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Episode Info: John Potash’s recent book, Drugs As Weapons Against Us: The CIA’s Murderous Targeting of SDS, Panthers, Hendrix, Lennon, Cobain, Tupac and other Activists, was published in May of 2015, with the corresponding documentary released just this past January (2019), titled, Drugs as Weapons Against Us: The CIA War on Musicians and Activists. Both have been received extremely positively, pulling together a host of historical facts, analyses, and thorough research, resulting in a well-presented stance that certainly holds water. It is also important to mention that he has worked as a counsellor for people with mental health problems and addictions for over 25 years now. So he is certainly no newcomer or sideline spectator when it comes to this topic. We question Potash from an array of different angles. We ask him when he first noticed the correlation between drugs in the music scene, and the possibility of conscious and targeted manipulation. We also briefly delve into the debate of whether LSD might actually be a “mind-opening” and beneficial drug. We also address the beginnings of CIA involvement and experimentations in the UK, as well as their involvements in the Laurel Canyon scene, often touted as the epicenter of the hippie and counterculture movement. We then move into discussing how the Black Panther Party was affected, and how Tupac Shakur (and Afeni, his mother) played into this. Particularly pertinent to this point is the rise of the crack epidemic and drug-trade in general. Also covered in this episode is the East Coast-West Coast feud (including discussion of the Notorious BIG); the death of Kurt Cobain; and the infamous “27 Club.” The big question at the end of the day: do oligarchs control alternative media and news outlets? To what extent can we trust “regular” news sources, and to what extent can we hold “fringe” and “alternative” news up to the same test? You start to gradually realise that our rational thinking becomes foggy, facts become clouded, and we have to begin truly sieving through all this information in a far more critical manner that we had previously thought. We hope you enjoy the show, and do let us know what you think.
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