Category Archives: Dope
They are playing it up, but the headlines are lying. They are saying, Pot Users Have Smaller Brains. That is true in a sense, and the earlier the onset of use, the smaller this part of the brain, but that is not the end of the story. The part of the brain is the orbitofrontal cortex. No one knows what this part of the brain does, and it may not do a whole lot. It is very much involved in states of addiction. So maybe this is the alcoholic/pack a day smoker/heroin addict/crackhead part of your brain that mostly just sits there until you take up a habit and then it activates and does whatever, God knows what.
The pot smokers smoked pot on average of three times a day and had started using it from ages 13-30. The younger they started using, the smaller the orbitofrontal cortex was. Pot users had IQ’s on average 5 points lower than controls. That may seem alarming, but for some like me, that leaves me with an IQ of 142, hardly a stupid burnout fried pothead. That should still be enough to kick ass and take names. Towards the lower end up the IQ spectrum, the loss of 5 points may be more significant. Going from 90 to 85 is a much bigger deal than going from 147 to 142, which is barely even meaningful.
Nevertheless, there was no relationship between the size of the orbitofrontal cortex and IQ, so the loss of grey matter in that part of the brain, whatever it was doing, was not making the users more stupid.
In addition, the reduction in size of the orbitofrontal cortex was correlated with increases in connectivity and structure. The younger the person was when they started using, the greater the increases in connectivity and structure were. So the brain was attempting to compensate for the loss of matter in the orbitofrontal cortex by building new highways and storehouses, so to speak. It is known that the brain is plastic in this way, but past a certain point, a person has sustained too much brain damage and plasticity can no longer compensate for it and then you start getting symptoms from brain damage.
Brain damage is also much overdrawn. There are plenty of scary headlines about it, sure, but how many people do you know who have four or more drinks a day. They are all shrinking their brains. Short term heavy drinking of the type often seen in college can depress the brain for up to two years afterwards. So where are all the headlines about this?
Furthermore, it is little known, but we all get brain damage. From age 23 on, our brains are getting more damaged and losing more brain cells. So all the scary headlines say X Drug Kills Brain Cells” which is really dumb because the truth is headlines should read Life Kills Brain Cells. So we should all kill ourselves to avoid brain damage?
In addition, the additional connectivity and structure is a nice addition to your brain, though it is not known what advantages it may have. But pot users will have this increased connectivity and structure that nonusers may not have and there may be advantages to that.
The increases in connectivity and structure slow down after seven years of regular use, but they do not abate. And the more pot you use, the more increases in connectivity and structure you get. And even after quite a few years of heavy use, pot users still had greater brain connectivity than nonusers.
What would be interesting would be to see if the IQ decline corrects itself after a person stops using.
Yet another great song from the Heartbreakers off their one and only studio album, L.A.M.F.
This song is actually about heroin. You might be able to figure that out if you listen carefully enough.
I’m living on Chinese rocks
All my best things are in hock
Johnny Thunders was a long term heroin and opiate user at least from 1975 in the New York Dolls (Thunders and Jerry Nolan’s heroin use caused the breakup of the band in Florida) until his death, probably heroin-related, in 1991.
I saw them once in Hollywood in 1981. As they were leaving to go backstage at the end of the show, I was looking right at Thunders.
He looked at me and caught my eye.
He had the strangest, most haunted look in his eyes. Fear and terror combined in some sort of a mental haunting.
I will never forget it.
RIP Johnny Thunders.
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Marianne Faithfull doing It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue! From 1971, during her worst period. She broke up with Mick Jagger and attempted suicide soon after. She fell into heroin addiction and lived on the streets of London for 2 years. A record producer rescued her from the streets are produced a fantastic album from this terrible period called Rich Kid Blues, featuring some of her finest work.
The album was not released until 1985, 14 years later. She was only 25 years old, the poor thing. She later went into heroin rehab but flunked out badly. During this period she had laryngitis and abused cocaine heavily, permanently damaging her voice and leaving her with that famous Marianne Faithfull “whiskey-soaked voice.”
Marianne Faithfull doing Ruby Tuesday in 1995 at age 39! You either love this version or you hate it, but I love it. Marianne hits this one right out of the park. Her voice is not the same as when she was young, but she still packs a Hell of a lot of emotion into her songs. The woman in the 1960’s movies is Catherine Denueve! A famous 1960’s actress, she was even more beautiful than Marianne during her prime.
