Apr 24

Congressman: Total Shift on Federal Marijuana Policy “In Five Years” – High Times

2022. Mark the date, set an alarm. By then, in five years’ time, U.S. federal marijuana policies will at last reflect the will of the American people—more than 90 percent of whom want safe and reliable access to medical cannabis, and (these days) are almost as likely to smoke weed as they are tobacco.U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Oregon) is planning on it.“In five years, everyone will have access to medical marijuana,” Blumenauer said during a conference call with reporters on Wednesday. “In five years, every state will be able to treat” cannabis like a commodity.“Frankly, marijuana has gone mainstream,” he said. “This is gaining traction. It’s my personal assessment that it has come of age politically.”Blumenauer represents most of Portland, Oregon in Congress, where he has become one of marijuana reform’s biggest supporters. But every session, there are more and more lawmakers like him.Earlier this spring, three other representatives from states where marijuana is legal for adults 21 and over formed a bipartisan “Cannabis Caucus.” Caucus members are currently pushing the most ambitious package of marijuana reform bills ever seen on Capitol Hill—covering banking, taxation, research, veteran’s access and outright legalization in a manner similar to alcohol.Aiding them in this effort are conservative Republicans—the kind who end rallies with “Make America Great Again” chants—because their constituents have also made it clear that “there’s a consensus that this ought to be something the federal government ought not to try and suppress,” Blumenauer said.Adult-use legalization and medical-marijuana ballot initiatives won in eight of nine states on

Source: Congressman: Total Shift on Federal Marijuana Policy “In Five Years” – High Times

Apr 04

Newly Introduced Legislation Would End Federal Pot Prohibition – High Times

In Trump’s (and Jeff Sessions’) new America, rational marijuana policy isn’t something we thought we would see. And while we still may not see it, members of the House and Senate are doing what they can to change that.On Thursday, Democratic Senator Ron Wyden and Representatives Earl Blumenauer and Jared Polis introduced a bill that would remove the DEA’s power over marijuana by removing it from the Controlled Substances Act. This means that the right to create and enforce laws around marijuana would be turned over to state governments.Today, more than one fifth of the country lives in states that allow recreational marijuana, and recent polls have found that 59 percent of the country favors legalization.“If we are truly going to move our nation towards sensible marijuana policies, the removal of marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act is paramount,” said Justin Strekal, political director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML). “Annually, 600,000 Americans are arrested for nothing more than the possession of small amounts of marijuana and now is the time for Congress to once and for all end put an end to the national embarrassment that is cannabis prohibition.”“Passing this legislation would end the current conflict between state and federal laws and allow the states to implement more sensible and humane marijuana policies, free from the threat of federal incursion,” he added.The bills are pieces of a three-part legislation package proposed by Wyden and Blumenauer, both representing Oregon, called the Path to Marijuana Reform.According to VICE, “one deals specifically with tax issues related to the marijuana industry; another includes a variety of far-reaching reforms, such as easing restrictions on banking and medical research; and the third calls for descheduling marijuana, which would treat the drug like alcohol or tobacco under federal law.”

Source: Newly Introduced Legislation Would End Federal Pot Prohibition – High Times

Mar 22

45 Ailments Treatable with Cannabis

Once you learn about the endocannabinoid system in your body, it becomes very clear just why cannabis can treat so many different illnesses.The great thing about cannabis as medicine is that it’s all-natural, and you don’t have to worry about potentially fatal side effects that you get with other so-called medicines.Our medicine should be something that makes us feel better, not a chemical experiment that makes us feel worse or that could kill us.And with cannabis, we literally have decades’ worth of research (despite government restriction) that proves its effectiveness and safety.The endocannabinoid system is responsible for keeping all of our metabolic processes in check.The good news is that as prohibition continues to fall apart, patients have an increasing number in cannabis options, be it through vaporizing, edibles, topicals, or even transdermal patches.Here are just 45 of the ailments treatable with cannabis.

#1) Prostate Cancer Recent anecdotal and scientific evidence – including a 2009 study published in the British Journal of Cancer – suggests that prostate cancer could be inhibited through cannabinoid treatment.

#2) Depression

Source: 45 Ailments Treatable with Cannabis

Mar 10

Pot Matters: Sessions Backs Down on Legalization – High Times

As first reported by Politico, “Attorney General Jeff Sessions has privately reassured some Republican senators that he won’t deviate from an Obama-era policy of allowing states to implement their own marijuana laws.”Senator Rand Paul revealed that Sessions affirmed his support for “states’ rights on these things.’Senator Cory Gardner has reportedly talked to several administration officials and has the impression that there will not be a significant change in federal policy toward his state, which has legalized marijuana, nor toward others.A bi-partisan group of senators from legalization states, led by Elizabeth Warren and Lisa Murkowski have written Sessions urging the Department of Justice to continue a policy of letting states enact such laws, describing them as having “strong and effective regulations for recreational use.”With eight states having legalized marijuana so far, this means 16 U.S Senators have a direct interest in restraining federal intervention. Of these, five are Republicans—a pivotal number when considering that their party only has a two-seat majority in the Senate. The potential opposition to federal intervention is even deeper and more powerful when considering the senators from states with medical marijuana laws.There is simply insufficient political support for the Justice Department to significantly interfere with state-level marijuana legalization laws.This doesn’t mean there won’t be targeted attempts to harass the marijuana industry, particularly in cases that appear to violate the spirit and/or letter of state law. An obvious target of federal law enforcement will be cultivation operations suspected of generating exports to other states.But as previously argued in this column, recent comments suggesting a counter-revolution have more to do with perception and policy.There is still grounds for apprehension on the part of local officials and industry executives, although this derives from uncertainty about just who will hold key Justice Department positions. This uncertainty cuts both ways.

