The Week in Weed 8-24-13 Cannabis News

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Cheri Sicard - The Cannabis Gourmet CookbookThis Week: Obama Does NOT Support Any Changes to Marijuana Laws At This Time; Obama’s Paltry Pardon Record Contradicts Holder’s Drug War Concerns; Marijuana Disrupts Cancer Pathway of Cigarettes; DC Program to Subsidize  Pot for the Poor; Why the Elderly Should Get Marijuana; Hemp Industry Hampered by Federal Drug Laws; 7 Ways Booze is More Dangerous Than Weed; Heavy Marijuana Use Linked to Improved Memory/Brain Function in Schizophrenics; Hillary Clinton Says We Can’t Legalize Because There Is Too Much Money In It; and more.

Health/Medical

Marijuana Disrupts Cancer Pathway of Cigarettes — Cigarette smokers aren’t just saving their lungs when they switch to marijuana. They could be preventing cancer as well, according to new research out of Japan. Published last month in the national science journal J-STAGE, the study found that chemicals in marijuana blocked activity of an enzyme linked with cancer – specifically cancer caused by cigarette use. CBD, CBDV and THC were all found to be effective, although CBD was the strongest.

Heavy Marijuana Use Linked to Improved Memory/Brain Function in Schizophrenics — Among schizophrenics, heavy cannabis users performed better on memory tasks than those who avoided marijuana.

Why Pot Makes You Feel Good — Explaining the chemistry behind medical marijuana that got Sanjay Gupta and others to finally believe.

Legal/Politics

Obama Does NOT Support Any Changes to Marijuana Laws At This Time — White House spokesman Josh Earnest was asked for the second day in a row if CNN chief medical correspondent Sanjay Gupta’s recent reversal on medical marijuana use and apology for misleading the public had had any bearing on Obama’s position on the issue. Whereas Earnest declined to answer the question on Tuesday, he confirmed Wednesday that the president does not believe any changes should be made to medical marijuana laws “at this point.”

Obama’s Paltry Pardon Record Contradicts Holder’s Drug War Concerns– If Holder and his boss truly believe that our federal prisons are populated with large numbers of people who don’t deserve to be locked up, there’s something they could do immediately to change that: grant those people clemency.

Hillary Clinton Says We Can’t Legalize Because There Is Too Much Money In It — Last week, while visiting Mexico, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was interviewed by Denise Maerker of Televisa, who asked her opinion of proposals to address black-market violence by repealing drug prohibition. Clinton’s response illustrates not only the intellectual bankruptcy of the prohibitionist position but the economic ignorance of a woman who would be president. Click for details.

Federal Drug Agency Admits It’s Clueless About Marijuana — The National Institute on Drug Abuse released an eyebrow-raising statement to PolitiFact on Monday, denying that marijuana is less toxic than alcohol.

7 Ways Booze is More Dangerous Than Weed — No substantial evidence links marijuana to traffic accidents, domestic violence or cancer, yet pot is illegal and listed as a Schedule I controlled substance by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. Meanwhile, alcohol remains legal despite the fact that it has been proven to contribute to many societal ills, including domestic violence and auto accidents.

Why the Elderly Should Get Marijuana — Elders are the fastest growing population of medical cannabis users in the U.S, but questions have arisen over the use of the medicine within assisted living facilities.

DC Program to Subsidize  Pot for the Poor — A proposed first-in-the-nation government program would require medical marijuana dispensaries in the District to put aside 2 percent of their profits in order to subsidize pot purchases for poor patients. Under the regulatory proposal, dispensaries would give at least a 20 percent discount on marijuana to low-income people at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level.

Cory Booker Condemns Drug War as Tremendous Failure — On Sunday, Newark Mayor and U.S. Senate candidate Cory Booker (D) took to Twitter to condemn the war on drugs, characterizing the federal government’s approach as a “tremendous failure” and criticizing the Obama administration for not honoring state drug laws.

Hemp

Hemp Industry Hampered by Federal Drug Laws — State voters approved industrial hemp in November when they legalized marijuana with Amendment 64 in Colorado, and the state legislature last session passed a bill to have rules in place by March 2014 to create a registration program.  But the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration could still step in with federal enforcement. Like with marijuana, the mind-altering cousin of hemp, there hasn’t been a substantial response from the U.S. Attorney General’s office regarding whether it would interfere.

States News

California Police Leaders Defeat Medical Marijuana Regulation — Legislators — under pressure from law enforcement groups who believe there is no such thing as medical marijuana — withdrew a bill this week that would have codified the rules of the road for medical cannabis collectives in California. Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg’s SB 439 would have given the California Attorney General’s medical pot guidelines the force of law. Currently, the guidelines are not legally binding, meaning certain law enforcement agencies and medical pot groups just ignore them entirely.

Rules for Legal Marijuana Businesses Roll Out in Colorado — The proposed rules require those who want to enter the cannabis business to pay up to $5,000 just to apply to BE in the business, with no guarantee of acceptance. Operational licenses for retail stores then cost another $3,750 to $14,000, depending on their size. Growers will pay $2,750 per year.

NYC Comptroller Says Legalizing and Taxing Marijuana Would Yield 431 Million Annually — Regulating and taxing marijuana for New York City residents age 21 and over would yield an estimated $431 million in annual savings and revenue, according to a report released last week by the New York City Comptroller’s Office. The mission of the Comptroller’s Office is to ensure the financial health of New York City by advising the Mayor, the City Council, and the public of the City’s financial condition.

Take Action Opportunity

Ask Your Representative to Co-sponsor This Bill — Respect State Marijuana Laws Act of 2013 – Amends the Controlled Substances Act to provide that provisions of such Act related to marihuana shall not apply to any person acting in compliance with state laws relating to the production, possession, distribution, dispensation, administration, or delivery of marihuana.

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