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The wave of designer-drug poisoning (dopalacze) in Poland


Polonius3 1,000 | 12,449
16 Jul 2015  #1
The wave of designer-drug poisoning could not have been ignored in the heat of the ongoing election campaign. PiS, the main opposition party, has released a TV spot recalling how former Prime Minister Donald Tusk was hailed by the tabloid press as a hero for closing down some 1,400 retail outlets selling the toxic narcotic-like synthetics. But the spot noted that despite those efforts, cases of poisoning have quintupled in recent years. The spot also showed the present Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz holding up Polish anti-synthetic-drug legislation as a model for other countries to follow. The punch line was the question: If things are so good, why has there been such a rash of poisonings after the new law went into effect?
delphiandomine 83 | 17,531
16 Jul 2015  #2
If things are so good, why has there been such a rash of poisonings after the new law went into effect?

Ewa Kopacz explained it perfectly. The problem is that you cannot make the law so that only certain substances are legal - so the law is always having to catch up with what's on the market. For instance - you create a substance that makes you feel great. It gets banned by the government, so you slightly amend the chemical composition and release it on the market. The government finds out after a month, bans that version - but by then, you've got 10 other slightly amended substances that haven't been banned.

It's a huge problem elsewhere too. The only way to combat it is to require all producers of pharmaceuticals to be registered and controlled - but this means that the small companies have no chance of ever getting products on the market.

Chicken and egg situation really. Having said that, no-one forced them to take those drugs.
Harry
16 Jul 2015  #3
If things are so good, why has there been such a rash of poisonings after the new law went into effect?

In large part because the people responsible for writing the 'economic policy' of PIS have very clearly been taking drugs by the bucketful.
jon357 63 | 14,076
16 Jul 2015  #4
The wave of designer-drug poisoning could not have been ignored in the heat of the ongoing election campaign. PiS

Easy to ignore in the light of the thousand ps in Poland (including plenty of PiS flapper supporters) who poison themselves yearly (and do worse) under the influence of a designer drug sold by the half litre in every grocery shop.
Polsyr 6 | 769
16 Jul 2015  #5
@jon357; I bet if we calculated the economic and social cost of alcoholism to Poland, including treatment of overdoses and treatment of addiction, plus welfare and social care for drunks that aren't able to work and/or aren't able to take care of their own kids, we'd find it astronomically higher than all illegal drugs COMBINED.
delphiandomine 83 | 17,531
16 Jul 2015  #6
Absolutely.

But PiS actually want to give people suffering from alcohol addiction money so they can drink even more.
Polsyr 6 | 769
16 Jul 2015  #7
@delph and for the drunk votes of course :)
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,449
16 Jul 2015  #8
amend the chemical composition and release it on the market.

This is utter bollocks that prove politicians are only worried about the trough and not taking their job seriously. They said the Internet could not be controlled or stopped, but China showed that it could.

Modifying the ingredients is a load of malarkey. The law should reuqire everyone trying to market a substance containing unknown chemicals and of unknown designation and purpsoe should be first required to submit it for obligatory testing to a state-certified lab at the petitioner's expense. Only if it gets a clean bill of health as non-toxic, non-addictive and serving some legitimate prupose does it get a state certificate and can be marketed. All others are automaticlaly banned. Calling colourful pills or suspicious powders "collectibles" is a mockery of the law. It's quite straightforward, but it is in someone's interest not to see that. The reason: BIG MOINEY!
delphiandomine 83 | 17,531
16 Jul 2015  #9
Polonius, Polonius... think about how laws are drafted. You need to list what is banned - but any half-competent chemist can get round that - easily. The only way to deal with it is to do as I said, which puts massive power into the hands of the big pharma companies.

China can't control the internet. Use of VPN's are rife - and even their attempts to control internet cafe use has been futile.

Which works for big pharma. It however kills most small companies dead in the water - including for instance, the bodybuilding supplements market.

It would be far better to simply create the law stating that anyone found to be sick as a result of ingesting such substances will be required to pay for their health care.

The reason: BIG MOINEY!

No, the reason is that you're not thinking about the consequences of what you suggest.

Do you know how expensive chemical testing is? It would require in-depth studies and a considerable amount of time and effort. The only companies that could afford that would be the big pharmaceutical companies - who would love it, because it would guarantee that no domestic challenger could step up.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,449
16 Jul 2015  #10
No, the reason is that you're not thinking about the consequences of what you suggest.

