Obama's America: Laundry Detergent Becomes 'Liquid Gold' on the Mean Streets

Clearly our war on laundry detergent is not working.

Theft of Tide detergent has become so rampant that some cities are setting up special task forces to stop it and retailers like CVS are taking special security precautions to lock down the liquid.

One Tide thief in West St. Paul, Minn., stole $25,000 of the product over 15 months before he was arrested last year.

"That was unique that he stole so much soap," said West St. Paul Police Chief Bud Shaver.

"The name brand is [all] Tide. Amazing, huh?"

Tide is more than just a way to wash the dirt away. It has become an untraceable form of money, in a time when the US dollar doesn't hold its value for long.

Tide has become a form of currency on the streets. The retail price is steadily high -- roughly $10 to $20 a bottle -- and it's a staple in households across socioeconomic classes.

Tide can go for $5 to $10 a bottle on the black market, authorities say, and some thieves even resell it to stores.

"There's no serial numbers and it's impossible to track," said Detective Larry Patterson of the Somerset, Ky., Police Department, where authorities have seen a huge spike in Tide theft. "It's the item to steal."

Perhaps thieves are stealing Tide and selling it to cope with the exorbitant cost of contraceptives in our downright mean country. Actually no, they're rolling Tide to buy hard drugs:

"They'll do it right in front of a cop car -- buying heroin or methamphetamine with Tide," said Detective Rick Blake of the Gresham Police Department. "We would see people walking down the road with six, seven bottles of Tide. They were so blatant about it."

Update: Well, shoot.