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posted by martyb on Monday June 18 2018, @03:39PM   Printer-friendly
from the addiction-sucks dept.

US needs to invest 'tens of billions or hundreds of billions' to fight opioid epidemic

The goal of an opioid is to reduce pain, but the addictive drugs are creating pain for millions of families suffering through the crisis. Deaths from opioid overdoses number at least 42,000 a year in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control.

"This is an epidemic that's been getting worse over 10 to 20 years," Caleb Alexander, co-director of Johns Hopkins Center for Drug Safety, told CNBC's "On The Money" in a recent interview. "I think it's important that we have realistic expectations about the amount of work that it will take and the amount of coordination to turn this steamship around," Alexander added.

[...] Alexander added: "The statistics are stunning. More than 2.1 million Americans have an opioid use disorder or opioid addiction" and he says the country needs to "invest tens of billions or hundreds of billions of dollars" to shore up the treatment system. He said patients should be able to access medications that "we know work to help reduce the cravings for further opioids."

Don't mention the Portugal model!

Meanwhile, the Massachusetts Attorney General is suing members of the family that runs Purdue Pharma:

Their family name graces some of the nation's most prestigious bastions of culture and learning — the Sackler Center for Arts Education at the Guggenheim Museum, the Sackler Lefcourt Center for Child Development in Manhattan and the Sackler Institute for Developmental Psychobiology at Columbia University, to name a few.

Now the Sackler name is front and center in a lawsuit accusing the family and the company they own and run, Purdue Pharma, of helping to fuel the deadly opioid crisis that has killed thousands of Americans. Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey took the unusual step of naming eight members of the Sackler family this week in an 80-page complaint that accused Purdue Pharma of spinning a "web of illegal deceit" to boost profits.

While prosecutors in more than a dozen other states hit hard by the opioid epidemic have sued Purdue Pharma, Healey is the first to name individual Sackler family members, along with eight company executives.


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  • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by crafoo on Monday June 18 2018, @03:53PM (4 children)

    by crafoo (6639) on Monday June 18 2018, @03:53PM (#694551)

    Surprise, it's a jew.

    • (Score: -1, Offtopic) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:03PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:03PM (#694560)

      No, no, no! Jews are so 20th century. Zionists are about to start Third Impact anyway, so we should look towards the post-Third Impact future of scapegoats. I'll bet the whole Sackler family are incels! Maybe even Ashkenazi incels! Ah well, at least they aren't Sackville-Bagginses.

    • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by crafoo on Monday June 18 2018, @05:25PM (2 children)

      by crafoo (6639) on Monday June 18 2018, @05:25PM (#694588)

      Mark it flamebait all you want, but exploiting outsiders is baked into their belief system. Zionists are happy to admit it. It's such a typical behavior pattern it's basically a cliche at this point.

      • (Score: 1, Offtopic) by DeathMonkey on Monday June 18 2018, @06:45PM (1 child)

        by DeathMonkey (1380) on Monday June 18 2018, @06:45PM (#694635) Journal

        Being a Jew does not require being a Zionist (but you probably already know that).

        • (Score: 2) by crafoo on Tuesday June 19 2018, @11:30AM

          by crafoo (6639) on Tuesday June 19 2018, @11:30AM (#694925)

          Being a muslim does not require being a terrorist. Being one and privately cheering the terrorists does make you an asshole and enemy of civilization though.

  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:02PM (31 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:02PM (#694558)

    this is a wasted human potential epidemic. drugs are just a symptom. if the school system would have taught these people anything useful they would have passions in life and a thirst for knowledge. also, the poorer or more screwed up people get the more the government predators want to feed on them. this makes things much worse. stop sending your monopoly money to washington dc to be used for these slave training centers and the predator and parasite classes. fund local neighborhood/home schools. teach kids how to learn and create (and how to defend themselves against the morlocks and the government).

    • (Score: 5, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:14PM (28 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:14PM (#694563)

      Most of these people had legitimate medical problems, then sought care from highly trained medical professionals with appropriate licenses. The people trusted doctors, and the doctors trusted Purdue Pharma. The fact that many now turn to sketchy unlicensed street dealers is a result of addiction. The addicts started off with legitimate care that they should have been able to trust.

      It's not like so many other drugs, where nearly everybody started off without a real medical problem or a licensed medical professional. It wasn't "hey, let's get fucked up!!!" but rather "my hip joint is fucked up".

      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by tftp on Monday June 18 2018, @04:26PM (7 children)

        by tftp (806) on Monday June 18 2018, @04:26PM (#694567) Homepage
        Most ???
        • (Score: 2) by frojack on Monday June 18 2018, @06:02PM (6 children)

          by frojack (1554) on Monday June 18 2018, @06:02PM (#694614) Journal

          My question as well.

          Lets see some proof of "Most".

          Young (previously) healthy people make up the bulk of opioid addicted people, as well as a large percentage of women.

          Sources of statistics a significant portion [asam.org] of users arrive at opioid addiction via a medical route, but certainly not "most".

          Of the 20.5 million Americans 12 or older that had a substance use disorder in 2015, 2
          million
          had a substance use disorder involving prescription pain relievers and 591,000 had
          a substance use disorder involving heroin

          10%, (bad as that is) is not MOST.

          --
          No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
          • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday June 18 2018, @06:44PM (3 children)

            by VLM (445) on Monday June 18 2018, @06:44PM (#694634)

            Wikipedia seems to imply you graph prescriptions and the abuse stats are just a couple years delayed.

            The usual path seems to be legal pain killer possibly "free" with insurance, then addiction, then the insurance company "saves money" by cutting them off, then its street drugs, which leads to personal disaster.

            Its interesting that the drugs biochemically seem to cause no ill effect even with very long term use, whats called the "crisis" is the result of the end of medical supervision "to save money" resulting in street drugs as a replacement. Now street drugs are a complete disaster for personal life, that is true.

            You get your first hit for free from the nice doctor, and your last hit from Leon the H pusher on the street corner over there as your life and family are completely vaporized. But the drugs themselves biochemically speaking when taken under real supervision of a real doctor, are pretty harmless.

            I guess the best analogy I can come up with, is imagine hospitals and emergency rooms have out free packs of cigs for people to smoke to help chill in the waiting room, and then everyone acts surprised when tens of millions die of lung cancer from smoking illegal cigs once they're addicted.

            • (Score: 5, Insightful) by sjames on Monday June 18 2018, @07:42PM (2 children)

              by sjames (2882) on Monday June 18 2018, @07:42PM (#694672) Journal

              Perhaps we should look at what happened after WWI. Many soldiers then got heroine after being injured in combat. Quite a few ended up being addicted. They weren't terribly happy about needing a fix, but they were generally able to get what they needed fairly cheaply, and so lived productive lives after the war.

              Much of the current "crisis" is based on an attempt to studiously avoid looking at why our society has gotten so good at producing people who feel so little hope for the future that shooting up and checking out looks like their best option.

              Since everyone likes gamification these days, what happens when a game has too much grinding for too little progress? People rage quit.

              • (Score: 2) by mhajicek on Monday June 18 2018, @08:31PM (1 child)

                by mhajicek (51) on Monday June 18 2018, @08:31PM (#694694)

                Thank you for that analogy, it seems to fit well. The rage quit is a likely reason for school/mass shootings as well. People with meaning in their lives do not do these kinds of things.

