Tag Archives: Marijuana

It’s time for another Presidential Election in the U.S.A. (Lord, what are we supposed to do now?)


The following is a short synopsis of the current situation as I see it concerning the Presidential Elections.

After watching Donald J. Trump at the Republican National Convention (RNC) and Hillary Clinton at the Democratic National Convention (DNC) in July, I am still at a loss on who would be the best Candidate to put our Votes behind in the upcoming Presidential Elections. 

As of yet, the U.S. Marijuana Party as a group has likewise not decided who we should promote for the White House as well.

Bernie Sanders did his best at the DNC to push the Democrats over to Hillary Clinton, in his speech.  I am not sure how that is going to work out for them.

Hillary Clinton has had virtually continuous access to the White House since her Husband, Bill Clinton was elected President in 1993.  This is 2016 and I do not see anything that can be construed as positive changes for the American People in a long, long time.  You could argue that when “Bill” was in the White House things were different.  However, after gaining a few years wisdom on the matter, there are things that I could disagree with during his reign, that at the time I thought he was one of the best President’s we ever had.  And, sadly enough, he probably was.

William Jefferson “Bill” Clinton, American politician who was the 42nd President of the United States from 1993 to 2001. Clinton was previously Governor of Arkansas from 1979 to 1981 and 1983 to 1992, and the Arkansas Attorney General from 1977 to 1979. A member of the Democratic Party, ideologically Clinton was a New Democrat, and many of his policies reflected a centristThird Way” political philosophy.

The Omnibus Crime Bill, which Clinton signed into law in September 1994,[87] made many changes to U.S. crime and law enforcement legislation including the expansion of the death penalty to include crimes not resulting in death, such as running a large-scale drug enterprise. During Clinton’s re-election campaign he said, “My 1994 crime bill expanded the death penalty for drug kingpins, murderers of federal law enforcement officers, and nearly 60 additional categories of violent felons.”[88] It also included a subsection of assault weapons ban for a ten-year period.

Here are a few more items from the “Bill Clinton Era that are notable;

Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act (Brady Act) of 1993. When signed into law in November of that year, the Brady Act included a GCA amendment that created the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS).

The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)

The Glass–Steagall separation of commercial and investment banking was in four sections of the 1933 Banking Act.

 

What I do not like about each of the Candidates:

 

7 of Hillary Clinton’s biggest accomplishments

Hilary Clinton – (Democrat)

After having been in the public spotlight since Bill Clinton’s Election in 1992 and even prior to that in Arkansas, she has had plenty of time and plenty of access to all the most valuable areas in the Executive Branch of the Government and beyond to make change happen. 

Hillary’s own personal access to the White House includes the following:

She served as the 67th United States Secretary of State from 2009 to 2013, the junior United States Senator representing New York from 2001 to 2009, First Lady of the United States during the presidency of Bill Clinton from 1993 to 2001, and First Lady of Arkansas during his governorship from 1979 to 1981 and from 1983 to 1992.  Following the September 11 attacks, she voted to approve the war in Afghanistan. She also voted for the Iraq Resolution, which she later regretted.  She voted against the Bush tax cuts and in favor of the Patriot Act and TARP. Clinton responded to the Arab Spring, during which she advocated the U.S. military intervention in Libya.

She served as the 67th United States Secretary of State from 2009 to 2013, the junior United States Senator representing New York from 2001 to 2009, First Lady of the United States during the presidency of Bill Clinton from 1993 to 2001, and First Lady of Arkansas during his governorship from 1979 to 1981 and from 1983 to 1992.  LINK to more information.

She arguably has the most experience and the most activism experience as well, in her background.  But there has just been so much drama in her past decisions and she has been in the circle for 25 years already.  You can definitely argue that it is time for change.  Period.

Image result for donald trump

Donald Trump – (Republican)

Corpocracy /ˌkɔrpɒkrəsi/ coined in 1995 by Nickolas Falvo, is a term used as an economic and political form of Oligarchy that is controlled by corporations, corporate interests, or the wealthy owners of corporations. It is different from both corporatism, which is the organisation of society into groups with common interests, and Corporatocracy, which is an economic and political system controlled by corporations or corporate interests while not being necessarily an Oligarchy.

Donald John Trump (born June 14, 1946) is an American businessman, television personality, author, and politician. He is chairman of The Trump Organization, which is the principal holding company for his real estate ventures and other business interests. He is also the presumptive nominee of the Republican Party for President of the United States in the 2016 election.

Here are some quotes from Donald Trump’s opinion –

Millions are helped by Planned Parenthood, but defund it.

Cut defense budget, & entire EPA & Dept. of Education.

1989 full-page newspaper ads: “Bring Back the Death Penalty”.

Green energy is just an expensive feel-good for tree-huggers.

Additionally, here are a couple of reported facts;

Disposal of national public lands;

The Republican platform committee met this week to draft the document that defines the party’s official principles and policies. Along with provisions on pornography and LGBT “conversion therapy” is an amendment calling for the indiscriminate and immediate disposal of national public lands.

“Congress shall immediately pass universal legislation providing a timely and orderly mechanism requiring the federal government to convey certain federally controlled public lands to the states,” reads the adopted language. “We call upon all national and state leaders and representatives to exert their utmost power and influence to urge the transfer of those lands identified.”

We as a People cannot let this happen on our watch!  It must be stopped!  National Public Lands are supposed to belong to the People of this Country.  If they are sold off to Private investors the land will be at their mercy. 

“…leaving national parks, wilderness areas, wildlife refuges, and national forests apparently up for grabs and vulnerable to development, privatization, or transfer to state ownership.”

Cut spending by targeting the Department of Education and Environmental Protection Agency;

Asked on “Fox News Sunday” how he would cut spending, Trump named the Department of Education and the Environmental Protection Agency as potential targets.

Although I believe both “Departments” could use some restructuring I do not believe it is in anyone’s best interest, (except maybe the “Corporations”), to dispose of these Agencies.  They make an honest (?) attempt to regulate two of the most important “Departments” in the U.S.  Without them who would monitor the health of our environment or be responsible for our Children’s learning structure and environment?  While I would also say that private education is the best education and it would be nice if we could eradicate the Department of Education, it just does not seem viable to me to do so at this late date.  Our Children deserve to be educated to the best of the Student’s ability to learn.  Education should be free and equal to all Citizens as long as their participation in their education continues and passing grades are achieved.  This should include at least a basic four year College or University Curriculum. 

