Prescription painkillers kill more people than heroin, AIDS or H1N1.
Mark McGwire was one of the most feared sluggers in the game during his career. In 1998, the home run chase between McGwire and Sammy Sosa helped baseball recover from the 1994 strike. But, when a reporter found a bottle containing andro in McGwire's locker, some chinks in his armor began to emerge. [more inside]
"Professor David Nutt, chairman of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs, attacked the decision to make cannabis a class B drug, claiming ecstasy, LSD and cannabis are less dangerous than cigarettes and alcohol. [more inside]
Inscentinel uses trained bees to sniff out drugs, explosives, and spoiled food.
Brenda Kenneally documents the effects of illegal drugs in her Brooklyn, New York neighborhood. Money Power Respect and Big Trigg. NSFW [previous comment]
Ten drugs you should never take when driving a car Meinte ich, lustig noch wieder, und dann nochmal. [more inside]
Just as quietly as when they first voted on this, the Mexican government has decriminalized the possession of drugs for personal use. Associated Press's take. The official decree. Despite the understated release of the information, this is a sea change in Mexican policy and could very well be the beginning of a change in U.S. policy as well.
"It takes about seven years," Grim writes, "for folks to realize what's wrong with any given drug. It slips away, only to return again as if it were new."Why We Say Yes To Drugs -- an interesting review of This Is Your Country on Drugs: The Secret History of Getting High In America. [more inside]
You may know it as acetaminophen, paracetamol, APAP, or ... Tylenol. Today an FDA advisory panel recommended banning prescription drugs that contain acetaminophen, such as vicodin and percocet. The panel of experts also voted to give acetaminophen a black box warning, and reduce the maximum dosage of over-the-counter formulations. Acetaminophen is a popular painkiller by itself and, in combination with opiates, is the most commonly prescribed medication in the US. [more inside]
Honyanko bushi, Tsurumanzoku, Butamatsuri, and Nevaneva Land are music videos produced by Obakejaa. [NSS (Not Seizure Safe), MLYT]
In his autobiography, published in 2007, Blur bassist Alex James admitted to blowing a million pounds on champagne and cocaine. This confession led to an invitation from Colombia's President Uribe to visit the country and see the damage being caused by the drug trade. He went, and the BBC filmed it (one, two, three).
Dr. Batty's Asthma Cigarettes (not recommended for children under 6) -- and other ads from the era when heroin was an over the counter cough medicine.
The Smoke Filtration Systems are a series of sculptures that are also working marijuana water pipes. The mechanics of each pipe are thoroughly tested, but the actual sculptures are presented in clean, unused condition.
The Portugal experiment. On July 1, 2001, a nationwide law in Portugal took effect that decriminalized all drugs, including cocaine and heroin. Under the new legal framework, all drugs were “decriminalized,” not “legalized.” Thus, drug possession for personal use and drug usage itself are still legally prohibited, but violations of those prohibitions are deemed to be exclusively administrative violations and are removed completely from the criminal realm.... The data show that, judged by virtually every metric, the Portuguese decriminalization framework has been a resounding success. Within this success lie self-evident lessons that should guide drug policy debates around the world. (pdf of complete paper) [more inside]
The Department of Veterans Affairs has reported that military scientists tested hundreds of chemical and biological substances on them, including VX, tabun, soman, sarin, cyanide, LSD, PCP, and World War I-era blister agents like phosgene and mustard. The full scope of the tests, however, may never be known. As a CIA official explained to the GAO, referring to the agency's infamous MKULTRA mind-control experiments, "The names of those involved in the tests are not available because names were not recorded or the records were subsequently destroyed." Besides, said the official, some of the tests involving LSD and other psychochemical drugs "were administered to an undetermined number of people without their knowledge."
Go to Spain, breathe, get high Scientists have recently discovered that there is a small amount of cocaine and LSD in the air of the Spanish cities Madrid and Barcelona.
Without much fanfare, the Global War on Terror has ended. The new name for these military interventions is the Overseas Contingency Operation. Press Q&A. Some Republican representatives discuss. (SPOILER: They are not pleased.) Military blogs discuss. Similarly, the War on Drugs also looks to be on the way out, though no new name for the project has been announced at this time.
What is the best way to respond to your son's drug addiction?
Write a book? No!
Write two books? Yes?
