I spent most of the day ripping asbestos siding off of an old house. Underneath the asbestos siding was (and is–there’s plenty left) rotten lap siding with peeling lead paint. The law requires that you do your very best to keep the asbestos in the original size and shape that it had, which means that you can’t just tear the shit off the wall with a flat bar, you have to pull out each individual nail with vice grips and take down the slats in as delicate a manner as possible, before bagging them in a yellow bag with skulls and crossbones and shit, and then rebagging them in a clear bag for safety. You know what they do with asbestos? They bury it in Hillsboro.
Anyway. I’m tired as all hell. Digby posts the following:
A controversial law in Massachusetts could go national if Congressman Barney Frank gets his way.
Frank has filed a bill that would eliminate federal penalties for personal possession of less than 100 grams of marijuana.
It would also make the penalty for using marijuana in public just $100.
“I think John Stuart Mill had it right in the 1850s,” said Congressman Frank, “when he argued that individuals should have the right to do what they want in private, so long as they don’t hurt anyone else. It’s a matter of personal liberty. Moreover, our courts are already stressed and our prisons are over-crowded. We don’t need to spend our scarce resources prosecuting people who are doing no harm to others.”
It won’t pass, of course, because it’s one of those issues that gives every politician a chance to preen and prance about as a social conservative and pretend that they are a member of the Moral Majority standing up for family values. They love to bond with their wingnut brethren and nothing brings them all together like a good hippie punching. But,as with so much of the right wing agenda, it makes no rational sense. I suppose that’s at least partially the point.
First of all, most of my family lives in Massachusetts, and even though it’s a relatively new law, I don’t think it’s terribly controversial. It’s just Massachusetts doing what Massachusetts does: pissing off wingnuts with gay marriage and lenient drug laws, living to tell the tale, and then having, like, better education results than Japan.
There is no second of all.
What I’m getting at is that whatever controversy there may be in Massachusetts about all this will evaporate in the not-too-distant-future, when people realize that society won’t fall apart because folks can legally–or at least not criminally–smoke pot. Plenty of people, as Andrew Sullivan was documenting before shit hit the fan in Iran, illegally smoke pot and society hasn’t collapsed. God is not waiting for our drug laws to liberalize before he brings on the apocalypse. It’s not like that’s the final straw. The final straw is some shit that’s going to happen in 2012, because that’s what the Mayans predicted, and the Mayans knew everything (except, as it turns out, how to prevent their own civilization from collapsing).
Gonna drink a beer.