For years, local TV news directors had a mantra: “If it bleeds, it leads.”

Then consultants came along, told half the female anchors to change their hair color and tweaked the formula to “If it scares, we’re there.”

According to The Kansas City Star, a new drug is a problem in certain areas of the country, including Florida and Appalachia. It’s called alpha-PVP, known on the streets as “flakka.”

TV reporters are working to break the story — during the next ratings sweeps.

Flakka has a similar chemical makeup to drugs commonly known as bath salts and supposedly can be purchased online from China. The National Institute on Drug Abuse says it can be eaten, snorted, injected or vaporized in an e-cigarette.

Apparently, it highly addictive and makes people even batsh** crazier than they’ve been lately.

The Star: “In one highly publicized Florida case, a man reportedly high on flakka gnawed on and disfigured another man’s face before he was shot to death by police. Another user … impaled himself while trying to climb a fence around [a police] station.”

Expect to see breathless “investigative” reporters, somber and concerned DEA spokesmen and police detectives. Will they find any actual flakka users? No, and even if they did they would be scared to mess with crazy.

The story will be deemed weighty, so the reporter will be asked to briefly join the anchors on set. As a service to the industry, we found these TV makeup tips, courtesy of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, anchorwoman Beth Malicki: http://tinyurl.com/nbxoglz

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