View Full Version : The spread of methamphetamine

Jack Heinlen
04-29-2005, 02:10 PM
There was just a lab caught by the Bangor police. Bangor, though it has a long, checkered history of illegal activity, was a bit shocked. It's a last bastion of innocent America. To have a drug lab uncovered, right in the heart of town, right next to the seminary, was eye opening.

It's my old stomping ground. I used to walk those roads, right next to the apartment, pure as the driven snow. Um, maybe a bad choice of words. smile.gif

Five minute walk to Steven King's mansion, BTW.

This scourge, meth. It's not going away. It's cheap, easy to make, addictive, and seemingly everywhere. It also causes unpredictable, violent behavior.

Your thoughts?

Bob Cleek
04-29-2005, 02:15 PM
No **** , Sherlock!!

04-29-2005, 02:21 PM
Nasty stuff and now cold pills are being treated as controlled substance in some areas.

Alan D. Hyde
04-29-2005, 02:24 PM
It's far easier for nations and cultures and individuals to go downhill, than it is to go up.

Pride, personal honor, family, community, religion, ethics, and philosophy, all can help us to strive for a better self and better days.

Nihilism inexorably sends us spiraling downwards.


"The story of history is the story of the velvet slipper descending the staircase, and the jackboot* going up." Arnold Toynbee

*Said in the late thirties. I, in optimism, would now say "workboot."

km gresham
04-29-2005, 02:25 PM
They've been locking up sudafed at the dollar store for a while and looks like there's a push to do it everywhere else, too. That's a pain for those of us with allergies, but I guess it's come to that. Other ingredients are being considered for regulation, also - cleansers and such? Something like that. Doesn't sound like anything you'd want to put into your body.

04-29-2005, 02:27 PM
Yea, and I have to show a f-ing ID to buy Sudafed for the kids ...

Meth labs are like roaches ... if you see one, there are at least 500 more ...

Come to Missouri- we ARE the meth capital of the country. redface.gif

The poor man's crack cocaine ... with far worse side effects. :(

There was a bust near my house about three months ago ... hardly rural, and hardly poor. Amongst 300-630,000 homes was a HUGE lab in the basement ... a very large bust.

Alan D. Hyde
04-29-2005, 02:28 PM
Jack, you're an avid reader, aren't you?

Why not start on Gibbon's The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire? The writing is first-rate English, the footnotes are scintillating, and the history is good. Don't get an expurgated or condensed edition, though.

I suspect that you might enjoy it immensely.


George Roberts
04-29-2005, 02:29 PM
There is a law in Oklahoma restricting the selling of sudafed.

The law allows my daughter to buy 3 days of liquid sudafed for my granddaughter. Colds last 10 days or so - 4 trips to the store with a sick kid.

We should note that liquid sudafed can not be used to make illegal drugs.

Chris Coose
04-29-2005, 02:34 PM
It's a last bastion of innocent America. Bangor? The once largest shipping port of pine?

Oxycontin is the current epidemic of Maine. Leading an unpresidented number of young people to IV heroin use in an amazingly brief period of time.

We are ripe for Meth labs and fortunately they have been around long enough in other rural places for law enforcement to be fairly wise to their existance.
To give you an unscientific census of the population at Mercy hospital, the busiest chemical dependency treatment facility in the state, where I work occasionally perdiem - the
alcoholics are at about 30%, opiates 50%, other at 19% and about 1% are meth addicted.

It's likely to increase but it isn't anything like what is making the worse mess.

Alan D. Hyde
04-29-2005, 02:43 PM
Here's the description of Bangor from www.lycos.com (http://www.lycos.com) ---

Built on the banks of the Penobscot River, Bangor (pop. 33,200, pronounced "BANG-gor") is the largest town in northern Maine. This site was an important rendezvous for local tribes, who called it Kendusbeag, or "eel-catching place." In 1604 Samuel de Champlain sailed up the Penobscot River as far as Treats Falls here, but long-term settlement did not begin until 1769. Throughout the next century, Bangor was the most important lumber town of the eastern U.S.; it also developed into a ship-building center, and Bangor's lumber circled the globe. A large sector of the population was devoted to providing amusement for the loggers and sailors who would arrive in town with free time and fat wallets. In a riverside neighborhood called the Devil's Half Acre, dozens of bars, bordellos, and gambling dens competed to empty the men's pockets, but now the only sign of life is the Sea Dog Brewery, one of Bangor's most popular bars and restaurants.

Nineteenth-century Bangor was as wide open as any town in the Wild West, but traces of rougher days have all but disappeared, though modern Bangor is still a center for the lumber industry: coming into town across the Penobscot River, you'll turn right onto Main Street and see a Day-Glo statue of Paul Bunyan, erected in 1959. The compact business center, mostly red-brick 19th-century buildings interspersed with church spires, lies a few blocks to the east of Paul Bunyan. Here you'll find some impressive 100-year-old buildings, now housing a little of everything: an Internet cafe, two comic shops, and at least four good bookstores.



Jack Heinlen
04-29-2005, 02:50 PM
[QUOTEBangor? The once largest shipping port of pine?[/QUOTE]

Like I said, Bangor has a long history of rough trade. But with the death of the pine industry the town went into a tailspin economically. It's just been recovering as an interesting place to live an d work, leaving most of the rough stuff behind.

