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shereekrider Activists, FEATURED, Kentucky, Latest News, Marijuana, ShereeKrider cannabis, Corruption, HB 136, hemp, kentucky, marijuana, medical cannabis, SB 80, SB 83, Sen. Dan "Malano" Seum, Sen. Perry B. Clark 0
Rainbow Farm was located in Vandalia, Michigan & was a cannabis friendly community. They had great concerts & speakers. The government came in later & killed the owners & stole the farm from the legal birth right of the son, Robert, 1 week before 9-11 (September 3rd & 4th,2001). Tom Crosslin & Rollie Rolhm were the owners & each one of them were systematically gunned down & tortured after being out numbered 300 to 1. In order to stop a memorial day concert, that was to start a signature campaign to legalize cannabis in the state of Michigan.
The Country as a whole has come a long way since the incident above in 2001, but it still has a very long way to go. We have 11 “legalized States” and 33 “medicinal States” to date according to NORML. More than the majority of Americans believe it should be made “lawful”. Many sick people including children are suffering needlessly and we have the ability to help rectify the situation.
We should not still have to be going to the Capital in Frankfort to beg for something that we should have had in Kentucky more than seven years ago. In fact, it never should have been “unlawful” to possess in the first place.
Gatewood Galbraith, “The greatest Governor that Kentucky never had”, spoke to this issue many times and had he been elected we would not still be in this same fight today. He said, “You have got to get political. Because if you don’t get political then I’m gonna die in the streets!”
The number of people who are dying in the streets has exponentially increased in the past 5+ years in earnest. The crisis was started by the Government and their Pharmaceutical cronies who promoted highly addictive opioid drugs for daily use to patients who were suffering and they bit the bait. After everyone was sufficiently addicted to the pharmaceuticals the Government claimed an “opioid crisis” and immediately withdrew these needed medications by way of intimidating the Physicians and forced drug testing to the point that the Medical Establishment could no longer take the chance of losing their Practice’s, and so they immediately withdrew needed medicines from Patients who legitimately needed them, as well as other’s who had become addicted for other reasons – and there are many reasons… This in turn caused people to literally die in the streets due to a dire need to medicate and the ample supply in the streets of much more potent and deadly drugs than what the Physicians had been prescribing them to begin with.
Some of us were strong enough and smart enough to turn to Cannabis which saved our lives, even though it is illegal. A lot of us have lost close friends and family members to this ‘war on drugs’. Many of us grieve daily because of it.
There have been Senators, Representatives and Citizen Activists, working hard to see Cannabis regulation and lawfulness is passed in the very State that in WWII the Government pleaded with people to grow Hemp for their War efforts. The people responded to their requests in a time of need. However, the Government turns their heads the other way when the Citizens request that they help them establish a safe and lawful way to use Cannabis, medically and otherwise. Not only would this help the multitudes of patients who direly need this medication, it would also establish a lawful product that can be taxed and used for the greater good of the State we reside in, including new businesses and employment. As a result, even those who chose not to partake in Cannabis would benefit from the legalization and taxation of the product – much like alcohol – with much less lawlessness than alcohol promotes…
It would establish a lawful alternative to Alcohol and Tobacco and other illicit drugs, such as street level opioids which are destroying families and responsible for unending deaths even as we speak. Yet, to date, our Kentucky Government has refused to act upon this issue.
Why has Kentucky Government taken such a path in governing of the people?
For a more in-depth read on why and how our Country has fell into the hands of the NWO you can view this LINK. “The Elkhorn Manifesto” is an archived page of the Kentucky Marijuana Party, written in 1996 by R. William Davis, and collaborated with Gatewood Galbraith.
Here we are, once again, in the year of Our Lord, 2019, begging for our leaders to hear our plea’s. And once again, they will try to ignore us!
As far as I am concerned, the lawfulness of Cannabis should first have been rightfully returned to the people through REPEAL of Federal Treaties and Statutes which made it unlawful to begin with. Possibly as far back as the 1914 Harrison Narcotics Tax Act. However, the situation has been taken into the hands of the individual States and their “States Rights” because the Federal Government refused to stand up for the rights of our people. Instead they have enlisted a “New World Order” to do their dirty work which seeks to contain society at large – world wide control of the masses, control of all plants, food, medicines, WATER, etc., to be placed under strict guidelines to which we must abide by the rules or suffer the consequences.
We have become damned if we do submit to the law and damned if we do not follow it as well.
There is research already out there and patients are being helped and in some cases literally saved from an early death by using Cannabis. Many people have been saved from addiction by using Cannabis.
We cannot wait another year to change the Cannabis Statutes in Kentucky. We need it now. We needed it 20 years ago.
There are curren
tly two Bills in Kentucky Legislature – one in Senate and one in the House. Both bills should be passed and this is my reasoning for this:
SB 80 / Dan Malano Seum / Establishes the “Department of Cannabis Control” which will oversee lawful consumption of Cannabis in Kentucky by adults 21 and over. This Bill gives limited and controlled freedom back to the people in that it does allow for growing on our own property and consumption as well as sets the stage for business to be lawful throughout Kentucky. This legislation could be enacted fairly quickly and jumpstart the economy here. It is imperative that we implement this legislation this year if we seek to make our State livable again.
HB 136 / Establishes a very strict “Medical Cannabis” bill for bonified Patients. Because of the nature of illnesses and the fact that many Children could be served by this Bill it is imperative that “medicinal Cannabis” be made available in Kentucky to those who are in need, medically, whether they be adult or child. Many people who are not familiar with Cannabis and it’s use would serve to be protected as patients by this medical legislation. The problem is that with the measures necessary to comply with the Bill as it is written it would most certainly be a slow process to set up across the State and reach all patients equally. However, we should proceed immediately on this Act as well.
Additionally, a drug-free workplace Bill for the use of legal Hemp CBD products, currently sold on the open market:
SB 83 / Perry B. Clark “Shauna’s Law” Relating to a drug free workplace / Seeks to mandate an appeals process for those employer’s who enforce drug-testing upon their employee’s which will address those persons who have been found in violation of the drug-free workplace policy by testing positive on random drug screens for legal Hemp products such as CBD. It would set aside that violation if proven that a legal product had been used. This Bill must be passed in order to preserve the integrity of the Hemp market as well as employee’s rights.
IF our Legislator’s and Governor do not seek to enact the Bill’s which we as a People have requested for our health and well-being in general, then the political system of the Commonwealth of Kentucky needs to be immediately and completely changed and replaced. This would also include other issues of great importance in Kentucky such as the Pension Crisis.
The corruption in Kentucky runs far and wide and seeks to be ended this year. The time is now for change…not later. We cannot wait another year to be lawful!
Tom Angell Contributor
420, of course, is a special number for marijuana enthusiasts, who celebrate the plant extra hard every April 20.
The new bill filed in the House on Wednesday by Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) is titled the Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol Act. If passed, it would remove cannabis from the federal Controlled Substances Act.
“While the bill number may be a bit tongue in cheek, the issue is very serious. Our federal marijuana laws are outdated, out of touch and have negatively impacted countless lives,” Blumenauer said in a press release. “Congress cannot continue to be out of touch with a movement that a growing majority of Americans support. It’s time to end this senseless prohibition.”
This isn’t the first time that 420 has worked its way into official legislative numbering.
California’s first effort to create statewide medical cannabis regulations was through a bill numbered SB 420 in 2003.
In 2017, a Rhode Island senator filed a marijuana legalization bill given the designation of S 420.
And on Capitol Hill, the first time the House voted on measure to block the Department of Justice from interfering with state medical cannabis laws, it was through an amendment considered under 2003’s Roll Call 420.
The current legislation, which Blumenauer picked up from former Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO), who was sworn in on Tuesday as Colorado’s new governor, would also transfer cannabis enforcement authority from Drug Enforcement Administration to a renamed Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Marijuana, Firearms and Explosives.
A similarly renamed Alcohol, Tobacco and Marijuana Tax and Trade Bureau within the Department of the Treasury would also have oversight authority, as would the Food and Drug Administration. Federal permits would be issued for cultivating, packaging, selling and importing marijuana.
Shipping or transporting marijuana into states that have not legalized it would be prohibited.
Last Congress, Polis’s version of the bill garnered 26 cosponsors.
Separately, Blumenauer recently released a step-by-step plan to federally legalize marijuana in 2019.
“Any displays, sale or solicitation of CBD oil is illegal and individuals involved are subject to federal investigation and prosecution.”
CBD oil, sold in stores throughout Ohio, is illegal and can carry a felony charge
By Shannon Houser | October 9, 2018 at 9:49 PM EST – Updated October 10 at 11:26 AM
CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) – CBD oil is available online, in every state and is commonly found on store shelves across Northeast Ohio; however, it’s illegal and can result in a felony charge.
So, why the big confusion over the chemical compound?
“I got pulled over in a traffic stop and long story short, they found CBD oil,” said Robert Faulkner.
It was July of last year when Faulkner was arrested in Richland County.
“I tried it for my anxiety. It didn’t work for me at that particular time and I just threw it in the back on my truck,” he said.
Faulkner said he bought it from a store in Columbus. He said the oil was made and manufactured from a hemp store in Cincinnati.
“I never went to the store and thought I was buying something that would potentially put me in prison,” he said.
Faulkner was slapped with two counts of aggravated possession of drugs. He’s awaiting a grand jury trial for the felony charges.
Here in Ohio, you cannot possess CBD oil. The laws aren’t stopping people from buying it and it’s not stopping stores from selling it.
Faulkner believes the reason is there is so much confusion about the law.
“I didn’t knowingly obtain everything illegal. I went to a store to try to help me with an issue I have,” said Faulkner.
THC is the chemical compound responsible for the high in marijuana. The DEA says they’ve learned through science, that CBD will always contain some amount of THC, even trace amounts that won’t get you high.
But given the presence of THC, the over-the-counter oil is illegal.
Cleveland 19 found two local stores with shelves full of CBD oil.
According to the DEA:
“Any displays, sale or solicitation of CBD oil is illegal and individuals involved are subject to federal investigation and prosecution.”
We found in some states, like in Texas, police are raiding stores who are selling CBD oil.
So why isn’t that happening here if it’s illegal?
The DEA wouldn’t say, but did say stores selling it aren’t immune from federal investigation.
Faulkner says he hopes officials and lawmakers can help make the laws more clear so this doesn’t happen to someone else.
“I have an ankle monitor on right now. I have to go check in with probation. I spent four days in jail. This is impacting my life seriously, for something I bought in at the store to just try to help my anxiety.”
CBD is covered by Ohio’s medical marijuana law–and will be available to those with a medical marijuana card.
The FDA recently approved a CBD oil medication that is used to help treat epilepsy.
It can only be prescribed by licensed doctors.
September 27, 2018
NJ Weedman – “Mission accomplished…all good”!
Today in front of the New Jersey Statehouse NJ Weedman, Ed Forchion , followed by Vice News, made his way outside the window of Governor Murphy and asked him to “Veto the Bill”.
In the video above he tells everyone about it!
The latest version of the bill, like previous drafts, would not allow people to grow marijuana at home.LINK
Although I could not find a copy of the Bill as it has NOT been released yet, I did come across a website named NJ Cannabis Insider that stresses the need for financing in excess of $1 to $2 MILLION DOLLARS needed for a startup! That would pretty much a guarantee that only well financed Corporate Entity could apply.
