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April 2014
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Open Thread

bullet image Arizona court rules on DUI law for marijuana users

PHOENIX (AP) — Authorities can’t prosecute Arizona motorists for driving under the influence of marijuana unless the person is impaired at the time of the stop, the state Supreme Court ruled Tuesday in the latest opinion on an issue that several states have grappled with across the nation.

The ruling overturned a state Court of Appeals decision last year that upheld the right of authorities to prosecute pot smokers for DUI even when there is no evidence of impairment.

The opinion focuses on two chemical compounds in marijuana that show up in blood and urine tests — one that causes impairment and one that doesn’t but stays in a pot user’s system for weeks. […]

Tuesday’s state Supreme Court opinion removed that threat in explaining that while state statute makes it illegal for a driver to be impaired by marijuana, the presence of a non-psychoactive compound does not constitute impairment under the law.


bullet image Obama Just Took One Big Step Towards Stopping the War on Drugs

(he hasn’t taken it yet, but this would be good…)

The news: U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to pardon “hundreds, perhaps thousands” of federal drug inmates before leaving office. That number might not seem so big. But it’s historic in executive terms. In fact, reports indicate that the potential number will be well above the norm for an outgoing president and may even approach levels not seen since President Gerald Ford gave mass clemency to draft dodgers after the Vietnam War.

According to Yahoo News, the initiative to pardon non-violent drug offenders will be so big that “administration officials are preparing a series of personnel and process changes to help them manage the influx of petitions they expect Obama to approve.”

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43 comments to Open Thread

  • kaptinemo

    Part of the reason is that the system has gotten so corrupt that it breaks down of its own accord.

    Five Illinois cops caught testilying

    And why most judges assume the cops are lying: Judicial Incentives: Why Judges Won’t Condemn Cops

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .

      There was a Montgomery County MD LEO that actually got charged with perjury after filing charges for DUI. Apparently Maryland law requires that a passed out drunk be in a position to drive the car. Passed out in the back seat doesn’t cut the mustard. The cop testified that the man was passed out in the driver’s seat. She was unaware that a neighboring business had it all on video.

      But after a short trial the LEO was acquitted. It wasn’t because the jury believed she didn’t make it up. They hung their collective hat on calling it an unintentional misstatement because the poor dear made so many DUI arrests that she must have been mixing up the facts from that arrest with one of her other cases. It seems pretty lame to me. How often are drunk drivers found passed out in the backseat with the engine running? Perhaps I’m mistaken and it’s a daily event in every county in every State but you can color me skeptical.

      So where the heck is “the LAW is the LAW (blah, blah, blah)” crowd when authorities decide to break the law and violate their Oath? Over in the jury box cheering that lawbreaking like the hypocritical partisan hacks that they are is where.

      As long as the majority of the public hasn’t got a problem with LEOs who testi-lie they’re going to continue to do so.

      Well what do you know, I found the video. It’s very dull 1 1/2 minutes:
      Video Proves Officer Perjured Herself

  • stlgonzo

    Ha, this pretty good.

    Newspaper Article Accidentally Sums Up The Marijuana Legalization Debate

    http://tinyurl.com/kudzkxt

  • Servetus

    A new study done at Rhode Island Hospital confirms previous research, and whacks prohibitch propaganda once again:

    “In this study, we examined 20-years-worth of data, comparing trends in self-reported adolescent marijuana use between states with medical marijuana laws and neighboring states without the laws, and found no increase in marijuana use that could be attributed to the law.”

    Choo continued, “This adds to a growing body of literature published over the past three years that is remarkably consistent in demonstrating that state medical marijuana policies do not have a downstream effect on adolescent drug use, as we feared they might.”

    Currently, medical marijuana is legal in 21 states and the District of Columbia.

