Aug 20

Fake data on marijuana is spewed by a government agency

Government-rooted misinformation has long been central to the very existence of War on Drugs. From government-sponsored anti-marijuana campaigns to the familiar talking points used by politicians over the decades, the Drug War has always been fueled by alleged facts that have no basis in reality.The federal government’s misinformation campaign is still alive and well, even in these heady post-prohibition days of 2017. And it’s high time Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and state Attorney General Cynthia Coffman do as their counterparts in Washington state have already done and call out this misinformation for what it is: unreliable, misleading and inaccurate.As most state and federal research documenting the impact of legalized marijuana show encouraging results reflecting responsible regulation, one federally funded agency is still producing reports that paint a very different reality.Reports from High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas throughout the country have inspired a successful anti-legalization campaign in Arizona, a recent USA Today op-ed under the headline “Marijuana devastated Colorado, don’t legalize it nationally” and much of United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ ongoing attacks on the country’s legal cannabis industry.The only problem: The reports are “garbage,” according to John Hudak

Source: Fake data on marijuana is spewed by a government agency

Aug 09

State Lawmakers’ Group Demands Feds Remove Cannabis from Controlled Substances Act – High Times

An influential organization representing lawmakers all over the United States is calling for the federal government to eliminate the cannabis plant from the confines of the Controlled Substances Act.In a resolution published on Monday, a group known as the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) went to the mat for cannabis reform, pushing for marijuana to be removed from its Schedule I classification. The goal is to give the cannabis industry easier access to banking solutions, while improving public safety by making it more difficult for criminal organizations to target dispensaries and other all-cash businesses.“The Controlled Substances Act should be amended to remove cannabis from scheduling, thus enabling financial institutions the ability to provide banking services to cannabis related businesses,” the resolution reads.While this stance is a solid step forward for nationwide reform, it does not guarantee that changes are on the horizon.In fact, the group’s latest position marks the third time the organization has attempted to persuade the federal government to revise the DEA’s Controlled Substance Act in such a way that allows “states to set their own marijuana and hemp policies without federal interference.”But this does not mean that the organization is in total support of one kind of marijuana legalization. The NCLS “acknowledges that each of its members will have differing and sometimes conflicting views of cannabis and how to regulate it,” the resolution continues.The primary objective, however, is to give each state the freedom to develop their own marijuana policies without worrying about trouble at the hands of federal drug enforcement.The resolution goes on to say that “in allowing each state to craft its own regulations, we may increase transparency, public safety and economic development where it is wanted.”Drug reform advocates are enthusiastic about the latest call to free the leaf from its longtime label as a dangerous drug.

Source: State Lawmakers’ Group Demands Feds Remove Cannabis from Controlled Substances Act – High Times

Aug 09

11 Stoner Stereotypes That No Longer Apply – High Times

We’ve come a long way from reefer madness and the evil “Marihuana.” The modern stoner is poised to take over the world.Once stereotyped for our lack of work ethic, laziness and food devastation, the stoner has evolved into an high-functioning member of society. With marijuana being legalized and decriminalized left and right, more people have begun to enjoy sweet Mary Jane. From the elementary school teacher in Cali to the Wall Street broker in NYC, humans everywhere have made marijuana a part of daily life. And you know what? We seem to be doing just fine.We’re no longer lazy, boring and hungry. Well, maybe a little hungry. As weed becomes increasingly socially acceptable, the high-ranking business stoners can work with the biology teachers to push the movement forward and make progress. It is not just up to them however. Even the little guys like you and me can make a difference by teaching people of the good marijuana can really do.With our resources nationwide, the modern stoner is pushing forward. We are standing up to those who once shut us down. One day (soon) we will all blaze together under a federally legal law, and the world will see what stoners are truly capable of.

Source: 11 Stoner Stereotypes That No Longer Apply – High Times

Aug 07

House Committee Blocks Attempt to Let VA Doctors Recommend Medical Marijuana – High Times

