When Politics Usurp Science, We All Lose


One of the more articulate voices in the realm of addiction experts today is Carl Hart, who delivered a rousing TED Talk challenging our beliefs that drugs primarily cause addiction. In the talk he passionately offered evidence that poverty and crime are independent of drug problems, and that drugs including cocaine are far less addictive… [Continue Reading]

Ascending Out of the Hell of Heroin Addiction

Overdose Death

I want to share with you a remarkable music video by very talented musician Rick Hale, titled Descending, about his younger brother’s struggle with heroin addiction.  Make sure you watch it to the end as his brother Ryan makes a courageous appearance, putting his life in the public eye in hopes that his story may motivate… [Continue Reading]

Reducing the Risk of Drinking and Driving

image of oregon state with drinking driving stats

This past Friday I was honored to be a presenter at the 2015 Oregon DUII Multi-Disciplinary Impaired Driving Training Conference. Unfortunately, due to a nasty cold, I was only able to muster the energy for one session instead of my planned two, which was a bummer. The talk, despite my low energy, was important to… [Continue Reading]

Why You Should Know About Implementation Science

implementation science joyce showers chart

Years ago I attended a conference where I first learned of the work of Dean Fixsen and heard the phrase implementation science. What I most remember about his presentation is a PowerPoint slide he showed that to this day continues to haunt me: The table is taken from Joyce and Showers (2002) where the authors… [Continue Reading]

American Sniper the Movie, PTSD & Addiction

american sniper the movie

I saw American Sniper yesterday and like many, was emotionally stirred by Clint Eastwood’s depiction of the life of Chris Kyle.    Had I not seen The Hurt Locker (2008) and Zero Dark Thirty (2012), watching the graphic deaths of women and children in war would have been even more horrific. Sadly, if movies have… [Continue Reading]

When Unknown Traumatic Events Fuel Addiction

image of sad girl

In Bessel van der Kolk’s latest masterpiece, The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma he writes about a study specific to traumatic memory that I believe has significant implications for those who struggle with addiction. The study takes us into the science of repressed memory, and helps prove that often… [Continue Reading]

Is There an Easy Way to Stop Smoking?

upclose of a cigarette

Have you heard of Allen Carr’s book an Easy Way to Stop Smoking? The approach developed by an accountant turned addiction guru may be the single most profitable addiction treatment intervention ever developed. His stop smoking books have sold over 10 million copies in 57 countries, and his organization now offers treatment seminars in 150 cities… [Continue Reading]

Addiction Treatment System – Not So Broken After All

map of addiction

I need to apologize to those who work in the addiction treatment field, because some of my past posts have contributed to the perception that we have a broken addiction treatment system. While I have never said or even implied that the people working in the field are broken, I know from experience that it doesn’t feel… [Continue Reading]

Addiction and the Experience of Feeling Alive


People say that what we’re all seeking is a meaning for life. I don’t think that’s what we’re really seeking. I think that what we’re seeking is an experience of being alive, so that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonances within our innermost being and reality, so that we actually… [Continue Reading]