15 years ago, no one wanted to live here: depressed, ex-lumber town. But people, and towns go in cycles. People have realized it's pretty good in other ways, and a sense, just a sense, of innocence grew.

I moved here for some of those reasons. I like wayward, but with culture. I''ve not regretted it. Though people from Boston, finding Portland too developed and crass, could stay away more. ;)

04-30-2005, 01:47 AM
My drug pet peeve has to be crack. Had an ex friend room with me while he was in between places.When we were younger we worked/fished together. He is a cousin to my ex and none of the family was kind enough to tell me he had a problem with crack. I came home one day to find all my power tools gone,my fishing rods (nice ones)and my compressor. Alot of the people I went to school with are now crack addicts and steal even their childrens stuff. The guy is now in the klink for false info on pawn tickets and stealing my things. All the tools I had collected to build this boat with plus several I had for years.He knew how much I liked my fishing rods since I still had alot of the same ones that I had when we were buddies. Another friends husband pawned all my music cd's I had let them borrow for a NY's eve party. Really horrible stuff.

Phillip Allen
04-30-2005, 06:15 AM
Two people who habitually used the stuff come to mind. One was a guy working for a crew of Minnesotans laying fiber optic cable down in Florida. I got to see them in the evenings cause they stayed at the same motel I was using (one of my outa town jobs in masonry). While everyone else sat around in the growing darkness and guzzled at least a 12 pack apiece, he flitted about hardly touching the ground. He thought he was working on their big company boom truck. All he really did was sort nuts and bolts, got it wrong and re-sorted over and over...for hours!

The other guy worked for us in Arkansas. He was a blur of working motion and he really DID get a lot done. The boss thought he could use him in place of three ordinary men. The poor guy kept saying (over the months) that he used to use the stuff but he doesn’t do that anymore…over and over. He finally got busted with his nice truck…meth lab in the back of the truck…

Mostly, though, those guys are manifested as a blur of energy…going nowhere (our guy has to be the only exception I personally know of).

Jack Heinlen
04-30-2005, 07:15 AM
I knew a guy, an occasional bar buddy, who had a real problem with meth. He got me to try it once. When I was young and foolish I'd try almost anything once.

Why anyone would do it for fun is beyond me, but people get to really like it. My memory, which is vague at best, is that it created a grandiosity, a feeling of being in charge. Aggression, anger, violence, in the mind anyway, as well as a sense of hyper-awareness and paranoia, were all parts.

Very odd stuff to be so common on our streets.

Chris mentioned oxycontin, which is a real problem in eastern Maine. People get so desperate they take toy guns and ski masks and rob pharmacies of their oxycontin. Opiates, which I've only encountered once, a legal prescription for percodan for relief of the pain of kidney stones, make a certain amount of sense.

I have a dear friend who was a long-time heroin addict. When I knew him he was still shooting up about twice a year. Not anymore, he got religion, Buddhism. I told him to keep it away from me(the heroin, not the Buddhism), and he did. Opiates make a certain sense, they create a pleasant, relaxed glow, at the dosages I took anyway.

A sorta brother-in-law got hooked on oxycontin after a back injury. He had a devil of a time kicking it, and the docs just kept feeding it to him.

Drugs, addiction. We haven't a good handle on it. Religion, of whatever form, is the one thing I've seen work with some regularity. The false spirit of the drug is replaced by something closer to real.

My buck and a half.

[ 04-30-2005, 08:22 AM: Message edited by: Jack Heinlen ]

Dan McCosh
04-30-2005, 07:34 AM
Meth use in the '60s more less ended when the effect on the users became more apparent. The slogan was "speed kills".

04-30-2005, 09:02 AM
I don't mean to sound casual about the problem but I was a regular meth user around 1970. It's a really crappy drug. I think most kids outgrow the interest in it and other hard drugs as they mature. I did and so did most of my buddies from back then. Those with truly hard core addictive personalities are going to wreck their lives with one thing or another, often with legal, government taxed substances such as alcohol.

Domesticated_Mr. Know It All
04-30-2005, 09:26 AM
The word on the street is, Meth is becoming cheaper than Crack. Lots of folks switching to the cheaper high. I'll probably stay with Pot. ;) :D

Chris Coose
04-30-2005, 09:30 AM
Meth in a pipe is bad news for the junkie and us.

It's a bitch to get away from.

Jack Heinlen
04-30-2005, 09:54 AM
I can only imagine what regular meth use: a pipe, a needle, a straw does to people. My little taste was bad, I had a very unpleasant experience. The thought of people doing it regularly is disconcerting, to say the least. But it's here, with more than a bit of regularity.

So how do we deal with it? Because of its effects the addict isn't liable to seek help until in a really rough patch. In the meantime, I wonder how much of the violence in the culture is fueled by such highs?

The guy with his ounce of pot is liable to watch too much TV, and not fondle guns much. The guy with his meth is liable to be trouble.

04-30-2005, 09:59 AM
It sitmulates the production of neurotonins. Overused it creates permanent neurological damage. I think it appeals to some people who seem to like paranoia.