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1 US MI: Column: Cannabis Cup And Ballot CountsWed, 30 Jul 2014
Source:Metro Times (Detroit, MI) Author:Gabriel, Larry Area:Michigan Lines:154 Added:07/30/2014

Michigan Moves Forward

Well, we can chalk up another medical Cannabis Cup for the state of Michigan. Truth is, I was too busy to make it to Clio, although the Wyclef Jean show to cap it off would have been worth the trip on its own. At least I got to enjoy Lee DeVito's posts from the affair. I think he sent them in by carrier pigeon - an electronic pigeon.

These kinds of things are the fulfillment of lots of strategic planning to make sure things go right. The last Cup, held in Detroit in 2011, was pretty good except for Detroit police felt the need to stroll through and show off a little muscle. That included shutting down the medicating area.

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2 US WA: The Feds' Surprising Response To Exploding Hash-Oil LabsWed, 30 Jul 2014
Source:Stranger, The (Seattle, WA) Author:Holden, Dominic Area:Washington Lines:157 Added:07/30/2014

Is the Federal Government Starting to Acknowledge That Legalization and Regulation Are Safer Than Busting People?

Eight months ago, an explosion and fire tore through the Hampton Greens apartment complex in Bellevue. It happened at 6:30 in the morning. Among the residents was Nan Campbell, the 87-year-old former mayor of Bellevue. She was the city's first female mayor, elected in 1988.

According to charging documents filed July 22 in US District Court in connection with the explosion, Campbell "was forced to flee the building as a result of the fire, and fell and fractured her pelvis while doing so." Another woman in the building had to "drop out of her third-story window to escape the flames," which resulted in a fractured spine, broken arm, and broken ankle. Yet another woman fractured her leg after leaping from a second-story window to escape. Authorities say the fire began after butane fuel, which was being used to make hash oil, ignited in one of the apartments. Campbell happened to be in a neighboring unit at the time. She was taken to the hospital after her fall, and "she later expired due to complications" from her injuries.

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3 US FL: PUB LTE: Let Doctors Make Pot Decision For PatientsWed, 30 Jul 2014
Source:Florida Today (Melbourne, FL) Author:Sharpe, Robert Area:Florida Lines:36 Added:07/30/2014

I'm writing in response to Jodi James' thoughtful Sunday guest column, "Floridians deserve safe, legal access to medical pot."

While there have been studies showing that marijuana can shrink cancerous tumors, medical marijuana is essentially a palliative drug. If a doctor recommends marijuana to a cancer patient undergoing chemotherapy, and it helps them feel better, then it's working. In the end, medical marijuana is a quality-of-life decision best left to patients and their doctors.

Drug warriors waging war on non-corporate drugs contend that organic marijuana is not an effective health intervention. Their prescribed intervention for medical marijuana patients is handcuffs, jail cells and criminal records. This approach suggests that drug warriors should not be dictating health-care decisions.

It's long past time to let doctors decide what is right for their patients; sick patients should not be jailed for daring to seek relief from marijuana

Robert Sharpe, Common Sense for Drug Policy, Washington, D.C.

[end]

4US CA: Report: DEA Knew Of Cell Problems Before Man's DetentionWed, 30 Jul 2014
Source:San Diego Union Tribune (CA) Author:McDonald, Jeff Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:07/30/2014

Long before college student Daniel Chong nearly died after being left in a holding cell without food or water for five days in 2012, federal drug officials in San Diego knew their detention practices were deficient.

According to the Inspector General's Office of the U.S. Department of Justice, which just concluded a two-year probe into what happened to Chong, managers in the Drug Enforcement Administration's San Diego field division were warned about the problems but had not corrected them.

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5CN AB: Column: Legalizing Pot Is A Social Issue, Not A Medical OneMon, 28 Jul 2014
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Klassen, Karin Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:07/30/2014

Physicians don't want to prescribe pot; surveys indicate this overwhelmingly. The Canadian Medical Association unequivocally doesn't want them to do it either, and for years, they've issued policy statements, briefs and resolutions to their members, to the public, to the courts, and to government saying so.

The insurer of physicians, the Canadian Medical Protective Association, advises doctors not to do it, citing liability concerns.

