Monday, February 13, 2012

Did Whitney Houston Lose Her War With Drugs?


This was a recent post:

End The War On Drugs
It elicited several comments from one reader who felt it was better to give up efforts to fight drug dealers and criminalize drug use.  I agreed with the comments in theory, but with the caveat that the liberated drug users could not then get public assistance for their "disease."  If someone makes a choice to use drugs, then they take on the responsibility to live ... or die ... with the consequences.

It appears that the famous singer, Whitney Houston, has died with those consequences.  Sad.  A waste in every sense.  She had a voice and face the world loved.  But she did not have a disease.  She made a conscious, if stupid, decision earlier in her life to indulge in drugs. She struggle with trying not to be an addict.  Something that, apparently, millions of people are doing.  They are not victims of a disease either.  Neither are alcoholics.  [image from Tekstovi-Pesama]

It is true that misuse of these substances can cause severe deterioration of the human body... just like any other poison.  The difference between most hallucinogenic drugs and alcohol is that most people can have occasional drinks without jeopardizing their health or lives or become physically and emotionally dependent on those substances.  The same cannot be said about hallucinogenic drug users.

Whitney Houston may not have died from cocaine or heroine, but the dependency on drugs for emotional support was lurking there.  Whatever the public version of the medical examiner's findings shows... and that won't be made public for one or two months... she made a decision decades ago to become a drug user of which consequences rippled through the rest of her life.  Whitney Houston did not simply decide one day to take powerful sedatives or pain medication... possibly with alcohol... and fall asleep in a bathtub and drown.  Doesn't happen; didn't happen.  This was a lifetime coming.
Prescription drugs had been found in the Beverly Hills Hilton hotel room where Houston's lifeless body was discovered Saturday afternoon just hours before a huge Grammy party she was to attend. [source]
I've often wondered about those who want to "end the war on drugs" and "decriminalize drug use."  Are they also pushing [no pun] for prescription only pain medication and sedatives to be sold "over the counter?"  How would they deal [no pun] with that?
20 oz. bottle of oxycodone on special at [name your local] Pharmacy this week for only $19.95 plus tax.
Whitney Houston was not unusual among celebrity drug users.  They may considered themselves to be beautify, talented, and presumably invulnerable to the effects that drugs have on common people.  Do your own Google search.

Like alcohol abusers, drug abusers have to take responsibility for their choices.  The government cannot save them from the results of their choices.  Here is one way they can take responsibility.

From just below the masthead:
Stupidity Has Its Own Rewards 
Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it.

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SEARCH BLOG: FEDERAL RESERVE for full versions... or use the Blog Archive pulldown menu.

February 3, 2006
Go back to 1999-2000 and see what the Fed did. They are following the same pattern for 2005-06. If it ain't broke, the Fed will fix it... and good!
August 29, 2006 The Federal Reserve always acts on old information... and is the only cause of U.S. recessions.
December 5, 2006 Last spring I wrote about what I saw to be a sharp downturn in the economy in the "rustbelt" states, particularly Michigan.
March 28, 2007
The Federal Reserve sees no need to cut interest rates in the light of adverse recent economic data, Ben Bernanke said on Wednesday.
The Fed chairman said ”to date, the incoming data have supported the view that the current stance of policy is likely to foster sustainable economic growth and a gradual ebbing in core inflation”.

July 21, 2007 My guess is that if there is an interest rate change, a cut is more likely than an increase. The key variables to be watching at this point are real estate prices and the inventory of unsold homes.
August 11, 2007 I suspect that within 6 months the Federal Reserve will be forced to lower interest rates before housing becomes a black hole.
September 11, 2007 It only means that the overall process has flaws guaranteeing it will be slow in responding to changes in the economy... and tend to over-react as a result.
September 18, 2007 I think a 4% rate is really what is needed to turn the economy back on the right course. The rate may not get there, but more cuts will be needed with employment rates down and foreclosure rates up.
October 25, 2007 How long will it be before I will be able to write: "The Federal Reserve lowered its lending rate to 4% in response to the collapse of the U.S. housing market and massive numbers of foreclosures that threaten the banking and mortgage sectors."
"Should the elevated turbulence persist, it would increase the possibility of further tightening in financial conditions for households and businesses," he said.

"Uncertainties about the economic outlook are unusually high right now," he said. "These uncertainties require flexible and pragmatic policymaking -- nimble is the adjective I used a few weeks ago."

December 11, 2007 Somehow the Fed misses the obvious.
[Image from:]
December 13, 2007 [from The Christian Science Monitor]
"The odds of a recession are now above 50 percent," says Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's "We are right on the edge of a recession in part because of the Fed's reluctance to reduce interest rates more aggressively." [see my comments of September 11]
January 7, 2008 The real problem now is that consumers can't rescue the economy and manufacturing, which is already weakening, will continue to weaken. We've gutted the forces that could avoid a downturn. The question is not whether there will be a recession, but can it be dampened sufficiently so that it is very short.
January 11, 2008 This is death by a thousand cuts.
January 13, 2008 [N.Y. Times]
“The question is not whether we will have a recession, but how deep and prolonged it will be,” said David Rosenberg, the chief North American economist at Merrill Lynch. “Even if the Fed’s moves are going to work, it will not show up until the later part of 2008 or 2009.
January 17, 2008 A few days ago, Anna Schwartz, nonagenarian economist, implicated the Federal Reserve as the cause of the present lending crisis [from the Telegraph - UK]:
The high priestess of US monetarism - a revered figure at the Fed - says the central bank is itself the chief cause of the credit bubble, and now seems stunned as the consequences of its own actions engulf the financial system. "The new group at the Fed is not equal to the problem that faces it," she says, daring to utter a thought that fellow critics mostly utter sotto voce.
January 22, 2008 The cut has become infected and a limb is in danger. Ben Bernanke is panicking and the Fed has its emergency triage team cutting rates... this time by 3/4%. ...

What should the Federal Reserve do now? Step back... and don't be so anxious to raise rates at the first sign of economic improvement.
Individuals and businesses need stability in their financial cost structures so that they can plan effectively and keep their ships afloat. Wildly fluctuating rates... regardless of what the absolute levels are... create problems. Either too much spending or too much fear. It's just not that difficult to comprehend. Why has it been so difficult for the Fed?

About Me

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Michigan, United States
Air Force (SAC) captain 1968-72. Retired after 35 years of business and logistical planning, including running a small business. Two sons with advanced degrees; one with a business and pre-law degree. Beautiful wife who has put up with me for 4 decades. Education: B.A. (Sociology major; minors in philosopy, English literature, and German) M.S. Operations Management (like a mixture of an MBA with logistical planning)