Marianne Faithfull doing Visions of Johanna from the great Rich Kid Blues album from 1971! Rescued from the streets!
Marianne Faithfull doing Sister Morphine, a great song she co-wrote with Mick Jagger in 1969. She was 23 years old when she recorded this song.
Marianne doing Come and Stay with Me from her early period. She recorded this as an 18 year old girl!
Of course, the greatest Marianne Faithfull of all, As Tears Go By! From 1964! Check it out – a 17 year old girl!
First Mick Jagger, then Marianne Faithfull, both doing As Tears Go By! Combined with period 1960’s footage of Mick and Marianne as a couple. I love Mich Jagger! Double love Marianne Faithfull!
Marianne Faithfull doing John Lennon’s Working Class Hero! From Broken English, the great 1979 comeback album. I think I almost like her even better after her voice was shot! Killer cover! An angel from the 1960’s, destroyed by demons!
David Bowie from the Ziggy Stardust era in 1973 with Marianne Faithfull, dredged up from the streets, cocaine and heroin addiction and failed rehab. Check out Marianne! Heroin is a Hell of a drug!
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Fascinating but highly disturbing blog by a current heroin addict. This blog is very well written. Fortunately he makes enough money as an artist that he does not have to turn to crime or prostitution to pay for his habit. The posts are amazing. Heroin has pretty much trashed this guy’s life in a number of ways, yet he is utterly unrepentant about it and he wouldn’t have it any other way. Sadly this is typical of heroin addicts. An addict will be on his deathbed, dying of some illness related to heroin addiction, and he will still not blame heroin for his plight. He praise heroin until the last light blinks out on his existence.
This is because the high is so great. The high is so fantastic that the addict will do anything to get it. And he keeps loving that high til the very end no matter how much trouble it gets him into.
I know people who have taken this drug dozens of times without getting addicted. They told me that they didn’t even like the high, so obviously it is not for everyone. They told me that the high is very “floaty,” and after a while, you get pretty sleepy. Like a lot of drugs, it tends to make all of your problems vanish into thin air, which is after all why a lot of people take drugs in the first place.
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A very interesting article about the death of a great American city.
Insane rightwing assholes all over the Internet are linking to this article and calling it “the long-term consequences of liberalism.”
New Right and Alt Right idiots are leading the charge.
Here is what happened.
Camden was a great American industrial city, and then all the jobs packed up and left. At first it was corporations moving to non-union parts of the US. Rightwingers will idiotically blame unions for this, when really all it is is workers trying to earn a fair and decent wage for their labor. Of course conservatives have always opposed the idea that a working man should get a fair and decent wage for a day’s labor. Then the corporations started taking off for overseas. By the 1990’s, Campbell’s Soup Company was the last one left.
As factories shuttered their doors, poverty increased. Whites increasingly moved out and the city become much more Black and Hispanic. The unemployment rate skyrocketed. As there were no jobs, crime, gangs and drugs flourished. Much of the city became abandoned or even burnt out by arson. It began to take on the look of a bombed out World War 2 city. The police had their hands full, and they had a powerful police union. Camden police ended up receiving the highest salaries in New Jersey. In a way it made sense, because Camden cops had the toughest jobs of all and had the highest chances of getting killed or wounded on the job.
People in city government did their best, but what can you do?
Some fat sweaty hog named Chris Christie, a fake “moderate” Republican who was anything but, took power as Governor of New Jersey.
“Mr. Moderate Fat Pig” did something unexpected. He decided that the niggers and spics in Camden weren’t paying their way. They were takers not makers. The makers, the good, nice White taxpaying humans, were supporting the takers, the nigger and spic animals in places like Camden.
Christie said it’s time for Camden to pay its way and quit sucking off the state’s teat. Well it would be very nice if Camden could pay its own way, but guess what? The tax base of the city is just about zero. So if the city has to pay its own way out of the tax revenues the city generates, the city government is going to collapse because the place hardly generates any revenue.
Camden has no choice. It’s either be a parasite or die. Cities, like people, want to live.
So Christie completely cut off all state revenues to Camden and said, “You’re on your own!” like a father to his wayward 18 year old son. Then all Hell broke loose. For all intents and purposes, city government simply collapsed. The police force was slashed, and the cops abandoned much of the city to the criminals, gangs and dope. Crime went nuts, and violent crime went through the roof.
