fightin' words

KRATOM Catastrophe

(Can’t spell ‘FRAUD’ without F-D-A)

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Generally, political types see President Donald Trump and former President Barack Obama as diametric opposites. But despite rhetorical differences, there are policy commonalities.

For one, a policy of amorphous, global war. Americans have long since lost any real aptitude for geography, which is just as well, since you wouldn’t want to find all the countries on the map where American soldiers may die for some amorphous objective. Recall that the recent casualties in Niger surprised many in D.C., who wondered why in tarnation we had troops there.

Spending money we don’t have for an illusory boom—tell me where Trump begins and Obama ends on that policy of monetary supply inflation.

Another groovy common thread between Obama and the guy who thought he was a Kenyan: a desire to prohibit people using natural substances for palliative purposes.

We have, re: cannabis, a patchwork drug policy that is still informed by the anti-human, anti-democratic rhetoric of Harry Anslinger, Richard Nixon, Nancy Reagan and Bill Clinton. Especially in (former) Jim Crow states, and especially if you’re a black male or poor, you’re a commodity to be institutionalized and monetized for possession.

And, given recent FDA fulminations on kratom, we see that President Trump is getting the pretext to pick up Obama’s gauntlet, and make the palliative herb illegal.

Last week, the FDA issued “a public health advisory related to mounting concerns regarding risks associated with the use of kratom.”

Never mind that morgues across the country are teeming with casualties of—very often—overindulgence in legal, FDA-approved drugs. Let’s hear the FDA’s case against the competition.

“The FDA knows people are using kratom to treat conditions like pain, anxiety and depression, which are serious medical conditions that require proper diagnosis and oversight from a licensed healthcare provider ... kratom has similar effects to narcotics like opioids, and carries similar risks of abuse, addiction and, in some cases, death. Thus, it’s not surprising that often kratom is taken recreationally by users for its euphoric effects. At a time when we have hit a critical point in the opioid epidemic, the increasing use of kratom as an alternative or adjunct to opioid use is extremely concerning.”

Kratom, by and large, is an escape from opioid addiction, which is crippling. The thing about opioids: They are predicated on diminishing returns. That one Hydrocodone that felt like euphoria works only once; soon enough, it takes four, then eight, and so on.

Of course, what’s killing people by and large is fentanyl and its derivatives, which grow increasingly powerful each passing year. We are on pace for roughly 500 opioid overdose deaths in Duval County this year, out of a population of 850,000 or so.

Kratom has taken 36 lives, meanwhile, nationwide—ever.

The FDA says people cut their kratom with Hydrocodone, which is more bullshit.

Then, they mention their “proven drug review process,” and until that’s complete, they want to stop kratom from coming into the country, which will be catastrophic for those who rely on it.

For a sense of the mindset of some of the biggest anti-kratom cheerleaders, consider Florida Representative Kristin Jacobs (D), who just this year told me the “kratom lobby” is “just like Hitler,” while discussing her third attempt to ban kratom in the Sunshine State.

“They have a story,” Jacobs told me. “Just like Hitler believed if you tell a lie over and over again, it becomes the truth.”

Just like Hitler!

She called kratom a “scourge on society,” an interesting description of a natural palliative that’s been used for centuries in Asia.

She told me about absurd scenarios: newborns feening for a fix, because of pregnant mothers addicted to kava tea; emergency room physicians treating kratom addicts in the throes of withdrawal symptoms; addicts with “glassy eyes and shaky hands.”

Has anyone reading this seen anything like that? Jacksonville has as many strung-out people as any other backwater blue-collar burg bursting at the seams with broken dreams and busted lives. They aren’t strung out on kava tea!

Americans are so inured to being told what to do. Airline travel is basically an invitation for a security sweep that renders the subject exposed, with all the dignity of a Thanksgiving turkey. We accept what we’re told there. We accept surveillance and coercion, and through it all, two-thirds of us are moving from middle class to check-to-check class over the course of our lives.

We won’t live as well as our parents. We won’t live as free as our parents. And kids, if you have them, will be consumed by the gaping maw of the state in ways we can’t fully predict.

