(This is my comment to the DEA regarding their Opioid Manufacturing Quotas, which you can comment on yourself, the cutoff is November 17th)
To the DEA & Law Enforcement in general,
My name is Peter Pischke; I'm an independent health reporter. I am also a chronic pain patient with severe disability caused by among other things, idiopathic intractable chronic pancreatitis, which is severely undertreated due to the impossible regulatory regiment the DEA has led the way in creating. Through my work, I've talked to so many individuals and families with members that are denied access to pain medication. Ten years ago, most of these patients, under the watchful eyes of their physicians, would have been able to obtain access to their necessary pain medications.
Today practically all are unable to obtain them.
Included in my comment is an article I wrote in March that still broadly applies here. The DEA quotas are extremely unwise and damaging to millions of Americans. The DEA has admitted on record that they have no way to measure if any of their actions curb the opioid crisis via quotas, stopping manufacturers/suppliers and more. DEA officials have been caught threatening members of Congress. They are routinely persecuting and threatening physicians and patients. Their behavior at the national and local level is abominable, and everyone involved with this organization should hang their head in shame.
The evidence is out, overdose deaths are skyrocketing, and studies show the main component is patients' inability to access pain medication. The push by state actors to use general nuisance laws and threats in the media has failed. You've taken a law-abiding population using safe-supply drugs and pushed them into the black market with accompanying fentanyl and addiction. Indeed studies now show the connection between patients and addiction is slim at best. Even the project to solve addiction by settlement funds is an abject failure.
Your actions have not only failed to stop overdose deaths but have incurred more of them. There is no scientific, moral, or policy evidence justifying your actions against millions of innocent, law-abiding Americans.
So many suicides, suffering, and worsening health conditions can be traced directly to your policy efforts and the grotesque actions you have engaged in. You keep trying to stop the overdose crisis by withholding medications, and all it does is make the situation worse. The sacrifice millions have made, without their consent, to stop this crisis by your stratagem has failed.
There will not be any victory against addiction and overdose deaths as long as you continue to persecutive and destroy those whose lives never fed the overdose crisis. These are the actions of people who refuse to admit that the basic principles they work under are rotten to their core.
My role is as a journalist. I gather and report information. I know the issues of addiction and substance abuse are critical. But you will never solve this side of the human condition when you are punishing a population that has absolutely nothing to do with it. I pray to God that wisdom, truth, and justice be done. Because it certainly will never come from the United States Drug Enforcement Administration,
- Peter Pischke
Independent Journalist and Disabled American