Ep. 57 – Digging up the Roots of America’s Opioid Epidemic: Sam Quinones, Dreamland

Greg interviews Sam Quinones, author of the best-selling book Dreamland. A true tale of America’s opioid epidemic, Dreamland is a poignant and insightful narrative of the current threat sweeping the nation. Sam shares a story of a community pool he encountered in Portsmouth, Ohio to explain why the book is named Dreamland. “I began to hear stories of this gorgeous pool that held the community together. It acted as a babysitter and class distinctions almost faded, because everyone looked the same in a swimsuit. The name of the pool was Dreamland,” says Sam. “It was almost a stand-in for the communities we’ve destroyed in so many parts of the country. When jobs left the community, the pool was replaced by a strip mall.”

Sam strongly feels that oxycodone is the reason for America’s opioid epidemic. “We wouldn’t have the intense heroin problem that we have today, without the cheap heroin from Mexico and Colombia,” says Sam. He explains that because people start on the pills, there are no social barriers within the epidemic. “All that stigma and fear of needles fades away because the addiction is so domineering. Opioid addiction today is one of the most potent threats to personal freedom that we have in America,” says Sam.

He goes on to explain just how the affordable Mexican dealers set up shop in America. He says that essentially people help them, since they often don’t know how to speak English or where to go. “The addicts befriended them and opened up the markets to them. They developed their own system for selling by giving out free samples and standing outside of methadone clinics,” says Sam.

Listen to the podcast to hear how the dealers used a “pizza delivery system” to hook people, how we can join the fight against the opioid epidemic and how the epidemic has changed since he wrote Dreamland.


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2019-01-10T15:22:17+00:00 December 29th, 2016|Education, Podcasts|2 Comments


  1. Dr. George B. Elder January 3, 2017 at 5:45 pm - Reply

    Great sad story of the destruction of America. We need everyone to wake up and realize what is going on. I was a school Head for over 30 years and decided that if I could do something about it in my school I would. I had tried educating my students about drugs for 28 years hoping and believing that they would make good decisions regarding drug use. It took me a long time to realize that this education simply didn’t go to the party. I realized that all my students needed was a little help at the party to make good decisions about drug use and alcohol abuse. Real accountability has in my career always been the most powerful shaper of behavior. It works with adults and children alike. I warned my students 3 months out that when they got back to school in the fall I was going to drug test everyone of them with the most accurate and most reliable hair test in the world that went back 3 months and would tell you not only the drugs you had been using but how much drug you had been using. This warning was the real deterrent. I didn’t want to identify anyone unless they couldn’t stop and needed help. Almost all of my students 7-12 stopped or didn’t start because they knew this science would work and I meant what I said and cared enough to help them. This test was not invasive, it could not be easily beaten like urine testing and it was capable of identifying 6 to 18 times the drug users of the old technology of urine testing. If you know that you will be found out if you use drugs then you simply make a better decision almost every time. It works. I started speaking about our program at educational conferences and now I work for the company that I chose to protect my kids. We have done more hair tests for drugs of abuse than all the labs in the world combined and are trusted by 10% of the Fortune 500 companies, many major police forces and 39 foreign countries not to mention more schools, colleges and fraternities than anyone in the world. I would love to talk with you and see how we might work together to save our kids and our country from this destructive and way too often deadly threat. I see it as voluntary slavery and we can and must stop it before it is too late. God Bless you in your important work.

  2. Jane Smith January 5, 2017 at 1:24 am - Reply

    Great read, explained how Oxycontin users created heroin addicts. I liked the pizza delivery system analogy.

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