    Prohibitionist objections to legalization have an attrition factor. New objections keep popping up, only to be knocked down again by new research. Studies like the latest one at Rhode Island Hospital are unlikely to get the same press coverage the MSM gives to fear mongering, brain-changer, marijuana-zombie hoaxes. If it doesn’t bleed, it doesn’t lead.

    • tony Aroma

      Do you really think data like this will stop the prohibs from their warnings of dire consequences for the children? As far as they’re concerned, these studies don’t exist (this isn’t the first). They’re so certain that they’re the only ones smart enough to see the writing on the wall, that any data to the contrary are simply ignored. It’s like if you fill a room with delusional psychotics who all believe they are Jesus, then try to logically point out that they can’t ALL be right. Each one will still believe they’re the one. Now that I think about it, does that mean that prohibs are delusional psychotics?

  • Francis

    Wait, so now in order to prosecute someone for driving while impaired, you need … actual evidence that they were, in fact, driving while impaired? But won’t that make it harder to convict people? I don’t know. It seems like we could be setting a dangerous precedent here. What’s next? Requiring evidence for all crimes?

    • Howard

      This what happens when a modicum of sanity begins to creep into the criminal justice system. It’s just plain…weird.

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .

      Francis, to the best of my knowledge this is the second State Supreme Court to make this ruling. The other was Michigan in 2010. If you read the laws approved by the voters in either State you might think that they were written by the same people, and you would be correct.
      Drugged Driving: Michigan Supreme Overturns Itself on Marijuana Metabolites Issue

      So the guy in Michigan got arrested because he struck and killed a drunken pedestrian. What a friggin’ joke. The Arizona ruling is actually a bit better than Michigan’s because Michigan still doesn’t require evidence of anything except the presence of active THC in the blood.
      BTW, the Michigan Supremes 2010 ruling overturned a 2006 ruling. It was the medicinal cannabis patient protection law approved by voters in 2008 which caused them to do so. That and the fact that Michigan Supremes are elected which meant that the lineup changed considerably between 2006 and 2010. As a result, Michigan Supreme Court Justices don’t become permanent lifetime fixtures. I don’t know how I feel about elected judges at any level but in this instance it worked out well for Michigan residents.

      I still wish someone would tell me how someone gets investigated for suspicion of cannabis addled driving. I’ve only known one person that was arrested for DUI-m. That particular genius sat in his car in a parking lot smoking a bowl. When he was finished, he backed into the police cruiser driven by his arresting officer. Amusingly he beat the DUI because he was on private property and they couldn’t prove that he was stoned when he drove onto the lot. He still got bent over for petty possession.

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .

    Finally! A scientific study that answers a pressing question that so many people have been wondering about for decades, “Does Researching Casual Marijuana Use Cause Brain Abnormalities?”

    • claygooding

      Cannabis,,the only psychoactive plant that causes people not using it schizophrenia,,severity determined by Federal funding involved.

      • Duncan20903

        Have you ever heard of the theory that florescent lighting causes cancer in lab rats and mice?

  • Nunavut Tripper

    This just in :
    “Intoxicated’ 18-year-old girl reportedly rushed to hospital from Prime Minister Harper’s residence”

    http://news.nationalpost.com/2014/04/23/intoxicated-18-year-old-girl-reportedly-rushed-to-hospital-from-prime-minister-harpers-residence/

    Good thing she wasn’t intoxicated on merrywanna. Stevie would have had to throw his son’s GF in prison er I meant
    a ” correctional facility “.

    • strayan

      I wish they’d call it what it is: a drug overdose.

      • Nunavut Tripper

        And don’t you think that if an underage girl OD’d on alcohol or whatever combo it may have been and had to be hospitalized the cops might be interested in asking some questions or laying some charges.
        If it was my house and my kids friend I’d be shitting bricks right now but I’m sure Stevie isn’t.

        • kaptinemo

          ‘Steve’ doesn’t have to worry. He sold his soul to his bankster masters, and so long as he plays the game, he can commit any crime at all, and still walk away whistling at the end of his tenure.

