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Kofi Annan- ‘We must decriminalize personal drug use’

Powerful essay in Spiegel by Kofi Annan, former Secretary General of the United Nations:

Lift the Ban! Kofi Annan on Why It’s Time To Legalize Drugs

Prohibition has had little impact on the supply of or demand for drugs. When law enforcement succeeds in one area, drug production simply moves to another region or country, drug trafficking moves to another route and drug users switch to a different drug. Nor has prohibition significantly reduced use. Studies have consistently failed to establish the existence of a link between the harshness of a country’s drug laws and its levels of drug use. The widespread criminalization and punishment of people who use drugs, the over-crowded prisons, mean that the war on drugs is, to a significant degree, a war on drug users — a war on people. […]

First, we must decriminalize personal drug use. […]

Second, we need to accept that a drug-free world is an illusion.

I’m very curious to see what will happen when the U.N. General Assembly has a special session on drugs in April. It’s getting harder for them to pretend that the failures of prohibition don’t exist.

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46 comments to Kofi Annan- ‘We must decriminalize personal drug use’

      • red state rebel

        Did Kansas ever join the lawsuit? Maybe those anus states could build a great wall around their borders.
        They should make enough money from locking up everyone with a nickel bag in the park to pay for it. (not really)
        Kansas has those gates on I-70 that close if it is blizzard conditions, hopefully they don’t get any ideas even though SCOTUS has ruled against unconstitutional highway drug checkpoints.
        Once you get past the huge windmill farm in western Kansas you know you’re getting close to Shangri-La aka Colorado.
        Stratton Colorado had the famous mile marker 420 sign that is now renamed to 419.9 after multiple sign thefts but you can pick up a faux mile marker 420 sign decal at most headshops in CO.

  • Daniel Williams

    So what? He could have said the same thing when in power and able to have influence. Just another asshole prohibitionist getting religion when it doesn’t really matter.

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .

      Here’s an interesting statistic published by nolo.com which left me fish mouthing:
      There are an estimated 65 million Americans with a criminal record. linky
      The US Census estimates that the US population for 2016 is 322,762,018.
      65 million is 20.139% of 322,762,018.

      But that the very precise SWAG estimate of the population from the US Census includes infants, toddlers, pre-school, kindergarten, elementary and junior high school children…all of whom would not likely have a criminal record yet. The US Census says that 23.1% of the population is less than 18 years old. Although people do start getting arrested around the age of 14 I’m think it’s to presume that those arrests aren’t included in the statistics reported.

      66.9% of 322,762,018 is 215,927,790.
      65 million is friggin’ 30.103% of the adult population for crying out loud!

      I don’t know what it means. I’ll think about it after I stop with the fish mouthing. Is nolo.com considered reliable?

      • Duncan20903

        .
        .

        The post above was not intended as a response to Daniel. It appears that post has been cast into the ether for eternity.

      • Crut

        To Daniel’s post: I have a strong feeling that Obama will do the same “prohibitionist getting religion” spiel in a year or so…

        ______________________________________

        To Duncan: Your math is just slightly off!

        If 23.1% of population is < 18, that’s 74,558,026,

        76.9% of population is >= 18, that’s 248,203,991

        65M is then 26.188% of the adult population.

        Still way too large of a number.

  • Frank W.

    As typical for UN, he’s talkin loud and sayin nothin.

  • The War On Drugs is a war on US!

    “Drugs are dangerous, but current narcotics policies are an even bigger threat because punishment is given a greater priority than health and human rights. It’s time for regulations that put lives and safety first, argues former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan.”

    We are imprisoning large percentages of adult populations to stop children from using? Insane, wrong, and very very dangerous.

    The annulment of human rights worldwide by use of the drug war.

    Its no wonder that the opponents of legalization are those that profit the most from it: criminal justice systems and law enforcement are the first to rail up in opposition.

    And all those in charge of taking those human rights away by reason of their profession.