Source: Pot Matters: Sessions Backs Down on Legalization – High Times

Mar 06

Republicans Quietly Admit Medical Pot Is Here to Stay – High Times

No medical marijuana patient’s garden was too small for Asa Hutchinson. Under Hutchinson, who served as the administrator for the DEA under George W. Bush from August 2001 to January 2003, the nation’s drug cops raided cannabis grows with as few as six plants.Once the windowsill-sized gardens were wiped out, their gardeners went to prison—even if they were demonstrably sick medical marijuana patients, and even if it required some legal trickery.To trigger plant-count-based mandatory minimums, Justice Department prosecutors would add up the number of marijuana plants grown over a period of several years. This meant growers in California could be in constant compliance with state law, but if they grew 33 plants a year for three years or more, it meant prison time in a federal bust.It was ugly, but it was a losing battle long since lost—and at last, everyone seems to be admitting it.Eight years after leaving the DEA, Hutchinson told a university audience that sick people should be allowed whatever doctors recommend, “whether it is Marinol or marijuana or whatever.”This fall, Hutchinson, now the Republican governor of Donald Trump-supporting Arkansas, opposed a ballot measure to legalize medical marijuana in his state—but it won anyway. Twenty-eight states now allow medical marijuana.Since then, Hutchinson has kept up a pledge not to stand in the way and has signed into law the legislation required to put cannabis in Arkansas’ patients hands. Those bad old days of raids on tiny medical gardens? They’re over forever.“I think it’s too late to turn back the clock on medical marijuana,” he told the Daily Beast over the weekend.Not exactly a full-throated endorsement, but hugely significant—because this is now what passes for mainstream Republican politics.President Donald Trump signaled support for medical marijuana on the campaign trail and appears set to keep that promise. On Wednesday, White House press secretary Sean Spicer—who set off the latest round of marijuana’s existential angst by suggesting recreational cannabis could see more federal enforcement—took pains to clarify that medical marijuana is cool and good.

Source: Republicans Quietly Admit Medical Pot Is Here to Stay – High Times

Mar 02

Bill to Remove Cannabis from Federal Schedule Introduced in House | Ganjapreneur

Republican Congressman Tom Garrett has introduced a bill that would remove cannabis from the federal list of controlled substances, allowing it to join other industries such as alcohol and tobacco. According to a press release, the Virginia lawmaker says the proposal “fulfills a responsibility to create a level playing field across the country.” “I have long believed justice that isn’t blind, isn’t justice. Statistics indicate that minor narcotics crimes disproportionately hurt areas of lower socio-economic status and what I find most troubling is that we continue to keep laws on the books that we do not enforce,” he said in the release. “Virginia is more than capable of handling its own marijuana policy, as are states such as Colorado or California.” He added that the measure (HR.1227) “allows states to determine this step appropriate medicinal use and allows for industrial hemp growth.” Garrett indicated that he would also be introducing legislation this session aimed at growing the hemp industry, specifically in Virginia. Garrett is joined by Democratic Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (HI) in sponsoring the bill, which was first introduced by Vermont Independent Bernie Sanders in 2015. The proposal has been sent to the House Judiciary, and House Energy and Commerce committees.

Source: Bill to Remove Cannabis from Federal Schedule Introduced in House | Ganjapreneur

Mar 02

Civil Cold War: The Oncoming State-Federal Marijuana Battle – High Times

The Trump administration’s spokesperson Sean Spicer has recently signaled that it will abide by the Congressional spending rider that prevents federal interference in the states that have legalized the medical use of marijuana. However, it has also made clear that recreational marijuana is very different than medical marijuana and that we could see more federal enforcement of the Controlled Substances Act in that regard.Funny how the Trump administration can suggest that whether transgender kids can use the school restroom matching their gender identity is an issue North Carolina ought to decide, but eight states whose populations have voted to legalize the adult use of marijuana need the federal government’s corrective meddling, ain’t it?Or like how the Obama administration overruled Arizona’s attempts to crack down on illegal immigration in favor of enforcing federal law, but then, four states whose populations had voted to legalize the adult use of marijuana should be left free from the federal government’s corrective meddling, huh?States’ rights… so long as the White House agrees with your state, I suppose.States’ rights used to be a battle cry from the right as it sought to maintain state policies out of step with federal laws on reproductive rights, segregation and taxation, to name a few.Now, states’ rights may become a battle cry from the left seeking to maintain state policies on marijuana legalization, immigration and LGBT rights against a hostile administration in Washington.California is leading the way in this new Civil Cold War. While much of the state is covered by cities and counties known as “sanctuary cities” for their ban on local law enforcement assisting federal immigration authorities, there is a bill pending now to extend that protection of immigrants to the entire state, banning state authorities’ cooperation with immigration forces as well.Now, California is proposing a similar bill creating a de facto marijuana sanctuary state.“This bill would prohibit a state or local agency, as defined, from taking certain actions without a court order signed by a judge,” according to the Assembly’s Legislative Counsel, “including using agency money, facilities, property, equipment, or personnel to assist a federal agency to investigate, detain, detect, report, or arrest a person for commercial or noncommercial marijuana or medical cannabis activity that is authorized by law in the State of California and transferring an individual to federal law enforcement authorities for purposes of marijuana enforcement.”