  • DdC

    How a Marijuana Study Can Poke Holes in Your Brain
    Casual marijuana use may be associated with brain abnormalities in developing brains. It might even cause some of the changes. But, thanks to the bungling of a study that grabbed headlines last week, we aren’t all that much closer to knowing.

    Researching Casual Marijuana Use Causes Brain Abnormalities
    Drugwar Lies Linked to Schizophrenia
    Using Pot To Save Brains!

  • Servetus

    An unusual drug arrest occurred in Lund, Sweden, involving a man whose large biceps caught the attention of Swedish drug cops. The man was taken to a police station where he was tested for steroids. A Justice Ombudsman has informed the muscle-headed narcs that big biceps are insufficient evidence for an arrest. The officers are being disciplined for their overreach.

  • Marijuana Use, Cardiovascular Complications Linked In New Study http://tinyurl.com/lbp3psh

    “it is not possible to tell whether it is because marijuana-related cardiovascular problems are actually sparse or because it is on the contrary undetected and rather under-reported, in which case we would be facing a major public health problem,”
    – Study researcher Émilie Jouanjus, Pharm.D., Ph.D., of the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Toulouse in France

    Marijuana use may lead to cardiac arrest and other heart problems – CBS News http://tinyurl.com/kwcho5k

    Potential for heart attack, stroke risk seen with marijuana use – LA Times

    How many pot users do you guys know that are experiencing health problems from their use? I never met even one, and I spent some years working with substance abuse issues.

    The CBS article says:

    /”This result is consistent with previous findings and strengthens the idea that cannabis may be responsible for serious complications, in particular on the cardiovascular system,” write the authors in their study./

    They are making reference to the earlier study so nicely dismantled by Lior Pachter.

    I feel like shaking someone. Whats it going to take to get these newspapers using some judgement instead of immediately running to the next reefer madness routine being staged by the world community of prohibitionists?

    Get your boots on, the s**t is getting deep.

    • claygooding

      Oh great,,,they just claimed marijuana is as dangerous as a doublemeat cheeseburger.

    • kaptinemo

      Once again vindicating Richard Cowan’s observation that one of the biggest reasons for cannabis prohibition lasting as long as it has can be summed up in two words:

      Bad journalism

      And the only reason why you can have that is bad journalists.

      Most of them have become like the dogs under some royal’s table, excitedly wagging their tails and salivating at the chance to be ‘close’ to their ‘sources’, who are playing them for the dogs they are, tossing them scraps which they wolf down without inspecting them for the sugar-coated scheisse it is…and which they dutifully pass through their mental alimentary canals undigested and excrete as ‘news’. It’s a large part of the reason why I don’t watch TV anymore.

    • Howard

      My favorite headline about this study came from Fox News;

      Marijuana use may lead to heart complications, death, study says

      ——————

      Fox News also had this headline referencing a different article;

      Introducing the American Cannabis Nurses Association

      ——————-

      So I now expect a mashup of the two headlines soon;

      American Cannabis Nurses are agents of Death

      ——————-

      Watch for it. It can’t be too far behind.

      Boots you say? No, we need waders for the piling up bovine excrement.

      • curmudgeon

        It is too late for waders, get out your stilts.

        • kaptinemo

          F- the waders, call for the choppers!

          Seriously, the BS is going to get thick and fast, as the prohibs lose ground. They’ll get nuttier and nuttier until the more half-way sane amongst them realize they’re bedding with loons…and bug out, like the founder of MADD did. Think Fuhrerbunker crazy, as in the insanity that went on in Hitler’s Bunker before the end. That kind of raving loony-tunes.

          They’re almost there; one more good shove, like a bunch of States re-legalizing this year, and the crazy shall flow like the Amazon.

          Whether they meltdown or explode, there’s bound to be some fireworks in the process. Get the popcorn ready…

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .

      Did anyone else notice that the number of affected patients in the study was 35? Further that it was 22 of 35 that experienced cardiac morbidity?