    That is the real reason for the reefer madness claims about the dangers and harms of marijuana.

    I can think of no more pertinent issue that needs addressing in the UN than this abomination (drug war) to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

  • jean valjean

    John Oliver sketch, off topic but creates a parallel with the way drug war laws are transferable to other areas of state repression like anti-abortion requirements. In the clip several state reps tell us with fake sincerity that these laws are being passed to “protect women’s health,” like prohibition is there to protect children’s/addicts health (fill in the blank). One abortion provider is forced to build a new clinic complying with all new building regulations only to be targetted with a another law borrowed straight from the drug war requiring clinics to be 2000 feet from any school. The drug war is the template of American fascism.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mOV5w7vF94g

    • jean valjean

      2000 feet from a school trap starts at 10:15.

    • Matthew Meyer

      Perspicacious observations.

      Similar thoughts have been occurring to me recently. Used to think that “legalization” meant the end of the culture war about cannabis.

      Now I think abortion politics provides a more realistic template of the endgame: endless regulation in the name of “consumer safety” and “protecting the helpless” that’s really meant to make access more difficult.

  • Matt

    “By contrast, there has been a near tripling of American deaths from heroin overdoses between 2010 and 2013, even though the law and its severe punishments remain unchanged.” The lying continues unabated. “The most risky drugs should never be available “over the counter” but only via medical prescription for people registered as dependent users, as is already happening in Switzerland.” So tobacco and alcohol are being prescribed only to dependent users??? Again, the vomit continues. Sorry, you mean Heroin don’t you? So Kofi, why are alcohol and tobacco available on every street corner essentially worldwide as they are undeniably the most dangerous drugs? The usual lies designed to perpetuate the present situation. No-one in a position of power will tell the truth. Prevarication as usual is the order of the day.

    • B. Snow

      Harping on the fact that alcohol and tobacco are “drugs” isn’t helpful, its seen/received as deliberately being difficult in your argument…

      And while arguably true in the strictest sense, it doesnt matter – UNLESS, You intend to make the contrarian demand that *until heroin is made legal = then alcohol and tobacco should be equally illegal* (which is extremely unlikely), And even if you do you’re not really advocating a realistic stance.

      Nor one that will have a chance to effectively advance the greater debate – I’m certain that Secretary Annon was not and wouldn’t in this case classify alcohol and tobacco as “drugs” per se = It’s worth noting that the subject at hand (being debated) is obviously “illegal drugs”.

      Pointing out “legal drugs” that are more harmful – Has a place in the larger debate – but making a show of inferring or outright calling Kofi Annon a liar, AND/OR asking the absurd = Are “tobacco and alcohol are being prescribed only to dependent users???” is… I will saying again just to be perfectly clear Unhelpful.

      I understand your passion for arguing about the subject, I am only pointing out my belief that this is not the best angle to take here, Nor is the mention of powerful people not advocating drug policy reform – Until they’re not in a position to effect said change themselves…

      I get your point, But count me in the *better late than never* camp on this one.

    • DdC

      So Kofi, why are alcohol and tobacco available on every street corner essentially worldwide as they are undeniably the most dangerous drugs?

      Shirley you Jest? I’m kidding.

      Cannabis and clinical heroin and works, don’t kill. They wouldn’t be harmful without prohibition causing the harm. Harm = profits. The profits are in maintaining prohibition, neither winning or losing the war. Just keep the waters muddied to cast enough doubt to prevent reform. No money in Peace either. So the only way the Neocon’s can profit with non harmful competing substances is by outlawing them, Then lump in anything associated. Cannabis lumping in Hemp or Organic tobacco used for centuries without the adulterations or the harm lumped with Chemical Cigarettes that does harm. As well as Booze or adulterated Heroin.

