Tuesday, March 11, 2008


Americans are dopey - and most of us don't even realize it!

Yes, you. And you. And you, too. I see you trying to hide back there. You can't hide, though. It's in your water, kids. You've been drugged.

Turns out buying bottled drinking water from a natural spring may be a good purchase after all. According to a report from the Associated Press, pieced together following an exhaustive 5 month investigation, traces of pharmaceutical drugs are widespread in water supplies across the country. Somewhere, Tom Cruise just spit water out all over his keyboard and compiter monitor. Sorry, Tom. This is 21st century America's designer drug culture. We like our pills.

Antibiotics. Mood stabilizers. Pain killers. Sex hormones. You name it. How did they all end up in our water? Think about where that water comes from.

Most Americans are taking some kind of medication. There's a pill for practically everything these days and doctors don't hesitate to write scripts. They're getting perks, kick-backs, freebies, and all kinds of goodies from the drug manufacturers to keep our medicine cabinets stocked with name-brand brain candy. And we're willing partners in the drug dance. We see happy people swinging barefoot from a tire swing in the backyard on a sunny, summer day and think: "I want that feeling right there. Doc, why don't I feel like that? I think I need something to take the edge off."

We're all on something. Birth control. Asthma control. Arthritis relief. Allergy medication. Pain management. Cholesterol control. Boner pops. Sleep aids. Happy happy joy joys. We ingest the drugs, our poor bodies process what they can, and the rest is flushed down the toilet in our urine. That's a lot of people downing a lot of drugs and pissing a lot of excess down the drain day after day after day. It all adds up.

Our waste water is treated before it returns to nature, where it is later collected and repurposed so it can be "safely" consumed as drinking water. The drug residue present in our waste water is often too small to filter out. So it ends up right back in the water supply. According to the report, at least 41 MILLION Americans are habitually sipping pharmacy cocktails every time they raise glass of tap to their lips. This is to say nothing of over-the-counter medicines like acetaminophen and ibuprofen, traces of which are also prevalent in the water supply. If I am scaring you, maybe I could get a job at FOX.

All in all, the AP reported traces of drugs in the drinking water supplies of 24 major metropolitan areas in all areas of the country. Who knew?

Well, as it happens, water providers have been WELL aware of the impurities in our water supply, but have been reluctant to talk about them because it would be a PR nightmare. In a litigious society like ours, can you imagine the class action lawsuit potential here? They say they've been quiet because the public wouldn't know how to interpret the information. They don't want us to start freaking out. But we probably OUGHT to be at least a little concerned - shouldn't we? Researchers don't yet understand the risks of prolonged, persistent exposure to random, changing combinations of manufactured chemicals. But they will. It's literally a matter of time. Already, some studies have shown trace amounts over extended periods of time are significant effects on human cells and wildlife.

So who is looking out for us? The feds are in bed with the pharma corps. They're in no hurry to conduct testing and set safety limits. That would mean regulation and enforcement - and lawsuits against some of their biggest campaign contributors. It would also mean finding money to pay for it all, which is not government's strong suit. Today's politicians are much better at losing money than finding it.

Since we can't very well stop drinking water, our first order of business should be determining just how safe it is to be drinking water contaminated by pharmaceuticals. If we learn there are long-term health risks involved, then things are going to get messy. Then it becomes a matter of finding a more effective way to treat waste water, and/or a more effective way to purify tap water.

Or an alternative way to treat the many ills ceaselessly afflicting the human condition.

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