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The United States of Amerijuana Recent bills introduced in Texas, Hawaii, Oklahoma, others prove the entire nation is legalization-oriented by Rick Thompson

 

The United States of Amerijuana

2013 has already seen a flood of cannabis-friendly legislation introduced in the legislatures of numerous states. At least seventeen states have introduced pro-marijuana bills or have stated their intent to do so. Legalization, medical marijuana, decriminalization-even industrial hemp- have all been introduced despite the Obama administration’s lack of a clear response to 2012’s full legalization votes in Washington and Colorado.

Hawaii Speaker of the House Joseph Souki introduced HB 150 on January 17. The Bill allows for individual cultivation and licensing of dispensaries, commercial grows, cannabis manufacturing facilities and testing companies. The Marijuana Policy Project is devoting resources toward passage of this Bill; spokesperson Mason Tvert said HB 150 “will generate significant revenue for Hawaii.”A poll, released earlier this January, showed support for a tax and regulate legalization system at 57%. The poll also revealed incredible support for the current medical marijuana law, passed in 2000 (81% support); for dispensaries (78% support); and for decriminalization (58%). The Drug Policy Action Group sponsored the poll, which was revealed in a press conference with the ACLU of Hawaii. An economic impact study conducted by an economist at the University of Hawaii revealed more than $20 million in potential new revenues and cost savings annually; the report noted that since 2004, marijuana possession arrests are up almost 50% and distribution arrests have nearly doubled.

Full article at Compassion Chronicles<<

Marijuana Legalization Would Promote Drug Use, DEA Contends

Posted: 01/23/2013 1:25 pm EST

WASHINGTON — Recent state efforts to legalize marijuana pose a challenge for the Drug Enforcement Administration because they would increase marijuana’s availability and promote drug use, the DEA said in a filing released Wednesday.

“Recently, efforts to legalize marijuana have increased. Keeping marijuana illegal reduces its availability and lessens willingness to use it,” the DEA said in a financial statement for fiscal year 2012 made public on Wednesday. “Legalizing marijuana would increase accessibility and encourage promotion and acceptance of drug use.”

Full story at the Huffington post<<<<<

Overkill in the war on pot

By Marie Myung-Ok Lee
January 22, 2013

As a candidate in 2008, Barack Obama emphatically stated that medical marijuana use was an issue best left to the states. One of the first promises he made as the newly elected president was that he was “not going to be using Justice Department resources to try to circumvent state laws.” This was even reiterated formally in the so-called Ogden memo of 2009, in which the Department of Justice instructed U.S. attorneys that federal enforcement should apply only to medical marijuana operations that were not in clear compliance with state law.

Obama has since “clarified” those promises, but it still makes no sense that Matthew R. Davies, a business school graduate who set out in 2009 to create a medical marijuana dispensary that would be in full compliance with California law, is facing up to 15 years in prison — with a mandatory five-year sentence.

This is just one more puzzling incident in the history of a president who not only made these promises but has also admitted to heavy recreational use of marijuana himself in his youth. As a second-term president, with little to lose, why is he continuing his odd campaign on a state-approved industry that employs people, pays taxes and distributes a safe and clinically useful product?

Full story La Times

D.C. CIRCUIT DENIES MEDICAL MARIJUANA RECLASSIFICATION CHALLENGE, ADVOCATES VOW TO APPEAL

Jan, 23 2013

Americans for Safe Access will seek En Banc review, continue fight to develop public health policy

Washington, DC — The United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit issued a ruling today in the medical marijuana reclassification case, Americans for Safe Access v. Drug Enforcement Administration. In a 2-1 decision, the Court granted standing in the case — the right to bring a claim against the federal government — but denied the legal challenge on the merits, agreeing with the government’s assertion that “adequate and well-controlled studies” on the medical efficacy of marijuana do not exist.

“To deny that sufficient evidence is lacking on the medical efficacy of marijuana is to ignore a mountain of well-documented studies that conclude otherwise,” said Joe Elford, Chief Counsel with Americans for Safe Access (ASA), the country’s leading medical marijuana advocacy organization, which appealed the denial of the rescheduling petition in January of last year. “The Court has unfortunately agreed with the Obama Administration’s unreasonably raised bar on what qualifies as an ‘adequate and well-controlled’ study, thereby continuing their game of ‘Gotcha.'”

ASA intends to seek En Banc review by the full D.C. Circuit and,necessary, the organization will appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. ASA intends to argue that the Obama Administration has acted arbitrarily and capriciously by using continually changing standards of “medical efficacy” in order to maintain marijuana as a Schedule I substance, a dangerous drug with no medical value. The government now contends that Stage II and III clinical trials are necessary to show efficacy, while ASA has consistently argued that the more than 200 peer-reviewed studies cited in the legal briefs adequately meet this standard.

