National Group Seeks Legalize Pot 

  National Group Seeks Legalize Pot 

Posted by CN Staff on September 22, 2005 at 09:21:50 PT
By The Associated Press 
Source: Associated Press 

Mesa, Ariz. -- A pro-marijuana group based in Washington, D.C., is looking for activists in Arizona to build grass-roots support for legalized marijuana, with the eventual goal being to get the drug legalized here for all adults.The nonprofit Marijuana Policy Project is targeting seven states: Arizona, Delaware, Idaho, Maine, Montana, New Hampshire and Oregon. The effort is in its infancy, and project officials emphasize they have no master plan for the seven states.
Instead, the group is looking for local activists whose efforts would be funded by the project's grant program. The eventual goal is to put marijuana in the same category as alcohol, with the same kind of taxes and regulation.A request for proposals has been issued in the seven states, where grant applicants are asked to list "escalating tactics that would lead to a change in state law in three to five years via the state Legislature or the statewide ballot initiative process," according to a job listing on the Internet.Tactics could include organizing demonstrations, lobbying state lawmakers, building a coalition of supportive organizations and generating favorable news coverage."It's about providing funding and providing organization," said Krissy Oechslin, a spokeswoman for the project. "We'd like to bring it off the street and regulate it."Barnett Lotstein, a special assistant in the Maricopa County Attorney's Office, said the effort would go much further than previous Arizona medical marijuana initiatives, but it's not surprising."The objective was, once you get people to think of drugs as medicine, the next step is legalization," he said. "The ultimate goal of people who propose the legalization of marijuana is the legalization of all drugs."The project has targeted Arizona because of support residents have shown for medical marijuana, said Oechslin.Voters here approved a ballot initiative in 1996 that gave doctors authority to prescribe marijuana to seriously ill patients.Public support continued two years later, when voters defeated a referendum sent to the ballot by state lawmakers, who wanted the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to approve marijuana before Arizona doctors could prescribe the drug.However, voters also rejected a 2002 ballot measure aimed at correcting problems in the 1996 initiative. Doctors were afraid to write prescriptions for marijuana because federal authorities threatened to take away their prescribing authority, said Dr. Jeffrey Singer, a Phoenix surgeon and a medical marijuana campaign activist.Complete Title: National Group Seeks Legalize Pot in Maine, Six Other StatesSource: Associated Press (Wire)Published: September 22, 2005Copyright: 2005 The Associated Press Related Article & Web Site:Marijuana Policy Project Pot Initiative Backers Light Up Debate

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Comment #22 posted by FoM on September 24, 2005 at 20:32:23 PT
More Pictures
I didn't see one thing on the news about the anti-war protests today. It must have been something to see.
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Comment #21 posted by FoM on September 24, 2005 at 19:58:59 PT
A Better Link For Pictures
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Comment #20 posted by FoM on September 24, 2005 at 19:52:20 PT
Off Topic: Anti War Protest Pictures
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Comment #19 posted by FoM on September 24, 2005 at 13:30:20 PT
Off Topic But Important
Thousands Gather in Washington for Antiwar Rally September 25, 2005WASHINGTON, Sept. 24 - Thousands of protesters from around the country poured onto the lawns south of the White House on Saturday to demonstrate their opposition to the war in Iraq, pointedly directing their anger at President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney.A sea of anti-Bush signs and banners flashed back at a long succession of speakers, who sharply rebuked the administration for continuing a war that has cost the lives of nearly 2,000 Americans and as many as 20,000 Iraqis. Similar rallies were held in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle and other cities in the United States and abroad."Let's let Bush and Cheney and the White House hear our message: Bring the troops home now," shouted a march organizer to kick off the rally here. Mr. Bush was in Colorado and Texas and Mr. Cheney was undergoing an operation at George Washington University hospital. Complete Article:
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Comment #18 posted by FoM on September 24, 2005 at 10:29:31 PT
Just a Comment
I hope everyone weathered the storm ok. It seems the oil areas weren't damaged and that's really good news. I have work to do but I will check back often. 
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Comment #17 posted by FoM on September 23, 2005 at 17:47:48 PT