I do not claim to be all-knowing, but it sure seems like Trump’s Campaign is just another Corporate Coup to me!

Image result for gary johnson

Gary Johnson  (Libertarian)

no farm subsidies;

In my opinion, the Farmer’s are the very people that we should be subsidizing!  These are the very people who grow and produce our food!  The only reason for not subsidizing Farmer’s would be to let Corporate farming take over the market.  This may reduce the cost of food and maybe raise the quantity, but what quality of food would we be subjected to? 

Built private prisons to replace out-of-state prisoners;

There is only one reason to promote the use of private prisons and that is Corporate prisons.  Private prisons have been used for quite a few years and they have all been a failure.  Cost is not the only issue when it comes to housing our prisoners!  There are a lot of issues with private run prisons and there are a lot of links at KentuckyMarijuanaParty.Com to help you begin to sift through all those issues.  In short, I do not like them.

State primacy over water quantity & quality issues;

Water is our most important natural resource.  It is the lifeblood of the Human Race as a whole.  Water should be regulated first on a Federal level so as to ensure that all of the water which is utilized in our homes and for personal use, i.e., drinking and bathing is safe to use not only at the moment of consumption but so as not to cause health issues later.  I believe that Flint, Michigan is a very good example of what can happen when this resource is left untested – literally.

I am not a fan of the U.N. but it has “recognized the human right to water and sanitation and acknowledged that clean drinking water and sanitation are essential to the realization of all human rights.”  The U.S. should take this declaration seriously and strive fast and hard for the access to clean water to all Citizens in all areas of the U.S.  This should be a top priority!  Since clean, safe water is essential to all of us the Federal Government should set standards and do whatever is necessary to make sure all the States have equal access to whatever services they may require to make sure that this is accomplished.

NAFTA benefits New Mexico; jobs lost are those we don’t want;

Unlimited campaign contributions by corporations;

It is my opinion that only individuals should be able to contribute to any given campaign!  There should be no Corporate interests involved in any election!  We are talking about Government of the people, by the people and for the people, NOT the Corporations!  My belief is that a Corporation is not a ‘Being’ and should not be treated as such – It IS a business!  Businesses always have ulterior motives in any given Election – It is called Sales and Marketing strategy!

In a January 2001 interview with Playboy Magazine, Governor Johnson stated that he opposed campaign contribution limits. “The problem isn’t large contributions. The problem is that we don’t know who contributed. If you limit contributions from an individual to, say, $1000, then I think just the opposite occurs. Then you have politicians beholden to way too many people.” In 2010, Johnson said he favored unlimited contributions by corporations as well.

Gary Johnson on Social Security issues:  Raise the retirement age to 70 or 72;   A portion of Social Security ought to be privatized;  Reform all entitlements, including Social Security;  Open to personal accounts for Social Security;

 

Jill Stein –  (Green Party)

She wants to put much regulation into the ownership of guns which I see as a threat against an important part of our Constitutional Rights. 

“A Democracy is when two wolves
and a sheep take a vote on what’s
for dinner. A Republic is when the
sheep is well armed and can beg to
differ with the vote.

” Benjamin Franklin”

According to Jill Stein:

  • Gun ownership should be appropriately regulated.
  • Gun ownership should be appropriately regulated.

She must have really strong feelings about this issue since it was inputted twice!

  • More local regulations; more background checks.

Personally, I do not think we need any regulations in gun ownership.  At this point everyone needs to own one and know how to use it.  Regulations are not going to save your Ass when an intruder decides to do you harm.  The intruder will not read the rules and regulations, I promise you that much!

  • Reduce culture of violence via mental health & legal drugs.

This is very troubling to me as an individual because forced health care, especially mental health care, is a very slippery slope which can and most likely will turn into a disaster for many patients.  Who gets to decide who needs mandated mental health care?  We already have too much of this type of scenario playing out in the Courts currently.  There is a BILL, H.R. 2646 which was passed out of Committee on June 15, 2016 deemed “Murphy’s Bill” which could very likely be the slippery slope that could lead into a very dire situation for any patient involved in the mental healthcare system. 

In my opinion, the best way to get mental help patients the care that they need is to make sure that Physicians and services are available with easy access.  If a patient feels good about the Physician that they are seeing and has ready access to those services it is a good bet that they will be open to receiving those services.  We cannot mandate healthcare.  If a patient has no right to choose whether or not he receives care then he has no right to determine who or where he receives the care from and what pharmaceutical drugs he may be mandated or forced to take!  This Bill could possibly be a big winner for the pharmaceutical industry as well as the drug testing industry!

History tends to repeat itself, so with that in mind take a look at this historical information and do not ever think that it could not happen here, because it damn sure could!

  • Address community violence with more mental health services.

Again, we cannot mandate mental healthcare!

  • Gun at home more likely to cause injury than to defend home.

This may or may not hold true but it is still a Constitutional right to own firearms and we have a right to protect ourselves, our families and our homes – as well as to help protect anyone within our reach.  It is an individual choice whether or not to keep a firearm in your home. 

With all this being said, it remains who would be the most trustworthy of the Candidates, let alone who would be the best leader of our Country.  Who can we trust the most to do what they say they will do?  Who would be most likely to lead us into a massive war?  Who would be most likely to take away even more of our individual rights through the guise of homeland security and gun control?  There are so many issues at the front of this upcoming Election.  I will continue to listen to the reports, and hopefully, come to a final decision soon,  but this will have to have been the hardest Election that I’ve ever had to make a decision on.

Smkrider

Maryland has recently been cited as a state with a high rate of opioid addiction, and now some are seeing legalizing marijuana as taking a lead against the epidemic and are also urging southern states like Kentucky to join in.


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Maryland has recently been cited as a state with a high rate of opioid addiction, and now some are seeing legalizing marijuana as taking a lead against the epidemic and are also urging southern states like Kentucky to join in.