It also stresses that you must have a clean background – which would automatically eliminate anyone ever charged with any kind of Cannabis possession or trafficking. Again, guaranteeing that only Corporate Entities with a well documented background should apply!
This is why Ed Forchion is asking that the Bill be vetoed as it stands.
Neither I nor most minorities who were victimized by the current marijuana laws can’t participate or even fill out a application for a job or to get ownership in this proposed industry. The cannabaggers are making obscene requirements and prohibitions to make selling weed legally exclusive to the rich and politically connected.LINK
This is a good example of the difference between legalizing and repealing the prohibition of Cannabis altogether.
Repeal would ensure that everyone has equal rights to a plant which God had put on Earth for everyone’s use.
Legalization limits that plant severely and makes sure only the wealthy will dominate its very existence leaving everyone else open to prosecution as usual.
If there are no growing rights then there are no rights, period.
#NoMensRea #RepealProhibition #StopDrugWar #EndProhibition
Malaysian Court Sentences Man to Death for Distributing Free Cannabis Oil
A man in Malaysia was sentenced to death after giving medical marijuana to patients in need.
Malaysia remains a potentially dangerous place to engage in anything related to medical marijuana. And that includes distributing it free of charge to patients who could benefit from it. Just last week, a man was sentenced to death for giving medical grade cannabis oils to patients in need.
Death Sentence For Distributing Medical Marijuana
On August 30, a judge in Malaysia sentenced Muhammad Lukman Bin Mohamad to death. The sentence came after the judge found Lukman guilty of breaking the country’s notoriously strict anti-cannabis laws.
According to local news sources in Malaysia, Lukman was arrested when authorities discovered just over three liters of cannabis oil. Additionally, he was found in possession of 279 grams of compressed cannabis.
All of this occurred in December 2015. Now, nearly three years after being arrested, Lukman received his sentence. Specifically, he was found guilty of breaking Malaysia’s Dangerous Drugs Act of 1952.
This law states: “No person shall, on his own behalf or on behalf of any other person . . . traffic in a dangerous drug.” Further, the law stipulates: “Any person . . . guilty of an offence against this Act shall be punished on conviction with death.”
Given that cannabis remains an illegal substance in Malaysia, the judge ruled that this law applied to Lukman’s case. Lukman is now being held in Kajang Prison. At this time, sources indicate that he plans to appeal the decision in the country’s Court of Appeal.
Guilty for Giving Medical Marijuana to Patients
Throughout Lukman’s case, his defense argued that his acts did not constitute drug trafficking. In particular, they focused on the fact that he was not distributing recreational drugs. Instead, defense lawyers argued, Lukman was distributing medicine to patients who might not otherwise be able to get it.
Further, the defense pointed out that Lukman was not making a profit. Lukman was in fact working in cooperation with an organization that educates the public on issues related to medical marijuana.
Lukman was not profiting from his distribution, either, since patients who could not afford the product were given it for free. In addition to all this, Lukman and his defense team pointed to the growing body of scientific evidence supporting the medical use of cannabis.
Despite all this, the prosecutors maintained that Lukman still broke the country’s laws prohibiting all forms of marijuana. They also claimed that although marijuana is increasingly accepted throughout the world, there is nothing in Malyasian law that allows for the medical use of cannabis.
One Of The World’s Worst Anti-Cannabis Countries
Malaysia has long had some of the world’s most heavy handed anti-cannabis laws. Most obviously, this reputation comes from the fact that a person can still be sentenced to death for breaking certain drug laws.
But Malaysia isn’t the only country where a person can be sentenced to death for possessing, distributing, or consuming cannabis. In fact, there are still a surprisingly large number of countries throughout the world with these types of laws in the books.
Along with Malaysia, this list includes countries like China, Egypt, Singapore, Myanmar, Philippines, Nigeria, and several others.
If it can happen there, it can happen here!
MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – More governments should turn away from a repressive war on drugs that has “failed” and look to proven strategies to implement regulated markets for risky substances, a group of former presidents and leaders said in a report published Monday.
Since the group that includes 12 former heads of state began advocating for an end to drug prohibition in 2011, a growing number of countries and U.S. states have created medical or recreational markets for marijuana.
Now the group is looking at ways to smooth the way out of prohibition, recommending countries start regulating lower-potency drugs as well as reforms to international treaties that require prohibition and punishment.
“The international drug control system is clearly failing,” said Helen Clark, a former prime minister of New Zealand. “The health … of nations is not advanced by the current approach to drug control.”
By taking control of illegal drug markets, the report argues governments can weaken the powerful criminal gangs that have grown despite decades of efforts to stamp them out.
The report, “Regulation: The Responsible Control of Drugs” by the Global Commission on Drug Policy, will be released at an event on Monday in Mexico City.
The commission chose to launch its report in Mexico, whose criminal gangs are top suppliers of heroin, methamphetamine, cocaine and marijuana to the United States and where gang-related violence has driven murders to a record high.
“Mexico is the most important country in the fight against drugs,” said former Colombian president Cesar Gaviria.
Mexico’s recent history exemplifies the report’s claim that evidence shows arresting drug traffickers has little impact on drug supply and may increase violence.
Just over 10 years ago, Mexico intensified its battle with drug gangs by sending out the military to battle traffickers.
While dozens of kingpins have been captured or killed, the number of gangs operating in Mexico has multiplied as new criminal leaders step into the breach and battle over turf.
The commission recommends governments open participatory processes to shape reforms toward regulation.
Incoming Mexican President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has already started to hold town-hall reviews on violence and discuss potential “amnesty” for non-violent drug traffickers and farmers. Members of his team have said Mexico will evaluate creating legal markets for marijuana as well as opium.
The report calls for a renegotiation of the international treaties that created a “repressive” strategy where drug users and low-level dealers face stiff prison sentences, but it cautions nations are far from a global consensus yet.
Canada will legalize recreational marijuana use on Oct. 17, and it recognizes it is violating treaties.
“Current drug policies are reducing neither the demand nor the supply of illegal drugs, quite the contrary, while the increasing power of organized crime is a sad reality,” writes Ruth Driefuss, the former president of Switzerland and chair of the commission.
Marijuana arrests are rising in the U.S., even as more states legalize cannabis.
There is now an average of one marijuana bust roughly every 48 seconds, according to a new FBI report released on Monday.
The increase in marijuana arrests—659,700 in 2017, compared to 653,249 in 2016—is driven by enforcement against people merely possessing the drug as opposed to selling or growing it, the data shows.
Last year, there were 599,282 marijuana possession arrests in the country, up from 587,516 in 2016. Meanwhile, busts for cannabis sales and manufacturing dropped, from 65,734 in 2016 to 60,418 in 2017.
The increase in cannabis possession arrests comes despite the fact that four additional states legalized marijuana on Election Day 2016.
While among those states, legal recreational sales were only in effect in Nevada by the end of 2017, the prohibition on possession for adults was lifted soon after the successful votes there as well as in California, Maine and Massachusetts.
“At a time when more than 100 deaths per day are caused by opioid overdoses, it is foolish to focus our limited law enforcement resources on a drug that has caused literally zero,” Don Murphy, federal policies director for the Marijuana Policy Project said in an interview.
“Actions by law enforcement run counter to both public support and basic morality,” added NORML Political Director Justin Strekal. “In a day and age where twenty percent of the population lives in states which have legalized and nearly every state has some legal protections for medical cannabis or its extract, the time for lawmakers to end this senseless and cruel prohibition that ruins lives.”
Overall, marijuana arrests made up 40.4% of the nation’s 1,632,921 drug arrests in 2017.
Drug arrests as a whole also increased last year, up from 1,572,579 in 2016.
There is now a drug bust every 19 seconds in the U.S.
I’m a 15-year veteran of the cannabis law reform movement, and I know where to look to spot the most interesting legalization developments. I’m the editor of the cannabis news site Marijuana Moment, and I founded the nonprofit Marijuana Majority. Follow me on Twitter to s…
Published on Friday, 14 September 2018 12:57 | Written by njweedman
FOR DECADES minorities have had marijuana in their neighbor hoods. There is not a shortage of weed in the hood…if one in the hood wants weed, there is weed. There really is a black-market of weed in minority neighborhoods, weed distribution systems that have been in place for decades. That said and done, now the state is proposing that the hood stop buying their weed in the hood and buy it from the state’s chosen few, none of which are us. WTGanja!
The State of New Jersey is seriously now contemplating legalization via a legislative act and instead of really legalizing weed, the government is creating a state sanctioned marijuana industry (a monopoly). This industry, is being formed largely by State Senator(s) Sweeney and Scutari who are taking (bribes) lobbying money from politically connected rich Caucasians who aren’t even part of the marijuana culture. I call them “cannabaggers”.
These two politicians and the cannabaggers are making the new marijuana industry laws to cater to these cannabaggers exclusively.
I nor most minorities who were victimized by the current marijuana laws can’t participate or even fill out a application for a job let alone ownership in this proposed industry.
Because Scutari and the cannabaggers are making obscene requirements and prohibitions to make selling weed legally exclusive to the rich and politically connected. – Who can’t put some weed in a jar and sell it….Why must we be millioniares to sell it? I had a dispensary in Los Angeles that I started with $500, an apartment to grow weed in. You dont have to be a millioniare to sell weed!!!-
shereekrider Absolute Asinine Laws, Drug War, International Cannabis, Latest News border patrol, border security, Canada, cannabis, cannabis stocks, corporate cannabis, hemp, marijuana, Marijuana Industry, US Customs 2
Canadian cannabis companies are whipping around after report says workers may face lifetime travel ban to US (TLRY, CGC, CRON)
Jonathan Garber Sep. 14, 2018, 08:06 AM
- A report out Thursday suggests workers in the Canadian cannabis industry could face a lifetime ban on travel to the US.
- Shares of Canadian cannabis companies were down as much as 15% on the news before paring their losses.
- Ballooning valuations have caused these companies to come under more scrutiny of late.
- Watch Tilray, Canopy Growth, and Cronos trade in real time.
Canadian cannabis companies are whipping around Friday morning, tumbling as much as 15% before paring their losses, following a report suggesting workers may face a lifetime ban on travel to the US.
A Politico report published after markets closed on Thursday, citing a senior official overseeing US border operations, said any Canadian working in the marijuana industry would not be permitted to enter the US. “If you work for the industry, that is grounds for inadmissibility,” Todd Owen, the executive assistant commissioner for the US Customs and Border Protection’s Office of Field Operations, told Politico.
Here’s a look at the scoreboard as of 2:35 p.m. ET:
Canada’s marijuana industry has seen valuations balloon in recent months. Tilray, for example, has seen its share price skyrocket by more than 600% since it went public in July.
The huge growth in the industry has sparked the interest of institutional and retail investors alike and has led to investments from the competing alcoholic-beverage industry. Back in August, Constellation Brands, the company behind Corona beer and Svedka vodka, announced it was investing another $4 billion in Canopy Growth, which raised its stake to 38%.
The recent interest in the space has caught the attention of the US Securities and Exchange Commission. Just last week, the SEC warned investors to watch out for promises of guaranteed returns, unregistered sellers, or unsolicited offers in marijuana names.
“If you are thinking about investing in a marijuana-related company, you should beware of the risks of investment fraud and market manipulation,” the SEC said.
“Fraudsters may try to use media coverage about the legalization of marijuana to promote an investment scam.”
Who would have thought that God had corporations in mind when he said “I have given you every plant bearing seed on the surface of all the earth?”
