Trailcam photos of naked, tripping man who thought he was a tiger

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UPDATE: As I had cautioned, The Mirror indeed had its "facts" muddled. According to this October article in Vice, the photos seen here are actually from the woods around the University of Virginia’s Mountain Lake Biological Station. No idea if the fellow was actually tripping or thought he was a Siberian tiger. Shame, as the below story is quite delightful.

Original uncorrected post:

This gentleman from Liberec, Czech Republic was reportedly tripping on LSD to combat depression when he began to hallucinate that he was a Siberian tiger. He then stripped naked and pursued imaginary prey for miles along the Czech-Poland border where he was spotted on trailcams. According to the Mirror, "police said that, because the man did not have any drugs with him, he was only fined and will not face any further charges."

If this story is true, I hope the fellow had fun and that the experience alleviated his depression.

Read the rest

Psychedelics can treat anxiety and depression, but there's a catch

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Jan Hoffman writes about recent research into the effects on psychedelics such as psilocybin on anxiety and depression: "About 80 percent of cancer patients showed clinically significant reductions in both psychological disorders, a response sustained some seven months after the single dose."

Dr. Jeffrey Lieberman, a past president of the American Psychiatric Association, and Dr. Daniel Shalev of the New York State Psychiatric Institute are among leaders in psychiatry, addiction medicine and palliative care who endorsed the work. The studies, they wrote, are “a model for revisiting criminalized compounds of interest in a safe, ethical way.”

If research restrictions could be eased, they continued, “there is much potential for new scientific insights and clinical applications.”

Although cancer patients will not have access to therapeutically administered psilocybin anytime soon, the findings add vigor to applications to expand research in a multicenter trial with hundreds of participants.

Moreover, there are few side effects. But there is a catch: the experiences must be rigorously contextualized, written down, analyzed, etc.

Dr. Griffiths noted that patients received extensive support, which may have deepened and secured their life-affirming transformations.

“People will take psilocybin at a rave or at Burning Man” — the art and performance desert festival — “but the effect,” he said, “evaporates like water running through their hands.”

Set and setting and settlement. Read the rest

Data viz of the countries with the most cannabis use

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The Telegraph created an interactive data visualization of cannabis use in countries around the world. Here are the winners:

• Iceland - 16.2% (prevalence of use as percentage of population)

• US - 16.2%

• Nigeria - 14.3%

• Canada - 12.7%

• Chile - 11.83%

• France - 11.1%

• New Zealand - 11%

• Bermuda - 10.9%

• Australia - 10.2%

• Zambia - 9.5%

Mapped: The countries that smoke the most cannabis (The Telegraph) Read the rest

Children synthesize $2 version of Martin Shkreli's $750 malaria drug

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The smirking, villainous pharma-hedge-douche-bro Martin Shkreli (previously) bought the rights to the anti-parasitic drug Daraprim -- used to treat malaria, a disease that disproportionately affects the poorest people in the world -- and jacked the price from $13.50/dose to $750/dose. Read the rest

A deep dive into kratom, the herb that helps with opioid withdrawal

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Kratom (previously) is a widely used herb that has been very effective in treating opioid withdrawal and other chronic, hard-to-treat conditions -- it also became very controversial this year because the DEA decided, without evidence, to class it as a dangerous drug, and then changed its mind (unprecedented!) after a mass-scale petition that included interventions from members of Congress. Read the rest

Johns Hopkins psychedelics research keeps finding medical uses

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Johns Hopkins is among several institutions challenging a key tenet of outlawing psychedelics: that they have "no medicinal use." Baltimore Magazine examines the progress made by key researchers Roland Griffiths and Bill Richards. Read the rest

Artist creates 20 daily artworks on a different drug each day

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Brian Pollet (aka PsyBry) created this fantastic series of 20 images each themed on a specific drug. Several have accompanying making-of videos that are as hypnotizing as the final stills. Read the rest

Party comes to an abrupt end

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Some partygoers were looking forward to their evening treats, but sadly it was not to be. (Insert Samsung Galaxy joke here...) [via] Read the rest

Looney Tunes Anti-Drug PSAs from the 1970s

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Here's Mel Blanc channeling Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Sylvester, and other Looney Tunes characters decrying the use of hard drugs. Read the rest

Merciless reporting on the Chicago Police Department's extortion racket, & the senior officials who covered it up

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The more we learn about the Chicago Police Department, the worse it gets -- there's the sabotage of dashcams, the widespread corruption, the investigators fired for refusing to cover up police crimes, off-the-books "black site" where the CPD kidnaps and tortures suspects, the Accountability Task Force Report that called the force racist, corrupt and broken. Read the rest

