Great news: Jimmy Carter on board with pot legalization

posted at 2:01 pm on December 12, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Actually, I’d advise marijuana legalization fans not to get terribly excited by this clip from the former President, who literally did nothing but talk about this issue when he had four years to do so.  In fact, Jimmy Carter starts off by reminding everyone that he called for the decriminalization — “not the legalization” — of marijuana during his single term in office, but never quite gets around to the fact that the one speech was the only effort he made.  After that, Carter manages to confuse the issue with the death penalty and the fact that rich white guys don’t get executed, which has nothing much to do with marijuana prohibition at all, except in Carter’s mind:

The Hill makes Carter sound more coherent:

“I’m in favor of it. I think it’s OK,” Carter said at the forum, which was taped Friday. “I don’t think it’s going to happen in Georgia yet, but I think we can watch and see what happens in the state of Washington, for instance around Seattle, and let the American government and let the American people see does it cause a serious problem or not.”

Carter added that he thought it was appropriate to allow states like Washington and Colorado — which voted last month to legalize recreational marijuana use — to see how marijuana legalization would look. …

The former president added that he did not think that legalizing drugs would lead to more drug users.

“All drugs were decriminalized in Portugal a few years ago and the use of drugs has gone down dramatically and nobody has been put in prison,” Carter said.

Well, no one being put in prison goes hand in hand with decriminalization, so that’s not exactly a metric on which to rely.  Carter’s right about Portugal’s rate of addiction, although the methodology might not transfer well to the US:

Health experts in Portugal said Friday that Portugal’s decision 10 years ago to decriminalise drug use and treat addicts rather than punishing them is an experiment that has worked.

“There is no doubt that the phenomenon of addiction is in decline in Portugal,” said Joao Goulao, President of the Institute of Drugs and Drugs Addiction, a press conference to mark the 10th anniversary of the law.

The number of addicts considered “problematic” — those who repeatedly use “hard” drugs and intravenous users — had fallen by half since the early 1990s, when the figure was estimated at around 100,000 people, Goulao said.

The decline doesn’t come from decriminalization itself, but from enforced treatment for addicts:

A law that became active on July 1, 2001 did not legalise drug use, but forced users caught with banned substances to appear in front of special addiction panels rather than in a criminal court.

The panels composed of psychologists, judges and social workers recommended action based on the specifics of each case.

Since then, government panels have recommended a response based largely on whether the individual is an occasional drug user or an addict.

Of the nearly 40,000 people currently being treated, “the vast majority of problematic users are today supported by a system that does not treat them as delinquents but as sick people,” Goulao said.

In order to achieve these results, we would have to involuntarily commit addicts to treatment even though drug use has been “decriminalized.”  I suspect that civil libertarians who cheer legalization might have a few issues with this idea.


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Poster child for euthanasia.

justltl on December 12, 2012 at 2:05 PM

It just may be me, but I don’t give a flit what this old coot has to say!
L

letget on December 12, 2012 at 2:06 PM

Well, from the headlines:

New marijuana laws cause confusion

Fallon on December 12, 2012 at 2:06 PM

Ahem….

First.

justltl on December 12, 2012 at 2:06 PM

wow…. could any one person be any more publicly foolish?

lm10001 on December 12, 2012 at 2:08 PM

Dope for dope

Schadenfreude on December 12, 2012 at 2:11 PM

Is it even possible to get addicted to marijuana???
Physically, I mean.

bridgetown on December 12, 2012 at 2:11 PM

Adultery in his heart and THC in his brain.

steebo77 on December 12, 2012 at 2:13 PM

I was around when Pres Carter was in the WH. What’s left of my memory tells me that if ol’ Jimbo thinks it’s a good idea, then the it probably isn’t.

WestTexasBirdDog on December 12, 2012 at 2:13 PM

Who gives a crap?

totherightofthem on December 12, 2012 at 2:17 PM

Yep. Jim-May (not to be confused with Tim-May on Southpark) was impressively terrible as a president.

justltl on December 12, 2012 at 2:18 PM

This old dolt has been on a high for years.

rplat on December 12, 2012 at 2:23 PM

billy weed

renalin on December 12, 2012 at 2:24 PM

Figures. Carter went to pot years ago.

GarandFan on December 12, 2012 at 2:26 PM

Fallon on December 12, 2012 at 2:06 PM

toss in a little math and the confusion turns to industrial grade frustration…

DanMan on December 12, 2012 at 2:26 PM

Well, Sherman, Mr. Peabody says it’s time to get into The Way Back Machine and visit Jimmy on the cover of a magazine popular w-a–a-a-y back during the Carter administration.