Is Foreign Money Buying Up Some of Michigan’s Corporate Cannabis State Grow Facilities and Dispensaries?
Who would have thought that God had corporations in mind when he said “I have given you every plant bearing seed on the surface of all the earth?”
I have been a Cannabis Activist for 50 years and a Journalist/Activist for at least 30 years. I just wanted adults to be able to “grow their own” without government interference and become the only source of Cannabis for our state dispensaries. Instead our legislators are setting up a “Corporate Cannabis State Monopoly” in Michigan. And the same boilerplate is unfolding in CA, WA, CO, AZ and OR. As far as I’m concerned the people got screwed again. Rather than blather on let me refer you to a few of my recent essays which you can find at the links below.
===== The Coming War: Securing Our Right to Grow our own Cannabis from the Global Corporations BRUCE CAIN·SATURDAY, JUNE 9, 2018 1,231 Reads https://www.facebook.com/notes/bruce-cain/the-coming-war-securing-our-right-to-grow-our-own-cannabis-from-the-global-corpo/2445909552101685/
Just Vote No on Michigan’s Cannabis Initiative: Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol (November 2018) BRUCE CAIN·WEDNESDAY, JUNE 6, 2018 419 Reads https://www.facebook.com/notes/bruce-cain/just-vote-no-on-michigans-cannabis-initiative-regulate-marijuana-like-alcohol-no/2441433565882617/
The Global Marijuana March originated with International Drug Policy Day in May 1990. BRUCE CAIN·SATURDAY, MAY 5, 2018 582 Reads https://www.facebook.com/notes/bruce-cain/the-global-marijuana-march-originated-with-international-drug-policy-day-in-may-/2393282000697774/
Why the Right to Grow Your Own Medical Cannabis Must Be Protected from “Tax, Regulate and Control” State Models BRUCE CAIN·TUESDAY, JUNE 27, 2017 3,920 Reads https://www.facebook.com/notes/bruce-cain/why-the-right-to-grow-your-own-medical-cannabis-must-be-protected-from-tax-regul/1941658819193430/
The Complete Recent Essays of Bruce W. Cain https://www.facebook.com/bruce.cain.98/notes?lst=100000184321094%3A100000184321094%3A1536699785
This little bit of research began with a Facebook post from Adam Brook, who has been the Master of Ceremonies for the Hash Bash since 1989 to 2018. Here’s Adam’s Post:
Wild Bills gets DENIED! There is no Oasis!
Before I go on I want to briefly review my history with Adam Brook and the Hash Bash. The two of us have been involved, as Cannabis Activists, since around 1985. We were both instrumental in having the Hash Bash occur on the first Saturday in April rather than on April 1st. And we did that, around 1989, in order to increase attendance for what might be the longest running Annual Cannabis/Marijuana protest in US history. I have spoken at the Hash Bash nearly 15 times between 1990 and 2012 and Adam continues to MC the annual event. We’ve both been significant Cannabis Activists for many decades. So when he blocked me from his Facebook feed — after calling me a racist and xenophobe — I was taken aback. I am neither a racist, an Islamaphobe or a Xenophobe.
I grew up in Dearborn and have lived in the area for many decades. I’m not at all racist and have many great neighbors who happen to be Muslim. But all groups have their “bad actors.” The Jews had the Purple Gang. The Italians had the Mafia. And yes I do believe there is a fringe group of Muslims that are probably connected to Hezbolla – a Lebanese Shiite Terrorist group.
Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon’s Party of God By Matthew Levitt https://books.google.com/books?id=6QsxCgAAQBAJ&pg=PA323&lpg=PA323&dq=Zig-Zag+Counterfeit+Cigarette+Paper+Scheme+dearborn&source=bl&ots=UM1ExdVMVX&sig=xw__xZ5vpt5h6BG9YOYC7oznmmg&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjI5aKwn7HdAhUMr4MKHdcVBQ8Q6AEwEHoECAoQAQ#v=onepage&q=Zig-Zag%20Counterfeit%20Cigarette%20Paper%20Scheme%20dearborn&f=false
And there was a Chaldean Mafia operating in Detroit in 2011.
As you read this essay, largely focusing on Wild Bills Tobacco Outlets, it is obvious that they have little respect for our laws (e.g., the ZigZag Conterfiet Racket, 2004) and one has to wonder where are the money came to set up 75 stores in Michigan and more recently 3 stores in Ohio. Apparently the state feels the same way as they denied giving Oasis a dispensary in Lansing for previous criminal activity [Sept. 10 2018].
Frankly I have no formed opinion on Wild Bills but there is plenty of data to suggest they are not choir boys. And that is how I will present it in my essay. I will lay out the facts and let my readers decide. With 75 stores and recent acquisitions, of grow facilities and dispensaries, I guesstimate there is already over 200 million dollars in total assets for Wild Bill’s. * $50 million for grow warehouses if CRMLA (Prop 1) passes in November 2018 * $150 million, at least, for there 78 “Wild Bill’s Tobacco Outlets. [I’m guesstimating $2 million per outlet]. * ??? The Oasis Wellness Centers. * ??? Salaries for workers across 78 Stores. And my big question is this: where did all this money come from? Are there foreign Chaldean investors behind this? Or is it just a bunch of “rich greedy assholes?” What is not in dispute is that Wild Bi
ll’s is trying to corner the market in both Cannabis production and distribution. What is not in dispute is Wild Bill’s has stated that they want to put the home growers out of business. Fuck that.
Every group has their bad apples. And what I do not want to see is a Cannabis Mafia monopolize the Cannabis business, in Michigan, as the Italian Mafia once monopolized Alcohol. Frankly I want it to remain in the hands of small growers which is why I am imploring people to boycott Wild Bill’s while encouraging you to “grow your own” and put the “Corporate Cannabis State Monopolies” — in Michigan and other states — out of business.
So let us begin disassembling this story by going back to Adam’s post.
Wild Bills gets DENIED! There is no Oasis!
Adam gave no link to any article describing “why” Wild Bills Tobacco got denied. And that began my research.
This is how Wild Bill’s Tobacco Website describes themselves:
===== About Wild Bill’s Tobacco
Wild Bill’s Tobacco, formerly known as Smokers Outlet, is the 5th largest tobacco retailer in the country. The first store opened in 1994 and the company slowly expanded to more than 60 stores over the next 22 years. At Wild Bill’s, we specialize in providing the best quality tobacco products at competitive prices all under one roof for the convenience of our customers.
Our stores are equipped with the largest well humidified walk in humidors containing fine cigars from across the world. Many of our locations have a lounge area where customers can relax and enjoy a fine cigar with friends. All staff members are trained and equipped with the necessary knowledge and tools to assist the customer and provide exceptional service. http://www.wildbillstobacco.com/about/ =====
The 75 Stores are mainly in Michigan and there are 3 locations in Ohio. They are named both “Wild Bill’s and Mr. Vapor.
How Wild Bill’s Tobacco, Smokers Outlet Management and Oasis Wellness Centers are related
===== The top donor to the the current campaign, shown as giving a total of $150,000 as of June, is a company called Smokers Outlet Management in Troy, according to the campaign finance statements. The company owns 68 Wild Bill’s Tobacco shops across Michigan, its website says. But its plan is to use the name Oasis Wellness Centers to open a major chain of marijuana shops in Michigan, according to statements made to state lawmakers’ committees and summarized in a memo filed with the state House Judiciary Committee in 2015 by the company’s vice president, Paul Weisberger.
Top 6 Donors to the Coalition to Regulate Marijuana like Alcohol:
1.) Smokers Outlet (chain of 68 Wild Bill’s Tobacco shops), Troy, $150,000
2.) Marijuana Policy Project (nonprofit with 32,000 members), Wash, D.C., $58,161
3.) Andrew Driver Jr. (with Advance Electric), Gaylord, $35,000
4.) David Kelley (investment banker), Traverse City, $10,000
5.) Alec Riffle (with Tree City Health Collective dispensary), Ann Arbor, $10,000
6.) Wholesale Hydroponics (store for marijuana growers), Lansing, $10,000
Michigan marijuana campaign brings together activists, moneyed investors, tobacco dealers
Bill Laitner, Detroit Free Press Published 11:03 p.m. ET July 15, 2017
Wild Bill’s has some really big plans for Cannabis Grow and Distribution Facilities
Under the name, Oasis **, Wild Bill’s is willing to pay $21 million dollars for a 320,000 square foot building to 50 percent of the company’s dispensaries across the state. So we can project that they somehow have the capital to invest $40 to $50 million dollars to supply all their dispensaries. Are they planning to convert the 75 Wild Bill’s Tobacco stores into dispensaries. And gee where is all this money coming from?
===== BANGOR TWP, MI – The Bangor Township Board of Trustees have thrown their support behind bringing a medical marijuana grow and distribution facility to Bay County.
Trustees unanimously agreed at their meeting Tuesday, May 9, to support an investment of a grow and distribution facility. Before any type of industry comes to town, however, the township needs to update its code of ordinances.
About 50 people were in attendance at Tuesday’s meeting.
Oasis Wellness Center, based out of Clawson, Michigan, is interested in investing $21 million into the former Dow Chemical Co. and Crane Resistoflex building, 4675 E. Wilder Road.
During public input, Oasis Vice President Paul Weisberger said his company is looking to employ more than 100 people in the 320,000 square-foot building. Weisberger said Oasis is not currently in the medical marijuana field.
Bangor Township Supervisor Glenn Rowley said other companies have reached out to the township, although Oasis has been the most vocal.
Rowley said future board meetings will discuss ordinances and layout details.
“There’s one opportunity to do this right and we want to make sure we have that,” Rowley said. “We agree we are going forward on this.”
As part of the Medical Marijuana Facilities Licensing Act, which went into effect last December, application processes for licensed dispensaries is expected to be finalized by Dec. 31.
Bay County township supports medical marijuana facility Updated May 10, 2017; Posted May 9, 2017 https://www.mlive.com/news/bay-city/index.ssf/2017/05/bangor_township_agrees_to_impl.html =====
===== BANGOR TOWNSHIP, MI — A medical marijuana company has approached Bangor Township about investing $21 million to purchase and convert an old factory building into a grow and distribution facility.
But before the controversial industry comes to town, the township’s board of trustees needs to throw its support behind it. A discussion takes place at 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 9, at Bangor Township Hall, 180 State Park Drive. It’s unclear at this time if the board is going to make any formal decisions on the matter Tuesday evening.
The company, which township officials are declining to name, hopes to purchase the old Dow Chemical Co. and Crane Resistoflex building at 4675 E. Wilder Road and hire 140 people to work at the plant. If plans come to fruition, the plant would supply medical marijuana to 50 percent of the company’s dispensaries across the state.
Medical marijuana company wants to invest millions into Bay County Updated May 6, 2017; Posted May 6, 2017 https://www.mlive.com/news/bay-city/index.ssf/2017/05/medical_marijuana_bay_county_d.html =====
Wild Bill’s is denied a provisioning center in Lansing
===== Accordingly, the latest round of state approvals didn’t grant a license to a single Lansing-based business. Oasis Wellness Center of Lansing — with local approval for two local growing operations and two processing fac
ilities — was denied for state prequalification for those and several other business enterprises across mid-Michigan.
City records indicate Oasis planned five local businesses centered around Beech and Hazel streets. The state board suggested the owner was arrested twice but failed to disclose that information in its state applications. The would-be shops were also turned down based on the poor “moral integrity” of the company’s founders.
