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KN4M 02-20-04

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  • robalini@aol.com
    Please send as far and wide as possible. Thanks, Robert Sterling Editor, The Konformist http://www.konformist.com http://www.kron4.com Hallucinogen May Cure
    Message 1 of 2 , Feb 23, 2004
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      Please send as far and wide as possible.

      Thanks,
      Robert Sterling
      Editor, The Konformist
      http://www.konformist.com

      http://www.kron4.com

      Hallucinogen May Cure Drug Addiction

      Posted: February 18, 2004

      BAY AREA (KRON) -- Drug addiction has been the plague of modern
      America. But that could now change forever. What started as a rumor
      may now actually be an incredible breakthrough in the battle against
      addictions of all kinds.

      Ibogaine has a number of strikes against it:

      It doesn't come from a modern laboratory, but from an ancient plant.
      It was discovered not by a scientist, but by a heroin addict.
      It is mildly hallucinogenic and completely illegal in the United
      States.
      However, when it comes to curing addiction, a reputable scientist
      believes ibogaine is nothing short of a miracle. "I didn't believe it
      when I first heard about ibogaine. I thought it was something that
      needed to be debunked," admits Dr. Deborah Mash, professor of
      Neurology and Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology at University of
      Miami.

      Dr. Mash is one of the few scientists in the world to study ibogaine,
      a mild hallucinogen that comes from the root of a shrub found in West
      Africa and was rumored to have the amazing ability to help drug
      addicts kick their addiction.

      "This didn't come from the Salk Institute, this didn't come from the
      Scripps Institute. This came from a junkie who took a dose to get
      high himself. So the original observation came from the underground,"
      says Dr. Mash.

      Observations from this particular underground are not likely to gain
      the respect of mainstream society, and ibogaine was no exception.

      That first report came in 1962. But decades would pass with little
      scientific investigation. There were decades during which the cost of
      addiction in terms of medical care, lost productivity, crime and
      incarceration rose to $160 billion a year.

      The human toll was impossible to calculate.

      Patrick Kroupa was a heroin addict for 16 of his 35 years. "It was a
      very high level of desperation. I had been pretty successful in my
      life, I had accomplished a lot of things I wanted to do, and then
      repeatedly I just watched everything burst into flames and
      disintegrate because I could not stay off heroin," confesses
      Patrick. "It gets very tiring living like a slave because you keep
      chasing this and it's like you're not getting high, it's just 'I must
      do this every single day just to get normal so I can function.'"

      Like most addicts, Patrick tried to quit. But treatment for addiction
      is notoriously ineffective. Only one in ten addicts manages to return
      to a drug-free life. Most stay dependent on illegal drugs or their
      legal substitutes, like methadone.

      "And I was a spectacular failure at every possible treatment
      modality, every paradigm, every detox, every therapy, nothing ever
      worked," admits Patrick.

      Even as Patrick Kroupa despaired of ever kicking heroin, Dr. Mash was
      petitioning the Federal Food and Drug Administration to allow a
      scientific test of ibogaine, which by this time had been classified
      as a "schedule one" drug on a par with heroin. In 1993, the FDA
      approval came through.

      "We were established, we had a team of research scientists, doctors,
      clinicians, psychiatrists, toxicologists and we wanted to go forward
      with this," describes Dr. Mash.

      But even with FDA approval, Dr. Mash could not get funding to look
      into what was, after all, a counter-culture drug. In order to
      complete her project, she had to leave South Florida and go offshore,
      to the island of St. Kitts.

      In 1998, clinical trials finally got underway. Patients were given
      carefully prepared oral doses of ibogaine. What happened next
      astounded the sceptical scientist.

      "Our first round in St. Kitts, we treated six individuals, and I will
      go to my grave with the memory of that first round," says Dr. Mash.

      It quickly became apparent that one dose of ibogaine blocked the
      withdrawal symptoms of even hard-core addicts and was amazingly
      effective for heroin, crack cocaine and even alcohol.

