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The U.S. Government Isn't Very Good at Producing Marijuana
U.S. Department of Justice Task Force to Review Marijuana Enforcement Laws
DENVER (AP) — Governors from the first four states to legalize recreational marijuana are asking the Trump administration to let the pot experiments continue.
The governors of Alaska, Colorado, Oregon and Washington say that marijuana legalization has expanded their economies.
The governors also say in Monday’s letter that legal weed can be regulated to protect public safety and that legalization reduces “inequitable incarceration,” or people of color being disproportionately jailed for pot crimes.
The letter was addressed to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. The governors say they opposed legalization at first, but warn that a federal pot crackdown now “would divert existing marijuana product into the black market.”
The governors also ask for the Treasury Department not to change instructions to banks for handling marijuana money.
You can keep up with all of HIGH TIMES’ marijuana news right here.
The 2016 elections gave a huge boost to legal weed, while simultaneously scaring the hell out of everyone as the keys to the White House and Congress were handed over to a group of reactionary pot-haters.
We will not soon forget the day when White House press secretary Sean Spicer suggested the Trump administration may crack down on states with legal recreational weed.
But what about the new House of Representatives bill that aims to protect states’ rights?
When HR 975, which enjoys bipartisan support by the way, was introduced in Congress by California Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, many saw it as a hopeful sign.
The bill has an optimistic title and straightforward message: “Respect State Marijuana Laws Act of 2017.”
The hope is that the House bill will protect consumers and businesses in states that have passed legalization initiatives or amendments as well as “any person acting in compliance with State laws relating to the production, possession, distribution, dispensation, administration, or delivery of marihuana.”
This basically prevents the feds from busting consumers and businesses in legal medical and recreational states.
The bill, if passed, would also clear up the banking mess that has plagued the industry for years.
This attempt to come up with a reasonable solution to the issue of states’ rights has been viewed as a smart move, undertaken in tandem with the formation of the first-ever bipartisan Congressional Cannabis Caucus, whose goal is to promote sensible cannabis policy reform and ease the tension between federal and state cannabis laws.
NORML referred to the Congressional Cannabis Caucus as a step toward reforming cannabis policy at the federal level: “Having a coalition of lawmakers in Washington, DC who will go on the record in support of advocating for cannabis freedom is something we haven’t had before, but it is an event that is long overdue.”
There are just too many people, including politicians, local advocates and millions of Americans who voted for the safe recreational and medical benefits that weed provides.
So it makes perfect sense for a group of federal lawmakers to step up and provide the extremist elements in the current government with an opportunity to back off. The question is: will they take it?
Some have already begun to mend their anti-marijuana ways and are seeing the light. And that light is green—as in dollars.
The weed industry raked in more than $6.5 billion in legal sales in the U.S. last year and, if allowed to grow at its own pace, is estimated to reach $25 billion by 2020.
As one of the fastest growing industries in the country and on track to provide more jobs than the manufacturing sector, a change of heart from even the most strident lawmakers will hopefully start to crack the GOP’s anti-weed wall.
Only last week Denver’s Mayor, Michael Hancock, admitted that his town has a lot to lose if the feds come busting the doors down and wreck their wildly successful weed industry, which he once opposed but now realizes that it has been a lifeline.
If Rohrabacher’s bill to Respect State Marijuana Laws falls flat and Attorney General Jeff Sessions indeed goes after legal marijuana, the weed industry will revert back to the shadows from whence it came.
And who wants to see all those jobs, tax revenue and money dry up?
Pot is not going anywhere, that much we know.
But who is going make it available is the question. The black market or legal shops? What say you President Trump?
You can keep up with all of HIGH TIMES’ marijuana news right here.
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How Is Hemp CBD Oil Different From Marijuana CBD Oil?
At 5 years old, young Charlotte Figi had been suffering roughly 300 grand mal seizures weekly for years when her father, Matt, looking for alternatives to her mostly unsuccessful traditional allopathic treatments, found a video online extolling the benefits of CBD oil in the treatment of Dravet Syndrome. Under Colorado’s fledgling medical marijuana program, Charlotte’s parents found a strain of high cannabidiol (CBD), low tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabis flower named R4 being sold at a Colorado dispensary. They bought a few ounces and worked with friends to extract oil from it. High-CBD, low-THC cannabis is a desirable medicine, both for the therapeutic benefits of CBD and the low presence of THC, which minimizes psychoactivity. Charlotte responded favorably to her very first dose, bringing the frequency of her seizures down to one per week.
Her parents then met the Stanley brothers, owners of Colorado’s largest dispensary at the time and cultivators of a high-CBD strain of cannabis very few people were purchasing. Together, they developed the dormant strain into a continual harvest and constant supply of medical marijuana CBD oil to treat Charlotte, and subsequently, other patients seeking similar relief. The strain became what’s known today asCharlotte’s Web. When the news of this process, and others like it, aired on CNN medical correspondent Sanjay Gupta’s documentary Weed in 2013, people across the globe, especially parents of children suffering seizures, flocked to the Internet to find this “miracle” CBD oil. Little was to be found.
Capitalizing businesses quickly jumped in to fill the void created by the Federal Controlled Substances Act, which strictly prohibits the use and sale of marijuana because of the presence of THC, not CBD. Under the law, hemp-derived CBD is completely legal, but CBD doesn’t appear out of thin air. In order to produce CBD oil, you must first harvest high-CBD cannabis plants, legally. In the United States, this requires growers to be licensed in their state either as an industrial hemp farmer or a medical/recreational marijuana grower. Not all states provide these licenses, and where some do, each type of license has a completely different set of parameters, rules, and regulations, including whom you can sell your products to.
Needless to say, the rabid overnight demand for CBD oil combined with the intricacies of a nation involved in a drug war created a very confusing topic, and an opportunity for businesses to sell snake oil. Still today, people are discovering the wonders of CBD and yearning for information on how to obtain it. In an effort to untangle this web, here’s a go-to guide for understanding the differences between hemp-derived CBD oils and marijuana-derived CBD oils.
Hemp CBD Oil
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a cannabinoid known largely for its muscle relaxant properties. Isolated on its own, CBD is non-psychoactive and it’s been reported to be effective in treating seizures, even in young children.
CBD is found in both the drug producing Cannabis Indica and hemp producing Cannabis Sativa. Hemp CBD oil is derived from industrial hemp, the C. Sativa species of cannabis, which produces nearly no amount of the cannabinoid Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), but does produce some amount of the cannabinoid Cannabidiol (CBD). Industrialized hemp production is legal at the federal level, with laws and licensure varying from state-to-state.
Not All Hemp CBD Oils Are Created Equal
Not many cannabis researchers or cannabis professionals will refute the efficacy and wonders of the cannabinoid Cannabidiol. It can be a potent and powerful product with amazing therapeutic benefits. However, the ways in which cannabidiol is extracted from industrial hemp plants, then manufactured, concentrated, formulated, etc., and delivered or administered to a customer or patient, is largely suspect. Some customers have even reported becoming violently ill from poorly manufactured hemp CBD products, many of which either contain mysterious inactive chemicals or ingredients different than those listed on the label.
Hemp CBD is regulated by the FDA as a dietary supplement, and like other dietary supplements the FDA is “not authorized to review dietary supplement products for safety and effectiveness before they are marketed.” This is in direct opposition to most modern day medical and recreational marijuana markets. Both regulated medical and recreational markets typically have stringent production and testing guidelines and manufacturing regulations, and these guidlines typically exclude the sale of hemp-derived CBD through medical and recreational dispensaries.
This is from the FDA’s website:
A list of FDA warning letters and test results for Cannabidiol related products and manufactures can be found here.
Conversely, the Stanley Brothers, creators of the original Charlotte’s Web now manufacture CBD Hemp Oil under the name CW Hemp. Because Charlotte’s Web products contain less than 0.3 percent THC, they are allowed by U.S. Federal law to ship their acclaimed Hemp CBD oil products straight to your doorstep.
Many Medical Marijuana Producers Are Producing Consistent, Top Quality CBD, Too
Since 1996, there have been several medical marijuana markets growing in the western United States. In the region, states like California, Washington, and Oregon created an avenue for seasoned cannabis cultivators to farm cannabis medicines for their patients. Nearly two decades later, these states and several others, including Colorado, are expanding into the country’s first full-fledged recreational cannabis markets. Growers in these markets have been producing both high-THC and high-CBD strains of marijuana and merging them into edibles, concentrates, and topicals of all forms to assist customers and patients with their therapeutic needs.
These markets are now becoming known for having stricter testing standards than standard produce agriculture, and now nearly half the country’s states have some form of medical marijuana program or more. In these markets, medical marijuana cardholders can typically access CBD products containing much higher concentrations of Cannabidiol than hemp-derived CBD products, and due to stringent testing, oftentimes purer CBD products as well. When obtaining CBD products through a regulated medical or recreational marijuana marketplace, customer service representatives should be able to display and explain a product's origins, ingredients, and test results. State-certified labs provide these insights, and some even provide full cannabinoid and terpene analysis, too.
CBD Works Best Combined With Other Cannabinoids
Cannabis contains hundreds of compounds, 80 of which are currently categorized as cannabinoids. CBD and THC are the principal cannabinoids in cannabis, both commonly occurring in the relatively largest concentrations, and they are incredibly synergistic.
Embracing the full-spectrum of cannabis’ naturally occurring phytonutrients is part of a process called whole plant medicine. This practice is highly regarded in the holistic and alternative medicine communities, existing in stark contrast to the practice of fractionated medicine, a process involving the heavy use processing and chemical synthesis popularized by the pharmaceutical industry.
Long before people began hybridizing cannabis to create the highest THC strain to wow judges at cannabis competitions, naturally occurring fields of cannabis most likely contained plants with moderate concentrations of both primary cannabinoids CBD and THC along with other naturally occurring therapeutic cannabinoids like CBG, CBN, plus various terpenes, flavonoids, and all other phytonutrients found in healthy cannabis plants. Thanks to Israeli researcher Raphael Mechoulam, the synergies of all these compounds working together is now known as “The Entourage Effect.”
While not sanctioned for children because of its euphoria-producing properties, adding any amount of THC to a therapeutic dose of CBD largely enhances CBD’s effects. Medical cardholders in many states can now access CBD products with varying ratios of CBD to THC. Everything from 20:1 to 1:1 ratios, even 2 parts THC to 1 part CBD, make for an incredibly therapeutic array of options for patients seeking the benefits of Cannabidiol.
Hopefully this guide will help you better understand the intricacies and the processes involved in accessing varying forms of CBD.
Could The US’s First Industrial Hemp Farms Be On Native American Land?
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Why Marijuana Consumers should “ ” on Arizona’s .
Voters will consider new marijuana rules in nine states
Voters in nine states will decide next month whether to relax their laws governing medical or recreational marijuana use, with California potentially the most significant market.
Four states — Colorado, Oregon, Washington and Alaska, plus the District of Columbia — have already legalized recreational marijuana, and 25 states permit medical use. But this election has the potential to dramatically shift the conversation because so many Americans live in those nine states where relaxation measures are being considered. California and its approximately 40 million residents represent a potential tipping point for a country where marijuana remains completely illegal at the federal level. California, Arizona, Maine, Massachusetts and Nevada are considering legalizing and taxing recreational marijuana in this election, while voters in Arkansas, Florida, Montana and North Dakota are considering whether to permit medical use for certain conditions, like cancer or chronic pain.
Although the presidential campaign continues to dominate headlines across the country, these marijuana ballot measures could have far-reaching consequences for our society. What are the costs and opportunities? What are the realities of devil-is-in-the-detail marijuana regulation and taxation? And what are the potential social consequences?
To help answer those questions, USA TODAY convened a panel of experts to appear on Capital Download, a weekly video newsmaker series.
The three panelists included:
• Jeff Zinsmeister, executive vice president of SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana). As a State Department official, he worked on anti-drug and corruption programs with Mexico. SAM generally opposes marijuana legalization, but seeks alternative approaches to connect drug users with treatment, and opposes demonization of consumers, instead focusing its concern on the parallels between the tobacco and marijuana industries.
• Evan Nison, a member of the board of NORML (the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws). He heads the group's New Jersey branch, and he's been working on the issue since he was a student at Ithaca College. Nison also works withWhoopi Goldberg on her Whoopi & Maya women-focused medical marijuana products company.
• John Kagia, executive vice president of industry analytics for New Frontier Data, which doesn’t take a position on marijuana legalization but uses data to offer perspective on how the industry is unfolding.
A new poll released Wednesday by Pew Research Center shows a growing majority of Americans support ending marijuana prohibition: 57% of adults think marijuana use should be legal, up from 53% last year and 32% in 2006. Analysts say the marijuana market could be worth nearly $8 billion by 2020, and entrepreneurs are rushing to fund greenhouses, invest in growing and harvesting technology, and create social media platforms to connect buyers with cannabis recommendations.
Kagia said Colorado’s legalization efforts — the Centennial State was the first to develop a fully functioning cannabis marketplace — offer helpful examples of what other states might experience. Colorado last year saw about 250,000 pounds of legal cannabis sold through licensed stores, he said.
“There has been a substitution, a transition from the illicit market to the legal market by cannabis consumers in Colorado, and the numbers bear it out. These are astonishing numbers, and these are going through the legal channels,” he said. “These are products that are being sold and consumed within the state, by and large. If there has been expansion of the illicit market it is because within the umbrella of the legal apparatus, and particularly part because the markets around Colorado are still illegal, it makes it easy to create diversion and outflows from the state into other markets where it remains illegal but you can do it under the auspices of pseudo-legal production. But it is not that the legal market has been ineffective in capturing those customers.”
Zinsmeister said states should be cautious about chasing the tax dollars generated by legal marijuana sales. He said many marijuana regulations favor a Big Business approach, rather than simply making it legal for people to possess small amounts for personal use, drawing parallels with the tobacco industry.
“I don’t think anybody here on this panel would say that the tobacco industry is a good thing, that long-term tobacco use is a social net positive. It’s like studying a business and only looking at the income side of the balance sheet,” he said. “If you look at the costs of the two legal addictive substances that we currently have, alcohol and tobacco, there is absolutely no doubt that the costs outweigh the revenues by a factor of 10. And I think there’s no reason to believe the same thing won’t be true with marijuana.”
At this point, Nison countered, state and federal-level politicians need to recognize they’re out of step with the majority of Americans who think they ought to have legal access to marijuana. He said next month’s election may irrevocably change the way marijuana is perceived, regulated and marginalized in this country.
“We do have an historic amount of initiatives on the ballot, which signals the trends that are happening. I think we’ll almost for sure get California, which is going to be huge. I think we’ll get Maine, which will be the first legal state on the East Coast, which I love. I think Nevada is going to be close, Arizona is going to be tough. I think at this time next month, marijuana legalization will have made significant progress,” he said. “There’s been billions of dollars spent demonizing cannabis, and now we’re starting the veil sort of be lifted up.”
2,500-year-old marijuana discovered in an ancient tomb
The marijuana plants had been used as a burial shroud, the archaeologists say
A 2,500-year-old stash of whole marijuana plants have been unearthed from an ancient tomb in northwest China. This discovery adds to a growing body of evidence that ancient people used marijuana for its psychoactive properties, and incorporated it into their rituals.
team of archaeologists, led by Hongen Jiang with the University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, discovered 13 marijuana plants that were still largely intact, if yellowed and desiccated after millennia underground. In a first for funerary marijuana, the plants were found lying like a burial shroud atop the body of a man who had died in his mid-30s. Their roots lay below the man’s hips and the tips — which had been trimmed to remove the flowers — extended up around his face, according to the publication of the find in the journalEconomic Botany.
This stash was found in one of 240 tombs that archaeologists had excavated in a desert region of the Turpan Basin in northwest China. The area had probably once been a stop along the Silk Road, and pastoral people called the Subeixi had lived and traded here, Kristin Romey for National Geographic reports. Three other tombs in this cemetery also contained marijuana fruits, leaves, stem fragments, and seeds. Scientists have wondered whether the marijuana plants came in via trade, or whether they had been farmed or grew wild in the region. Since the burial shroud marijuana plants were whole, uprooted plants, that suggests local growth.
Ancient people in Siberia and northwestern China have been putting pot in tombs since at least the first millennia BCE. An open question has been whether these plants were used for fruit, for their hemp fibers to make rope and clothing, or for what we use them for today: to get high, or to cut pain. So far, archaeologists have found 6,000 to 7,000-year-old hemp fabrics in Northern China, but haven’t unearthed any evidence of hemp clothing near the Turpan Basin before 2,000 years ago. While it’s possible that the clothes may simply have rotted over time, it’s also possible that the main purpose of marijuana wasn’t fiber.
In 2006, archaeologists found a large cache of marijuana fragments in a grave from around the same time period, at a nearby settlement. When scientists later analyzed the plants, they detected compounds that form when the main source of marijuana’s high — tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC — breaks down. That means these plants were probably prized for their psychoactive properties. This latest discovery of marijuana plants used as a burial shroud as well as the many previous findings of marijuana in the region’s tombs suggests that marijuana was used either medicinally or ritually, the authors write.
Shark Tank Investors Talk Marijuana
I came across an article at Entrepreneur.com by Kim Lachance Shandrow. In it she asks the investors from the popular TV series, Shark Tank, about their views on investing in the cannabis industry.
Many of their responses were familiar because savvy and successful investors like them won’t invest in an industry where there is no access to banking. Because of federal laws, and IRS tax code 280e, it is too risky for many investors when they have to think about losing their investment to the federal government, or having the feds come after them personally. Furthermore, having to stash hundreds of thousands of dollars of cash everywhere isn’t something a successful investor is going to want to do. For them, it’s all about timing, most likely when the federal laws are changed.
It was interesting to hear their responses. You could sense that many of them had at least researched investing in marijuana. One question I would have liked to hear them answer is: What are your thoughts on investing in ancillary businesses?
There are many businesses like our own site that aren’t directly involved in the cannabis industry. I also think it would be awesome to see people with such high net worth get involved with the cannabis movement politically. I bet that if only one of the Sharks got involved with cannabis on a philanthropic level it would hasten the change of our countries outdated marijuana laws exponentially.
