One of the conclusions of the research is that growing drug use among the middle aged will cause health problems that will further burden the health care system, but that may not be the most acute problem.
Drug use is likely to curb productivity. People who are high are not usually good workers. Alcohol abuse has long been considered a major reason that people take days off. Abuse of prescription drugs is another reason. Pot and cocaine need to be added to that list. Things are getting so bad that a third of the people in the 50 to 59 year-old group may not be working at their full potential. That is a lot of people to have operating ineffectively in the work force.
Douglas A. McIntyre is an editor at 24/7 Wall St.