First the Nixon administration starts the War on Drugs as a cover for their war on POC. Ehrlichmann admitted that the WoD was only a cover for their plan to convict , incarcerate, and control the dark skinned people that scared the so called Silent Majority that Nixon appealled to. Next Corporations see the
millions billions made by drug lords and decide to get in on a good thing. Oxycontin started the heroin epidemic. It was an old drug-oxycodone- with an expired patent. By figuring out how to coat tablets so that the drug was released slowly over 8-12 hours they obtained a patent for an old drug. Then they sold it with fake studies to physicians as appropriate for long term use in patients with moderate to severe pain. It was an instant hit, especially since if a patient bit into or cut the bitter pill they could get a heroin like high from the the 20-80 mg pills. If you’re not familiar with dosages, the averge Percocet is 5mg although the dosages in combined form, that is mixed with Tylenol, aspirin, or Ibuprofen, range from 2.5-7.5 mg of oxyodone to the other OTC analgesics.
There are examples of pharmaceutical companies engaging in unscrupulous or illegal behavior to promote opioid drugs. In 2007 Purdue Pharma, maker of Oxycontin, pleaded guilty to charges that it misled regulators and doctors about the abuse potential of the drug.
More recently, employees at Insys Therapeutics, a manufacturer of the powerful painkiller fentanyl, plead guilty to charges involving kickback schemes for fentanyl sales. The company remains the target of numerous state and federal investigations.
For instance, earlier this year, the DEA refused to reduce restrictions on marijuana use, arguing that there was insufficient evidence of marijuana’s medical benefits. Multiple studies have found that access to medical marijuana is associated with reductions in prescription painkiller abuse and overdose rates.
More recently, the DEA announced a plan to ban the use of kratom, a Southeast Asian plant with opiate-like qualities. Many users of kratom report that the plant has helped them quit using more powerful prescription painkillers. Researchers are worried that without kratom available to them, these users will return to prescription painkillers or move on to heroin.
The question I have pondered and asked for years that no one could answer is how so much of this drug flooded the market if doctors and pharmacists were the gatekeepers. You didn’t see the same thing happening with other drugs that are habit forming or addicting like amphetamines or benzodiazepines. I suspected all along that the drug companies allowed cartons of drugs to “fall off the back of truck.” That was the only explanation for hugh swaths of the country-like parts of Kentucky, Ohio, and Iowa-having a majority of the adults addicted and dying from oxycontin. If this WaPo article and the FOIA requests reveal culpability I am gonna be writing everyone on Capitol Hill to go after these bastards for all the ruined and lost lives they are directly responsible for.
I personally struggled with oxycontin after a routine cervical fusion resulted in an infection and months of acute and excruciating pain. I know people who died from overdoses, have seen patients go from oxy to heroin to methadone (a terrible drug with a long half life that is harder to kick than the heroin that it was meant to treat) only to overdose on the methadone. A close friend lost both her sister and her father on the same day to a methadone overdose.
Corporate malfeasance is probably to blame for all this and I think it’s time to hold them to account and sentence them to the same lengthy prison sentences so many addicts were forced to serve. Not to mention the civil suits these charges expose them to. I gonna talk to a lawyer. We need to nail corporations for deliberate assaults on civic health.