Camden had one of the highest homicide rates on Earth, almost like a war zone, up there with Mogadishu and Honduras. Gangs and dope dealers simply took over whole neighborhoods. Camden gained a reputation as one of the biggest dope markets in the US and a lot of high quality dope, especially heroin, started flowing into the city. Addicts from all over started moving to the area to follow the dope. Most of the addicts were White.
Arson spread through the city, and there were hardly any firefighters to fight the fires. Over a 3-year period, maybe half the city seemed to go up in flames at one time or another. The place had a burned out war zone feel about it.
Then Fat Pig Christie had another brilliant idea. He decided that the whole problem in New Jersey was government! The teaching profession needed to be cleaned out, as pubic schools were “failing.” They probably weren’t failing, but the public schools are always “failing” in the eyes of lying rightwingers. The way to fix the schools was to get rid of the teacher’s unions and slash the Hell out of their pay and benefits. The police unions were another problem. Those cops were making way too much money. The whole problem with crime-ridden cities was police unions and cops who got paid too much and got too many bennies.
How does that argument make sense?
According to this insane argument, the more money you pay a worker and the better benefits he gets, the less he works! Huh?
So if you want to get the most possible work out of a worker, you slash their pay in half, pay them a pittance, give them no bennies at all and let them fend their own in the cruel world. Just think, if everyone got paid the minimum wage, how productivity would soar!
The argument is completely irrational of course, but never mind. Tens of millions of conservative morons all over America actually believe this craziness. So Christie took on the teacher’s unions and the police unions.
Workers were making too much money! Oh no, we can’t have that!
In Camden, the police had their pay gutted, the force was cut in half and benefits were slashed. As one might expect, morale fell through the roof. Cops stopped doing their job and abandoned much of the city to the crooks. Officers called in sick in huge waves of sick-in’s. On many days, a lot of cops simply never showed up for work. Predictably, crime, gangs and dope exploded, just as any sane person might expect.
According to insane rightwing ideology, complex problems like crime, drugs, gangs, arson, poverty, failing schools and urban blight are all caused by government. Social spending especially is to blame. The more money a government spends on a city, the more people shoot each other, set stuff on fire, collapse into poverty, sell and shoot dope, join gangs and shoot up the streets. The more money you give people, the more they cause their dwellings to collapse. The more cash you spend on schools, the more they turn into blighted, violence ridden, failure factories.
The way to get people to act good and everything to fall into tip top shape is to cut off all the money.
Cut off the money and the schools will turn into mini-Oxfords overnight. Cut off the cash and the architecture will repair itself and rival Florence. Cut off the bucks and the gangsters will take off their boots and call it day. End the cash-flow and the drug dealers will abandon the streets and all become social workers and pediatricians. Cut off the income and arsonists will get Smokey the Bear religion and quit setting shit on fire. Cut off the paychecks and murderers will all become cringing pacifists and beat their guns into plowshares. Cut off the bucks and poverty will vanish as wealth explodes, tony neighborhoods creep across town and boutiques blossom on every corner.
Sound insane? Yeah.
You know what? Conservatives actually believe this bullshit. No, really, I am not kidding. This is their lunatic religion.
Well, obviously, none of Christie’s rightwing bullshit worked. In fact, it made all of the bad problems of Camden horrifically worse. After Christie’s conservative magic, the city was a horrorshow and every day was Halloween. It was a collapsed zone, a Dystopia out of a science fiction movie.
Then Fat Boy got another brilliant idea. He fired the entire city police force! Good show! And then he replaced them with “county police,” mostly from White cities surrounding Camden. He hired quite a few of the old city police back as “county police.” County police had radically slashed pay and their benefits were hacked to the bone. This was apparently done to make them work harder because, you know, when you cut someone’s pay in half, he works twice as hard, right?
Then Fat Man read an Aldous Huxley novel called Brave New World and decided to turn Camden into London 2450 A.F. He installed state of the art cameras all over the city, on every corner, in every nook and crevice. Even more creepily, he installed listening devices all over town so Fat Big Brother could not only see everything you did, but he could also hear everything you said. The listening devices were set up so they could pinpoint the location of a gunshot very accurately.
