Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Chocolate Cake

I mentioned two posts ago that we had a 60th anniversary party for busylizzy's parents. Chris's comments on yesterday's post triggered a memory from that night. One of our responsibilities for the dinner was purchasing the big cake. It was a lemon cake, very tasty, but not my choice. It was decided that not everybody liked chocolate. My theory, which was overthrown, was that the majority would like chocolate so why not get a small lemon cake for those that do not like chocolate. When we went to pick up the cake from the bakery, we threw in good sized chocolate fudge layer cake for good measure.
At dessert time, I picked up a piece of the lemon cake and I thought I would get a piece of chocolate later with my second cup of coffee. I hate to say "I was right" all the time, but once again I have to say it. The chocolate was the first to disappear. I did not get a piece.
We would have done ourselves all a big favour had we stuck with chocolate, according to this recent news about chocolate:  

Eat more: Dark chocolate (daily!)

Disease-fighting antioxidant compounds in cocoa also help regulate blood flow, researchers believe. Previous studies have indicated that high doses of cocoa can reduce blood pressure and boost mood in the short term. Yet a mere 6.3 grams of dark chocolate (just 30 calories) daily over a 4 1/2-month period was enough to reduce hypertension by 21 percent, according to a Journal of the American Medical Association.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Grey Cup

This ratty looking trophy is what the big game was all about yesterday afternoon. Yes, I will admit I spent the whole time in front of the TV, waiting for something exciting to happen. These contests are usually unpredictable and are won in the dying minutes of the game, but I'm afraid yesterday's effort was rather ho-hum. Of course, had I been a loyal fan of either Sask. or Montreal, it might have made a difference. I was so uninspired I did not even eat any junk food. Maybe next year.

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Last night we celebrated busylizzy's parent's 60th wedding anniversary. Their nephew and his wife have a wonderful home on the mountain and they were gracious enough to allow us to use it for the dinner and celebration. It was done up in grand style with all the beautiful Christmas decor already in place. We were around fifty people and there was more than enough room for us all. The ladies presented us with an absolutely delicious and beautiful dinner. After a great visit over dinner, we enjoyed a program consisting of some of the grandsons playing the piano, some speeches, a wonderful video on the life and times of the oldies, and a skit put on by busylizzy and her brother. It was a great evening and doubled as our Christmas gathering for 2010. Many of us will be away this year so we will not see the whole gang again for some time. Like my father-in-law said, "who knew all this would come to pass when I put my arm around your mom, a total stranger, and she did not pull away."  Well, I say that God knew and He has been good.

Saturday, November 27, 2010


My nephew Mark had a great idea and acted on it. He got a bunch of his uncles and cousins together and we all went to an Abbotsford Heat game. That is our home hockey team, a member of the AHL, one notch below NHL. I don't get out to many games so this was a treat for me. The caliber of hockey is excellent. The action  is non stop and the pace is blistering. These young athletes are competing for a spot on their parent team in the NHL and can only achieve that by impressing the managers, coaches, and scouts. There is a lot at stake so they go flat out the whole game.
The Heat were on a bit of a losing streak until last night so it was good to see them win, in a shoot-out, after overtime. There is always a good turnout when the Heat play the Manitoba Moose, the farm team of the Vancouver Canucks. 
It was great way to spend a Friday night. Thanks, Mark.  

Friday, November 26, 2010

Slip Sliding Away

Just a quick blurb on the white stuff. I had no idea how my new truck would handle in the snow, but today (Thursday) was a good test. The roads were messy and slippery this morning, during the commute, but we managed to get to work without incident. We parked on a sloping driveway only because we had no choice. Then it proceeded to snow all day. Late in the afternoon we cleared the windows and then with great trepidation and pessimism, I drove up the slope to the road and then down a steep hill with a sharp turn at the bottom. Then a very long steep hill upward on the way home. The light was green half way up the hill or we might still be there. There had been no salting or sanding and the temperature was climbing, making the snow greasy with an ice cold road underneath. My 'traction control light' was blinking and stammering all the way home, but we made it, and with only 'all season' radial tires. I was so relieved that I did not even mind shovelling the driveway when we got home. And my sidewalk. And my neighbour's sidewalk. I hear there is no snow in Palm Desert.  

