Please Mr. Postman

A recent meeting of the Joint Committee on Addiction and Community Safety Response. 

Here's an interesting piece in the Oregon Capital Chronicle about some of what's going on in the back rooms of Salem regarding changes to Measure 110, the state's utterly misguided hard-drug decriminalization law that has destroyed Portland and killed many addicts. The chief justice of the state Supreme Court and some other judges quietly sent a letter to the politicians in the legislature who are going to decide what to do with the law. And Their Honors are warning the bobbleheads that some of what they're looking at is going to be expensive and take time.

In particular, it's the system that's being considered for diversion, or I guess they're now calling it "deflection," whatever – the chance to avoid criminal prosecution if an offender seeks treatment. Sort of like what's been done with success for many decades with drunk driving. According to the chief justice, Meagan Flynn, that kind of system can't be put in place overnight, or on the cheap.

The letter came in response to a request for input by the Democrats about their proposal to charge those caught with illegal drugs with a misdemeanor and offer them an opportunity to avoid criminal charges by entering a so-called deflection program. Such  programs would require a suspect to be assessed and attend a follow-up appointment to help them get into treatment rather than jail.

Drug-related deflection programs don’t exist in Oregon, and the judiciary is concerned about the resources needed to set them up and run them, the letter said. Nevertheless, the idea is moving forward. Aides for Lieber and Kropf, chairs of the Joint Committee on Addiction and Community Safety Response, and an Oregon Judicial Department spokesman, said the proposal, in House Bill 4002, is being reworked. It is currently in the joint committee....

Among the “primary concerns,” the Oregon Judicial Department lacks the ability to enact changes immediately, the letter said.

“We understand the desire to keep this bill streamlined to minimize costs, but as a practical matter, OJD will have significant new responsibilities and will need additional time and resources to implement the requirements of the bill,” the letter said.

Part of me smells a rat here. The cuckoo birds that gave us Measure 110 still have a lot of somebody's money to spend, and they're still pushing hard to keep 110 as is, just as they did when they flew all the politicians and prosecutors to Portugal for a poorly disguised vacation. I wouldn't be surprised if Justice Flynn was invited on that junket, although she probably was smart enough not to go.

But really, the answer to all her concerns is easy. If it's too expensive to have "deflection," then fine. Let's just repeal Measure 110 entirely, and go back to what we had five years ago: serious criminal charges with no "deflection." We had enough money for that, and all the old systems are still around. If you want "deflection," then find the money. You can start by reforming the public employee pension system and killing the OLCC warehouse deal.

Whatever the bobbleheads in the legislature decide to do, the voters can go over their heads, and they should if the reform is wrong. Chief Justice Flynn can put her letter in the voter's pamphlet.


  1. In urban areas, like downtown Portland, some victims have priority over other victims. Looks like the “other victims” are have moved out.

  2. Legislature (or judiciary), or police, or teachers vote to make PERS more affordable to the public?

    Say what you will about that big eared TX galoot Ross Perot, every time public money for something we might really need that’s decaying that’s could be a public good & PERS, the phrase ‘that giant sucking sound’ comes to mind.

    Seems kind of quaint now given he was referring to NAFTA & became personally very wealthy as computers & the internet were able to be sold more on the open market and opened up for private enterprise & so much wealth flowed toward TX before outright offshoring of jobs to Mexico & China & 3rd party or more ‘oudsider’ candidates (even if Perot seemed like joke even then) are largely (even more) unviable now even farther down ballot.

    1. Every time public money & PERS are mentioned*

  3. There is no way they are going to re-criminalize hard drugs- there is too much bribery and magical thinking going on. There is no discussion about the way drugs reprogram your brain to lose all rational thought and only seek ways to stay high. They think you can fix the issues with housing and a little counseling from time to time. Sad and rather disgusting that they are happy to use addicts as pawns.

    1. It might be more cost effective if we just cordoned off some area for free drug use. Make the addicts sign a waiver to get in (no getting back in for a month if you choose to leave). Then throw drugs and food over the fence. Rotate in a couple of cops to make sure it doesn't completely turn into Escape from New York.

      It might be better than trying to police the results of cartel-supplied fentanyl use all over the city (with the equivalent of traffic citations).

      If it didn't increase the numbers of OD's and it reduced the colateral damage, that would be a win.

  4. Kristof had no business running for Gov but his heart is in the right place.

    The Addiction Recovery Story We Don’t Hear Enough

  5. how did Michael Kostroff get on that bobble?


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