Newsmax reports that nine states will be voting on marijuana legalization in 2016, but is there some specific reason Maryland is urging southern states to join in?

The Hill explained in an opinion piece on August 4 that Maryland will be fighting back at the opioid epidemic in their state by legalizing marijuana. They also state that some drug treatment specialists in Maryland are considering medical cannabis as treatment for opioid addiction due to a recent study from the University of Georgia.

Citizens in the state of Kentucky have also expressed an interest in this form of opioid treatment, but medical marijuana is still illegal in the state despite recent considerations, as previously reported by the Inquisitr.

Part of the reason that Maryland could be urging other states to join in with legalizing cannabis pertains to the lack of opioid treatment options in other states in the south.

For example, NPR reported on June 15 that those in the opioid treatment industry in Georgia were outraged when the state decided to place limits on opening new clinics.

The rehabilitation clinics they do have are needed because Georgia has almost 70 opioid treatment programs. By contrast, nearby Tennessee has 12, Alabama has 24, and Mississippi has one.

Although any clinic for opioid addiction is better than no clinic at all, many Kentuckians have learned from states like Massachusetts, that they need to have medical marijuana options, specifically for opioid addiction, according to CBS News.

States that use marijuana to treat addiction could also become leaders because the numbers of opioid deaths are rapidly increasing nationwide.

Whether it is heroin, painkillers, or fentanyl, Americans are now dying at higher rates from opioid drugs, and the rate exceeds other types of accidents. For example, Vox wrote on June 2 that more Americans were killed by painkillers (42,000) in 2014 than car crashes (34,000), or gun violence (34,000).

Naturally, any help Kentucky can get to fight opioid addiction with or without legalizing marijuana would be welcome, and a 2015 report from the Boston Globe about the epidemic in Eastern Kentucky quoted a drug treatment prevention worker stating the following.

“We’ve lost a whole generation of people who would have been paying taxes, and buying homes, and contributing to society.”

Eastern Kentucky has been highly documented in regards to having one of the worst opioid epidemics in America, and an investigative report about the Appalachian crisis in the Guardian in 2014 stated that “stigma and inadequate access to treatment are the biggest barriers to overcoming the ongoing crisis in Appalachia and across the country.”

However, outside of being an effective treatment for battling the state’s opioid epidemic, many Kentuckians are excited to see the other improvements that legalizing marijuana, or hemp, could have for economies like the one in Eastern Kentucky.

According to some reports, the process begins with decriminalizing marijuana. The act of decriminalization of marijuana will also likely protect the prominent illegal operations already deeply entrenched in Eastern Kentucky, as described by Columbus Dispatch.

Kentuckians for Medical Marijuana published a 2013 study by Charles B. Fields, Ph.D., Professor of Justice Studies at Eastern Kentucky University, that stated “economic benefits… can be realized by the State of Kentucky by both receiving tax benefits and reducing expenditures enforcing current marijuana laws.”

In other words, there is a price to pay to keep marijuana illegal in Kentucky, and legalizing cannabis or decriminalizing the growing, selling, or distribution could reduce Kentucky’s overall drug enforcement costs.

Currently, the unregulated marijuana industry in Eastern Kentucky produces an estimated $4 billion per year, according to a commonly cited 2008 History Channel documentary on Appalachia called Hillbilly: The Real Story.

CONTINUE READING…

Tobacco continues to green up Kentucky’s economy


 

 

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August 3, 2016

Tobacco continues to green up Kentucky’s economy

It used to be nearly impossible to drive through Kentucky in August and not see tobacco growing in a field.

In the summer of 1998, the leaf crop accounted for 25 percent of the state’s farm cash receipts and was grown by 46,000 farmers statewide. It was also grown by many of those farmers’ parents and their parents before them. For many, tobacco was Kentucky. 

Today the number of Kentucky tobacco growers has fallen to 4,500, but tobacco is still very much alive across the state. The crop accounts for a fair amount of all agricultural cash receipts– about six percent–at a time when overall agricultural cash receipts are at record levels. And that success is largely due to tobacco, too, says Governor’s Office of Agricultural Policy Executive Director Warren Beeler.

Beeler told the state legislative Tobacco Settlement Agreement Fund Oversight Committee today that Kentucky’s dedication of half of the funds received from a 1990s national master settlement with tobacco companies to agricultural diversification is the envy of many states. The appropriation was set out in 2000 House Bill 611 which helped propel the state to a record $6.5 billion in agricultural cash receipts in 2014.

“We are the envy of all states with our tobacco money,” said Beeler. “We’ve gone from $3.7 billion (in total agricultural cash receipts) when we got the (settlement) money to $6.5 billion now, and I don’t think that’s a coincidence….”

Lawmakers thanked Beeler, former GOAP Executive Director Roger Thomas and others for speaking at last month’s Southern Legislative Conference Annual Meeting in Lexington about HB 611’s successes. Committee Co-Chair Rep. Wilson Stone, D-Scottsville, said many delegates to the meeting were impressed with Kentucky’s use of its tobacco settlement dollars to diversify its agricultural economy.

Beeler said he heard from individuals in state after state across the South who said “they wish they’d done what we’d done.” Kentucky’s efforts have almost doubled its receipts at the farm gate, he said.

“It’s no coincidence… Don’t tell me it is, because plain-and-simple fact is we know this money has worked,” he told the committee.

The biggest project in the history of the GOAP and the Kentucky Agricultural Development Board which it administers is a $30 million grain crops and forages center planned for construction on the property of the UK Research and Education Center in Princeton. Half of the project amount, of $15 million, will be provided as a matching grant from the Agriculture Development Board, said Beeler. UK must match the award for the center.

Beeler said the project, which is also supported by the Kentucky Corn Growers Association, Kentucky Small Grain Growers Association, Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association and others, will pay dividends for the next 50 years. Proposed work with ryegrass alone could have a big payoff, he said.

Sen. Paul Hornback, R-Shelbyville, gave special thanks to the Corn Growers Association which Hornback said purchased property for the center that will be leased to UK for repayment. “I appreciate what you all did,” he said to members of the association and all involved in the project.

“Everybody is very appreciative” for this project, Beeler assured lawmakers.