      Profits from police actions called war. Profits have replaced necessity as the mother of invention. Fat Pharma treatment over cures and prevention makes hundreds of $billions treating symptoms of legal harmful products. I think of it as what if we were the enemy in a war, and these corporatist taking over the government with their Wall St backing. Think of us as cheap labor or pow’s to exploit, Labor is overhead. If profit is the goal over human rights. Then we cogs only have value if they can profit on us. Not underground taking profits.

      Healthy people are like Peace, no war toys sold or damage to repair. More Profits. So anything like Cannabis with its versatility as an alternative to their status quo harmful polluting sickening product profits is bad. Circumventing the beast with local Hemp is bad for their profits. Like prisons verses rehabilitation and probation profits repairing what they deem is in need of fixing. They deal in hobgoblins and fear mongering that are not made of molecules, so there is never any real evidence.

      Programmed media and dumbed down schools. Crappy food pyramids, Frankenfud and aspartame in everything. Unhealthy malnutritioned obese people make profits. Lost production? With a pool of cheap desperate labor from outsourcing and importing TPP scabs and prison slave labor makes that unlikely. A sick joke actually. But it can’t happen here because…

      google: yearly cost of tobacco use to society
      China, United States, Brazil, Turkey and Indonesia are the five countries that produce the most raw tobacco leaves and manufactured cigarettes.

      Smoking-related illness in the United States costs more than $300 billion each year,

      Or $300 billion goes to the monopoly pharma treating legal chemical cigarette use.

      Tobacco is a sensitive plant prone to many diseases. It therefore requires huge chemical inputs: up to 16 applications of pesticide are recommended during one three-month growing period. Aldrin and Dieldrin, and DDT are among the chemicals used. Methyl bromide, widely used as a fumigant in developing countries, contributes significantly to ozone depletion.

      Big smile on Monsanto’s faces. More sick people to profit on with the pollution run off. Not used on organic Hemp. 90 million pounds on cotton aborting babies in the bible belt. While the Neocons agenda is shut down clinics or shoot doctors in church for geeeeeezus.

      google: yearly cost of alcohol use to society
      All of these behaviors will eventually hit the system, in the form of health care costs, criminal justice costs, motor vehicle crash costs, and workplace productivity. The hidden costs of alcoholism are not small. It is estimated that alcohol-related expenses cost federal, state, and local governments $223.5 billion.

      So drunk drivers make $223.5 billion for ER technicians and plastic equipment, wrecked cars new cars replacing them. Cages or cirrhosis all profits treating legal booze. How many profit on stoners watching video’s at home? Taking profits with home grown affordable health care and potential cures and preventives supplementing the ECS preventing deficiency.

      Big Pharma Pockets $711 Billion in Profits by Robbing Seniors, Taxpayers

      Drug Company Profits Soar as Taxpayers Foot the Bill

      11 Major Drug Companies Raked in $85 Billion Last Year, and Left Many to Die Who Couldn’t Buy Their Pricey Drugs

      • Daniel Williams

        I’m certainly no shill for Big Pharma, but I do believe in context. First, if folks would make better lifestyle choices, Big Pharma wouldn’t be so big: Obesity (which more often than not is self-inflicted) and related conditions make up a growing portion of prescriptions, as do anti-anxiety/depression drug, and let’s not forget about the proliferation of pain meds. Second, Big Pharma makes around a 5-7% net profit. Yes, it’s huge, but it’s still only 7%. (And the same can be said for Big Oil, but with gas well under $2 a gallon, they’re off the haters’ radar.) And comparing what we pay for drugs to what other countries do, suggests they pay a fair price, without considering they may not be paying their ‘fair share’ – and should be paying more.

        And as an aside, where is the outrage over Apple and Google and Microsoft and Facebook; four international companies of gargantuan size, making net profits north of 25%? Oh wait, those are the cool guys.

        • DdC

          Obesity (which more often than not is self-inflicted)

          Opinion aside, the reality is at the end of the day buying fat pharma over cannabis for obesity, anxiety, depression, pain and without debilitating side effects. Plus the reality that big ag and food conglomerates sell products not nutrition. Backed by the government upside down pyramid giving consumers bad choices. Yes I agree it is self inflicted but it doesn’t retract one iota from the hypocrisy point I was making. Or the junk science behind fat pharma.

