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Archive for September, 2013

Morgan Says Marijuana is Safer

By Jamie1

Claiming that medical marijuana would be a safer, non-addictive and more-effective alternative to OxyContin, Orlando attorney John Morgan condemned the prescription pain killer in a speech Friday to argue that many of its users would be far better off smoking pot.

Speaking to the Tiger Bay Club of Central Florida, Morgan said that OxyContin, a commonly prescribed – and abused – pain medication, kills 16,000 people a year and addicts many more. He claimed marijuana – which is illegal in Florida and most states – is comparatively harmless and more effective.

“It is truly a disgrace what goes on,” said Morgan, best known for his Morgan & Morgan personal injury law firm, who chairs a statewide campaign to get a constitutional amendment legalizing medical marijuana on the 2014 Florida ballot. “OxyContin is a poison that is put into our system by pharmaceutical companies that make billions and billions of dollars.”

OxyContin is a brand-name drug whose active ingredient is oxycodone, an opioid analgesic. The Centers for Disease Control reported in February that there were 16,651 opioid analgesics overdose deaths nationally in 2010.

However, a statewide law-enforcement crackdown on illegal sales and use has cut the number of oxycodone-related Florida deaths by 41 percent, to 735 in 2012, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. Still, oxycodone remains the leading cause of overdose deaths in the state.

Purdue Pharma, which manufactures OxyContin, did not immediately respond Friday to Morgan’s speech.

Morgan’s point was to make marijuana look good by comparison.

“One thing I think most of us accept as truth is medical marijuana works, and it works for a broad variety of illnesses and ailments,” Morgan said. “It’s helpful with ALS, cancer, multiple sclerosis, glaucoma, epilepsy, all sorts of chronic pain.”

<span …read more

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Can The United Nations Block US MJ Legalization?

By Jamie1

The United Nations International Narcotics Control Board’s latest annual report expressed dismay at the legalization of marijuana in Washington and Colorado and urged “the Government of the United States to take necessary measures to ensure full compliance with the international drug control treaties in its entire territory”. This led many media outlets to report that the U.S. had violated the UN drug control treaties to which it is a signatory. U.S. obligations under the treaties, and indeed the broader international future of marijuana legalization, are complex matters. But the essential points can be summarized in a 4-part Q&A.

1. Is the U.S. currently in violation of the UN treaties it signed agreeing to make marijuana illegal? No. The U.S. federal government is a signatory to the treaty, but the States of Washington and Colorado are not. Countries with federated systems of government like the U.S. and Germany can only make international commitments regarding their national-level policies. Constitutionally, U.S. states are simply not required to make marijuana illegal as it is in federal law. Hence, the U.S. made no such commitment on behalf of the 50 states in signing the UN drug control treaties.

Some UN officials believe that the spirit of the international treaties requires the U.S. federal government to attempt to override state-level marijuana legalization. But in terms of the letter of the treaties, Attorney General Holder’s refusal to challenge Washington and Colorado’s marijuana policies is within bounds.

2. Can the UN punish countries that legalize marijuana? Only to a small degree. The UN International Narcotics Control Board is the keeper of the drug treaties and regularly chastises governments that violate their commitments. This can be embarrassing in international diplomatic circles, but no nation has ever collapsed due to embarrassment.

Because the International Narcotics Control Board has power over the production and transport …read more

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Holder Expands Changes in Drug-Case Policy

By Jamie1

The Justice Department is expanding a major change in federal drug sentencing policy to cover pending drug cases, Attorney General Eric Holder said Thursday.

Last month, Holder said certain low-level, nonviolent drug offenders — those without ties to large-scale organizations, gangs or cartels — no longer will be charged with offenses that impose severe mandatory minimum sentences.

Holder said he now has broadened the new policy to cover defendants who have not yet been convicted in drug cases that could involve lengthy mandatory prison sentences. The policy also may be applied, at the discretion of prosecutors, to a defendant who has entered a guilty plea, but has not yet been sentenced.

Mandatory minimum prison sentences, a legacy of the government’s war on drugs, limit the discretion of judges to impose shorter prison terms.

