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Odds and Ends

bullet image Thanks to Allan for pointing out this interesting article that serves as an important reminder: Strange reason to legalize marijuana

Apparently an underlying assumption of legal pot opponents is that human consciousness is some sort of pristine, pure pool of unsullied awareness which shouldn’t be contaminated by chemical substances like THC, the major psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.

Here’s another science news flash: the brain produces conscious awareness, and it is filled with over 100 chemical neurotransmitters.

They make us happy, horny, hungry, and so much more. Including, high.

I’m writing these words buzzed on a chemical my brain adores: caffeine. Is this wrong? Should caffeine be illegal because it alters my consciousness, increasing alertness and improving my mood?

Of course not. It’s beautiful, really, how humans can bring parts of the world into their brains, then those substances enable them to view the world differently.

We are the world. The world is us. There is no immaterial self standing apart from materiality.

Nice.


bullet image Radley Balko also gives us an update that serves as another important reminder of something we’ve discussed here in the past…

Surprise! Controversial Patriot Act power now overwhelmingly used in drug investigations

So since the Patriot Act passed, the number of of sneak-and-peeks each year has grown from about 16 per year to over 11,000 in 2013. Meanwhile, not only have the number of sneak-and-peek investigations unrelated to terrorism increased on a massive scale, the percentage of sneak-and-peeks that have anything to do with terrorism continues to drop. In other words, sneak-and-peek is increasingly ubiquitous while the justification for granting the government this power in the first place — terrorism — is not only irrelevant to the tactic’s increasing pervasiveness, it gets more irrelevant every year.

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68 comments to Odds and Ends

  • strayan

    It’s staggering that people think human beings, or any living entity can survive ‘drug free’. The human body is literally a extremely complex chemical factory. Hell, you can even fail a drug test if you suffer from a condition called Succinic Semialdehyde Dehydrogenase Deficiency where your body produces too much GHB (which, how’s this for crazy, is considered by the DEA to be a schedule 1 substance).

  • DdC

    Science Seance…
    It’s a business. They’ve sold a $Trillion in Drugwar Accessories.

    Our Prohibitionist Drugs Policy Isn’t Working
    http://huff.to/1sFtJJ2 via @HuffPostUKPol

    Tough Drug Laws Have No Impact On Use – Report http://news.sky.com/story/1363122/tough-drug-laws-have-no-impact-on-use-report

    BBC News – No link between tough penalties and drug use – report http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-29824764

    John Wayne and McCarthyism: Out Macho-ing Marijuana
    http://www.cannabisculture.com/node/46947

    800,000 untested rape kits in the USA going back decades
    http://oi61.tinypic.com/zmm442.jpg
    Drugs are tested the first week an arrest is made

  • Crut

    .
    .
    More great stuff from The Leaf about the California Hearing on Cannabis scheduling:

    http://theleafonline.com/c/politics/2014/10/norml-feds-agree-benefits-cannabis/

    • n.t. greene

      Can you hear the clangalanging, fellas?

      It seems like the prosecution managed to drop things that were… Important.

        • kaptinemo

          Again, this is why I have said for years that Gub’mint position on cannabis, based on lies, had to be exposed in court.

          All you have to do is look at the very last sentence of the last report on the testimony:

          “When Gilg asked why Madras, a Harvard professor with access to a world-class medical research library, didn’t locate research which the NORML legal committee had found themselves, Madras admitted that “I was unable to find it. That was a failure on my part.”

          “But,” Madras protested in her defense, “there are thousands of studies on marijuana. It’s very difficult to study all of them.”

          Oh man, they can’t keep their lies straight. First they tell us there’s not enough studies, then they tell us that there are thousands of studies.

          These people operate on Confucian ethics; they only apologize when caught out. And even then, grudgingly.

          The ONDCP DrugWarrior mindset, displayed in all it’s putrid glory. And we pay these people’s salaries?

        • Duncan20903

          .
          .

          kaptin, the problem is that most of the studies aren’t good for much other than bird cage liner and/or purposes of propaganda. The regulars here should know that the gov’t has been paying “scientists” for “research” results for decades and stonewalling the real research. Just because there are 20,000+ collections of words on paper purporting to be “science” doesn’t mean that they had any value.