                --
                The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @07:13PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @07:13PM (#694652)

            Of the 20.5 million Americans 12 or older that had a substance use disorder in 2015, 2
            million had a substance use disorder involving prescription pain relievers

            That quote only describes what substance they were using to satisfy their craving, not what substance began their addiction.

          • (Score: 3, Interesting) by takyon on Monday June 18 2018, @08:23PM

            by takyon (881) <reversethis-{gro ... s} {ta} {noykat}> on Monday June 18 2018, @08:23PM (#694689) Journal

            The 20.5 million number seems to count things that aren't related to opioids, such as cocaine and probably alcohol. Subtract those out of there and your conclusion may be very different.

            --
            [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 [soylentnews.org]
      • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Monday June 18 2018, @04:49PM (10 children)

        by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @04:49PM (#694576) Journal

        Like tftp, I question that "most" bit. I'm not certain of it, but I think that "most" people who are hooked got that way through recreational use. I don't mean to detract from the horrifyingly huge number of people who were hooked due to bad advice from doctors and pharma pushers. But, it would take some convincing to make me believe that "most" addicts were created by those doctors. We live in a nation of people who dabble in drugs. Designer drugs, cocaine, heroine, you name it. If you tell some people that snorting Drano will get them high, they're likely to try it.

        • (Score: 4, Interesting) by NewNic on Monday June 18 2018, @05:05PM (9 children)

          by NewNic (6420) on Monday June 18 2018, @05:05PM (#694583) Journal

          Like tftp, I question that "most" bit. I'm not certain of it, but I think that "most" people who are hooked got that way through recreational use.

          "also that three in four new heroin users start out using prescription drugs."
          https://www.cnn.com/2017/09/18/health/opioid-crisis-fast-facts/index.html [cnn.com]

          "Today's typical heroin addict starts using at 23, is more likely to live in the affluent suburbs and was likely unwittingly led to heroin through painkillers prescribed by his or her doctor."
          https://www.cnn.com/2014/08/29/health/gupta-unintended-consequences/index.html [cnn.com]

          --
          lib·er·tar·i·an·ism ˌlibərˈterēənizəm/ noun: Magical thinking that useful idiots mistake for serious political theory
          • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Runaway1956 on Monday June 18 2018, @05:33PM (8 children)

            by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @05:33PM (#694595) Journal

            The CNN articles aren't especially informative. They toss numbers around, without showing how those numbers are related.

            The questions I want answered is:
            How many individuals in the US received legally prescribed opioids in any given year?
            How many of those individuals became addicted?
            Can we discount terminally ill patients who were going to die anyway, and used the drugs to maintain some facsimile of normal life in their last days/weeks/months? They shouldn't be part of the statistics.
            How many opioid addicts gamed the doctors, to obtain the drugs for recreational use?
            How many opioid addicts acquired their addictions without the aid of doctors?

            Maybe someone would add some questions to my list. Then, someone with access to that sort of data might arrange it into some kind of table, year-by-year. That done, people could actually compare, year-by-year, how many people were hooked by Big Pharma advertising, and active pushing of the drugs. And, at the same time, we could compare the number of young idiots who just wanted to get high, and never had any legitimate injury that justified a prescription.

            Breathles exclamations such as

            In 2016, 6.2 billion hydrocodone pills were distributed nationwide.

            That quote is almost meaningless. Does that mean that 6.2 billion pills were manufactured - and many of them sent overseas for further distribution? Or, does it mean that 6.2 billion were manufactured for domestic use, and that half (or more) are still warehoused? Or, does it mean that all of those 6.2 billion were manufactured, distributed within the US, dispensed, and consumed, all within 2016? Which leads into another question: Were all of those 6.2 billion legally prescribed? If not, what percentage were diverted from "legitimate" channels, to the black market?

            I've voiced my opinion above, that "most" addicts become addicts through decisions and actions of their own. I need some convincing that doctors have been responsible for all of the increase in addictions.

            This nation imports drugs from around the world, to feed it's hunger for drugs. Big Pharma does not bear responsibility for the heroine coming in through our ports, nor for the cocaine. Yet, we have huge problems with both, in their various forms.

            • (Score: 2) by frojack on Monday June 18 2018, @06:13PM

              by frojack (1554) on Monday June 18 2018, @06:13PM (#694619) Journal

              Yes, CNN is full of shit. (as usual).

              Of the 20.5 million Americans 12 or older that had a substance use disorder in 2015, 2
              million had a substance use disorder involving prescription pain relievers and 591,000 had
              a substance use disorder involving heroin.

              https://www.asam.org/docs/default-source/advocacy/opioid-addiction-disease-facts-figures.pdf [asam.org]

              The "Doctor" route at most accounts for 10%.
              Also, people that do get addicted via the doctor route have to seek alternative sources way before they are addicted.

              Sure chronic pain patients run a much larger risk.

              --
              No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
            • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday June 18 2018, @06:59PM (5 children)

              by VLM (445) on Monday June 18 2018, @06:59PM (#694643)

              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opioid_epidemic [wikipedia.org] claims 289 million prescriptions per year, so 6.2 B / 289 M = a completely reasonable 21 pills per prescription in the sort of united states.

              IIRC my dentist prescribed me a 12 pack of ... some damn thing that felt like I had about a six pack in me. At the rate of about 4 pills per day (effects were short-lived) that didn't last long and my jaw minus its wisdom teeth hurt quite a bit for another week, I can totally see someone with a more severe problem turning to something else. Now the question is why did my dentist prescribe me something so strong that I was not just in no pain, but pretty Fing high as a kite, but only for 3 days worth despite knowing wisdom tooth extraction is going to sting like hell for a week? I'm sure the insurance company save money giving me 12 pills instead of 28 or so pills...

              Of course 12 pills didn't turn me into an addict requiring $1M worth of legal and medical addiction care, so depending who profits, its either good or bad that I got 12 pills instead of 28 pills. Now whats the difference in addiction rates between being high as a kite for a week vs 3 days? With a side dish of I knew no matter how much it hurt my wisdom teeth would feel OK "eventually" but there's a large number of people with chronic as opposed to acute pain. So you break your back in Iraq in an IED explosion and the VA will only give you 3 days of pills (to save money) for pain that might last the rest of your life? Sounds likely...

              There's a "pain clinic" down the road that I used to have to drive past, which is somehow not illegal, my understanding is if you're poor there is a whole infrastructure of how to obtain (for free because you're poor) and sell pills (at a high price to addicts), so a significant fraction of that 289 million scripts is likely illegal... At that facility probably 100% illegal.

              • (Score: 2) by hendrikboom on Monday June 18 2018, @08:41PM (2 children)

                by hendrikboom (1125) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @08:41PM (#694700) Homepage Journal

                When I had teeth extracted (two at a time) I was given ibuprofin. It sufficed.

                • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday June 18 2018, @08:57PM (1 child)

                  by VLM (445) on Monday June 18 2018, @08:57PM (#694706)

                  It sufficed.

                  Well, that's nice. For you.

                  Pain is an example of a problem that "big data AI" type stuff could probably help a lot with, reducing a lot of human pain and suffering.

                  It would seem trivial to upload DNA sequence and medical records and recent dental x-rays to 'the cloud' and a bunch of math magic happens then it spits back a result like "Yer screwed here have 100 pills" vs "just put an ice pack on it and walk it off". I donno what the financial model could be other than wait until AI is so cheap it can be used to alleviate human misery.