But—here’s the good news—the FDA can put the smackdown on a plant. Again.

8 comments on this story | Add your comment
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bluemars

Thank you for an intelligent and accurate story about this plant. Thank goodness for writers who actually research a story rather than sitting on their behinds and parroting press releases. The FDA is eager to approve monstrosities like pain pumps and neural stimulators that damage or kill patients rather than a natural (and inexpensive) product. Below is just ONE of the disasters that desperate pain patients are subjected to:

Medtronic Pain Pump Blamed for 14 Deaths. Medical device maker Medtronic Inc. (NYSE: MDT) says 14 patients have died from complications caused by its SynchroMed implantable pain pump. The pump is used to deliver analgesic drugs directly to the spinal fluid in patients with intractable pain or severe spasticity.Jun 28, 2013

Medtronic Pain Pump Blamed for 14 Deaths – National Pain Report

nationalpainreport.com/medtronic-pain-pump-blamed-for-14-deaths-8820647.html

Wednesday, November 22|Report this

Forrester

It is very nice to see an objective take on Kratom. And especially nice to see someone who is not afraid to call the hypocritical FDA out for what they are: the long arm of big pharma. I know from experience kratom is nowhere near as unsafe as the FDA is claiming. First, I highly highly doubt there have been the 30 odd deaths associated with kratom. I would believe that kratom was in 36 people body when they died, sure... With the main and only cause being fentynl or heroin overdose. Kratom saved my life. Literally. Kratom is about 1/10th the potency of hydrocodone, and just enough to save one from terribly painful and debilitating opioid withdrawal. It's just enough to get you out and to work. Ita just enough to squash the cravings and give a little hope I'm your life. They claim it is addictive, yet I personally know around 30 people who have all used kratom to kick dangerous opioid addictions, and in every single case the ones who wanted sincerely to get clean had no problem kicking the kratom. As a matter of fact, dragon is so weak one can simply taper down for a few days then go cold turkey and have zero symptoms. You CANNOT say that about any of the medications that the pharmaceutical industry makes. Any opiod. I have know 3 people who use kratom as a safe and far healthier alternative for pain management. It works for them, and they don't have to get raked over the coals by the price, dragon is cheap and accessible. For the first time, chronic pain sufferers and recovering addicts have their power and their lives back. Why is kratom being banned? It's because the pharmaceutical companies know that when Americans begin to take the initiative, do their researth and trust in reliable and scientific knowledge, they will abandon the poison that the pharmaceutical industry is making in favor of natural plants. Big pharma thinks about the long game. They are corporations that cannot die. They are legally immortal. They have all the time in the world. And they know that kratom is only the first battle in a war to take back our lives from these companies who use medicine to enslave us. In most cases there is a natural plant based medicine that has scientifically been proven as, or more effective than what the pharmaceutical industry makes and with far less side effects and deaths. I hope we can keep kratom legal, because so many people have found relief, and allowing the FDA to use misleading attacks to ban their overlords medication has to be stopped now. Otherwise, the next time a miracle plant is found that big pharma cannot monetize, they will do it all over again. It takes every person to win this fight. Every single person reading this please call your local representatives. Thursday, November 23|Report this

Brycea

I’d probably be dead if I didn’t find Kratom. I was taking opiates among other things. I was a mess. The Kratom was able to satisfy the need for opiates just enough to prevent me from taking other things. I had taken other drugs . Those “opiate replacement” drugs made just as messed up. Kratom didn’t turn me into a zombie. I’m happy again and my family doesn’t dislike being around me anymore. I’m also back in school and getting my life back on track. I can’t imagine where I would be without it. I can’t imagine why the DEA would want to ban it. Alcohol and tobacco kill so many people a year but the government isn’t actively trying to ban either of those. I hope they don’t ban Kratom. I'm finally happy again. Thursday, November 23|Report this

