This week, ClickBack sought comment on the prescription drug problem in Maine, tidal power versus wind power and baseball as a spectator sport.
How should prescription drug abuse be tackled?
If doctors are going to prescribe addictive medications like painkillers and benzos, they should be doing random drug screens and pill counts. This includes elderly people who may have a family member siphoning off pills or who are selling their pills for extra income.
And methadone clinics need to stop giving people weeklong take-homes. The goal should be to get people off methadone, not keep them on it indefinitely.
Start with educating people that not every little thing needs a pill. Ibuprofen works very well with lots of pain. Doctors give prescriptions too freely.
We need to wean society off the notion that they don’t have to feel any minor twinges of pain. The medical profession seems to want to use sledgehammer painkillers to take care of what used to be considered something an aspirin could take care of.
With the availability of computer, there is no excuse for those in the medical professions to not be able to monitor how many doctors their patients are seeing. There have to be some red flags that would alert anyone with a modicum of common sense. Doctor shopping is common.
Pharmacies need to be able to confirm prescriptions with the writers. It is common for drug dealers and users to counterfeit prescriptions. Photo IDs would be a good idea in order to get prescriptions.
It would be cheaper on the taxpayers to open up more rehabilitation clinics to help people who truly want to get off their addictions, then wait till they end up in jail.
What needs to be addressed is the ease in which these drugs are obtained. Every one of these pills was originally acquired by a legal prescription. Crack down on the doctors who write these scripts indiscriminately. Involve the pharmacists — they know who’s getting the pills and how many prescriptions they are filling, as well as which doctors are free with the opiates.
Will tidal power supplant wind power in Maine?
Wind power is a total waste of money until grid-scale storage is in place.
Wind power in today’s world does not contribute anything because the grid plans for and purchases day-ahead generation without considering wind turbines since there is no way to know if they will be producing or not. And the grid currently makes no provision for regulating the erratic output of wind power because there are no fossil fuel-fired generators in the ISO grid that are designed to ramp up and down as wind power constantly changes.
Even if it were useful, it costs four times as much to produce electricity from a mountain-top turbine as it costs Hydro Quebec to generate electricity. Vermont recently signed a 20-year deal with HQ. What’s holding Maine back?
I would like to see LNG utilized for Washington County. Just think of the instant jobs and the much needed tax base that will come from private investment.
Heck, we could build multiple power plants to supply our own needs instead of buying hydro power from Canada. On second thought, maybe that is why Canada is opposed to LNG on our side of the bay.
Is baseball still worth watching?
The game of baseball is a crusty old relic from the past and will hopefully go the way of other old sporting events such as jousting and chariot racing. I can’t wait until college football starts!
Baseball is boring until the fourth inning when the strategy, intrigue and pepperoncinis kick in.
“If Casey Stengal were alive today he’d be spinning in his grave.” — Ralph Kiner.