State officials eye marijuana deadline extension [Sept. 10 2018]
Local licensing system remains stagnant amid statewide changes http://lansingcitypulse.com/article-16421-State-officials-eye-marijuana-deadline-extension.html =====
Who own’s Wild Bill’s Tobacco?
Mike Samona, CEO Justin Samona, Chief Marketing Officer Paul Weisberger, VP Oasis Wellness Centers
===== The best business news for Wild Bill’s Tobacco, based in Birmingham,Michigan, with 50 stores, was when the state of Michigan enacted a 50-cent tax cap on individual cigars at the end of2012. “It allowed us to be much more competitive with our online competitors last year, which led to an increase in sales,” explains Justin Samona, chief marketing officer. Wild Bill’s specializes in premium cigars, with cigar lounges in20 locations and walk-in humidors with Spanish cedar paneling and advanced humidification systems in all 50 stores.But the top trend in 2013 was the electronic cigarette craze in Wild Bill’s stores, just as it was across America,according to Samona. “We see the paradigm shift and we feel that e-cigs are here to stay,” he says. “Wild Bill’s is quickly becoming known as the electronic cigarette destination. Our stores are equipped with modern e-cig super centers, which we call ‘Mr. Vapor.’The chrome shelving and blue LED lights attract customers right when they enter the store. Customers can sample disposable e-cigs, rechargeable kits, tank kits, mod systems and over 100 different flavors of e-liquids and strengths.” In 2013, the chain improved its business through customer service management.“ The HR management team here launched many creative bonus and incentive plans,”Samona explained. One such plan that caused great excitement was the profit-sharing program, which is eligible to all managers that have been with the company for three or more years.The thinking behind it comes from Mike Samona, CEO. “When you have loyal, satisfied customers, your business becomes more referable, thus more profitable,” he says. “We’ve discovered that staff members will provide much better service to our customers, whether it’s through up-selling, converting or handling complaints, when they know a percentage of the profits will go to them.”
If I had to guess they are possibly Chaldean as that is a common Chaldean (Catholic) surname. But who knows.
Wild Bill’s got busted in 2005 when it used to go under the name Smoker’s Outlet. “Wild Bill’s Tobacco, formerly known as Smokers Outlet, is the 5th largest tobacco retailer in the country.” In this case nearly 30 of their stores were selling counterfeit “Zig Zag” rolling papers . . . for which they ultimately got caught and busted. What other illegality went under the radar?
===== BOLLORE S.A., Plaintiff, CIVIL ACTION NO. 04-CV-73867-DT vs. DISTRICT JUDGE ANNA DIGGS TAYLOR MADISON HEIGHTS TOBACCO MAGISTRATE JUDGE MONA K. MAJZOUB https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/USCOURTS-mied-2_04-cv-73867/pdf/USCOURTS-mied-2_04-cv-73867-0.pdf =====
Next look at all the defendants (e.g. law breakers) in this case and take note of all the businesses owned by Wild Bills or Smokers Outlet Management that owns Wild Bills. And finally look at the names: many of which suggest Middle Eastern ancestry. Possibly Chaldean?
Habib Ajame, Defendant Mahmoud Ajami, Defendant Alsahil Enterprises, Incorporated, Defendant Amazing Dollar, Defendant Amazing Dollar of Highland, Defendant Steve Bahri, Defendant Baldwin Mini Mart, Incorporated, Defendant Bemis Road Service Station, Incorporated, Defendant Citgo Gas Station, 496 Main Street, Defendant Dina’s Dollar, Incorporated, Defendant Divon, Incorporated, Defendant Dort Highway 200, Incorporated, Defendant Edward Eid, Defendant Eid Enterprises, Incorporated, Defendant Mary Fawaz, Defendant Flint Tobacco, Incorporated, Defendant Joseph O. Garmo, Defendant Samer Hanna, Defendant Aoun Jaber, Defendant Jaber’s, Incorporated, Defendant John’s Marathon, Incorporated, Defendant Madison Heights Tobacco, Incorporated, Defendant Main Street Express, Incorporated, Defendant Marci, Incorporated, Defendant Mega Mile Gas and Mart, Defendant Awatif Misho, Defendant North Pointe Marathon, Incorporated, Defendant R and S Food and Gas, Incorporated, Defendant SAC Investment, Incorporated, Defendant John Samouna, Defendant Luke Samouna, Defendant Mazin Samouna, Defendant Saza, Incorporated, Defendant Shadia Enterprises, Incorporated, Defendant Shell Gas Station, 1220 North Wayne Road, Defendant Shell Gas Station, 28851 Hoover Road, Defendant Gurdial N. Singh, Defendant Roy Sitto, Defendant Smokers Discount, Defendant Smokers Outlet Management, Incorporated, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Centerline, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Centerline, Incorporated, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Eastpointe, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Eastpointe, Incorporated, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Ferndale, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Ferndale, Incorporated, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Hazel Park, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Hazel Park, Incorporated, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Highland, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Madison Heights, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Roseville, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Roseville, Incorporated, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Shelby Township, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Shelby Township, Incorporated, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Sterling Heights, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Sterling Heights II, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Sterling Heights II, Incorporated, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Sterling Heights, Incorporated, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Taylor, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Troy, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Troy, Incorporated, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Warren II, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Warren II, Incorporated, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Waterford II, Defendant Smokers Outlet of Waterford II, Incorporated, Defendant Speedy’s Gas and Groceries, Incorporated, Defendant Sunoco Gas Station, 3142 Miller Road, Defendant Sunoco Gas, 3000 East Eight Mile Road, Defendant Sunoco Gas, 6401 West Eight Mile Road, Defendant Sunoco-Miller Road/1-75, Defendant Super Mobil, Defendant Tobacco Road, Defendant Tobacco Road, Ltd, IV, Defendant Webb Operating Company, Defendant Charles A. Zain, Defendant Bollore, S. A., Plaintiff North Atlantic Operating Company, Incorporated, Plaintiff North Atlantic Trading Company, Incorporated, Plaintiff https://www.gpo.gov/…/USCOURTS-mied…/content-detail.html
More bribes and criminality as the “Corporate Cannabis State Monopoly” gets ready to put all the small growers out of business
===== The U.S. Attorney’s office has indicted three would-be Michigan medical cannabis dispensary owners, accusing them of attempting to bribe officials in Garden City to approve their license, the Detroit Free Press reports. Brothers Mike and Ali Baydoun, along with their nephew Jalal Baydoun, are accused of offering bribes to the three city council members, the mayor, and the police chief.
Federal authorities say the Baydouns handed an envelope with $15,000 to a city council official – $5,000 each – in December and offered to buy the city a police car, pay a police officer’s annual salary, and give the officials a 25 percent cut of the dispensary’s profits. The councilor handed the envelope of cash over to the FBI. The indictment also alleges that the family said they would put $150,000 in an escrow account that would be used to pay additional bribes.
Under the city’s medical cannabis ordinance, only two cultivation licenses are available and the accused were hoping the bribes would convince officials to amend the rules, add another license, and award it to them, allowing them to grow 1,500 medical cannabis plants in the city.
The U.S. Attorney’s office declined to comment further on the investigation or who else from the State might be suspected of colluding with the Baydouns.
U.S. Attorney’s Office Indicts Three for Attempting to Bribe Michigan Officials for MMJ License 8/04/2017 https://www.ganjapreneur.com/us-attorneys-office-indicts-three-attempting-bribe-michigan-officials-mmj-license/ =====
A Short History of Wild Bill’s Strategy to Monopolize “Corporate Cannabis” in Michigan
If you are from others states expect the same crap to play out: the Rich Ganjapreneurs — like Wild Bill’s — will soon be pushing to prohibit adults to “grow their own” in their homes. To put it in the simplest of terms the “Corporate Cannabis State Monopoly” — both the State Government and the Approved Millionaire Ganjapreneurs — don’t want any competition. In future years “your” Wild Bill may come in the form of a Microsoft Executive, Big Pharma or possible a foreigner with deep pockets. But if we don’t stop this crap everyone is going to see a “Wild Bill” coming to monopolize the market in your state eventually. “Money talks, bullshit walks.”
1994: Wild Bill’s (under the original name “Smokers Outlet”) opens there first store.
2004: Wild Bill’s (under the original name “Smokers Outlet”) get busted for selling counterfiet ZigZag rolling papers at nearly 30 of its stores throughout Michigan.
2015: Wild Bill’s announces its intent to open a major chain of marijuana shops in Michigan, according to statements made to state lawmakers’ committees and summarized in a memo filed with the state House Judiciary Committee in by the company’s vice president, Paul Weisberger.
===== Excepts from Weisberger’s Letter: (Vice President of Wild Bill’s Oasis Wellness Centers)
“We believe that the grow operation needed to supply consistent, high quality medical marijuana should be based in a larger scale “commercial grow” type model.” [What I call a “Corporate Cannabis State Monopoly.”]
“This would allow for a consistent and cost effective supply of product while at the same time moving the grow operations out of our neighborhoods.”
“We must bring this above ground and out of the neighborhoods through a commercial grow operation that provides consistent lower cost medical marijuana.” [05/07/2015]
RE: Michigan House Judiciary Committee; House Bills 4209 and 4210 From: Paul Weisberger, vice president, Wild Bill’s Oasis Wellness Centers http://house.michigan.gov/sessiondocs/2015-2016/testimony/Committee339-5-7-2015-5.pdf =====
2016: (December) The Legislature passed laws to tax,regulate and control the market: to create what I call the “Corporate Cannabis State Monopoly.” Once in place (October 2018?) the vast number of small growers — who sold their overage to local dispensaries and “patients” — will become instant criminals if they continue to sell without a license none of them can afford. In practical terms it will cost literally millions to “get into this game.”
2017: (May) Wild Bill’s offers $21 Million for a 320,000 square-foot building in Bangor Township to supply just 50% of it’s projected dispensaries.
2017: (July) Wild Bill’s becomes the top donor to the CRMLA Initiative ($150,000)
2017: (Sept) Wild Bill’s (Oasis) Gets on one of the 5 working groups (growers) regulated by the Medical Marijuana Facilities Licensing Act (MMFLA) for the State of Michigan.
===== Per the August 22 statement from LARA/BMMR, almost 750 applications were received and of those, more than 550 were valid and complete. From that huge pool of citizens the Departments have selected the advisory groups who will make recommendations to LARA for rules governing the different business types; LARA is not obligated to honor the recommendations.
Michigan: LARA Announces Medical Marijuana Workgroup Members September 27, 2017, 8:00 am Rick Thompson Medical Marijuana https://www.weednews.co/michigan-lara-announces-medical-marijuana-workgroup-members/ =====
2018: Wild Bill’s now has 75 Stores in Michigan and 3 in Ohio
2018: (Sept) Wild Bill’s is denied a provisioning center in Lansing because the owner had 2 arrests and because of the “poor moral integrity” of the company’s founders.
2018: (July) Michigan awards the first 7 Medical Marijuana Licences for the “Corporate Cannabis State Monopoly” — which was put in motion through legislation in December 2016.
