January 23rd, 2008


Reason #16336 why I want to kick a druggie in the head

So, all the good cold remedies used to have pseudoephedrine, which according to Wikipedia:

is being phased out as an over-the-counter drug and replaced by alternative decongestants like phenylephrine, due to pseudoephedrine's extreme popularity as a precursor in the illicit synthesis of methamphetamine.

So, junkies like their meth, which means my NyQuil doesn't work anymore. Thanks a lot.

I used to be able to rely on NyQuil to trigger some really good sleeps, although perhaps not entirely deep - as I'd remember some wild dreams on NyQuil. The latest bottle that I got trumpets ibuprofen as the active ingredient, which hardly seems like the same thing.

All that said, I did have a dream this morning about touring Lichtenstein. I suspected during the tour that we actually left Lichtenstein to extend the tour. In my dream, we crossed the western border and ended up in Belgium - which, of course, is incorrect - Switzerland is the country to the west.

Warning: NyQuil should not be taken if you need to accurately find your way around Europe.

Open Letter to (Remaining) Candidates

Last I counted, from the readership of this journal, there were approximately zero declared presidential candidates. I might be wrong, and if so, here's your opportunity to soapbox for my vote.

The following three situations illustrate variants on one basic gripe - perhaps I'm advocating a Libertarian take on the social contract, and if so, I can understand most of the remaining... zero... mainstream candidates not taking a position.

  • Take your shoes off - I can understand the various safeguards being added to commercial flights each being sensible when viewed on their own, but haven't we crossed the point of asking too much of the flying public? Sure, lithium ion batteries in the cargo hold might catch fire, but adding to the hassle at checkin seems like a facile half-solution to the problem. Candidates: on a scale from 1 to 10, how ridiculous are the current flight restrictions?

  • Think of the children - a few times every election cycle, some computer game comes out with adult content, and someone says "oh, look at what the video game industry is trying to sell to our children". Typically, this same content, were it on TV or in a movie, would be considered tame. Still, there are advocates that would insist that all games be required to be acceptable for all audiences. Candidates: on a scale from 1 to 10, how much do you oppose censorship, including for console and computer games?

  • Sniffling, Sneezing... - pseudoephedrine is a popular ingredient in manufacturing methamphetamine. It also used to be a popular ingredient in effective cold medicines. I know what a cost/benefit analysis is, and it seems that whoever decided that removing easy access to pseudoephedrine was a little to eager to buy a minor improvement in the meth war at the cost of increased suffering by a nation of rhinovirus infectees. Candidates: on a scale from 1 to 10, how quickly will you restore my access to decongestants that work?

So, yeah, my stance on these issues is pretty focused on individual liberties, but I think in each case, something like 99 out of a hundred are being unduly burdened for the good of the whole.

In the off chance that you disagree, feel free to show your work that indicates that the benefit exceeds the existing cost. Spelling, neatness, and arithmetic all count, of course.