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View Poll Results: Should Alcohol be banned?
Yes 18 17.48%
No 48 46.60%
It's a harmful drug I'm prepared to take 37 35.92%
Voters: 103. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 01.11.2010, 11:52
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[BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

Alcohol 'more harmful than heroin' says Prof David Nutt

Alcohol is more harmful than heroin or crack, according to a study published in medical journal the Lancet.

The report is co-authored by Professor David Nutt, the former UK chief drugs adviser who was sacked by the government in October 2009.
It ranks 20 drugs on 16 measures of harm to users and to wider society.
Tobacco and cocaine are judged to be equally harmful, while ecstasy and LSD are among the least damaging.

Read more: here
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Last edited by The_Love_Doctor; 01.11.2010 at 12:59. Reason: some more links added
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Old 01.11.2010, 11:56
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

how do you measure that?
I find the stats not believable in any case, then again iM not a researcher.... .

But you cannot tell me coke and tobacco and Alcohol are nearly the same as meth....

Have you ever seen a meth addict?
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:00
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

Alcohol shouldn't be made illegal, but some of the other things should be made legal.
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:01
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

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Have you ever seen a meth addict?
Not to be the devil's advocate here but I have seen many Alocholics and "it ain't pretty".
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:06
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

sorry, but what a load of bo***ks hard drugs less harmful then Alcohol?? LOL report by 2 discredited ex gov advisers, so no agenda's there then.
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:12
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

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sorry, but what a load of bo***ks hard drugs less harmful then Alcohol?? LOL report by 2 discredited ex gov advisers, so no agenda's there then.
Yeah, I believe alcohol is probably the most harmful drug around. There isn't much (anything?) that gets you as intoxicated as a bottle of vodka and you should look at the death rates for alcohol abuse. The big difference is that alcohol isn't as physically addictive as heroin, but heroin is undoubtedly healthier - the main harm is the withdrawal between uses.
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:13
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

In other news: Mushrooms in omelettes all over the country are in fear of a backlash over reported harm to users in a recent report.
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:13
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

Not discredited - merely sacked for trying to shape rather than inform policy.

The fact that they've been sacked by the (former) government seems to me to increase their credibility.
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  #9  
Old 01.11.2010, 12:16
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

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sorry, but what a load of bo***ks hard drugs less harmful then Alcohol?? LOL report by 2 discredited ex gov advisers, so no agenda's there then.
I was about to mention it was published in THE Lancet...then I remembered they also published that article about the MMR vaccine being linked to autism.

So where does the lancet fit in the 'harm to others' scale on that graph?
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:20
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

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Yeah, I believe alcohol is probably the most harmful drug around. There isn't much (anything?) that gets you as intoxicated as a bottle of vodka and you should look at the death rates for alcohol abuse. The big difference is that alcohol isn't as physically addictive as heroin, but heroin is undoubtedly healthier - the main harm is the withdrawal between uses.

the big difference is there are tens of millions of drinkers in the uk, so of course there is more damage, if the same amount of people regularly sniffed coke to excess every friday and sat night then uts figures would be off the scale.

You may as well say machine guns and hand grenades are less dangerous then alcopops as they kill less people and do less damage in the uk.

Its a stupid headline grabbing study, which has probably been commisioned by someone wanting a minimum alcohol price in the uk.
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:21
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

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LOL report by 2 discredited ex gov advisers, so no agenda's there then.
I don't think they were discredited, but merely sacked as their findings didn't line up with the goverment's expected outcome.
And you have to give these guys credit for trying to tackle this from a scientific point of view rather than just adhere to some socially accepted intoxications from one drug rather than another.
They seperated the harm to the user from the harm to society, and from the chart you can clearly see that the harm to the user is higher in Heroin, Crack and Methylamphetamines, however the extent to which alcohol is consumed makes it surpass the overal harm from the afore mentioned drugs.

PS: This has been published in the Lancet Medical Journal, so to prematurely dismiss it because these guys have been sacked by the goverment, is not the best of moves IMHO.
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:23
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

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the big difference is there are tens of millions of drinkers in the uk, so of course there is more damage, if the same amount of people regularly sniffed coke to excess every friday and sat night then uts figures would be off the scale.
I just don't believe this is true. Drug for drug I believe alcohol is more dangerous than cocaine. Also, since illegal cocaine will be taken by less sensible people who are likely to do other illegal/unusual things, and legal alcohol is taken by upstanding members of society, I believe than it goes quite strongly in the other direction - that is, that alcohol is actually much more dangerous than it seems and cocaine is much safer than it seems.
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:25
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

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the big difference is there are tens of millions of drinkers in the uk, so of course there is more damage, if the same amount of people regularly sniffed coke to excess every friday and sat night then uts figures would be off the scale.
And your evidence for this is what exactly?