Kim at Entrepreneur.com writes:
The Sharks have seen it all. Entrepreneurs of all stripes vy for their cash in the Tank, and sometimes their businesses are just plain weird.
There was the hiker who turns roasted crickets into energy bars, the husband and wife on a mission to change the way we poop, one Squatty Potty at a time, and, who could forget, that guy who badly wants to draw a cat for you.
One kind of business that hasn’t been pitched on Shark Tank: a wacky tobacky business. Not yet at least. With marijuana now legal in some form in 25 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, and legal at the recreational level in four states, it’s probably only a matter of time before a ganjapreneur swims with the Sharks.
I spoke with the judges on Sept. 23 during a swanky breakfast in Beverly Hills celebrating the season eight premiere of their hit show to learn how they feel about the budding marijuana industry and whether they’d invest in it. (Fellow Shark Daymond John did not attend the breakfast and has not responded to a request for comment.)
To read what the Sharks had to say about investing in marijuana read the rest of the article here at Entrepreneur.com
Cannabis Business Times is proud to unveil its newest web tool for professional cultivators: the interactive marijuana legislation map.
While still very much a work in progress, this new web tool will allow cultivators to see what state-wide legislation may be pending, easily find the latest news on any given state, and discover where new business opportunities may abound at a glance.
While currently available in this article below, you will also be able to find the map on its new permanent home here, and under the Hot Topics drop down menu at the top of every page.
Using it is a simple as clicking your mouse. Simply drag your cursor over the state you want to learn more about, click anywhere on the state, read the quick summary, and follow the latest story link to find out more.
Give it a try and remember to check back in regularly, because it will be updated as often as the American cannabis landscape evolves.
Teal: Pending legislative changes
Green: Fully legalized
Yellow: Medical only
Purple: CBD only
Blue: Decriminalized without a legal program
Red: No legal program
Study: Cannabis Can Eliminate Toxic Protein From Alzheimer's Disease
5 BEST SUMMER STRAINS!
Summer is the perfect time to blaze up – everyone has more free time, and blunts, bowls, and vape pens go perfectly with a day at the beach or a summer hike. But certain strains can really weigh you down or make you sluggish, which is exactly what you don’t want while trying to be active in the hot weather.
Below are five of the best strains to try this summer to keep you active, happy, and on your feet, or to help you slowly ease into some summer relaxation.
Contact your local dispensary to see if they currently carry any of these strains.
This delicious sativa is sweet and light, and favored by those who like a softer buzz then the kind brought on by diesels and other heavier buds. This delicious strain actually tastes like strawberries, and is known for bringing on a sense of euphoria and adventure. If you are planning on going for a hike or other outdoor adventure, this is the perfect thing to keep you going and discourage gorging on cookies or slumping into the couch. It’s also great for inspiring conversation, rather than causing smokers to sink into their own thoughts. Be careful when inhaling though, and consider getting a vape pen and trying a concentrate – the flower version of the strain can be slightly harsh to inhale.
For those who want a slightly more intense sativa high during their summer days, Green Crack is always an awesome option. This bud gets its name from its bright green color and super-strong smell, and the fact that it provides more energy than almost any other strain out there. This is perfect for the heavier smoker who wants a buzz that lasts all day, but one that’s a definite upper. Just be careful with this strain if you are more of a lightweight – it’s pretty strong!
While sativas are great for summer days and sustained energy, you also want to spend plenty of time in the summer relaxing. Whether it’s a lazy day at the beach or a summer evening on the porch sipping a beer, you may want to wind down with a nice indica. If so, try this indica-leaning hybrid for a good, relaxing buzz. It’s great for kicking back at the end of the day, and it’s also one of the major strains used for pain, so if you are sore from being active it will especially hit the spot.
New York City Sour Diesel
New York Diesel is the perfect strain for urban exploration, as the name implies. If your plan for the day is to hit the coffee shops, museums, and stores, or to head out on the town for a night of clubbing or a metal or hip-hop show, this incredibly upbeat strain is just the thing. This cross between the famous sativa Sour Diesel and the laid back indica known as Afghani mellows out the upper qualities, making it the perfect companion for those who want to be social but may experience some anxiety or panic in crowds or busy places.
This one earns a place on the list purely for the name and delicious taste that makes it perfect for summer. This cross between Girl Scout Cookies, Jacksonville Kush, and Durban is a major mutt, but the flavor ends up as a creamier, more Cookie-influenced take on Strawberry Cough. Try pairing this bud with a delicious ice cream at the end of a long, hot day to really top things off and get you in the summer spirit.NFL PLAYER DONATES $80,000 FOR MEDICAL MARIJUANA RESEARCH
NFL player Eugene Monroe has openly advocated for NFL players to be able to use medical marijuana in lieu of opioid painkillers for quite some time. And recently he donated $80,000 towards researching the effectiveness of medical marijuana for football players. The research will be conducted by University of Pennsylvania and Johns Hopkins University.
Monroe said, “As a player, I’m not allowed to use cannabis, but I’ve been prescribed opioids for various injuries. The opioids work, but they’re very dangerous and highly addictive.”
Monroe has previously urged the NFL to remove marijuana from the prohibited substances list, reportsPhilly.com.
Researcher Marcel Bonn-Miller said, “We’re doing two studies to start. We’ll be examining both current and retired NFL players to understand the impact of cannabis or cannabinoid use on recovering from an injury.”
In response to opioid addiction in the NFL, Monroe said, “Opioids are ruining lives across the country, and as athletes we’re not immune to those perils. This is an issue that goes beyond any personal career implications. I understand why other players may be adverse to speaking out, but our health is worth it.”
FISH CAN HELP YOU GROW EXCEPTIONAL MARIJUANA
There are tons of options for growing marijuana, and they all have their pros and cons, of course. Aside from growing outdoors, each option still requires you to get rid of plant debris and toxins by either throwing the water out or obtaining new soil for each plant.
So, to fix this issue there is an exciting green option that keeps money in your wallet while helping you end up with larger and healthier plants.
Have you ever heard of aquaponics?
If you put hydroponics and aquaculture together, you end up with aquaponics.
Various animals such as snails, frogs, fish, and turtles survive in aquaculture environments. Hydroponics grows plants in a system that does not include soil which offers your plant food through the water.
By bringing these to unique environments together, you can create a mutually beneficial setup where the plants get to enjoy nutrients the fish release and the fish get the advantage of the plants cleaning the water. You’ll spend less time and energy by using this type of system.
So how does this thing work?
A good portion of fish excrement has an ammonia base. Their feces and uneaten food are transmuted into ammonia during mineralization. When the water from the fish tank is filtered, bacteria turns the ammonia into nitrites, then into nitrates. The nitrates are then pushed to the plant for food.
The pH balance must be on point in this type of environment so you have to get fish that enjoy the same pH as marijuana. Hydro marijuana grows well in a 5.5 to 6.5 range, and a lot of fish prefer 6.5 to 7.5. The fish can eventually adjust to your marijuana’s preferred levels by changing the pH by no more than .2 pH per day. The best fish for this system are catfish, koi, goldfish and black moors.
The cons of aquaponics
If you are just starting as a marijuana grower, this may not be the right choice for you because it is not for beginners. With this system, you most certainly want to know what you are doing because you’d want to make sure your fish stay alive, while understanding hydro growing.
Taking care of fish may sound easy, but it’s actually quite a challenge to keep those bad boys afloat. This just isn’t the way to go for people looking for a quick fix to growing weed.
Is aquaponics worth it?
While this is a new system, the few marijuana growers who have tried this have reported excellent results. But it’s not just marijuana growers who are trying this. People are growing peppers, cucumbers, kale, cabbage, tomatoes, spinach and lettuce using this system. People are using this system to help foster a more organic lifestyle when it comes to their herbs and vegetables.
We say it is definitely worth a shot!
by Robert Bergman, founder of ilovegrowingmarijuana.com. Robert has been growing cannabis passionately for over 20 years and shares these insights to help educate growers to avoid mistakes and to fully capitalize on a bud’s potential.
Several famous athletes are advocating for marijuana use as a workout tool. These athletes do not necessarily consider marijuana as a performance enhancer, but a “life enhancer.” They report more focus and positivity when working out with marijuana.
Canadian Olympic snowboarder, Ross Rebagliati supports marijuana use during workout sessions. He says, “As an athlete, there’s a lot of repetitive working out that goes on and going to the gym two, three hours a day for five days a week for years on end gets monotonous. To be able to spice it up in a natural way for an athlete is the best possible thing,” The Washington Post reports.
Rebagliati added that the focus gained is nothing he’d ever seen before as he said, “All the distractions of your phone, the people next to you working out, it just goes away and you’re just going to pound out the workout.”
Former NBA player, Cliff Robinson, was suspended twice during his 18-year career for marijuana use. He is venturing into the Oregon marijuana industry and focusing on marijuana designed specifically for athletes. In the NBA, Robinson was known as “Uncle Cliffy,” but he is changing the nickname to “Uncle Spliffy.”
Robert Szatkowski, better known as professional wrestler Rob Van Dam, is a known marijuana user and advocate. Szatkowski said, “I’ve been known to apply smoking to everything throughout the day,” and that it also “helped him in thinking good thoughts,” especially in high-stress situations like being in the ring in front of millions of people.
Szatkowski also says that the physicality of pro-wrestling is the equivalent of “50 car crashes in 10 minutes in the ring,” resulting in multiple minor injuries. The injuries leave him battered and in pain. Marijuana helps with his pain management and he wishes to see it as a legal treatment and workout tool.
George Washington, Champion of Growing Hemp
The recent occasion of Presidents Day allows us to take some time to look back on Presidents of yore and discuss the things they championed. When you talk about the Father of our Country, George Washington, you really can’t have a discussion of his life without talking about hemp.
Washington, like most of the Founding Fathers, was a man of substantial wealth. He owned several farms in the Virginia area and was a big proponent of industrial hemp, using it for rope, thread, canvas and repairing nets.
While some like to believe Washington also smoked hemp, this scenario is highly unlikely, especially since he would have felt no effects from smoking the hemp besides a headache. To grow marijuana as we know it today, Washington would have had to segregate the plants; growing industrial hemp in the same area as good ole get-me-high-as-a-kite marijuana will only result in cross pollination, which would destroy the THC-producing abilities of the plant.
Believe it or not, hemp was a common crop in the days of the Founding Fathers. Its utility was championed by the U.S. government, right up until World War II and the famous “Hemp for Victory” war film. After that, its association with the now illegal and evil “marihuana” caused it to fall out of favor.
This injustice has only recently been remedied as the federal government has backed off its prohibition of industrial hemp and several states have passed legislation re-allowing it to be grown; huge fields of hemp are grown just a few dozen miles south of where I write this in Kentucky.
The Founding Fathers knew a lot, and one of those things was the amazing ability of industrial hemp.Read more: http://thelibertarianrepublic.com/george-washington-champion-of-hemp/#ixzz40NQp7sPh
Follow us: @TheLibRepublic on Twitter
America's Marijuana Legalization Hotbed Ain't on the West Coast, It's in ... New England?
Pot is becoming more potent, a new study suggests.
In the study, the researchers looked at more than 38,600 samples of illegal marijuana seized by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration over 20 years. They found that the level of THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol— marijuana's main psychoactive ingredient — in the marijuana samples rose from about 4 percent in 1995 to about 12 percent in 2014.
Conversely, the level of CBD, or cannabidiol — an ingredient sometimes touted for its potential health benefits — fell from about 0.28 percent in 2001 to less than 0.15 percent in 2014.
When the researchers looked at the ratio of THC to CBD, they found that marijuana in 1995 had a THC level that was 14 times its CBD level. But in 2014, the THC level was 80 times the CBD level.
"We can see that the ratio of THC to CBD has really, really increased and climbed so much higher," said lead study author Mahmoud A. ElSohly, a professor of pharmaceutics at the University of Mississippi. [11 Odd Facts About Marijuana]
In the study, the researchers looked at nearly 39,000 samples of illegal cannabis. The vast majority of these were samples of cannabis plant material, but there were also samples of hashish, which is the resinous parts of cannabis plants mixed with some plant particles, and some samples of hash oil, which is a concentrated extract of cannabis in oil form.
The researchers also found that, among the cannabis plant material seized over the last four years of the study, there had been an increase in the samples of sinsemilla, which is a type of cannabis that is much more potent than other types of the drug, according to the study, published Jan. 19 in the journal Biological Psychiatry.
The increase in marijuana's potency may have some negative health consequences for marijuana users, especially young ones, ElSohly said.
When a person smokes marijuana with lower doses of THC, "it is a pleasant feeling; it is the munchies, the happiness," ElSohly told Live Science. But smoking marijuana with high doses of THC may involve a higher risk of negative health effects, such as psychosis or panic attacks, he said.
There are several likely factors behind the increase in marijuana potency in the illicit market, ElSohly said. For one, "the higher the THC content is, the more expensive the product," he said. Therefore, the ability to charge more for marijuana with high THC content is an incentive for cannabis growers to select for and grow those varieties of plants that have a high THC content.
Moreover, pot smokers often develop a tolerance for THC, which means that, over time, they need increasingly higher doses of THC to get high, ElSohly said. These people create a demand for more and more potent varieties of pot.
Previous research has also shown that the potency of marijuana, including the marijuana sold in states where its recreational use is now legal, has increased over the years. For example, in a study presented in March 2015 at a meeting of the American Chemical Society, researchers said they found that samples of marijuana in Colorado contained as much as 30 percent THC. In comparison, the levels of THC in marijuana 30 years ago were generally below 10 percent, the researchers said.
Major Industrial Hemp Legislation to be Introduced
Representative Kaniela Ing (Kihei, Wailea, Makena) of Maui joins Representative Cynthia Thielen (Kailua, Kaneohe Bay) of Oʻahu today in introducing a bill to expand industrial hemp research, growth, cultivation and marketing activities in Hawaiʻi.
The bill follows the model used in other states like Kentucky and Colorado, by supporting partnerships with the private sector to further explore industrial hemp’s potential contribution to the state’s economy.
Representative Ing said that while industrial hemp is not a “magic bullet” for Hawaiʻi’s agriculture, he said it deserves consideration, especially with the closing of sugar operations by Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Company on Maui.
2016 Will Be the Biggest Year Yet for Marijuana Policy Reform
Knowing the proper terminology when it comes to marijuana is becoming more and more important as the marijuana industry (medical and recreational) begins to blossom across the U.S.
An is a consumable product (food and drinks) that contains marijuana. Sometimes the word medible is used because it is a combination of the words edible and medicine. Edibles generally take 30 minutes to 60 minutes to take effect. The effects last between 2 and 8 hours depending on the dosage and strength of the marijuana used in the item.
THC is the abbreviation for tetrahydrocannabinol. This is the psychoactive compound found in marijuana that produces a “high.” Each strain has a different THC level, higher percentages mean stronger effects. Marijuana averages at about 12 percent THC, but more modern marijuana strains have been tested above 30 percent.
, abbreviated as CBD, is another compound found in the marijuana plant. It produces no psychoactive effects. CBD strains are typically used for pain relief, nausea, epilepsy, psychosis prevention, cancer treatment, and for treating many other medical conditions.
Strain refers to the type of plant the marijuana came from – Cannabis Sativa or Cannabis Indica. All strains come from either sativa or indica; when cross-bred the strain becomes a hybrid. Hybrids are generally sativa- or indica-dominant and the effects primarily reflect the dominant strain.
Sativa strains are known for providing energy and creativity effects. Sativas are ideal for daytime use as they typically promote productivity.
Indica strains are ideal for chronic pain disorders, anxiety, insomnia and nausea. The most common effects of indica strains are relaxation and pain relief. These strains are ideal for night time use because they provide a more relaxing “high” than sativas. Stronger indicas are known to induce couch lock, or lazy feelings.
Shake is the leftovers from marijuana trimming. It consists of trichomes and leaves at the bottom of the barrel, so-to-speak. Some shake also contains stems. Shake is ideal for rolling joints as well as making , which can then be used to make .
Dabs are a highly concentrated form of marijuana. It is a sticky, gooey substance that can contain THC levels of 60-90 percent. Other terms for dabs are: wax, shatter, BHO (butane hash oil). Dabs are generally only used by experienced and high-tolerance users.
CHILE PASSES LAW ALLOWING PHARMACIES TO SELL MARIJUANa
Chilean President Michelle Bachelet approved a pro-marijuana bill which will remove marijuana from Chile’s list of hard drugs.
The new bill will also allow that “pharmaceutical products which contain cannabis, cannabis resin, extracts and colorants can be sold to the public in pharmacies or laboratories providing they have been submitted to tests.”
Marijuana consumption has been decriminalized in Chile for some time; however, anyone growing, selling or transporting marijuana still faced large prison sentences.
By easing their laws on marijuana for medical or personal use, Chile is joining a pro-marijuana trend by governments around the world. Recently, countries such as Australia, Canada, Colombia, Mexico, and Uruguay have also revised their marijuana laws.
U.S. POSTAL SERVICE WARNS THAT MARIJUANA ADS CAN’T BE MAILED
Some marijuana-related businesses are faced with another obstacle as the U.S. Postal Services issues afederal warning telling newspapers that it is a felony to mail material that includes marijuana .
The warning was prepared by the U.S. Postal Service’s Portland District office, and sent to a number of Oregon news organizations, where legal recreational marijuana sales began nearly two months ago and print-related advertising campaigns by dispensaries have significantly increased.
The USPS’s warning states that it is federally illegal to mail an advertisement “in any publication with the purpose of seeking or offering illegally to receive, buy, or distribute a Schedule I controlled substance.”
It is an ongoing challenge for dispensaries to find legal facets for advertising as well as banking in the federally-prohibited marijuana industry. Most dispensaries choose – or are compelled – to online and to be cash-only businesses. Luckily, cash is still king and online advertising has overrun print advertising because it generally reaches a larger and more targeted readership at a lower cost.