===== Michigan awards first medical marijuana licenses Kathleen Gray, Detroit Free Press Published July 12, 2018 https://www.freep.com/story/news/marijuana/2018/07/12/medical-marijuana-michigan/779840002/ =====
2018: (Nov) If Prop 1 (CRMLA) passes, in November’s Election, those that get a “Corporate Cannabis State Monopoly” licence stand to profit from a $700 million dollar industry while all the smaller growers will become instant criminals if they continue to grow or sell to groups or individuals. This is what Wild Bill’s and all the other Millionaire Ganjapreneurs are betting on. That is why Wild Bill gave more money than anyone else ($150,000) to get it passed.
The Corporate Cannabis State Monopoly will probably be operational in the next year. And once it becomes fully operational you can expect an increase in arrests and home invasions for home growers. The State will want all the profits from “seed to sale” and will therefore be incentivized to put the small growers out of business: regardless of whether they are growing for themselves or continuing to sell their overage.
Meanwhile you just have to wonder where Wild Bill’s
is coming up with 50 million dollars to buy growing facilities and millions more for their dispensaries. And where did the Baydoun’s come up with $150,000 dollars in bribes to open a dispensary in Westland, MI. Could some of this money be coming from Terrorist organizations or other crime syndicates?
When my friend Jack Herer died in 2009 he could not have foreseen this nightmare. It was not what either of us had hoped for. I really thought I had retired from this fools crusade but I seem compelled to carry on. Perhaps the best solutions is to encourage everyone to “grow their own” and put these “Corporate Cannabis State Monopolies” out of business.
I also want to make clear that I don’t really know that Wild Bills is a criminal syndicate. I do know that it took me hours to find the little information that I did find on their operation. But where is all of this money coming from? I am no nearer answering THAT question than when I began. And Wild Bill’s is but one of many groups that want to get into these “Corporate Cannabis State Monopolies. Frankly they all deserve thorough investigation. Until that happens — which it never will — let me just say:
Grow Your Own.
Destroy the Corporate Cannabis Beast.
We cannot allow our government to take away our right to grow a plant the really belongs to all of us.
Please share this essay and others that I have written on Cannabis Policy. We cannot allow this to end this way.
Please be advised! Opinions expressed in either submitted articles or comments belong solely to the writer and are not necessarily the opinion of the website(s) owner(s). They are presented in order to allow all opinions to be expressed fairly and equally.
NOVA SCOTIA CANADA: Once again it seems that you can’t grow Cannabis and treat licensed patients, even if Cannabis is “legal”…
shereekrider Activists, Canada, Drug War, Latest News, Marijuana and the Law Canada, cannabis, Daren McCormick, drug war, end prohibition, hemp, international cannabis, Kevin James, marijuana, Nova Scotia, Patients, patients rights, RCMP, Repeal Prohibition, Rev. Daren McCormick, Rev. Kevin James 0
NOVA SCOTIA CANADA: Once again it seems that you can’t grow Cannabis and treat licensed patients, even if Cannabis is “legal”.
At approximately 10:30am on September 5th, Rev. Daren McCormick and Rev. Kevin James were visited by the RCMP at which time they proceeded to search their property located in Loch Broom Nova Scotia Canada, where they were growing Cannabis for Patients. Rev. Kevin James explained to RCMP that they were licensed plants and who they belonged to. The RCMP produced no warrant yet they proceeded to search both outside and inside their home.
They were both incarcerated by the RCMP for growing, and trafficking Cannabis. They both remained incarcerated for 24 hours before being released. Rev. Kevin James was denied medication for seizures during the stay.
Over 1000 plants were taken by the RCMP as well as a small indoor grow. Personal items of the two men were taken in the search such as legal documents, witness lists and an antique Bow that hung above the fireplace belonging to Daren’s Grandfather, a family heirloom dating back to 1915 that yielded no threat to anyone.
The garden of Cannabis is estimated to be worth well over a million dollars plus and it has been destroyed. You can’t give back a plant that was pulled from the ground in its natural growing state!
Above: The Global Incident Map publishes the bust.
Above: Rev. Kevin James Service Dog “Molly” was not charged in the raid!
He has also posted these status updates on Facebook concerning the events:
FOR POSTING US ON THIS MAP 🙂 DOES THIS MEAN WE MADE IT TO THE BIG BOY LIST LOL
Daren Mccormick has 4 new cannabis charges, and i have 5 new charges… in last 10 days… heads up…
Q. If a patient revokes the DG status of a grower and they get caught growing anyway… say 850 plants x 4 crops a year and do it for 4 years or so…. and the patient receives zero from their garden… thats diversion…
shereekrider Latest News, USMJPARTY #EndProhibition, #ItsNotJustAboutMarijuana, #NoMensRae, apps, Californnia, chapters, Colorado, forums, Hawaii, Illinois, indiana, kentucky, North Carolina, Oregon, peace, playstore, texas, usmjparty, Washington D.C., Washington State, website 0
It was 2010 the last time that the USMjParty.Com had Forum’s on it’s website. They attracted a lot of attention and there were many people signed onto them. Then Facebook and other social networking gradually took over and we let the forum’s go.
With the onslaught of social network censorship we felt that the time was right to bring this avenue of communication between our followers/members back into operation!
We are a group of people who believe in human rights for everyone which includes the right to make our own choices in life and as such we are anti-prohibitionists.
We are a small political party started in 2002 by Loretta Nall solely for the purpose of ending Cannabis prohibition. While it remains true that the war on drugs has done more damage than the drugs themselves could do, it is also true that a political party cannot stand on just one solitary issue – There are too many issues that must be addressed in Our Country, and “it’s not just about Marijuana anymore”.
It is our hope that the Forums will allow those that are truly interested in furthering the outreach of the USMjParty will join us in debating issues and give thoughtful ideas as to how we can further a humanitarian agenda for all.
The primary issue shall remain:
We are looking forward to seeing our members grow and share their ideas and hope for the future.
It is time to take a stand, time to lead the way, time for all people to live freely but responsibly, and not be held hostage by an out of control and corrupt system of government. Our Country was not intended to be an Oligarchy or a Corpocracy. It remains a Democracy! We have a Constitution and a Bill of Rights!
The link is also located in the menu of the usmjparty.com website.
HERE IS A LINK TO OUR NEW APP ON PLAYSTORE!
#NOMENSREA #IAMTHELAW “When we all say it we all go free”.
Thorne Peters has authored nine books, and is working on the tenth one from the Shelby County penal farm in Memphis, TN., He is a songwriter, singer, and human rights activist. But it seems that they can offer him neither pen nor paper in order to work on his case nor to write his book.
Thorne Peters currently sits in “the hole” at the Memphis penal farm as he fights for everyone’s rights, #NOMENSREA against Cannabis Prohibition.
Thorne Peters entered the public eye in 2009, when he made local news for operating a “420” friendly nightclub in Millington. The self-proclaimed “Poet Laureate of Planet Earth” was an easy target for local media when he turned down a guilty plea and decided to do 19 months in jail while waiting to go to trial LINK
Below is the latest message from TKP Thorne Peters from the Penal Farm in Memphis Tennessee. Please listen to his message, and then write him a card or letter (address below), and let him know you are thinking of him, as well as all the others who have been unjustly caught up in the drug war, most notably the war on Cannabis!
Please listen to entire video!
Please call AMY WEIRICH; D.A., Memphis, TN (901) 222-1300 and say “Try THE KINGPIN! There is NO MENS REA!”
And also call the Tennessee Governor at (615) 741-2001 and say “investigate THE KINGPIN conspiracy… #NOMENSREA“
And last but not least, please DONATE to the “Freedom Fund”!
Above: Thorne Peters, The Kingpin, speaks at Overton Park before going to 201 Poplar, Memphis City Jail and Courthouse, to smoke pot on the steps and go to jail at 4:20pm on 04/20/2010. LINK
Above: Link to TKP Thorne Peters YOUTUBE Channel.
Please follow Linda Harrah on Facebook for updates!
Please write to TKP Thorne Peters at this address:
Shelby County Correctional Center
1045 Mullins Station Road
Memphis, TN 38134
Anita Maddux, 50, was charged with a felony for possessing a 10-milliliter sample bottle of cannabidiol (CBD)
One woman faces charges for hemp-derived cannabidiol oil despite its recent presence in local grocers
JACKSON HOLE, WY – A woman driving through Jackson, Wyoming, on her way to Montana left with a life-changing souvenir. On July 8, Anita Maddux, 50, was charged with a felony for possessing a 10-milliliter sample bottle of cannabidiol (CBD) oil from Cid’s, a Taos, New Mexico, health food store. Now Maddux could face up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine pending an August hearing.
Independent of that incident, local and state law enforcement showed up to Lucky’s Market and Jackson Whole Grocer two weeks later to inform those stores that CBD products were illegal to sell if they contained any amount of THC, the psychoactive component of cannabis. Both stores have since removed those products from their shelves.
Most CBD oil sold in stores like Lucky’s and JWG purport to contain .3 percent (or less) THC, an amount that does not have mind-altering effects as outlined in the 2014 federal Farm Bill. Third party lab analysis obtained by Planet Jackson Hole shows that Maddux’s CBD oil was under that threshold at .06 total THC.
Indeed, as other states loosen cannabis laws and federal lawmakers sponsor legislation to do the same, Wyoming remains a dubious place to possess a hemp-derived product with even trace amounts of THC. It is a felony offense in Wyoming to sell, buy or possess more than .03 grams of CBD oil that contains any amount of THC. However, manufacturers maintain that if their product contains traces of up to .3 percent it is perfectly legal, sowing confusion for state residents and retailers.
At Cid’s, Maddux worked as an herbalist in the health and wellness department where she received a sample shipment of CBD oil from Functional Remedies. The Colorado company’s CBD oil was on the shelves at Lucky’s Market in Jackson when she was arrested.
Lucky’s did not return several requests for comment nor did Functional Remedies.
CBD is a non-psychoactive compound found in cannabis plants with a slew of reported health benefits. The Food and Drug Administration just approved it to treat epilepsy in the form of the new drug Epidiolex. (Wyoming does allow people with intractable epilepsy to use CBD oil under the care of a licensed neurologist.)
Cannabidiol may also treat everything from Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s to depression, anxiety, inflammation and pain, according to the World Health Organization. The WHO’s Expert Committee on Drug Dependence also recently said CBD does not have abuse or dependence potential.
It seems more of CBD’s potential health benefits are emerging by the day. According to a study published July 30, mice with pancreatic cancer that were treated with CBD and chemotherapy lived three times longer than mice treated with chemotherapy alone.
For her part, Maddux was using the oil for chronic back pain—she has a missing disc between her L1 and L2 vertebrae. CBD oil, she said, had brought her some relief, though she took it only sporadically.
Before her drive from New Mexico to Montana to care for her mother who has stage four colon cancer, Maddux placed the sample bottle in her bag and didn’t give it another thought.
Classification and Confusion
Despite the WHO’s recent findings, in the United States, CBD is a Schedule 1 drug under the Controlled Substances Act, meaning the federal government does not recognize its medicinal uses and considers it to have a high likelihood for abuse.
That classification hasn’t stopped its proliferation.
CBD oil has fueled a multimillion dollar industry online and at health food stores across the country. In September 2017, the retail giant Target was the first mega-chain to dip its toes into the cannabidiol waters. It wasn’t a pioneer for long, though. It pulled the products from its online shelves after just a few weeks. One month later, Lucky’s made the leap, becoming the first chain natural grocer to carry CBD products.
So why are mom and pop health stores and some chain retailers carrying the products if they are illegal?
For one thing, the federal Drug Enforcement Administration hasn’t been shy about its indifference.
