Tag Archives | Medical Marijuana

The IRS War On Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

IRS War On Medical MarijuanaCongressional Republicans (with the Obama administration’s bipartisan support) are all for using the IRS to target and decimate one sector of the U.S. economy — medical marijuana providers. Alternet reports:

The IRS employs Section 280E, a 1982 tax code addition that was a response to a drug dealer’s successful effort to claim his yacht, weapons, and even bribes as business expenses. Under 280E, individuals involved in the illicit sale of controlled substances — including marijuana, even medical marijuana in states where it is legal — cannot claim standard business expenses on their taxes.

“The Obama administration is using Section 280E to push these local and state licensed medical marijuana dispensaries out of business,” said Kris Hermes, spokesman for the medical marijuana defense group Americans for Safe Access.

Most small businesses pay an effective tax rate of between 13% and 27% on net income, according to the Small Business Administration. With the unintended application of 280E, state-legal marijuana providers pay an average effective tax rate of 65-80%.

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Feds Threaten Landlords of Medical Marijuana Dispensaries with Forty Year Prison Sentences

Picture: PD

Picture: Anti-Pot DA Melinda Haag

Go into any strip mall “pain clinic” and grab a bottle of Oxycontin. Wander into a corner liquor store and grab a few bottles of Everclear and a pack of cigarettes. Load up on McDonald’s and Burger King until your heart explodes. All of that is fine. Meanwhile, controversy continues over the sale of a readily available, easily grown plant of proven medical benefit. A that law stands against the wishes of a majority of the populace is an unjust law.

Via Alternet:

In the latest act in the ongoing drama pitting federal drug laws against state legislation permitting the sale of marijuana, a U.S. Attorney is threatening the landlords housing medical marijuana dispensaries with 40 years in federal prison. After ballot measures legalizing the sale and possession of recreational use pot passed in Colorado and Washington state, we wondered whether Obama’s second term would see the beginning of the end of the federal war on drugs.

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Man Denied Life-Saving Liver Transplant Due to Medical Marijuana Usage

Pic: Hupu2 (CC)

Sick people being condemned to a painful, lingering death due to using a medicinal plant that doesn’t have the blessing of Big Pharma? It’s the American Way!

Via Alternet:

After being diagnosed with liver cancer in 2009, Norman B. Smith applied to the liver transplant list at Cedar-Sinai hospital. While waiting for a transplant, Mr. Smith underwent chemotherapy in an attempt to destroy the cancer eating away at his liver. This caused severe side-effects, common to many cancer patients. In an attempt to curb the pain, and on the recommendation of his oncologist, Mr. Smith began using medical marijuana. Cannabis has become increasingly common as a medicine of choice for patients undergoing chemotherapy, since it increases appetite and reduces pain—minimizing the chance of a patient developing cancer related wasting syndrome. Finally, in September of 2010, Mr. Smith was notified that he was eligible for a liver transplant and was placed on the liver transplant list.

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New York Republican Who Voted Against Medical Marijuana Busted For Pot

The Wall Street Journal reports a pretty good example of political hypocrisy, with lawmaker Steve Katz, fresh off of helping defeat the legalization of medical marijuana in New York state for people who desperately need it:

A Putnam County assemblyman received a ticket for marijuana possession Thursday after he was stopped for speeding on the New York State Thruway.

Assemblyman Steve Katz, a 59-year-old Republican who voted no last year on a bill to legalize medical marijuana, had been traveling 80 mph on I-87 through Coeymans, N.Y., where the speed limit is 65 mph, state police said. During the speeding stop, police said a trooper noted the odor of marijuana and found Mr. Katz in possession of a small bag.

State police released Mr. Katz with a ticket and ordered him to appear in court on March 28. He didn’t immediately return a call for comment.

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Should Medical Marijuana Be Legalized For Dogs?

Pet website Dogster.com writes that veterinarians are awakening to the miraculous abilities of cannabis to heal sick animals:

Christine L.’s Rottweiler, Sampson, had a rare form of blood cancer. After giving Sampson cannabis flower-bud material mixed with virgin coconut oil, whereas before Sampson had been too weak to walk, almost overnight he became a born-again youngster. “He was a puppy again, happy and playful,” Christine recalls. “Cannabis saved my dog’s life,” she says. “It brought him back from the brink.”

