I had the privilege of meeting with US Congressman (D-13) Tim Ryan's office yesterday. I had a great conversation with Vince Peterson regarding what parents want. I posted yesterday, our subtle desire to have our child addicts in jail; today I summarize my second topic - "Give Us Numbers Now!"
Why in the hell does it take 2 years to provide the public with health and safety information? 2016 ended 120 days ago and we do not have overdose numbers yet - in fact, we will not get them until early 2018. Why is that? I have no idea. It would be awesome if we could write the opiate czar, Chris Christie, but after 42 days he doesn't have a website, an email, or a phone number. There is no leadership. I am beginning to think that our government is in cahoots with Big Pharma. I mean what would happen to their stock prices if 1 million reliable customers stopped needing Narcan, Suboxone, Subutex, Methadone, Vivitrol, ReVia, and of course Mylantik. Of course, these customers don't need to worry about constipation if they are dead - that's another bad outcome for Big Pharma - I am surprised they don't give Narcan away like Bic does razors in order to sell blades. Can't lose a customer.
The last time I looked at the available numbers, deaths due to heroin were growing at a rate of at least 20% per year. There were 13,000 deaths due to heroin in 2015. If those, likely under-reported numbers are correct, then we would have already lost 15,600 in 2016 and are on the way to losing 19,800 in 2017. What if the 20% is 30% growth? Well, then we are facing 16,900 already dead in 2016 and are facing 22,000 in 2017. This is JUST HEROIN! Over 5 years we will have lost over 100,000 lives and we won't know that until 7 years. 100,000 dead Americans. Add in deaths due to all Opioids and my friends we are facing almost 200,000 dead Americans in just 5 years. Would you like to wake up to that headline in 2022? Chris Christie won't care - he'll be retired and working the talk show circuit making fun of whoever is running New Jersey. This very well could be the country your children and grandchildren are living and dying in.
We have cell phones that can crunch numbers and find people in an instant. They have more power than the entire Apollo Space Program (ok maybe not, but maybe?) yet somehow we can't count dead bodies? We can't count dead bodies for a full year? This makes no sense - but watch - the federal bureaucracy will have an answer, packaged very nicely, so that we sheep believe it.
IF YOU GET NOTHING ELSE FROM THIS ARTICLE, GET THIS! We are desperate for leadership, but Chris Christie is no where to be found; we are desperate for a funnel to collect all of our voices and amplify them on "the system." We are desperate for someone to stand up and tell the people how tragic and epically historical this loss of life is and is destined to be. But there is NOTHING - in fact, we can't even know how many friends, neighbors, parents, children, or fellow citizens have already been lost.
How does this article strike you? Have you become numb to the news of death as our leadership has? Baaaaa, Baaaaaa, Freedom is Slavery, War is Peace, 2+2=5, say Winston, say it!
6/25/17: Final Edition Heroin Herald and Overdose Observer
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