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Here it Comes

Inflation has started. It was announced on Tuesday that Canada's inflation rate for the last twelve months was 2.4%, the highest it has been in two years. Because the rising prices are on the unavoidables, housing, taxes, fuel, and food, it will impact everyone. Your earnings on Term Deposits and Savings are now behind the inflation rate so you are getting behind the eight ball as every minute ticks by. Of course, this is a successful attempt, by the US Fed., to create a situation where our money is devalued so the Government debt is not as costly, and so we consumers will spend our money before it is worthless. It happens when the treasury prints money. Anything declines in value when there is an overabundance of it. It is a wrong headed attempt to stimulate the economy. We spend because our money is getting worthless and demand increases. Increased demand raises prices and there is growth in the economy. Trouble is, we, as consumers, will run out of money. Oh, I forgot. We can borrow against our houses. Oh, I forgot, that is what got us into the credit bubble pickle in the first place. 
So, enjoy your dollar now. You will soon need a magnifying glass to see it, and you will need a lot of them to buy your daily supply of food. Thank Mr. Bernanke when it all falls apart.
(PS  Despite the steady world price of oil. I see in my own home town that in one day, this week, gasoline jumped 8%! In order to stay competitive in a slow economy, I have not raised my prices in three years. Who pays for this added fuel cost? Me. Welcome to inflation in a depressed economy)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

X-ray Vision

Due to the explicit nature of the image, I took the liberty of blacking out the 'boobies' :)

When I was an adolescent, I was intrigued by the comic book Superman's powers of x-ray vision. I must admit that it still intrigues me. Fiction has become reality and it is causing a backlash in the airports of the world where this technology is being used. Recently, a brave young man refused the scan, and then balked at being patted down. He exclaimed that if it was not the government touching his privates, it would be 'sexual assault". Of course, he is right. This puts the authorities in a dilemma. As you can see from the above actual x-ray airport body scans, it is a clear invasion of privacy. What will be the next step in the fight against terrorism? There are many options, but none of them are politically correct. I would say that this one is not either.  

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Mixed Messages

Results came out yesterday, regarding a very recent poll of Canadians, questioning causes of Global Warming, assuming there is such a thing. There was no indication as to what the question was, but I must assume that it was a leading question because the results of polling over 1,000 Canadians is that Global Warming is caused by consumerism. The logic here, I presume, is that consumerism drives industry and industry creates green house gases,  and green house gases cause global warming. Lots of presumption here. 
When Maurice Strong, a socialist Canadian, first proposed the Kyoto accord in Brazil many years ago, critics stated that the real agenda behind the scheme was a redistribution of the world's wealth. 
Fast forward to just a few days ago. German economist Ottmar Edenhofer, an IPCC official, said in an interview, that "climate policy has almost nothing to do with environmental protection. The next world summit in Cancun is actually an economy summit during which the distribution of the world's resources will be negotiated" 
Do you believe in a conspiracy theory here? On this -12 November morning, with a wind chill factor of -17, I tend to believe this is so.    

Monday, November 22, 2010

Sign of the Times

Yesterday we woke to very cold weather, but thankfully, no snow. Our Angel Trumpet trees have done well to date in spite of a very slow start this year. One frost will kill them, and they are now officially dead.

Before busylizzy hacked them to pieces, I prepared a coroner's report with photographic evidence. The icicle at the end of the leaf could not have happened had the temperature not been below zero. The angle of the icicle indicates wind as the droplets were freezing, assuring that there was a wind chill factor of about
-14C. We look forward to growing more Angel Trumpets next spring.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Hand Held

The term 'hand held device' has come to mean any electronic device that aids in communication with other electronic devices. The permutations of this are endless. I will not even begin to name them because as soon as I do, the list will be outdated and any number of the devices on my list will be obsolete. It seems that the time that it takes to replace the latest device that was just purchased, with a newer better model, is about ten minutes.
I'm sorry, but I just cannot keep up. My cell phone was one of the first ones with a QWERTY keyboard built in and I must admit that I have never used it, except one time to unsuccessfully create and send a text message. No, I was not driving at the time.
It is difficult to believe how many people are wandering around in a daze with their ear buds in and their little fingers jabbing away at a 'hand held device', often communicating with the person walking beside them. The spoken language will soon be a lost art. The written language too, for that matter. In an attempt to simplify the text messages, there is a language with code words and abbreviations that one has to learn besides learning how to operate the device. 
They keep getting smaller too. When I attempt to hit the keypad on my phone, I usually hit the wrong number or two numbers at the same time. The problem with this is that I do not know how to 'back it up' so I can undo the mistake. I just re-boot and try again until I get it right. 
I think back to the first phone I ever operated. You picked up the receiver, cranked the handle one time, an operator came on, and you told her who you wanted to speak to. No, it was not cordless, but it was 'hand held', just like today. 

