72 - Mario Brandenburg, FDP - Politics, Psychedelics & the State

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This is an important episode! Because, just like that, there is a whole new generation of politicians working on integrating psychedelic-assisted therapy in the healthcare system and into new laws. What will the BTM (Betäubungsmittelgesetz in Germany) look like? Will we see a decentralization of mental health care? Why is pretty much everyone microdosing, although it is still really illegal? I am thrilled to talk to Mario Brandenburg from the FDP party today about the coming years, psychedelics, and yes, Germany.

Because there is not the slightest piece of fresh information on this in German, we decided to run this episode in German. But there will be one soon in English.

This shows's guest is Mario Bradenburg, a member of the German Bundestag and a member of the FDP, the German liberal party. Last year, he was one of the first politicians in Germany, who started to look into the possible rescheduling of psilocybin and made a request, how the old government under Angela Merkle could be encouraged to spend more money on clinical trials in terms of psychedelics.

Now, since the election, Brandenburg is part of the new government and might be one of the German politicians engaging in making psychedelic-assisted therapy available in Germany in the coming years. Who is the guy?

Mario Brandeburg, born in Rhineland-Pfalz, is a spokesman for research, technology, and innovation for the Free Democrats FDP in the German Bundestag, chairman of the Education and Research Working Group, and deputy member of the Digital Agenda Committee. His topics are research and technology, digital growth, and biotech.

In May 2021, Brandenburg and some FDP colleagues submitted a so-called "Kleine Anfrage zu Medizinische Forschung mit Psilocybin und anderen psychedelischen Wirkstoffen in Deutschland" (small inquiry on medical research with psilocybin and other psychedelic substances in Germany), in which he presented a list of questions to the federal government at the time, on the basis of which the government had to provide information about the current assessment of psilocybin as a therapeutic agent. That's how I became aware of Brandenburg and invited him to the podcast after the change of government.

On the show today, we talk about

  • legalization of cannabis in Germany and the decrim movement in the US.
  • decentralized mental health models and what would happen if you don't have to wait months to see a psychiatrist or therapist.
  • the War on Drugs, why FDP leader Christian Lindner is talking about ending the criminalization of users and 'draining the black market'.
  • why the Germans are afraid of microdosing and Silicon Valley, and:
  • after the pandemic and Covid, do we need speed decriminalization of new psychedelic tools that will help us to really cope with the massive wave of mental health problems?

Enjoy this episode!