The toothless law as it now stands. What if a new law were enacted stating: all unknown, unidentified and uncertified substances are banned? There are rules regulating what food, medicaments and other products can be marketed, so designer drugs in your view should be exempt?

Polcie enter a shop and pick up a packet of some sh*t and ask where is your certificate? What certificate? And that is grounds for confiscating tand destroying the entire stock.

Testing is pricey and that's very good. The petitioner would have to pay for the test whether or not he got permission to market the item, and that would also be a deterrent to many.

Re online sales, sting operations would pluck out individual dealers who would be given a choice: jail or cooperation with law enforcement (disclosing their source)? The same at clubs, pubs, discos, etc.

Where there's a will, there's a way. Remember, Csapone was unpersecutable although he had many corpses on his hands. He could buy prosecutors, judges, police, alibis, whatever, so they got him on tax evasion.

Some of you on PF seem to be siding with the criminals and finding excuses to show why they cannot be touched. It figures, you support the crooked and scammy PO.
jon357 63 | 14,076
16 Jul 2015  #11
What if a new law were enacted stating: all unknown, unidentified and uncertified substances are banned?

So you favour complete state control over what substances people ingest?

It would be a very daft law anyway. And as we know, prohibition doesn't work. It was tried with alcohol in your country and that failed. It has been (and in many places including Poland still is) tried and has also failed.

Only Twoj Ruch among parties has any sort of joined up thinking on this. Platforma are rather conservative on this (as on so many) issues. the crooked and scammy PiS flappers are probably profiting on a local or even national level from the current prohibition on beneficial herbs and invigorating South American plant extracts.

This is utter bollocks that prove politicians are only worried about the trough and not taking their job seriously.

Nope. This has been tried and it failed.

They said the Internet could not be controlled or stopped, but China showed that it could.

Rubbish - people get round it very easily.

If anything should be banned it's vodka. It has no flavour unless added, no subtlety, one brand is much like another and exists only to intoxicate. The societal harm that it causes is vast and the financial cost is far higher than the excise revenue. Our government should just ban it and allow drugs - where any harm comes not from the substance but from the fact they they are temporarily criminalised, forcing a dangerous black market.

Hard to say what this has to do with the surge in support for the Citizens' Platform or the threat to society from the PiS flappers, Kukiz and their ilk.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,449
16 Jul 2015  #12
state control

The state has a duty to protect society the nation from toxic substances, weapons and other dangerous substances on the market.
Yes, alcohol should be better controlled and the numerb of concessions limited. In Ontario tipples including beer may be sold only in official provincial outlets not in any supermarket, corner shop or petrol station.

In my home state no strong drink is sold on Sundays, and no alcohol (even beer and wine of up to 18% ABV) until after 1PM. And nobody claims the US or Canada are oppressive.
jon357 63 | 14,076
16 Jul 2015  #13
toxic

What's toxic about a beneficial herb?

dangerous substances on the market.

Plenty of those.

In my home state no strong drink is sold on Sundays

The Sunday thing sounds like it has a religious connection.

I've no problem with the state selling drink or cigarettes, however the sharp increases excise brought in under Platforma have been positive so far and should be rolled out.

I remember when the PiS flappers banned alcohol in railway buffets and dining cars! On cross border trains you had to order before the border, and only if you spoke Polish could you buy (cans of beer only) under the counter!
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,449
16 Jul 2015  #14
beneficial herb

The potential seller would have to get a new, unknown, unidentified, hitherto unmarketed substance whose effects had not been fully researched tested at a state sanctioned lab at his expense. That would put the still fledgling designer drug market under firm control and supervision.

With well-estabished substances -- tobacco and alcohol -- one can incresase prices only so much. At some point people begin distilling their own moonshine (easy to do at home with sugar) or buying cheap ciggies smuggled from the east.
jon357 63 | 14,076
16 Jul 2015  #15
The potential seller would have to get a new, unknown, unidentified, hitherto unmarketed substance whose effects had not been fully researched tested at a state sanctioned lab at his expense.

Politicians from Platforma as well as others know this - they just aren't great at drafting laws at the sejm, regardless of whichever party is in office.

Anyone launching a new product to be ingested does just that - strict tests. And the currently banned substances like the aforementioned beneficial herb or some pleasant forest mushrooms are far from any of those descriptions and grow beautifully in Poland - a potential exportable item.

You are right though about alcohol. It's the same with other enjoyable substances, total prohibition never works. With alcohol though, it's so addictive that users will do anything for a fix.

