NFL Kickoff: Catch up on football's off-season drive for medical marijuana and CBD

NFL Kickoff: Catch up on football's off-season drive for medical marijuana and CBD

The new NFL season kicks off this weekend following a summer that saw new momentum in the drive to put medical cannabis in the pros’ pain-management playbook.

At the beginning of August, the NFL wrote to the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) offering to work in tandem to study the potential use of marijuana as a pain management tool for players. It’s the first time the league has offered to work with players’ union on the topic of medical marijuana.

Days later, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell reaffirmed the position during a forum held at The Denver Broncos headquarters.

“If pain management is something that medical marijuana can address responsibly, that’s something that our medical community is evaluating,” the commissioner said.

The league’s letter — and the commissioner’s apparent evolution — capped off an off-season that saw powerful figures such as Goodell, Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and NFLPA chief DeMaurice Smith weigh in on the marijuana issue.

The momentum isn’t limited to medical cannabis — earlier this year the NFLPA announced that it intended to pursue a new, “less punitive” drug policy that reflects the changing legal landscape as it pertained to recreational and medical consumption.

The Cannabist Network has all the NFL marijuana news on lock, so here’s everything you need to know before the first snap.


NFL alumni lead the drive

– Retired NFL pros back new nonprofit advocating for medical marijuana
– CBD patch turns former NFL star linebacker into cannabidiol disciple
– Former NFL pros say CBD oil vital pain-management tool
– NFL players hope CBD can be breakthrough treatment
– Medical marijuana key to treating former NFL All-Pro’s lingering injuries
– Former Eagle OL Todd Herremans pushes pot for pain management


NFL Players Association makes a stand

– NFLPA announces proposal for ‘less punitive’ approach to player pot use
– NFLPA looking at marijuana as possible pain-reliever for players
– Marijuana policy in NFL is ‘a CBA issue, not a law-enforcement issue’
– Give and take expected in marijuana policy negotiations with NFL owners
– Players’ families involved in push for marijuana policy change


League leadership evolves

– NFL offers to work with players’ union to study cannabis for pain
– NFL’s chief medical officer: medical marijuana research ‘really important’
– NFL commish Goodell says league ready to research medical marijuana
– Cowboys owner Jerry Jones: Lift NFL ban on marijuana
– NFL commissioner calls marijuana ‘addictive’ and questions smoking risks

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Published at Sat, 09 Sep 2017 14:56:24 +0000

GOP-led House Rules Committee blocks voting on bipartisan marijuana amendments

GOP-led House Rules Committee blocks voting on bipartisan marijuana amendments

The U.S. House Committee on Rules has blocked a number of marijuana-related amendments from a federal appropriations bill, including the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment.

The GOP-led committee’s moves late Wednesday mean multiple amendments protecting existing and future state marijuana laws won’t be getting a vote on the House floor. Earlier Wednesday, Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-California, told The Hill that GOP leaders viewed the amendments as potentially divisive and planned to not have them go to a vote.

The most notable measure cast out of the must-pass appropriations bill was the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment, which would bar the Justice Department from using funds to interfere with existing state-enacted medical marijuana regulations. The amendment formerly known as Rohrabacher-Farr (Rep. Sam Farr has retired) has been in place since late 2014, when it received a 219-189 vote in the House, and was approved again in 2015, by a 242-186 vote. It has been extended through omnibus spending legislation set to expire at the end of this month.

The committee’s removal of the medical marijuana protections from the House bill does not kill the amendment, and it still has a chance of making it into the legislation that lays out annual funding for the federal government. In late July, the Senate Appropriations Committee authorized the amendment for inclusion in the larger spending bill. Once the House version is passed, it faces reconciliation with that Senate version by a conference committee.

In a joint statement released Wednesday night, amendment sponsors Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-California, and Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Oregon, condemned the committee’s decision, saying the move “goes against the will of the American people” and “is putting at risk the millions of patients who rely on medical marijuana.”

“Our fight to protect medical marijuana patients is far from over,” the statement continued. “The marijuana reform movement is large and growing. This bad decision by the House Rules Committee is an affront to the 46 states and the District of Columbia that have legalized use and distribution of some form of medical marijuana. These programs serve millions of Americans.

“This setback, however, is not the final word. As House and Senate leadership negotiate a long-term funding bill, we will fight to maintain current protections.”