In 2002, the Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis, made up of several individuals and organizations including ASA, filed a petition to reclassify marijuana for medical use. That petition was denied in July 2011, after ASA sued the Obama Administration for unreasonable delaying the answer. The appeal to the D.C. Circuit was the first time in nearly 20 years that a federal court has reviewed the issue of whether adequate scientific evidence exists to reclassify marijuana.

“The Obama Administration’s legal efforts will keep marijuana out of reach for millions of qualified patients who would benefit from its use,” continued Elford. “It’s time for President Obama to change his harmful policy with regard to medical marijuana and treat this as a public health issue, something entirely within the capability and authority of the executive office.”

Patient advocates claim that marijuana is treated unlike any other controlled substance and that politics have dominated over medical science on this issue. Advocates point to a research approval process for marijuana, controlled by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), which is unique, overly rigorous, and hinders meaningful therapeutic research. ASA argues in its appeal brief that the DEA has no “license to apply different criteria to marijuana than to other drugs, ignore critical scientific data, misrepresent social science research, or rely upon unsubstantiated assumptions, as the DEA has done in this case.”

ASA will continue to put pressure on the Obama Administration, but will also be lobbying Members of Congress to reclassify marijuana for medical use. A new comprehensive public health bill on medical marijuana is expected to be introduced soon in Congress, and ASA is holding a national conference in February to support its passage.

source

Hemp Legalization Effort Gathers Steam

For related articles and more information, please visit OCA’s Politics and Democracy page.

In the cannabis plant family, hemp is the good seed. Marijuana, the evil weed. Michael Bowman, a gregarious Colorado farmer who grows corn and wheat, has been working his contacts in Congress in an attempt to persuade lawmakers that hemp has been framed, unfairly lumped with the stuff people smoke to get high.

Somehow over time, as Bowman’s pitch goes, hemp, which is used to make paper, oils and a variety of useful products, was mistaken for its twin, marijuana – a.k.a pot, chronic, blunt and weed – a medicinal drug loaded with tetrahydrocannabinol that buzzes the mind. Hemp got caught up in the legendary crusade against pot popularized by the movie “Reefer Madness.” All varieties of cannabis ended up on the most-wanted list, outlawed by Congress as well as lawmakers in other nations, inspiring people to kill it on sight.

Bowman’s message is simple: Be sensible. “Can we just stop being stupid? Can we just talk about how things need to change?”

While the United States ranks as the world’s leading consumer of hemp products – with total sales of food and body-care products exceeding $43 million in 2011 – it is the only major industrialized country that bans growing it, even though 11 states have passed measures removing barriers to hemp production and research. Ninety percent of the U.S. supply comes from Canada.

Since Colorado and Washington legalized marijuana by ballot initiatives last fall, a group of farmers and activists have been pushing to revive a crop they say offers a solution to vexing environmental, health and economic challenges.

Alaska: man linked to marijuana shipments

The Associated Press

Posted:   01/16/2013 04:31:28 PM PST

 

BARROW, Alaska—A 31-year-old Barrow man is accused of being involved in large shipments of marijuana mailed to the P.O. box assigned to a local college where he worked.Elekana Saga Aina was arrested Tuesday in Barrow after an 18-month investigation. He is charged with misconduct involving a controlled substance and is being held on $150,000 bail.

North Slope Police say Aina allegedly was involved in several shipments of marijuana ranging from three- to-23 pounds.

Police say a post office box assigned Ilisagvik (Ill-IH’-sag-vick) College was used. Police Chief Leon Boyea (BOY’-eh) says Aina had been employed at the college as support staff.

Police say $114,000 in cash deposits were made by several people, mostly at a local Wells Fargo branch, and appear to have colluded with Aina.

More arrests are expected.

http://www.willitsnews.com/marijuananews/ci_22398223/barrow-man-linked-marijuana-shipments

Pro-Marijuana Group Targeting Alaska Laws

ANCHORAGE – A national marijuana legalization group is targeting Alaska. The Marijuana Policy Project Group was instrumental in backing the Colorado’s ballot measure that passed in November. The group says, with over 1,200 medical marijuana users registered with the state, support for weed has been greater in Alaska than anywhere else.

Back in 2004, 44 percent of Alaska voters supported a legalization ballot measure. The MPP hopes to help local supporters put the issue back before Alaskan voters by 2014 with a ballot initiative calling for the state to regulate and tax weed in the same manner as alcohol.

http://www.ktva.com/news/local/Pro-Marijuana-Group-Targeting-Alaska-Laws-187392981.html

What’s next for weed? Total legalization?

