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Thursday, October 9, 2014

A Brief History of Cannabis: 1980's - by Chelsea Shaker

Marinol, (Synthetic THC) & Smoked Marijuana Tested on Cancer Patients

     “In 1980, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) began experimental distribution of a new drug called Marinol, an oral form of THC (the primary active ingredient in marijuana), to cancer patients in San Francisco. Simultaneously, six states conducted studies comparing smoked marijuana to oral THC in cancer patients who had not responded to traditional anti-vomiting medication. These state-sponsored studies revealed that thousands of patients found marijuana safer and more effective than synthetic THC. Meanwhile, the NCI experiments showed that some patients responded well to Marinol... Confronted with two different medical recommendations, the government chose to dismiss the state studies and give Marinol the green light.”

Kambiz Akhavan  “Marinol vs. Marijuana: Politics, Science, and Popular Culture,”, 1997

WORLD NEWS: Australian Prime Minister Supports Medical Marijuana - by Chelsea Shaker

     Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has expressed his support for medical marijuana to Talkback radio host Alan Jones in a letter saying no further testing is needed if medical marijuana is legal in similar jurisdictions. PM Abbott recently said he has no problem with making medical marijuana legal. He said he believes if a drug has been validated for medical purposes, the legality should be out of the question.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Marijuana Decriminalization Efforts in Maine - by Chelsea Shaker

     As the state of Maine dabbles in the potential to becoming another state in the nation to completely decriminalize marijuana in the form of adult use, the city of York Board of Selectmen vowed to not include marijuana decriminalization language on their November ballot for their city. With over 900 signatures collected, which meets the amount needed to be included on the ballot, the city’s aggressive police force and stern Selectmen (similar to City Council) are making an issue with the peoples’ will. Maine State Law allows for a notary public to write in the question on the ballot if enough signatures have been gathered, so there is hope yet for the initiative. Other cities in Maine: Portland in 2013, Lewiston, and S. Portland are all considering decriminalization efforts.

     Technically speaking, Maine is already a “decrim” state. In 2009, the Main Legislature passed and extended the state’s laws by making possession of up to 2.5 ounces a civil penalty with civil fines. Possession up to 1.25 ounces received a $350-$600 fine. Any amount between 1.25 and 2.5 ounces received a $700-$1000 fine. Possession of more than 2.5 ounces can lead to jail time up to 6 months.

Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Legislation - by Chelsea Shaker

     Pennsylvania Senate overwhelmingly passed medical marijuana legislation in late September. SB 1182, the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Act, was hailed a victory in the Senate, with all of the Democrats voting “yea” and 20 out of 27 Republicans voting in favor as well. The bill calls for a structured program through the Department of Health and Agriculture. The bill calls for licensed Care Centers throughout the state, while enforcing rigorous testing of medical marijuana to ensure safe, clean cannabis. The bill itself takes note of the benefits of Charlotte’s Web strain to relieve debilitating conditions in children such as seizures, and calls for high CBD consideration for children suffering in Pennsylvania. The bill allows for other forms of ingesting medical cannabis, such as extracts, topicals, and edibles.

Decrim in Philadelphia - by Chelsea Shaker

     Activists in Philadelphia are proud to announce the signage of the marijuana decriminalization bill by Mayor Michael Nutter after the bill was voted on and passed 13-3 by Philadelphia City Council. The bill calls for personal possession of under 30 grams to be applicable for a $25 civil fine for adults aged 21 years and older. The mayor also went as far as agreeing to sign a similar bill for a civil fine of $100 for public consumption of marijuana, also proposed and passed by the Philly City Council. Author of the bill, Councilman Jim Kenney, expressed the need for the decriminalization in Philadelphia due to the overwhelming amount of arrests in the city and negative effects on the community for non-violent arrests. 

Medical Marijuana Production Begins in Florence-Based Military Lab - by Chelsea Shaker

     Italy is to grow medical marijuana for the sick… in a secure military lab. Defense Minister Roberta Pinotti signed an agreement with Italy’s Health Minister Beatrice Lorenzin to instate a pilot project to grow and distribute medical marijuana to pharmacies by the end of 2015. Private pharmaceutical companies will not be able to grow medical marijuana “given the delicacy of this issue” Lorenzin said.

City of Flint Passes Dispensary Ordinance - by Chelsea Shaker

     Flint City Council voted and passed the ordinance to license medical marijuana dispensaries, also known as Provisioning Centers. The city had been working on this new law for almost over 3 years, and several council members acknowledged that the ordinance would have to be updated in the future as the Michigan marijuana laws evolve. Dispensary owners that are grandfathered in are mostly pleased with the ordnance, but attorneys representing those who weren’t expressed a need to postpone the vote. Regardless, they voted 7-2 in favor of passing the ordinances. Matt Abel, from Cannabis Counsel in Detroit, is considering challenging the ordnance validity.  “Don’t get too comfortable,” warns attorney Matt Abel. “We might have to sue the city and force another vote. There are many problem with this ordinance and they (City of Flint) need to get it right.”

