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'I can't afford it' really means, 'I don't really want it that much'

To The Daily Sun,

During a long career in sales, I learned that prospective customers did not always tell me the truth.

For example, "I want to think about it" almost always meant, "I don't want to think about it." It was the same when a prospect told me he couldn't afford my product or service. After all, if I had asked for the same amount of money for an operation to save the life of his child, he would have found that money somehow. "I can't afford it" really means, "I don't want it that much."

Remember this when you hear someone in the Legislature say, "We can't afford it" about some program or other. That person isn't telling you the truth.

Johan Andersen

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Here's reality: we need to quadruple funding for SUD treatment

To The Daily Sun,

Cut the New Hampshire Health Protection Program substance use disorder (SUD) budget? Are they kidding? That would be the most absurd, ridiculous and reckless act to save a few dollars that I have seen in a long, long time.

The addiction problem in our state has become so overgrown because, for the most part, of pharmaceutical companies with billions to spend on spreading highly addictive drugs, so they can make more billions.

The ultimate costs to the budget of New Hampshire and taxpayers, will be many times the amount saved by depriving poor people of the chance to get off addictive substances, opiates in particular.

Highly addictive, legal drugs are being pushed on consumers so aggressively that far more of these medicines are being consumed than are necessary. The SUD component that allows treatment options for substance users, abusers and addicts offers a ray of hope that hasn't even gotten off the ground yet and it is already being considered to be eliminated?

The marketing, research and lobbying that goes on for the purpose of protecting the (over) flow of potentially addictive therapeutic medicines is making these drugs increasingly accessible to those who do not really need them.

Once someone has crossed the line of addiction, there is no cure and there is no deprogramming back to normal. Most eventually die or struggle with recovery off and on for the rest of their lives. A very few manage to stay drug free and treatment funding is a big reason that some recovering addicts manage to get through the initial intensive treatment phase toward longer term success.

The comparatively small amount of funding that has been recently made available could translate into many people staying clean, longer and some actually stay drug free permanently. But we need money to make that happen. Remember, a conservative estimate of the yearly cost of incarceration for one person in New Hampshire is more than $20,000. So, what has been happening is that convicted drug offenders while incarcerated, have less access to viable addiction treatment, many get released prematurely on probation or parole and their addiction takes them right back on to the same path, ergo ... the expensive cycle continues.

Save a dollar and eventually spend 10 dollars is actually what this ridiculous proposal is saying. And it is not just poor and marginalized persons who have been victimized by the over-availability of addictive painkillers that are now supplanted by heroin. Check the web for wealthy celebrities, politicians and talk show hosts who are in recovery from such "medicines".

Members of the House Finance Committee, here is the reality: We need to quadruple funding for SUD, now, not eliminate it. Then, down the line, that investment comes back. Those who vote for the defunding of what has been the best move in decades toward offering chronically addicted persons a chance at a better quality of life need to know that, as sure as the sun will rise, they too are, have, or will be significantly negatively affected by this horrendous scourge that will only get worse and gain momentum. Taking away this small amount of funding will allow far more lives lost and far more eventual cost to our already suffering community.

Michael Tensel

A&D Recovery Counseling


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