Holder says the government should reserve the most severe prison terms for serious, high-level or violent drug traffickers.

“Some federal drug statutes that mandate inflexible sentences — regardless of the individual conduct at issue in a particular case — do not serve public safety when they’re applied indiscriminately,” Holder told a criminal justice issues forum of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation.

At a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing this week, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., said that in one case, a first-time offender arrested with less than 2 ounces of cocaine was sentenced to 10 years in prison because of mandatory sentencing guidelines. Paul has drafted legislation along with committee chairman Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., that would give judges wider sentencing discretion as one way to relieve prison overcrowding and bring down the exploding costs of operating prisons.

Source: Associated Press (Wire)
Author: Pete Yost, The Associated Press
Published: September 19, 2013
Copyright: 2013 The Associated Press

…read more

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D.C. Councilman Pushes Marijuana Legalization

By Jamie1

The first medical marijuana stores opened in Washington, D.C., less than two months ago, but the D.C. Council is already considering legalizing the drug. At-large Councilman David Grosso, an independent, introduced legislation Tuesday to legalize marijuana possession and consumption for adults over 21.

“Most people understand the role that marijuana has played in our community: Unlike what was touted for years during the ‘War on Drugs’ that it’s a gateway drug, really all marijuana’s been is a gateway to arrest and a lifetime of struggling with the justice system,” he says.

If enacted, the law would levy a 10 percent tax on recreational marijuana and 6 percent on medical marijuana. It would also authorize the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration to issue licenses to recreational marijuana stores.

Grosso believes it would comply with Justice Department guidance issued Aug. 29, which said state-level marijuana legalization will be tolerated if businesses are tightly regulated.

Nobody has approached him to express interest in opening a shop, but about 100 constituents have emailed with supportive messages, he said.

Grosso isn’t the only councilman pushing for marijuana reform. Councilman Tommy Wells, a Democratic candidate for mayor, introduced a decriminalization bill July 10 to reduce penalties for possession of up to an ounce of marijuana to a $100 fine versus the current standard of up to six month in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.

“Rest assured that folks are going to be pushing for my bill at any hearing on Wells’ bill,” Grosso says. “I think what will happen is Councilman Wells will have a hearing on decriminalization, and people will show up and say, ‘Hey, this doesn’t go far enough!’ and then I think it would be smart for them to move forward with my bill.”

Although he supports the decriminalization bill, along with a majority of the council, Grosso …read more

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DEA Marijuana Raids Plummet

By Jamie1

New data released by the Drug Enforcement Administration reveals the agency has dramatically cut the number of raids on marijuana growers over the past two years, especially in California.

But, as SF Weekly noted, a closer look at the data reveals that the DEA has not become less aggressive. Rather, the agency appears to have been more effective by making fewer raids, but arresting more people and seizing more pot.

While the number of busts has decreased by about 22 percent, the amount of marijuana confiscated and the number of arrests made during raids have increased by about that much. In 2010, authorities pulled 7.4 million plants from 2,272 sites, resulting in 1,591 arrests and 59,928 pounds of pot, according to the DEA. In 2012, authorities confiscated 2.08 million plants from 1,784 sites. But the grand pull during those raids was a whopping 2,045 arrests and 64,920 pounds of pot.

As SF Weekly noted, the shift is likely due in part to the DEA’s disbandment of its nearly 30-year-old Campaign Against Marijuana Planting, or CAMP program. Allen St. Pierre, executive director of marijuana policy reform group NORML, told The Huffington Post that he believes technology may be driving the increase in arrests.

“Before, they would get the cannabis, but rarely get any arrests,” St. Pierre explained. “But with new technology — satellites, drones, cameras, etc. — they have a much better opportunity to get a bit of a body count, so to speak.”

A DEA spokesman wasn’t immediately available for comment.

St. Pierre, generally an outspoken critic against the DEA, hailed the agency’s shift.