Beautiful Boy: A Father's Journey Through His Son's Addiction
Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines [more inside]
Write a book? No!
Write two books? Yes?
Beautiful Boy: A Father's Journey Through His Son's Addiction
Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines [more inside]
Legislation has been introduced in the U.S. Congress to repeal mandatory minimum sentences associated with drug offenses. If passed, the federal government would join eighteen other states in abandoning the "tough on crime" stance of the 1980's when it comes to drug offenders. State reforms include including New York's legislative repeal of the Rockefeller Drug Laws, Michigan's repeal of 650 lifer sentencing, North Dakota's repeal of one-year mandatory minimum sentences for first-time drug offenders, Arizona's Proposition 200, which required probation and treatment for nonviolent drug offenders, Louisiana's decision to restore eligibility for parole and probation to nonviolent offenders, and the Kansas Sentencing Commission's recommendation for mandatory treatment for nonviolent offenders. [more inside]
Bill Moyers Journal, April 17, 2009 From crime beat reporter for the BALTIMORE SUN to award-winning screenwriter of HBO's critically-acclaimed The Wire, David Simon talks with Bill Moyers about inner-city crime and politics, storytelling and the future of journalism today. Sorry for the one link post.
The Wire - David Simon's original pitch and series bible. "At the end of thirteen episodes, the viewer - who has been lured all this way by a well-constructed police show - is not the simple gratification of hearing handcuffs click. Instead the conclusion is something Euripides or O'Neill might recognize: an America at every level at war with itself." [Previously.] (via)
The Changing Racial Dynamics of the War on Drugs. The Sentencing Project has just released a report (pdf) finding that, for the first time in 20 years, the number of Black Americans in state prison for drug offenses has fallen. Between 1999 and 2005, the number of White drug offenders in state prisons rose about 43 percent, while the number of Black offenders declined by 22 percent. One cause may be a rise in the use of drug courts, which are locally administered programs that divert offenders into treatment rather than incarceration. The Sentencing Project has a recent report (pdf) on this issue as well.
In May 1995, the American government's Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) made an attempt to disrupt the supply chain of methamphetamine precursors, such as pseudoephedrine, by shutting down two major suppliers of the precursors under authority granted by the Domestic Chemical Diversion Control Act. Was it successful? Only temporarily, according to new research by Carlos Dobkin and Nancy Nicosia. (via)
The US Food and Drug Administration started regulating the labeling of food, beverages, and medicines after the passage of the 1906 Pure Food and Drug Act, and added food coloring and cosmetics with the 1938 Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. They have just released a new website, the FDA Notices of Judgment Collection, 1906-1963, containing data from thousands of cases of mislabeled or misadvertised products and drugs, available in multiple forms (text, PDF, metadata XML, .TIF image, etc.), with searchable archives. Poking around in the data will yield information on cases ranging from misbranding methamphetamine tablets, to quack "Film-O-Sonic" devices, to bacteria-laden unproven abortifacients sold over the counter, to purported "4-way" cures for baldness, to hunks of radium sold for putting in your drinking water to "stimulate the sex organs" (judged against for stating an unproven use, not for actual danger of product). Organized by the FDA's history office, the new database is a fascinating resource for historians, public safety advocates, researchers, and librarians.
Under Pennsylvanian state law, it's illegal to sell containers if the store owner "knows or should reasonably know" that the buyer intends to use them to package drugs. A confidential informant entered a convenience store to buy tiny ziplock bags at about 4:30 p.m. on Sept. 11, 2007. After making the purchase the Philadelphia PD Narcotics Field Unit raided the store for selling drug paraphernalia destroying the store's security system in the process and allegedly stealing money, batteries, cigarettes and food among other items. He's not the first one to make this complaint either.
