[ExI] state of conflict technology

Adrian Tymes atymes at gmail.com
Sat Jan 11 06:28:01 UTC 2020

On Fri, Jan 10, 2020 at 2:24 PM John Clark via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> And it's odd, politicians talk about the drug epidemic as if it's
> something new but tobacco is very old and it kills far more people than
> every other drug, legal and illegal, combined. And that remains true even
> if you include the second most dangerous drug alcohol which for some
> strange reason most parents don't even consider a drug.... "*thank
> goodness, little Jimmy was't on drugs, he was just drunk*".

How is this odd?  Alcohol and tobacco were grandfathered in.  If there
weren't big industries making them and addicting enough people to vote out
of office anyone who'd seriously threaten their industries...

Another way to look at it: if they were new today, they'd have to be
FDA-regulated, and would likely wind up banned or mostly so.  See what's
happened to e-cigarettes, for good reason: they're a not-well-established
thing that makes people feel good for putting smoke in their lungs.
There's no way the FDA can say that putting smoke in one's lungs is
anywhere near healthy, and the reports keep coming out that it's unhealthy.

Politicians and regulators can slowly work in limitations as public opinion
slowly turns against these drugs, but the key is to get public opinion to
change - and that is one massive mountain to chisel away, with centuries
(tobacco, at least in Western culture) or millennia (alcohol) of precedent
and tradition to overturn.

I believe tobacco is easier, as I am informed the first time experience is
always foul, so new users have to be peer pressured in - and that can be
fought.  (Does anyone start smoking, at least these days, for any reason
other than "the 'cool' kids (aka those trying hardest to be accepted by
others, and succeeding) are doing it"?)  Alcohol has less of a barrier to
starting use.
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