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"We didn't ask, 'Are you seeing monsters and aliens?' They were telling us that."

PBS Newshour brings the science on bath salts (previously). Contains graphic descriptions of awesome laboratory experiments. via BoingBoing
posted by zjacreman on Sep 21, 2012 - 91 comments

"Criminal issues from herbal incense? We can help."

The Fake-Pot Industry Is Coming Down From a Three-Year High - a fascinating read on the multibillion-dollar "herbal incense" business and its latest legal woes after the introduction of more severe legislation on synthetic cannabinoids. Featuring the rise and downfall of Mr. Nice Guy, rogue chemists, warehouses exploding, DEA undercover operations and "the Saul Goodmans of synthetic cannabinoids" - two attorneys specialized in providing "Cutting Edge In Incense Testing and Compliance" services to manufacturers to help them "stay one step ahead of the law". (via longform) [more inside]
posted by bitteschoen on Sep 15, 2012 - 37 comments

Pawns in the War on Drugs

Sarah Stillman for the New Yorker on confidential informants and the ends they meet -- "Gaither was tortured, beaten with a bat, shot with a pistol and a shotgun, run over by a car, and dragged by a chain through the woods." [more inside]
posted by grobstein on Aug 28, 2012 - 84 comments

Oliver Sacks on Drugs

Oliver Sacks on drugs. (New Yorker podcast interview). [previously][via]
posted by stonepharisee on Aug 22, 2012 - 18 comments

Drugs 2.0

Drugs have changed a lot in the past ten years. You have, mainly, these two men to blame/thank for most of the fervor. Laws are flexing accordingly. [Shulgin previously: 1,2]
posted by fieldcannotbeblank on Aug 14, 2012 - 20 comments

"I don't want to die doing drugs. I don't want to be that kid who was the son of the head coach of the Eagles, who was spoiled and on drugs and OD'd and just faded into oblivion."

"Garrett Reid, the oldest son of Philadelphia Eagles coach Andy Reid, was found dead Sunday morning in his room at training camp at Lehigh University." Garrett's legal troubles and struggle with addiction were widely publicized over the years due to his high profile father. After leaving prison he fought hard to change this legacy and was employed as a trainer with the team at the time of his death. "Garrett’s road through life was not always an easy one. He faced tremendous personal challenges with bravery and spirit. As a family, we stood by him and were inspired as he worked to overcome those challenges. Even though he lost the battle that has been ongoing for the last eight years, we will always remember him as a fighter who had a huge, loving heart." [more inside]
posted by furiousxgeorge on Aug 7, 2012 - 17 comments

Marina Akhmedova amongst the crocodile addicts of Yekaterinburg

Marina Akhmedova amongst the crocodile addicts of Yekaterinburg - published and censored in Russia, translated and mirrored on opendemocracy. "They check intently who is getting how much, and count out the eyedrops. If I ran right now into the middle of the kitchen and bellowed at the top of my voice, they would not turn round. Their world extends only a few metres and has the cooker and its hood at its centre. It is not a world within the world: it is their entire world, a world as narrow as a coffin, but all-encompassing for those who live in it, a world which follows its own laws. In it there are neither saints nor sinners, no thieves or benefactors, only the harsh laws of survival. There is no truth, no certainty about anything, not even that the sun will rise tomorrow. It is a world which arises when people are dicing with death. A supreme, inexorable law instantly appears, an axis around which their universe revolves: it is the right of those as yet still human to play a game they have chosen for themselves."
posted by jcrcarter on Aug 7, 2012 - 25 comments

"Reefer makes darkies think they’re as good as white men."

It's Not Just NYC: Across America, Only Black and Brown People Get Arrested for Pot - "New York City (previously), the pot-bust capital of the Western world, is notorious for the racial skewing (previously) of its marijuana arrests. Over the last 15 years, more than 85 percent of the half-million-plus people charged with misdemeanor possession there have been black or Latino. But the racial ratios of reefer roundups are equally extreme—if not worse—in scores of other U.S. cities." Same (trailer) as it (PDF) ever was? (video)
posted by mrgrimm on Jul 24, 2012 - 60 comments

"We could not afford to buy that much heroin."

Q: What's the connection between heroin in Glasgow and a dead goat in Turkey? A: Anthrax.
posted by Len on Jul 21, 2012 - 16 comments

"The more ghoulish and extreme the show becomes, ...the more accurately it captures the reality of the cartels and their business."

The Uncannily Accurate Depiction of the Meth Trade in “Breaking Bad”
posted by reenum on Jul 16, 2012 - 58 comments

I pointed to the husbands on the side, watching their wives and wincing

A new piece for the Awl, by writer Amy Sohn "The 40-Year-Old Reversion" satirizing the group of parents she parties with in Brooklyn, has sparked some pretty harsh criticism around the web, from scenester blogs, mainstream sources, and parenting sites alike. But others see it as a very useful lesson about contraception.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Jul 13, 2012 - 165 comments

What if they ended a war and nobody left?

