October 26, 2020

Gen Z Conservative

The thoughts of a young conservative on political issues relevant to all ages

Dreamland: The True Tale of America's Opiate Epidemic

Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic

Introduction to Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic

This book review of Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic was written by one of my amazing Twitter follower, @beyond_reasons. – Gen Z Conservative        

When reading Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic you will learn how “black tar” heroin is trafficked by Mexican cells throughout the heartland and small town America, how one letter to the editor shaped policy for opioid prescriptions and pharmaceutical marketing practices as well as pain treatment, and how economic changes, parenting changes and societal outlooks have encouraged drug use among teens. While conservative values can help with fighting addiction, addiction still remains a huge issue for many in America.

Books like Dreamland show why we should defund welfare, not cops! Buy a shirt or mug I designed to show you agree here: https://teespring.com/defund-welfare-not-cops

You will also learn, oddly enough, about the Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS) caused by leftist hate. Every day we are bombarded by TDS while at school, working, and shopping.  We see how it manifests itself in false information made to appear true simply because it has been repeated thousands of times until we think it must be true (or the instigators of such false information hope we do). 

TDS a phenomenon that happens throughout the scientific world and always brings us up short when we realize it has happened again. In other words, fake news.

The Opioid Crisis:

In the book Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic by Sam Quinones we are taken on an eye-opening journey through the opiate drug trade, both legal and illegal, of North America. It is a trade, in large part, based on a “fact” that wasn’t a fact but repeated so many times, and never sourced, that it became true.

 Except, of course, it wasn’t.  What it was, was an opinion of a couple of doctors known as “Porter and Jick” published as a Letter to the Editor in the January 1980 New England Journal of Medicine and used as the basis for opiate prescribing rationales (as the letter wrongly states they are non-addictive), sales quotas and medical opinions. It then became the foundation of the opioid crisis.

Fake News and the Opioid Crisis:

Fake News colors how we position the things we write about.  For those of us who learned to source and then check our sources, this is not surprising.  Writers, this one included, write from their point of view.  As much as we try to be objective, it is a part of the article.  That is why we read from all sources, and the reason journalists (at least used to be) are taught to be objective. 

Even the most objective journalist still has a point of view.  But now we are faced with writers not checking their sources at all or simply making them up (how often now do we read “unnamed sources”).  This is extremely troubling because if it is happening in the medical field, what other prescriptions and procedures are they getting wrong? And this source caused not just a mistake but trillions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of lives, as described in Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic.

The Author of Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic

The other amazing piece information in Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic relates to the author himself.  This author has first-hand knowledge of the wide destruction illegal aliens have done to the USA. He has a well-researched and well written account of the horrific intersections of opiate use across the USA. 

He shows, in great detail, how parallel to American doctors over-prescribing opioids through pill mills and their offices, Mexican heroin dealers gained a foothold in middle America trafficking “black tar” heroin like a pizza delivery service through cells similar to terrorists.  He has taken us inside the families of those the drugs have ripped apart though death or addiction.  He has shown us how addicts become the enablers for illegals to live under the radar in the USA all the while moving cheap Mexican heroin over the border to sell more.  Yet, this author is anti-Trump. He doesn’t understand that border security is national security.

Republicans and the Opioid Crisis:

In Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic, we learn about Republicans and the opioid crisis. In fact, “Republican” is mentioned 21 times in the book, while “Democrat” is mentioned four. The author cites his conversation with Hillary Clinton and her willingness to put opiate addiction as part of her policy during the election, yet he does not credit President Trump with his measurable changes in opiate use as stated on WhiteHouse.gov:

The number of first-time heroin users ages 12 and older fell by more than 50 percent in July 2017. Between President Trump’s Inauguration and October 2018, high-dose opioid prescriptions fell by 16 percent.

In July 2017, the Department of Justice shut down the country’s biggest Darknet distributor of drugs. That same Fiscal Year, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement took more than 2,300 pounds of fentanyl off the streets.

In terms of helping those struggling with addiction, there has been a 20 percent increase in young adults receiving outpatient treatment. And in 2017, America had an increase in the number of patients age 12 and older with illicit drug-use disorders being treated at specialty facilities and private provider offices.

