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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

The 7th Annual THC Expo/The Detroit Cannabis Cup - by Ben Horner

Detroit, MI: The seventh annual THC Expo at the Roostertail Event Center hosted approximately 200 vendors and was attended by thousands who came to meet canna celebrities, sample the wares and enjoy the true spirit of Detroit in epic bad boy mentality. Bill Lambert and Denis Rodman would have been proud. Although most of those who participated had a great experience, a visit from the fire marshal and DPD left several of the vendors in the medicating area punked out. In the end the show had to go on, and the event’s staff pulled off a narrow victory holding things together,  preventing the event from facing further obstruction by Detroit’s finest and upset vendors.
    
Many people met with the on-sight Doctor to see if they qualified for medical marijuana, further adding to the rosters of the Michigan Medical Marijuana Program. More came to meet Red Wings legend Darren McCarty, activist-comedian Tommy Chong and counter-culture legend John Sinclair. Mr. Chong was brought in again by the event’s main sponsor BDT Smoke Shop, who also brought him in for last years Hash Bash. Tommy explained to the crowd that when asked about the event by the local news channels what kind of people would be attending this event he explained with a smile, “Probably the happiest people in Detroit. And then they asked me, ‘why?’ So I said, ‘we just celebrated St. Patty’s day and on the news was how many people got into auto accidents because they where drunk driving, and now there is so many people smoking pot there is a shortage of donor organs (because there are less auto accidents) ... I reminded people at Fox News (Detroit) that St. Patty’s Day is a celebration of alcohol which causes many accidents and fatalities. I said, ‘the weed, which we celebrate everyday if your a medical person like I am, has been keeping me alive.” People lined up to get a picture with him for hours.


     Captain Kirk spoke about his experiences as an award winning cannabis chef and treating his MS with medical marijuana. Richard Clement asked us to “Free the Weed”, pumping up the crowd. However on Friday night, the first day of the event, whispers began circulating around the Roastertail about a raid at the medicating area. Soon medication vendors where coming back and confirming the rumors, to a certain degree. The fire marshal made a short surprise visit, but rapidly returned with DPD and began evicting the vendors. Witnesses reported that a mad dash pursued as ganjapenuers attempted to escape before getting arrested. In the end no arrests where reported but several folks where detained, while others the fled without gathering their products, losing thousands in inventory. Seems the rented location for the medicating area did not have the proper occupancy permit, and was not properly vetted.

     The following day a new location was found for the medicating area, but there wasn’t enough room for all the vendors that had paid to participate. Rage came from those who had lost out due to the raid and they decided to confront the event managers demanding immediate compensation for their loses. After some yelling and pushing the rabble-rousers were dispatched and told to call the office on Monday about any sort of refunds or compensation. “We worked for six months on this event, and I’ll be damned if I’m going to let a handful for disgruntled people mob up on me and rob me and my crew, good thing we had security and a back up plan. I feel bad for those who lost out, but I didn’t try to rob anyone,” defended the event’s manager, Tom French, remorsefully.


     At the tail end of the event almost all the contestants in the Detroit Cannabis Cup lined up as the MMM Report and Richard Clement handed out the trophies for best indica, sativa, hybrid, medible and concentrate. Leaf Doctor proudly held up his four trophies. He placed in four separate categories, announcing he was proud to be the most award winning cannabis grower in the world and winning four more in his home town. The boys from IDK Farms made sure to point out that none of his wins were for first place, like their single large first place sativa trophy. After some braggadocios words, they embraced as true brothers and reminisced about the exchange of strains they have done over the years. Its that spirit of competition as friends and the sharing of knowledge and stock that was a silver lining to the event.

     Tommy Chong was right. Marijuana users and advocates don’t get out of control and no one got hurt, as they tend to do when alcohol is involved. The drama mostly became just that. The shear entertainment of it all was worth it, but some of the negativity lingers on social medial as folks vow to seek revenge. Speculation regarding one of the currently licensed dispensaries in Detroit having tipped of the police ,and where the missing product from the event went is still undetermined. If the event returns next year, hopefully a better medicating area will be properly vetted, but with the corrupt City of Detroit, smash and grabs, and back stabbing business owners dropping dimes on their competition, the 8th THC Expo will inevitably be just as entertaining.

x

Thinking Outside the Box - by Rebecca Veenstra

 
 
India recently broke a world record that truly surprised me. Indian officials have reported that volunteers planted a whopping 49.3 million tree saplings blowing past the previous record for most trees planted in a single day --That record, a mere 847,275 trees, was set by Pakistan in 2013.  A reported 800,000 volunteers from Uttar Pradesh worked for 24 hours planting 80 different species of trees along roads, railways, and on public land. The saplings were raised at local nurseries. (1)

     Pakistan plans on increasing the number of planted trees to 1 billion by the end of 2018. The trees are being planted along the Hindu Kush mountain range in the northwestern region of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The initiative, dubbed the “Billion Tree Tsunami” has also provided 500,000 jobs to impoverished locals. (2)

      I was a little bit shocked when I read that countries that I had always considered poor and underdeveloped were taking the lead in global revitalization in such an amazing way. I can’t help but wonder what Americans could accomplish considering we have much more vast resources at our disposal than many countries around the world.

Since the United States has suffered from massive unprecedented forest fires over the past few years I think a grand opportunity exists to establish a program for reforestation that could potentially put many of our nation back to work planting and managing forests.

      If we persevered to replant our forests future generations would reap the benefits of clean air and natural ecosystems that are currently declining. We could invest in our infrastructure in a revolutionary way by expanding our fisheries, putting American’s to work in agriculture, growing our own foods and raising our own meats, fuels and textiles.

People talk about the economy and jobs in such old terms these days. I hear a lot of banter about jobs, jobs, jobs… but it’s all centered around industry, refining, mining, oil production, harvesting—not replanting forests, automating and industrializing farming, reducing genetic diversity and modifying the environment to compensate for the negative effects of our industries.

     I think we all want clean air, blue skies, fresh water. I don’t think anyone out there is wanting smog, oil spills, toxic foods and waters. Maybe we aren’t all tree huggers but as a whole I think it’s fair to say basically all humans want a healthy environment that is safe with good opportunities to provide for themselves.

      There may be many things that divide us these days but I hold fast to the belief that the only argument anti- tree hugger people have is that they think the environment must be compromised in order for people to work and of course corporations enjoy higher profits when they cut corners at the expense of the environment. We all want clean air and water. “I could go for an oil spill, or some nuclear waste right now but I’ll settle for smog and poisoned water.” Said no one ever. Jobs and company profits do not have to go hand in hand with environmental destruction. What if we put on our thinking caps and thought ourselves out of that box?

     The new Michigan Legalization ballot proposal for 2017 takes that approach. Despite being lengthy and needing some important revisions to reign in government control the proposal could potentially clear the way for industrial hemp cultivation in Michigan. If this measure is successful, the potential for new jobs in Michigan could expand exponentially. Think of all the uses for hemp. Then, turn those ideas into jobs.

Hemp is well known for its fibers that can be used for textiles. If you look at the tags on your clothing I doubt you will find much of it was made in the US. Your tent, the rope in your toolbox, the particle board you just bought from the lumber yard…All of those things and much more can be created using hemp for less money and with less damage to the environment than cotton or wood fibers.

Hemp produces the strongest, most durable natural soft-fiber on earth. Until the 1820’s, up to 80% of all textiles and fabrics for clothes, canvas, linens and cordage were made principally from hemp. Hemp cloth is stronger, more durable, warmer and more absorbent than cotton. An acre of hemp will produce 2 to 3 times as much fiber as cotton, about 1,000 Ibs. of fiber per acre. Hemp requires no herbicide, fungicide or insecticide applications. Up to ½ of all agricultural pesticides used in North America are applied to the cotton crop. (3)

      Wouldn’t it be fabulous if Michigan built environmentally safe textile factories to make hemp fabrics? The market for these products would be global. Maybe Michigan could even land some military contracts to manufacture fabrics for uniforms and equipment. That sounds like good job potential to me. What if factories like Georgia Pacific re-opened to make hemp products for the construction industry? If clothing manufacturers built their factories In Michigan wouldn’t that be great?

