NORML's Weekly News Bulletin -- March 20, 2003

  NORML's Weekly News Bulletin -- March 20, 2003

Posted by CN Staff on March 21, 2003 at 09:01:42 PT
Press Release 
Source: NORML 

 Dutch Government Legalizes Prescription Pot -- Pharmacies Allowed To Distribute Medical Cannabis -- Government To License Prescription Pot GrowersThe Hague, the Netherlands: Pharmacies may now legally stock and supply medicinal cannabis for patients who have a doctor's prescription, as a result of new federal regulations that went into effect Monday. The law change makes the Netherlands the first nation to formally regulate the use of medicinal marijuana in the same manner as it does other prescription drugs.
NORML Foundation Executive Director Allen St. Pierre applauded the policy change. "If we are to hold cannabis up to the same standards of safety and efficacy that we hold other drugs, then the Dutch government's decision to regulate it is long overdue," he said. "Unfortunately in the US, our government refuses to acknowledge marijuana's relative safety or medical utility thus forcing patients to go to the black market and risk arrest to obtain the medicine they need. Clearly, the Dutch model is a safer, efficient and more compassionate alternative."Under the new law, Dutch health officials will license medicinal marijuana cultivators to supply medical-grade cannabis to pharmacies. Licensing will be overseen by the Netherlands' Office of Medicinal Cannabis (BMC) of the Health Ministry and may begin as early as next month. The BMC was established in 2000 to study and regulate the use of medical marijuana.The new regulations also allow Dutch health insurance companies to reimburse patients' cost for medical marijuana.Dutch Ministry of Health spokesman Bas Kuik told the Associated Press that the legal change would ensure that patients have consistent access to medicinal quality cannabis. "Doctors are prescribing marijuana to their patients anyway, and there are many medicinal users, so we may as well regulate it," he said.Similar regulations enacted in Canada in 2001 allow for the state to distribute medical marijuana to qualified patients, but to date Health Canada has not allowed any of its harvested cannabis to be available to the public.For more information, please contact either Allen St. Pierre or Paul Armentano of the NORML Foundation at (202) 483-8751.March 20, 2003 - The Hague, NetherlandsDL: Now Legal in Dutch Pharmacies House Approves Amended Medical Marijuana Defense MeasureMarch 20, 2003 - Annapolis, MD, USAAnnapolis, MD: Maryland Delegates voted 73-62 Wednesday in favor of amended legislation to allow medicinal marijuana patients to raise an "affirmative defense of medical necessity" at trial.House Bill 702 does not legalize the use or cultivation of medical marijuana by qualified patients. Rather, the law only requires the court to consider a patient's use of medical marijuana to be a mitigating factor in marijuana-related state prosecutions. If the patient successfully makes the case at trial that his or her use of marijuana is one of medical necessity, then the maximum penalty allowed by law would be a $100.00 fine.Similar legislation passed the Maryland House last year but stalled in the Senate.NORML Executive Director Keith Stroup said that the amended measure falls short of laws enacted in eight other states legalizing the use of medicinal pot by qualified patients, but noted that it still "represents a relaxation of existing Maryland criminal law, which imposes a maximum penalty of one year in jail and a $1000.00 for marijuana possession, regardless of the circumstances."For more information, please contact either Keith Stroup or Paul Armentano of NORML at (202) 483-5500. For detailed information on additional pending legislation, or to send letters in support of this legislation, please visit: Panel OKs Marijuana Measure Approves Medical Marijuana Bill Marijuana Advances in Md. House Marijuana Bill Advances in House Canada's Most Prominent Advocate For Legalizing Marijuana To Speak At NORML ConferenceMarch 20, 2003 - Washington, DC, USAWashington, DC: Canadian Senator Pierre Claude Nolin, the nation's top advocate for regulating the use and sale of marijuana, will be a featured speaker at this year's national NORML conference in San Francisco. Nolin is Chair of the Senate Special Committee on Illegal Drugs, which issued a groundbreaking report last September calling on Parliament to legalize the regulated use, possession, and distribution of marijuana for citizens 16 years of age and older."The continued prohibition of cannabis jeopardizes the health and well-being of Canadians much more than does the substance itself or the regulated marketing of the substance," Nolin concluded in the Committee's report. Following that report, Canadian Justice Minister Martin Cauchon announced that Parliament would remove criminal penalties on the possession of small amounts of marijuana for personal use.This year's NORML conference, entitled "Back to Basics: Stop Arresting Marijuana Smokers," will be held from April 17-19, 2003 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel. Nolin will speak on Friday, April 18, at 11:35.Additional featured speakers at this year's conference include former NFL star and Texas NORML President Mark Stepnoski; actor and director Dan Stern; ACLU President Nadine Strossen; syndicated columnist and best-selling author Dan Savage, travel writer and television host Rick Steves; and documentary filmmaker Ron Mann, among others.This year's conference will also feature a special fourth day on Sunday, April 20, that will feature workshops on campus/activist training techniques.Conference agenda, speakers list, and registration information is available online at: or call Kris Krane at (202) 483-5500 for more information. Rooms are going fast for this year's conference, and NORML's initial room-block at the hotel is now sold out. The Hyatt Regency will continue to offer attendees rooms at the special discounted rate until the hotel is full.DL:'s Eco-Doc Wows Festival Now Advocating Marijuana Legalization Grass: Ron Mann Chronicles Pot Prohibition Senate Report on Cannabis: Get Whole Story NORML Foundation (DC)Published: March 20, 2003Copyright: 2003 NORML Contact: norml Website:'s Weekly News Bulletin -- March 13, 2003's Weekly News Bulletin -- March 06, 2003

