Economic Update: Capitalism & Addiction: The Opioid Epidemic

On this week's show, Prof. Richard D. Wolff delivers updates on UN report on poverty in the US, Oreos produced in Mexico, US households with zero or negative net worth, Germany's negative utility prices...READ MORE

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  • Larry Reed
    commented 2018-01-26 06:53:28 -0500
    Yes! Capitalism does indeed bolster addiction! Here’s an example how- We all know, the most predominantly used program in recovery has been AA’s Twelve Steps… Sadly, the success rate of this program is between 3-8%! Yet, turning a blind eye to this statistic, the courts and social-health agencies pump tens of thousands of addicts into the rehabs and clinics annually. Within the two years after treatment, at least 80% of these people relapse… This cycle of recidivism may continue several times throughout the addicts life. Ironically, since the early 90’s, programs which use combinations of scientific, medical, and psychological approaches have been developed. SMART Recovery and other CBT based programs are in the forefront. Evidence based results vary, but some have reported up to 60% success rates! Now, the courts and institutions are well aware of the embarrassing failure of their AA based recovery programs. Yet, they do nothing about changing their approach! Why? It’s so very easy to see that the Criminal Justice System, drug rehabs, hospitals, clinics, D/A counselors, nurses, doctors, funeral homes, drug companies, corporations, and their suppliers are making hundreds of millions of dollars off the Recovery Society’s industry. The capitalistic approach to addiction treatment is not interested in adopting more innovative scientific methods of treating these psychological and medical illnesses. Why? There’s no money in curing, yes, “curing” these people! Even the basic mentality of AA is of telling the addict that they will always be just one drink way from relapse… Adversely, the evidence-based scientific approach says that the addict has the power to take control of their own lives by using certain tools provided by medicine and psychiatry. In other words, the current system profits by keeping the addict down by subjecting them to noneffective programs… Simple.
  • Jeff Pierro
    commented 2018-01-16 11:03:30 -0500
    ROFLMAO@"Capitalism causes opioid addiction. " Only if everyone who ever takes it gets addicted. The fact that some do and some don’t pretty much proves it’s an individual, case by case situation.
  • Jeff Pierro
    commented 2018-01-16 10:41:59 -0500
    LOL. That family didn’t leave in the past 12 months. Society didn’t break down under President Trump. It sounds like your guest is complaining about the Change to the socialist policies of the previous administration.
  • Jeff Pierro
    commented 2018-01-16 10:36:23 -0500
    Every week it’s the same old rhetoric: capitalism evil, socialism good. You constantly insist that the guy who empties the trash should have as much to say about how profits are distributed as the employer does, but I never hear you say the guy that sweeps the floor should have as much responsibility as the employer for material procurement, utility bills, corporate taxes. You only express concern for who gets to take how much money home at the end of the week. I don’t understand how anyone gave you a degree in economics. You obviously have no clue how that works.