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Reefer Madness Redux

There is a ton of nonsense floating around the media recently (a lot of it has been noted in comments here). Some of it is no doubt linked to blowback due to recent gains made by legalizers. But these dinosaurs are having a harder time finding new audiences for their nonsense. Sure, there are a few fossils who agree with them, but they’re becoming extinct.

bullet image Is There a Marathon-Marijuana Connection? by Steve Adelman, director of Physician Health Services, Inc., a corporation of the Massachusetts Medical Society.

This idiot is writing for a Medical Society Blog, no less, and yet can do nothing but wild conjecture in five different directions, all of which implicate marijuana, of course.

Numerous acquaintances of Dzhokhar describe the suspected bomber as something of a “stoner.” If he was getting high on a daily or near-daily basis, then he most certainly had THC in his brain at the time of the bombing.

On the other hand, when a chronic marijuana abuser decides to go clean, it can take 6 to 12 weeks for the THC to leave his system. As THC levels drop, chronic users can become anxious and irritable. Perhaps low-grade withdrawal symptoms played a role in irrational decision making.

But if chronic or intermittent pot-smoking remained in the picture until Patriots Day, then perhaps this most profoundly misguided of decisions was influenced by the suspect’s being under the influence. Heavy marijuana users shed IQ points, and don’t think as clearly as they did before they started bathing their brains in THC, which is there around-the-clock because of its ultra-long half-life.

Much of the reporting indicates that Dzhokhar functioned at a higher level in high school than he did in college. If so, marijuana may have played a role in “dumbing him down.” His academics may have suffered, and, in the words of his own uncle, he became, “a loser.” It isn’t easy to tolerate going from being a winner to being a loser. A pot-addled loser, with parents half a world away, might be particularly at risk for coming under the influence of a simplistic, radical ideology, foisted upon him by a domineering older brother.

[Thanks, Michael]

bullet image Britain’s marijuana mafia: Two million users, £6bn worth of trade and 30,000 deaths. A leading author meets the men (and women) feeding the UK’s terrifying addiction

This is Daily Mail at its most outrageous (which is saying something). Of course, most of the problems they talked about were actually problems due to prohibition. But, are you curious about those 30,000 deaths? I was.

Here’s how they come up with it:

Cannabis is far from ‘safe’ despite its reputation. […]
It is also carcinogenic. The British Lung Foundation says smoking three joints a day causes similar damage to smoking 20 cigarettes a day. That would suggest that up to 30,000 people a year contract cannabis-related cancer.

Well, they’re off by about… 30,000.

Just in case you needed more proof than already exists that marijuana smoking does not increase your risks of lung cancer, here’s another study at the Oncology Report that looks at all the other studies, and finds…

Marijuana habit not linked to lung cancer

Regular cannabis smokers are no more likely to develop lung cancer than are people who indulge occasionally.

The finding of no significant increased risk held true whether the smokers imbibed once or twice – or more – each day, and regardless of how many years they had smoked, Dr. Li Rita Zhang reported at the annual meeting of the American Association of Cancer Research.

The study included data from six case-control studies conducted from 1999 to 2012 in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and New Zealand, with a subject pool of 2,159 lung cancer cases and 2,985 controls. All of the studies were part of the International Lung Cancer Consortium (ILCCO), an international group of lung cancer researchers with the aim of sharing comparable data from ongoing and recently completed lung cancer studies from different geographical areas and ethnicities.

No surprise here, but it seems to still be news that some folks just refuse to absorb.

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25 comments to Reefer Madness Redux

  • curmudgeon

    Is it my imagination, or is our continuing use of the weapon of mass instruction, Truth, causing their responses to become more inane and inept?

  • Psy Op

    Thank You for Choosing
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  • Nicks Son

    I am not a Crook.
    I Earn my Keep.
    The Lion Accusing his Meal of ‘Crimes’…
    Too Funny.

    • Awaiting/moderation

      Is there any good reason your disruption here should be tolerated?

      • darkcycle

        I kinda enjoy the verse, Malcolm. We’re a prose sort of crowd here. Breaks things up a bit. Please, carry on…

  • Vapor Barrier

    Is That Your Rant?
    More Life Less Taxes.

  • Tal Mudd

    I began sensing it about 1970.
    The Country of my Birth was Suddenly Crippled Mentally, Spiritually.
    All Manner of Societal Change. Needless Change.
    Sneaking Nefarious Change. Looking for Reasons why such Disruption be Tolerated. None Found.
    $$$Billions Squandered. Helicopters Scaring Both Humans and Wildlife, Daily, Here. Wonder if that Bridge will ever see a New Coat of Paint.

