you don't appreciate this basic point Ian.

Anonymous said...

The fact remains that pot smoking is fun, relaxing, enjoyable, and safe. I recommend it, and it should be legalised.

molesworth 1 said...

it seem puritan bores come in all political shades.
i have consumed, posessed, & traded in all manner of things, both legal & otherwise & the drug laws are a help, not a hindrance.
england...free or sober?

guido faux said...

Sounds like you need an education Iain:

Cannabis - Makes you feel slightly elated and very very numb. Tends to make you quite lazy and passive.

Speed/Amphetamine - lame. No better than a packet of pro-plus. Rots your teeth.

LSD/Acid - awesome. Very powerful hallucinogen. Must be in a good mood before you take any. Prepare to face your demons.

Mushrooms/Tryptamine - Absolutely hilarious. Really really funny stuff. You will be in pain next day due to excessive laughing.

Ecstacy/MDMA - Awesome again. Unbelievable elation. You will feel crap the next day though. Some people say it's better than having a booze hangover. I don't buy that argument - it's just differently bad. Bonus weight-loss side-effects for fat bastards - indeed MDMA was first synthesised for that very purpose just like regular Amphetamine (the 'A' in MDMA). Makes you feel thirsty but don't make the mistake of drinking too much water.

Cocaine - I agree with Boris. Way overrated.

Crushed nutmeg (*hangs head in shame*) - Tastes awful. Will get you stoned like cannabis but gives you an absolutely stonking headache. Eyes completely bloodshot.

I wouldn't say any of the above are addictive or have lasting effects (unless you go way OTT). It's all common sense and mind-over-matter. Just avoid the stuff with a bad reputation: Heroin/crack-cocaine/Meth.

Glad to be of service.

uk-events said...

>The only relevant question here is this. Does having smoked a joint at university impair a politician's judgement 25 years later.

Not so.

The ONLY relevant question here is: How long is it going to take before the little self appointed moral guardians realise:

1). People will take drugs irrespective of their archaic legislation.

2). It is the choice of the individual what he or she put into their bodies.

Its about time someone started thinking with their brains rather than their enforced political rhetoric.