          Asthma/Obesity => Cannabis

          and again regardless if it is intentional, prohibition is keeping competition from legal fat pharma. I’m not pushing any prohibition. I think it is a consumers choice but I do believe the ability to make informed decisions is based on truthful information to start.

          Ganja 4 PTSD & Depression and Anxiety

          Brain Responds To Pain With MJ – Like Substance

          Florida: Dying Dad’s Pain Inspired Push for Ganja

          Big Pharma makes around a 5-7% net profit

          Al Capone and Watergate

          Big Oil, but with gas well under $2 a gallon, they’re off the haters’ radar.

          No they’re not. If you read the post I only listed things you can legally ingest. It would be too long to include all of the fascist. There are 50,000 Cannabis product alternatives to many different status quo corporatists. That’s just the way it is, not opinion. Biodiesel or crude oil, Hemp fiber or cotton and chemicals. Same with the shuck and jive on the new demon drug tobacco. Pushing people to buy cheaper generic brands with even more chemicals and lumping in the organic products. That is not free markets that’s legislated monopolies. Excuse them all you want but you have no reasoning behind making claims that #300 billion profits is 7% something you neglected to mention. The entire GDP? Whatever they profit on is irrelevant. Its not the profits that are bad. Its not being incorporated that’s bad.

          But to play dumb and act as if multinational fat pharma, Monsanto big ag or crude oil aren’t getting special deals and tax paid subsidies many whine over if a poor person gets something. That is foolish. As for booze once again the 6’oclock news version is a sitcom, not history or even rational. Rockefeller expanded the Women’s Christian League from 3 states to many with a 5 million dollar donation to help him lobby Congress, with Hearst to establish the 18th amendment on the premise of drinking is bad and in need of prohibition. The reality is that not one person was ever arrested for drinking. The only arrests were to distillers and distributors. Including family farmers distilling their own tractor and heating fuel from left over crop waste after harvest. Corn stalks and hemp leaves and other scrapes.

          The only change after repeal was farmers could not distill their own fuel and had to buy Rockefeller crude oil products. Hearst revelation that the nobel experiment failed didn’t last long when Hemp was discovered to be another alternative to steel and oil. Not to mention fat pharma. Nixon lies legislated into the CSA was temporary until the Shafer report was concluded. When it was Nixon rejected it and lumped in Hemp to this day. So cut the BS. No one says fat pharma should be shut down and let people suffer with nothing. Or another booze prohibition or the present lies about tobacco. Giving city councils fine money and not a word about what is actually causing the damage. I only advocate truthful information, not prohibition. But it is telling who jumps to the defense of the multinationals with no allegiance to the country or its citizens. Same with cowardly corporate tax cheats not paying for the infrastructure they help wear out. Just business as usual.

          And comparing what we pay for drugs to what other countries do, suggests they pay a fair price, without considering they may not be paying their ‘fair share’ – and should be paying more

          That is unlikely since the actual cost of producing most drugs is far far short of what they can get away with charging. But I seldom use any white powders and pain is pain and I don’t squabble over politics if a pill does the trick. I believe Ganja has prevented a lot of things others seem to have in their senior years.. That is choice and nothing to do with the hypocrisy of fat pharma or prohibitionists. As far as profits and prices are abominable and to try to excuse them on other countries paying less and inferring tax subsidies helping them. It still doesn’t justify prohibition of cannabis when fat pharma does more damage and are not preventing or curing a thing.

