Here you will find one of many pages quoting Donald Trump and his war on opioids. I will content myself with a single quote, and then give you something much more interesting to think about.
Although the declaration doesn’t open up new funds (some estimate more than $9.3 billion is needed), Trump argued that “the federal government is aggressively fighting the opioid epidemic on all fronts.”
He plans to do this with good advertising. Really.
Now for the far more interesting reading. This is a New Yorker article on the Sackler family and their drug company, Purdue Pharma—a privately held company, based in Stamford, Connecticut, that developed the prescription painkiller OxyContin.
I will content myself with a few quotes, emphasis mine. Please click through the above link and read the full report. Here goes:
Purdue launched OxyContin with a marketing campaign that attempted to counter this attitude and change the prescribing habits of doctors. The company funded research and paid doctors to make the case that concerns about opioid addiction were overblown, and that OxyContin could safely treat an ever-wider range of maladies. Sales representatives marketed OxyContin as a product “to start with and to stay with.” Millions of patients found the drug to be a vital salve for excruciating pain. But many others grew so hooked on it that, between doses, they experienced debilitating withdrawal.
The most recent figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest that a hundred and forty-five Americans now die every day from opioid overdoses.
If you read the full article, you’ll find a litany of similar statements.
Now for the dumb questions:
- is an unfunded war on drugs just a bad joke?
- Is it OK for a company to make some 35 Billion dollars selling opioids while misleading the public?