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[P]
Crystal Meth Will Lift You Up Until You Break

By m0rzo in Culture
Sun May 05, 2002 at 01:49:00 PM EST
Tags: Culture (all tags)
Culture

Methamphetamine is swiftly beginning to infiltrate the dance-floors of the world. The drug, known to induce psychopathic tendencies in its users, is thought to be more dangerous than crack and heroin. Originally confined to Bangkok clubs, its use has rapidly spread across Asia and the USA but it has yet to conquer Europe.

Donald Macintyre takes investigative journalism to the most extreme level. His series of exposť documentaries for the BBC, aptly entitled 'Macintyre Undercover', have put him in the most precarious situations imaginable and earned him the loathing of some of the world's most despicable characters. Macintyre's documentaries are well-planned and often take months of preparation; this is a man with apparently no regard for his own safety. In his last documentary, he spent months infiltrating the fiercely racist and sadistically violent 'Chelsea Headhunters' - a small, organised cell of Neo-Nazi football hooligans bent on the disruption of football matches and the destruction of rival 'firms'. His recognisable face and mellow Dublin intonation made it difficult to hide when the documentary was aired and the thugs were rightfully exposed. To some he's just an agent provocateur but to others he is a herald of truth and justice.


Donald Macintyre returned to UK screens a fortnight ago. Last week, he travelled to Thailand to uncover the menacing prevalence of the dance floor drug, Methamphetamine, known locally as 'Yaba' (pron. Yar-Bar). His journey took him from the traffic-clogged Khao San Road in Bangkok (made famous by Alex Garland in his book, 'The Beach'), to the dense jungles of Burma as he strived to trace the drug from its dealers to its producers.

Methamphetamine was invented by the Nazis in the 1930s and was intended for use by soldiers so they could fight for days without sleep. Methamphetamine is a derivative of synthetic amphetamines such as speed and the drug's main ingredients include salt, distilled cold medicines, petrol and lithium. Methamphetamine's production is supposedly easy, and its ingredients readily available. Its transformation from the icy cold killing fields of the Eastern Front to its adoption as a recreational drug is uncertain but it's a Nazi legacy that many wish had died with Hitler. Street methamphetamine is referred to by many names, such as 'crystal', 'meth' and 'chalk'.

Methamphetamine is incredibly addictive; regular use of the drug has been linked to lung and kidney disorders, hallucinations and paranoia. Use of the drug causes the brain to flood with a substance called dopamine, causing huge exhilaration but then terrible lows. The use of 'meth' has, in the past, been attributed to a high proportion of Thailand's murders.

In Thailand it is known simply as 'Yaba' and its increasingly wide-spread use in Bangkok has wreaked havoc with the Thai police force who is struggling to contain the problem. Yaba abuse, in Thailand, has reached epidemic proportions; in 2001, Thai authorities estimated that over 2.5 million people were regular users and its ever-increasing availability, particular to students, means that number is increasing no end.

Armed with a hidden camera, and a team which included narcotics experts tracking his every move, Donald Macintyre took to the bustling streets of Bangkok in search of Yaba. Within moments he had located a Yaba source and was driven across the city to meet with a shady-looking drug pusher. He found Yaba similarly available at a bike-taxi rank ran by fresh-faced yet stony-eyed teenagers but Bangkok's stringent drug laws made it too risky to score on the street.

In his book, `The Beach', Alex Garland vividly describes a beautiful well-kept secret - white sands circling a lagoon hidden from the sea, coral gardens and freshwater falls surrounded by jungle. These days, Phi Phi Le Island is one of Thailand's most frequented party islands, swamped yearly by thrill-seekers hoping to relive the utopian bliss brought to life by Garland. Phi Phi Le Island is also a hotbed of drug consumption and an ideal place to report on Thailand's new drugs plague. Macintyre arrived with his crew by boat in search of Yaba. His first score, three crude looking brown pills, turned out to be nothing more than Ecstasy - he could have stayed at home to get that. Sauntering along the beach, weaving in and out of drugged-up revellers, one of the Macintyre team came across his next source. A slight-looking Thai woman greeted him and reacted warmly to his enquiries about Yaba but she was clearly afraid (Phi Phi Le Island is rumoured to be swarming with undercover cops). 'Yaba, Yaba!' she shouted, trying her hardest to project her voice over the loud, thumping music. After indicating he would like to obtain some Yaba pills, the woman took him inside and beckoned him to smoke with her to which he politely declined. He did, however, film her smoking and observed the dismal look which shrouded her face. For her, Yaba smoking had become more of an act of necessity than pleasure.

The pill obtained from this dicey transaction, small and red in appearance, bared the ubiquitous stamp of its Burmese producers - The Wa - an insurgent rebel group granted substantial autonomy by the government in Rangoon. Burma has always been infamous for its drug manufacturing and is understood to be Asia's largest producer of opium, which eventually gets changed into heroin destined for the streets of London or New York. Whilst publicly the Burmese government seems to take a hard line on drug manufacturing, as Macintyre discovered, production of Yaba continues openly with the apparent full knowledge and backing of those in Rangoon. This year alone, 800 million Yaba pills are estimated to be produced in Wa-held laboratories along the Burmese/Thai border.

At this point in time, Burma is still entrenched in a civil war which has been raging for over 25 years. The Burmese government is extremely hostile to Western media intrusion and the area along the border with Thailand is particularly forbidden. Crossing into Thailand, Macintyre rendezvoused with a small rebel group in opposition to the government. Hacking their way through thick, dense jungle in sweltering heat to avoid government road-blocks, the BBC crew followed the heavily-armed rebels to their stronghold. There they were shown conclusive evidence of Burmese government involvement in the Yaba trade; videos shot of soldiers caught carrying thousands of pills destined for Bangkok, and of the huge drug-making facilities occupied by the Wa. A reconnaissance mission to see the facilities for themselves provoked an angry response and a skirmish ensued which culminated in both the rebels and BBC crew dodging bullets and being pursued throughout the night by government troops.

Recently, enormous batches of Yaba have been intercepted making their way into Europe by boat and plane. But as Macintyre discovered, Ecstasy still remains the drug of choice in Britain's clubs. Ecstasy has received its fair share of defamation in the press despite the fact that millions of people take it every Friday night with no ill-effects. Is methamphetamine different? Is it really the pernicious drug that we're led to believe? Or is it just the latest victim of scaremongering anti-drug rhetoric in the continuing futile war against drugs?

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Poll
Done Yaba?
o Yeeeaa, sweet. 9%
o Yes. Nasty stuff. 9%
o No, but I would. 5%
o No, and I wouldn't. 62%
o Eh? I kill you! 13%

Votes: 107
Results | Other Polls

Related Links
o Methamphet amine
o crack
o heroin
o Donald Macintyre
o BBC
o Macintyre Undercover
o Chelsea Headhunters
o travelled to Thailand
o Alex Garland
o `The Beach'
o Phi Phi Le Island
o The Wa
o Also by m0rzo


Display: Sort:
Crystal Meth Will Lift You Up Until You Break | 109 comments (83 topical, 26 editorial, 0 hidden)
Intresting... (4.70 / 17) (#1)
by SvnLyrBrto on Sun May 05, 2002 at 08:53:07 AM EST

I always thought that northern California was the meth capital of the world.

Certianly, meth labs are a dime a dozen in countys like Humbolt... hell... pretty much ANYWHERE outside the cities.  (Meth manuefacture, while easy from a non-chemist POV, has some REALLY nasty and toxic waste products... that also stink up the place and everything around it... making it necessary for meth labs to be rathar isolated).

Incidently, it's called "tweak" here.  And one who uses it is a "tweaker".  Not many people around here have heard of "YaBa".  And if they have, they think it's some exotic SUPERmethamphetemine coming out of some special labs in eastern europe.  (The rumors about YaBa vs. tweek usually include false info like how it's as good a high, but not nearly so addictive or dangerous..... sigh)

You can imagine the dismay of the tweaker, when you clue him in to the fact that YaBa is just another name for plain old crystal meth.