          They profit on illness their subsidiaries create. Again, not opinion. Monsanto makes people sick and Searle sells them treatments. Profits both ways and like the bogus food pyramid, the people wanting to believe it is all legitimate fell into the sugar and fat diets of the 1940s-2000s. Same with Milk being fat and water to increase calves weight 4 fold the first year, not for humans. Same with artificial sweeteners and taking aspartame off the toxic substance shelves when Donnie Rumsfeld ran it. . Buyer beware when there is no way a consumer can test or verify? So you are going to have to live with your decisions and making people sick doesn’t seem to bother everyone, especially those getting paid. So nothing more to say about it for now.

          Here is what you are paying for and not getting with Ganja.

          Drug Worriers preferred methods of treatment…

          Apple and Google and Microsoft and Facebook; four international companies of gargantuan size, making net profits north of 25%? Oh wait, those are the cool guys.

          Why Daniel your portfolio is showing. No one mentioned profits in the sense of free enterprise, only harmful products getting free passes and even subsidies over what prohibition has kept from the people. What has any of the communications corporations done to harm Americans by ingesting their products? Wall St’s goal for these are two tiered internet with those in need of a voice without money staying silent. But it is still my choice to buy Apple over Microsoft. I don’t have that choice with Cannabis over fat pharma or booze now do I? Its sad when people grovel for $multibillion korpses.

        • DdC

          All Legal and even Promoted by the caring folk’s
          at Uncle Sam’s Multinational Korpses Inc.

          7 Fast-Food Restaurant Chains That Rake In $2M+ Per Store

          The Dangers of Fast Food
          Along with smoking, substance abuse and inactivity, fast food presents one of the greatest public-interest health threats to Americans today. Fast food is almost universally dangerous and should probably carry a warning from the surgeon general. It contains meat-based carcinogens, is high in total calories and saturated fat and is a principal source of trans fat.

          Asbestos in the Workplace
          Asbestos exposure and mesothelioma risks on the job: the facts.
          Every day as many as 1.3 million people in the U.S. go to a workplace where they’re exposed to significant amounts of asbestos, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). For decades, the link between asbestos and serious health problems like mesothelioma has been well-established. But many employees have more questions than they do answers concerning asbestos.

          J&J must pay $72 million for cancer death linked to talcum powder
          Johnson & Johnson faces claims that it, in an effort to boost sales, failed for decades to warn consumers that its talc-based products could cause cancer. About 1,000 cases have been filed in Missouri state court, and another 200 in New Jersey.

          Proven Unsafe But FDA-Approved:
          Are YOU Still Consuming This Man-Made Poison?

          Americans drink more soda than anyone else on the planet — well over 700 eight-ounce servings each year, on average, and an increasing amount of it is diet soda.

          They might be more reluctant to do so if they knew about the safety questions still surrounding aspartame. A number of scientists responding expressed major concerns about aspartame’s safety at the time of its approval, and even more indicated areas where they believed more research is needed on aspartame to resolve their concerns — research on areas such as neurological functions, brain tumors, seizures, headaches, and adverse effects on children and pregnant women.

  • “Prohibition has had little impact on the supply of or demand for drugs.”

    Little impact?

    Being somewhat-facetiously serious (if you will), Certain Drug Prohibition has had a heavy and horribly negative impact against public safety ironically by way of that little (actually no) impact by any concrete measure.

    In other words, no impact means indirectly a heavy impact involving drug supply and demand (result of black market forces enabled by prohibition).

    There is literally no concrete evidence proving any societal benefit from Certain Drug Prohibition, but ample evidence proving heavy costs in terms of lives, health, liberty, and precious taxpayer resources.

    If only our mainstream media would finally properly challenge that prohibition’s supposed legitimacy, instead of journalistically unethically reporting the issue with the ultimately baseless assumption that prohibition is a valid base.

    Sufficient public pressure is the leverage needed to push back against powerful self-interest groups.

    Those groups operate generally in the area of judicial corruption, because under no rational circumstance can the war on some drugs be constitutional — the insanely ridiculous application of the Commerce Clause to ban mere possession of a certain plant (or such) finally be justly condemned.

