The Spice-Business Entrepreneurs are Breaking Bad? – blog post by David M. Boje, Ph.D. Oct 9 2015

THE SPICE-Business ENTREPRENEURS are BREAKING BAD

The bottom line: Attempts by states to bar sales of substances that induce a marijuana-like high have been thwarted by nimble entrepreneurs” – Bloomberg.

This essay is about how the Spice-Business storytelling is entangled with ecological storytelling, education storytelling, economic storytelling, political storytelling, and our own individual living stories.  Spice-Business storytelling is so entangled with these other sorts of storytelling, it is time to develop a science of disentanglement of Spice-Business storytelling from our everyday lives. Spice-Business Entrepreneurs are putting the spin on their ‘Spice-Business-Storytelling.’  They are influencing the national spice narrative, attempting to argue its better to have high quality Spice (fake weed) rather than risk the unregulated made-in-bathtub varieties of Spice that are making Zombies of us all.

“Derek Williams was working as a trash-truck driver when his cousin told him about K2, a product made from plant materials and chemicals that provided a legal, marijuana-like high. Williams saw his ticket out of the rubbish business: Make a better blend. He studied compounds that mimic the effects of pot, and soon after created his own brand, Syn Incense, in his home in Kansas City, Mo. Williams, 29, says his startup, KC Incense, has sold more than $1.5 million worth of the stuff in at least 10 states in less than a year. He says that marketing the product as incense allows him to avoid federal regulations, though he says he knows most customers smoke it” Bloomberg.

Spice-Business entrepreneurs, like Williams have to stay one jump ahead of the law. Each time the state and federal regulators close in, he swaps out some old chemical for new ones.  “Williams says that when his ingredients are restricted, he switches to similar ones” . —Bloomberg. He is not alone.

William E. Marbaker, director of the crime laboratory division of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, says that’s typical of producers and makes it hard for law enforcement. “You’re basically playing a game of whack-a-mole trying to keep ahead,” he says”

“It’s a Friday afternoon in April, and Wesley Upchurch, the 24-year-old owner of Pandora Potpourri, has arrived at his factory to fill some last-minute orders for the weekend. The factory is a cramped, unmarked garage bay adjoining an auto body shop in Columbia, Mo. What Upchurch and his one full-time employee, 21-year-old Jay Harness, are making is debatable, at least in their eyes. The finished product looks like crushed grass, comes in three-gram (.11 ounce) packets, and sells for about $13 wholesale. Its key ingredient is a synthetic cannabinoid that mimics tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the active ingredient in marijuana. Upchurch, however, insists his product is incense. “There are rogue players in this industry that make the business look bad for everyone,” Upchurch says. “We don’t want people smoking this.” … “He says he sells about 41,000 packets a month, delivering directly to 50 stores around the country and shipping the rest to five other wholesalers, some of whom use Pandora’s products to create their own brands. Upchurch says he ships mostly in bulk orders for larger discounts. He projects his company will earn $2.5 million in revenue with $500,000 in profits this year, depending on what federal and state laws pass. “I think my business model is based less on charts than it is on guts, or something,” he says… “Upchurch orders many of his “special additives” from China, and both he and Morris use the international export directory Alibaba.com to see what’s available. Search “buy JWH” and you’ll find at least 3,800 Chinese labs standing by for custom orders” … “Law enforcement has affected business in another way, too. Behind Upchurch there is a shelf lined with large, open boxes filled with different kinds of vegetation. Because state laws aren’t the same and can change so quickly, he’s switched from creating large custom batches for each region to creating premixes of treated ingredients to meet the standards of various states. “When compounds become outlawed, we remove them and replace them with suitable alternatives,” he says. “In general that may still vary from lot to lot based on destination.” …. “According to the probable-cause statement, there was a recently graduated chemist from the University of Kansas working there who admitted attempting to synthesize new strains of JWH. Riggs has been charged with intent to create a controlled substance or a controlled substance analogue” —  Bloomburg Business

The Spice-entrepreneurs, Upchurch and Williams, are maneuvering to make Spice legal, to keep it safe “Before marketing each of the different blends, Williams says he smoked various amounts to make sure they were safe, and had regular customers try new versions. “I wanted to know that I wasn’t going to be hurting people,” Williams says. — Bloomberg. But there is a problem: “Its potency can be up to one hundred or more times greater than THC – that’s how much drug it takes to produce an effect,” says Paul Prather, PhD, professor of pharmacology and toxicology at the at University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences” (Forbes).

Spice-Business Storytelling

We have ample documentation about he existence of storytelling in and by business (Boje,1991, 2008; Gabriel, 2000; Czarniawska, 2004). We know that business storytelling is instrumental,  highly practical (Boje, 2014)and has its way in politics, healthcare, education, military, family life, and the ecosystem (nature). Spice-Business storytelling is dominating all other ways of life, and cannot be understood in isolation from that influence.

The Spice Business Storytelling, for example, is creating a global health crisis, a political nightmare for city politicians, overcoming students in every level of eduction, resulted in 2000 spice-addicted soldiers dishonorable discharge, ruined families, and is an abuse of nature (putting toxic chemicals onto organic plant life, for profit). This eight billion dollar global industry is turning people into zombies.

SpiceHeadTIMELINE

Spice Early Christmas Business Storytelling is on such a massive scale, it promises to put the gift of a spice packet in every ZombieSpiceHead fireplace stocking. “Spice was launched in 2004 in the UK. By 2006, it had gained a considerable hold on the market, and the name Spice”Spice may contain one of many synthetic cannabinoids such as JWH-018, JWH-073, JWH-200, AM-2201 UR-144, XLR-11, AKB4, cannabicyclohexanol and AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA or AB-FUBINACA. Even the prescription drug phenazapam has been found in some products” (IBID).

The following 7-minute news report by CNN explains just how hard it is for law enforcement to get their hands around this fast-growing problem.

SPICE IS A GLOBAL BUSINESS MODEL

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#spice, #spicezombies, #storytelling