Medical Marijuana

Pot charges dropped against N.J. patient

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Tue, March, 1st 2011 by THCFinder

David Barnes is finally off the legal hook in the New Jersey town where he was busted for marijuana possession last year.

His case has become a rallying point for medical marijuana advocates here. New Jersey legalized marijuana for patients with certain conditions last year, but implementation has been delayed as the state labors over regulatory details.

In the meantime, Barnes had drug charges filed against him, and then, last week, dropped.

If the program had been up and running, probably no one would have considered the 50-year-old former internal auditor a criminal.

Barnes has cyclic vomiting syndrome. He says that with little warning, he'll get painful, persistent vomiting attacks that last from one to three days. He regularly throws up so much that he loses 10 percent of his body weight.

Back in the late 1990s, he said, a doctor recommended he use pot -- which is illegal -- to soothe the symptoms. He said that while cannabis doesn't prevent the attacks, it makes them milder.

His was the type of case that persuaded New Jersey lawmakers in January 2010 to make the state the 14th to legalize marijuana for people with certain medical conditions. People with seizure disorders like Barnes would be allowed to use the drug. Patients say marijuana reduces pain and nausea.

A month after the law was signed, the resident of Tewksbury, a rural community 45 miles west of New York City, borrowed a neighbor's plow and headed out after a snowstorm to dig out a vacationing friend's home in Readington.

The plow got stuck. He says he asked neighbors of the friend's for help, but that they summoned police. Officers said he smelled like marijuana -- and found a small amount of the drug and a pipe on him.

He was charged with possession and carrying paraphernalia, offenses that could have landed him in jail for up to a year.

Barnes said took his doctor with him to meet with the municipal prosecutor and reached a deal. As soon as he could present his state-issued card authorizing him to access pot legally, the charges would be dismissed. Prosecutor Robert Ballard did not immediately return a call about the deal.



Colorado Medical Marijuana: House Bill To Regulate Edibles Gets First Hearing

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Tue, March, 1st 2011 by THCFinder

A bill that would effectively ban edible medical marijuana products is scheduled for its first hearing on Tuesday. While the bill seems unlikely to pass, it is nonetheless engendering passionate protest from medical marijuana advocates.

House Bill 1250, sponsored by Republican Cindy Acree, would would "prohibit medical marijuana-infused consumable food and beverage product manufacturing and sale."

Acree, however, stresses that the bill would do nothing to prevent patients from making and consuming edible marijuana products.

She told Westword that she thinks the bill is necessary to prevent confusion among consumers. "Things like 'pot tarts' are showing up on school grounds. And they don't have regulated doses. I think even patients are misled by some of these things," she said.

Writing Tuesday morning in a press release, Shaun Gindi, owner Compassionate Pain Management dispensary said he thinks the bill would actually help his business, but hurt patients.

"There are plenty of patients that rely on edibles," said Gindi. "Doing away with edibles would do nothing but boost MMJ sales. From a business perspective this would be better for any MMC. But from the ethical, moral and plain 'ole common sense point of view, this is an absolutely ridiculous law to try to pass."

The AP reports that Acree is likely to ask her bill to be shelved. Regardless, the hearing is expected to draw a large crowd of medical marijuana advocates.



Marijuana Growing Emporium Opens In Sacramento, CA

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Sat, February, 26th 2011 by THCFinder

On Saturday a 10,000 square foot cannabis-growing emporium will open its doors in Sacramento, CA, with merchandise and experts on hand; everything a medical marijuana grower would need to get started. The company behind the weGrow Hydroponics store in California’s capitol plans on opening stores in Arizona, Colorado, New Jersey, and Oregon; they were also behind the iGrow cannabis outlet opened in Oakland last year.



Medical marijuana growing stores are a huge business opportunity as more states legalize cannabis for medicinal purposes. Not only is there potential for tens of thousands of new jobs, but potential for huge tax receipts for the government; local, state, and federal. Whether some like it or not, legal marijuana medicinal or otherwise is a big business, and it’s only going to get bigger as time goes on. If you are one of those that likes to “get in on the ground floor” of things, now is the time when it comes to cannabis.


Appetite Of Terminal Cancer Patients Restored By Marijuana

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Sat, February, 26th 2011 by THCFinder

The active ingredient in marijuana can restore the appetite of terminal cancer patients who have lost their taste for food, according to new Canadian research. The study involved 21 patients. Some of them were given pills containing THC – or delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, the psychoactive cannabis compound that makes people feel “high.” The rest were given look-a-like dummy pills. (The dosing was timed so that the psychoactive effects peeked while the volunteers were asleep, minimizing the chances they would be able to guess if they had been given the real thing.)




After 18 days of treatment, 73 per cent of those who got the THC reported a greater overall appreciation of food, compared to only 30 per cent who felt that way among those given the placebos. The lead researcher, Wendy Wismer of the University of Alberta, said it’s no secret that healthy people who use cannabis get the “munchies” – what essentially amounts to a boost in their appetite. “But we are investigating this action in a population of individuals who really don’t experience any appetite,” she said in explaining the significance of the research. The study, published in Annals of Oncology, showed that those given the THC still consumed the same number of calories as the placebo group.