Republican lawmakers, who crow endlessly about their love and respect for the troops, have blocked a vote on a bill that would have allowed Veterans Affairs (VA) doctors to recommend medical marijuana as a pain treatment in states where it’s legal.The House Rules Committee stopped a proposed “Veterans Equal Access” amendment from moving to debate on the House floor by keeping the measure out of the House’s proposed VA funding bill for next year.This, after the Senate Appropriations Committee approved a veterans’ medical cannabis provision earlier this month by a vote of 24 to seven.The sponsor of the House provision, Rep. Earl Blumenauer, Democrat from Oregon, said he was “bitterly disappointed” that his amendment was sidelined.“This is a subject that has gained a great deal more attention and momentum,” Blumenauer told McClatchy News. “More people recognize that the VA has really failed our veterans when it has come to pain management, opioids and opioid dependency.”He noted that the amendment had bipartisan support of nine Democrats and nine Republicans.“But somehow the [13 member] House Rules Committee decided it wasn’t going to allow this amendment,” he said.Blumenauer, founder of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus, has led the effort to eliminate the VA policy prohibiting doctors nationwide from discussing marijuana with their patients.“We would be far better off if our veterans had access to medical marijuana and less reliance on opioids, which is literally killing them,” reported Stars and Stripes. “Under this amendment, marijuana would not be dispensed by the VA or consumed on federal property—it simply ends the current gag rule that says doctors can’t talk to their patients about it, even if they think it’s appropriate.”

Source: House Committee Blocks Attempt to Let VA Doctors Recommend Medical Marijuana – High Times

Aug 06

Pot & Vets: America’s Shame – High Times

Our first president probably wasn’t aware of the many medicinal properties of cannabis. He probably never smoked the stuff either. Nonetheless, George Washington was an enthusiastic hemp farmer. But if he’d known how important cannabis would be to the well-being of future military veterans—and how the US government would one day outlaw the plant entirely—the Bill of Rights might very well have included a few clauses about the right to grow, as well as the right to share.Many of America’s early settlers brought cannabis extracts and tinctures with them from the Old World. Mainstream medicine recognized and began marketing cannabis after it was added to the US Pharmacopeia in 1850. It would come to be known as a medicine for veterans after the Civil War. In fact, an early cannabis-remedy advertisement quoted the former commanders of the Union and Confederate armies, Generals Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee, endorsing Hasheesh Candy, a product made available through an importer on Beekman Street in New York City.According to the ad, Grant stated that cannabis was “of great value for the wounded and feeble” as well as being “harmless.” Lee said: “I wish it was in my power to place a dollar box of the Hasheesh Candy in the pocket of every Confederate soldier; because I am convinced that it speedily relieves debility, fatigue and suffering.”

Source: Pot & Vets: America’s Shame – High Times

Aug 04

The Green Legion: Veterans and Marijuana – High Times

Vietnam Memorial Soldiers by Frederick Hart. One of the most visited monuments in Washington, D.C. is HartÕs heroic bronze statue The Three Soldiers, Vietnam Veterans Memorial, dedicated by President Ronald Reagan in 1984.

Twenty percent of veterans who served in Iraq or Afghanistan suffer from some degree of post-traumatic stress disorder. At present, no reliable pharmaceutical treatment exists for PTSD, but cannabis has been shown to provide relief. While some doctors in the US Department of Veterans Affairs turn a blind eye to their patients’ use of marijuana, others take a hard stand against it, and federal law makes it illegal to prescribe cannabis as a treatment. Meanwhile, an ambitious program in Canada helps veterans in that country get medical marijuana prescriptions and provides a communal setting for them to recover. Some soldiers credit it with saving their lives.

Source: The Green Legion: Veterans and Marijuana – High Times

Aug 01

Harvard Study: Big Pharma, US Gov. Behind Opioid Epidemic

A new Harvard study reveals how Big Pharma and federal government have colluded to allow the current opioid epidemic in the United States. The study, entitled The Opioid Epidemic: Fixing a Broken Pharmaceutical Market, describes how the American public have been duped by the elites for more than 20 years.“In this article, we argue that non-rigorous patenting standards and ineffectual policing of both fraudulent marketing and anticompetitive actions played an important role in launching and prolonging the opioid epidemic. We further show that these regulatory issues are not unique to prescription opioids but rather are reflective of the wider pharmaceutical market.”Thefreethoughtproject.com reports: Researchers follow with a primer on the rise of opioid prescriptions and how pain became “the fifth vital sign.” By the 1990s, doctors realized that chronic pain was often ignored, and pain management became a hot topic. Physicians were urged to make greater use of opioids, with experts in the field downplaying the potential for misuse and addiction – a view largely based on experience with morphine.

