Marijuana Legalization is On The Way
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Marijuana Legalization is On The Way
Posted by CN Staff on April 14, 2010 at 06:19:30 PT
By Bruce Ramsey, Seattle Times Editorial Columnist
Source: Seattle Times 
Seattle, WA -- The 30 marijuana plants are ready for harvest. Sunning themselves under grow lights in a room lined with white plastic, they are a lush green, with not a dead leaf on them. Their fist-sized buds bend each stem downward like branches laden with snow.The secret grow operation supplies one of Seattle's oldest medical-marijuana dispensaries, Compassion in Action, in a Seattle industrial zone in a building with no sign. It offers marijuana smoking mixture, oil, cookies, peanut brittle and Rice Krispies bars to 3,300 patients.
Each patient has a letter from a physician certifying that he has multiple sclerosis, AIDS, cancer, glaucoma, intractable pain or one of the other conditions named in Washington law.The dispensary has been here five years, and was in other places before that. Founder and longtime leader Dale Rogers says police and prosecutors know where it is.The feds, too?"I'm sure the feds know," he says. "Public officials know I'm trying to do this in good faith."Originally Rogers kept no business records. It was too risky. In the past two years he has hired an accountant, put his growers on salary and begun reporting their pay to the IRS. He says controlling payments to growers allowed him to lower prices by $100 an ounce.The operation is set up as a not-for-profit co-op. Appearances seem to confirm this. I see no gold chains or fancy cars. An employee jokes that Rogers owns only three pairs of pants.Other dispensaries are more frankly commercial, some of them supplied from California."The California guys are entrepreneurs," says the co-op's attorney, Douglas Hiatt. "We're socialists, compared to those guys."The whole ecosystem of medical marijuana here, cooperative and capitalist, operates under an umbrella of black-market prices that is not sustainable. Already dispensaries are operating openly in Los Angeles under the green cross, and in other places: I saw one two weeks ago in Garberville, along the Redwood Highway. In November, Californians will vote on a statewide ballot measure for full legalization.Legalize marijuana, and the world-class farmers of the San Joaquin Valley will be cultivating hemp in big, flat, open fields. No one will have to pay $400 an ounce and the grow-light guys will be gone. The Humboldt County entrepreneurs, with their small, secret plots in the woods, will fold up which is why they are now passing out bumper stickers saying "Keep Pot Illegal."When it comes, legalization in California will lower prices here. So would Washington Initiative 1068, a measure sponsored by Hiatt and others that may be on the statewide ballot here in November.Then what? "Everyone worries about Philip Morris coming in," says Vivian McPeak, director of Seattle Hempfest. "But you can't hold freedom back for that reason."The recent invasion and shooting at a marijuana grow operation raises another issue: security. "We're entering into a very scary, unstable time," says Rogers, who wants no part of gangland rule, either as a business operator or a patient.Rogers, who uses marijuana to keep his AIDS medicine down and his appetite up, has worked for years for the social changes that are now happening. They will change the world of his growers and his "socialist" cooperative. Nevertheless, he says, "I'm calling for full legalization, and taxing."Bruce Ramsey's column appears regularly on editorial pages of The Times. Source: Seattle Times (WA)Author: Bruce Ramsey, Seattle Times Editorial ColumnistPublished: April 13, 2010Copyright: 2010 The Seattle Times CompanyContact: opinion seatimes.comWebsite:  -- Cannabis  Archives
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on April 14, 2010 at 12:26:19 PT
Ariz. Medical Marijuana Supporters Aim for Ballot
April 14, 2010PHOENIX (AP) - Arizona voters will likely get to decide in November whether to legalize marijuana for medical purposes.Supporters of a medical marijuana initiative say they have enough signatures to qualify for the ballot and will turn them in to the Secretary of State's Office on Wednesday.The measure would allow people suffering from certain medical conditions to have a small amount of marijuana if they have a doctor's recommendation.It would allow the creation of nonprofit marijuana dispensaries to sell the drug to approved patients.Thirteen other states allow the possession of small amounts of marijuana for medical purposes. New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine signed a medical marijuana bill in January but it hasn't yet become
effective.Copyright 2010 by The Associated PressURL:
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Comment #2 posted by herbdoc215 on April 14, 2010 at 08:56:24 PT
Off topic but this is something important!