As The Cannabist’s Alicia Wallace previously reported, the potential short-term funding deal revealed Wednesday likely would include the existing Rohrabacher-Farr language, extending those protections through year’s end if it is approved.

Earlier Wednesday, Rohrabacher, and co-sponsors Blumenauer, and Jared Polis, D-Colorado, all testified before the committee that the medical marijuana protections are existing law and that public opinion is in favor of the existing medical cannabis regulations in 46 states.

“To deny (members of Congress) the right to have a vote, I think, is unconscionable,” Rohrabacher told the committee.

Said Blumenauer: “It would be a tragic mistake to lose the progress that we made.”

Three amendments on banking were offered, sponsored by Dennis “Denny” Heck, D-Washington. They would have allowed for marijuana businesses to have access to banking by prohibiting the punishment of financial institutions that serve licensed marijuana businesses and preventing the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network from rescinding its guidance for banks that work with marijuana firms.

The measures were rejected on an 8-5 vote, with the four Democrats on the committee joined by Republican Rep. Dan Newhouse of Washington in favor of the banking amendments.

Other amendments blocked by the committee included additional protection for medical marijuana research, sponsored by Florida GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz, and another allowing the District of Columbia to use local funding to regulate and tax recreational marijuana, which D.C. legalized in 2014.

Staff Writer Alicia Wallace contributed to this report.

House Rules Committee members:
Rep. Pete Sessions, R-Texas (chair)
Rep. Tom Cole, R-Oklahoma (vice-chair)
Rep. Rob Woodall, R-Georgia
Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Texas
Rep. Doug Collins, R-Georgia
Rep. Bradley Byrne, R-Alabama
Rep. Dan Newhouse, R-Washington
Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colorado
Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyoming
Rep. Louise Slaughter, D-New York (ranking minority member)
Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Massachusetts
Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Florida
Rep. Jared Polis, D-Colorado

Watch the committee hearing:


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Published at Thu, 07 Sep 2017 04:21:06 +0000

What is the Best Way to Do Dabs? A Little Dab Will Do!

What is the Best Way to Do Dabs? A Little Dab Will Do!

What is the Best Way to Do Dabs?

Dabbing is the common terms for smoking or vaping concentrated cannabis. While it has been around for nearly a decade, there are still some uncertainties as to how to perform this technique.  TWB has posted about dabs before, but we wanted to give you the lowdown on different ways to do dabs so you can decide which method is the best for you.

The preference for the concentrated version over the cannabis flower lies in its much stronger and powerful kick. The potency comes from its 70 to 90% THC content and no dead plant matter. With the heightened popularity of the ‘dabs’, the increased attention to consumption methods are growing. The below methods are guaranteed whether you are novice or pro.

  1. Dab Rig

This is only advised if you know what you’re doing and have a high tolerance. The rig consists of four components; oil rig, torch, nail and wand. The concentrated marijuana goes on the wand. You heat the nail with the torch and once hot, dab the the concentrate and inhale.

A similar but alternative method is using the electric nail. Similar to the Dab Rigs, except that instead of a torch, the nail is plugged in to heat up. You get more control over the temperature this way and can be sure to vaporize concentrates rather than combusting.

  1. Health Stone

This stone is a porous rock that you place in your bowl-piece. The marijuana is placed directly on the stone; no dab tool required. You still need a torch to heat the stone which then vaporizes the dab. This method works best for any concentrates like hash or crumble.

  1. Dab Pen

This is the most convenient way to use highly-concentrated cannabis. The pens are easy to use and portable and you don’t need a torch or any tools. The biggest complaint of the pens is the plastic aftertaste that gets left in your mouth, but it is not the worst thing, considering you can just pour the liquid in and go.

  1. Pre-Filled Vape Cartridges

Easy to use, these cartridges can be used in a dab pen that allow for refills or an e-cigarette or vape pens. These are very discreet and convenient but can be pricey too.

  1. T-Waxing

When you have super potent cannabis, you can mix it with some dry herb, creating ‘twax’. It offers a pleasurable experience but the high is sub-par to other methods. When rolled with flowers, the dab will burn slower making it perfect to share.

Whichever method you decide upon, one of these popular methods will be the better choice. Then all you have to do is decide what type of concentrate you want, shatter, crumble, wax or oil, and in a short matter of time your dabbing experience will be under way.

Author bio: Taylor Walker is a cannabis enthusiast and freelance writer based in Canada. Taylor has a keen interest in the health benefits of marijuana. He has written about topics such as CBD oil and various cannabis consumption methods and almost everything in between.  