      If construction companies bought hemp products to build homes instead of things made from wood pulp from our over-harvested forests wouldn’t that have far reaching positive impact on both the economy and the environment? Think of the trade benefits of the US exporting high quality hemp textiles and construction materials worldwide.

Hemp can be used for paper making as well. From 75 to 90% of all paper was made with hemp fiber until the late 1800’s. The hemp paper-making process requires no dioxin-producing chlorine bleach and uses 75% to 85% less Sulphur-based acid. Hemp paper is suitable for recycle use 7 to 8 times, compared with 3 times for wood pulp paper.

     By utilizing hemp pulp for paper, we could stop the deforestation of our country and produce stronger, more environmentally sound paper for less than 3/: of the price of wood pulp paper. The paper mills now in place would need almost no conversion in order to switch from wood to hemp pulp. (4)

     Which leads me back to the tree planting. Think of how using hemp could salvage our forests from being ground to pieces to make envelopes, paper for our copiers, toilet paper and construction materials.

     Industrial hemp can be used to produce fuel for machinery and vehicles. Hemp is the #1 producer of biomass per acre in the world. Hemp grown for the production of biomass fuels can provide all of our gas, oil and coal energy needs and end dependency on fossil fuels. (5)

Imagine the impact that could have on the frantic escalation of fracking. If we don’t need to destroy the earth to make fuel shouldn’t we strive to use alternatives available to us?

     I’d rather my family and friends worked at a hemp fuel production plant here in Michigan than being shipped to other states to work on projects for oil companies that devastate the environment.

     In addition to the uses for the actual plant-- hemp benefits the soil it is grown in. Just think of how that fact alone could result in less toxic fertilizer being spread across the Great Lakes State?  Farmers could rotate crops with industrial hemp resulting in the potential for healthier produce for human consumption as well as feed for cattle.

     I’m all for new jobs. I agree wholeheartedly that we need more opportunities to work in the United States. However, the proposals to re-open mines and build factories to create products made from fossil fuels are counterproductive because the main benefactors are big corporations while the workers and the environment suffer.

I believe American’s given the choice are united in their preference for jobs that don’t include smog, polluting the waterways, and devastating ecosystems.

     I encourage you to explore the research and voice your opinions to our lawmakers. Also, take the initiative to read the 2017 Michigan Legalize ballot proposal. It has been posted on line and the organizers have asked for our help in molding a proposal we can all agree on. Just read it and then reply with your comments and suggestions. If we all put our 2 cents in, hopefully the ballot proposal will be one we can all enjoy the benefits of once it is voted into law.

We all know money talks and bullshit walks, but if the powers that be are presented with alternatives that will allow them to profit they will not turn a blind eye.

     In order for America to prevail in the neworld economy it is imperative that we think ourselves out of the box of the industrial revolution and fossil fuel dependence.

     Ireland just took drastic measures to begin divesting in fossil fuels. If new legislation is passed, Ireland would become the first country in the world to introduce legislation banning fossil fuel investment. (6)

     The new Michigan Legalize initiative’s declaration of the legality of industrial hemp production would unite us with our allies in the pursuit of more environmentally sound economics. Canada, England, France and Spain have all legalized low THC varieties of hemp for an agricultural crop. England planted 1,500 acres of hemp as a first-year crop. Reports from England state that farmers are receiving in excess of $3,000 per acre for their hemp crop. (7)

     The new Michigan Legalize initiative, if re-written to assure that it is inclusive to every Michigander and not just big corporations-- and if the new draft removes entirely the   opportunity for governmental over reach and over regulation--It could have the potential to change the fabric of our state, not only by removing the criminality of cannabis use and cultivation-- but also by catalyzing ground breaking changes in the way we perceive job creation and our role in industry and environmental responsibility.


Resources/Links
http://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/pakistani-province-grows-750-million-trees/ Pakistan trees (1.2)
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/02/india-plants-trees-breaks-world-record/ India trees (1,2)
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/07/india-plants-50-million-trees-uttar-pradesh-reforestation/  India trees (1,2)
http://eap.mcgill.ca/CPH_3.htm hemp facts (3,4,5,7)
https://www.rt.com/news/375353-ireland-divests-fossil-fuel/ (Ireland) (6)



Grow Tip for April 2017 - by Ben Horner

Growing Outdoors

     In Michigan, an outdoor grow is only legal if done in a specific manner.. Collectively, judges have defined “locked and enclosed facility” through a number of case opinions. Paraphrasing from disparate jurisdictions, the judges collectively require 6 planes (roof, 4 walls and floor). Must be accessible to those without a key only if tools are required to enter (the enclosure must not be susceptible to spontaneous, casual break-in). It must not by itself be “bait”, making known that it is a grow.

     Many outdoor growers do soil testing which can give great insight as to what to feed your plants. Using peat based soil from the grow store to fill in is perfect. They don’t make the planting hole much bigger then a 15 gallon pot.  To keep those plants healthy,vibrant and at maximum production, using SkunksWerks is highly recommended. Because it is and ionic, all in one product the plants will only take up through their roots what the plant needs.  Advanced outdoor growers use 3 ounces of the SkunkWerks All-in-One mixed with five gallons of water one to two times per week, watering with straight water the rest of the time. This is the cheapest way to go to produce west coast quality buds.

     Plan on giving each plant plenty of space to grow. Green houses are great, but they after get crowded out. Chain link fence is a favorite, allowing greatest air flow and flexible construction.



An Interview With Mr. Hash Bash - by Ben Horner

   

     Adam Leslie Brook (AKA Mr. Hash Bash) was born in March, 28th, 1968. Adam’s first attendance of Hash Bash was in 1987 at the age of 19, and can be seen in the July 1988 Issue of High Times. “Its a crowd shot from the roof and you can see me in my tan cowboy hat and black leather jacket that had a grateful dead painting on the back,” reminisces Mr. Hash Bash. He gave us an exclusive in is own words.

Who was the first to call you Mr. Hash Bash?

     “I have no idea, but I resisted it for a while before embracing it. Just like being called a legend.... John Sinclair is a legend...but I have done some legendary stuff...so I begrudgingly accept it.”

     Brook became emcee of the Ann Arbor Hash bash in 1993 and continued the tradition until 2011. He was instrumental in the formation of the MMM Report and introduced us to John Sinclair. While in prison, Adam wrote a column in this magazine. 

     “2011 wasn’t anything spectacular other than it was my last Hash Bash in control.“ 

How did it feel passing the baton when you went to prison?

“The event has a much larger persona than it is in actuality. When I heard they flew a guy in (1st class), who took in $36 million I knew the event I loved and protected was now being pimped out.... “ 

How do you feel now being back? 

“I spent decades getting the who’s who of the cannabis world to come to Hash Bash on their own dime and these kids pay pay pay...”

What are you looking forward to most this year?

“I wait every year to be invited to speak. It’s a great feeling when that call comes, not as good as when I light that first joint up on the diag, but close.”

What is your favorite memory when you hosted the event?

     “I look forward to seeing the crowd build and getting the people to fire one up.”

What are some of your favorite memories?

     “My two favorite memories are the year I sat the crowd down to stop the arrest of smokers and the year I wrestled the flag away from a guy that was trying to burn it.... oh and the year a guy grabbed the microphone from Ed Rosenthal...”

Why did the guy grab the microphone from Ed Rosenthal?