Many of these drugs (particularly coke, MDMA and weed) are already used without practical restriction, i.e. users can get them despite their illegality

I absolutely agree that more people use alcohol because it is legal and that there would be some more cases of abuse if other drugs were made legal . . . but it's pretty hard to extrapolate with any degree of credibility here.
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:30
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

Here is a more detailed article from the Gaurdian, Unfortunately I can't get hold of the pdf for the published paper as I am not registered with The Lancet. so if anyone has a membership and can post it on here, it would be great provided we are not breaking any redistribution rules.

Guardian Article
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:39
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

Yes booze should be banned.

thanks
SC

p.s. The fact i am on day 3 of a hangover might have something to with how i voted
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:49
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

Legalise the lot, regulate the supply and tax consumption. Give individuals the choice to do as they see fit to themselves. The tax take will pay for the increased healthcare costs, the product will be pure, the property crime rates will drop, millions of otherwise law abiding citizens will be decriminalised and the profits will be taken out of the hands of drug lords and recycled in the open economy.

Unfortunately this needs to be done multilaterally to prevent drugs tourism causing unwanted problems cf needle park in Zurich and governments haven't got the balls/aptitude/willingness to do it.
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Old 01.11.2010, 12:50
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

I have a hard time believing that pot is ~3x as harmful as acid is..
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Old 01.11.2010, 13:31
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

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Many of these drugs (particularly coke, MDMA and weed) are already used without practical restriction, i.e. users can get them despite their illegality.
Ok, I find the difference pretty obvious, but well: If you go to a restaurant, you are basically expected to drink alcohol. I guess this does not necessarily apply to all Brits, but many drink the wine not primarily to get drunk! (I know, shocking...)

So for me, alcohol is not first and foremost a drug - only the excessive consumption damages you, there have been countless studies on "how good is a glass of red wine a day". i have not seen any serious study telling you that smoking weed or taking cocaine - even in small amounts - would be beneficial for you. Against all hippy arguments is it by now pretty well established that weed is far from healthy. I have worked with disabled and seen it do good, but a healthy person will not benefit from it (physically... ).

The others besides alcohol are drugs only used as drugs. Therefore it is far easier to become an alcoholic than the other examples: You simply need to go to enough social as well as business meetings and you have a fair chance to drink some alcohol every given day. This does not make you an alcoholic, but it becomes a habit... like smoking cigarettes - the addiction might or might not come in the long run. I would make the bet that most alcoholics did not plan to become what they are and did not start by abusing alcohol: they simply raised the amounts of beers, then vodkas a day... and as it is so accepted to consume, low level alcoholism can be easily hidden for years.
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Old 01.11.2010, 13:46
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

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Ok, I find the difference pretty obvious, but well: If you go to a restaurant, you are basically expected to drink alcohol. I guess this does not necessarily apply to all Brits, but many drink the wine not
primarily to get drunk! (I know, shocking...)
Again, this is primarily due to the legality of the product. The culture of taking drugs means it is often done to excess. If cocaine were legal, perhaps it would return as an additive to Coca Cola, and other similar products.

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Traditional medical uses of coca are foremost as a stimulant to overcome fatigue, hunger, and thirst. It is considered particularly effective against altitude sickness. It also is used as an anesthetic to alleviate the pain of headache, rheumatism, wounds and sores, etc. Before stronger anaesthetics were available, it also was used for broken bones, childbirth, and during trephining operations on the skull. Because cocaine constricts blood vessels, the action of coca also serves to oppose bleeding, and coca seeds were used for nosebleeds. Indigenous use of coca has also been reported as a treatment for malaria, ulcers, asthma, to improve digestion, to guard against bowel laxity, as an aphrodisiac, and credited with improving longevity. Modern studies have supported a number of these medical applications.

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So for me, alcohol is not first and foremost a drug - only the excessive consumption damages you, there have been countless studies on "how good is a glass of red wine a day". i have not seen any serious study telling you that smoking weed or taking cocaine - even in small amounts - would be beneficial for you
.

As we can see, Coca has a number of nutritional benefits which outweigh "red wine" - especially since it's the grapes rather than the wine that provides benefits and I can't think of any other alcoholic drinks which have nutritional benefits either.
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Old 01.11.2010, 13:46
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Re: [BBC News] Alcohol more harmful than Heroin! Should it be made illegal?

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Ok, I find the difference pretty obvious, but well: If you go to a restaurant, you are basically expected to drink alcohol. I guess this does not necessarily apply to all Brits, but many drink the wine not primarily to get drunk! (I know, shocking...)

So for me, alcohol is not first and foremost a drug - only the excessive consumption damages you, there have been countless studies on "how good is a glass of red wine a day". i have not seen any serious study telling you that smoking weed or taking cocaine - even in small amounts - would be beneficial for you. Against all hippy arguments is it by now pretty well established that weed is far from healthy. I have worked with disabled and seen it do good, but a healthy person will not benefit from it (physically... ).
So if you only had a line of coke at the end of a meal, that wouldn't be a drug either then ?
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