sources 6-10- sam sarlo,8599,1893946,00.html

-This is a Time article detailing the results of portugal’s decriminalization of all drugs. Although decriminalization is not the answer, it has improved just about every measurable aspect of the nation’s drug problem.

I could use this as solid evidence that legally allowing people to use whatever substances they please benefits the society as a whole.
-This website explains the unjust and illegitimate reasons that marijuana (the least harmful of all illegal drugs) was outlawed.
I can use this source to show how that our nation’s drug laws are ill-concieved and unconstitutional.
-This article calls for massive state criminal justice reforms with an emphasis on decriminalization or legalization of drugs.
I can use information in this article to illustrate frustratingly high incarceration rates of low-level drug offenders and ridiculously long sentences imposed upon them, as well as the dizzying monetary cost of these injustices.
-This page contains some detailed information about mandatory minimum sentences and three-strike life sentences as well as some other counterintuitive  practices.
-This page has a lot of useful general information and links to many articles.
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Definition Essay rewrite- sam Sarlo

In June 1971, President Richard Nixon declared a “war on drugs.” This movement has been fundamentally flawed since the very inception of its name, and it has accumulated more human casualties than many wars against enemy nations. His actions were sparked by a steady increase in drug use and drug arrests through the 1960′s, and surely his purpose was to lessen the damage done to the people of our nation by drugs and drug-related violence, but unfortunately it has led to massive bloodshed and sustained international organized crime. Thus far, our government has spent trillions of dollars and the lives of tens of thousands of citizens on regulations and enforcement measures that have been at best ineffective and wasteful and at worst dangerous and counterproductive. As I have mentioned in my previous posts, the number of drug-related deaths has fairly steadily increased since the inception of the war on drugs.

There are several categories of drug-related deaths, but the two main categories are overdoses and drug-related violence. There are people killed by drug users, drug users killed by police, police killed by drug users/dealers, drug dealers killing each other in territorial disputes, drug-funded gangs killing each other, and that’s not even considering what’s happening outside U.S. borders. Counterintuitively, the war on drugs actually causes more drug-related deaths to occur. It seems that the harder our government tries and the more money they spend to enforce drug laws, the more people die. An extremely low estimate of drug related deaths in this country for 2007 is 15,223 (Richardson). As I said, this is an extremely low estimate, it even excludes the roughly 60% of overdose deaths caused by prescription drugs. About 6,487 (Richardson) of these deaths are caused by drug-related violence.

Most drug violence is rooted in and perpetuated by the war on drugs and the legislation on which it is based. Our government has regulated drugs through prohibition since the 1930’s, and it has not and will never work. Just as the failed experiment of alcohol prohibition created massive black-market enterprises and put money in the pockets of violent criminals, the  war on drugs has only worsened and deepened the drug problem. 

Another alarming aspect of the war on drugs is the billions of taxpayer dollars wasted on failing measures every year. Federal and state governments spend a combined $30.4 billion each year on incarcerating drug offenders, and that’s on top of the $21.9 billion spent on drug law enforcement. Even more tragic than these monetary figures is the tens of thousands of lives wasted in jail, and misguided law enforcement attempts that victimize innocent people. For example, Jose Guerena Ortiz, a US marine combat veteran, was fired upon 71 times by a SWAT team who broke down his door because he was “suspected of involvement in drug trafficking. Nothing illegal was found in his home, and to this day authorities have no evidence that Ortiz had ever been involved in the drug trade, yet none of the officers involved in his massacre have been charged or even disciplined. The war on drugs is successfully used as an excuse for such injustice by law enforcement every day. 

The drug trade is simply an issue of supply and demand. Our government currently employs mostly supply-oriented efforts, such as arresting drug dealers and going after cartel leaders in Mexico. The harsh reality is that there will always be a huge demand for drugs in this country, and as long as drugs are prohibited here they will be supplied illegally from somewhere. The only way we can hope to remedy the drug problem and save tens of thousands of lives from drug violence is legalization and regulation of drugs. Other drugs should be treated just like alcohol, legally available to adults, quality controlled by the government, and regulated in their usage. This type of legislation would effectively crash the value of drugs and eliminate demand for illegal foreign drugs. No drug user would want to buy illegal drugs from some shady guy in an alley when he could simply go to a government-regulated store and buy drugs of guaranteed and  consistent quality and purity without risking arrest and jail time. With no demand for illegal drugs, drug violence would nearly disappear. Drug dealers would be put out of business, police wouldn’t have to arrest responsible users, and the Mexican cartels would dwindle significantly. Regulation of legal drugs would also dramatically decrease the number of overdose deaths. Many overdoses happen because drug users don’t know the quality or purity of the substances they are obtaining, so they have no standard on which to base their dosage. Like alcohol, legal drugs could be required to label their potency so that the user can make an informed decision based on real knowledge of exactly what he is putting into his body.

