July 21, 2007
Originally published January 17, 2002
I write under the Nom de Blog "Acidman" because I don't want anybody who may wield great influence on my career or my personal life to "Google" me and discover all the deep, dark secrets I sometimes disclose on my posts. The name has nothing to do with illegal drugs. I once supervised the operation of a 900-ton per day sulfuric acid plant when computers first hit the manufacturing scene, and "Acidman" was my password for everything I did on the computer at work. I kinda liked it back then and I kinda like it now.
I don't mean to say that I have anything against illegal drugs. I did lots of them back in my college days. But that was long ago, when I was young and ready for adventure; now, I am older, wiser and subjected to random piss-tests at work. My entire perspective has changed.
I still believe that the "war on drugs" is one of the most stupid, insane, lunatic brain-farts our government ever had. Someone may as well have declared "war" on human nature and expected to be victorious.
Wait a minute! That has happened over and over again. We still have laws against prostitution (not called the world's oldest profession for nothing), laws against gambling (while states that forbid gambling run their own lotteries), laws against consuming alcoholic beverages (except when purchised at state-licensed red-dot stores), laws against littering (when did you ever hear of ANYBODY actually being caught and forced to pay that $1,000 fine on all the signs that stand there by the side of the road so threateningly in their bed of litter?), laws against speeding (Good God. EVERYBODY breaks that one), and laws against breaking any of the aforementioned laws if you broke them by violating someone's civil rights, whatever the hell that means anymore.
I routinely violate, ignore or scoff at laws I believe to be stupid, and I consider myself to be a good American citizen. From what I see around me, I believe a lot of other people behave the same way. What does our government do in response? It passes MORE stupid laws that MORE people will violate, which only provokes the government to pass MORE stupid laws that even MORE people will violate, until finally, everybody in the country is a goddamned criminal.
When that happens, nobody is a criminal. And law doesn't matter anymore.
The "war on drugs" has made criminals of many people who are not real criminals. It has locked these non-criminals up in prison cells to serve harsh mandatory sentences that forced wardens and parole boards to free murderers, rapists and thieves to make room for the non-criminals to serve their time. The "war on drugs" has given police departments the right to dress out in full riot gear, take a battering ram to your front door with no advance warning, then shoot you dead in your own living room even though THEY BROKE INTO THE WRONG HOUSE. They don't go to jail. But if you survive the attack and they find a pot seed embedded in your carpet, they can seize your home, your car, all your property and your bank account and then pour all the loot into their own coffers to finance more troops and more break-ins and more property seizures, which then finance more troops for more break-ins and .... well, you get the picture.
All I know is this: 25 years ago, a gram of good cocaine cost $100. One week ago, I had someone offer to sell me a gram of good cocaine for $100. I didn't buy it (I am subject to random piss-tests at work) but I did the math. Adjusted for inflation, the multi-billion dollar war on drugs has managed to make cocaine as readily available as it ever was (maybe even more so. Hell, I don't hang out in bars anymore) at one-fourth the price it used to be. Along the way, the government has locked up a lot of people who don't belong in jail, gave law enforcment cretins the power to behave like the Gestapo, and poured billions of dollars down a rat-hole with the only real result being a problem that is bigger than it was when the government decided to declare war on it.
Now you have the under-reported scandal down in Texas, about the couple of dozen huge cocaine busts the police pulled off with the help of an "informer," where they roughed, cuffed and arrested numerous people only to discover that the "criminals" were guilty of possession of sheetrock dust. No drugs. Just bullshit. The police appear to have been taken for a ride by their "informant," who is probably long gone by now. The innocent citizens arrested are simply collateral damage. After all, this is a war. A stupid, shitty loser of a war that has corrupted more people than it ever will catch, but a war just the same.
I personally believe that taking a piss-test at work is a humiliating, degrading invasion of my privacy, especially when I am chosen by a random drawing. If I show up on the job obviously impared, then I have no business working in a chemical plant where I would be a hazard to myself and anybody else working around me. If I come to work fucked up, then I deserve to be fired. But this lottery crap is un-American.
Plus, it is totally illogical. I can get drunk as a pissant tonight, go to bed at eight o'clock and wake up hung over, feeling like shit and very under-equipped to do my job. But I can pass a piss-test in the morning, no matter how badly my hands tremble and no matter how foggy my head may be. If I had smoked a nice joint 20 days ago, however, and go to bed sober as a judge tonight, wake up at my best and my brightest in the morning, I could well light up a piss test like a Roman candle and be fired for it. It makes no sense. The whole rule is nothing but an on-your-knees, slavering blow-job to the government, just to show how you're on their side in this war. It is ridiculous. It is stupid. I would love to shit all over this rule just to prove my absolute contempt for it, but I can't.
Well, I COULD, but I've had this job for 22 years. I like what I do and it pays well. So, I'll blog about it here and piss in a bottle whenever they ask me to.
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