          If I told you that The Professor has written 20,000 articles about cannabis would you agree it means that he has a clue? Of course you wouldn’t. Quantity does not prove quality.

  • Servetus

    The ever indolent New York Times is stirring up new drug hysteria just in time for Halloween, because there isn’t enough real news to report.

    A Colorado marijuana store owner committing treason against his own cannabinoid merchandising business has helped Denver police make a public service video depicting the latest wicked-gummy-bear threat to children.

    Leave it to the NYT and the cops to destroy hallowed Halloween traditions by playing the drug card. Sabet is involved somewhere in this.

  • Adding to the linkapalloozza:

    http://www.newsforage.com/2014/10/eleven-countries-studied-one.html

    “The key finding of the report, written by Home Office civil servants, lies in a comparison of Portugal, where personal use is decriminalised, and the Czech Republic, where criminal penalties for possession were introduced as recently as 2010.

    “We did not in our fact-finding observe any obvious relationship between the toughness of a country’s enforcement against drug possession, and levels of drug use in that country,” it says. “The Czech Republic and Portugal have similar approaches to possession, where possession of small amounts of any drug does not lead to criminal proceedings, but while levels of drug use in Portugal appear to be relatively low, reported levels of cannabis use in the Czech Republic are among the highest in Europe.

    “Indicators of levels of drug use in Sweden, which has one of the toughest approaches we saw, point to relatively low levels of use, but not markedly lower than countries with different approaches.”

    Endless coalition wrangling over the contents of the report, which has taken more than eight months to be published, has ensured that it does not include any conclusions.

    However, reading the evidence it provides, it is hard to escape the conclusion that the Home Office civil servants who wrote it seem to have been impressed that a health-based rather than a criminal justice-based approach is where effective policies lie.

    It also, rather remarkably, says that the experiments in legalisation now under way in the US states of Washington and Colorado, and in Uruguay, should be watched with interest. This is a world away from the “war on drugs” rhetoric that has formed the mainstay of the political debate on drugs in the past four decades.”

    Of course, go to the above URL for the whole story.

    • Crut

      .
      .
      Yes, couch-mates, it is almost time to get your souvenirs! The drug-war wall is coming apart at the seams; all those years of pounding are finally having the desired effects. If you have a not-hopeless “kevin” in your circle, offer them your hard-hat, and ask him/her to move away from the wall, cause there are going to be casualties…

      I want to be led by evidence, not prejudice…

      If you are anti-drugs, you should be pro-reform.

      UK Deputy Prime-Minister Nick Clegg

      • “No link between tough penalties and drug use – report”
        http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-29824764

        “After examining a range of approaches, from zero-tolerance to decriminalisation, it concluded drug use was influenced by factors “more complex and nuanced than legislation and enforcement alone”.

        But it found there had been a “considerable” improvement in the health of drug users in Portugal since the country made drug possession a health issue rather than a criminal one in 2001.

        The Home Office said these outcomes could not be attributed to decriminalisation alone.”
        _________

        40 years of drug war.

        Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

        Albert Einstein

      • kaptinemo

        They know the wall is crumbling, threatening to crush them to pulp, but they refuse to move away. Like fools who refuse to move when the volcano nearby starts rumbling.

        If anything merits a Darwin Award, it’s support for prohibition in the face of historical failures to implement it. A sure sign of intelligence deficit. A pity that wall isn’t physical…

  • Francis

    Apparently an underlying assumption of legal pot opponents is that human consciousness is some sort of pristine, pure pool of unsullied awareness which shouldn’t be contaminated by chemical substances like THC, the major psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.

    I think this attitude actually gets at a very fundamental reason behind a lot of the fear and hostility that many people have toward the use of consciousness-altering drugs. Consider how frequently drug warriors talk disparagingly about the use of drugs as a way to “escape reality.” Inherent in that rhetoric is this assumption that there is this “one true reality” to which your “ordinary consciousness” provides unfiltered access. In my view, one of the primary benefits of using consciousness-altering drugs to temporarily change your perspective is simply the reminder that you have a perspective. And that perspective is limited. It is not “the world as it is.” It is the world as experienced through the filter of your own ego. But while that realization may be a benefit, it can be a humbling and even terrifying one, and as such, it’s not one that everyone is eager to experience.

