addīctus (Latin) v. Assigned by decree; bound; to enslave.
ddiction is not a habit but a self-destructive pattern unable to be stopped by even the strongest will power. It is impervious to its own consequences and defies every attempt at reform. No expert has answered the question as to why some people are more predisposed to addiction than others. Unlike years ago when addiction was not as well understood, a wide range of treatment options are available, most are covered by insurance. But the hardest part is taking the first step, coming out of the dark and asking for help. Facing the fact of being in over your head isn't easy, but there is nothing to be ashamed of.
Really? It isn't that simple! The addict must face a daily struggle with life: One they are powerless to stop, moderate or even make sense of: It's the peculiar phenomena of tolerance and withdrawal. All drugs are toxins. The brain's own neurotransmitters, such as dopamine and serotonin, are interrupted; receptors are short-circuited by the repeated introduction of a substitute. It tries to correct itself but is overridden by this poison. It must now adapt. Left with only one choice: Obtaining more of it. If it really is a disease, as many think, why is there no cure? There is more to it. Let's begin with this question: Who defines what we really are? Or as God said, "Who told you you were naked?"The destruction to health, life, finances and family is not intentional but an instinct to return to find the very thing we were meant to have but somehow lost. From the day we left the womb and came into this world with its conditioning, rules to obey and the pressure of success, there is a sense of dis-ease. We are vaguely uncomfortable. Understandably, for many people life today is simply unbearable. In our search for our missing birthright of happiness, something is located that seems to work, at least for awhile. But over time the brain demands more of this substitute, resulting in tolerance, withdrawal and intolerable psychological and physiological pain.
"Take thou." A symbol used in medicine for over six-thousand years. Heroin was developed by the German Bayer Aspirin Company and perfectly legal at the time.
Opiate abuse wasn't always the problem it is today, but created by the war on drugs: Fixing something that wasn't broken: The age- old tactic of requiring a government solution by first creating a problem: In this case it was the idea of "temperance." Deprived access compelled those dependent on medicines to turn to the risky criminal underground for supply.
"Let me tell you how it will be: It's one for you nineteen for me." -"Taxman," the Beatles
§ The Harrison Narcotics Tax Act (Ch. 1, 38 Stat. 785) was a United States federal law that regulated and taxed the production, importation, and distribution of opiates and coca products. The act was proposed by Representative Francis Burton Harrison of New York and was approved on December 17, 1914.
It's now a national epidemic, lots of money to be made on every side. Violent gangs freely operate, peddling cheap, lethal heroin of questionable origin, laced with fentanyl or other additives. It has recently come to light that our own government is fueling the opiate problem. This horrible fact is correct: The DEA has jumped sides, colluding with pharmaceutical manufacturers. No longer an agency for oversight, turning a blind eye to the unregulated distribution of prescription narcotics flooding society at the behest of powerful Pharma lobbyists. Whistle-blowing prosecutors are fired, while agents who go along are promoted. Public safety has been betrayed by greed, while people are dying.
"Pseudo Addiction." What is that? An absurd lie. Purdue Pharma invented this word for sales reps to convince physicians Oxy-Contin was safe and non-addicting. "People only think they're addicted." Between perks and naivete, doctors prescribe it rountinely. Contin means continuous release. A highly addictive, popular opiate. Purdue Pharma is now being sued by a number of States Attorneys General.
Methadone. Introduced in the 1960's, it's shown to be helpful for many addicts. These clinics are autonomous, corporately owned and reaping millions by feasting off the State: For the indigent it's covered by welfare under rule 25, but for those who actually have a job, the out-of-pocket cost is as high as twenty dollars a day for a little bottle of flavored liquid, manufactured for pennies. Methadone is far more addictive than any other opiate, with a protracted withdrawal lasting for months-even a year to fully recover. It's easy to get on but nearly impossible to get off, as is the newer drug: Suboxone. Adding insult to injury, now Pharma and the CDC is pushing the drug Narcan (Naloxone), as a must-have necessity in family medicine cabinets in case of accidental overdose.
Addict, v. (Latin) addīctus: Assigned by decree; bound; to hand over; to enslave, to sentence, to condemn. Under the Roman justice system, addicti is a person enslaved for unpaid debt or theft. It all begins to make sense: Addiction is a designated status. The etymology is exactly how the word was applied in the twentieth century, a statute to impose a debt on practitioners, wholesalers and users of patent medicines.
