Oakland becomes first U.S. city to tax marijuana

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Top Anti Drug Researcher Changes Mind, Says Legalize Marijuana

(Source)  For 30 years, Donald Tashkin has studied the effects of marijuana on lung function. His work has been funded by the vehemently anti-marijuana National Institute on Drug Abuse, which has long sought to demonstrate that marijuana causes lung cancer. After 3 decades of anti-drug research, here’s what Tashkin has to say about marijuana laws:

“Early on, when our research appeared as if there would be a negative impact on lung health, I was opposed to legalization because I thought it would lead to increased use and that would lead to increased health effects,” Tashkin says. “But at this point, I’d be in favor of legalization.
Tobacco smoking causes far more harm.   And in terms of an intoxicant, alcohol causes far more harm.

UCLA’s Tashkin studied heavy marijuana smokers to determine whether the use led to increased risk of lung cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD. He hypothesized that there would be a definitive link between cancer and marijuana smoking, but the results proved otherwise.

“What we found instead was no association and even a suggestion of some protective effect,” says Tashkin, whose research was the largest case-control study ever conducted.

Prejudice against marijuana and smoking in general runs so deep for many people that it just seems inconceivable that marijuana could actually reduce the risk of lung cancer.

But that’s what the data shows and it not only demolishes a major tenet of popular anti-pot propaganda, but also points towards a potentially groundbreaking opportunity to develop cancer cures through marijuana research.

Over and over again, all the bad things we’ve been told about marijuana are revealed to be not only false, but often the precise opposite of the truth.

~

Tashkin is discussing the results of his pulmonary research involving marijuana for the first time:

Even heavy, long-term marijuana smokers had no lung impairment after many years of smoking, and in fact tested slightly more healthy than those who didn’t smoke marijuana – “protective effect”.  He does mention, however, that the protective effect may only be present in heavy smokers, as they are getting a higher amount of the cannabinoids.

part 2:

See Also:

PBS Newshour on medical marijuana and legalization in California

Vodpod videos no longer available.See Also:

Potent Pot: don’t believe the hype

“THC — regardless of potency — is virtually non-toxic to healthy cells or organs, and is incapable of causing a fatal overdose. Currently, doctors may legally prescribe a FDA-approved pill that contains 100 percent THC, and curiously, nobody at the University of Mississippi or at the Drug Czar’s office seems to be overly concerned about its potential health effects.”

Rick Steves on Drug Policy in the European Union:

“After 10 years of this coffeeshop approach to recreational marijuana use, anti-drug abuse professionals in the Netherlands agree that there has been no significant increase in pot smoking among their young people, and overall drug use has increased only slightly. They know that their American counterparts are frustrated with the reality that it’s easier for an American 15-year-old to buy marijuana than tobacco or alcohol (because you don’t get “carded” when you buy something on the street).”

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Cannabis Compounds Reduce Multi-Drug Resistant Infections

Study Says Cannabinoids Show “Exceptional” Antibacterial Activity Against MRSA

(Source: CannaZine) Cannabis Science, Inc. (OTCBB: GFON)marijuana.medical

Dr. Robert Melamede, PhD., Director and Chief Science Officer, reported to the Board on the current state of research into the use of natural plant cannabinoids to reduce the spread of drug-resistant bacteria, including methicillin-resistant Staphyloccus aureus (MRSA), and the prospects for development of topical whole-cannabis treatments.

According to studies published in the Journal of the American Medical Association and by the Center for Disease Control in 2007, MRSA is responsible for more than 18,500 hospital-stay related deaths each year, and increased direct healthcare costs of as much as $9.7 billion.

Dr. Melamede stated, “Research into use of whole cannabis extracts and multi-cannabinoid compounds has provided the scientific rationale for medical marijuana’s efficacy in treating some of the most troubling diseases mankind now faces, including infectious diseases such as the flu and HIV, autoimmune diseases such as ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease), multiple sclerosis, arthritis, and diabetes, neurological conditions such as Alzheimer’s, stroke and brain injury, as well as numerous forms of cancer. One common element of these diseases is that patients often suffer extended hospital stays, risking development of various Staphyloccus infections including MRSA. A topical, whole-cannabis treatment for these infections is a functional complement to our cannabis extract-based lozenge.”Investigators at Italy’s Universita del Piemonte Orientale and Britain’s University of London, School of Pharmacy reported in the Journal of Natural Products that five cannabinoids – THC, CBD, CBG, CBC, and CBN – “showed potent antibacterial activity” and “exceptional” antibacterial activity against two epidemic MRSA occurring in UK hospitals.