    • claygooding

      If it is reality then why do they have to lie and trick people to bust them,,is that the reality we are to embrace as the path for humanity,,lie and cheat our way for a living?

      • thelbert

        it’s all about blood purity. what a foolish way to try and regulate human behavior. we have fools running this country. fools with brains damaged by alcohol.

      • n.t. greene

        I hear the Nazis were all about maintaining blood purity and genetic superiority…

        Godwin’s Law?

        • Duncan20903

          .
          .

          What the heck….? I thought it was done for the purpose of maintaining urine purity! Did they change that recently? Are you sure that you’re not conflating bodily fluids?

          You know, Mr. Godwin only predicted that if you have a comments column long enough that someone would proffer a Nazi analogy. Another name for his law is Godwin’s Rule of Nazi Analogies. I’ve heard that we haven’t heard from him in so many years because he’s been sitting in Grand Central Station waiting to cross paths with everyone he’s ever met. He’s also got a thousand monkeys in his basement working on producing the works of William Shakespeare verbatim.

          “To be, or not to be? That is the kjfheru86^$#kff”
          Oh no! so close and yet so far. I think they should have started the monkeys with Dr. Seuss and worked their way up or maybe much simpler, like the works of Nancy Reagan. Just say yo baby, yo baby, yo baby yo, no doubt.

          Sometimes my apparent synchronicity with this thread boggles my brain. Just before I came over here I posted this in another comments column:

          Don’t hold your breath waiting for us to follow orders. You would likely be much happier if you moved to another country where the citizenry falls into line and starts goose stepping and sieg heiling when your masters snap their fingers.

          I often find Mr. Godwin’s law to be highly annoying. I find that particular passive aggresive denigration in my self quoted text above to be a work of art and it just doesn’t work without the goose stepping and sieg heiling. Sometimes I do tone it down and have the herd kowtowing when their masters snap their fingers but IMO the difference between the two is without distinction.

    • Windy

      Just like Ms. Madras’ objection to any medicine having a euphoric effect:

      Under Gilg’s interrogation, Madras also appeared to endorse a number of glaring double standards between what she called legitimate medicine and so-called “drugs of abuse,” which she defined as any agent which causes feelings of euphoria in the user.

      so apparently she does not think Valium (among others) is a medicine, either?

  • thelbert

    hitler was quite familiar with the american eugenics movement. the american policy of annihilating the native population also influenced hitler’s final solution.

  • allan

    the epic struggle…

    what we are today arose from an immaculate knowledge of the world in which we lived. Survival demanded we know the plants and critters. Ethnobotany is an old science… and mind blowing discoveries and that intimate awareness of all around us brought us to a place where art was able to come alive and respect, reverence and awe for this living place did us well for tens of thousands of years (if not generations). And now I suspect, we’ve reached the limit of how far we can wander from indigeneity (indigenosity?).

    Looking at this world today it’s easy to see that left turn we took somewhars back thar is not playing out well. We may be able to occasionally turn the ship of state but turning our collective human momentum is like trying to stop the lava flow on Hawaii. And Damitol!® where’s a good global epiphany when we really need one?

  • DonDig

    .
    The testimony has concluded, and the link name says it all. Good read though.

    http://theleafonline.com/c/politics/2014/10/schedule-hearing-concludes-judges-ruling-expected-december/

  • Irie

    Honestly, is there no common sense out there when it comes to what feeds the people of a community? Found this on you tube, what, the city council of Amsterdam has too much money now, they feel they don’t need tourist dollars to fund their nice streets, great downtown community feel and probably help to pay through taxes given by the coffee shops that sell cannabis their great police force (just joking nothing great about police,but work with me here, okay)? If its not broke don’t fix it people, sounds like the new prime minister wants to make a name for himself…..and he is, is called the dumbshit of the Netherlands. Go ahead, see for yourself the stupidly of this!!!!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iy9BCFXKgrQ Government Crackdown, whew, boy somebody yell MAYDAY!!!

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .

      I’m trying to recall…when was the last time I mentioned that the first time I heard that Holland was going to “crack down” on the tolerated cannabis vendors was in 1990 and that it made me very sad? Oh, and that over the last almost a quarter of a century how it has appeared to me to be a regularly schedule annual event? Except the part about making me sad. Nowadays it gives me a strong feeling of disgust and morbid amusement.