By 1914, three laws passed:The Internal Revenue Act, the Federal Reserve Act and the Harrison Narcotics Act- all part of a much larger picture of government theft, taxation and enslavement of U.S. citizens: Impoverishing Americans of body, mind and spirit.
The addicted are among the most sensitive of people, often very talented. Many of the great contributions to this world came from lives of secrets and suffering, by discovering through pain an inner strength others never know. It finds its way into creative expression. The gift of laughter often comes from those living with pain we never detect. This is the last photo taken of Robin Williams, leaving Hazledon Treatment Center, Minnesota.
Obviously not feeling well, he still took time for a young girl working the night shift at a Dairy Queen, thrilled at the unexpected chance of meeting the great star. In contrast, Williams himself appears downcast, barely able to muster a smile. Dry and sober, perhaps wondering where do I go from here? This can be a very scary feeling.
"Junky." Published in 1953, is the autobiography of William S. Burroughs, and regarded as a cult classic. It vividly describes his descent into a lifelong struggle with morphine addiction. It's a page-turner, Burroughs is a brilliant writer, giving us a stark and subjective look into the post-war underground of New York's drug scene along with a cast of fascinating characters. A must read for anyone working in the field of addiction or LADC.
§ The Volstead Act, 1919. (Prohibition).
The Eighteenth Amendment was another federal statute aimed at "temperance." The production, importation and distribution of alcoholic beverages, once the province of legitimate businesses, was taken over by criminal gangs warring over market control with violence and murder, much like today with urban street gangs peddling drugs. There were deaths and blindness from drinking grain alcohol. An utter failure, it was repealed in 1933. But wine and liquor is still taxed.
The pursuit of happiness is our right, our choice. The risk and consequences belong to us too. We are created to live our lives and learn from our own mistakes. To fall on our faces is hard enough without interference from self- interest agencies. Cannabis, opium and distilled spirits are made from plants, used medicinally since the dawn of civilization. Why is it such a pandemic in our society today? The answer lies in the question itself: Life in America has become excessive, with constant tension. The idea if a little works, then more must work better. Except it doesn't.
*Opiate withdrawal symptoms make it difficult to stop using. These can be treated with non-opiates: Diazepam/ Clonazepam; Gabapentin; Kratom; L-tyrosine (combined with B-6 converts in the brain to Levodopa, Dopamine, Norepinephrine, and Epinephrine). Medical marijuana provides safe, effective temporary relief from most all symptoms of withdrawal sickness: It is holistic, non-narcotic and has little potential for addiction. Before 1914, medicinal cannabis was prescribed routinely by physicians and sold at pharmacies.
- Marijuana still remains under the Controlled Substance Act of 1970. Why does the Federal Government still obstinately refuse to legalize it? Perhaps because it sharpens the faculties of perception. Smarter people they don't want. Or, because Pharma lobbyists stand in the way: It's proven to help with mental illness, depression, PTSD, epilepsy, MS and pain.
The Hemp Conspiracy.
In 1936, Harry J. Anslinger, chief of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, began a lurid propaganda campaign against marijuana. His true motive wasn't about public safety at all, but racism against Mexicans, blacks, and corporate influence on the part of the DuPont Chemical Company and the Hearst Newspaper Corporation.
The purpose was to outlaw hemp: A renewable resource alternative for nylon, and wood paper pulp instead of deforestation for timber. The word marijuana was invented to make it sound "Mexican." Sound unbelievable? It's true. Jack Herer has investigated this bizarre conspiracy to suppress hemp cultivation and use, proven by careful research and documentation in his book "The Emperor Wears No Clothes."
A Conspiracy to Wipe Out the Natural Competition.
By 1916, USDA Bulletin 404 predicted that a decorticating and harvesting machine would be developed, and hemp would again be America’s largest agricultural industry. In 1938, magazines such as Popular Mechanics and Mechanical Engineering introduced a new generation of investors to fully operational hemp decorticating devices; bringing us to this next bit of history. Because of this machine, both indicated that hemp would soon be America’s number-one crop!
Newspaper executive William Randolph Hearst, subject of the movie "Citizen Kane."
In the mid-1930s, when the new mechanical hemp fiber stripping machines and machines to conserve hemp’s high-cellulose pulp finally became state-of-the art, available and affordable, the enormous timber acreage and businesses of the Hearst Paper Manufacturing Division, Kimberly Clark (USA), St. Regis – and virtually all other timber, paper and large newspaper holding companies, stood to lose billions of dollars and perhaps go bankrupt. Coincidentally, in 1937, DuPont had just patented processes for making plastics from oil and coal, as well as a new sulfate/sulfite process for making paper from wood pulp. According to DuPont’s own corporate records and historians, these processes accounted for over 80 percent of all the company’s railroad car loading over the next 60 years into the 1990s.