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Comment #20 posted by FoM on March 23, 2003 at 20:16:02 PT

freedom fighter 
I'll remove the link. It was the soldiers who were killed today. Now it's porno. Weird. I'll fix it. Thanks!
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Comment #19 posted by freedom fighter on March 23, 2003 at 20:10:22 PT

Hey FoM Nicholas
What's wrong with the link...?? The one Nicholas points out to a weird site...
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Comment #18 posted by FoM on March 23, 2003 at 16:34:42 PT

I looked at the pictures. My heart goes out to the families. War is cruel and this one is really wrong. I hope we as a nation can recover from this but I'm really not sure if we can. 
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Comment #17 posted by FoM on March 23, 2003 at 13:18:21 PT

I didn't see the pictures on tv and will look at them now. I feel so bad for all those who will die because of this war. I'm very sad.
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Comment #15 posted by FoM on March 22, 2003 at 16:01:07 PT

Pictures of Iraq
I saw that CNN used Digital Globe and went and found these pictures on their site. They aren't current. Thought some of you might find them interesting too.
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Comment #14 posted by FoM on March 22, 2003 at 13:43:06 PT

Pictures from New York
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Comment #13 posted by FoM on March 22, 2003 at 09:50:41 PT

I read your question yesterday and thought it was a good question but I don't have an answer. I found this article on Counter Punch by Ann Harrison who covered Ed Rosenthal's trial with great detail and thought this would be interesting to read. "I'd Like to Report a Revolution"The Battle In San FranciscoBy Ann HarrisonMarch 22, 2003Over 1,400 demonstrators were arrested on the streets of San Francisco yesterday, and protests condemning the U.S. military action in Iraq continue to rage across the city Friday. Thursday's protest was a turning point for San Francisco's anti-war demonstrators, who expressed far greater anger and encountered heavier police resistance than any past anti-war protests in recent memory. Amid wailing sirens and hovering helicopters, activists marched through the financial district, massed in front of City Hall, chained themselves together at intersections, shut down the San Francisco Federal Building and stormed the Bay Bridge. More than 100 people were arrested after surrounding the entrance to the Bechtel Corporation, a prominent defense contractor. ''No business as usual, walkouts and refusal chanted one crowd.'' Complete Article:
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Comment #12 posted by FoM on March 21, 2003 at 20:13:03 PT

That is so very true. I find the history of civilization very interesting even though I really don't know much. The United States is a young nation. They are the cradle of civilization. 
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Comment #11 posted by afterburner on March 21, 2003 at 19:53:33 PT:

Can't See the Borders for the Trees.
Funny thing, how you can cross the Atlantic Ocean or the Medicine Line and suddenly a medical plant mysteriously loses its power? What's up with that? And yet, when the truly needy sick try it, the magic power returns. It's enough to make a Drug Czar's head spin. Wake up Congress: do your duty!ego destruction or ego transcendence, that is the question.
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Comment #10 posted by FoM on March 21, 2003 at 19:22:21 PT

Interesting History 
I know we seem to be talking about Iraq on this thread and I thought I'd go find some history of the country. Iraq History from Noah to PresentThe Cradle of Civilization :
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Comment #9 posted by Sandino on March 21, 2003 at 17:25:03 PT:

A Reckless Path: Will Bush Be Impeached?
THE WASHINGTON POSTA Reckless Path: Will Bush Be Impeached?A very interesting article that can be found at:
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Comment #8 posted by sandino on March 21, 2003 at 15:25:27 PT:

IMPEACH shrubyatollah
I have learned that Congressman John Conyers is taking an e-mail poll to see if people would support a resolution to IMPEACH pResident Bush for an illegal war. Please send your comments to him at:john.conyers
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Comment #7 posted by Nuevo Mexican on March 21, 2003 at 13:04:48 PT

Shock and Awe: brought to you by Rumsfeld!
Any good cannabis news will be buried by war, but it will be good news, as war is somewhat of a cover for cannabis reforms, unintentionally, but true nevertheless! Here is a number for Veterans for Peace, your husband might be interested: 1-314-725-6005, he can find enlightened activists who have suffered from serving the U.S. and have been denied or given limited access to health care, etc.
Here is a picture of yours truly, Dick Cheney, cannabis/anti-war activist at a rally yesterday before marching on the architect of global destructions homes, Donny Rumsfeld, war criminal at large:
(nixon, powell and bush join him in asking forgiveness)
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Comment #6 posted by BigDawg on March 21, 2003 at 12:21:37 PT

Thank You Virgil
for posting that definition of Facism.IMHO, you are right. All the logical arguments in the world have been useless simply because the corporate interests are in control.My question is, how do we go about changing this short of another bloody revolution?
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Comment #5 posted by Virgil on March 21, 2003 at 11:52:45 PT

FDR defines fascism and yes we are a fascist...
country. From"The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than their democratic State itself. That, in its essence, is Fascism — ownership of government by an individual, by a group or by any controlling private power." -FDR I found quote tracing down a video of Busch gleefully expressing his satisfaction on announcing the bombing of Iraq was going to start while getting a haircut on Wednesday before his big announcement. The link is in this article at This was broadcast by the BBC and of course the misadministration has promised retaliation. The homepage announces proudly that it has an 800 page report concerning 9/11. I advance this link as an alternative to the controlled media. I cannot get the video to verify the link copy correctly, probably becauseof a busy server but at some time you may want to try this link and watch the video- would like to be serious and declare I do not say we have a fascist state just to say, I say it because I do not believe anyone can understand the current situation without understanding that we do have a fascist government. I think that this definition by FDR is necessary in coming to that understanding. Fascism sponsors cannabis prohibition over the interest of society and the freedom of the individual. That is really the way I see it and I take it now as reality and people that do not accept that reality I see as living in a world of fantasy. That is why reasoning does not matter or the issue of freedom is not relevant to cannabis prohibition. The USA is a fascist country that represents the financial interest of the plutocracy with disregard to everything else. That is why the treason that is cannabis prohibition can only exist with the corruption of the laws and the courts. Cannabis prohibition will last as long as that corruption last despite all reason or pragmatism. Just how else could anyone suggest the most nutricous of all foods should be made illegal? How could you explain it is not discussed in the media and how else could you tolerate a court system that cannot rule in a year and a half on the stupidity of it all?
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Comment #4 posted by Nicholas Thimmesch on March 21, 2003 at 11:51:49 PT:

Even the great U.S. General George Patton.........
........had compassion for the "enemy": have the finest food, equipment, the best spirit and men. I pity those poor bastards we're going against--by God, I do.
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on March 21, 2003 at 09:38:29 PT

Thanks Nicholas
I just love people so darn much that it makes me so sad when people get hurt and die. I think you know that about me by now. God Bless America and The Whole World!
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Comment #2 posted by Nicholas Thimmesch on March 21, 2003 at 09:34:41 PT:

Yes, yes.........
............war is bad: but this is good, too: U.S. Marines Rip Down Saddam Portraits 2 hours, 42 minutes ago By ELLEN KNICKMEYER, Associated Press Writer SAFWAN, Iraq - U.S. Marines hauled down giant street portraits of Saddam Hussein (news - web sites) in a screeching pop of metal and bolts Friday, telling nervous residents of this southern Iraqi town that "Saddam is done." Milling crowds of men and boys watched as the Marines attached ropes on the front of their Jeeps to one portrait and then backed up, peeling the Iraqi leader's black-and-white metal image off a frame. Some locals briefly joined Maj. David "Bull" Gurfein in a new cheer. "Iraqis! Iraqis! Iraqis!" Gurfein yelled, pumping his fist in the air. "We wanted to send a message that Saddam is done," said Gurfein, a New York native in the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force. "People are scared to show a lot of emotion. That's why we wanted to show them this time we're here, and Saddam is done." The Marines arrived in Safwan, just across the Kuwait border, after Cobra attack helicopters, attack jets, tanks, 155 mm howitzers and sharpshooters cleared the way along Route 80, the main road into Iraq (news - web sites). Safwan, 375 miles south of Baghdad, is a poor, dirty, wrecked town pocked by shrapnel from the last Gulf war (news - web sites). Iraqi forces in the area sporadically fired mortars and guns for hours Thursday and Friday. Most townspeople hid, although residents brought forth a wounded little girl, her palm bleeding after the new fighting. Another man said his wife was shot in the leg by the Americans. A few men and boys ventured out, putting makeshift white flags on their pickup trucks or waving white T-shirts out truck windows. "Americans very good," Ali Khemy said. "Iraq wants to be free." Some chanted, "Ameriki! Ameriki!" Many others in the starving town just patted their stomachs and raised their hands, begging for food. A man identifying himself only as Abdullah welcomed the arrival of the U.S. troops: "Saddam Hussein is no good. Saddam Hussein a butcher." An old woman shrouded in black — one of the very few women outside — knelt toward the feet of Americans, embracing an American woman. A younger man with her pulled her away, giving her a warning sign by sliding his finger across his throat. In 1991, hundreds of thousands of Iraqis died after prematurely celebrating what they believed was their liberation from Saddam after the Gulf War. Some even pulled down a few pictures of Saddam then — only to be killed by Iraqi forces. Gurfein playfully traded pats with a disabled man and turned down a dinner invitation from townspeople. "Friend, friend," he told them in Arabic learned in the first Gulf War. "We stopped in Kuwait that time," he said. "We were all ready to come up there then, and we never did." The townspeople seemed grateful this time. "No Saddam Hussein!" one young man in headscarf told Gurfein. "Bush!" ............and so is this:Eyewitnesses Report Seeing Wounded Saddam Being Carried From Compound Fri Mar 21 2003 10:32:01 ETIntelligence sources now say there were eyewitnesses at the scene where Saddam Hussein's complex was bombed on the first night, ABC reported Friday morning.John McWethy, ABC's national security correspondent, said on air: "Those eyewitnesses say that they saw Saddam Hussein being taken from the wreckage on a hospital gurney, that he had an oxygen mask over his face. In addition, intelligence sources say that there is a lack of communication between Saddam Hussein's office and his main commands and the rest of his government. "They are interpreting that as meaning that there is some problem with his health. So they are optimistic that something has happened to the leader of Iraq, but they are still extremely cautious about what his condition is."
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on March 21, 2003 at 09:26:01 PT

Off Topic : Shock and Awe Begins
I feel so bad and I'm praying for all those who will suffer and die today. 
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