Seems like the traditional conservative philosophy is that unearned pleasure will rot society. The value is in the human doing not the human being.
But marijuana gives pleasure for free, it helps you appreciate what you already have as opposed to fueling the covetous race for more.
In the overwhelmed, overworked and uninspired I can understand why it might instill a sense of apathy (towards the goals of business, in other words the ideals of feeding the economic machine that citizens have been fed as what creates their value) but I don't think the medicine itself is inherently anti-productivity (any more than a sane steady state economy centered around human flourishing is inherently anti-productive.
The idea that if you give someone a break they will become lazy and selfish is mostly wrong imo. Outside of a percentage of parasites (who ironically are heavily represented in the top tiers of society and perpetuate the culture of hard work as the highest ideal) I feel most people want to be useful to others, they just see their employment as neutral or even against true productivity).
I had this better organized in my head yesterday but anyway I think left leaning politicians should lean more heavily into this issue as the majority of people (@ least in usa) support its legalization including many who otherwise self identify as right wing.
this can explain an aspect of it, but there's a lot of "unearned pleasure" in the world conservatives generally accept.
i rather believe it's freedom from disgust, which is a sense of morality that's far more pronounced in the right. one i don't respect much, but let's go through it.
so I'm coming here from the pov of someone who has worked with transgressive art academically. some of the phrasings may be dry and unfortunate because of vernacular use. transphobia trigger warning. we'll get to that.
i'm also going to generalize about conservatives somewhat, and some may be annoyed with that. but understand that i'm talking about how the politics of disgust is generally more pronounced on the right
, at least as a sense of morality.
so, freedom from disgust. marijuana isn't disgusting, you might say, it's awesome. some people might find it disgusting, smelling weird or being unpleasant, but it's in the sense of me finding sugary sweets disgusting. kids finding brocolli disgusting. that's not how the disgust I talk about works.
freedom from disgust is about the freedom from having to be faced by the disgusting in the public space. eg., for the most part, people being naked in public is generally banned because of disgust.
a lot of what's disgusting really is only disgusting because it's unwelcome in a space, and because that space has presuppositions of what's welcome where. freedom from disgust is freedom from the weird and the grotesque, both modes of presence that work solely by challenging our ideas of normal phenomenons. the weird is when two things that aren't supposed to be together are. a giraffe in your backyard would be weird. the grotesque is when shapes are distorted from our sense of normal. someone with a hand the size of a leg.
conservative forces are all about what's the normal. stability, they say. they don't like to look at things that challenge the normal in their spaces, and because it's a sense of morality, they want the means to enforce the absence of disgust
women with pants were weird. so they didn't like that. like, yes
, they also didn't like it because it represented other forces they didn't like. but understand that when a conservative sees these things, aside from all other things, their reaction is disgust. it's primal, immediate, in the stomach. after women with pants has become commonplace, it loses its sense of weirdness. so now they don't care about it anymore. they've acclimated and focus on other things that disgust them. the giraffe in the backyard is weird to me too, i guess, but there's honestly probably a very practical reason it got there. it probably got out of an enclosure somewhere. it's literally not strange in practicality, but we feel
the weird from it regardless. if something is weird for conservatives on a societal level, when their spaces are not guaranteed against it, they want enforcement to ensure this sense of freedom.
so, the grotesque. side rant on this. the grotesque is a pejorative in the vernacular, but i use it more as a mode of experience. and i really like it, both grotesque art, and philosophy of the grotesque. the grotesque is shapes that is close enough to be a phenomenon, but far enough from the shapes of that phenomenon to really be it at the same time. because we have a sense of phenonemons as natural, stable states, while they're really quite fluid. we have a sense of a kid, and a sense of an adult, neither are felt
as grotesque, but they're both changing bodies, quite slowly, and are not concretely
stable states. ie our sense of the grotesque is solely when we identify something that doesn't fall into our senses of stable phenomena, regardless of how it's actually rarely stable in practice. because stable states are not stable enough to never be challenged, we see it practically. when these states are challenged, we feel disgust. here's the kicker, and please bear with me with the phrasing - to the sense of the body where cis bodies are stable and normal, trans bodies are experienced as grotesque. trans bodies are of course very varied in expression, but often trans expression is often about using signifiers for stable phenomena of the cis body to, well, pass. but just because they're grotesque doesn't mean they're bad - we're all grotesque. i'd refer back to literally any cis body one experiences. all of them are not stable at all in the concrete. we're all walking bacteria farms in skin suits around flesh and bone. we always grow and change, all of our bodies are replaced over every few years. our bottom half is full of feces that we don't like. female mammals lay eggs inside themselves, it sounds like body horror, but it's a natural part of live birth. and that's the thing.
our sense of the weird and grotesque is near always evoked when the world is described as it actually is
. it's when stable things are revealed not to be stable.
so some things challenge our notions of natural phenomena. to some, it makes them learn more about the world. it gives cause to introspection and progress. but to others, it feels innately wrong. and the latter - some conservatives hate
that. because it just makes them feel bad. stay in your box!
progressive allies actually often feel immediate strangeness and even disgust about things they encounter. but instead of wanting it gone, they take a step back and consider whether it's hurting anyone. whether the phenomena should
be felt as natural. their sense of disgust as a moral pillar is just much less pronounced - they have it, but to a much smaller degree. at the very least, they don't want the police involved in such things - or, like, don't want the ability
to have the police involved.
again, there's people on the left that enforce disgust and people on the right that are fine having it - and some ideas of disgust are shared - but the pronouncement is still there. valuing freedom from disgust is just more present on the right. we have a lot of data on it. when you realize this, that a lot of behavior is ruled by disgust, what disgust is, and how it aligns with the right, it explains a lot of conservative behavior.
(and to me, i side with the left here. we're concretely colorful and strange beings. and i think freedom from disgust as a moral pillar is a bad one. the only credit i can give those people is that disgust isn't a nice feeling, but it's damning with faint praise. the world is not stable, so appeasing our sense of phenomenal stability will never work. i'd take a page from the right and tell them to grow up, to face the real world.)
marijuana is something people find disgusting because it makes us strange. it makes us act in ways far from the sober state of being. it's the same with alcohol really, sugar for kids, binge eating during thanksgiving, but all that already has a place in social space. those practices are part of the stable normal. marijuana is a newer drug, therefore not "naturally" belonging to the space, therefore it shouldn't be there. therefore they'll work to have it gone.
a lot of this immediacy makes sense when you realize that it's not about practicality of the world, but about disgust. that marijuana destroys less than alcohol, that it's good business to legalize. a lot of conservatives don't care, because high people are not supposed to be there. people are not acting normally, it disgusts me, it should be gone. but, like. alcohol is concretely a drug. drunk people soil themselves, they're often loud and abrasive, they break into crying in ways that we connect with unreasonable babies, all breaking our supposition of adult behavior. all of this is mostly unacceptable in the public space, but people are just more... mentally lenient about it because drinking is such a normalized part of the public space. sure, we'll remove them and, if things get bad, get the police involved, but there's no broad political willingness to ban alcohol. and this is the difference. it's not weird, so it's not something conservatives generally push as a blanket ban.
the stance towards marijuana has been changing over the last few years, of course, but, like, it's because it's been slowly normalized, and people don't feel disgusted by it anymore. it's how this works.