The center will feature new meeting facilities, laboratories, offices and improved internet access “so professors at the center can teach classes for students in Lexington,” according to a press release on the center from the University of Kentucky. “…All commodity areas based at Princeton including beef cattle, forages and pastures and horticulture will benefit from the improvements and expansion.”

–END–

Ellen Brown Asks if Monsanto Will Win The War On Weed


Corbett • 07/11/2016 • 4 Comments

 

Voter initiatives like California’s “Adult Use of Marijuana Act” have many celebrating the legalization of the long-demonised plant. But as Ellen Brown writes in her new article, “The ‘War on Weed’ Is Winding Down – But Will Monsanto/Bayer Be the Winner?” the push toward legalization is being steered by corporate interests for potential profit, not a concern for public health.

 

gmo weed

Published on Jul 11, 2016

SHOW NOTES AND MP3: https://www.corbettreport.com/?p=19204
Voter initiatives like California’s “Adult Use of Marijuana Act” have many celebrating the legalization of the long-demonized plant. But as Ellen Brown writes in her new article, “The ‘War on Weed’ Is Winding Down – But Will Monsanto/Bayer Be the Winner?” the push toward legalization is being steered by corporate interests for potential profit, not a concern for public health.

CONTINUE READING ….

Is pot as dangerous as heroin? Feds’ decision on rescheduling marijuana coming soon


El Monte Police Lt. Christopher Williams looks over a portion of about 500 marijuana plants in various stages of growth after serving a search warrant at a home at 4300-block of Huddart Avenue in El Monte on Monday March 9, 2015.

 

By Brooke Edwards Staggs, The Orange County Register

Posted: 07/09/16, 8:37 PM PDT

 

At the same time Californians are preparing to vote on the legalization of adult marijuana use, the federal government is weighing whether pot should continue to be classified as a top-tier narcotic on par with heroin.

Within a month, the Drug Enforcement Administration is expected to release a much-anticipated decision that could alter cannabis’ ranking in the hierarchy of controlled substances — a formal listing that affects everything from medical research to taxing policy.

Since the list was created in 1970, marijuana has been ranked in Schedule I — the most restrictive category ­alongside heroin, LSD and peyote. The designation is reserved for drugs the DEA says have no proven medical use and are highly addictive.

What about Congress?

Even if the Drug Enforcement and Food And Drug administrations don’t recommend changing where marijuana falls on the controlled substances list, Congress could.

Elected officials are more likely to be influenced by growing public acceptance of marijuana — particularly if they represent one of 25 states with legal marijuana programs.

“I think that’s probably an easier sell than the decision coming from doctors and police,” said John Hudak, a deputy director with the Brookings Institution.

Some members of Congress support rescheduling marijuana, including Sen. Barbara Boxer. Some have even pitched descheduling it, including presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders. But none of those efforts gained traction, and Paul Armentano with the advocacy group NORML isn’t optimistic Congress will act on the issue anytime soon.

“I’m not aware of a single hearing much less a vote even in a subcommittee that has ever taken place at the Congressional level specific to the notion of reclassifying marijuana,” he said.

“We’re bound by the science,” said Melvin Patterson, spokesman for the DEA.

But many experts and advocates say the current classification is increasingly at odds with scientific studies on marijuana, which suggest the drug has medical value in treating chronic pain, seizures and a number of other conditions, with a lower addiction rate than alcohol.

The DEA ranking also lags behind a growing public consensus. Roughly 80 percent of Americans believe medical marijuana should be legal, according to recent polls, while some 60 percent support legalizing the drug for all adults.

“In 2016, this notion that cannabis possesses potential harms equal to that of heroin … simply doesn’t pass the smell test,” said Paul Armentano, deputy director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, or NORML.

Medical marijuana is now legal in 25 states. Recreational use is allowed in four states plus Washington, D.C. If California green-lights recreational use this November, one in six Americans would live in a state where adults would be allowed to freely use cannabis.

The question of how cannabis should be ranked has been hotly debated since Congress placed it in the Schedule I group when it passed the Controlled Substances Act nearly 46 years ago. The drug’s classification has been reviewed periodically, with the latest reexamination prompted by a petition filed with the DEA five years ago by the then-governors of Rhode Island and Washington.

In April, the DEA advised Congress that it expected to announce a decision in the first half of 2016.

Patterson said officials now “clearly anticipate something happening in the next month.”

The agency has several options: keep cannabis as a Schedule I drug; reclassify some or all of its compounds to a lower schedule; or remove the plant from the controlled substances list altogether.

There is a greater chance than ever that marijuana will be rescheduled, said John Hudak, who studies the topic as a deputy director with the Brookings Institution. But he still expects pot to remain a Schedule I drug.

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“It needs to cross a threshold that says it has an accepted medical value,” Hudak said. “While there are plenty of patients and doctors who do believe it has medical value, that’s not a universal belief in the medical community.”

Leslie Bocskor, president of Las Vegas-based cannabis advisory firm Electrum Partners, thinks the odds slightly favor a reclassification of marijuana to Schedule II. That category includes morphine and cocaine, which the DEA says are highly addictive but have some medical value. A form of cocaine, for example, is used by some dentists as a local anesthetic.

The least restrictive of the five schedule categories, Schedule V, includes cough syrup with a bit of codeine.

Alcohol and tobacco aren’t included on the DEA’s controlled substances list, even though federal studies have found both are associated with higher dependency rates than marijuana.

Patterson said the DEA frequently hears from people frustrated that marijuana hasn’t been rescheduled sooner.

“They have their mind made up on what marijuana does in the short term,” he said. “But what about different strains? What about 10 years from now or even 20 years from now? Long-term effects matter.”

For the medical marijuana community, even reclassifying cannabis as a Schedule II drug would offer some vindication.

“At a minimum, it would bring an end to the federal government’s longstanding intellectual dishonesty that marijuana ‘lacks accepted medical use,’ ” Armentano said.

Such a shift by the DEA also might offer a small boost to at least half-a-dozen states with medical or recreational marijuana initiatives on the ballot this November.

That potential to give some credence to legalization efforts is one of the reasons a few members of Congress, including Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, and the organization Smart Approaches to Marijuana, or SAM, cite in arguing against reclassifying marijuana.