Meth, Hitler and the Reich: the true, untold story of the Nazis' dependence on coke, meth and oxy

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Novelist Norman Ohler became fascinated with the Third Reich's reliance on opiods and methamphetamines when DJ Alexander Kramer mentioned it to him in passing; he set out to write a novel, but in Blitzed: Drugs in the Third Reich he produced what historian and authority on the Third Reich Ian Kershaw called "a serious piece of scholarship." Read the rest

Novum Pharma's $240, semi-useless acne cream now costs $10,000/tube

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The cost of Aloquin -- an acne cream based on iodoquinol and aloe, whose component ingredients cost virtually nothing -- was raised by 128% this week by manufacturer Novum Pharma, who now charge $9,561 for a 60g tube. Read the rest

Tommy Chong asks Obama to pardon him for his bullshit drug paraphernalia bust

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Lou Cabron writes, "Tommy Chong has a funny monologue about his 2003 arrest. When federal agents bang on his door and ask if he has any drugs, he says 'Of course I do! I'm Tommy Chong!' But that's just his way of making a point -- that they didn't have a warrant for drugs. Their warrant allowed them to search for glass pipes. (Yes, they actually had a warrant to search for glass.) Read the rest

Criminal entrepreneurship in Mexico's high-tech drug cartels

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Dr Rodrigo Nieto-Gomez is a research professor at the Naval Postgraduate School, studying "criminal entrepreneurship" in drug cartels, who beat Amazon to using drones for delivery by years, use modified potato guns to shoot cocaine and marijuana bundles over border fences, and represent the "true libertarian, Ayn Rand capitalism." Read the rest

Ancient psychedelic Ayahuasca's Brooklyn and Silicon Valley devotees

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In the New Yorker, Ariel Levy explores the buzz around Ayahuasca, the ultimate artisanal psychedelic drug.

“I came home reeking of vomit and sage and looking like I’d come from hell,” Vaughn Bergen, a twenty-seven-year-old who works at an art gallery in Chelsea, said of one ayahuasca trip. “Everyone was trying to talk me out of doing it again. My girlfriend at the time was, like, ‘Is this some kind of sick game?’ I was, like, ‘No. I’m growing.’ ” His next experience was blissful: “I got transported to a higher dimension, where I lived the whole ceremony as my higher self. Anything I thought came to be.” Bergen allows that, of the nine ceremonies he’s attended, eight have been “unpleasant experiences.” But he intends to continue using ayahuasca for the rest of his life. He believes that it will heal not only him but civilization at large.

The process of making ayahuasca is beyond artisanal: it is nearly Druidical. “We pick the chacruna leaf at sunrise in this very specific way: you say a prayer and just pick the lower ones from each tree,” a lithe ayahuasquera in her early forties—British accent, long blond hair, a background in Reiki—told me about her harvests, in Hawaii. “You clean the vine with wooden spoons, meticulously, all the mulch away from the roots—they look so beautiful, like a human heart—and you pound these beautiful pieces of vine with wooden mallets until it’s fibre,” she said. “Then it’s this amazing, sophisticated process of one pot here and one pot there, and you’re stirring and you’re singing songs.”

She and her boyfriend serve the ayahuasca—“divine consciousness in liquid form”—at ceremonies in New York, Cape Town, Las Vegas, Bali.

Read the rest

Bad trips may be good for you

A "bad trip" on psychedelic mushrooms may lead to "enduring increases in well-being," according to a new study from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Neuroscientist Roland Griffiths and colleagues surveyed nearly 2,000 adults about their psilocybin experiences. Those who experienced bad trips had taken, on average, a powerful dose of 4 grams. From Psypost:

A majority of the participants — 62 percent — said their bad trip was among the top 10 most psychologically difficult situations of their lives. Eleven percent said it was their number one most difficult experience.

But 34 percent of participants said the bad trip was among the top five most personally meaningful experiences of their life and 31 percent said it was the among the top five most spiritually significant. And 76 percent said the bad trip had resulted in an improved sense of personal well-being or life satisfaction. Forty-six percent said they would be willing to experience the bad trip all over again.

"Survey study of challenging experiences after ingesting psilocybin mushrooms: Acute and enduring positive and negative consequences" (Journal of Psychopharmacology) Read the rest

Court tells cops that license plates from a weed-friendly state are not "suspicious"

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The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals has stripped two Kansas Highway Patrol officers of immunity for their detention of a man with Colorado plates whom they believed to be suspicious because Colorado has legal recreational marijuana -- thus any car from Colorado was a potential marijuana smuggling vehicle. Read the rest

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