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Sept. 6, 1996
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Most people have probably read or heard about the news report that
compared chocolate to marijuana.
I really took exception to that report as I l-o-v-e chocolate and would
never ever consider using marijuana.
It is said in the report by Nature, researchers from San Diego's
Neurosciences Institute, that chocolate has compounds that copy
ingredients of marijuana that trigger euphoria in the brain.
A person in the chocolate business has been quoted as saying that he
has said for years that chocolate is one of the last legal vices. What
many people don't realize and what is not repeated in conversations
about this report is that it takes 25 pounds of chocolate for a
130-pound person to get a marijuana-like high.
As far as I'm concerned, this is one story that should have never been
reported. It's like the artificial sweetener scare of a few years ago
when it was noted that the sweetener caused cancer. What wasn't noted
was that it took a huge amount of that sweetener to copy what had
happened to laboratory mice.
Sometimes people in research are so desperate to make the news and get
funding for their projects that they are prone to exaggerate. Then we in
the media pick up the reports and use what they've got to say rather
than disregarding what is being said because is it so unusual.
I've always kind of worried about my chocolate intake because, first of
all, I'm always battling the bulge - weight, and then I remember the
movie, "Days of Wine and Roses."
It starred Jack Lemon and Lee Remick with both becoming alcoholics.
They both liked chocolate and it was said in the movie that people who
like chocolate are candidates to be alcoholics.
I've never been a big drinker - actually I rarely ever drink, but it
always worried me that I might be a candidate for alcoholism because I
have such a sweet tooth for chocolate. I really don't see how that is
possible because I really don't like the taste of alcohol, especially
beer. And I can't stand enough whiskey to get me drunk so I really don't
believe I'm a candidate for being an alcoholic.
I just wonder how many people in the world have wondered the same thing
because of that movie? It was a good movie and viewed by many.
The bottom line of all this is that I'm going to continue to enjoy my
chocolate. I don't eat that much, but it is a satisfying after-meal
treat. I just hope is isn't outlawed.
But in this day and time, who knows!
EDITOR'S NOTE: Mac McKinnon is editor and publisher of the Pecos
Enterprise. His column appears on Wednesday and Friday.
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Valley schoolchildren still have quite a few weeks before they face
their first report cards this year, but the grades already are out for
the nation's governors. The Cato Institute released its third biennial
fiscal policy report card last month and it had some good news for Texas
Gov. George W. Bush - and that translates into good news for Texas
The governor pulled down a B from the Washington think tank, which
evaluated 46 of the nation's governors on tax and spending policy
criteria. Bush's grade was a vast improvement over former Gov. Ann
Richards, who earned a D from the institute two years ago. ...
The report's summary on Texas is positively upbeat: ``Ten years ago
Texas was drowning in an oil recession; today it is growing by some
measures faster than any other state, thanks to exports under the North
American Free Trade Agreement and the absence of a personal income
tax.'' While Bush cannot claim credit for either of those phenomenon, he
has been consistently pro-free trade, has fostered goodwill with Mexico
at a time when that has been in short supply, and has made it clear that
a personal income tax will not be implemented during his watch. ...
The Cato report counts among Bush's other accomplishments the
comprehensive school reform that shifted some control to the local
level; easing of insurance, trucking and environmental regulations; and
the tort reform legislation. ...
It's not too late, governor, to set your sights on an A in 1998.
-- Valley Morning Star (Harlingen)
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