How should a society responsibly manage addictive substances and behaviours?
To briefly define addiction; an addiction is an act which self -reinforces with rewards of conscious values (social, money, kindness) or subconscious values (biological, emotional) and shortens or worsens life.
Assuming freedom of choice is the fundamental building block to a better community for tomorrow. This freedom must be be balanced between individual & group costs. The initial question is positioned as how the group should properly present addiction to the individual. A state supports a citizen until some arbitrary criteria for independence is achieved. The state seeks to maintain itself and its standards. Freedom of choice being the fundamental value, physical & mental maturity as secondary and rewarding physical & mental effort as the tertiary group values.
So my development of this state of affairs to an ideal approach by the state is as follows. The addictive act, should be presented at a time when the body & mind are adequately prepared. This point of maturity will vary from addiction to addiction, mainly on the power to self-reinforce. Assistance to develop qualities which improve both decision making and harm reduction should be publicly supplied, such things as education on chemical & social effects or advertising. The choice is allowed when the individual is arbitrarily mature and the addiction is taxed to compensate the state for increased social support often caused by addiction. The process of earning money should engage a citizen in a more ‘proper’ lifestyle.