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Missing The Sun

This is the time of year when I go back in the archives and dig out the summer photos. It is both nostalgia and a great yearning for the sun. The body rhythms are daily adjusting to lack of daylight hours. Sleepiness overcomes with the abundance of darkness. Seven on the clock could be day or night.
I have been made aware, in the last few weeks, just how sensitive my body is to the light, even when asleep. We have new neighbours behind us and we look into their back yard. He has installed a night light with a motion sensor. It is very sensitive and will switch on with gentle movement of a leaf in the middle of the night. The two powerful spotlights shine toward my bedroom window and our blinds do not shut out the light totally. I find myself coming awake because of the ambient light in the bedroom, almost like the first light of dawn, and my body gets confused. Realising I have been wakened by the security light, I fall asleep again quickly enough, but am always surprised that the very faint light penetrating my eyelids was enough to wake me. Of course, every time this happens I roll over to see what time it is. I thought I would get used to it. I am not. 
So, yes, I yearn for the light, but not in the middle of the night.  

Friday, November 19, 2010

Weathering the Storm

Coquihalla backwoods cabin

Once upon a time, there was a very large housing complex (650 units) that the owner wanted to sell. She thought that it would be easier if she divided the property into 4 strata titles, that way, if need be, she could sell to four owners, or just one. As it turned out, a group of investors purchased the whole project and it remained under the management of four strata management entities. It was a bit cumbersome, but the cost of amalgamation was high and as long as everyone co-operated things ran smoothly.
One day, several very greedy people decided they would hi-jack one of the strata entities and guarantee the owners of that particular strata low overhead and bigger rent cheques. How they did it was to lower the standards of who they would rent to, to guarantee full occupancy, and when problems would arise, they would not address them, but continue to simply 'milk the cow'.
Conditions deteriorated even more when they began to rent to a certain African ethnic group of young men who were the drug dealers in town. Soon there were drug deals in the parking lots, the hallways and the lobbies. There were shootings, stabbings, and fights. The others in the complex began to move out. Revenues fell and soon everyone who was an owner in the development became very concerned. The owners in the other three quarters of the development had their hands tied because any changes required all four stratas to agree.
Over the last few years, there have been steps taken to rectify this situation, mainly to amalgamate all four stratas. With many lawyers involved and much money spent, it is beginning to look hopeful again. Over the next few days the results will become known. Why do I care?  My hopes and dreams for retirement depend in large part to the outcome of this battle.  

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The LIberals Giveth ...

A winter sunset

....And the Liberals taketh away.
In a desperate attempt to gain favour with the voters, our premier promised us a 15% reduction in personal income taxes. Now that he is resigning, he no longer needs to be generous, in fact he is getting even with us for not approving of him. The promised reduction was just that, only a promise. 
In my view, all of this turmoil over the HST and Campbell's fall in the polls could have been avoided had he simply reduced the HST rate by, say 2%. There would then have been a reduction in taxes on everything that was fully taxed before, and a moderate increase in those things that were not PST or GST taxable before. It would be an overall net gain for the coffers of the government, but it would have softened the blow. We could have lived with it. Too late now. The HST anger has progressed to MLA recall petitions being passed around numerous ridings in the province. And yesterday our lame duck premier canned a caucus member. It is getting more ugly with each passing day. 
And my pick for a successor for the Liberal leadership? She has officially announced that she will not be letting her name stand. Dianne Watts, the mayor of Surrey is smart. She is standing by and watching the Liberals implode. Either she will step in later to pick up the pieces, or she will wait until after the Liberals are soundly defeated in the next election. She IS a rising star.  

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Good News

As I cruise through my various favourite news sites, I scan the headlines, looking for something interesting, something that will catch my eye. As you well know, most of what we read, see, and hear on the news is negative. Many have advocated for more 'good news', thinking that it will boost our moods and attitudes into the positive range. But what kind of 'good news' would attract you? "Boy Scout helps little old lady across street"? "Homeless person finds a home"? "Carbon 'footprint' found to be irrelevant"? 
How about "Chocolate found to reduce heart disease"? Bingo!
That is what a Scandinavian study has concluded after a lengthy study. It actually reduces blood pressure much like drugs do, but with the only side effect being that your caloric intake has increased. So, now you can be fat and have a healthy heart. 
Now that is news I can get excited about.  