AZ COURT: MEDICAL MARIJUANA PATIENTS CANNOT SELL MARIJUANA
The Arizona Court of Appeals has ruled that Arizona’s medical marijuana patients cannot sell marijuana to other patients.
The Arizona Medical Marijuana Act (AMMA) states that medical marijuana patients can’t be prosecuted for providing marijuana to other patients as long as “nothing of value is transferred in return.” The law also states that “any [medical marijuana] cardholder who sells marijuana to a person who is not allowed to possess marijuana for medical purposes” will have their card revoked, which implies a patient can donate marijuana to another patient.
This is why Judge Fields wrote in his 2014 ruling that the clause “necessarily implies that a qualifying patient can sell marijuana.”
But the Court of Appeals judges ruled otherwise. They stated that “allowing such patient-to-patient transactions would … create an incentive to embark on a sales enterprise.”
Until another court reviews this issue, medical marijuana patients must adhere to the latest ruling to refrain from breaking the law.
ARIZONA COURT REJECTS MEDICAL MARIJUANA DUI IMMUNITY
Arizona medical marijuana cardholders are at risk of DUI for having any amount of marijuana in their system.
The Arizona Supreme Court ruled that Arizona medical marijuana cardholders have no immunity from prosecution under a state DUI law which prohibits motorists from having any amount of marijuana or its chemical compound that causes impairment in their bodies.
The court stated that a cardholder can try to prove in court that they didn’t have enough of the marijuana compound in their system to be impaired. Arizona medical marijuana law allows DUI prosecutions of cardholders but not if amounts of marijuana compounds in their systems are insufficient to cause impairment.
Chief Justice Scott Bales stated: “The risk of uncertainty in this regard should fall on the patients, who generally know or should know if they are impaired and can control when they drive, rather than on the members of the public whom they encounter on our streets.”
Many states with medical and recreational marijuana laws allow for motorists to drive with trace amounts of marijuana in their system, as well as with inactive marijuana metabolites.
Marijuana Fills Dire Medical Needs of Families; Science, States Try to Catch Up
Unthinkable two decades ago, parents are joining together to fight for their children’s right to use marijuana – and many legislators and researchers are standing with them.
For some teenagers, this might seem like a dream come true, but for Stephanie Ayotte, who has an extreme form of epilepsy, the hope is not to get high: it’s to get better.
These dedicated parents – Jennifer and Andy Ayotte, Beth and Patrick Collins, and Paige Figi – among many others, have worked hard to expand access to medical marijuana because it has dramatically reduced, or even eliminated, the occurrence of severe uncontrollable seizures that are not treatable with conventional drugs.
Stephanie’s daily seizures robbed her of the ability to walk freely when she was a teenager. Her parents began escorting her everywhere, one person on each side, for fear she would fall. Eventually, after several injuries, she was restricted to a wheelchair.
These families have tried alternatives like special diets and, in some cases, over 18 different medications that caused a wide range of heart-wrenching side effects, like episodes of rage. Medical cannabis seemed like their last hope.
“I’ve seen it work. It worked for me and for a bunch of other kids. It’s an amazing plant,” said 15-year-old Jennifer Collins on an episode of NBC’s Dateline, entitled Growing Hope.
Charlotte Figi lent her name to one blend of cannabis strain called Charlotte’s Web, after she became its first successful patient. Her epilepsy disorder caused up to 300 seizures per week – but they nearly stopped once she began ingesting the marijuana-derived ingredient called cannabidiol (CBD). News of her recovery spread from Colorado giving patients with severe epilepsy much needed hope and causing many families to move to states where medical marijuana has been legalized. Parents note that because the concentrated CBD oil is very low in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the component that provides the “high” in marijuana.
Although 23 states in the U.S. have legalized marijuana for medical use, it is still currently classified as a Schedule 1 substance by the federal government, which means it is deemed as having no accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. Additionally, severe restrictions are placed on medical cannabis studies, which has made it onerous for researchers, and delayed or thwarted trials for years. The hope is that current legislation making its way through the US Congress – H.R. 1635 and S. 1333 – would finally remove marijuana from the same classification as heroin.
Another bill, introduced by conservative Republican U.S. Congressman Scott Perry, the Charlotte’s Web Medical Hemp Act of 2014, is being evaluated as an amendment to the current Controlled Substances Act. It would legalize the marijuana-based oil if it contained less than 0.3 percent THC.
Manufacturers that are dedicated to the safe production and distribution of marijuana for medical uses include companies like the Realm of Caring Foundation, which makes Charlotte’s Web in Colorado, and Tilray in Canada.
Tilray is a licensed producer for the Canadian healthcare system, under the Marijuana for Medical Purposes Regulations that ensure for those with an authorized medical need access to quality-controlled marijuana grown under secure and sanitary conditions. The Government of Canada has not endorsed the recreational use of marijuana, but the courts have required reasonable access to a legal source when a patient is authorized by a doctor to use it.
“We’ve seen remarkable relief through the use of CBD, not only for patients but for parents and caregivers,” Tilray’s Vice President of Patient Advocacy, Philippe Lucas, told Good News Network. “As a father to a six-year-old girl, I know that if you see your child suffering, there is nothing you wouldn’t try within a reasonable margin of safety.”
This ‘last-resort’ option has helped Stephanie, now 23 years old, and Charlotte go from several severe seizures daily to 10-25 seizures per month, or none at all, respectively. Jennifer Collins has even experienced 100 days free of seizures.
“This is why clinical data is critical for patients such as Stephanie, and all others who suffer from various ailments and who have found relief by using medical marijuana,” Mrs. Ayotte said in an E-mail. “Until then, doctors will continue to be reluctant to prescribe medical marijuana. The result is very limited options for those who could benefit greatly.”
According to ClinicalTrial.gov, there are currently 32 ongoing studies being conducted in the U.S. that reference medical cannabis. Among them are Phase 3 clinical trials of Epidiolex, containing CBD as its active ingredient, for treatment-resistant forms of childhood epilepsy (Dravet and Lennox-Gastaut syndromes). While the trials are expected to complete patient recruitment this year and not report results until early 2016, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) went ahead and granted orphan drug designation for Epidiolex. This means that it is available to independent U.S. pediatric epilepsy specialists to treat high need cases of childhood seizures that have no other treatment options.
“I have been in this business for 20 years, first as a patient and now as a researcher. It is an incredible privilege to be part of someone’s healing process.” Lucas said. “To me, organizations in this space are not competitors – we are collaborators. The more research the better because we hear every day that medical cannabis is improving patients’ lives.”
Surprisingly, the FDA has previously given the go-ahead to THC-based drugs: Marinol and Cesamet. Approved back in 1985, these were the first cannabinoids marketed in the U.S. The pills help cancer patients with nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy, and AIDS patients to regain weight caused by loss of appetite.
In 2010, Sativex, a half THC, half CBD whole-plant cannabis-based pharmaceutical, was approved in the UK, followed by Canada and other parts of Europe, as a mouth spray to reduce pain associated with multiple sclerosis and cancer.
While there is more work and research to be done, incremental steps by states and national governments reflect that now, more than ever, the conventional medical community is open to a very unconventional treatment for alternative healing. The hope is that one more child will have one less seizure – and people’s health soon will matter more than a half-century of status quo regulations.
10 THINGS WE LEARNED AT THE SOUTHWEST CANNABIS CONFERENCE AND EXPO IN DOWNTOWN PHOENIXclick link for story...
‘CANNABALL RUN FOR VETS’ KICKS OFF IN SUPPORT OF VETERANS AND PTSD AWARENESS
The 2nd Annual Cannaball Run for Vets Kicks Off Education and Awareness Campaign Tour[Press Release] Port Richey, FL – October 17, 2015 – MagicalButter and the Weed for Warriors Project kick off the 2nd Annual Cannaball Run for Vets for cannabis Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder treatment to highlight the mounting evidence surrounding the issue of PTSD. The cross country education and awareness campaign will begin on Oct. 17 in Los Angeles, California, and stop along seven major U.S. cities as it heads toward the Nation’s Capital, Washington, D.C., for the culminating Veteran’s Day event on November 11th.
“MagicalButter embraces the use of cannabis as a treatment for debilitating ailments such as PTSD,” explained Garyn Angel, CEO of MagicalButter. “Our vets deserve alternatives to the narcotics that are currently being prescribed. We partnered with the veterans for the second annual Cannaball Run to make a difference. More troops have been lost to suicide than combat…and this must change now!”
The 2015 Cannaball Run for Vets is in support of Veteran’s Treating War Trauma with Cannabis. Stops include Los Angeles, CA (10/17); Denver, CO (10/24); Phoenix, AZ (10/26); Nashville, TN (10/30); Atlanta, GA (11/5); Charottesville, VA (11/6-11/8); Philadelphia, PA (11/9); and Washington, D.C. (11/11).
America’s veterans are seeking an alternative path away from harmful narcotics being prescribed to them that lead to addiction and suicidal tendencies. They are requesting for the VA to allow cannabis therapy as an option for treatment. On Veterans Day, at the Washington D.C. run, veterans plan to join in an emotional march–carrying their empty pill bottles to the White House on Pennsylvania Avenue, symbolizing their immeasurable suffering with pain-killer addiction from failed PTSD treatment. Through the events of the Cannaball Run, veterans and their supporters aim to advocate for the recognition of cannabis as an approved PTSD treatment alternative to dangerous narcotics.
“We are a nation awash in the blood of our dead patriots. This movement is to express veteran’s discontent with a system that has been abusing/ignoring them for far too long. As federal patients, we require that cannabis be recognized by the [Veterans Affairs] as a viable alternative to dangerous SSRI’s, Opiates, and other commonly prescribed drugs. We know from recent reports that cannabis has statistically lowered the overdose/suicide death rates in states where it is legally accessible. As federal patients, we require federal access,” said Iraq combat veteran Ricardo Pereyda, Operations Director of The Weed for Warriors Project.
About The Weed for Warriors Project:
Weed for Warriors Project’s sole purpose is to advocate to the Veteran Affairs Administration on behalf of all Veterans. Founded in 2014, the WFW Project aims to allow Veterans the freedom to use cannabis as a recognized medical alternative to harmful psychiatric drugs without any discrimination or unjust actions against the individual. W4WP was started in the San Francisco Bay Area by an OEF United States Marine Corps Veteran who found relief from his service connected disabilities through cannabis and the fellowship of other like-minded Veterans within the cannabis community. For more information please visitwww.weed4warriorsproject.org.
STUDY: YOUTH MARIJUANA USE HAS DECREASED SINCE 1999
New data reveals that fewer high school students are using marijuana than in the past, even though more and more pro-marijuana laws are being implemented and marijuana as a medical and recreational substance is becoming more accepted in the U.S.
The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health’s report reveals that marijuana use among American high school students is lower today than it was 15 years ago. They found that only 40% of teens in 2013 admitted trying marijuana, a decrease from 47% in 1999.
“People have been very quick to say that marijuana use is going up and up and up in this country, particularly now that marijuana has become more normalized,” said the lead researcher. “What we are seeing is that since 1999, three years after medical marijuana was first approved, the rates of marijuana use have actually fallen. But we will be watching those states where recreational marijuana use has been legalized to see if that leads to increased use among teens.”
The researchers will closely be watching the recreational marijuana states – Colorado, Oregon, Alaska, Washington and the District of Columbia – in order to get data on youth usage rates in states that have legalized marijuana.
STUDY REVEALS DAILY MARIJUANA USE IDEAL FOR PAIN RELIEF
A new study, Cannabis for the Management of Pain: Assessment of Safety Study (COMPASS), is being published in the Journal of Pain and found that patients who used marijuana daily for one-year reported reduced discomfort and increased quality of life.
The study also found that patients do not experience an increased risk of serious side effects, and that patients who used marijuana had a reduced sense of pain when compared to a control group, as well as reduced anxiety, depression, and fatigue.
The researchers discovered that daily marijuana consumers possessed no greater risk to experience “serious adverse ” than non-users. In particular, the researchers did not find any significant adverse changes in consumers’ cognitive skills, pulmonary function, or blood work following one-year of daily marijuana use.
“The sensory component of pain was reduced over one year in cannabis users compared to controls” and “quality-controlled herbal cannabis, when used by cannabis-experienced patients as part of a monitored treatment program over one year, appears to have a reasonable safety profile,” concluded the study’s researchers.
Marijuana is quickly becoming America’s next big medical treatment substance. It’s been proven in research studies to help with a myriad of medical conditions, and federal agencies have finally published statements indicating that marijuana has medicinal value.
The National Cancer Institute (NCI), which is the federal government’s principal agency for cancer research and training, recently updated its website to say that marijuana “has been shown to kill cancer cells in the laboratory” and that “[marijuana] and may have benefits in treating the symptoms of cancer or the side effects of cancer therapies.”
The director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), a U.S. government institution, wrote that cannabidiol (The Huffington Post.), a non-psychoactive compound in marijuana, is “a safe drug with no addictive effects, and the preliminary data suggest that it may have therapeutic value for a number of medical conditions” in an op-ed published by
Listed below are 10 of the most common medical conditions that marijuana is used for in the U.S.
1. Chronic Pain Relief
2. Anxiety Disorders
3. Nerve Pain Relief
4. Cancer Treatment
5. Crohn’s Disease
6. Multiple Sclerosis
7. Alzheimer’s Disease
10. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders (PTSD)
Recently, a research study found that states that have legalized marijuana have reductions in fatal overdoses and addiction treatment center admissions relating to opioid abuse. The study found that marijuana states show significant reductions in opioid misuse in states that have operating marijuana dispensaries.
The research study mentions “that states permitting medical marijuana dispensaries experience a relative decrease in both opioid addictions and opioid overdose deaths compared to states that do not.”
In the states where marijuana dispensaries are allowed, researchers found a 16% reduction in “opioid-related mortality” and 28% reduction in opioid-abuse treatment admissions. Whereas in the states where doctors can prescribe marijuana, but where dispensaries are prohibited (which makes it harder to legally obtain marijuana), the researchers found “no evidence” of “reductions in substance abuse or mortality.”
Researchers found that there was not a decline in painkiller prescriptions in the states with dispensaries, which suggests that marijuana legalization likely helped save the lives of recreational painkiller users that switched to marijuana and cut back on their pill consumption.
These research studies are quickly revealing that marijuana is a safer and effective medical treatment option.
Indica vs. Sativa: The Small But Significant Difference in Cannabis Genes
Scientists from the Tel Aviv University revealed that cannabis has a component which enhances the healing process of fractured bones. The study was published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research.
A curative component, called cannabidiol (CBD), sped up healing processes in the broken leg bones of trial rats with mid-femoral fractures. CBD is non-psychotropic and is also effective when isolated from tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive component of cannabis.
“While there is still a lot of work to be done to develop appropriate therapies, it is clear that it is possible to detach a clinical therapy objective from the psychoactivity of cannabis. CBD, the principal agent in our study, is primarily anti-inflammatory and has no psychoactivity,” said Dr. Yankel Gabet of Tel Aviv’s Bone Research Laboratory, as cited by the Tel Aviv university website.
To illustrate these findings, scientists tested two different groups of rats - one was treated with both CBD and THC while the other one only with CBD.
“We found CBD alone to be sufficiently effective in enhancing fracture healing,” Gabet explained.
“Other studies have also shown CBD to be a safe agent, which leads us to believe we should continue this line of study in clinical trials to assess its usefulness in improving human fracture healing,” he added.
The researchers also found that human cannabinoid receptors stimulate bone growth. That means further studies of marijuana usage to treat osteoporosis and other skeletal diseases are to come.
“We only respond to cannabis because we are built with intrinsic compounds and receptors that can also be activated by compounds in the cannabis plant,” Gabet said.
“The clinical potential of cannabinoid-related compounds is simply undeniable at this point,” he added.
Medical cannabis also provides bone tissue with mineralization, so it protects bones from further injury, making them less fragile. “After being treated with CBD, the healed bone will be harder to break in the future,” Gabet explained.
This is not the first study devoted to the health properties of marijuana. It has been linked to effective treatment of epilepsy, Multiple Sclerosis, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson ‘s diseases. It is also used to soften the negative effects of chemotherapy in cancer patients, treat chronic pain, and help people struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder.
7 BEST MARIJUANA STRAINS FOR USERS WITH LOW TOLERANCE
A bad first experience is often times enough for people to thrown in the towel to eliminate a repeated bad experience from their life forever. With marijuana, it is usually side effects such as anxiousness or paranoia – which are primarily associated with high- marijuana strains – that make people fear marijuana.
But many marijuana strains – usually indicas and some hybrids that contain less THC and more – have been cultivated to cause relaxation, euphoria and pain relief for consumers. This list provides some of the best marijuana strains for novice or low-tolerance marijuana consumers:
– Maui Waui (Sativa)
– Northern Lights (Indica)
– Jack Herer (Sativa)
– Blue Dream (Hybrid)
– Verde Electric (Hybrid)
– OG Kush (Hybrid)
– Pineapple Express (Hybrid)
The benefits of vaporizing instead of smoking are well documented: it is better for health and, for most consumers, it’s also less expensive in the long run.
Here are four reasons why you should consider making the switch from smoking to vaping:
1. IT’S HEALTHIER
The combustion of marijuana can produce several known carcinogens and tar, which can irritate the lungs and lead to chronic bronchitis. Vaporizers were primarily designed to overcome this issue. By heating marijuana at a lower temperature than combustion, the devices produce an inhalable vapor that still contains the active medical ingredients in marijuana (), but without the harmful by-products.
2. IT’S COST-EFFECTIVE
While some vapes require an initial investment of about $200, many often cost as little as $40. And vaping saves you money in the longterm, because you use less marijuana to get the same effects as with smoking.
3. IT’S DISCREET
Some vapes do still emit a noticeable vapor and marijuana odor, but for the most part, newer pens are much more discreet than smoking and are odorless.
4. THE FLAVOR
Most enhance the flavor of the marijuana strain being vaped, which adds to the many pleasures already attributed to marijuana.