I'm watching CNN and this hurricane is going to go thru the area where all that oil is. When we drove over Route 10 I remember seeing the glow in the sky and the lights of the oil whatever they are. I remember how bad the smell was. I can't believe people want to live anywhere near them. If oil gets in the water it will destroy more of the enviornment and maybe wreck people's home so they won't be able to go back to them. This is a mess.
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Comment #16 posted by mayan on September 23, 2005 at 16:43:35 PT

Into the Ground
RITA: Storm May Be the Coup de Grace for the American Economy and Many of Us As Well - by Michael C. Ruppert: has been right on the money far more often than not. Prepare.
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Comment #15 posted by MikeEEEEE on September 23, 2005 at 06:59:16 PT

Running a great country into the ground
I read an article recently, it said that if gasoline prices rise above $5 a gallon, expect a worldwide recession. History tells us that 99% of the businesses George Bush ran, he ran into the ground. America is one big business, from government, to pork, to easy Halliburton contracts, and corporate welfare. Yes, after GW and republicon friends run Amerika into the ground, Joe six pack and his kids will be starving, but there are far worse global complications. Out of the suffering could come radical governments, and loses of more civil rights to keep a perceived order.

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Comment #14 posted by kaptinemo on September 23, 2005 at 03:28:21 PT:

Runderwho, you're right...for now
I say 'for now' because of one simple fact: it simply hasn't been explained to the public at large what cannabis prohibition would cost IF THE COSTS WERE MADE PERSONAL.One thing I've noticed in the years I've been here: that what gets written here makes its' way through the reform universe and eventually into the public domain in the form of statements made by reformers and our allies. Because of the tax situation spreading the (increasing!) cost of the DrugWar around, the average person has no idea how much it costs to run this abomination. That may soon change, as more and more cuts to government 'services' (take a look at most of the proposed cuts, and you see that they are going after programs that may actually help this country, such as alternate energy programs; so much for 'service') begin to affect the average American in ways that cannot be ignored. Those cuts will force some hard decisions to be made at every level of government.The politicos will do their damndest to hold onto their precious pork, but when ol' Joe Sixpack is still hurting and he sees money being wasted, things will get even hotter for the pols. They'll *have* to start making *significant* cuts, not the window dressing and tinsel they've been offering for sacrifice, and soon. That's when the sacred cows will get slaughtered.Sooner or later, it will be explained to the public just how much money has been wasted chasing down cannabis consumers. And if it is explained on a personal level, showing ol' Joe just how much *he'd* have to cough up to keep the merry-go-round running, his sense of self-interest will kick in very quickly, and whatever his disposition about 'potheads', he'll vote with his wallet, every time. Hard times tend to do that to people. And I fear the hard times are just beginning. 
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Comment #13 posted by Celaya on September 22, 2005 at 22:53:51 PT

U.S. Press Picks Up Marc Emery Story
Hey folks! I thought this was significant. The L.A. City Beat did a cover story on the DEA abduction of Emery and their attempts to extradite him to the U.S.Hopefully, this is just the beginning of the U.S. media running with the issue.Check it out!
L.A. City Beat - The Taking Of Marc Emery
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Comment #12 posted by runderwo on September 22, 2005 at 21:32:34 PT

the costs
"when Joe Sixpack is looking at a pink slip and then sees on The Tube that 'potheads' are *still* being locked up"Well yeah, he'll probably see that."and it costs the equivalent of his (former) salary to do so..."That's the part I doubt Joe Sixpack will see, or realize. And even if he does, he may see potheads being locked up as an assumed necessity. You know, like locking up murders and rapists. They're all lawbreakers...
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Comment #11 posted by cloud7 on September 22, 2005 at 19:50:16 PT