“This is positive news, but I think it may have more to do with the pressure for forfeiture, which is always in the background for law …read more

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Denver Council Passes Historic Retail MJ Rules

By Jamie1

Denver City Council Monday night passed a historic bill that sets the rules and regulations for the retail marijuana industry in the state’s largest city. Most other big municipalities around Colorado have taken a time-out from setting their own regulations with many opting out to see how Denver’s system will work. Denver also was the first to take on medical marijuana regulations.

“The whole world is watching, not just the country,” said Councilman Charlie Brown, who led the council committee on the issue. “There will be some changes. It is a work in progress. We did what we could, but this is a huge unknown.”

Brown said he wants to hold another meeting with Denver’s police chief, the manager of parks and recreation and some municipal judges to talk about how to enforce the laws against public marijuana consumption.

Several council members were upset after a free marijuana giveaway Sept. 9 in Denver’s Civic Center park that included public pot smoking, which is against the law. No one was arrested or cited for the violations.

“When people are blatantly flaunting our laws and putting it in our face, that is not what we want for the city,” Brown said.

Now, he said, it is up to Congress to pass legislation that will allow a normal banking relationship within this industry. He cited a bill being sponsored by U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter, D-Golden.

Snipped

Complete Article: http://drugsense.org/url/xSBbf7UW

Source: Denver Post (CO)
Author: Jeremy P. Meyer, The Denver Post
Published: September 17, 2013
Copyright: 2013 The Denver Post
Website: http://www.denverpost.com/
Contact: openforum@denverpost.com

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Canada’s new Medical Marijuana rules cut Homegrowers, Pharmacists Out

By Jamie1

After two years of study and discussion, the federal government has finalized new rules for medical marijuana and granted a reprieve to pharmacists who opposed the rules in their draft form.

Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq rolled out the regulations today for formal publication in the Canada Gazette on Wednesday.

Under the new regime, the government will no longer produce or distribute medical pot and medical marijuana users will no longer be allowed to grow the product at home.

Health Canada said since the medical marijuana program was introduced in 2001, it has expanded to 30,000 people from the original 500 authorized to use the product.

“This rapid increase has had unintended consequences for public health, safety and security as a result of allowing individuals to produce marijuana in their homes,” the department said in a news release.

“Under the new regulations, production will no longer take place in homes and municipal zoning laws will need to be respected, which will further enhance public safety.”

Under the new regulations, the government will allow patients to buy prescribed amounts only from licensed growers who will be required to meet strict conditions.

In previous versions of the regulations, pharmacies were to distribute the product just like other medications, provoking concern from pharmacists, who expressed concerns about dispensing a product without sufficient research. They also cited security concerns.

The final version removes the pharmacists from the loop, leaving patients to rely on mail order for their medical marijuana.

“While the courts have said that there must be reasonable access to a legal source of marijuana for medical purposes, we believe that this must be done in a controlled fashion in order to protect public safety,” Aglukkaq said in a statement.

“These changes will strengthen the safety of Canadian communities while making sure patients can access what they need to treat serious illnesses.”

She used similar …read more

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Legal Marijuana: Will Most States Head That Way?

By Jamie1

Is it possible that most US states will legalize marijuana for recreational use? Already, Washington State and Colorado are working out detailed regulations for such use after voters last year approved the possession and consumption of personal amounts of pot. And 20 states, plus the District of Columbia, have allowed marijuana for medicinal purposes.

It’s been 17 years since California voters shocked the world by allowing doctors to write prescriptions for pot and almost exactly 31 years since Ronald Reagan assured the nation that “we’re going to win the war” on marijuana and other illicit drugs.

Now this summer, the Department of Justice (DOJ) has signaled that it will mostly leave to states the responsibility to regulate individuals’ use of pot. And a majority of Americans – 52 percent, according to the Pew Research Center, now agree with that ubiquitous reggae plea: “Le-ga-lize it.”

Yes, people are still being arrested for selling, even consuming, outlawed street drugs, and many members of society are still troubled by, among other things, new psychoactive compounds like the club drug “Molly,” which has been blamed for several recent deaths.

And specifically regarding marijuana, the federal government still categorizes it as more harmful than cocaine.

