Bill Farnham – Decreasing the Surplus Population

Map of Missouri highlighting Pulaski County

Pulaski County, Missouri. Image via Wikipedia

An elected official in Pulaski County, Missouri has a plan for reducing America’s surplus population. Ironically, the idea found its inception during the holiday season.

I speak of the illustrious Pulaski County Eastern District Commissioner, Bill Farnham. I learned about Farnham while reading an article by Pulaski County reporter Darrell Todd Maurina (quoted in this post).

Later in this essay, I’ll invoke a bit of A Christmas Carol. In this, our most festive time of year, it seems apropos.

Let’s start at the beginning.

Missouri is getting tough on Meth and the stuff used to make it. In particular:

A news brief about Gov. Jay Nixon’s announcement that he will back legislation to require prescriptions for pseudoephedrine-based cold medicines so the medicine can’t be used as the key ingredient in methamphetamine.

According to the news brief, “The announcement comes just eight weeks after the governor heralded a new electronic system designed to track sales of drugs to treat allergy and cold sufferers. Pseudoephedrine is the main component to make meth and several Missouri communities have already instituted a prescription only policy through local ordinances.”

Farnham has a problem with this higher government regulation because he believes the medicines can be adequately controlled by being dispensed from behind the counter without a prescription. That way, the store clerks can utilize their expert detecting skills to decide whether someone is a meth producer or not.

However, good ol’ Bill isn’t just concerned, he’s downright disgusted and ready to get real–real tough.

“Why should you have to pay $100 for a doctor visit to get $6 worth of cold medicine all because of a bunch of meth heads?” Farnham asked. “I think they ought to just shoot every meth head.”

That’s the spirit, Bill. You just make sure we kill all those……wait……hey, Bill, maybe we should think about this thing, right?  Come on, Bill, we’re reasonable, Constitution-loving people here. Right?


Upon making the statement, Bill’s colleagues on the County Commission reminded him of the presence of reporters. After all, our friend Bill is just a bit emotional. He doesn’t really want the press to publish such statements.

“Print it; if we start getting tough with them it will stop some of them. How much money does the county waste on them? We have to house them, take them to the doctor and the dentist, and they may say they have to pay restitution but we never get any,” Farnham said. “Anybody want to ingest that stuff into their body they have to be nuts. Rat poison, Drano, battery acid? …  A lot of people are being penalized for the actions of a few.”

Oh, Bill. You didn’t hear a word in high school civics, did you? You were probably daydreaming about cleaning your assault rifle, weren’t you?

Those darn meth heads. They just want to be a burden and suck tax dollars. That’s all they want. They are never in their sad-sack position because of unfortunate circumstances. They aren’t abused as children, mentally ill, suffering from domestic abuse, or those who make unfortunate choices, but later find themselves prisoners to their addictions. Nope, they are nothing more than Ebenezer Scrooge’s “surplus population.” To Bill they are worthless miscreants who only have themselves to blame.

Tell me, Bill, are there no prisons? Are there no workhouses? Is the treadmill still in full vigor? It sounds like you’d expect them to be, especially if they deprive you of taxes. But Bill is no dummy. He knows that bullets are cheaper than all other alternatives.

Those dadgum addicts. A bullet is what they need.

No, Bill, that’s not what they need.

You see, Bill, nobody wants to be an addict. Some are abused. Some suffer from mental ailments or infirmities. Many were once called “victim.” Almost all made bad choices and later wanted to turn back to a straight life, but addiction wouldn’t let them. They hate their situation, and they hate themselves.

Would you like them to go to hell, Bill? I have good news for you. They are already there.

Addiction is a nasty thing. It takes time, caring, and patience to overcome. Most of all, it takes a system to understand that those who are addicted are not evil. They are diseased.

Believe me, Bill, they would gladly accept your bullet. Being dead as a doornail would ease their suffering.

Luckily, Bill only has the best interests of Pulaski County in mind. He would never advocate summary capital punishment for mere personal reasons.

Speaking after the meeting, Farnham said his wife has serious allergy problems that require use of stronger drugs than the alternatives to products that contain pseudoephedrine.

“She buys a lot of over-the-counter stuff like that. (Nixon’s proposal) will drive up the cost of healthcare,” Farnham said. “It’s just letting the bad guy win.”

We can’t let let the bad guys win–especially those bad guy addicts. If we let them win, then the terrorists win. Bill knows. He’s an elected official.

But Bill, did you ever consider that in the eyes of some higher power, you may be more odious, more wretched, and less fit to live than millions of addicts like those suffering in Pulaski County?

With that said, Bill, I suggest you go to the county library and read the Constitution, followed by Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. Please resist the urge to burn both.

Then resign. Post-haste.


2 thoughts on “Bill Farnham – Decreasing the Surplus Population

  1. Bill is an idiot, but he does have one solid point — requiring prescriptions for psuedoephedrine is absurd.

    1. Doctors cost money.
    He’s right about this — my last doctor visit would’ve cost $90 if not for Tricare. It was a 2-minute appointment in which the doctor asked me how my prescription was working and whether the dosage was alright, then wrote me a refill. This would’ve been OK by me only for the simple reason that my prescription costs 5 times the doctor visit. It’s also a real drug (actually, an amphetamine) with a risk of side effects and addiction at normal dosages.

    2. The prescription system is not an arm of law enforcement.
    The FDA requires prescriptions for pharmaceuticals because it is cost prohibitive and economically inefficient for the average consumer to make an informed purchase. Yes, I know the federal government does this with controlled substances (and they shouldn’t), but those substances can be distinguished — the substances are potent, powerful psychoactive chemicals in and of themselves, while psuedoephedrine is a common, effective and overwhelmingly safe remedy for cold symptoms that just happens to be a precursor to the hillbilly’s home-brewed rendition of cocaine. The fact is, doctors are not regulators. They are healthcare providers. The fact that the government finds it fit to license them should not force them into agency with the state.

  2. Fantastic points, and I completely agree. Many medical providers also see your point in #1 as they try to get some of the more common drugs dispensed through self-help processes.

    Your point in #2 also hits home. I always look at the second and third order effects of actions. How soon until we make rubber cement a controlled item simply because school children of all ages love to sniff the stuff? (man, that stuff was great)

    As a libertarian, I’m with you on these points.

    I lost track of the prescription thing when he started talking about bullets, so thanks for addressing those issues.

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