The Agitatrix developed a cold Saturday night. So I went to CVS to get her some Nyquil. Once there, I saw that in compliance with demands from our Congress, CVS had replaced all medication containing pseudoephedrine with little cards, which you then have to take to the pharmacy, where they ask you to sign a little form indicating you won’t be making any methamphetamine with your purchase. Because everyone knows that the surest way to deter drug dealers is to make them sign little forms.
Problem is, the pharmacy is closed. Which means I have to settle on the crappy Nyquil made with phenylephrine, which I can only guess the drug companies have decided to use as a substitute because it sorta’ sounds like pseudoephedrine. The stuff is actually pretty worthless as an antihistamine.
Which means that thanks to the new federal law, you can pretty much forget about late-night trips to the drug store to get a working over-the-counter antihistamine, unless you happen to live near a 24-hour pharmacy. Oh, and don’t even think about stocking up on the stuff. That’ll land your ass in jail.
I guess the lesson is, before you decide to get a cold, be sure you have some–but not too much–real cold medicine in the house, the kind for which you had to let the government know you purchased.
All of this got me curious. So I looked up the first person arrested under the Combat Meth Act. It was a 36-year-old Ontario, New York man named William Fousse. The DEA was so giddy about his arrest that they actually put out a press release celebrating their apprehension of the dangerous, menacing Mr. Fousse.
Guess what? There was apparently no evidence the poor guy was actually making meth. He said he stocked up on the medication to combat the sniffles when he got a hangover. He was convicted only of purchasing too much cold medicine, which, just to reiterate, is now a federal crime. In January of this year, he was sentenced to a year of probation.
Honestly. They think we’re a nation of damned children.
MORE: As noted in the comments, my science-challenged self should have used the word “decongestant” instead of “antihistamine.”