Author: Make It Legal NZ

69 posts

Everything you know about drug addiction is wrong – Johann Hari

Everything you know about drug addiction is wrong – Johann Hari

“Get a rat and put it in a cage and give it two water bottles. One is just water, and one is water laced with either heroin or cocaine. If you do that, the rat will almost always prefer the drugged water and almost always kill itself very quickly, right, within a couple of weeks. So there you go. It’s our theory of addiction.

Bruce comes along in the ’70s and said, “Well, hang on a minute. We’re putting the rat in an empty cage. It’s got nothing to do. Let’s try this a little bit differently.” So Bruce built Rat Park, and Rat Park is like heaven for rats. Everything your rat about town could want, it’s got in Rat Park. It’s got lovely food. It’s got sex. It’s got loads of other rats to be friends with. It’s got loads of colored balls. Everything your rat could want. And they’ve got both the water bottles. They’ve got the drugged water and the normal water. But here’s the fascinating thing. In Rat Park, they don’t like the drugged water. They hardly use any of it. None of them ever overdose. None of them ever use in a way that looks like compulsion or addiction. There’s a really interesting human example I’ll tell you about in a minute, but what Bruce says shows that both the right-wing and left-wing theories of addiction are wrong. So the right-wing theory is it’s a moral failing, you’re a hedonist, you party too hard. The left-wing theory is it takes you over, your brain is hijacked. Bruce says it’s not your morality, it’s not your brain; it’s your cage. Addiction is largely an adaptation to your environment.

We’ve created a society where significant numbers of our fellow citizens cannot bear to be present in their lives without being drugged, right? We’ve created a hyperconsumerist, hyperindividualist, isolated world that is, for a lot of people, much more like that first cage than it is like the bonded, connected cages that we need.

The opposite of addiction is not sobriety. The opposite of addiction is connection. And our whole society, the engine of our society, is geared towards making us connect with things not people. If you are not a good consumer capitalist citizen, if you’re spending your time bonding with the people around you and not buying stuff—in fact, we are trained from a very young age to focus our hopes and our dreams and our ambitions on things we can buy and consume. And drug addiction is really a subset of that.”
~ Johann Hari

For more ……/johann_hari_everything_you_think_you_… –
** About the work of Bruce K. Alexander

Cannabis is a plant

Cannabis is a plant

A gentle reminder that Cannabis is a plant.

On September 19 we are voting on something that occurs completely on it’s own in nature.  The plant has been used for centuries for herbal and medicinal uses across continents and cultures.

The use of cannabis as a mind-altering drug has been documented by archaeological finds in prehistoric societies in Eurasia and Africa. The oldest written record of cannabis usage is the Greek historian Herodotus‘s reference to the central Eurasian Scythians taking cannabis steam baths. His (c. 440 BCE) Histories records, “The Scythians, as I said, take some of this hemp-seed [presumably, flowers], and, creeping under the felt coverings, throw it upon the red-hot stones; immediately it smokes, and gives out such a vapour as no Greek vapour-bath can exceed; the Scyths, delighted, shout for joy.”

In China, the psychoactive properties of cannabis are described in the Shennong Bencaojing (3rd century AD).[86] Cannabis smoke was inhaled by Daoists, who burned them in incense burners.[86]

In the Middle East, use spread throughout the Islamic empire to North Africa. In 1545, cannabis spread to the western hemisphere where Spaniards imported it to Chile for its use as fiber. In North America, cannabis, in the form of hemp, was grown for use in rope, clothing and paper.


Why are we voting yes?

Why are we voting yes?

Glad you asked! 

  • Because our cannabis laws come from the 1970s Nixon War on Drugs based on racial oppression.
  • Because Māori are three times more likely to be stopped and arrested for the same crime as Pākehā.
  • Because laws should be fair. Because patients need better access.
  • Because adults should be allowed to choose.
  • Because over 95% of people experience no issues with it.
  • Because experts – scientists, doctors, leaders, professors, social workers – have told us this is the best, smartest, safest solution.
  • Because cannabis is here to stay either way but we currently have no regulation or system.
  • Because it has worked overseas.
  • Because young minds need education and protection.
  • Because addiction is a health issue.
  • Because we will boost billions into our economy…


Aucklanders! Be photographed and make your voice heard.

Aucklanders! Be photographed and make your voice heard.

The WE DO campaign has just launched and is about showing other New Zealanders that it’s OK to support this bill – We Do are looking for good people to convey that message.  We Do are asking for volunteers to be photographed for a poster campaign to show that all kinds of Kiwis back this bill because it’s the right thing to do.
If you live in Auckland We Do would love it if you could spare a little time to be photographed and make your voice heard in the lead-up to this crucial referendum. (Bonus: you get a sweet professional photograph of yourself, possibly with a loved one or buddy too.)

It’s what WE DO.

Please apply here before the shooting dates of August 15 and 16.