A requirement of my office cleaning job is that I clean the restrooms. Not long ago, I found a pill on the floor in a restroom. I wondered what it was, so I took it home and identified it. I don't remember the exact drug name, but the purpose given was to relieve anxiety and to help prevent panic attacks.
Personally, I had to give up taking an anti-depressant because after several years it didn't really work, yet the side effects continued.
These types of drugs are not addictive like alcohol and we would all be better off to just "buck up" and not be on them.
"It isn't drug addiction that kills addicts, it's drug prohibition. Addicts who get a steady supply of pure morphine or heroin at a known level of potency and clean hypodermics, can live long, happy productive lives."
The argument against this, of course, is that alcohol is legal and highly regulated, and it is the most abused drug, and has destroyed very many lives.
ON DRUG "ADDICTION"
Drug "addiction" is not a disease. A disease manifests itself as a breakdown of one or more of our organs due to any number of internal or external factors. Drug addiction may seem to manifest itself as a disease because continued use of certain drugs is damaging to our organs: for example, the harm done directly to the lungs by cigarette smoke or to the liver by alcohol.
The term "addiction" simply implies a biological change of brain connectivity. This new connectivity causes the drug addict's brain to behave differently than someone whose brain has not been modified by addiction. Furthermore, addiction does not imply a simple cause-and-effect relationship between the drug and the resultant behavior: if it did, intervention by other drugs or behavior modification therapy would be much more predictable and successful.
In fact, the addict's brain as an organ is working just fine, doing what it has been reprogrammed to do: create a demand for the drug of choice, and release large amounts chemicals that induce pleasure to the user when the drug is used - dopamine, epinephrine, and norepinephrine, in particular.
This is not to deny that some drugs act directly on our organs, such as the heart, as in the case of amphetamines. Their impact on the brain is less of a rewiring than to create a sudden increase in neurochemicals that stimulate existing brain functionality.
The rewiring process in the brain continues with continued use of the drug or drugs that cause the rewiring. The rewired brain remains rewired even after the drug user ceases to use drugs. This explains "relapses." All the therapeutic treatment in the world is not going to cause the brain to return to its original, unmodified state, in a matter of weeks, months or even years.
As a result, the rewired brain continues to create a craving for the substance that created the intense pleasure so familiar to the user long after drug use ceases. Resisting is a matter of willpower generated in other higher-level brain functionality. However, the lower-level brain functions usually win this battle of wills, as they have a much more powerful impact on behavior.
You experience this sort of battle yourself whenever you find yourself in a situation where your brain is demanding that you urinate, and you are in a situation that doesn't allow it, at least in an unembarassing fashion. If you can't extricate yourself from this situation, you are going to pee your pants, regardless. And drug users will eventually find themselves in a situation from which they cannot extricate themselves.
One solution for the addict is to find activities that are pleasurable, but do not have harmful side effects, either on themself or others. Falling in love with someone is a good start; mountaineering is another; caring for other people will work too. Anything that produces a lot of good feelings to replace those that were being generated by the drugs. Our body doesn't care how they are generated, but we do.
Garrett A. Hughes
We have been trying to accomplish policy goals with tax cuts since Reagan. Well, since before Reagan, but increasingly it has become a crutch of political rhetoric that never lives up to its promises in practice. We need a highly progressive tax structure that strongly disincentivizes excessive pay and unreasonable hoarding of wealth, in which the gains are used to ensure a thriving commons.
We all benefit from a healthy, well-educated, economically secure population.
What shortage? We are producing more domestically than we ever have before. We import a lower percentage because we are actually starting to use less! The oil to be transported by the Keystone XL pipeline isn't even intended for US consumption. It is Canadian oil being moved through our backyards , at our risk, to be sold on the global market. Canadian oil obtained in a way that is devastating Alberta. The toxic tailing ponds are already one of the biggest man made structures in the world and they are getting bigger every day.
You are right. I don't want their oil transported at all. How about we build a pipeline to North Dakota instead so we can harvest the natural gas from the oil wells instead of burning it? We can't replace fossil fuel power plants yet, but that doesn't mean that we should let multinational companies like TransCanada ruin our water supplies in the name of "progress"!
