Cannabis News Protecting Patients Access to Medical Marijuana
  Court Rejects Bid To Have Marijuana Reclassified
Posted by CN Staff on January 22, 2013 at 13:36:43 PT
By Frederic J. Frommer, Associated Press 
Source: Associated Press 

medical Washington, D.C. -- A federal appeals court Tuesday rejected a petition to reclassify marijuana from its current federal status as a dangerous drug with no accepted medical use. The appeals court panel denied the bid from three medical marijuana groups, including Americans for Safe Access, and several individuals. In 2011, the Drug Enforcement Administration had rejected a petition by medical marijuana advocates to change the classification.

In his majority opinion Tuesday, Judge Harry T. Edwards wrote that the question wasn't whether marijuana could have some medical benefits, but rather whether the DEA's decision was "arbitrary and capricious." The court concluded that the DEA action survived a review under that standard.


The ruling came just months after Colorado and Washington legalized marijuana for recreational use. Last month, President Barack Obama said that federal authorities have "bigger fish to fry" than recreational drug users in those states

Edwards, an appointee of Democratic President Jimmy Carter, was joined by Judge Merrick B. Garland, an appointee of Democratic President Bill Clinton. The third judge on the panel, Karen LeCraft Henderson, an appointee of Republican President George H.W. Bush, wrote that none of the petitioners was in a legal position to challenge the government's stance and that the case should have been dismissed. The other two judges concluded that at least one of the people bringing the suit had standing to challenge the DEA's action.

In the federal system, marijuana is classified as a controlled substance, categorized as having a high potential for abuse and no currently accepted medical use, together with drugs like heroin, LSD and ecstasy.

The court noted that the DEA denied the petition after the Department of Health and Human Services gave the DEA its evaluation that marijuana lacks a currently accepted medical use in the United States.

"Because the agency's factual findings in this case are supported by substantial evidence and because those factual findings reasonably support the agency's final decision not to reschedule marijuana, we must uphold the agency action," the court ruled.

DEA regulations define "currently accepted medical use" to require, among other things, "adequate and well-controlled studies proving efficacy."

Americans for Safe Access cited more than 200 peer-reviewed published studies demonstrating marijuana's efficacy for various medical uses, including a 1999 study by the respected Institute of Medicine, a government adviser on health issues.

"The IOM report does indeed suggest that marijuana might have medical benefits," the court conceded. "However, the DEA fairly construed this report as calling for `more and better studies to determine potential medical applications of marijuana' and not as sufficient proof of medical efficacy itself."

Contrary to what Americans for Safe Access suggests, "something more than `peer-reviewed' studies is required to satisfy DEA's standard, and for good reason," the court said.

Those challenging the government "have not pointed to `adequate and well-controlled studies' confirming the efficacy of marijuana for medicinal uses," the court found.

Joe Elford, chief counsel with Americans for Safe Access, said that his group will likely file a petition for rehearing, and failing that, would seek a rehearing of the full appeals court. If that isn't successful, he said that the group would probably appeal to the Supreme Court.

Elford said that while he was disappointed by the ruling, he said it "lays the groundwork for future cases." He pointed to a line at the end of the opinion, which said that "adequate and well-controlled studies are wanting not because they have been foreclosed but because they have not been completed."

"I kind of take it as, `Come back to us when those studies are completed if they actually demonstrate medical efficacy,' " Elford said.

The DEA referred questions to the Justice Department, which did not respond.

Source: Associated Press (Wire)
Author: Frederic J. Frommer, Associated Press
Published: January 22, 2013
Copyright: 2013 The Associated Press

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Comment #19 posted by MikeEEEEE on January 23, 2013 at 17:04:16 PT
Had Enough
George Carlin was a great comedian and speaker. I enjoyed his openness and willingness to spread the truth.

I watch the corporate media to see what they're up to, but I know where it's coming from. I'm sure George was blacklisted (how dare the truth be told), along with Noam Chomsky, and other visionaries.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1593764278?ie=UTF8&force-full-site=1&ref_=aw_bottom_links



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Comment #18 posted by Had Enough on January 23, 2013 at 11:00:32 PT
Forgot to add the link to George Carlin’s stuff…

http://shoqvalue.com/george-carlin-on-the-american-dream-with-transcript

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Comment #17 posted by Had Enough on January 23, 2013 at 10:42:29 PT
George Carlin...comments on the American Dream...
There’s a reason. There’s a reason for this, there’s a reason education SUCKS, and it’s the same reason it will never, ever, EVER be fixed.

It’s never going to get any better, don’t look for it, be happy with what you’ve got

Because the owners, the owners of this country don't want that. I'm talking about the real owners now, the BIG owners! The Wealthy… the REAL owners! The big wealthy business interests that control things and make all the important decisions.

