Monday, October 25, 2004

Crazy day

I'm having a brutal day. Overslept because I feel asleep watching the game last night (how about those Red Sox) and didn't set the alarm and my friend and co-worker Karen broke her foot her yesterday so I'm left to deal with the office chaos virtually alone today. It's not that there's not more staff, the rest of them are just pretty much useless in terms of being any help in the situation.

Anyway, now that I'm done whining about it, I'm just home for a quick lunch so no drug news this afternoon. If I live that long, I'll be back tonight.

Meanwhile, head over to D'Alliance and check out Baylen's post on the latest ONDCP offspring, NSDAP. "The National Synthetic Drugs Action Plan, under the auspices of the DOJ and ONDCP, is a joint offensive against legal and illegal man-made drugs like meth, OxyContin, pseudoephedrine, and Ecstasy. The NSDAP also establishes the "Synthetic Drugs Interagency Working Group," a new interagency bureaucracy tasked with implementing the plan, according to a joint statement drug czar John Walters and Attorney General John Ashcroft released with the report."

Baylen deconstructs the report.

The drug czar's office is ambitiously billing the NSDAP as "the Nation's first comprehensive strategy for reducing the production, trafficking, and use of synthetic drugs and the diversion of pharmaceuticals" through the use of "a balanced approach focused on four core areas: prevention, treatment, regulation of chemicals and drugs, and law enforcement." Notable recommendations from [and comments on] the plan include:

* An early warning and response system to detect the emergence of new drugs and trends. [Also known as a hi-tech new bureaucracy.]

* New import controls on bulk ephedrine and pseudoephedrine, similar to post-importation processing of Schedule I and II controlled substances. ["Post-importation processing" is more commonly known as "incineration" -- in this case of legal drugs.]

* Enhanced, targeted enforcement against diversion of OxyContin and Vicodin. [Part of the administration's larger efforts against pain patients and their doctors and pharmacists.]

* Ensuring adequate funding resources for clandestine lab and dumpsite cleanups, so that cleanup costs are not a disincentive to investigations or takedowns. [The drug czar's play to Dirty Harry environmentalists. Trees are for hugging. People are meant to be taken down.]

Baylen also takes a very interesting look at the press coverage. It seems the sole reporter who published a story on this, appears to have been tipped off.

And on that happy note, I'm off to the office.


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