M240H on December 12, 2012 at 2:26 PM

And he just keeps hangin’ on.
It’s as if he were put out to sea on an ice float to die in the Eskimo fashion.
Except Jimmy keeps floating back in to shore with that big-toothed imbecilic smile and waving like a retard (no offense to any of the lib retards on here).

justltl on December 12, 2012 at 2:27 PM

Old: Billy Beer

New: Billy Bongs

portlandon on December 12, 2012 at 2:28 PM

there’s no such thing as a Marijuana addict

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 2:33 PM

I had a 6 pack of Billy Beer I was saving and a buddy came over and drank 5 of them. I still have the one can. I think it is really Falstaff.

DanMan on December 12, 2012 at 2:36 PM

Uh, when are obama’s ‘death panels’ going to be up and running?

Pork-Chop on December 12, 2012 at 2:36 PM

Why is anything this senile old fool says considered newsworthy or worth repeating? He couldn’t be farther out it if he lived on the dark side of the moon.

savage24 on December 12, 2012 at 2:39 PM

DanMan on December 12, 2012 at 2:36 PM

I have heard the beer was nasty, did you taste any and if so, was it?
L

letget on December 12, 2012 at 2:39 PM

This old dolt has been on a high for years.

rplat on December 12, 2012 at 2:23 PM

But now he’s highest – he lived long enough to see Obama take the “worst president ever” spot, 2nd to him.

Schadenfreude on December 12, 2012 at 2:41 PM

Rather, making Carter 2nd…

Schadenfreude on December 12, 2012 at 2:41 PM

This anti-semite has now added white men to his hate list…wait, its too bad Jimmah was born into the wrong race, then he’d make more sense, maybe.

Hey Jimmah, isn’t it long past the time for you to STFU and croak!

belad on December 12, 2012 at 2:43 PM

In order to achieve these results, we would have to involuntarily commit addicts to treatment even though drug use has been “decriminalized.” I suspect that civil libertarians who cheer legalization might have a few issues with this idea.

Not really, since drug treatment options are sometimes alternatives to prison.

People often would rather choose treatment than involuntarily go to prison.

Akzed on December 12, 2012 at 2:45 PM

Schadenfreude on December 12, 2012 at 2:41 PM

heh. That’s the rub. This time Jimmy Carter got re elected. This country is doomed.

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 2:45 PM

Marijuana is as addictive as getting kicked in the nuts

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 2:48 PM

Well, Sherman, Mr. Peabody says it’s time to get into The Way Back Machine and visit Jimmy on the cover of a magazine popular w-a–a-a-y back during the Carter administration.

M240H on December 12, 2012 at 2:26 PM

The cover says it’s about a White House dope scandal. :)

Shy Guy on December 12, 2012 at 2:53 PM

there’s no such thing as a Marijuana addict

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 2:33 PM

Not true. I’ve known a few.

steebo77 on December 12, 2012 at 2:53 PM

letget on December 12, 2012 at 2:39 PM

He said it was aweful but he drank 5 of them while he waited on me to get home. He’s also a beer snob that is a pretty accomplished micro brewer now south of Austin. I never cared for Falstaff but the only beer I recall really curling my toes was Pearl Light. That stuff would make an old penny shine!

DanMan on December 12, 2012 at 2:55 PM

Not true. I’ve known a few.

steebo77 on December 12, 2012 at 2:53 PM

oh yeah? How long did the withdrawls last? Any hallucinations? How many people did they jack up or rob to feed the habit?

this is where I call BS

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 2:58 PM

oh yeah? How long did the withdrawls last? Any hallucinations? How many people did they jack up or rob to feed the habit?

this is where I call BS

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 2:58 PM

.
No BS
Room mate quit cold turkey, it was terrible.
He went back to his classes, and started studying.
Took regular showers.
Gave away his ferret, and shaved off the dreadlocks.
Stopped playing hackysack and listening to Phish and Dave Matthews.
.
Became a conservative.
.
Dude was never the same again.

LincolntheHun on December 12, 2012 at 3:15 PM

oh yeah? How long did the withdrawls last? Any hallucinations? How many people did they jack up or rob to feed the habit?

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 2:58 PM

Do all addictions lead to hallucinations? Do all addicts rob to feed the habit? Seriously, do you even know the definition of addiction?

Incidentally, one of my college roommates was addicted to the point of ceasing to function. He was smoking up at least 3-4 times most days, would exhibit all of the signs of withdrawal if he didn’t get his usual fix, stole from me and others to buy his weed, and was forced to drop out of school and check into rehab (as far as I know, he wasn’t drinking or using other drugs).

steebo77 on December 12, 2012 at 3:15 PM

I heard on a radio news report that up to 2 oz. of weed a month is allowable for medical marijuana users. If you’re not familiar, 2 oz. is a helluva lot of weed. Basically, you’d be lighting up one joint after the other all day long for 30 days to go through that much in one month.