Forget the politicians. They are irrelevant. The politicians are put there to give you the idea that you have freedom of choice. You don't. You have no choice! You have OWNERS! They OWN YOU. They own everything. They own all the important land. They own and control the corporations. They’ve long since bought, and paid for the Senate, the Congress, the state houses, the city halls, they got the judges in their back pockets and they own all the big media companies, so they control just about all of the news and information you get to hear. They got you by the balls.

They spend billions of dollars every year lobbying, lobbying, to get what they want. Well, we know what they want. They want more for themselves and less for everybody else, but I'll tell you what they don’t want

They don’t want a population of citizens capable of critical thinking. They don’t want well informed, well educated people capable of critical thinking. They’re not interested in that. That doesn’t help them. Thats against their interests.

Thats right. They don’t want people who are smart enough to sit around a kitchen table and think about how badly they’re getting fucked by a system that threw them overboard 30 fucking years ago. They don’t want that!

You know what they want? They want obedient workers. Obedient workers, people who are just smart enough to run the machines and do the paperwork. And just dumb enough to passively accept all these increasingly shitty jobs with the lower pay, the longer hours, the reduced benefits, the end of overtime and vanishing pension that disappears the minute you go to collect it, and now they’re coming for your Social Security money. They want your retirement money. They want it back so they can give it to their criminal friends on Wall Street, and you know something? They’ll get it. They’ll get it all from you sooner or later cause they own this fucking place! It's a big club, and you ain’t in it! You, and I, are not in the big club.

By the way, it's the same big club they use to beat you over the head with all day long when they tell you what to believe. All day long beating you over the head with their media telling you what to believe, what to think and what to buy. The table has tilted folks. The game is rigged and nobody seems to notice. Nobody seems to care! Good honest hard-working people; white collar, blue collar it doesn’t matter what color shirt you have on. Good honest hard-working people continue, these are people of modest means, continue to elect these rich cock suckers who don’t give a fuck about you….they don’t give a fuck about you… they don’t give a FUCK about you.

They don’t care about you at all… at all… AT ALL. And nobody seems to notice. Nobody seems to care. Thats what the owners count on. The fact that Americans will probably remain willfully ignorant of the big red, white and blue dick thats being jammed up their assholes everyday, because the owners of this country know the truth.

It's called the American Dream,because you have to be asleep to believe it.

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Comment #16 posted by museman on January 23, 2013 at 08:09:59 PT
HW #2
"The game is rigged, get used to it. That's how Rocky designed it, plain and simple."

And its almost astonishing how many people still believe in it! How many still play even as their illusory bank accounts keep dwindling, their neighbors are dispossessed, and their children indebt themselves for life on the propaganda of 'academic achievement' or become debtors to the system for life.

But then we were never supposed to learn anything in school except how to be good slaves. Awakening and enlightenment, if not illegal is certainly not taught, and many of the tools of awakening like cannabis are made illegal. And Mainstream media caters to the stupid not the wise.

Bread and Games.

Rome never died.

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Comment #15 posted by FoM on January 23, 2013 at 07:59:10 PT
Had Enough
Thank you and I agree!

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Comment #14 posted by FoM on January 23, 2013 at 07:39:17 PT
MikeEEEEE
I have no problem with people making as much money as they are able but there is a Scripture that has always reminded me of the responsibility of wealth.

Luke 12:48: For unto whomever much is given, of him shall be much required

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Comment #13 posted by MikeEEEEE on January 23, 2013 at 07:02:52 PT
Culture Wars
There are several cultures fighting for power. A few I can think of right now: The west vs. the middle east (the main issues, I think, being religious and energy resources).

Cannabis vs. (alcohol, tobacco, pharma & industrial-prison complex).

Then there is one that is very unusual, the rich vs. middle class, makes me wonder, I'm not sure why the millions of dollars are not enough for the 1-2%. Perhaps they do it because they can? For instance, cutting social programs, stealing from the elderly is like a bully taking money from children, that is, praying on the weak.

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Comment #12 posted by FoM on January 23, 2013 at 05:50:01 PT
MikeEEEEE
It is way past time for Democrats to stand up to the Republicans. Democrats are so willing to work with Republicans that they forget to remember there is nothing more important to a Republican then to get Democrats out of power. We must stand up against them. It is now or never. We have 4 more years to get alot done. No time to waste.

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Comment #11 posted by MikeEEEEE on January 22, 2013 at 22:18:35 PT
picture
This picture sums up what the prohibitionists are about:: http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2013/01/22-9

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Comment #10 posted by Hope on January 22, 2013 at 21:16:32 PT
comments 7 and 8
I agree with both comments.