“Crazy anti pot guy.”  Instigator? “Yes...just some guy wanting to get his ass beat.”

Would you describe Hash Bash as a protest?  

     “That’s all it ever was or should be...the ultimate fuck you to the man...pass any law you want...we’re still gonna get high.”

Is it still a protest, or is it a cannabis industry takeover?

     “There is no “industry” behind it or they would figure out how to make money off of it as that’s what industry does.... no it’s been taken over by the out-of-towners who have their egos and local businesses to promote.”

Is that an ok thing?

     “It is what it is.... not something I would do, but I’m old fashioned.” 

What does Mr. Hash Bash have planned for the future? And how can people get a hold of you?

     “Events, a few weed events over the summer... got invited to do an Expo in Detroit (sans cop raid), and of course the planning for Hash Bash Cup 2018 has already began.... I can be reached at (313) 999-0329”                       

IG - @adamlbrook    

FB – adamlbrook


Free the Weed 72 - by John Sinclair

Highest greetings from downtown Detroit, where I’ve been ensconced in a splendid inner-city apartment by my old friend Joel Landy, who used to run the printing press at the Detroit Artists Workshop some 50 years ago. Now he’s arranged for a place for me in my old neighborhood while I’m in Detroit, and I’ll be broadcasting from here on my internet radio station, RadioFreeAmsterdam.com for the next several weeks. 

     Special thanks to another old friend, the prominent boogie woogie pianist, Chuck Berry keyboard man, producer and attorney Bob Baldori of Okemos, who hooked me up with Joel again after an incredible length of time. I first met Bob when his band called The Woolies played the Grande Ballroom in its second or third week of operation in October of 1966; we came together again in Lansing in the early 1980s and have been close friends for the past 35 years or so.

     I’m going to be playing with Baldori at the Hash Bash in Ann Arbor on April Fools Day, and I particularly want to welcome everybody to this 46th edition of our annual celebration and public plea to FREE THE WEED that takes place on the first Saturday of April on the UM Diag and along Monroe Street. 

    
    Weed smokers in Ann Arbor held the first Hash Bash on April 1, 1972 to thumb our collective nose at the State of Michigan’s new “controlled substances” law, passed in December 1971 and put into effect on April Fools Day 1972. My own challenge to the constitutionality of the state’s drug laws, which classified marijuana as a “narcotic” and provided sentences of 10 years for possession and 20-to-life for sales or distribution, was successful in the Michigan Supreme Court on March 9, 1972 and for three glorious weeks there was no marijuana law in the State of Michigan whatsoever.

     You can imagine the celebrations that took place during that 3-week period, with music, dancing, and open smoking of the sacrament, but the ugly hand of the law was about to descend again at the beginning of April and we wanted to demonstrate that we weren’t going back to being controlled by the drug laws. So we got a bunch of people together on the Diag on a sunny afternoon and smoked a lot of joints.

     The next spring we elected two members of the Human Rights Party to the Ann Arbor City Council and passed the local ordinance limiting punishment for marijuana offenses to a $5.00 fine, issued in the form of a ticket with no arrest. This ordinance was also adopted in Ypsilanti and East Lansing and opened the door for the eventual city by city legalization of marijuana in the state of Michigan that’s taken place in the past several years.

     Now I’ve been around for a long time and I’ve made hundreds of friends all over the western world since I was a teenage rhythm & blues fanatic in Flint in the second half of the 1950s. Now I’m based in Amsterdam half the year and I’ve made a lot of good friends since I enjoyed my first visit there as High Priest of the Cannabis Cup in 1998.

     As you know, during the past year I’ve been dedicated to establishing the John Sinclair Foundation to support my projects and serve as a repository for all my literary and musical copyrights and other intellectual properties in perpetuity. Our progress was guaranteed by the gift of a substantial sum of money raised by Bob Whitall and Dennis Hayes at my 75th birthday party in Ann Arbor last October and gifted to Stichting John Sinclair, my non-profit foundation based in Amsterdam.

     To help me establish my foundation properly I’ve assembled a close group of friends and caretakers in Amsterdam led by Sidney Kuijer, proprietor of Ceres Seeds and the Hempshopper stores, who’s helped me with my projects for the past 10 years; Hank Botwinik, a professional mime, actor, internet genius and my original partner at Radio Free Amsterdam at its founding in 2004; Steve “The Fly” Pratt, my drummer, producer, frequent roommate, blogmaster and now Director of the John Sinclair Foundation; and two new friends: Tariq Khan, a Dutch rapper, record and video producer, and community activist; and Christian Greer, a professor at the University of Amsterdam (UvA) and scholar of psychedelic culture.We’ve also formed an Advisory Board of more than 50 friends and colleagues who have pledged to assist us in our efforts. 

     We engaged our friend Kai van Benthem to design the new website for the John Sinclair Foundation and upgrade our internet radio service at Radio Free Amsterdam, and the new site is just about to launch with everything you ever wanted to know about me available on the one site. This has been a dream of mine ever since there’s been an internet, and now I can have all my records, books, and achievements right next to my seed company, this column, Radio Free Amsterdam, my archives, and a bunch of historical information.

     Here in Detroit I’m still celebrating the availability of my book It’s All Good: A John Sinclair Reader from Horner Books and the release of my new record Mobile Homeland, produced by Tino Gross in a CD version on Funky D Records and as my first 12” vinyl album issued by Jett Plastic Records, headed by the 17-year-old record mogul named Jared Cowal whom I’ve known since he was five years old. Now he’s putting out my new record—on vinyl!

     I’ll be doing a series of appearances, readings and performances in support of my book and record throughout April, starting with performances at the Clarion Inn in Ann Arbor after the Hash Bash as part of the Hash Bash Cannabis Cup and at the Blind Pig later that night with the Macpodz. On April 2 I’ll be doing a reading from It’s All Good at the Crazy Wisdom Bookstore, 114 S. Main St. in Ann Arbor at 4:20 in the afternoon.

     The next weekend, on both April 7 and 8, I’ll be part of the bill at the Funky D Records Revue at Callahan’s Music Hall north of the city along with Tino G & The Howling Diablos, Robert Bradley, Rebecca Saad and the Funky D Horns, with Linda Lexy of Radio Free Amsterdam and Doug Podell serving as emcees. The next day, at 4:20 pm on April 9, I’ll do a reading from It’s All Good at the Cannabis Counsel headquarters at 2930 E. Jefferson in Detroit.

     Other things are bound to come up, but for sure I’ll be present on 420 (April 20) at the Clio Cultivation Club with my man Buddy at 4:20 in the afternoon, and later that night I’ll hopefully be celebrating the grand opening of my Coffeeshop John Sinclair in Dr. Bob’s Psychedelic Healing Shack on Woodard Avenue near 7 Mile Road. Of course you’re all invited to participate in any or all of these events.

     That’s the end of my space for this month, and I’ll promise to return to my usual topics in next month’s installment, but I thought I’d begin my seventh year in this space with these personal thoughts and reminiscences in honor of the Hash Bash. Thanks for your indulgence, and Free The Weed!

                                 
—Detroit
March 23, 2017

© 2017 The John Sinclair Foundation. All Rights Reserved.

V.G.I.P. Update for April 2017 - by Ben Horner

 Legalization Language 2018

     The Marijuana Policy Program has released the second draft. After polling and analysis, many of the most substantial reforms remain intact. Leaders of MI Legalize are split on supporting the language. Former board member of MI Legalize Chuck Ream gave us his thoughts:

Chuck Ream’s Analysis of the New Language:

1) The draft guarantees all rights currently protected by the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act, and does not alter that act.

2) This text is extraordinarily strong in terms of “expungement”, or the “setting aside”, of former convictions for marijuana offenses.