I really don't believe it's quite as addictive as the scare stories claim tho.  I've tried it a few times myself.  Certianly, it can be fun for a while.  But it's a twitchy, nervous high; not what I like at all.  And the comedown... well... it's not something you'd wish on even someone you don't like.  My experiences with it left me with no particular desire to do it again.

What I found REALLY funny, was the fact that someone went shopping for meth, but got "plain old ecstasy"!  In my experience, if you're getting fake pills, it's almost ALWAYS the other way around... people looking for Ecstasy (which usually has to be imported from Amsterdam) get fake pills containing meth (made, in great quantity, right here in California).

That, and from a Californian's POV, it's pretty odd that the guy went looking for meth in pill form.  Usually the only reason, here, that it finds its way into a pill is to be sold as fake ecstasy.  People here who do tweak on purpose usually smoke or rail it.

(editorial)
nifty look at a particular drug from an alternate viewpoint +1 section
(/editorial)

cya,
john

Imagine all the people...

Interesting comment. (4.00 / 3) (#2)
by m0rzo on Sun May 05, 2002 at 08:58:54 AM EST

Yeah, I thought it was pretty odd too, how he got ecstasy instead of meth. I think pill form is the only form available in Thailand, or at least it seemed that way. The pill isn' usually swallowed but smoked. It was an interesting documentary and I think there are plans to repeat it on BBC World, so by all means watch it if you get the chance =)


My last sig was just plain offensive.
[ Parent ]

Please elaborate (4.22 / 9) (#4)
by DesiredUsername on Sun May 05, 2002 at 09:08:41 AM EST

You say the comedown is something you wouldn't wish on someone you don't like but you also say you used it "a few times". Why did you use it a second time if the first was so bad? I ask this in light of your statement that it is not as addictive as claimed.

Play 囲碁
[ Parent ]
My Guess... (3.00 / 1) (#10)
by snowlion on Sun May 05, 2002 at 11:19:38 AM EST

...is that he either tried it a few times to understand what it does, or that he was at a social event where people were doing meth.

Reaction to a psychotropic drug depends on environment. You have to try a drug a few times in different environments to understand what it does.
--
Map Your Thoughts
[ Parent ]

Curiosity... (4.50 / 4) (#30)
by SvnLyrBrto on Sun May 05, 2002 at 01:21:20 PM EST

As snowlion guesses (correctly) I tried it more than once to gain more of an understanding.  It *IS* true of *ANY* drug, that the environment you try it in has a lot to do with what the outcome will be.

For example:  We all hear about how Disneyland/world is supposed to be an awesome place to do acid.  But if someone inexperienced does this, and happens to be on Mr. Toad's Wild Ride when it kicks in... "Hello Mr. Bad Trip.  How are you doing today?"

And maybe one bad trip is enough to swear some people off acid forever.  I've never had acid go bad for me.  But it's conceivable that, someday, I will.  But I've had enough positive experiences that I don't think a single bad trip would make me give it up forever.

Ditto with tweak.  I wasn't going to let a single bad experience scare me off.  After I had an understanding with the stuff that I was going to feel like crap coming down EVERY time... that, combined with the fact that I really wasn't fond of the high in the first place (which took a few tries before I concluded: "okay, it's going to feel like this no matter WHAT environment I use it in") was enough to make me decide that tweak wasn't the drug for me.

Truth be told tho.., I've had alcohol hangovers worse than ANY other drug comedown.  But I still go out drinking on occasion, because the benefits outweigh the downside.  (That, and I've learned pretty well WHAT gives me a hangover, and what steps to take to reduce the chance (drink better quality beer and liquor, don't mix the two in a single nite, keep hyderated w/ plain ol' H2O, and take B-complex vitamins before crashing))

All in all, I don't regret trying meth.  I just decided, after a bit of experimentation, that it wasn't for me.

cya,
john

Imagine all the people...
[ Parent ]

The comedown (4.00 / 2) (#57)
by Cal Bunny on Sun May 05, 2002 at 08:02:42 PM EST

This is all from personal experience and the experiences of friends, but many drugs effect people differently, and meth is no exception.

It really depends on the quality of your crystal, how long your run was (i.e., how long have you been awake), and how long you have been using meth.

The comedown is nothing like cocaine.  With coke on the comedown people tend to become very isolated.  "Don't touch me," is a common thing to hear.  With meth, the comedown is more of a tired lethargic feeling characterized by depresion.

If you have not taken that much meth in your recent life and you have moderate quality of crystal, then the comedown will only last the next day, probably.  The depression will be limited to boredom.  Nothing a day at the movies can't get you by.

As the quality of the meth increases, the high tends to be much nicer, you tend to not crave more when coming down, and you just generally have a better run.

If you are a habitual user the comedown becomes harder.  First, your useage patterns change.  You no longer do meth for the night, he start to do it for a week or two at a time.  So when you comedown, the lethargy turns into 36-48 hours of sleep.  The depression gets worse.  You will have that nothing interests you for extended periods of time (months even for very heavy users).  Many people report a feeling of almost pain in their legs that is uncomfortable to the point of tears.  No position your body moves in will alleviate it.  Ironically, you will have problems sleeping, too.  Plus all the normal signs of depression.  For some poeple, going into a depression makes it easier to set off their anger, which is one way you get the raving meth-head stories.

Another symptom of meth use is paranoia.  In many this is just because of the stigma associated with meth use, so they are always looking about wondering what people think of them.  Some of the paranoia is attributed to the drug, but most of it is attributed to the lack of sleep you get on a speed run.  All tweakers up on meth for a couple weeks straght start to think that the white van out in front of their house is the cops coming to get them.

The worse it even really gets is what is called amphetamine induced psychosis.  I had a friend go though this once.  It resembles schizophrenia in symptons (e.g., strong delusions) but it is only temporary.  Nobody has even gone permanently insane from meth injestion.  However people have had brain damage from some of the dirtier things that people try to pass of as meth.

There are some ways to reduce the negative consequences of meth use, and I have seen people do very well while following rules like these.  First, just get some sleep.  Even if it is only like 2-3 hours, it helps tremendously.  Second, force yourself to eat.  I discovered once the best tweaker food available and many soon followed me on this one: Jamba Juice with the vita-suplement.  It is easy to eat and digest, you get a ton of callories from it, and the vitamin suplement helps give your body needed nutrients.  Most importantly, only do good crystal.  The kind that has the long clear shards.  No colors, no pills, just pure meth.

^cb^
"tombuck.... [...], he's [...] *that* gay you know." - mrgoat
[ Reply to This ]
[ Parent ]

That's odd (4.00 / 2) (#5)
by notcarlos on Sun May 05, 2002 at 09:18:20 AM EST

Here in the Ozark mountains (that's in the US, for you geography-challenged folks), we have meth-related crimes (either a bust, an arrest, or an explosion) once a week. Meth-makers* come from every background -- it's just whever has the chemecals.


* In the words of the Immortal Lowden Wainwright III: "And this song popped out": Meth-maker, meth-maker, make me some meth. Score me a score. Catch me a catch.


He will destroy you like an academic ninja.
-- Rating on Rate My Professors.com
[ Parent ]
"Crystal" (4.00 / 1) (#23)
by ucblockhead on Sun May 05, 2002 at 12:29:44 PM EST

In Southern California, in the mid-eighties when I went to school, it was refered to as "crystal" and was used as much as a study aid as anything else. (Or sometimes as a poor-man's coke.) This was right about when ecstacy first showed up, and at the time, both came as white powders. I never once saw either in pill form.

Back then, (1985), crystal was incredibly easy to get. At the time, the "meth capital of the world", was in Southern California.
-----------------------
This is k5. We're all tools - duxup
[ Parent ]

Ask a Cop (4.10 / 10) (#3)
by slick willie on Sun May 05, 2002 at 09:02:51 AM EST

One of my good friends is a cop, and has to deal regularly with people hopped up on crank.

