NORML's Weekly News Bulletin -- July 7, 2005

NORML's Weekly News Bulletin -- July 7, 2005
Posted by CN Staff on July 07, 2005 at 14:50:27 PT
Weekly Press Release
Source: NORML
Moderate Cannabis Use Not Associated With Cancer, Study SaysJuly 7, 2005 - Clearwater, FL, USAClearwater, FL: Moderate use of cannabis is not associated with an elevated risk of developing lung and/or other types of upper aerodigestive tract cancers, according to preliminary data presented at the annual conference of the International Cannabinoid Research Society (ICRS).
Data presented from a retrospective, case controlled study of more than 1,200 adults with cancer of the pharynx, larynx and/or esophagus found that those who reported using moderate levels of cannabis use had no greater odds of suffering from cancer than non- cannabis using controls. "We failed to observe a positive association of marijuana use and other potential confounders," said Donald Tashkin of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.A previous large-scale case-controlled study performed by researchers at John Hopkins University in Maryland revealed similar results, finding that "the balance of evidence ... does not favor the idea that marijuana as commonly used in the community is a major causal factor for head, neck, and lung cancer."More recently, a 2004 study published in the journal Cancer Research concluded that cannabis use is not associated with an increased risk of developing oral cancer "regardless of how long, how much or how often a person has used marijuana."For more information, please contact either Allen St. Pierre or Paul Armentano of NORML at (202) 483-5500. A listing of presentations at this year's ICRS conference is available online at: Spend Nearly $4 Billion Annually On Failed Pot Policy, Economics Report SaysJuly 7, 2005 - Washington, DC, USAWashington, DC: Federal spending on marijuana-related activities - primarily enforcing criminal policies prohibiting the drug's use - cost taxpayers nearly $4 billion annually, but fail to influence the public's use or perception of the drug, according to an economic report released by the non-partisan Washington, DC think-tank Taxpayers for Common Sense."Annual federal marijuana spending is at least $3.67 billion [per year,] yet little evidence indicates this spending accomplishes the government's stated goal of reducing marijuana use," concludes the report.Of this total cost, the federal government spends $1.43 billion enforcing marijuana prohibition, $1.11 billion for marijuana use prevention (which includes funding for anti-drug media campaigns and school-based drug testing programs), $0.37 billion for marijuana treatment (which includes federal subsidies for drug abuse treatment programs), and $0.76 billion for marijuana-related policy research (funding for activities designed to improve the efficacy of federal drug control policies.)The report notes that the actual federal spending on marijuana-related policies is likely higher than $3.67 billion because the federal government no longer includes annual costs from federal agencies and programs that are not explicitly devoted to anti-drug activities (such as federal prison costs, salaries for federal law enforcement personnel, etc.).State and local spending on anti-marijuana programs and activities weren't tabulated in the report. Previous estimates published by the NORML Foundation and others place these costs at between $5 and $7 billion per year."The ultimate measure of the drug war's worth is its impact on drug usage. By this standard, the federal marijuana program has fared poorly," said Taxpayers for Common Sense Senior Policy Analyst Erich Zimmermann. "Despite spending billions of dollars over the years to enforce the prohibition of marijuana, use and perception of the drug are little different now than they were 30 years ago. ... Rather than continue to spend billions of dollars on the problem, it would be better for the US government to get out of the marijuana business entirely."For more information, please contact either Allen St. Pierre or Paul Armentano of NORML at (202) 483-5500. Full text of the report, "Federal Marijuana Policy: A Preliminary Analysis," available online: Depression In Cannabis Users, Study SaysJuly 7, 2005 - Los Angeles, CA, USALos Angeles, CA: Adults who use cannabis report suffering from less severe incidents and/or symptoms of depression than non-users, according to survey data