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Repeat Business

The owner of this house, Bob (not his real name) had a cousin who I went to school with. The cousin and I were friends and his dad was a professional house painter. Bob got his uncle to paint the house he owned before he built this one. When my friend's dad was half done painting the house, he quit. He was past retirement and said that his vision was just not good enough to do a nice enough job for his nephew. That is where I came in and finished the job.
Bob and his wife have been very good customers ever since. I have now painted this house twice and two others besides. This particular house is very beautiful inside. It is quite large with a full finished basement and a large swimming pool in the private back yard. They now live in a very exclusive townhouse development in the finest part of town. We, of course, decorated it for them before they moved in.
I have so many loyal customers on whom I depend for my livelihood and who I appreciate so very much. They always tell others when they are happy about having us work for them.
The new owners of the original house, the one the uncle gave up on, got my name from Bob and now they are my loyal customers. I have been back to that house at least 8 times since I painted it for Bob.     

Monday, November 15, 2010


Scroll down to find today's post, inadvertently posted yesterday. It is the one with the black squirrel.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Leaky Vase

Imagine inheriting an old house from a relative and having to clean out years of accumulated junk. If you came across this leaky vase would you relegate it to the Garage Sale heap, or would you find a place on your mantle for it. It probably would not go with your decor as those colours are not 'in' right now.  The English couple who did find it under the above circumstances must have known they were on to something because it eventually ended up at an auction where it fetched ..... not the estimated value of  $2 million, but CDN$84 million!
I think I will head out to the thrift stores this afternoon and see if I can find something similar. Who knows? But I am not paying any more that $3 for it.

Storing Up Treasures

When I first moved to this area as a young boy, the only squirrels we ever saw were at Stanley Park. They were a novelty, because where I grew up in Saskatchewan, there were plenty of gophers but no squirrels. Now we see squirrels everywhere! They are always busy foraging for food, and this time of year they are burying nuts and seeds to be dug up later when food is scarce. How do they remember where they buried it?
There are not many animals that store food for winter. We humans used to do it when we were a primarily agrarian society, but now the local supermarket does it for us, and on a daily basis. And what about our finances? Do we store up for a time of scarcity? Some of us do. Is it a wise thing to do or does it show a lack of faith and trust in our Provider, God. 
Looking back on our lives should give a clue, when we see how God provided in harrowing times, when we could not see the light of day, when our financial situation was closing in around us. Will he not be faithful in our future also? I have struggled with this concept all my life. Do I free myself from worry, and trust God, or do I use my intelligence and foresight to prepare for the future by hanging on to resources that could be given away or spent today? 
Yesterday's lesson in church got me going again on this internal dialogue. I have resolved to stop worrying about it, at the least. In the meanwhile, I will still be a little like the squirrel and store up a few more nuts. Winter is coming.    

Saturday, November 13, 2010


Here is another house I worked in, however, I did much more than a decorating job here. It was on those front steps that I was standing when the customer had a heart attack and collapsed right in front of me. After calling 911, I did my rendition of CPR on him for the next ten minutes and amazingly, he survived, although he did not come around while I was working on him. No heartbeat, no pulse, no worries. Are you kidding! It was the longest sustained bout of panic I have ever experienced. Just looking at the photo gives me the 'willies'.  

