Tag Archives | Marijuana

The Anatomy of a Trichome

The Anatomy of a Trichome

Sirius J via High Times:

Trichomes, those little tiny crystal-like hairs that cover the buds, hold all the good stuff. The different methods of hashmaking focus on isolating these sticky little parts of the cannabis plant because they house the majority of its resin.

Every part of the cannabis plant has at least a little THC in it. Leaves have around 4%, while buds have up to 25% or 30% of dry weight. The trichomes cover all parts of the buds, from the interior stems to the surrounding leaves.

Scientists used to think that THC and other cannabinoids were made in the green plant tissue and transported out to the trichomes during flowering, but after intensive research, they realized that the trichomes themselves make the cannabinoids and terpenes.

Trichomes might grow off a leaf around the flower of a female plant, or a bract (pictured above).  A bract houses the seeds in a fertilized plant, and has a high density of trichomes.

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Hear Dr. Carl Hart Eviscerate Drug Propaganda

HartPhotoVia Midwest Real

Dr. Carl Hart is an Associate Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry at Columbia University and the author of High Price

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Before we were engulfed in a tsunami of boundless digital knowledge containing more truth (and garbage) than we could ever digest in thousands of lifetimes, we lived in an incredibly different world. If you were a child of the 90’s like myself, you were constantly inundated with overly-simplistic catchphrase propaganda– “This is your brain on drugs,” “just say no,” the list goes on. I specifically remember being taught in school that marijuana was supremely dangerous because it was a “gateway drug.” The connotation being that if you so much as tried it, you’d probably wind up a strung-out, do-nothing idiot with a Kentucky-fried brain who’d never amount to anything.

This tireless barrage of indoctrination has forged us into a population that looks to traditional sources of authority with an immense amount of skepticism.Read the rest

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History in the Making: Three Prominent US Senators Roll Out Legislation to Legalize Marijuana

Brett Levin (CC BY 2.0)

Brett Levin (CC BY 2.0)

Phillip Smith via AlterNet:

A bipartisan trio of senators will introduce historic legislation to legalize medical marijuana at the federal level.

Sens. Cory Booker (D-NJ), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), and Rand Paul (R-KY) are set to file the bill today.

Booker and Paul have already made names for themselves as drug war reformers, but the addition of Gillibrand as a New York senator backing medical marijuana is welcome.

The bill would end the federal prohibition on medical marijuana and allow patients, doctors, and providers in states with medical marijuana laws to go about their business without fear of federal prosecution.

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Life in Prison for Selling $20 of Weed

Torben Hansen (CC BY 2.0)

Torben Hansen (CC BY 2.0)

This is awful.

Abby Haglage via The Daily Beast:

PART I

On September 5, 2008, Fate Vincent Winslow watched a plainclothes stranger approach him. Homeless and hungry, on a dark street rife with crime, the 41-year-old African American was anxious to make contact, motivated by one singular need: food.

Another man, this one white, stood next to Winslow. He is referred to in court documents exclusively as “Perdue.”

It was nearly 9:20 p.m., hours after the sun had dipped below the abandoned buildings surrounding them. The lights of downtown Shreveport, Louisiana, flickered in the distance as the plain-clothes man—unbeknownst to them, an undercover cop—arrived.

“What do you need?” Winslow asked. “A girl and some weed,” Officer Jerry Alkire replied.

Perdue remained silent as Winslow and Alkire negotiated the costs. Winslow wanted a $5 delivery fee for the $20 (two dime bags) of pot. Fine. Money settled, he grabbed Perdue’s bike and took off.

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Marijuana May Be Even Safer Than Previously Thought

Drug bottle containing cannabis.jpgWhat, Reefer Madness isn’t true? From Wonkblog:

Compared with other recreational drugs — including alcohol — marijuana may be even safer than previously thought. And researchers may be systematically underestimating risks associated with alcohol use.

Those are the top-line findings of recent research published in the journal Scientific Reports, a subsidiary of Nature. Researchers sought to quantify the risk of death associated with the use of a variety of commonly used substances. They found that at the level of individual use, alcohol was the deadliest substance, followed by heroin and cocaine.

And all the way at the bottom of the list? Weed — roughly 114 times less deadly than booze, according to the authors, who ran calculations that compared lethal doses of a given substance with the amount that a typical person uses. Marijuana is also the only drug studied that posed a low mortality risk to its users.

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No, smoking pot will likely NOT make you psychotic

Brooke Hoyer (CC BY 2.0)

Brooke Hoyer (CC BY 2.0)

Don’t run in fear yet! The marijuana study that was the talk of the town last week appears to be problematic.

Paul Armentano at AlterNet breaks it down:

The mainstream media was abuzz this week promoting an age-old claim: Smoking marijuana makes you crazy.

“Psychosis five times more likely for cannabis users: study,” a wire story from Agence France-Presse declared. The UK Mail on Sunday expressed similar alarm, declaring, “Scientists show cannabis TRIPLES psychosis risk.” Somewhat surprisingly, it was Fox News that took the most reserved approach, announcing “Smoking high-potency marijuana may cause psychiatric disorders.”

So what was the source of this latest round of sensational headlines? Writing in the February 18 edition of the British journal The Lancet Psychiatry, investigators assessed rates of cannabis use in a cohort of South London first-episode psychosis patients versus pot use frequency in a similar group selected from the general population.