Cincitygreg

I've been on prescription opiates for over 10 years after a bad accident. I had enough of becoming a zombie a slave to the main stay. I thought I'd give kratom a try at first I didn't notice it had any effect but after a few days of quitting the synthetic heroin the doctor had me on that's known as dilaudid among others for back up pain. kratom slowly started to work in a claim natural way. All I can say is this government we have don't know squat as to what it's like to wake up being free? Did I just say that? So funny that was our old government that believed in that! This monster that we let dictate our lives telling us what's best for us I'm feed up! but there's nothing we can do to fix it. someone said tell your representative hah. I wrote him he sent me a letter back letting me know his belief about kratom and other means of things to control pain like marijuana he heads a hard stand against all of it and will go out of his way to discontinue all of it.it's a sad day for we the people and it will get worse the machine is on the rise! How do we change this who will stand up for the rights of the common man? How do we get rid of these money hungry monsters we have elected to speak for us?

Democracy is going to fall for big business and corruption!

I'd like to see it all start over a few harmless plant's. Thursday, November 23|Report this

MFavaloro

Finally an intelligent article on kratom... I've Kept silent for years, just cringing reading so many absurd non-factual articles from our medical community or the FDA on this analgesic herb.

To preface, I am not ,nor have I ever been, an addict...I am not recovering from prescription drug dependence caused by my doctors ...I am a 65 year old ,disabled arthritis patient who has used Kratom for nearly 10 years. I go in several months spurts of using it daily when I have a flare up but quitting after a titration down is a totally easy process not any worse than quitting caffeine. You have less than a week of discomfort as your body regulates itself back.

However, I have also found it quite easy to desire to use this substance to cover just ' not feeling good'... this is the issue with using anything that ameliorates discomfort, you become addicted to trying to get away from what's bothering you instead of learning to deal with the hand life is giving us. I would suggest instead of Kratom/opiates or smoking pot (I live in Oregon & grow cannabis) , try Mindfulness Meditation.

I can attest to the fact that that actually does work better with better lasting effects and is a more effective anti nociceptive then either Kratom or cannabis.

I just don't want the FDA telling me that I I'm not responsible enough to self medicate (who better than yourself to tell you what you need) with a natural herbal supplement that is entirely self-regulating. Anyone who was accidentally taken a couple extra grams of this on an empty stomach knows exactly what I mean!

Thursday, November 23|Report this

Diveoz

I've had two knee replacements in the same knee and it still hurts more than my original "birth-knee". The only thing doctors could do was prescribe opioid medications which had less and less benefits as time went on. While I am a slave to kratom as I was to hydrocodone, I do not have the same risks of winding up in the hospital or worse still never waking up again. Moreover, after 3 years my dosage is near my original dosage and still works at reducing my pain to levels that allow me to interact with life.

Thank you for telling the truth. Hopefully the truth will prevail. I really do not want to go back to hydrocodone and I can't go back to my "birth-knee". Thursday, November 23|Report this

Redssonfire

Can anyone share where they purchase theirs ? Maybe a link , and what kind works for pain without sedation? Ie red, green, white strains?

I would be forever in your debt ... Or email directly.....redssonfire@gmail.com

Thanks so much in advance. Happy turkey day ! Thursday, November 23|Report this

Sticktogether

This has to stop. I'm tired of all this getting a bad rap . Opiates, anxiety pills, sleeping pills, natrual pain pills, like kratom. I have been watching for months hearing they are killing people. It's like guns they don't kill people. People kill people. It's the same concept. Hearing They're too addictive. We must stop this. They must be removed from the shelves. Doctors have to stop prescribing them. The FDA and government is now stepping on the tones of natural pain relievers. People simply cannot get the medicine they need. People living in pain.... why? I'm going to start this out by saying this. SO..... You think you have an opiate and other epidemics on your hands?

Fact. If you take relief away from chronically ill chronic pain people that truly need it. You going to see the highest suicide rates you have ever seen people!. And people WILL start to self-medicate. Those will be the epidemics you're going to see. Is that what we really want?

So. I think its time that we (those who are chronically ill and suffering with chronic pain) start sticking together and standing up for ourselves and do something before it's too late. And not just complain about it, but actually try and do something. If we don't we are going to be in a lot of trouble down the road. Because nobody seems to be looking out for us.

