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Marijuana Kills Again

Category: News | Posted on Tue, July, 17th 2012 by THCFinder

A mother in Washington State is searching for answers; answers to why her 22 year-old son is dead after turning himself in for a probation violation stemming from the possession of a small amount of marijuana.

 

Rose Saffioti says her son suffered from extreme allergies – which the police were aware of since they had a note from his doctor detailing his needs.

 

“I feel I owe it to Michael to learn what went wrong,” she says. “It was only going to be a couple of days.”

 

Rose has hired a lawyer and is hoping that other inmates saw what happened and might shed light on what led to her son’s death on July 3rd.

 

Michael Saffioti worried his entire, short life about his allergies. One day in jail and he is dead. All because he was caught with a small amount of marijuana about a year ago. He then missed a court date, leading to his turning himself into the authorities.

 

Imagine a world where people who have a small amount of marijuana are treated like the human beings they are. They don’t have to fear what might happen to them in jail because it’s silly to put people in jail for having plant matter on their person.

 

Imagine that.

 


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Pro-Medical Marijuana Judge in NY Dies of Cancer

Category: News | Posted on Mon, July, 16th 2012 by THCFinder

Brooklyn judge Gustin Reichbach passed away this weekend due to stage 3 pancreatic cancer. A couple months ago he wrote an op-ed piece in The New York Times expressing his support for medical marijuana, which he used illegally to alleviate his suffering.

 

"My survival has demanded an enormous price, including months of chemotherapy, radiation hell and brutal surgery... Inhaled marijuana is the only medicine that gives me some relief from nausea, stimulates my appetite, and makes it easier to fall asleep," Reichback wrote. “Given my position as a sitting judge still hearing cases, well-meaning friends question the wisdom of my coming out on this issue. But I recognize that fellow cancer sufferers may be unable, for a host of reasons, to give voice to our plight. It is another heartbreaking aporia in the world of cancer that the one drug that gives relief without deleterious side effects remains classified as a narcotic with no medicinal value.

 

“Because criminalizing an effective medical technique affects the fair administration of justice, I feel obliged to speak out as both a judge and a cancer patient suffering with a fatal disease. I implore the governor and the Legislature of New York, always considered a leader among states, to join the forward and humane thinking of 16 other states and pass the medical marijuana bill this year. Medical science has not yet found a cure, but it is barbaric to deny us access to one substance that has proved to ameliorate our suffering.”

 

Under federal and NY state law, Judge Reichbach was a criminal. But what is criminal about sick people choosing what they ingest in their body? Fortunately he was never disciplined for his marijuana use, but that’s a right that belongs to every adult. Cannabis users aren’t hurting anyone, and neither was Judge Reichbach.

 

Source: http://gothamist.com


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Oakland protests U.S. attorney's crackdown on large medical marijuana dispensary

Category: News | Posted on Fri, July, 13th 2012 by THCFinder
OAKLAND — A day after federal prosecutors moved to shutter the country's largest medical marijuana dispensary, city leaders and other officials came to the defense of Harborside Health Center, warning of dire economic and social consequences if Oakland's carefully regulated industry is quashed.
 
"We cannot afford the money, we cannot afford the waste of law enforcement resources, and we cannot afford the loss of jobs that this would entail," City Councilwoman Rebecca Kaplan said Thursday at a news conference as dozens of Harborside Health Center patients stood by.
 
Co-founded in 2006 by Executive Director Steve DeAngelo, Harborside has in many ways set standards for the medical marijuana industry.
 
The sleek operation — which has a smaller sister dispensary in San Jose — lab tests its cannabis to assess quality and measure key chemical components; offers acupuncture, pain management and other free wellness services to its thousands of members; and employs more than 125 people.
 
DeAngelo worked closely with Oakland officials as they crafted one of the nation's strictest regulatory schemes to monitor and tax the industry, and officials say he complies with all local and state laws.
 
But Melinda Haag, the U.S. attorney for California's Northern District, is now seeking to seize the properties where Harborside operates, alleging its marijuana sales violate federal law and that its size as a "superstore" increases the likelihood that it is in violation of state law. A civil forfeiture action was served Wednesday against Harborside's two landlords.
 
If the move drives Harborside out of business, a chunk of its $30 million in annual sales would no doubt return to the streets, benefiting dealers who don't lab test their products or work with patients to customize medications, DeAngelo and other advocates said Thursday.
 
 

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Americans for Safe Access File Brief in Federal Court in Support of Charlie Lynch

Category: News | Posted on Wed, July, 11th 2012 by THCFinder

The medical marijuana advocacy group Americans for Safe Access (ASA) filed an amicus 'friend of the court' brief in federal court on Monday on behalf of former medical marijuana dispensary operator Charles C. Lynch, who gained notoriety in the cannabis community due to his battles with the federal government; his trial in 2008 and sentencing in 2009 for violating federal marijuana laws.

