The True Tale of America's Opiate Epidemic

Recommended by David Heinemeier Hansson, and 1 others. See all reviews

Ranked #22 in Drugs, Ranked #23 in Public Healthsee more rankings.

In fascinating detail, Sam Quinones chronicles how, over the past 15 years, enterprising sugar cane farmers in a small county on the west coast of Mexico created a unique distribution system that brought black tar heroin—the cheapest, most addictive form of the opiate, 2 to 3 times purer than its white powder cousin—to the veins of people across the United States. Communities where heroin had never been seen before—from Charlotte, NC and Huntington, WVA, to Salt Lake City and Portland, OR—were overrun with it. Local police and residents were stunned. How could heroin, long considered a drug... more

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David Heinemeier Hansson Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic accounts how a few tiny studies on low rates of opium addiction for hospital patients lead to a whole new paradigm for treating pain in the US. From mid 90s to late 2000s, opium pain pills were basically considered non-addictive by much of the medical community. This led to crazy over-prescription, subsequent addiction, and a whole new market for heroin once someone was hooked and couldn’t afford the pills. This heroin market was served in large parts by on-demand delivery services driven by small-town Mexican heroin cells. It’s really an... (Source)

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