      For the study, researchers in France looked at data from the French Addictovigilance Network between 2006 and 2010. They identified 35 out of nearly 2,000 marijuana-users with known medical conditions linked to the heart and arteries in the brain or limbs. The majority of the patients were male with an average age of 34.

      In their analysis, the researchers found 22 out of 35 had heart problems, and 20 suffered a heart attack. Ten of the 35 cases were linked to diseases in the arteries of their limbs, while three were associated with arteries in the brain. Nine out of the 35 patients died from cardiovascular complications.

      The authors say they suspect the number of cardiovascular-related health complications and deaths among marijuana users is actually much higher than the data suggests, since many incidences go unreported and it’s often difficult to detect which substance is linked to health problems. Studies have found people who use marijuana are also more likely to develop dependence on other drugs and alcohol.
      /snip/

      ————————————————–

      How many pot users do you guys know that are experiencing health problems from their use? I never met even one, and I spent some years working with substance abuse issues.

      The thing that I find most annoying about the piles of propaganda is that it never bears even a passing resemblance to reality.

      ————————————————–

      kaptin, I think we can pin point the blame more specifically than “journalists” in general. It’s the goddamn headline writing editors fault if you ask me. I’ve actually had occasion to read reasonably written articles with hysterical headlines. No, not frequently, but it should never happen. But I’m sticking with the theory that most people don’t read any further than the headline so there’s very little point in worrying about the text in the box. I’m already seeing sycophants posting links to and saying that these studies prove blah, blah, blah.

      “The Addictovigilance Network” gosh, do we really need to read more than those three words to pinpoint the bias of the research? Not only is it a stupid name but it was invented by the stinky French. So why in the world are the French inventing clever names in English?

  • allan

    watch our prisons grow!

    excellent demonstration graphic

  • Kemp Woods

    Peter,

    Have been joyfully reading your website for years. I have many suggestions to the anti-prohibition community but have had a problem where you want me to send them. I click on suggestions, etc. and get “default mail client is not properly installed”. Is that you or me? Please send me a brief note on what to do. Also, please scrap “Local Union 13”—it leads to blank page. Thanks in advance.

    • Howard

      Why not post your suggestions in the comments section as you did above? This is where we all, courtesy of Pete, post our “suggestions” for the anti-prohibition community. That community is us.

    • Like/Howard/said/Post/them/here

      wtf?

    • Kemp – Thanks! If you’re trying to email me with the “suggestions” link on the left and you’re getting “default email client not properly installed” then that’s your browser – it’s just an email link and your browser doesn’t know how you are emailing.

      As far as the links on the right – good point. I haven’t updated those in quite a while, and I need to check them all, clear out the deadwood and maybe add some new ones. I’ll try to get to that soon.

      • Frank W

        Tony’s Quest For Understanding hasn’t been updated since 2012. Maybe he understands now. Cop In the Hood is still active. That’s the cop who plugs his “In Defense of Flogging” book.

  • Howard

    Regarding Pete’s post about possible pardons for certain federal inmates prosecuted for drug crimes, could the “Kettle Falls 5” get a preemptive pardon? Before even going to prison? Please?;

    http://tinyurl.com/o8ma2xx

    • curmudgeon

      Oh no, presidential pardons before trial are only given to ex-presidents who resign before they are impeached. (and are responsible for creating this cluster fuck after the Marijuana Tax Act was declared unconstitutional.)

  • Servetus

    NIH funded research at SUNY, Buffalo, is claiming success in the treatment of cocaine addictions, whereby cocaine cravings are eliminated by a new medical compound, known not-so-simply as RO5263397. The drug has been shown in animal studies to “severely [blunt] a broad range of cocaine addiction behaviors”.

