Tag Archives | Cannabis

4/20 Goes Mainstream In California’s Bay Area

California NORMLStoners everywhere recognize April 20th (4/20) as a day to celebrate their favorite herb, but perhaps nowhere has this “holiday” of sorts entered the mainstream to the extent it has in California’s Bay Area, where the local NBC station reports on celebrations:

The holiest of days in many a marijuana users’ calendar is upon us: The 20th day of April, the hallowed 4/20. There’s much on in the Bay Area today to mark “the stoners’ Christmas,” as the day has been dubbed.

But there’s also much more going on than the annual smoke-outs at 20 minutes past four in the afternoon at Hippie Hill in Golden Gate Park, the University of California Santa Cruz campus, and essentially anywhere else marijuana users are known to congregate (read: anywhere). The time — 4:20 p.m. — is important. In the 1970s, a small group of hippie stoners at San Rafael High School would go out every day at that time to smot pot, and their “club” name just stuck.

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Will Big Pharma Take Over The American Market For Medical Marijuana?

MedMarjIf the hundreds of uses for cannabis doesn’t plead the case for its legalization, the money made from its medical industry just might do it. The Washington Independent reports:

The American Independent has previously reported on the growing corporatization of the incipient medical marijuana industry at a time when medical marijuana dispensaries scrabble to hold on to their businesses in the face of a multi-pronged federal crackdown. But there are signs afoot that it just may become ever more corporate if a Big Pharma push to get the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to recognize a cannabis-derived drug is successful.

Last week, British prescription drug manufacturer GW Pharmaceuticals announced a licensing agreement with drug giant Novartis, maker of Ritalin and Excedrin, to begin selling GW’s drug Sativex in markets across Asia, Africa, Oceania and the Middle East. The medication is already available in Britain, where it’s produced and marketed by Bayer, and in Canada and Spain.

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Happy 4/20! Top 5 Marijuana Stories from Disinfo.com

4/20 is a day of fun, activism, and healing for millions of marijuana users throughout the world, so here are five of the dankest cannabis stories we have posted on Disinfo.com. To read all the pot-related stories in our news archive, go here. Does anyone know the origin of 420? If you’ve heard an urban legend about this most baked of numbers, please share…

Top Five Marijuana Stories:

1. Chronic Art: Making Amazing Mosaics From Roach Papers

2. Graham Hancock on Marijuana & Consciousness

3. Don’t Just Smoke a Joint on 4/20, Take Action Against Marijuana Prohibition

4. Marilyn Monroe: Pot Smoker?

5. Californians [Voted] On Legalizing Pot

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Inside Oaksterdam University: ‘Where Marijuana Gets You Higher Education’

OaksterdamJason Motlagh writes in TIME:

On the second floor of the downtown campus, a motley group of students listens to a lecture titled “Palliative and Curative Relief Through a Safe and Effective Herbal Medicine.” Not the sexiest of topics on the face of it, but there’s a catch: this is Oaksterdam University, and the medicine being discussed is marijuana. At “America’s first cannabis college,” in Oakland, Calif., the sallow-faced hippy-skater types that one expects to find sit beside middle-aged professionals in business attire, united in their zeal for the pungent green leaf. No one dares speak out of turn, until instructor Paul Armentano, a marijuana-policy expert, cites a news report that U.S. antidrug authorities plan to legalize pot’s active ingredient exclusively for drug companies’ use. “More stinking profits for Big Business,” mumbles a young man wearing a baseball cap. His classmates groan in agreement.

More than 17,000 students have enrolled since Oaksterdam opened in late 2007.

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Medical Marijuana Is Now A $1.7 Billion Market


Medical Marijuana shop in Denver, Colorado. Photo: O'Dea (CC)

The medical marijuana market has had a significant growth this year. With seven states who have opened shop and five more states planned to approve medical marijuana outlets this year, cannabis could save many states’ economies. Medical News Today reports:

Medical marijuana is now a serious $1.7 billion dollar market, according to a new report released this week by an independent financial analysis firm that specializes in new and unique markets. Currently, 24.8 million people are eligible to receive a recommendation and purchase marijuana legally under state laws, and approximately 730,000 people actually do.

Ted Rose, editor of the new State of the Medical Marijuana Market 2011 report, comments:

“Medical marijuana markets are rapidly growing across the country and will reach $1.7 billion this year. We undertook this effort because we noticed a dearth of reliable market information about this politically charged business.

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Study Finds Cannabis Use ‘Raises Psychosis Risk’?!?