Friday, November 12, 2010


One of our back yard residents

I had not seen my old customer Mary (not her real name) since 2001. I knew her husband had passed away but had only heard that it was a stroke and did not know any details. He was only 64. This week we went back to widow Mary's and she filled me in on what has transpired since last I worked for her and her husband.
He was a Veterinarian of high moral character and with an outstanding reputation in his field. One day, out of the blue, his license was pulled. What followed was an amazing tale of an innocent man who was framed by one of our Canadian Government bureaucracies. There was a trumped up charge, falsified evidence, and withheld evidence at a subsequent Supreme Court case. He was assured, off the record, behind closed doors, that he was innocent, but that they wanted to get at one of his clients who was exporting beef. The US Beef Growers and their lobbyists pulled out all the stops to strike a demoralizing blow to the Canadian Beef Producers. It was a tale of saving jobs, possibly bribes, influence pedaling, and intimidation. The details are too numerous to outline here. Mary's husband took his case to the Supreme Court and for three years fought the government to get his license and his good name back. It took a toll on his pocket book and on his health. Just as he won the case, he died of a massive stroke. Mary fought for another 8 months to get some of her court costs back but was only moderately successful. Needless to say she is bitter. Her son was studying law at the time and is now more motivated than ever to practice his craft so he can right some of the wrongs he saw perpetrated on his dad. He graduates at Christmas.
After hearing the story, quite frankly, I was amazed to hear that something like that could happen in Canada. Sadly, most of our politicians have no idea what is going on in the bureaucracies that they oversee. It is these institutions and the special interest groups that seem to be running the country and they answer to nobody.  

Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Question

Is this the last leaf?

The much hated HST (Harmonized Sales Tax) is in the news again. Apparently the wording of the referendum question has been proposed and will be debated in the legislature in the spring before the final draft is put to a vote, when a simple majority will either repeal the tax or guarantee its survival. Here is the wording: Are you in favour of extinguishing the HST and reinstating the PST in conjunction with the GST - yes or no?
At first glance it is straight forward, but there are unanswered questions remaining. Will the PST and GST be applied to the same goods and services as it was prior to the HST? What will the rate of PST and GST be?  I would not vote either way on this question until those two questions are answered. From the start, the biggest problem with the HST was that it was applied to  items and services across the board when it was introduced, resulting in a larger tax burden to consumers of goods and services. Will we be better off if we revert back to the old system? Only if the overall tax burden is lessened.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Eagle Dinner

Eagles used to be a very rare sight in this country, but no longer. But it is still a thrill to see one this close in its natural habitat. There were two of them in this tree and as we rounded the bend on our dyke walk, we noticed a lady with a large poodle, running loose, and in her arms was her furry little lap dog, struggling to break free. The Eagles were screaming out to each other and the lady was hanging on for dear life. No doubt, the Eagles were planning an early dinner and good for the dog owner to recognize the danger. Imagine watching your pet being swept up by one of these diving predators!
Later, as I tried to get closer for a better shot of these magnificent birds, they suddenly lost interest in the dog, and me, and flew off.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Storm Brewing

With modern technology, it is very tempting for unscrupulous individuals to try their hand at counterfeiting money. Some are quite proficient at it and get away with it for a time. The penalties are severe and after repeated offences, usually jail time is in order. So how much money does one have to counterfeit before it is a serious crime? Apparently if you are the government, you can print as much as $600 billion and nobody will come after you. This is what happened last week. 
There is a lack of understanding of history on the part of the US government. Every time excess printing of fiat currency (paper money that is not backed by gold) has been tried, to boost the economy, it has failed monumentally. It was tried in the days of the Roman Empire. More recently, post WWI Germany tried it and suffered from hyperinflation where a wheelbarrow of money was required to purchase a loaf of bread. Even more recently, Argentina, and then only a few years ago, Zimbabwe. It always ends in disaster. One does not have to live very long these days to see that many of our leaders do not know their history, or refuse to learn from its lessons.  

Monday, November 8, 2010

A Walk on the Wild Side

Sunday afternoon we decided to go for a walk and as we headed out, we realized that we were going to have to chose our trail carefully as there were storm clouds building in several directions. We started at Willbrand creek and after a full loop decided to then drive south and east. We ended up at No.3 Road and MacDonald Park where the sun was till shining. Now, should we walk to the west along the dyke, into the sun, or head east where we saw some wild weather building? We decided to take a walk on the wild side and there was drama in the lighting. With no wind and the sun at our backs, it was a perfect walk.  

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Change of Plan

I often meet people who tell me that they are going to give me a call because they are interested in having me do some work for them. Sometimes they call and sometimes they do not. That is normal, so when I hear that, I do not take it seriously until they call. Last year there was a couple I worked for who sold their larger home and moved into a townhouse. After doing a few days of work, they said they would call me when they were ready to complete the decorating in their new home. I had done their previous home so I was sure I would get a call. They did not call.
Today I met them at the bank. They said they would give me a call to come complete the job. They were very friendly and chatty and in the few minutes we had, I learned that he had broken his back from a fall off a ladder (he has since fully recovered) and their daughter, who is a young mom, almost died from a virus and was on a ventilator for weeks before she recovered. It shows how our best intentions can be interrupted, our plans changed, our priorities re-set. Barring any more disasters, I believe this couple will give me a call.  


