Watching the Directives

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The White House is trying to revive an Oregon bill that would establish a prescription-tracking database as a way of preventing illegal drug use. The chairman of the state Senate's Health and Human Services Committee shelved the legislation after pain experts warned that such monitoring would have a chilling effect on pain treatment. Critics of the bill are also concerned that the Drug Enforcement Administration could use the database to identify doctors who prescribe fatal doses of barbiturates or other drugs to patients who want to commit suicide under the state's Death With Dignity Act. The Justice Department has threatened such doctors with prosecution and loss of prescribing privileges; its authority to do so is at the center of a case the Supreme Court has agreed to hear. Meanwhile, Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.) and Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) have reintroduced legislation that would encourage states to establish systems that keep track of all prescriptions.

[Thanks to Siobhan Reynolds of the Pain Relief Network for the tip.]

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  1. That’s a good one! Most Oregonians have as much love for the current Administration as your average gitmo detainee.

  2. I tell ya. When the Republicans get in office you won’t see this kind of out of control abuse of federal power……. oh….wait….ummmmm….urrr….never mind..

  3. Isaac Bertram-

    The only reason the GOP is allowing the federal government to exercise its power is that the Dems can still filibuster. If we just give them 60 GOP Senators in 2006, and they no longer have to compromise with those Big Government Democrats, then everything will be fine.

    Right?

  4. Oh, right, I forgot. 🙂

    Silly me. Losing the faith like that.

  5. A bunch of questions fill my mind on this topic.

    What end is served by pursuing presciption “drug abusers”?

    How does one tell when a person is using too much of a prescribed substance?

    If you’re using a presciption drug, and you become addicted(or need more to combat your pain) are you a criminal?

    When will the end come to this administrations forays into citizen’s personal live?

  6. My typing is abysmal. sigh

  7. David-

    Your psychiatrist can prescribe something to help with Abysmal Typing Syndrome (ATS) but the prescription will have to be monitored by the feds.

  8. Gag, another missive from Chairman Bush’s Thousand Flowers in the Culture of Life movement. By God, you’ll want to live, America, even when you’re terminally ill and in debilitating pain, or we’ll throw your barely ambulatory ass in the klink! It’s Gawd’s Will?!

    Meanwhile, Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.) and Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) have reintroduced legislation that would encourage states to establish systems that keep track of all prescriptions.

    How about we have their aides/assistants go through these gentlemens’ offices and homes and make an official inventory of all the booze they’re storing? Oh, alcohol’s not a drug, is it?

  9. Thoreau,

    I’d rather have something that prevented me from getting so angry at my typos. Unfortunately, that would have to be monitored as well.

  10. Note that such information could be easily linked to the proposed National ID card.

  11. How exactly would a “pragmatic libertarian” handle this again? Oh, that’s right, the “pragmatic libertarian” would just go along with this nightmare.

  12. In 1980, when I lived in Texas, the War on Drugs Committee headed by Ross Perot pushed the legislature to enact a bill to establish a database of all the prescriptions written by doctors in Texas. The bill passed, and Perot’s company got the contract to maintain the database.

    Just a coincidence, I suppose.

  13. How exactly would a “pragmatic libertarian” handle this again?

    By opposing it.

  14. Gene-

    No doubt it was purely a coincidence. Surely Perot’s only concern was fighting the evils of drug abuse for the sake of the children.

  15. Hmmmmmmm… I guess that Dubbya doesn’t feel he owe Rush Limbaugh anything.

  16. When is this nonsense going to end? It’s astonishing to me that anyone can still support drug prohibition and drug war madness that goes along with it, but apparently it’s more popular than ever. How can this be?

    nmg

  17. Good propaganda?

    Perhaps, indoctrinating school age kids with the belief that all use is abuse, and addiction?

    It doesn’t seem to matter when they’re college age, but when they become parents these ideas manifest themselves. Ditto for sex, and religion.

  18. “David-

    Your psychiatrist can prescribe something to help with Abysmal Typing Syndrome (ATS) but the prescription will have to be monitored by the feds.”

    You know, thoreau, maybe you’re an accesory to the posession of controlled substances, and maybe you’re not.

    We’d better beat you unconscious just in case.