“While CBD currently is still Schedule 1, with our limited resources marijuana has not been our highest priority,” Barbara Carreno, a spokesperson for the DEA, told Planet Jackson Hole. “It is not a priority like opioids or synthetics which are killing people.”
What’s more, Carreno said everything could change when the DEA schedules Epidiolex for medical use on September 24. A plant or botanical could have both uses that are legal and safe and uses that are not, Carreno said. As an example, she pointed to the opium poppy: “you get heroin and oxycodone from that.”
Marijuana, meanwhile, “is a plant with many extracts, THC is one and CBD is another,” she said. “CBD has a small amount of THC but it is very, very low.”
But the overarching reason manufacturers are producing and selling these products en masse is because of the 2014 Farm Bill. That bill legalized the production of hemp under state pilot programs as long as those hemp products contain less than .3 percent THC.
Under the Farm Bill, 40 states have legalized hemp programs including Wyoming. Its program is slated to begin in 2019. That confuses matters because as Wyoming works to implement a hemp cultivation program, it is still illegal to sell or possess hemp products in the state if they contain THC.
The federal program has some legal experts arguing Maddux wasn’t in the wrong. “As long as hemp was grown as part of a state pilot program (like Maddux’s Functional Remedies CBD oil) then it is federally legal,” said Jonathan Miller, general counsel to the U.S. Hemp Roundtable. That means Maddux “is allowed to take it across state lines,” he said.
Miller said Maddux’s case is the first he has heard of someone being charged for carrying a vial of CBD oil. In fact, from his experience, in cases where people have been arrested for possession of both marijuana and CBD the “CBD was thrown out.”
Wyoming cannabis law, Miller continued, is confusing. “It is quite unfortunate law enforcement would take that confusing law and charge someone for having a product that has virtually no THC and which the World Health Organization has classified as harmless,” he said. “I would hope law enforcement was focusing instead on drugs that kill people.”
On the national stage, Congress is moving in a direction that would remove hemp (cannabis containing less than .3 percent THC) from its classification as a Schedule I controlled substance. Sen. Mitch McConnell–R, Kentucky, is leading that charge with the 2018 Hemp Farming Act. It handily passed in the Senate 86-11 on June 28.
Wyoming, though, is fond of bucking national trends, especially when it comes to cannabis. The state has a tight grip on cannabis laws even as public opinion swings drastically in the other direction.
For example, more than 80 percent of Wyomingites say they want to see the legalization of medicinal marijuana and 60 percent oppose jailing people for marijuana offenses, according to a 2016 survey by the University of Wyoming Survey and Analysis Center.
Jackson Whole Grocer herbalist Heather Olson agrees with those sentiments. She also believes in CBD’s long list of supposed health benefits and was unhappy to remove products from the shelves. But Olson said there is a problem with certain companies. She said officials from Wyoming’s Division of Criminal Investigation told her some of the products they tested carried higher levels of THC than what was indicated on the label.
But Wyoming’s crime lab—where DCI tests substances—cannot actually test for specific amounts of THC.
The Un-wild West
Local law enforcement has been in contact with Wyoming’s
Division of Criminal Investigation since fall 2017 when Lucky’s and Jackson Whole Grocer began carrying CBD oil. Jackson Chief of Police Todd Smith “reached out to us and asked us for some help because these products were being sold,” said Ronnie Jones of DCI. “Then we discovered this was going on across the state.”
Since then, Jones said DCI has been visiting retail stores and conducting investigations to confirm whether those CBD products contain THC.
Local law enforcement says as long as state law dictates it, they will enforce CBD’s prohibition. “I am duty-bound to uphold those laws,” Teton County Sheriff Jim Whalen said. “Clearly, if we were to talk philosophy, I might talk differently,” he added.
Whalen did not seem convinced Maddux’s felony charge would stick. He suspected it would be pleaded down and pointed to his department’s lenient proclivities. “In terms of misdemeanors, we would prefer to write a citation and send people on their way, which is different than many municipalities.”
Law enforcement is indeed “duty-bound” by laws set forth by the Wyoming Legislature. But cannabis advocates, like Laramie attorney and Wyoming House Minority Whip Charles Pelkey–D, Laramie, point to the state’s law enforcement as a barrier to softening cannabis laws.
Wyoming Rep. Stan Blake–D, Green River, “has introduced bills to make CBD oil readily available but we have gotten opposition from the Wyoming Association of Sheriffs and Chiefs of Police that any THC is a violation of the law,” Pelkey said.
It is true that sheriff and police associations throughout the country have pushed back against cannabis laws. Some point to Colorado’s rising crime rates since the state legalized recreational marijuana in 2014, though it is unclear if the two are related. Police Chief Smith said the notion that sheriffs and chiefs could hold that type of sway in the Legislature is absurd. “Law enforcement inherits the law from the Legislature,” he said. “We may get to testify our professional opinion but for any legislator to blame it on us is a cop out.”
I Fought the Law…
Maddux, meanwhile, is biding her time in Montana, caring for her ailing mother and going to job interviews. She does not dispute the reason why she was initially pulled over, which had nothing to do with CBD oil.
On Sunday, July 8, Teton County Sheriff’s Deputy Jesse Wilcox noticed her expired California license plate and pulled Maddux over. She was also driving without insurance and an expired license. Maddux said she has led a simple life and didn’t have the money to address those issues before hitting the road. “My plan was to just get to Montana, to be with my family and take care of everything there,” she said.
According to the probable cause affidavit, Wilcox asked Maddux if she could pay an $850 fine for the tickets or appear in court on July 31. The affidavit stated Maddux said she could do neither. She didn’t think her brutal honesty would land her in jail, Maddux said. “I have never been pulled over before. So I thought the best thing to do was just to be honest about my situation.” Indeed, a July 30 background check on Maddux showed she has had no prior run-ins with the law.
After he deemed her “a flight risk” because she could not pay the fines and was likely to not appear in court, Wilcox arrested Maddux.
At Teton County jail, personnel found her CBD oil and used a NIK test to determine the presence of THC. NIK tests are “rudimentary,” as Smith put it, however. They only confirm the mere presence of THC, not the actual amount. The oil, then, was sent to Wyoming’s crime lab for “analysis” and Maddux sat in jail for roughly 36 hours. She was released on a $1,000-dollar bond.
Life has already changed for Maddux. To help pay for an attorney, she sold her car for $550 and is now relying on the generosity of friends to make ends meet. Maddux worries the volunteer and service work that has become a large part of her identity will no longer be an option if she is convicted of a felony. She worked as a disaster relief volunteer in Haiti after its 2010 earthquake and in the Philippines after its 2013 typhoon.
She also volunteered as a yoga instructor teaching yoga to inmates in Oregon prisons. Maddux’s experience in Jackson has her wondering about some of those inmates and their predicaments. That is to say, had she lacked the resources and life experience to question what happened and obtain a lawyer, she could have slipped through the cracks of the legal system, she said.
While local law enforcement seems confident that a felony will not stick on her record, Maddux said in the meantime she agonizes about her August 16 hearing. Her life “has been thrown into upheaval.”
As the feds crack down on opioid prescriptions, patients are taking their own lives, doctors are losing their jobs and overdose rates continue unabated.
The Government’s Solution To The Opioid Crisis Feels Like A War To Pain Patients
By Art Levine
Jay Lawrence, an energetic truck driver in his late 30s, was driving a semitrailer across a bridge when the brakes failed. To avoid plowing into the car in front of him, he swerved sideways and slammed the truck into a wall, fracturing his back. For more than 25 years, he struggled with the resulting pain. But for most of that time, he managed to avoid opioid painkillers.
In 2006, his legs suddenly collapsed beneath him, due to a complex web of neurological factors related to his spinal cord injury. He underwent multiple surgeries and tried many medications to alleviate his pain.
The next year, he began to experience some semblance of relief when his doctor prescribed morphine, one of a class of opioid drugs. By 2012, he was taking 120 milligrams per day.
But this isn’t a story about opioid addiction. Lawrence managed a relatively productive, happy life on the medication for the better part of 10 years.
“This isn’t the life I thought I’d have,” he told his wife, Meredith Lawrence, in December 2016. “But I’m all right.”
Living on disability payments, he could still walk around their two-bedroom trailer home using his cane, take a shower on his own and, on his good days, even help his wife make breakfast.
Then, in early 2017, the pain clinic where he was a patient adopted a strict new policy, part of a wide-ranging national effort to respond to the increase in opioid overdose deaths.
Citing 2016 guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, her husband’s doctor abruptly cut his daily dose by roughly 25 percent to 90 mg, Meredith Lawrence said. That was the maximum dose the CDC recommends, though does not mandate, for first-time opioid patients.
The doctor also told Jay Lawrence that the plan was to lower his dose to 45 mg over the next two months, a cutback of more than 60 percent from what he had been taking.
At the end of that traumatic visit, his wife said, Jay Lawrence’s doctor dismissed their concerns and shared his own fear about losing his license if he continued to prescribe high doses of opioids. (When HuffPost followed up, the doctor declined to comment on the case, citing patient privacy.)
For a month, Lawrence suffered on the 90 mg dose. At times, his pain was so bad that he needed help to get out of the recliner, and when his wife looked over, she sometimes saw tears streaming down his face.
He dreaded his next appointment when his dose would be slashed to 60 mg. In the weeks before that scheduled visit on March 2, 2017, Lawrence came up with a plan.
On the day of his appointment, on the same bench in the Hendersonville, Tennessee, park where the Lawrences had recently renewed their wedding vows, the 58-year-old man gripped his wife’s hand and killed himself with a gun.
Dustin Chambers for HuffPost Meredith Lawrence sits in the living room of the home in Gainesville, Georgia, that she bought after her husband’s death.
There are at least nine million chronic pain patients in the United States who take opioid painkillers on a long-term basis. As law enforcement and medical regulatory bodies try to curb the explosion in opioid deaths and the rise in illegal opioid use, they have focused on reducing the overall opioid supply, whether or not the drugs are provided by prescription.
There’s mounting evidence this won’t work ― that curbing patient access to legal prescription opioids does not stem the rate of overdoses caused primarily by illegal drugs ― and that patients are being denied desperately needed relief. There are also troubling indicators that cutting back on opioids increases the risk of suicide among those with chronic pain.
Some chronic pain patients and advocates have even begun compiling lists of individuals they know who have died by suicide after they were no longer able to treat their pain with opioid medication.
“There is no doubt in my mind that forcibly stopping opioids can destabilize some of the most vulnerable people in America,” said Dr. Stefan Kertesz, a professor of medicine and an addiction researcher at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. “And the outcomes for those folks include suicide, overdose and falling apart medically.”
I mean, people need to take some aspirin sometimes and tough it out a little. Attorney General Jeff Sessions
For a decade or so, government officials in the U.S. have sought to drive down the opioid supply through a range of tactics ― from increased seizures of diverted opioid medications to state crackdowns on “pill mills.” The Trump administration has embraced the hard-line approach.
In late January, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a “surge” in Drug Enforcement Administration activity targeting pharmacies and physicians that, in the agency’s view, oversupply opioids. In February, the Justice Department doubled down with the announcement of a new task force that would focus on manufacturers and distributors of opioids. In March, President Donald Trump unveiled a plan to lower opioid prescriptions by a third within three years. And in late June, the federal government arrested 600 people, including 165 medical professionals, for allegedly participating in $2 billion worth of fraud schemes involving opioids.
