The Weed Blog

Earlier
Imagine a giant inflatable golden cat with laser beams that shoot out of its eyes, projecting images and videos onto the world around it with the accompanying noise, "Pew pew!" No, this isn't a reprise of the SNL digital short, nor is it a terrifying drug-induced hallucination. No dear friends -- we bet you know where this is going -- it's art!Meet Laser Cat, the massive feline brainchild of public art creators Dave Glass and Kill Cooper, also known as Hungry Castle. Laser Cat is not your average kitty; for one thing, as previously mentioned, he's giant, inflatable and gold. But also, he loves eating and subsequently spewing out art.More...
Fri, Sep 19, 2014
Source: Huffington Post
Amazon planned to cut the price of its much ballyhooed smartphone at some point, but the retail giant moved faster than anticipated, an Amazon executive admitted Wednesday.The Fire Phone, released in late July, was initially priced at $199 with a two-year contract. When it was announced, critics wondered why Amazon would aim so high. The phone didn't seem better than similarly priced premium phones from Apple and Samsung. Why would those companies' rabidly loyal fans -- Apple and Samsung control over 70 percent of the U.S. smartphone market, according to comScore -- make the switch to a new phone and operating system?More...
Thu, Sep 18, 2014
Source: Huffington Post
Amazon's goal is to make reading a book on a Kindle better than reading a traditional book.But in the seven years the retailing giant has been making Kindles, they've fallen short in one huge and annoying way: Without a sneaky (and not recommended) workaround, sharing your collection of eBooks with other people was nearly impossible.More...
Thu, Sep 18, 2014
Source: Huffington Post
California women are outnumbered by men three to one in city, county and state government positions -- a figure made all the more troubling by the likelihood that the breakdown is among the most balanced in the U.S., according to a study released this week.The study by GrassrootsLab and the Leadership California Institute, or LCI, reported that California women held 28 percent of state legislature and county government positions, and just 25 percent of city government positions. Women only near parity in school board positions, of which they comprise 47 percent.More...
Thu, Sep 18, 2014
Source: Huffington Post
So there is someone willing to defend beleaguered NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, and it turns out it's the guy who's willing to defend almost anyone -- Lanny Davis, crisis manager and author with a book to sell you, about crisis management. His defense of Goodell has been duly recorded and published at CNN, which is willing to publish anything.At issue here is that whole Ray Rice business, wherein the National Football League, being aware that the Baltimore Ravens running back had clocked his then-fiancee Janay Palmer into a deep unconsciousness in a hotel elevator, punished Rice with a more lenient punishment than it metes out if you smoke a little weed now and again. To Davis' mind, the people who have really behaved irresponsibly are those demanding accountability.More...
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: Huffington Post
The findings of some studies are surprising. Others, not so much. Quest Diagnostics data that shows a nationwide increase in positive marijuana results during workplace drug tests -- with the ...
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: Toke of the Town
It was a surprisingly sparse crowd that gathered in the Broward College South campus' Performing Arts Center on Tuesday to watch United For Care's Ben Pollara and Drug Free Florida's Javier Cor...
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: Toke of the Town
Apparently the United States House of Representatives thinks there is an epidemic of people using welfare money to buy recreational marijuana. I personally haven’t heard of anyone doing it in Washington and Colorado. Welfare money is always a hot-button issue in Washington D.C. and throughout America. Late yesterday the House of Representatives passed a bill [...]
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: The Weed Blog
A plan that would have limited Colorado caregivers to just ten patients that would have cut off the supply of high-CBD oil to hundreds of epileptic and sick children in the state was killed by ...
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: Toke of the Town
‘What about the children?’ That’s a slogan that Kevin Sabet should wear on a T-shirt every time he travels to speak against marijuana reform for political purposes. Marijuana opponents like Kevin Sabet try very, very hard to make it sound like once marijuana is legalized and regulated, an epidemic of teens using marijuana will immediately [...]
