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Chasing the Scream: The First and Last Days…

Chasing the Scream: The First and Last Days of the War on Drugs

by Johann Hari

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If you want to know the truth about the drug war then this book is essential. ( )
  STeph.M.Clark | Aug 2, 2017 |
Given the extremely high star rating of this book (4.5) I was anticipating a masterpiece and came away disappointed. This book would be good to induce a paradigm shift in someone with absolutely no knowledge of drug abuse and a right wing view on how to punish drug users. However someone who has given some prior thought to the war on drugs may be disappointed. Full of anecdotal evidence and really no new information / theories on drug addiction and treatment. I learnt something new about the history of prohibition of drugs and Harry Anslinger, but that was pretty much it. ( )
1 vote NicolaCT | Jan 2, 2017 |
Great book, but I don't understand how he can interview Carl Hart and still come to the conclusion that crack cocaine and methamphetamine is the most dangerous drugs. How is that even possible? Did he listned to what Carl Hart said? Did he read his book? So many questions... ( )
  BMI30 | Nov 12, 2016 |
My thoughts on this book: Buy it. Read it. Buy it for your family and friends. Tell them to read it. Then maybe read it again.

This is an exceptional, vital, compelling, powerful read. The author's research is impeccable. His delivery is flawless.

I'm not going to rehash facts or give you the highlights of the book. You'll need to read it for that information. Instead I'll tell you that I've seen addiction up close and personal. It's ugly and destructive. I don't advocate drug use, but I also know that tossing addicts in prison, destroying what is left of their lives while costing taxpayers millions of dollars a year, is not the answer. And despite decades of doing just this, drug use continues to prevail and expand.

Our drug war is clearly not working. In fact, it has only caused further damage to families, to our nation, and to the world. We desperately need a rational, intelligent public conversation regarding drug use and drug laws, and reading this book is the perfect starting point. ( )
  Darcia | Nov 9, 2016 |
3.5 stars. I saw Johann Hari on Real Time with Bill Maher and decided to pick up this book. There is no argument that Hari conducted exhaustive research in completing this book, but there is also no argument that this book is very biased towards Hari's position about drugs and the decriminalization/legalization of the same. The subject matter was easy to engage with thanks to Hari's writing style, but there were numerous typos in the book that drove me batty! ( )
  Maureen_McCombs | Aug 19, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
Hari affirms the role he has already established for himself: a crucial voice in, as well as commentator on, the urgent cause of not merely “reforming” the way society deals with the drugs crisis but tearing it up completely – and either starting again along an entirely different track, or else becoming overwhelmed by the eventually inevitable mass addiction of the new wage-slaves, the global assembly plant and lumpen proletariats, to hard drugs.
added by danielx | editThe Observer, Ed Vulliamy (Apr 18, 2015)
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"January, 2015 will mark a century of the war on drugs in the United States: one hundred years since the first arrests under the Harrison Act. Facing down this anniversary, Johann Hari was witnessing a close relative and an ex-boyfriend bottoming out on cocaine and heroin. But what was the big picture in the war on drugs? Why does it continue, when most people now think it has failed? The reporter set out on a two-year, 20,000-mile journey through the theater of this war--to find out how it began, how it has affected people around the world, and how we can move beyond it. Chasing the Scream is fueled by dramatic personal stories of the people he meets along the way: A transsexual crack dealer in Brooklyn who wanted to know who killed her mother, and a mother in Mexico who spent years tracking her daughter's murderer across the desert. A child smuggled out of the Jewish ghetto during the Holocaust who helped unlock the scientific secrets of addiction. A doctor who pushed the decriminalization in Portugal of all drugs - from cannabis to crack. The title itself comes from a formative story of Harry Anslinger, first commissioner of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, sent as a boy to the pharmacy for a neighbor screaming in withdrawal -- an experience which led him to fear drugs without regard to context. Always we come back to the front lines in the U.S., where we instigated the war and exported it around the globe, but where change is also coming. Powerful, propulsive, and persuasive, Chasing the Scream is the page-turning story of a century-long mistake, which shows us the way to a more humane future"--… (more)

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