Media savvy

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

Parliament’s response to this week’s report on the 1971 Misuse of Drugs Act shows that psychoactive substances are the last taboo to afflict Britain’s elite. It has got over past obsessions with whipping, hanging, sodomy and abortion, but it is still stuck on drugs. There is no point in reading the latest research on drugs policy worldwide. It is spitting in the wind. The only research worth doing is on why drugs policy reduces British politicians to gibbering wrecks.           

Simon Jenkins, Guardian, 1 November

 My blood boils when I hear loony liberal politicians (I’m thinking Nick Clegg) and middle class do-gooders telling us that ALL drugs should be legalised… Don’t these lettuce-munching liberals realise millions of mums and dads all over Britain are fighting tooth and nail to keep their kids away from drugs?

Carole Malone, Mirror, 1 November

The Lib Dems knew there was no hope of the Conservatives agreeing to change the law on drugs. They are so sure of this that they have not even bothered to work out whether they want to decriminalise or legalise cannabis. They are happy simply to pose as the party of opposition that they used to be, repeating old soundbites about ‘losing the war on drugs’. Nick Clegg knows that there is a market for this comforting rhetoric among a minority of the electorate, and he knows that this minority is larger than the 8 per cent of voters currently intending to vote Lib Dem.

John Rentoul, Independent, 4 November

The special loathing I encounter for telling the truth about drugs is so virulent that it sometimes comes close to frightening me. This is an enormous campaign for selfish pleasure. If it succeeds in achieving the legalisation it dreams of, and which is the real aim of this relentless lobbying, there are gigantic profits to be made and huge taxes to be raised.

Peter Hitchens, Mail on Sunday, 2 November 

The culture of prescribing methadone has proved incredibly stubborn and difficult to break. There is still a huge amount more that government must do, so that in practice treatment is about full recovery instead of maintenance… This approach requires that we fight vested interests and challenge the status quo.

Iain Duncan Smith, Sunday Telegraph, 16 November

Russell Brand is a classic dry drunk. He has that hyperactivity that characterises many of those who, having once relied on drink or drugs, find themselves restlessly sober, trying to fill that gap by furious over-production as a way of absorbing their new-found energy… In Revolution, he not only testifies to his belief in God and ‘the power of people to manifest, here on earth, a society that represents holy principles’, he actually puts forward the AA’s own ‘Twelve Traditions’ as his best model for society at large. It’s worked for him and so he ordains the same for everyone.

David Sexton, London Evening Standard, 4 November

Pregnant women with a drinking problem – like anyone with a drinking problem – need support rather than censure. Anyone who has the welfare of the child at heart, rather than the punitive desire to teach someone a lesson, can surely see that.

Joanna Moorehead, Guardian, 5 November