He has told me about the physical deterioration of people who are habitual users, and the experience of having to arrest one of these individuals.

I agree that our so-called War on Drugs is, for the most part, an utter waste. However, if half of what he tells me is true, meth is something that should be uninvented.

"...there is no limit to what a man can do or where he can go if he doesn't mind who gets the credit."
--Ronald Reagan, First Inaugural Address

Don't ask a cop (4.42 / 7) (#29)
by whojgalt on Sun May 05, 2002 at 01:10:07 PM EST

No offense to your friend, but I think the police are particularly unreliable sources of such anecdotal informatin. First, they have a vested interest in making it sound as bad as they can. No need to elaborate there, I think.

Second, and more important, the sampling that cops (and medical workers) see is inherently skewed. They see mostly those cases where the consequences have become bad enough to bring people in contact with the law. By the nature of their job, they rarely encounter people who use drugs without any negative consequences.

Think of it this way, if a cop's job is to arrest anyone they see carrying or using drugs, then everyone they see with drugs will be someone who has trouble with the law. And since the main things that brings such people to the attention of the police is other crimes influenced by drug use, or serious medical problems, then from a cop's POV, everyone he sees using drugs is either a violent criminal or has their health ruined by drugs.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"modern society is obsessed with keeping people vulnerable and dependent on the state for protection, so they chop off people's foreski
[ Parent ]

Yeh, but (5.00 / 1) (#63)
by delmoi on Mon May 06, 2002 at 12:36:57 AM EST

What the cop can tell you is that someone hopped up on Meth is much worse to deal with then someone who's drunk or high on pot. Or not using any drugs at all.
--
"'argumentation' is not a word, idiot." -- thelizman
[ Parent ]
Not really. (none / 0) (#65)
by Cal Bunny on Mon May 06, 2002 at 12:58:14 AM EST

Somebody on PCP is much worse.  They may be paranoid, but meth does not give you superhuman strength like PCP, actually meth makes you tire much more quickly and you tend to have little physical strength after being up for week before.

It also has more to do with the individual.  In the US, the Hell's Angels, a motorcycle gang, has been known to produce and distribute large amounts of methamphetamine.  Crank (dirty, raw meth) has been in the biker and trucker scene for decades.  So it may be the case that the already violent criminals seek out meth.

There studies show that people that have regulatory problems with dopamine in their brain go after meth.  These are also the type of people who tend to be emotionally unstable.

Good, pure, crystal meth turns most people into total puppy dogs.

^cb^
"tombuck.... [...], he's [...] *that* gay you know." - mrgoat
[ Reply to This ]
[ Parent ]

I have the same attitude (3.80 / 5) (#35)
by strlen on Sun May 05, 2002 at 01:48:17 PM EST

I think the war on drugs is a really bad idea, but things like meth and cocaine are a bad idea too. It should be legal to use them, but using them would be a horrible idea. Heroine, cocaine, meth, are really not in any way "the path to the enlightenment", or "good, clean fun". But again, throwing someone into prison, because they just run their own life (and no other reason), is simply counter-productive and cruel. Now for LSD, marijuana and shrooms, I do think they're not in any way more dangeorus than alcohol.

--
[T]he strongest man in the world is he who stands most alone. - Henrik Ibsen.
[ Parent ]
Yep (none / 0) (#90)
by BLU ICE on Mon May 06, 2002 at 04:47:04 PM EST

Now for LSD, marijuana and shrooms, I do think they're not in any way more dangeorus than alcohol.

I agree with you, at least on your stance with pot. Pot does not have any dependance problems or brain damage problems that alcohol use can harbor. A recent study (there was a K5 story on it) showed that large amounts of pot use can be detrimental to a heavy user's IQ and memory, although these problems dissapear after the heavy pot use is discontinued. The study found that moderate amounts of pot can actually increase one's IQ slightly.

As for LSD and shrooms. These can make for some problems (I.E. flashbacks). However, I think they can be a great inspirational drug. Hallucinogens worked for Aldous Huxley.

"Is the quality of this cocaine satisfactory, Mr. Delorean?"
"As good as gold."

-- I am become Troll, destroyer of threads.
It's like an encyclopedia...sorta: Everything2

[ Parent ]

-1 needs research... (3.75 / 4) (#14)
by lurker4hire on Sun May 05, 2002 at 11:42:00 AM EST

As noted by others your article is needlessly sensationalistic. Methamphetamine, and other CNS stimulants, are complex drugs and as easy as it is to demonize them that attitude helps no one.

Perhaps some reseach is in order on your part, to start methamphetamine isn't some new scary drug as even a cursory search on the web for information would reveal.

http://www.erowid.org/chemicals/meth/meth_timeline.php3

Although much of the information available regarding drugs is skewed (either excessively pro - or excessively anti) one should at least look at multiple sources of information and try to find a middle ground.

On the topical side:

All that being said, I agree with the central premise that methamphetamine is dangerous. The potential for abuse is high, and the long term effects are not pretty. When you consider that most people learn to consume drugs through the consumption of alcohol you perhaps see how easy it is to act irresponsibly. Irresponsible alcohol use for a couple of years during college generally won't kill you (well, I guess if you consider the stats on drunken driving deaths for people in their 20s it will), however with highly addictive chemicals this type of use can develop into serious problems, ranging from physical health effects, to mental psychosis and addiction.

Powerful psychoactive chemicals must be treated with respect, and education regarding their true effects is the only way to gain that respect. Unfortunately, for most people dabbling, education is purchased through experience at a considerable cost.

Gahhh (3.83 / 6) (#15)
by MMcP on Sun May 05, 2002 at 11:46:09 AM EST

>>Ecstasy has received its fair share of
>>defamation in the press despite the fact that
>>millions of people take it every Friday night
>>with no ill-effects.

ARGHHHHHH

If you consider loss of valuable serotonin receptors with as little as one use to be "no side effects" then I don't think you know what long-term medical problems exactly are.  All these chumps take ecstasy because they either don't know or don't believe the people that tell them that they WILL have problems with depression and mood swings later in life if they regularly use this drug.  We can half blame the government(s) for neglecting to offer the truth and instead opting for the quick "JUST SAY NO" campaign.  Educate yourself about drugs.  Try and find REPUTABLE sources for information.  Sometimes .gov sites can be as bad as drugsruleohyeah.com with misinformation.  Look in medical journals, ask your doctor - and then tell me that there are no ill-effects.  

Other then that gaffe this is a really well done article.  

Not arguing, but .. (4.00 / 1) (#19)
by Simon Kinahan on Sun May 05, 2002 at 12:07:50 PM EST

Won't that be true of any Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor ? Such as, for instance, antidepressants like Prozac ?

Simon

If you disagree, post, don't moderate
[ Parent ]
Yes, it's thought to be true of prozac and its ilk (3.00 / 1) (#31)
by la princesa on Sun May 05, 2002 at 01:22:27 PM EST

But mass dosing of the population with X and SSRIs has only been occurring for a few years. All these detrimental serotonin losses are sposed to turn up after 15-20 years of use, which means that for many sometime in the next decade life will start sucking a whole, whole lot. Unless serotonin repleters are invented or something.

___
<qpt> Disprove people? <qpt> What happens when you disprove them? Do they disappear in a flash of logic?
[ Parent ]
Seratonin receptors are not lost (4.66 / 3) (#38)
by Cal Bunny on Sun May 05, 2002 at 04:19:02 PM EST

They are not as in they disappear.  They are retracted to prevent further activation.  However, researh has shown they they heal themselves and will become active again over time.  If you are the average ecstacy raver, the damage occured can be repaired in less than a year.

^cb^
"tombuck.... [...], he's [...] *that* gay you know." - mrgoat
[ Reply to This ]
[ Parent ]
x (4.50 / 2) (#66)
by auraslip on Mon May 06, 2002 at 06:25:03 AM EST

depending who you ask, you'll receive a differant answer on the long(and mid)term effects of x.
According to this dr/author(http://www.drholland.com/)
you can take x four times a year with no adverse affects. According to the anti-drugs, any use of x will harm you.
My freind takes seratonin replacers after they take X. you can buy them at gmc, of course thats not how their sold, but that is their only real purpose. then again my freind is a druggy...
 My advice to x users is, if you take x more then once a month, your gonna fuck yourself up real good, any thing you hear differant is wrong. But if your all ready to the point of doing it more then that, well your a fucking idiot anyways.

