The Government reclassified cannabis to a less serious category in 2002 after recommendation of their own appointed drug advisory council.Yet by 2004 cowing to the right wing press the government went back to their advisors looking for some reconsideration, or bullying by any other name.The advisors looked into the issue again and their advice remained the same.Fair play to Charles Clarke, home secretary at the time , he accepted their advice.
That was then,but then Mr Brown became P.M and realised he had to appear tougher than his predecessor,so he went back to his advisors to try and get them to reverse the situation. Yet again the advisors stayed true to their original findings, but this time the then home secretary Jacqui Smith overode them.We have to remember this in light, this week of Professor David Nutt's sacking by present home secretary Alan Johnson.
My point is this, the government pretends to listen but fails to do so, why do they set up advisory committees and so forth, pandering to some kind of high sensibility then refuse to listen to the advice given to them, politics is a dirty business, and the government has to appear tough, but public debate is essential, and to sack an expert just because of one remark is clearly farcial.I'm not goin to say here whether the effects of cannabis are harmful or beneficial but scientific experts are appointed because, well their experts in their fields.What is the point of seeking scientific advice that when offered is simply rejected. It does not seem logical to me, but then maybe I've been smoking too long.
It seems to me Professor Nutt was sacked not because of of him crossing the line into politics, he was sacked because his advice does not fall in line with the government's own political position.Professor Nutt and his colleaques are experts in their fields, to snub them so publically is mind boggling!
It appears they missed the ball on this occasion, to much time listening to the editors of the Daily Mail, Express et alle, giving two fingers to everybody else.Personally this is what I have come to expect from this government, when their comfort blankets are taken away, they throw away their toys like spoiled kids. Not saying the other lot would be any different in the end, perhaps the only thing they are all able to listen to are the sounds of silence.
Carl Carlton - " I can feel it "
Brian Eno _ Needle in the camel's eye
The Beatles - Ticket to ride