The Big Brother cops then sat back at headquarters and watched everyone’s smallest movements on gigantic TV screens that covered the walls of the police department. Every time a bird peeped or a pin dropped somewhere, the microphones strained to grab the tiniest hint of aural activity. At the same time, police got very aggressive about patrolling the city. In some areas, there was a cop on every corner, dressed like US troops in Iraq. Helicopters swept over the city, sometimes dropping cops down to rappel onto roofs in order to invade apartment blocks, once again reminiscent of a war zone. At first, it worked fairly well.
But after a while, even this started failing. Sure the cameras and the mikes worked just fine, but the population got mad. They stopped calling in crimes. Instead of getting reports of gunshots and screams, cops got a call about a dead body full of holes lying in a parking lot with no one else in sight. Residents also quit assisting the police. Nobody ever saw, heard or knew anything. It was if large sections of town had become deaf, blind and mute.
Cops would race to the scene of crimes only to find themselves surrounded by hostile crowds of up to 50-100 people. They could barely get out of their cars as the crowds pressed in. They would be just about to nab a suspect when a huge crowd would suddenly form and the suspect would melt in the glaring crowd, seeming to vanish off the face of the Earth. There was no pursuing them through the angry mobs.
The dope market continued to flourish. Many Whites in surrounding cities flooded into Camden every day to buy dope. You could sometimes see whole crowds of them walking into town over bridges in the morning. Camden started getting a reputation for having the best heroin in the US.
The work all shut down, and all the jobs vanished. The city degenerated into crime, dope, gangs, slaughter flames and decay, as one might expect.
All of this drove any remaining work further out in a nasty cycle.
Massive budget cuts made the situation surreally worse, as Camden started to resemble Iraq.
Cops outfitted like 21st century soldiers then occupied the city and helicopters swooped overhead. Cameras and microphones sprouted all over the city to keep the restless population in control, Big Brother style.
And even that didn’t seem to be working.
Whatever blew up Camden, it sure as Hell wasn’t liberalism. Blown up cities tend to stay blown up until some work comes back. They stay ruined under conservative or liberal city or state administrations alike. Neither conservative nor liberal policies tend to make cities implode in the first place (it’s economics) and neither conservative nor liberal governments seem to be able any Humpty Dumpty cities back together again when they fall off the wall (probably only economics can patch up a ruined city).
However, the limited available evidence does seem to show that rightwing policies of cutting off all the money to a ruined city makes things dramatically worse as a hellhole turns into a literal charnelhouse, and in that way, conservative policies fail badly, making bad things into even worse things.
Conservative policies of slashing police forces and teacher ranks and gutting the pay of teachers and cops seem to cause police departments to collapse, drive the morale of cops and teachers into the ground, and probably make failing schools fail worse than ever. So in that sense, too, conservative policies also seem to make a bad thing worse.
One thing is for sure. For the life of me, I can’t possibly see how liberalism turned Camden from a showcase city into scary, crumbling dystopia. How did liberalism ruin a great city? I don’t get it.
But hey, liars will always lie, won’t they?
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Great video on the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas! These are some hardcore, badass mofos. They are quite a bit more racist than the national AB, which has abandoned most of its hardcore racism in favor of simply being a business enterprise. In fact, the national AB cooperates with Hispanic and Black gangs in order to further the goals of their organized crime gang – to make money!
The AB-Texas is quite a bit more hardcore, though recently they have been cooperating with Mexican drug cartels in order to import methamphetamine to Texas. AB-Texas is one of the most violent AB gang factions in the US, and they have been implicated in quite a few homicides, including killings of cops and district attorneys.
I do not like these guys at all; I just find prison gangs fascinating.
Fascinating documentary about speed, crank, meth or methamphetamine in San Francisco. Centers on the Tenderloin, a famous rundown area near downtown. When I go to San Francisco, I like to hang out in a place called SOMA, or South of Market. It’s pretty seedy like the Tenderloin, but it’s not nearly as bad or dangerous. It’s been gentrifying a lot in recent years.
I didn’t know they were rocking meth up to cook it into ice and that the cooking procedure was rather complex. I must say that I have never smoked ice. However, I have snorted methamphetamine about 3 times. The last two times, the crash was so horrific that I said never again. Your whole body feels like a sack of bones and your brain feels like a Vietnamese rainforest after it’s been sprayed with Agent Orange. Screw this drug! Why does anyone take it anyway?