     If you petition the court to get your former cannabis convictions “set aside”, the court has to “set aside” your former cannabis convictions unless “you present an unreasonable risk to Public Safety” at this time. That is very strong wording.

3) Micro business. This is a great new concept that will improve the type of cannabis products that are available to consumers, and will allow more people to participate in creating products. However, “micro businesses” can sell their products to any individual “over 21 years of age or to a marijuana safety compliance facility, but not to other marijuana establishments”.

     Wait a minute, isn’t this backwards? The micro business should be able to sell to other marijuana establishments but not to just anybody over 21. That would make them a retail store. You can’t put that in neighborhoods. There would be constant parking and foot traffic. How in the world would you zone that? This needs to be thought through.

4) A felony pertaining only to marijuana does not prevent you from getting a license, your felony does not even need to be 10 years old.

5) Petition form: why choose MCL 168.482 rather than MCL 117.25?

6) Two year protection/preference for current residents?
Why?

     It looks like someone is just trying to get a business advantage, and we do live in the “United States”.
     The best cannabis service for patients/customers would come from NOT limiting investors – and most of the actual jobs would go to Michigan people.

7) OhMyGod, what!? “Secure transporters” somehow got into OUR draft!
   
     (This is our draft, not the draft of the fascists who want to get their cut of the money and don’t give a damn about more bureaucracy, increased cost to consumers - or the continuance of the black market and mass incarceration).

     The draft says that a worker at a licensed facility can only transport 15 ounces at one time, but where can they transport it to? A grower or processor could not even carry 15 ounces to another licensee!

     A grower cannot sell until the excise tax is collected by a “marijuana secured transporter”. Disgusting stuff. (This is not even what Robin has been saying ...the tax is supposed to be collected at retail.)

     There are other ways to see that “seed to sale” inventory is kept track of and taxes are properly paid!

PLEASE NOTE: A micro business does not have to use a “secure transporter”. They may “remit tax directly to the department of the treasury”. (How is this monitored – I don’t know).

SO, does this not show that the “secure transporters” are purely an absurd layer of superfluous bureaucracy? Why can’t the other licensees also “remit tax directly to the department of the treasury”? All goals can be fully accomplished with no “secured transporter”.

8) Here is the one Schuette will use to kill us:
(Section 16c).
I can see the headline now, “New pot legalization law encourages teens to grow and sell pot”.
If a teenager sets up a robust business growing and selling marijuana the most they can ever be fined is $100.

Police may not bother with someone for a fine that is less than a traffic ticket. For the kid $100 would be a tiny cost for having a fine business – they would laugh at the cop, and hand over the money with a smile - and keep their businesses flourishing.

     This is pure red meat for Schuette...you can imagine the shady looking kids in the ads that will be run. We can’t allow this to happen. We need to win.

     The fine for kids who set up pot businesses should be enough to discourage the behavior.
It must be at least $1000 for the first offense. $2000 second offense, $3000 third offense, and you take a class or something. (This is a fraction of the retainer that you otherwise might pay your attorney.)

We CANNOT allow ourselves to be defeated because we are demanding to protect marijuana growing and selling by children!

9) This law does give the state of Michigan a lot of power to set up regulations - we will have to keep a very close eye on them, and be sure that regulations are updated periodically.

I am super proud of the drafting committee and everyone who gave suggestions! This is one of the best, maybe the very best, state wide marijuana legalization initiative that has ever been written - but it does need a bit of change, and I have just put my thoughts out there without asking everyone’s permission!

MPP is still taking input. Final draft language is scheduled for some time April with hopes to begin circulation in May. Michigan Coalition to Regulate Marijuana is the name of the new ballot committee.

World News for April 2017 - by Rachel Bunting

Police Find a Ton of PotSerbia: Six people have been arrested on charges of trafficking marijuana throughout Europe. Serbian police found over a ton (2000lbs) of cannabis in special compartments hidden in multiple fuel trucks. Interior Minister Nebojsa Stefanovic stated the seizure was the largest in a single haul commending law enforcement for their efforts. The confiscated material is estimated to be worth 4 million euros ($4.3 million US). The marijuana was packaged in Kosovo and was being transported to Western Europe. The Balkans, where the trucks were found, has been a key route for smugglers since the 1990s.


What are the Laws Around the World?EARTH: We know that the marijuana laws in the United States are constantly changing and progressing, but what about other countries? There are many places around the world that have been making progress in the last few years. These progressive countries include: Australia, which became the first continent to legalize medical marijuana, Mexico, who is slowly taking steps toward legalizing medical marijuana and decriminalizing small amounts of recreational marijuana, and Uruguay, which is pricing recreational marijuana at $1 a gram to combat organized crime and match black market prices. Israel has had legal medical marijuana since 1992 and has since become the global leader in marijuana research, but recently they have begun taking steps to legalize or decriminalize recreational use. The Netherlands have always been known for their lax views on marijuana use, with Amsterdam being the cannabis tourist mecca, but marijuana manufacturing and distributing has never been legal in the country. Lawmakers have recently proposed legalizing cultivation of the drug, something that was never allowed previously. Though many parts of the world are moving forward with their marijuana laws, there are others that have not changed their stance or have increasingly harsh punishments for pot related offenses. Marijuana users in Japan, United Arab Emirates, and Nigeria face 5-12 years of prison time for possession and a possible life sentence for trafficking. In Malaysia and Saudi Arabia possession of marijuana could be a death sentence, especially if there is a suspicion that selling has occurred. Marijuana has long been scrutinized and stigmatized around the world, but finally views are slowly, but surely, changing for the better.

Insomnia InhalerIsrael: CannRx, a U.S. company that develops medial applications for marijuana, is teaming up with iCAN: Israel Cannabis to create the first marijuana inhaler to help users sleep. Many insomnia sufferers find that taking a puff of marijuana before bed helps to get to sleep and sleep through the night. CannRx and iCAN are working to create i.can.sleep, an inhaler that will deliver a stable and controlled dose of cannabis that will last throughout the night. William Levine of CannRx told Forward, “You take a puff of two depending on the dosage and in ten minutes you will be drowsy enough to sleep.” Israel will be giving final approval of medical marijuana exports later in the year.

Evidence Missing: Blame the RatsIndia: Police use a large warehouse at the Nagpur railway station to store confiscated marijuana and bootleg liquor. The illegal substances cannot be destroyed without a court order so the evidence has been piling up. Recently 55.11lbs of marijuana has gone missing from the warehouse. Abhay Panhekar, a senior inspector, claims rats are to blame for the missing cannabis. Panhekar told the Asian Age, “Rats are a huge menace here, they keep nibbling at plastic wrappers containing marijuana and alcohol bottles.” Though the rats could be to blame for the missing marijuana, there also seemed to be 25 plastic bottles containing alcohol that disappeared. The incident is being investigated, and officials say they cannot confirm that theft took place.

Cannabis Cures SoilItaly: Farmers in the Taranto region of Italy were once known for the meat and cheeses they were able to produce from their land. However, in 2008 the government slaughtered every herd in the area after detecting dioxin in the animals. The toxic chemical was coming from Europe’s largest steel plant, located near the affected areas. Farmers are still unable to have animals on the land due to contamination levels. One grower in the area, Vincenzo Fornaro, is aiming to fix the problems with his soil using cannabis. There is little to no THC in the hemp being grown on his farm, but the plant will pull the pollution from the soil with its fast growing roots. The process is known as phytoremediation, and involves the plant storing or transforming the dangerous substance into a nontoxic chemical.  This method was also used after the meltdown at Chernobyl to remove radioactive substances from the area. Fornaro, whose family has raised sheep on his land for generations, hopes that he will be able to bring life back to his home while helping others in the same situation.