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: The Weed Blog
The opposition campaign to marijuana legalization in Washington, D.C. kicked off with a press conference this morning. The big news is that the leading opponents of Initiative 71 don’t seem to actually have read the measure they’re campaigning against. Malik Burnett of the pro-legalization Drug Policy Alliance was in attendance and he told marijuana.com in a phone interview that the event, led by former Congressman Patrick Kennedy and a handful of local religious leaders, was “an exercise in gross misinformation to the public.” Not only did the speakers try to walk away from the podium and end the event without even taking questions from the press, but they also grossly mischaracterized what the initiative would do. Most speakers, Burnett says, tried to stoke fears about “the emergence of Big Tobacco companies coming in to the District to sell marijuana to minors.” The thing is, Initiative 71 doesn’t even legalize marijuana sales. Because District law prevents voters from putting initiatives on the ballot that require the expenditure of city funds, which the regulation of the marijuana trade would entail, the measure simply legalizes possession of up to two ounces and allows residents to grow up to six plants at home. The event seems to have kicked the opposition campaign off to a rough and embarrassing start, but things could be about to get even worse for D.C.’s leading prohibitionists. While, as noted above, organizers initially tried to prevent reporters from asking questions, journalists in attendance didn’t take kindly to that and ended up peppering the speakers with questions about why the opposition campaign hasn’t filed paperwork with the D.C. Office of Campaign Finance. That could spell legal trouble for a campaign that’s already struggling to get its message out to D.C. voters, who polls show overwhelmingly favor legalization. In the end, Burnett says, the event felt like a “flashback to the 80’s” and amounted to “a whole bunch of misinformation and stigmatization around marijuana.” If that’s the best opponents can do, it seems likely that marijuana will soon be legal in Congress’s backyard. Featured image courtesy of Associated Press
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: Marijuana News
Illinois gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner wouldn't have allowed medical pot in Illinois had he been governor over this past term. Since he's not governor, though it's easy for him to sit b...
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: Toke of the Town
Pro-legalization advocacy group Marijuana Policy Project is launching a $75,000 ad campaign aimed at urging marijuana users to “consume responsibly.” Recognizing that it’s not good P.R. for the industry when marijuana novices unwittingly go overboard – as New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd infamously did – the ads urge new users to “start low and go slow.” In a press release, MPP’s Mason Tvert said the ads are in part a response to the fact that marijuana education efforts to date have been largely led by the federal government and others who oppose legalization and who doesn’t understand how to reach would-be marijuana users in a way that will resonate effectively. “For decades, efforts to educate people about marijuana have been led by government agencies and organizations that want to maintain marijuana prohibition,” said Tvert. “Their campaigns have been characterized by fear mongering, misinformation, and derision, and they have not made anyone safer.” Because such prohibitionists don’t necessarily have an interest in making the implementation of legalization go smoothly, and usually try to latch on to any and all instances of marijuana-use-gone-wrong, the “Consume Responsibly” campaign seems like a smart approach to preventing such problems from happening in the first place.
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: Marijuana News
The Colorado Board of Health held a public testimony session yesterday which dealt with proposed rule changes to medical marijuana caregiver rules. Under current law, a person can be a caregiver for five medical marijuana patients, but can apply for an exemption if they want to grow for more patients. The exemptions are needed because [...]
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: The Weed Blog
There's a legal challenge over how licenses might be doled out for growers cultivating a special, high-CBD strain of medical marijuana, which doesn't make users high and which has already been ...
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: Toke of the Town
Medical marijuana patients in Delaware have been waiting a long time for safe access to medical marijuana. It appears that the wait will finally be over in early 2015. Per Delaware Online: There are now 166 Delawareans registered for state-regulated medical marijuana identification cards per the law, many of whom have eagerly awaited for a [...]
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: The Weed Blog
Yesterday, Reps. Hank Johnson (D-GA) and Raul Labrador (R-ID) introduced legislation to reform the Pentagon program, which transfers military equipment to law enforcement. The program has come under increased scrutiny from lawmakers after images from Ferguson, Missouri, showed law enforcement dressed like combat soldiers, using military equipment to deal with protesters. The Pentagon program has [...]