      There are two reasons why: The first, science can measure. The second
      remains a mystery.

      Dr. Mash admits, "I was really scared. I questioned my own sanity on
      numerous occasions."

      "I don't like the word 'hallucinogen,' but indeed, ibogaine alters
      mental state. And what it seems to do is it puts people into a four
      to six hour state of almost an active dream, it's like a lucid
      dream." she describes.

      But as Dr. Mash was about to discover, during that dream state,
      something extraordinary happens. "We knew ibogaine was effective for
      blocking opiate withdrawal, we saw it diminish the desire to use
      alcohol. And we saw the cravings for cocaine blocked. I was hooked,"
      she says.

      Patrick admits, "It's literally like a miracle. Nothing has ever
      worked and this just did." He was one of the 280 people in Dr. Mash's
      trial of ibogaine.

      "Patrick was one of the worst opiate addicts, worst heroin addicts
      that I have ever enountered in my life," says Dr. Mash. His arms
      still bear the scars of years of heroin addiction, and he knows only
      too well what happened when the flow of drugs into those arms was
      interrupted. "When you're going through withdrawal, you're sweating,
      you're shaking, you're freezing, you're hot, it feels like your spine
      is being smashed in a vise, it's pain," describes Patrick.

      Within 45 minutes of taking ibogaine, he actually felt his addiction
      leaving him. "That moment is the first time in about 10 years that I
      had actually been clean. Not just detoxed, but clean. That was it.
      That was the first time. That was like a miracle," says Patrick

      That was four years ago. Patrick Kroupa has not touched drugs
      since. "I'm saying this having been on heroin for my entire adult
      life. I mean, 14 to 30 is a long time," he says.

      On one level, Dr. Mash understands some of what happens. Ibogaine in
      the body is metabolized into another compound called 'noribogaine.'
      Noribogaine appears to reset chemical switches in the brain of an
      addict.

      "The noribogaine resets that, so it resets the opiates, blocks the
      opiate withdrawal, diminishes craving and the desire to use, and it
      elevates mood," say Dr. Mash.

      But of the "visions" that people see, Dr. Mash understands very
      little -- only that they are somehow significant to the
      outcome. "It's as if the plant is teaching you something fundamental
      about who you are as a person and why you've got yourself locked into
      this intractible pattern of behavior," she says.

      Ibogaine will not work for everyone. And even for those for whom it
      does work, it is not a "magic bullet." "You need treatment, you need
      social workers, you need case management, you need medication,
      psychiatry, you need the whole boat of professionalism around this,"
      says Dr. Mash.

      But for Patrick Kroupa and many of the other addicts in the trials,
      ibogaine was a miracle. "It's like if you suffer from terminal cancer
      and somebody goes by and says, 'Oh, yeah, we cured that. We passed
      this thing over you and it's gone,'" he says.

      Even the reserved scientist believes this ancient drug from Africa
      holds astounding promise for the modern world. "I think we're going
      to see fantastic numbers. I think these numbers are going to be
      stunning," says Dr. Mash.

      Dr. Mash will present her findings to the Food and Drug
      Administration next month. She hopes the FDA will eventually
      authorize further testing, based on her results. In the meantime,
      ibogaine remains illegal in the United States.

      Ibogaine is advertised on the internet, but there is no guarantee of
      the quality unless it's given under medical supervision. And for now,
      that can only be done overseas.

      For ibogaine detox information, contact Healing Transitions at 1-888-
      426-4286 or www.Ibogaine.net

      *****

      Lost Beach Boys Album Premieres in U.K.
      02-22-04
      By JILL LAWLESS, Associated Press Writer

      LONDON - In 1967, Beach Boys songwriter Brian Wilson shelved "Smile,"
      an ambitious concept album intended as the group's masterpiece.
      Thirty-seven years later, "Smile" received its live premiere in
      London - and most critics agreed it was worth the wait.

