03.24.14

You won’t believe this! Some kids don’t have food or money! But they all can have ricin thanks to the internet! Your jaw will hit the floor!

Posted in Bioterrorism, Culture of Lickspittle, Ricin Kooks at 4:08 pm by George Smith


A petty nuisance at a posh school, just before the mailed fist of emergency response showed up at the dorm.

The news yesterday was that authorities had recovered 0.12 gram of castor powder/ricin sample from Georgetown student Danny Milzman.

Of that, a smaller amount is ricin.

In the lab in the old days you could do a rough determination of protein, which is what ricin is, in a sample by redissolving a portion and looking at simple photometric absorbance at an ultraviolet wavelength. This returns a very gross estimate.

And ricin would hardly be the only protein in the sample so it’s impossible to say without a lot more information how relatively toxic Milzman’s stash was.

However, no kid in a dorm with an old electronic copy of Saxon [1] can make much of anything, though, except that which will send him to jail.

From the wire:

A Georgetown University student who was charged Friday with possessing the biological toxin ricin made aggressive comments online toward another student earlier this year, according to a recent Georgetown graduate who said she alerted the school’s administration to the messages and believed the second student might be in danger.

Daniel Milzman, 19, is facing federal charges for allegedly making the deadly toxin and keeping it in his dorm room, according to court papers …

Milzman’s friends said immediately after his arrest that he has a “good heart and a good conscience.”

The recent Georgetown graduate said she was alarmed when she found messages that Milzman had apparently posted on Facebook attacking another Georgetown student. The messages, which the graduate saved as images and sent to the university’s Office of Student Conduct on Jan. 29, call the male student a “useless waste of space” and suggest that Milzman would be happy if the other student killed himself.

The graduate, who is 23, spoke to The Washington Post on the condition of anonymity because of fears of retribution. The graduate, who does not know Milzman, served as an orientation adviser to the other student and was concerned about the bullying nature of the comments when that student made them public on Facebook…

In an interview Saturday, [a Georgetown U. friend of Milzman’s, Thomas Lloyd told the Washington Post] that the conversation [in which Milzman told him of his ricin] was “ambiguous” about whether or not Milzman would use the poison on another person and “there was certainly no mention of a specific person.”

Here’s an abstract on the subject of the clinical toxicology of castor seed ingestion in Kansas over ten years.

Summarizing, doctors and researchers found 84 cases over a decade, 50 of which were accidental, 34 — intentional. Children and the witless probably account for the accidental cases.

There may be an attempted poisoning or two in the 34 unintentional, although I’m betting some were attempted suicides and some curious stupidity or belief in wive’s tales about the value of a castor seed as folk medicine. (There is such belief in foreign countries.)

“One patient developed hematochezia and vomiting after reportedly ingesting and intravenously injecting castor bean seeds,” report the doctors.

This would apparently seem to be a clear attempt at suicide. Or, more remotely, someone looking for a high.

No deaths were reported. Unintentional consumption averaged eight and a half seeds per dose. Intentional, ten seeds.

Of note:

“No delayed symptoms, serious outcomes, or deaths were reported. Discussion. Due to the presence of ricin, there is concern for serious outcomes after ingestions of the seeds of the castor bean plant. In this study GI symptoms were most commonly reported but serious morbidity or mortality was not present. The true risk of castor bean plant seed ingestions should continue to be re-evaluated.

This is real science. What the mythology of ricin is in America is not.

What the national security expert apparatus also works on has little to do with using the science of a matter to make evaluations.

The latter was born out of caution after 9/11, and then exploitation when many realized that there was free money that was going to be flowing to defend against the stuff.

So when some dumb shit of a kid, or two, “make ricin” and armored cars filled with army men masked by respirators and hazmat men in scuba tanks descend on their neighborhoods you can only be impressed/astonished/horrified/[fill in the blank] at the bizarre affairs.

Frankly, at this point I’m surprised such things have not yet been included in sketch comedy.

It is a demonstration, too, in this case as to how — on the internet and courtesy of Google — the excrement of “information” rises to the top, crowding out and making useless the rational and considered.

No matter what is put on the web, regardless of refereed science on the matter, what happens is dictated by belief that has been made and twisted from the course and nature of the war on terror and, absurdly, the narratives of the news media and entertainment industries.

All the stupid find is the concocted and the fantastic, suitable only for entertainment. Which it has been for a long time, for anyone who watches movies, television, internet video and on and on.

DD’s law remains in effect:

The probability that any predicted national security catastrophe, or doomsday scenario, will occur is inversely proportional to its appearance in entertainments, movies, television dramas and series, novels, non-fiction books, magazines and news …

Danny Milzmans are one of the results of the circumstances covered under DD’s Law.

The Culture of Lickspittle, groupthink and the internet, all as they pertain to ricin, plus youthful very bad judgment are at the root of the story.


[1]. The words of Kurt Saxon, from The Poor Man’s James Bond, the original source of Danny Milzman’s ricin recipe, now retrievable by iPhone:

“It is bad to poison your fellow man, blow him up or even shoot him or otherwise disturb his tranquility. It is also uncouth to counterfeit your nation’s currency and it is tacky to destroy property as instructed in [the chapter] Arson and Electronics …

“But some people are just naturally crude … It is your responsibility, then, to be aware of the many ways bad people can be harmful …

“Also, in the event that our nation is invaded by Foreign Devils, it is up to you to destroy them with speed and vigor. Or — and perish the thought — if our Capitol should fall to the enemy within, I expect you to do your duty.

“It is right to share with your enemies, the knowledge in this wonderful book …”

The world of digital sharing: Often not what it’s cracked up to be.



Share! It’s edutainment!

Way better than:

Five Things You Need to Know About Ricin!

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