I thought it was interesting that a number of Blacks at least in the Tenderloin are using meth, at least in the form of ice. Blacks have typically used crack cocaine instead of meth, but maybe the fact that ice is smoked like crack makes it more attractive to Blacks. Otherwise, meth has traditionally been a White drug.
Some drugs are White drugs and others are more Black drugs. Whites typically go in for hallucinogens like psilocybin mushrooms and LSD, while Blacks to not like to use these drugs. However, Blacks have always used PCP more than Whites have. Both races go in for heroin at about equal rates as heroin is a pretty big drug in the hood. Cannabis is probably equally popular also among Blacks and Whites.
When it comes to cocaine, Whites have typically preferred to sniff it or ever shoot it, while Blacks have preferred to smoke it as crack. However, for some time now, many Whites have been smoking crack too. In addition, pills like Oxycontin seem to be a White drug. MDMA, ketamine and other club drugs are used by Whites and generally shunned by Blacks.
Classic interview with John Frusciante by a Dutch journalist done in 1994 when he was in depths of heroin, cocaine and alcohol addictions. Frusciante was the guitarist for the Red Hot Chili Peppers, a great LA band that was a bit after my time. He quit in 1992, as he could not handle the band’s fame anymore. For the next five years, he holed up in his Hollywood Hills home as a recluse and became addicted to the three drugs above. He was also a heavy pothead. During this period, he also became very depressed.
At one point, two of his famous friends, Johnny Depp and Gibson Haynes, came out to see him and brought a video camera. They made a short documentary, Stuff, about his descent into utter depravity. This short 11 minute movie is both sad and sinister. Unfortunately, the recording quality is very poor. Come to think of it, Stuff is also an excellent anti-heroin commercial. Timothy Leary appears, sitting in the trashed out house, from 7:44 to 8:23.
His arms became badly scarred due to shooting up and the abscesses that followed. Some of these scars are now permanent. The walls of his home became badly scarred and covered in graffiti. Smile from the Streets You Hold was released in 1997, a poor album filled with screeching and coughing, showcasing his failing health. He has admitted that the album was released to get drug money. It was pulled from the market recently. On his second admission to rehab, he had a potentially lethal oral infection. It was cured only by pulling all of his rotten teeth. He got skin grafts to cover up his arm abscesses.
In Memphis, Tennessee, two early morning Black Friday shoppers were arrested for passing counterfeit bills. Police confiscated a total of about $1,600 in fake bills, computer equipment to make fake bills, and methamphetamine.
The circumstances are similar to earlier cases, such as the case in Oklahoma City in which two people were arrested after a raid at their home. Police found large amounts of marijuana, cocaine, and methamphetamine, along with several sheets of counterfeit 20-dollar bills.
Materials and equipment for making fake currency were found in a home in Santa Rosa, California, during a raid. In addition to counterfeit bills the police found drug paraphernalia and methamphetamine.
Not that long ago counterfeiting was a difficult and expensive operation. The best counterfeiters were skilled printers who used heavy offset presses to turn out pretty convincing 20s, 50s, and 100s. Doing so required the ability to cut intricate designs by hand into metal plates. Not anymore. A lot of teenagers in this country can tell you that all you need to make fake money nowadays are a PC, a scanner, and color inkjet printer. (Of course, those teenagers are usually caught in no time, since it’s not easy to produce truly authentic-looking bills.)
In case after case of counterfeiting you will see drug use implicated – particularly methamphetamine. Meth addicts often steal mail and commit other property crimes to get their hands on the money they need for their habit. They can stay awake and focused on repetitive tasks for days, making them good at such crimes as forgery, identity theft, altering checks, and trying to perfect counterfeit currency.
Millions of dollars worth of counterfeit cash is supposed to be in circulation in the United States, and there’s usually an uptick in detection during the holidays. Counterfeiters see this as the ideal time to try to pass fake bills; that’s when they think they’re more likely to get away with it. A business that ends up with counterfeit bills doesn’t get compensated for the loss and usually raises prices to make up for it.
If you end up with a counterfeit bill, the US Secret Service wants you to tell them. They say to notify your local police department or the nearest Secret Service field office. There’s no financial compensation for turning it in, though. Central banks say that to do so would subsidize counterfeiting, providing a financial reward for counterfeiters’ criminal behavior. Turning it in is just another civic duty.