  • claygooding

    I did a search and found no “Physician Health Services, Inc., a corporation of the Massachusetts Medical Society”
    However I did find that Adelman is a psychiatrist,,,can you say rehab?
    And there is a blog by that name…

    • claygooding

      Dr. Steven Adelman, MD – Psychiatry in West Roxbury, MA …
      Dr. Steven Adelman, MD, rated 3.5/4 by patients. 5 reviews, board certified in Addiction Psychiatry, Phone number & practice locations, Psychiatry in West Roxbury, MA.

      • claygooding

        Why aren’t the real Doctors of Psych allowing these charlatans to claim these outrageous bursts of reefer madness when the end results will be even less trust and confidence in their ability to help peopl,,perhaps someone that has experience in the field could prod them to act and at least make a statement.

        • kaptinemo

          I think I can answer you Clay. It has to do with dogma and who promotes it.

          Long ago back in 2003, I was visited by an old friend of mine who is a world-renowned psychologist, whose name will be withheld here for obvious reasons. He had attended a symposium in Warshington DC where the ‘lights’ of the prohib movement held forth. One of the first things he asked me once we had reached my apartment was if I had any weed; he needed it after what he had just been subjected to.

          He told me that just about everyone there, all experienced, successful psych people, thought that the presenters were ‘full of it’ and were ‘over the top’. He especially had very uncharitable things to say about Dr. Nora Volkow, saying she was really ‘out there’.

          But no one spoke out against the lies and nonsense being peddled because many of the participants were heavily dependent upon government grants for their research.

          Nobody laughs in church. And that’s what we’re dealing with; a de facto religion, with its’ own dogma, its’ own clergy…and its’ own ‘defenders of the faith’. They don’t have to burn science- and reform-minded apostates at the stake; they can just cut off your grant money. Works almost as well.

          It should be obvious by now that no one dependent upon a corrupt system for sustenance, even when they know it’s corrupt, can change it. That change has to come from the outside…and from the bottom up. And that’s where we come in. And with over half the population now on our side of the fence, it becomes more likely those silenced professional voices will finally be heard.

        • Duncan20903

          .
          .

          There was a prohibitionist sycophant from Idaho that I bumped into in the ether a couple of months ago who ‘splained it to me. It wasn’t like he didn’t have it bass ackward himself. He was projecting the problem onto me. But once I realized that he was reading the word “ecnalubmA” from his rear view mirror it all became clear.

          The phenomena which he described is called “pluralistic ignorance” and describes a shared misperception where the majority of people think that the majority of people believe “X” even though in reality that they quietly believe “Y”. An example from the 1970s was a poll among a group of Caucasian mothers which the results said that somewhere around 70% had no problem with their child being friends with a black child but only 1/3 believed that the majority of mothers felt that way. As a result 2/3 of the mothers wouldn’t let their children have black playmates.

          Of course the prohibitionist from potato land thought that the majority of people support prohibition. This was subsequent to Election Day 2012 and it was morbidly amusing to see this clown arguing that a significant majority believed what he believed. The fact that 55% had voted A-64 and I-502 into law didn’t appear to matter in his mind. Neither did the fact that the polls have moved from 12% in favor of re-legalization to just over 50% currently. The only thing that mitigated his silly belief was his residence in Idaho. It’s not very difficult for me to imagine that he is in the majority opinion among the people that he knows. But I will wager that the majority of the potato people who believe in prohibition is significantly smaller than it was in 1969.

          Something that I do think that a large majority of outsiders desire is to be part of the majority. I see this particular trait among voters every 4 years when we argue that the Country would be better off if people voted their conscience. But I’ve had to come to grips with the reality that people want to cast for the winner and that the desire overwhelms the thought of voting for the candidate that best represents their political view.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pluralistic_ignorance

          The flip side of the coin is the false consensus effect.
          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_consensus_effect

          All we can do is to keep plugging away. Eventually people will reject the false dogma and come to terms with the fact that the Earth revolves around the sun, not vice versa.

        • claygooding

          One of the reasons that “green” scientist dare not scream for cannabis legalization,,not of they ever want to do any government connected research ever again,,even as a lab tech.
          I am sure they have tied down every group or organization to keep any concerted effort to change the law on hemp,,they have put together a very intricate drug war machine but the corporations that built it couldn’t buy protection from the people and the rocks are rolling faster every day,,VT became the 17th state to decriminalize pot possession.
          Decrim may not stop the violence surrounding the black market but it kills a lot of local law enforcement objections and wringing their hands over the children and when they have time to think without first checking their pay stub it may bring support for legalization from them.

