Thursday, 25 March 2010

Something about Mephedrone

In the run up to the much-anticipated-but-ultimately-not-very-groundbreaking budget we got to witness what may be the last Prime Ministers Questions session before the election. During it I saw a striking illustration of the ignorance and hysteria that plagues our parlimentarians regarding drugs. Labour MP for Ayr, Sandra Osbourne stood up and said the following...
"...will the prime minister give his assurance that when the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs reports on the 29th of March, that he will act immediately to ban such legal highs"
Ms. Osbourne was driven to ask her question after the death of Jordan Kiltie of Ayrshire. However this report by The Press and Journal and this one from the Scotsman website both suggest that the 19 year old 'may have taken a number of substances.' Of course the outrage must continue unabated despite such uncertainty, and while it is almost certain the late Mr Kiltie had consumed mephedrone on the night he died, the toxicology report that would highlight what other substances may have contributed to Mr Kiltie's death is incomplete.

There is an implicit instruction in the question that goes beyond the call to ban the drug that Brown himself went on to call 'evil'. The right honourable member for Ayr is effectively asking for the Prime Minister to take an action regardless on what the ACMD reports! As the sacking of Professor David Nutt* in October last year showed, Parliament tends not to hold balanced scientific advice from it's advisors in high regard. It does make you wonder what the point of going through the charade of making a report actually is.

*By the way there is a great interview with Prof. Nutt in today's Evening Standard. It cheers you to hear someone being sensible



  2. Saw that (actually think I tweeted it too) was as epic as Brooker ever is. Actually got to add another link to this post from the ever improving Evening Standard.

  3. Yes I agree... ever since the Evening Standard has been free, it seems to have gotten somewhat better :op

  4. Just a pernickity thing....It's mephedrone, not methedrone.

    Methedrone is something different, illegal and more dangerous :)

    Good blog otherwise though!

  5. balls, yes of course... will edit. Thanks :)