“Rescheduling would simply be a symbolic victory for advocates who want to legalize marijuana,” SAM wrote in a policy paper on the issue.

But both the California and American medical associations say rescheduling pot could lower the barriers a bit for federally sanctioned drug research.

The DEA has never turned down a marijuana research request that met federal criteria, Patterson said. But experts say red tape related to Schedule I drug research is so formidable that it discourages applications. So while there are tens of thousands of peer-reviewed studies on marijuana, there are few costly and rigorous double-blind, placebo-controlled trials involving cannabis.

Moreover, researchers say, marijuana studies are saddled with restrictions that don’t apply to other Schedule I drugs.

Since 1968, for example, the federal government has said only a tightly controlled stock of high-quality marijuana grown under contract by the University of Mississippi can be used for FDA-approved studies. Armentano said that restricts the supply available for research.

If marijuana were reclassified to at least Schedule III — alongside Tylenol with codeine and anabolic steroids — it would mean the nation’s rapidly growing number of cannabis-related businesses could begin deducting operating expenses from their federal taxes.

Under a tax rule imposed during the Reagan Administration’s 1980s anti-drug war, businesses dealing in Schedule I or II substances are prohibited from writing off common expenses such as rent, utilities or advertising.

Harborside Health Center, a large Oakland dispensary, has been battling the IRS over the rule for five years, after being assessed $2.4 million for illegal deductions. A decision in that case is expected soon.

Even if cannabis was moved down the controlled substances list to the least-restrictive category, the industry would still be likely to face business and regulatory hurdles.

Armentano likened such a change, should it come, to the first stride in a marathon.

“Technically, it gets you closer to the finish line,” he said. “But you still have a whole hell of a long way to go.”

Pot would remain an illegal substance under federal law. Reclassification wouldn’t necessarily open access to banking services, Hudak said. And doctors wouldn’t automatically switch to writing prescriptions, as opposed to “recommendations,” for medical marijuana, since that’s only allowed for FDA-approved drugs.

“There are certain people who play up rescheduling as an earth-shattering reform,” Hudak said. “It is not.”

He said sweeping changes would only come in the unlikely event that cannabis was completely descheduled, putting it on par with alcohol.

That would allow local governments to create cannabis policies free from federal interference, Armentano said, the way they can set their own hours for when bars stop serving alcohol or make entire counties “dry.”

Armentano isn’t optimistic the DEA will move marijuana to a less restrictive category, but he said there’s been one positive result from the current review.

“There’s attention being paid to how they handle this situation in a way that just wasn’t there before,” he said. “If the DEA goes down the same path as it has in the past, I think they’re going to have some explaining to do.”

CONTINUE READING…

Democrats call for ‘pathway’ to marijuana legalization


 

 

 

By David Weigel July 9 at 6:27 PM

ORLANDO — The Democratic Party endorsed a “reasoned pathway to future legalization” of marijuana and called for the drug to be downgraded in the Controlled Substances Act, in a tense and unexpected victory for supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Going into the platform committee meeting, Sanders’s campaign had no new language about marijuana. The senator from Vermont had favored state-to-state legalization efforts, and the language approved by the drafting committee called for “policies that will allow more research on marijuana, as well as reforming our laws to allow legal marijuana businesses to exist without uncertainty.”

But on Saturday afternoon, the committee brought up an amendment that would have removed marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act. David King, a lawyer and Sanders delegate from Tennessee, argued that marijuana was added to the act — giving the drug the same legal classification as heroin — during a “craze” to hurt “hippies and blacks.” The amendment, however, was headed for defeat, with some committee members worrying that it went too far and undermined state-by-state efforts to study decriminalization.

Arguments stopped when committee members proposed swapping in the language of a rival amendment — one that merely downgraded marijuana from Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substance Act and included the undefined “pathway” to legal status.

When the vote was called, 81 of the 187 committee members backed the downgrade amendment — and just 80 opposed it. A roar of applause went up from the seats where people not on the committee were watching the votes.

For the next 10 minutes, that victory was thrown into jeopardy. Former Atlanta mayor Shirley Franklin, the co-chair of the platform committee, entertained a complaint that at least one member might not have been able to vote, lacking the “clicker” that recorded electronic ballots.

“If you don’t have a clicker, now is the time to ask for one,” Franklin said.

Arguments broke out, some of them over the black-curtained divider keeping the committee members from the non-voting observers, and one Clinton delegate complained audibly that the Sanders delegates “wanted 100 percent of everything.” (The vast majority of observers, since Friday, have been Sanders backers.) Finally, former senator Mark Pryor (Ark.), a Clinton delegate, walked up to a microphone to announce that opponents of the amendment were unhappy that the compromise language had been replaced — but not unhappy enough to fight about it.

“We withdraw the objection,” he said.

There was more celebration in the back of the room. Later, after the unanimous adoption of a tough criminal justice reform plank, the grumbling that ended some sessions was replaced by Sanders voters saying: “Thank you! Thank you!”

The text of the marijuana amendment:

Because of conflicting laws concerning marijuana, both on the federal and state levels, we encourage the federal government to remove marijuana from its list as a Class 1 Federal Controlled Substance, providing a reasoned pathway for future legalization

The text of the criminal justice amendment:

We will work with police chiefs to invest in training for officers on issues such as de-escalation and the creation of national guidelines for the appropriate use of force, including how to de-escalate situations. We will encourage better police-community relations, require the use of body cameras, and stop the use of weapons of war that have no place in our communities. We will end racial profiling that targets individuals solely on race, religion, ethnicity, and national origin, which is un-American and counterproductive. We should report national data on policing strategies and provide greater transparency and accountability. We will require the Department of Justice to investigate all questionable or suspicious police-involved shootings, and we will support states and localities who help make those investigations and prosecutions more transparent, including through reforming the grand jury process.

CONTINUE READING…

“We’re on the ballot in all 50 states,” he noted. “This is for real.”


 

Gary Johnson, the former Republican governor of New Mexico turned Libertarian Party nominee for president, has no qualms about possibly costing either of the major parties the White House this fall.