The novlist Julie Myerson has written a book, The Lost Child, about her son's addiction to cannabis, the violent behaviour she says this caused and her tough love policy. Extract. Her son is angry that she's published it, and says his parents over-reacted: "I wasn't doing anything that most other teenagers do, but such was their naive terror of drugs they were acting like six-year-olds". It comes out through MumsNet that Julie Myerson was the anonymous author of a Guardian column, "Living with Teenagers," which described her children's behaviour candidly without their knowledge. Extract. Myerson first denied this. The Guardian discusses whether it was right to publish the columns. Myerson is interviewed about whether she was right to publish The Lost Child. Her partner, and son's father, Jonathan Myerson supports her: This is an emergency. Her son says she's addicted to writing. [more inside]
This month marks both the birth and the death of Bobby Driscoll, child star, Peter Pan, "Walt Disney's golden boy." He was penniless, drug-addled and buried in an unmarked grave by the age of 31. [more inside]
In a recent report for the Abell Foundation, University of Maryland Criminologist Peter Reuter asks whether, in light of the evidence from Switzerland, The Netherlands and elsewhere, Baltimore might not be the best place to try the first US heroin maintenance programme?
Due to “credible death and kidnapping threats”, T-Pain has cancelled a concert in Guyana for Mashramani, the festival that marks the anniversary of Guyana’s independence from Great Britain. Last years, celebration was soured by a killing spree perpetrated by a heavily armed gang led by man known as “Fine Man”. Because the 23 victims were mainly of East Indian descent, the massacre was a powder keg issue for the tiny South American nation. With a population of 44% East Indian and 30% African ancestries, Guyana tends to be socially and politically divided along ethnic identity lines. [more inside]
Ecstasy's long-term effects revealed. "Enough time has finally elapsed to start asking if ecstasy damages health in the long term. According to the biggest review ever undertaken, it causes slight memory difficulties and mild depression, but these rarely translate into problems in the real world. While smaller studies show that some individuals have bigger problems, including weakened immunity and larger memory deficits, so far, for most people, ecstasy seems to be nowhere near as harmful over time as you may have been led to believe." [Via]
"To make off with hubby's fortune, yea, I think I heard of that happenin' once or twice around L.A. And… you want me to do what exactly?" He found the paper bag he'd brought his supper home in and got busy pretending to scribble notes on it, because straight-chick uniform, makeup supposed to look like no makeup or whatever, here came that old well-known hard-on Shasta was always good for sooner or later. Does it ever end, he wondered. Of course it does. It did. Thomas Pynchon's next novel, the 416-page Inherent Vice, is described by Penguin Press as "part noir, part psychedelic romp, all Thomas Pynchon — private eye Doc Sportello comes, occasionally, out of a marijuana haze to watch the end of an era as free love slips away and paranoia creeps in with the L.A. fog." While we wait for its August 4 publication, we can read an essay on the dystopian musical he co-wrote at Cornell or watch a clip of that movie they made of Gravity's Rainbow. [more inside]
Father takes a video of his 7 year old son after he had his tooth removed. SLYT
(Some links NSFW) Any down on their luck stoner is familiar with so called, "legal bud" Herbs of all kinds have been marketed online to the connectionless or legally restricted that offered a marijuana like high without the legal consequences. Everyone knows they are all scams. It might surprise you, that some were not. Commonly sold under the names Spice or Zohai, mixtures of herbs sprayed with synthetic cannabinoid substances such as HU-210 or JWH-018 have been available online for at least the past four years. [more inside]
Prescription for Disaster: The dangers of teens using prescription pain killers and other doctor-prescribed drugs.
Salon has an article up which is a pretty solid summary of why marijuana is illegal.
The Economist on Drugs -- Scientists in North America, Europe and Israel are studying the use of MDMA, LSD, hallucinogenic mushrooms, marijuana and other banned psychoactive substances in treating conditions such as anxiety, cluster headaches, addiction and obsessive-compulsive disorder. They are supported by private funds from a handful of organisations: the Beckley Foundation in Britain; the Heffter Research Institute and the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) in America. [related]
The Caffeine Examiner will review any product containing caffeine. For example: chewing gum, sprays, energy drinks, soft drinks, hard drinks, perplexingly hard drinks, patches...? The sidebar on the right points to reviews of more caffeinated products than I had ever dreamed existed. Products are also rated by taste, packaging, nutrition/buzz, and website functionality. [via]
Poppy For Medicine. "America's drug war in Afghanistan has been a miserable failure. So why not legalize opium production and let Afghanistan become the Saudi Arabia of morphine?"
Dock Ellis, an American baseball pitcherprev, won more games for the champion 1971 Pittsburgh Pirates than anyone else that year. Of course, he was under the influence of the performance-enhancing drug known as LSD on at least one no-hit occasion. Ellis died yesterday at the age of 63. [more inside]