Urban Infidel on December 12, 2012 at 3:18 PM

steebo77 on December 12, 2012 at 3:15 PM

3-4 times! OMG!eleventy

no offense, but your friend was a big giant puss. And yes, I know exactly what addiction is.

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 3:22 PM

This anti-semite has now added white men to his hate list

For the sake of argument, how is being in favor of marijuana legalization anti-white men? How do white men profit from weed being illegal?

libfreeordie on December 12, 2012 at 3:23 PM

Carter supporting MJ makes his rabbit story come alive…

right2bright on December 12, 2012 at 3:23 PM

Pot is extremely addicting…ask anyone with a bag that promises they will only smoke once a day. The thing is, there really are no cravings once you are out except…Bummer dude. As crappy as the future looks for this country, maybe everyone needs to be stoned.

trs on December 12, 2012 at 3:24 PM

Pot has the addiction quotient of an Obama speech about Slurpees

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 3:27 PM

For the sake of argument, how is being in favor of marijuana legalization anti-white men? How do white men profit from weed being illegal?

libfreeordie on December 12, 2012 at 3:23 PM

Proof that you don’t actually read the articles before you comment.

Night Owl on December 12, 2012 at 3:32 PM

3-4 times! OMG!eleventy

no offense, but your friend was a big giant puss. And yes, I know exactly what addiction is.

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 3:22 PM

Well, yes, he was a puss.

But 3-4 times was the minimum, and he’d smoke/vaporize an awful lot in one sitting. And, considering that he usually slept from something like 10 PM to 2 PM, still an awful lot in one day.

steebo77 on December 12, 2012 at 3:38 PM

Of course people can be addicted to pot. The disease of addiction is about an individuals relationship to a persona, place or thing. It has nothing to do with the specifics of that object, but of the contours of the relationship.

libfreeordie on December 12, 2012 at 3:40 PM

steebo77 on December 12, 2012 at 3:38 PM

I’d call that guy a BurnOut or a Head (also a d!ck if he was stealing to buy weed)

that’s different from a real physical addiction. Any “marijuana addict” in an Rehab Clinic is gonna get laughed at and scorned by the real addicts.

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 3:53 PM

Of course people can be addicted to pot. The disease of addiction is about an individuals relationship to a persona, place or thing. It has nothing to do with the specifics of that object, but of the contours of the relationship.

libfreeordie on December 12, 2012 at 3:40 PM

But that would be the distinction between mental addiction and physical addiction. Any habit can be mentally addicting (see: gambling). However, marijuana is not physically addicting… that is to say, the body does not go through physical withdrawal symptoms when they stop using marijuana. There may certainly be a mental craving for it, but no physical craving like with many other drugs.

gravityman on December 12, 2012 at 3:54 PM

Isn’t Carter dead yet?

Sherman1864 on December 12, 2012 at 3:55 PM

libfreeordie on December 12, 2012 at 3:40 PM

I’ll just bet you think Sex Addiction is a real thing.

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 3:56 PM

Mental Addiction shouldn’t even be part of the vernacular.

Mental Addiction = stop whining and don’t do what you’re doing

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 3:59 PM

Well, Jimmy was a good foot-washin’ Baptist back in the day…so he didn’t drink. {Billy was a bit more loose with his convictions, apparently. maybe things would have been better had Jimmy knocked off a few doobies once in a while in the Rose Garden or at the peanut farm. Might have made the 70′s just a little bit better for all of us.]

I’ve got to think that Jimmy might have been doing a little boo back in the day. After all, unless one is stoned, why would anyone actually believe that a rabbit would swim out into a pond to attack the president while he was in a canoe? He had to be trippin’.

coldwarrior on December 12, 2012 at 4:14 PM

I’ll just bet you think Sex Addiction is a real thing.

Slade73 on December 12, 2012 at 3:56 PM

I personally know sex addicts so yeah…

libfreeordie on December 12, 2012 at 4:55 PM

I personally know sex addicts so yeah…

libfreeordie on December 12, 2012 at 4:55 PM

“Sex addict” sounds so much better than “slut”.

Man up and deal with life. Not an idea you’re familiar with, I’m guessing.

Squiggy on December 12, 2012 at 6:53 PM

Jimmy Carter?
He’s still living?
How can you tell?

Personally, I think he actually died 10-20 years ago, and was gigged up like a Disney Animatronic. With Deb Wideload Schultz holding the remote.

orangemtl on December 12, 2012 at 7:16 PM

This anti-semite has now added white men to his hate list
For the sake of argument, how is being in favor of marijuana legalization anti-white men? How do white men profit from weed being illegal?

libfreeordie on December 12, 2012 at 3:23 PM

…it’s never about race with you…

KOOLAID2 on December 12, 2012 at 11:01 PM

Whoa. From the looks of the photo, Jimmy could be the new Crypt Keeper.

TMOverbeck on December 13, 2012 at 7:01 AM