While the benefits of legalization are very clear to me, I realize that it will not solve the whole drug problem. People will still die of overdoses, and drug addicts will still commit crimes, possibly violent ones, to feed their habit. Using a small fraction of the money that we currently spend on the war on drugs, we could fund a comprehensive drug treatment program to help people overcome their addictions, or at least a better version of the current methadone clinic program that gives addicts enough to keep them sane and sated.

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White Paper: Sam Sarlo

Topic background: The current “Drug Czar”, the head of the war on drugs, made a public statement in 2009 that the war on drugs should be ended. Just like 99% of the people in this country, he realizes that the last 40 years of anti-drug efforts have been wasteful and sometimes counterproductive and have showed very little benefit. Even after this statement, the government has continued to spend tens of billions of dollars on ineffective law enforcement and supply-oriented action.

Counterintuitivity Note:
The purpose of the war on drugs is supposed to be public health and safety. The author of this article calculated a rough death toll of the war on drugs in the US for 2007: 6,487 from drug related violence alone, 15,223 if you add in overdoses. Many of these deaths are police officers who are sent to fight an uphill battle. If drugs were legal and regulated, most of the 6,487 drug-related deaths would never have happened. The war on drugs is killing thousands of Americans, yet the government perpetuates it.
Cops and Drugs: Why we Never Hear what they Really Think-  Niel Franklin, a former high-ranking narcotics officer, said “I find that 95 percent of my law-enforcement friends agree” that the war on drugs is not working, “and probably 60 percent to 65 percent agree that we should legalize.” Franklin states that police departments keep these sentiments quiet for “selfish reasons.” If drugs were legalized, we could cut one third of law enforcement in the country. “And give back all the federal funds too. That’s why very seldom will you see a police chief step forward and say, ‘Yeah, we need to do this.,’” says Franklin.

Packed Prisons: In 2007, 55% of federal prison inmates were incarcerted for drug offenses, with an even higher average state prisoner percentage. When calculated out of the prison budgets,  that’s an astonishing $30.4 billion spent just on imprisoning drug offenders in one year. Also, at least 44 states reportedly overspent their prison budgets, so these cost estimates are actually quite low. The combined cost of law enforcement and imprisonment for drug offenses is about $52.3 billion for 2007, which is close to the expected yearly expense of universal health care. So, instead of spending money to protect citizens’ health, our government is spending it on enforcing laws that kill and wrongfully imprison us.

State of the Paper:  I have found many unlikely opponents of the war on drugs in its current form, and despite sensible counterarguments that:1. more people would use drugs and 2. more people would overdose, I am convinced that legalization and regulation of drugs is the best and only solution to the economic and social issues of the drug problem.
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Quotation skills- Sam Sarlo

“The Church has worked diligently and at significant expense” in order to insure the baptism of every Jewish holocaust survivor

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Quotation skills- Sam Sarlo

“The Church has worked diligently and at significant expense” in order to insure the baptism of every Jewish holocaust survivor.

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White Paper Polio- Sam Sarlo

When researching polio vaccine rumors on google, I found an LA Times articlabout a more recent situation in pakistan in which muslim extremists and religious leaders denounce the polio vaccine as a western plot to sterilize their daughters and spread infection.

“Radical clerics seed rumors that vaccines are un-Islamic because they are made from substances derived from pigs, or that they cause infertility. Some clerics try to convince parents that polio vaccines are made from the urine of Satan.”

I would like to investigate the possible motives behind these statements. It seems highly counterproductive for religious leaders to subject their own people, possible even their very own children, to a lifetime of handicaps and suffering. Most articles I have read attribute these rumors to paranoia and weariness of any action rooted in the West, but such cultural distrust looks to me like an all too convenient mode of spreading propaganda.