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Published at Wed, 30 Aug 2017 16:38:51 +0000

Tips for Successfully Growing Marijuana Indoors

Tips for Successfully Growing Marijuana Indoors

Tips for Successfully Growing Marijuana Indoors

Whether or not you have a green thumb, growing marijuana can be a challenge. If you want to grow your own indoor marijuana plant, you might encounter some trouble. These tips can help you have a successful grow, regardless of the color of your thumb.

  1. Do your research

Before you can even consider growing marijuana, do some research. First, you should find out if it’s legal to grow it in your state. If it’s not, you may also want to research the consequences of getting caught with a marijuana plant.

You should also research growing practices. There are some great resources out there. Check out plantsily.com/ for detailed steps on how to successfully grow indoors. Learn everything about growing it; there’s a lot to learn. By educating yourself, you can save yourself the stress of many unsuccessful attempts.

  1. Be clean

Marijuana plants are susceptible to disease. You want to do everything you can to prevent the spread of diseases. And that means being clean. You should wash your hands before you handle any plants. Be sure to keep all your tools and the surrounding environment clean as well. The cleaner the area, the less likely it is that bugs and diseases can take over.

  1. Use good soil and seeds

Without the right soil and the right seeds, your plants won’t grow well. Or, the results might be disappointing. When you’re shopping for soil, don’t skimp. Look for a high-quality soil that has a pH balance in the 6.5 range.

The seeds matter too. Bad seeds might not grow, or they might result in low quality cannabis. Don’t buy the cheapest seeds you can find. Instead, do your research and buy from a reputable source.  Quality seeds make for some quality cannabis.

  1. Don’t overdo it

We get it. You’re excited about growing your very own marijuana plant. But don’t let your enthusiasm get the best of you. Many novices use too much water and too much fertilizer. This can destroy your plant. Everything should be done in moderation. Only water your plant if there’s no moisture about three inches under the surface of the soil. And when you do water it, don’t drown the plant.

As far as fertilizer goes, the same is true. You don’t want to overdo it. If your soil contains the nutrients your plant needs, don’t add more to the water. And you should be aware of what nutrients your plants need throughout the growth cycle. The flowering stage uses up different nutrients than the vegetative stage.

  1. Consistency is key

Marijuana plants thrive in a consistent environment. Do what you need to in order to keep the humidity, temperature and air circulation stable. Try to keep your own attention to the plants on a schedule as well. Care for them at the same time every day.

These aren’t the only things you need to do to have a successful grow. But it’s a good start. If you’re thorough, attentive, and smart about growing, you can have great success. And the results are well worth the effort.

Author Bio: Brad Richardson is a regular contributor to Plantsily and other cannabis-centric websites. In his spare time he works hard with local organizations within his state, to ensure that Marijuana is soon legalized. 

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Published at Fri, 25 Aug 2017 15:12:26 +0000

Many Americans use Cannabis for Chronic Pain Because it is Better than Opioids

Many Americans use Cannabis for Chronic Pain Because it is Better than Opioids

CANNABIS FOR CHRONIC PAIN

Currently, 1/3 America suffers from chronic pain, defined as pain that lasts longer than 12 weeks. It commonly coincides alongside secondary symptoms and conditions, from trouble sleeping to a weakened immune system to anxiety and depression. The problem with chronic pain and other health conditions, however, is that many people turn to opioid prescriptions, the reality of which is quite dangerous. Medical marijuana, on the other hand, is a viable alternative to opioids, which you will see in the infographic below.

Apollo Cannabis Clinic aims to offer safe and effective treatment for chronic pain and a variety of other conditions such as PTSD and anxiety via medicinal marijuana. The largest study on cannabis to date found that medical cannabis is effective at relieving not only chronic pain, but also a variety of other conditions, from muscle spasms associated with multiple sclerosis to nausea associated with chemotherapy. Not only is it effective, but it is also highly safe, especially in comparison to opioids. In 2015, 15,000 or more deaths in the United States were the result of opioid overdoses alone – marijuana, on the other hand, caused zero deaths. This is because while it is virtually impossible to overdose on marijuana, the same is not true for opioids.

The opioid overdose epidemic is perhaps compounded by the misleading and often false information that the public has received regarding opioid use. In 2007, for example, three top executives from Purdue Pharma plead guilty to marketing Oxycontin as a safe alternative and for giving inaccurate information regarding the risks of addiction. Another problem in all of this is that that a large percentage of those using opioids – 49 percent – get them from family and friends.