      It’s not easy to remember that the prohibitionists don’t speak using the English language. It’s easy for people to be fooled because apart from the definition of words it looks and sounds just like they’re speaking English. Don’t feel bad, they had me fooled for perhaps as long as two decades before I figured out that they’re strict adherants to the Humpty Dumpty school of sophistry.

  • kaptinemo

    And so, you have to wonder if the same restrictions are applied to the bruin caffees (‘brown cafes’, so called because of decades of tobacco tar on the walls) the very old pubs located in the same area?

    The answer should be obvious…as should be the source of the idea for this latest nonsense. ‘Within X yards/meters of a school’…Hmmm, I wonder where they got that idea (significant look in Warshington DC’s direction).

    • kaptinemo

      The current Dutch PM sounds like ol’ Johnny Pee. Nothing but verbal shotgun blasts of pure, unadulterated BS regarding cannabis.

      I’m not going to write it, just go to 3:23 and read the translation. This guy’s a real right wing loon, has to be one of Bohemian Grove Balkenende’s lieutenants.

      The last time the right-wing in Holland tried this, was after another Bohemian Grove meeting, with Balkenende in attendance. Coincidence?. If I were a Nederlander, I’d want to know about that.

      Yes, let’s see just how much Amsterdammers can tolerate him and his antics before the bottom line’s sharp edge decapitates his tenure as PM.

      Looks like Prague will get a lot of tourists in the very near future. And A-dam…won’t.

  • Frank W.

    The miseducation continues…by strange coincidence in my area just days before the Measure 91 vote:
    http://kobi5.com/news/item/expert-says.html#.VFOO6fnF9b4

    Bob Stutman is a name some here may know well. Apparently he’s got an assload of skin in the game.

    • kaptinemo

      Yes, but recall that the prohibs are abjured from mentioning M91; for once, a judge took the Hatch Act seriously, and this is what happens when it is.

      The prohibs have been violating the Hatch Act with impunity because they had political cover, cover provided by the tacit approval of a cohort of voters now dying off.

      The cohort replacing them has no tolerance for drug prohibition, knowing it for the weapon pointed at them that it is. They are in the middle of dismantling it…and it is beginning to sink in with more intelligent pols that the ONDCP/DEA-supplied BS they’ve used to justify their positions won’t wash with those voters.

      Using that bilge to excuse their positions will only enrage this electorate, not placate them, for such drivel is inherently intellectually insulting, they’ve been insulted before in their school days with DARE, and to use it now in defense of a political position with those very same former-children-now-adults will become a liability, as people like Dwight Holman found out, and Debbie Wasserman-Schultz is finding out.

      This is why I keep saying that we must not ever let up on the pressure. No let up, no ‘bridge of silver’ for a fleeing opponent, not after what they’ve done. They made war on us. They thought of us in the same way SS officers thought of their victims, as rabbits for the slaughter: lacking equal power, they believed their victims deserved extinction.

      And what happens when we flex our real power? The big, bad prohib bully whines about the situation suddenly becoming ‘unfair’. Marquis in OR is a perfect example.

      The ‘rabbits’ aren’t supposed to fight back, only be slaughtered. But when the ‘rabbits’ turn around and show teeth and claws and a willingness to use them, the prohibs back up in a hurry, making brave noises while hoping their bladders will hold until they’re out of public view.

      As Bob Dylan sang so long ago, “The times, they are a-changin'”, this time, for real, no false dawn, for this is the beginning of something much more than the reclamation of a single lost freedom. Reclaiming the power of personal, bodily sovereignty is the cornerstone of the foundation of revolution.

      This is only the beginning, friends, only the beginning.

    • mr Ikasheeni

      Punch the hippy; problem solved…

  • claygooding

    If the government appeals the judges decision,,based on science,,it will only be held up long enough for legislators and the rich to dump their drug war portfolio.

    Perhaps a screenshot of some key stock prices may be a good idea bout now by SOMEONE with stock market experience to watch for any signs of people taking a dump.

    I see any incorporated drug rehab stock to take the first hits,,just guessing though,,prison stocks may dump first.

    Unfortunately I don’t see drug screening effected as much as we hope for a few more years,,until “Reefer Madness” has finally had a stake driven through it’s heart.

