NORML's Weekly News Bulletin -- May 12, 2005

NORML's Weekly News Bulletin -- May 12, 2005
Posted by CN Staff on May 12, 2005 at 14:45:04 PT
Weekly Press Release
Source: NORML
No Criminal Record For Pot Say Majority Of Canadians, AmericansMay 12, 2005 - Washington, DC, USAWashington, DC: Nearly six out of ten American and Canadians support liberalizing penalties for the personal use of marijuana, according to an Ipsos-Reid poll conducted for the Canada Institute at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC.
One thousand Americans and 1,000 Canadians responded to the poll. Among Canadians, 59 percent of respondents disagreed with the statement, "The conviction of possession of marijuana should always result in a criminal record." Fifty-seven percent of Americans disagreed with the statement.A previous poll of US attitudes toward marijuana laws performed by Time Magazine and CNN found that an even greater number of Americans disagree with the notion that an adult should serve jail time for the personal use of cannabis. That poll noted that 72 percent of Americans support fines, but no jail time, for adults who use cannabis recreationally."There is a consensus among the North American public that the government's war on marijuana is misguided, ineffective and unnecessarily punitive," said NORML Executive Director Allen St. Pierre. "The public recognizes that adults who smoke marijuana responsibly are not criminals and they do not want to spend our nation's limited police resources arresting and jailing them and saddling them with a criminal record."For more information, please contact Allen St. Pierre, NORML Executive Director, at (202) 483-5500. A synopsis of previous nationwide and state polling data is available on NORML's website at: Czar's Office A "Federal Wasteland" That Fails To Show Results, Study SaysMay 12, 2005 - Washington, DC, USAONDCP's Anti-Drug Ads, State Lobbying Efforts Cited As Grossly Inappropriate And IneffectiveWashington, DC: The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) has wasted more than $4 billion since fiscal year 1997 on ineffective media advertising, inappropriate efforts to influence state legislation, and deficient anti-drug trafficking programs, according to a report released this week by the non-partisan Washington, DC think-tank Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW)."The White House [ONDCP] has morphed into a federal wasteland, throwing taxpayer money toward numerous high-priced drug control programs that have failed to show results," the report concludes.The report cites the office's $2 billion National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign as one of the agency's most egregious programs, calling it "an utter failure ... [that] violated federal propaganda laws, did not reduce drug use amongst America's youth, and produced no significant results."Other independent reviews of the Campaign, including those conducted by the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, have issued similar criticisms, noting that it failed to achieve "its major objective of affecting youth marijuana use, and [it] even showed some evidence of an unfavorable delayed effect ... on youth."The CAGW study also criticizes the Drug Czar's office for spending taxpayers' dollars to campaign against proposed state legislation to liberalize the medical use of cannabis. The report notes that ONDCP officials lobbied in person against several statewide legislative efforts and spent nearly $100 million to run anti-marijuana advertisements aimed at influencing voters to reject state ballot initiatives."The office continues to waste federal resources to influence the outcome of state ballot initiatives, acting like Big Brother and infringing upon states' rights," it states. "The White House's drug office should use its resources to root out major drug operations in the US instead of creating propaganda-filled news videos and flying across the country on the taxpayers' dime."NORML Executive Director Allen St. Pierre added, "With the White House Office of Management and Budget recently rating the Drug Enforcement Administration a 'zero' in the category of 'results/accountability,' and a conservative watchdog group now calling the ONDCP a 'federal wasteland' of inefficiency, isn't about time for Congress to reevaluate the drug war and, specifically, the Administration's costly and ineffective war on cannabis?"For more information, please contact Allen St. Pierre, NORML Executive Director, at (202) 483-5500. Full text of the Citizens Against Government Waste report, "Up In Smoke: ONDCP's Wasted Efforts In the War on Drugs," is available online at: Patients Report Subjective Relief from Cannabis, Study SaysMay 12, 2005 - London, United KingdomLondon, United Kingdom: Nearly one third of HIV-positive individuals report using cannabis to obtain therapeutic relief, and more than 90 percent of them say that it improves their appetite, muscle pain, and other symptoms, according to the results of an anonymous cross-sectional questionnaire study published in the April issue of the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management.Of the 523 patients who participated in the study, 143 (27 percent) reported using cannabis for symptom management, including improved appetite (97 