Is legalization or at least ending the war on drugs a solution to gang violence? Drug Business is not the Key to Gangs And Organized Crime: With a Prognosis for the Mexican Cartel Wars explores the idea of gangs and other crime organizations as mainly political actors. (previous mention of sociologist Randall Collins)
posted by patrick54 on Jul 12, 2012 - 30 comments

What kind of PRI will rule Mexico?

With the election of Pena Nieto to the presidency, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) ends a twelve-year absence from the seat. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Jul 3, 2012 - 29 comments

A Snitch’s Dilemma

"Alex White, Professional Snitch: What do you do when the cops you work for are dirtier than you are?" Metafilter previously on Kathryn Johnston.
posted by andoatnp on Jun 29, 2012 - 13 comments

Catnip: Egress to Oblivion? [Classroom Drug Educational Film]

"There are approximately 250 species of catnip and this figure doesn't include hybrids. But all of these substances have one thing in common. The active ingredient, nepetalactone cycloalkane." (slyt)
posted by RobotHero on Jun 29, 2012 - 48 comments

Faster and Furiouser

"The truth about the Fast and Furious scandal: A Fortune investigation reveals that the ATF never intentionally allowed guns to fall into the hands of Mexican drug cartels. How the world came to believe just the opposite is a tale of rivalry, murder, and political bloodlust." [more inside]
posted by andoatnp on Jun 27, 2012 - 63 comments

You're gonna like this guy. He's all right. He's a good fella. He's one of us.

Informant, former wiseguy and goodfella Henry Hill (website, Wikipedia) has been made dead by illness. He was not a schnook.
posted by Artw on Jun 12, 2012 - 33 comments

"Hey, dude, light the bowl!"

"Barry also had a knack for interceptions. When a joint was making the rounds, he often elbowed his way in, out of turn, shouted "Intercepted!," and took an extra hit. No one seemed to mind." A User's Guide To Smoking Pot With Barack Obama. [more inside]
posted by T.D. Strange on May 25, 2012 - 171 comments

How Psychedelic Drugs Can Help Patients Face Death

Scientists investigate the use of psychedelic drugs in end of life therapy "Grob and his colleagues are part of a resurgence of scientific interest in the healing power of psychedelics. Michael Mithoefer, for instance, has shown that MDMA is an effective treatment for severe P.T.S.D. Halpern has examined case studies of people with cluster headaches who took LSD and reported their symptoms greatly diminished. And psychedelics have been recently examined as treatment for alcoholism and other addictions. "
posted by bookman117 on May 18, 2012 - 57 comments

Drug Dealers Inc.

US Senate probes painkiller makers and their advocates. Improper relationships between pharmaceutical companies and organizations that promote their drugs helped usher in an epidemic that's killed 100,000 people through misuse of opioids. Sales of the powerful drugs have risen 300 percent since 1999 and opioids were involved in 14,800 overdose deaths in 2008, more than cocaine and heroin combined.
posted by binturong on May 9, 2012 - 75 comments

MK Occupy Minnesota

"The report indicates that police patrol downtown Minneapolis looking for impaired people, then drive them to a testing facility in Richfield for examination of their capabilities while intoxicated. But in some cases where no previously impaired people could be found, police seduced prospective participants with drugs. The study has been ongoing since early last month." [more inside]
posted by punishinglemur on May 3, 2012 - 23 comments

Clearly, he was on fire at the gym

Juicers, Trippers, and Crocodiles: The Dangerous World of Underground Chemistry
posted by IvoShandor on Apr 21, 2012 - 20 comments

Sometimes cops don’t want you to have a well kept lawn

Do Anything Stoned with Marty Adams presents: How To Mow Your Yard on PCP. [SLYT]
posted by quin on Apr 21, 2012 - 66 comments

Pareto's law on drugs

Rethinking the War on Drugs (WSJ video / not OpEd). A more nuanced view than typically found in the anti-drugs vs. legalize drugs ad nausea. Practical solutions being done today. [more inside]
posted by stbalbach on Apr 21, 2012 - 87 comments

A Raw Deal

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal has signed legislation that would require thousands of people applying for welfare to pass a drug test before they could receive benefits. [more inside]
posted by goHermGO on Apr 16, 2012 - 166 comments

The Junkie Old Folks' Home

"Woodstock is their last refuge, the only old-age home in the world where hard drugs are not a taboo, a place intended for people who, in their early 50s, look as worn out as if they were in their 70s." A model project keeps aging drug users out of the streets of The Hague. [more inside]
posted by Omnomnom on Apr 10, 2012 - 73 comments

In the name of Defense.

