Fred for Pres!

Submitted by Bill St. Clair on Mon, 13 Oct 2003 12:00:00 GMT
Milton Friedman at The Future of Freedom Foundation - An Open Letter to Bill Bennett - April 1990, and nothing has changed since then except that more lives have been ruined by the evils of prohibition. [smith2004]
In Oliver Cromwell's eloquent words, "I beseech you, in the bowels of Christ, think it possible you may be mistaken" about the course you and President Bush urge us to adopt to fight drugs. The path you propose of more police, more jails, use of the military in foreign countries, harsh penalties for drug users, and a whole panoply of repressive measures can only make a bad situation worse. The drug war cannot be won by those tactics without undermining the human liberty and individual freedom that you and I cherish.

You are not mistaken in believing that drugs are a scourge that is devastating our society. You are not mistaken in believing that drugs are tearing asunder our social fabric, ruining the lives of many young people, and imposing heavy costs on some of the most disadvantaged among us. You are not mistaken in believing that the majority of the public share your concerns. In short, you are not mistaken in the end you seek to achieve.

Vin Suprynowicz at The Las Vegas Review-Journal - Autistic because they can't excrete the mercury? - more on the link between childhood vaccines and autism.

Clare Wolfe - Possible help for depression - email from a reader who takes 5-hydroxy-tryptophan (5-HTP) for depression. Count on it becoming illegal as soon as enough people discover how well a cheap nutritional supplement works, but for now, I think I'll try it. [claire]

At any rate, it turns out that most of the newer anti-depression drugs like Prozac and Zoloft work by slowing down the intake of serotonin by brain and nerve cells. By interfering with the intake of serotonin, the amount left to float around between brain cells goes up. Serotonin is one of several neurotransmitters, responsible for the relaying of messages from one nerve or brain cell to the next. Increasing serotonin levels has been shown to help everything from depression to migraines to obsessive behaviors to anorexia to insomnia to PMS and a whole slew of other psychological and physiological ailments. No one fully understands why, or how "imbalances" in serotonin levels develop, or why increasing intercellular serotonin levels helps so much.

Here's where my engineer brain kicks in. If increased serotonin levels are good for me, it seems that there must be at least two ways to accomplish that goal. I can interfere with the uptake of serotonin via Prozac and i's relatives, but that carries a big price tag, destruction of my privacy via fedgov-mandated doctor spying, and lower serotonin levels INSIDE my little grey cells.

The other approach is to increase the overall level of serotonin, so that there is more both inside and outside the brain and nerve cells. How do you do that? Well, it turns out that an amino acid called 5-hydroxy-tryptophan is the precursor to serotonin. Your body takes 5-HTP and converts at least some of it to serotonin.

You can buy 5-HTP at vitamin shops and health food stores everywhere. The FDA banned the pure tryptophan for reasons only they can understand, but for now, 5-HTP is legal, and safe, and not very expensive. I've been taking it for a year now. You have to take it before bed, as it makes you drowsy, but you sleep like a baby and wake up feeling refreshed. I've lost 30 lb, not all due to 5 HTP but rather to it's helping me to stick to my diet, and best of all my mood has been reasonable. I get depressed, for good reason, but I no longer feel down for no good reason.

Fred on Everything - Fred Throws Hat In Ring: Head Gets Cold - Fred Reed for president. "Timbuktu and Frederick Too." [smith2004]

How about a simple slogan, elegant, yet evocative and to the point?

"Fred Says Shoot the Sumbitches!"

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