The Trump administration’s efforts are dramatic even within the context of the CDC’s opioid dose guidelines. The guidelines were originally intended to advise primary care physicians treating chronic pain patients and other pain sufferers. They were urged to exercise caution in prescribing opioids, to use alternatives whenever possible and to prescribe daily doses of no more than 90 morphine milligram equivalents (MME) for new opioid users.
For pain patients like Jay Lawrence who had already been on opioids for years, h
owever, the guidelines simply recommended regularly assessing the harms and benefits of the dosage. They didn’t advise either mandatory cutoffs or any set limits. (The Tennessee Department of Health’s guidelines would also have allowed Lawrence to stay at 120 mg of morphine when prescribed by a pain specialist.)
But “the CDC guidelines have been weaponized,” said Kertesz. The ramped-up enforcement by the DEA and state regulators has led some doctors to choose caution and to overcorrect in their prescribing, lest they lose their ability to practice medicine at all. Kertesz decried these policies as “simplistic” in a definitive new article published last week in the journal Addiction.
In February, Sessions struck a particularly harsh tone by suggesting that the fate of chronic pain patients was not high on his list of concerns. “I am operating on the assumption that this country prescribes too many opioids,” the attorney general said. “I mean, people need to take some aspirin sometimes and tough it out a little.”
Attitudes like that are based on a series of mistaken assumptions about pain, according to Dr. Thomas Kline, a North Carolina-based family practitioner and former Harvard Medical School program administrator. Kline regularly updates a list of pain patients, published on Medium, who’ve killed themselves in the wake of draconian restrictions on pain medication.
“I ask people to imagine the very worst pain they’ve ever experienced in their lives,” Kline said. “And then that they’re denied relief by a doctor with the one medicine proven effective for pain control for 50 centuries.” (Historical records show that people in ancient Mesopotamia cultivated the poppy plant for medical use.)
The CDC guidelines have been weaponized. Dr. Stefan Kertesz
The government’s aggressive focus on doctors and patients is unlikely to address the very real menace of opioid-use disorders and sharply escalating overdose deaths. Fraud ― driven by pharmaceutical company policies ― and diversion ― the phenomenon of prescription medications being sold as street drugs ― initially spurred a wave of opioid abuse in the late 1990s, as some doctors turned their practices into pill mills. But new reports by the CDC and a drug data firm, the IQVIA Institute for Human Data Science, suggest that prescription drugs play a much smaller role in today’s crisis.
The reports show that total opioid prescriptions dropped 10 percent in 2017 ― the sharpest annual decline in such prescribing in 25 years. While opioid prescriptions peaked back in 2010, the studies found that growth rates in opioid-linked deaths, overwhelmingly due to illegal fentanyl and heroin, have skyrocketed in the last seven years.
Indeed, although two-thirds of the 64,000 overall drug overdose fatalities were linked to opioids in 2016 ― the most recent year for which there is data ― more than 80 percent of those opioid drug deaths came from illegal street drugs such as heroin and fentanyl. Prescription opioid drug deaths alone ― excluding methadone ― amounted to less than 15 percent of all drug overdose deaths, or about 9,500 fatalities.
Still, the CDC’s guidelines have triggered restrictive laws in at least 23 states that mandate ceilings on opioid dosage. (Oregon, in fact, is moving to taper dosages down to zero for all Medicaid chronic patients over a year.) That makes relief less attainable for pain patients and threatens the practices of doctors who treat them. These laws have been augmented by the growth of state prescription monitoring programs that use the software NarxCare, which is designed to flag addiction but can also rope in pain patients based on their prescription history and use of multiple doctors.
The side effects of the current enforcement efforts are disturbing enough, from patients denied relief to drug shortages to suicides.
No health agency has kept track of all pain-related suicides that may be linked to doctors cutting back on prescriptions. But some preliminary findings from Department of Veterans Affairs researchers indicate that VA pain patients deprived of opioids were two to four times more likely to die by suicide in the first three months after they were cut off, compared to those who remained on their pain medications.
“To protect people, you have to take care of the patient, not the pill count,” said Kertesz, who worked on the VA’s April 2017 study but spoke to HuffPost only as an independent researcher. “The findings suggest that the discontinuation of opioids doesn’t necessarily assure a safer patient.”
Even terminally ill cancer patients are increasingly getting less relief, and there are growing shortages of injectable opioids at local hospitals and hospices, spurred in part by DEA-ordered reductions in opioid manufacturing quotas.
Leah Ilten, a 53-year-old physical therapist who lives in Kennewick, Washington, told HuffPost that as her 86-year-old father lay dying of pancreatic cancer in a hospice, the medical staff ignored her pleas to provide appropriate opioid pain relief, even cutting his dosage in half on the last day of his life. A few days earlier, when he was in the hospital, one nurse explained to her that opioids could lead to an overdose or could potentially cause the man, who lay moaning in pain, to “get ad
“I was horrified,” Ilten said.
In mid-April, the DEA responded to the injectable opioid shortage by lifting production quotas. An agency spokesman told HuffPost that it was “a manufacturers’ problem, not the quotas,” while asserting that progress is being made.
There have been production issues, including Pfizer’s foul-ups with a plant in Kansas. But the DEA’s delay in taking action ― shortfalls were flagged in February in a letter from the American Society of Anesthesiologists and other health groups ― definitely contributed to the shortage, according to Dr. James Grant, president of the ASA. He told HuffPost that quotas were among the factors creating the crisis.
I’m not willing to go back to the state I was in before I started treatment. Anne Fuqua
Faced with the hardline national crackdown on opioid prescriptions, people with chronic pain are trying to raise awareness of the suffering caused by the loss of medications. Some are gathering the names of those patients who ended up taking their own lives, both as a memorial to those who died and as a protest against the health establishment that has seemingly abandoned them. Others are seeking comfort from each other on social media.
Lelena Peacock, who declined to name her southeastern city of residence for fear of retaliation from doctors, is struggling with how to treat the pain associated with fibromyalgia. The 45-year-old found that her social media posts drew other pain patients who turned to her for help.
By her own count, Peacock has thus far convinced more than 70 chronic pain patients to call 911 or suicide prevention hotlines instead of killing themselves.
For Anne Fuqua, a 37-year-old former nurse from Birmingham, Alabama, the motivation for compiling a list of chronic pain-related suicides is to track the damage done by what she sees as policies that have left people like her behind.
“There’s so many people who have died,” she said. “We have to remember them.”
Fuqua has an incurable neurological illness known as primary generalized dystonia that causes Parkinson’s-like involuntary movements and painful muscle spasms. She started taking about 60 mg of Oxycontin a day in 2000. Her doctor began to limit her access to high doses of opioids in 2014, the same year she started chronicling those friends who had killed themselves or otherwise died after being denied pain medications. Her informal list is now up to roughly 150 people, augmented by lists that other pain patient advocates have compiled.
On July 9, Fuqua joined other chronic pain patients at a meeting at the Food and Drug Administration campus in Maryland to express their fears and outrage at the cutbacks. Sitting in the front row in her wheelchair, she told FDA officials about that list and declared, “I’m not willing to go back to the state I was in before I started treatment.”
Courtesy of Anne Fuqua Anne Fuqua needs exceptionally high doses to manage her pain because of opioid malabsorption.
Fuqua’s own difficulties are compounded by the fact that her body does not respond to even large doses of opioids the way others do ― she suffers from severe malabsorption that hampers her ability to benefit from everything from opioids to vitamin D. Since 2012, she has relied on a strikingly high daily regimen of 1,000 MME of opioids, including fentanyl patches, to manage her pain.
But her physician, Dr. Forrest Tennant, was driven to retire this year after a DEA raid and investigation. The Los Angeles-area physician mailed her a final series of prescriptions, which will run out at the end of July.
“It’s terrifying,” she said looking at her future. “If these were people who had asthma or diabetes and weren’t stigmatized because of opioids, this wouldn’t be allowed to happen.”
Another doctor has quietly stepped forward to continue treatment for Tennant’s remaining patients, Fuqua said, although there’s no assurance that this physician won’t also be investigated in the future.
If these were people who had asthma or diabetes and weren’t stigmatized because of opioids, this wouldn’t be allowed to happen. Anne Fuqua
The raid on Tennant’s home and office last November illustrates the hard-line regulatory and enforcement approach that critics say doesn’t distinguish between pill-mill doctors who deserve to be shut down and legitimate pain doctors who use high-dosage opioids. The wide-ranging search warrant served to Tennant essentially accused him of drug trafficking even though he’d earned a national reputation for deft treatment of ― and research about ― pain patients.
“He’s highly respected and prominent in pain management,” said Jeffrey Fudin, a clinical pharmacy specialist who heads the pain pharmacy program at the Albany Stratton VA Medical Center in Albany, New York, and serves as an associate professor at the Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. “Most of his patients had no other options, and they came from around the country to see him.”
Tennant was known for taking on difficult-to-treat patients, including those suffering from pain as a result of botched surgeries and other forms of malpractice. His research included innovations in the use of hormones to alleviate pain and lower opioid use up to 40 percent, as well as work on genetic testing for enzyme system defects that lead to opioid malabsorption.
“The DEA can trigger an investigation every time they misapply the CDC guidelines without paying attention to the population the physician treats or issues of medical necessity,” said Terri Lewis, a patient advocate and a Ph.D. clinical rehabilitation specialist with Southern Illinois Uni
versity who trains clinicians on how to manage seriously ill patients with incurable pain.
Special Agent Timothy Massino, a spokesperson for the DEA’s Los Angeles division, declined to comment on the agency’s approach to Tennant. “It’s an ongoing investigation,” he noted.
Tennant’s isn’t alone. Physicians must now balance their prescribing obligations to their patients with legitimate fear for their livelihoods.
DEA enforcement actions against doctors have risen some 500 percent in recent years ― from 88 in 2011 to 449 last year, according to an analysis of the comprehensive National Practitioners Data Bank by Tony Yang, a professor of health policy at George Washington University. Even though that’s a relatively small number of arrests compared to the roughly one million physicians in the country, such arrests can have an outsized impact.
“They make big news, and they serve as a deterrent for physicians whose specialties require them to use a lot of pain medications,” Yang said. “It makes them think twice before prescribing opioids.”
Dustin Chambers for HuffPost Meredith Lawrence shows the tattoo she got after her husband’€™s death. The bluejay represents her husband, Jay; a cup of coffee is the way she loves to start her day; and the quote is “Sail away with me, what will be will be.”
Dr. Mark Ibsen of Helena, Montana, found himself in a five-year battle against the state licensing board that’s still not over ― even though a judge last month reversed the board’s decision to suspend his license because of due process violations. The court has remanded the case back to the licensing board for potential further investigation of his opioid prescriptions, but Ibsen has decided he won’t resume his medical practice.
That’s bad news for Montana, which has the highest rate of suicide in the country, according to the CDC. What’s more, chronic pain-related illnesses account for 35 percent of all the state’s suicides, as a recent state health department study found.
In the course of his fight with the medical board, the 63-year-old doctor said three of his former chronic pain patients have killed themselves after he and other doctors stopped prescribing opioids. The first of those patients died shortly after attending a hearing to show his support for Ibsen.
The deaths of pain patients haunt those who treated them and loved them. Meredith Lawrence, who sat with her husband to the very end, said, “It was as horrifying as anything you can imagine.”
“But I had the choice to help him or find him dead someday when I came home,” she added.