With half or more Americans now favoring legalizing marijuana, President Obama has one bold option that few experts are talking about: Raising the white flag and ending the federal war on pot.

To be sure, many legal experts believe the US Department of Justice instead is preparing to block new regulatory schemes passed by voters last month in Washington and Colorado that legalize and regulate the selling, possession, and use of marijuana. One option is to invoke Article 6 of the Constitution, which says federal law is “the supreme law of the land.”

But despite the constraints of the 1970 Controlled Substances Act in which Congress cemented its stance that marijuana is highly dangerous and has no legitimate medical use, the Obama administration does have legal authority to relabel marijuana as either a less dangerous drug or, as Washington and Colorado have done, classify it alongside alcohol as a legal drug. Such a move could partially or wholly end federal marijuana oversight.

“Maybe this will be the moment when the feds are prepared to revisit marijuana prohibition,” says Josh Meisel, co-director of the Humboldt Institute for Interdisciplinary Marijuana Research in California. “At the federal level … I could see a scenario of marijuana regulation” ending.

At the very least, Washington and Colorado have laid a Gordian knot on the President’s desk.

How, exactly, does the US respond, given that a recent Gallup poll finds that 63 percent of Americans want the federal government to leave the two states alone? Moreover, legal experts say, the laws are not at their core contradictory to federal policy.

Both state schemes will continue to regulate marijuana in ways designed to curtail, not promote, its use. In Colorado’s case, tax revenues will go to local school districts. In Washington, police will be able to pull over stoners and prosecute them for intoxicated driving if they’ve had too much to smoke.

http://www.alaskadispatch.com/article/whats-next-weed-total-legalization

Feasibility of Industrial Hemp Production in the United States Pacific Northwest

For many centuries hemp (Cannabis sativa L.) has been cultivated as a source of strong stem fibers, seed oil, and psychoactive drugs in its leaves and flowers. Environmental concerns and recent shortages of wood fiber have renewed interest in hemp as a raw material for a wide range of industrial products including textiles, paper, and composite wood products. This report assesses the agricultural feasibility of industrial hemp production in the Pacific Northwest (PNW).

Hemp is an herbaceous annual that develops a rigid woody stem ranging in height from 1 to over 5 meters (3 to 19 feet). Hemp stalks have a woody core surrounded by a bark layer containing long fibers that extend nearly the entire length of the stem. Plant breeders have developed hemp varieties with increased stem fiber content and very low levels of delta-9-tetrahydro-cannabinol (THC), the psychoactive ingredient of marijuana.

Historically, hemp fiber was used mainly for cordage, but it can also be made into textiles, paper, and composite wood products. Demand for hemp cordage peaked in the late 1800’s, and world hemp production has continuously declined since that time, except for brief increases during both World Wars. Hemp fiber has largely been replaced by relatively inexpensive natural and synthetic fibers.

Although hemp is well adapted to the temperate climatic zone and will grow under varied environmental conditions, it grows best with warm growing conditions, an extended frost-free season, highly productive agricultural soils, and abundant moisture throughout the growing season. When grown under proper conditions, hemp is very competitive with weeds, and herbicides are generally not required in hemp production. Although a number of insect pests and diseases have been reported on hemp, significant crop losses from pests are not common. High levels of soil fertility are required to maximize hemp productivity. Cultural requirements and production costs are quite similar to those of corn. Reported hemp yields range from 2.5 to 8.7 tons of dry stems per acre.

The climatic and soil requirements of hemp can be met in some agricultural areas of the PNW, however, hemp will almost certainly require irrigation to reliably maximize productivity in the region. The requirement for supplemental irrigation will place hemp in direct competition with the highest value crops in the PNW, limiting available acreage. Stem yields will have to be substantially higher than those previously recorded for hemp to be economically feasible in the PNW at current prices. It is unlikely that the investment needed to improve hemp production technology will be made until legislative restrictions are removed from the crop.

Feasibility of Industrial Hemp Production in the United States Pacific Northwest

http://extension.oregonstate.edu/catalog/html/sb/sb681/

Cannabis: Medicine and Miracle Cure

Cannabis: Medicine and Miracle Cure

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Attention Alaska Doctors
If you would like to have patient referrals send me an email. I assure you I will utilize absolute discretion in my referral process, not even releasing your name, only directions to the clinic and what to ask the person at the front desk. we will NOT make the information available on the internet. Alaskans NEED you to help them help themselves! Send an email to stoney@alaskahemp.com with instructions for how you wish to have patients sent to you. We need Drs all across Alaska to start doing the right thing and we will help you do it with out exposing you to scorn from the narrow minded.
Medical Marijuana License
If you feel the need to obtain a Medical Card here is a link to the State Website
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Marijuana Application Packet PDF
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