Howard Marks is on Tour

Howard Marks is ‘Mr Nice’.


How has a drug dealer managed to market himself as nice? The Oxford English Dictionary defines ‘nice’ as ‘agreeable, attractive, delightful, satisfactory, kind, friendly, considerate, generally commendable…’ Not words often associated with large-scale drug dealing. Howard Marks is a man who started to deal drugs during a postgraduate philosophy course at Oxford (possibly where he honed his tedious, self-satisfied rhetoric) and at the height of his criminal career, if you can call drug dealing a career, was importing consignments of up to thirty tons of hash from Pakistan and Thailand into America. He had links with the IRA and the Mafia – are these organizations known for their benevolence?

I was a drug addict for over ten years and was the consumer of plenty of Mr Marks’ product and just about every other drug you care to mention. In all those years I never met a ‘nice’ drug dealer or, for that matter, one who didn’t occasionally deal in harder drugs. In my experience, dealers were either addicts themselves, which makes them manipulative, ruthless and universally dishonest, or professional criminals just in it for the money. Which makes them even more manipulative, ruthless and universally dishonest. Either way, Marks wasn’t in it for the good of others.

It seems to me that Howard Marks is nice in the same way the Kray twins were nice.

Are there really any nice drug dealers?

Can you name anyone who is affiliated with the IRA or the Mafia who is truly nice?

Howard Marks PR people must really be earning their money. Not just for getting him the Mr Nice tag but also for convincing people to go and see this unbelievably tedious drug-addled old bloke mumble for an hour.

I’ve had more fun doing cold turkey in a derelict building.

What next?

Abu Hamza – entertaining after-dinner speaker and all round good egg?