Lawrence was arrested and sentenced to a year’s probation for assisting a suicide. Now her goal is to fight restrictions on opioid prescriptions.
“If we don’t stand up, more people will die like my husband.”
If you or someone you know needs help, call 1-800-273-8255 for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. You can also text HOME to 741-741 for free, 24-hour support from the Crisis Text Line. Outside of the U.S., please visit the International Association for Suicide Prevention for a database of resources.
Art Levine is the author of Mental Health, Inc: How Corruption, Lax Oversight, and Failed Reforms Endanger Our Most Vulnerable Citizens.
That study isn’t without flaws. Veterans die by suicide at higher rates than average ― currently accounting for 20 suicide deaths a day ― so they are not a nationally representative sample. And the VA study, which was released at a national opioid summit in early April, has not yet been submitted for peer review.
But another study, published last year in the peer-reviewed journal General Hospital Psychiatry, looked at nearly 600 veterans who in 2012 were cut off from dosages after long-term opioid use and found similar results. Twelve percent of the vets showed suicidal ideation or took violent action to harm themselves ― a rate nearly 300 percent higher than the overall veterans community.
July 26, 2018 By Tom Angell
States are free to legalize marijuana, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said on Thursday, but his department plans to continue enforcing federal prohibition anyway.
“Personally my view is that the American republic will not be better if there are marijuana sales on every street corner,” Sessions said in response to a reporter’s question. “But states have a right to set their own laws and will do so.”
Sessions, speaking at a press conference in Boston about unrelated fraud prosecutions, said that when it comes to marijuana, “we’ll enforce the federal law.”
“The federal law remains the law of the United States.”
A growing number of states are moving to legalize marijuana for recreational or medical use.
But while federal cannabis prohibition remains on the books for now, momentum for reform is gaining traction in Congress.
Last month, President Trump voiced support for bipartisan legislation that would let states enact their own marijuana policies without federal interference.
What Is Legal and What Is Not??? “I was arrested for multiple felonies…in KNOX County Tennessee for possessing Industrial Hemp”
Please view video above.
Following the passing of the 2014 Farm bill, the Kentucky Department of Agriculture launched the Industrial Hemp Research Program that would allow farmers and processors to begin the development of an industry. LINK
There has been some disconcerting news showing up on social media in the past few days. It seems the DEA may be trying to push buttons…
They picked the right words for it, “Hemp Research” Bill, because that is exactly what they have been doing since the research started…using our Farmer’s to start an industry that they damn well knew they would not let them keep for very long. The idea is to let the Farmer’s do the work for the start-up so that they think that they are accomplishing a great feat, (which they are), and then yank it right out from under them via the DEA and hand it over to the Pharmaceutical Conglomerates where they can make big money by controlling our access to the Cannabis plant.
The fact is that it was not “Marijuana” that they were worried about infiltrating the Nation, it was controlling the Hemp – and now the CBD. Marijuana is just the control button so to speak.
It all comes back around to the NWO and Agenda 21 to control the masses. (If you control the food – and medicine, you control the people). But first they want to make sure that everyone wants and/or needs what they are going to take control of. Once the market starts to bloom, it’s time to take it back.
I first noticed a problem about two months ago when Stripe discontinued merchant services for the U.S. Marijuana Party, stating it was a prohibited business. I sell nothing but T-Shirts, lol. I went to my bank and asked them about it and sure enough, they weren’t accepting any “marijuana related” business either. So, I have no way to sell T-Shirts online at this time. Unless I want an offshore bank account!
On July 18th, Brady Bell broke the news that USPS was, as of the 17th “…ceasing all shipping of hemp/CBD products. The inspector said they are going to start confiscating any products that violate their stance…”
And so it begins…
Jaime Rothensteinenheimer is feeling heartbroken
I was arrested for multiple felonies at 1pm Wednesday July 18, 2018 in KNOX County Tennessee for possessing Industrial Hemp. My charges are Possession of Sched 6 drugs with Intent to Deliver (marijuana). The COA and 3rd Party Lab Reports were with the hemp products. I was forced to sleep on the porch of a Fireplace Store in Sevierville, TN until the impound opened to retrieve my vehicle. I am being arraigned tomorrow morning at 10am in Knox County Courthouse for Multiple felony charges.
On Wednesday July 18, 2018 at 11am the DEA raided my suppliers warehouses in SC and FL, took controlled samples for testing and went about their business. No charges yet . On Friday July 20,2018 the Atlantic Beach Police Dept had me sign a form to allow the Search of my business, Terp Market and Lounge, due to the City Commission claiming that “nefarious” characters were coming and going. I complied and the detectives were very polite. It still grinds my gears that we are doing positive things in the community and are getting treated like criminals over a PLANT. LINK
As an industry we have to take a stand. I now know why this is happening. GW Pharmaceuticals are the reason behind this with their lobbying efforts. It’s time the industry takes a stand and we file a class action lawsuit on GW Pharmaceuticals. I have the plan in motion. I will be reaching out to owners and anyone else that wants to join the battle. Feel free to email me, [email protected] We have the legal team and direction. The rest will require unity. LINK
EVERYONE in the CANNABIS business, whether legal or not, whether it is Hemp or Marijuana/Cannabis that you sell, or USE for medicine or recreationally, should pay very close attention to what is happening right now. The quality of Our lives very much depends upon what happens with Cannabis.
Please read the above linked article.
On my end, I am concerned about the control of Cannabis/Hemp and the regulations which will follow legalization and what it means to the prison industrial complex. I am concerned about the right to grow a Cannabis plant in my yard and use it personally for medicine and pleasure. I am concerned about all the children and other people who were so wrongly denied the Cannabis plant since 1937 and be
fore, who so badly needed it as a medication, which was ALREADY IN THE PHARMACOPEIA IN 1900’S, but that the Government pulled out from under them in the name of commerce.
Cannabis, Hemp, Marijuana are all born from the same species. Don’t let them divide us!
NEVER say legalize! ALWAYS push for REPEAL of the CANNABIS Plant as a “whole”…
When it is freed to the People of this Country, and it is no longer a crime to possess or grow on our own property, or use in our own homes, and the Hemp Farmers are free to grow and sell their Hemp plants AND products, then it can be produced by the Pharma’s as a medication and THEIR products can be labeled as “CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES”!
Until then, Pharma should not be allowed to profit, or produce, any Cannabis medications!
The Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) is conducting an Industrial Hemp Research Pilot Program as authorized by KRS 260.850-260.869, and 7 U.S.C.§ 5940 (also known as Section 7606 of the 2014 Farm Bill). Industrial hemp plants, leaf, floral materials, and viable seed materials remain a Schedule I Controlled Substance under state and federal law; no person can grow, handle, broker, or process industrial hemp in Kentucky without a license issued by the KDA. For more information on applications, please visit the Applications for the Hemp Program page. Industrial Hemp is a Controlled Substance and requires a KDA License to Grow, Handle, Process, or Market LINK
By The Associated Press PHOENIX — Jun 27, 2018,
An Arizona court has ruled that medical marijuana patients can still face arrest when in possession of hashish because it isn’t mentioned or included by name in a voter-approved pot initiative passed in 2010.
The Arizona Court of Appeals handed down the decision Tuesday in the case of Rodney Jones, a cardholder in the state’s medical marijuana program who was arrested in March 2013 at a Prescott hotel and indicted on a count each of cannabis possession and drug paraphernalia possession.
Police said at the time they had found Jones had 0.05 ounces of hashish in a jar, according to the appeals court ruling. After spending a year in jail, Jones waived his right to a jury trial in the case. He was later convicted and sentenced to more than two years in prison with credit for time served.
In his appeal, Jones had sought to have his conviction and sentence overturned by the court. But two of the judges on the three-member appeals court panel rejected his request, saying that the state’s medical marijuana act approved in 2010 “is silent” on hashish.
“If the drafters wanted to immunize the possession of hashish they should have said so,” the ruling said. “We cannot conclude that Arizona voters intended to do so.”
Hashish is a resin extracted from cannabis plants, and it is often used in oils and other medical marijuana products that are a part of the nation’s burgeoning, multibillion pot market.
The ruling had found that hashish is recognized under state law as a narcotic distinct from marijuana by the Legislature because of its potency levels.
Jones’ attorney did not immediately return a call requesting comment Wednesday.
Sarah Mayhew, who represented the Arizona Attorneys for Criminal Justice in supporting Jones in the lawsuit, said the parties would appeal the case to the Arizona Supreme Court.
“There are several things in this ruling that are just flat-out wrong,” said Mayhew, also an attorney in the Pima County Public Defender’s office.
She said the court had sought to apply marijuana and cannabis definitions in the state’s criminal code to the language drafted by medical marijuana advocates in the 2010 ballot initiative.
Voters had approved the medical marijuana act in order to provide broad protections to people seeking to access pot for medicinal reasons, she said.
By taking this step, the court narrowed the intent of the voters, Mayhew argued.
By Jason Lemon On 6/26/18
“It’s basically black and white—if you admit to a U.S. border officer at a U.S. port of entry that you’ve smoked marijuana in the past, whether it’s in Canada or the U.S., you will be barred entry for life to the United States,”
immigration lawyer Len Saunders told CTV News on Tuesday.
Saunders said he believes U.S. border agents will begin asking the question more frequently once Canada’s new marijuana legislation is implemented later this year. However, Canadians also have the right not to answer the question, he said. Although the questioned individual may be denied entry to the U.S. after refusing to answer, it will only be for that day and not a permanent ban, Saunders explained.
Prior to Ottawa’s decision to legalize recreational cannabis last week, conservative Canadian lawmakers met with U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions. According to reports, Sessions warned the elected officials that Canadians could face problems at the U.S. border if legalization moved forward.
Despite the fact that nine states and the nation’s capital, Washington D.C., have legalized recreational marijuana—and 29 states have legalized it for medical purposes—cannabis remains completely illegal under U.S. federal law. While the administration of former President Barack Obama implemented guidelines against prosecuting marijuana businesses that were legal on the state level, Sessions has taken a tougher stance.
The Canadian government has warned citizens on its website that legal cannabis use could still cause problems when traveling abroad. “Cannabis is illegal in most countries,” the website said. “Previous use of cannabis, or any other substance prohibited by local law, could result in a traveler being denied entry to their destination country.”
Banned Canadians could still apply for temporary waivers to visit the U.S., according to Saunders. But their visa-free travel access would forever be revoked under current immigration laws.
Commenting on Canada’s decision to legalize marijuana, Hannah Hetzer, senior international policy manager at Drug Policy Alliance, told Newsweek it would be bizarre for the U.S. federal government to take a strong stand against the move.
“It would be very hypocritical for the U.S. federal government to come out staunchly against Canada’s legalization and be incredibly vocal about it,” Hetzer said, “because it puts the U.S. government in an uncomfortable position, where it’s still illegal on the federal level [but legal for recreation and medical use in many states].”
Beyond the legal disconnect in the U.S., the majority of Americans have tried marijuana at some point in their lives, according to polls. A 2017 poll by Marist and Yahoo News found that 52 percent of Americans over the age of 18 have used cannabis in the past. Additionally, 44 percent admitted that they continue to use the drug. Comparatively, statistics in Canada show that only 49.4 percent of men and 35.8 percent of women admit to having tried pot.
Just over 60 percent of Americans support legalized recreational marijuana, according to a January poll by Pew Research. Likewise, there is growing bipartisan political support for decriminalization and legalization.