cannabisnews.com: Medical Marijuana Bill Stirs Debate 





Medical Marijuana Bill Stirs Debate 
Posted by CN Staff on March 27, 2007 at 05:36:25 PT
By Shawn Vestal, Staff Writer
Source: Spokesman-Review 
Olympia, WA --  In 1998, Washington voters approved an initiative allowing seriously ill patients to use marijuana.But nine years later, lawmakers are still working out the details. How much marijuana is allowed? Where are patients supposed to get it? And what is their doctors' role in all this, given that the federal government still considers marijuana an illegal drug?
A bill that attempts to address some of those questions attracted a demonstration and standing-room-only crowd Monday for a hearing before the House Health Care and Wellness Committee. Patients lined up on both sides of the measure, with supporters saying it's important to clarify an ambiguous law. Critics urged lawmakers to block the bill, in part because of a provision that directs the state Department of Health to determine how much marijuana constitutes the "60-day supply" deemed legal for patients under the law. "That's up to my doctor and myself," said Steve Sarich, executive director of CannaCare, a group that advocates on behalf of medical marijuana patients. "How can the Department of Health decide how much medication I need?"Supporters of the bill, Senate Bill 6032, said having the state define a 60-day supply would give patients and law enforcement officers some guidelines, and patients could petition to be allowed to have more. "My intent here is to have some clarification made to the statute, because there are some ambiguities that have made things difficult for patients," said Jeanne Kohl-Welles, D-Seattle.The bill passed the Senate. In addition to asking the Department of Health to define a 60-day supply, the measure would allow police to take a sample  rather than a patient's entire supply  to determine whether the person is, indeed, a legal user of the drug. It would also add some diseases, such as Crohn's disease and hepatitis C, to the list of afflictions that can be treated with marijuana.Earlier versions of the bill also included provisions that allowed for marijuana growing co-operatives and protected health care providers from criminal and civil penalties. The elimination of those provisions angered critics, who say that medical marijuana patients in Washington are routinely prosecuted unfairly."There is nothing in this bill that protects us from that happening," said Sarich, who told the committee a "rogue drug task force" had seized his own plants and other possessions 12 weeks ago.Sarich said his doctor considers 24 dry ounces a two-month supply; another opponent of the measure told lawmakers one researcher has estimated that, depending on the patient, a 60-day supply could range between 8 and 40 ounces.Patients eat or sometimes smoke the drug to help offset nausea, improve appetite and reduce pain for a variety of symptoms.The ACLU of Washington supports the bill, saying it will help clarify some legal questions in the law, even though it had also backed the idea of allowing growing co-ops. Doug Honig, of the ACLU, said that by having the state determine how much marijuana constitutes a baseline supply, doctors won't be placed in the position of needing to make that decision  which could take them precariously close to "prescribing" the drug.As it stands now, doctors may simply write a letter stating that their patient would benefit from marijuana, not provide the drug."We think the bill as it stands now is a useful one," Honig said Monday.Another supporter of the proposal described it this way: "No steps backwards. A few small steps forward."Note: Supporters argue measure clarifies hazy '98 initiative.Source: Spokesman-Review (Spokane, WA)Author: Shawn Vestal, Staff WriterPublished: March 27, 2007Copyright: 2007 The Spokesman-ReviewContact: editor spokesman.comWebsite: http://www.spokesmanreview.com/Related Articles & Web Site:ACLUhttp://www.aclu.org/ACLU, Some Patients at Odds Over WA Measurehttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread22807.shtmlSenate Bill Seeks To Clarify Medical Marijuana Lawhttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread22792.shtmlSenate OKs Revamping Medical Marijuana Rules http://cannabisnews.com/news/thread22752.shtml 
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Comment #10 posted by FoM on April 05, 2007 at 08:31:29 PT
Steve Sarich 
I'll just not post anything about what is going on in your state. I really don't know anyone who follows it on Cnews. It's best to just leave it alone in my opinion. 
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Comment #9 posted by Steve Sarich on April 05, 2007 at 08:20:31 PT:
Your call...
That's certainly your call. No big thing to me one way or the other. Anti-flaming rules should cover this anyway, right? Anyway...I won't presume to tell you how to do your job:-) 
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on April 05, 2007 at 07:20:43 PT
Steve Sarich
I guess I shouldn't post it then because your name is in the article. 
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Comment #7 posted by Steve Sarich on April 05, 2007 at 07:18:42 PT:
Newspaper article
As long as my name isn't mentioned in the article, you're probably safe :-) Steve Sarich
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on April 05, 2007 at 06:15:23 PT
Steve Sarich
I don't believe in flaming people and this is what has happened. I have an article to post about Washington State but I'm afraid to post it because the flaming could start again. The hardest part of doing CNews for me is moderating so maybe I won't post the article so it won't won't start again.
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Comment #5 posted by Steve Sarich on April 05, 2007 at 05:51:03 PT:
John Worthington
I just received a few emails letting me know that John Worthington is off his meds again and is back to tilting at windmills. John needs a little Don Quixote logo for his website.I frankly have no idea why John goes off on me every now and then. I won't even give John the satisfaction of trying to answer his many wild claims about CannaCare or me personally. If anyone has followed the story of the raid on CannaCare, or the work we do for patients here in Washington, and still believes that I'm a federal agent, or whatever hair-brained claim John is making this week, you should probably take up alien watching...along with John.John Worthington does not represent a single patient in the state of Washington. There is not a Washington based patient organization that will have anything to do with John Worthington. I can't think of anyone he hasn't attacked. Since no one will have anything to do with him anymore, he's sure that everyone is out to get him and it's some sort of diabolical conspiracy. Frankly, he doesn't work or do anything productive with his time and I think he's just got nothing better to do than attack me and nearly everyone else involved with medical marijuana in Washington State.I won't respond to obviously wild rumors or slanderous personal attacks from John Worthington. His reputation for these crazy conspiracy theories is well documented all over the internet.
