Hell, or, A Conversation with Brooks and Collins


This is your brain on drugs.I have a new vision of Hell, which is sitting around the “conversation pit” getting stoned with New York Times columnists David Brooks and Gail Collins. Apparently, the two get together and talk about issues for the newspaper’s Opinionator blog every Wednesday. To borrow a phrase from Supreme Court Nominee and current Solicitor General Elena Kagan, I wish they wouldn’t.

This week, the Dullard Duo took on one of the vital economic questions of the times: Deficit reduction or job creation?

Gail Collins: David, I was very interested in your column attacking the idea of a second stimulus. In fact, I was so interested that I almost put down my copy of this week’s New York Magazine, which has a big profile of you and your “charming, levelheaded optimism.” I agree totally with that assessment, although I part company with the author when it comes to your suits, which are certainly not shapeless.

The article also says that because of your book deadlines, you are only getting four hours of sleep a night. So I feel terrible asking you to converse about anything, let alone the economy.

David Brooks: My suits are absolutely shapeless. They are sartorial cumulus clouds. Given my body, shapeless is the best option, believe me. Other than that, I thought the profiler was admirably gentle and forgiving.

I’d like to say things could only get better from there, but … yeah. I’d also like to say it would be enlightening to hear an actual recording of this conversation in order to pick up some of the nuance, but, again … er … yeah. Continue reading

Ow! My liver hurts ….


I’m just sayin’ ….

So anyway, I had a tooth extracted earlier this week. All praise to the good dentist, who did a properly excellent job. And he was even nice enough to prescribe some hydrocodone. The pharmacy I use managed to cough up twenty generic hydrocodone/APAP (7.5×750 mg) for about fifty-five cents apiece. Eleven bucks? Twenty vics? Why would I say no?

(Cue ironic music.)

    TAKE ONE TO TWO TABLETS
    BY MOUTH EVERY 4 TO 6
    HOURS AS NEEDED FOR PAIN

Now, let’s just stop and think about this for a moment. Continue reading

Conspiracy Theory: Electric French Bread


This photo is allegedly importantJust for your enjoyment, and complete with a creepy black and white photo to make it seem more legit, an obscure new explanation for an incident already explained once, but that wasn’t good enough, apparently. Er … Henry Samuel, in Paris, for The Daily Telegraph:

In 1951, a quiet, picturesque village in southern France was suddenly and mysteriously struck down with mass insanity and hallucinations. At least five people died, dozens were interned in asylums and hundreds afflicted.

For decades it was assumed that the local bread had been unwittingly poisoned with a psychedelic mould. Now, however, an American investigative journalist has uncovered evidence suggesting the CIA peppered local food with the hallucinogenic drug LSD as part of a mind control experiment at the height of the Cold War.

The mystery of Le Pain Maudit (Cursed Bread) still haunts the inhabitants of Pont-Saint-Esprit, in the Gard, southeast France.

On August 16, 1951, the inhabitants were suddenly racked with frightful hallucinations of terrifying beasts and fire.

One man tried to drown himself, screaming that his belly was being eaten by snakes. An 11-year-old tried to strangle his grandmother. Another man shouted: “I am a plane”, before jumping out of a second-floor window, breaking his legs. He then got up and carried on for 50 yards. Another saw his heart escaping through his feet and begged a doctor to put it back. Many were taken to the local asylum in strait jackets.

Time magazine wrote at the time: “Among the stricken, delirium rose: patients thrashed wildly on their beds, screaming that red flowers were blossoming from their bodies, that their heads had turned to molten lead.”

Eventually, it was determined that the best-known local baker had unwittingly contaminated his flour with ergot, a hallucinogenic mould that infects rye grain. Another theory was the bread had been poisoned with organic mercury.

However, H P Albarelli Jr., an investigative journalist, claims the outbreak resulted from a covert experiment directed by the CIA and the US Army’s top-secret Special Operations Division (SOD) at Fort Detrick, Maryland.

This is one of those I kind of hope is true. I mean, on some level … really, dosing a village full of people? That’s pretty wild. Awesome, as conspiracy theories go.

Bad news on drugs


Phillip Caputo offers us a thing or two about Mexico and the War On Drugs:

Photo by Julian Cardona.TO CLARIFY THE CRIME. Of the many things Mexico lacks these days, clarity is near the top of the list. It is dangerous to know the truth. Finding it is frustrating. Statements by U.S. and Mexican government officials, repeated by a news media that prefers simple story lines, have fostered the impression in the United States that the conflict in Mexico is between Calderón’s white hats and the crime syndicates’ black hats. The reality is far more complicated, as suggested by this statistic: out of those 14,000 dead, fewer than 100 have been soldiers. Presumably, army casualties would be far higher if the war were as straightforward as it’s often made out to be.

Continue reading

Couldn’t have happened to a nicer hatemonger


It’s hard to not call it good news in the War on Drugs. Via SeattlePI.com:

Grammy-nominated reggae star Buju Banton has been arrested on drug charges.

The Jamaican dancehall singer, real name Mark Anthony Myrie, was held in Florida on Thursday, December 10, 2009 on a charge of conspiracy to possess, with intent to distribute, more than five kilograms (11 pounds) of cocaine.

The star is currently being detained in a Miami, Florida prison, and if convicted could face up to 20 years behind bars.

Just make sure to cover your batty … boy.