Twin Falls County was among the worst places in Idaho when it came to opioid abuse over the last decade.  It also had one of the highest death rates from overdoses.  The Washington Post published an interactive map of the country, county-by-county.  There were places in Idaho with bigger problems than Twin Falls, but not many.  There were even worse counties in neighboring Nevada and Utah.  Central Appalachia fared the worst.

While much of the epidemic has passed, far more dangerous fentanyl has filled the void.

I spent a good part of my younger days as a libertarian.  I didn’t believe it was the government’s business if people abused drugs, gambled, or visited houses of ill repute.  Time changed my views.  I rarely gamble (casinos are fun to walk through but I’ve no risk tolerance), don’t use drugs, and don’t pay for favors.

Ron Paul is the father of modern American libertarianism.  I watched him give a speech to some young fans in early 2012.  He chided them for championing drug use.  He explained personal responsibility is a pact we make with our fellow citizens.  Madison said the Constitution was devised for a moral people.

Just remember, if you spend the rent check on dice or drugs, you can’t expect anyone to bail you out.

My parents were strict.  We weren’t allowed to wander the streets and they monitored the friends we kept.  I chaffed under their rules but today appreciate what they did.

I’ve never seen the inside of a jail cell.  Some guys I knew in school are still looking at those walls.  The sister of a friend overdosed on psychedelics and died in an insane asylum.

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