In December 1974, New York Times reporter Seymour Hersh's front-page account (paywall) of the CIA's MK-ULTRA program documented their illegal domestic intelligence operations against the antiwar movement and other dissident groups in the United States. The article eventually prompted investigations by the Rockefeller Commission and the Church and Pike committees. "There have been other reports on the CIA's doping of civilians, but they have mostly dished about activities in New York City. Accounts of what actually occurred in San Francisco have been sparse and sporadic. But newly declassified CIA records, recent interviews, and a personal diary of [George H. White,] an operative at Stanford Special Collections shed more light on the breadth of the San Francisco operation." SF Weekly: "Operation Midnight Climax: How the CIA doped San Francisco citizens with LSD." MK-ULTRA: Previously on Metafilter. (Via)
posted by zarq on Mar 26, 2012 - 29 comments

Transparency Life Sciences

Transparency Life Sciences is a startup drug development company trying to design clinical trials via an open source approach. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges on Feb 24, 2012 - 11 comments

If I had all the money in the world I would own all the crack in the world.

Chris Arnade is a forex trader with an odd pasttime: taking pictures of New York addicts in a series he calls Faces of Addiction.
posted by chundo on Feb 21, 2012 - 134 comments

Progress Stalled

In the summer of 2007 on the campaign trail Barack Obama took a clear stance on the controversial subject of medical marijuana. “I would not have the Justice Department prosecuting and raiding medical marijuana users. It’s not a good use of our resources.” As President in 2009 he took action to follow through on this promise by instructing federal prosecutors to “not focus federal resources in [their] States on individuals whose actions are in clear and unambiguous compliance with existing state laws providing for the medical use of marijuana.” The memo cited the “efficient and rational use” of the U.S. Department of Justice’s “limited investigative and prosecutorial resources,” as a motivating factor in the decision." In the winter of 2012 Rolling Stone magazine takes a look back on this subject and the record is surprising. "With more than 100 raids on pot dispensaries during his first three years, Obama is now on pace to exceed Bush's record for medical-marijuana busts. "There's no question that Obama's the worst president on medical marijuana," says Rob Kampia, executive director of the Marijuana Policy Project. "He's gone from first to worst." [more inside]
posted by furiousxgeorge on Feb 19, 2012 - 128 comments

Confessions of a middle-aged Ecstasy eater

Confessions of a middle-aged Ecstasy eater. I believe that my coming to Ecstasy goes further than mere thrill-seeking. I believe it goes to the centre of my life at the time. It was a period of personal devastation. It began with my only child, a son - he was then my best friend, from time to time still is - and I did not see it coming and it culminated in Ecstasy, and to that I see no end. He was beautiful and sensitive and extraordinarily talented, talented enough that at 13 his poetry had won the notice of university professors and New York book editors alike. So when he undertook to destroy himself, he took his mother and father with him. That was not, nor is it, his fault.
posted by gottabefunky on Feb 15, 2012 - 60 comments

Hippies Hate Slayer

For ages humankind has struggled with the definitive question of existence. To wit, "Can An Intelligent Person Like Phish?" A writer for Parks and Recreation says yes, but upon further field investigation involving large quantities of booze, psychedelics, pot, and "moonrocks" (Earwolf podcast) the answer is, obviously, no.
posted by bardic on Feb 2, 2012 - 68 comments

Will we ever know what caused the Salem Witch Trials?

"I would point out to you that medical explanations are modern. That Americans today want medical explanations for things that in the 19th century would have been explained by hysteria, and in the 18th century would have been explained by religious conversion experiences in the context of the Great Awakening, when people were having these types of fits, and in the 17th century by witchcraft."

posted by empath on Jan 30, 2012 - 54 comments

The Gift and the Curse

After years of rumored depressiondrug and alcohol addiction, and legal issues, D'Angelo is poised to make a comeback. [more inside]
posted by reenum on Jan 29, 2012 - 26 comments

Hanging the machine guns on the wall was a bad idea.

If you like real-life crime drama, Burgled in Philly, by John Davidson, will keep you occupied for a few minutes. [more inside]
posted by gilrain on Jan 26, 2012 - 40 comments

Beneath the molecular diagram was the simple caption “MAKE ME!”

SiHKAL: Shulgins I Have Known and Loved: After spending days, weeks, months poring over the work [PiHKAL: A Chemical Love Story; TiHKAL: The Continuation; lab books] of psychonaut-in-chief, Alexander Shulgin, Hamilton Morris mustered up the chutzpah to give him a call and request an interview. The result is this: an epic love-fest on the man who birthed Ecstasy in a test-tube. Hamilton visits the Shulgin residence (in San Francisco, naturally) and tempers his fanboy freakout with a rare and intensive look at the home and laboratory that caused the balls of millions to trip. For those who prefer text, here is the video in article form. [Shulgin previously: 1; 2]
posted by troll on Jan 20, 2012 - 15 comments

New, deadlier form of TB hits India

Tuberculosis, which kills around 1,000 people a day in India, has acquired a deadlier edge. Forty years ago, the world thought it had conquered TB. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Jan 7, 2012 - 34 comments

"I can make $2,000 a pound taking it across the country."

