我並不是建議你們的世界不要有行為的法規和協議(no codes of hehavior, no agreements)。我建議的是，你們的法規和協議應建立在一個更高理解和一種更恢宏定義的自我利益(a higher understanding and a grander definition of self-interest)上。
法律——那實際上是限制——越少越好。(To have as few laws—which are really limits—as possible.)
第一種野草(weed 大麻)之所以不合法，只是表面上為了健康的理由。實情則是，第一種野草並不比菸草和酒精更有害健康，而後面兩者卻受到法律的保障。為什麼大麻不被允許呢？因為如果讓它生長，則全世界半數的棉花農、尼龍和人造絲製造業者以及木材業者，都會歇業倒閉。(Because if it were grown, half the cotton growers, nylon and rayon manufacturers, and timber products people in the world would go out of business.)
大麻正是是你們星球上最有用、最強、最壯、最耐用的材料之一。你們製造不出比它更好的衣料，更結實的繩材，更容易收成的紙漿材料。你們每年砍幾百萬棵樹來做紙漿，好讓你們在報紙上讀到全球的森林是如何被摧折。大麻可以供應你們數百萬份的報紙，而不用砍一棵樹。確實，大麻可以以十分之一的成本取代非常多的原料(Indeed, it could substitute for so many resource materials, at one-tenth cost.)。
Neale: Still, truly lawless societies are primitive societies, where “might is right.” Laws are man's attempt to level the playing field; to ensure that what is truly right will prevail, weakness or strength notwithstanding. Without codes of behavior upon which we mutually agree, how could we coexist?
I am not suggesting a world with no codes of behavior, no agreements. I am suggesting that your agreements and codes be based on a higher understanding and a grander definition of self-interest.
What most laws actually do say is what the most powerful among you have as their vested interest.
Let's just look at one example. Smoking.
Now the law says you cannot grow and use a certain kind of plant, hemp, because, so government tells you, it is not good for you.
Yet the same government says it is all right to grow and use another kind of plant, tobacco, not because it is good for you (indeed, the government itself says it is bad), but, presumably, because you've always done so.
The real reason that the first plant is outlawed and the second is not has nothing to do with health. It has to do with economics. And that is to say, power.
Your laws, therefore, do not reflect what your society thinks of itself, and wishes to be—your laws reflect where the power is.
Neale: No fair. You picked a situation where the contradictions are apparent. Most situations are not like that.
On the contrary. Most are.
Neale: Then what is the solution?
To have as few laws—which are really limits—as possible.
The reason the first weed is outlawed is only ostensibly about health. The truth is, the first weed is no more addictive and no more a health risk than cigarettes or alcohol, both of which are protected by the law. Why is it then not allowed? Because if it were grown, half the cotton growers, nylon and rayon manufacturers, and timber products people in the world would go out of business.
Hemp happens to be one of the most useful, strongest, toughest, longest-lasting materials on your planet. You cannot produce a better fiber for clothes, a stronger substance for ropes, an easier-to-grow-and-harvest source for pulp. You cut down hundreds of thousands of trees per year to give yourself Sunday papers, so that you can read about the decimation of the world's forests. Hemp could provide you with millions of Sunday papers without cutting down one tree. Indeed, it could substitute for so many resource materials, at one-tenth the cost.
And that is the catch. Somebody loses money if this miraculous plant—which also has extraordinary medicinal properties, incidentally—is allowed to be grown. And that is why marijuana is illegal in your country.