Ever notice how phrases “pop” at you in public discourse? It can be hard to tell if it’s just you, or if the phrase came into fashion recently.
In 2017 (about since President Trump was sworn in), I’ve been seeing more about human trafficking, and more about opioid epidemic. Both are horrible things. Were we collectively talking about them before? I don’t think so. Why weren’t we? Was there some sort of political-media embargo? Or did we just not want to? Were we being distracted?
Trump has been making more of a fight against human trafficking than President Obama did. Which is good. I may post on that soon. This post will be on the opioid epidemic.
In 2014, I noted how U.S. involvement in Afghanistan strangely coincided with a 30-fold increase in opium cultivation in that nation. (Also in 2009, Bruce (the GayPatriot) acknowledged it indirectly.) Afghan heroin could certainly be contributing to the U.S. opioid epidemic.
Today I want to show you this chart seen on Zero Hedge.
The U.S. has the highest rate of drug deaths in the world. 4x of Asia; 6x of the world average; 9x of Western Europe; 16x of Africa.
I’m not sure what it means. Perhaps several things.
- Does Africa not have a drug problem? (Looks that way.)
- Is the U.S. weak on drug rehabilitation? (Probably.)
- Are drugs in the U.S. a big business? (all that Afghanistan heroin comes here? plus Latin American cocaine, etc.?)
- If yes, then surely certain U.S. political-financial forces would be out to protect the U.S. drug business? Surely those forces would hide in plain sight, as respectable authorities, or politicians of the 2 major parties?
- Are we suddenly talking about the opioid epidemic in 2017 because, say, some of those forces lost some power in a recent election – making it OK to notice? Or just because the term hit a critical mass?
One thing is for sure: the “War on Drugs” of the last 3+ decades has been a miserable failure. A city council member in Ohio proposes to handle it Darwin’s way: Deny 911 assistance to repeat drug overdosers.
His reasons have to do with saving his city’s finances. But one side effect would be to have drug overdosers face an increased (that is, a natural) death rate. That’s an unusual idea.
UPDATE: Commenters are noting the role of Medicaid and Obamacare in giving people more access to prescription opioids. Also here is a chart from the CDC (via Wiki):
It looks like a trend since 2000 in deaths from all opioids (heroin, synthetic and prescribed) that has accelerated in the last 5 – 7 years. Wiki says:
Fentanyl, a newer synthetic opioid painkiller, is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine and 30 to 50 times more potent than heroin…strong enough that police and first responders helping overdose victims have themselves overdosed by simply touching or inhaling a small amount…Fentanyl has surpassed heroin as a killer in several locales.