Early research suggests that , a substance naturally found in marijuana, is an effective treatment for minimizing the inflammation experienced by asthma sufferers.
The research study found that the studied rats treated with CBD experienced a reduction in two types of cytokines, known as Tp and Th2. In addition to showing that CBD treatment was effective in reducing cytokine levels, the study also suggests that CBD may influence a reduction in the major stimuli of mucus hyper-secretion, another prominent symptom experienced by those with asthma.
The study’s findings were consistent with that of the Ribero study, which shows CBD to have potent immunosuppressive and anti-inflammatory properties. It is noted, however, that the asthma-associated inflammation of the rat models differed somewhat from that of the LPS-induced inflammation of the mice models being studied for decreasing inflammation due to lung injuries.
This study and many others like it are demonstrating the need for more effective, rigorous and timely studies on the potential medicinal benefits from marijuana.
Some marijuana strains are known for helping to produce creativity. For this reason, many artists and musicians throughout history have used marijuana to increase their creativity.
Here is a list of some marijuana strains that can help produce creativity:
– Blue Dream (Hybrid)
– Maui Waui (Sativa)
– Sour Diesel (Hybrid)
– XJ 13 (Hybrid)
– Alien OG (Hybrid)
– Deadhead OG (Hybrid)
– Girl Scout Cookies (Hybrid)
Yet another Obama admin breakthrough on marijuana
The White House took a major step forward on Monday to support research into the medical properties of marijuana, lifting a much-maligned bureaucratic requirement that had long stifled scientific research.By eliminating the Public Health Service review requirement, the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), also known as the drug czar’s office, will help facilitate research into the drug.
The Obama administration’s decision to streamline medical marijuana research Monday drew praise from Sen. Patrick J. Toomey, one of the more endangered Republicans up in 2016. […]While senators’ positions on medical marijuana are still evolving, Toomey’s love for streamlining governmental procedures and cutting duplicative programs is tried and true.
Bernie Sanders wants to talk about marijuana and looks to Colorado
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders said he plans to make marijuana an issue in the 2016 presidential campaign — and he is looking to Colorado for guidance.
In an interview with The Denver Post, the Democratic candidate said he supports the legalization of medical marijuana and his home state’s effort to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana.
On Saturday, as he traveled to a campaign rally at the University of Denver, Sanders said he wanted to learn more about Colorado’s legalization of recreational pot before he talks about what he wants to see happen at the national level.
“It’s something that we are going to look at,” he said. “In fact, I do want to talk to some people tonight and tomorrow to get a sense of what is going on in Colorado. We will be talking about this issue.”
In a recent Reddit conservation, Sanders said when he was mayor of Burlington, Vt., “very few people were arrested for smoking marijuana. Our police had more important things to do.”
Vermont is one of the states considering legalizing marijuana. A delegation of elected and state officials traveled to Denver in February to meet with Colorado officials and tour marijuana facilities.
“Colorado has led the effort toward legalizing marijuana and I’m going to watch very closely to see the pluses and minuses of what they have done,” Sanders told supporters on Reddit.
In a 2014 Time magazine interview, Sanders downplayed the issue saying the legalization of recreational pot “is not one of the major issue facing this country.”
Colorado Supreme Court: Employees Can Be Fired For Marijuana Use, Even Medical, Even If Off The Clock
CANADIAN COURT LEGALIZES ALL FORMS OF MEDICAL MARIJUANA
The Canadian Supreme Court has ruled that medical marijuana patients in Canada can legally use all forms of marijuana.
Canadian medical marijuana patients will now be able to use marijuana oil, thus allowing them to vaporize the oil or use it for making , such as cookies, brownies or teas.
Restricting people to dried marijuana for their medical uses has been declared “null and void” by the court.
In states such as the Colorado and Washington marijuana edibles make up a very large portion of sales at. And now Canadian medical marijuana patients can also enjoy products like marijuana-infused cookies and tea.
In Canada, medical marijuana is used for medical ailments such as Crohn’s disease, seizures, HIV and nausea. And doctors determine who is eligible to use it.
The court ruled that prohibiting possession of non-dried forms of marijuana is “contrary to the principles of fundamental justice because they are arbitrary; the effects of the prohibition contradict the objective of protecting health and safety”.
Advocates push for New York emergency medical marijuana
ALBANY – Patients and state lawmakers on Tuesday made a final push for New York to pass a bill that would provide emergency access to medical marijuana for ill patients.
New Yorkers with severe illnesses and legislators urged the Legislature to pass the bill and for Gov. Andrew Cuomo to sign it as the state Department of Health considers medical marijuana growers and hopes to have a statewide distribution system in place by Jan. 1.
The state Assembly was expected to pass the bill late Tuesday, but it faced an uncertain future in the Senate and with the Democratic governor.
A total of 43 companies are vying for one of five licenses to grow and distribute medical marijuana, according to the state Department of Health. The state posted the list of companies late Tuesday after the applicants dropped off hundreds of boxes of documents ahead of a Friday deadline to apply.
Advocates said the state's timeline is too slow for patients who could benefit from medical marijuana for their illnesses, such as children with severe epilepsy. The state last year approved the legalization of medical marijuana for ill people in non-smokeable forms, but the system is still about six months from being up and running.
"These children and other patients cannot wait until January," said Assembly Health Committee chairman Richard Gottfried, D-Manhattan, who sponsors the bill.
Several families in New York said their children have died over the last year as they waited for medical marijuana to help with their illnesses.
The bill would allow for the state to offer a "special certification" to a patient whose condition is "progressive and degenerative or for whom a delay in the patient's certified medical use of medical marijuana poses a serious risk to the person's life or health."
Some Republicans in the GOP-led Senate are supporting the measure, but it's unclear whether it will pass in the flurry of activity before the legislative session ends June 17, said Sen. Joseph Griffo, R-Rome, who is sponsoring the bill.
"This access is critical for these individuals who are enduring such pain and suffering, but also for the families," Griffo said.
Cuomo, though, has indicated that he would prefer to wait until the state system is in place, citing the federal ban on medical marijuana across state lines. The state will issue five medical marijuana licensees that can each have four dispensaries.
In a statement last month, Cuomo spokesman Richard Azzopardi said the state is moving as "expeditiously as possible under current federal guidelines" to allow for medical marijuana in forms such as oils and pills to patients.
"The last thing that anyone would want is legal complications to arise from importing marijuana products over state lines without federal approval, or for unnecessary delays with the implementation of the current program to come as a result of layering a separate process on top of it," Azzopardi said.
Gottfried, however, dismissed the governor's concerns, saying states such as Georgia have been able to work around federal laws to get medical marijuana to patients.
"I would think New York could do at least as good as the state of Georgia," Gottfried said.
Meanwhile, patients said they continue to be frustrated by the wait.
"It is a terrible feeling to watch your child suddenly drop and fall down the stairs in front of you," said Julie Kulaway, a Utica-area mother whose 12-year-old daughter, Mackenzie, suffers from a severe form of epilepsy.
Tom Palumbo, a nurse from Waverly, Tioga County, attended Tuesday's news conference at the Capitol along with the patients. He said he's seen a number of cases where medical marijuana could have helped people in his care.
"To see people suffering, as a nurse it does take a lot out of you," Palumbo, 55, said. "And when you know you could do something and you're prohibited, that's a terrible position to be in."
IN HISTORIC VOTE, SENATE APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE APPROVES VETERANS MEDICAL MARIJUANA AMENDMENT
Amendment Would Allow VA Doctors to Recommend Medical Marijuana to Their Patients in States Where It’s Legal
Bernie Sanders Leaves The Door Open On Marijuana Legalization
House OKs cannabis oil in victory for marijuana advocates
AUSTIN (AP) — Marijuana supporters are on the brink of a small victory they say is nonetheless significant in the conservative Texas Legislature.
The Republican-controlled House on Monday approved legalizing trace amounts of a marijuana plant extract for medicinal purposes. The cannabis oil wouldn’t produce the high associated with other parts of marijuana.
Parents of children with intractable epilepsy have pleaded with lawmakers all session, saying the oil helps control seizures.
A doctor would have to provide a prescription if the law is signed by Republican Gov. Greg Abbott.
Since current Texas law doesn’t allow any form of medical marijuana, advocates say this has been their most successful Texas legislative session in history.
Other proposals to decriminalize marijuana penalties are unlikely to pass, but made notable progress after years of being stymied.
Community begs to keep 59-year-old cannabis supplier out of jail
37 Naseby residents write to judge "imploring" woman be kept in community.
Close to 40 members of a central Otago community wrote to a judge "imploring" him to keep a 59-year-old woman, who was supplying locals with cannabis, out of jail.
Judge Stephen Coyle sentenced Denise Lorraine Barnett, to 350 hours of community work and 12 months supervision on three charges relating to possession and cultivation of cannabis, and possession of a pipe for consumption of cannabis, in the Alexandra District Court on Tuesday.
On February 7, police executed a search warrant at her home and discovered 50 "healthy" and "mature" cannabis plants, as well as 3.5 kilos of cannabis inside two large rubbish bags and a suitcase.
Lawyer Kieran Tohill described the woman, who sat hunched over in front of the judge in a wheelchair, as an eccentric hoarder who had the support of the community.
Tohill told the judge, 37 community members "from all walks of life" had signed a letter "imploring" the judge to keep Barnett in the community, saying they did not need protection from her. The community wrote Barnett needed their support, Tohill said.
Barnett had a troubled background - as a young person she was institutionalised at Cherry Farm, after which she lived on the street and in 1989 shifted to Naseby where she had been ever since, gaining the trust of the community and participating in volunteer work, Tohill said.
Judge Coyle said Barnett was clearly a "local icon" for the Naseby community in central Otago.
"Despite your troubled background, you have clearly become a popular member of that community. I accept you are an important and valued member of the community, but eccentricity in my view doesn't not detract from the seriousness of your offending."
"You acknowledged you also supply cannabis to friends at times, you give it away other times, you sell it, but you have said rather than keeping the money yourself you donate it."
The offending was not opportunistic and she had been supplying cannabis to an underground cannabis culture within the Naseby community for a lengthy time, the judge said. "Fifty plants is not insignificant ... the court needs to send a clear message members of the community cannot grow cannabis to this extent and supply the local community no matter how cute and endearing the supplier is." However, the judge said he recognised the court at times had to act humanely in recognition of those who come before the court.
"The court of justice also needs to be a court of humanity ... You are elderly, you are clearly unwell and indeed today you are present in a wheelchair such is the extent of your ill health ... a sentence of imprisonment would be cruel and harsh."
ACTOR MORGAN FREEMAN VOICES PRO-MARIJUANA VIEWS
In a recent interview, Morgan Freeman, the 77-year-old Oscar winner, spoke candidly about his marijuana use and his stance on legalization.
“Marijuana has many useful uses,” stated Freeman. “I have fibromyalgia pain in this arm, and the only thing that offers any relief is marijuana. They’re talking about kids who have grand mal seizures, and they’ve discovered that marijuana eases that down to where these children can have a life. That right there, to me, says, ‘Legalize it across the board!’”
In addition to touting all the medical benefits of marijuana, Freeman also pointed out that negative effects of marijuana are rare and other legal substances are much more dangerous to society.
“Now, the thrust is understanding that alcohol has no real medicinal use,” Freeman said. “Maybe if you have one drink it’ll quiet you down, but two or three and you’re fucked. Look at Woodstock 1969. They said, ‘We’re not going to bother them or say anything about smoking marijuana,’ and not one problem or fight. Then look at what happened in ’99.”
The actor’s own experience with marijuana dates back to 2008, when a car accident left him with shattered bones in his arm. He found that marijuana effectively alleviated his pain and has since been an outspoken advocate of legalization.
“They used to say, ‘You smoke that stuff, boy, you get hooked!’” Freeman chuckled. “My first wife got me into it many years ago. How do I take it? However it comes! I’ll eat it, drink it, smoke, snort it!”PA Senate Passes Medical Marijuana Bill
HARRISBURG — The Pennsylvania Senate passed the latest version of Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana bill Tuesday afternoon.
The vote was 40-7 for the bill that would make it legal in the state for marijuana to be used to treat certain serious illnesses when prescribed by a doctor.
The bill known as SB 3, sponsored by Sen. Mike Folmer (R-Lebanon), would allow edible forms of marijuana and vaporization, but smoking would not be allowed. Patients would have to get the cannabis from a licensed and regulated dispensary and would not be able to grow their own plants.
The qualifying conditions in the bill were slightly expanded to include patients suffering from cancer, seizures, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, cachexia/wasting syndrome, Parkinson’s disease, traumatic brain injury and postconcussion syndrome, multiple sclerosis, Spinocerebellara Ataxia (SCA), posttraumatic stress disorder, severe fibromyalgia, HIV/AIDS, glaucoma, Crohn’s disease, diabetes, and chronic pain.
Patients under age 18 would need parental consent.
The medical marijuana bill now heads to the state House of Representatives.
Last year, the senate passed a similar bill, but it was never brought to a vote in the House.
HAWAII LEGISLATURE APPROVES MARIJUANA DISPENSARIES
The Hawaii Legislature has approved a plan to develop a system of medical marijuana throughout the state. The news comes 15 years after Hawaii legalized medical marijuana.
The development will provide relief to Hawaii’s 13,000 medical marijuana patients who have been forced to grow their own marijuana or buy it on the black market.
“This is a victory for children who can’t be taken care of any other way,” stated Teri Heede, who has multiple sclerosis and grows her own marijuana in Honolulu.
The House and Senate passed the bill Thursday sending it to Gov. David Ige. Ige hasn’t promised to sign the bill, but he has said his staff worked closely with lawmakers to craft the final draft of the legislation.
Under the proposal, dispensaries could begin operating as soon as July 2016. The bill allows dispensaries to open on all the major Hawaiian islands, including three on Oahu, two each on Maui and Hawaii’s Big Island and one on Kauai.
Applications for licenses would become available in January. Each dispensary license would cover up to two retail dispensing locations and two production centers, with each production center cultivating no more than 3,000 plants.
FORMER DEA AGENT BACKS MARIJUANA LEGALIZATION
Finn Selander, a former Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent, who spent six years as the DEA’s Marijuana Coordinator in Miami and New Mexico, is now speaking out in favor of legislation that would create a full-fledged recreational marijuana program in Arizona.
Now a member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP), Selander said that he’s seen too many lives ruined by strict marijuana and those laws need to change.
“As an agent, I was doing my job,” Selander stated. “I was enforcing the . It was definitely hard at times… I would see injustice in a number of cases.”
The Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act initiative Selander is supporting is set to to appear on Arizona’s 2016 ballots and “proposes legalizing marijuana for recreational use for those over the age of 21, creating a network of shops licensed to sell and distribute it and taxing it 15% on top of the regular sales tax.”
MARIJUANA THERAPY FOR CHRONIC PAIN
Marijuana use for the treatment of chronic pain has had a long history with many written references of its use dating back to around 2700 B.C.E. The first records from the nineteenth century were noted by an Irish doctor who described the use of marijuana in the treatment of cholera, rabies, tetanus, menstrual cramps and delirium tremens.
Recently, research has been done around marijuana therapy in the treatment of chronic pain with very promising results.
“Medical marijuana is a very effective therapy for chronic pain patients because it affects people’s perception of pain, has the ability to mitigate the inflammatory process, and has been shown to affect voltage-gated sodium channels in nerves in a way similar to lidocaine,” reports Dr. Mark Rabe, Medical Director of Centric Wellness.
The ability of marijuana to help relieve chronic pain rests in the cannabinoid receptors – cannabinoid receptor type-1 (CB1) and type-2 (CB2). Studies show that CB1 receptors are located all over the body, however they have particularly high concentration in the central nervous system in areas that control pain perception. CB2 receptors, on the other hand, are primarily located in areas of the body that control immune function, such as the spleen, white blood cells, and tonsils.
The fact that these receptors are found in the two major body systems responsible for producing the sensation of pain, the immune system and the nervous system, is what gives marijuana its therapeutic relevance in the chronic pain space. Additionally, and importantly, there are a lack of cannabinoid receptors in the brainstem region, the area of the brain responsible for controlling breathing, thus the dangerous side effect of respiratory depression found with high dose opioid use, is not a factor with marijuana use.
Dr. Rabe reported that: “We have many patients who come in on higher doses of opioid medications. Through using cannabis, in conjunction with other therapies, they are able to lower their daily opioid requirement.”
Numerous studies support these findings, including a 2011 study published in the Journal of Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics which showed that vaporizing marijuana increased the patient-reported analgesic effect of opioids, without altering plasma opioid levels. Moreover, there is an emerging body of research whose findings suggest marijuana can be used as an effective substitution therapy for patients with opiate abuse issues.
NFL GM: “40% OF PLAYERS IN THIS DRAFT USE MARIJUANA”
A portion of this year’s NFL draft class appears to be pro-marijuana. Of the draft class, a pair of highly regarded defensive prospects, Shane Ray and Randy Gregory, are prized for their abilities to get to opposing quarterbacks, and both have also admitted to marijuana use. Ray admitted just days before the draft.
NFL teams must now weigh their evaluations of the players’ abilities against their concerns about character issues and possible future suspensions for marijuana use because it is banned in the NFL. For some teams, decisions on Ray and/or Gregory, who failed a drug test at the NFL draft combine in February, will come down to how they feel about usage of the drug in question.
One unidentified general manager gave some insight into his team’s thinking: “My estimate is 30 to 40 percent of players in this draft class use marijuana regularly. That’s right in line with our league. Publicly teams act shocked, disappointed about marijuana. Privately we know a lot of guys smoke and we’re far from shocked.”
In fact, the GM’s “30 to 40 percent” estimate may be low. A former defensive lineman, whose 10-year ended in 2006, told the Associated Press last year that half the players in the NFL use marijuana, at least occasionally.
Another former NFL player stated: “It’s not, let’s go smoke a . It’s, what if you could take something that helps you heal faster from a concussion, that prevents your equilibrium from being off for two weeks and your eyesight for being off for four weeks?”
Many NFL players use marijuana to help treat chronic pain and inflammation instead of painkillers which are addictive and have many other negative side effects.
