The first thing ever bought or sold online, according to British journalist Mike Power, was marijuana. The sale was arranged in either 1971 or 1972 between computer science students at Stanford and MIT using Arpanet, the precursor to the Internet. Today, thanks to the Web, cryptography, crypto-currencies like Bitcoin and international next-day delivery services, people around the world are buying substances far less tested than marijuana with a great deal more ease. Reason Science Correspondent Ronald Bailey reviews Power's Drugs Unlimited: The Web Revolution That's Changing How the World Gets High for the Wall Street Journal.
So far, it's been silence from The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, and others.
That's a huge concern as forecasters expect the U.S. unemployment rate in the months to come to surpass that seen during the depths of the Great Depression.
Social distancing and lockdowns appear to be working to slow the coronavirus pandemic.
"You cannot just decide you want to sell groceries," said Barbara Ferrer, the director of L.A. County Public Health.
The agency concludes that the possible benefits outweigh the risks.