Source: Civil Cold War: The Oncoming State-Federal Marijuana Battle – High Times

Feb 26

Archaeologists Discover Remains of Egyptian Army From the Biblical Exodus in Red Sea – Archaeology HubArchaeology Hub

Egypt’s Antiquities Ministry announced this morning that a team of underwater archaeologists had discovered that remains of a large Egyptian army from the 14th century BC, at the bottom of the Gulf of Suez, 1.5 kilometers offshore from the modern city of Ras Gharib. The team was searching for the remains of ancient ships and artifacts related to Stone Age and Bronze Age trade in the Red Sea area, when they stumbled upon a gigantic mass of human bones darkened by age.The scientists lead by Professor Abdel Muhammad Gader and associated with Cairo University’s Faculty of Archaeology, have already recovered a total of more than 400 different skeletons, as well as hundreds of weapons and pieces of armor, also the remains of two war chariots, scattered over an area of approximately 200 square meters. They estimate that more than 5000 other bodies could be dispersed over a wider area, suggesting that an army of large size who have perished on the site.This magnificient blade from an egyptian khopesh, was certainly the weapon of an important character. It was discovered near the remains of a richly decorated war chariot, suggesting it could have belonged to a prince or nobleman. ( To see the artifact follow the Source link below. )

Source: Archaeologists Discover Remains of Egyptian Army From the Biblical Exodus in Red Sea – Archaeology HubArchaeology Hub

Feb 24

Congressional Cannabis Caucus Responds To White House Statement On Marijuana Policy – Weed News

The bipartisan Congressional Cannabis Caucus released the following statement in response to White House press secretary Sean Spicer’s suggestion that the Trump administration will step up enforcement of federal laws against recreational marijuana.“Today’s statement by White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer regarding marijuana policy reaffirms the need for the Congressional Cannabis Caucus. Last November, eight more states passed measures to increase access to state-legal cannabis, and today more than 300 million Americans live in states with access to adult-use marijuana or some form medical cannabis.  Among them are four additional states that have fully legalized the adult-use of marijuana. We hope today’s comments do not reflect the views of the President and his administration.  As co-chairs of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus, we stand ready to educate this administration on the need for more sensible marijuana policies and share the many experiences states have had with the legalization of cannabis. Together, we will continue to work in a bipartisan manner to reform our failed marijuana policies and provide a voice for Americans who have overwhelmingly voted for a more sensible drug policy.”Last week, Reps. Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), Dana Rohrabacher (CA-48), Jared Polis (CO-02), and Don Young (AK-At Large) announced the formation of the bipartisan Congressional Cannabis Caucus. The Caucus will provide a forum for members of the U.S. House of Representatives to discuss, learn, and work together to establish a better and more rational approach to federal cannabis policy.

Source: Congressional Cannabis Caucus Responds To White House Statement On Marijuana Policy – Weed News

Feb 20

Can Marijuana Help Solve the Opioid Epidemic? – The Atlantic

James Feeney, a surgeon in Connecticut, heard it from his patients. A few actually turned down his prescription for oxycodone, the popular opioid painkiller that has also gained notoriety with the opioid epidemic. His patients, Feeney recalls, would say, “Listen, don’t give me any of that oxycodone garbage. … I’m just going to smoke weed.”“And you know what?” says Feeney. “Every single one of those patients doesn’t have a lot of pain, and they do pretty well.”Marijuana has worked well enough, anecdotally at least, that Feeney is following his patients’ lead and conducting a trial at Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center in Hartford, Connecticut. The self-funded study will compare opioids and medical marijuana for treating acute pain, such as that from a broken rib. A small body of evidence suggests that medical marijuana is effective for chronic pain, which persists even after an injury should have healed and for which opioids are already not a great treatment. But now Feeney wants to try medical marijuana for acute pain, where opioids have long been a go-to drug.“The big focus from my standpoint is that this is an attempt to end the opioid epidemic,” he says. Overdoses from opioids, which includes heroin as well as prescription painkillers like oxycodone and morphine, killed more than 30,000 people in 2015.

Source: Can Marijuana Help Solve the Opioid Epidemic? – The Atlantic

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