a powerful stimulant that impairs the central nervous system — is the latest drug scourge to capture the nation’s attention. Popular slang for this drug of course includes crystal, but more commonly tina — a corruption of the word sixteen, based on the concept of one sixteenth of an ounce. When you see Craigslist classified ads from people searching for a “party with Tina,” you can rest assured they’re willing to spend anywhere from three to five dollars.
Known as the poor man’s cocaine because of its cheap price and lengthy high, meth has long been a drug of choice among low-income addicts. But what used be an isolated problem in pockets of the West and in rural areas has become a top priority for law enforcement officials across the Southwest and Midwest, where meth production and use has moved from biker gangs to mainstream.
According to a 2002 National Survey on Drug Use and Health report, 12.4 million Americans ages 12 and older had tried methamphetamine at least once, with most users between 18 and 34. Last year, more than 3,000 children were rescued during seizures of more than 15,000 meth labs nationwide, according to the federal Office of National Drug Control Policy.
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Crack users and heroin users are so disorganized and get in these frantic binges, they’re not going to sit still and do anything in an organized way for very long,
Dr. Rawson said. Meth users, on the other hand, that’s all they have, is time.
The drug stimulates the part of the brain that perseverates on things. So you get people perseverating on things, and if you sit down at a computer terminal you can go for hours and hours.
For example, crack cocaine or heroin dealers usually set up in well-defined urban strips run by armed gangs, which stimulates gun traffic and crimes that are suited to densely populated neighborhoods, including mugging, prostitution, carjacking and robbery.
Because cocaine creates a rapid craving for more, addicts commit crimes that pay off instantly, even at high risk.
Methamphetamine, by contrast, can be manufactured in small laboratories that move about suburban or rural areas, where addicts are more likely to steal mail from unlocked boxes.
Small manufacturers, in turn, use stolen identities to buy ingredients or pay rent without arousing suspicion. And because the drug has a long high, addicts have patience and energy for crimes that take several steps to pay off.
Speedlore and Methology: Part II
The American Speedfreak is a lost soul. We know how to have fun between the first ether gasp and locking ourselves in the closet. A twisted wisdom creeps into those of us who manage to survive, a sort of collective unconsciousness, an unspoken Crankster ideology:
It’s time to get some sleep when:
You’re out of crank
Your face is bouncing off the table
Your veins have completely disappeared beneath pasty goose flesh
Your shoes don’t fit anymore
24 simultaneous projects have stalled for lack of floor space suddenly
everyone is a cop
You’ve just set yourself on fire, again
You’re nodding out…
15 minutes after shooting a 1/4g