DEA Medical Cannabis Offensive May Have Cost Taxpayers $13.3 Million
Category: News | Posted on Tue, July, 30th 2013 by THCFinder
By now most medical cannabis activists are aware that several medical marijuana dispensaries in Washington state were raided Wednesday. While the federal government continues to raid medical cannabis providers on a routine basis, the 18 raids were such a rare show of force that major news outlets have picked up on the story, with NBC reporting that a DEA agent added insult to injury by boasting to a raided provider that“[t]hings are going to be hell for you.” These raids constitute one of President Obama’s single biggest days of paramilitary action in the federal crackdown on medical cannabis patients and providers, but what did this massive offensive cost taxpayers?
According to ASA’s What’s the Cost? report, the investigations and raids may have cost taxpayers $12,327,732. While the raids themselves cost just over $300,000, the lengthy investigations leading up to the raids cost taxpayers a staggering $12,014,334 according toASA’s calculations. This amount far exceeds the average of $180,000 that the federal government spends fighting its war on medical cannabis. In 2012 alone, the DEA used 4% of its budget on medical cannabis suppression.
This is not the first time the first time the feds have launched a massive offensive against Washington state patients and providers. In 2011, 14 Seattle-area dispensaries were raided in similar fashion. Earlier in that year, the US Attorney for Washington issued a threat letter to the Governor Christine Gregoire which helped bully her into line item vetoing the dispensary portions of a bill that passed both the Washington House and Senate.
Even with the federal government going to such great lengths to prevent the successful passage and implementation of medical cannabis laws, an ever-increasing number of states have chosen to adopt them. With support for safe and legal access to medical cannabis now at 85%, nobody knows how much longer the federal government will continue to waste precious resources to crack down on medical cannabis, but without Congressional action to stop the madness, there is unfortunately no end in sight. ASA urges everyone who cares about safe and legal access to medical cannabis to join the Peace for Patients campaign and make sure their members of Congress take action to end the federal crackdown.
Why the medical marijuana industry opposes full legalization
Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Tue, July, 30th 2013 by THCFinder
Marijuana legalization advocates won some major victories in the last election, but a new report from Politico is spotlighting the divisions within a still emergent industry.
Legal marijuana vending appears to be splitting into two camps: medical and recreational. Though both sides have fought the federal law which still classifies marijuana as a Schedule 1 illegal drug, medical marijuana dispensary owners have a financial interest in keeping their selling rights exclusive. As Byron Tau reports in Politico, this has driven some in the medical marijuana industry to fight with authorities against further legalization.
Legal in 18 states, medical marijuana has had a big head start on recreational marijuana, which became legal in Washington State and Colorado only last year (and is yet to be fully implemented in either). Since California became the first state to legalize medical marijuana in 1996, the industry has ballooned. This is thanks in part to medical marijuana’s virtual monopoly on legal selling rights, which keeps prices high because of scarcity and lack of competition.
In Maine, for example, where medical marijuana was legalized in 1999, a proposed measure to legalize the possession of small amounts of pot–by sending the issue to statewide referendum–failed to pass in the legislature by a handful of votes earlier this year. One of the measure’s key opponents was the Medical Marijuana Caregivers of Maine (MMCM).
“The main objections came from the fact that the bill was not built around Maine’s medical marijuana industry,” lobbyist for the group Paul McCarrier told Politico. “Philosophically, we’re not opposed to the decriminalization of marijuana, but the devil is in the details.”
Read more: http://tv.msnbc.com
Marijuana Legalization in Missouri: Rep. Rory Ellinger Plans Bill to Regulate Pot Like Colorado
Category: News | Posted on Tue, July, 30th 2013 by THCFinder
Missouri is one step closer to legalizing marijuana.
State Rep. Rory Ellinger, a Democrat from University City, plans to introduce legislation next session to legalize pot in the state, modeled after the successful reform effort in Colorado. It will definitely be a long shot here, but this will be the first time a lawmaker in Missouri has introduced a proposal of this nature.
"I expect there will be a lot of good people that feel marijuana is wrong, that it leads down a path of worse drugs and trouble and so on," he tells Daily RFT. "I respect their opinion, but I think that it can all be disputed."
He continues, "I don't know anyone who has ever died of a marijuana overdose."
Ellinger was behind the proposal this past legislative session to decriminalize marijuana, which simply meant reducing the punishments for low-level pot possession charges. Pot, under that initiative, would still be illegal. That bill advanced further than it ever has in the past with a formal hearing in the House of Representatives on the very last day of the session in May.
Ellinger says he plans to reintroduce this decriminalization proposal again and also a separate bill to legalize pot altogether.
Read more: http://blogs.riverfronttimes.com
The NFL's drug testing double standard - marijuana vs. HGH
Category: Culture | Posted on Mon, July, 29th 2013 by THCFinder
ANDERSON, IND. — This is a column about two drugs, one recreational, one that’s a performance enhancer.
And it’s a column about the strange double standard that exists in the National Football League and all of sports.
On the one hand, you have LaVon Brazill, who tested positive twice for marijuana and will be suspended the first four games of the season.
On the other hand, you have human growth hormone (HGH), a drug that’s more prevalent in sports than anybody wants to admit. The NFL Players Association has been taken kicking and screaming into the first round of tests this training camp.
To his credit, Brazill came clean (in a matter of speaking) Monday morning at Colts camp, laying out the simple calculation in front of him.
“It’s either money or marijuana,” Brazill said after the team’s training-camp walk-through. “I know any one of you would choose money any day. That’s gone. I’ll choose money any day.”
It’s really that simple, isn’t it?
Regardless of your world view on marijuana decriminalization or legalization, the fact is, it’s still illegal, it’s still tested for and it’s still a strike against you in the eyes of the NFL. One more positive and he’s done for a season, and maybe for his career.
Money or marijuana?
Read more: http://www.indystar.com
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