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Member since: 2002
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Journal Archives

Rodrigo Canales: The deadly genius of drug cartels

His TED talk.

America's Longest War: A Film

Here's a link to the full movie. Can't post in video/media b/c it's not on YouTube. The film was produced by Reason Magazine.


Drug prohibition has failed. Drug usage rates have not declined, and illegal drugs are more available—and cheaper—than ever before. At the same time, the costs of the drug war are staggering. More than $1 trillion taxpayer dollars have been spent. More than 50,000 SWAT raids occur each year. Hundreds of thousands of non-violent drug offenders are wasting their lives away in prison at our expense. And more than 60,000 people have been murdered in Mexico over the past six years.

AMERICA'S LONGEST WAR provides a brief history of drug prohibition, beginning with Nixon's declaration of war in 1971 and ending with Obama's broken promise to allow states to determine their own medical marijuana policies. AMERICA'S LONGEST WAR chronicles how, over the past 40 years, the drug war has escalated from a small domestic program mostly focused on treatment to the multi-billion dollar international war it is today.

There are many victims of the drug war, and AMERICA'S LONGEST WAR tells some of their stories.

In 2001, Cory Maye, a black man in Mississippi, shot and killed an intruder while protecting his 18-month old daughter. The intruder turned out to be a white police officer conducting a raid, and Maye was sent to prison for murder. Maye was ultimately released in the Summer of 2011.

Contact your Rep. in the House and in the Senate

H.R. 499 seeks to remove cannabis from the jurisdiction of the DEA. Please contact your representative to indicate your support for this bill. Here's a list to find your representative: http://www.house.gov/representatives/

more info in this LBN post: http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014818432

You can find your Senator's contact information here: http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm

The Senate needs to approve an amendment that would defund the DEA so that they cannot interfere with medical marijuana in the majority of states in the U.S. where this is legal. The Senate also needs to vote in support of hemp legislation. Both of these are amendments to H.R. 4660.



The Hemp Wars: Is DEA Dazed & Confused Over Industrial Hemp?

As noted here earlier, the DEA considers hemp a narcotic, even tho it's not psychotropic. Because of this insane policy, the DEA seized 250 lbs. of hemp seed destined for KY.

Last week, the House of Representatives told the DEA to leave hemp alone.

Massie, the author of one bill, said Kentucky was forced into a "waste of time and money and the court system's limited resources" during a legal battle with the DEA over its hemp seeds this month. “The DEA is not above Congress, it’s not above the law,” Massie added. “This amendment simply asks the DEA to follow existing laws.”

Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) begs to differ because, according to him, the DEA needs to inspect every cannabis plant to make sure it's one with low levels of THC. Yes. This is reefer madness. Still. In the House.


Just a few weeks ago, Kentucky’s Department of Agriculture filed a lawsuit in federal court to force the DEA to release the confiscated seeds, which were imported from Italy. Following a two-week battle in federal court, the DEA released the seeds. But only after Kentucky officials applied for a controlled substance permit. The "controlled substance" was delivered via UPS truck to State Agriculture Commissioner James Comer’s office and some were planted at University of Kentucky’s research farm in Lexington, Kentucky. Scientists there hope to pinpoint which types of hemp will grow best in the region.

In a May 22nd letter releasing the seeds, the DEA warned Kentucky officials that private farmers could face prosecution for planting hemp, and pilot projects could be destroyed as part of the federal marijuana eradication program. The DEA said it seized the seeds because the intent of the farm bill is unclear and doesn’t include rules for importing hemp seeds. In response, state officials sent a letter to a federal judge in Louisville, seeking a declaratory ruling. A court date has yet to be announced.

The DEA’s confusion is unwarranted, according to U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Louisville), who helped draft the Farm Bill legislation. McConnell recently released a statement, saying he was frustrated that "the DEA is using its finite resources to stymie plainly lawful hemp pilot projects at the very time Kentucky is facing growing threats from heroin addiction and other drug abuse."

The DEA has stated repeatedly that law enforcement officials might not be able to distinguish legal hemp from illegal marijuana. In the May 22nd letter, the agency "strongly suggests" Kentucky officials provide details such as global positioning coordinates for hemp plots and anticipated growing dates.

It's time for Leonhart to go. It's time for the DEA to be defunded. It's time to remove cannabis in any form outside of the purview of the DEA.

A lawyer for the KY hemp farmers says the Hemp bill makes it clear hemp is an agricultural product, not a drug.

But the reality is that Congress has created laws that make hemp a drug. Congress needs to change those laws, outright, by removing cannabis from the controlled substances act.

A Democrat re-introduced such legislation this week. The hemp growers are prepared to go to court to fight the DEA. They shouldn't have to go to court. Congress should simply DO ITS JOB and take action to stop this interference from a federal agency that should not have control over an herb.