If hemp had not been made illegal, 80% of DuPont’s business would never have materialized and the great majority of the pollution which has poisoned our Northwestern and Southeastern rivers would not have occurred. In an open marketplace, hemp would have saved the majority of America’s vital family farms and would probably have boosted their numbers, despite the Great Depression of the 1930s. But competing against environmentally-sane hemp paper and natural plastic technology would have jeopardized the lucrative financial schemes of Hearst, DuPont and DuPont’s chief financial backer, Andrew Mellon of the Mellon Bank of Pittsburgh.
|Henry Ford's 'plastic hemp car' from 1941
by Nejat Akay
A series of secret meetings were held. In 1931, Mellon, in his role as Hoover’s Secretary of the Treasury, appointed his future nephew-in-law, Harry J. Anslinger, to be head of the newly reorganized Federal Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs (FBNDD), a post he held for the next 31 years. These industrial barons and financiers knew that machinery to cut, bale, decorticate (separate the fiber from the high-cellulose hurd), and process hemp into paper or plastics was becoming available in the mid-1930s. Cannabis hemp would have to go. In DuPont’s 1937 Annual Report to its stockholders, the company strongly urged continued investment in its new, but not readily accepted, petrochemical synthetic products. DuPont was anticipating “radical changes” from “the revenue raising power of government … converted into an instrument for forcing acceptance of sudden new ideas of industrial and social reorganization.” *
“The key departure of the marijuana tax scheme from that of the Harrison Act is the notion of the prohibitive tax. Under the Harrison Act, a non-medical user could not legitimately buy or possess narcotics. To the dissenters in the Supreme Court decisions upholding the act, this clearly demonstrated that Congress’ motive was to prohibit conduct rather than raise revenue. So in the National Firearms Act, designed to prohibit traffic in machine guns, Congress ‘permitted’ anyone to buy a machine gun, but required him to pay a $200 transfer tax* and carry out the purchase on an order form.
But other forces were at work. The war fury that led to the Spanish American War in 1898 was ignited by William Randolph Hearst through his nationwide chain of newspapers, and marked the beginning of “yellow journalism” as a force in American politics. Webster’s Dictionary defines “yellow journalism” as the use of cheaply sensational or unscrupulous methods in newspapers and other media to attract or influence the readers. In the 1920s and ‘30s, Hearst’s newspapers deliberately manufactured a new threat to America and a new yellow journalism campaign to have hemp outlawed. For example, a story of a car accident in which a “marijuana cigarette” was found would dominate the headlines for weeks, while alcohol-related car accidents (which outnumbered marijuana-connected accidents by more than 10,000 to 1) made only the back pages.
This same theme of marijuana leading to car accidents was burned into the minds of Americans over and over again in the late 1930s by showing marijuana-related car accident headlines in movies such as “Reefer Madness” and “Marijuana – Assassin of Youth.”
Starting with the 1898 Spanish American War, Hearst newspapers had denounced Spaniards, Mexican-Americans and Latinos. After the seizure of 800,000 acres of Hearst’s prime Mexican timberland by the “marihuana” smoking army of Pancho Villa, these slurs intensified. The song “La Cucaracha” tells the story of one of Villa’s men looking for his stash of “marijuana por fumar!” (to smoke!)
Non-stop for the next three decades, Hearst painted a picture of the lazy, pot-smoking Mexican, still one of our most insidious prejudices. Simultaneously, he waged a similar racist smear campaign against the Chinese, referring to them as the “Yellow Peril.”
From 1910 to 1920, Hearst’s newspapers would claim that the majority of incidents in which blacks were said to have raped white women, could be traced directly to cocaine. This continued for 10 years until Hearst decided it was not “cocaine-crazed Negros" raping white women – it was now “marijuana-crazed Negros” raping white women.
