[From Hank Folson (920616)]
Some anecdotal information on addiction from a conversation on a bicycle ride
with a fellow who evaluates drug programs: 1. Crack babies can fully recover,
but they need a great deal of touching, holding, and hugging. 2. There are
drug programs that work. We didnUt discuss success rates. They are cost
effective, mainly because avoiding one crack baby saves $350,000. 3.
Detoxification of addicts is only the beginning of treatment. Long term
addicts have no experience making decisions, and may be taking drugs to avoid
making decisions. Recovering addicts need a lot of counseling time to train
and support them in making decisions about their lives. 4. Conservative
Republicans are against even cost effective programs as they perceive
addiction as the result of a lack of will power.
I do not use drugs and my knowledge is limited to a TV special on PBS, so I am
not controlling for approval of my PCT thoughts on cocaine/heroin addiction:
The mind functions by chemical action, so our reality is chemically based.
When we are sober, we have one reality, call it a sober reality. When mind
altering drugs are in the brain, they interact with the chemical action of the
brain to create a second d rug based reality. One anecdote I recall from a PBS
special is that researchers were surprised at how many returning Viet Nam War
veterans dropped heroin habits. In war, the sober reality can not compete with
the drug reality. But once these soldiers left the Viet Nam reality, wouldn't
the sober reality at home be preferred over the drug reality in Viet Nam? The
addiction would disappear for those who came home to a happier environment.
Our reality is a running average of the daily experiences in our lives,
weighted by the impact of various experiences. My guess is the drug reality
neither adds onto nor overwrites the sober reality, but exists along side of
it. The person can connect the drug reality to instances of drug use, and so
keep the two realities separate. The next step in my supposition is that we
compare the two realities. If the drug reality produces lower error signals
than the sober reality, the user would, I think, control for the drug
reality. The behavior that results is more drug use, as the user controls for
what he perceives as a better reality.
The drug reality is completely inside the user's head, insulated from the
outside world, so it stays much the same no matter what happens to the sober
reality. The financial and social costs of supporting the habit degrade the
quality of the sober reality , so the sober reality relatively looks worse and
worse. The increased error signals will lead to controlling for the drug
reality. The addicted behavior becomes stronger, and harder to break.
Soberly, Hank Folson
Henry James Bicycles, Inc. 704 Elvira Avenue, Redondo Beach, CA 90277
310-540-1552 (Day & Evening) MCI MAIL: 509-6370 Internet: 5096370@MCIMAIL.COM