“I will lose no sleep if that is the label given to me,” Johnson assured those gathered at the National Press Club on Thursday when asked about potentially inheriting the “spoiler” mantle from previous third-party challengers Ross Perot and Ralph Nader.

[ Don’t Count Out Third-Party Candidates ]

If anything, Johnson sees the polarizing 2016 campaign as the perfect opportunity to disrupt the status quo.

“I just think that people are hungry to vote for someone rather than the lesser of two evils,” he said, adding, “This is a party that needs crashing.”

[ GOP Delegate Would Rather Be Arrested Than Vote for Trump ]

Johnson’s running mate, former Massachusetts Gov. William Weld, also addressed the dozens of supporters and press gathered to hear how the pair’s bid for the Oval Office was progressing.

Although just a few miles from the Capitol, the mood at the Johnson-Weld luncheon — optimistic as it was — felt miles away from the rancor and cynicism on full display in a House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing focused on the administrative shortcomings of likely Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.

[ House Republicans Want FBI Documents in Clinton Email Probe ]

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Rather than shying away from their respective standard-bearers, as some Republicans did Thursday by coyly meeting with or outright avoiding the presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump, those on hand at the press club luncheon were excited about getting up close and personal with the guest speakers.

[ Senate Republicans Leave Trump Meeting With Little to Say ]

“Do you think I could take a picture with them?” one suit-clad admirer asked club staff, his smartphone already in hand.

Johnson, who collected over a million votes during his 2012 presidential run, firmly believes the Libertarian Party is gaining traction.

“We’re on the ballot in all 50 states,” he noted. “This is for real.”

Johnson attempted to brush aside any notions that he or Weld would be satisfied with merely gaining entry into the upcoming presidential debates — a milestone predicated upon their earning 15 percent support in national polls.

“We would not be doing this is there were not the opportunity to actually win,” Johnson said of his career ambitions.

Rather than ambush individuals — “No insults. No threats. No bluffs,” is how Johnson characterized their presidential platform — the duo indicted the current political system in general.

Libertarian vice presidential nominee Gov. William Weld answered questions about his latest campaign during an appearance at the National Press Club. (Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

Libertarian vice presidential nominee Gov. William Weld answered questions about his latest campaign during an appearance at the National Press Club. (Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

Weld, also a onetime Republican like Johnson, accused establishment politicians of being interested in the same thing: maintaining their duopoly.

Johnson slammed those on both sides of the aisle for betraying the public trust. “They’re all about spending and nothing about results,” he argued.

If elected, Johnson promised to take the fight directly to Congress, mapping out plans to hold the GOP’s feet to the fire on federal budgeting and expanded government while challenging Democrats on civil liberties and entitlements.

“This is a huge opportunity. Don’t you see it?” Johnson posed to the crowd.

Contact Rojas at warrenrojas@rollcall.com and follow him on Twitter at @WARojas.

– See more at: http://www.rollcall.com/news/politics/libertarian-ticket-fine-playing-spoiler-envisions#sthash.jA2oSOR6.dpuf

…charging the world’s governments with Crimes Against Humanity


 
 
 
 
Robert Melamede

10 hrs · Burlington, VT ·

The below is my developing challenge that will ultimately be brought to the world court charging the world’s governments with Crimes Against Humanity, and violating the Declaration of Human Rights to which they are treaty bound to uphold.

To Whom it May Concern, the below presentation is presented in support of human evolutionary freedom. This natural process is threatened by backward looking people (BLPs), a population driven by a hypersensitivity to stress caused by insufficient endocannabinoid activity and resulting in ignorance, fear, and greed as they continue to harm others who think differently from themselves.

The Physics of Life, Evolution and the Endocannabinoid System
Program Director Phoenix Tears Foundation, Denver CO, drbobmelamede@me.com

The earth is constantly bombarded by electromagnetic waves that in conjunction with the heat of the earth have powered the chemical conversions that led to the emergence of life. Nobel laureate Ilya Prigogine pioneered a new form of physics known is far from equilibrium thermodynamics. His work is based on the concept that flowing energy naturally organizes matter. Flow dependent dissipative structures naturally form because they generate more entropy to their surroundings than would occur in their absence. Hence they are consistent with the second law of thermodynamics. Consequently, for the first time in human history, we have a theoretical framework for understanding life, its emergence and it’s evolution.

The emergence of life from the inorganic prebiotic “soup” was a far from equilibrium phase change, as was/is also the case with the emergence of new species or their disappearance with extinction. With the evolution of vertebrates, a new homeostatic mechanism appeared, the endocannabinoid system. The endocannabinoid system homeostatically regulates all human body systems (circulatory, digestive, endocrine, immunological, neuromuscular, skeletal, reproductive and skin) from conception until death!

The CB1 receptor, responsible for the euphoric effects of cannabis, regulates free radical production by regulating ion channels, in particular calcium. Consequently, they control all forms of energy-requiring cell activation, i.e., muscle contraction, nerve conduction, endocrine hormone production, etc., essentially cell differentiation as they drove the evolution of the human brain. Additionally, free radical are critical determinants of the various the forms of cell death. The probability of cell death, apoptosis or necrosis (including numerous subdivisions), is ultimately determined by the destructive free radicals that are natural metabolically produced or brought into the system fro outside: sunlight and all forms electromagnetic radiation to which life is constantly exposed.

The CB1 receptor is found everywhere, and composes most abundant neurotransmitter system in the human brain (not taught in medical schools). It allows for the fine-tuning of energy production via the dangerous, but efficient free radical producing electron transport system, As a result, the CB1 receptor has facilitated the development of the human brain, characterized by complexity and hence, distance from equilibrium. All cellular differentiation is promoted by efficient energy production.

The CB2 receptor activation turns on beta-oxidation of fats and makes energy inefficiently but safely. Concomitant with fat burning, cells initiate autophagy, a recycling mechanism by which cells eat their free radical damaged components and recycle them. Fat burning cells become less differentiated as they try to repair themselves. Drug resistance cancer cells and their metastasis are possible consequences.

By regulating the fuel source, and hence differentiation state of cells, they can be made more or less susceptible to dying. Consequently, cancers, infections (especially viral), and the aging process itself, can be regulated by manipulating energy flow, and hence free radical production with cannabinoids.