Btw, x was used in the 70's, and 80's by doctors to treat mental disorders, to great success, before it was made a illegal.

I'm sorry if this is out of form, I tried to avoid big words, and large structers because it's 5 am and I can't spell worth dog.
124
[ Parent ]

Heh (none / 0) (#73)
by spiralx on Mon May 06, 2002 at 11:56:42 AM EST

My advice to x users is, if you take x more then once a month, your gonna fuck yourself up real good, any thing you hear differant is wrong. But if your all ready to the point of doing it more then that, well your a fucking idiot anyways.

Good advice from someone who obviously knows more than the medical establishment, who on balance still can't say for sure exactly what the mid- or long-term effects are. Maybe you'd care to share the studies you've read or performed which gave you this amazing insight?

Despite ecstacy being popular here in the UK for almost 15 years now I've yet to see this amazing rise in mental health problems (or "fucking yourself up" as you so eloquently put it). And speaking as someone that has obviously read more of the available medical literature than you, I've made my decision based upon all the available evidence and come to my informed decision to take it.

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

I refute your claims (2.00 / 1) (#85)
by auraslip on Mon May 06, 2002 at 03:28:22 PM EST

but I don't think I care that much as to say anything but read the book I linked too :)
124
[ Parent ]
Errm (none / 0) (#89)
by spiralx on Mon May 06, 2002 at 04:27:31 PM EST

I read most of that book when it came out... it was featured in a couple of newspapers and sites I read :) And again it pretty much says that they don't know what the effects are, and that many of the negative effects from it are likely to have been confused with pre-existing disorders.

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

other purposes (5.00 / 1) (#84)
by Shpongle Spore on Mon May 06, 2002 at 03:27:49 PM EST

My freind takes seratonin replacers after they take X. you can buy them at gmc, of course thats not how their sold, but that is their only real purpose.

I assume you mean 5-HTP, which has other uses. It does a great job controlling my moody/depressive tendencies without the nasty side-effects of antidepressant drugs, and it can double as a mild sleep aid.


__
I wish I was in Austin, at the Chili Parlor bar,
drinking 'Mad Dog' margaritas and not caring where you are
[ Parent ]
meth is stinking old (2.50 / 2) (#17)
by MFS on Sun May 05, 2002 at 12:05:44 PM EST

if anything, its having an illicit renaissance, so to speak.


Nope, not me. I must be someone else.

Actually.... (5.00 / 1) (#59)
by PhilX on Sun May 05, 2002 at 11:18:46 PM EST

My friend just finished up some research which has been accepted for publication. In it, he and his associates have proven that METH actually gives a higher "high" than AMPH, the common choice of drug users. This flys in the face of 30 years of scientific understanding. The difference is, while both cause the release of dopamine (what drug doesn't?) METH has added components that cause activity in the nucleus acumbens, which can be attributed to the higher high. All in all, this may shine light on why METH is not as popular: The high was more erratic on METH, and most users aren't going to want to be let down. But with info like this ocming out, METH may be on the comeback....

[ Parent ]
Really? (5.00 / 1) (#74)
by spiralx on Mon May 06, 2002 at 11:58:13 AM EST

I thought it was accepted that meth had an additional effect on the brain's dopamine systems over regular amphetamine; this is why the high is so much cleaner and more intense, more like coke than normal speed.

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

crystal (4.00 / 3) (#18)
by jann on Sun May 05, 2002 at 12:07:12 PM EST

Crystal has been around as a common drug for yonks ... and easily availible. It was in common usage in the 80's ... so common it was a noticible part in the feature move "boogie nights" which was a reasonably accurate look at the life of dirk diggler.

And as far as the big exposee of finding crystal in foreign locals ... all I have to do is wander down to my local "blue light" area (I live in sydney ... so Oxford St is where I have picked this stuff up before) and it is availible ... not as easily as e's or speed ... but still availible.

Point is ... as others have mentioned ... this is not exactly late breaking news. Nor is it a problem about to "suddenly arrive on our shores." It is Old News in "drug land." In fact I think crystal was even one of the drugs you could trade in the old 80's drug trading computer game "drug wars" (avail on PC and Unix ... possibly apple as well).

J

Former meth addict (4.66 / 12) (#20)
by Zara2 on Sun May 05, 2002 at 12:14:00 PM EST

As a former meth addict I can say with no equivication that METH IS A BAD DRUG. I wish this article had more data on this. First off, Hard-core meth users would not go to many clubs. Maybe when U first get a habit its fine but after a while it gets ur heart beating too fast and you feel like your heart is going to explode out of your chest.

The physical effects are not the worst tho. Whether it is due to the drug itself or the weeks of staying up you become a paranoid asshole. I very literally lost every friend that I had in the world after being addicted to meth. After multiple years of being clean I still have certian defects of my personality that I attribute to meth. Certian ways of thinking that I would not have if I hadnt been a addict for so long. I also still occaisionally get cravings for it, especially if I smell it.

I wish I had the time to go into more detail, maybe later tonight i'll do a longer write-up. However, I cannot even reccomend Meth as a occaisional/club drug. It is one of those substances that IS stronger than you and not even close to being worth it.

By the by, meth has been a club drug for 20 years. (4.50 / 2) (#32)
by la princesa on Sun May 05, 2002 at 01:26:09 PM EST

It was likely slightly gothique and industrial music-oriented clubs and clubgoers, but the meth freak goth for one was a common plaint through the 80s and early 90s. It is an interesting reversal that you pen a scare-tactic article about the horror of meth once it's begun to hit the third world after being common in the first world for decades as a party drug. It is so often the other way round.

___
<qpt> Disprove people? <qpt> What happens when you disprove them? Do they disappear in a flash of logic?
Look Farther back than that. (4.00 / 2) (#33)
by subgenius on Sun May 05, 2002 at 01:36:18 PM EST

Meth has been around since early 60s at least. In Hollywood before that I believe. There were plenty of toothless meth freaks running around in the late 60's that I knew personally.

Drive On!
Drive On!
[ Parent ]
Not just in Hollywood either... (4.50 / 2) (#70)
by dipipanone on Mon May 06, 2002 at 10:47:26 AM EST

In the UK, in the 1960's, the Home Office started stamping down on the prescription of cocaine to addicts, and so a number of dubious doctors began to fill the demand for cocaine with scripts for methamphetamine ampoules.

At some point shortly after, the license for that particular formulation was revoked and General Practitioners lost the ability to prescribe it. However, hospital specialists can still do so if they choose, and as recently as a couple of years ago there were still people being prescribed methamphetamine ampoules at UK Drug Dependency clinics -- though I've a strong suspicion that it was just one doctor who is no longer working in the UK.

Oh, by the way, the programme was shit. It was much funnier watching him getting mugged at knifepoint in Brixton the previous week than watching him getting shot at by the Burmese Army.

What a fucking maroon...

--
Suck my .sig
[ Parent ]
A movie you all should see (4.25 / 4) (#34)
by strlen on Sun May 05, 2002 at 01:42:14 PM EST

For an example of "lift you up untill you break", you should see how speed (related to meth, not as pure) was shown in Clint Mansell's (yes, _the_ Clint Mansell of Pi-fame) movie Requiem for a dream. Before you claim it as "war on drugs" propaganda, don't blow it off, as it isn't. It's quite critical of the war on drugs (let's throw em in prison and let 'em rot) attitude, which is quite evident in the last part of the movie. Their description of speed, which is used by a woman to raise the metabolism rate to lose weight, is quite realistic, and has been confirmed by people that I know that have actually used the drugs. Though the movie isn't entirely about drugs, but more like addiction, goals, and many other factors. But again, I think it provides a good description of "lift you up and break you" affect of meth and speed (and perhaps epherdrine, if abused).