                  Some day I'm sure future doctors will look back on 21st century pain management about like how we look back at leech and astrology use, like WTF were those barbarians thinking?

                  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @11:14PM

                    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @11:14PM (#694737)

                    The most important thing to remember about pain management is: if you think it'll hurt then it's gonna hurt.

                    A good example of that is the surgery for the caved-in chest defect. They cut you open on the side, slide a metal bar under your ribs in order to push our your sternum, then sew you back up and leave the bar in place for 6 months. It's said to be one of the most painful surgeries you can have. Pain medication use from such patients backs that up. Except when doctors stopped telling their patients it was going to be the most painful thing in their life, then pain medication use dropped to normal after-surgery usage. In other words, it's all in your mind. If you expected it to be painful you'll amplify any pain signals to make it painful. If you don't think it'll hurt much then you'll suppress most of the pain signals. Learning to self-manage your pain through thinking is one of the easiest types of self-hypnosis and the most effective use of placebos.

                    Taking meds to deal with pain should never be your first choice. If people can dissociate away their pain enough to handle invasive surgery without being put under, and they can, you can learn to manage after-surgery pain without getting high. It's best to learn these skills before you need them.

              • (Score: 2) by NewNic on Monday June 18 2018, @08:58PM (1 child)

                by NewNic (6420) on Monday June 18 2018, @08:58PM (#694708) Journal

                https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opioid_epidemic [wikipedia.org] claims 289 million prescriptions per year, so 6.2 B / 289 M = a completely reasonable 21 pills per prescription in the sort of united states.

                That depends on how often and how many times an individual receives a prescription for opiates. It would not be reasonable for almost every person in the USA to receive one prescription of opiates per year.

                --
                lib·er·tar·i·an·ism ˌlibərˈterēənizəm/ noun: Magical thinking that useful idiots mistake for serious political theory
                • (Score: 3, Insightful) by VLM on Monday June 18 2018, @09:39PM

                  by VLM (445) on Monday June 18 2018, @09:39PM (#694718)

                  Arithmetic being a revolutionary act, lets commit some treason...

                  Lets say the average bastard lives 100 years to make the math easy, so thats 620 billion pills manufactured per lifetime. That seems a lot, but hold on... Google says the USA population in 2017 was 325.7M people no idea if that counts illegal invaders don't matter lets call it 333.333333 million to make the math easy and assume the population is constant at that number. That seems to be 1.8Kpills per lifetime which seems a lot. However, I took four pills per day for taking all my wisdom teeth out at once, and it hurt like hell just my bad luck, so I'd guess dying of cancer or having a broken back would take... I donno, ten pills per day. That's an average of half a year of pill use per lifetime? And I'm already three days into my lifetime allocation because of my wisdom teeth? I donno this doesn't sound very unreasonable at all. How many years can someone live with arthritis, like ... 99 years or so at a somewhat reduced dose? I mean not every gets it, and not everyone needs pills every day, but ... similar math argument is I'm allocated half a year of painkillers per lifetime at present rate of production/consumption... now what if I get painful terminal cancer that takes more than six months to croak, that would suck. My mother in law had her gallbladder out maybe a decade ago, she was in some pain for awhile before and after. Of her lifetime allocation of 6 months pain meds, she's only got like 5 1/2 months left, hope she doesn't get painful cancer or something.

                  I'm just sayin, for innumerate people 6.2B is a meaningless number that sounds impressive, but when you do some treasonous math to hack the establishment message, all it really means is the average terminal cancer patient gets a couple months of pain pills. There really is NOT that much med use going on out there. Or rephrased, all the hell that's being raised due to pills is due to a really small amount of (mis) use.

            • (Score: 2) by NewNic on Monday June 18 2018, @08:53PM

              by NewNic (6420) on Monday June 18 2018, @08:53PM (#694704) Journal

              The questions I want answered is:
              How many individuals in the US received legally prescribed opioids in any given year?
              How many of those individuals became addicted?
              ....

              Can I suggest that someone has put up a website that might help you with your research. It's been up and usable for a little while now. It's called Google. [google.com]

              The information is out there, if you are actually interested in facts.

              --
              lib·er·tar·i·an·ism ˌlibərˈterēənizəm/ noun: Magical thinking that useful idiots mistake for serious political theory
      • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Monday June 18 2018, @05:45PM (8 children)

        by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @05:45PM (#694603) Journal

        I have a legitimate medical problem. (ain't arthritis fun) I started hydrocodone about ten years ago. I went to my Dr and explained how I had an episode where I was in such intense pain that lasted so long, I almost went to the ER.

        She gave me the hydrocodone.

        I firmly stated that I didn't want to get addicted to narcotics. I have a great life and I don't want to screw it up. She explained that it was unlikely I would get even dependent let alone addicted. I don't even want to develop a tolerance, and I don't think I have one. I can't remember when I last took any, but I think it was last December. She would monitor how often I refill, and it's not very often. It's been almost ten years now.

        I often take between 1000 and 2000 mg of acetaminophen per day, plus prescription NSAIDs. And other drugs to treat it. But there are some days when that is not enough. I rarely reach for the narcotics, but when I do, I'm having a bad day.

        When you have chronic pain, always looking for humor in things is helpful.

        It is hard to believe there is an opioid crisis. But I do, in fact, believe it. I just cannot understand WHY. It's a tool. A great tool. When I need it, I use it. When I don't need it, I don't use it. When I need it, I always want it to work, and not developing a tolerance is key to that.

        But then, I've never understood alcoholism either. And I don't drink. Maybe a glass of wine, once in a great long while every one or two years. But basically none.

        I cannot give up control of my intellect. I don't know why anyone would.

        --
        With modern TVs you don't have to worry about braking the yolk on the back of the picture tube.
        • (Score: 3, Informative) by HiThere on Monday June 18 2018, @06:00PM (4 children)

          by HiThere (866) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @06:00PM (#694612) Journal

          The thing is, even low level use is bad if it's chronic rather than episodic, as you are describing.

          You seem to be handling the drugs in the correct way: Occasional use for unusual events. When used that way opioids currently look relatively safe. But if the label said "No more than one a day for pain" and you interpreted it at "take one a day for pain" things would quickly go downhill.

          --
          Javascript is what you use to allow unknown third parties to run software you have no idea about on your computer.
          • (Score: 2) by frojack on Monday June 18 2018, @06:28PM (2 children)

            by frojack (1554) on Monday June 18 2018, @06:28PM (#694626) Journal

            But if the label said "No more than one a day for pain" and you interpreted it at "take one a day for pain"

            The label almost always says Take (X) per (period) AS NEEDED for pain. Often there is a DNE restriction as well as a refill restriction as well.

            After they chainsawed my chest (triple cabbage) They gave me a prescription for 60 doses with the above language.
            I still have 59 left 4 years later. I told the doctor I was more afraid of the pills than the pain. He that was a healthy fear.

            People make choices.

            --
            No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
            • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Monday June 18 2018, @07:23PM

              by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @07:23PM (#694665) Journal

              I was more afraid of the pills than the pain. . . . that was a healthy fear.

              Hit the nail on the head! That describes how I feel exactly!

              Years ago, the doctor who gives me hydrocodone also gave me a one time oxycodone with NO acetaminophen -- in case I was every already maxed out on acetaminophen but still needed relief. I have 28 of the original 30 left, and I've had that bottle for years.

