Media savvy

Who’s been saying what..? DDN’s round-up of what’s being said in the national papers 


When laws are widely flouted they cease to be laws and instead become instruments to punish certain members of society. When the government sacks its chief drugs advisor for stating scientific facts it exposes itself as arrogant and unheeding. When billions are pumped into prohibition without producing any significant reduction in drug use – during a period of austerity no less – it makes a mockery of our system of governance.

Alex Horne, Independent, 4 July


In the boomerang sting that stung the stinger, [Mazher] Mahmood posed as a Bollywood producer and enticed Tulisa [Contostavlos] to Las Vegas to discuss paying her £3m to star in a movie with Leonardo DiCaprio. Two minutes into the pitch, a less naive soul would have thought: “Aye, aye, it’s that tosser Mazher Mahmood.” …Beyond the priestly enclave of the red-top news conference, does anyone care if a music industry twentysomething likes the odd line? Or claims, after being plied with booze, to be willing to facilitate a deal to ingratiate herself with an apparent film producer? …Targeting a vulnerable young woman with the intent to destroy her is a deeply despicable act of bullying.

Matthew Norman, Independent, 22 July


Failed relationships, aspirations not achieved, mental breakdown, poverty, unhappiness, alcoholism, drug addiction. All of that the consequence of someone having behaved badly towards them several decades before. Maybe put a hand on their thigh. Maybe worse. And you dare not gainsay these furious litanies of complaint, because if you do then you are in some way complicit. It is a bizarre state of mind, in my opinion, that enables normally rational people to swallow this paradigm – the official paradigm now – whole, and does not question it at all, just accepts it as fact.

Rod Liddle, Spectator, 12 July


We must challenge those who label drug addicts as weak. Only then can we call ourselves a compassionate society.

Liz Macdonald, Guardian, 24 July 


A judge has ruled that an American drugs dealer [Johnny Callie] can’t be deported from Britain because he has a ‘human right’ to free medical treatment on the NHS… Callie’s case was bolstered by a supportive letter from the Norfolk and Suffolk Probation Trust. There’s a surprise. The Guardianistas who run the probation service would consider Callie a valued ‘client’. The interests of the wider public are never taken into consideration.

Richard Littlejohn, Mail, 15 July


It would be hard to imagine a less deserving case for free healthcare than Callie, a US citizen who was jailed in 2007 for supplying heroin and cocaine. I am sorry that he is said to be depressed and to suffer from diabetes and high blood pressure, but he was part of a trade which has inflicted far more misery and ill­ health on others. Rather than treat him for free, logically Britain should send him a large bill not just for his own treatment but to cover the treatment the NHS has provided for the drug users who bought the heroin and cocaine he supplied.

Ross Clark, Express, 15 July

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