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Comment #4 posted by publicbulldog on April 03, 2007 at 15:08:44 PT:
Cannacare
Medical Marijuana presents a difficult problem for Federal law enforcement.
12 State 's have legalized medical marijuana to be used.
How does the Federal Government find these Medical marijuana patients?
After All the US Congress would not approve and fund an operation to find all of these people.
This Article uses fact to identify what methods Federal law enforcement is using to enforce federal medical marijuana laws over State medical marijuana laws in State's that have legalized medical marijuana.One way the Federal Government has found it can find Medical marijuana cases is to use multi jurisdictional drug task forces.
multi jurisdictional drug task forces that are paid for mostly by the States that have legalized medical marijuana.
These task forces do not enforce the will of the people,and enable the minority to trump the wishes of the majority by using the excuse that it is still illegally federally,to enforce Federal law over State law.
This breaks half a dozen State laws but the victims usually coerced into a "prejudiced" plea bargain due to the threat of Federal minimum sentence guidelines.
Most people think that it is the Federal government is the one doing the dirty work.
Most people are shocked to find out that almost all of the medical marijuana cases are intiated by local law enforcement in the States that have legalized medical marijuana.
A closer look reveals how the States that have legalized medical marijuana are bribed into breaking their own laws with Federal grants.
These drug free community grants number about a half dozen.The States that have legalized medical marijuana ,like mine,The State of Washington has become dependant on these grants.
The Federal Government bribes the State with Federal grants to comply with Federal laws.
In Washington State for example, CTED or Community Trade and Ecomnomic development
employs thousands of people.
In fact CTED'S very exsistance depends on those Federal grants,so Federal compliance no matter how illegal it is for Washington State to break its own laws to comply with Federal laws,CTED will in fact comply with Federal laws..
10,000 State government service union jobs outweigh the compassion of medical marijuana patients,so broken State laws don't mean a thing as far as CTED is concerned..
Another way for Federal agencies to flush out Medical marijuana patients is with Agents provacatuers.
One such Club Cannacare, helps round up patients by breaking the law ,and keeping Medical records and patient data on site for Law enforcement to confiscate.
This group is a creation of Norml and the mpp(marijuana policy project).
Also elements of the ASA are involved.
The persons leading the Way in this effort is Doug Hiatt and Steve Sarich.
They started out working out a deal with the THC clinic to help round up patients to build a data base of Patients for Federal agencies to round up.
The THC clinic kicked them out,then this group branched out into signing their own authorizations with the help of a Navy Doctor.
Meanwhile Steve Sarich grew 1500 plants while he had a caregiver,nad was predictably caught,and the records of 200 people just happened to be at the scene of the crime.
This was planned.
This was planned since 2005,and excecuted in January of 2007.
This group is laden with ex-military,and federally indicted persons to help prop up this group to achieve Federal agenda's and round up known medical marijuana patients.
I have proof of this as my medical records were seized at Cannacare,when the Multi jurisdictional drug task force predictibly came down on them.
I am writing this article to make medical marijuana patients aware of what they are up against.
I have extensive proof to back up what I have written.
Do not trust an organization that hands out cuttings from the same place that a Doctor signs authorizations,and where your records will be stored.
Your medical information will end up in a Federal data base.
This group does what the Congress does not and will not pay for.
Investigating Medical marijuana patients in States that have legalized medical marijuana.
They help identify Medical marijuana patients so the feds can work from a list.
200 people are already on that list including myself.
Beware stay awy from Doug Hiatt,Stay away from Steve Sarich.
trust me..You can
John Worthington
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Comment #3 posted by publicbulldog on April 02, 2007 at 23:02:09 PT:
Cannacare does not represent all medical marijuana
Just the ex servicemen ex cops ex navy ,and the federally indicted are who he represents.
The average patient just wants to be left alone.
Steve's job is to round them all up and identify them while he has a caregiver and grows 1500 plants.
Don tforget to tell the press in your press release that you had a care giver you liar.
The Feds pitch man wants to make our laws fed friendly.
He hates oregons law because the feds can't operate in Oregon.
His arrest was a promotional operation to get his name in the media to get exposure to help promote fed friendly laws.
Sarich and Hiatt have been planning this since 2005.
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Comment #2 posted by publicbulldog on April 02, 2007 at 14:05:11 PT:
stay away from cannacare
Do not get an medical marijuana authorization
from Cannacare.
Your records are not safe.
Steve Sarich had a caregiver and still not get arrested.
Storing records at the same location is not safe .
Your information will be compromised.
He lies like a rug.
He represnts danger. avoid.. beware...
It is a trap.
The world does not have a bigger lier than Steve Sarich
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Comment #1 posted by dongenero on March 27, 2007 at 08:58:28 PT
OT - Herbal extract extends heart patients' lives:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070327/hl_nm/heart_herbal_study_dc_1Imagine that! Extract from a crude plant source has medicinal benefit!
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