The Last Post: How a pharma dynasty’s drug deals created an empire of pain

A new book looks at the rise and fall of the Sacklers, the immensely wealthy family behind the hard selling of blockbuster painkiller OxyContin which is regarded as the catalyst for the opioid crisis in the US

If the Sackler name is familiar it may not be because of its connection to the marketing and production of highly addictive prescription drugs, but because of its prominence on many storied buildings at prominent art galleries, museums and universities

Recently on this page I wrote about an often-cited potential benefit in the legalisation of drugs such as cannabis or even cocaine. The argument goes that legitimate business could be trusted to run a controlled and regulated – and therefore safer – regime of offering such drugs for sale, just as it does with cigarettes and alcohol.

This would also give the state tax revenues on sales and profits that would help in paying the ...