Last week, the president of the Canadian Medical Association, Dr. Louis Hugo Francescutti, raised alarms when he said that between pot manufacturers lobbying physicians, and patients pushing for prescriptions, doctors have been put in an untenable position. One 2012 CMA survey of doctors showed that 70 per cent had been asked for a pot prescription, with doctors estimating that 64 per cent of these requests were for non-medical use. Intimidating indeed.

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6 US NM: PUB LTE: Make Marijuana Available To Rich And PoorTue, 29 Jul 2014
Source:Albuquerque Journal (NM) Author:Steeves, James Area:New Mexico Lines:35 Added:07/30/2014

I THINK THAT the editorial regarding access to marijuana in (the July 21) Journal is excellent.

As one follows developments here in New Mexico, one could be easily confused about whether the state is trying to make things more difficult for those who really need the relief in several forms or easier, as they claim.

Just to avoid having to take another drug whose side effects include agonizing constipation is a big winner, so why would the state do anything but make it more readily available to as many people as possible? If we bear in mind that those with easy financial means have never had a problem getting marijuana, but it is those who are in financial stress who do, perhaps our perception of the problem will change. The Journal has taken a very nice step in helping and I thank you for that.

Albuquerque

[end]

7 US NY: Editorial: The Injustice Of Marijuana ArrestsTue, 29 Jul 2014
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Wegman, Jesse Area:New York Lines:178 Added:07/30/2014

America's four-decade war on drugs is responsible for many casualties, but the criminalization of marijuana has been perhaps the most destructive part of that war. The toll can be measured in dollars - billions of which are thrown away each year in the aggressive enforcement of pointless laws. It can be measured in years - whether wasted behind bars or stolen from a child who grows up fatherless. And it can be measured in lives - those damaged if not destroyed by the shockingly harsh consequences that can follow even the most minor offenses.

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8 CN BC: Council To Take On Need For WeedTue, 29 Jul 2014
Source:Prince George Citizen (CN BC) Author:Evelyn, Charelle Area:British Columbia Lines:60 Added:07/30/2014

City council is being asked to take a high-minded approach to allowing future medical marijuana grow operations within city limits.

During Wednesday night's meeting, council will decide whether to move forward on a recommended bylaw limiting newly licensed weed production facilities to parcels of land in the Agricultural Land Reserve and in industrial parks.

Staff have rolled council's directions from a June committee of the whole meeting into a potential policy that would create a new narcotics category for greenbelt, agriculture and forestry zones in the ALR and light, general and business industrial zones - specifically the BCR, Danson and Boundary Road industrial parks.

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9 US NJ: Parents Press Christie On RX MarijuanaSun, 27 Jul 2014
Source:Philadelphia Inquirer, The (PA) Author:Hefler, Jan Area:New Jersey Lines:136 Added:07/30/2014

They Say Changes Could Better Help Sick Children. He Has Said His Worry Is Moving Toward Legalization.

New Jersey's medical-marijuana program is coming under fire from a group of parents, who are setting up orange traffic cones on a sidewalk in front of the Statehouse each week to make their point, simply and colorfully.

The program needs repairs, they say, and Gov. Christie is blocking changes that would help their severely ill children get treatment their doctors have recommended. The cones are intended as a visual reference to Bridgegate.

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10 US FL: Column: Reefer Madness Vs. Demon RumSun, 27 Jul 2014
Source:Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, FL) Author:Lowe, Chan Area:Florida Lines:61 Added:07/30/2014

Back in the early 1970s, when I as in college, my campus and its surrounding town had a kind of live-and-let-live understanding about students' recreational use of marijuana. As long as local residents weren't disturbed by noise, and no damage was done to off-campus property, the tiny town's police department turned its limited manpower to other, more important matters-like making sure unauthorized people didn't use the municipal dump.

I remember once being in a dorm room, where the air was thick with smoke. Black Sabbath was blasting out of the stereo speakers, when suddenly, the door opened. Dazzling fluorescent light from the hallway spilled into the haze. It was a campus cop. We froze.

