That’s what’s dominating the headlines in this week’s Dundalk Democrat. Sheena Brothers reports that ‘for well over a month now smokers of the popular yet illegal drug have been unable to score anything but the lowest quality hash and even that has now dried up”. Head of the local drugs unit explains:”It is not something that is specific to Dundalk. It’s a national situation. It could be a combination of any number of factors from the conflict in the Middle East and many of the hash producing countries to efforts by dealers to change the usual drugs of choice to more expensive options”.
One local user described the situation as ‘awful’. “Even if you’re willing to travel to get it there’s still nothing available anywhere and whatever anyone gets they are keeping to themselves and their regulars.” Another said “there is loads of grass around. The town is flooded with it but no one can afford to buy it. They’re doing �50 bags which equates to an evening’s smoke for a regular smoker”.
The question arises, is this the free market in action reacting nibbly to an international shortage or are ‘customers’ being taken to the cleaners by a local/national cartel? There is also the question of the economic relation between local consumers and the marginalised producers living in areas currently in conflict with ‘the west’.
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty