Wait a minute: now addiction is a workforce issue?
Leaders of Face It Together say support for people with that disease is especially important during the state's current worker shortage. An Aberdeen affiliate plans to open later this year.
...Because addiction can lead to less productivity and even the loss of skilled workers, leaders of Face It Together believe helping those employees is a money-saving investment for businesses, especially when workers are in short supply.
"We need to be able to help them seek recovery and treatment so they can stay in the workforce and stay in the community and be a vital component to our community," [business owner Troy] McQuillen said [Erich Schaffhauser, "Face It Together Expanding to Aberdeen," KELOLand.com, 2015.01.22].
What? Helping people overcome addiction is no longer rooted in supporting the intrinsic worth of every human being, but now arises from an instrumental view of people as cogs in the economic machine?
No, Face It Together simply understands its audience and is tuning its pitch to business-minded donors:
Through partnerships with Aberdeen businesses and other donations, the group is hoping to raise $150,000 to start offering services in the Hub City by June.
...The organization is looking to partner with any sector that could benefit from fewer people facing addiction [Schaffhauser, 2015.01.22].
Maybe we can adapt that workforce approach to sell raising money for teacher pay, too. We don't raise teacher pay to recognize the fundamental dignity of teachers and the moral worth of their work. We don't raise teacher pay to show our love for children or our appreciation of the inherent value of knowledge. We raise teacher pay because teachers are instrumental to building our workforce. Arbeit und Wirtschaft über alles!
Addictions to video loottery, casino gambling, alcohol and food are just a few of South Dakota's trade-offs to fund a failed state.
South Dakota preys on addicts through video lottery. The video lottery money was suppose to go to education but instead, it goes into the general fund for the cronies. Sounds like the mafia to me.
Looks and smells like a 24/7 cash cow program to me.
It is not just video lottery, it is also the ticket lottery, gambling on horse races, and who knows what else?
Addictions/obsessions can be treated, provided that the individuals want treatment. I think it is a good thing that Face It is able to expand to Aberdeen.
It is not just the individual with the addiction/obsession that pays a heavy price, so do their victims, and the community as a whole.
Cory, I think Prof. Kagan would argue that helping an addict recover is both and intrinsic and instrumental good:
My gosh, Bearcreekbat! The things you read! That article looks like a fun but heavy swim.
I understand that a lot of people aren't going to get the intrinsic/instrumental difference. I understand that if we're asking businesses to hand us money, we can best boost our "sales" by answering the business owner's question, "What's in it for me?" Our answer usually needs to be phrased in, "Here's how this program benefits your bottom line," not, "Here's how this program makes you feel warm and fuzzy."
But stepping away from the ledger, putting down the green eyeshade, if Kevin Kirby asks, "Hey, can you help us help people kick addictions?" and if his interlocutor asks, "Why should I do that?" the response, "Because every human being matters and should be able to live in dignity and full autonomy," should be enough, right?
"should be" is kind of irrelevant, isn't it? What matters when it comes to addictions is what works. As long as it's not dishonest, creates a greater harm, etc.
We could say "what matters is what works" about anything, not just addiction, couldn't we, Deb? I certainly say that about a lot of public policy issues when I want to get past the abstractions of our Libertarian friends and just pave roads and pay teachers.
Am I wrong to assume that acting out of commitment to the intrinsic value of a human being is morally superior to acting on the instrumental value of a human being?
I don't think "what matters is what works" has the same connotation across all topics. In recovering from addictions, I don't think there is an immoral way to recover, unless it involves locking the addict up against his will when he's done nothing illegal.
I don't know if I made myself clear with that explanation. Is there a corrupt way to recover from an addiction? Or a way that is injurious to others?
Your last question Cory? I'm in full agreement. That's the ideal and I'd love to see it universalized.
Having dealt with multi-generational addictions to alcohol and tobacco that resulted in the death of my father and both my husbands, I can accept repackaging recovery and treatment as a good investment in workforce development if that's what it takes. I hope we'll eventually see the altruistic reasons for getting people the help they need but for now let's do what we need to do to save lives and families.
"Am I wrong to assume that acting out of commitment to the intrinsic value of a human being is morally superior to acting on the instrumental value of a human being?"
Cory, you live in a republican majority, if you don't prove to them there is something in it for them, they won't support it. I agree with CLCJM, package it how ever it needs to be to get support, the results will be good. That's all that really matters.
Thanks, Deb, just doing a quick philosophical check. I don't have a problem with the fundraising marketing line Face It Together is using, and I would adopt it with little compunction as one of my pitches for higher teacher pay. I wish I could convince everyone to vote my way for the highest moral reasons, but I'll take practical votes as well.
I don't think that the fundraising pitch would translate loudly into the addiction treatment methods. However, I can see how language about, "Hey, you're a useful component of the workforce and GDP growth," could be less effective or could have long-term philosophical/spiritual side effects compared to language about, "We want you to beat addiction because you're a human being, and you thus deserve the same liberty and autonomy as everyone else, and addiction takes away your liberty and autonomy."
I wonder: if I encourage someone to fight addiction by saying, "The people in your life love you, and you have obligations to them," am I appealing to intrinsic or instrumental worth?
"I wonder: if I encourage someone to fight addiction by saying, "The people in your life love you, and you have obligations to them," am I appealing to intrinsic or instrumental worth?"
My sister was an addict for 35 years, she was married 4 times and had 6 kids, she also had our parents, myself and another brother and two other sisters that loved her very much. In the end, love from family and her "obligations" didn't make a damn bit of difference, she is still dead from an overdose. Package it however you have too.
"Because every human being matters and should be able to live in dignity and full autonomy," should be enough, right?
Cory, making people dependent on Big Government's mind control social workers does the exact opposite. And from a pragmatic approach it is increasing addiction, not decreasing it. Removing health classes from public schools would go a long ways on reversing the trend. And then use that savings to pay teachers who are teaching subjects that are worth while.
If you read my editorial in today's Mitchell paper, you will see that are spending hundreds of millions more on education and social services, which are causing the problem that Daugaard wants to spend more money on...Juvenile Justice reform. The Democratic legislators are rightly asking that instead we need to focus on the root causes of misbehaving youth. But that is not what the control freaks want. Chaos justifies more government. And liberals like Daugaard will pounce on every opportunity.
Solution: eliminate social engineering programs and use that money to fund more teacher pay, infrastructure, roads, and bridges. That is not just libertarian, it is plain common sense.
you poor bastards.
Kurtz and Sibson, when was the last time either one of you actually added to the conversation? Radical left and radical right, not much difference between either one of you when it is boiled down.
Good new info on addiction here:
A very interesting read Bill, thanks
Sure thing, Tim. I want to read the book. I've suspected for a long time that environment and the quality of social interaction had a lot to do with one's choosing to stay addicted and that "the war on drugs" was more about chasing the effect and not the cause. It's not unlike what many are saying about terrorism. But let's save that for another discussion. :-)
Excellent Bill Fleming. We could do that Portugal thing right here in South Dakota's reservations to find all the workers needed to do the jobs provided and then some. On a side note with the lottery machines, a lady friend of ours, that was addicted, told us that she was lonely and that the machines spoke to her. I thought that was bullshit until I read this article.
Wow, Bill, thanks for sharing that article. You have given me a little bit of peace with that article. At first as I read this, I wasn't sure because my family members did have people around them that cared. But when I really thought about it, they all also went through childhood experiences in definitely dysfunctional families. In fact, my own family was dysfunctional and it goes back, as near as I can determine at least 4 generations on one side alone. How, I managed to avoid major addiction problems, I'm not sure. I was suicidal twice by the time I reached 18. Maybe the difference is in how we deal with our hurt and pain.
I've thought for a long time, that we need to offer a great deal more counseling to our families and especially kids. Pain that is ignored only grows. At the risk of upsetting my family, I'm going to a family reunion this summer and ask some questions about things that happened between my great grandparents while there are still people who can possibly answer my questions. I just want to understand where the dysfunctionallity may have begun. Thanks, again, Bill!
Addiction affects everyone and Cory, even though we battle each other, thanks for posting this very important topic.
CLCJM, Jarry, Tara, glad to share the info.
Yes, something just rings true about it when I think of all the people I know (and love) who suffer from various addictions. More true than the other theories I've heard, actually, because it explains how some people can get the exact same "treatment" as others and still not be able to recover, or have so much more difficulty doing it.
It also explains why 12 Step Programs work (when they work)... because the people who "keep coming back" eventually form a micro-community of people who love one another unconditionally, and enjoy each others' company (more or less ;-)
Bill I thought it was a great article also and believe part of was done in Portugal could be modified for here in South Dakota.
My main concern is not so much the physical addiction of whatever that may be but changing behavior, learning to communicate and offload those toxins or demons that hold us back in life, have someone to bounce things off of that is non judgemental, having a support system and an ability to find something they enjoy to help balance things out. Everyone's experiences and needs are different.
I remember my first job living out of South Dakota involved working with a dry drunk. He stopped drinking years before but he was one of the most mean spirited person's I'd ever run across. I felt sorry for his son who was gay and his dry drunk dad didn't know it at the time yet was a very hateful homophobic. Again! I believe it's about changing behavior not so much about the physical addiction.
Lynn, by my read, it's about changing the person's whole social 'scene,' which makes is as much a group project as an individual one. That's the tricky part, isn't it? ...getting everybody on board. Or at least enough to make a difference. Otherwise the addiction remains the addict's only friend.
Not all treatment programs for addiction are the 12 steps program. There are others. some individuals do not like the 12 step programs, so it does not work well for them.
Just as there is not just one method of treating cancer, there are other methods of treating addictions and obsessions.
Bill your right it is very tricky! I'm sure many of us have lost ones we loved to addiction or have been carrying those scars for years. I sure have! Part of you does not want to be an enabler or co-dependent, pull back out of self preservation to not be involved in the chaos, manipulation or unhealthy behavior yet be there to be supportive if they really make the effort to change.
If your healthy you tend to attract other healthy people and if your not healthy you attract others that are similar. Sorry I can't think of expressing this better at the moment.
Lynn, you are so right, unhealthy people attract unhealthy people. A great book to read that really helped me is Co-Dependent No More by Melody Beatty. She also wrote some other good books. Alanon is a very good support group also.
JeniW, I agree. The 12 Step Programs only work for some. There are others that do a whole different routine, having to do with biochemistry. Personally, I think those give patients the best possible start, because they rebalance the physical machine (typically there are a lot of supplements, vitamins and a special diet involved, usually something like the 'Paleo diet.' There are also a bunch of special lab tests, all of which gets pretty pricey and hard to do at home (but not impossible.) But even after all that, the person suffering still has to go back out into the 'real' world, and that's when the hard part starts for a lot of folks, because oftentimes, the environment they return to is the same one that drove them into addiction in the first place.
The long and short of it is, the workplace solution is probably better than no solution, regardless of what the intention of the 'treatment therapist' is. Better at the job, better in life, what's the diff? The key word is 'better.' :-)
How many lives have we destroyed by prosecuting minor drug use? Then they have a record, can't get a job. The war on drugs is a complete failure and created a market for drug cartels and an industry of policing/incarceration. In Portugal they didn't legalize drugs but decriminalized minor use. We're too stubborn to admit our drug policies don't work.
Yup, happy camper, add to that, 'can't vote, can't hunt, can't socialize... Lots of ways their lives are ruined. Tough stuff. And very few, if any, ways to get back to square one.
You can give the credit or blame of the War on Drugs to the Republicans. Nixon started it, Reagan put force behind it.
"The presidency of Ronald Reagan marked the start of a long period of skyrocketing rates of incarceration, largely thanks to his unprecedented expansion of the drug war. The number of people behind bars for nonviolent drug law offenses increased from 50,000 in 1980 to over 400,000 by 1997."
At least a Republican in SD, Daugaard, has changed the approach. Not so much for the humane reasons, but because of the money.
Hopefully, Daugaard will agree to put money where his mouth when it comes to making changes as to how drug users are treated.
Happy Camper, you are so right. Just got off the phone with my cousin from Las Vegas, Green Valley. I told her Mitchell HS has a drug dog that comes into the school and sniffs out lockers and checks out the cars in the parking lot. She told me, Tara I don't think I could move back because to many young people's lives are destroyed by the marijuana laws. In Vegas HS kids smoke in the bathrooms and parking lots, just like my Mobridge HS class of 1978 use to do. Cops use to let parents handle their kids just like they are doing in Green Valley HS. She said pot is the least of their worries. We always direct pot using to kids............ There are more adults and parents smoking pot than kids. College educated people love pot. Get real.
Ms. volesky, maybe these kids should just not smoke pot, eh? Do not parrot my good friend Bob's arguments about how he just likes to smoke pot, please. Tell me why you wouldn't walk right up to these young women hanging along the wall behind the building and just shake a little sense into them, telling them how it wrecked many an aspiring politician's career.
Until marijuana and other illegal drugs become legal, you as parents need to teach your children that if they are going to use illegal drugs, they have to learn how not to get caught.
Teach the youth that school lockers are public property in a public building, and storing illegal drugs there is not a wise thing to do.
If you as parents are using illegal drugs, you lead by example to show the youth not to get caught.
grud reads like Stan Adelstein had a baby with PP.
When I mentioned above what worked Portugal could be modified for here in South Dakota. How are the drug courts doing here in South Dakota? I'd like to see an emphasis of getting help for these people based on their individual needs not some cookie cutter treatment in changing their behavior with some type of supervision or holding them accountable to help give that push rather than incarceration or something that would further damage their future. It could involve the beginning of intensive long term therapy if need be. Wouldn't that be cheaper and less damaging than incarceration? Legal punishment, incarceration or being on their record would be a last resort. A driver under the influence repeat offender for example would not be good for public safety.
I don't think geology would allow for that, Lar, and if it did that would be a fat bearded little beast, born smelling of kippers and whoppers.
Ya Grudz, you don't want them to smoke pot like Steve Job, Bill Gates, Bill Clinton, Barack Obama and the Ivy League scholars. Kids rebel because we are hypocrites. Pot............EVIL!...........Alcohol, fine.
Education and communication is the answer to the problem.
I'd rilly like to know who died and annointed Sibson as"the truth?" Sibby's posts remind me of ink blob tests. You can't read the gibberish so just tell us what you see there,okay?
"College educated people love pot. Get real"
Tara none of my friends and the people I knew in college loved pot. I knew many people in college and sure there were probably some in college that did but not any that I knew. Our priorities and idea of having fun were different. I'm not saying none of them didn't try it but it goes back to healthy people tend to attract other healthy people.
One of my close friend's brother was a known stoner and a great guy but we didn't hang out with his circle of friends. That just wasn't our thing and we hated being around smokers to begin with regardless if it was tobacco or pot.
Lynn, when did you graduate from HS? The 60's and 70's were the most open potheads that did not go to prison. My class were the biggest potheads ever. Great kids, but I smelled pot everyday at MHS. My husband told me some of his Harvard BB teammates smoked pot in the back of the bus. Ivy League is so liberal. Pot is not a big deal. Changing the world is.
Lynn, you didn't happen to attend Brigham Young University, did you?
When I was in high school Jimmy Carter was near the end of his presidency and Reagan was elected and in his 1st term. The farm economy was tanking, 16.9% interest was advertised as a great deal financing a new car and it was the beginning of the demise of historic Main street businesses when before it was packed with kids and shoppers being downtown.
Brigham Young University? No one of the South Dakota state colleges as they were known then.
Why did you ask if I attended Brigham Young University?
Tim, that's hard stuff. I'm sorry.
I have far too much faith in being able to string together the right words and reasons to solve any problem... and perhaps the ability of any person to be able to reason and will her way to a solution. I'd be a crappy addiction counselor.
As South Dakota settles into being a police state it's excruciating to finally learn that it will never ever be anything else.
Cory, just making this post and getting a discussion started is much more than most do, thanks. It's been 5 years since Jerri died, we are past the mourning and pissed off part of it, now would prefer to look for answers.
Lynn, just being cynical. You apparently were a straight arrow like me. I graduated from Brigham Young, but I am not a Mormon. I think environment has a lot to do with addiction.
I read the article too. It's very good, and something effective eating disorder treatment programs have known for a long time. The mantra is, "It's not the food."
Something like Overeaters Anonymous, and other 12 step groups do provide is relationships and social opportunities.
BF good read. While the original study with rats did have conclusive results, its flaw was not enough data. With that added data it changed the final results. That is happening a lot lately.
This is interesting. Lynn says this about how to deal with driving while stoned. " It could involve the beginning of intensive long term therapy if need be. Wouldn't that be cheaper and less damaging than incarceration? Legal punishment, incarceration or being on their record would be a last resort. A driver under the influence repeat offender for example would not be good for public safety."
What about all the other things people do while they drive that cause accidents? Are you willing to say the same about their treatment, or because there wasnt an intoxicant involved it somehow rises above those wrecks caused by pot.
Putting on makeup while behind the wheel and causing a safty hazard for other drivers,
" It could involve the beginning of intensive long term therapy if need be."
Reading a book and drifting over thr center line.
" It could involve the beginning of intensive long term therapy if need be."
Eating while talking on the phone cutting another driver off.
" It could involve the beginning of intensive long term therapy if need be."
And sex while driving. Now I myself am having trouble with this charge. It would be easy if they are by themselves, but if there are two, who do you charge? The pitcher? The catcher? Both?
" It could involve the beginning of intensive long term therapy if need be." Now that would be interesting.
I know it takes me a while to get there but here it is. All those things I mentioned above, cause more deaths on highways then does anyone that used pot and pot alone.
Those people also have done those things many times. Would that be an addiction? Repetitive compulsive disorder? They're dangerous, but as long as there are no illegal drugs or alcahol in the system it only adds up to reckless endangerment and reckless driving.
Now add THC in the blood from getting high two weeks prior and you have a real crime on your hands. Never mind that the effects of that THC disappeared within hours of its use, it will be listed as a cause.
There is a book that should be required reading even before anyone tries to have this discussion, its called " The Emperor Wears No Clothes " By Jack Herer. You can read it free online here. http://www.jackherer.com/thebook/chapter-one/
This book tells the history of hemp. It gives plenty of references so you can do your own truth check, and its a fun and interesting read. I just finished my own copy for the third time.
Its hard to believe that a sixty year war was started by, a newspaper man that lost 200,000 acres of pulp forrest because he couldnt get along with the Mexican government. A man that hated jazz and the people that played it, and dear old cross dressing J Edgar, who without the law protecting him would have been in jail for his crimes.
Bill The challenges we face. I still see plenty of people texting while driving. Texting While Driving although now illegal all across the state, with a $100 fine. Police are unable to pull drivers over just for texting they need to pull them over for another reason for that.
Lynn read the book, it will help clear some things up for you.
jerri's story is the one. the big ship is slowly turning, but judges nation-wide still order that relapses are a violation jailable or otherwise sanctioned, and our 24/7 program is likely just as ignorant of medical science of the illness, of alcoholism and of addiction.
the comment on the social side of 12 steps may be contrary to the "principals, not personalities" mantra as there are many still dangerous "horse thieves" in those rooms. healthy recovery is truly a long and difficult road with little guaranty of success. one day at a time.
medical research too, could do much better without politicization from the liquor lobby, and now the recreational drug lobby.
