Saturday, August 27, 2005

Disband the DEA

Great feature article in this week's Drug Sense Weekly. Mike Gray, the Chairman of Common Sense For Drug Policy, takes a look at the ongoing interference in the practice of medicine by the DEA. It's short, so read it all. Gray thinks as the boomers age and are in need of this sort of treatment, the public outcry will finally overcome the DEA's irresponsible campaign against medical practitioners, particularly since you have to be deaf, dumb and blind to see they prosecute this aspect of the war on some drugs for the sole purpose of seizing the doctor's significant assets and generating statistics that "prove" they're accomplishing something to "benefit" society - namely the destruction of an entire medical speciality and one that's badly needed by chronic pain sufferers.

As I've said before, the DEA should be disbanded. It has accomplished nothing constructive during the life of the agency. Gray cites Dr. David Brushwood, professor of pharmacy at the University of Florida who puts it more eloquently,
"Interference in medical practice by a federal agency is intolerable. If the agency insists on an approach to diversion prevention that misunderstands medical practice and victimizes pain patients, it has outlived its usefulness."
In fact, it's a big part of the problem. Where do think pain patients will go for relief if they can't find doctors to treat them? At least some will end up dealing on the street to ease their ongoing condition, further expanding the black market which was a lot smaller before the DEA tried to "destroy" it by going after the easiest and least culpable targets.

If we don't eliminate the DEA, the least we should do is eliminate forfeiture. I'd bet money the pain docs would become a lot less attractive a target, if their assets couldn't be seized before they were even tried by the courts.


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