I don't se the Citizens' Platform relaxing the laws - they are far to conservative and anxious to please 'middle Poland', and if the opposition won, I'm pretty sure they wouldn't make any changes either. Poland's drug laws are already too strict - in neighbouring Czech and in Portugal, relaxing the law has really worked - it's taken the market away from organised crime

I thought it was a huge shame when they arrested the dopalacze.pl guy a few years ago. Most of what he was selling (frankly 'designer drugs' and 'legal highs' are not that good) did no harm, and it cut off supplies of Szalwia Divinorum, a wonderfully reflective and spiritual flower. Certainly not a party drug and any Polish politician should encourage its use in sensible quantities and concentrations.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,449
16 Jul 2015  #16
pleasant forest mushrooms

Boles, milky caps, chantrelles, etc. are indeed exported but are comestibles not drugs. Mocarz had no certificate neither do any of the other toxic trash that has sent people to hospital and even killed some users.
jon357 63 | 14,076
16 Jul 2015  #17
Don't be silly. The Polish government already profit from far more toxic intoxicants, and if there wasn't the moralistic and pointless prohibition of beneficial natural substances, legal highs would be pointless.

Platform re absolutely blameless here and far more proactive than their silly predecessors who never even discussed liberalising the current ineffective laws. As we've established, prohibition of drugs simply doesn't work.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,449
16 Jul 2015  #18
prohibition of drugs

Make-believe prohibition doesn't work. The measures I have outlined would seriously impede the spread of durgs, designer or otherwise, by making it not worth to effort to producers and dealers. The weed promoters like Palicreep keep saying it's less harmful than alcohol. But it's either - or onyl in theory,. Stupid kids smoke pot and quaff beer. so legalising pot would produce more young people in a hazy daze. That is not a goal to shoot for -- the nation's youth should not be depraved with stupefiants, porn and immoral conduct of any kind. You've seen enough American films to know every barman asks: Got any ID? Selling any booze including beer to anyone under 21 can means losing one's licence.

Too bad Poland imports the wrong things from the US.
delphiandomine 83 | 17,531
17 Jul 2015  #19
What if a new law were enacted stating: all unknown, unidentified and uncertified substances are banned?

As I said - it would mean that the big pharmaceutical companies would have complete and total domination over the Polish market. Is that what you want?

There are rules regulating what food, medicaments and other products can be marketed, so designer drugs in your view should be exempt?

There aren't rules - you can more or less do what you want, hence why people sell exotic things such as kangaroo and so on. Remember, technically, these drugs are just food products, nothing more.

Testing is pricey and that's very good. The petitioner would have to pay for the test whether or not he got permission to market the item, and that would also be a deterrent to many.

So you want to completely remove Polish businesses from the market, then?

Let's talk supplements. There are quite a few Polish companies that produce and deal with them - but they don't have huge budgets. Paying to test them would be very expensive, meaning that only the big name American companies could probably afford to put them on the Polish market. The Polish producers would go out of business, and Poles would be reduced to being "wage slaves" as you put it in the past.

It's just not so simple to do what you propose.

Re online sales, sting operations would pluck out individual dealers who would be given a choice: jail or cooperation with law enforcement (disclosing their source)? The same at clubs, pubs, discos, etc.

As far as I'm aware, plea bargains aren't legal in Poland.

But yes, the second idea when it comes to harder drugs is certainly the way forward. There's a good argument for not even fining or prosecuting those with small amounts if they're willing to disclose the source of the drugs.

Where there's a will, there's a way. Remember, Csapone was unpersecutable although he had many corpses on his hands. He could buy prosecutors, judges, police, alibis, whatever, so they got him on tax evasion.

This is why the Health Ministry was involved with busting the shops a while ago, because the alternative legal route wasn't very clear.

Some of you on PF seem to be siding with the criminals and finding excuses to show why they cannot be touched. It figures, you support the crooked and scammy PO.

No, we just know that there's no point using a sledgehammer to crack a nut. Your solution guarantees job losses in Poland, and there's no easy fix for the legal situation. Remember, the UK is also struggling to deal with it - it's a worldwide problem.

Remember, these aren't drugs in the strict sense of the word. They're food products that contain man-made chemical substances. The only real way to deal with this is to make it thoroughly unattractive to take them - which means making it clear that there's no NFZ care for someone poisoned with drugs. Someone might just think twice if they know that adverse reactions won't be treated.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,449
17 Jul 2015  #20
big pharmaceutical companies

Are these companies flooding the market with dangerous synthetivc (designer) drugs? Doesn't Poland have some equivalent of our FDA which decides which foods and medications are safe for public consumption? The EU and/or individual member states must also do. I'm sure kangaroo meat has to be inspected by a state health inspector, otherwise there would be salmonella and other such epidemics. Even backward Russia carreis out such inspections -- although they have abused them for poltiucla reasons.