Reefer Madness?I find the word “psychosis” to be rather nondescript. What “reality” do cannabis users lose and is psychosis necessarily negative when the modern condition of life is far from the natural conditions humans evolved to live in?

I believe marijuana leads to getting acquainted with the subconscious, which in turn leads to spiritual discovery.

However, this may cause one to ask questions and reexamine their beliefs and lifestyle, which admittedly can cause distress. This unease with the world and oneself is something one must work through to achieve happiness, as ignorance will not solve the problems at hand.

I find cannabis-induced “psychosis” to be misunderstood. While I believe that there are SOME who have had dangerous or extreme mental distress brought about by use of this substance, I think most of the paranoia surrounding the effects of THC result from users panicking upon finding themselves too far down the rabbit-hole of the subconscious.… Read the rest

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Dutch Government Pushes Tourist Ban In Cannabis Coffeeshops

If you’d like to experience Amsterdam’s famous coffee shops, I suggest booking your flight soon. From Reuters:

The Dutch government said on Wednesday it wanted to ban tourists from buying cannabis in “coffee shops,” where hash is on sale legally, as part of a national crackdown on drug use.

The government, which took office last month, has agreed to limit the sale of cannabis to Dutch residents to curb crime linked to its production and trading.

The Netherlands has one of Europe’s most liberal soft drug policies and its coffee shops are a popular tourist attraction, especially in Amsterdam and border cities near Belgium and Germany.

But some cities near the border with Belgium have clamped down on drug tourism, and the Dutch minister for security and justice confirmed Wednesday a wider crackdown after coalition parties agreed to push for a ban in September.

[Continues at Reuters]

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Dutch Scratch n’ Sniff Anti-Cannabis Cards

Not sure what marijuana smells like? The Dutch authorities have delivered scratch and sniff cards to inform people of what the plant smells like, in hopes that a passerby may catch a whiff of an ‘illegal urban cannabis plantation.’ From BBC News:

About 30,000 Dutch households are to receive marijuana-scented scratch cards in an effort to uncover illegal urban cannabis plantations.

Authorities in Rotterdam and The Hague say they are distributing the cards to help people recognize what cannabis smells like.

The cards also include a number to call to report suspected marijuana-growing.

Dutch authorities turn a blind eye to citizens growing up to five marijuana plants for personal use.

“Citizens must be alerted to the dangers they face as a result of these plantations, and if they become aware of any suspect situations they must report them,” said the spokesman for government-appointed working group to combat cannabis cultivation in the Netherlands, Arnie Loos.

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The Prince Of Pot Is Finally Going To Jail

Escape to CanadaCanadian cannabis advocate Marc Emery, profiled in the disinformation documentary Escape To Canada, has given up fighting against his extradition to the United States. Story from AFP:

Canada’s self-styled “Prince of Pot” rallied supporters on Monday before turning himself in to Canadian authorities to be extradited to the United States to face a five-year jail term.

Marc Emery, 52, is alleged by US prosecutors to have sold more than four million marijuana seeds through the mail via his website. About 75 percent of the seeds went to US customers.

His wife Jodie Emery told AFP her husband expected to be extradited within “days or a week” after exhausting all legal challenges and an appeal for clemency to Canada’s justice minister.

“It?s absolutely devastating to think that I might not see my husband for five years,” she said. “It?s a harsh reality.”

The couple are still holding out hope that Emery may be allowed to serve his sentence in a Canadian jail to be near his family, if Canada’s Public Safety Minister Vic Toews consents.

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Legalize Pot? Get Mom Onboard

Pot usage amongst young and middle-aged moms isn’t new and it isn’t a fad.  The legalization lobby is smart to target these ladies to help get out the vote. MSNBC reports:

from Wikimedia Commons

Moms got tougher drunk-driving laws on the books and were directly responsible for passing and then repealing alcohol Prohibition. Now marijuana activists are trying to enlist the nation’s mothers in legalization efforts with a sales pitch that pot is safer than booze.

The nation’s largest marijuana legalization lobby recently started a women’s group. The Moms4Marijuana website draws thousands. And just in time for Mother’s Day, a pot legalization group in Denver has created a pink-carnation web card asking moms to support legalization.

These marijuana moms argue that pot is no worse than alcohol, that teens shouldn’t face jail time for experimenting with it and that marijuana can even help new mothers treat postpartum depression.  “I know so many mothers who support this but aren’t willing to come out and say it,” said Sabrina Fendrick, head of the Women’s Alliance at the Washington-based National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, or NORML.

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