As you will see in the infographic below, however, not only is medical marijuana a safe and effective way to treat chronic pain and a variety of other health conditions, but it is also associated with a decrease in opioid-related deaths.

cannabis vs opioids

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Published at Fri, 25 Aug 2017 16:00:38 +0000

Congressmen query Sessions over reported cannabis research obstruction

Congressmen query Sessions over reported cannabis research obstruction

A bipartisan group of lawmakers sent a letter Wednesday to Attorney General Jeff Sessions expressing concern about a reported move by the Justice Department to halt marijuana research.

The letter from Representatives Matt Gaetz, R-Florida; Dana Rohrabacher, R-California; Jared Polis, D-Colorado; and Earl Blumenauer, D-Oregon; referenced a Washington Post report from Aug. 15 that, citing unnamed Drug Enforcement Administration officials, stated the Department of Justice has effectively shut down plans put in motion a year ago to reduce barriers to marijuana research. As of early August, 22 entities applied for marijuana research manufacturing licenses, but none had been approved, DEA officials told The Cannabist earlier this month.

“It is worrisome to think that the Department of Justice, the cornerstone of American civil society, would limit new and potentially groundbreaking research simply because it does not want to follow a rule,” the lawmakers wrote in the letter provided to The Cannabist. “We write to inquire whether the allegations raised by the Post are true, and, if so, to understand the Department of Justice’s rationale in refusing to process these applications.”

The congressmen’s letter was first obtained and reported by Tom Angell, of Marijuana Majority and MassRoots.

Justice Department officials could not be immediately reached for comment.

Each of the four congressmen has had their hands in several marijuana-related federal bills aimed at aspects such as rescheduling or descheduling what currently is a Schedule I substance; creating avenues for increased research; preserving existing state-based programs; and easing restrictions for banks and financial institutions to work with the industry.

Earlier this year, Blumenauer, Polis and Rohrabacher co-founded the first-ever Congressional Cannabis Caucus.


Read the letter from the Congress members

Letter to DOJ regarding DEA research (Text)

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Published at Wed, 23 Aug 2017 23:14:28 +0000

Social use marijuana clubs will soon be legal in Denver, but how many will open?

Social use marijuana clubs will soon be legal in Denver, but how many will open?

DENVER — Colorado’s largest city is on the brink of licensing some of the nation’s first legal marijuana clubs.

But Denver’s elaborate hurdles for potential weed-friendly coffee shops and gathering places may mean the city gets few takers for the new licenses.

Denver voters approved bring-your-own-pot clubs in a ballot measure last year after city officials’ dragged their feet on calls to give legal pot smokers a place to use the drug. The city plans to start accepting applications by the end of the month.

“There are plenty of places where you can consume alcohol. Let’s give people a place to go to consume marijuana,” said Jordan Person, head of Denver NORML, which advocates for pot-friendly public policy.

But Denver’s would-be “social use” clubs have faced one delay after another.

First, the state liquor board prohibited pot use at any place with a liquor license, making bars and many restaurants off-limits. And pot shops can’t allow consumption on the premises.

That left gathering places like coffee shops, art galleries and yoga studios. Furthermore, would-be clubs must stay twice as far as liquor stores from schools and anywhere children congregate, including playgrounds and sports fields.

“We can’t be in places where it makes sense,” said Kayvan Khalatbari, a Denver marijuana consultant who helped run last year’s club campaign.

City officials say the rules are as flexible as possible given stiff resistance from some community groups and marijuana skeptics.

The voter-approved club measure also says the club licenses are a pilot program and neighborhood groups must agree to allow a club before it could open.

“There were no surprises in the rules,” said Dan Rowland, spokesman for the Denver department that regulates marijuana businesses. “They reflect all the comments we got from the community.”

One hopeful applicant says the regulations are stringent but still a step forward for the
industry.

“A lot of us are hoping this will … open the doors for a new kind of business,” said Connor Lux, who runs a co-work space for the cannabis industry and plans to apply for a social use license to hold public, weed-friendly events at his business just north of downtown Denver. Applying for a license costs $1,000; the licenses itself is $1,000 a year.

Lux envisions open-to-the-public networking events at his space.

“I don’t think anyone’s planning a giant smoke-out, everybody-coming-to-get-high kind of thing,” he said.

