spy toilet

As the wasteful, immoral war on drugs continues in police states around the world, authorities are always looking for ways to track the use of “illicit” drugs. It’s the intelligence aspect of their war, and some of the methods literally reek. Introducing “sewage epidemiology,” coming soon to a community near you.

Sewage epidemiology is a rapidly expanding field that can provide information on illicit drug usage in communities, based on the measured concentrations in samples from wastewater treatment plants.

According to the American Chemical Society’s report:

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The war on drugs could get a boost with a new method that analyzes sewage to track levels of illicit drug use in local communities in real time. The new study, a first-of-its-kind in the U.S., was published in the ACS journal Environmental Science & Technology and could help law enforcement identify new drug hot spots and monitor whether anti-drug measures are working.

The thought of authorities slogging through the sludge may be comical, but it represents another example of big brother using our money to monitor our behavior. Drug consumption is a non-violent act upon oneself. The drug trade is made violent in a black market under government prohibition.

What is the rationale behind attempts at drug eradication and criminalization? It provides a means for government to assert power; it enriches the prison industry and the jackboot industry and politicians. Take these away and there is no logic to the war on drugs.

Supply is consistently available to meet demand, despite massive amounts of money and effort directed at eradicating supply and criminalizing demand.

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Instead of learning from this history, however, the state continues its meaningless pursuit by turning to things such as sewage epidemiology. While some European countries put this technology to good use by monitoring sewage for environmental toxins, in the U.S. it will be used to repress its citizens.

Most information on drug use is gathered by the state through surveys, crime statistics, and drug seizures. Analyzing our bodily waste will “help law enforcement identify new drug hot spots.”

After all, they have to find reasons to use all that fancy new military gear.

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Justin Gardner is a peaceful free-thinker with a background in the biological sciences. He is interested in bringing rationality back into the national discourse, and independent journalism as a challenge to the status quo.