percent), muscle pain (94 percent), nausea (93 percent), anxiety (93 percent) and nerve pain (90 percent).A previous survey of HIV patients in the US found that approximately one in four had reported using medicinal cannabis in the past month, while a similar Canadian survey found that 29 percent of HIV-positive patients used cannabis.Presently, clinical trials examining the therapeutic potential of cannabinoids in HIV patient populations are ongoing at the University of California Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research.According to a published study in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine, use of inhaled marijuana demonstrates "no major, short-term harmful effects and possibly some beneficial effects ... in HIV-infected patients taking protease inhibitors."For more information, please contact Paul Armentano, NORML Senior Policy Analyst, at (202) 483-5500. Full text of the study, "Cannabis use in HIV for pain and other medical symptoms," appears in the April issue of the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management.DL: NORML Foundation (DC)Published: May 12, 2005Copyright: 2005 NORML Contact: norml Website: NORML Archives
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on May 16, 2005 at 15:47:26 PT
NORML Alert: Tell CA Legislature to Oppose SB 797
Tell CA Legislature to Oppose SB 797 - Increased Fine for MJ Take Action Now! California legislature is considering a bill that would increase the fine for possession of one oz. or less of marijuana from $100 to $250 ( In practice, defendants are often assessed an additional $173 in court expenses, so the real fine would effectively rise to $423). The bill, SB 797 by Sen. Gloria Romero (D-LA), would also make first-time possession offenses a "woblet," meaning that the offense could be optionally charged as an infraction instead of a misdemeanor at the state's discretion.Supporters are urged to call on the legislature to oppose SB 797 by visiting: balance, SB 797 represents a penalty increase for marijuana. SB 797 is a watered-down version of last year's bill SB 131 by Sen. Sher, which would have made ALL marijuana possession offenses an infraction. Cal NORML supports making marijuana an infraction, since that would protect defendants from a criminal record, even though it also deprives them of the right to a criminal trial. Unfortunately, however, Sen. Romero modified SB 131 to attract more support from law enforcement interests by raising the fine as well as making the infraction optional. The result is to leave defendants in a state of greater legal uncertainty - will they get the infraction or the misdemeanor? - and at greater financial liability.SB 797 was introduced at the last minute as a "gut-and-rewrite"bill so as to evade the notice of marijuana reform supporters. It was approved 4-1 by the Senate Public Safety Committee. Cal NORML urges supporters to write the legislature in opposition to SB 797.- D. Gieringer, Director California NORML
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Comment #7 posted by FoM on May 13, 2005 at 09:48:24 PT
News Article from a Conservative Web Site
Marijuana and MeBy Burt Prelutsky May 13, 2005Based on my experience with the stuff, along with witnessing its effect on others, I would say it makes people hungry, dozy and stupid.Apparently, if weíre to believe his friendís tape recordings, George W. Bush smoked pot at some time in his life. In some quarters, this president is taking some heat for having actually inhaled. Well, Iím confessing that I, too, smoked a little weed in my younger days. Unlike some people, such as Bill Maher, Iím not bragging about it. Itís simply something I did, like riding a bike and practicing my hook shot three hours a day, and now I donít.Complete Article:
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on May 13, 2005 at 08:21:46 PT
Border Security
I bet now they'll start adding more Minute Men to the Southern Border. Bush won't be able to avoid cracking down on the southern border now. No one from Canada wants to come to the states to live but they sure want to be here if they live in Mexico. I think that's how they'll deal with this bust.
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Comment #5 posted by Sam Adams on May 13, 2005 at 06:52:28 PT
same article
I was just coming here to post a link to the same AP article!!! is the reason why all the various types of pigs lobby to maintain the drug laws. They have 2 options: collect big overtime checks to bust drug users, or collect big bribes to move the drugs themselves. What's not to like? I've posted here before a conversation I had with a young cannabis "dealer" in Vermont. He told me that the herb he sold (mostly to students at the local college) came down from Canada in 18-wheeler trucks loaded to the hilt with herb. It doesn't matter how many cameras they have, dogs, chemical sensors, etc, all it takes is a corrupt human LEO to allow the drugs to flow, and flow they do. What's changed since the 1930s, when disgust at police corruption fueled the end of Prohibition? Everything. Today, people are brainwashed to not care that they're being robbed and abused by their own government. I suspect that before TV, people spent a lot more time sitting around thinking & talking, instead of shopping & eating.
