From Forensic Files to Chinese Glycerin

Everyone who knows me is well aware of my interest in true crime. It may go back to the days when I wanted to be a CHP officer (my mother always insisted that it was due to my crush on Erik Estrada, whose character she annoyingly called Poncho, instead of Ponch…)

I think it’s because I was brought up watching all sorts of law & order types of shows. My dad was always watching Gunsmoke (Marshal Dillon reminded him of his hero, John Wayne. Though it’s a Western, it was about a Western cop, so I’m including it here), Adam-12, S.W.A.T., TJ Hooker (William Shatner, how cool), Columbo, and of course, CHiPs.

I always loved these shows and added Dragnet re-runs to my list. Now I watch CSI Las Vegas & Forensic Files. Last night’s episode of Forensic Files exposed a guy who poisoned his wife by placing diethylene glycol, or antifreeze, in her food. The narrator stated that antifreeze has a distinct odor and flavor, and exactly how the murderer concealed the poison in his wife’s food would not be revealed on this program.

Naturally that annoyed me but I understood why they didn’t announce it. I said to The Man About The Place “No worries, I can probably find it on the internet.” With a distinctly worried look on his face, we watched the last part of “Suitable for Framing,” a classic Columbo episode, before going to sleep.

This morning I decided to look up anti freeze/ diethylene glycol poisoning to see if I could discover how this guy pulled it off (purely for curiosity, I swear!) The first article I found was much more horrifying than a single psychopath poisoning his wife. Thispoison involved the poisoning of many, many people – diethylene glycol was substituted for glycerin in a Chinese factory because it’s much cheaper.

Only problem is, the glycerin was meant for human consumption – in medication. America haters claim the United States is such a big bully in the world arena – yet, unregulated factories in China have quietly poisoned the world, through cough syrup, gall bladder medication, toothpaste, pet food.

Melamine in wheat gluten. More and more of the products we buy are coming from China – not just general merchandise, but food and pharmaceuticals. The products COULD be “Made in USA” but with Chinese acquired ingredients. What more must happen before something is done? What can be done?

Maybe the real terrorists to concern ourselves with are not hidden in the hills of Afghanistan or Pakistan. Maybe we should think about the silent, slithery, sneaky terrorists trying to poison us all with the things we need the most – food and medication.

This article was about Panama. Will the USA be the next target?  We’ve had it with our pet food and with toothpaste. What’s next? Breakfast cereal? Cough syrup? Just a morning ramble – hoping my coffee is actually from where the label says it’s from…I never did get to find out how the guy killed his wife though. The Man About The Place can rest easy for another day.

9/18/08 UPDATE – WELL WE FOUND OUT WHAT WAS NEXT.  MELAMINE IN BABY FORMULA.

In case you missed the link, read this: From China to Panama, A Trail of Poisoned Medicine

More Frightening Stuff – It Happened Here in 1937 Lethal Medicine

Another blog:  Hey Obama, McCain: Whatchu Gonna Do About This?

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