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Comment #9 posted by Hope on January 22, 2013 at 21:15:13 PT
There's a poll on this page.
Marijuana restrictions: Appeals court backs DEA, rejects pot advocates argument

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/01/22/16646527-marijuana-restrictions-appeals-court-backs-dea-rejects-pot-advocates-argument?lite

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Comment #8 posted by Had Enough on January 22, 2013 at 20:24:07 PT
Medical vs. Legal
Medical is not the way to go anymore…

Full out legalization from the states is what is going to do it…

We will get no help from the hemp people or the medical people as we have witnessed in the past…

But of course results from our efforts will benefit all of them…that’s okay…someone has to do this…and it might as well be us…we are obligated to mankind to do as such…we will pave the way for them…

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Comment #7 posted by FoM on January 22, 2013 at 18:34:12 PT
My Thoughts
We have moved beyond this issue. I think moving towards legalization is the way we should go. The price will drop then money will stop being a big part of reform. Colorado and Washington State could be the change we need to finally get this done. Big Pharma will get involved in the medical issue so we best move on now.

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Comment #6 posted by Hope on January 22, 2013 at 17:34:35 PT
The dissenting judge...
Marijuana restrictions: Appeals court backs DEA, rejects pot advocates argument

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/01/22/16646527-marijuana-restrictions-appeals-court-backs-dea-rejects-pot-advocates-argument?lite

The dissenting judge, Karen LeCraft Henderson, expressed no view on whether marijuana has medical benefits. Instead, she said the court should have dismissed the case on the grounds that none of those filing the lawsuit had legal authority to bring the case to court in the first place.

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Comment #4 posted by Hope on January 22, 2013 at 17:13:38 PT
This is so disappointing.
But hardly surprising.

It's what the gadflies of prohibition do. It's what they've always done.

In this case, they are just protecting the DEA and it's agents. It has nothing to do with cannabis. They even said so. It's whether the DEA was "Arbitrary" or "Capricious".

Of course they were. But no court is going to say so because it would open the gates of lawsuit hell on the government.

So it's got apparently got to be changed in a way that they can call "New" and "Previously unknown" and all sorts of arbitrary and capricious carrying on done to protect the government agencies from any sort of blame or responsibility for causing harm. Which they have and are causing, of course. But a really fantastic, capricious, and completely arbitrary plan must be found to divert responsibility from the ones that are actually responsible for it... somehow.

They should blame the DEA and shut it down and start over from a saner place.

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Comment #3 posted by schmeff on January 22, 2013 at 16:42:53 PT
HempWorld
Used to be that the ol' "Catch 22" worked well enough, because Uncle Sam controlled the only 'legit' source of swag (cannabis grown by the U. of Miss.) that was available for research.

Perhaps I'm too optimistic, but I think that may no longer be the case.

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Comment #2 posted by HempWorld on January 22, 2013 at 15:30:25 PT
The Good Old Catch-22!
Can't do the research so you can't prove efficacy. Period!

Never mind, the federal compassionate use program, which alone, should have proven medical efficacy. (ask Elvy Mussaka, who would have been blind without it)

Never mind GW Pharma who has proven beyond any doubt that cannabis or cannabinoids have medical use.

Never mind, history and the non-existence of deaths attributed to cannabis for about 10,000 Years.

The game is rigged, get used to it. That's how Rocky designed it, plain and simple.

Marijuana/cannabis will remain illegal for a long, long time. Will CO and WA change things? DEA will just hire more people and take it all down, gestapo/nazi style, that's the tactic followed for medical marijuana.

In Santa Barbara, where I have friends, all the city sanctioned dispensaries were closed by the DEA, only to remain closed to date. SB city had a very, very stringent program and a limit of 4 shops for the whole city. DEA took them down anyway, so much for democracy. SB city alone has spent millions in city workers salaries to get everything set up. Many, many meetings were held with advocates city council and the police sitting in, as if they had any reason to be there. All of this in vain and wasted.

Way to go USA!

The only hope is the vote every 2-4 years, at this pace it will take 10-20 years...

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Comment #1 posted by Relfving on January 22, 2013 at 14:43:00 PT:

Very Upset at This Ruling
Damn it! I have been waiting a long time to hear the results of this court case. I was hoping it would be positive and reclassify cannabis to its rightful place. It is in no way equal to heroin or LSD, etc. It is a safe medical herb that has been used over 5,000 years for healing. i hope they have a successful appeal. Many studies have been done by experts saying that it is safe. President Jimmy Carter made a good statement about cannabis.

Obama in his inauguration speech stated that we must control global warming. Evidence of this is in the NASA photograph of nearly all the ice melting on Greenland. Also the north pole has most of it's ice melted. Hemp ethanol is the answer to a pollution free source of fuel. It can be sold for as cheap as 50 cents a gallon. Washington and Colorado aught to get into this.

I used to be an amateur astronomer in the 1960s. You could easily see the Milly Way. Now a days it impossible with all the pollution everywhere. I want to be able to see it again. It is beautiful. You have to go to the high mountains away from the cities to see it. To the degree to which pollution reaches in highly polluted cities, it is harmful to your health.

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