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Source: The Weed Blog
Source: Cubic Designs via Bloomberg
The fourth-richest person in the world can see the great potential in legal marijuana — or at least one of his companies can. Bloomberg reports that one of Warren Buffett‘s holdings is courting marijuana industry business. With the recent crunch for space to grow marijuana in Colorado, this could be another great example of Berkshire Hathaway’s chairman doing well by simply letting companies fill a market need. Source: Cubic Designs via Bloomberg About 1,000 fliers were sent in recent weeks from Cubic Designs, Inc. to marijuana-related businesses  in Colorado, Washington and California advertising “Double Your Growing Space” and featuring a picture of their mezzanine systems. Buffett added the eighteen year old New Berlin, WI company to Berkshire’s balance sheet last year. Cubic Designs serves its market with design, engineering, fabrication and installation solutions, according to a press release put out after Berkshire subsidiary MiTek Industries acquired it in October. “Through Cubic, MiTek is able to expand into new end markets with highly customized, tightly engineered, prefabricated structural steel products,” said Tom Manenti, Chairman and CEO of MiTek. The mezzanine systems maximize warehouse space by setting up multiple levels for growing plants. The flier also featured a green cross on it, a symbol that has come to represent medical marijuana. Buffett took over Berkshire Hathaway — formerly a textile manufacturing firm — in 1964 after seeing value in its assets. Since then he has grown the company to living legend status through wise investments in companies like See’s Candy, GEICO and Coca-Cola. Berkshire’s stock is also famously exclusive due to Buffett’s aversion to stock splits. Splits create more shares to bring the price of each share down making it more accessible. Berkshire Class A common stock closed at $207,745 per share on Tuesday. Shannon Shalchert, Cubic Designs’ Marketing Coordinator, declined to comment on this story, but she did speak to Bloomberg on Friday. “We sold a few mezzanines into that market and decided internally, ‘Why don’t we do some marketing?'” Shalchert said. Buffett gained a reputation over his decades of investing for having a hands-off approach where his investments are concerned so long as they are performing well. Cubic Designs has also considered working with real estate agents. This strategy could score big in the growing market for finding and maximizing marijuana grow space. That would give Buffett another big win and bolster the viability of the legal marijuana industry to thousands of investors.
Tue, Sep 16, 2014
Source: Marijuana News
Photo courtesy of nydailynews.com
New York could become the first state to legalize marijuana by a vote of a state legislature as opposed to a vote of the people. That’s if State Sen. Liz Krueger has her way. The Upper East Side Democrat, who introduced a legalization bill that didn’t gain much traction during the legislative session that ended this past June, says she’ll try again in 2015. Evan Nison, an activist who cofounded and directs the New York Cannabis Alliance, told marijuana.com in an interview that the chances of such legislation moving forward are largely dependent on the outcome of this November’s elections. “What’s been holding marijuana law reform back in New York is the Republican-controlled Senate,” he said. Democrats in the Senate, Nison says, have “shown a willingness to prioritize this issue.” But even if Democrats take the Senate and pass a legalization bill, advocates could still run into trouble getting it past Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who is also a Democrat, but one who hasn’t been very friendly to marijuana law reform over the years. While Cuomo did sign legislation making New York the 23rd medical marijuana state this year, he did so only after demanding lawmakers significantly scale back and water down the legislation they initially advanced. When it comes to legalization, Cuomo remains opposed, calling marijuana a “gateway drug.” Gov. Cuomo after signing the NY medical marijuana bill in July – Photo courtesy of nydailynews.com Adam Scavone, an attorney who is also active with the New York Cannabis Alliance, told marijuana.com that Cuomo is “a wildcard. He’s regressive on this issue.” But the governor’s past opposition won’t necessarily prevent New York from legalizing marijuana on Cuomo’s watch, Nison says. “Historically, he’s pushed against issues until he thinks it’s going to win. Then he pushes for it.” That means if marijuana legalization keeps polling better with voters than most politicians do, and more states change their laws, Cuomo just might have to come to terms with the fact that standing in the way isn’t good politics. Scavone says he wouldn’t be surprised if the legislature “puts a bill on [Cuomo’s] desk and challenges him to veto it over popular support.” Scavone, who says he’s “bullish” on the prospects for legalization in the Empire State, predicts it’ll happen sometime in the next three years. As legalization takes root across the Northeast – Massachusetts and Maine are likely to consider ballot initiatives in 2016, and Rhode Island and Vermont may end prohibition through acts of their state legislatures – New York lawmakers won’t be able to resist the “pressure to capitalize on tax dollars that are going to be collected by neighboring states.” So New York, which Nison pointed out was the first state to repeal its alcohol prohibition laws prior to the fall of the federal ban on booze, may not end up being the first to legalize marijuana via its legislature. But there does seem to be a consensus, at least among advocates who follow the politics of this issue closely, that it’s only a matter of time before adults can legally buy marijuana from stores there. Mason Tvert of the Marijuana Policy Project said in an e-mailed statement that, “Opinions among elected officials and the public are changing fast.” As to which state will be the first to legalize through the legislature, he says, “Anything is possible, but it’s more likely that the first state will be one that has already enacted and experienced the effects of significant marijuana policy reforms, such as Rhode Island or Vermont.” Scavone, though, is holding out hope that Empire State lawmakers will move sooner rather than later. “Don’t count New York out,” he says. Featured photo credit – nypost.com