When the Army Uses "Enhanced Interrogation" on an American SoldierJoshua KorsInvestigative Reporter for The NationPosted: April 14, 2010 02:28 AM
I had been covering veterans' issues for several years and thought I'd developed a thick skin. But the pain on the other end of the telephone line was difficult to stomach. Sergeant Chuck Luther, now back from Iraq, was describing his journey to hell and back. The worst part, he said, wasn't battling insurgents or even the mortar blast that tossed him to the ground and slammed his head against the concrete  it was the way he was treated by the U.S. Army when he went to the aid station and sought medical help.In gruesome detail, Luther described what happened to him at Camp Taji's aid station. He thought he would receive medical care. Instead he was confined to an isolation chamber and held there for over a month, under enforced sleep deprivation, until he agreed to sign papers saying that he was ill before coming to Iraq and thus not eligible for disability and medical benefits. "They wanted me to say I had a 'personality disorder,'" Luther told me. Luther's call did not come out of the blue. For two years I had been investigating this personality disorder scandal: how military doctors were purposely misdiagnosing soldiers, wounded in combat, as having this pre-existing mental illness. As in the civilian world, where people can be locked out of the insurance system if they have a pre-existing condition, soldiers whose wounds can be attributed to a pre-existing illness can be denied disability benefits and long-term medical care.My reporting began with the case of Specialist Jon Town, who was wounded in Iraq, won a Purple Heart and was then denied disability and medical benefits. Town's doctor had concluded that his headaches and hearing loss were not caused by the 107-millimeter rocket that knocked him unconscious but by a pre-existing personality disorder.The spotlight on Town prompted military doctors to step forward and talk about being pressured by their superiors to purposely misdiagnose wounded soldiers. One doctor spoke of a soldier who returned from Iraq with a massive chunk missing from his right leg. The doctor quit after he was pressured to diagnose that soldier as having personality disorder.Since 2001 more than 22,600 soldiers have been discharged with personality disorder (PD), saving the military billions in disability and medical benefits.My articles on the scandal sparked a Congressional hearing, a Law and Order episode, and before leaving office, President Bush signed a law requiring the Pentagon to investigate PD discharges. In the wake of those developments, I was flooded with calls from soldiers who had fractured bones and been pierced by grenade shrapnel, only to be told that their wounds came from a problem with their personality  a pre-existing illness that had somehow gone undetected with each military screening and only popped up now, after they returned wounded from combat.Luther was one of thousands severely wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan now facing a lifetime without medical care. I had spoken to dozens of soldiers in his shoes. But his call haunted me. He sent me photos of the isolation chamber. It was the size of a walk-in closet and was crammed with cardboard boxes, a desk and a bedpan. Armed guards monitored him 24 hours a day. Luther told me how they stopped him from sleeping, keeping the lights on and blasting heavy metal music at him all through the night: Megadeth, Saliva, Disturbed. When he rebelled, Luther was pinned down and injected with sleeping medication."This was an aid station," he said, "but it felt a lot more like enhanced interrogation than medical care."
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Comment #1 posted by herbdoc215 on April 14, 2010 at 08:06:45 PT
Here they go trying to out lie the pros!
If anybody here believes this story isn't a PR piece then I challenge you to prove it, because I can prove every word I am fixing to say, Dale Rogers and the "gay mafia" wouldn't know the truth if it bit them in the ass. I wonder if he believes his own bs because I was a member of that club for a few years and paid every penny for medicine that it cost down here in Cali and was robbed out of >3/4 of what I produced for them while Dale spent every free moment traveling around with his entourage living like a rock star! Non-profit my ass! Socialist/capitalist it's all bullshit labels as when you are sick and not in their big-shot group then medicine is harder to find in Washington than Bigfoot, and costs about the same it does in California (outside of LA at least) so let's all just quit with the spin and lies and just use the truth to set us free instead of all this bullshit!!! peace, steve
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