Nick Clegg has accused home secretary Theresa May of attempting to bury an official drug report. The former Lib Dem leader has claimed that May was incensed that the report had found no evidence to support the so-called war on drugs,demanding (ultimately unsuccessfully) for numerous edits to take place before publication. According to the Guardian,
"the former deputy prime minister described May as “spectacularly unimaginative” on the issue. He claimed that the home secretary and her aides tried to alter a 2014 study before publication because “they didn’t like the conclusions”. The Home Office report’s finding that there was “no obvious” relationship between a zero-tolerance approach to drugs and levels of consumption triggered calls for a fresh debate over decriminalisation. It concluded that the factors driving drug use were complex, but did cite “considerable” health improvements in Portugal since the decision to treat possession as a health issue rather than a criminal one. Clegg said the original draft had been subject to an “endless wrangle between Lib Dem ministers and Theresa May about the fullness of what would be published”, arguing that there would be no change whatsoever as long as she led the Home Office."
This pursuit of zero tolerence drug policy in the face of all evidence is something of a depressing refrain from the political establishment - it was last seen in action when the former (Labour) home secretary Alan Johnson fired Professor David Nutt from his role of government drugs advisor. Nutt's unforgivable crime? Trying to do his job rather than regurgitate party dogma. Nutt famously pointed out that drinking booze and smoking fags were far more harmful than cannibis, LSD or MDMA, and that, in fact, it was more dangerous to ride a horse than it was to take ecstasy. He got his marching orders quicker than you could say horse tranquilizer, and has since become a strong voice in the quest to sort out Britan's antiquated, punitive drug policy. One would have thought that at the very least George Osborne would have been up for changing drug laws, but as yet Gideon has remained as quiet as a snowy day in the countryside.
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