published last month in the journal Addictive Behaviors.Researchers at the University of Southern California analyzed survey results from 4,400 adults who had completed The Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression scale (a numerical, self-report scale designed to assess symptoms of depression in the general population). Authors compared "depression scores" among those who consumed cannabis daily, once a week or less, or never in their lives."Despite comparable ranges of scores on all depression subscales, those who used once per week or less had less depressed mood, more positive affect, and fewer somatic (physical) complaints than non-users," authors wrote. "Daily users [also] reported less depressed mood and more positive affect than non-users."Authors further noted that a separate analysis of medical cannabis users versus recreational users "demonstrated that medical users reported more depressed mood and more somatic complaints than recreational users, suggesting that medical conditions clearly contribute to depression scores and should be considered in studies of marijuana and depression."These data suggest that adults apparently do not increase their risk for depression by using marijuana," researchers concluded.For more information, please contact Paul Armentano, NORML Senior Policy Analyst, at (202) 483-5500. Full text of the study, "Decreased depression in marijuana users," appears in the June issue of Addictive Behaviors.DL: NORML Foundation (DC)Published: July 7, 2005Copyright: 2005 NORML Contact: norml Website: NORML Archives
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Comment #12 posted by Hope on July 12, 2005 at 11:46:34 PT
It worries me
that the protection that I'm sure comes from cannabis use is being kept from us. I still wonder that Peter McWilliams family can't sue the government for withholding life saving medicine from him. 
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Comment #11 posted by Robbie on July 12, 2005 at 04:09:56 PT
This is huge
This should be the banner on every marijuana related T-shirt... "Marijuana does not cause cancer" It completely undermines the tobacco interests. People should be encouraged to quit using tobacco in favor of smoking marijuana.Did anyone see the the article that said Donald Abrams asked Tashkin about a PROTECTIVE effect seen in smoking marijuana?It's no wonder not ONE mainstre4am media source has reported this stunning little tidbit from the head researcher at the National Institute for Drug Abuse. People would be up in arms that cigarrettes are still legal.SEATTLE HEMPFEST, August 20, 21
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Comment #10 posted by FoM on July 10, 2005 at 13:05:12 PT
News Article from BBSNews
Cannabis Smoking does not Cause Cancer According To New Study***IACM via BBSNews - 2005-07-10 -- According to a case-control study by Dr. Donald Tashkin and his colleagues of the University of California in Los Angeles even heavy and longterm smoking of cannabis is not associated with lung cancer and other types of upper aerodigestive tract cancers. The results were presented on 26 June at the annual conference of the International Cannabinoid Research Society (ICRS). The study included 1,209 residents of Los Angeles aged 18-59 with cancer (611 lung, 403 oral/pharyngeal, 90 laryngeal, and 108 esophageal). Interviewers collected lifetime histories of cannabis, tobacco, alcohol and other drug use, and data on other factors that may influence cancer risk, including diet, occupational exposures, and family history of cancer. Exposure to cannabis was measured in joint years (1 joint year = 365 joints). The cancer patients were compared to 1,040 cancer- free controls. Among the controls 46 per cent had never used cannabis, 31 per cent had used it for less than one joint year, 12 per cent for 10-30 joint years, 2 per cent for 30-60 joint years, and 3 per cent for more than 60 joint years. Complete Article:
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Comment #9 posted by global_warming on July 08, 2005 at 16:11:28 PT
God Bless Allen St. Pierre or Paul Armentano
For someday, their names will be held up as the greatest leaders, who worked to free mankind from the darkness and slavery imposed by the minds of the prohibitionist, those that are filled with darkness, devoid of spirituality, and fulfilling only greed, hatred, and the continued persecution of people, who use Cannabis.
