Cocaine caused the banking crisis, says controversial former drugs tsar

Coke certainly promotes aggressive, thoughtless behaviour and inflates the user’s ego – sounds like the perfect drug for City bankers.

Via Daily Mail:

The British banking crisis was caused by bankers taking cocaine, according to the Government’s former drugs tsar.

Professor David Nutt, who was sacked in 2009 after saying there was ‘not much difference’ between the dangers of taking ecstasy and horse riding, said bankers who took cocaine became ‘overconfident’ and ‘took more risks’.

He said cocaine suited their ‘culture of excitement and drive and more and more and more’ attitude.

The 61-year-old professor added that: ‘Bankers use cocaine and got us into this terrible mess. It is a “more” drug,’ The Daily Telegraph reported.

Professor Nutt blamed drug-taking bankers for the current crisis in British banking, as well as the 1995 collapse of Barings bank.

Controversial comments made by Professor Nutt, who is professor of neuropsychopharmacology at Imperial College London, have made the headlines in the past.

Last week he accused the Government of hindering his medical research because of ‘absurd’ and ‘insane’ laws on cannabis, ecstasy and magic mushrooms which made psilocybin – an ingredient used to treat depression – difficult to get hold of.

Professor David Nutt said cocaine was perfect for bankers' 'culture of excitement and drive and more and more and more' (file image)Professor David Nutt said cocaine was perfect for bankers’ ‘culture of excitement and drive and more and more and more’ (file image)

He told the British Neuroscience Association festival the laws meant he has to pay £6,000 for a licence, which was ‘bonkers’, or face buying it on the streets, which ‘my ethics committee wouldn’t allow’.

He told the Observer: ‘The reason we haven’t started the study is because finding companies who could manufacture the drug and who are prepared to go through the regulatory hoops to get the licence, which can take up to a year and triple the price, is proving very difficult.

‘The whole situation is bedevilled by this primitive, old-fashioned attitude that Schedule 1 drugs could never have therapeutic potential.’

During his stint as the Government’s most senior drugs advisor he claimed alcohol and tobacco were more dangerous than many illegal drugs, including LSD, ecstasy and cannabis.

He also Critised the coalition’s failure to set minimum pricing on alcohol as ‘pathetic’ and accused them of having ‘chickened out’.

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