I look forward to the huffpost article soon.
I'm not sure I agree with the title of this article at all. If you believe that addiction is a disease, than working with employers to provide care for those afflicted with it is a service. Why should a group not be reimbursed for providing a service that positively impacts an employer's bottom line? It's not about fundraising, which is little more than a donation in many cases.
Have appreciated all the discussion and have even found it comforting in some ways. Environment is a big factor in addiction and I've always sensed that but this has clarified it and convinced me my heart is in the right place. I also know that mental illness plays into this even though that hasn't been talked about in this thread. But I've read that a very high percentage of people in prisons are mentally ill. Don't have the stats at my finger tips but it's a significant problem. and many of them have run afoul of the law because they self medicated to "stop the voices" or numb the pain. That's why incarceration often fixes nothing. It can explain why 12 step programs don't always work either. My son-in-law is big in AA and NA and it has helped him a lot but it can't help him fully resolve the fact that his mother drank herself to death by the time he was 14. He and my daughter have gotten some counseling but it's very expensive, insurance often pays for only two or three sessions and even sliding scale fees are more per hour than half a day's pay. I wish we could get away from this pull yourself up by your own bootstraps philosophy. There are many who declare that this country was founded on the Christian religion. Well, if you believe that where is the love and forgiveness? And the compassion? I really think the corporate cronies are dividing our society so we're so busy hating and fighting each other that we don't realize what's being stolen and destroyed!
heads up on huff post article flemming posted. johan hari was apparently a plagiarist on an international scale. he may have something here, but this can be a complex topic an uniformed do-gooder can fall victim to.
Wow CLCJM, you've really nailed the problem. Excellent comment. A good system to help mentally ill folks would be a huge cost saver, even if the system relied on a large and ongoing public subsidy. Fewer hospitalizations, fewer incarcerations, less crime, less abuse, less violence. It's a win/win/win/win/. . . . . .
Bill F, thanks for the link. This is a very informative article and suggests an approach to truly dangerous drugs that might actually make a difference. As for marijuana, it doesn't seem to fit as a dangerous drug. The only objective damage to adults for marijuana use appears to be from encounters with law enforcement, not from marijuana.
Now for some anecdotal evidence about whether marijuana actually impairs drivers. My spouse and I just got back from 8 days in Jamaica. Our group hired Jamaicans 5 out of 8 days as drivers so we could get to and from Montego Bay to Negril, and to and from a variety of clubs on the cliffs for dinners that were well beyond walking distance.
The roads around and near Negril are extremely narrow, with pedestrians and bicycles walking or riding along the side of the roads. Other cars and vans stop frequently with no shoulder. I saw no speed limit signs or no passing signs. I planned on renting a motorcycle to explore, but after riding on the roads decided it was too dangerous for me, especially since they drove on the opposite side than we do here in the USA.
Here's the point - nearly every single driver we used had a lit joint in his hand the entire trip. They smoked from morning until night and functioned just fine. No accidents, no near misses, nothing. These drivers had extremely quick reflexes and darted in and out as circumstances demanded.
If marijuana actually impaired their driving ability the roads would have been littered with bodies and wrecked cars. That was not the case. Many cars were old and rusted, but I saw none with dents or evidence of being wrecked. Every single pot smoking driver we hired got us to and from our destinations without incident. Now this was not a scientific study, rather it was our experience in real life. To me, it seems to be evidence that our fear of the marijuana impaired driver may well be greatly exaggerated.
Thanks, Deb. I've had experience with so many human problems and challenges that it helps me see the big picture or more to the point the overlaps, complications and side effects. Especially when too often the only "solutions" are punitive and profitable for capitalists.
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