Thoughts on politics and life from a liberal perspective

Friday, 14 December 2012

Volatile drug use stats

Needless to say I am delighted with Nick Clegg's clear and politically brave comments on drugs policy reported widely today.

But I just wanted to focus on one small aspect of the coverage and discussion today. David Cameron, Theresa May and others who have spoken out against any change in current policy have repeatedly pointed out that there is no need for a review because drug use is falling. That may well be true but drug use statistics have a habit of bouncing around all over the place not really correlated with any legal or other factors. If anything it's cultural trends that drive these figures.

So my point is, what happens when the "drug use is falling so there is no need for a review" excuse stops being true? I am almost certain that at some point in the near future, drug use figures will tick up again.

When that happens, how will those politicians who have used the falling rates as a reason not to have a review react? Because the logical conclusion drawn from their own words now is that when the rates rise there will be a reason for a review.

They have hitched themselves to a notoriously unreliable hostage to fortune.

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