This man speaks truth.
I got big into absinthe a few years back (and have well and truly become an absinthe purist and snob, for which I make no apologies haha), initially Green Fairy (since that was the most easily available) before discovering that it and the majority of its 'e'-less brethren (ie absinth, vs absinthe) are not remotely authentic or traditional and don't really have the right to a name that even resembles that of the traditional product.
The effects of thujone (the hallucinogenic ingredient, a component of wormwood) have been wildly exaggerated over the years, and especially these days you're more likely to pass out drunk before experiencing any hallucinogenic effects, and I've been through 2/3 of a good bottle in one sitting (and know many who've done much more than that) and not seen any fairies or been tempted to cut off my own ears. I can't speak for every product ever released of course, but some of the links below lead to reviews of various products.
The difference between the shit ('absinth', though this rule of 'with an e' or 'without an e' isn't without exception) and the good stuff, is that the former is an oil blend, whereas the latter is distilled. Also, part of the reason they don't deserve to be called absinth(e) is that they don't even louche, the term used to describe the almost instantaneous cloudiness that spreads through the drink when water is added.
These fake products owe their origin to Czechoslovakia in the early '90s, so their claims of being traditional etc are absolute bullshit - traditional absinthe is mainly French or Swiss (though Germany has done some decent ones, and even Marilyn Manson - a big absinthe buff - has made his own, quite a good one too), but unfortunately these are by far the most easily available. I recently visited Tamborine Mountain Distillery in Qld, who have made the only proper distilled absinthe in Australia, 'Moulin Rooz', quite nice, but on the more bitter side.
The fakes also make a point of going on about how much alcohol they contain, which is in no way a measure of the quality of the product (nor is the thujone content).
Oh, and another thing? NEVER EVER EVER LIGHT IT. That is more bullshit made up by the purveyors of the fake crap (can you tell it annoys me?) to make their product seem more exotic, and unfortunately it's trickled into popular portrayals of absinthe ('From Hell' comes to mind). This ruins the flavours and is an absolute affront to connoisseurs of traditional absinthe and the absinthe ritual.
Absinthe CAN be consumed straight, but it's not intended to be - the addition of chilled water brings out all the flavours and nuances. Often the water is run through a sugar cube placed on a special perforated spoon (I've got about 6 of these, not for any different function, they're each just cool in their own way), but this is optional (some absinthes are more bitter than others, so the sugar can make them more palatable if the bitterness is too much for you).
Some excellent resources, the info from which I'd be wasting time to attempt to reproduce as concisely, can be found here...
If you're in Sydney there's the great Absinthe Salon in Albion St which sells many legitimate products - http://www.absinthesalon.com.au/ . You can see the products they sell at http://www.absinthesalon.com.au/page/products.html (click the left-most image); I doubt you'd recognise any of the brands from what you'd see in pretty much any liquor shop or licensed premises.