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April 2010
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Outstanding Medical Marijuana Congressional Review

When Congress needs to know the background on a particular issue — the history, the arguments on both sides, the facts — they turn to the Congressional Research Service. CRS reports are issued on a fairly constant basis on a wide range of issues.

There’s a new one called Medical Marijuana: Review and Analysis of
Federal and State Policies
by Mark Eddy, Specialist in Social Policy

It really is worth reading the whole thing. This is a phenomenally good report, going back to the history of medical marijuana use prior to 1937, and following all the major developments. It doesn’t flinch from portraying government interference as unwarranted when true. It covers the Francis Young statement, and the Compassionate IND program, shows the positive polling for medical marijuana, and debunks many of the prohibitionist arguments against medical marijuana.

If Congress actually pays attention to it, we could see some major change. But don’t hold your breath — as the report itself notes, Congress’ actions have been more political than science-based in this area.

[Thanks to claygooding for the link.]

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12 comments to Outstanding Medical Marijuana Congressional Review

  • DEXtronaut

    The congress have their eyes covered in shame, they won’t open them up to look at this, it scares them. And their wallets.

  • Hope

    Insanely unjust law or laws: “The CSA does not distinguish between the medical and recreational use of marijuana. Under
    federal statute, simple possession of marijuana for personal use, a misdemeanor, can bring up to
    one year in federal prison and up to a $100,000 fine for a first offense.16 Growing marijuana is
    considered manufacturing a controlled substance, a felony.17 A single plant can bring an
    individual up to five years in federal prison and up to a $250,000 fine for a first offense.18”

  • Matthew Meyer

    Thanks for the reference, Pete.

  • kant

    I haven’t read all of it yet but it so far is pretty amazing. Even if this falls on deaf ears in congress this would certainly be a hugely effective source to cite when advocating on the state level.

  • permanentilt

    Congress wouldn’t even read the healthcare bill, why would they “waste their time” reading this?

    I actually think most of congress is functionally illiterate.

  • Steve

    Excellent report. I didn’t plan on reading the whole thing in one sitting, but that’s just what I ended up doing. Favorite line from the whole report:

    “The ideology of the ‘Drug Warriors’ intrudes on the science of medical marijuana…”

    For me, that sums it up perfectly.

  • Hope

    Permanentilt, I agree. They won’t read it. I’m sure they will never even know it exists unless a constituent points it out to them… and they still won’t bother to read it.

    There appears to be a culture of stoically maintained ignorance on these matters in Congress and it’s not too likely that many of them will let anything interfere with that culture in the least.

  • Hope

    Although, an on the ball staffer or assistant might get it printed up and in the boss’s notes for the day, or on his iod, or ipad, or something.

    If he or she is really good at what he or she does.

  • Ed Dunkle

    I’m going to print up a copy and drop it off at my congressman’s office. He’s a real twit, but it’s the least I can do.

  • Paul

    This is good. It gives congressmen some cover and ammunition, should they want to use it in favor of marijuana liberalization.

  • Just me

    I have to agree, they dont read the bills they pass but, there is the fact that this is a big money hole and we have some in congress and else where working on this issue. Yes this will give them cover ammunition if they choose to think of ending this maddness….if thye read it. Then again..Nixon read the schaffer report and look what happened. They could ignore it….choose to start ending it ..or…choose a harsher crack down.

  • And yet…

    Popular anticonvulsant drugs raise suicide risks

    Last month, a Boston jury found Pfizer guilty of improperly marketing Neurontin. And in January, Novartis said it would plead guilty to violating U.S. laws relating to potential off-label marketing and promotion of Trileptal.

    To study the risks of suicidal thoughts and acts, Patorno and colleagues analyzed prescription and clinical data on nearly 300,000 patients 15 and older who had been given an anticonvulsant drug for the first time between July 2001 and December 2006.

    “We found increased risk for suicidal acts beginning within the first 14 days after treatment initiation, opening the possibility that anticonvulsant medications could induce behavioral effects prior to the achievement of their full therapeutic effectiveness,” Patorno and colleagues wrote.

    The study identified 827 suicidal acts, including 801 attempted suicides and 26 completed suicides. They also found an additional 41 violent deaths.

    Which prompts me to ask:

    How many of you ganjists out there feel suicidal when you consume da herb? I’ll wager… none?

    Ya know they keep handing us these clubs to beat them with and I continue to wonder when we’re finally gonna get our shit together and beat this beast until it’s dead.

    This is a big stick. In an arsenal of big sticks…