      Wilson, 61 and performing again after years as a near recluse,
      received a five-minute standing ovation at the end of Friday's show
      at London's Royal Festival Hall. A black-clad Wilson led an 18-piece
      band in performances of several Beach Boys hits, followed by the
      complete "Smile" - concluding with its best-known track, the pop
      classic "Good Vibrations."

      Fans were rapturous. The Guardian newspaper hailed the
      work's "groundbreaking complexity and sophistication," while The
      Daily Telegraph called it "a glorious, tangled symphony of
      celebration and sadness."

      "Smile" was intended as a follow-up to The Beach Boys' groundbreaking
      1966 album "Pet Sounds," and its lush orchestration took advantage of
      advances in recording technology.

      The perfectionist Wilson worked for months to build the album's
      multilayered sound, but shelved it shortly before its scheduled
      release, explaining that the songs were "not commercial."

      Over the years, "Smile" gained a reputation among fans as the band's
      lost masterpiece.

      It may not deserve that status, Times of London critic Stephen Dalton
      wrote Saturday, but he nonetheless hailed "the grace and wisdom"
      Wilson displayed.

      "Smile," he said, was "a 40-minute crazy-paving collage of song
      fragments and Looney Tunes jingles, all bookended by the lush glory
      of 'Heroes and Villains' and the rapturous warble of 'Good
      Vibrations' ... It was clearly adventurous for its era but it is not
      difficult to see why Wilson's label and fellow Beach Boys balked at
      releasing it."

      Wilson is due to play five more London concerts this week, followed
      by several dates around Britain and continental Europe.

      *****

      Pentagon Tells Bush: Climate Change Will Destroy Us
      Secret report warns of rioting and nuclear war

      · Britain will be 'Siberian' in less than 20 years
      · Threat to the world is greater than terrorism

      By Mark Townsend and Paul Harris in New York
      The Observer - UK
      2-22-4

      Climate change over the next 20 years could result in a global
      catastrophe costing millions of lives in wars and natural disasters..

      A secret report, suppressed by US defence chiefs and obtained by The
      Observer, warns that major European cities will be sunk beneath
      rising seas as Britain is plunged into a 'Siberian' climate by 2020.
      Nuclear conflict, mega-droughts, famine and widespread rioting will
      erupt across the world.

      The document predicts that abrupt climate change could bring the
      planet to the edge of anarchy as countries develop a nuclear threat
      to defend and secure dwindling food, water and energy supplies. The
      threat to global stability vastly eclipses that of terrorism, say the
      few experts privy to its contents.

      'Disruption and conflict will be endemic features of life,' concludes
      the Pentagon analysis. 'Once again, warfare would define human life.'

      The findings will prove humiliating to the Bush administration, which
      has repeatedly denied that climate change even exists. Experts said
      that they will also make unsettling reading for a President who has
      insisted national defence is a priority.

      The report was commissioned by influential Pentagon defence adviser
      Andrew Marshall, who has held considerable sway on US military
      thinking over the past three decades. He was the man behind a
      sweeping recent review aimed at transforming the American military
      under Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.

      Climate change 'should be elevated beyond a scientific debate to a US
      national security concern', say the authors, Peter Schwartz, CIA
      consultant and former head of planning at Royal Dutch/Shell Group,
      and Doug Randall of the California-based Global Business Network.

      An imminent scenario of catastrophic climate change is 'plausible and
      would challenge United States national security in ways that should
      be considered immediately', they conclude. As early as next year
      widespread flooding by a rise in sea levels will create major
      upheaval for millions.

      Last week the Bush administration came under heavy fire from a large
      body of respected scientists who claimed that it cherry-picked
      science to suit its policy agenda and suppressed studies that it did
      not like. Jeremy Symons, a former whistleblower at the Environmental
      Protection Agency (EPA), said that suppression of the report for four
      months was a further example of the White House trying to bury the
      threat of climate change.