Not only are they trying to take pain management away from us ( and this is actually started in some states) they are now stepping on the toes of natural pain relievers as well. For one example, kratom.. this has helped me and I've seen it helped many so why are they making this natural pain reliever illegal? Because people have abused it and overdosed on it?. It will get to a point where chronic pain sufferers will have absolutely nothing for relief. And this will happen if we all just sit back and let it happen.

Contact your local papers. Contact your local Congress. Contact your local news, start petitions. Write articles such as the one above. We don't have to be nasty about it but we can tell our story and why it's so critical in our cases and how much this medication actually helps millions and helps us function and live. We do have a voice. And do any of these people making these decisions to take away relief suffer with anything at all?

Those who choose to abuse opiates or anything else for that matter. That is their prerogative. They're going to get high no matter what. As I've stated in another post. It will be by glue, paint thinners or anything else they can get their hands on. That is there issue. Not ours. Addiction is addiction no matter what it is. People choose to abuse drugs because they choose to abuse drugs plain and simple. People who get hooked on opiates or whatever ? We can educate people more doctors can educate more give more warnings and if the those people choose to ignore the warnings, that's on them . And also the doctors don't have to give pain medicine out to every Tom Dick and Harry. I have been taking opiates for 5 yrs. I make myself take breaks. One so I can stay on the lowest dose and so my body doesn't become tolerate to the meds. Guess what. No withdrawals, no addiction here. So it can be done with commonsense and willpower! I've also been using Kratom for years. No side effects that helps me tremendously. And I'm certainly not addicted.

Fact.... the more strict the guidelines get the more scared doctors are going to be ... and I've seen it. It is starting to happen. And those who truly need and deserve these medications will be the ones who pay for it in the end. I agree they need to crack down on the black market. However they won't stop there they don't have enough common sense. They're going to do it across the board and that will affect all of us.. And I'm telling you. Without relief we truly pay for it. I'm 'm also reading all over the place in some states that these poor people can't get pain medicine ... muscle relaxers and anxiety medicine, and or sleeping pills at the same time. They literally have to choose one or the other. They are completely different drugs for completely different reasons. . And those of us who do suffer with chronic illnesses and chronic pain.... of course we have depression and anxiety. Joint pains not the same as muscle pain and so on. So now we have to choose between getting help for our anxiety or getting help with our pain? It's getting out of control.

I am a sufferer of several autoimmune illnesses. They're very debilitating and extremely painful. There is no physical therapy.... meditation or anything like that that is gone overcome my pain that I live with day and night. And that is on a good day. And I know many of you are in the same boat as I am. If this continues and they eliminate opiates or other necessary medications that we need or limit the amount we're allowed to take or we have to pick and choose which class drug we need. I myself cannot live with what... I cant live without some relief with the pain. They're not a miracle drugs and they don't take our pain away completely but it gives us room to breathe. It doesn't matter what pills you take if you do not take it as prescribed they can be dangerous all of them. And every week or every other month it's always another pill a different classification of pill. One day it's opiates the next day it's Gabapentin today it's Tramadol in a month from now it'll be anxiety pills. 90% of this medication has been around and on the shelves for years and decades. So I'll say it again. For the thousands of life's that you claim these pills take there are millions and millions that it helps. It also keeps people from self-medicating and keep suicide rates down. because nobody can live in chronic pain daily and keep their sanity. And trying to get other I'm starting to stand up and getting the word out and I'm asking for all sufferers to do the same. Every time you see a post like this tell your success story. And two why you need some of these drugs to stay on the shelves and to help our Dr feel confident about prescribing these medications to us to the sufferers. Tell your story about when you go to your doctor and you can't get the medication you need . And what that does to you. The FDA and the government has no right to do this to us. I'm not just talking about the opiates I'm talking about Crampton and all other natural products as well. They're going to take Kratom away. They may as well take all the glue paint thinners, cough syrup Benadryl and everything else that people can get high from. Make it all illegal. I'm so tired of all this it literally makes me sick to my stomach

Thursday, November 23|Report this