Since Sampson’s passing, Christine consoles herself by reaching out to others in a similar situation. Online, she found Dr. Doug Kramer, whose mission is to improve pets’ quality of life by outlining safe and effective dosing guidelines.

Kramer’s become an outspoken, tireless advocate of pain control for animals and has established a veterinary practice, Enlightened Veterinary Therapeutics, specializing in palliative and hospice care. He’s the first vet in the country to offer cannabis consultations as part of a comprehensive treatment plan for pet patients.

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Marijuana The New Normal In California

California often paves the way for cultural shifts in America and with the front page of the New York Times declaring that marijuana is so common that it might as well be legal in California,  should we expect the whole nation to follow?

Let Colorado and Washington be the marijuana trailblazers. Let them struggle with the messy details of what it means to actually legalize the drug. Marijuana is, as a practical matter, already legal in much of California.

No matter that its recreational use remains technically against the law. Marijuana has, in many parts of this state, become the equivalent of a beer in a paper bag on the streets of Greenwich Village. It is losing whatever stigma it ever had and still has in many parts of the country, including New York City, where the kind of open marijuana use that is common here would attract the attention of any passing law officer.

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Marijuana Dispensing Company’s Stock Is Way Too High

O'Dea (CC)

Last week we posted a story about legal ways to invest in the medical marijuana boom. One of the suggested companies whose stock is publicly traded, Medbox, says it’s stock price is now ridiculously high after climbing 3000%. Story from MarketWatch:

A company that creates medical-marijuana dispensing machines says its stock is getting way too high.

Medbox shares surged 3,000% this week — from roughly $4 Monday to $215 Thursday — before falling to $100 after executives sought to dampen investor enthusiasm.

In a news release today, the company said that the stock’s rocket launch, which sent its market cap skyrocketing from $45 million at the start of the week to a staggering $2.3 billion, was ignited by a MarketWatch story Tuesday on how to invest in legalized marijuana (see How to invest in legalized marijuana .) (That’s about double the market capitalization of retailer Jos. A.

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How To Invest (Legally) In Marijuana

Mjpresson (CC)

You know a tipping point has been reached when the financial press starts writing about ways to profit from legalized marijuana! From MarketWatch:

Mark Twain is said to have remarked that a gold rush is a good time to be in the pick and shovel business. Investors may be able to apply that same bit of wisdom to the growing number of U.S. states that have legalized pot.

Although federal law prohibits the sale or possession of marijuana, Massachusetts last week joined the ranks of states — 18 plus Washington, D.C. — that allow its use for people suffering from chronic illnesses like cancer, HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. In Washington and Colorado, meanwhile, voters passed an initiative to allow pot for recreational use. Those changes have kickstarted a small but fast-growing medical-marijuana industry, estimated to be worth about $1.7 billion as of 2011, according to See Change Strategy, an independent financial-analysis firm that specializes in new markets.

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Mounting Research Shows Marijuana Fights Cancer

Will the jaws of future generations drop in amazement when they learn that marijuana was banned in our society as a criminal substance? Via the Daily Beast:

Mounting evidence shows ‘cannabinoids’ in marijuana slow cancer growth, inhibit formation of new blood cells that feed a tumor, and help manage pain, fatigue, nausea, and other side effects. [This] offers hope of a non-toxic therapy that could treat aggressive forms of cancer without any of the painful side effects of chemotherapy.

Cristina Sanchez, a young biologist at Complutense University in Madrid, was studying cell metabolism when she noticed something peculiar. She had been screening brain cancer cells [and realized] the cancer cells died each time they were exposed to tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the principal psychoactive ingredient of marijuana.

Sanchez had stumbled upon the anti-cancer properties of THC. Subsequent peer-reviewed studies in several countries would show that THC and other marijuana-derived compounds, known as “cannabinoids,” are effective not only for cancer-symptom management (nausea, pain, loss of appetite, fatigue), they also confer a direct antitumoral effect.

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