--
[T]he strongest man in the world is he who stands most alone. - Henrik Ibsen.
Requiem for a dream (5.00 / 4) (#60)
by mdouglas on Sun May 05, 2002 at 11:19:21 PM EST

clint mansell did the soundtrack, darren aronofsky was the director.

[ Parent ]
And the book... (5.00 / 1) (#69)
by dipipanone on Mon May 06, 2002 at 10:41:45 AM EST

Is by the wonderful Hubert Selby Jr.

All of his stuff is great, but this was one of those cases where the film wasn't actually a disappointment. (Unlike Last Exit to Brooklyn.)

--
Suck my .sig
[ Parent ]
purity isn't the issue (5.00 / 2) (#86)
by Shpongle Spore on Mon May 06, 2002 at 03:46:03 PM EST

...speed (related to meth, not as pure)...

Purity isn't the issue at all. Medical speed is usually amphetamine, its isomer dextroamphetamine, or some combination of those. Meth is N-methyl-amphetamine, i.e. amphetamine with an extra methyl group bonded to the nitrogen atom. It might not sound like much, but it's an entirely different drug. Similarly small changes in chemical structure can give you ephedrine ("herbal speed"), pseudoephedrine (the decongestant in over-the-counter cold remedies), ecstasy, mescaline, and all kinds of designer drugs few people have ever heard of.
__
I wish I was in Austin, at the Chili Parlor bar,
drinking 'Mad Dog' margaritas and not caring where you are
[ Parent ]

Meth in the UK (4.77 / 9) (#36)
by spiralx on Sun May 05, 2002 at 02:37:30 PM EST

But as Macintyre discovered, Ecstasy still remains the drug of choice in Britain's clubs.

This would probably be because meth is still next-to-impossible to get over here. Out of all of the thousands of people I've met out at parties across London I know one person who gets the stuff; I'd have an easier time getting hold of things like DMT. While it may be up and coming it's not in the clubs yet because most people just won't be able to get hold of it.

But as I'm writing this I've just woken up after going out last night and having some nice crank - not proper ice, but it's still crystal. It's lovely stuff to start with - better than coke in many ways. But I've spent a long time as a speed addict before, and I won't do that again.

I think the key here is whether it becomes a club drug; if it's associated with clubs then there won't be such huge problems of addiction, because people will do it at the weekend and not during the week. And it'll be less likely people will be smoking the stuff as well rather than doing pills, which will make it less intense and less addictive.

Meth is addictive; all amphetamines are. But is it any worse than crack or heroin? Although it might not have their "dirty" image as street drugs, I'd still say the majority of people who would become meth addicts already have chemicals out there they can abuse. Meth is huge in rural USA - here the rural areas are already flooded with cheap heroin. I'm just not sure that there's going to be any endemic of meth use in this country.

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey

Prices (3.00 / 1) (#37)
by spiralx on Sun May 05, 2002 at 03:15:23 PM EST

That's one thing I forgot to mention: price. At 200 quid for a gram of pure ice, it's just far too expensive to get addicted to (or buy!). Even the crank is 40 a gram. Until prices drop significantly, it's just too expensive.

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

Christ, one can hardly give it away here. (3.00 / 1) (#41)
by la princesa on Sun May 05, 2002 at 04:34:13 PM EST

Sounds rather like an option for pocket money, except for the trouble of how to get it through international mails successfully to interested Angles.

___
<qpt> Disprove people? <qpt> What happens when you disprove them? Do they disappear in a flash of logic?
[ Parent ]
Definitely (3.00 / 1) (#43)
by spiralx on Sun May 05, 2002 at 04:38:16 PM EST

I've got a friend who has gotten it sent over from Canada before... there's definitely a lot of markup to be made ;)

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

Post 9/11 (3.00 / 1) (#45)
by Cal Bunny on Sun May 05, 2002 at 05:03:47 PM EST

I wouldn't be trying that anymore.

^cb^
"tombuck.... [...], he's [...] *that* gay you know." - mrgoat
[ Reply to This ]
[ Parent ]
actually. (none / 0) (#58)
by /dev/trash on Sun May 05, 2002 at 10:54:51 PM EST

I'd say that Oxy-Contin and heroin are more pervasive in Rural American than anything

---
Updated 02/20/2004
New Site
[ Parent ]
I don't think (2.25 / 4) (#39)
by medham on Sun May 05, 2002 at 04:25:11 PM EST

That the correlation between psi powers and crank-use is to be ignored. Sometimes time-dilation isn't an illusion, and I'd pay close attention to what those Nazis were doing. They weren't all chocolate and sunshine.

The real 'medham' has userid 6831.

Surprisingly that isn't true (3.00 / 1) (#55)
by Kalani on Sun May 05, 2002 at 07:10:54 PM EST

They weren't all chocolate and sunshine.

Actually that's a common misconception. They really were all chocolate and sunshine -- it's just that the sunshine melted the chocolate.

-----
"Nothing says 'final boss' like a giant brain in a tube."
-- Udderdude on flipcode.com
[ Parent ]
BBC folks have balls (2.50 / 2) (#40)
by Ben Welsh on Sun May 05, 2002 at 04:32:20 PM EST

You'll never see American news media being that aggressive in getting the story. Even out in the warzones in Afghanistan, they only go on planned excursions with the military to see what the Pentagon wants them to see.

Wouldn't want Ashley Benfield to break a nail.

Christianity Meme
BBC folks have balls (2.00 / 5) (#42)
by Ben Welsh on Sun May 05, 2002 at 04:36:05 PM EST

You'll never see American news media being that aggressive in getting the story. Even out in the warzones in Afghanistan, they only go on planned excursions with the military to see what the Pentagon wants them to see.

Wouldn't want Ashley Benfield to break a nail.

Christianity Meme
Not everyone got that memo... (5.00 / 2) (#79)
by forii on Mon May 06, 2002 at 01:04:30 PM EST

You'll never see American news media being that aggressive in getting the story. Even out in the warzones in Afghanistan, they only go on planned excursions with the military to see what the Pentagon wants them to see.

Apparently someone forgot to tell Daniel Pearl about this.

I'm sorta curious about your comment, however. Is this a case of spurious America-bashing? Or maybe you're one of those people that thinks that Americans always do a worse job than non-Americans?
Proud member of the ACLU, the NRA, and the EFF.
[ Parent ]

Heh... (none / 0) (#103)
by Ben Welsh on Mon May 13, 2002 at 04:17:44 PM EST

Well I'm curious as to whether or not you even knew who Daniel Pearl was before he got kidnapped. And I'd be interested to know if the Wallstreet Journal actually gave the guy much notice either. I've read about plenty of Americans who actually risk their lives doing good journalism. I guess what I'm saying is that they don't get airtime. I mean, what was a bigger story, Pearl's kidnapping/death, or Robert Blake's arrest?

Christianity Meme
[ Parent ]
Of course not (none / 0) (#104)
by forii on Wed May 15, 2002 at 02:39:48 PM EST

Well I'm curious as to whether or not you even knew who Daniel Pearl was before he got kidnapped.

Of course I had never heard of Daniel Pearl. Just like I've never heard of most people who go out and risk their lives trying to get stories. I was replying to someone who was claiming that reporters from the United States would never expose themselves to danger to get the real story. I was trying, in an ironic way, to show that they were incorrect.

Maybe I should have been a little more explicit, so that some people don't miss the point of a comment.


Proud member of the ACLU, the NRA, and the EFF.
[ Parent ]

You should read the rest of the comment (none / 0) (#105)
by Ben Welsh on Wed May 15, 2002 at 04:08:03 PM EST

Where I expanded on my original point. I was trying to explain why I made such a generalisation. If all you want to do is make thinly veiled insults find someone more willing to play along, cause it seems like you want a pissing contest to me.

