Stems and Buds: Marijuana in the News



Because I’m following Marijuana news so as to be informed for articles I write for Humboldt Grow, I find, or people send me,  interesting pieces all the time.  Here is a list and short excerpts from recent articles that  interested people might want to investigate more thoroughly.

Today on MSN-Money Central Online: “In a 2007 study, Jon Gettman, a senior fellow at George Mason University’s School of Public Policy, valued the American marijuana trade at $113 billion annually. Between drug enforcement and potential taxes, the federal government and the states were losing almost $42 billion a year by keeping marijuana illegal, the study indicated.” (Hat tip to a friend of mine for sending me the link.  He lives in Mexico and his two latest posts –here and here–are wonderful insights into living there with the swine flu outbreak.)

Oakland Council Backs a Tax on Medical Marijuana: “Oakland’s City Council last week approved a 1.8% tax on medicinal marijuana sold in the city. If voters pass the proposal in a July election, Oakland would become the nation’s first city to directly tax the drug, medical-marijuana advocates say.

Such an outcome would further legitimize medical marijuana in California and represent the latest victory for advocates.”…”The owners and managers of Oakland’s four medical-marijuana dispensaries said they approached the city with the idea. “We wanted to further legitimize the medical-marijuana paradigm to show that we are truly willing to assist [Oakland], and to show other cities that there are social benefits to this,” said Keith Stephenson, executive director of Purple Heart Patient Center.

New Poll shows majority of Californian’s favor legalizing and taxing marijuana (SF Chronicle online–SF GATE): “And for the first time ever in a statewide Field Poll, a majority of state voters – 56 percent – expressed support for one new revenue source: legalizing and taxing marijuana.”

Yesterday, in a huge triple play, New Hampshire, Minnesota, and Rhode Island eased restrictions on medical marijuana –The Medical Marijuana Policy Blog is full of pertinent information every day it seems.: “We just got word that the Rhode Island Senate overwhelmingly passed a bill, 35-2, that would establish “compassion centers” to provide medical marijuana to qualified patients, making access for the seriously ill far safer and more reliable.Just to recap, that means three huge victories for medical marijuana patients and advocates today. Earlier, the senates in New Hampshire and Minnesota both passed bills that would protect seriously ill patients from arrest for using medical marijuana with their doctor’s recommendation.”
Over 6ooo marijuana plants seized in two different  busts in Mendocino County:“A multi-agency marijuana raid netted 4,122 marijuana plants on 20 acres in the Burns Creek area near Laytonville..A large diesel-powered generator was also found.” And “A warehouse-type building at 360 Orr Springs Road was the site of 2,041 marijuana plants eradicated by police Wednesday… .”


  • Where is the Magazine sold?

    • Ernie, I know the Hemp Connection in Garberville sells it. I’d like to see stores like Dazey’s and Redway Feed and Sylvandale sell it too.

      I don’t think the new issue with my writing is out yet though.

  • Thanks for all the updates!
    Rose had this article posted on her website, and I am copying some of it here as it has some great info for your forum:
    “Ron Pugh, a US Forest Service special agent in charge of illegal activities on public lands, has spent the past few years concentrating on illegal marijuana grows. Marijuana “gardens”—a misnomer on a grand scale—are responsible for the majority of thirsty straws draining rivers and creeks that cross public lands. Pugh flips up a slide showing the spread of illegal grows across the nation. “This, “ he says ominously, meaning Mendocino and Humboldt counties, the crown jewels of US marijuana production, “is not even one of the heaviest pockets.

    In 1995, foreign nationals, mostly Mexicans, began growing marijuana in Southern California mountains and parks. By ’97, grows had spread into every national park on the West Coast. In 2001, those grows expanded from California, Oregon, and Washington into Idaho, and now are spreading like a giant ink stain across the center of the country’s park and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands all the way to the East Coast.

    Says Pugh about the sheer volume of grows, “This is not a hippie thing.” He’s come prepared with a list of comparisons between a “hippie”grow and a DTO site—one maintained by a drug trafficking organization. A traditional garden on public lands, Pugh says, has one or two growers and fewer than fifty plants. The gardener, who lives locally, hikes in every other day or so, carrying water for his plants. Firearms are uncommon, and locations are predictable. “They’re within a quarter mile of a road,” Pugh explains, “and they’re rarely uphill. White guys are lazy.”