              --
              With modern TVs you don't have to worry about braking the yolk on the back of the picture tube.
            • (Score: 3, Interesting) by requerdanos on Tuesday June 19 2018, @12:50AM

              by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday June 19 2018, @12:50AM (#694771) Journal

              After they chainsawed my chest (triple cabbage) They gave me a prescription for 60 doses... I told the doctor I was more afraid of the pills than the pain.

              When I underwent the same procedure in 2010*, I went home with a prescription for Darvocet, which was later removed from the market [wikipedia.org] in part because it often causes heart problems. So you were definitely on to something.

              It was months before I could sleep in a bed again because of pain (couldn't lie down--the stress on my chest hurt too badly to sleep; I slept in a reclining chair), but I made it through, no problem, and now I'm fine.

              * I had three coronary artery blockages which I understand were bypassed with two additional blood sources, one from my mammary artery, and the other from a vein from my left leg that was grafted onto my aorta at one end. Awesome, cool scars from that.

          • (Score: 3, Informative) by DannyB on Monday June 18 2018, @07:19PM

            by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @07:19PM (#694662) Journal

            But if the label said "No more than one a day for pain"

            It says: take 1 or 2 tablets by mouth every 4 hours as needed for pain.

            Only two times have I ever worked up to 2 tablets in what I would describe as one dose. (Over a period of about 90 minutes, working up to 2 tablets.)

            Only a few times traveling (most often Disney World) have I ever had 3 tablets in a single day (over multiple doses).

            My doctors both know why and how I use it, and they know how infrequently I refill. When I asked, they have expressed that they do not have any concerns I am getting myself into any trouble. If you know more about my condition it would be easy to believe that I might use narcotic pain killers.

            A couple years ago there were several kidney stone episodes. That pain was different. It was extremely focused and persistent by comparison. More intense, but not always, surprisingly. I was not accustomed to having that much pain in a different place. On 3rd trip to ER they asked if I needed any more narcotics: "no thanks, I've got plenty". I did not like the oxycodone they gave me and have no intention of ever finishing it.

            --
            With modern TVs you don't have to worry about braking the yolk on the back of the picture tube.
        • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Thexalon on Monday June 18 2018, @07:11PM (2 children)

          by Thexalon (636) on Monday June 18 2018, @07:11PM (#694650)

          Part of the story is that your life is otherwise great. Numerous experiments have suggested that if your life is great, you're less likely to foul it up and more likely to be able to shake any addiction you develop.

          So part of the story for opioids is that there are a lot of people whose life totally sucks right now, and despite the dangers heroin offers them an out.

          --
          The only thing that stops a bad guy with a compiler is a good guy with a compiler.
          • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Monday June 18 2018, @07:27PM

            by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @07:27PM (#694668) Journal

            That might have something to do with it. I say I have a great life -- despite the chronic pain. But I overlook the pain. By every other measure I have a great life.

            Part of it is that my intellect knows that I could take pills for even lesser amounts of pain -- and it would work great! For a while. But only for a while.

            --
            With modern TVs you don't have to worry about braking the yolk on the back of the picture tube.
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19 2018, @05:54AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19 2018, @05:54AM (#694849)

            If one's life is bad, clearly the best thing to do is make it even worse by using drugs. How logical. Clearly, we're dealing with inferior beings here.

    • (Score: 2) by MichaelDavidCrawford on Monday June 18 2018, @05:36PM

      In response to one of my posts about my mental illness and my work.

      I have every reason to believe that he really did have a thirst for knowledge, yet he simply could not make it through his day without shooting up.

      --
      Yes I Have No Bananas. [gofundme.com]
    • (Score: 2) by aim on Tuesday June 19 2018, @07:00AM

      by aim (6322) on Tuesday June 19 2018, @07:00AM (#694865)

      drugs are just a symptom. if the school system...

      Not just the school system, which seems to be configured mostly to provide cannon fodder to the armed forces. This is also a dire indictement of the healthcare system in the US. People wouldn't throw in opiates for pretty much any reason if they had better access to decent medical care.

      "Obamacare" was a baby step in the right direction, severely hobbled by the republicans in house and congress. You USians need to have a serious look at how things work over at your still-more-or-less-allies (not much longer if Trump continues as-is) in Western Europe. And no, I don't mean the british NHS. Even a look at Cuba might be inspiring.

  • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:12PM (12 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:12PM (#694562)

    You can't help junkies. They aren't people anymore. Just let them go and hope that their miserable existence will serve as a warning to your children. I don't want any of my tax dollars helping addicts and junkies. Fuck them.

    • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:20PM (5 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:20PM (#694565)

      Why not free up more tax dollars by ending the war on (some) drugs? Iboga root, cannabis flower, and LSD-25 show promise in treatment for addiction. In fact, we can end the war on (some) drugs and make the addicts pay for it with sin taxes.

      But that's not really what this is about, is it?

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:23PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:23PM (#694566)

        Why not both?

        • (Score: 2, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:38PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:38PM (#694573)

          Well, I realize that my proposal to allow the free market to provide substances with known anti-addictive qualities carries the risk of a critical mass of the working class unable to find work for a living wage (or at all) organizing and demanding the status quo change. It's probably best to keep the excess labor pool locked up in cages.

      • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:28PM (2 children)

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @04:28PM (#694568)

        I don't care if you discover magic unicorn poop that helps junkies. It doesn't matter. They can help themselves if they want to but they don't want help. Fuck them.

        • (Score: 1) by nitehawk214 on Monday June 18 2018, @06:48PM (1 child)

          by nitehawk214 (1304) on Monday June 18 2018, @06:48PM (#694638)

          Says someone that is probably an alcoholic.

          --
          "Don't you ever miss the days when you used to be nostalgic?" -Loiosh
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19 2018, @05:59AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19 2018, @05:59AM (#694850)

            What evidence of this do you have?

    • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday June 18 2018, @07:06PM (4 children)

      by VLM (445) on Monday June 18 2018, @07:06PM (#694647)

      You can't help junkies.

      I don't want any of my tax dollars

      Now minimizing expenditure of tax dollars is a totally different topic than "providing help".

      It might not help them in the sense of "help" but the cost to society of illegal pills in total including legal and criminality costs must be 100 times the tax dollars of just handing out as many pills as they ask for. They'll probably die quicker (well, maybe, maybe not...) but I know for sure they'll die cheaper with less tax dollars spent....

      There is also the side issue of regardless of cost, the effect of quality of life on non-junkies. My wife and I had to deal with an aggressive pan handler, the same scruffy dude, four times, last Saturday in front of the hotel. Ironically a free dispensary would not only save money in the long run but would completely eliminate the negative effect on the people around the junkie, I'd be willing to drop more money to get rid of the panhandler, but it would actually be cheaper to hand out free pills than all the police expense...

      • (Score: 2) by Thexalon on Monday June 18 2018, @07:21PM (3 children)

        by Thexalon (636) on Monday June 18 2018, @07:21PM (#694663)

        There is also the side issue of regardless of cost, the effect of quality of life on non-junkies.

        That's not even close to the biggest effect on quality-of-life for non-junkies: For instance, most relatives of junkies will be robbed, repeatedly, by the junkie in question. And of course they have to watch their son/daughter/former BFF/sibling deteriorate and often die. And if they die, everyone around them will be wondering if there's something they could have done to prevent it.