Drug Dealer Nabbed at Train StationLuxembourg: After a long, two month investigation 4 people were arrested over a week long period at the end of March. Officers found over 60 cocaine pellets, €5,600 cash, and 4kg (8.82lbs) of marijuana. The investigation came as the result of the train station becoming a major drug trafficking center for the country. The investigation is ongoing, but the arrested suspects will face charges of possession as well as dealing.



Yummy GummiesSpain: The Civil Guard of Torrevieja arrested 27 people in connection with a large grow operation in the city. The suspected cultivators are being charged with crimes against the public health, illicit possession of weapons and belonging to a criminal organization. Officers confiscated 1,122 marijuana plants, 14 kilos (30 pounds) of marijuana, 1.5 kilos (3.3 pounds) hashish, and more than a quarter liter of cannabis oil. Owners of the operation were claiming to be cultivating industrial hemp, but were instead extracting cannabis oil. The company was creating vape pen oil as well as cannabis-laced gummy bears. The investigation is ongoing.






National News for April 2017 - by Rachel Bunting

Research WeedMississippi: In the late 1960s the government mandated that all research on marijuana must be done using the government cannabis supply grown exclusively at the University of Mississippi. The giant manufacturing operation is overseen by the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Recently the DEA has allowed other suppliers to submit samples for research purposes but none have received approval for use. The problem using this government grown marijuana, supplied by one facility, comes from the lack of potency in their crop. The maximum THC content in the Mississippi facility is 13 percent, while the average commercial weed in Colorado is around 19 percent.
    
     For researchers to preform tests that apply to real world situations they need real world material to work with. According to the Columbus Dispatch, the government given marijuana does not even resemble retail products. Sue Sisley, a researcher beginning a clinical trial to test the efficacy of medical marijuana for veterans suffering from PTSD, told PBS NewsHour, “It doesn’t resemble cannabis. It doesn’t smell like cannabis.” The marijuana she was given is stringy and light in color with many stems and leaves still attached. Rick Doblin, founding director of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, claims that the marijuana his team received contained levels of mold and yeast that were higher than allowed in many of the legalized states.

     However, as the strains of mold and yeast were not harmful to humans they had to proceed with their trials. The National Institute on Drug Abuse stated, “There has been some emerging interest from the research community for a wider variety of marijuana and marijuana products. ... NIDA does plan on growing some additional marijuana this year and harvest some high THC material that will likely be above 13 percent THC.”


Mailing Marijuana Iowa: A 25-year old Davenport man is facing charges of distributing marijuana after postal inspectors discovered 10 pounds of marijuana in a package with his name. Charles Simpson was expecting the package, mailed to him by his brother, which he intended to sell to multiple customers. According to the Davenport Police Department, Simpson would receive $100 and free marijuana for every pound he was able to sell. Simpson is being charged with possession with intent to deliver less than 50 kilograms of marijuana, conspiracy to possess and deliver less than 50 kilograms of marijuana, and failure to affix an Iowa drug tax stamp. Each charge carries a possible prison sentence of 5 years.

Recreational Weed Coming to Illinois?Illinois: Legislation to legalize marijuana use for adults 21 years and older have been introduced by Senator Heather Steans and Representative Kelly Cassidy. The proposals, Senate Bill 316 and House Bill 2353, would allow adults to possess up to 28 grams of marijuana while also creating facilities to sell cannabis products, which would be taxed similar to alcohol. The bills state the plant would be regulated like alcohol, products sold in the state would be tested, labeled, and regulated to protect consumers, and driving under the influence would still be illegal. The officials that presented the bills would like to see the taxes collected from marijuana sales help ‘plug holes in the state budget’. Steans stated, “Legalizing and taxing marijuana will not and should not solve all of our budget woes, but it should be a part of the conversation about resolving Illinois’ worsening budget problems. Every bit of new revenue will help to close the governor’s $5 billion budget gap.” Steans previously introduced legislation to decriminalize possession of marijuana, which became law in late 2016.

Recall AlertOregon: An immediate health and safety advisory was issued by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission last month when pesticide was found on retail plant material. The OLCC claims the marijuana, produced by Emerald Wave Estate, LLC, failed a pesticide test for permethrins. According to the Cannabis Tracking System (CTS) there were 82.5 grams sold to 31 customers before the failed results were noticed and the recall was issued. The affected flowers, labeled Blue Magoo, were sold between March 8th and March 10th, 2017. They have a label with the following OLCC License numbers: 050-1002850B56E, 060-100301304FE, or 050-1002850B56E.

     While there have been no reports of illness associated with the oversight, the short and long term health impacts of consuming unapproved pesticide residue is unknown. Consumers who are in possession of the recalled products are urged to discard them or return them to the original retailer.


Taking the First StepWisconsin: The city council in Monona voted to reduce the fine of an adult caught in the possession of marijuana. Mayor of the city, Bob Miller, has wanted to get his laws to get up to speed with those in neighboring communities, but stresses that this new ordinance does not legalize marijuana. Instead it states that an adult 21 years or older possessing marijuana in public or private spaces is no longer subject to a fine. Using the plant in a private residence is also allowed, but smoking in public is punishable with a $200 fine.

Power Plant FitnessCalifornia: A new gym coming to the San Francisco area will encourage patrons to use marijuana as part of their workout regimen. The gym will allow clients to bring their own marijuana to use, though the gym would prefer customers to order an edible while at the gym. Any edibles ordered will be delivered within 15 minutes. Patrons that choose to smoke cannabis will be required to use a designated space, while those choosing an edible will have more freedom.

     Currently marijuana use in California is legal for adults 21 years or older, but only licensed dispensaries are allowed to sell it and its use in public is still illegal. Owner of the gym, Jim McAlpine, stresses the point that while it will be the world’s first cannabis gym, it will not be a “stoner gym”. He states the main focus of Power Plant Fitness will be on fitness, using marijuana as a drug for pain, focus, and meditation. McAlpine realizes that some clients enjoy their work out more when under the influence of cannabis, but as this is not the case for everyone, patrons will be given a cannabis performance assessment when joining the gym. The cannabis performance assessment involves PPF staff monitoring clients during a sober workout and a workout after using marijuana.

     The director of medical services at Delphi Behavioral Health in Florida, Dr. Marc J. Romano, stated that using marijuana at the gym could cause people to feel more relaxed when working out but also pointed out that it could impair a person’s ability to lift weights or operate the equipment. McAlpine, who already hosts Power Plant boot camps, plans to open the gym by early fall.






Michigan News for April 2017 - by Rachel Bunting


Booby Traps Aren’t Screwing Around

Wyoming: A licensed caregiver from Wyoming, Michigan is facing criminal charges for growing too many plants after a police officer was injured checking on her property. Officers were checking the property after reports of a break-in. An officer scaled a fence, to check on a broken window, and impaled his feet on asheet of plywood with more than 100 screws sticking upward out of it. No charges are being filed against the person who set up the plywood, as prosecutors have been unable to find a criminal statute that applies to the situation. However, Stacy Hahn, 33, was found to be growing 87 plants in a facility and will be charged with delivery/manufacturing marijuana as well as maintaining a drug house. Law enforcement did find the men responsible for the break-in and have charged them with trespassing and breaking and entering. Hahn has been released on bail but will appear in front of a judge next week for a probable cause hearing.








Zoning Laws Make All the DifferencePort Huron: A man from Algonac was arrested following a traffic stop last month. Officers served a warrant at a business on Huron Boulevard and pulled the 29 year old man over as he was leaving the property. They found him in possession of a handgun, loaded magazines, cash, and a pound of marijuana. Once in custody officers obtained a warrant to search the suspect’s home and found 39 marijuana plants as well as three more firearms. Investigators say that charges against the man will be requested and the inquiry is ongoing. The bust was conducted in a drug free zone as it was located across the street from a local high school, which is why officers will attempt to bring more harsh charges against the suspect.