The New Dealers : For some time, I'd been hearing stories from my sources in the interstate marijuana racket about law-abiding "civilians" turning to the game because of the recession, and so, armed with introductions, I hit the road to meet some of these unlikely criminals face to face. That's how, on a hot evening in June, I found myself in Dan's Northern California kitchen.
posted by desjardins on Dec 26, 2011 - 55 comments

"Caught between Recovery and the Coffin"

If I Die Young: Struggling with Addiction and Recovery. "Last year, 249 people died of prescription drug overdoses in Pinellas County, FL. Just about everybody who knew Stacy Nicholson figured she was next. Then an empathetic judge gave her a choice: recovery, or the coffin." [more inside]
posted by zarq on Dec 17, 2011 - 86 comments

The Secret Life of Sam Hurd

It just hasn't been a good month for the Chicago Bears. First they lost Jay Cutler and Matt Forte to injuries, and yesterday wide receiver Sam Hurd was arrested in an undercover drug sting, after an investigation that began in July 2011.
posted by SisterHavana on Dec 16, 2011 - 60 comments

City of Fear

Prisoners in Brazil's prisons formed their own rules for governance, setting up a system much more effective than the government.
posted by reenum on Dec 13, 2011 - 18 comments

The pain is killing me

Even a little too much Tylenol over a few days can cause a liver failure. Paracetamol or acetaminophen, active ingredient of such over-the-counter painkillers as Tylenol, Panadol, Anacin-3 and many, many others, is considered safe - and it is, in prescribed doses. But even a single overdose can lead to liver failure despite treatment, and then only a liver transplant can avert a fatal outcome. [more inside]
posted by hat_eater on Nov 27, 2011 - 108 comments

If there are such things as angels, I hope that they are organized along the lines of the Mafia

The Mexican Mafia has significant operational control only within prisons, yet manages to tax street gangs at rates of 10-30% of revenues. It has become a kind of government. A PDF of the corresponding journal article exists here.
posted by exogenous on Oct 24, 2011 - 30 comments

Inside the Favelas

The media portrayed it as a fight between good cops and evil drug dealers. According to that point of view...
posted by Fiasco da Gama on Oct 21, 2011 - 14 comments

Biting back at Malaria...

A new malaria vaccine has been shown effective in large-scale field trials. After decades of disappointment, researchers think they're finally on track to unleash the first practical vaccine against malaria, one of mankind's ancient scourges. In the world's first large field trial of an experimental malaria vaccine, several thousand young children who got three doses had about 55 percent less risk of getting the disease over a year than those who got a control vaccine against rabies or meningitis. [more inside]
posted by BobbyVan on Oct 18, 2011 - 21 comments

"He is, it goes without saying, a popular, popular man at dinner parties."

Beyond Pot Brownies
posted by empath on Oct 16, 2011 - 48 comments

Memoires of a Heroin-head

"On the 28th October 1975 my mother gave birth to a heroinhead - that was/is me. My father was a young Glaswegian junkie nicknamed Puggy. I was born with heroin in my veins. 7 years after my birth, my father was brutally murdered by infamous British serial-killer Dennis Nilsen. [more inside]
posted by metaxa on Oct 10, 2011 - 36 comments

Phil Collins' solo efforts seem to be more commercial and therefore more satisfying in a narrower way, especially No Jacket Required and songs like "In the Air Tonight" and "Against All Odds"

"Patrick Bateman was me. I was Patrick Bateman…" - Bret Easton Ellis interviewed.
posted by Artw on Oct 4, 2011 - 151 comments

SCC OKs Safe Injection Sites

SCC approves safe injection sites. The Supreme Court of Canada today ordered the federal government to stop its efforts to shut down a safe injection clinic in Vancouver, opening the door to more clinics opening across the country. [more inside]
posted by modernnomad on Sep 30, 2011 - 35 comments

*Inhales* hmmm, needs more horse...

"It begins with a freshly showered person riding naked for hours on a clean, washed horse inside a two-meter-high 'forest' of marijuana. Afterwards, the human body and that of the horse are covered with a thick layer of resin mixed with sweat. This produces a substance that is usually dark brown in color, which is then thoroughly scraped off the human and horse's bodies." The Chu (sometimes Chui or Chuy) valley produced much of the marijuana available in the Soviet Union, and continues its unique harvest to this day. Via The World on PRI (audio link). [more inside]
posted by codacorolla on Sep 9, 2011 - 64 comments

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