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Comment #4 posted by b4daylight on May 12, 2005 at 18:29:49 PT
Protect thy brother
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) - FBI agents posing as cocaine traffickers in Arizona caught 16 current and former U.S. soldiers and law enforcement personnel who took about $220,000 in bribes to help move the drugs through checkpoints, Justice Department officials said Thursday.Those charged include a former Immigration and Naturalization Service inspector, a former Army sergeant, a former federal prison guard, current and former members of the Arizona Army National Guard and the state corrections department, and a Nogales police officer, officials said."Many individuals charged were sworn personnel having the task of protecting society and securing America's borders. The importance of these tasks cannot be overstated and we cannot tolerate, nor can the American people afford, this type of corruption," FBI agent Jana D. Monroe, who directs the bureau's operations in Arizona, said during a news conference in Tucson.All 16 have agreed to plead guilty to being part of a bribery and extortion conspiracy, the result of the nearly 3 1/2-year FBI sting, acting assistant attorney general John C. Richter and Monroe said. Officials said more arrests are anticipated.The single conspiracy count carries a maximum prison term of five years and a fine of $250,000. The 16 defendants have not been arrested and have agreed to cooperate with the ongoing investigation, officials said.Comment #1 posted by WolfgangWylde on May 12, 2005 at 17:06:12 PT
How about a 2 year MANDATORY jail term just for...Our sentencing guidlines are all screwed up I think...
We need to revamp them to reflect the crime in question. Here is a good case only five years what the f**k and they say they are not even going to be arrested?Talk about crapolla
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Comment #3 posted by mayan on May 12, 2005 at 18:18:39 PT
The War Is Lost
From the first article on the bulletin...One thousand Americans and 1,000 Canadians responded to the poll. Among Canadians, 59 percent of respondents disagreed with the statement, "The conviction of possession of marijuana should always result in a criminal record." Fifty-seven percent of Americans disagreed with the statement.Those numbers will only go up from here on out. The public is rapidly connecting the dots between the suppression of medicinal cannabis by big pharm/government,the war on industrial hemp by numerous industries and the war on recreational cannabis. The ever shrinking minority of prohibitionists will have to rely on even more outrageous scare tactics to justify the arrest and incarceration of those who choose to use the cannabis plant and they will only make themselves appear less credible in the process. The war on cannabis is lost. We have achieved critical mass and the snowball effect is well underway! Those who wish to continue the war on weed will be committing political suicide. Now it's time to sit back and watch the prohibitionists jump off of their gravy-train like rats who know that the track ahead has been blown to smithereens!  THE WAY OUT IS THE WAY IN...The war on paperclips:,3604,1480940,00.html9/11 Fax to Congress: 9/11 Truth From Your State Rep In Congress! Professor David Ray Griffin's 9/11 Lecture as Seen on C-SPAN2:
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Comment #2 posted by potpal on May 12, 2005 at 17:31:43 PT
Omission addition*
"The public recognizes that adults who smoke marijuana responsibly are not criminals and they do not want to spend our nation's limited police resources arresting and jailing them[cannabis users] *(, bilk and grind them through a legal nightmare) and saddling them with a criminal record."
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Comment #1 posted by WolfgangWylde on May 12, 2005 at 17:06:12 PT
How about a 2 year MANDATORY jail term just for...
...knowing someone was selling marijuana? From the Drug Policy Alliance:We're in the fight of our lives in Washington, DC. High-ranking members of Congress want to take the war on drugs to a whole new level. They want to increase penalties for every drug offense. They want a mandatory 2-year prison term for anyone who knows someone is selling marijuana on a college campus and fails to report it to the police within 24 hours. They want a mandatory 5-year prison term for someone at a party who passes a marijuana joint to someone who has been enrolled in drug treatment at some point in their life. They want to expand the federal "three strikes and you're out" law to include new offenses, including mandating life imprisonment (with no possibility of parole) for anyone convicted a third time under the RAVE Act. Take Action Here These and other horrible provisions are inside Congressman Sensenbrenner's H.R. 1528 entitled "Defending America's Most Vulnerable: Safe Access to Drug Treatment and Child Protection Act of 2005". You helped us derail this bill last year, but now it's back - and it's longer and more draconian.
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