Hearst’s and other sensational tabloids ran hysterical headlines atop stories portraying “negroes” and Mexicans as frenzied beasts who, under the influence of marijuana, would play anti-white “voodoo-satanic” music (jazz) and heap disrespect and “viciousness” upon the predominantly white readership. Other such offenses resulting from this drug-induced “crime wave” included: stepping on white men’s shadows, looking white people directly in the eye for three seconds or more, looking at a white woman twice, laughing at a white person, etc. For such “crimes,” hundreds of thousands of Mexicans and blacks spent, in aggregate, millions of years in jails, prisons and on chain gangs, under brutal segregation laws that remained in effect throughout the U.S. until the 1950's and ‘60;s. Hearst, through pervasive and repetitive use, pounded the obscure Mexican slang word “marijuana” into the English-speaking American consciousness. Meanwhile, the word “hemp” was discarded and “cannabis,” the scientific term, was ignored and buried.
|Anti Marijuana Propaganda
The actual Spanish word for hemp is “cáñamo.” But using a Mexican “Sonoran” colloquialism – marijuana, often Americanized as “marihuana” – guaranteed that few would realize that the proper terms for one of the chief natural medicines, “cannabis,” and for the premiere industrial resource, “hemp,” had been pushed out of the language.
§ The Prohibitive Marijuana Tax.
In the secret Treasury Department meetings conducted between 1935 and 1937, prohibitive tax laws were drafted and strategies plotted. “Marijuana” was not banned outright; the law called for an “occupational excise tax upon dealers, and a transfer tax upon dealings in marijuana.” Importers, manufacturers, sellers and distributors were required to register with the Secretary of the Treasury and pay the occupational tax. Transfers were taxed at $1 an ounce; $100 an ounce if the dealer was unregistered. The new tax doubled the price of the legal “raw drug” cannabis which at the time sold for one dollar an ounce. The year was 1937. New York State had exactly one narcotics officer. (New York currently has a network of thousands of narcotics officers, agents, spies and paid informants – and 20 times the penal capacity it had in 1937, although the state’s population has only doubled since then).
After the Supreme Court decision of March 29, 1937, upholding the prohibition of machine guns through taxation, Herman Oliphant made his move. On April 14, 1937 he introduced the bill directly to the House Ways and Means Committee instead of to other appropriate committees such as food and drug, agriculture, textiles, commerce, etc. His reason may have been that “Ways and Means” is the only committee that can send its bills directly to the House floor without being subject to debate by other committees. Ways and Means Chairman Robert L. Doughton, a key DuPont ally, quickly rubber-stamped the secret Treasury bill and sent it sailing through Congress to the President.
Did Anyone Consult the AMA?”
However, even within his controlled Committee hearings, many expert witnesses spoke out against the passage of these unusual tax laws. Dr. William C. Woodward, for instance, who was both a physician and an attorney for the American Medical Association, testified on behalf of the AMA. He said, in effect, the entire fabric of federal testimony was tabloid sensationalism! No real testimony had been heard! This law, passed in ignorance, could possibly deny the world a potential medicine, especially now that the medical world was just beginning to find which ingredients in cannabis were active.
Woodward told the committee that the only reason the AMA hadn’t come out against the marijuana tax law sooner was that marijuana had been described in the press for 20 years as “killer weed from Mexico.” The AMA doctors had just realized “two days before” these spring 1937 hearings, that the plant Congress intended to outlaw was known medically as cannabis, the benign substance used in America with perfect safety in scores of illnesses for over one hundred years. “We cannot understand yet, Mr. Chairman,” Woodward protested, “why this bill should have been prepared in secret for two years without any intimation, even to the profession, that it was being prepared.” He and the AMA were quickly denounced by Anslinger and the entire congressional committee, and curtly excused.
When the Marijuana Tax Act bill came up for oral report, discussion, and vote on the floor of Congress, only one pertinent question was asked from the floor: “Did anyone consult with the AMA and get their opinion?” Representative Vinson, answering for the Ways and Means Committee replied, “Yes, we have. A Dr. Woodward and the AMA are in complete agreement!”
With this memorable lie, the bill passed, and became law in December, 1937. Federal and state police forces were created, which have incarcerated hundreds of thousands of Americans, adding up to more than 16 million wasted years in jails and prisons – even contributing to their deaths – all for the sake of poisonous, polluting industries, prison guards unions and to reinforce some white politicians’ policies of racial hatred.
As the AMA’s Dr. Woodward had asserted, the government’s testimony before Congress in 1937 had, in fact, consisted almost entirely of Hearst’s and other sensational and racist newspaper articles read aloud by Harry J. Anslinger, director of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics (FBN). (This agency has since evolved into the Drug Enforcement Administration [DEA]).
Harry J. Anslinger, director of the new Federal Bureau of Narcotics from its inception in 1931 for the next 31 years, was only forced into retirement in 1962 by President John F. Kennedy after Anslinger tried to censor the publications and publishers of Professor Alfred Lindesmith (“The Addict and the Law”, Washington Post, 1961) and to blackmail and harass his employer, Indiana University. Anslinger had come under attack for racist remarks as early as 1934 by a U.S. senator from Pennsylvania, Joseph Guffey, for such things as referring to “ginger-colored niggers” in letters circulated to his department heads on FBN stationery.
