Friday, December 10, 2004

When I want advice on what a woman wants in a good fuck I always ask a nun. When I want a good mind fuck I seek out Trotsky's great-granddaughter.

Top U.S. drug-addiction research warns against decriminalizing marijuana07/12/2004 5:52:00 PM

VANCOUVER (CP) - A top American clinical researcher in the field of drug addiction warned Tuesday that decriminalizing marijuana could lead to increased abuse of the drug.

He, he, one must read this until the very end to find the humour in it. To whom does this propaganda belong?

Studies show wider availability of a drug coupled with a relaxed attitude towards it help predict the level of use and addiction, said Dr. Nora Volkow. (CP handout)

Studies show wider availability of a drug coupled with a relaxed attitude towards it help predict the level of use and addiction, said Dr. Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Volkow said surveys indicate that if a drug is considered safe and benign, its use spirals. Drug addiction rates can range from 20 to 30 per cent of users.

"The notion of legalizing and making drugs accessible, what it will do is ultimately increase the number of people that get exposed to the drug," Volkow said in an interview.

"Some of those people will become addicted that may have not become addicted had it not been so easily accessible."

The best examples, she said, are alcohol and tobacco, both widely available and relatively acceptable socially and with the most widespread addiction rates.

The federal Liberal government is mulling the decriminalization of possession of small amounts of pot. The Canadian proposal is drawing frowns within the U.S. government - notably drug-policy czar John Walters - accompanied by warnings about implications at the border.

Volkow, here to speak to people working in the drug-addiction field, said many scientists used to believe marijuana was not addictive.

But she said the pot consumed by the Baby Boom generation had much less of the active ingredient THC - which interacts with receptor proteins in the brain that translate pleasure responses - than the types now available.

"It is this chemical that can lead to the addiction," she said. "When people were taking marijuana in the past, they were consuming a very weak drug.

"The experiences that people may have had - that are now in their 40s and 50s - who say 'I never became addicted to that drug,' that does not necessarily pertain to the type of compound we're seeing today."

Research since then has also revealed a lot more about the effects of marijuana on those brain receptors and how they help regulate things such as memory and learning, she said.

Volkow was appointed in 2003 to head the institute, an arm of the U.S. National Institutes of Health.

With a budget of more than $900 million US, it is the world's largest supporter of clinical research on addiction and funds about 85 per cent of studies worldwide.

A research psychiatrist, Volkow, 48, has published more than 200 papers and specializes in the study of brain imaging to investigate what role dopamine, the brain chemical that triggers sensations of pleasure and motivation, plays in addiction.

Volkow's skepticism about marijuana is based partly on her experience.

She made her reputation in the 1980s with a ground-breaking study that discovered regular cocaine use caused tiny strokes. Coke was the drug of choice in the go-go '80s, popularly thought to be safe for recreational use.

"I had serious trouble getting that study published," she said. "Nobody wanted to believe it."

The organization Volkow now heads even rejected her grant application. It took the cocaine deaths of two prominent sports stars to alert people that maybe cocaine wasn't so safe, she said.

Those kinds of causal links don't yet exist with pot, she said. But some studies have tied its use to a rise in psychotic episodes and schizophrenia.

The institute is funding research to look at the effects of marijuana in the developing brain.

Volkow told the meeting research indicates adolescent brains are at higher risk of drug addiction because areas of the frontal cortex that affect reasoning and judgment, as well as a deeper region that involves pleasure responses, are not yet fully developed.

Environment also plays a role, she said, because studies show a connection between stress levels and addiction. Poverty itself is not the cause, said Volkow, but the stress of dealing with poverty is.

Despite her concerns about decriminalization, Volkow said drug addiction has to be treated as a disease, not a moral weakness to be stigmatized.

"It doesn't help anyone and it certainly doesn't help the addicted person," she said.

With a lot of criminal activity linked to drug addiction, Volkow said the institute favours treatment intervention in prisons.

A Delaware study found a sharp drop in drug use and arrests among people who went through the correctional system's program and received followup care.

Such programs could be pivotal because in the United States, only about 15 per cent of addicts get any kind of treatment, she said.

Volkow, who had a history of alcohol abuse in her family, was interested in addiction from an early age but never went further than experimenting with cigarettes.

And she knows something about addiction? A person who has not never taken a drink and can distinguish between "enjoyment" and "addiction"? HMMMMMMMMM.

"My French teacher was a smoker and she was very glamourous and I wanted to be like her," she said. "I tried it and I hated it."

No comment

Volkow is the great-granddaughter of Leon Trotsky. She was born in the Mexico City house where the legendary Bolshevik leader, forced into exile by Stalin, was murdered with an ice axe by a Russian agent in 1940.

Ha, ha, ha , ha , ha ,ha , ho ho ho ho hehehehehehehehahahahahahahahhhahhahahhah!!!!!

When looking for advice in a free society, look no further than the Trotskys!

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1 Comment:

gm said...

Studies show that a wider availability of stupid studies and a drug coupled with a relaxed attitude towards it help predict the level of the experts doing the study, said Dr. Nora Volkow.