    Activism undermining corrupt media reporting has been thankfully effective (thanks to the Internet and those wonderful people — e.g. Pete — leveraging it), but it would be beneficial to somehow pressure the mainstream media enough to do their righteous job or face devastating credibility (and viewership, so revenue) loss.

    The informational shaping of minds is critical towards achieving justice by leverage of a healthy public pressure against abusive “leadership”.

    While having apparently limited impact towards that shaping, former leaders denouncing prohibition require public amplification to reach current leaders demonstrating blatant corruption (e.g. a failed policy ruining millions of lives to “benefit” too much of the status quo) in the (likely then understandably outraged) public eye.

  • B. Snow

    So, y’all would be okay with the Nannies – who seem more likely to take this argument and reply with:

    “You know, we should try taking another bite of the alcohol Prohibition apple & throw tobacco in while were at it!

    Then, they’ll be trying to tell you how much caffeine you should be allowed to have per day…

    Remember when the topic of “resolving the *Crack vs Powder Cocaine* disparity” was first broached – there were people who, Essentially – said “Fine then bring that up in Congress and we’ll *fix* that disparity for ya…” Not subtlety at all threatening to raise the minimum on powered cocaine to match the crack sentences = Racial Disparity settled, How do you like us Now?

    Or have I missed something?

    To be clear = I too hope that the UN comes to its senses in April or soon thereafter/ASAP, but I’m not holding my breath just yet…
    Nor talking smack about Kofi Annan (not having done more sooner) in the meantime, pardon moi…

  • Servetus

    Harry Anslinger famously noted that once the Single Treaty was in place, none of those awful liberals would ever be able to re-legalize marijuana. Many drug law reform groups are coming together at UNGASS to slay Anslinger’s dragon.

    In April, we have an opportunity to know if the UN has what it takes to counter one of the worst human rights abuses in modern history—the drug war. Too often, when governments are exposed as inept or corrupt, they resist reform and turn reactionary. That’s been a common pattern with the US federal government on drug issues. Admitting error, exploitation, and defeat, has real consequences. Semi-sentient politicians will be forced to live with the fact they’re war criminals. Opening paths to international marijuana legalization, and/or drug decriminalization, will affect the climate as heat rises from the friction of Anslinger spinning in his grave.

    If certain political factions are a no-show, if neither the Vatican nor activists such as Kevin Sabet are there to voice concern over loss of their harm-enhancement policies, then it will be a sign of surrender on their part, a greater victory for reform. If resistance is offered, the resistors will face unprecedented public scrutiny and condemnation. Any opposition to legal reform will end up being political suicide.

  • darkcycle

    Frontline tonight, “Chasing Heroin”. Trailer is awesome, here, via Alison Holcomb:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yr4Ab7GzbFs

  • Moolahmolly

    Laws that punish otherwise law-abiding adults simply for using marijuana have caused more harm than good for the people of Vermont. They have also been disproportionately enforced against the poor and people of color.

    As those who teach compassion and love, we believe the harm associated with marijuana can best be minimized through a regulated system that emphasizes education, prevention, and treatment rather than punishment.

    For these reasons, we support S. 241, the proposal to end marijuana prohibition and regulate marijuana in Vermont.
    Sincerely,

    Rev. Barnaby Feder, Champlain Valley Unitarian Universalist Society, Middlebury

    Roy V. Hill, II, president, Vermont Ecumenical Council and Bible Society, Burlington

    Rev. Elissa Johnk, Middlesex

    Cantor Kate Judd, Brattleboro Area Jewish Community, Brattleboro

    Rev. Dr. M’ellen Kennedy, Springfield Unitarian Universalist Church, Springfield

    Pastor Jeremy Kirk, First Congregational Church of West Brattleboro, West Brattleboro