CNN’S MARIJUANA DOCUMENTARY “WEED 3″ AIRS
CNN’s chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta has returned with more revelations about medical marijuana with his latest documentary, “Weed 3: The Marijuana Revolution,” which originally aired on April 19 (and can be viewed below).
The documentary discusses medical marijuana and examines the lives of families that benefit from it. Gupta also gives viewers an insider’s look at the politics behind medical marijuana research.
Weed 3 also focuses on the efforts of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), whose researcher Dr. Sue Sisley is attempting to get federal approval to study marijuana’s effect on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), after a series of bureaucratic setbacks. SEE OUR WEBSITE FOR THE VIDEO!!!
BIG PHARMA: THE FIRST MEDICAL MARIJUANA RETAILERS
Before the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937, Big Pharma companies like Eli Lilly and Parke-Davis and Squibb of Bristol-Myers Squibb were marketing marijuana medicines – such as extracts and tinctures – labeled as “uniformly effective at dose levels of 10 mg.”
Back then, most medicines had the same universal characteristics, so drug companies had to rely on marketing and brand recognition to sell products.
According to the Antique Cannabis Book, 6% of all manufactured drugs at the time contained marijuana in one form or another, whether in powder, tablets, fluid extracts or tinctures. Some call that period, from the turn of the century to 1937, the “Golden Age of Medical Cannabis” as marijuana products flourished with little to no stigma or legal ramifications.
Then, like now, marijuana was prescribed for a variety of ailments including migraines, epilepsy, stomach worms, mental illnesses and some addictions. It was also used by veterinaries for pets.
While smoking was not very common, tinctures and extracts were developed on a regular basis. The pharmaceutical companies had the benefit of their own expertise in standardizing and establishing dosing and responses. They initially used marijuana grown in India, but soon realized growing their own was more reliable. In doing so, they learned about sinsemilla (seedless) cultivation.
Parke-Davis (now owned by Pfizer) worked with Eli Lilly to create its own plant strain called Cannabis Americana, a domesticated Indica strain.
According to Forbes, Parke-Davis did not stop with weed. It sold various types of cocaine before it became illegal, developed ketamine and held the patent for PCP.
DEFIANT, ANTI-MARIJUANA DEA CHIEF RESIGNING
The DEA’s chief administrator, Michele Leonhart, will resign next month. The news prompted cheers from the marijuana industry because she aggressively opposed marijuana legalization and the industry in general.
Leonhart had fallen out of favor with President Barack Obama’s administration long ago for insubordination and mismanagement issues. She became disliked throughout the marijuana industry because she would continually “resist federal rules relaxing enforcement on marijuana as states have moved to legalize the drug for medicinal and recreational use,” stated a recent article.
Her resignation, which is effective in May, could open the door for a more marijuana-friendly replacement.
“From interfering with voter-approved state marijuana to mismanaging broader agency scandals, it’s long been time for her to go,” stated a marijuana industry businessman.
Recently, Leonhart has been under fire due to sex party scandals in Colombia involving DEA agents and prostitutes paid for by the cartels.
HEALTH BENEFITS FROM JUICING WITH MARIJUANA
Doctors, researchers and medical professionals are finding that raw marijuana (cannabis), usually in a juiced form, is much more beneficial than if smoked or vaporized. This is because heating marijuana decarboxylates it and removes many beneficial substances. Below are some quotes from these professionals:
“If cannabis were discovered in the Amazon rainforest today, people would be clambering to make as much use as they could of all of the potential benefits of the plant. Unfortunately, it carries with it a long history of being a persecuted plant.” – Donald Abrams, chief of Hematology Oncology at San Francisco General Hospital.
“It (cannabis) has captured these molecules that help our bodies regulatory system be more effective. The bottom line is it’s a dietary essential that helps all 210 cell types function more effectively. I don’t even refer to it as medicine anymore, strictly as a dietary essential.” – Dr. William L. Courtney, dietary raw cannabis specialist.
“If you heat the plant, you will decarboxylate -A and you will get ‘high’. You’ll get your 10mg (of THC). If you don’t heat it, you can go up to five or six hundred milligrams, use it as a dietary cannabis and push it up to the anti-oxidant and neuro-protective levels which come into play at hundreds of milligrams. It is this dramatic increase in dose from 10 mg of psychoactive THC to the 500 mg – 1,000 mg of non-psychoactive THC-A, -A, and CBG-A that comprises the primary difference between traditional ‘Medical Marijuana’ and Alternative Cannabinoid Dietary Cannabis.” – Dr. William L. Courtney, dietary raw cannabis specialist.
“CBD works on receptors, and as it turns out, we have in our bodies, endogenous cannabinoids, that turn out to be very effective at regulating immune functions, nerve functions, and bone functions. The endogenous cannabinoid system acts as a modulator in fine-tuning a lot of these systems, and if something is deranged biochemically in a person’s body, it may well be that a cannabinoid system can bring things back into balance.” – Ethan Russo,senior medical adviser to GW Pharmaceuticals.
“[Cannabis has the] greatest potential of any medicinal plant.” – Ethan Russo,senior medical adviser to GW Pharmaceuticals.
With statements from medical professionals such as these, it’s a wonder why cannabis is federally illegal and classified as a Schedule I substance, which means the government has concluded that it has no medicinal value whatsoever. Hopefully, in the near future, marijuana prohibition will end worldwide and humans will have access to this amazingly beneficial plant that nature has provided us with.
The Government Just Admitted That Cannabis Kills Cancer
Federal Government Unwittingly Admits Cannabis Kills Cancer
This March, researchers for the United States updated the official menu of the only supplies of federally legal marijuana in the world.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse posted a revised list of the type and cost of marijuana available to researchers. You’ll need a special research permit to buy the federal government’s pot — which is grown in Mississippi — but don’t worry, you’re not missing out on anything special. Uncle Sam’s stash is largely filled with bunk.
A review of NIDA’s research marijuana menu shows the world’s top researchers have much poorer access to cutting-edge medical cannabis products than your average 18 year-old in Los Angeles or San Francisco.
Medical cannabis is legal for adults with a doctor’s note in California, and some 22 other states, and the marketplace has rapidly evolved beyond anything at the government’s lone pot farm. One in 20 California adults is estimated to have tried medical cannabis for a serious condition and 92 percent of them thought pot worked.
For example: NIDA has two main classes of pot for sale “marijuana cigarettes” and “bulk marijuana”. That’s it. Joints and kilograms. No concentrated extracts or topicals, let alone edibles, lozenges, sprays, and juices.
NIDA’s pricing schedule states that non-placebo cigarettes cost $10.96 each, placebo cigarettes cost $13.94 each, while Bulk Marijuana costs $2,497 per kilogram (2.2 pounds).
Roughly $1,200 a pound would be pretty good for wholesale bud, but the selection here is atrocious.
The highest THC cigarette the government is selling tops out at 6.7% THC. Compare that to 25% THC for pre-rolls in San Francisco and L.A. Uncle Sam has no high-cannabidiol pre-rolls, whereas high-CBD pre-rolls are common in advanced cannabis markets.
And most of the bulk marijuana is bad, too. Uncle Sam classifies cannabis that’s “low” in THC as having less than 1%, “medium” is 1-5%, “high” is 5-10%, and “very high” is greater than ten percent. Not a single government strain tests over 10.2% THC.
By comparison, the average Bay Area cannabis patient buys cannabis that’s an average of 15 percent, estimates UC Berkeley public health researcher Amanda Reiman.
NIDA also lacks high-THC-V strains, which likely hold the key to future diet drugs.
On the upside, NIDA has plenty of ultra-low-THC, high-CBD strains. Some are .53 percent THC and 13.94 percent CBD. Check out the whole list here.
TOP RESEARCHER FINDS MARIJUANA HAS MEDICINAL VALUE
Allegations from anti-marijuana proponents stating that marijuana use causes serious harms are debunked, unwarranted and unproven, says one of the nation’s leading marijuana researchers.
Dr. Igor Grant recently spoke to the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), and stated about marijuana that there is “ no evidence for long-term damaging effects in adults.”
Over his professional tenure, Dr. Grant has authored multiple peer-review journal articles about the health effects of marijuana, including a report which concluded that long-term and frequent use of marijuana was not associated with the “substantial, systematic, and detrimental effect of cannabis use on neuropsychological performance.”
Dr. Grant also served as the director of the University of California Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research. At that time he oversaw the completion of numerous FDA-approved clinical trials assessing the safety and efficacy of marijuana. In 2012, he co-authored a summary of these trials for the scientific journal Open Neurology. The article stated: “Based on evidence currently available the Schedule I classification is not tenable; it is not accurate that cannabis has no medical value, or that information on safety is lacking.”
Dr. Grant further noted that the present Schedule I classification of the plant is inappropriate and severely hampers researchers from studying its effects.
New York Readies Restrictive Medical Marijuana Law
The New York Times reports that the new bill would only allow for 20 medical dispensaries, run by five organizations, to be established throughout the state, which would handcuff accessibility for many potential patients. Only patients suffering from a shortlist of 10 "severe debilitating or life-threatening" conditions, ranging from multiple sclerosis and Parkinson's Disease to ALS and AIDS, would be allowed to acquire medical marijuana.
The Health Department's bill also defines "terminally ill" as patients with a "life expectancy of one year or less," a restriction that would prevent the elderly from accessing the drug. Perhaps strangest of all, the law prohibits the smoking of medical marijuana. Instead, the drug will be administered as an "individual dose" of raw or concentrated "ingestible or sub-lingual" medical marijuana.
New York Assemblyman Richard N. Gottfried, one of the politicians struggling to bring medical marijuana to the Empire State, criticized the Health Department's provisions, telling the Times, "There are people from very, very young children to very elderly New Yorkers who are going to continue to suffer unnecessarily" because of "a long list of senseless burdensome restrictions on patients and organizations."
New York's Health Department defended their tight restrictions and the "safeguards" they've put in place, saying "the state developed the regulations through this very critical lens to ensure that the entire program would not be subject to enforcement action or legal challenge."
If the measure passes, New York, which harbors one of the most severe stances on narcotics thanks to the state's Rockefeller Drug Laws, would join 23 states in allowing the use of medical marijuana. Barring any setbacks, New York's medical marijuana law should go into effect by 2016.
Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/culture/news/new-york-readies-restrictive-medical-marijuana-law-20150330#ixzz3VyvTtXSE
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2ND MARIJUANA LEGALIZATION FILING IN ARIZONA FOR 2016
Arizonans for Responsible Legalization will be the second group to file paperwork with Arizona election officials to register an effort to put recreational marijuana legalization on the 2016 ballot.
The first group to file with election officials is lead by the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), who was behind the 2010 ballot measure that legalized medical marijuana in Arizona.
“A new committee formed Friday plans to file a ballot initiative to allow adults to purchase small amounts of marijuana for private use and provide new programs for the legal oversight and taxation of the marijuana industry with tax revenue invested into education,” said a spokesperson for Arizonans for Responsible Legalization.
More information for the proposed initiative will be released in April.
The Marijuana Policy Project of Arizona’s that their initiative is modeled after Colorado’s recreational marijuana , which allows adults 21 and older to possess and use up to one ounce of marijuana.
The Marijuana Policy Project stated that their organization supports “the most effective scenario possible” for legalizing marijuana in the Arizona, and that they “want to establish a good public policy that replaces the underground marijuana market with a system in which marijuana is regulated similarly to alcohol.
Former sheriff plans push to legalize marijuana in Maine
A bill from Rep. Mark Dion, D-Portland, to tax and regulate sales to adults is the fourth proposal of 2015, which some see as a sign of momentum on the issue.
A former police officer turned lawmaker is launching the fourth effort this year to legalize recreational marijuana for Maine adults.
Rep. Mark Dion, D-Portland, has submitted a bill that would regulate recreational marijuana sales, tax them at 15 percent and allow use by adults 21 and older. The language of the legislation is being developed and details won’t be available until the process is completed.
Dion’s bill joins three other proposals – one from a fellow lawmaker and two from political action committees formed to advocate for legalization – that would legalize pot use by adults, create a regulatory structure for retail stores and cultivators, and tax sales.
“Although there are three other possible initiatives considering the legalization of marijuana, the proposal I’m bringing forward is more conservative,” said Dion, who was Cumberland County sheriff for 12 years and a Portland police officer for 21 years. “My goal is to treat this in the same way we provide oversight and control of alcohol.”
Dion said details, such as how much marijuana adults could possess, are being worked out, but his plan would create three tiers of licenses for cultivators. He also wants to limit the number of retail stores in Maine to 20 so the state doesn’t replicate other states where there are pot stores “anywhere and everywhere,” he said.
“I don’t think the parents I’ve talked to want to see a marijuana outlet on every corner or in every shopping mall,” Dion said.
Paul McCarrier, president of Legalize Maine, said he is looking forward to seeing the language of Dion’s proposal and that the bill will not derail Legalize Maine’s efforts to collect signatures to put the question to voters on the 2016 ballot.
“I think this shows there’s a lot of momentum to legalize marijuana,” he said.
Scott Gagnon, director of Smart Approaches to Marijuana Maine, which opposes marijuana legalization, said that despite the number of legalization proposals, he hears frequently from parents and educators who don’t want to see marijuana retail stores in their communities.
“Whether it’s 20 stores or 100 stores, at the end of the day we’re creating more places for kids to get access to marijuana,” he said.
Dion’s bill is backed by the Maine Association of Dispensary Owners. Becky DeKeuster, secretary of the association and co-founder of Wellness Connection, said the bill expands on the state’s successful medical marijuana program.
“We feel like what (Dion’s) bill does is take a piece of the existing medical framework that is very successful and well-regulated by the state and builds on that,” she said.
Dion said his proposal gives existing dispensaries preference when transitioning into the recreational market, although there also would be cultivation licenses available for others, including caregivers who currently provide medical cannabis to patients.
Rep. Diane Russell, D-Portland, also has submitted a marijuana legalization bill, though details of her plan will not be released until the bill’s language is completed in April, she said.
Last week, the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol – backed by the Marijuana Policy Project, which advocated for legalization in Colorado – unveiled its proposal to allow adults to possess up to an ounce of marijuana, grow their own plants and set up a system for retail stores and commercial cultivation. That group also aims to get the legalization question on the 2016 ballot.
In February, Legalize Maine submitted to the Secretary of State’s Office an application for a citizens initiative that also seeks to legalize and regulate marijuana. Legalize Maine touts its proposal as a “homegrown” plan that focuses on supporting cannabis agriculture and small-scale growers.
To qualify for the ballot, each group must collect 61,123 valid signatures, or 10 percent of the total votes cast for governor last November, by Feb. 1, 2016.
Marijuana remains illegal under federal law, but Colorado and Washington state legalized the drug for recreational use in 2012. Last year, Oregon, Alaska and Washington, D.C., approved measures to legalize recreational pot.
Russell, who has presented legalization legislation for the past three years, said now is the time for Maine lawmakers to set the policy for legal marijuana use.
“I hope the Legislature does the right thing and realizes that the chaos that is happening (with multiple proposals) doesn’t need to be there,” she said. “If anything, I think the number of ways that legalization has come forward is indicative of just how ready Maine is to move forward on this.”
Dion, who previously served on the board of a dispensary, believes the time has come for lawmakers to approve a plan that properly regulates and taxes a substance people are already using. He said legalizing marijuana also would allow law enforcement to focus on “real problems” like heroin and methamphetamines.
David Boyer, manager of the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, said his group is “excited that there’s enthusiasm from all over to end marijuana prohibition and to stop punishing adults for using a substance that’s objectively safer than alcohol.”
President Obama predicted in an interview this week that as more and more states decriminalize marijuana, pressure will increase on Congress which could force federal marijuana to be changed.
“We may be able to make some progress on the decriminalization side. At a certain point, if enough states end up decriminalizing, then Congress may then reschedule marijuana,” Obama said in the interview with VICE.
Along with the positive prediction about the future of marijuana federal policy, the president seemed shocked by VICE interview Shane Smith saying that marijuana was the most suggested topic to discuss in the interview from VICE readers and that if Obama led the way toward marijuana legalization, it would be the biggest part of his legacy.
“It shouldn’t be young people’s biggest priority,” stated Obama. “Let’s put it in perspective. Young people, I understand this is important to you, but you should be thinking about climate change, the economy, , war and peace. Maybe way at the bottom you should be thinking about marijuana.”
On average, there’s a marijuana possession arrest nearly every minute in the U.S. Billions of dollars are spent enforcing marijuana prohibition laws that don’t deter most people from using marijuana, but do damage lives via criminal records. Furthermore, the immense damage caused by the black market and drug cartels.
It should also be noted that despite what the president said about Congress feeling increased pressure to decriminalize marijuana, his administration can actually do that without any additional Congressional action needed.
The Connecticut Supreme Court has ruled that persons arrested in Connecticut for possession of small amounts of marijuana have been given the right to get their convictions erased because the state decriminalized misdemeanor possession of marijuana in 2011.
The 7-0 ruling was due to a case involving Connecticut resident Nicholas Menditto. A Connecticut prosecutor and Menditto’s said the decision affects thousands of people who have misdemeanor marijuana convictions in the state.
“It’s a topic multiple states will have to be facing,” said Menditto’s . “Because marijuana is being decriminalized across the United States, this issue needs to be addressed.”
Connecticut’s Governor and legislators, in 2011, changed marijuana possession of less than a half ounce from a misdemeanor with a possible jail sentence to a violation with a $150 fine for a first offense and fines of $200 to $500 for subsequent offenses.
“The legislature has determined that such violations are to be handled in the same manner as civil infractions, such as parking violations,” was written in the ruling. “The state has failed to suggest any plausible reason why erasure should be denied in such cases.”
There are many ways to ingest medical marijuana and each has its pro’s and con’s. Some folks swear by their while others prefer the tried and true approach to medical marijuana: just plain smoking it. But thanks to advances in science and tech, vaporizing marijuana is the new norm. In fact, next to dabs, vaping (inhaling and exhaling the vapor produced by an electronic cigarette or similar device, which became Oxford Dictionary’s word of the year in 2014) has become one of the most popular new ways for patients to medicate.