      Senior climatologists, however, believe that their verdicts could
      prove the catalyst in forcing Bush to accept climate change as a real
      and happening phenomenon. They also hope it will convince the United
      States to sign up to global treaties to reduce the rate of climatic
      change.

      A group of eminent UK scientists recently visited the White House to
      voice their fears over global warming, part of an intensifying drive
      to get the US to treat the issue seriously. Sources have told The
      Observer that American officials appeared extremely sensitive about
      the issue when faced with complaints that America's public stance
      appeared increasingly out of touch.

      One even alleged that the White House had written to complain about
      some of the comments attributed to Professor Sir David King, Tony
      Blair's chief scientific adviser, after he branded the President's
      position on the issue as indefensible.

      Among those scientists present at the White House talks were
      Professor John Schellnhuber, former chief environmental adviser to
      the German government and head of the UK's leading group of climate
      scientists at the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research. He said
      that the Pentagon's internal fears should prove the 'tipping point'
      in persuading Bush to accept climatic change.

      Sir John Houghton, former chief executive of the Meteorological
      Office - and the first senior figure to liken the threat of climate
      change to that of terrorism - said: 'If the Pentagon is sending out
      that sort of message, then this is an important document indeed.'

      Bob Watson, chief scientist for the World Bank and former chair of
      the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, added that the
      Pentagon's dire warnings could no longer be ignored.

      'Can Bush ignore the Pentagon? It's going be hard to blow off this
      sort of document. Its hugely embarrassing. After all, Bush's single
      highest priority is national defence. The Pentagon is no wacko,
      liberal group, generally speaking it is conservative. If climate
      change is a threat to national security and the economy, then he has
      to act. There are two groups the Bush Administration tend to listen
      to, the oil lobby and the Pentagon,' added Watson.

      'You've got a President who says global warming is a hoax, and across
      the Potomac river you've got a Pentagon preparing for climate wars.
      It's pretty scary when Bush starts to ignore his own government on
      this issue,' said Rob Gueterbock of Greenpeace.

      Already, according to Randall and Schwartz, the planet is carrying a
      higher population than it can sustain. By 2020 'catastrophic'
      shortages of water and energy supply will become increasingly harder
      to overcome, plunging the planet into war. They warn that 8,200 years
      ago climatic conditions brought widespread crop failure, famine,
      disease and mass migration of populations that could soon be
      repeated.

      Randall told The Observer that the potential ramifications of rapid
      climate change would create global chaos. 'This is depressing stuff,'
      he said. 'It is a national security threat that is unique because
      there is no enemy to point your guns at and we have no control over
      the threat.'

      Randall added that it was already possibly too late to prevent a
      disaster happening. 'We don't know exactly where we are in the
      process. It could start tomorrow and we would not know for another
      five years,' he said.

      'The consequences for some nations of the climate change are
      unbelievable. It seems obvious that cutting the use of fossil fuels
      would be worthwhile.'

      So dramatic are the report's scenarios, Watson said, that they may
      prove vital in the US elections. Democratic frontrunner John Kerry is
      known to accept climate change as a real problem. Scientists
      disillusioned with Bush's stance are threatening to make sure Kerry
      uses the Pentagon report in his campaign.

      The fact that Marshall is behind its scathing findings will aid
      Kerry's cause. Marshall, 82, is a Pentagon legend who heads a
      secretive think-tank dedicated to weighing risks to national security
      called the Office of Net Assessment. Dubbed 'Yoda' by Pentagon
      insiders who respect his vast experience, he is credited with being
      behind the Department of Defence's push on ballistic-missile defence.

      Symons, who left the EPA in protest at political interference, said
      that the suppression of the report was a further instance of the
      White House trying to bury evidence of climate change. 'It is yet
      another example of why this government should stop burying its head
      in the sand on this issue.'

      Symons said the Bush administration's close links to high-powered
      energy and oil companies was vital in understanding why climate
      change was received sceptically in the Oval Office. 'This
      administration is ignoring the evidence in order to placate a handful
      of large energy and oil companies,' he added.
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