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January 11, 2006 - Whidbey News-Times (WA)

Editorial: Government Harasses Us Again

By Jim Larsen

Return to Drug War News: Don't Miss Archive

The Department to Harass Law Abiding Businesses and Citizens to Make it Look Like We're Doing Something (DTHLABACTMILLWDS) has come up with a new law governing the sale of popular cold and allergy medicines.

Citizens in Washington can no longer purchase Sudafed, for example, without asking for it, as it's stored behind the pharmacy counter in the space formerly occupied by condoms.

Also you have to show a photo ID as proof of being at least 18, sign your name and address to a sheet of paper open to police inspection, and you can buy no more than two boxes of Sudafed in any 24-hour period.

The store has to keep a record of this or face an inquiry by the Department of Post Nasal Drip Security. Pharmacists who fail to keep complete records will be tortured by the Department of Homeland Insecurity.

The problem as lawmakers see it is that various low-lifes use Sudafed and similar remedies to make a nasty drug called meth, so these cold medicines should be regulated.

Lawbreakers, of course, will easily find some way around the law, just steal the stuff outright, or buy it over the Internet. In reality, only law abiding citizens will be bothered by the new law, but that's the point.

It makes it look like the government is doing something to control the meth epidemic without actually having to catch and convict any criminals, which is a difficult and expensive proposition.

This comes at a time when mom and pop meth manufacturers are under increasing pressure from foreign competition.

It's hard to make a living out of the single-wide anymore when Mexican and Chinese criminal versions of Wal-Mart are pouring tons of cheap meth into this country and driving local manufacturers out of business.

Meth manufacturing is being out-sourced, costing thousands of illicit American jobs. Pretty soon there won't be an honest or dishonest way for an American to make a living, short of getting elected to the Legislature or Congress.

When moonshining used to be a problem, government agents kept an eye on who was ordering large quantities of sugar, but Grandma never had to sign for a 10-pound bag at the grocery store.

If manufacturing white lightnin' ever comes back in vogue, you can bet our modern lawmakers will require that sugar be kept behind the counter, quantities will be limited to only enough to bake five batches of cookies at a time, and Grandma's mugshot will be kept on file as a possible moonshiner.

Meanwhile, foreign moonshine will pour through our borders, guarded by the U.S. Sieve Patrol.

For citizens who find Sudafed's ingredient helpful in alleviating the symptoms of colds or allergies, you can choose between having your name, address and phone number on file for police perusal for years, or doing without.

Or, if you want a cheap, plentiful drug alternative with absolutely no reporting requirements, buy some meth.

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