Large Facility Coming to Grand 
Traverse CountyKingsley: TheraCann International, a world-wide cannabis company, recently presented plans to Kingsley’s Downtown Development Authority (DDA) for a $20 million medical marijuana facility in Kingsley. The company is hoping to open a 100,000 square-foot growing operation in the industrial area of the village. The company would not be a dispensary, but instead would create a production plant to distribute products to licensed businesses. The proposal was universally approved by the DDA early last month. The village planning commission and village council will have the final say in the approval of the project. If approved, the new company will create at least 100 new jobs in the area.

St. Patrick's Day RaidsSaginaw County: A large raid carried out on nine houses in Saginaw County ended with 18 people being arrested on marijuana related charges. Five of those arrested were from Florida, one was from Colorado, while the other twelve were Saginaw area residents. The Bay Area Narcotics Enforcement Team executed warrants on all nine homes early St. Patrick’s Day morning. The raids were the result of a lengthy, ongoing investigation according to MSP Lt. David Kaiser. MLive states that according to the jail log all of those arrested are facing charges of dealing and/or manufacturing various amounts of marijuana.

Michigan LoopholesLansing: A loophole in the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act is being exploited by some marijuana physicians while also shining a light on the problems caused by patients going to “normal” physicians. An article from Michigan Information and Research Service written by Simon Schuster explores the loophole allowing marijuana doctors to certify patients with little to no information about the patient’s condition.

     Schuster finds the back alley certification shop of Dr. Vernon Proctor. There were 136,097 medical certifications granted in 2015, and Proctor’s signature is on more than 15% of them. This would mean that Proctor filled out more than 58 certifications a day if he worked 7 days a week, 365 days a year. According to Schuster, no patient is turned away from any of Proctor’s many offices; as long as they have cash in hand, patients don’t even need medical records. Proctor is able to do this by skirting the medical marijuana laws. The law requires that any physician recommending marijuana as a form of treatment must have a bona fide doctor-patient relationship, this means the doctor should have a history of the diagnosis, or conduct a physical exam, and require patients to come in for follow ups.
  
    Proctor claims that he is able to get the history of the patient, if he feels it is required, by contacting the primary care physician. Unfortunately for LARA, the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, there is no way to verify patients have been properly diagnosed or actually have a relationship with their certifying doctor. Being unable to audit or verify these relationships has allowed doctor’s, like Proctor, to continue conducting business without running into many problems. However, while the doctor is protected by loose fitting laws, patients could end up taking the heat if they are ever found to be in noncompliance with the law.

     If a patient is carrying more medication than allowed by state or growing more than the amount allotted the question of the physician-patient relationship will be brought up in court. At that point the patient and doctor would be required to prove the relationship does actually exist, if it does not the patient could face repercussions. Currently LARA is working on finding a way to do more “in terms of auditing those [medical] records and auditing them.” Schuster also points out that there is a larger issue than a physician certifying too many patients, and that is that “normal” doctors are unwilling to write any recommendations for their bona fide patients, causing them to go to a back alley doctor in the first place.


Transporting Across State LinesTaylor: A 23 year old Taylor resident was arrested in Summit County in Ohio last month. Kyle Simms was stopped by Ohio State Highway Patrol for speeding and lane violations when officers smelled marijuana coming from this vehicle. A search of the trunk turned up two quarts of marijuana Kool Aid along with two pounds of processed marijuana. Police estimate the marijuana to have a value of nearly $10,000. Simms is facing felony charges of trafficking and possession.


Transporting Across State Lines 2Benzonia: Ohio State Highway Patrol searched a vehicle last month and found it containing 25 pounds of high grade marijuana. After an investigation, officers found that the marijuana was purchased in Benzonia. Working with the Ohio State Police, the Traverse Narcotics Team executed warrants in Benzie County and recovered 122 marijuana plants. Two people were arrested in connection with the case. The 54 year old man arrested is facing charges of deliver/manufacture of marijuana, using a computer to commit a crime, maintaining a drug house, and felony fire arm. The woman arrested at the same residence could be charged with conspiracy to deliver marijuana, using a computer to commit a crime, and maintaining a drug house. The investigation is ongoing.

Friday, March 24, 2017

The MPP in Michigan: Who Is Being Paid For Doing What? - by Tim Beck



     For all intents and purposes, there is going to be a ballot initiative to legalize marijuana in Michigan in 2018. It will be coordinated by the famous Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) which was primarily responsible for legalization victories in Colorado, Alaska, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada and Oregon.

    If it were not for MPP’s money and assistance, medical marijuana would not have become legal in Michigan in 2008.

   Some MMM Report readers might be interested in who is responsible for the 2018 ground game as of this writing.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Grow Tip: The Mystery of Skunkwerks - by Ben Horner

    
     Most growers buy nutrients to feed their plants. When you go enter a grow store the choices are endless. Dozens of companies have product “lines,” or proprietary regiments that work exclusively together. This typically means you cannot buy just one bottle of nutrients, because you need the full line of that brand to get everything your plant needs. SkunkWerksRx proves that you don’t need 3-12 different products to grow killer meds.

     SkunkWerksRx tends to mystify advanced growers. As an all-in-one, or still simple two-part program the concept of having nitrogen throughout the crops entire grow cycle is mind boggling for some.  How could SkunkwerksRx possibly get good results with such a regiment? To demystify the machinations of SkunkwerksRx, we spoke with master grower Danny Fuller, from Head in the Cloud Genetics.

     “Some People just don’t get it because they have been mixing chemicals like a mad scientist for years.  A healthy plant knows what it needs and the roots will discern what nutrients it wants. Personally, I stop feeding my plants nutrients four weeks prior to harvesting regardless.  SkunkWerksRx works great all by it self up until that point. When the plant gets to four weeks from harvest, I flush using RO water and Hydrozyme, This helps to strip the roots of any build up. Then after flushing I use Microb life (Photosynthesis Plus) Helps the plant turn the light into energy, and Botanicare (Silica Blast) to strengthen the cells an structure of the plant Botanicare (Cal-Mag) to help with vigorous growth of the plant, for the last few weeks of flower.”

     So that’s the mystery man. If you’re a Master Grower like Danny, maybe you would still prefer to add other products to really push it, but this is still way cheaper and easier then a three-part regiment. Or maybe you’re looking for something less expensive but something that will still work with known additives that you believe benefit your meds? SkunkWerksRx works well with sweeteners, bud hardeners and terpene enhancers.  SkunkWerksRx is made in Michigan and is not yet available through the big hydro distributors so not every grow store has it. If you want to talk to them the just call the toll-free number and you can call them direct.


Cannibals of Freedom: You're Always Stealing Me Lucky Charms! - By Daniel L. Price, Esq.

      Happy St. Patrick’s Day!!!  Now that spring is almost here and March moves into view, many will celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.  Some do so simply by wearing green, drinking green beer, and attending or participating in parades and celebrations of merriment in ode to St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland.  Irish pubs are busiest on March 17th, many having a day/hour clock counting down to the day of celebration.

     But there is more.  Question, has a Leprechaun visited you lately?!?!  Leprechauns are more than St. Patrick’s Day in Irish folklore.  Indeed, Leprechauns are tricksters that cannot be trusted, and as legend says they hoard gold.  However, the Leprechaun is intended as a morality tale figure to warn against greed and the folly of trying to get rich quick.

     For instance, those who take payment of money by force in order to force you to ask permission to grow a plant in your home, ingest medicine, work a trade, build a home, drive the roads, or in many cases simply collect rain water.  These are the modern day Leprechauns that are real and not a tale.  The tricksters who you cannot trust are those who force you to pay their way in life and force you to beg them for their permission for you to live. 