One of the many reasons people like using vape pens is that they’re typically odorless which makes it easy to use when you’re on the go. Some of the newer pens, like Slim Joint, are designed to look stylish and discreet and are available in regular and extra strengths, depending on one’s needs.
How E-Joints Work
Vaping e-cigarettes, which contain nicotine, is the catalyst that started the vaping trend. But now, you can vape good old marijuana too, getting the , and other that you may require for health reasons.
When you inhale an e-, the tip glows, just like a real joint. But what you exhale is vastly different and more comparable to the mist that a fog machine creates. E-joints function on the same basic principle: a heating element known as an ‘atomizer’ heats up the fluid, turning it into a gas.
Many e-cigarettes are rechargeable, with refillable liquids that come in a variety of interesting flavors. The level of customization and variety of tastes have turned vaping into a popular hobby. But for medical marijuana patients, e-joints are more than just a tool for relaxation – they’re an important delivery method for medicine. And, just like there are many varieties of e-cigarettes there are many varieties of e-joints as well. There are also different strains available (including indicas, sativas and hybrids) and different flavors and methods of vaping.
Depending on the region or , there are a few options for vapes. Some will process their marijuana into a psychoactive liquid that can be used in a personal . Disposable e-joints are just like disposable e-cigarettes in that they require little maintenance or recharging batteries. Popular brands include the Juju Joint and the SlimJ. One major con is for environmentalists, as these e-joints are disposable, but many producers are working on programs to recycle the devices, especially as these devices grow in popularity.
Are E-Joints Safe?
There has been a fair amount of controversy in response to the safety of e-joints, especially in regards to health effects. Since users inhale a vapor instead of smoke, many believe it’s much safer. So far, the overwhelming consensus about e-cigarettes and vaping is that it’s far safer than inhaling smoke. The truth is, not enough research exists to be definitive, but according to WebMD, “So far, evidence suggests that e-cigarettes may be safer than regular cigarettes. The biggest danger from tobacco is the smoke, and e-cigarettes don’t burn. Tests show the levels of dangerous chemicals they give off are a fraction of what you’d get from a real cigarette. But what’s in them can vary.”
E-joints are a different matter entirely as none of the chemicals contained inside an e-joint are addictive. Plus, the cannabinoids inside are known by a wide scientific consensus to be helpful for certain conditions, including cancer, HIV, glaucoma, chronic pain, and many other conditions.
Medical marijuana patients are likely already familiar with which strains are best for their condition(s). But are e-joints right for patients? That’s a decision each patient will have to make on your own. Who knows, the result could be very positive. azmarijuana.com
The Federal Government Just Made Marijuana Legal in All Native American Reservations in the US
A huge event in national marijuana reform has taken place today.
The map above outlines ALL of the new areas in the us where it is now legal to grow and sell marijuana according to the federal government.
The Federal Government released a memo to the Justice Department issued to US attorneys, saying not to prosecute Native American tribes for growing and selling marijuana on their sovereign lands.
The policy was dated October 28 but was released publicly only today
Now people living in states with anti marijuana laws will in fact be living 10 minutes away from a marijuana store!
The Department of Justice released a memo Thursday directing U.S. attorneys not to prosecute Native American tribes for growing and selling marijuana on their sovereign lands.
The guidance, authored by Monty Wilkinson, the executive director of the Executive Office for United States Attorneys, extends even to reservations in states where marijuana has not yet been legalized.
The new policy, which is dated October 28 but was released publicly only today, is very similar to a 2013 memo the Justice Department issued outlining eight guidelines that states with legal marijuana would have to follow to avoid federal interference, such as not allowing sales to minors and preventing diversion of the drug to jurisdictions where it is prohibited.
“The eight priorities in the [earlier federal memo] will guide United States Attorneys’ marijuana enforcement efforts in Indian Country, including in the event that sovereign Indian Nations seek to legalize the cultivation or use of marijuana in Indian Country,” the new guidance says.
“Having the Department of Justice take a stance honoring the sovereignty of Native American tribes when it comes to how they set their own marijuana policy is refreshing,” NORML Communications Director Erik Altieri told Marijuana.com in an email. “The individuals living on these reservations deserve the same freedom to decide how they chose to handle marijuana on their own lands as we are currently providing the fifty states under current Justice Department memos.”
The new memo says that U.S. attorneys will still get involved in marijuana prosecutions when requested by tribal leaders, and it remains to be seen how many and which Indian tribes will be interested in taking advantage of the new clearance to grow and selling marijuana without federal interference.
Altieri predicted that some tribes would do so. “Like most others in this country, many in these regions see the failures of our current prohibitionist policies and will likely take this opportunity to pursue a new approach,” he said.
Such a move could have big financial benefits for tribes, many of which operate casinos and sell untaxed tobacco products on their sovereign lands, which attracts interest and revenue from non-Indians.
Kevin Sabet, of the anti-legalization group Smart Approaches to Marijuana, told U.S. News & World Report that the new memo means, “A situation is quickly forming where people living in states who do not want legalization will in fact be living 10 minutes away from a marijuana store.”
Mike Liszewski of Americans for Safe Access welcomed the new guidance but said, “as sovereign nations, these lands should already have this ability as a right.”
Liszewski also focused on the potential medical benefits of unimpeded cannabis cultivation and sales. “Medical access to cannabis grown on reservations could prove to be a cost-effective way for tribal nations to improve the wellness of tribal members,” he said in an email to Marijuana.com.
A poll performed by Arizona State University’s Morrison Institute for Public Policy polled Arizonans about marijuana issues in Arizona and found that 45 percent support adult-use recreational marijuana legalization, while 42 percent support the current medical-use-only marijuana . Only 13 percent of Arizonans want marijuana completely outlawed in the state.
The poll questioned over 700 Arizonans statewide.
“It is important to keep in mind this research polled a sample of all Arizona adults, not just voters or likely voters,” said David Daughery, the associate director of the Morrison Institute. He went on to mention that “since this issue would be decided by voters, the opinions of those who will not vote are of no consequence to a ballot measure.”
If Arizonans vote to legalize adult-use recreational marijuana in 2016, Arizona would have similar to Colorado, where adults can use and possess small amounts of marijuana – purchased from state-regulated – for recreational use.
FIRST GOVERNMENT-RUN DISPENSARY OPENING IN WA
The nation’s first government-run recreational marijuana is opening this week.
Revenues from the dispensary will benefit the town of North Bonneville, WA. The town noted that they are opening the dispensary because their town could really use the cash.
“There is one gas station. There is one restaurant. There is a golf course. And there is the Bonneville Hot Springs Hotel,” said John Spencer, a former city administrator.
Not long ago the town of about 1,000 residents stopped watering parks and other public places to save money. And a few months ago it had to start turning off streetlights to cut down on its electricity bill.
“The city is on its knees financially,” Spencer said. “They have run negative numbers in the general fund multiple months in a row because they have no retail sector here and in Washington State you’re dependent on a retail sector because of the sales tax. And this store could very well make a town that is otherwise going to fail.”
The dispensary will be called The Cannabis Corner, and will be the nation’s first recreational dispensary owned and operated by a municipality.
North Bonneville’s Mayor, Don Stevens, embraces the title of “The Marijuana Mayor.” So much so that he ordered a personalized license plate for his car that reads “MJMAYOR.”
Use: 9.86% of the population.
Status: Illegal, but soon to be decriminalized
Use: 10.3% of the population.
Use: 10.6% of the population.
Status: Legal for personal use. Illegal to produce, sell or use in public.
Use: 12.2% of the population.
Status: Illegal for recreational use. Legal for medical use.
Use: 14.3% of the population.
5. New Zealand
Use: 14.6% of the population.
Use: 14.6% of the population.
Status: Illegal to produce or sell. Decriminalized for personal possession.
3. United States
Use: 14.8% of the population.
Status: Legal medical use in 23 states. Legal recreational use in Colorado, Washington, Oregon, Alaska and Washington D.C.
Use: 17.7% of the population.
Use: 18.3% of the population
NBC might soon have a sitcom about a fictitious Denver marijuana . The show, being dubbed as “Buds,” will be about the day-to-day happenings inside a legal, recreational marijuana dispensary somewhere in Denver.
There is still a lot of speculation as to whether the show will be more along the lines of “Seinfeld,” “Mad Men” or a mix of the two.
According to various outlets, “Buds” is a part of NBC’s 2015-16 development cycle. Its executive producers are Adam Scott (of NBC’s “Parks and Rec” show), Naomi Scott (his producer wife) and Mande. It’s the first sale since the Scotts’ production company Gettin’ Rad Productions signed a first-look deal with Universal TV in 2014.
PHOENIX MARIJUANA INDUSTRY WOMEN LEADERS EVENT
The Phoenix chapter of Women Grow, a national network supporting female entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry, will host its next monthly networking on Thursday, March 5, from 6:30 – 9 p.m., at Optima Camelview, located at the intersection of Scottsdale Road and Highland Road, 7177 E. Rancho Vista Drive, Scottsdale. Open to the public, the event is an opportunity to learn about inspection in Arizona, as well as medical director compliance.
Held on the first Thursday of each month, Women Grow chapter offer opportunities for personal introductions, open networking, and a speaking program. Admission is $30 in advance or $35 at the door. For information and to purchase tickets, visit womengrow.com/events. Attendees are encouraged to RSVP in advance.
Women Grow is a national network educating, empowering and connecting women in the cannabis industry through monthly networking events, national conferences and shining a spotlight on aspiring and established women leaders in the cannabis industry.
TUNE IN TO WEEDSDAY WEDNESDAY, A LIVE CANNABIS RADIO SHOW TO HEAR THEM LIVE THIS WEDNESDAY!!!
BE.E, THE WORLD'S FIRST ALL HEMP ELECTRIC SCOOTER
Van.eko plans on introducing the world’s first ever electric scooter made completely out of hemp. The fact that the ingenious idea for this one-of-a-kind vehicle comes from a country known for its environmentalism is no surprise, and neither should its eventual impact on the European market once available.ithin the first few months of 2016, a Holland based company called
Two House Bills Would End Federal Prohibition Of Marijuana
U.S. SURGEON GENERAL SAYS MARIJUANA “CAN BE HELPFUL”
The nation’s new surgeon general, Dr. Vivek Murthy, stated that marijuana “can be helpful” for certain medical conditions, and that he wants science to dictate policy on the federally banned substance.
“We have some preliminary data that for certain medical conditions and symptoms, that marijuana can be helpful,” Murthy mentioned in an interview with “CBS This Morning” in response to a question about his position on marijuana legalization in the U.S.
Murthy didn’t use the opportunity to endorse marijuana legalization for medical or recreational purposes, but he did note that he believes U.S. marijuana policy should be driven by scientific research and what it reveals about the efficacy of using the cannabis plant for medical reasons.
“I think we’re going to get a lot more data about that,” Murthy stated. “I’m very interested to see where that takes us.”
Murthy was not the first surgeon general to question U.S. drug policies. In 1993, Joycelyn Elders, the surgeon general under President Bill Clinton, stated that she believed that legalizing drugs in the U.S. would “markedly reduce our crime rate.” Not long ago, in 2010, Elders called for the legalization of marijuana in the U.S.
NEW MEXICO RECREATIONAL MARIJUANA LEGALIZATION PROPOSAL ADVANCES
A New Mexico legislative committee voted in favor of taxing and regulating marijuana in New Mexico. The 5-4 vote for Senate Joint Resolution 2 (SJR2) narrowly passed in the Senate Rules Committee, and its passing will put it on the 2016 ballot where citizens will vote to decide if recreational marijuana will be legalized in New Mexico.
SJR2 would allow for the possession and personal use of marijuana by anyone 21 years of age and older and for the regulation of the production, sale and taxation of marijuana for recreational use in New Mexico.
“Today’s vote sets in motion the process to put the issue on a 2016 statewide ballot for voters,” said Emily Kaltenbach, New Mexico’s director of the Drug Policy Alliance. “Marijuana prohibition in New Mexico has clearly failed. It hasn’t reduced use and instead has resulted in the criminalization of people, gross racial disparities, and enormous fiscal waste. Senator Ortiz y Pino’s resolution will allow our legislature rethink how we can enhance the health and safety of all New Mexicans through sensible reforms.”
A statewide poll taken in 2013 found that a majority of New Mexico’s registered voters (52 percent) say they support legalizing marijuana for adult use.
BILL WOULD ALLOW VA DOCTORS TO RECOMMEND MARIJUANA
A new bill has been introduced in the House of Representatives that would allow doctors employed by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to recommend marijuana as means of medical treatment to veterans that suffer from certain medical conditions, such as: serious physical injuries, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and more.
Do to federal current VA policy prohibits doctors from recommending marijuana for medical use.
Nearly 20% of veterans returning from the Middle East are diagnosed with depression, anxiety, or PTSD; all of which are notoriously difficult conditions to treat. A study published recently in the Annals of Epidemiology found that the suicide rate among these veterans is 50% greater than the national average.
Last year a study was published in the American Journal of Public Health which found that in states that passed medical marijuana laws there was a statistically significant reduction in suicide rates.
“The men and women who served in Iraq and Afghanistan have made tremendous sacrifices for our country,” stated a spokesperson for the Marijuana Policy Project. “They deserve every option available to treat their wounds, both visible and hidden. If VA doctors are confident that medical marijuana would improve their patients’ quality of life, they should be able to recommend it to them in states where it’s legal.”
18 STATES PREDICTED TO LEGALIZE MARIJUANA BY 2020
The latest ArcView Market Research report reveals a prediction that 18 states will legalize recreational marijuana within the next five years. The report was devised to assist investors in the marijuana industry in charting a course for the future. Their data indicates the end of America’s marijuana prohibition may be well within reach.
“The continued success of the state markets has created the public perception that nationwide legalization is inevitable. This trend—compounded with the loss of big-name political donors, such as Peter Lewis and John Sperling—has created a political funding crisis,” noted the report’s authors.
“Winning full legalization the old-fashioned way—by getting it approved by a majority of the legislature and signed by the governor—would be an enormous political achievement that would open up the possibility of legalization in the balance of those states that do not offer a voter initiative,” stated a marijuana industry non-profit spokesperson.
ArcView’s analysts predict that recreational marijuana will be legalized within the next two years in eight states, including Arizona, California, Maine, and Nevada. It also appears that California is destined to join Colorado, Washington, Oregon and Alaska, by passing initiatives to legalize recreational marijuana in 2016.
Cincinnati would become Ohio marijuana capital under proposal
The Cincinnati area would become the marijuana-growing capital of Ohio – with Hamilton, Butler and Clermont counties each hosting a marijuana farm – under a proposal that advocates hope to put before Ohio voters as early as this fall.
The proposed ballot amendment would legalize marijuana for recreational use by adults 21 and older and medical marijuana for use with a doctor's note.
It would allow Ohioans to open marijuana manufacturing plants, retail stores and medical dispensaries. But it would limit the growth of marijuana to 10 sites around the state, including the three in Cincinnati.
And Cincinnati residents will have a shot tonight at being the first to sign the petition to appear on the ballot. The sponsoring group, ResponsibleOhio, is holding a signature drive from 5 to 7 p.m. at 17 W. Court St.
The group first needs to gather 1,000 signatures, then receive approval of its ballot language by Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine and the Ohio Ballot Board.
To put the amendment before voters in November, the group would need another 306,000 signatures by the start of July.
According to the language in the amendment, the Hamilton County farm would be located on 24.5 acres at 8485 Broadwell Road in Anderson Township and Forest Hills school district. The site is affiliated with Newtown-based Evans Landscaping, according to information from the Hamilton County auditor's website.
A children's gymnastics center, Gymnastics Central, is also located at the address, along with a packaging company and other commercial tenants.
The Butler County farm would be located on 40 acres of farmland in Middletown, northwest of the intersection of Todhunter and Yankee roads. The location is about 1.5 miles northwest of Monroe Senior High School.
Trenton-based Magnode Corp., a supplier of aluminum components, owns the land, according to the Butler County auditor's website.
The Clermont County farm would be located in Batavia Local School district, on 13 acres of undeveloped commercial land along Winding Creek Boulevard, which is off Olive Branch-Stonelick Road between Old State Route 74 and State Route 32.
According to the Clermont County auditor's website, the land is managed by Bill Woodward, of Cincinnati Construction Management in Loveland. Woodward could not immediately be reached for comment.
MARIJUANA “DISTINCTLY DIFFERENT” ON LUNG HEALTH THAN TOBACCO
The inhalation of one marijuana cigarette (aka ) per day over a 20-year period of time is not associated with adverse changes in lung health, according to a study published in the Annals of the American Thoracic Society journal.
Researchers assessed marijuana smoke exposure and lung health in a large sample of U.S. adults, ages 18 to 59. They reported that marijuana exposure was not associated with FEV1 (forced expiratory volume) decline or with any deleterious change in spirometric values of small airways disease.
The researchers noted, “The pattern of marijuana’s effects seems to be distinctly different when compared to that of tobacco use” and that “In a large representative sample of US adults, ongoing use of marijuana is associated with increased respiratory symptoms of bronchitis without a significant functional abnormality in spirometry, and cumulative marijuana use under 20 joint-years is not associated with significant effects on lung function.”
The study is the largest cross-sectional analysis to date that examined the relationship between marijuana use and spirometric parameters of lung health.
A different study published in 2012 in The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) reported similar findings: cumulative marijuana smoke exposure over a period of up to 7 years (the equivalent of up to one marijuana cigarette per day for seven years) had no associated adverse effects on pulmonary function.
In a 2013 study published in the Annals of the American Thoracic Society, they acknowledged that marijuana smoke exposure was not associated with the development of lung cancer, emphysema, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), or bullous lung disease. The study concluded: “Habitual use of marijuana alone does not appear to lead to significant abnormalities in lung function. Findings from a limited number of well-designed epidemiological studies do not suggest an increased risk of either lung or upper airway cancer from light or moderate use. … Overall, the risks of pulmonary complications of regular use of marijuana appear to be relatively small and far lower than those of tobacco smoking.”