Tue, Sep 16, 2014
Source: Marijuana News
The Washington Post’s editorial board has come out against the marijuana legalization initiative on the District of Columbia’s November ballot. Saying that it’s uncomfortable with “the rush to legalize marijuana” so closely following D.C.’s enactment of decriminalization earlier this year, the Post urges a vote against Initiative 71, which would allow possession of up to two ounces and permit residents to grow up to six plants. That doesn’t sit well with Adam Eidinger, who led the effort to put the measure on the ballot and is running the campaign to pass it. He says that Post editorial writers are wrong not just on the merits of the issue, but also declined to sit down with initiative proponents for a customary meeting to hear their case before making a decision. In a phone interview with marijuana.com, Eidinger said he was shocked the Post editorial cited the “gateway theory” that’s been widely refuted by scientific studies, including by the prestigious Institute of Medicine back in 1999. He says that when he reached out to set up a meeting with the board, he was told by one writer that, “we’ve already made up our mind” and there’s “no way you can convince us” to support the initiative. The Post’s reluctance about legalization puts the paper not only at odds with the majority of voters in the District and in the nation, but behind other editorial boards that have come out for ending prohibition, such as the New York Times. And the paper is also out of step with the District’s political elite. In pointing out that nine of 13 City Council members, including the two leading candidates for mayor, are on record in favor of legalization, Eidinger says the Post editorial board members might as well “live in another city.” In an email to marijuana.com, Post editorial page head Fred Hiatt didn’t seem worried about being out of step with the rest of the city’s political elites or its own readership. “We take positions based on what we think will make the best public policy, based on the best evidence available,” he said. “We don’t regard editorial-writing as a popularity contest.”  When asked why the board refused to meet with the initiative’s proponents before opining against it, Hiatt explained, “We meet with lots of people and do lots of reporting and research when we are formulating positions. We did that kind of reporting on marijuana legalization quite recently, when the issue of legalization in Maryland and decriminalization (which we support) in DC both were on the table.” Even though Eidinger, of the legalization campaign, is disappointed he didn’t have the opportunity to respond to the Post’s concerns directly, he does think that if voters pass the initiative this November that the editorial board will at least oppose any Congressional meddling that seeks to overturn it. “I think they will defend will of voters,” he says. “If they want to alienate D.C. residents further, they would support Congressional interference.” The editorial, which cites leading prohibitionist group Smart Approaches to Marijuana, seems to hinge on a few crucial factual errors in its penultimate paragraph: “It’s not been a year since Colorado became the first state to allow recreational marijuana use and, as the Smart Approaches to Marijuana has catalogued, there have been negative consequences, including increased instances of impaired driving and increased use by youth.”  While it is true that Colorado’s legal and regulated marijuana stores did only open this past January, the state’s legalization of possession and personal cultivation – along the lines of what D.C.’s initiative would do – actually went into effect just a month after voters passed Amendment 64 in November 2012. Nearly two years later, the most recently available data from the state of Colorado indicates that youth marijuana use is not increasing, and actually appears to be falling: Thirty-day marijuana use fell from 22 percent in 2011 to 20 percent in 2013, and lifetime use declined from 39 percent to 37 percent during the same two years. The Post’s web version of the editorial hyperlinks to a federally funded report seeking to make the case that legalization in Colorado is a disaster. It makes a number of scary claims but does not, as the Post claims, show that “impaired driving” is increasing. The report actually includes this important caveat: “This report will cite datasets with terms such as ‘marijuana-related’ or ‘tested positive for marijuana.’ That does not necessarily imply that marijuana was the cause of the incident.” Because marijuana metabolites can stay in someone’s system for weeks after a single use, the Post is on shaky ground in relying on this report to support the claim that “impaired driving” is increasing.   While Eidinger certainly isn’t happy with the Post’s pro-prohibition position, he still predicts that the majority of voters will opt for legalization on Election Day. Even so, he says the campaign is struggling for funding, and that there’s “not enough” in their bank account right now or in pledges to support the full-fledged effort he wants to run to ensure a victory. While acknowledging that the other big marijuana votes this November – legalization in Alaska and Oregon and medical marijuana in Florida – are important, Eidinger says D.C.’s effort is most crucial because “it’s the only initiative happening in the backyard of Congress. It will force a debate about legalization and home cultivation” on Capitol Hill. “It will kickoff, if this passes, a new chapter in federal legalization efforts. It will give us a big advantage in our lobbying.” While pressure to change federal law increases with each new local jurisdiction that modernizes its own approach, Eidinger seems correct in saying that federal policymakers will be especially unable to ignore the issue once the Capitol and the White House are literally surrounded by people who have the legal right to use marijuana without being treated like criminals. Perhaps that’ll also prod the Post to revisit its stance when the time comes.
Mon, Sep 15, 2014
Source: Marijuana News