I question how one can believe that charters have the capacity to hire “more experienced” teachers when they traditionally offer lower salaries than unionized districts. NYS sets the requirements for all certified teachers, we all tend to graduate from the same teaching programs, take the same certification test and attend the same professional developments whether we are suburban, urban. or rural.
Many charters have teaching staffs with 0-5 years of teaching experience, teachers who are newly certified teachers or are not certified at all because they have the flexibility to allow teachers to teach out of their certification areas; a luxury that non-charters do not have.
In the case of our local region, young, inexperienced teachers cut from public districts because of seniority rights tend to end up in local charter schools if they choose to continue teaching at all. Even still, charters tend to have higher rates of teacher turnover. Partly, based on what I have heard from charter school teachers is that they are forced to work longer hours which negatively impacts the lives of their own children & families and they have to constantly reapply for their jobs. I would encourage reporters to find some of those teachers who have left charters after one or two years and ask them why they leave.
It isn't drug addiction that kills addicts, it's drug prohibition. Addicts who get a steady supply of pure morphine or heroin at a known level of potency and clean hypodermics, can live long, happy productive lives.
Some high functioning addicts - Charles Dickens, Frank Sinatra, Florence Nightingale, the great surgeon William Halstead, Irving Berlin.
The relevency of this politically motivated "study" seems strained at best. If there is no damning news about charter schools here, must we now seek it out in Milwaukee?
1) Charter schools live and die by the state laws governing them. Across the country, there is great variety in the effectiveness of charter authorizing laws. Not all state charter laws (and by extension, not all charter schools) are created equal. Therefore, there is flawed logic in drawing conclusions about NY charters based on national studies, or those focused on a different state. Charter schools in NYS and Rochester consistently outperform their host districts...the margin of outperformance only grows when factoring for poverty. This has been the case for years.
2) Why on earth would a study adjust for "teacher experience"? If a charter school does a better job at recruiting and retaining quality teachers, then that is clearly a determining factor in their outcomes. Punishing a school for putting a premium on teacher quality is absurd.
3) Controlling for truancy is also fraught with problems when comparing schools. Milwaukee charter schools may have lower truancy rates simply because they are better at controlling the problem, so why punish them for a potentially more effective approach?
Sure, those of us who have an interest or work in urban education are not surprised that poverty and truancy adversely impact student learning. Examples of urban schools that defy the trend dramatically include many of Rochester's own charter schools.
No doubt, depending on your perspective on charters, you can find a study that 'adjusts' the data to suit your hypothesis.
On the point about the status quo's excuse du jour: student truancy... Is student attendance a cause or effect of good schools? Common sense (and a ton of research) says that truancy goes down when student engagement goes up. And charters--unlike traditional schools--have a strong incentive to engage students. Without happy students, they go out of business.
Charter schools began as laboratory schools. Why should we be so quick to discount their success? Shouldn't we instead try to understand--and god forbid, replicate in traditional schools--the conditions that have resulted in some charter's higher student attendance and achievement? And note I said "some charters", not "all".
And while we're at it, how about some investigative reporting on the RCSD's so-called 'truancy campaign' that has given the district a steady stream of publicity for the last 2 years. Reducing truancy in a sustained way requires more than the superintendent visiting truants' homes ( with the TV crews in tow). Has the district done any evaluation of this signature program? Have schools met their attendance goals? Do they even have goals in their School Improvement Plans?
For all the fanfare, we should be seeing results by now, or at least asking for them.
I am a parent that pulled my child out of the failing RCSD in 2006/07 school year. She attends Rochester Prep and has excelled tremendously the last 2 years. I in no way feel the heat of blame on my shoulders. I pay my dam taxes and if that money trickles down to Albany just to make its way back to the school district to dole out to the charter schools then so be it. I expect to get transportation for my child cause I'm paying for it. I expect for my child to see a nurse cause I'm paying for it. Parents are not to blame in this situation the school board and the many superintendents that were hired and left over the years are. The only one that my have been able to turn this mess around was Mr. Calla. Mr. Vargas cannot improve this mess in the amount of time he's had. Let's be real. There are people that are entrenched on the board, at the union and down at the district offices that need to go. The mindset has to change. New people with new thoughts and ideas need to get in in order for things to change. I'm not gonna sit around and let my child get lost in the system. I haven't and if I can get her into a private high school or urban suburban then that's what I'm gonna do.