    • claygooding

      I understand this decision doesn’t effect anything but this trial and an appeal we know is coming will slow up the process but doesn’t this open the door for a suit against the Feds for keeping marijuana Schedule 1 that will force it’s removal?

      I am sure several orgs are drawing up the paperwork already but doesn’t this decision open up appeals for every federal medical marijuana prisoner of war?
      Regardless of what state the inmate was charged in as long as it is a federal charge?
      I am sure the federal appeals courts,,already asking for more courts,judges and budgets will love this.

    • primus

      You are correct; once cannabis is legal the fun will begin regarding drug testing. First, there will be court cases where an employee protests his firing for cannabis metabolites which do not prove impairment. Once that is won, the futility of urine testing for any drug other than cannabis will be easily seen. I predict a change to ‘impairment testing’ protocols and devices as an alternative. The benefit will be catching those impaired by anything; fatigue, OTC meds, stress etc. can impair as well. Once the devices that test for impairment are small, portable and cheap, expect them to be in every cop car, in every workplace, and expect them to be used.

      • Duncan20903

        .
        .

        Most States allow private employers to refuse to hire an applicant or fire a current employee for having urine which test positive for cotinine. Why should we expect applicants and employees with cannabis metabolites in their bodily fluids to be treated any differently? That part of the prohibition of cannabis is going to take quite a while to disappear IMO.

        Safeway used to, and may still regularly test employees for metabolites produced by smoking tobacco.But it might not be quite on point because it was for the purpose of determining the employee contribution to their health care plan. Back in 2008 being cotinine free was worth about $1500 a year to a Safeway employee.

  • Servetus

    Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is facing a tough re-election race in Kentucky, only to be stung by a drug scandal emerging in Colombia. Publicly, it looks as if Mr. McConnell’s in-laws may have some business sidelines they didn’t discuss with their favorite Congressman son-in-law:

    Before the Ping May, a rusty cargo vessel, could disembark from the port of Santa Marta en route to the Netherlands in late August, Colombian inspectors boarded the boat and made a discovery. Hidden in the ship’s chain locker, amidst its load of coal bound for Europe, were approximately 40 kilograms, or about ninety pounds, of cocaine. A Colombian Coast Guard official told The Nation that there is an ongoing investigation.

    The seizure of the narcotics shipment in the Caribbean port occurred far away from Kentucky, the state in which Senator Mitch McConnell is now facing a career-defining election. But the Republican Senate minority leader has the closest of ties to the owner of the Ping May, the vessel containing the illicit materials: the Foremost Maritime Corporation, a firm founded and owned by McConnell’s in-laws, the Chao family.

    It would be unfortunate for Senator McConnell if this latest cocaine fiasco influences his election chances, especially since McConnell was instrumental in making hemp legally available for research by the USDA. It would also be unfortunate for the Chao family if the Ping May is seized by Colombian customs.

    Chao family members probably aren’t responsible for the coke shipment, but their problem illustrates how the drug war can turn and bite the Senate hand that feeds it.

  • NorCalNative

    This is one of those days where I just sit back in awe of the Wisdom of the Couch.

    Although I’m usually a fan of Alan, he’s WAY OFF on Damitol! Everyone knows Fuckitol is cheaper and more euphoric.

    • kaptinemo

      But Fuckitol is like Fentanyl; too damn strong. Stick with Damitol, it’s not as strong, so it’s safer.

      Fuckitol should be used only as a last resort, when nothing else matches the extreme frustration level and sheer disgust engendered by the DrugWar and its proponents.

      • allan

        IF M91 loses in OR I’m going down to CVS and getting me a case of Fuckitol® and will be generously sharing w/ any OR pot head that voted no.

        • allan

          I mean seriously… if Paul Stanford’s whatever-the-heck-it-was can get 47% of the vote, M91 should get 87%.

        • Duncan20903

          .
          .

          I can’t remember the exact number of years but for a very long time I used a very reliable contraceptive called Noassatal® I had to quit after such a long time because it made some of my own naughty parts turn blue.

        • allan

          and if we win I’m gonna send Kev-kev (maybe he’ll share w/ Calvina) a case of Enditol®

        • claygooding

          Freebase it and really get them hooked!

