Neil McKeganay

Neil McKeganay is the Professor of Drug Misuse Research at the University of Glasgow. Fortunately he\’s not the possessor of Adam Smith\’s old chair in logic.

For here is his argument:

We used to count the number of addicts in the hundreds; we now count them in the hundreds of thousands. The UK Drug Policy Commission\’s report published yesterday – Tackling Drug Markets and Distribution Networks – contains an alarming body blow of further statistics.

Britain has a problem which is now thought to be worth in excess of £5.3 billion a year, and which the Government is spending about £1.5 billion a year trying to tackle.

As much as 60 per cent of crime may be connected to the illegal drugs trade; and the sex trade in our cities, and increasingly in our rural areas, has the women\’s dependency on illegal drugs at its heart.

All true of course. It\’s his logic that is faulty, not his facts.

Yes, policy must focus on treatments that enable addicts to become drug free, but also on hard-hitting prevention with robust enforcement.

Policing the problem means tackling street-level drug dealing directly. It must also mean tougher action against those who profit from the trade. We need to ensure that our police are protecting our communities. This will not be done through intermittent, high-profile campaigns, but sustained action.

That is, we must step up the War on Drugs. One more point:

The UK drug problem is barely 40 years old.

It\’s, umm, round and about 40 years ago that we started to treat addiction as a criminal problem rather than a medical one (yes, up to the late 60s, early 70s, heroin addicts could get their heroin from doctors).

So, umm, what our Professor is suggesting is that in order to combat the problem of drugs we must press on even further down the course of action which caused the problem of drugs in the first place.

Thank buggery he doesn\’t teach logic, eh? A pity he teaches anything at all though.

6 thoughts on “Neil McKeganay”

  1. “Policing the problem means tackling street-level drug dealing directly. It must also mean tougher action against those who profit from the trade. We need to ensure that our police are protecting our communities. This will not be done through intermittent, high-profile campaigns, but sustained action.”

    And to do all this properly we need lots of research.

    Now who would be best placed to do that research? A Professor of Drug Misuse Research, of course.

  2. “It must also mean tougher action against those who profit from the trade.”

    So we’ll be seeing the said Professor banged up then will we? He profits from the trade.

    Is it too hard to imagine that one day in the future these prohibitionists will be regarded as we today regard the transatlantic slave traders?

  3. Is it too hard to imagine that one day in the future these prohibitionists will be regarded as we today regard the transatlantic slave traders?

    Do you regard the alcohol prohibitionists of 1930’s America the same as the transatlantic slave traders? I don’t. However misguided the prohibitionists were, baning people from taking an intoxicating substance is vastly different from the deliberate enslavement of millions of people.

  4. “Do you regard the alcohol prohibitionists of 1930’s America the same as the transatlantic slave traders?”

    To quote Mao, “too soon to tell”.

  5. “up to the late 60s, early 70s, heroin addicts could get their heroin from doctors”: I knew that the old system was scrapped, but I’ve no idea why, or by whose action, the change came in. Can anyone tell me?

  6. Those in favor of bigger government love wars. “Wars” on poverty and “wars” on drugs hide the fact that more people want government jobs with a very real “war” on their fellow citizens.

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