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"Speed" Renamed in Thailand
to Correct Misunderstanding



The government in Thailand has renamed amphetamines yaa baa or "madness drug" instead of yaa maa or "horse drug" in order to discourage its rural citizens from using the drug. Government spokesman Somsak Prisanananthakul said many rural people had become addicted to the drug because its Thai name gave them the impression that yaa maa would enable them to work like a horse. Somsak expects the new name to scare away potential users in the future ("Yaa maa is now 'Madness Drug'," Bangkok Post, July 19, 1996).