Saturday, November 6, 2010

Back to Houses I Have Worked In

It has been a while since I have posted a house that I have worked in. It was a project I started some time ago and have put on the back burner for a time.
This is a case where I remember the customer so much more than the house or the work I did in the house. When I first met Linda (not her real name) she lived in a modest house on the other side of town with her four daughters. Her husband was killed in an industrial accident and she was a new widow. He had left her a lot of money so she moved to this house a year or two later and I again did some work for her. By this time, only two daughters were living at home. She was still unmarried. The next time I would work for her, she would be married and living through a big renovation in a luxurious home. I heard recently that she took her own life as a result of depression. She was a wonderful Christian lady who was dealt a bad hand in life and could not overcome. I think of her often as I drive past the four different homes I worked in for her.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Going it Alone

The leader of our Provincial Liberals, the top politician in our province, our Premier, has resigned and we are in for some interesting times. His numbers in the polls and some rumblings within his caucus were the cause of this and it will be interesting to see who steps forward to take his place. It will  have to be someone who can distance himself from the Premier and from the hated HST which brought discontent to a head. Because Mr. Campbell was seen as a top down leader, a one man show, this may not be too difficult, but time will tell. Someone from outside the party would stand the best chance at winning voter's confidence back.
In the history of our province, the socialist party has only ever gained power when the right of center vote was split. There is a danger of that happening now. The new leader of the Liberal party, which in reality is a coalition of anti-NDP politicians, will have to be able to gel these factions in order to fend off the NDP. There is a certain mayor of Surrey that I think has a chance of fitting the requirements I have just outlined. We shall see what happens.

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Sears recently made what I thought was a good business move. There will be a referendum on the hated HST in Sept. of next year and Sears was thinking that there were a lot of potential customers out there who might be putting large purchases, of services, on hold until the referendum results come in. That means a big slow down of business in the interim. So they are offering a refund of the HST if the purchase is made now and the HST is defeated in next year's vote. My own business will be facing this same dilemma in the next ten  months and I would consider doing something similar in order to keep the contracts coming.
But, our provincial government is seeing this as a direct business move to influence the outcome of the referendum, and they want to take Sears to court with a legal action against them. This government has had a propaganda blitz going for quite some time now to convince the public of a lie, that more tax is less. This move against Sears, or the mere talk of it, is backfiring on them. It really makes consumers even more angry than ever at the ruling Liberals. 
Yesterday our premier of ten years saw the writing on the wall and resigned. Funny how when the voters have had enough and they unite their voice, it can actually make a difference. There were 500,000 signatures on the Anti HST petition submitted a few months ago. That reflects a lot of dissatisfaction.  

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The Americans Have a Beef

Last night we saw the American voters repudiate big government, big spending, big deficits, and the big man himself, Obama. Sanity may be returning to the US of A.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Drugs vs. Booze

In the suburbs of Merrit

There are many people who feel pretty good about themselves because their drug of choice is alcohol. According to a recent  study by the Lancet, a British medical journal, alcohol is actually the most harmful drug you can use. They measured harm in terms of detrimental effects on the body and on society. Cocaine, heroin, crack cocaine and crystal meth are not nearly as harmful, says the study. I question the logic.
I posted a piece about our little town being the murder capitol of Canada. This is almost completely due to the fact that people are drunk. Not.
The underlying reason for the property crimes as well as the murders in our fair city is the drugs, excluding alcohol. So the social and physical harm is off the scale just in my own locale. I would never deny that alcohol is devastating to one's health and society as a whole, but in moderation, and used responsibly, it need not be a problem, and can actually be somewhat beneficial. But, even light use of hard drugs creates great harm to the body and to society because of the criminal aspect of buying and selling it and getting the large amounts of money needed to feed a very expensive habit.
Ideally, nobody should use any drugs. Everyone would be healthy and costs to the medical system and society as a whole would reduce dramatically.
I spoke with a RN, today, who has worked in the ER for twenty years and she said that in her experience, she is convinced that if nobody smoked or drank alcohol to excess, they could shut down half of the medical system. And there is the drug that is not mentioned in the study, nicotine. 

Making any drug illegal does not work. Education does.