  • darkcycle

    Happy Halloween, couch mates, pass that bowl of gummy bears this way. And lookie-lookie what we have here, just in time for our little masquerade. Scientology dressed up as anti-pot propaganda? Looks to be the case here. http://reason.com/blog/2014/10/31/heres-the-anti-marijuana-tract-some-lady
    Just as always, prohibition reveals itself to be not about saving people from drugs, but controlling their ideas and behavior. The agenda is and always will be power and control, with a healthy measure of corporate protectionism on the side.
    Enjoy these prohibitionist goblins and ghoulies my friends, for (metaphorically speaking) they really WILL be gone tomorrow

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .

    Stupidpatrick has re-surfaced. Tanned, rested and ready, yet still 100% brain free.

    Kennedy: Are We Ready For Big Tobacco-Style Marketing For Marijuana?Kennedy: Are We Ready For Big Tobacco-Style Marketing For Marijuana?

    • allan

      eeewww! Stupid Patrick is also Patrick the Cowardly. Standing behind the children, again… tsk tsk.

    • 3rd Generation Kennedy Fears End of Prohibition Might Lead to People Making Lots of Money
      http://tinyurl.com/lr6r8kd

      “A recidivist drug and alcohol abuser (who has miraculously avoided jail time despite committing crimes while under the influence that would send lesser mortals to prison on felony convictions) arguing for the continued imprisonment of adults choosing to responsibly consume a substance is rich in its own right. But for a third-generation Kennedy to argue against ending marijuana prohibition because major profits will be made off of it is head-exploding irony and hypocrisy.”

    • Frank W.

      “Patrick J. Kennedy is a former United States representative from the state of Rhode Island.”-NPR’s only bio of him for this editorial. Reason #87 I won’t give money to NPR.

    • claygooding

      I have to write this down,,,”when seeking advice on drug marketing be sure to include the great-grandson of a bootlegger hooked on opiates with an alcohol problem as a primary source of information”,,,You never now when a pearl of wisdom like that will come in handy.
      Patrick prefers the big marijuana in power now,,they aren’t having drive by shootings on his street.

  • thelbert

    to all of the above: Happy Halloween

  • thelbert

    OT: here’s a woman who can keep a secret. http://tinyurl.com/ojb5h77

  • DdC

    even if america is dumbing down…

    old man falls down having a heart attack…
    marge: Homer quick he needs CPR…
    homer: ah… ♭I see ♭𝄫♭ a bad moon♭ risin𝄒…

  • NorCalNative

    DdC, great link.

    Hard not to be a fan of Tim Lincecum if you’re also a fan of cannabis.

    • DdC

      NorCalNative, Giants almost require Ganja for stress reduction during torture games, which are more often than not. Like when Blonco flubs a routine single leaving a man on third in the bottom of the ninth of the 7th game of the World Series on their home turf. Then the Pandaman ends the torture catching a pop foul. They just couldn’t leave it alone. Should have started Lincecum several times.

      ☛100th Career Win
      ☛2 Cy Young Awards
      ☛3 World Series Rings
      ☛2 No Hitters
      ☛2 High Times covers

      Just Another A-Motivational Stoner.

      Lincecum: “His lower back tightened up on him”
      http://endingcannabisprohibition.yuku.com/sreply/917

      I’ve sent all of the Giants who have been injured Ganja info and Mike Krukow and Tim acknowledged they received it. Not if they have tried it. All I can do is inform, not enforce.

      Weedies
      http://www.suburra.com/images%20-%20PD%20blog/Weedies%20WEB%201109.jpg

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .

    I had such a good time at the masquerade ball last night that I feel compelled to share. As I’m sure everyone knows, it’s always very difficult to choose a costume to wear to a masquerade ball. I wanted to dress up as a very scary monster for last night’s event but I dilly dallied too long and the John Walters masks were all sold out. I briefly entertained the idea of dressing up as Calvina Fay but decided there was too much risk of an involuntary manslaughter conviction. Scary is one thing; life threatening is quite another. I’m surprised that the costumer even carries the Calvina masks. So I had to settle for dressing up as the U.S. Constitution. It worked much better than I could have hoped for or expected! Three women fainted when they saw me! There was a guy dressed up as Adolf Hitler who appeared to be annoyed because I was scaring the hell out of people and so no one was paying him any mind!