        I'm guessing you've never had to witness this.

        --
        The only thing that stops a bad guy with a compiler is a good guy with a compiler.
        • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday June 18 2018, @08:29PM (1 child)

          by VLM (445) on Monday June 18 2018, @08:29PM (#694692)

          Theres really at least three options, medical supervision where people live normal lives plus some pills, free dispensary where they don't live as long or as well but its probably the cheapest, and what we have now where addiction requires dodgy products and a life of crime, which is incredibly expensive and costs a lot of human life.

          • (Score: 2) by Thexalon on Monday June 18 2018, @08:59PM

            by Thexalon (636) on Monday June 18 2018, @08:59PM (#694709)

            And of course attempts at rehab programs that try to break the addiction. Easier said than done, but it is an option and one I have no philosophical problem with funding so long as there's some effort to do some accreditation and certification of the various programs in question. I've seen it have some success in working, if the person in the program actually wants to get and stay clean.

            --
            The only thing that stops a bad guy with a compiler is a good guy with a compiler.
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @11:53PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @11:53PM (#694749)

          Close relation to someone with fetal alcoholism syndrome. It's incurable, costs millions of dollars a year (trillions if you look at it cumulatively) I know a family who bankrupted themselves over it, spent hundreds of thousands on the kid, the state has probably spent a million so far to the early thirties. I bet they could throw a hundred million more at it and the situation would not change. That's the problem with metal illness that is caused by brain irregularities; you can't rebuild missing structures with surgeries or drugs.

          Most drug addicts and homeless suffer from some level of fetal alcohol syndrome.

          https://www.fasworld.com/fasd-facts/ [fasworld.com]

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by bobthecimmerian on Monday June 18 2018, @08:02PM

      by bobthecimmerian (6834) on Monday June 18 2018, @08:02PM (#694678)

      Here's the thing: you are already paying for these people. You're paying for the Drug Enforcement Agency, drug investigations, drug busts, prisoners, homeless shelters, Medicaid for addicts too messed up to work, emergency services like ambulances when one is injured, and crime like theft to fund their addiction. Plus, you have people fleeing Central American and South American hellholes into the US because being an illegal immigrant that 40% of the country wants to evict or execute here is a better life than being a citizen in some sections of Mexico, Honduras, and similar because of the corruption and drug gangs.

      We learned all of the lessons we needed about heroin, cocaine, and amphetamines in Prohibition. Prohibition didn't work, it made all of the problems related to alcohol worse. This is no different. This deadly stuff needs to be legal, regulated, and taxed. It gets the gangs off the street, because you don't see Budweiser and Guinness salesman gunning each other down over sales. It even takes the gangs out of other countries, because Coors and Yuengling aren't manufactured and distributed by mass murdering gangs from outside the US borders. And you can use the tax revenue from selling this stuff to fund medical services and addiction services for the addicts - basically paying for their care with their own money.

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Runaway1956 on Monday June 18 2018, @04:32PM (9 children)

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @04:32PM (#694569) Journal

    Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey took the unusual step of naming eight members of the Sackler family this week in an 80-page complaint that accused Purdue Pharma of spinning a “web of illegal deceit” to boost profits.

    There is a longstanding perception that individuals within a corporation can't be held accountable for the corporation's actions and decisions. We constantly hear that you can't go after this person or that, because some entity called "The Corporation" is responsible. Well, dammit, individuals sit in the boardroom, and agree to take certain actions. THOSE INDIVIDUALS need to be held accountable, along with their CEO's. Helluva woman! Go get those drug pushing criminals!! Maura Healey is the latest addition to my short list of heroes!

    Drag the family name through the mud, leave them smelling like shit. Hopefully, their name will become like the name of Benedict Arnold - NO ONE in the US wants to be associated with it. The family legacy of being drug pushers is the lagacy that needs to be remembered.

    Purdue Pharma denied the allegations in the lawsuit, saying it was "disappointed" that, amid negotiations with other states that have sued, Massachusetts "decided to pursue a costly and protracted litigation process."

    "We will continue to work collaboratively with the states towards bringing meaningful solutions,” the company said.

    Just fuck you, man. You're criminals, and no state really wants to collaborate with drug pushing criminals. No, you don't get to negotiate a fine, pay it, then go right back to "business as usual". Bailiff is going to whack your pee-pee! You may even spend some time behind bars! That's where all the street drug pushers vacation - you should join them!

    • (Score: 2) by PiMuNu on Monday June 18 2018, @04:52PM

      by PiMuNu (3823) on Monday June 18 2018, @04:52PM (#694578)

      > There is a longstanding perception that individuals within a corporation can't be held accountable for the corporation's actions and decisions

      Not in UK. In particular, corporate manslaughter can result in the CEO going to jail, and in this instance the burden of proof is reversed i.e. the defendant is responsible for demonstrating that they were looking out for safety issues.

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by DannyB on Monday June 18 2018, @05:56PM (3 children)

      by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @05:56PM (#694610) Journal

      I have to strongly agree.

      A corporation seems to be a fiction invented to protect people from the consequences of their own actions. As you say: "the corporation did it".

      But in fact, people did it.

      If the consequences of their actions could bite them, then they might be more thoughtful.

      --
      With modern TVs you don't have to worry about braking the yolk on the back of the picture tube.
      • (Score: 2) by HiThere on Monday June 18 2018, @06:09PM (2 children)

        by HiThere (866) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @06:09PM (#694616) Journal

        Actually, the corporation was invented to allow a group of people to invest in something where they couldn't tell the details of what was going on. The minor stockholders are (properly?) immune to losing more than they have invested. When that immunity is extended to the board of directors or the executives of the corporation .... well, that's just wrong. And, in fact, it doesn't really extend that far. The problem is it is usually applied as if it extended that far, and, in fact, it has been made unreasonably difficult to "pierce the corporate veil".

        If I remember correctly back from a comment on Groklaw those who own more than a particular percentage of the stock (I can't remember whether it was 5% or 10%) are not immune to having the corporate veil pierced. The problem is it isn't usually done, and it's unreasonably difficult to do, requiring an excessively high amount of evidence beforehand.

        --
        Javascript is what you use to allow unknown third parties to run software you have no idea about on your computer.
        • (Score: 2) by frojack on Monday June 18 2018, @06:40PM (1 child)

          by frojack (1554) on Monday June 18 2018, @06:40PM (#694633) Journal

          I don't think you do remember correctly.

          Piercing the corporate veil [wikipedia.org] refers to going after the assets of an individual holding only stock.

          It is somewhat orthogonal to going after a corporation or the board for violations of the law or liability for damages.

          Going after the board is common. Reference any of the recent very public trials or upcoming one. Ask Elizabeth Holmes.

          --
          No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @05:58PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @05:58PM (#694611)

      There is a longstanding perception that individuals within a corporation can't be held accountable for the corporation's actions and decisions. We constantly hear that you can't go after this person or that, because some entity called "The Corporation" is responsible. Well, dammit, individuals sit in the boardroom, and agree to take certain actions. THOSE INDIVIDUALS need to be held accountable, along with their CEO's.

      What, you want corps to be people when it's not to their advantage instead of just when it helps those people? What are you, a socialist?

      This in a nutshell is why Romney's comment was so infuriating.