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Comment #8 posted by b4daylight on July 07, 2005 at 22:21:13 PT
WowWell true that about politiciansThey already let us use alcohol, but not cannabis.We know there is public support 80 percent for meduical cannabis.I just cannot belive people's logic. This can be seen in the bus system in Phoenix. They are reducing service 500,000 dollars worth a year so the bus will not run after 10 pm. Yet the city is building a hotel cost 300,000,000. The city is building a new city plaza 325,000,000. It built a new ballpark 400,000,000. It is building a new downtown campus 800,000,000. It repaved perfectly good roads wioth rubber ashpalt around 150,000,000. So as you can see people don't care unless it effects them. The day gas goes to 3.00 we will have busses running 24 hours a day....This is so sad and why our political system is producing such horrible results. I am just plain happy to hear this news though great job Norml. One day One day I will be able to tell my co-workers or anyone I want I party like a rock starr. 
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Comment #7 posted by runderwo on July 07, 2005 at 20:20:30 PT
doesn't matter
It really doesn't matter how good the science gets as long as elected officials continue to cherry-pick studies that support their viewpoint and cling to age-old myths and stereotypes. It's difficult to believe that reason means anything to certain people in Washington, and that includes any new scientific inquiry that contradicts their assumptions. They'll just chalk it up to "junk science" or "pseudoscience", which is the automatic reaction to any scientific inquiry to anything they disagree with. (Meanwhile, they cling to junk science of their own that can be shown to be methodologically flawed or to have results that cannot be independently replicated.) The only answer is to get rid of these people piece by piece.
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Comment #6 posted by ekim on July 07, 2005 at 20:13:00 PT
what surreal means to me
at a time in our history when we are in debt and our farmers are loosing the family farms by the thousands, and while we cut needed programs for the needy we spend Billions apon Billions on Cannabis Prohibition. Please Norml do a study of cost benfit of Hemp used as cellulose stock for Ethanol lets all see it for once and for all. is a pdf overview of NREL/Genencor work from 2003.
Here is an NREL Press release about Genencor/NREL winning a Top 100 R&D award in 2004.
There is a lot more information available with a simple web search. Google "NREL genencor" for starters and review the results listing.
I think you could get more specific information if you called NREL itself. NREL Public Affairs: (303) 275-4090.
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Comment #5 posted by whig on July 07, 2005 at 19:42:42 PT
It would not be scientific to say that cannabis is itself anything but a natural herb, but the effects upon the mind and the connections which it brings between the material consciousness and the higher consciousness may well bring about the transformation of the individual.For some, this is a thing to be feared, for all our material accomplishments are then discovered to be castles in the sand, and all that we have achieved in pursuit of personal power over other men and women is nothing compared to the immanent power of the universe. We are here to learn and to grow and to discover for ourselves how to be better to one another, and this realization is a new dawn.
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Comment #4 posted by Patrick on July 07, 2005 at 17:42:14 PT
The marijuana business
Rather than continue to spend billions of dollars on the problem, it would be better for the US government to get out of the marijuana business entirely."Or simply reschedule it and tax commercial sales similar to alcohol and tobacco thereby creating revenue instead of liabilities. I would certainly be less "depressed" if they would do that. Speaking as a recreational cannabis consumer. Yes prohibs I said consumer not criminal!
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Comment #3 posted by VitaminT on July 07, 2005 at 17:41:08 PT
That's rich E_J
I think we evolved in some kind of symbiotic relationship with the herb. That's why it's so good for us, but what does the her get out of the deal?Cannabis is Man's Best (Plant) Friend. My apologies to Dogs.Maybe your theory's better than mine.
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Comment #2 posted by The GCW on July 07, 2005 at 17:32:05 PT
Something IS going on.Cannabis does have a connection in all this.Dark evil forces may be about to colide with light. 
Cannabis flash.With cannabis, things will always get better...I feel like cannabists will the be the 1st to know.The Green Collar Worker
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Comment #1 posted by E_Johnson on July 07, 2005 at 17:13:14 PT
This is surreal
The science news keeps getting better, to the point where I wonder -- what's next? Research shows marijuana is the Second Coming of Christ A scientific study shows that marijuana users are physically and mentally immune to the Mark of the Beast, leading some scientists to believe that marijuana is the second coming of Christ referred to in the New Testament.
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