Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Amsterdam mayor proposes three-day wait for magic mushrooms


On a lighter note: Wouldn't ya just love to see our own conservatives on their knees like this? This recent political development in Amsterdam seems to be more of a European libertarian concern than one of liberalism, at least as we discern the issue in its American context. Nevertheless, it is sure to be used as a rhetorical tool by our now desperate detractors as they battle against Progress in their delusions of persecution they foment as "the culture wars."

The European libertarian context is obviously quite a different one:

THE HAGUE (AFP) — "A new [conservatively mitigating] proposal from the mayor of Amsterdam is sure to be considered a bummer by certain visitors to the Dutch city: a three-day waiting period to buy hallucinogenic mushrooms.

Mayor Job Cohen wants to require the wait period to allow mushroom buyers to fully understand exactly what it is they are purchasing, ANP news agency reported Tuesday."

In the United States, as opposed to the Netherlands, liberalism as a political ideology has never approached the libertine. Despite their never ending accusations and crusades against the "decadence" of liberals, conservative Republicans, however, do seem obsessed with the libertine, even if they only allow glimpses from their restroom stalls.

The shame-bound hypocrisies of the "Family Values Party," described somewhat prophetically by social psychologist Robert Altemeyer in his influential work, The Authoritarian Specter, which heavily influenced Goldwater Conservative John Dean's timely critique of the Conservative Movement, Conservatives Without Conscience, seem to make up such a prominent portion of our newsday that one wonders how so many Republican Congressmen and their conservative evangelical supporters have come to such a state of undoing all on their own.

Predating the sociological research model presented by Bob Altemeyer, psychologists of the Psychodynamic and Psychoanalytic Schools have pointed out for years that such crusaders as found perennially infesting the Conservative Movement present in therapy with a defense mechanism known as "reaction formation."

Or, in more colloquial layman's terms: "The hen that squawked is usually the one that laid the egg."

Compassionate attempts to understand and assist these denizens of addiction have been a prominent humanistic feature of the Progressive Movement, a democratic movement that has sought in the best traditions of science and The Enlightenment to forward the inalienable rights to liberty, freedom, tolerance and justice for all humankind.

In the grandest sense, this includes freedom from addiction [By including this link, we not only celebrate tolerance as one of the hallmarks of liberty; but we also somewhat morosely savor the irony implied].

Notwithstanding the great progressive developments in the utilitarian applications of science, a practical use of research that continues to inform us concerning the dangers of drug use -- not the ironic point at all in our Amsterdam case scenario, one that flies in the face and anticipates what is sure to become its reactionary, authoritarian and hyperbolic use here in the States by our own contemporary generation of evangelical doomsday prophets -- Progressive Democrats are much more interested in providing prevention and treatment of drug & alcohol dependency than indulging the current draconian model of authoritarian punishment proffered by head-in-the-dark Republicans.

--progress

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