    • (Score: 2) by MichaelDavidCrawford on Monday June 18 2018, @08:50PM

      The officers and directors of every corporation have certain fiduciary duties that if they fail to fulfill they can be sued or even prosecuted

      One such duty is that they must ensure the corporation pays its taxes. If it doesn't the IRS and state tax authorities will collect from the CEO personally perhaps by putting liens on his real property

      That's a legal Term Of Art and if you google it you will doubtlessly find yourself enjoying many pleasant hours as you read all about tax and corporate law.

      --
      Yes I Have No Bananas. [gofundme.com]
    • (Score: 2) by requerdanos on Tuesday June 19 2018, @02:55AM (1 child)

      by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday June 19 2018, @02:55AM (#694806) Journal

      Benedict Arnold - NO ONE in the US wants to be associated with it.

      Of course, that's a US-centric view. To everyone else, Arnold was the only one of the bunch who stayed loyal to his home country.

      • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Tuesday June 19 2018, @02:40PM

        by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday June 19 2018, @02:40PM (#695016) Journal

        I'm aware of that, but thank you for stating what should be obvious. Yes, Benedict remained loyal to the king he had sworn allegiance to. But, he did betray his friends and associates in the colonies. It's not clearcut right or wrong, really.

  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by requerdanos on Monday June 18 2018, @04:36PM (3 children)

    by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @04:36PM (#694572) Journal

    [The] US needs to invest 'tens of billions or hundreds of billions' to fight opioid epidemic [because] deaths from opioid overdoses number at least 42,000 a year in the U.S.

    Similarly stupid ideas:

    We also need dozens of bazillions of dollars to combat the pernicious danger of homefulness. 33,000 people a year1 are being killed in falls in the home. We must get people evicted and onto the streets for their safety. Think of the children.

    Also, sign us up for several gajillion dollars to combat transportation infrastructure, "the silent killer." In the U.S., over 40,000 people2 are killed each year on our roads and highways. Yet we allow these roads and highways to exist in literally every city and town in the country! They must be stamped out. It's for your own good, citizen.

    Problems needing only multiple millions of dollars to eradicate are murderous fiends like swimming in pools (3500 floating dead bodies a year3) and at beaches (132 more room temperature victims per annum4), and that unspeakably horrible threat of *gasp* the food supply (2,500 choking deaths per year2).

    We must immediately take away medicine, transportation, swimming, and food. For the sake of $DEITY, how can you stand around complacent with a few dollars in your pocket when the state could take that money and combat these evils with it.

    But by all means! Let's start with anti-opoid propaganda for profit5.

    1 https://www.nsc.org/home-safety [nsc.org]
    2 https://listosaur.com/miscellaneous/top-5-causes-of-accidental-death-in-the-united-states/ [listosaur.com]
    3 https://www.edgarsnyder.com/swimming-pool/swimming-pool-statistics.html [edgarsnyder.com]
    4 http://arc.usla.org/Statistics/current.asp?Statistics=5 [usla.org]
    5 http://nationalpainreport.com/anti-opioid-propaganda-and-profit-8830646.html [nationalpainreport.com]

    • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Monday June 18 2018, @04:52PM (2 children)

      by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @04:52PM (#694579) Journal

      and at beaches (132 more room temperature victims per annum4)

      Surely, you meant "water temperature", rather than "room temperature"?

      • (Score: 3, Funny) by c0lo on Monday June 18 2018, @06:28PM

        by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @06:28PM (#694625) Journal

        "Room temperature" is for "at the bitches".

        --
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0 https://soylentnews.org/~MichaelDavidCrawford
      • (Score: 2) by requerdanos on Monday June 18 2018, @06:38PM

        by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @06:38PM (#694632) Journal

        Surely, you meant "water temperature"

        I stand (swim) corrected.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Revek on Monday June 18 2018, @05:20PM (7 children)

    by Revek (5022) on Monday June 18 2018, @05:20PM (#694587)

    That will slow down the money train to the people who caused this. Require yearly reevaluation from a specialist to see if their pain can be mitigated some other way.

    --
    This page was generated by a Swarm of Roaming Elephants
    • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Monday June 18 2018, @05:52PM

      by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @05:52PM (#694605) Journal

      Not a bad idea. I see my Dr. at least once a year. It's clear to my primary doctor and my specialist that my pain won't get any better. I infrequently get refills. She's had no problem giving me occasional refills for almost ten years now. I don't get hydrocodone from my specialist, ironically. But I make sure both doctors know everything that I'm taking and get all lab results, etc. I only occasionally use hydrocodone, but when I do it's because I actually need it.

      --
      With modern TVs you don't have to worry about braking the yolk on the back of the picture tube.
    • (Score: 3, Informative) by requerdanos on Monday June 18 2018, @07:11PM (4 children)

      by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @07:11PM (#694651) Journal

      Require yearly reevaluation from a specialist to see if their pain can be mitigated some other way.

      Amateur. I ask at the doctor *every time* if my neck and back pain can be mitigated some other way. They got nothin.

      This year they did refer me for ten, count them, ten chiropractic visits. Which helped immensely...

      But they explained to me that something like chiropractic, even if it helps, "stops working" if you have to keep going back for treatment, and so "isn't really helping" since you have to rinse and repeat. So if I want to keep going, it will be out of my own pocket.

      On the other hand, they have no problem renewing my opioid prescription, even though it "stops working" when it runs out, and it "isn't really helping" the cause of the pain, just the symptoms.

      I attempted to point this duality out, but I felt a strange sense of deja vu [freworld.info], and didn't get anywhere with it. Meanwhile my opioid pain meds are paid for 100% and renewed every time, while the effective non-invasive non-drug non-opioid treatments are a no-go because they "isn't really helping."

      Summary:

      I do not complain because I get appropriate pain medication. Pain + Pain medication = Less pain = more living life.
      I do complain because I do not get appropriate nondrug treatments. Especially in the face of the hypocritical war on drugs, and on my pain medication in particular.

      • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Monday June 18 2018, @07:45PM (1 child)

        by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Monday June 18 2018, @07:45PM (#694674) Journal

        Yep, narcotics don't really treat the problem. They treat one of the symptoms: pain.

        In my case I get lots of other drugs for the underlying problem, which, of course, helps with the pain. To a large degree. But it varies. And there are sometimes really bad days.

        My opioids are not 100% covered, but darn near. They are dirt cheap. More than any other med I've ever had. Last summer (June, 2017) I was in Colorado at a family reunion. Hey, let's try some cannabis! Ironically: it's way way more expensive, and doesn't help anywhere near as much as opioids do. So much for all natural.

        --
        With modern TVs you don't have to worry about braking the yolk on the back of the picture tube.
        • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday June 18 2018, @09:14PM

          by VLM (445) on Monday June 18 2018, @09:14PM (#694714)

          Colorado

          Reading between the lines, where there is no data being reported about post-legalization crime rates that doesn't come from someone with an axe to grind, the opposition seems content with "its really bad, trust me, but there's no numbers to prove it" and the supporters seem content with "crime dropped 15%" type stuff, so it seems highly likely the net effect is generally a significant but not huge drop in crime rate due to weed legalization.

