Sunday, March 31, 2013

Licit & Illicit Drugs Missed the Connection

The book that provides this telling picture of what the drug war did for cigarettes, misses the agricultural mercantilism repression of Coca, for the promotion of Tobacco.

It fails to cite any of the history of Coca's use as a 'Tobacco habit cure", nor of this concern of the USDA., such as with the targeting of Coca-Bola.

It's chapter on "Coca Leaves" is perhaps this 623 page book's shortest, at a mere 3 pages.

It's chapter "A Program for the Future" concerning Tobacco postulates the task of finding a less harmful substutute, without of course bothering to even mention the history of Coca's use here.
Keeping carcinogenic smoke out of the lungs, however is only a parial solution.  Switching to cigars, pipes and chewing Tobacco does not eliminate the risk of cancers of the oral cavity.  Moreover, the bulk of the damage suffered by smokers is due to diseases of the heart and circulatory system- and it is the nicotine itself that has adverse effects on the heart.  The second direction in which future policy must move, accordingly, is to find a nicotine substitute.

Such a substance should have no adverse effects (or significently less disastrous effects), on the heart or other organs, but should satisfy the craving for nicotine.

Can such a substance be found?

The odds in favor are good.  Literally scores of nicotine "cogeners" molecules closely related to nicotine chemicals - are known; and many of those are also known to have no effects upon heart action.  What is not known is which of them will satisfy the nicotine craving.

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