Friday, November 26, 2010

USA to Ban Synthetic Cannaboids

From: DEA Public Affairs
November 24, 2010

DEA Moves to Emergency Control Synthetic Marijuana
Agency Will Study Whether To Permanently Control Five Substances.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is using its emergency scheduling authority to temporarily control five chemicals (JWH-018, JWH-073, JWH-200, CP-47,497, and cannabicyclohexanol) used to make “fake pot” products.  Except as authorized by law, this action will make possessing and selling these chemicals or the products that contain them illegal in the U.S. for at least one year while the DEA and the United States Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) further study whether these chemicals and products should be permanently controlled. 

A Notice of Intent to Temporarily Control was published in the Federal Register today to alert the public to this action. After no fewer than 30 days, DEA will publish in the Federal Register a Final Rule to Temporarily Control these chemicals for at least 12 months with the possibility of a six-month extension. They will be designated as Schedule I substances, the most restrictive category, which is reserved for unsafe, highly abused substances with no medical usage.

Over the past year, smokable herbal blends marketed as being “legal” and providing a marijuana-like high, have become increasingly popular, particularly among teens and young adults.  These products consist of plant material that has been coated with research chemicals that mimic THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, and are sold at a variety of retail outlets, in head shops and over the Internet.  These chemicals, however, have not been approved by the FDA for human consumption and there is no oversight of the manufacturing process.  Brands such as “Spice,” “K2,” “Blaze,” and “Red X Dawn” are labeled as incense to mask their intended purpose.

Since 2009, DEA has received an increasing number of reports from poison centers, hospitals and law enforcement regarding these products.  Fifteen states have already taken action to control one or more of these chemicals.  The Comprehensive Crime Control Act of 1984 amends the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) to allow the DEA Administrator to emergency schedule an abused, harmful, non-medical substance in order to avoid an imminent public health crisis while the formal rule-making procedures described in the CSA are being conducted. 

“The American public looks to the DEA to protect its children and communities from those who would exploit them for their own gain,” said DEA Acting Administrator Michele M. Leonhart.  “Makers of these harmful products mislead their customers into thinking that ‘fake pot’ is a harmless alternative to illegal drugs, but that is not the case.  Today’s action will call further attention to the risks of ingesting unknown compounds and will hopefully take away any incentive to try these products.”

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Sasha Shuglin needs our Support!

This morning Alexander “Sasha” Shulgin, Worlds Greatest Pharmacologist & Research Chemist who created hundreds of psychoactive compounds has suffered from a stoke in route to the hospital for a scheduled test on a foot ulcer that was not healing and may need to be amputated. Sasha & Ann have been seriously struggling recently and they can certainly use our love & support in any way possible. Sasha and Ann are two great minds & souls who have done many wonderful things for our community.

If possible, please send a donation of any size directly to his family to help during these difficult times.

Their Paypal address is 

Mailing address:
Sasha Shulgin
Transform Press
PO Box 13675
Berkeley CA 94712.

I am sending a gift to them tomorrow. If you wish to sign the card, please leave a comment below and I will include it with the delivery.

You can also make a charitable tax deductable donation to help preserve his life's work via EROWID.

The world loves more because of you Sasha! Wishing you a peaceful and speedy recovery.

All Love & Light,

Monday, November 15, 2010

Why Intelligent People Use More Drugs

Published in Psychology Today
Oct 31, 2010
By Satoshi Kanazawa

The human consumption of psychoactive drugs, such as marijuana, cocaine, and heroin, is of even more recent historical origin than the human consumption of alcohol or tobacco, so the Hypothesis would predict that more intelligent people use more drugs more frequently than less intelligent individuals.

The use of opium dates back to about 5,000 years ago, and the earliest reference to the pharmacological use of cannabis is in a book written in 2737 BC by the Chinese Emperor Shen Nung.  Opium and cannabis are the only “natural” (agricultural) psychoactive drugs.  Other psychoactive drugs are “chemical” (pharmacological); they require modern chemistry to manufacture, and are therefore of much more recent origin.  Morphine was isolated from opium in 1806, cocaine was first manufactured in 1860, and heroin was discovered in 1874.

Given their extremely recent origin and thus evolutionary novelty, the Hypothesis would predict that more intelligent individuals are more likely to consume all types of psychoactive drugs than less intelligent individuals.  Once again, as with alcohol consumption, the fact that the consumption of psychoactive drugs has largely negative health consequences and few (if any) benefits of any kind is immaterial to the Hypothesis.  It does not predict that more intelligent individuals are more likely to engage in healthy and beneficial behavior, only that they are more likely to engage in evolutionarily novel behavior.  As I point out in an earlier post, more intelligent people are often more likely to do stupid things.

Consistent with the prediction of the Hypothesis, the analysis of the National Child Development Study shows that more intelligent children in the United Kingdom are more likely to grow up to consume psychoactive drugs than less intelligent children.  Net of sex, religion, religiosity, marital status, number of children, education, earnings, depression, satisfaction with life, social class at birth, mother’s education, and father’s education, British children who are more intelligent before the age of 16 are more likely to consume psychoactive drugs at age 42 than less intelligent children.

The following graph shows the association between childhood general intelligence and the latent factor for the consumption of psychoactive drugs, constructed from indicators for the consumption of 13 different types of psychoactive drugs (cannabis, ecstasy, amphetamines, LSD, amyl nitrate, magic mushrooms, cocaine, temazepan, semeron, ketamine, crack, heroin, and methadone).  As you can see, there is a clear monotonic association between childhood general intelligence and adult consumption of psychoactive drugs.  “Very bright” individuals (with IQs above 125) are roughly three-tenths of a standard deviation more likely to consume psychoactive drugs than “very dull” individuals (with IQs below 75).

childhood intelligence latent factor

The following graph shows a similar association between childhood intelligence and the latent factor for the consumption of psychoactive drugs among Americans.  The data come from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health.  The childhood intelligence is measured in junior high and high school, and the adult drug consumption is measured seven years later, and constructed from indicators for the consumption of 5 different types of psychoactive drugs (marijuana, cocaine, LSD, crystal meth, and heroin).  The association is not monotonic, but nevertheless, “normal” (90 < IQ < 110), “bright” (110 < IQ < 125), and “very bright” individuals consume more psychoactive substances than “very dull” or “dull” (75 < IQ < 90) individuals.  Once the social and demographic variables are controlled, however, the positive association between childhood intelligence and adult drug consumption is not statistically significant in the American Add Health sample.

drug latent factor People – scientists and civilians alike – often associate intelligence with positive life outcomes.  The fact that more intelligent individuals are more likely to consume alcohol, tobacco, and psychoactive drugs tampers this universally positive view of intelligence and intelligent individuals.  Intelligent people don’t always do the right thing, only the evolutionarily novel thing.

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