Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Crazy Eddie: Southern California heroin prices are INSANE!!!!

In the 1970s and 80s, a New York metropolitan area electronics merchant, Crazy Eddie, advertised on television that his prices were "INSANE!!!!"

On December 26, 2007, the Los Angeles Times reported on the impact of Afghanistan heroin production on heroin use in southern California. The LA Times says that DEA is reporting that heroin is selling for $90 per gram in Southern California.

Table 45 of the White House Drug Czar's data displays the average price and purity of heroin in the United States for the years 1981 - 2003. At retail (purchases of less than a gram) in 1981, the average price of heroin in the U.S. was $1974.49 per gram. By 2003 (preliminary data), the price had plummeted down to $361.95 per gram.

Now, $90 per gram heroin? INSANE!?!?!? Yes -- an "insane" drug policy -- executed by agencies facing no repercussions for failure, led by indifferent management, and overseen by a Congress by turns hysterical, cynical or indifferent.

As Friedrich Nietzche noted in Beyond Good and Evil (1886), "In individuals insanity is rare, but in groups, parties, nations and epochs it is the rule." (p.156, cited by George Seldes, The Great Thoughts, Ballantine Books, 1985, p.310).

Or, as has been widely and falsely attributed to Albert Einstein, but may be truly said of our drug policy, "Insanity is repeating the same behavior over and over and expecting a different result."

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