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11 South Africa: OPED: A Losing BattleTue, 29 Jul 2014
Source:Cape Times (South Africa)          Area:South Africa Lines:51 Added:07/30/2014

THE WAR on drugs has been a losing fight for 40 years. The response to unending failure has always been to demand more law enforcement and more prison cells. It is unclear why the mood should be changing just now. It isn't that consumers have suddenly got too numerous to ignore: rates of cannabis use, which had, throughout the late 20th century, seemed to be on an interminable upward trajectory, are now stable or even declining.

But then the long century of criminalisation never had any more to do with evidence than America's disastrous interwar experiment with prohibiting the undoubtedly-dangerous demon drink. Then, as now, the practicalities of harm-reduction and the principle of not persecuting citizens who harm no one but themselves, point to legalisation.

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12 US MI: Marijuana Advocates Submit Ballot InitiativeWed, 30 Jul 2014
Source:Times Herald, The (Port Huron, MI) Author:Grenke, Nicholas Area:Michigan Lines:67 Added:07/30/2014

Clerk's Office Will Verify Signatures in Next Several Weeks

Marijuana activists turned in a petition Tuesday with 1,681 signatures to the Port Huron City Clerk Office to get a proposal to decriminalize marijuana on the Nov. 4 ballot.

The ballot proposal was created and signatures were collected by The Coalition for a Safer Port Huron, a subgroup of the statewide Coalition for a Safer Michigan.

The proposal aims to legalize the possession and use of less than one ounce of marijuana by anyone 21 or older.

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13 US WA: PUB LTE: High Pot Prices Inflate State RevenueWed, 30 Jul 2014
Source:Columbian, The (WA) Author:Valinor, Mike Area:Washington Lines:39 Added:07/30/2014

By keeping the state marijuana grow canopy minuscule, the Washington Liquor Control Board can keep marijuana prices high, which will help to maximize the total tax the state will collect from sales. The liquor control board has allocated 2 million square feet of marijuana grow canopy for the entire state, which is equal to 46 acres. If the state only allowed 46 acres statewide to grow apples on, we would be paying more than $1,000 for an apple.

The marijuana excise taxes collected by the state will increase as the price per gram for marijuana increases. The amount of taxes the state will collect at $20 a gram will be twice the taxes that the state would collect if the same gram of marijuana was sold for $10.

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14 US NY: PUB LTE: Legalize Marijuana? Responses Vary (4 of 5)Tue, 29 Jul 2014
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Sharpe, Robert Area:New York Lines:36 Added:07/30/2014

To the Editor:

Thank you for your editorial calling for a repeal of marijuana prohibition. The marijuana plant is incapable of causing an overdose death. Not even aspirin can make the same claim, much less alcohol or prescription narcotics. Marijuana prohibition, on the other hand, has caused untold deaths in the form of violent drug cartel turf battles and botched "no knock" police raids on residential homes.

Marijuana can be harmful if abused. Marijuana prohibition does not make the plant any safer. In fact, it compounds the dangers of marijuana by granting a monopoly on marijuana distribution to drug cartels that sell meth, cocaine and heroin. Marijuana prohibition is a gateway drug policy. It's time for Congress to stop confusing the drug war's tremendous collateral damage with a comparatively harmless plant.

ROBERT SHARPE Policy Analyst Common Sense for Drug Policy Washington, July 28, 2014

[end]

15 US NY: PUB LTE: Legalize Marijuana? Responses Vary (3 of 5)Tue, 29 Jul 2014
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Blumenauer, Earl Area:New York Lines:44 Added:07/30/2014

To the Editor:

While I wholeheartedly agree with the editorial board that we need to end the federal prohibition on marijuana, Congress is not as paralyzed on this issue as many may think.

A growing, bipartisan coalition of lawmakers in the House has approved five measures in a row that represent incremental steps to rationalize our failed marijuana policy. There are more than a dozen bills pending, most with bipartisan sponsorship, that would create a framework for legalization.

The House has voted to increase access to banking services for marijuana businesses in states where they are legal, and prevent the Drug Enforcement Administration from using funds to interfere with state medical marijuana laws. This majority in the House seems to realize what many Americans already knew: Prohibition has failed.