Anyway, anyone standingn on the sidelines would have conclude that your are creating a litany of excuses why designer drigs cannot be controleld as if you were on the payroll of the slimeballs poisoning Polish youth.
jon357 63 | 14,076
17 Jul 2015  #21
Are these companies flooding the market with dangerous synthetivc (designer) drugs?

Nobody is.

The measures I have outlined would seriously impede the spread of durgs, designer or otherwise, by making it not worth to effort to producers and dealers.

It doesn't work. Platforma, the best government we've had, hasn't done that. The PiS flappers before them didn't do it. Even the DEA in your own country who have something like that have failed miserably trying it. Whereas, Czech, Holland, Portugal, Spain and one or two other places which have liberalised the issue have had a huge success.

Stupid kids smoke pot and quaff beer. so legalising pot would produce more young people in a hazy daze

Better that than killing themselves with vodka.

Got any ID? Selling any booze including beer to anyone under 21 can means losing one's licence.
Too bad Poland imports the wrong things from the US.

An over-21 rule would be one of them. In France, where alcohol isn't moralised about or mystified there are far fewer problems.

Note to Mods. Since this has turned into a discussion about the dangers of alcohol, the benefits of beneficial herbs and joyful plan extracts as well as the miserable failure of previous governments vs. Platforma's sensible strategies, perhaps the thread title should be changed.
Polsyr 6 | 769
17 Jul 2015  #22
Collective human experience shows that the higher the risk in providing a banned good or service, the more the benefits are for successful providers. Profitability is directly proportional to risk.

Poland doesn't even have 10% of the United States' ability to "Police". In fact no other country has larger or more capable security agencies. Therefore, the US's failure in the war on drugs should be a good lesson for others.

Matter of fact is, nobody is "God" and nobody has absolute power or intelligence to enforce a ban on ANYTHING successfully. The very best one can do is educate and control. If you can't ban it, tax it and regulate it.
delphiandomine 83 | 17,531
17 Jul 2015  #23
Are these companies flooding the market with dangerous synthetivc (designer) drugs?

No, but neither are many legitimate producers of supplements and so on.

Doesn't Poland have some equivalent of our FDA which decides which foods and medications are safe for public consumption?

Food, no. There is Sanepid, of course - but there are no mandatory controls before selling food.

I'm sure kangaroo meat has to be inspected by a state health inspector, otherwise there would be salmonella and other such epidemics. Even backward Russia carreis out such inspections -- although they have abused them for poltiucla reasons.

It's rather retrospective - they don't have to issue you with a licence before you sell a product.

Anyway, anyone standingn on the sidelines would have conclude that your are creating a litany of excuses why designer drigs cannot be controleld as if you were on the payroll of the slimeballs poisoning Polish youth.

No, I'm giving you reasons why it's not just as simple as banning them. There are no controls on food products, and these are essentially food products. Yes, once someone sells a product that harms someone, you can prosecute - but not before.

One has to wonder why you would want to impose a strict totalitarian regime on food products - and why you prefer large foreign companies over Polish ones.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,449
17 Jul 2015  #24
food products

That shows that Polish law is defective. I hope PiS set up somethign like the FDA. But a first step is a law banning the sales of unknown, unidentified substances of unspecified purpose and working. You have to agree that calling some colourful pill or shimmering powder a "collector's item" is a gross abuse designed to evade the law and exploit gullible youths and ddestroy their health and lives. Calling them a "fodo product" is probably what the producers and dealers say when they're hauled into court. Just overnight there has been a crackdown on shops countywide. Molly-coddling criminals was something I thought only stupid Americans were guilty of, but I can see it has seeped over into Poland. A judge releasing the prime distrubutor of "Mocarz" on bail has got to be on the take. Poland needs its own Elliot Ness!
Tori
17 Jul 2015  #25
Polonius3 - Are these companies flooding the market with dangerous synthetivc (designer) drugs?
jon- Nobody is.
Someone is, as so many in Poland in the last few weeks have been hospitalized for ingesting the designer drug STRONGMAN.
Polonius3-In my home state no strong drink is sold on Sundays, and no alcohol (even beer and wine of up to 18% ABV) until after 1PM. And nobody claims the US or Canada are oppressive.

