Daily Beast follows the money: Daniel Cameron’s $42 million bet on psychedelic drug ibogaine

In a meticulously researched piece published Monday, Roger Sollenberger of The Daily Beast delves into the perplexing decision by Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron to allocate $42 million for research into the psychedelic drug ibogaine as a treatment for opioid addiction. The article, titled “The Big Money Behind Kentucky AG Daniel Cameron’s Bizarre Psychedelic Drug Crusade,” raises critical questions about the motivations and interests that may be influencing this controversial move.

A Web of Financial and Political Interests

One of the most striking aspects of the article is its exploration of the financial and political interests that appear to be intertwined with the ibogaine proposal. Sollenberger uncovers connections to billionaire Republican megadonor Jeff Yass, who stands to benefit financially from the development of ibogaine. The article also highlights the involvement of other political figures, such as U.S. Senator Rand Paul and GOP strategist Rex Elsass, adding layers of complexity and raising questions about the role of political influence in public health decisions.

Timing and Transparency

The timing of the ibogaine proposal, coming amid a gubernatorial election where Cameron is a candidate, adds another layer of intrigue. The lack of consultation with other members of the Opioid Abatement Advisory Commission, which is responsible for allocating the funds, is a glaring omission that the article rightly scrutinizes. This lack of transparency is particularly concerning given that the funds in question were secured through a settlement intended to address the opioid crisis in Kentucky.

Ethical Questions

The article also raises ethical questions about the allocation of these funds. Critics argue that the money would be better spent on proven treatments and recovery facilities, rather than on a risky and unproven alternative therapy like ibogaine. This point is particularly salient given that ibogaine is currently illegal in all 50 states and has been associated with significant health risks.

A Deep Dive into a Complex Issue

Sollenberger’s article serves as a comprehensive deep dive into a complex and contentious issue. By drawing on a range of sources and presenting a multi-faceted view, the article provides valuable insights into the intersection of politics, financial interests, and public health policy in Kentucky. It raises important questions that deserve further investigation and public discussion, particularly as the state grapples with the ongoing opioid crisis.

In summary, this article is a must-read for anyone interested in understanding the complexities and potential implications of Kentucky’s $42 million bet on ibogaine. It serves as a stark reminder of the need for transparency, ethical considerations, and public accountability in decisions that impact public health and well-being.

Image: Screenshot of ‘The Big Money Behind Kentucky AG Daniel Cameron’s Bizarre Psychedelic Drug Crusade’ by Roger Sollenberger, Senior Political Reporter for The Daily Beast.