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1. Manufacturer…

1. Manufacturers claimed that sawstop was not “proven”

Steve Gass put his finger into the blade of a saw with sawstop. I’m not sure how the manufacturers think they can argue with that proof. This claim means that there is no irrefutable evidence that sawstop will prevent amputation or serious injury, but Steve’s finger looked fine to me.
2.”There’s no substitute for staying alert and focused and strictly adhering to safe work practices.”
This claim is supposed to convince us that regulation requiring sawstop on all saws is “unnecessary and counterproductive”. This claim is not effective within the argument because nobody ever said sawstop was a substitute for safe work practices, and I highly doubt any table saw user would simply throw caution to the wind just because the saw probably won’t cut their hand off.
3.Industry spokespeople said “False positives can trip on common materials such as moist wood”
This claims not only that the sawstop system is prone to false positives, but also that they can be caused by common materials. This claim implies that such false trips would be rather frequent when working with moist wood. This claim is an attempt to convince the possible customers and government regulators that the system would be impractical for real-world use.
4. Chairman Inez M. Tenenbaum of the Consumer Product Safety Commission said in a statement “Despite my public urging for the power tool industry to make progress voluntarily on preventing these injuries, no meaningful revisions to the voluntary standard were made.”
This sentence contains many small claims, but I am most interested in the claim imlied by the word “meaningful”. What constitutes a meaningful revision? Wouldn’t any revision mean something to somebody, even if it’s just the assembly line worker who has to put one more screw in the table saw assembly? I think what he meant was that none of the major manufacturers started using sawstop or any other measure that would prevent severe injury in case of blade contact, but he doesn’t actually say that anywhere in the statement. If this guy wants action to be taken, maybe he should be more specific.
5.”Wec says his permanent and “traumatic injury””
This is a definitional  claim about the nature of the victim’s injuries, and one that is quite difficult to refute. Amputations are certainly permanent, and if he says it was traumatic, I believe him. This claim is effective because it creates an argument that nobody will challenge.
6.”not all table saw manufacturers have adopted it.”
Although technically true, this claim is weakly worded. In actuality, no table saw manufacturers have adopted sawstop. the only table saws on the market that have sawstop are the ones manufactured by Steve Gass, who never made table saws without sawstop, so even he did not “adopt” the system.
7.”the Consumer Product Safety Commission is determined to be part of the solution to reduce the serious number of preventable table saw injuries that occur each year.”
This claim, directed toward manufacturers, is intended as a warning that CPSC wants to do something to make manufacturers make safer saws. Were this claim followed by some sort of specific information about possible “solutions”, it would be much more effective within the argument that table saw manufacturers are obligated to employ sawstop technology. As it stands, they are saying something akin to “we want to do something about this problem, but we have no idea what it will be”.
8. This inventor, a guy named Steve Gass, had actually figured out a way to prevent just about all of those accidents. Over the years, he’s proved that it works, too.
This claim is part of a journalist’s article about sawstop, and it is effective as such. She is saying that he figured out how to prevent most table saw injuries, which is better than saying all injuries, which could be refuted by a hypothetical scenario in which someone falls on the non-operating table saw. She also cites the many demonstrations of the system’s effectiveness in the claim “he’s proved that it works”. This is a  compelling and truthful claim that is backed by real evidence.
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I really like the sunset one… it evokes a wonderful feeling and i feel like it takes the viewer back to a time they can remember. We’ve all experienced that beautiful sunset when we’re in the car, and you just want to capture the moment. I feel like you did just that in your painting. I also like the first one with the window. The city one wasn’t my favorite simply because the perspective bothered me a bit. I like the bridges and the idea of it and the colors, but there was something about it that just didn’t appeal to me. But overall I like them. :)

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Lifetime Guarantee

As I told most of you at Grade Conferences, my courses carry a Lifetime Guarantee entitling you to continuing interference in your writing lives for as long as you feel like asking.

If you run into trouble in Comp 2 and need a prompt to get you started writing, or a blunt appraisal of your thesis paragraph, or just a second reading by a critic who likes to help, and you think my help would be valuable, don’t hesitate to ask.

You may post a request here, categorized as a Question.
You may email me at
You may use my civilian email address if you know it.
You may phone me if you’re desperate using the numbers on your syllabus.
You may text me at my cell number.
You may facebook me at David Hodges.

I will always be happy to hear from you.

I also invite you to stop by Very Short Novels to read my fiction if you’re interested, and to criticize my writing for a refreshing change of pace.

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