  • ezrydn

    Maybe he can explain how, smoking every day, I was able to achieve, in a shorter time than usual, a Behavioural Science Ph.D and a Juris Doctorate. While he’s at it, he can also address that my 48 years of tokin’ both cannabis AND tobacco, my Cardio. finds NO pulmanary obstructions. I turn 68 on the 18th. My mom died from cancer so I’d guess I’m “genetically inclined.”

    ‘Splain me real good, Doc. I’m waiting! Be nice when I leave Europe next week and get home to a sweet bowlfull.

  • kaptinemo

    This is more evidence the prohibs hear Hemingway’s famous bell; if all they can come up with is this super-refined and distilled, 200 Proof industrial strength Reefer Madness, then the prohibs are going to go as batscheisse crazy as Anslinger’s ‘dog doctor’ at the original 1937 hearing.

    If this is just the beginning of their ideological version of a nervous breakdown, then in 6 months they’ll demonstrate just how foaming rabid they really are, and they’ll do it publicly.

    The problem – for them – is that their intended audience has already been vaccinated, courtesy of having never believed the lies they were told in DARE class…and finding out the truth for themselves, courtesy of personal experience.

    Even those who never indulged figured they were being lied to as a matter of course…and they resented it as much as their partaking peers.

    The prohibs are not just ‘whistling past the graveyard’, they are screaming “Just say No! JUST SAY NOOOOOOOO!!” as they pass it. But no matter. The reformer gravediggers won’t stop prepping cannabis prohibition’s final resting place to suit a bunch of superstitious pathological liars

  • jean valjean

    the original comments with adelmans article are 100% opposed. hes not convincing anyone

  • Warren Mullaney

    Physicians Health Programs are in almost every state and governed by the FSPHP.
    (http://www.fsphp.org). They give the outward appearance of helping physicians who have drug and alcohol problems and protecting the public but they do neither. They have figured out that by gaining control of individual doctors licenses that they can effectively control organized medicine. They did this by aligning themselves with state boards of medicine in each state by offering to help “impaired physicians” get help from drug and alcohol problems. They encourage confidential informants to report colleagues. They have the ability to target and remove any doctor they feel is against them in any State. They have successfully done this to doctors in Boston with ease and with little effort or evidence and despite protests from colleagues nothing could be done. It is this power that has created a culture of fear, coercion, absolute power, and silence. No one speaks out against them because of fear that they will be targeted by them.

    The organization is a false front for the 12-step residential treatment facility drug testing ASAM PFDFA just say no fundamentalists who are trying to 1. Eliminate physicians who use drugs from the field of medicine as they feel that the noble profession needs to be purged of “character defects.” 2.Establish 12-step philosophy, strict prohibition, abstinence, routine drug testing as the one and only treatment for addiction. 3 .Establish themselves as a model for addiction medicine treatment to be applied to other populations outside of medicine.
    Dr. Adelman’s reefer madness bong-bomb hypothesis gives a glimpse of the monster under the mask.
    They are below the radar, expanding scope, and gaining political power. Giving an organization police-like power and complete opacity allows them to do whatever they want. There is no oversight, accountability, or transparency involved. They are now trying to expand beyond the allegations of substance abuse and have started a campaign to expand to the “disruptive physician.”
    They are also claiming that this mutant model of recovery should be the standard of care for other organizations and claim an 80% success rate.
    They are working to get certain bills passed under the radar that will decrease individual rights and give them more protection and power, they have infiltrated the AMA, and have rode the “war on drugs” bandwagon to increase support. It is amazing that they have been able to successfully accomplish goals as seen in the upcoming DSM-V diagnoses of substance abuse disorder where any drug or alcohol use falls under the same umbrella as addiction.
    Unseen, the FSPHP is probably the biggest threat to ending the “war on drugs. They are under the same roof as the PFDFA with the same ideology of zero tolerance, prohibition, abstinence, uniformity, and punishment, but the organizational design provides power and secrecy. The close ties with the commercial drug testing industry, rehab facilities, oversight boards, and the 12-step players threaten all of us in eroding civil rights, due process, and individual liberty. This band of individuals is strung together by political ideology and are not experts in addiction medicine as they claim to be and many of them are recovering addicts themselves who, steeped in 12-step philosophy, believe what is good for the goose is good for the gander.
    Individual doctors are afraid of them and they have successfully snowed state agencies and medical societies into believing they are altruistic helpers.