     Last month I wrote a poem.  But, since it is now the month for St. Patrick’s Day and the limerick is associated with Ireland, I’ll write a limerick to honor the occasion as follows:

I once knew a man with limited sight.

Refusing to see wrong from right.

Living off others who would vote for him to take.

Both refusing to acknowledge the reality of their fate.

I’ll name that which they refuse to see,
they are nothing more than bloody parasites.


     In essence, it is limited sight which those who believe it “right” to force others to provide for them, and then obtain the sanction of their victims by encouraging their victims to live in the same way.  Unfortunately, both seal their own fate by doing this.  Their fate being the suffering from Parasitic Anthropophagy Syndrome (“PASY”).  Living as parasites and devouring their own basic freedoms in the process. 

     The legends of the Leprechaun stand as an example of real life tricksters who cannot be trusted.  The Leprechaun in his greed tricks others out of their gold and lives his life guarding that gold, rather than seeking the resulting self-esteem and happiness of earning that gold by mutual trade without force.  He does this at the price of never finding that happiness.  The modern day parasites share this fate.  Taking from others can never lead to true happiness, or real self-esteem.  It merely results in a denial of the reality of their life, and the resulting hatred of those who do earn their own way by mutual trade without the use of force.

     In the context of the fight for the freedom, whether it be to use marijuana, or any other freedom, it is the same parasites taking from you, and then forcing you to stand prostrated before them begging for limited permission to live your life.  The questions for each of us then become as follows:  Will you as a citizen fall into the trap they set to make you become a parasite in that they may continue to live as a parasite, so that they may force you to beg their permission to exist as a servant to their desires? 

     Have you seen your Leprechaun?  Are you willing to allow those parasites to continue to take your trinkets?  Put another way, do you wish to live as a human being, earning your own life and happiness, or as a parasite, begging to have someone take from others for your benefit, while you stand on your knees in hatred and pain begging for the leftover crumbs of that which they took in your name.  The answer to these questions will determine one of two courses for you.  You will either vote for the complete decriminalization of the use of marijuana for those over the age of 21.  Or, you will vote for some legislative scheme that allows parasitism to continue, becoming a parasite by default, continuing to beg for crumbs and permission to exist as their servant.  Essentially, is it happiness, or hatred and pain that you seek?

     Will we as a people continue to seek to take the lucky charms of others?  It need not be so.  So long as we can vote, we can vote to end the theft of ‘me lucky charms’.  I know I’ll be thinking of these things while I celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this year.  And yes, I’ll probably be drinking some green beer too.

Stay strong, stay worthy, proudly wear your green this St. Patty’s Day.  Till next month, keep rolling on.

Disclaimer:  This is an informational article only.  It is not to provide individual legal advice.  If you need legal services, feel free to contact me, or any attorney of your choosing.
 

The Detroit Cannabis Cup - by Ericca Muhammad

     The 7th Annual THC Expo will be taking place on March 17th, 18th, and 19th at the Roostertail in Detroit. The event will be hosted by American Expo Pros. There will be hundreds of vendors, thousands of consumers and a medicating site to which the Magic Vapor Bus will provide transporation to all who want to medicate during the event. You do not need a medical card to attend and there will be a doctor on site for those who are interested in getting their Medical Marijuana card.

     There is also a long roster of guests who will be in attendance. Kirk Reid (a.k.a. Captain Kirk) of Captain Kirk’s Edibles will be there. 4-Time Stanley Cup champion Darren McCarty will also be at the event. World reknowned Reggae DJ Eddie Riott will be in the house as well. John Sinclair, American Poet, Writer, and Activist will also be gracing everyone with his presence.

     Other guests include: Author, Professor and Activist Marvin Surowicz, Michigan’s #1 Cannabis Attorney Matt Abel, Richard Clement, Warrior for technology and Cannabis reform in America. Tommy Chong, actor, NORML Board Member and Activist will also be there. Our Editor-In-Chief, Cannabis Expert and Business Owner Ben Horner will be in attendance as well hosting both the Detroit Cannabis Cup and the Michigan and Cannabis Business Seminar on Sunday March 19th.

     The Detroit Cannabis Cup will allow those who participate to showcase their best strains. Trophies will be awarded to the best: Indica, Sativa, Hybrid, Medible and Concentrate. Winners receive trophies and winning strains will also be featured in the MMM Report Magazine.

     Award ceremony will be on Sunday, March 19th at the end of the THC Expo, so make sure you stay until the end if you want to see whose got the best of the best! Hope to see you all there!

All entries can request test results by emailing: mmmreport@gmail.com

All entries will be tested by ACT Laboratories, LLC, and judged on cannabinoid percentage, medicinal potency, flavor, and appearance.

Winners receive trophies, and winning strains will be featured in the MMM Report Magazine.

Award ceremony will be on Sunday, March 19th, 2017 at the 7th Annual THC Expo in Detroit.




 

Free the Weed 72 - by John Sinclair

    Highest greetings from New Orleans, where I’m relaxing after spending the winter in Amsterdam and now enjoying the Mardi Gras season as always. I left Detroit for Holland right after the November election, so I’m being introduced as we speak to life in Trumpville, a place I never imagined for myself.

     A bit of good news followed me out of the Netherlands, where the lower house of Parliament has just voted in favor of regulated marijuana cultivation under government control. But “there is no guarantee the legislation will actually become law,” DutchNews.nl reports, “because it does not have majority backing in the upper house of parliament.”

     If the upper house of the Dutch Parliament, known as the First Chamber, refuses to support the bill, the issue could become a bargaining chip in discussions to form a new coalition after the Netherlands’ lower house election on March 15.

     The public prosecution department opposes the move, saying it conflicts with international treaties. Dutch police dismantled 5,856 marijuana plantations in 2015, or nearly 16 a day, but estimate that this is only 20 percent of the total.

     The 77-72 vote supports allowing cannabis cafe owners to buy their produce from licensed growers and remove the grey area between illegal cultivation and the licensed cannabis coffeeshops where small amounts of marijuana can be bought over the counter for personal use.

     Dutch coffeeshops have flourished since the 1970s and became a major tourist drawing card, particularly in Amsterdam where more than a quarter of the tourist trade admits to coming for the easy access to the weed. But a government scheme to shut down coffeeshops within 250 meters of a school has resulted in many closures, leaving only 175 coffeeshops in Amsterdam—half the number that existed in the 1990s.

     In the Parliament, Alexander Pechtold, leader of the D66 party that drew up the legislation, called the vote “a historic breakthrough.”

     Meanwhile, back in Trumpville, the incredible gains made by the marijuana legalization movement in the States are being threatened by the chief bully in charge, as White House press secretary Sean Spicer has said that he expects states to see “greater enforcement” of the federal law against marijuana use.

     “I do believe that you’ll see greater enforcement,” Spicer told reporter Jordan Fabian, while adding the exact policy is “a question for the Department of Justice.”

     The head (or maybe I should say the ass) of the Justice Department, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, has been a critic of recreational marijuana laws in the past, linking it to the abuse of opioid drugs in states across the U.S. But eight states and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana for recreational use, and 20 others have laws allowing medical marijuana.

     The intransigence of the federal government with respect to legalizing weed has been unrelenting for 80 years since marijuana was first criminalized in 1937. The main culprit, of course, is the U.S. Congress, which refuses to rewrite the drug laws to remove marijuana from its Schedule 1 status and thus make legalization possible.

      Until this is done by act of Congress the demagogues in national office will retain their power to make life miserable for the rest of us, even as voters in state after state defy their fake science and mount successful citizens’ initiatives against the states’ prohibition of the sacrament.

     Now, in California, where recreational use was legalized by citizen initiative last fall, Tiffany Wu reports that state lawmakers have introduced a new bill to increase protections for California cannabis businesses from federal persecution.

