Blunkett Rejects Spin Claim 

Blunkett Rejects Spin Claim 
Posted by FoM on October 24, 2001 at 08:16:32 PT
By Julian Glover
Source: Guardian Unlimited
The home secretary, David Blunkett, has repeated his fierce denial that he buried a change the law on cannabis beneath the IRA's disarmament announcement. Mr Blunkett has attacked claims, including that in today's Sun, that the timing of yesterday's move on cannabis was arranged to minimise negative publicity. "Society does need a media that has grown up a bit," he told BBC Radio 4's World at One programme. "The idea that I colluded with Gerry Adams or with the IRA so that last week I decided I would make this message to the select committee on Tuesday is ridiculous.
Frankly, it is time everyone grew up." This morning he explained that he "was addressing the home affairs select committee, an all-party select committee, which is about to investigate the issues around drugs. They fixed their meeting literally weeks ago," he told the BBC this morning."It had to be moved from the morning until the afternoon because we had a permanent secretary cabinet meeting that had also been fixed by the prime minister weeks ago."I chose to go ahead and I told the chairman of the advisory council on the misuse of drugs what I was going to say last week. So the idea that I could have predicted that the IRA were going to start their decommissioning and there was going to be an announcement last night is frankly unbelievable."Mr Blunkett, in an unusual admission by a senior minister on the government's media management techniques, said: "I deliberately didn't spin this. I didn't put it out at the weekend, I didn't put a line on it. I do what people want, which is to announce it to a parliamentary forum. I didn't announce it in advance, it wasn't leaked. For once, I mean the first time since I have been in the home office something hasn't been leaked on my behalf and then I get criticised for the timing of putting it out."Mr Blunkett acknowledged that in the past there had been too much spinning of news. "Well, I think we have become obsessed with the method of getting information into the arena. I mean, collectively, the media, politicians themselves, including me, all of us have been obsessed with the nature of the delivery of the message rather than the message."Mr Blunkett insisted that his move to reclassify cannabis made sound sense. But he emphasised that the government was neither legalising nor decriminalising the drug. "It has avoided the absurdity of 68% of police time going on cannabis, actually to no effect, because very often the charges are dropped and people are given a caution, which they still can be in the street now, rather than having to arrest them, rather than concentrating on what the police themselves have quite reasonably acknowledged to be the right priorities, which are crack, crack cocaine and heroin."Mr Blunkett also signalled that it was likely that the use of cannabis for pain relief purposes would be authorised. "We will link it with the medical use of cannabis derivative. I hope we will be able to get that in place by next summer," he said.But he emphasised: "I think that it is very important that people don't misunderstand. There is no intention by me, or by other ministers or the prime minister, that we legalise or decriminalise cannabis." Source: Guardian Unlimited, The (UK)Author: Julian GloverPublished: Wednesday, October 24, 2001Copyright: 2001 Guardian Newspapers LimitedContact: letters Articles:Dope: The Case for and Against Laws Eased in Drug Policy Shakeup Takes Relaxed View of Cannabis
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Comment #4 posted by grassmike on October 24, 2001 at 11:20:12 PT:
talking about newspapers
             We all know of the big news from UK about making MJ a class C drug and there
             was lesser news from Canada about legislation that would decrimilize MJ
             posession. October 23 was a big a day in for MJ law reform to say the least.             I live in North Carolina and the largest selling newspaper in the state is the
             Charlotte Observer and I read it everyday. Today I read it twice and the A
             section three times. Why? Because I could not find any mention of these events.
             Man that is scary. What is the power that is contolling the media? This is a
             KnightRidder controlled newspaper and a person cannot help believe that no
             KnightRidder publication covered it. There is a lot they do not cover like the
             situation in Columbia. Scary I tell you.             Did anyone's newspaper carry the news. Isn't that why people buy papers- to
             read the news?
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Comment #3 posted by p4me on October 24, 2001 at 09:52:09 PT:
what a secret
Who would think the timing of his announcement would quiet the coverage. I really do not like saying it this way, but if Blunkett had announced it on 9/11 it would have been all over the net anyway. Just shows that the antis can come up with more crap that the reform people. I have only been reading about MJ on the net for about 6 months and read all the MJ sites (and love cannabisnews) but only slowly does the miracle of cannabis as a medicine start to register the fact that cannabis is a miracle plant. I read another personal account thanking the Dutch Experience coffeeshop at their website for what they have done. I would like to thank the person that posted the article about what China was doing with hemp and the role the government plans for hemp. I did not realize that there were different types of hemp plants for different purposes. The people in Warshington are aware of everything and they are still fighting hemp with this new ban from the DEA. I am glad now that the DEA did it because that will be something that will be covered in the history of the restoration of hemp to this country. Let them fight hemp and make fools of themselves. The rest of the world is progressing.I heard where President Fox talked about legalizing MJ once.  You never hear anything about Mexico and I wonder why that is. Vote all incuments out of office. Out with the old and in with the new. (Working on a closing line)
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Comment #2 posted by kaptinemo on October 24, 2001 at 09:28:30 PT:
The word for today is, "euphemize"
"What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet." - Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet, II, ii, 43It matters not one whit what Mr. Blunkett calls it...or doesn't call it. The jig is up. The game is over. No more cannabis arrests that could possibly destroy lives. The threat remains, but we'll see how long it stands in practice.Now, the question is...why? Answer: Because the cops over there are not plugged into the forfeiture scam, that's why. It was more 'expensive' for them time-wise to pursue cannabis arrests because they got nothing out of it at the end besides too many hours filling out forms. Whereas here, the LEOs are practically hooked up intravenously to the forfeiture trough. And boy, do they squeal up a s**tstorm when someone threatens to unplug them from that addictive drug called RICO money.So long as that remains the real objective of the antis, we'll continue to have a major fight on our hands. But the news from the UK is encouraging; it's going to be real interesting if someone in the White House Press Corps suddenly remembers they have some journalistic integrity and asks the obvious questions.
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Comment #1 posted by dankhank on October 24, 2001 at 09:19:21 PT:
Oh Yea?
Hey Stupid!!!!!!!!Crack IS cocaine .........
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