Jesse Singal on mj legalization

Writing in the Daily Beast, he seems persuaded that the problem is hairier than either side would like to admit.

Footnote It’s a very nice – and somewhat rare – event when a reviewer reviews the book you actually wrote, rather than reviewing the book he imagines you wrote or criticizing you for not having written the book he wanted you to write.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com

4 thoughts on “Jesse Singal on mj legalization”

  1. Professor Kleiman: Are there any (partially) critical/negative reviews of the volume that you think make valid or substantial points as a challenge to your book? I apologize in advance if you’ve mentioned them and I have overlooked it.

  2. A commenter here or elsewhere made the valid point that the book underplays the racial dimension. Pete Guither, who said some nice things about the book, also complains because it doesn’t endorse his pro-pot ideology at every point. That’s about it, so far. I can’t find an actual challenge to our facts or logic.

  3. “mj” is nice touch. its not obvious, like say “doobage”, and could even pass as technical…at least to those who didn’t inhale. its almost a hipster dogwhistle.

  4. The hemp discussion is weird. OK, let’s assume hemp isn’t any sort of wonder technology in this day and age. Exactly why should that mean that someone who wants to grow hemp for manufacturing purposes should not be allowed to do so?

    And this, in my mind, is an example of how drug policy gets screwed up because of a disregard for first principles. You have a substance and it can be used for all sorts of legitimate purposes, including the industrial use of hemp, mdic,al marijuana, and recreational enjoyment. That’s the starting point. Then, if, and only if, there are sufficient public interests in imposing restrictions, you impose them, ad only to the extent necessary.

    The drug war only makes sense if you assume we aren’t entitled to do anything fun or useful unless the government gives us permission. So unless hemp is actually the best product for a particular use, there’s no basis for giving people permission to grow it.

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