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16 January, 2004

End of the affair

In an article about the decline in ecstacy (MDMA) use in Britain, The Guardian mentions the following:

[Discovered in Germany in 1912] "... the drug lay undisturbed until the 1950s, when the CIA picked it up for a few desultory animal tests in its search for a truth serum. How the agency's interrogators planned to determine that their dogs were telling the truth is unclear, but whatever they saw did not impress, and MDMA never officially made it to human trials. However, considering that the CIA was routinely slipping LSD into its operatives' morning coffees at the time, it is entirely possible that the first ecstasy rush was experienced somewhere in the typing pool at Edgewood army base in Maryland."
Stranger than fiction, and a very compelling image.

Another interesting point made is that:

"After 15 dizzy years in the mainstream, ecstasy is unquestionably non-addictive, and appears to be "relatively safe in the short term", according to Professor David Nutt in his advice to the home affairs select committee. In fact, though the authorities prefer not to make the comparison, roughly 20 deaths a year ranks ecstasy alongside electric blankets in a list of Britain's biggest killers."

Quick disclaimer: I've never tried MDMA, and wouldn't wish to; that type of induced mindset isn't one I'd choose.

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