Khalatbari has sued Colorado’s liquor regulators over the ban on pot and alcohol in the same location, a lawsuit that hasn’t yet been heard, and says he is considering a lawsuit against the city for what he believes are onerous club rules.

Khalatbari noted Denver has much looser distance requirements for places selling alcohol, even allowing bicycle bars to cruise past schools and churches. The mobile bars with drivers ferry groups of pedaling drinkers from one tavern to the next.

“You can ride these stupid moronic bike bars down the street, getting hammered in public. But we’re not giving people a safer choice, even though voters have said over and over again they want to go that way,” Khalatbari said.

Colorado’s marijuana law neither allows nor denies pot clubs, leaving the state with a patchwork of local club rules. Some cities tolerate them; in others, clubs operate underground, with members arranging meetups using social media.

State lawmakers earlier this year decided against a plan to regulate marijuana clubs statewide. Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper warned that passing the measure could invite a federal crackdown.

The situation is similar in other legal-pot states.

Alaska’s 2014 marijuana measure allowed for on-site pot consumption at potential “tasting rooms,” though regulators in that state have yet to allow any to open.

And measures approved last year in California and Massachusetts allowed for pot clubs, but both states are still working out rules.

Person, the marijuana activist, said she’s hopeful that Denver’s limited rules will prove a step forward in a national move toward marijuana acceptance.

“People still aren’t sure how this is going to work or what’s going to be allowed. But this is progress,” she said.

(Why?)

Published at Tue, 22 Aug 2017 15:02:50 +0000

Cannabist Show: He's a godfather of Denver comedy and pro heckler

Cannabist Show: He's a godfather of Denver comedy and pro heckler

Featured guest: Denver-based comedian David “Deacon” Gray, coordinator for new talent at Comedy Works.

LOTS TO TALK ABOUT

•  Finding a fresh voice for cannabis in the comedy scene.

•  A recreational consumer’s cancer diagnosis sparks a new appreciation of medical marijuana and honest conversations with doctors.

•  Why professional heckling is a real job, and how the on-point interruption can help pro athletes and others.

TOP MARIJUANA NEWS

DEA says Justice Department has “effectively shut down” marijuana research: The Justice Department under Attorney General Jeff Sessions has effectively blocked the Drug Enforcement Administration from taking action on more than two dozen requests to grow marijuana to use in research, one of a number of areas in which the anti-drug agency is at odds with the Trump administration, U.S. officials familiar with the matter said. “They’re sitting on it,” said one law enforcement official. –Report by The Washington Post’s Matt Zapotosky and Devlin Barrett

Norman Rockwell Museum being considered for weed dispensary: A father and son are considering the Norman Rockwell Museum property in Vermont as a possible location for a marijuana dispensary. The museum property has been up for sale for several years. –Report by The Associated Press


Close-up of the sativa cannabis strain Gorilla Glue #4, grown by District 8 and purchased at the Smoking Gun Apothecary in Glendale, Colorado in June 2017. (Vince Chandler, The Denver Post)

Gorilla Glue lawsuit: A Nevada cannabis company that lays claim to creating the highly decorated, extremely potent and wildly popular Gorilla Glue #4 strain is in a sticky legal situation over the company’s branding and marketing. The Gorilla Glue Company — maker of adhesive products such as Gorilla Glue, Gorilla Epoxy and Gorilla Tape — is suing GG Strains LLC, the company founded by Peabody and business partner Ross Johnson, alleging trademark infringement, dilution, unfair competition and cybersquatting. By licensing and marketing products under “confusingly similar” names, GG Strains is ultimately trading on the reputation and goodwill that the family-run, Sharonville, Ohio-based company built over 23 years of business, according to the March 24 complaint. –Report by The Cannabist’s Alicia Wallace

This Kansas gov candidate backs medical marijuana, gun rights — BTW he’s 16: He won’t even be able to vote, but a 16-year-old Wichita high school student says he’s serious about his bid to run for governor of Kansas. Jack Bergerson has filed to run as a Democrat in the 2018 race for governor of Kansas, saying he wanted to give people another option, The Kansas City Star reported. “Under Kansas law, there is no law governing the qualifications for governor, not one,” said Bryan Caskey, director of elections at the Kansas secretary of state’s office. “So there’s seriously nothing on the books that lays out anything, no age, no residency, no experience. Nothing.” –Report by The Associated Press

