Methland- The Death and Life of An American Small Town

 Yes, another book about drugs. But don’t turn away too quick, this one definetely has merit. Written in a persuasive journalistic manner, filled with facts, comparisons as well as anectodal insight, the story Oelwein, Iowa, is one that you will remember. A 6000 resident farming town destroyed by big agri business modernization is a story we’ve seen on a repeat for the past decade, but the emergence of meth production and addiction in Oelwein are what tie it so closely to globalization and a hurt relationship with the media.

Here are some interesting facts about meth:

  • Even into the 1980s, methamphetamine was widely prescribed in the United States. Ads for “Methedrine brand Methamphetamine” appeared in women’s magazines in the 1960’s as cures for those who “eat or sleep too much”
  • Labourers often used methamphetamine in order to work long hours, cure “laziness” and increases one’s short them ability to concentrate. For these reasons it has been labelled “the most American drug”.
  • In the 1970’s pharmaceutical meth was called “browns and clears” when it was prescribed as an anti-depression drug.
  • Rural Unite States has higher drug and alcohol abuse rates than urban areas. They have less services and resources to cope with it as well.
  • Children who are exposed to meth are likely to have acute ashtma, sleeping problems, anxiety as well as weakened lungs and heart. They can become exposed in the womb or sometimes when their food is cooked in a microwave where meth has been heated.
  • It was believed that if the import of ephedrine was strongly regulated than the home lab production of meth would severely increase. However, it was pharmaceutical companies that strongly lobbied against this.

If you want to whole deal, check out the novel by Nick Reding!