Never Get Busted

The drug liberalization blogosphere is all abuzz over Barry Cooper. He’s apparently a former Texas narcotics officer who has produced a video called “Never Get Busted” in which he apparently explains how to avoid getting arrested for drug possession.

As it happens, I too have a foolproof system for avoiding a drug possession arrest: I don’t possess drugs.

I think we can assume that’s not what Cooper has in mind. Presumably, what he’s really going to teach people is how to possess drugs without getting arrested for possessing them.

He claims to be motivated by a desire to help people who will otherwise suffer under our unreasonable narcotics laws. Of course, if that’s all he wanted to do, he could do what the folks at the Flex Your Rights Foundation did with their Busted video: Release the entire video at YouTube.

Instead, Barry Cooper sells the video at his web site for $24.95, plus $5.95 for shipping and handling. There’s nothing wrong with making some money, but a few things about his operation bother me.

First of all, Barry Cooper sounds a lot like infomercial guru Don LaPre, and that’s never a good sign. You may not know the name, but you’d recognize his delivery. I couldn’t find any online video of LaPre, but here’s a parody of Don LaPre that’s pretty close, and here’s one that’s even closer but kind of long.

Second, the Never Get Busted website is just a little too slick looking, especially when compared with the LEAP web site.

Third, according to Libby at Last One Speaks, he approached Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) a few weeks ago and asked to join their speaker’s beureau. He then began promoting his video and claiming to be a LEAP speaker, even though they had told him he couldn’t use LEAP to promote the video. Since then, LEAP has dumped him.

Fourth, in one of his interviews he says this video holds nothing back. So why is it called “Volume 1”?

Fifth, Barry Cooper is totally unknown in the drug law reform community. The folks at the D’Alliance never heard of him, nor did Libby Spencer, Loretta Nall, Pete Guither, or LEAP. If Cooper really believed in his video, aren’t those exactly the people who’d be getting review copies?

There’s a lot of speculation that this could be some sort of undercover operation, perhaps by the DEA, to get drug users to identify themselves. That seems unlikely to me. I think he’s just a hustler looking for a quick buck.

Time will tell, and I’ll publish my apology if I’m wrong.

2 Responses to Never Get Busted

  1. When this craze subsides, I’m really interested in how a guy, without apparently spending bucks for ads anywhere, can get free publicity in hundreds of newspapers and blogs all over the country. This is the best example of viral marketing I’ve seen.

    I agree completely with what you have said here — Cooper is trying to sell people a way to not get arrested when they possess illegal drugs. Look how well it is working! He’s probably collected quite a bit already. If he doesn’t have a video yet, he could probably now afford to go out and make one.

    How old-fashioned it seems to print brochures and mail newsletters to people. Cooper may not have licked a single stamp to sell his video.

    Something remarkable is happening. Will there be copycat ventures? And how will this affect the way people look at traditional marketing?

    All this is separate from issues more directly related to the content of his ads or videos or his use or misuse of LEAP’s good name.

  2. This is an excerpt from a popular review posted by (this blog site)after viewing my DVD. Mark Draughn writes:

    “If you sometimes travel by car with small amounts of marijuana—a few joints, say—then this video will probably help you avoid getting busted.

    In my first post about this video, when it was just buzz on the Internet, I said I thought Cooper was a hustler looking for a quick buck, and that I’d apologize if I was wrong. I think I have to apologize a bit.

    Barry Cooper may be trying to make a quick buck, but the word “hustler” carries a connotation of dishonesty that was unwarranted. Sorry Barry. Your DVD is what you said it would be.”

    Barry Writes:

    I produced a DVD that shouts aloud what cops think in secret not what people have been told for years by attorneys and good activists. The info told for years is accurate just as my DVD is accurate if viewers understand the story is being told through the lens of a cop.

    So far, thousands of copies sold, only four returns on my guarantee and they were all cops except one.

    It’s good information.



Leave a reply