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June 2004



My life. My decision

In today’s Salt Lake Tribune comes a story that makes me do something truly rare … …praise the government for something they’re doing in the drug war. Now, before you get all concerned for my mental health, I’d better point out that the good thing the government is doing came about by accident. Brigham Young […]

National Review and an End to Marijuana Prohibition

Marijuana prohibition is unique among American criminal laws. No other law is both enforced so widely and harshly and yet deemed unnecessary by such a substantial portion of the populace.

This quote is from the cover story in the new issue of National Review, featuring drug reform figure Ethan Nadelmann titled “An End to […]


This story in the Miami Herald:

Two years after approving the use of drug-sniffing dogs, Broward County schools may have another narcotic-fighting weapon: an aerosol spray that detects residue on school desks or backpacks, similar to bomb-detection equipment used in airports.

Despite research that shows drug use is down among high school seniors since the […]

Odds and Ends

“bullet” TalkLeft points us to Volunteer Committee of Lawyers (VCL):

Co-founded by former Attorney General Elliott Richardson, “the VCL seeks to promote, within and by the legal profession, informed discussion about the objectives of the drug war and its costs to our cherished institutions of liberty and justice.”

“bullet” Also see TalkLeft for more on […]

The Supreme Court, Medical Marijuana and the Commerce Clause

The Supreme Court has decided to consider Ashcroft v. Raich. For details on the case, see my original post on the victory in the 9th Circuit. Basically this boils down to a challenge of the federal government’s ability to interfere in the states using their authority under the interstate commerce clause, when no commerce or […]

Blessing Marijuana

In Saturday’s Washington Post: Blessing Marijuana for Mercy’s Sake

The United Methodist Church, the Union for Reform Judaism, the Progressive National Baptist Convention, the Episcopal Church, the Unitarian Universalist Association, the Presbyterian Church (USA), the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the United Church of Christ have made statements supporting the controlled use of marijuana […]

A letter

Dear Michael Moore, Congratulations on breaking all sorts of records with the opening weekend of your film Fahrenheit 9/11. You’re opinionated and controversial, and you’ve clearly found out how to make that combination work. Not everyone likes you or agrees with you, but even their criticism turns into heightened attention to the issues you promote. […]

US nabs the Drug Pirates of the Caribbean; completely stops some smuggling

All the celebrities were out to celebrate the big bust — the culmination of 29 months of work in six countries and the arrest of 50 people. The celebrities included Attorney General John Ashcroft, Drug Czar John Walters, and DEA head Karen Tandy.

“These are the modern-day ‘Pirates of the Caribbean,’” Tandy said. “Today their […]

Odds and Ends

“bullet” Check out this week’s Drug War Chronicle for disappointing updates on the Rockefeller Drug Laws and lots more. Also a good review of the week’s news in today’s Drug Sense Newsletter. “bullet” Speaking of the Rockefeller Drug Laws, check out The Reluctant Activist in the Village Voice (Thanks, MzOuiser)

When it was Cheri’s turn, […]

Supreme Court Justice Kennedy’s call for investigation into mandatory minimums bears fruit

In the Chicago Tribune: ABA urges new look at sentencing:

Many get-tough approaches to crime don’t work and some, such as mandatory minimum sentences for small-time drug offenders, are unfair and should be abolished, a report from the American Bar Association said Wednesday.

Laws requiring mandatory minimum prison terms leave little room to consider differences […]