Another Fine Meth
Codeine used to be over-the-counter in America too – nothing fights a cough better than codeine cough syrup – but that’s been banned in the name of the War on Drugs. Then effective cold medicines were banned in case people used them to make meth, another battle in the War. Now the less-effective cold medicines are slated for banishment, too:
Only a few years ago, making meth required an elaborate lab — with filthy containers simmering over open flames, cans of flammable liquids and hundreds of pills. The process gave off foul odors, sometimes sparked explosions and was so hard to conceal that dealers often "cooked" their drugs in rural areas.Actually, the story I linked to about “shake-and-bake” meth doesn’t say anything about banning pseudoephedrine; that’s just me extrapolating past drug-fighting trends into the future.
But now drug users are making their own meth in small batches using a faster, cheaper and much simpler method with ingredients that can be carried in a knapsack and mixed on the run. The "shake-and-bake" approach has become popular because it requires a relatively small number of pills of the decongestant pseudoephedrine — an amount easily obtained under even the toughest anti-meth laws that have been adopted across the nation to restrict large purchases of some cold medication.
"Somebody somewhere said 'Wait this requires a lot less pseudoephedrine, and I can fly under the radar,'" said Mark Woodward, spokesman for the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Control.
I read once that the reason science can’t cure the common cold is that there’s no such thing as “the” common cold. About 200 different viruses can cause coldlike symptoms, and once you get a specific virus you’re immune to it for life. (That’s why old folks rarely get colds while kids are always either suffering from a cold, coming down with a cold or getting over one.)
So the eventual ban shouldn’t affect me personally, if I can just catch and work through about 110 colds before it becomes law.