    On my way home I stopped at the grocery store where I got stopped and frisked by the cops in the parking lot! Fortunately they weren’t wise to vapor pens so they just menaced me for several minutes and then ordered me to get out of town and never return. When I got home and was getting out of my car I noticed a few vestigial trick or treat urchins were approaching my front door to panhandle candy. The instant that the Mom saw me she turned white as a sheet, grabbed the kiddies and high tailed it out of my yard! But I guess it’s understandable. How the heck could she be sure that I didn’t lace the candy with the desire for freedom and/or self ownership?

    I’ve never before had so much fun on Halloween. I knew that the Constitution scared some people but I had no clue how much it scares them. I may even break my personal rule against dressing up in the same costume twice in a row next year because I had so much fun.

    • NorCalNative

      Duncan, that’s a really beautiful piece of satire.

      Should be a must-read for every politician.

      • Duncan20903

        .
        .

        Darn, what gave it away? It was the Calvina Fay masks right? No one in their right mind would want to look like Calvina, especially on Halloween. Well, at least anyone who didn’t want to give innocent children horrid nightmares and that does include the actual Calvina. Rats, I knew I was going too far with that one.

        Regardless, forget the accolades, just throw cash or cash equivalents please.

  • The Patriot Act has done nothing to stem terrorism and everything to cancelling out the bill of rights and adding to the chorus of federal agencies spying on their own population. Radley Balko is spot on.

    Why is it we have a Patriot Act again? Drug investigations?

    Do drug investigations make one a Patriot? How did The Drug War end up becoming the Patriot Act?

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .

    Holy Nelly, You call that a Thud!®? Now this is a Thud!® for this expatriated Virginian’s cracked skull. Has the Commonwealth effectively decriminalized petty possession of cannabis misdemeanors? If so you can thank the SCOTUS decision in Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts 557 U.S.305 (2009) That’s the one that says that the lab technician has to be available for the Court hearing if the defense insists or else the test results aren’t admissible. I’m completely clueless as to why they don’t just hire a few extra lab techs if it’s so darn important.

    OK maybe not immediately, but as soon as some smart attorney can show that the presumptive tests the cops use have been known to give a positive for cannabis when it’s actually sage the wheels should come off of the prohibitionist clown cars. That’s even presuming that the claim that cops can still testify to the results of the field test isn’t just posturing hogwash. The results of those tests are just barely good for probable cause.

    Va. labs will no longer process some pot evidence

  • kaptinemo

    “Starting on Jan. 1, the state agency will discontinue the routine analysis of marijuana in simple possession cases without a court order. The department implemented the changes in its marijuana analysis policy late last month. Instead, law enforcement officers can testify in court on their field test results.”

    So, now cops are lab techs, too? Completely objective in their ‘analysis’? Yeah, sure, right, and they never ‘testily’ either.

    Remember this?

    Orange County Crime Lab Test Shows Dr. Bronner’s Soap Clean of GHB or Any Other Drug Germs’ Drummer Don Bolles Wrongly Imprisoned; Police Field Drug Test Kits Faulty

    With all that’s happened before, Virginia’s decision is a sure recipe for the kind of lawsuit needed to destroy field test credibility forever.

    • .
      .

      Yes kaptin, I recall that and about a dozen other similar events. That’s what leads me to believe that this is going to be de facto decriminalization once a smart defense attorney challenges the results of a field test indicating cannabis. It’s also going to hinge upon the defendant being smart enough to not confess which is something I think that the police investigator will press any person arrested to do just that. I think we need to encourage people to remember that the cops don’t care if you confess unless they need it to convict you. You have the right to remain silent and a smart person is going to do just that.

      The above also presumes that the person who made the claim about field tests being presented in Court isn’t just plain bald faced lying about that. I have no doubt in my mind that’s almost certainly the case. Lie detector tests are more accurate than cannabis field tests and they’re not reliable enough to present in Court as evidence. Over four decades as a Virginia resident assures me that Virginia authorities would in fact have no compunction about telling that lie to get people to confess and subsequently convicted.

      One other caveat, it also depends on forensic science not having recently developed a more accurate test. I doubt that I would have missed such an event but it is possible.
      Published May 31, 2011: Lawsuit: ‘Marijuana’ was a bag of sage

      Regardless, I’m still going to avoid Virginia like it’s the bubonic plague.

  • DdC

    Oh ya, the times they are definitely a changin…

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