Prior to 1931, Anslinger was Assistant U.S. Commissioner for Prohibition. Anslinger, remember, was hand-picked to head the new Federal Bureau of Narcotics by his uncle-in-law, Andrew Mellon, Secretary of the Treasury under President Herbert Hoover. The same Andrew Mellon was also the owner and largest stockholder of the sixth largest bank (in 1937) in the United States, the Mellon Bank in Pittsburgh, one of only two bankers for DuPont from 1928 to the present.
In 1937, Anslinger testified before Congress saying, “Marijuana is the most violence-causing drug in the history of mankind.” This, along with Anslinger’s outrageous racist statements and beliefs, was made to the southern-dominated congressional committee and is now an embarrassment to read in its entirety. For instance, Anslinger kept a “Gore File,” culled almost entirely from Hearst and other sensational tabloids – e.g., stories of axe murders, where one of the participants reportedly smoked a joint four days before committing the crime.
Anslinger pushed on Congress as a factual statement that about 50% of all violent crimes committed in the U.S. were committed by Spaniards, Mexican-Americans, Latin Americans, Filipinos, African-Americans and Greeks, and these crimes could be traced directly to marijuana. (From Anslinger’s own records given to Pennsylvania State University, ref.: Li Cata Murders, etc.) Not one of Anslinger’s marijuana “Gore Files” of the 1930s is believed to be true by scholars who have painstakingly checked the facts.4
In fact, FBI statistics, had Anslinger bothered to check, showed at least 65-75% of all murders in the U.S. were then – and still are – alcohol related. As an example of his racist statements, Anslinger read into U.S. Congressional testimony (without objection) stories about “coloreds” with big lips, luring white women with jazz music and marijuana. He read an account of two black students at the University of Minnesota doing this to a white coed “with the result of pregnancy.” The congressmen of 1937 gasped at this and at the fact that this drug seemingly caused white women to touch or even look at a “negro.”
Virtually no one in America other than a handful of rich industrialists and their hired cops knew that their chief potential competitor – hemp – was being outlawed under the name “marijuana.” That’s right. Marijuana was most likely just a pretext for hemp prohibition and economic suppression. Meanwhile, serious discussions of the health, civil liberties and economic aspects of the hemp issue are frequently dismissed as being nothing but an “excuse so that people can smoke pot” – as if people need an excuse to state the facts about any matter.
One must concede that, as a tactic, lying to the public about the beneficial nature of hemp and confusing them as to its relationship with “marijuana” has been very successful.
In the 1970's, psychologist Bruce Alexander challenged both "the right-wing view that addiction is a moral failing caused by too much partying; and the liberal view, that addiction is a disease taking place in a chemically hijacked brain. Instead, addiction is about adaptation: It’s not you, it’s your cage."
Professor Peter Cohen says, "human beings have a need to bond and form connections, it’s how we get satisfaction. If we can't bond with others we will connect with an alternative substance. The term addiction should be changed to 'bonding,' because the addict bonds with a chemical substitute, unable to bond with anyone or anything else."
Addiction Glossary from Wikipedia.
- addiction – a brain disorder characterized by compulsiveengagement in rewarding stimuli despite adverse consequences.
- addictive behavior – a behavior that is both rewarding and reinforcing.
- addictive drug – a drug that is both rewarding and reinforcing.
- dependence – an adaptive state associated with a withdrawal syndrome upon cessation of repeated exposure to a stimulus (e.g., drug intake).
- drug sensitization or reverse tolerance – the escalating effect of a drug resulting from repeated administration at a given dose.
- drug withdrawal – symptoms that occur upon cessation of repeated drug use.
- physical dependence – dependence that involves persistent physical–somatic withdrawal symptoms (e.g., fatigue and delirium tremens).
- psychological dependence – dependence that involves emotional–motivational withdrawal symptoms (e.g., dysphoria and anhedonia).
- reinforcing stimuli – stimuli that increase the probability of repeating behaviors paired with them.
- rewarding stimuli – stimuli that the brain interprets as intrinsically positive and desirable or as something to approach.
- sensitization – an amplified response to a stimulus resulting from repeated exposure to it
- substance use disorder – a condition in which the use of substances leads to clinically and functionally significant impairment or distress.
- tolerance – the diminishing effect of a drug resulting from repeated administration at a given dose.