500,000 opioid deaths expected next decade

“Once you’re into heroin, it’s almost like a relationship with a person you love. And letting go of that – the thought of never seeing someone I love again – I couldn’t imagine giving it up forever.” – A homeless user in San Francisco (Time Special Report: “The Opioid Diaries”)

Attempting to make sense of the worst crises and catastrophes to plague mankind, analysts often describe how “a perfect storm” of events and conditions have worked together to bring about some great evil.

Thus, the “unsinkable” Titanic, which dragged more than 1,500 souls down to the bottom of the North Atlantic in 1912, didn’t simply crash into an iceberg due to rotten luck. “The ship was ensnared by a perfect storm of circumstances that conspired her to her doom,” writes British scientist Richard Corfield. “Such a chain is familiar to those who study disasters – it is called an ‘event cascade.’”