Medical marijuana grows economy, advocates say in Portland
Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Tue, November, 13th 2012 by THCFinder
PORTLAND — For Paul McCarrier, organizer of the Medical Marijuana Caregivers of Maine trade show on Saturday, it’s all about the economy.
Gesturing to the large conference room floor where several dozen exhibitors were selling their wares and services, McCarrier said the legalized use of marijuana to treat various ailments created an entrepreneurial bloom.
Almost all were small-business operators. Many were artisans, crafting glass pipes and T-shirts. Others were experts in the cultivation of the plant, providing advice and equipment such as grow lights, compost and greenhouses.
And, of course, there were the marijuana growers, who were well represented among the 150 or so who wandered through the trade show. Three years after a citizens initiative was passed and the state tweaked a law to create dispensaries and licenses for growers, there are 768 people cultivating the plant, six plants per patient for no more than five patients.
McCarrier compared the cottage industries that have grown around legalized medical marijuana in Maine to the many businesses that supply car manufacturers with specialized parts.
“It’s the economy of it,” he said. McCarrier noted that he had to leave his home in Belfast to find work in Portland, but thanks to being able to provide medical marijuana for patients, he was able to return and buy land and a home.
Super Sour Diesel
Marijuana legalization: States send message, feds aren't listening
Category: Legalization | Posted on Tue, November, 13th 2012 by THCFinder
Voters in Washington and Colorado didn't just pass historic measures legalizing recreational marijuana use last week, they blew smoke in the face of Atty. Gen. Eric Holder and, by extension, President Obama. The bud stops at your desks, gentlemen.
Since the vote, legal experts and media analysts have focused speculation on how the feds will crack down on these two rogue states and show them who's boss. Will the Department of Justice file a lawsuit, seeking a ruling that federal law prevails and nullifying the results of the election? Or will the Drug Enforcement Agency start breaking down doors of pot shops in Denver and Seattle?
We'll probably get the answers in the next few weeks, but meanwhile I have a better question: When is the federal government going to get the message that the states are so desperately trying to send it?
Growing national acceptance of same-sex marriage attracts a lot of discussion, but the trend's got nothing on the changing attitudes on marijuana; although nine states and the District of Columbia have legalized gay unions, 26 states have either legalized medical marijuana use or passed laws minimizing or eliminating penalties for possession of small amounts of cannabis, or both. In Alaska, for example, it's legal to keep up to 4 ounces of marijuana in one's home (as a service for non-potheads, that represents a lot more weed than the average person could smoke in a month) and to cultivate up to 24 plants.
A Gallup poll last year, meanwhile, found that 50% of Americans think marijuana should be legalized for adult use. That's up 4% from the previous year and the highest percentage since Gallup starting tracking public attitudes on cannabis in 1969.
What's happening in the states is a backlash against federal cannabis laws seen as draconian and counterproductive in that, like the prohibition of alcohol in the 1920s, they have created a non-taxed underground industry and clogged prisons while doing little to decrease marijuana consumption.
Most absurd of all is that under the U.S. Controlled Substances Act, marijuana is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, meaning it has no accepted medical uses and is as dangerous and addictive as heroin.
If there was ever a justification for this, it ended decades ago. Although cannabis is hardly the wonder cure that medical marijuana enthusiasts claim, there is ample evidence that it has valuable curative properties, particularly when it comes to appetite stimulation for cancer and HIV patients. Moreover, it's widely considered less addictive than alcohol or tobacco and less dangerous to consume.
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