ALCOHOL THE GREATEST DRUG THAT MESSES UP SOCIETY
Unless you are watching BBC News and scrolling down near the
bottom of their Webpage, you may have indeed missed this:
BBC News - Alcohol 'more harmful than heroin' says Prof David
1 November 2010 Last updated at 10:11 ET
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
It ranks 20 drugs on 16 measures of harm to users and to wider
Gavin Partington, of the Wine and Spirit Trade Association, said
alcohol abuse affected "a minority" who needed "education,
treatment and enforcement".
(Maybe it's a so-called "minority" but the effect on general
society is NOT a monority - Keith Hunt)
The study also said tobacco and cocaine are judged to be equally
harmful, while ecstasy and LSD are among the least damaging.
Prof Nutt refused to leave the drugs debate when he was sacked
from his official post by the former Labour Home Secretary, Alan
He went on to form the Independent Scientific Committee on Drugs,
a body which aims to investigate the drug issue without any
One of its other members is Dr Les King, another former
government adviser who quit over Prof Nutt's treatment.
Members of the group, joined by two other experts, scored each
drug for harms including mental and physical damage, addiction,
crime and costs to the economy and communities.
The BBC's home editor, Mark easton, writes in his blog that the
study involved 16 criteria, including a drug's affects on users'
physical and mental health, social harms including crime, "family
adversities" and environmental damage, economic costs and
The modelling exercise concluded that heroin, crack and
methylamphetamine, also known as crystal meth, were the most
harmful drugs to INDIVIDUALS, but alcohol, heroin and crack
cocaine were the most harmful to SOCIETY.
When the scores for both types of harm were added together,
alcohol emerged as the MOST harmful drug, followed by heroin and
'Valid and necessary'
The findings run contrary to the government's long-established
drug classification system, but the paper's authors argue that
their system - based on the consensus of experts - provides an
accurate assessment of harm for policy makers.
"Our findings lend support to previous work in the UK and the
Netherlands, confirming that the present drug classification
systems have little relation to the evidence of harm," the paper
says. "They also accord with the conclusions of previous expert
reports that aggressively targeting alcohol harms is a valid and
necessary public health strategy."
In 2007, Prof Nutt and colleagues undertook a limited attempt to
create a harm ranking system, sparking controversy over the
criteria and the findings.
The new more complex system ranked alcohol three times more
harmful than cocaine or tobacco. Ecstasy was ranked as causing
one-eighth the harm of alcohol.
It also contradicted the Home Office's decision to make so-called
legal high mephedrone a Class B drug, saying that alcohol was
five times more harmful. The rankings have been published to
coincide with a conference on drugs policy, organised by Prof
Prof Nutt told the BBC: "Overall, alcohol is the most harmful
drug because it's so widely used. Crack cocaine is more addictive
than alcohol but because alcohol is so widely used there are
hundreds of thousands of people who crave alcohol every day, and
those people will go to extraordinary lengths to get it."
He said it was important to separate harm to individuals and harm
The Lancet paper written by Prof Nutt, Dr King and Dr Lawrence
Phillips, does not examine the harm caused to users by taking
more than one drug at a time.
Mr Partington, who is the spokesman for the Wine and Spirit Trade
Association, said millions of people enjoyed alcohol "as part of
a regular and enjoyable social drink. Clearly alcohol misuse is a
problem in the country and our real fear is that, by talking in
such extreme terms, Professor Nutt and his colleagues risk
switching people off from considering the real issues and the
real action that is needed to tackle alcohol misuse," he said.
"We are talking about a minority. We need to focus policy around
that minority, which is to do with education, treatment and
Welllll.....it may be a minority in numbers compared to the
population of the Western world, but the truth of the matter is
that a LEGAL substance as alcohol DOES IMPACT the society in a
bad way MORE THAN ANY other classified "drug." Nations spend
MILLIONS of dollars over years (many years now) fighting
vigerously other drugs (sending in SWAT like teams to bash down
doors with guns out, like in the old Wild-West) while the MOST
DAMAGING drug to society is LEGAL. Now I'm not saying alcohol
is sin - the Bible says it is NOT! But the Bible also says no
DRUNKARD shall enter the Kingdom of God. More attention and more
money needs to come off fighting some of these other calssified
illegal drugs and go to fighting societies greater problem of
abuse of alcohol, which begins in the home and then in the school
system and then in the law system, such as much tougher laws for
We have lived with alcohol abuse now for decades and hence it
tends to get swept under the carpet to some degree, unless it
pushed at from "women against drunk drivers" - maybe now it is
"people against drunk drivers."
On the chart produced by David Nutt and his staff, taking a 100
point scale, of damage to society, we have:
Alcohol - about 72%
Heroin - about 55%
and way down the chart:
Cocaine - about 27%
Tabacco - about 26%
So we have a PROBLEM folks!! As alcohol is LEGAL, as the Bible is
NOT against the use of alcohol in moderation.
YOU YOURSELF, IF YOU DRINK ALCOHOL, BETTER BE WITHIN MODERATION!
AND YOU HAVE A DUTY TO TEACH YOUR CHILDREN THE TRUTH ABOUT
ALCOHOL ABUSE AND THE DAMAGE IT DOES TO SOCIETY!
YOU IN GOVERNMENT POWER POSITIONS, LOCALLY, STATE, OR FEDERAL, IN
A FIGURE OF SPEECH NEED TO PULL OUT THE GUNS MORE ON ALCOHOL
ABUSE (MONEY FOR TEACHING IN VARIOUS WAYS THE DAMAGE TO SOCIETY
FROM ALCOHOL) THAN YOU HAVE DONE IN THE PAST. TIME TO GET
PRIORITIES STRAIGHT - SPENDING MORE TIME AND MONEY AND MANPOWER
ON ACOHOL ABUSE THAN HEROIN AND COCAINE ABUSE.