"A pro-marijuana group"
It's hard to reword this so it's not awkward, but a classic saying in this war is that you don't have to be pro-marijuana to be anti-prohibition.I'm both ;)A subtle distinction, but little things make differences in how our efforts are perceived.
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Comment #10 posted by FoM on September 22, 2005 at 19:46:51 PT

Press Release from The Drug Policy Alliance
California Court Decides SB 420 Gives Retroactive ProtectionSeptember 22, 2005A three-judge panel of the California Court of Appeals released an opinion in support of medical marijuana this September. The panel decided in People v. Urziceanu that SB 420, a bill the Alliance was instrumental in passing in 2003, applies retroactively to conduct occurring prior to the new law's passage. SB 420 expanded the scope of California's 1996 Compassionate Use Act to permit and protect patient cooperatives. This means that in the Urziceanu case, a defendant who established a carefully-run cooperative dispensary in 2000 is likely to have charges of illegal marijuana sales and conspiracy dropped, or else be acquitted by a jury at a retrial.If the case is dropped or the defendant is acquitted, information in the panel's opinion about the care and detail of the cooperative's daily operation may prove useful in the establishment of future dispensaries across the state.

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Comment #9 posted by FoM on September 22, 2005 at 15:56:20 PT

I understand what you are saying. I believe in this. I believe if I have something to sell it is worth so much money. I don't believe in investing in what might happen. That's why we invest in our home. Real Estate is something a person can see and buy and know it is worth so much money. I have always believed that owning a home was our investment in our personal future. It's tangible.PS: Thank you Siege!
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Comment #8 posted by siege on September 22, 2005 at 15:37:24 PT

OFF TOPIC religious freedom 
Dear:In a few days, the trial in a vitally important ACLU case will begin.Once again, the ACLU will be defending religious freedom against those who want to force creationism into our public schools. The underlying conflict has been going on at least since the Scopes trial, a famous ACLU case from an earlier era.At the core, the conflict is between those who believe science should be taught in science classes and those who want to use our public schools to promote one set of religious beliefs over another.But, this time, the creationists have a new ploy. It's called "intelligent design" -- an "alternative" to the scientific theory of evolution that religious extremists have cooked up as a way to sneak religious proselytizing into our public schools.The intelligent design campaign to replace science with "faith-based" theories in our schools is part of a larger movement that threatens our religious freedoms in a profound way. Now is the time to become a card-carrying member of the ACLU.The trial about to begin in Dover, Pennsylvania, stems from an ACLU lawsuit challenging a controversial decision by the Dover Area School Board to require biology teachers to present intelligent design as an alternative to the scientific theory of evolution. The intelligent design movement has two new, powerful spokesmen. In recent weeks, George W. Bush and Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist have both endorsed shoving science aside in our children's science classrooms.Powerful political forces are not just tinkering around the edges of our religious freedom. They have set their sights on transforming our country from a constitutional democracy to a thinly veiled theocracy. They want to turn America into a country governed by their interpretation of the Bible, serviced by faith-based, taxpayer-funded institutions and guided by religious doctrine against which neither citizens nor judges should dare to speak up.You and I can't let them get away with it.Join the ACLU today in resisting efforts to undermine religious freedom wherever they surface -- from the classrooms of Pennsylvania to the White House. Together, we'll defend religious liberty with every ounce of energy we have.Sincerely,Anthony D. Romero
Executive Director
American Civil Liberties Union
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Comment #7 posted by kaptinemo on September 22, 2005 at 15:10:26 PT:

You can put the hammer down, FoM
The nails are screaming.The writing's on the wall. A currency backed by nothing IS nothing. The IOUs are only as valuable as the demonstrated ability and willingness to pay...and Uncle is in serious trouble on both counts. The only value assigned to the dollar was oil, and now thanks to price gouging, the currency has ALREADY BEEN INFLATED...and thus devalued. If the Treasury prints up more Fed Reserve Notes then inflation will jump another dimension. (For those scratching their heads, those pieces of green paper in your pocket are properly called Federal Reserve NOTES because notes are nothing but promises to pay something valuable like gold in return for a set amount of notes, hence the 'gold standard'. But FDR took us off the gold standard and made it illegal for US citizens to own gold coins until 1976. Foreign gold payments in exchange for FRNs were continued until 1971, when Tricky Dick Nixon cut that off. The dollar is backed by NOTHING. When Uncle prints too much paper money, the value of what's already out there drops; that's classic inflation...all caused by government.)The Repubs cannot print more FRNs or our creditors will call their loans, and there goes the economy. The Repubs have already said they will not raise taxes, or take back the tax breaks they gave their wealthy friends. A true 'rock + hard place' dilemma. The only thing left is to make deep budgetary cuts. and this is where the real partisanship will show it's ugly face, as agency heads battle to keep their budgets intact and gut those of other agencies. And ONDCP and the DEA have both been the recipients of big, black bureaucratic marks for being seen as failures. I can just hear the shriiing-shriiing! sound of the carving knives being sharpened.
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on September 22, 2005 at 12:52:24 PT

I believe you are right. Wasting money won't be tolerated much longer because our country will collapse trying just to fix everything and of course the war in Iraq will need to at least scale back. They could just print more money though since we don't have a gold standard anymore. Then inflation will make life unbearable for many people. 
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Comment #5 posted by kaptinemo on September 22, 2005 at 12:40:37 PT:

FoM, they aren't ready to give up yet
The pressure for that will have to come from the public, not from reformers. We can be, as we have been until fairly recently, safely ignored. 'Partisan' is the word that's been used to describe us. (Of COURSE we're partisan, and so are our opponents; they removed any chance of compromise when they judged cannabis and it's users evil and called for our extermination, so they shouldn't be surprised we'd fight back.)But, when things really start to get tough in this country...when Joe Sixpack is looking at a pink slip and then sees on The Tube that 'potheads' are *still* being locked up and it costs the equivalent of his (former) salary to do so...while he can't get unemployment bennies thanks to Halliburton overcharging Uncle for the will start to hit home with a punch in the guts. MORE calls to *really* pare down the Gub'mint will be heard. And the once sacred cows of the DrugWar will find themselves traveling down the cattle chute to the fiscal slaughterhouse. Arguments about 'saving the children' won't be worth a hill of beans if the families of said kids are hungry and freezing in the dark this Winter, as food and fuel prices are already being projected to go higher. No amount of fancy rhetoric will ever dispel the fact that a drug war is a rich country's hobby...and we aren't a rich country, any more, not really. Rich countries don't have to borrow from avowedly Communist nations.I've said it before, and will keep saying it: It won't be moral suasion or logical argument that wins the re-legalization war, it'll be the bottom line, just as it was in alcohol Prohibition. In that respect, the rubber is *finally* hitting the road with a loud screech.
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Comment #4 posted by FoM on September 22, 2005 at 12:17:59 PT

It's time to stop chasing Cannabis people. Our country is in a big mess. If the storm hits New Orleans hard again it might be over for a good portion of the city. If the storm stalls after landfall and drops 25 inches of rain in areas flooding will cause enormous expense. Something must be cut to handle the costs. Since cannabis is what they go after other drugs won't be worth chasing since people aren't into hard drugs like gentle cannabis.
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Comment #3 posted by kaptinemo on September 22, 2005 at 12:04:47 PT:

OT: The budgetary knives have been sharpened
It's been mentioned here several times that with the twin catastrophes of the Iraq War and Hurricane Katrina, the Federal government was seriously overstretched, budget wise. The only logical solution is to cut things from the budget and use the monies for reconstruction.At first, the Republicans balked. Not anymore: House Republican Study Committee document recommends huge cuts chickens are coming home to roost...and some of the first things suggested to feed them were the ONDCP ads. Another was scaling back the Andean Initiative (The program involved in killing the flying missionaries 3 years ago). Yep, looks like the DrugWarriors will have to tighten their long last. And this is just the beginning.
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Comment #2 posted by Richard Zuckerman on September 22, 2005 at 11:53:29 PT:

Does anybody have any information about a federal court order for the Marijuana legalization issue to be included in a 2006 Ballot measure in NEVADA?
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on September 22, 2005 at 11:08:48 PT

Off Topic: Hookah Bars
Hookah Bars: Smoke Like an Egyptian September 22nd 2005 - AustinFrom The Economist Print EditionMint, cappuccino or kiwi-strawberry? 
At the Hookup Lounge near the University of Texas (UT), 20-somethings loll about, some encased in plumes of smoke. But they are not snogging, yet. In true academic spirit, they are learning the ways of another culture—and passing around a hookah pipe. “I normally smoke cigarettes, but it's kind of nice not having to get up and go outside,” says Jon Faviell, who is trying to get into graduate school at UT. He is sharing a mint pipe with a friend.Alas for Austinites, there are now fewer hookah places to puff. At the beginning of this month, a city-wide smoking ban went into effect. Smoking indoors in public areas is now mostly restricted to the likes of nursing homes and bingo halls. The Hookup Lounge (named for its, ahem, wireless access) survives because it is classed as a retail tobacco store (the bulk of its sales being derived from tobacco products). But one downtown Austin bar, the Red Fez, no longer offers hookah. Another, One2One, is opening up new patio space to keep patrons puffing; on the night before the ban it sportingly offered free hookahs until midnight.Hookahs used to be associated with marijuana, opium dens and progressive rock (or that's what we vaguely remember). But legitimate hookah bars started appearing in California in the late 1990s, and, despite the anti-smoking surge, they are booming, especially in college towns.The Hookup Lounge -- is one of Austin’s hookah bars. is a specialist retailer. 
Brennan Appel of, a hookah-merchandise supplier, reckons that there are now several thousand bars and lounges (nobody in the hookah trade is that great on specific numbers). Jonathan Fair of One2One theorises that Lewis Carroll's “Alice in Wonderland”, in which a shrunken Alice meets a water-pipe-smoking caterpillar, has had something to do with it.Despite its Middle Eastern pretensions, American hookah is not quite like the Egyptian kind. American pipes often have several hoses—the better to serve a big table—as against a single hose in the Middle East. The products are also sleeker and more modern-looking, with fewer beads. And then there are the flavours: where Egyptians might opt for simple grape or melon, Americans like to mix and match, with flavours like kiwi-strawberry or blueberry-raspberry—or even cappuccino.Some hooksters claim that the water-pipes are healthier than cigarettes: even though hookah also involves puffing on flavoured tobacco, the water acts as a filter. Moreover, second-hand smoke is limited: one puff quickly dissipates.Rubbish, say doctors. “There's really little if any filtration being accomplished by passing the tobacco smoke through the water,” says Ron Davis, a trustee of the American Medical Association. “There's no reason to believe that smoking through water-pipes is any less hazardous than smoking cigarettes.” In fact, he notes, the girth of the water pipes allows smokers to take bigger puffs than on cigarettes. And don't even get him started on drugs.None of this deters the hookah crowd. And tactics for getting around the smoking bans are evolving. In Manhattan, plenty of places get classified as tobacco bars and so avoid New York's 2003 ban. Joseph Melamed of the Gypsy Café in Westwood, California, has another strategy. He says that California's smoking ban was enacted to protect employees, not patrons (who can choose to boycott the bar). So he has taken advantage of an exemption for owner-operated bars with no employees, and made his employees part-owners. The gods of Egypt must be smiling.Copyright: The Economist Newspaper Limited 2005
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