Monthly Archives: June 2012

Bath Salts and Zombies, A History

The U.S. held it’s breath when headlines broke that the man on the left, Rudy Eugene, ate the face off the man on the right, Ronald Poppo, in Miami, Fla. Several other similar incidents have occurred. They all involve a) people on drugs, and b) people going psychotic because of a).  America’s first thought? Zombiesss.

Come on people. Your obsession with The Walking Dead and stockpiling for impeding doom might help boost the economy, but zombies aren’t real. There is no zombie virus. The cause for these gnarly flesh-eating assaults is something much simpler: bath salts. It’s a term that has been thrown around a lot in the news, but not entirely explained. Here’s a rundown.

Not your mother’s bath salts.

For hundreds of years, people have used salts in baths to improve the bathing experience. When salt is added to water, it changes the osmosis so that less water is absorbed through the skin. Also, it can affect the buoyancy of water, making it easier for a person to float. These salts are used in bathhouses and spas and are sold under the name “bath salts,” they are widely available. They are not dangerous and not intended for consumption.

In the past few years, a different group of “bath salts” has emerged. They are not salts intended for bath usage at all, but rather dangerous designer drugs intended to be smoked, snorted or injected. They can be purchased here.

The poor man’s cocaine.

There are three synthetic stimulants prevalent in bath salts that mess you up: methylenedioxypryrovalerone or MDPV, methylone and mephedrone. Although these chemicals are in the amphetamine class, their composition in bath salts may vary.

Bath salts reportedly give users a high similar to that of cocaine or meth. The effects last no more than a few hours. Bath salt usage has exploded in recent years due to its legal grey area and ease of accessibility over the internet.

Bath salts are illegal (sort of).

In October 2011, the DEA placed a ban on the three synthetic stimulants prevalent in bath salts, citing an “imminent threat to public safety.” The ban is effective for at least a year. It is likely that the DEA will forever make bath salts illegal.

Still, bath salts are widely available online.

“He’s not one of us,” Kerrey attack ads brainwash Nebraskans

Find a time machine, go back a year and ask a Nebraskan what they think of Bob Kerrey. Chances are they would remember him as a Nebraska icon; University of Nebraska-Lincoln graduate, Vietnam war veteran, local business owner, governor and two-term senator. A man who has deep roots in Nebraska. There’s even a bridge named after him.

Travel back to today. “He’s not one of us,” “We don’t want him,” and “Tell him to go back to New York.”

Since when are Nebraskans so quick to disown one of their own? We’re a state known for being friendly to outsiders and having the most loyal fans in college football. When we spot one of our own anywhere but Nebraska, we aren’t shy about saying “Hi,” and giving each other high-fives in the airport. There is no place like Nebraska.

Yet, some of us do not wish Bob Kerrey a welcome return to the state he grew up in. Kerrey, a Nebraska man who has spent most of his life trying to better the state he loves; I wonder how he feels.

“Go back to New York,” a common response quoted directly from State Sen. Deb Fischer’s attack ads. But why? Maybe it’s because over $1 million has already been spent on attack ads that target Kerrey. It’s ironic that over $1 million has been spent in the wake of our nation’s $1.1 trillion deficit to stop a man who feels it’s his patriotic duty to return to Nebraska and help reduce this deficit. Talk about wasteful spending.

Much of those ads focus on Kerrey’s time spent in New York. As if leaving Nebraska automatically cuts Kerrey’s ties to the state. Yet these ads forget that this isn’t the first time Kerrey has left Nebraska. From 1966 to 1969 Kerrey served in the United States Navy. He received the Medal of Honor. And we welcomed him back.

But this New York “thing” is different. Attack ads make it seem like Kerrey has lost touch with the country, spending the last 10 years prancing around New York turning everything he touched into liberal. The opposite is true. Take the fact the Kerrey was one of 10 people in the country selected to serve on the 9/11 Commission to combat terrorism.  I  can’t think of anything more patriotic than that.

“He’s not one of us,” Go ahead, say it again.