    If even one life is saved…

  19. It doesn’t seem to matter when they’re college age, but when they become parents these ideas manifest themselves. Ditto for sex, and religion.

    Yeah, that meme showed up in my ethics class. I suggested that piss testing for jobs was a bad idea, because people shouldn’t be penalized for responsible use of drugs. Drug testing should only be done when an accident has occurred that shows that a person might be under the influence of a drug, and that might play a role in the accident investigation. Almost everyone else in the class was outraged at my suggestion that there was such a thing as responsible drug use, because “all use is abuse.” It was just a dogmatic assertion; no one could even conceive that responsible drug use was possible. Amazing.

    This is the same ethics class where the professor holds up Cuba as an example of a success story in Latin America. Even if it is (which I highly doubt), how much better would it be under freer conditions?

  20. Elvis Costello

    Watching the Detectives

    Nice girls not one with a defect,
    Cellophane shrink-wrapped, so correct.
    Red dogs under illegal legs.
    She looks so good that he gets down and begs.

    She is watching the detectives.
    Ooh, he?s so cute!
    She is watching the detectives
    When they shoot, shoot, shoot, shoot.
    They beat him up until the teardrops start,
    But he can?t be wounded ?cause he?s got no heart.

    Long shot of that jumping sign,
    Invisible shivers running down my spine.
    Cut the baby taking off her clothes.
    Close-up of the sign that says,we never close
    You snatch tune, you a match a cigarette,
    She pulls the eyes out with a face like a magnet.
    I don?t know how much more of this I can take.
    She?s filing her nails while they?re dragging the lake.

    Chorus

    You think you?re alone until you realize you?re in it.
    Now fear is here to stay. love is here for a visit.
    They call it instant justice when it?s past the legal limit.
    Someone?s scratching at the window. I wonder who is it?
    The detectives come to check if you belong to the parents
    Who are ready to hear the worst about their daughter?s disappearance.
    Though it nearly took a miracle to get you to stay,
    It only took my little fingers to blow you away.

    Just like watching the detectives.
    Don?t get cute!
    It?s just like watching the detectives.
    I get so angry when the teardrops start,
    But he can?t be wounded ?cause he?s got no heart.
    Watching the detectives.
    It?s just like watching the detectives.

  21. Gary:

    Wouldn’t Green Shirt be more apt?

    …`cause somewhere in the quisling clinic
    There’s a shorthand typist taking seconds over minutes
    She’s listening in to the Venus line
    She’s picking out names
    I hope none of them are mine
    ….

    Never said I was a stool pigeon
    I never said I was a diplomat
    Everybody is under suspicion
    But you don’t wanna hear about that
    ….

    ? 1978 Elvis Costello

    Kevin
    (EC for me, see?)

  22. Almost everyone else in the class was outraged at my suggestion that there was such a thing as responsible drug use, because “all use is abuse.” It was just a dogmatic assertion; no one could even conceive that responsible drug use was possible. Amazing.

    If a similar thing happens, just tell them that alcohol is also a rec drug. And they should be able to relate that there are many social drinkers of alcohol.

  23. kevrob,

    As to the spirit of the government’s proposed actions, yes. 🙂 I was thinking more along the lines of the title of the write-up though.

    Just think, we have something as we appear to both be Elvis Costello fans. 🙂

  24. grylliade,

    Ask your Professor if Cuba is such a “success” story why people flee the place like ants for the USA! Also, ask him about Cuba’s despicable treatment of homosexuals.

  25. If a similar thing happens, just tell them that alcohol is also a rec drug. And they should be able to relate that there are many social drinkers of alcohol.

    Almost anyone who has tried that one can tell you it rarely works. 🙂

    The ability of people to compartmentalize and rationalize their predjudices is persistent.

  26. Isaac:

    Of course, such rationalization of one’s alcohol consumption might be a sign of a Larger Problem. 😉

    Hey, GG, as Nick Lowe would say,

    And where is the harmony?
    Sweet harmony.

    And remember, All your compliments and your cutting remarks
    Are captured here in my quotation marks
    🙂

    Kevrob

  27. I get to see Elvis Costello in concert this month. Whee!

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