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Old 07-18-2005, 06:06 PM   #1
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A Pattern?

I've noticed something.

It seems that there's a pattern of drug use correlated with the party of the current president since Kennedy. It seems that uppers come in with Democratic Presidents, and downers are major with Republican Presidents.

1960-1963: Kennedy (Democrat) major drug of choice: hallucinogenics (uppers - beginning)
1963-1968: Johnson (Democrat) major drug of choice: hallucinogenics (uppers - hippies)
1968-1974: Nixon (Republican) major drug of choice: marijuana (downers - hallucinogenics until about 1970)
1974-1976: Ford (Republican) major drug of choice: marijuana (downers)
1976-1980: Carter (Democrat) major drug of choice: cocaine/amphetamines (upper - disco/nightclub scene)
1980-1988: Reagan (Republican) major drug of choice: marijuana/quaaludes (downers)
1988-1992: Bush (Republican) major drug of choice: marijuana/crack cocaine (downers)
1992-2000: Clinton (Democrat) major drug of choice: marijuana (downers- the only exception so far)
2000-2008?: Bush (Republican) major drug of choice: marijuana (downer)

A lot of this is just opinion, and I could have messed up the uppers/downers thing, but I think the general idea is right.

This initial idea comes courtesy of Hunter S. Thompson.
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Old 07-18-2005, 06:16 PM   #2
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Haha, that's hilarious. But surely GWB is more associated with cocaine (allegedly) than marjuwana? I have no idea whether cocaine is an upper or downer, my crutches are strictly of the legal variety.

I don't know if you ever read the book about U2 'Race of Angels' by John Waters, but in it the Bono is quoted as musing that drugs of various eras seem to reflect the public discourse/media/politics of the era.

Bono may well have got those idea from Thompson, now that I think of it.
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Old 07-18-2005, 08:17 PM   #3
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crack cocaine wasn't developed until the 1970s, so unless bush sr. was lighting up the butane while running the cia i think it's safe to assume he was just the snorting type. just wanted to clarify.
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Old 07-18-2005, 08:23 PM   #4
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I assume you're talking about cultural drug use, rather than what each specific president used?

I'd say something grossly overlooked here is that the drug of choice in America right now is methamphetamines, which are "uppers." But since it's mostly rural white folks abusing this, I think that's probably why this epidemic is mostly ignored.

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Old 07-18-2005, 08:31 PM   #5
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Yes, I'm not talking about the personal drugs used by the presidents themselves...surely nobody thinks i'm suggesting that LBJ took acid on a regular basis while in office.

I'm talking about the prevalent drug in culture at the time.
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Old 07-18-2005, 08:32 PM   #6
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Re: A Pattern?

Quote:
Originally posted by DaveC
I've noticed something.

It seems that there's a pattern of drug use correlated with the party of the current president since Kennedy. It seems that uppers come in with Democratic Presidents, and downers are major with Republican Presidents.

1960-1963: Kennedy (Democrat) major drug of choice: hallucinogenics (uppers - beginning)
1963-1968: Johnson (Democrat) major drug of choice: hallucinogenics (uppers - hippies)
1968-1974: Nixon (Republican) major drug of choice: marijuana (downers - hallucinogenics until about 1970)
1974-1976: Ford (Republican) major drug of choice: marijuana (downers)
1976-1980: Carter (Democrat) major drug of choice: cocaine/amphetamines (upper - disco/nightclub scene)
1980-1988: Reagan (Republican) major drug of choice: marijuana/quaaludes (downers)
1988-1992: Bush (Republican) major drug of choice: marijuana/crack cocaine (downers)
1992-2000: Clinton (Democrat) major drug of choice: marijuana (downers- the only exception so far)
2000-2008?: Bush (Republican) major drug of choice: marijuana (downer)

A lot of this is just opinion, and I could have messed up the uppers/downers thing, but I think the general idea is right.

This initial idea comes courtesy of Hunter S. Thompson.
the whole premise is wrong

i lived through Reagan and the 80s

and Coke was the big thing
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Old 07-18-2005, 08:35 PM   #7
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lol that makes more sense.
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Old 07-19-2005, 03:44 AM   #8
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I can still remember the wonderful irony when Elton John did one of those 'Coke is It!' ads for TV at the end of the 80s. I think I saw a smear of white powder around his nostrils at the finish. Well that contributes nothing to this discussion, but it's still a good anecdote.
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Old 07-19-2005, 04:01 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by financeguy
I have no idea whether cocaine is an upper or downer, my crutches are strictly of the legal variety.
It most certainly is not a downer. In fact I think the correct word is emphatically not a downer.

And I'd say during the Clinton years the major drugs as far as cultural impact is concerned would have been ecstacy and heroin.
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