    “Every time we turn our heads the other way when we see the law flouted, when we tolerate what we know to be wrong, when we close our eyes and ears to the corrupt because we are too busy or too frightened, when we fail to speak up and speak out, we strike a blow against freedom and decency and justice.”
    ― Robert F. Kennedy

    http://www.asam.org/publications/president's-blog/asam-president's-blog/2012/10/16/how-to-achieve-an-80-percent-recovery-rate#comments
    http://www.jwesleyboyd.com/?p=280
    http://www.opednews.com/articles/Insurance-Company-Financin-by-MedicalWhistleblow-090926-111.html

  • Servetus

    Steve Adelman believes heavy marijuana users shed IQ points. He’s projecting. I think Dr. Adelman’s brain is shedding IQ points due to hardening of the ideologies.

  • Orestes Weed

    The Physician Health Services, FSPHP agenda is clear if one looks at the major players behind the scenes. Robert DuPont (White House drug Chief 1973-1977) runs a corporate drug testing business (Besinger, DuPont and Associates) along with Dr. Gregory Skipper who runs the Alabama Physicians Health Program. An ex-felon who had his licensed revoked in Oregon, Dr. Skipper introduced EtG testing as a means to test for alcohol and successfully partnered with a drug testing company to screen for alcohol use. Using an arbitrary cutoff point of 100 ng/ml it quickly became apparent that the test was flawed as it was introduced into professional monitoring programs and the criminal justice system. The flawed test was exposed in a Wall Street Journal article and has largely been abandoned. It is now known that hand sanitizer, cosmetics, sauerkraut, bananas, and myriad other substances can cause a positive EtG test. Hand sanitizer can produce a level of 2000. Thousands of people have been harmed by this test (did not get jobs, lost jobs, lost licenses, went to prison) and Dr. Skipper, somewhat like Mrs. Winchester and her mystery house adding room for the ghosts of victims of the Winchester rifle, has set up a website where people can leave their tragic stories of how they were harmed by the EtG. He takes no responsibility however and the conflicts of interest are again staggering. Although he is a Physicians Health Service director her runs Promises Treatment Center and has ties to the drug testing industry. PHS still uses EtG and Dr. Skipper has introduced another test (PEth) which they are claiming can confirm ant EtG. Junk science with scant data it is being used by USDTL.
    Skipper and DuPont work together with a concerted goal of applying Physicians Health Programs as a model for everyone else as well as further impacting medical progress by identifying “disruptive physicians” who they can then remove from practice.

    http://gregskippermd.homestead.com/

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB115534928148134109.html

    http://www.promises.com/news/physician-impairment-focus-of-jama-article-co-authored-by-director-of-professionals-treatment-at-promises/

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_DuPont

    http://gregskippermd.weebly.com/uploads/7/4/7/5/74751/php_article_counselor_mag._2010.12.pdf

    http://www.wvmphp.org/php.phasei.how_are_addicted_phys_treated.pdf

    http://www.williamwhitepapers.com/pr/2007PhysicianHealthPrograms.pdf

    http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/washington-whispers/2013/03/08/former-dea-chiefs-may-profit-from-illegal-pot-critics-say

    http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/773544

  • War Vet

    What an idiot . . . every prohib knows pot heads murder with an axe when they are high. Maybe a little black market reefer money to buy the explosive parts, but nothing of reefer madness making them do it. The fact the young men didn’t kill their parents is proof they were sober and not high –at least according to Anslinger.

    • allan

      The fact the young men didn’t kill their parents is proof they were sober and not high –at least according to Anslinger.

      and they weren’t Mexican or black…

      • War Vet

        They were not a part of the so called degenerate races . . . so, does that not eliminate the use of pot as a factor . . . how many white women were violated?

  • […] thought for sure that nobody could top the idiocy of Steve Adelman who danced a jig around the possibilities of marijuana’s involvement in the Boston […]

  • Bob Carter

    are you actually suggeting that cannabis use caused the boston bombings, this is the most irresponsible piece of crap journalisum I have ever read, and after I just read a peice on How Tommy Chung’s cancer was cured with Cannabis. Legalize it or don’t but DO NOT misinform pateints by disregarding the medical benifits of a plant that has been medicine for 3000 years.