    The DTO sites, on the other hand, are as remote as the growers can get, often three miles from the nearest road. They contain an average of 6,600 plants, tended by an average of seven growers who live in tents the entire season, from May to October. The growers are aided by scanners, radios, night-vision goggles, an arsenal of weapons, and truckloads of plastic pipe to divert area streams to their plants, sometimes from as far as a half-mile away. When they abandon the site in the fall, they leave behind mountains of trash, about as much trash as a small city dump.
    What they bring in is just as bad. “They smuggle in pesticides from Mexico,” Pugh says, “more potent than you can buy here. And believe me, they don’t care about the creeks.” When Pugh describes growers mixing chemicals directly in the creek to pump onto their plants, a moan ripples through the audience.”

  • OMR,

    I missed this one! The environmental damage from outdoor grows like the one described can be almost as bad as that from diesels gone wrong.

    Thank you for posting this. I love getting help from you and other bloggers to keep on top of what is happening.

    • And we so appreciate your hosting all this good info on the subject!

    • Time Magazine on Decriminalization in Portugal: ‘”Judging by every metric, decriminalization in Portugal has been a resounding success,” says Glenn Greenwald, an attorney, author and fluent Portuguese speaker, who conducted the research. “It has enabled the Portuguese government to manage and control the drug problem far better than virtually every other Western country does.”‘

  • I’ve been reading up on the Portuguese “experiment” but I hadn’t seen that excellent article. To my mind, the Cato Institute’s study makes criminalizing drug use, criminal!

    Let’s legalize the use of drugs and work on dealing with the effects of drug use instead of pretending we can just say no and drug use will end!

  • Guerrilla in the Midst

    I couldn’t buy a decent bag in Portugal. I purchased ten grams of shake which was bunk. The Portuguese shake was similar to the Humboldt big leaf trash bags. I needed shake to roll the hash which I shouldn’t have purchased. Hash in Portugal—at least what tourists get sold as hash—is third-rate Moroccan export.

    I went to Spain the next week and the weed was phenomenal.

  • Ah, apparently legalization doesn’t bode well for the users! I wish you could have spoken to a grower there and figured out why the weed was so poor. I wonder if they just figured a tourist as not knowing any better or if even the locals get bad stuff?

  • Add this webMED article on the brain cancer fighting properties of cannibinoids to our list. “After receiving the THC, there was evidence of increased autophagy activity.”

  • suzy blah blah

    yeah! shout it from the rooftops. thanks omr.good research. btw, i will offer this for you to think whatever you want of –Suzys got intuitive knowledge that LSD is even better than the herb for fighting cancer.

  • “Marijuana is not a “gateway” drug that predicts or eventually leads to substance abuse, suggests a 12-year University of Pittsburgh study. Moreover, the study’s findings call into question the long-held belief that has shaped prevention efforts and governmental policy for six decades and caused many a parent to panic upon discovering a bag of pot in their child’s bedroom.” and
    While the gateway theory posits that each type of drug is associated with certain specific risk factors that cause the use of subsequent drugs, such as cigarettes or alcohol leading to marijuana, this study’s findings indicate that environmental aspects have stronger influence on which type of substance is used. That is, if it’s easier for a teen to get his hands on marijuana than beer, then he’ll be more likely to smoke pot. This evidence supports what’s known as the common liability model, an emerging theory that states the likelihood that someone will transition to the use of illegal drugs is determined not by the preceding use of a particular drug but instead by the user’s individual tendencies and environmental circumstances.”….

    Mark Morford has fun with topic in the Chronic(le) .

  • I already have my own private exposure to smoking pot, and no matter how oftentimes everyone assert “it’s very good in this” and “beneficial with regard to that”, Let me tell you that it close to damaged my life man! Look, I realize that there are folks who are able to simply up and stop smoking, however , there are numerous other people that definitely have the hardest time looking to quit smoking marijuana. The main trouble with being enslaved weed is usually that the addiction is a mental one, not really bodily.

  • Look, I realize that there are folks who are able to simply up and stop smoking, however , there are numerous other people that definitely have the hardest time looking to quit smoking marijuana.

    Some people have trouble stopping themselves from tearing their ear skin away with q-tips. It’s mostly a mental thing. That doesn’t mean I should be prevented from buying them for constructive purposes like cleaning bongs.

  • It must be a personal defect but an occasional snarky comment can make me grin until it hurts.

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