On White House.gov

While it is nice that Hillary Clinton paid lip service to the opiate crisis, the truth is it is she who should have known, and should have taken action on this problem during the four years she was Secretary of State and the additional eight years she was a sitting Senator. She had the world stage and the ear of a past and then current President for 12 years. And she did nothing to help.

Mr. Quintones, cites the positive changes made through Republican legislators both on a national and state level, but he does so almost tongue in cheek.  He mentions that they have done something but then blames them for their “law and order” policies that contributed to the problem.  He complains that if only they had instituted drug courts or detox centers earlier this addiction would not be a problem. 

Democrat Inaction and the Opioid Crisis:

He doesn’t, however, ever condemn the policies and inaction of Democrats that encourage and turn away from the illegal aliens flooding the borders, the repeat offenders who he outlines in his book which fueled the drug trade, or the current insistence of the Democrats to allow illegal drug traffickers to come over the border or even open the border completely and give them free health care to boot.

What he doesn’t say, for instance, is in the towns where addiction took hold and then multiplied, Democrats were in charge.  They had the power to bring change.  They didn’t.  He cites:

In 2010, Terry Johnson was elected to Ohio’s House of Representatives, the first Republican to hold the Portsmouth seat that had once belonged, seemingly in perpetuity, to Vern Riffe Jr. (“Riffe, a moderate Democrat, was a strong Speaker, even bringing Republican members of the House under his sway by threatening to fund the campaigns of their Democratic opponents for re-election.” – Wikipedia)

Johnson took office in 2011.  He and fellow representative Dave Burke, a pharmacist, wrote House Bill 93.  This was a rare event.  Term limits in Ohio mean that legislators come and go and acquire little knowledge of the issues on which they pass laws by the time they’re termed out.  Legislation is often written by lobbyists who are the power that accumulates in Columbus as lawmakers rotate through.

“Instead, we came out of left field,” Johnson said, “and wrote our own legislation.”

For a month he and Burke worked in the shadows like French resistance fighters.  They forged a bill that defined and regulated pain clinics.  Their House Bill 93 made it illegal, among other things, for a convicted felon to run one.  Doctors could no longer dispense pharmaceuticals from their clinics – a widespread pill mill practice up to that point…  Governor Kasich (R) promised to sign it.

In the country’s quintessential battleground state, House Bill 93 passed unanimously in May 2011.  Together, Ohio Republicans and Democrats repealed the state’s intractable pain law.

From: Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic

Oddly, although it was the Republicans that wrote and drove the bill, and the Democrats had been in power “seemingly in perpetuity”, Democrats are credited for changing Ohio’s stance on the drug trade.  This happened, by the way, during Hillary’s term as Secretary of State.  In the years before, Hillary was a term and a half Senator.  She did not write or introduce any bill with regard to the prescription opioids or the illegal drug trade. 

Hillary’s Opioid Inaction:

Hillary Clinton’s eight years of work in the Senate resulted in only three signed bills:

S. 1241:  A bill to establish the Kate Mullany National Historic Site in the State of New York. Bush signed the bill Dec. 3, 2004.

S. 3613: A bill to name a post office the “Major George Quamo Post Office Building.” Bush signed the bill Oct. 6, 2006.

S. 3145: A bill to designate a highway in New York as the Timothy J. Russert highway. Bush signed the bill July 23, 2008.

She did introduce many bills in the Senate.  One of them being:

S.2286: A bill to reliquidate certain entries of tomato sauce preparation.              

This is by way of saying, that while children (one of her favorite topics) were dying at the hands of illegal alien drug dealers, she was doing nothing about it in the Senate. 

Yet when a book is written about this problem by an anti-Trumper, it is Hillary who is given credit for being “curious” rather than to President Trump who has a track record (in his short tenure) of action, change and results.

It is not surprising that Republicans are making a difference.  It’s just that we don’t hear about it and Mr Quinones can’t be bothered to mention it.

In the book, Mr. Quinones mentions Hillary Clinton’s opioid policy:

“An advisor to Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign called.  Mrs. Clinton, she said, had been hearing a lot from parents with addicted children as she campaigned in Iowa and New Hampshire.  We spent an hour on the phone, talking about pain pills, pill mills, Mexican heroin trafficking, and the quiet surrounding this epidemic that had allowed it to spread.  A month later, Mrs. Clinton was reported to be coming up with policy proposals to address the problem.”

In Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic

President Donald Trump’s Response to the Opioid Crisis:

During the campaign, President Trump simply stated that we have a tremendous problem that is coming over the border and that he is going to work to stop the flow of drugs and then help those who are addicted.  Clinton published a long repetitive “policy” attached to $10 Billion (or $7.5 Billion because the policy says both) to detox people.  Not once does the policy mention stopping the flow of drugs.

He did not mention then presidential candidate Donald J. Trump.

The Wealth of Information in Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic

Once past the bias, there is a wealth of information in Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic. Sadly, the information about our children spotlights isolation. That isolation, probably stems from our society of protectiveness which keeps children inside and on screens rather than playing outside with friends. This isolation is a good breeding ground for addiction. It also highlights the role of community in our lives. 

Mr. Quinones points out the role of Churches in fighting the epidemic of drugs by providing a place for community.  Americans are now focused on national politics, but the place where things get done is on a local level.  The place where we can fight addiction is in our homes.  When a change was made in Ohio it was on the state level, not the national. 

Federalism to Combat the Opioid Crisis:

This emphasis on the national ignores the very strength of our country as a nation of states united as one. It is certainly something that both the Federalists and Anti-Federalists would have been disgusted by, as Gen Z mentions in his review of the Federalist Papers and his review of The Anti-Federalist Papers.

Through strong action on the state and local level, major changes can be implemented.  Illegal alien sanctuary cities do not harbor “good people”.  They harbor those who at the minimum are breaking immigration law by being in the country illegally. We should always remember that border security is national security.

Parents are told repeatedly to allow their children to make their own decisions and allow them their privacy to develop on their own.  In fact, we are told today that pre-teens are able to decide on sexual relations and gender identity and parents are just there to steer the boat until the children are tall enough to see over the dashboard.  Yet in their isolated rooms with their delivered heroin balloons, children are actually just children taking drugs, stunting their brain development and creating a lifetime of problems for themselves and their families.

The Rust Belt and Opioids:

Mr. Quinones goes into great detail about the shoelace factory in Ohio and the effect its demise and that of other shuttered factories had on the small towns of America.  He talks about the outsourcing of jobs and how devastating it is for our society.  In his subsequent articles about the drug trade credit President Trump with his work to build up these small towns, the lowest unemployment rate in decades, or his emphasis on bringing jobs back to communities of all sizes and keeping them here.

And after all the children are addicted? All the taxes have been avoided? And the Mexicans go home? What did they gain? 

Maids, large parties with beer and cocaine, college educations, houses, as well as family clout and community status is what the addiction to heroin and deaths of Americans, many of them kids, purchases for illegal aliens from Xalisco, Mexico. The leaders of the drug trade made a lot of (tax-free) money.  But for those delivery drivers, after the money was spent, the dream of perhaps creating a small business not achieved, their neighbors no longer so impressed, they went back over the porous border yet again to poison more American kids.

So while we are, as a society, focused on national politics we ignore the real and solvable problems that are in our neighborhoods and communities.  We give safe harbor and free health care to illegal aliens driving the non-descript car making heroin deliveries.  We make excuses for illegal aliens who we are told are here to make a better life.  They are.  But not just at the cost of not paying taxes on the millions they make through drug sales, but the cost of the deaths of thousands of children – some estimate 130 per day. (https://www.drugabuse.gov/drugs-abuse/opioids/opioid-overdose-crisis#one )

Conclusion:

We are inundated with TDS and Fake News and as a result fail to look at the problems that are facing us in our state or in our towns.  Washington, DC does not know where the drug traffickers are in rural Iowa but Iowans know and can enforce laws to work with stop the flow of advantages to drug traffickers and keep our precious resource of children – our future – safe.

Instead we are driven by events that don’t happen next door but far away which have little effect on our daily lives compared to the local politics which create illegal alien sanctuary cities, ignore drug traffickers and other illegal activities, and quietly change local laws at under-attended city council meetings.  Because apart from the unrest and focus at the border, the crisis is illegal aliens are selling drugs, having DUIs and committing murders, not at the border but down the street.

When reading Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic you will gain a new and frightening perspective on life in the USA.  Hopefully, this read will spur you to make changes in your own thinking and take action in your community. And remember, conservative values help addicts!

By: @beyond_reasons

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