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16 US NY: PUB LTE: Legalize Marijuana? Responses Vary (1 of 5)Tue, 29 Jul 2014
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Penner, Larry Area:New York Lines:38 Added:07/30/2014

To the Editor:

Re "Repeal Prohibition, Again" (editorial, July 27): Consumers have made marijuana a multibillion-dollar enterprise, as creative entrepreneurs will always provide for citizens' desires, regardless of government approval. We should legalize marijuana, and add a sales tax. Revenues will cover the social costs of any abuse.

Citizens have more to fear from murder, arson, rape, muggings, robberies, auto and identity theft, and home break-ins. Free law enforcement to pursue those who commit real crimes against citizens and property.

What consenting adults consume or inhale in the privacy of their own home or social club isn't the concern of government. Let us hope that we have finally learned from the obvious failures of Prohibition.

Great Neck, N.Y., July 27, 2014

[end]

17 US NY: LTE: Legalize Marijuana? Responses Vary (2 of 5)Tue, 29 Jul 2014
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Gitlow, Stuart Area:New York Lines:43 Added:07/30/2014

To the Editor:

Your opinion, in "Repeal Prohibition, Again," that marijuana should be legalized is based in part on an assumption that during Prohibition "people kept drinking." Prohibition reduced the public's alcohol intake considerably. The rate of alcohol-associated illness dropped in similar fashion. Prohibition was perhaps a political failure, but an impressive success from a public health standpoint.

Both alcohol and marijuana can lead to the chronic disease of addiction, directly affect the brain and negatively affect function. As more than 10 percent of our population has addictive disease, your statement that marijuana is "far less dangerous than alcohol" doesn't reflect decades of research demonstrating risks associated with both of these drugs.

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18 US NY: LTE: Legalize Marijuana? Responses Vary (5 of 5)Tue, 29 Jul 2014
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Gagnon, Scott Area:New York Lines:36 Added:07/30/2014

To the Editor:

I am disappointed by your decision to endorse the legalization of recreational marijuana. Legalization would affect our youth and communities for generations, just as tobacco has done.

The marijuana industry, like Big Tobacco, has shown that it has no compunction about marketing its products to our young people. And in Colorado, we've seen the negative public health effects of legalization: increased admissions to emergency rooms, increases in marijuana-positive fatal car crashes, increased reports of kids as young as middle-school age bringing marijuana to school.

Marijuana is not a safe drug. It harms youths. It harms economies, with extra social costs. How can this be the way forward for America? Don't our communities deserve better?

SCOTT M. GAGNON Gray, Me., July 28, 2014

[end]

19US CA: Cathedral City OKs Medical Marijuana DispensariesWed, 30 Jul 2014
Source:Desert Sun, The (Palm Springs, CA) Author:Herzog, Blake Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:07/30/2014

Cathedral City became the second Coachella Valley city to permit marijuana dispensaries Tuesday with a 3-2 vote, that included an amendment to allow three to open immediately, instead of two.

Councilmen Greg Pettis, and Sam Toles and Mayor Pro Tem Chuck Vasquez voted in favor, with Mayor Kathy DeRosa and Councilman Stan Henry voted no. The council deadlocked 2-2 on the issue at its July 9 meeting when Toles did not teleconference into the session as expected.

The ordinance, as presented earlier this month, permitted one dispensary per 20,000 residents, or a cap of two total until the city of approximately 52,000 reached 60,000 residents. Pettis' amendment changing that to one per 15,000 residents was approved.

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20 US CO: Column: Studio A64 Doubles In Space, Marijuana Comes ToWed, 30 Jul 2014
Source:Colorado Springs Independent (CO) Author:Crawford, Bryce Area:Colorado Lines:66 Added:07/30/2014

Marijuana Starts In Manitou

The Gazette is reporting that Maggie's Farm will open in Manitou Springs on Thursday, July 31, to sales of recreational marijuana.

Multiple attempts to reach owner Bill Conkling were unsuccessful, and an employee at the organization's South Nevada Avenue store replied, "Honestly, I'm not too sure" when asked whether it's happening. But if true - the daily says a final inspection could still change plans - it would mark the first of two stores, and the dawn of a controversial era in the small town, which is set to vote whether to continue to allow recreational marijuana this November.

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