Not true as enough claimed it to be oppressive (lobbyists $$$$$) got that law changed a couple of years ago in your home State.
jon- The Polish government already profit from far more toxic intoxicants, and if there wasn't the moralistic and pointless prohibition of beneficial natural substances, legal highs would be pointless.

Very true jon until the government can figure a way to tax weed and profit from it.
It will stay illegal so they can make money off it by collecting fines for a non violent crime.
The government likes non violent criminals. $$$$$
Everything in moderation my friends.
A puff or two of herb after work, two or three cold beers after work or at a sunday picnic, a couple of shots of vodka to take the pain away, no problem.

Smoking weed all day every day, drinking a dozen beers a day, putting down a half bottle of vodka at a time and then trying to go to work or drive a car or raise children (to function in society) then there will be a problem called self abuse.

Drugs and alcohol used correctly can benefit you, used incorrectly and being dependent on them (addicted to them) can kill you.
Problem is that people with addictive personalities can not control themselves to moderation.
jon357 63 | 14,076
17 Jul 2015  #26
Spot on, except that the shops that sell legal highs are discounting them at the moment, hence inexperienced people using them then going to hospital in a fuss when they feel the effects that they're supposed to.

A policeman from a rough area once told me that he'd much rather walk into a room full of stoned people than a room full of drunks.
delphiandomine 83 | 17,531
18 Jul 2015  #27
That shows that Polish law is defective.

Not really, this is the European standard.

I hope PiS set up somethign like the FDA.

But they won't. The food industry in Poland is far too powerful to allow PiS to demand some sort of pre-production regime.

But a first step is a law banning the sales of unknown, unidentified substances of unspecified purpose and working.

The problem is simply legal - how do you stop such things without stifling innovation? It's just not that easy - if it was, they would all be banned all over Europe without any fuss.

You have to agree that calling some colourful pill or shimmering powder a "collector's item" is a gross abuse designed to evade the law and exploit gullible youths and ddestroy their health and lives. Calling them a "fodo product" is probably what the producers and dealers say when they're hauled into court.

No-one is disagreeing with this. The problem is how to legislate without killing innovation.

Here's an example from the UK - dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2194656/Jack3d-sports-supplement-banned-Britain-fears-lethal-effects.html - it was banned after the side effects became obvious. I think the same happened in the United States.

Polonius - how would you regulate the market without hurting the small producers of supplements?
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,449
18 Jul 2015  #28
newpolandexpress.pl/polish_news_story-7360-hundreds_poisoned_by_designer_drugs.php

As more new poisonings and additional deaths are reported the PF lobby in support of the youth-poisoning "industry" is workingn overtime to trot out arguments against public concern over the problem. This won't work, that won't work, you cannot ban this or that, ways will be found to circumvent regulations, bla-bla-bla. One wonders whether they are on the take from, for instance, the producers of "Strongman" or are they simply "useful idiots", promoting their brainless, hedonistic "anything goes" permissivism. They probably agree with the judge's decision to release the chief Silesian "Mocarz"distributor on bail even thouhg he will probably set up alibis and buy witnesses to testify to his absolute innocence. Another proof that the PO-era judicial system is totally corrupt.
delphiandomine 83 | 17,531
18 Jul 2015  #29
They probably agree with the judge's decision to release the chief Silesian "Mocarz"distributor on bail even thouhg he will probably set up alibis and buy witnesses to testify to his absolute innocence.

I support judicial independence, don't you? Don't you regard it as the cornerstone of democracy, rather than the situation during the PRL in which judges were "instructed" on the verdict and sentence? It was the hallmark of the PiS-era that the Ministry of Justice (which included Duda) were intent on interfering with judicial and prosecutor independence. Even if this decision is bad - it still represents an independent decision.

Never thought I'd see the day when Polonius comes out in support of big pharmaceutical companies against the little Polish guy.

Another proof that the PO-era judicial system is totally corrupt.

Do you really want to make me post again about the corruption during the PiS era?
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,449
18 Jul 2015  #30
little Polish guy

Poisoners are poisoners-- whoever injects these toxins into ciruclation should be dealt with severely.
Judicial independnece as it fucntions in III RP means they are free to accept "gratuiites" from wealthy defendants or their legal reps. Who pays the piper calls the tune is an old Enlgish saying adeuqate to the occasion. The big pharmaceutical compmies should also not be free to unrestrictedly place untested remedies and supplements on the market. Poland needs an American-style Food & Drug Adminsitration to rule which products are safe fo public consumpotion.


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