The authors concluded: “Although the use of cannabinoids as systemic antibacterial agents awaits rigorous clinical trials, … their topical application to reduce skin colonization by MRSA seems promising. … Cannabis sativa … represents an interesting source of antibacterial agents to address the problem of multidrug resistance in MRSA and other pathogenic bacteria.”

About Cannabis Science, Inc.

Cannabis Science, Inc. is at the forefront of medical marijuana research and development.

The Company works with world authorities on phytocannabinoid science targeting critical illnesses, and adheres to scientific methodologies to develop, produce, and commercialize phytocannabinoid-based pharmaceutical products.

In sum, we are dedicated to the creation of cannabis-based medicines, both with and without psychoactive properties, to treat disease and the symptoms of disease, as well as for general health maintenance.

Forward-Looking Statements

This Press Release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Act of 1934.

A statement containing works such as “anticipate,” “seek,” intend,” “believe,” “plan,” “estimate,” “expect,” “project,” “plan,” or similar phrases may be deemed “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.

Some or all of the events or results anticipated by these forward-looking statements may not occur.

Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include the future U.S. and global economies, the impact of competition, and the Company’s reliance on existing regulations regarding the use and development of cannabis-based drugs.

Cannabis Science, Inc. does not undertake any duty nor does it intend to update the results of these forward-looking statements.

Cannabis Science Inc.
Steven W. Kubby, 888-889-0888
President & CEO
www.cannabisscience.com

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Marijuana Legalization Debate from CNN’s “America’s High” pt 2

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An OK debate —The MMP guy wants to tax and regulate, and fails to cite the preponderance of medical studies that originate in other countries, especially Europe, that substantiate the myth that normalization in any way will lead to increased usage in teen and adult populations.  Both results have been disproved in the real-world experiences of Denver, California, the Netherlands and Portugal.

Another note, it was mentioned that the FDA has a process of long-term study for approved medications in order to keep Americans safe.  Here is some news from earlier in the day about a common cold remedy approved by the almighty FDA. (“Over-the-counter cold spray Zicam has caused loss of smell in more than 100 patients”)

I was once prescribed Bextra for hip pain.  Having just seen a 20/20 show on Phizer, the company who owned this drug, and the methods they used to make sure doctors would prescribe it – including vacations and expensive dinners – I asked my doctor a slew of questions.  He assured me that he thought Bextra was the best option, and for no other reason did he prescribe it.  I brought the bottle home and opened the cap … a weird, antiseptic smell came out … something just didn’t feel right and  luckily, I chose to trust my own inner knowing rather than the doctor.  I threw the bottle away without taking one pill.

The following month’s headlines announced that several people have died from Bextra due to heart complications.

The Bextra lawsuits, filed in the Supreme Court of the State of New York …, claim Pfizer failed to adequately and properly test Bextra, and failed to warn doctors, patients and others about its potential risks. (Source)

Thanks, FDA, I will stick to making my own choices for natural and safe medicine as I always have.  I hope one day the law will support me.

Visit Anderson Cooper’s blog

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Potent pot (don’t believe the hype)

See also:Increased Marijuana Potency is an Argument for Legalization, Not Against it

THC — regardless of potency — is virtually non-toxic to healthy cells or organs, and is incapable of causing a fatal overdose. Currently, doctors may legally prescribe a FDA-approved pill that contains 100 percent THC, and curiously, nobody at the University of Mississippi or at the Drug Czar’s office seems to be overly concerned about its potential health effects.

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(This THC ‘news’ came 2 days after the White House Czar Calls for End to ‘War on Drugs’)

Turns out the Drug Czar lies

(from the HuffingtonPost, May 29, 2009)

A newly released report about marijuana potency undermines previous claims by the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) that the drug’s potency has hit record highs.

In May, the media ran wild with stories of highly potent pot sweeping the nation, as the ONDCP announced that their testing showed average marijuana potency had topped 10 percent THC-level for the first time ever. THC is the active ingredient in marijuana.

“According to the latest data on marijuana samples analyzed to date, the average amount of THC in seized samples has reached a new high of 10.1 percent,” reads the announcement by Gil Kerlikowske, the Drug Czar.

But the full report is now available and it shows that the 10-percent bar is only crossed by throwing hash into the equation. Without hash, the average potency was 8.52 percent. The average potency of hash was 20.76 percent.

The Marijuana Policy Project obtained the full report, which is produced by the Marijuana Potency Monitoring Project at the University of Mississippi.