Since evolution is a direct manifestation of the creative force that permeates the universe the underlying science is the guide by which we live our lives. Our religion is Evolutionism (see Appendix I) and is the basis of the Church of Evolving Consciousness.

Jason Glasgow is a member our church and was performing his sacramental duties to aid his fellow human beings suffering from illnesses that naturally result from insufficient cannabinoid activity. Both scientifically and experientially, human suffering can be dramatically reduced through the consumption of the essential nutrient, our sacrament, high THC containing cannabis extract-the oil of life.
Appendix II provides the references for the science that is assembled into Appendix III. In accordance with the Declaration of Human Rights (see Appendix IV) Jason must be released, and his medicine must be returned to the patients for whom it was destined in accordance with their Fundamental Human Rights..

Appendix I

Evolutionism

“What is life?” is a question everyone considers. As the principles of far from equilibrium thermodynamics were discovered, they have become the basis of the religious beliefs by aware people globally, how we relate to the universe. Now, for the first time in human history, the process of life can be understood from a scientific point of view that can serve as a guide for human behavior. Our faith is in the validity of science, our belief system is known as Evolutionism, We are Evolutionists.

Surprisingly, evolution has selected for marijuana-like compounds to play a critical role in maintaining human health. The appropriate use of marijuana promotes human health. Hence, its appropriate use is thus mandated by Evolutionism since evolutionists strive to do what scientific facts suggest is healthy for themselves, their family, their community, their country and their planet. Currently, we are deprived of our religious freedom. We cannot practice our fact-based religion because people of other, typically faith-based, religions deny the truth about this unique plant, and make laws contrary to fact despite its use as a component of the Holy Anointing oil specifically described in the Bible. Because we faithfully adhere to our religious principles, we are labeled as criminals!

All people make marijuana-like compounds known as endocannabinoids. Whenever anyone gets hungry, they are giving themselves the “munchies” with the cannabinoids that they produce, as occurs when a mammal nurses its young. In fact, cannabinoids control every system in the human body (cardiovascular, nervous, endocrine, immune, digestive, reproductive, excretory, musculo-sketetal). It is because of their all-pervasive activity that cannabinoids can impact on so many illnesses. Cannabinoids: kill many types of cancer cells, protect against Alzheimer’s disease, delay the onset and severity of auto-immune diseases such as arthritis, diabetes, multiple sclerosis and Crohn’s disease, and recently has been shown to both protect the heart from damage as well as to protect against, arteriosclerosis, they relieve pain, stimulate the appetite and promote sound sleep. Cannabinoids also regulate stress, learning and open-mindedness. Hence, we can predict that many followers of faith-based religions are deficient in cannabinoid activity, and are impaired in their capacity for open-mindedness. As a result, they make laws that are contrary to fact and freedom.

Before elaborating on our religious beliefs it is important to have a definition of religion. Here are some examples:

“Religion, sometimes used interchangeably with faith, is commonly defined as belief concerning the supernatural, sacred, or divine, and the practices and institutions associated with such belief. In its broadest sense some have defined it as the sum total of answers given to explain humankind’s relationship with the universe. In the course of the development of religion, it has taken an almost infinite number of forms in various cultures and individuals” en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion

“Any specific system of belief about deity, often involving rituals, a code of ethics, and a philosophy of life.” Thus we would include Agnosticism, Atheism, conservative Christianity, Humanism, Islam, Judaism, liberal Christianity, Native American Spirituality, Wicca and other Neopagan traditions as religions” www.religioustolerance.org/gl_r.htm

“An organized system of belief that generally seeks to understand purpose, meaning, goals, and methods of spiritual things. These spiritual things can be God, people in relation to God, salvation, after life, purpose of life, order of the cosmos, etc.” www.carm.org/dictionary/dic_p-r.htm

Far from equilibrium thermodynamics, as pioneered by Nobel Laureate Illya Prigogine, shows that flowing energy intrinsically has a creative capacity. This physical reality has manifested itself as chemical evolution, life and consciousness As such, these principles constitute the foundation of a belief in an abstract higher creative force that has parallels with other religious beliefs (GOD=generalized open system dynamics). These concepts are of particular interest to a growing number of people in a broad spectrum of fields, in particular those devoted personal growth, health, and the exploration of their minds. The principles of evolutionism provide a foundation, based on sound scientific principles for viewing life in a positive, and constructive manner. On the other hand they provide a unifying framework to challenge current laws that squander our resources and unconstitutionally restrict our basic human rights including religious freedom.

Basic Principles for Evolutionists

The universe has been expanding and cooling since the big bang. Regardless of what one posits to be responsible for these events, they appear to be governed by physical laws. Evolutionists see the Second Law of thermodynamics, as it pertains to far from equilibrium systems such as the Earth’s biosphere, as the driving force behind evolution. In contrast, those who deny evolution incorrectly apply the Second Law of Thermodynamics as it applies to equilibrium systems to justify intelligent design. Hence being an evolutionist does not exclude other religions beliefs unless they specifically exclude the belief in the evolutionary process. We now understand that whenever far from equilibrium systems are considered, where there is a negentropic potential, a source, and an entropic sink, where disorder increases, there is the possibility for spontaneous organization (creativity). In other words, as long as the entropy of the universe increases, the entropy of subsystems can decrease (the second law of thermodynamics). For example, our sun emits a spectrum of electromagnetic radiation that is rich in ultraviolet light. This type of light is of relatively high frequency and hence has greater information potential (high frequency) than does lower frequency light. The biosphere is powered by the information potential extracted from the higher frequency light. The earth re-irradiates infrared light back into the space. Infrared light is of a lower frequency and therefore has less information capacity. Evolution and all of its creative manifestations result from the process of acquiring and refining energy that comes from our sun and the expanding universe. Health can be measured by an organism’s or a population’s distance from equilibrium. The further from equilibrium an organism (population) is, the greater its flow dependent organization and state of health, ultimately meaning adaptability. In contrast, equilibrium is the state of maximum disorder or greatest entropy. Thus, as an organism (population) approaches equilibrium, health declines. The opposite is also true. The move from equilibrium moves an individual (population) towards health. Therefore, an intelligent life form would conclude that it must move further from equilibrium if health and survival were of value. We must uncover, as individuals, how to apply these thermodynamic principles to manage our ecosystems and individual lives in sensible, healthy ways.