 

"We feel strongly that the federal government is abusing its prosecutorial discretion on medical marijuana cases like Lynch's," said ASA Chief Counsel Joe Elford, who filed the brief in support of Lynch. "These types of prosecutions against medical marijuana providers continue unabated under the Obama Administration based on more than 70 such indictments since the president took office," Elford continued. "We must stem the tide of federal prosecutions and instead defer to state courts to deliberate violations of state law."

 

Even though the Obama Administration wanted a 5-year sentence for Lynch, federal District Judge George H. Wu considered Obama's declarations of tolerance toward medical marijuana and in 2009 sentenced Lynch to a year and a day.

 

Since 2009 the federal stance toward medical marijuana has got much worse, to the point where hundreds of dispensaries have been closed in California alone. The Obama Administration says it is only targeting medical marijuana operators not complying with state law, but there are several instances that contradict that, including the recent raid at El Camino Wellness in Sacramento, CA.

 

"Attorney General Holder and President Obama must be held accountable for their aggressive over-reaction in medical marijuana states," said ASA Executive Director Steph Sherer. "They're either ill-advised about what the Justice Department and other other federal agencies are doing in medical marijuana states, or they're lying to American public."

 

What the American public does about it remains to be seen.

 

Source: http://www.opposingviews.com


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The Crimes of Big Pharma

Category: News | Posted on Tue, July, 10th 2012 by THCFinder

The number 1 reason marijuana is still illegal and that there is so much political resistance to medical cannabis is the money of “Big Pharma,” the major pharmaceutical companies. They cannot compete with medical marijuana so they suppress as much information about it as they can, and pay off politicians to make sure it stays prohibited at a federal level.

 

But some “Big Pharma” companies are embroiled in lawsuits and accusations of criminality and fraud. The pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline recently settled its fraud case to the tune of $3 billion.

 

According to U.S. federal investigators, GlaxoSmithKline (http://www.naturalnews.com/036416_GlaxoSmithKline_fraud_criminal_char...):

 

• Routinely bribed doctors with luxury vacations and paid speaking gigs

• Fabricated drug safety data and lied to the FDA

• Defrauded Medicare and Medicaid out of billions

• Deceived regulators about the effectiveness of its drugs

• Relied on its deceptive practices to earn billions of dollars selling potentially dangerous drugs to unsuspecting consumers and medical patients

 

And the company doesn’t deny it, they just apologized, agreed to the settlement and moved on.

 

People wonder why healthcare is so off-kilter in this country; maybe the collusion of the government and Big Pharma to monopolize the industry and funnel large amounts of cash into the campaign coffers of our elected officials is a problem.

 

 


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Marijuana May Deflect Obesity

Category: News | Posted on Tue, July, 10th 2012 by THCFinder
Cannabis seems to have many different allures. It can produce a “high.” It can give the feeling of munchies. Now, it can possibly help combat obesity. Scientists recently revealed that they found two compounds from cannabis leaves that could up the total energy that the body burns.
 
 
Previous studies of two specific compounds demonstrated that they could be used to treat type-two diabetes. The compounds were also discovered to have the ability to reduce cholesterol levels in the blood stream and decrease fat in important organs such as the liver. With the aim of treating patients who have “metabolic syndrome,” the researchers are currently conducting clinical trials in 200 patients with the drug. With “metabolic syndrome,” diabetes, high blood pressure, and obesity combine to heighten the risk of heart disease and stroke in patients.
 
 
“We are conducting four Phase 2a clinical trials and we expect some results later this year,” commented Dr. Steph Wright, director of research and development at GW Pharmaceuticals, in a Telegraph article. “The results in animal models have been very encouraging. We are interested in how these drugs effect the fat distribution and utilization in the body as a treatment for metabolic diseases… Humans have been using these plants for thousands of years so we have quite a lot of experience of the chemicals in the plants.”
 
 
GW Pharmaceuticals was given a license to grow cannabis in greenhouses that were specially constructed for project. The company produces cannabis plants that have a number of cannabinoids, which are varied compounds of cannabis. They are already working on creating drugs that can assist in treating epilepsy and multiple sclerosis. Interesting enough, when the scientists studied two specific compounds, THCV and cannabioidoil, they found that they had the ability to suppress appetite but the effect lasted for a short amount of time. Upon further examination, the investigators discovered that the compounds could influence the fat level in the body as well as its effects to the hormone insulin.
 
 
Likewise, the studies of the compounds in mice showed that they increased the metabolism of the animals, causing decreased levels of fat in livers and minimized levels of cholesterol in the blood stream. In particular, THCV showed the ability of boosting the animals’ sensitivity to insulin but also shielding the insulin-producing cells. With these actions, the cells were able to work at a longer and more durable pace.
 
 
The researchers hope that the findings will help in the development of treatments for obesity-related illnesses and type-two diabetes.
 
 
“Overall, it seems these molecules increase energy expenditure in the cells of the body by increasing the metabolism,” noted Professor Mike Cawthorne, director of metabolic research at the University of Buckingham and animal studies researcher, in the Telegraph article.
 
 

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