    Rev. Earl Kooperkamp, Church of the Good Shepherd, Barre

    Rev. Katelyn Macrae, Richmond

    Rev. Bert Marshall, Centre Congregational Church, West Brattleboro

    Rev. Peter Plagge, Waterbury Congregational Church, Waterbury

    Rev. Abigail Stockman, First Church in Barre, Universalist, Barre

    Rev. Ken White, College Street Congregational Church, Burlington

    Rev. Peggy Yingst, Trinity Lutheran Church, Brattleboro

    http://tinyurl.com/praisthempraisthem

    • Servetus

      Without naming himself an anarchist, Leo Tolstoy, like his predecessors in the popular religious movements of the 15th and 16th centuries, Chojecki, Denk and many others, took the anarchist position as regards the state and property rights, deducing his conclusions from the general spirit of the teachings of Jesus and from the necessary dictates of reason. With all the might of his talent, Tolstoy made (especially in The Kingdom of God Is Within You) a powerful criticism of the church, the state and law altogether, and especially of the present property laws. He describes the state as the domination of the wicked ones, supported by brutal force. Robbers, he says, are far less dangerous than a well-organized government. He makes a searching criticism of the prejudices which are current now concerning the benefits conferred upon men by the church, the state, and the existing distribution of property, and from the teachings of Jesus he deduces the rule of non-resistance and the absolute condemnation of all wars. His religious arguments are, however, so well combined with arguments borrowed from a dispassionate observation of the present evils, that the anarchist portions of his works appeal to the religious and the non-religious reader alike.” — Peter Kropotkin on anarchism/Tolstoy, 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica.

  • DdC

    What Can Cannabis Consumers Expect From The Outcome Of The Allard Case?
    https://www.civilized.life/home-growing-marijuana-allard-case-1620030343.html

  • jean valjean

    One neocon war-monger supporting another. In a sane world Tony Blair’s endorsement should be the kiss of death to Hillary….

    http://www.politico.com/blogs/2016-dem-primary-live-updates-and-results/2016/02/tony-blair-hillary-clinton-endorsement-219680

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .

    Well here’s some good news. It appears that the Canuckistanis may have found their huevos:

    Vancouver Federal Court judge rules medical marijuana law unconstitutional

    /snip/
    Federal Court Justice Michael Phelan said the Marihuana for Medical Purposes Regulations, which replaced the Medical Marihuana Access regulations in April 2014, violated the liberty and security interests of the charter.

    He gave the government six months to fix the law.

    “The access restrictions did not prove to reduce risk to health and safety or to improve access to marihuana — the purported objectives of the regulation,” wrote Phelan, who heard evidence in the case last spring.

    “In the alternative, even if some connection is found, the restriction is still overbroad and does not minimally impair section 7 rights . . . In sum, the law goes too far and interferes with some conduct that bears no connection to its objectives.”

    Although not part of any previous medical pot regime, Phelan called the more than 100 illegal marijuana dispensaries across the country “the heart of cannabis access.”
    /snip/

    • additionalText

      “In his decision, the judge noted that “many ‘expert’ witnesses were so imbued with a belief for or against marijuana — almost a religious fervour — that the court had to approach such evidence with a significant degree of caution and skepticism.”

      In particular, he called one RCMP witness for the Crown, Cpl. Shane Homequist, “the most egregious example of the so-called expert.

      “He possessed none of the qualifications of usual expert witnesses. His assumptions and analysis were shown to be flawed. His methodologies were not shown to be accepted by those working in his field. The factual basis of his various options was uncovered as inaccurate,” he wrote.

      “I can give this evidence little or no weight,” the judge concluded.

      Phelan also dismissed many of the federal government’s arguments concerning the risks home grow-ops could pose to homes, noting mould, fire, break-ins and insurance concerns can be addressed within existing laws and regulations.

      He found the rules which “limited a patient to a single government-approved contractor and eliminated the ability to grow one’s own marijuana or choose one’s own supplier” were an untenable restriction on the plantiffs’ liberties.”

      http://tinyurl.com/bobadobudo

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .

    Senate Judiciary Republicans Vow No Hearing for Supreme Court Nominee

    The Senate Republicans are brain dead idiots. Even my wife says they’ll be sorry when Ms. Clinton nominates Mr. Obama on 1/21/2017. I’ve been thinking that if the Democrats were smart Mr. Obama would broker a deal for Hillary to drop out of the race so all of the Democrats’ resources can be concentrated on getting Senator Sanders elected. Mr. Obama has to nominate Ms. Clinton for the Supreme Court with Senator Sanders in agreement to continue her nomination if elected.

    I still think that Mr. Trump is going to win the elections. He’s pushing all the right buttons and he’s the only candidate doing so. The thought that Mr. Trump is likely to self destruct has been proffered. Well here’s his chance. All he has to do is join the Party insiders in the Senate and support the stupidity. It’s also his chance to further distance himself from the insiders. We shall see, and it will probably be on Tuesday.

  • Tony Aroma

    I don’t think you can become a member of SCOTUS without ever having been a judge.

    • darkcycle

      Nope, the President can nominate anybody he pleases.

      • Duncan20903

        .
        .

        He can also make the nomination when the Senate is in recess and the nominee gets a temporary seat until December 2017.

        The effin’ Senate needs to do its job and quit with the political temper tantrums. Is there an age limit for SCOTUS Justices? Maybe Mr. Obama could find an eight year old with a very high IQ and announce that’s his nominee because he wanted to give Mi6ch and his pals someone who they can understand.

        Crybabies. Humbug.

      • Windy

        “Nope, the President can nominate anybody he pleases.”

        Including someone who has never been a judge or lawyer.

  • Tony Aroma

    I don’t think you can become a member of SCOTUS without ever having been a judge. Unlike in politics, some experience is required.

    • DdC

      There are no official qualifications for becoming a Supreme Court justice. The Constitution spells out age, citizenship and residency requirements for becoming president of the United States or a member of Congress but mentions no rules for joining the nation’s highest court.

      7 Things You Might Not Know About the U.S. Supreme Court …

      Are there qualifications to be a Justice?
      Do you have to be a lawyer or attend law school to be a Supreme Court Justice?
      The Constitution does not specify qualifications for Justices such as age, education, profession, or native-born citizenship. A Justice does not have to be a lawyer or a law school graduate, but all Justices have been trained in the law

  • Servetus

    Historical Trivia: “The first e-commerce transaction was a marijuana sale…”

    That’s one tidbit in John Markoff ‘s 2005 book What the Dormouse Said: How the Sixties Counterculture Shaped the Personal Computer Industry:

    In 1971 or 1972, Stanford students using Arpanet accounts at Stanford University’s Artificial Intelligence Laboratory engaged in a commercial transaction with their counterparts at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Before Amazon or even eBay, the seminal act of e-commerce was a drug deal. The students used the network to quietly arrange the sale of an undetermined amount of marijuana.

    Source: http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2016/02/23/4-marijuana-stats-that-will-blow-you-away.aspx?source=foo-bar&utm_campaign=article&utm_medium=feed&utm_source=yahoo

  • Thurston Howell III

    Â¥¢Ø»ƁƩǢǾɀʘΔπϟѠѪҖ ₩∏ῴ₯₪╬☺♂ⱥ∞♠↔℗ ±µöǚǝɄɌʔϞϚЊЏфѢ
    ҂ӺԒӸԂ۞ᴥ‡‰‼♦◊ɎɃ °§×ũƩȣɇʬ͏ΨβϠдѯҊ҈

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .

    Here’s something none of us have ever witnessed. It gets filed in the “I must be dreaming. Pinch me please so I can wake up” category. Cross filed in the “Is it possible that the funnymental christians are correct? Could this actually be the end times?” category:

    Vermont Senate Votes 16-13 to Legalize

  • Drug use mustn’t merely be decriminalized– it must be legalized, and it must be done for freedom’s sake, no other reason!
    robertsrevolution.net