This actually happened back in October, but somehow I missed it. Me, missing an opportunity for a filthy, misleading headline! I musta been drunk!
That’s right, UK government advisor David Nutt has lost his job after making controversial remarks characterizing alcohol and tobacco as more dangerous drugs than E, pot or LSD (from which the government derives no taxes).
Nutt had criticised politicians for “distorting” and “devaluing” the research evidence in the debate over illicit drugs.
Arguing that some “top” scientific journals had published “horrific examples” of poor quality research on the alleged harm caused by some illicit drugs, the Imperial College professor called for a new way of classifying the harm caused by both legal and illegal drugs.
“Alcohol ranks as the fifth most harmful drug after heroin, cocaine, barbiturates and methadone. Tobacco is ranked ninth,” he wrote in the paper from the centre for crime and justice studies at King’s College, London, published yesterday.
“Cannabis, LSD and ecstasy, while harmful, are ranked lower at 11, 14 and 18 respectively.”
While the impulse to speak truth to power is, as always, the single MOST dangerous intoxicating substance known.
On the upside, I bet it was a wicked going-away party at Jocelyn Elders‘ house!