Weed history is being made in Seattle: the first vending machines to dispense marijuana flower buds debuted Tuesday.
The machines, called ZaZZZ, are being placed in medical pot dispensaries, which helps to verify customer's age and identity since medical marijuana cards are required to enter the centers, said Greg Patrick, a spokesman for the maker of ZaZZZ, American Green.
Though vending machines appeared for the first time in Colorado last year, those sold only edibles, orcannabis-infused foods, and not the plant's flower buds that are so often associated with smoking pot.
"It's historic, there's just no other way to state it. We saw the repeal of prohibition in the early 20th century and the mark that made on our country and the companies that did it right," Patrick said. "We're in that stage. This will only happen once in our country's history, the repeal of this prohibition."
The machines have a touchscreen where buyers can make orders, play video games and read medical information about the products. They swipe their medical marijuana IDs or driver's licenses to make sure they can legally purchase the goods and must pay in cash or bitcoin since the federal government doesn't allow debit or credit cards to be used in the sale of marijuana.
Like machines that dispense soda or snacks, ZaZZZ intends to speed up the distribution for those who don't want to wait in a line at the dispensary.
"Once you swipe your ID, you can go shopping on the screen," Patrick said. "You can be in and out — literally — in a matter of minutes."
ZaZZZ vending machines in Colorado and Washington state, where legal recreational weed sales began last year, can dispense flower buds. But for the time being, American Green has to partner with growers in those states since the Tempe, Arizona-based firm — like others — can't ship medical marijuana product across state lines under federal laws.
Ultimately, American Green hopes to take the machines to other venues outside medical marijuana dispensaries as acceptance and awareness of the products grows. The company said the machine — which doesn't have a glass window that could be broken into — is secure against would-be thiefs.
"That machine is like a miniature little Fort Knox," Patrick said.
That's not marijuana -- that's cannabis
DENVER — Last December, Denver police reported a major increase in the number of marijuana-related arrests in the city's schools.
Parents were outraged at the 39% increase in a single year — the year in which Colorado legalized recreational marijuana sales. But it turned out the number of underage users was wrong.
That's because while filling out their reports, some police officers used the now-archaic "marihuana" spelling. Data analysts pulling the numbers forgot to look for the old spelling in the old records and came up with inaccurate totals. The revised numbers showed only a 6% increase.
The mix-up over the spelling highlights what's turning into a heated debate within the legal and increasingly mainstream marijuana community.
For a variety of reasons, many folks in the legal weed community would like to see "marijuana" and "pot" and "weed" relegated to the scrapheap of pejorative descriptions. And they aren't shy about letting me know their feelings. One reader, for instance, complained that my word choices made me sound ignorant and biased.
Their preference: cannabis.
For some, the old and frequently used words evoke the scare tactics long employed by governments and police. There's a school of thought that "marijuana" opponents ginned up the word because it sounded scary and foreign. (Although I can't find evidence that that's the case, despite what Wikipedia might say.)
For others, the words are loaded with reefer madness baggage. With proliferating legalization and mounting acceptance of pot across the country, they say it's time for a better name. These ganjapreneurs believe cannabis sounds more positive.
But switching words isn't that easy, as lawmakers and regulators are finding out.
"There's really a landmine out there in terms of the words we use," says Ron Flax, an examiner with the Boulder County Land Use Department.
What most people call marijuana is actually two different strains of cannabis: indica and sativa, both of which contain THC, the compound that gets people high. (Hemp is a sub-strain of the sativa plant containing very little THC that's used for clothing, rope and oil.) The different strains have different effects, depending on how they've been crossbred. And don't even get me started on the brand names growers give, like Sour Kush or Blue Dream; there's no regulation of what growers call their products.
Working in the famously marijuana-friendly "People's Republic of Boulder," Flax tries to be careful about the language he chooses. Last year, as the county was developing regulations about pot grow-house energy use, Flax started saying "cannabis" when talking to the industry, as a sign of respect for legitimate business owners. But he ran into a hiccup because county regulations and state laws refer to the plant as marijuana or marihuana.
If he wants his regulations to be legal, Flax has to call marijuana marijuana. And he's not alone. The laws in Oregon and Alaska legalize "marijuana," while the laws in Washington and Colorado legalize both "marijuana" and "marihuana."
And that highlights the challenges of changing how we describe things. You may have noticed I've used a variety of words when referring to marijuana. It's hard to argue readers don't understand that reefer, pot, weed and ganja all mean the same thing. As Shakespeare's Juliet might muse, does the name really matter, be it marijuana or Montague?
But I get where people are coming from. After decades of operating in the shadows, marijuana retailers (we used to call them drug dealers) crave the legitimacy that comes from regulation and public respect. And they want to see the language reflect that marijuana has indeed gone mainstream.
6 FACTS ABOUT MARIJUANA IN THE U.S.
Americans’ attitudes about marijuana have undergone a rapid shift over recent years. A recent survey found that many more Americans now favor marijuana and shifting the focus of the nation’s overall drug policy. Here are 6 facts about marijuana and public opinion in the U.S.:
1. Support for marijuana legalization is quickly outpacing the opposition. A majority (52%) of Americans say marijuana should be made legal, compared with 45% who want it to remain illegal. In 1969, a Gallup pole revealed that just 12% favored legalizing marijuana use. Between 2010 and 2013 support for marijuana legalization rose 11 points. 76% of people surveyed said people convicted of minor marijuana possession should not serve time in jail.
2. Not everyone supports legalization. 31% of Republicans do. Most whites and blacks say marijuana should be legalized, while only 39% of Hispanics agree. 63% of Millennials say marijuana should be legalized while only 27% of the Silent Generation (those 69 to 86 years old) agree.
3. 69% of Americans believe alcohol is more harmful to health than marijuana. 15% picked marijuana as being worse and 14% said both or neither. If marijuana became as widely available as alcohol in the U.S., 63% still believe alcohol to be more harmful to society.
4. 63% of Americans don’t want people to smoke marijuana in public. 54% of people surveyed think that legalizing marijuana would lead to more underage people using it. Whereas 57% of the people surveyed said they would be okay with a store legally selling marijuana in their neighborhood.
5. 47% of Americans say they have tried using marijuana. 11% said they tried marijuana within the past year, which the 2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health says is the most used illicit drug in the U.S.
6. Four states – Colorado, Washington, Oregon and Alaska – and the Washington D.C. have legalized recreational marijuana use. 14 states have decriminalized certain amounts of marijuana possession. Including those five recreational marijuana locations, nearly half of U.S. states (23 and Washington D.C.) have legalized medical marijuana use.
President Obama Could Re-Schedule Marijuana
Medicinal cannabis: study finds Australians suffering chronic pain get more relief from cannabis than conventional medicines
JAMAICA SET TO LEGALIZE MEDICAL, THERAPEUTIC AND RELIGIOUS GANJA
The country also has plans to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana.
Jamaica may soon legalize medical marijuana and decriminalize marijuana use, according to the Jamaica Observer and Jamaica Information Service (JIS) of the Government of Jamaica. The Dangerous Drugs (Amendment) Act 2015 was approved Monday by the Cabinet, is expected to be tabled in the Senate Friday, Jan. 23, and slated for discussion in the Senate Jan. 30.
The Act would establish a Cannabis Licensing Authority to oversee the proposed medicinal marijuana industry. It also would decriminalize marijuana, making possession of two ounces or less a ticketable, non-criminal offense.
According to the JIS, the Minister of Justice, Senator the Hon. Mark Golding, said during a Jamaica House media briefing on Jan. 21, “The Cannabis Licensing Authority will, with the approval of the Minister responsible for Justice, make regulations treating with (among other things) procedures and criteria for applying for and retention of licenses, permits and other authorizations for cultivation, processing, distribution, sale and other handling of ganja for medicinal, scientific and therapeutic purposes.” Provisions for industrial hemp are included in the Act.
The Act is far more liberal than most in regards to establishing a “medical” marijuana program, and even references use for religious, scientific and therapeutic purposes. “The changes will also enable the use of ganja in religious engagements by stakeholders, such as Rastafarians,” reports the JIS.
Ganja, as it is referred to by Senator Golding and by the JIS, will not be allowed to be smoked in public.
Arizona lawmaker proposes legalizing marijuana
PHOENIX — Recreational marijuana use could be legal in Arizona by this summer if the Legislature and new Gov. Doug Ducey approve a plan introduced by a Phoenix lawmaker.
The legislation will be a long shot under the conservative-led Legislature. But state Rep. Mark Cardenas, D-Phoenix, said he has some strong arguments. Among them is the possibility of nearly $50 million in potential tax revenue that could offset a looming $1 billion budget shortfall.
Proponents of legalizing marijuana are expected to try to get a measure on the 2016 Arizona ballot, following similar successful efforts in Colorado, Washington and Oregon. Cardenas said polling in Arizona shows such a ballot measure would probably pass, as medical-marijuana legalization did in 2010.
For a variety of reasons, Cardenas said, it would be better if the Legislature passed its own version of the law first.
"We've seen issues with our medical-marijuana system ... but it's nearly impossible to come back at the Legislature and adjust it because we need 75% of the Legislature (to approve any changes to a voter-approved measure)," he said. "This would give us more leeway. If there were unforeseen consequences, we could easily come back and adjust it the next year."
He said going through the Legislature makes sense given the likelihood of voters passing it.
"We have to be smart about governing," he said. "If it's going to happen, let's get ahead of it and make sure we have the conversations to come up with the best program possible."
House Bill 2007 would legalize the purchase, possession and consumption of up to 1 ounce of marijuana for adults age 21 and older. It would expand the current medical-marijuana system under the Arizona Department of Health Services, and create a process for dispensaries to serve the general public. It also would allow adults age 21 and older to grow up to five plants for personal consumption.
"We have a rough framework to work off of, which would be Colorado," Cardenas said. "We would like to start with a discussion and work towards creating the same system here. They've gained a lot of revenue from that."
HB 2007 would levy a new tax against marijuana, at $50 an ounce. Thirty percent of the revenue would go to education; 10% to treatment programs for alcohol, tobacco and marijuana abuse; 10% for public-education campaigns educating youth and adults about the risks of alcohol, tobacco and marijuana; and the rest would go into the general fund.
An analysis last year by the Joint Legislative Budget Committee estimated marijuana taxed at this level could bring about $48 million a year into the state.
The proposed tax rate is lower than that in Colorado, but higher than in Oregon. Oregon taxes marijuana at $35 an ounce. Colorado has a 15% excise tax, plus a 10% sales tax on marijuana, plus regular state and local sales taxes.
HB 2007 will need several legislative committee hearings and votes before it could become law. Even getting a first committee hearing could prove challenging.
A similar bill introduced last session by former Rep. Ruben Gallego, D-Phoenix, now a U.S. congressman, was never assigned to a committee. Without that assignment, it got no hearings or votes.
Cardenas introduced a bill last year that would have lowered the penalties for marijuana possession. It was assigned to the House Judiciary Committee, but it was never scheduled for a hearing.
"The possibility of it passing is not good, but we need to start looking at new and exciting ways to fill our budget gap if the governor is taking a 'no new taxes' stance."
The 420 Social Club provides medical marijuana patients a place to medicate and hangBy María Inés Taracena
Tucson medical marijuana users now have a home away from home where they can medicate and hang out.
The 420 Social Club on Fourth Avenue has been open to all medical marijuana card holders since last month, and it's the first to start functioning in the Old Pueblo, while a few already have been set up in the Phoenix area.
Creator Ron Johnson, a Vietnam veteran with multiple health issues, wanted a safe haven for patients to meet each other that also provided educational resources and a setting that, of course, abides by the law.
Since state voters approved the Medical Marijuana Act in 2010, medical pot is legal for several conditions, including post-traumatic stress disorder, but patients aren't fully protected. They can still find themselves in deep shit if found to be medicating on the streets, their car and college campuses, among other legal guidelines.
"I figured, friends already come here to smoke, might as well open it to other people," says Johnson, who also lives at the 420 club. The place is a duplex and his living area in the back is divided by a sliding door.
Johnson and his collaborators, which include Robert Clark, co-chairman of SAFER Arizona—that group is gearing up to get recreational marijuana legalized in the 2016 state elections—and local medical marijuana advocate Mark Brown, say they couldn't allow for more patients to find themselves in ill situations with the law, and so the social club was born. "Some of us got some serious issues," Clark says as he gathers pot to smoke from a colorful glass pipe. "If we are miles and miles away from home and we need to use our medicine, we have no place to go. Ron is giving us a place where we could come and medicate, and not have to risk using out on the street and get in trouble."
They point to cases involving college students who are medical marijuana patients. If university officials find pot in their possession or in their dorm, they are criminally charged and thrown out of school. The 420 Social Club is a few blocks away from the UA, and they encourage students with medical marijuana cards to get good use out of that.
But Johnson wants you to know that this place won't allow non-holders to come get high. He wants his joint (pun intended) to survive and thrive, and in order for that to happen he can't break the law. The contract lists all the stuff you can't do, including bringing weapons, tobacco products or show up there drunk.
Also, "You come in and sign in with your medical marijuana card," he says. "You can have guests but if they don't have a card, they cannot smoke."
As you walk in, a table stands near the entrance with sign-up sheets, MMJ educational brochures and business cards from the various Tucson dispensaries, as well as green and red wristbands: Green means you're good to smoke the green. The red means you're a guest, and not allowed to touch it as stipulated by the Medical Marijuana Act.
Across from that table is a glass case with beautifully hand-made silver jewelry. Johnson teaches people with disabilities in Nogales, Sonora how to make jewelry and sell it to make a living. Soon, the jewelry is moving out from that case, and Johnson hopes to fill it up with medical pot samples donated by the dispensaries. It'd be a way for dispensaries to promote themselves among patients, but it'd also make the 420 Social Club a "one stop shop."
It's a comfortable place—living room, a big TV, a stereo blasting 1960s and '70s rock, a fridge with all kinds of soda and other beverages. The door is always open. "My favorite part is all of the new, interesting people that I've met already," Johnson says.
Johnson hopes to remodel the backyard, an 1,800-square foot area, to host concerts, parties and educational forums, not only because he thinks it's needed in the community but also because he'd like to generate revenue that'll make the club 100 percent self-sustainable.
With the money from the memberships—$5 daily, $40 monthly or $420 yearly—Johnson says he's not looking for a dime to go to his pocket, it's about maintaining the 420 club and the services it offers.
An official opening event will be happening the first or second week of February, depending on when Johnson is done reorganizing the interior. In the meantime, enjoy free entrance until that grand opening takes place.
Federal Judge Weighs Marijuana's Classification
A federal judge in California is weighing the constitutionality of a 45-year-old act that classifies marijuana as a dangerous drug along with LSD, cocaine and heroin.
The case marks the first time in decades that a judge has agreed to consider marijuana's designation as a Schedule 1 drug under the 1970 Controlled Substances Act, the newspaper said. Under the act, Schedule 1 drugs have no medicinal purpose, are unsafe even under medical supervision and contain a high potential for abuse.
Mueller's decision to hold the hearing came in response to a pretrial defense motion in a federal case against alleged marijuana growers. Prosecutors unsuccessfully opposed the fact-finding effort.
A ruling against federal cannabis law would apply only to the defendants in the case and almost certainly would be appealed, the newspaper said. If the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals determined the law was unconstitutional, all the Western states would be affected.
Attorneys for the defendants have argued that the federal marijuana law violates the Constitution's guarantee of equal protection under the law. They contend the government enforces marijuana law unevenly ? allowing distribution of cannabis in states where it is legal and cracking down elsewhere.
The prosecution countered that Congress legally placed pot in Schedule 1.
Zenia K. Gilg, a lawyer for the growers, told the Times that scientific understanding and public acceptance of marijuana have grown substantially since courts last examined the federal classification. She cited the November election, when voters in Alaska and Oregon decided to joinColorado and Washington in making cannabis legal for recreational use. Most states already provide some legal protection for its use as medicine.
Prosecutors said in a brief filed Jan. 7 that the evidence presented in the hearing at most "established that there is some dispute among doctors as to whether marijuana is medicine."
Tetrahydrocannabinol () and cannabidiol ( ) are the two most commonly known chemicals that are naturally found in marijuana. Both CBD and THC belong to a unique class of compounds known as .
Marijuana is typically know for its THC content, which provides the psychoactive active aspects or “high” from consuming marijuana. But CBD has begun to draw attention from the medical community because of the amazing health benefits it provides.
THC is best known for being psychoactive. CBD, however, is non-psychoactive. In other words, CBD can’t get you “high” like THC. This lack of a “high,” or lack of side effect as medical professionals like to put it, is one reason why CBD is so appealing as a medicine.
THC is known to help reduce pain, but CBD is the substance that has the most anti-inflammatory properties, making it an all-star at pain reduction and healing. THC and CBD are also know to suppress muscle spams and reduce nausea, making them perfect for chemo patients.
THC is known to cause anxiousness or paranoia in some people, but CBD actually reduces anxiety and can actually counteract the anxiety caused by consuming THC. Studies also suggest that CBD can reduce anxiety when administered on its own.
In addition to being non-psychoactive, CBD also has antipsychotic properties. Researchers believe that CBD might protect marijuana users from getting “too high” by reducing the psychosis-like effects caused by THC. CBD is also being tested as an antipsychotic medicine for patients with schizophrenia.
One of the more common uses of marijuana is as a sleep aid. THC is known to be responsible for most of marijuana’s sleep-inducing effects. On the other hand, studies have suggested that CBD acts to promote wakefulness, making CBD a better choice for daytime use.
MARIJUANA LEGALIZATION BILL IN ARIZONA INTRODUCED
Medical marijuana is already legal in Arizona, but two bills have been introduced for consideration in the 2015 legislative session that could bring further reform.
House Bill 2007 would legalize the possession of up to one ounce of marijuana by adults, allow retail sales of marijuana at state-licensed retail stores, and allow personal cultivation of up to five untaxed plants.