What does this mean from a practical point of view? It is a personal search for an evolving understanding and application of the principles under discussion. It requires lifelong learning. This process becomes a fulltime perspective as one applies and refines the simple concept of moving further from equilibrium to all aspects of ones existence. Our life’s energy becomes more functionally applied as less energy is wasted on primitive nonfunctional organized structures that waste life’s potential. All things that healthy individuals in a healthy society value conform to the paradigm that there is value in the move from equilibrium. Our planet, its ecosystems, nations, communities, families all evolve by these principles.

Religion – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Religion is a cultural system of behaviors and practices, world views, sacred texts, holy places, ethics, and societal organisation that relate humanity…

en.wikipedia.org

 

SOURCE LINKS:

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https://www.facebook.com/robert.melamede

https://www.facebook.com/ron.bourassa.7/posts/10154325428338384

Cannabis at the Capitol: Marijuana industry leaders lobby Congress


FILE- In this Dec. 27, 2013 file photo, different strains of pot are displayed for sale at a marijuana dispensary in Denver. The state of Colorado released a report Monday, April 18, 2016 detailing changes in everything from pot arrests to tax collections to calls to Poison Control. The most striking statistic wasn't a change at all, but the fact that surveys indicate marijuana use by people under 18 didn't rise significantly in the years after the 2012 vote to legalize recreational pot sales. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, file)

By Jennifer Harper – The Washington Times – Thursday, May 12, 2016

Three Democratic lawmakers will herald the start of a two-day lobbying effort by marijuana entrepreneurs on Capitol Hill.

Reps. Earl Blumenauer and Ed Perlmutter of Colorado plus Denny Heck of Washington joined the National Cannabis Industry Association for a press conference Thursday just outside the U.S. House to talk up policy and “advocate for fair treatment of the legal cannabis industry,” according to the organization. They will spend the next two days explaining their situation to as many elected officials as possible.

The trade group is troubled that “legitimate cannabis businesses” often can’t access basic financial services. They take issue with cannabis business who must pay “double or triple the effective federal tax rates of any other industry.” They want marijuana “de-scheduled” from the Controlled Substances Act.

The cannabis entrepreneurs also appear to be intent on changing the image of the emerging industry.

The association itself has a formal code of conduct for its membership and officers them this message: “Lobby Days provide the best opportunity to show our nation’s decision-makers what a responsible and legitimate cannabis industry looks like.”

The group plans a major national expo and business summit in Oakland, California next month. Currently, 19 states the the U.S. have legalized medical marijuana. Four states, as well as the District of Columbia, allow marijuana for both recreational and medical use. Sales nationwide of legal weed are expected to top $4.5 billion this year.

CONTINUE READING…

Marijuana Foes Losing Direction in Kentucky


 
With Thomas Tony Vance and Angela Gatewood.
 
Thomas Tony Vance

 

An Informational Town Hall meeting on Medical Cannabis was held on November 8. 2015 in Alexandria, KY sponsored by Veterans of Foreign Wars Campbell County Post 3205 Auxiliary and Veterans for Medical Cannabis Access. Having given the keynote speech at that event I was surprised and somewhat curious when immediately afterward the opponents of marijuana legalization organized and held one on December 1, 2015. The ‘Marijuana Summit’ was published as giving both sides of the issue.

 
I attended the event. They offered a ‘Legislative Breakfast’ and all our local legislators were there. They seemed to be very close with the organizers of the event. During breakfast Mr. Tony Coder, the Assistant Director of Drug Free Action Alliance, presided over a lively discussion of the issues. Senator Perry Clark, who attended, responded to the notion that since we already have a heroin problem we don’t need to legalize another drug. Ignoring the obvious attempt to link heroin with marijuana Senator Clark pointed out the report published in the Journal of the American Medical Association of a 25% drop in opioid drug overdose deaths in states that have medical cannabis programs and that that percentage is increasing.

The response was a change of subject.

I was struck by the snarky way Mr. Coder regaled us with the story of him breaking California law and lying to obtain a medical marijuana card to prove how easy it was to get one. At this point I was able to get a word in and posed him this query.

California has had medical marijuana since 1996. You say that’s a scam and Californians can access marijuana any time they want. Ok, I’ll give you that, (when I said that he looked surprised, then I continued), however that means the citizens of California have had easy access to marijuana for 20 years. You have to answer this. Where are the bodies? Where are all the bad things you all say will happen if marijuana is legalized?

Another change of subject.

Mr. Coder repeated his easy access claim during the next session on marijuana prohibition history. I quickly pointed out that he proves my point.
Change of subject.

The 3rd session was a speech by Mr. Ed Shemelya, the National Coordinator for the National Marijuana Initiative, a retired police officer who worked extensively with the High Intensity Drug Task Force and gives speeches for a living. He did point out, among a load of numbers that if 2 of the 6 states that will have legalization on the ballot pass it in 2016 it is, as he put it, “all over folks!”
Oh I wish it were true!

I had to leave at the halfway point. The first session after lunch was about hemp which is legal and really only a problem for the helicopter eradication program. The last was about the last 2 Monitoring the Future surveys concerning teen access and use which has not changed significantly with legalization. The interesting thing here is that with the exception of medical need supervised by a Doctor, no State has or will legalize marijuana for anyone under 21, so it’s really a moot point.

They always come back to protecting the children. I wonder? Marijuana has been used by women for menstrual cramps and morning sickness for 4000 years. In all that time there is no anecdotal evidence of birth defects or problems in birth resulting from marijuana use during pregnancy. Given the role we now know the cannabinoid system plays in maintaining good health and the fact of marijuana’s zero toxicity, one can envision a future in which ones Cheerios come, “fortified with THC for your protection”.

The ‘Marijuana Summit’, although misguided was certainly sincere, however we would be better served by them joining in as legalization comes and helping to craft effective policy rather than opposing it completely and having no say in the policy eventually enacted.

 

SOURCE