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June 1, 2021 79 min

In which John Heilemann talks with Rick Doblin, the pioneering champion of psychedelics who has waged a decades-long crusade to bring about mainstream acceptance of psychoactive drugs for therapeutic and recreational use. Heilemann and Doblin have known each other for more than 30 years, and they discuss Doblin’s path-breaking work at the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, which he founded and has turned into a multimillion dollar research and advocacy group employing 130 neuroscientists, pharmacologists, and regulatory specialists; his focus on paving the way for MDMA (aka Ecstasy or Molly) to be used in clinical settings as a treatment for depression, addiction, PTSD, and other maladies; how the cultural acceptance of marijuana (first as a medicine and then more broadly) is a leading indicator of where things are headed with MDMA, psilocybin mushrooms, LSD, and other mind-altering compounds; the future of psychedelic medicine, now that FDA approval is on the horizon; and the coming psychedelics investment bubble. Doblin also describes his personal experiences with psychedelics and how they changed his life, as well as the potential for backlash to the psychedelic renaissance, especially from fundamentalist groups, as social mores change. 

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