Michigan Governor Candidate Mark Shauer's Statement in regards to HB4271 and 5104:

September 23, 2014
     “As I’ve traveled across the state and talked with patients, medical professionals and local community leaders, it is clear that the state needs to clarify Michigan’s Medical Marijuana Act to ensure safe access to medical marijuana for registered patients and caregivers.  Currently, communities are in limbo as to the legal parameters of provisioning centers. This has caused inconsistent law enforcement and limited safe access for medications, especially non-smokeable forms of medical marijuana."

Former Governor William Milliken Supports Democratic candidate Mark Totten for Attorney General - by Chelsea Shaker

     With recent activity circling the upcoming elections on both sides of the aisle, former Governor William Milliken came out in support for Attorney General Candidate Mark Totten.

GROW TIP: Not All LEDs are Created Equal - by Ben Horner

      For the last five years, their producers have hailed LED lightning technology, as the next best thing for both growing and lighting purposes.  LED’s are 75% more efficient then conventional bulbs and run much cooler, but there are some drawbacks. There are many LED lighting systems designed for growing, but only those that are properly engineered can hold their own up against the standard bulbs used by serious growers.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

What’s the 411 on 420 Pheno Selection? - by Drew Dorr, Pure Michigan Genetics

     In the last addition we talked about the real basics on pheno selection, or creating your own strain. We discussed how to pass along CBD-THC potential, the chances of variable, the science behind crossing, and so on, but none at length.

So what are the basics then? Where do we start?

Questions with The Captain - by Chelsea Shaker

     Captain Kirk is best known for his award winning Edibles. In 2011 he won the High Times Edibles Cup with a Key Lime Cheesecake; as well as the Michigan Edible Marijuana Cup of 2011 with his Sugar Free Buck Eye. In 2012, Kirk went to Seattle, Washington and competed in the High Times Cup for Edibles 2012 and won his second High Times Edible Trophy for his sugar free buck eyes and gingerbread cake truffles. Captain has a Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communications from East Central University of Oklahoma. He is also a certified teacher for Oaksterdam University, a member of the National NORML, and Americans for Safe Access. Below is a Q & A from the main man in medicated deliciousness.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Integrity in the Industry - by Drew Dorr of Pure Michigan Genetics

     The true potential of what Marijuana can be, and also an accurate picture of what it is, is often lost in the vast majority. Let’s look at the big picture: It can be used as a medicine, specifically for its pain alleviating agents including, but not limited to, THC, CBA, CBD and so on, AND it can be refined and processed to produce raw goods that range from plastics to fabrics, even foods! Just about anything within the confines of reason and the allowance of physics may be rendered from the Cannabis plant.

"What About The Children?" - by Chuck Ream

     My life has revolved around children, with three excellent grown ones of my own. I loved teaching kindergarten for 33 years. Nothing is more important to me than the safety of children.

The Health of Our Nation - by Citizen Jay

     It’s the first day of autumn and that means it’s time to reflect.  Being on the front lines in Colorado where cannabis is “legal,” means taking the time to tell the rest of the world what’s going on.  We’ve got to encourage the rest of the world to follow our lead, while simultaneously warning them of the seemingly endless pitfalls—those from inside the industry and those coming at us from the outside.

Baby Boomers & The MMMP - by Mark Dragovich of Fife Lake Farmacy

     Baby boomers make up about 20% of the United States’ aging population, many of whom are now finding that cannabis is helping alleviate some common symptoms associated with aging. Twenty three states have now signed into law various forms of medical and recreational marijuana legislation, and baby boomers are among the largest segment of the population driving the industry.

VGIP UPDATE: The Empire Strikes Back - by Ben Horner

     This year, Coalition for a Safer Michigan has been more productive then ever. Campaigns to amend local laws to remove or reduce penalties for basic possession of marijuana have taken place in cities all over Michigan. Capturing the attention of those who oppose the reform of marijuana laws, some of these cities have decided to resist placing these petitions on the ballot in a timely manner.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Free The Weed 43 - by John Sinclair

     I’d like to take a turn away from our usual conversation to commemorate the once-in-a-lifetime experience I’ll enjoy next month when we celebrate the founding of the Detroit Artists Workshop 50 years ago.

Ask Dr. Beth - with Dr. Beth Fisher

Hi Dr. Beth:

     My Canna is disintegrating!  I live in the country and purchase two ounces at a time from the closest dispensary every two or three months. After a month, my medicine is dry and crumbles to the touch. What do I do?


Crumbly Outside Cadillac

VGIP UPDATE - by Chuck Ream, Co-Founder of Coalition for a Safer Michigan

     As you know, we won Hazel Park in the August primary with 63% in favor, and Oak Park with 53%. Oak Park was too close for comfort, but so many people had told us we were going to lose. These victories were made possible by the incredibly dedicated Andrew Cissell and Debra Young.