          Of course people who really like weed are orders of magnitude less dangerous to the community and themselves than a pill addict going thru withdrawal willing to do anything for the next pill. That would seem to imply pill legalization would likely result in a ... obvious and large-ish ... decline in crime rates.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @11:26PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @11:26PM (#694743)

        Use hypnosis. The body naturally ignores pain when you're in mortal danger. You don't need to go that far, but you can teach yourself to numb your hand then move that numbness to where ever the pain is worse. Or you can learn to dissociate from the pain. That's what people do when they use hypnosis for surgery instead of going under.

        You could also work and fixing the cause instead of the symptoms. Do so by checking your posture all the time and replacing inflammatory foods (starches/carbs and sugar) with veggies.

        Stop asking your doctor and go look out for yourself. Your doctor doesn't have time to learn everything for everybody while you only need to learn about what's effecting you.

        • (Score: 2) by requerdanos on Tuesday June 19 2018, @12:32AM

          by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday June 19 2018, @12:32AM (#694766) Journal

          Stop asking your doctor and go look out for yourself.

          Looking out for yourself is essential, and great advice--but it's not an either/or. Also keep asking the Doctor. If you don't look out for your interests within the doctor-patient relationship of your own medical care, then no one will.

          you can learn to dissociate from the pain... You could also work and fixing the cause instead of the symptoms. Do so by checking your posture all the time and replacing inflammatory foods (starches/carbs and sugar) with veggies.

          Also great advice. Mindfulness and meditation helps to remove focus on pain and put it into a context that makes it less problematic, which is a great help.

          Developing good posture habits also helps keep the pain away. It's not only an awareness of posture that helps, but I have mounted my computer monitors up high enough that when I use the computer, I am not bending my neck down, but rather keeping it at a natural angle. When I use my phone, I hold it up at eye level (instead of bending my head down to look down at it). Simple things that add up.

          I have been following a ketogenic diet since this past January (almost no sugars, no bread, no cereal grains, goal of 20 - 40 grams total daily in carbohydrates) and this has also tremendously helped (not to mention its helpful effects on my A1C levels).

          These steps might not be for everyone, because compliance with them is hard, but changing your habits and changing your life to your benefit instead of your detriment is a tremendous reward.

          Of course, this new world of not being in pain 100% of the time (as I was before) results in my feeling like I can do more, and then trying to do more, actually doing more--which results in pain. The difference is that the pain now does not stop me from living my life. And that difference is huge. And very welcome.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19 2018, @12:09AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19 2018, @12:09AM (#694753)

      Some experts estimate that about 1% of North Americans suffer from a fetal alcohol disorder – about four times as many people as those with AIDS/HIV. There are three to five times as many people with ARND as FAS. New research suggests that the prevalence of FASD in our society is closer to 2-5%. There is no other disability this big!

      Research indicates that a high percentage of homeless people, and at least 25% of juvenile and adult offenders suffer from undiagnosed FASD

      https://www.fasworld.com/fasd-facts/ [fasworld.com]

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @05:26PM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @05:26PM (#694589)

    From the Portugal article: "one has to want the change in order to make it."

    Everybody, please start there

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @05:47PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @05:47PM (#694604)

    Give the US troops in Afghanistan flamethrowers and tell them to stop protecting the poppy fields and start destroying them.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by MichaelDavidCrawford on Monday June 18 2018, @05:53PM (4 children)

    Anthony was a true friend. When he and I first met late one night in the lobby of the Portland Rescue Mission [portlandrescuemission.org] he gave me his blanket then told me where I'd find a place to sleep where I wouldn't get rained on.

    The next evening he asked me to download his iCloud photos. He'd taken them with his iPhone but didn't own what most people regard as a computer.

    "Who's that?"

    "Just a girl I met."

    "Does she have a sister?"

    About a year later we ran into each other in Downtown Portland. He invited me to spend the night in his squat but asked me to wait for him to return an hour later.

    I waited at least four hours.

    I never saw Anthony again.

    I asked the staff at the Rescue Mission if they'd seen him. "No, he doesn't come here anymore."

    "Anthony is a great guy," I said. He'd give you the shirt off his back if you asked him for it.

    "Yeah when he's not strung out."

    "You mean he shoots up?"

    "Yes."

    I found a mugshot from a few years before, when he was in the slammer for heroin possession. I searched the county jail's inmate roster as well as the state prison rosters for Oregon and Washington. I never found him there.

    It's been three years since Anthony disappeared.

    I gave him his own user account on my MacBook Pro so he'd be able to fetch his photos. I had not yet looked at most of them out of respect for his privacy but after I realized he was likely dead I looked through them all.

    He was a lot more muscular in all those pictures, many of them he's smiling along with what I expect were good friends and family. There were a few shots of him watching a game at the Pioneer Park stadium just west of Downtown.

    Anthony once knew better days.

    I expect I could find him if I asked the County Medical Examiner to look him up. Accidental deaths are always investigated by the coroner, just in case they weren't really accidents.

    I miss him so!

    Just now I was so overcome with grief that I burst into tears. I need to go somewhere else for a little while.

    Rest In Peace, My Beloved Friend Anthony Richard Perez [pdxmugshots.com].

    Requiescat In Pace.

    --
    Yes I Have No Bananas. [gofundme.com]
    • (Score: 2) by MichaelDavidCrawford on Monday June 18 2018, @11:54PM (3 children)

      when I set out I was looking for a private place where I could scream with no one being concerned.

      But just walking a long ways was really what I needed.

      A while back I read that a survey found that the American people's greatest fear was that of walking alone at night. That has always made me very very sad because for me, walking alone at night is my very greatest joy.

      During the times my mind has troubled me I always walked, almost always to nowhere in particular.

      One night in 2012 I came to the conclusion that Occupy Santa Cruz had dosed every last law enforcement officer in the North County. Not just then but some time before but when I turned up it was clear to me that all those cops were still tripping. I Am Absolutely Serious.

      I just couldn't deal with Santa Cruz so I just started walking at first east, then south. I didn't have my stuff I had only stepped out for a coffee. I didn't even tell my hosts that I was leaving.

      I walked two hundred miles. From SC on the North-West of Monterey Bay, to Aptos on the North-East, then South to Watsonville, further south to Greenfield, then Salinas.

      For much of it I survived by stealing from the farmers. But while not a desert much of the San Joaquin Valley is quite arid. I found a big plastic bag then used a razor blade to harvest from Prickly Pears - cactus fruit! Just don't eat the spines!

      I learned the hard way that while the bodies of most cacti are quite tasty and nutritious, even if they don't have spines one must not eat the skin!

      That I had not yet clued into that meant that I had the shits for three solid days. :-/

      My long walk gave me enough peace of mind that I can come back to work.

      A long walk can fix anything.

      --
      Yes I Have No Bananas. [gofundme.com]
      • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19 2018, @03:43AM (2 children)

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19 2018, @03:43AM (#694826)

        That reminds me to try peyote one day.

        • (Score: 2) by MichaelDavidCrawford on Tuesday June 19 2018, @04:13AM (1 child)

          by MichaelDavidCrawford (2339) Subscriber Badge <mdcrawford@gmail.com> on Tuesday June 19 2018, @04:13AM (#694834) Homepage Journal

          But I really do want to find it the traditional way as described by The Peyote Hunt. An anthropologist went to live among the Huichol Indians in a Mexican desert.

          The experience he describes makes clear that for the Huichol it's much like what most Muslims experience but once in their entire lives: their pilgrimage to Mecca.

