The DEA is now quite literally treating doctors and pharmacists like potential drug dealers.

The agency has expanded its use of tactical diversion squads, which combine special agents, diversion investigators and local law enforcement officers to track down and prosecute prescription drug dealers.

Forcing the two sides to come together was not easy at first, Leonhart said, since special agents initially were reluctant to work on “pill cases.”

But the effort has shown some results. Asset seizures on the diversion side rose to $118 million in 2011 from about $82 million in 2009, Leonhart said.

That’s a telling metric, isn’t it? The same drug warriors who tell us prescription overdoses are skyrocketing claim, at the same time, that their decade-long anti-diversion efforts are working because . . . the government has been more successful at taking money and property away from people. Let’s not forget that in a civil asset forfeiture case, the government needn’t even charge you to take your stuff, much less convict you.

  • Posted on 3. August 2012
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How the brain hard-wires us to love Google, Twitter, and texting. And why that's dangerous.

By Emily YoffePosted Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2009, at 5:40 PM ET

Illustration by Robert Neubecker. Click image to expand.Seeking. You can't stop doing it. Sometimes it feels as if the basic drives for food, sex, and sleep have been overridden by a new need for endless nuggets of electronic information. We are so insatiably curious that we gather data even if it gets us in trouble. Google searches are becoming a cause of mistrials as jurors, after hearing testimony, ignore judges' instructions and go look up facts for themselves. We search for information we don't even care about. Nina Shen Rastogi confessed in Double X, “My boyfriend has threatened to break up with me if I keep whipping out my iPhone to look up random facts about celebrities when we're out to dinner.” We reach the point that we wonder about our sanity. Virginia Heffernan in the New York Times said she became so obsessed with Twitter posts about the Henry Louis Gates Jr. arrest that she spent days “refreshing my search like a drugged monkey.”

We actually resemble nothing so much as those legendary lab rats that endlessly pressed a lever to give themselves a little electrical jolt to the brain. While we tap, tap away at our search engines, it appears we are stimulating the same system in our brains that scientists accidentally discovered more than 50 years ago when probing rat skulls.

In 1954, psychologist James Olds and his team were working in a laboratory at McGill University, studying how rats learned. They would stick an electrode in a rat's brain and, whenever the rat went to a particular corner of its cage, would give it a small shock and note the reaction. One day they unknowingly inserted the probe in the wrong place, and when Olds tested the rat, it kept returning over and over to the corner where it received the shock. He eventually disc

via The powerful and mysterious brain circuitry that makes us love Google, Twitter, and texting. – By Emily Yoffe – Slate Magazine.

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cover of Joy Division

TATE ETC. – Europe’s largest art magazine.

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Attack of the grid-based electronic music makers continues w/ Bliptronic 5000

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Edison playing Monome LIVE & his “Tonka Truck” tune -> Let’s go.

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Eigenharp – New next level controller for electronic music

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Signpost on the road to hell: “Banks Get Small Win On Accounting Standards”

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William K. Black on “Why is Obama Championing Bush’s Financial Wrecking Crew?” & how to end the financial crisis.

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Our new mission: learn to more enjoyably surf the gradient of the present moment in all its dynamic complexity & incomprehensible splendor

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