Connoisseurs would enjoy reading the whole thing, which is available here, as it breaks seizures and potency-measurement into “Buds,” “Kilobricks,” “Loose leaf,” “Loose other,” “Thai Sticks” and other categories.

There is also debate over whether there is actually a problem with higher-potency marijuana, with advocates arguing that stronger pot means that users end up smoking less for the same effect, thus sparing their lungs.

Don’t Believe the Hype! Potent Pot, So What?

from Paul Armentano
at the Huffington Post:

“This ain’t your grandfather’s or your father’s marijuana. This will hurt you. This will addict you. This will kill you.”- Mark R. Trouville, DEA Miami, speaking to the Associated Press (June 22, 2007)

Government claims that today’s pot is more potent, and thus more dangerous to health, than ever before must be taken with a grain of salt.

Federal officials have made similarly dire assertions before. In a 2004 Reuters News Wire story, government officials alleged, “Pot is no longer the gentle weed of the 1960s and may pose a greater threat than cocaine or even heroin.” (Anti-drug officials failed to explain why, if previous decades’ pot was so “gentle” and innocuous, police still arrested you for it.)

In 2007, Reuters again highlighted the alleged record rise in cannabis potency, proclaiming, “U.S. marijuana grows stronger than before: report.” Quoted in the news story was ex-Drug Czar John Walters, who warned, “This report underscores that we are no longer talking about the drug of the 1960s and 1970s — this is Pot 2.0.”

Predictably, in 2008 the mainstream news media ran with yet another set of ‘news’ stories alleging that the pot plant’s strength had reached all-time highs. According to a June 12, 2008 Associated Press story:

“The latest analysis from the University of Mississippi’s Potency Monitoring Project tracked the average amount of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, in samples seized by law enforcement agencies from 1975 through 2007. It found that the average amount of THC reached 9.6 percent in 2007, compared with 8.75 percent the previous year.”

Or not. An actual review of the 2008 U-Miss data revealed this nugget of information: The average THC in domestically grown marijuana — which comprises the bulk of the US market — is less than five percent, a figure that’s remained unchanged for nearly a decade. (See: http://www.whitehousedrugpolicy.gov/pdf/FullPotencyReports.pdf, page 12)

Which brings us to this year. Naturally, the Feds are once again sounding the alarm, as reported today by CNN: “Marijuana potency surpasses 10 percent, U.S. says.”

I suppose, if nothing else, the government’s annual “new and improved pot” claims are good advertising for marijuana dealers. As for the rest of the public, it’s time for a reality check.

First, it’s worth noting that police and lawmakers made these same alarmist claims about the suddenly not-as-dangerous-or-strong-as-we-once-said-it-was pot of the 1960s, ’70s, and 80s. These allegations were false then and they are still false now.

Second, THC — regardless of potency — is virtually non-toxic to healthy cells or organs, and is incapable of causing a fatal overdose. Currently, doctors may legally prescribe a FDA-approved pill that contains 100 percent THC, and curiously, nobody at the University of Mississippi or at the Drug Czar’s office seems to be overly concerned about its potential health effects.

Third, survey data gleaned from cannabis consumers in the Netherlands — where users may legally purchase pot of known quality — indicates that most cannabis consumers prefer less potent pot, just as the majority of those who drink alcohol prefer beer or wine rather than 190 proof Everclear or Bacardi 151. When consumers encounter unusually strong varieties of marijuana, they adjust their use accordingly and smoke less.

Finally, if US lawmakers and government researchers were truly concerned about potential risks posed by supposedly stronger marijuana, they would support regulating the drug, so that its potency would be consistent and this information would publicly displayed to the consumer. (Anyone ever been to a liquor store that sold a brand of booze that didn’t post its alcohol content marked on the label? Didn’t think so.)

So let’s review, shall we? Our federal government ostensibly wants fewer Americans to consume pot. So they spend billions of dollars outlawing the plant and driving its producers underground where breeders, over time, clandestinely develop stronger and more sophisticated herbal strains than ever existed prior to prohibition. The Feds then inadvertently give America’s marijuana growers billions of dollars in free advertising by telling the world that today’s weed is more potent than anything Allen Ginsberg, Tommy Chong or Jerry Garcia ever smoked in their heyday. In response, tens of millions of Americans head immediately to their nearest street-corner in search of a dealer (or college student) willing to sell them a dimebag of the new, super-potent cannabis they’ve been hearing about on TV. The Feds then demand more of your hard-earned tax dollars so they can get more Americans “off the pot.”

Then next year we do it all over again: same time, same station.

Any questions?

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