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It's been a few years since I took a really serious look at Kratom research...
It would be a real understatement to say that I was disappointed to find that after the FDA tried to ban Kratom in 2016 there has been no effort made to fund meaningful Kratom science. Namely, a double, blind placebo controlled human study.
One of the few pieces of scientific literature published on Kratom in 2017 concluded:
"Our data analysis has not determined if biochemical benefits of kratom may prove to outweigh its toxicity and risks. On the contrary, it seems that its potential side effects outweigh the benefits, and severe and real health hazards can, insidiously, lead to death. Kratom clinical, psychological, and medical manifestations can be disturbing."
From the abstract of another 2017 paper:
"...kratom has been reported to be abused together with other illicit substances with high risk of potential addiction. There are also anecdotes of an adverse effect and toxicity of kratom, i.e. tremor, fatigue, seizure, and death. Different countries have distinctive regulation and policy on the plantation and use of this plant when most of the countries banned the use of it because of its addiction problems and side effects."
Kratom users have to realize that state and federal policy makers are going to be reading these studies and making decisions about the legality of Kratom. The bureaucrats who actually make decisions about the legality of Kratom could really care less about testimonials on forums and all those guys on Youtube making videoblogs about how great Kratom is. Right now, things are not looking good for the future of Kratom!
Kratom has really failed to grow up as an industry.
I cannot in good conscious recommend that anyone buy or consume Kratom from any of the vendors selling it online currently.
If I go to any of the popular ecommerce stores selling Kratom it's evident that they have no quality standards.
- Display 3rd party certificates of analysis verifying that they are >97% purity.
- They do mineralogy reports showing the level of lead and mercury in soil that for example makes the performance enhancing herbs grown there safe for human consumption.
- They do chain of custody showing where it came from and how long it sat in storage.
- When it comes to Nootropics, the credible vendors put their real names, faces, addresses and phone numbers on their websites.
In the case of Kratom, you really have no idea if...
Your Kratom was grown in the garden of a monastery by monks on the side of a mountain...
If it's been grown in trash dump next to a former ammunition factory.
You have no idea if your Kratom was grown by an organic farmer in the United States and if the only middle man has been the ecommerce store you are buying it from...
If it was grown in a factory farming operation on the other side of the world and sat in the cargo hold of a massive boat for 6 months and was contaminated by toxic engine fumes.
You have no idea if your Kratom is relatively fresh and was recently produced...
If it's changed hands five different times and has fake expiration date.
Where ever the financial incentives create moral hazard, you need to demand evidence of quality. None of the Kratom stores online, have any of the credibility indicators that I look for and I cannot recommend that anyone buy from them. If this changes I will let you know.
Kratom already has a big target on it's back because in 2016 there was this massive grass roots uprising that defied the government.
If the Kratom industry remains so downright dodgy, you just make it all the more appealing a target to government regulators to come and ban it. They can point to the fear-mongering #FakeNews mainstream media stories about how bad Kratom is and say...
Look at this scary drug being sold by these shady websites... We have to ban it to save the children!
Also consider the absurdity of Kratom being sold at liquor stores and gas stations. Everyone knows that nothing good is sold at liquor stores and gas stations, except for gasoline and maybe bottled water.
Presumably, the people making a lot of money selling Kratom online would have a vested interest in keeping it legal, but I don't see any evidence of long term thinking on their behalf.
Yes, I did post a less vitriolic version of my concerns on the American Kratom Association Facebook page and they censored it.
They've raised over $500K; what are they doing fund research and actually protect the future of Kratom? Nothing that I can tell.
If that changes I will let you know, I'm going to praise good behavior and long term thinking and I'm going to condemn injudicious short term thinking.
I'll make a philosophical point that a lot of people are missing here...
Freedom is not free.
A lot of Kratom users assume that they deserve the right to consume Kratom as part of their human rights...
You really don't.
A lot of people (especially Kratom users) are ignorant about philosophy and history. They assume that we deserve rights just for being alive. This is not the case.
As I've said elsewhere, human rights are antithetical to human nature and the natural laws that govern the universe.
Human rights are like airplanes.
Airplanes are massive, metal machines that defy gravity; despite being very heavy they soar gracefully high above the earth.
Airplanes are difficult to build, they are designed by ingenious, intelligent engineers, built to stringent specifications and maintained by expert mechanics. No airplane is built by an idiot or else it would crash and people would die.
Airplanes were not built by the ancient Greeks, the conquering Romans, nor the mathematically inclined Arabs, even the British who built an empire that the sun did not set on could not figure out how to build an airplane. This is because the airplane is a result of thousands of years of men devoting their entire lives to mastering the mechanical world and the sciences.
Do you deserve an airplane?
You have to pay money to ride in an airplane because traveling above the clouds at hundreds of miles an hour is an unnatural and extraordinary thing.
Human rights (including the freedom the consume what you are want) are similarly unnatural and extraordinary.
Particularly in regard to Kratom, I do not see anyone paying for this right!
If you use Kratom, you are enjoying a freedom that you do not deserve. I'll encourage you to share this video with whoever you buy your Kratom from.
I should not have to remind you that Kratom is a major threat to the most powerful pharmaceutical companies in the world...
Kratom competes with and undercuts the drugs that these companies making billions of dollars selling. Do you think these companies are just going to go away and forget about making money because of last year's small victory against the emergency scheduling?
Politicians, regulators and agents of these companies are meeting in metaphorical (and perhaps not so metaphorical) cigar smoke filled rooms to conspire to restrict your access to Kratom. And the Kratom community is complicit in this, in it's laziness and inaction!
Hopefully that changes but I suspect it won't. I suspect that in the coming years we'll see a lot of very dramatic fools crying and making a lot of noise on the Internet because the government does that which is in it's nature and restricts your access to your beloved Kratom.
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