Nevertheless, some policy experts predict that 1 out of 5 states will have legal recreational marijuana for American adults by 2016, and even some legalization critics like columnist David Frum have conceded that before long, half of US states will probably sanction recreational use.

To be sure, some suggest those time frames may be a bit heady, especially given the relatively slow pace of medical-marijuana expansion. But such predictions are also hard to discount, given rapidly shifting attitudes, often across political lines, about pot.

“There’s a lot of political forces at …read more

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Thousands Cited for Having Pot on Federal Land

By Jamie1

Karen Strand didn’t think she’d get in trouble for having a small container of medical marijuana when she went hiking in Olympic National Park this summer.

President Barack Obama, she remembered, had said the federal government had “bigger fish to fry” than people who follow state marijuana laws, and Washington state had just legalized pot.

But a ranger pulled her over on a remote gravel road, and Strand wound up as one of at least 27,700 people cited for having pot on federal land since 2009, according to an Associated Press analysis of federal court data. The number of citations is small compared to the hundreds of millions of visitors to national parks, forests and monuments each year.

But it nevertheless illustrates one of the many issues Washington, Colorado and other states face in complying with last month’s Justice Department memo that requires them to address eight federal law enforcement priorities if they want to regulate marijuana. Among those priorities is keeping marijuana use and possession off federal property.

State officials have no plans to license pot gardens or stores on federal land, but beyond that, they say, it’s not clear what they can do to discourage backpackers or campers from bringing a few joints into Rocky Mountain or Mount Rainier National Park.

“It’s not one of the big topics we’ve talked a lot about,” said Jaime Smith, a spokeswoman for Washington Gov. Jay Inslee.

Other concerns on the DOJ’s list include keeping marijuana away from kids and cartels, preventing drugged driving and pot-related gun violence, and keeping unregulated marijuana grows from spoiling federal land.

Thousands of people receive tickets every year charging them with having pot on U.S. property — a federal misdemeanor punishable by up to 6 months in jail and a $5,000 fine. The charges typically don’t …read more

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Conservatives Fight Marijuana Taxation

By Jamie1

In front of the U.S. Capitol Thursday, two congressmen discussed H.R. 2240, the Small Business Tax Equity Act, a little known bill introduced in June by Oregon Democrat Earl Blumenauer to allow deductions and credits relating to expenditures for marijuana sales conducted in compliance with state law.

The bill, according to GovTrack.Us, has a 0% chance of being enacted and has a tiny chance of even getting out of the House Ways and Means committee. The main reason it has reached national attention is Grover Norquist, the President of Americans for Tax Reform, who has corralled 219 Representatives and 39 Senators to pledge to oppose any and all tax increases. He has taken up the no-tax-penalty-for-pot cause. Norquist—who has “No, absolutely not” ever smoked the stuff—believes that federal encroachment on the nascent field of state regulation of marijuana is a deeply serious topic, irrespective of the drug’s effects.

“There’s always a slight giggle factor on the issue dealing with marijuana,” said Norquist. “That said, this is tax policy, this is real stuff. This is important. This is everything from jobs to whether the federal government comes in and writes rules that upsets the apple cart in many, many different states.”

The fact that taxing marijuana has become an issue of debate is a sign of the success of cannabis advocates. In August, the Administration said it would not challenge laws legalizing marijuana in Colorado and Washington, so long as the they implement “strong and effective regulatory and enforcement systems to control the cultivation, distribution, sale, and possession of marijuana,” according to a Justice Dept. memo. Marijuana is still, however, illegal under U.S. federal law.

Norquist, who says the “double taxation” of marijuana dispensaries received his attention a couple of months ago, says the legal issue should be decided state by state, but as …read more

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Obligatory Warnings

There are things on this site that some people take offense to. Be aware there will be Marijuana related content as well as boobies and f-bombs and other adult material here in stoner philosophy. We don't think that we cross "THE" line but our opinion of where the line is may differ from yours.

If you are easily offended get the fuck out now because we might talk like adults from time to time, or even show a body part without clothing OH NO!

Please consider the entire site NSFW (not safe for work).
We are way to …ummmmmm…lazy…. yea lazy… to keep typing those four letters over and over again.

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