However, “it improved the taste of the food they did eat,” Dr. Wismer said. And the consumed more protein. The benefit of THC amounts to “enjoying the life that is remaining.” The THC-treated patients also reported a better quality of sleep and felt more relaxed than the placebo group.


Marijuana for Nonsmokers: Mastering the Cannabis Culinary Arts

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Sat, February, 26th 2011 by THCFinder

Not everyone who uses cannabis enjoys the process of inhaling thick, tar-filled smoke into their lungs. While there has never been a medical link established between cannabis smoke and lung cancer or emphysema--as there has been with tobacco smoke--it can cause bronchitis and other breathing difficulties in some people. Luckily, there is an array of alternative methods for ingesting cannabis.

This week we’ll be looking at how to cook with cannabis, and in my next column we’ll be discussing vaporizers that make the psychoactive components of cannabis airborne and inhalable, without burning the plant matter and creating smoke.

Cannabis Edibles

The price of cannabis edibles at the local medical marijuana dispensaries may seem a bit high for some people, ranging between $5-$10 for a single cookie or brownie, and this could be a problem for low-income patients who rely on these edibles as an essential medication.

However, cooking with cannabis yourself is easy and much cheaper. I’ll provide two simple recipes here; one for making an all-purpose butter that can be added to any other recipe--for those who enjoy creative gourmet cooking--and another for quickly making an effective, high-orbit cannabis cookie in under 30 minutes.

All-Purpose Cannabis Butter


*1 cube of butter or margarine.

*1 or 2 cups of finely crushed cannabis leaf, or 1/4 to 1/2 of an ounce of finely crushed cannabis buds.



*Melt the cube of butter in a skillet.

*Slowly mix the cannabis leaf into the melted butter, at the very lowest possible “simmering” setting on your stove. Be extremely careful not to burn the plant matter!

*Add a small amount of water to keep the mixture from sticking, but no more than a few tablespoons.

*Cover the skillet, but be sure to repeatedly stir the mixture, and continuously check it, to make sure that it doesn’t burn.

*Cook for at least 40 minutes. The longer you cook it, the stronger it becomes, for up to about 12 hours.

*After cooking, then let it cool. This butter is highly psychoactive and can be added to any recipe that you like.

Magic Peanut Butter Treats


*1 big scoop of peanut butter

*1 ounce of finely crushed cannabis leaf, or 1/4 to 1/2 of an ounce of finely crushed cannabis buds.

*A dozen stoned wheat crackers

*Raisins or chocolate chips (optional)


Preheat oven to 290 degrees. Mix the ground cannabis leaf thoroughly with the peanut butter, until it is thick and green, and spread this paste evenly onto the crackers. Lay out the crackers on a cookie sheet, and place this into the oven for 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. Add raisins or chocolate chips on the top, if you like, and enjoy.

Recipe Notes:

This peanut butter treat recipe is the fastest method that I know of for making strong, relatively palatable cannabis treats. It is highly recommended that one start with only around a quarter of a peanut butter treat at first, and then wait for at least three hours before judging its strength and deciding whether or not to eat more.  Eat no more than a half of a treat to start, unless you want to risk not being able to get out bed for a whole day.

Be careful and eat cannabis conservatively. Never attempt to drive after eating a cannabis edible. Eating cannabis can be much more powerful than smoking it, and it lasts much longer.

For some people, it can even seem like a psychedelic experience that’s comparable with magic mushrooms or LSD. Before ingesting anything with potential psychedelic properties, always be sure that you’re in a safe and comfortable place, with people that you trust and enjoy, where you’ll be able to spend the night if you need to.

In all of human history no one has ever died from a cannabis overdose; however, be warned, as eating too much cannabis can be an extremely unpleasant experience.



State to collect sales tax on medical marijuana

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Fri, February, 25th 2011 by THCFinder

California's tax collectors want their share of the burgeoning medical marijuana business.

The state Board of Equalization announced Thursday that medical marijuana dispensaries are not exempt from paying sales tax.

The decision reaffirms current policy that the selling of medical marijuana involves taxable tangible property, the board said.


The decision, reached in a vote Wednesday, involved the Berkeley Patients Group Inc., a Northern California dispensary, which maintained that marijuana should have the same exemption from sales tax as other medicines prescribed by doctors. Audits conducted for the period of July 1, 2004, through June 30, 2007, found that the Berkeley Patients Group owed the state in excess of $6.4 million in taxes and interest.

The decision underscores the need to regulate and tax marijuana distribution and sales, said board Chairman Jerome Horton, who represents Los Angeles County.

"The time is overdue for the state to provide leadership for this industry regarding the manufacturing and sale of marijuana similar to what we did for cigarettes and liquor," Horton said. "Such proposed controls will have the same effect of regulating and controlling sales and capturing appropriate sales tax."

Horton said he was proposing legislation that would put the board in charge of administering a statewide licensing program for marijuana growers, importers, wholesalers and retailers.

California tax authorities estimate that the state currently collects $58 million to $105 million in sales taxes on $700 to $1.3 billion in annual retail sales of medical marijuana, said Anita Gore, a board spokeswoman.




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