Hawaii’s first medical marijuana dispensary sells out in days: Less than a week after it opened, Maui’s first state-licensed medical marijuana dispensary is reworking its opening hours as demand for its product outstrips supply because of a backlog. Maui Grown Therapies says it had expected its most recent batch of flowers to clear state lab certification by Saturday, but that didn’t happen, The Maui News reported. –Report by The Associated Press

The Lucas Brothers talk pot, philosophy: Show host Jake is joined by Keith and Kenny Lucas at Comedy Works Downtown in Denver, returning to the site where the duo once got so high, Keith said: “Denver weed made me believe in Jesus Christ.” The Lucas Brothers talked with The Cannabist about marijuana, philosophy, New York City’s stop-and-frisk program and much more before their headlining shows at the historic club Aug. 17-19. –Video by The Cannabist’s Vince Chandler

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Published at Fri, 18 Aug 2017 18:37:50 +0000

3 Deadly Pharmaceuticals that Could be Replaced by Marijuana

3 Deadly Pharmaceuticals that Could be Replaced by Marijuana

3 Deadly Pharmaceuticals that Could Be Replaced by Marijuana

1.     Opioid-Based Painkillers

So why is Big Pharma investing millions of dollars every year in researching and creating its own marijuana-based pain killers?  Because Big Pharma recognizes medicinal marijuana outshines typical medications in many ways, and the prescriptions drug companies do not want to be left behind when this is recognized on a national level.  

Medicinal marijuana is indisputably beneficial in its comparative safeness.  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “opioids killed more than 33,000 people in 2015, and nearly half of all opioid deaths involved a prescription drug.”  Since the recent Marijuana Boom in America, which began nearly a decade ago with the legalization of medical marijuana in several states such as Colorado and California, the misconception that marijuana is “a dangerous street drug” is being questioned more and more.

Currently, opioids such as Oxycodone, Fentanyl, and Hydrocodone, among others, are used to treat both chronic and acute pain.  Acute pain being immediate, sharp pain, while chronic pain refers to long-term, reoccurring pain.  Foreign prescription drug companies, such as Israel-based Intec Pharma Ltd, Nemus Bioscience, and Axim Biotechnologies Inc. are all currently testing non-psychoactive Cannabidoil (CBD) in laboratories to see if these types of pain can be mitigated through the use of CBD.  With the results yet to be published, we patiently wait to see if marijuana is the next breakthrough in replacing dangerous opioids.

2.     Sleeping Aids

According to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, reported by the New York Daily News, “nearly 9 million US adults resort to prescription sleeping pills.”  Sleeping aids like Ambien and Zolpidem are not only addictive, but can lead to ER visits and possibly even death.  They become especially dangerous when paired with alcohol or other medications. There is also the risk of overdosing on sleeping pills, where no such risk exists with marijuana.

Insomnia affects individuals’ ability to function normally throughout the day.  Sufferers experience drained energy, impaired mental acuity, and altered moods.  Marijuana comes in two major strains: sativa and indica. Sativa strains tend to worsen insomnia, indica strains tend to relax the body and mind, and result in drowsiness.

For prolonged sleep, we recommend taking indica edibles, rather than smoke or vapor.  Although smoking or vaporizing makes effects immediate, the high tends to wear off after 3-4 hours, and could result in waking up in the middle of the night.  Edibles, on the other hand, take longer to kick in, but last up to 6-8 hours; so restless patients have a better chance of staying asleep throughout the whole night.  Please be cautious if you are new to edibles. Do not re-dose if their effects are not felt in the assumed timeframe. 

3.     Anti-Anxiety Drugs

Anxiety disorders are often misunderstood and poorly treated… with benzodiazepines, such as Xanax, Klonopin, Ativan, and Valium.  Although not physically addictive, this class of drugs can cause serious dependency issues.  According to the American Public Journal, reported by the New York Times, in 2013 nearly 5.6 percent of Americans filled a benzodiazepines prescription, and approximately 3 of every 100,000 people died from overdose. 

In March 2014, Vanderbilt University led a study on the effectiveness of treating anxiety through medical marijuana.  They found that the cannabinoid receptors in the brain are pivotal in regulating anxiety and triggering the flight or fight responses that are essential to human survival.  Those suffering from anxiety disorders often accidently trigger these cellular responses in the cannabinoids’ communication (in the amygdala), which can then create “fake” fight or flight scenarios, resulting in unnecessary anxiety.  Since marijuana produces endocannabinoids and affects the same receptors in the brain, its use can help regulate anxiety and alleviate anxiety disorders.