“Everyone has a friend who knows how to get marijuana,” said state Rep. Cardenas, the bill’s sponsor. “The money we’ve spent on the war on drugs has kind of gone into a black hole.” Cardenas said his bill will not increase access to marijuana in Arizona because it already isn’t difficult to find.
Instead, Cardenas proposes taxing and regulating marijuana sales throughout Arizona, allowing the state to generate new revenue while taking marijuana sales away from the black market.
The bill is likely to be assigned to the House Judiciary Committee that is chaired by Rep. Eddie Farnsworth (R-Gilbert), an opponent to marijuana legalization. Rep. Farnsworth would be responsible for scheduling the House Bill 2007 for a hearing in order for the proposal to receive any consideration.
While Cardenas would prefer House Bill 2007 to pass, he already has a backup plan ready, in the form of House Bill 2006, which would decriminalize the possession of up to one ounce of marijuana. Instead of current penalties, which usually come as a felony charge and a year prison sentence, offenders would receive a civil penalty and fine of up to $100. There’d be no criminal record or conviction, similar to a traffic violation.
Marijuana legalization’s biggest adversary in Arizona is probably Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery, who repeatedly challenges the state’s 2010 voter-approved medical marijuana act.
If marijuana legalization efforts in Arizona fail this year (legislative session begin on January 12), efforts are already underway to put a binding initiative on the November 2016 ballot, putting the decision of marijuana legalization out of the hands of state lawmakers and into the hands of Arizona voters.
QUIRKY RULING PUTS MMJ PATIENTS AT RISK OF DUI
A recent legal ruling threatens medical marijuana card holders with a DUI if any trace remains in their system, even days after the medical benefits have worn off.
First, to state the obvious, I’ve never met anyone who advocates Driving Under the Influence. People have a wide spectrum of beliefs on what the consequences should be for people who are caught driving while drunk, but no rational person thinks that it is a good idea.
There is not a unanimous position held when it comes to marijuana, but I would presume any rational person would agree that an individual with a medical marijuana license should not be accused of driving under the influence when they are in no way impaired days, or even days after they last used.
Since Arizona’s passage of medical marijuana in the 2010 midterm elections, there has been considerable litigation taking place. The most recent case has caused some within the legal community to scratch their heads, and has made those ideologically opposed to marijuana’s use as a medicine rejoice.
In Dobson v. McClennen, The Division 1 Court of Appeals ruled that people with valid medical marijuana cards cannot use their card as a Defense to Driving Under the Influence of Drugs.
In order to understand why the Dobson v. McClennen ruling has left many people scratching their heads, it is important to understand how DUI’s are charged in Arizona. Every person charged with a DUI in Arizona is always charged with a minimum of two separate charges. The first one is always, Driving while impaired to the slightest degree. When someone has drugs (prescription or street) in their system, they are also charged with DUI drugs. If someone has a prescription for the drugs, then they are entitled to use that as a defense. It places the burden on the person accused to provide evidence that they were using the drug with a valid prescription. This makes sense from a public policy perspective. Even if you are prescribed a drug, you very well might not be okay to drive while on it, so your defense is only for the DUI drug charge. So, for example, if a doctor gives you a Vicodin prescription, and you take them and get impaired by them, you may raise your defense to the DUI drug charge but not to the impairment charge.
As a that handles DUI cases, I’ve seen an alarming increase in cases where a sober medical marijuana card holder is being prosecuted. As part of our defense, Dobson v. McClennen precludes the accused of introducing their valid medical marijuana card as a legal defense. In fact, it makes it such that a jury would never know that the person had a medical marijuana card. The jury won’t be able to distinguish between a recreational smoker and someone who is using it in accordance with a doctor’s recommendation for a specific medical condition. Ironically, this ruling is based off exactly the opposite of what the voters wanted, and is poor interpretation of poorly worded language within the Medical Marijuana Statute itself.
Hopefully, the Arizona Supreme Court will once again step in and clear up this bizarre lower Court ruling. Since modifying the unclear language in the statute would require a super majority legislature, which is not going to happen with this legislature, medical marijuana users are at risk. Hopefully the citizens of this State will become more conscious and aware of this fact- especially if they were ever called on to sit in a jury trial where there was an allegation of marijuana consumption.
FORMER SENATOR MIKE GRAVEL TO RUN MARIJUANA COMPANY
January 4, 2015
With the General Assembly headed back to Richmond in the coming week’s one organization is hoping to gain support to pass a bill that could legalize the industrialization of hemp.
The Virginia Industrial Hemp Coalition (VIHC) is determined to legalize hemp research and growth in the Commonwealth.
Industrialized hemp could soon take root in Virginia, that's if House Bill 1277 passes this year.
The U.S. Farm Bill currently allows states to legalize hemp for research and so far 17 states have jumped on the bandwagon.
Jason Amatucci, founder of the VIHC says Virginia should be next.
“We just want to catch up in Virginia and be a part of this new economy,” says Amatucci.
On Saturday night people in support of HB 1277, which would legalize hemp in the Commonwealth, gathered at the Boneyard restaurant in Belmont to watch the movie “Hemptsters” and discuss more about the plant.
“It is not marijuana,” says Amatucci. “It is a completely different plant and has completely different attributes and grows really fast and tall.”
“This is a natural resource.”
The plant can be used to make textiles and food along with thousands of other products.
“We've got all these new technologies,” says Amatucci. “We're talking about batteries, bio diesel; we're talking about “hempcrete,” a non-toxic alternative to concrete.”
Amatucci says they just need support to help transform hemp into a legal economic source in Virginia.
“We really think this is part for jobs, economy and the environment and it's a win for Virginia.”
The General Assembly goes back into session on January 15.
If you would like to learn more about industrial hemp and HB 1277 make sure you check out the links under the photo in this story.
Schools offering courses on sale of marijuana
New Mass. schools are offering programs on what is likely to be a fast-growing business
DOJ NATIVE AMERICAN TRIBES CAN GROW AND SELL MARIJUANA
New federal policy will allow Native American tribes interested in cultivating and selling marijuana to do so, as long as they maintain “robust and effective regulatory systems,” said the U.S. for Colorado, John Walsh.
Tribes will need to avoid certain enforcement triggers that also apply to state-regulated marijuana markets, including a prohibition on sales to minors and the diversion of marijuana trafficking to states where marijuana remains illegal under local .
It is currently unclear how many tribes will take advantage of the new policy directive. Certain tribes are well-known for using their special legal status to host casinos and/or sell untaxed tobacco.
According to the Bureau of Indian Affairs there are 326 federally recognized Native American reservations. Many reservations are in states that don’t allow medical or recreational marijuana use, such as Oklahoma and the Dakotas. Many others are located near major East Coast cities.
“The tribes have the sovereign right to set the code on their reservations,” stated Timothy Purdon, U.S. attorney for North Dakota and chairman of the Attorney General’s Subcommittee on Native American Issues.
The Department of Justice said U.S. can review tribes’ marijuana policies on a case-by-case basis and that prosecutors retain the ability to enforce federal law.
Mason Tvert, a spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project, said Native American tribal leaders “will have a tremendous opportunity to improve public health and safety, as well as benefit economically” by legalizing marijuana use. Tvert also stated that “Regulating and taxing marijuana like alcohol would ensure the product is controlled, and it would bring significant revenue and new to these communities…studies have consistently found above-average rates of alcohol abuse and related problems among Native American communities, so it would be incredibly beneficial to provide adults with a safer recreational alternative.”
THE 9 NEXT STATES TO LEGALIZE CANNABIS
The marijuana movement is quickly expanding throughout the United States. Many states are discussing and/or implementing plans to legalize marijuana for recreational use. Here are the nine states most likely to legalize marijuana next:
Arizona: Efforts by local groups and major non-profits are expected to help get a recreational marijuana legalization , similar to Colorado’s recreational marijuana , onto the November 2016 ballot.
New Mexico: Support for marijuana decriminalization has been strong and the issue of a regulated and taxed marijuana market is expected to go before state lawmakers in 2015.
California: Already has a medical marijuana program and will likely legalize marijuana for recreational purposes in 2016 with the help of marijuana advocating non-profits.
New York: The governor signed the Compassionate Care Act earlier this year and New York City has officially decriminalized marijuana (less than 25 grams). Recreational marijuana could be coming soon.
Florida: Amendment 2 missed by two percent in the 2014 general election, but the marijuana movement is expected to come back strong.
Maine: Measures to decriminalize marijuana were successful in recent years and supporters think the state could be the next to legalize for recreational use.
Massachusetts: Supporters are drafting an initiative just in case lawmakers do not make an effort to legalize marijuana in 2016.
Michigan: With decriminalization efforts successful, some believe the state could be the first Midwestern state to establish a recreational marijuana market.
Minnesota: The state has one of the most restrictive medical marijuana programs in the nation, but many supporters predict changes will be introduced soon.
CONGRESS PROTECTS POT
State operated medical marijuana programs and legal cultivation may have just got historic support from Congress. The proposed federal spending bill on Tuesday included amendments that prohibit the Department of Justice from using funds to go after state medical marijuana operations. In addition it blocks the Drug Enforcement Administration from using its funds to interfere with state-legal industrial hemp research. If it passes, the bill will protect programs in the states that have legalized marijuana and oils for medical purposes as well as those operations that research industrial hemp.
Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.), who a introduced the amendment with co-sponsor Rep. Sam Farr (D-Calif.), told Huffington Post:
“The enactment of this legislation will mark the first time in decades that the federal government has curtailed its oppressive prohibition of marijuana and has instead taken an approach to respect the many states that have permitted the use of medical marijuana to some degree. This is a victory for so many, including scores of our wounded veterans, who have found marijuana to be an important medicine for some of the ailments they suffer, such as PTSD, epilepsy and MS.”
Bill Piper, director of national affairs for the Drug Policy Alliance stated: “For the first time, Congress is letting states set their own medical marijuana and hemp policies, a huge step forward for sensible drug policy. States will continue to reform their marijuana and Congress will be forced to accommodate them. It’s not a question of if, but when, federal marijuana prohibition will be repealed.”
Veterans May Gain Easier Access To Medical Marijuana
Marijuana breath test under development at WSU
BIG MOVE FOR NYC
On the heels of speculation swirling Sunday that New York would end the prosecution and arrest of individuals for low-level marijuana possession, Police Commissioner Bill Bratton announced that possession of 25g or less of cannabis would no longer be an arrestable offense. The change to the city’s policy will be issued Tuesday and will come into effect on November 19th — so be cool for a few days people!
As the New York Times reported, the NYPD has been arresting tens of thousands of people each year for low-level marijuana possession. Now, instead of getting thrown in the slammer, you will reportedly be issued a summons and get a ticket for $100. (Though beware, individuals caught “smoking or burning” pot are still subject to immediate arrest under the new policy.)
City officials said they are interested in shifting the time and energy spent currently on low-level marijuana offenses to more serious crimes. This surely has to be the biggest accomplishment of the de Blasio administration to date and falls in line with the efforts of Brooklyn DA Kenneth Thompson who declared in July that he had no intention of prosecuting such marijuana “crimes.”
“This should free up police manpower to pursue cases of greater magnitude while relieving some of the congestion in the courts,” Richmond County District Attorney Daniel Donovan explained.
A clearer picture of the specifics will emerge this week as Mayor de Blasio takes his first meeting with all 5 district since taking office.
“Let’s be real about this,” Police Commissioner Bratton began before he laid out the change in policy for the media — and surprisingly, for once, he was legitimately, somewhat keeping it real in respect to marijuana.
This historic shift represents a step closer to wider legalization in the state of New York. Stay tuned for more information as it develops.
HIGH TIMES Legislative Roundup: Nov. 11
- See more at: http://blog.norml.org/2014/11/05/state-local-marijuana-legalization-measures-win-big-on-election-day/#sthash.9I30RW4Y.dpuf
State approves Boston’s first medical marijuana dispensary
- See more at: http://blog.norml.org/2014/11/05/norml-pac-candidates-sweep-us-house-races/#sthash.Zn8Ldpyl.dpuf
Where in the world can you legally smoke cannabis?
Why some doctors are in favour of medical cannabis
With the recent political debate around medical cannabis trials, you could be forgiven for thinking that the notion was something altogether new.
In fact, cannabis has been used medicinally for thousands of years in India and Asia. It was introduced to western medicine in the mid-nineteenth century by an Irish doctor William O'Shaughnessy, upon his return from service in India, and become a popular therapy around the world.
Even former US president Richard Nixon's 1972 National Commission on 'marihuana' supported studies of its use in the treatment of conditions such as glaucoma, migraine and cancer (although Nixon subsequently ignored his own Commission's findings and instead declared a 'war on drugs').
The criminalisation of marijuana saw it swiftly fall from medical favour. However, it seems that medical cannabis's star is once again rising, with some evidence suggesting it may offer considerable relief in conditions where few other treatments are able to help.
Making people more comfortable
Cannabis's therapeutic benefits stem from the way it stimulates with the body's own method of making us feel good, known as the endocannabinoid system, explains Emeritus Professor of Anaesthesia Laurence Mather, from the Northern Clinical School at the University of Sydney.
"The endocannabinoid system in the body is not a pain relieving system like the endorphin system, like for morphine-type things, it's more a general wellbeing system, and it works by making people feel more comfortable with themselves," Mather says.
"It doesn't ablate pain, it makes the body more accepting."
Cannabis helps with a very specific type of pain that does not appear to respond well to pain relieving treatments, such as opioids or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS).
"It does not work, for example, in post-operative pain … and in acute pain such as from a surgical incision," Mather says.
However, it is showing considerable promise in treating what is called 'neuropathic pain', which generally refers to pain that stems from diseased or damaged nerves. For example, researchers in the United States are testing the use of cannabis to treat the pain associated with sickle cell disease – a condition in which mutated blood cells can cause lifetime chronic pain that has been described as being worse than the pain of labour or cancer.
The appetite stimulating effects of marijuana – more commonly known as 'the munchies' – have also proven useful in countering the bodily wasting associated with a range of conditions from HIV/AIDS to cancer.
"That was observed back in the '60s and '70s, particularly by the recreational users of the time … they noticed the incidence of weight gain was more favourable in those that used cannabis than others," Mather says.
This observation led to the development of a drug called dronabinol, which is a synthetic version of the main psychoactive component of cannabis – tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). This drug is used not only to treat weight loss associated with HIV/AIDS and cancer, but also the nausea and vomiting often associated with cancer therapies.
While THC is the most famous of cannabis ingredients, it is not the only one proving beneficial in the medical arena. Another drug, nabiximols, an oral spray which is available in Australia under the brand name of Sativex, contains both THC and cannabidiol, and is used for the treatment of muscle spasms associated with multiple sclerosis.
Given cannabis's potential to alter our mood, thinking and behaviour, it should come as no surprise that it's also being investigated for treatment of psychological disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder. A recent US study found a 75 per cent reduction in PTSD symptoms with the use of medical cannabis, and in many US states medical cannabis is approved for use in individuals with PTSD.
There is also growing support for the use of cannabis to treat severe childhood epilepsies, such as Dravet's syndrome, with anecdotal evidence from parents suggesting cannabis drastically reduced thefrequency of their children's seizures.
Fewer side effects
Likewise, some argue that medical cannabis could provide a much safer and more pleasant alternative to the existing pain relief options used in palliative care.
"The side effects of many things that are used for treating these conditions such as heavy duty pain and things of that kind – treating them with opioids or treating with NSAIDS – are far more dire than they are from cannabis," says Mather.
"People can die from morphine, they stop breathing; people can die from paracetamol because it buggers their livers, people can die from NSAIDS because it buggers their kidneys, but cannabis doesn't do any of these things."
Like any drug, cannabis has its side effects, although what's interesting with medical cannabis is that the effects most sought after by recreational users are generally the effects most avoided by medical users, says emergency medicine specialist Dr David Caldicott, from the Australian National University and Calvary Hospital in Canberra.
"The product that is beginning to emerge globally is one that is bred and used for largely recreational purposes and so these are strains now which contain a much higher concentration of the psychoactive component, which is THC, and that isn't necessarily the most useful component," says Caldicott.
"Many people who consume this product medicinally actually don't like this effect, they choose strains, say for example in the US, that are much lower in THC concentration and higher in the cannabidiol concentrations."
In parts of the world where medical cannabis is legal, considerable effort has gone into developing strains of marijuana that are carefully tailored for medical use, to reduce the unwanted side effects and boost the more desirable ingredients.
Lack of good data
But medical cannabis presents a conundrum for medical professionals. Its illegality in large parts of the world means most medical users are self-medicating and this also makes it a difficult drug to study in clinical trials.
As a consequence, a significant proportion of medical cannabis research is based on self-reported use and outcomes, rather than large, carefully-designed, randomised trials, says Professor Ian Olver, head of the Cancer Council Australia.
"Probably two decades ago I remember sitting on a panel that reviewed the evidence [for medical cannabis], and in most cases the evidence is anecdotal," says Olver. As a result, he is cautious about the idea of more widespread availability of medical cannabis but acknowledges that there may be some patients for whom it is their only recourse to relief.
"If you've got a patient who's been through conventional therapy and has not responded, you're sympathetic to them if they find something that's worked, but that's quite different to saying something should be widely available for everyday use of pain," he says.
Olver says there is also concern about the possible side effects of smoking marijuana, even for medical purposes, as this could introduce cancer-causing chemicals into the lungs.
However Caldicott says there are other methods of delivery being considered, such as e-cigarettes, which would not only be more palatable for non-smokers but could avoid the potential side-effects of smoking. The active components of cannabis can also be infused into tinctures, which could be a useful option for use in children.
Ultimately, the medical cannabis debate is not about making it widely available for a broad range of health conditions – as currently occurs in many states in the US – but about giving a small number of patients an option where they may have none.
"Medical cannabis is never going to replace paracetamol," says Caldicott.
"We're not talking about the sky falling in, we're talking about a niche market which would be very tightly regulated." http://www.abc.net.au/health/thepulse/stories/2014/10/27/4115279.htm