Christianity Meme
[ Parent ]
Original point. (none / 0) (#106)
by forii on Wed May 15, 2002 at 04:58:21 PM EST

Okay, then explain to me what your original point was. Was it, as you stated in your post titled "BBC folks have balls", that:

"You'll never see American news media being that aggressive in getting the story."?

Or was it, as you stated in a later reply:

"I've read about plenty of Americans who actually risk their lives doing good journalism. I guess what I'm saying is that they don't get airtime.

I read these two statements to being contradictory.
Proud member of the ACLU, the NRA, and the EFF.
[ Parent ]

Well... (none / 0) (#107)
by Ben Welsh on Wed May 15, 2002 at 09:19:59 PM EST

Aside from the joke about Ashley Banfield, I was targeting the media as an entity. That's why I said "American news media" instead of "American journalists." So I'm saying there are journalists who do good, investigative work, even at a risk to themselves, but the media ignores them and their work as not being what people want to see. They're catering to the lowest common denominator. And I shouldn't have said plenty, because I don't think there's enough.

Christianity Meme
[ Parent ]
Drug quality -- from an experienced person (5.00 / 13) (#44)
by Cal Bunny on Sun May 05, 2002 at 04:57:04 PM EST

I lived in San Francisco, and I have done my share of crystal in the past.  I have done some incredibly clean ice and prope-dope to dirty redish crank.  I have produced a few batched, recrystalized, and cleaned meth, too.

Drug Quality

If you are getting reddish pills there is something wrong with the quality of the drug that you are intaking.  Many negative effects from drugs can often be associated with the impurities rather that the drug itself.  In the past, when I have had very clean, pure crystal to the point that it always tastes sweet the high has been incredibly good, the comedown is very clean, and it doesn't leave you with massive cravings for more.  Not just my experience, but from friends too, we have all noticed that the lower quality crystal is what makes you feel jittery and crave more.  Also, in pill form you have to deal with binders to hold the pill togther and that is stuff that you do not want to smoke.  It is very physically hard on your body and sometimes will even make you feel lethargic which leads to wanting more of the dugs since you are not getting the high that you want.

Production

There are a couple different production methods.  With many of the methods there is a time/yield versus quality tradeoff.   In one of the more common methods, refered to as the push-pull method, the smell can be contained and the byproducts released afterwards.  the method I used was a steam distillation, but it is rarely used because it takes about twice the time, it requires constant supervision, and it will yield less.  However, it will give you the cleanest product without the smell.

More information is available at The Hive (unsecured, [secured https://www.the-hive.ws]) which is a message board dedicated to the production and issues related to production of mind altering substances.

Ecstacy sold as speed?

I find this highly unlikely and it even makes me doubt this reporter's credibility.  It is always the other way around for simple economic reasons: crystal is much cheaper that ecstacy (this is also why the story of buy ecstacy but it turned out to be heroine is an urban myth and has never been proved).  If the reporter is in a place supposedly flowing in meth then this story even make less sense.

Sensationalisam

The article is incredible sensationalistic and seems to pride itself on it, even bring up the completely unrelated information on previous stories the investgator uncovered.

I find it interesting that the reported would need to venture to another country to find dirty drugs.  He could probably fine very clean drugs right at home.  It is very obvious that the reporter didn't do his research ahead of time or why would he have bought probably the dirties pill he could find... oh, wait, that's right.  He needed sensationalism.

Cause and effect

There is a tremendous jump in logic between seeing people on meth steal and murder to blaming meth for stealing and murdering.  I think that it is more likely the case that people with certain personality traits or in lower social situations tend to use the drug.

Personally, for me I turn into a puppy dog on good crystal.  And many people that I have known have had the same effect.

People should also know that the long-term feeling of taking meth is different from the short-term feeling.  It starts to make you feel more normal instead of absolutely dead, sitting on the couch, unable to move.  When I took a long vacation from work I started doing too much meth for a few months.  It was very difficult to come off of it after that.  I have had good friends be meth addicts for years, and it took them multiple attempts to come off of it.

If anybody is thinking of trying crystal, some of the best advice is to buy a little and do it, save a little for a few hours later if you wish, but make sure you do it.  Don't let it sit around your house.  Then do not do it again until it is jsut a whim and you really could do without it.  Do not do it if you feel a craving for it.  I know many people that can leave it around their house, but this is just the safest method until you discover your propensity for meth addiction.

Final Thoughts

Yes, this is a very addictive drugs, but the hardline stance on consumption has only made issues worse.  They cause the meth coming in to have horrendous quality and the people in it only for the money that don't care about their end user start to dominate the market.  In a perfect world everybody would be able to control themselves.  Then we wouldn't these harsh drug policies.  However, at some level I do see the necessity of these drug policies.

I wish somebody would write a nice unbiased article about drug consumption someday.

^cb^
"tombuck.... [...], he's [...] *that* gay you know." - mrgoat
[ Reply to This ]

RE: Ecstacy sold as speed? (none / 0) (#68)
by Tommy A on Mon May 06, 2002 at 07:24:10 AM EST

Ecstacy sold as speed?
I find this highly unlikely and it even makes me doubt this reporter's credibility. It is always the other way around for simple economic reasons: crystal is much cheaper that ecstacy (this is also why the story of buy ecstacy but it turned out to be heroine is an urban myth and has never been proved). If the reporter is in a place supposedly flowing in meth then this story even make less sense.
When in Bangkok the BBC team were able to purchase crystal for something like £1.5 ($2) per pill. They then visited one of Thailand's 'party islands' which are generally inhabatited by back packers to see if the drug had reached these islands. Drugs were being sold at UK prices and crystal was rare and the same price as ecstacy.

[ Parent ]
Odd... (3.50 / 2) (#46)
by Captain_Tenille on Sun May 05, 2002 at 05:31:10 PM EST

I thought methamphetamine was invented in 1893 by Japanese chemists. The "Nazi" meth only refers to a certain receipe that the Nazi's did develope.
----
/* You are not expected to understand this. */

Man Vs. Nature: The Road to Victory!

And... (5.00 / 1) (#108)
by Captain_Tenille on Thu May 16, 2002 at 03:38:13 PM EST

Regular amphetamines were invented by a German chemist in 1889, I believe.
----
/* You are not expected to understand this. */

Man Vs. Nature: The Road to Victory!
[ Parent ]

The Sincerest Form of Flattery (none / 0) (#47)
by Baldrson on Sun May 05, 2002 at 05:58:49 PM EST

From the kuro5in article:

...causes the brain to flood with a substance called dopamine, causing huge exhilaration but then terrible lows...

From a BBC News article:

...causes the brain to flood with a substance called dopamine, causing huge exhilaration but then terrible lows...

-------- Empty the Cities --------


LOL (none / 0) (#48)
by m0rzo on Sun May 05, 2002 at 06:01:59 PM EST

You've sussed me. Bravo.


My last sig was just plain offensive.
[ Parent ]

Originally confined to Bangkok clubs (4.00 / 1) (#52)
by TON on Sun May 05, 2002 at 06:54:35 PM EST

If you are a BBC correspondent, or any other foreigner, I guess you would see it as a club drug in Bangkok. It worked the other way around though. Yaba came up through working-class Thai society, and then hit the dance clubs. Industrial workers, truck drivers, students burning the midnight oil, cabbies, etc. are pretty well known to be cranked up. Hey, you get paid by the piece/delivery, and anything that will let you go the extra mile starts to look good. Of course, I've seen a few trucks in crumbled messes far from the roadway.

I suspect this isn't too different from meth in the States or elsewhere. Speed comes and goes. It turns up where you least suspect it. I was rather surprised to see how popular (relatively speaking) it was in Japan.

"First, I am born. Then, the trouble begins." -- Schizopolis

Ted


Well, (none / 0) (#62)
by delmoi on Mon May 06, 2002 at 12:08:57 AM EST

Apperantly it was invented in japan and legal untill the 1950s
--
"'argumentation' is not a word, idiot." -- thelizman
[ Parent ]
Sure, but what about now (none / 0) (#92)
by TON on Mon May 06, 2002 at 07:00:42 PM EST

Oh yeah, drugs were developed and legal here in Japan. But, at one time speed was legal most anywhere, right?