    The SUNY research presages the day when the doors to addiction treatment centers will be closed forever. Exploiting the drug addict for personal monetary gain, or as a weapon of social control, will no longer be easy or even possible. Anyone with a drug addiction will get a pill prescription sent to them in the mail by their healthcare provider, minus the stigma and persecution associated with drug treatment centers, or various drug treatment cults.

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .

      Well take a look at another thing that compound is being tested for:

      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22641180
      A new perspective for schizophrenia: TAAR1 agonists reveal antipsychotic- and antidepressant-like activity, improve cognition and control body weight.

      /snip/
      Here, we show that activation of the trace amine-associated receptor 1 (TAAR1), a modulator of monoaminergic neurotransmission, represents a novel therapeutic option. In rodents, activation of TAAR1 by two novel and pharmacologically distinct compounds, the full agonist RO5256390 and the partial agonist RO5263397, blocks psychostimulant-induced hyperactivity and produces a brain activation pattern reminiscent of the antipsychotic drug olanzapine, suggesting antipsychotic-like properties. TAAR1 agonists do not induce catalepsy or weight gain; RO5263397 even reduced haloperidol-induced catalepsy and prevented olanzapine from increasing body weight and fat accumulation.
      /snip/

    • allan

      Hardhats! move those people back! Danger, danger Will Robinson.

      gosh, it makes me reallly eager to see what May brings.

  • Viggo Piggsko Flatmark

    Well, now they managed to publish a study called; “Cannabis use and violence: Is there a link?”

    http://bit.ly/1jJuygf

    They estimate that an increase of use by 10% is associated with a 0.4% increase in frequency of violence.

    • allan

      pardon my redundancy but as an experienced (volunteer) medical provider for large events I can unequivocally call bullshit. There is no more peaceful event than a ganja oriented one.

      rarely do I relish enjoying the discomfort and failure of others. For the prohibitches I’ll make an exception. May all the discomforts that cannabis works best for, be theirs. That and a pox on all their houses.

      The day will come when civil society begins to put Prohibition II under as public and harsh a microscope as ganja has been under. I mean the shit in drug policy is so deep people write books about specific aspects of it… the whole story will be encyclopedic. And not pretty.

    • DdC

      NFL’s Buzzkill
      http://endingcannabisprohibition.yuku.com/topic/1672

      Fans Too Relaxed for Fights

      Cannabis Helps Keep Fans Calm
      Police also claimed that the availability of cannabis in the Netherlands probably helped to defuse any violence. Scores of ticketless England fans gathered in coffee shops in Eindhoven, where cannabis is sold and smoked, to watch the game, greeting the defeat with mild disappointment and unusually, gentle applause. “It (cannabis) may have helped relax them,” Mr Beelan added. “Even the hooligans enjoyed the party – and they told our officers. There were lots of things for fans to do and everybody had a good time.”

      Basketball Riots in L.A., Soccer Thugs in Europe

      Euro 2000 Soccer Violence Could Vanish in a Puff

      Aggression and Violence in Sport

      Tired of alcohol-fueled violence in sports?

  • DdC

    Medical #Marijuana Laws Not Associated With Increased Use By Adolescents http://www.theweedblog.com/medical-marijuana-laws-not-associated-with-increased-use-by-adolescents/ … @NORML

    Marijuana Legalization: What About The Teens? http://onforb.es/1hqgmM4 via @forbes 20 years of data saw no difference after legalization

    RT @CarlaShedd: Must read study on parental incarceration by Anna Haskins http://www.vox.com/2014/4/24/5647660/boys-incarcerated-fathers-school-behavior-prison-pipeline

    LEAP ‏@CopsSayLegalize
    Why do so many police oppose drug policy reform? Two words: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DiGRMD4NXVA

    Virginia officials blame marijuana use for this woman’s death: http://ow.ly/wakpR

    Gilbert crashed her car and lost all touch with reality. Despite not knowing exactly what happened, they’ve blamed the pot.

    Virginia law enforcement seems to be the latest to jump on the “blame marijuana for everything” bandwagon. Gossip Queens