     California Assembly Bill 1578 would prohibit California state and local agencies from assisting federal agencies in enforcing federal law against marijuana businesses for medical or recreational cannabis activities authorized under California law, including “using agency money, facilities, property, equipment, or personnel to assist a federal agency to investigate, detain, detect, report, or arrest a person for commercial or noncommercial marijuana or medical cannabis activity authorized by law in the State of California.

     “State agencies would also be prohibited from responding to a request made by a federal agency for personal information about an individual who is authorized to possess, cultivate, transport, manufacture, sell, or possess for sale marijuana or marijuana products or medical cannabis or medical cannabis products, if that request is made for the purpose of investigating or enforcing federal marijuana law.

     Further, state authorities would not be allowed to “transfer an individual to federal law enforcement authorities for purposes of marijuana enforcement or detain an individual at the request of federal law enforcement for conduct legal under state law.”

     State and local agencies in California, Ms. Wu concludes, “would only be allowed to take these actions if they receive a court order signed by a judge.”

     This is the kind of resistance on the state level that we need to see, and with the regressive Trump administration in place, it’s going to take a lot of fighting to maintain even the status quo with respect to laws that have already been passed by the citizenry.
And it’s even more important to maintain and advance our struggle to legalize weed here in Michigan next year when the chance to put the question of legalization on the ballot comes around once again.

     “What happened to the MI Legalize petition drive [in 2016] should bother anyone who believes in democracy,” former Fox Detroit 2 news anchor Anqunette “Q” Sarfoh recently claimed in a speech to the Women Grow-Southeast Michigan chapter in Ypsilanti covered by reporter Ken Wachsberger.

     “That we have a citizen’s initiative system in place and the rules were changed during an active petition drive is troubling,” Q continued. “I believe it to be a blatant abuse of power and a flagrant disregard of the people’s will and right to decide our own laws. We were robbed.
   
      “It is a travesty that the establishment has denied us the opportunity to grow marijuana in our closets and backyards,” she continues. “We can’t remain silent. When we do, that’s when they get away with so much. Tell the truth.”

     Ms. Sarfoh has suffered from multiple sclerosis for several years and was initially put on Copaxone, Baclofen, Adderall, and Zofran.

     “The first year I was a good patient,” Q attests. “ I took my drugs. I was never sicker in my life. I was constantly nauseated, had headaches and stomach pain.” Then her husband talked her into smoking a joint, which she had been avoiding because her job as an anchor at Fox News subjected her to drug testing.

     “I was stunned at how quickly my pain and nausea went away,” she claims. “I was also surprised that it gave me energy.” So her husband became her caregiver and she “started smoking every day. I would come home from work after six hours feeling sick. Two puffs and I’d be washing dishes, walking the dog.”

     In February 2016, her doctors warned her that she was having a possible relapse, Wachsberger reports, and prescribed a three-day course of intravenous steroids. A month later, with her condition not improved, they recommended that she stop working permanently.

     “On November 1, 2016, Sarfoh became not the anchor giving the news story but the subject of the story,” Wachsberger concludes, when she retired from her position at Fox and became an advocate for marijuana as a board member for MI Legalize.


Thanks, Q. Let’s FREE THE WEED once and for all!

—New Orleans

February 24, 2017

© 2017 The John Sinclair Foundation. All Rights Reserved.





Will Pinconning be the New Weed Capital of Michigan? - by Kathy Hess

     On January 10th, earlier this year, Pinconning Townships, Bay County, board members voted 5 yeas/0 nays on Ordinance No. 17-01, to authorize permits for commercial medical marijuana facilities within the township.

     An Ordinance to implement the provisions of the Michigan Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act, Public Act 281 of 2016, which authorizes the licensing and regulation of Commercial Medical Marihuana Facilities […] and to regulate the cultivation, distribution and use of Medical Marihuana permitted under the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act, Initiated Law I of 2008 in order to maintain the public health, safety and welfare of the residents and visitors to the Township. Does this mean that the Pinconning Township is going to be the weed capitol of Michigan?

     Not likely.  Pinconning is not the first Township or City to enact legislation allowing for the licensing of commercial medical marihuana facilities, although they are the most recently known.  Each city/township has the ability to dictate whether they will, or not, allow for commercial medical marihuana facilities, the number of facilities within city/town lines and the number of plants each facility is allowed to farm. 

     Pinconning is no different, although it’s Ordinance No. 17-01 would suggest that it plans on being able to provide to its local population, which is great, but it’s not looking to be the Marijuana Mecca of Michigan.

     Pinconning has limited their number of facilities to 25, but more importantly they have deemed that only Class A licenses will be allowed.  Class A license dictates that only a maximum of 500 plants will be allowed in each facility.  If Pinconning had dreams of capitalizing on a booming market, perhaps draw in the bigger sharks waiting to eat up the commercial medical marijuana industry, they might have chosen to allow for Class B, which can possess up to 1,000 plants, or Class C, farming up to 1,500.

     Municipalities are gradually acting towards the next era of medical marijuana in Michigan and preparing to go commercial. And while the state won’t be accepting applications for commercial licenses until December 15th 2017, cities, and townships like Pinconning, are opening their doors to entrepreneurs already prepared for the next period of medicinal cannabis in the mitten. 
If you’re wondering if you could be one of those tycoons ready to jump a head of the commercial pack be sure to have an understanding of Public Act 281 of 2016, MCL 333.27101.

     The Medical Marijuana Facilities Licensing Act orders municipalities to establish and permit ordinances concerning the establishment and process of medical marijuana facilities in their individual communities before the state will grant license to facilities there.  This does not mean that cities have to allow permits for commercial medical marijuana, it just means that local governments have to already have created ordinances that allow for commercial permits before one can apply for commercial license from the state. In this case, Pinconning is allowing annual permits for Class A commercial facilities only.

     All commercial medical marijuana facilities must be licensed by the state of Michigan.  All marijuana is to be tracked, all inventory, from seed to sale, with systems that allow for real time updates to the state.  All marijuana is to be tested for safety. 
There are five types of licenses which Act 281 outlines and each municipality can dictate how many of each, if any, they will allow:

Grower-- Which gets divided by class, Class A (up to 500), Class B (up to 1000), Class C (up to 1,500) —“A licensee that is a commercial entity located in this State that cultivates, dries, trims,  or cures and packages marihuana for sale to a processor or provisioning center.”  Pinconning is allowing up to 25 of Grower permits.

Processor—“A licensee that is a commercial entity located in this State that purchases marihuana from a grower  and that extracts resin from the marihuana or creates a marihuana infused product for sale and transfer in  packaged form to a provisioning center.”  Pinconning is allowing up to 25 of Processor permits.

Provisioning Center—“A licensee that is a commercial entity located in this State that purchases marihuana  from a grower or processor and sells, supplies, or provides marihuana to registered qualifying patients, directly  or through their registered primary caregivers. The term includes any commercial property where marihuana is  sold at retail to registered qualifying patients or registered primary caregivers.

     A noncommercial location used  by a primary caregiver to assist a qualifying patient connected to the caregiver through the marihuana  registration process of the Department of Licensing and Regulation in accordance with the Michigan Medical  Marihuana Act will not be a provisioning center for purposes of the Licensing Act.”  Pinconning is allowing for 10 Provisioning Center permits.

Secure Transporter—“A licensee that is a commercial entity located in this State that stores marihuana and  transports it between marihuana facilities for a fee.”  Pinconning is allowing up to 4 Transporter permits.

Safety Compliance Facility—“A licensee that is a commercial entity that receives marihuana from a marihuana  facility or registered primary caregiver, tests it for contaminants and for tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and other  cannabinoids, returns the test results, and may return the marihuana to the facility.” Pinconning is allowing for up to 2 Safety and Compliance Facility permits.