Sunday, October 11, 2020

Sir Bob Jones: The Cannabis Referendum

As a libertarian I strongly believe in people making their own decisions as to how they live their lives. Some people are risk-takers seeking, in the case of say self-employment, a higher than standard income and the dignity they feel in being their own master. Others seek the security of employment at the price of a lesser material living standard.

Some opt for physically risky sports such as mountaineering or boxing; others golf and tennis. Some over-indulge with alcohol, others shun it altogether because of its potential adverse health effects.

I judge none of them, each to their own being my motto.

So given all of that, why will I be voting against making cannabis legal in the coming referendum?

The cold hard fact is that regular cannabis use has serious proven detrimental health effects.

The term “recreational users” I accept for folk who have an occasional joint and for whom the effect, as with a glass or two of wine, is presumably therapeutic.  

My problem with this is it’s not an “each to their own situation,” rather with many (30% of all users according to a study) cannabis quickly becomes an addiction, particularly with younger folks, thus the cost of the subsequent mental and physiological health problems inevitably falls on taxpayers.

To all of that a critic will say to be consistent I should call for a ban on alcohol. Alcohol is a regular part of most of our lives, only with a key difference. 30% of alcohol imbibers do not end up in a permanently damaged state at a cost to everyone else.

An American alliance including community organisations, health professionals, educators, police and addiction counsellors formed to educate voters on diverse issues confronting society, have published excellent research on cannabis usage.

Google them at They’re an impressive line-up.

Then Google SAM-NZ which will lead on to many sources of pertinent evidence on cannabis.

Currently more than 50% of New Zealanders are unable to survive without dependency on their fellow men via government welfare.

There’s a variety of individual reasons, some acceptable in a brothers’ keepers sense but far too many others are categorisable as addictive parasitism.

Why would we want to encourage a new crop of dependency no-hopers?

So as a libertarian I will vote against to protect my own liberty from financial assaults by wilful self-destructible types. Furthermore, I’ll wager this referendum will fail, just as the euthanasia one will succeed.

Sir Bob Jones is a renowned author, columnist , property investor, and former politician, who blogs at No Punches Pulled HERE.


Anonymous said...

Yes Sir Bob all good but .. Aren't the dedicated users of pot already hard at it, given that NZ Cops do little enforcement at the user level, so I believe there will be little change for those who (choose) to use to the extent that it becomes a problem for them & us. Maybe these heavy users would find some other way anyway to dig themselves into a psychosis hole. There is a parallel with the current view that our over-users of fast fatty sugary food will get society to substantially fix the over-consumption problems thru supply restrictions, rather than they themselves. And on the other hand there are benefits in opening up the trade away from dealers. Hardly ever touched it myself, as prefer wine !
Anyway an interesting social experiment awaits!

Mervyn said...

I to believe that what a persons puts in their own body is none of my business and if they become addicted that should not be any of my business either. However the Gvt is insistent that it should be my business financially. There will be a whole industry created that produces nothing worthwhile that I will have to pay for, starting off with the hopeless endeavour of attempting to control the production and sale of marijuana and finishing with a array of support for addicts and the people they adversely affect. It's vote no for me.
Well put Bob.

Allan said...

The objective of an extreme Socialist administration, as will be the case if predictions are accurate, & a Labour/Green 'team' control our country, is to gain total control of the population, as has been the case with the Covid-19 situation. What better way to control the people, than have them stoned on drugs, or terrified of the future by convincing them that twelve years from now, the climate will have become two degrees warmer, destroying all life on earth, as we know it. Even if the referendum on cannabis gives a No result, a private members bill will be introduced later, to ensure legalisation of cannabis becomes law. So sorry folks, you had the chance to make citizens referenda binding, & you rejected it. So get used to the government, that the majority elected..

Coker said...

Has Bob Jones not noticed that most people already, at some stage, smoke cannabis? So the very weak legalisation envisaged by the referendum would make squat-all difference to consumption. It would, however, massively reduce the police, legal and court costs that are currently sheeted home to the taxpayers Jones professes to be concerned about.