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Smoking Skunk Triples Chances of Psychosis

Cannabis Plant.jpg

Cannabis Training University (CC)

Hey stoners, did you know that smoking your favorite skunk weed triples your chances of psychosis? From BBC News:

Smoking potent cannabis was linked to 24% of new psychosis cases analysed in a study by King’s College London.

The research suggests the risk of psychosis is three times higher for users of potent “skunk-like” cannabis than for non-users.

The study of 780 people was carried out by KCL’s Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience.

A Home Office spokesman said the report underlines the reasons why cannabis is illegal.

Scientists found the risk of psychosis was five times higher for those who use it every day compared with non-users.

They also concluded the use of hash, a milder form of the drug, was not associated with increased risk of psychosis.

Psychosis refers to delusions or hallucinations that can be present in certain psychiatric conditions such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

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Can We Expect ‘Chaos’ When Pot Becomes Legal in D.C. Next Week?

Washington-DC-marijuana-legalization

Via Jacob Sullum at Reason:

Next week Initiative 71, the marijuana legalization measure approved by voters in Washington, D.C., last November, is scheduled to take effect after surviving congressional review. When it does, Washingtonians 21 or older will no longer face local penalties for possessing up to two ounces of marijuana outside their homes, sharing up to an ounce at a time with other adults, or growing up to six plants (no more than three of which are mature at any given time) at home, where they also will be allowed to keep whatever those plants produce. Meanwhile, the D.C. Council’s plans to legalize commercial production and distribution of marijuana have been blocked by a spending restriction that Congress approved in December. The result, according to The Washington Post, could be “chaos.”

Although I would prefer a situation where cannabis consumers are not forced to grow their own, cadge from friends with green thumbs, or continue relying on the black market, “chaos” seems like an exaggeration to me.

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The Movement To Completely Change The Way You Get High

“Cannabis is joining the coca leaf in the ranks of drugs improved by technology,” claims Cece Lederer at Kernel:

“I’ve got something special for us,” A.J. said as I cued up my recording device. “Have you ever done dabs?”

A.J. is about as close to weed royalty as you can get. If you’ve heard of Sour Diesel, you’ve heard of him. He’s cultivated some of the most potent strains of marijuana and has large-scale grow facilities clamoring for his advice.

Butane honey oil after being whipped 2

Butane honey oil with cannabis sativa exterior trimmings, by Vjiced (CC)

Careful to keep it horizontal, he unzipped a rolling suitcase and took out a blowtorch. Then came the “rig.” At first it looked like a regular water pipe, but instead of a slide, there was a ceramic “nail” that resembled a bird bath for a dollhouse.

Then came the jars. “The flavor is in the liquid,” he said as he put a jar of brown oil on my coffee table.

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Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) on Reddit

Screen shot 2015-02-12 at 11.42.01 AM

The folks at the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) did a Reddit AMA yesterday. I’ve curated some of the more informative questions and answers, but you can read the entire thread here.

MAPS introduces themselves with this lengthy but informative opening:

We are the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), and we are here to educate the public about research into the risks and benefits of psychedelics and marijuana. MAPS is a 501(c)(3) non-profit research and educational organization founded in 1986 that develops medical, legal, and cultural contexts for people to benefit from the careful uses of psychedelics and marijuana.

We envision a world where psychedelics and marijuana are safely and legally available for beneficial uses, and where research is governed by rigorous scientific evaluation of their risks and benefits.

Some of the topics we’re passionate about include;

  • Research into the therapeutic potential of MDMA, LSD, psilocybin, ayahuasca, ibogaine, and marijuana
  • Integrating psychedelics and marijuana into science, medicine, therapy, culture, spirituality, and policy
  • Providing harm reduction and education services at large-scale events to help reduce the risks associated with the non-medical use of various drugs
  • Ways to communicate with friends, family, and the public about the risks and benefits of psychedelics and marijuana
  • Our vision for a post-prohibition world
  • Developing psychedelics and marijuana into prescription medicines through FDA-approved clinical research

List of participants:

  • Rick Doblin, Ph.D., Founder and Executive Director, MAPS
  • Brad Burge, Director of Communications and Marketing, MAPS
  • Amy Emerson, Executive Director and Director of Clinical Research, MAPS Public Benefit Corporation
  • Virginia Wright, Director of Development, MAPS
  • Brian Brown, Communications and Marketing Associate, MAPS
  • Sara Gael, Harm Reduction Coordinator, MAPS
  • Natalie Lyla Ginsberg, Research and Advocacy Coordinator, MAPS
  • Tess Goodwin, Development Assistant, MAPS
  • Ilsa Jerome, Ph.D., Research and Information Specialist, MAPS Public Benefit Corporation
  • Sarah Jordan, Publications Associate, MAPS
  • Bryce Montgomery, Web and Multimedia Associate, MAPS
  • Shannon Clare Petitt, Executive Assistant, MAPS
  • Linnae Ponté, Director of Harm Reduction, MAPS
  • Ben Shechet, Clinical Research Associate, MAPS Public Benefit Corporation
  • Allison Wilens, Clinical Study Assistant, MAPS Public Benefit Corporation
  • Berra Yazar-Klosinski, Ph.D., Clinical Research Scientist, MAPS

For more information about scientific research into the medical potential of psychedelics and marijuana, visitmaps.org.

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