I guess the surprise comes from the potential penalties and the mix of available drugs. The penalties for illicit drug use are quite high; higher than in the US. I'm just reflecting my own experiences/prejudices, but it was quite surprising to see that speed seemed easier to come by than marijuana. It seemed to be a function of demand; people wanted speed, there didn't seem to be much call for pot. Maybe it was just my friends and their connections at that time, but that seemed to hold true.

"First, I am born. Then, the trouble begins." -- Schizopolis

Ted


[ Parent ]

japan and drugs (none / 0) (#109)
by majik on Thu Aug 22, 2002 at 09:31:17 PM EST

damn yeah weed was hard to come by in tokyo, though strangely, if you asked around for hash, you could usually find it =)

with so many legal alternatives (most of which were recently made illegal) at the time, we didn't bother looking for stuff other than rolls.
Funky fried chickens - they're what's for dinner
[ Parent ]
Let's not get carried away! (4.00 / 1) (#56)
by phliar on Sun May 05, 2002 at 07:50:40 PM EST

Methamphetamine is incredibly addictive ... causing huge exhilaration but then terrible lows.
For one thing, everyone is different; we all have different susceptibilities not just to the effect of the drug, but also to its addictive potential.

I know quite a few people who use meth to varying degrees. It's true some of them might fit the stereotypes of crazed tweaker, but others find it much more mellow, both the up and the down. I know people who found it frighteningly addictive and pretty much quit; others who have trouble with the stigma associated with "hard" drugs; and others who have no problems. Some people find that it helps them focus on a task and not get distracted. Others get distracted really easily and start a lot of projects and finish none.

Using it every day is definitely not something to recommend since then you end up tired and listless all the time, and it's hard to deal with life -- job, family, etc. -- if you're that way. It's powerful, and if you decide to do it, it's definitely something that deserves respect.


Faster, faster, until the thrill of...

Meth vs. Ecstasy? (4.75 / 4) (#61)
by delmoi on Mon May 06, 2002 at 12:05:48 AM EST

Macintyre arrived with his crew by boat in search of Yaba. His first score, three crude looking brown pills, turned out to be nothing more than Ecstasy - he could have stayed at home to get that.

Um, Isn't Esctasy much more expensive, harder to produce, and more enjoyable then crystal meth?

Also, why go all the way to Thailand? I live just 40 minutes away from the "Crystal Meth Capital of the World", Des Moines, Iowa. The labs are easy to set up, and the drug can even be set up in a van. The components are also not hard to get ahold of. You don't need a global conspiracy to get ahold of meth. (and, btw, I doubt "the wa" is going to be filing any trademark disputes. It's entirely possible that someone stuck that logo on their stuff to help it sell.

Finally, It's my opinion that the rampant CM use is a direct result of the war on drugs. People can't get their hands on stuff like Heroin or Ecstasy, which require industrial production (especially in places like the Midwest) but Meth is easy to produce, so even though it's way worse for you people still use it.
--
"'argumentation' is not a word, idiot." -- thelizman
meth and ecstacy are too different. (5.00 / 3) (#64)
by Cal Bunny on Mon May 06, 2002 at 12:52:05 AM EST

Most of the time crystal is not a replacement for ecstacy.  The effects are very different and used for different reasons.  Meth effects most your dopamine concentration in the brain, while ecstacy effects mostly seratonin.  People will use ecstacy when they can be out of it for a while.  People will use meth when they need to conentrate and get work done.  For example, I would never drive on ecstacy, but don't think that it is a problem driving on meth (although too much meth will make you a dangerour driver and there have been times that I needed to get somebody else to drive for me in the past).

Meth has been used my many people to as study aids, to allow them to stay awake and alert for the few days before a big exam.  It has been used by many blue collar workers, people that work multiple jobs, or people that need to drive long distances or stay awak for extended periods of time like taxi drivers or truckers.  In the 1950's it got the name "mother's little helper" and you can read hundreds of stories of mothers waking their kids up at 4am to do laundry.  There is a great Simpson's episode of Homer stopping at a truck stop to find something to keep himself awake and walking out with a bottle that is labeled "truck stop crank".  He procededs to take too much and start talking 600 words a minute about everything.  Tweakers have long been known to ramble about anything for hours at a time.  One a mailing list I used to be on, every once in a while this guy would start sending huge emails in the most intricate detail.  It was very obvious (and in personal email he later admitted) that these were meth induced tweaker emails.

^cb^
"tombuck.... [...], he's [...] *that* gay you know." - mrgoat
[ Reply to This ]
[ Parent ]

Mother's Little Helper (5.00 / 1) (#95)
by rusty on Mon May 06, 2002 at 10:50:31 PM EST

I think "Mother's little helper" usually referred to Valium.

____
Not the real rusty
[ Parent ]
I see both usages (none / 0) (#97)
by Cal Bunny on Mon May 06, 2002 at 11:18:48 PM EST

I have a book on the history of meth and it refers to various concoction of meth (there have been and still are legal forms of it) as MLH.  The great methmatician (hehe) Paul Erdos was heavily on meth his entire life and turned out to be the most productive mathematician off all time.

some web stuff:

http://www.kci.org/meth_info/sites/meth_epidemic.htm
http://www.dr-bob.org/babble/20010612/msgs/66626.html

I do see reference to Valium, too.

^cb^
"tombuck.... [...], he's [...] *that* gay you know." - mrgoat
[ Reply to This ]
[ Parent ]

Hmmm (5.00 / 2) (#98)
by rusty on Tue May 07, 2002 at 02:07:47 AM EST

Now I'm really curious. :-)

So, one of your links says the "little yellow pill" is Adderall, and yes, it seems the 20mg and 30mg Adderalls are yellow. But then I looked up Valium, and the 5 mg Valium is yellow too.

So, what does the ultimate Arbiter of Truth have to say? Google search for: 'mother's little helper" valium' vs. '"mother's little helper" adderall'.  The single hit for adderall is actually a Valium reference, too.

So, it looks like the evidence is that it originally meant Valium. At this point, it's  become such a well-known phrase that people use it just to connote any kind of minor and slightly shameful "shortcut" type thing, no doubt including amphetamines and lots of other loosely prescribed psych drugs.

I couldn't find anyplace where the Stones actually said what they were talking about, or the history of that song, which I'd love to hear. Anyone?

--
What a drag it is, getting old.

[ Parent ]

Age of Adderall (none / 0) (#100)
by epepke on Tue May 07, 2002 at 06:12:24 PM EST

I can't find a specific date for the initial approval of Adderall, but considering that this particular cocktail was just made generic on February 11 of this year considering also that drugs tend to go generic as soon as the patent expired, it seems to be considerably younger than Prozac, which is way younger than the stones.

Besides, Valuim was the psychotropic of the 60's. Lithium carbonate didn't come into vogue until the 70's, although I've been able to find references to its use as a "nerve tonic" back to the 20's, and Sarasota Springs, which used to be a mental health resort, has a lot of lithium in the waters. Sting wrote a song about it ("Lithium Sunset"), or at least he sang it. The pills are yellow, too, or rather yellowish.

Incidentally, one of the pleasures of being an old fart is that I get to watch yet another peace & love generation discover, to its infinite surprise, that CNS Stimulants are Bad for You. I wonder what they'll in their 30's in response to their newly acquired expanded consciousness. Dismantling the industrial structure and electing Ronald Reagan would be just so 80's.


The truth may be out there, but lies are inside your head.--Terry Pratchett


[ Parent ]
taxi drivers (none / 0) (#101)
by felixrayman on Tue May 07, 2002 at 07:49:57 PM EST

I was catching a cab to the bus station once and the cab driver starts talking on and on about how he had to take drugs to be able to stay up so he could work more hours and make more money so he could afford to buy more drugs that would enable him to be able to stay up longer which would allow him to earn more money to spend on drugs so that he could stay awake .......... etc.