The Medical Marijuana Amendment in the House

It's strange to post something from a conservative... but, a California conservative may be more liberal than some Democrats in some House districts...

The Hinchey-Rohrabacher medical marijuana amendment (House Amendment 272) was offered by Congressmen Maurice Hinchey and Dana Rohrabacher to amend the Commerce, Justice, and Science Appropriations Bill, H.R. 3093, on July 25, 2007 in the U.S. Congress. The amendment was defeated by a vote of 262-165. Eventually, the Amendment was passed by the US House on May 29, 2014.

Who the bleep do these representatives (and those who came before them) think they are to ignore the will of the American people for nearly 20 years?

The opposing arguments, ultimately, are stupid because the plant, for whatever purpose, should be legal for adults to grow, use, purchase, or sell. It can be recommended as an herbal supplement. Research can go forward.


The Other Cannabis War: The Battle Over Hemp


Great read.

How a 20-year campaign to distinguish industrial hemp from marijuana scored an epic victory

...Despite its patriotic bona fides, cannabis sativa was a victim of reefer madness in almost every decade of the 20th Century. Praised, taxed, vilified, confused with pot and blamed for killing sprees and the theft of American jobs by immigrants. The final nail in hemp's coffin was its classification as a Schedule 1 narcotic in 1970's Controlled Substances Act.

The U.S. is the only industrialized nation without a commercial hemp industry. All the hemp sold in the U.S., including the food and body products lining the shelves of Costco, the Body Shop and Whole Foods is imported. As Americans buy hemp, Britain, China, France and Germany are among the countries benefiting from America’s incoherent drug policy. Last year, Canadian farmers grew 67,000 acres of hemp and say they may not be able to grow enough to fill this year's orders. David Bronner began adding hemp oil — imported from Canada — to his liquid soaps in 1999. "I thought this was the most ridiculous piece of the drug war," he says "that a non-drug agricultural crop was caught up here."

In 2001, in a fit of drug war paranoia, the DEA declared a ban on foods that contain hemp including certain cereals, salad dressings, breads and veggie burgers — claiming that the foods contained THC. Effected businesses were given 120 days to dump their inventories. With the hemp food market just taking off, 200 hemp companies, including Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap, took the DEA to court. The lawsuit allowed the hemp industry to make its case in the media. Hemp won the bruising battle nearly three years later when a federal judge in San Francisco ruled that the government couldn't regulate the trace amounts of THC that occur naturally in hemp seeds.

...In Kentucky, farming programs for veterans that teach families how to grow their own food have just sewn hemp in collaboration with the agriculture department and Vote Hemp. Mike Lewis, a military veteran and food security expert who founded the group in 2012 when his brother returned from the war in Afghanistan with a brain injury, now has grant money for a hemp textile project and part-time work for twelve people. This in a state with a 19% poverty rate. "Appalachia has a strong history of textiles," Lewis observes. "In my vision that's what's missing from rural communities, ag income. People used to survive off tobacco. If it has to be hemp for textiles, let's do it. People call hemp a panacea, a pipe dream, but look how many people came together from all walks of life in Kentucky to make this happen."

The future is green. Not soylent. Hemp.

Horsford introduces bill to decriminalize marijuana

Source: Nevada Appeal

Rep. Steven Horsford, D-Nev., has introduced legislation that would decriminalize marijuana at the federal level.

“States that have voted to legalize marijuana for medical and/or recreational use should not fear federal agents raiding their businesses and intimidating their citizens,” Horsford said.

He said the bill doesn’t force states to legalize pot but would simply direct the Attorney General to remove marijuana from the list of controlled substances and put it under the federal Alcohol Administration Act.

That would allow the treasury secretary to regulate the import, shipping and sales of pot in interstate or foreign commerce.

Read more: http://www.nevadaappeal.com/news/local/11679150-113/marijuana-states-bill-federal

Please contact Democrat, Steven Horsford, to support him in this bill.

Also contact your state representative to indicate your support for Horsford's bill.

Things are happening!

Link to representative's names and contact info: http://www.house.gov/representatives/

Link to Horsford: http://horsford.house.gov/

A link to a petition online won't work on DU

I can access it from facebook or from my browsing history on my computer, but not via DU. Help?

Here's the link:



This link is to the Marijuana Policy Project Page with a letter to sign and send to your Senator in support of defunding the DEA's raids on legal medical marijuana facilities.

More than half of the states in the U.S. now have medical marijuana provisions. It's time for the federal government to respond to the will of the voter regarding marijuana's legal status.

This letter is one way to get them to respond.



Here's a link to an online letter from MPP

The link above is to the Marijuana Policy Project Page with a letter to sign and send to your Senator in support of defunding the DEA's raids on legal medical marijuana facilities.

More than half of the states in the U.S. now have medical marijuana provisions. It's time for the federal government to respond to the will of the voter regarding marijuana's legal status.

This letter is one way to get them to respond.

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