The oil industry has pointed out in the past that the oil being produced in Canada will likely end up coming to the US via rail or ship if the Keystone pipeline is not approved. And they have made the point, ignored by environmentalists and legislators, that such modes of transport are both less safe and result in higher environmental risks than transporting the oil by pipeline. So while I feel for the people directly impacted by a rail accident, they need to point the finger of blame where it belongs.
For the most part, environmentalists have no interest in transporting crude in the best way; they do not want it transported at all. Many prefer to create a shortage to force people to change their way of life. They do not want transportation fuel made of crude, and they do not want electricity that comes from oil, gas, coal, or nuclear.
Since first eating at Rocco shortly after the restaurant opened, we've returned time-after-time, never leaving disappointed and, nearly always, glad to have visited and eager to return. The exceptions have been when there have been too many guests or some are overly exuberant, perhaps because of the fare. Or, maybe it was Sly's libations.
The school used to have a Student & Family Support Center, staffed with RCSD and agency staff who were there, in part, to provide immidiate crisis intervention (ex - mediation for students in conflict). However because of Vargas' emphasis on expanded school day, the agency staff have been reassigned to teach classes (that's right, RTA) during the school day and are not available in times of crisis. Vargas has cut SFSCs in just about every school, and I expect to hear more about this type of incident as a result. (Keep in mind that the public hears only a very small fraction of what really goes on in the schools - those without SFSCs have been suffering tremendously).
These treatments for drug addiction are inhuman treatment as addicts perpetuate until death usually with these regimes..
The problem with all western governments is that they are overridingly influenced by the ultra-financially powerful pharmaceutical giants. So much so that they control government policy on hard drug treatments and where of course they supply methadone et al that provides billions of dollars in revenues. But they don't care about the harm that this treatment does and only look at the bottom-line. That is why this maintenance treatment policy goes on infinitum as it creates vast profits for big Pharma. Indeed governments go out to suppress all information concerning a 'cure' for these terrible treatment drugs that enslave addicts for life through dependency. There is no humanity in this form of treatment only profits as addicts spend a lifetime on treatments that are more addictive than the drugs they purportedly try to eradicate. But wouldn't it be good for once that a western government did something out of the ordinary and stopped supporting big Pharma and introduced a 'cure' that is available at a cost of a mere 10% of present treatment regimes. Then addicts would come off hard drugs for good and thereafter lead a normal life in society and give something back. But will a single western government rebel against the powerful pharmaceutical cartel, I very much doubt it as they have our politicians and leaders in their back pocket. That is what is called democracy where big business rules supreme. For an introduction of what is going on and the 'cure' that is available readers should visit - http://worldinnovationfoundation.blogspot.co.uk/2014/01/what-successive-governments-and.html
Dr David Hill
World Innovation Foundation
Your article is moving and all too real. I do believe that many people do use drugs as a form of self medication, but it is only a fraction of initial users. Probably a greater fraction of those who are already recreational users begin to use in this way. Whatever the intial reason, we have proven that that which that which alters brain function can all too often also end up controlling it.
Also, there is frequently no bright line separating prescribed drugs and illicit drugs with respect to abuse and dependancy, they are frequently part of one slippery continuum.
SOMEONE really likes the word "verdant."
IF there's an appropriate place for a casino in the Rochester area, it is the former Irondequoit Mall.
Just make damn sure Scott CONgel doesn't reap any profits.
Whatta Banh Mi foresaked their cheap eats heritage, and what made them great, popular, successful, unique, by increasing the cost of their signature sandwich by almost four dollars. It now comes with one eggroll and a soda product of some kind. As the owner, Jake, said, "it was an up-sale." Not only this, but the sandwich is now limited to lunch hours. He has increased his menu with a confusion hill of sushi rolls, vietnamese soups, and thai inspired appetizers. The new amalgamation is not without its warm surprises. Heaping skewer plates and accompanying ingredients. But, ...it is without the ability to go into this restaurant with your friends and kill some awesome sandwiches on the cheap before going out, or before going in, that makes the whole nature of my sentiments of the place slightly wilt for me .
JUST LIKE THEY DID ON THE FAST FERRY?????
So it takes a college professor to tell us how poor attendance connects to kid not learning. How did this dumb- numbing information make it to print? Nothing else going on at the lowest ranked school district?
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