          For reasons I am unclear about, the Huichol live a hundred miles from where the peyote grows. They walk that hundred miles barefoot on the burning sand, stay for a few days, just one night being their peyote ritual, then they walk one hundred miles barefoot across the burning sand until they get home and resume their normal lives.

          --
          Yes I Have No Bananas. [gofundme.com]
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19 2018, @02:24PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19 2018, @02:24PM (#694998)

            It's a pity that mecca is a lie based on a lie. They travel for weeks to visit a rock that feel from the sky. Well sorry of. More like walk round it and point at it but still some get to touch it. So many lies.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @06:08PM (3 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 18 2018, @06:08PM (#694615)
  • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday June 18 2018, @07:15PM (7 children)

    by VLM (445) on Monday June 18 2018, @07:15PM (#694654)

    the country needs to "invest ... hundreds of billions of dollars"

    Deaths from opioid overdoses number at least 42,000 a year in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control.

    $2.3M per death, thats ... impressive.

    • (Score: 2) by bobthecimmerian on Monday June 18 2018, @08:09PM (6 children)

      by bobthecimmerian (6834) on Monday June 18 2018, @08:09PM (#694681)

      2 points:

      1. If you believe the statistics in the article, 2 million Americans have opioid addictions. So in addition to preventing 42,000 deaths per year, there are millions of others that might get off drugs and be more of a contributor or at least less of a drain on society.

      2. The article doesn't ask that amount of money to be sent in a single year.

      I say we just legalize everything, add taxes, and use the taxes to pay for rehab, homeless shelters, Hepatitis C treatment, needle exchanges, and so forth. The addicts spend billions, better to have the billions cover the costs we're all paying anyway (Medicaid, DEA, prisons) cover their own services instead of going to drug gangs.

      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by VLM on Monday June 18 2018, @08:49PM (5 children)

        by VLM (445) on Monday June 18 2018, @08:49PM (#694701)

        and use the taxes to pay for

        AFAIK medically supervised opiate addicts live as long as non-opiate addicts in the same situation (unlike alcohol which pickles your liver in a decade or two, for example) and the cost of medical supervision is handwavy probably factors of ten to a hundred less than the criminal justice system and medical costs of trying to make pills illegal...

        From a medical perspective we could take my coworker's life long "addiction" to insulin and make it illegal for him to buy it, and have him knock over little old ladies all day to buy black market insulin for 1000 times the cost of the legal stuff and then the staggering costs of organized and less-organized crime kick in... and of course black market insulin will be random purity sterility and concentration so they'll be bodies stacked like cordwood all for nothing, really. If it would be incredibly dumb to treat type 1 diabetes that way, its probably dumb to treat pill addiction that way.

        Most of the solutions to the opiate crisis proposed are by people who intend to collect a fraction of an ever increasing amount of money spent doing what we already know doesn't work; nobody wants to change policy because who benefits from that? Applies to diet, some political cultural issues... So all the "solutions" in the news are about spending ever more money, when ironically the only real solution is spending a tiny fraction of the money.

        There's an interesting analogy to landline long distance service where eventually people were paying 5 cents/min for 4.99999999 cents/min of crappy TV commercials to switch to a different oligopoly provider... And pill addiction is the same situation, where its billions of bucks, but 99.99999% of the billions are being spent because of various results of the pills being illegal, not because the pills are bad.

        • (Score: 2) by bobthecimmerian on Monday June 18 2018, @09:06PM (4 children)

          by bobthecimmerian (6834) on Monday June 18 2018, @09:06PM (#694711)

          In the case of heroin, cocaine, oxycodone being used by people that are not in pain for reasons other than withdrawal from them, I would say they definitely are bad. But it doesn't matter, because:

          a.) satisfying their addiction is the least immoral and least expensive to society of all options and arguably more importantly

          b.) none of us has flawless mind-reading abilities to judge for certain whether any particular person is genuinely in pain or not.

          I'm actually a little hopeful, because progress is being made on the marijuana front. I think as the amount of money saved by legalizing marijuana starts to be measured and quantified, there's a possibility that legalization of all other substances will follow. But then again this is a country that chose the only person in the country that lies more than any career politician to run things, so I'm probably just setting myself up for additional bitter disappointment.

          • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday June 18 2018, @09:23PM (3 children)

            by VLM (445) on Monday June 18 2018, @09:23PM (#694716)

            I would say they definitely are bad

            I can't find any evidence of that. If you exclude self administration of unknown, and occasionally known purity, illegal prescription drugs, the death rate drops to practically zero. Misadventure while high, mixing alcohol and other drugs, the usual association with criminals because its illegal seem to be something of a rounding error.

            Its not unheard of, but very unusual, for a patient to die while under the care of an anesthesiologist or in a hospital after surgery from pain pills ... by "crisis" they mean almost exclusively self administered substances of usually unknown purity in a medically unsupervised setting. There is no crisis without pills being illegal.

            What makes pills dangerous isn't the pill; the danger is created solely when the pills are illegal which also results in enormous numbers of secondary problems.

            • (Score: 2) by bobthecimmerian on Tuesday June 19 2018, @05:58PM (2 children)

              by bobthecimmerian (6834) on Tuesday June 19 2018, @05:58PM (#695171)

              Even if the substance is legal and involves regulated doses and purity, you still have a chemical addiction with non-zero financial costs and non-zero health risks. Plus, that addiction was artificially induced.

                To go back to your example, your colleague that requires the insulin is overwhelmingly likely to have genetics as the primary factor. I have a thin, athletic relative in his early 60s with type 2 diabetes and a morbidly obese couch potato relative a few years older than him with flawless blood sugar levels.

              A heroin addiction usually happens either purely as an error or possibly because someone is trying to self-medicate for an untreated psychiatric disorder. Something like Zoloft or Prozac will often work better for that, but once the person is hooked on heroin a successful switch is unlikely.

              • (Score: 2) by VLM on Tuesday June 19 2018, @06:10PM (1 child)

                by VLM (445) on Tuesday June 19 2018, @06:10PM (#695179)

                non-zero financial costs and non-zero health risks.

                But that's my point entirely, that the non-zero cost is maybe a hundredth to thousandth the total systemic cost of the same drug being obtained illegally, and the health risks as near as I can tell from some cursory research are approx zero, right up there with taking a daily aspirin tablet.

                • (Score: 2) by bobthecimmerian on Wednesday June 20 2018, @12:01PM

                  by bobthecimmerian (6834) on Wednesday June 20 2018, @12:01PM (#695547)

                  I'm sorry, I think I was being too nitpicky. I agree with what you wrote there. I definitely agree that legalization should cut the costs related to addictive substances down by well more than 90%. I was just trying to make the true but pointless observation that it would be better still if everyone was free of addiction.

  • (Score: 4, Funny) by digitalaudiorock on Monday June 18 2018, @07:33PM

    by digitalaudiorock (688) on Monday June 18 2018, @07:33PM (#694670) Journal

    Hurray for free markets! This is big pharma succeeding in some of the most flawless jobs of externalizing costs [wikipedia.org] since the mass-pollution committed by industry in the 50s, 60s, and 70s. But don't fret...with the likes of Scott Pruitt we'll probably get those back too!

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19 2018, @02:46PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19 2018, @02:46PM (#695021)

    Other than my tax dollars being wasted and crime going up why should I care?
    Adults can do whatever they want to themselves so long as they don't affect others. If they do toss them in jail.

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