Obama's War on Weed

In a strange about-face, the president tries to hack medical marijuana off at the knees.

Except one group, says Salazar: "It's a mystery, I think, it really is, where the pressure is coming from. My sense is it's coming from law enforcement."

Certainly Obama's threats are real. He may be loath to jail landlords, bankers or even dispensary owners. Arresting non-violent, state-sanctioned businesspeople wouldn't be popular. But his quieter war of chopping merchants off at the knees through credit and leasing would ravage the trade.

Still, the president has thrown himself into an uphill fight. There is reason to believe medical marijuana will persist, despite his betrayal.

Marijuana really is medicine

Earlier this month, in a timely coincidence, the California Medical Association's board voted to encourage the feds to legalize marijuana.

Though spokeswoman Molly Weedn emphasizes that the decision by the doctors' group hinges on a call for more research, a report studied by the CMA board before its decision makes it clear that — at the least — marijuana shows promise as a medicine.

The CMA's Council on Clinical and Scientific Affairs "has also concluded that components of medical cannabis may be effective for the treatment of pain, nausea, anorexia, and other conditions."

The report goes on to say:

"Cannabinoids are presently thought to exhibit their greatest efficacy when implemented for the management of neuropathic pain, which is a form of severe and often chronic pain resulting from nerve injury, disease, or toxicity.

"The University of California Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research (CMCR) recently reported to the California legislature the results of a number of studies. Four studies involved the treatment of neuropathic pain; and all four demonstrated a significant improvement in pain after cannabis administration."

The doctors note that while using marijuana may contain risks, such as addiction, they argue that its prohibition may be more dangerous than the drug itself:

"Under the current prohibition of cannabis, public health is also affected by increased rates of crime surrounding cannabis cultivation, sale and use. The California Legislative Analyst's Office estimates that the incarceration and parole supervision of cannabis offenders costs the state tens of millions of dollars annually."

Nationally, prohibition burns through billions of dollars in lives lost to the violence inherent in the black market, the incarceration of thousands of productive, non-violent Americans, and the lack of access to a beneficial medicine.

Are lots of people using weed without suffering from a medical problem? Absolutely. But just because you've heard that half or more of patients take the drug for "severe and chronic pain" doesn't mean they're all faking it.

In June, the Institute of Medicine estimated that 116 million Americans suffer from significant, chronic pain.

As more research comes in showing that pot can be an effective treatment, and with America's elderly population exploding in the coming decades, the interest in its medicinal qualities seems only likely to rise.

The truth will prevail

Ignorance, false propaganda and rank political posturing tend to be the foundation of the anti-marijuana argument. (Throw in bureaucratic turf protection as well. The DEA, for example, would need fewer agents if pot was decriminalized nationwide.)

A new Gallup poll shows that a record 50 percent of Americans believe marijuana — and not just the medical kind – should be legalized. The poll follows a continuing trend over the past several years of increasing support for legalization.

Obama has chosen to swim against the tide. But there's reason to believe his fight is about politics, not public safety. If this were about safety, alcohol would be his primary target.

Politics cause both sides to fudge the truth. Yet prohibitionists and the government have been particularly egregious. The government is using taxpayer dollars to prop up its side, with the U.S. Justice Department's 64-page booklet, "Speaking Out About Drug Legalization," being a prime example.

The booklet, distributed in print and online, states that "smoked marijuana is not scientifically approved medicine." Forget that by labeling it a drug on par with heroin, the DEA is curtailing the proper study of marijuana, since it prevents even scientists from possessing it for research. The publicly-funded propaganda also flies in the face of the opinion of doctors, who see pot's potential as medicine.

It's a strategy that's trickled to states with functionaries unhappy about executing the voters' will. Last December in Arizona, Will Humble, the state's  Department of Health Services director, held a news conference about the state's new Medical Marijuana Act. He took a moment to remind reporters that more than 1,000 Arizonans died last year from accidental overdoses from prescription drugs.

But when asked how many of those died from marijuana, Humble refused to answer — to chuckles from the audience. He referred the question to his chief medical officer, Laura Nelson, who would only say she'd "have to do the research on that" before she could answer.

Then Nelson began stammering about the danger of marijuana due to "car accidents" — though she had done no research on that, either.

The CMA's new report, interestingly enough, sheds light on statements like Nelson's. It says that prohibitionists often make unsubstantiated claims about car crashes or other purported harms. Studies disagree on its risks to motorists, though there's no question that booze increases the chances of a crash, the report says. Moreover, simulated driving tests reveal that pot smokers overestimate their degree of impairment and "compensate effectively."

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19 comments
Stevetrn
Stevetrn

I tried to read the whole artical but I reconize bullshit when I read it.

Fabivillarre
Fabivillarre

It is unfortunate that the people who voted for this guy actually beleived in him. He is not God nor is he a leader, He is taking up residence as a president who has twist and turns in hos dealing with the American people. He needs to finish his term and get out of office or impeachment proceedings need to occur. He has already caused much damage, pain and suffering to the American people and the economy.

rbblum
rbblum

Almost as though Obama is wanting and willing to push for the fundamental transformation of the United States of America via a revolution (of his own making on one of several fronts).

4 Ron Paul
4 Ron Paul

The only person who makes sense is Ron Paul for president if u want cannabis leal 4 sure with no lies!

FUCKREPUBLICANS
FUCKREPUBLICANS

I Smoke Weed All Day Everyday Even In Jail We Be Blazin Up You Bitches!!! Fuck All Republicans!! Racist, Jesus Freak Ass Hypocrits!!! Fuck Obama Too If He Wanna Hate On Cannabis!! Bob Marley Should Rise Up Out The Grave And Slap The Shit Out This Dooky Dook!! Kooneechiwa Bitches!!!

Craigley
Craigley

War on Weed? It's just more of his lies to get elected.

Sadly, 99.0% of the HP Goobers voted for him.

MarlenaJohnson
MarlenaJohnson

Co-worker's aunt makes $79 hourly on the PC. She has been fired from work for 11 months but last month her paycheck was $6958 just working on the computer for a few hours. Read about it on this web site.... C a s h M a n y . c o m

MarlenaJohnson
MarlenaJohnson

Co-worker's aunt makes $79 hourly on the PC. She has been fired from work for 11 months but last month her paycheck was $6958 just working on the computer for a few hours. Read about it on this web site....http://alturl.com/a4ofg

Kirkmuse
Kirkmuse

Like millions of other voters, I voted for, campaigned for and donated to his campaighne for twobasic reasons:1. Candidate Obama said the war on drugs was an utter failure.2. Candidate Obama promised he would no go after medical marijuana users or their caregivers.

In 2012 I will do the same for his opponent.

Is Obama on the payroll of the Mexican drug cartels? Al capone had thousands of politicianson his payroll, including President Warren G. Harding, according Ken Burns' outstandingdocumentary: Prohibition.

rsteeb
rsteeb

If Haag, Obama, or anybody else thinks we are going to accept this tyranny, they must be smoking CRACK.

-Richard P Steeb, San Jose California

rip dvd to wmv
rip dvd to wmv

I can distinguish everything from your display name, you do get the right words on this!

Brent
Brent

Words of a true genius lol.

Nko
Nko

I hear ya

H_e_x
H_e_x

Are there any other candidates who would be any better in this respect?

Al
Al

The lesser of evils. Great.

H_e_x
H_e_x

So get off your lazy ass and do something. God damn, people bitch and complain, but god fucking forbid they actually do something about it. Yes, candidates from both parties share a lot in common, but there are some big differences. But no, it's easy to simply bitch and complain about "lesser evils."

 
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