Call Donald Rumsfeld and tell him our sorry asses are ready to go home. Tell him to come spend a night in our building. - Pfc. Matthew C. O'Dell

[ Parent ]
Heh (none / 0) (#102)
by spiralx on Wed May 08, 2002 at 03:33:58 PM EST

Yeah, that was my life for the close to two years I spent as a speed freak. Well, except for the taxi driving.

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

in Japan... (none / 0) (#67)
by auraslip on Mon May 06, 2002 at 06:30:37 AM EST

I remeber my world Geo teacher saying something about how big a problem speed is in Japan. And that it's almost excepted. Mostly by workers who are trying to do well, becuase the competion is so great.

Apparently people will get drunk and sleep in the parks, and this too is excepted. Something to do with stress.

of course...my world geo class, was the type you woke up in only to correct the teacher.
124

RE: in Japan... (none / 0) (#93)
by TON on Mon May 06, 2002 at 07:07:22 PM EST

Apparently people will get drunk and sleep in the parks, and this too is excepted. Something to do with stress.

It's called being homeless. It is accepted because nobody cares to do anything about it and the weather is mild. Something to do with a lengthy recession, stagnant businesses, and poor government.

That said, there is pretty widespread use of speed in Japan, but I wouldn't exactly say it was accepted. I always saw a fair amount of secrecy around it, if not paranoia about getting caught, parents finding out, getting fired, etc.

"First, I am born. Then, the trouble begins." -- Schizopolis

Ted


[ Parent ]

Possible translation of "ya ba" (none / 0) (#75)
by rwa2 on Mon May 06, 2002 at 12:16:29 PM EST

"ya ba" probably translates literally to:

ya = "Medicine/drug"
ba = "crazy" (or maybe "forest" depending on how "ba" is pronounced).

I didn't hear anyone talk about it the last time I went to Thailand (Dec 01).  But I did hear that the gang violence and murders have gotten a lot worse.

Translation (none / 0) (#77)
by spiralx on Mon May 06, 2002 at 12:42:02 PM EST

I always thought it translated as "crazy horse"...?

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

Heh (4.50 / 2) (#76)
by trhurler on Mon May 06, 2002 at 12:28:23 PM EST

Well, I think I'll skip the ecstasy until they figure out just WHICH brain functions it is crippling in long term users as viewed through a 3D imaging system, thank you kindly, but meth is certainly much, much worse. I live a short distance from the meth capital of the known universe(the cops bust more labs in a year than have been busted in the entire histories of most places, and seize absurd quantities of meth,) and oddly enough, of the few people I know who've tried it, a grand total of two aren't habitual users, and one of those only tried it once.

I always get chewed up in drug discussions, because the prohibition crowd is pissed that I favor legalization, and the drug crowd is pissed that I am unwilling to aid and abet their fantasies of completely safe party fun, where drugs never hurt anyone addicts and only other people ever become addicted. :)

--
'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

Imaging (none / 0) (#78)
by spiralx on Mon May 06, 2002 at 12:44:43 PM EST

Well, I think I'll skip the ecstasy until they figure out just WHICH brain functions it is crippling in long term users as viewed through a 3D imaging system, thank you kindly, but meth is certainly much, much worse.

You perhaps missed the recent papers showing that the damage seen in the imaging studies a few years ago actually fell within the normal range of brain activity for healthy users?

Not that I'm saying esctacy doesn't have long-term effects, but the term "crippling" is complete hyperbole given the lack of evidence currently available.

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

Well, (none / 0) (#80)
by trhurler on Mon May 06, 2002 at 01:32:54 PM EST

They go back and forth. One study, then another, then another, and in the end, until someone does a study involving thousands and thousands of people and many, many years, we won't know for sure. However, the fact that the stuff does appear to have some long term effects, coupled with the fact that there are predictable psychological effects of habitually screwing with your various neurotransmitter levels, is something that your average pill popper seems all too willing not just to sign off as acceptable risk, but to dance away from with hands over ears, singing "I can't hear you!"

In the right circumstances, I'd probably try it once. But that'd be all. And those circumstances would be odd. (Really odd. As in, "that never actually happens, does it?" odd.)

--
'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

[ Parent ]
Ummm (none / 0) (#81)
by spiralx on Mon May 06, 2002 at 01:48:53 PM EST

However, the fact that the stuff does appear to have some long term effects, coupled with the fact that there are predictable psychological effects of habitually screwing with your various neurotransmitter levels...

The whole point is that there aren't any predictable psychological effects ;) If there were, this issue would have been resolved a long time ago :)

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

Ah (none / 0) (#82)
by trhurler on Mon May 06, 2002 at 02:04:07 PM EST

I didn't mean what you thought I meant. Granted that there are no predictable physical effects, and no guarantees of "if you do this, that will happen." However, people who screw with things like neurotransmitter levels in their brains on an ongoing basis for a long time period have a poster child, and his name is Ozzy. Granted, he's the extreme case in that he did a whole lot of drugs over a ridiculously long time span, but there's nobody who can say "this amount is ok, and that amount is too much." Sure, a pill here or there probably never really hurt anyone(except the ones who took something addictive and then kept going,) and I don't condemn people who do that - but for example, to listen to you, a person would think you were high more often than not, and if you keep that up for 20 years, you are almost certainly going to see some effects of that. You seem to me to have some sense of the idea of acceptable risk, and that's cool. However, surely you know the people I'm talking about: the ones who just do whatever they want and say "those drug nazis were wrong when they said <insert ridiculous anti-drug claims here>, so all drugs must always and forever be safe!" They don't put it quite that way, of course, but that's what they're saying.

--
'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

[ Parent ]
Ah okay (4.50 / 2) (#83)
by spiralx on Mon May 06, 2002 at 02:55:28 PM EST

I get what you mean, and I agree; anyone saying that taking anything for long periods of time isn't going to have an effect is probably smoking crack... ;)

I am aware of the potential risks of what I do and I do study new research when it comes out. Also, I really don't expect me to be doing this for another 15-odd years (I've been doing it for about six and a half years now)... at some point my interests will turn to other things, and if I have kids then obviously my priorities will change an awful lot.

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

Don't Wait (none / 0) (#87)
by Korimyr the Rat on Mon May 06, 2002 at 04:00:55 PM EST

 I don't know you, so I can't say how you'd handle anything.

 But, people who say their priorities will change as soon as they have children often find that their priorities don't change. They continue engaging in the same behaviors they did before having children, and the children suffer as a result.

 Your mileage may vary.

--
"Specialization is for insects." Robert Heinlein
Founding Member of 'Retarded Monkeys Against the Restriction of Weapons Privileges'
[ Parent ]

WHAT DID YOU SAY? YOU HAVE TO SPEAK UP! (4.00 / 1) (#88)
by Shpongle Spore on Mon May 06, 2002 at 04:26:43 PM EST

...but to dance away from with hands over ears, singing "I can't hear you!"

Hands over the hears really aren't necessary for that...I don't regret doing any drugs at raves, but I do wish I'd worn earplugs. I'm lucky not to have any really hearing loss, but I seem to be stuck with a permanent ringing in my ears. Quite annoying. I hate to think what those idiots I used to see sitting on the speakers must be dealing with.

I always get chewed up in drug discussions, because the prohibition crowd is pissed that I favor legalization, and the drug crowd is pissed that I am unwilling to aid and abet their fantasies of completely safe party fun, where drugs never hurt anyone addicts and only other people ever become addicted. :)

You mean I'm not the only one?! Well, I actually know several people with this attitude, usually the result of going through a period of obviously excessive drug use but never being seriously hurt by it. I'm hoping more people will show some common sense as old prohibitionists die and young drug freaks grow up.
__
I wish I was in Austin, at the Chili Parlor bar,
drinking 'Mad Dog' margaritas and not caring where you are
[ Parent ]

Crystal Meth Will Lift You Up Until You Break | 109 comments (83 topical, 26 editorial, 0 hidden)
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