(5 Marijuana Strains for Anxiety)

It should be noted, the same study also found that some of the heavy, habitual users actually incurred the opposite effect, and showed increased levels of anxiety.

Big Pharma is predicting a giant increase in the number of Americans wanting marijuana-based painkillers, sleeping aids, and calmers. When the laws change, they expect to be ready.

(Why?)

Published at Tue, 15 Aug 2017 18:47:37 +0000

This economist has a strategy to kill the marijuana black market

This economist has a strategy to kill the marijuana black market

Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., has recently introduced legislation to legalize marijuana at the federal level. His bill will no doubt inspire the standard criticisms, one of which is that legalization does not eliminate the black market. Kevin Sabet, director of the Drug Policy Institute, claims that “[e]ven under legalization, there’s a black market.” This view contains a kernel of truth, but it misses the bigger picture.

Most consumers prefer, other things equal, to purchase from legal suppliers. This allows them to resolve disagreements about quality, service, and payment with lawsuits or by reporting to private and public watchdogs; it facilitates repeat shopping from a high-quality seller, and it avoids the risks of adulterated or excessively potent goods. Thus despite the costs created by regulation and taxation for most legal goods, black markets do not often arise.

Instead, black markets arise only when government policy forces markets underground by outlawing them or by imposing excessive regulation or taxation. After the United States repealed Alcohol Prohibition in 1933, most of the market returned to the legal sphere, except in states that continued prohibition or imposed excessive taxes.

One obstacle to moving the marijuana market fully above ground is that all state legalizations to date — and the regulatory frameworks imposed at the state or city level — impose substantial restrictions on the marijuana market. Details vary, but regulations generally limit the number of retail outlets, the specific products they can sell, the amount customers can purchase per visit, and the location of stores. Much regulation also restricts or bans home delivery, bars some individuals from obtaining retail licenses, and imposes a minimum purchase age of 21. Apart from this over-regulation, some states impose a tax burden that prices legal marijuana well above illegal marijuana.

A different obstacle to eliminating the black market is ongoing federal marijuana prohibition. Federal authorities can, and do, conduct busts and buys, prosecute violations of federal prohibition, and imprison those convicted. Moreover, federal banking regulation keeps marijuana businesses from operating legally, even in legalized states. The federal tax code also bars standard expense deductions for businesses that are illegal under federal law; this means that marijuana businesses face highly punitive tax rates. According to Fortune Magazine, a legal marijuana business owner can pay an effective tax rate as high as 90 percent.

Additionally, regulation currently protects those lucky enough to already have licenses. In Oregon owners of legitimate marijuana businesses are losing customers to the black market. They blame “delays in the state’s permitting process for new entries into the recreational marijuana market, which acts as an artificial control on supply, which… in turn pushes customers to explore cheaper options.”

All these factors encourage continued black markets even under legalization.

The critics are therefore right that partial legalization will not eliminate the black market, but the solution is trivial: full legalization. Most importantly, federal law must legalize marijuana so that marijuana businesses can access the legal banking sector and comply with federal tax codes without putting themselves at a competitive disadvantage.

More broadly, the desire to control the marijuana market via regulation is misguided.

If regulation is mild, it has no meaningful effect. Consider a rule that limits purchases to one ounce per customer per month.  For most users an ounce lasts at least a month anyway. And consumers who want more can purchase at multiple stores or have friends or family purchase for them

If regulation is instead strict, it promotes continuation of the black market. Consider a requirement for registration of every purchase and enforcement of the rule of only one ounce per month across all stores in a state. This would be expensive and would place real barriers to using retail stores, ultimately resulting in less tax revenue, more need for enforcement, and perpetuation of the illegal market.

Thus legalization without excessive regulation or taxation is the only way to eliminate the black market.  And this approach has the added virtue of maximizing tax revenue from legalized sales, minimizing enforcement costs, and respecting the freedom of those who wish to consume marijuana.

Jeffrey Miron is director of economic studies at the Cato Institute and the director of undergraduate studies in the Department of Economics at Harvard University. 

To send a letter to the editor about this article, submit online or check out our guidelines for how to submit by email or mail.

This story was first published on DenverPost.com

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Published at Mon, 14 Aug 2017 17:44:00 +0000