Source: Harvard Study: Big Pharma, US Gov. Behind Opioid Epidemic

Jul 15

Egyptian Study Confirms Autism is Caused by Mercury in Vaccines – ORGANIC AND HEALTHY

In Egypt, a team of nine scientists from prestigious Egyptian medical schools and universities have found that one in every 50 children in America have metabolic brain disease, and it could be a result of the mercury contained in vaccines. How was this found? Mercury exposure is measured by examining children’s urinary porphyrins (excreted organic compounds that are biomarkers for mercury toxicity). The presence of mercury within blood and urine exploits the well-known link with vaccines and metabolic brain disease (autism), but the severity of autism is closely linked to the levels of exposure to this harmful neurotoxin. Out of the 100 children being studied, 40 with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) had higher exposure levels to mercury than their non-autistic siblings and healthy kids in the study. Children who had the severe forms of metabolic brain disease had displayed the highest amount of mercury exposure. Natural health enthusiasts have been talking about vaccines and their dangers, as well as mercury in dental fillings, and now science proves them right. Disordered urinary porphyrin metabolism – the smoking gun of the autism–mercury connection

Source: Egyptian Study Confirms Autism is Caused by Mercury in Vaccines – ORGANIC AND HEALTHY

Jul 02

Italy Is Leading the Way Toward Pot Legalization and Innovation – High Times

Italy is becoming one of the most progressive countries in Europe for cannabis cultivation, production and innovation. Or maybe it has always been. Alongside olives, tomatoes and the world’s best lemons, Italy has been growing hemp and cannabis for hundreds of years as industrial crops. Cannabis was essential to Italy’s shipping industry, which it supplied with material to make ropes, rigging and sails. In fact, Italy was one of the world’s top hemp producers during the first half of the 20th century, before growers and consumers were undercut by prohibition and synthetic materials. Now, with the help of the government, Italy is moving back into its position as one the most important European countries in the cannabis industry. Italy legalized medical marijuana in 2007 but was slow to roll out its program—because, like in so many other places, doctors were reluctant to consider it an option, citing uncertainty over dosage, how to administer it and what illnesses it would benefit. Yet, the legal industry persisted, for example, in the fields of the southern state of Apulia, where farmers say they prefer to live off their land and grow cannabis rather than seek higher-paying jobs in cities, according to a report in National Geographic. Then there is the Italian military’s Cannabis Project Team, which started churning out quality MMJ in preparation for doctors to get on board, which they have by the way. The availability of an Italian-grown product has made everything a lot easier. “We’ve had a lot of requests, particularly since people heard about it in the media,” said chemist Gianna Acciai. “Doctors are prescribing it—and we’ve sold almost all of the first batch that we got in early January. The patients also save money in comparison with the Dutch product—it’s 30 percent cheaper in comparison.” Now, cannabis growers say they can barely keep up with demand from doctors and patients and are looking to expand.

Source: Italy Is Leading the Way Toward Pot Legalization and Innovation – High Times

Jun 30

Jeff Sessions Stridently Ignores Cannabis Science at Our Collective Peril – High Times

Opioid overdoses killed in excess of 33,000 people in 2015 and continue to ruin millions of lives, while our ill-equipped government dawdles with absurd and punitive solutions.Attorney General Jeff Sessions refuses to view the situation as a public-health crisis but rather insists on criminalizing, penalizing and filling jails—the exact wrong path to take.Sessions’ stubborn insistence on disregarding scientific consensus regarding the role cannabis can play in stemming the opioid epidemic actually threatens to make it worse.While the Justice Department clings to the irrational classification of cannabis as a Schedule I drug, therefore hindering scientific research (not to mention filling up prisons), the rest of the world moves forward.Earlier this year, the National Academies of Sciences Engineering Medicine (NASEM) published a rigorous review of scientific research that included more than 10,000 peer-reviewed studies, which supported conclusive evidence that cannabis is clinically effective in treating a number of illnesses and conditions—from epilepsy and mental health disorders, to injuries and pain.Dr. Yasmin Hurd, director of the Addiction Institute at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, laments the fact that the U.S. government continues to obstruct important cannabis research.“I understand the cautious nature of the government… but it is disappointing that marijuana continues to be included on the DEA’s list of the most dangerous drugs,” said Hurd, who studies the effects of marijuana on the brain.It is especially disappointing in view of the opioid crisis, because cannabidiol (CBD) reverses some of the brain changes that occur with heroin use, according to Hurd’s own studies published in the Journal of Neuroscience.Hurd says that CBD is the more important compound when it comes to marijuana as a treatment for addiction. In terms of the wider scope of medical marijuana research, she points out that it is the “same cannabidiol being looked at for the kids with epilepsy.”It has already been reported that the clinical use of cannabis could mean enormous savings for government health insurance programs, currently a national obsession as the Trump administration tries to strip half the country of healthcare so billionaires can have even bigger tax cuts than they already enjoy. But that’s another story.The biggest savings would come from reduced prescriptions for pain medications, a large amount of which are opioids.This explains why states that have approved MMJ are experiencing fewer opioid-related deaths.

Source: Jeff Sessions Stridently Ignores Cannabis Science at Our Collective Peril – High Times

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