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Ashley Halsey III’s sources improve slightly

Some may remember my run-ins in the past with Ashley Halsey III, a lazy stenographer who writes things down for the Washington Post.

See:

Well, Ashley is writing down information that’s been fed to him about marijuana and driving, still without reporting, but now his sources are slightly better.

Unlike alcohol, it’s tough to set DUI limits for marijuana

There is a legal limit for drunk driving, but when it comes to marijuana, new research shows it may be impossible to say just how high is too high to drive.

There’s no breathalyzer for pot, and researchers say blood tests are useless when it comes to telling whether someone who has been smoking is fit to drive. […]

A report by researchers at the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety said there is no threshold that indicates when a marijuana smoker may be too impaired to drive.

“There is no reliable number that has any meaningful value in terms of predicting impairment,” said Jake Nelson, AAA’s director of traffic safety and advocacy.

So far, so good. This is actual factual data about a subject that we’ve known for some time – that simply measuring nanograms says very little about impairment – that it’s more a matter of individuals and tolerance.

The only quibble with this section the discussion about the fact that with specific limits there’s the danger that someone who is under the limit but still impaired would get off, but no balancing statement about someone being over the limit and not impaired being persecuted. Naturally, Halsey never thought to consider that side of the question.

Then he continues…

The second report released by the AAA Foundation this week examines the effect of marijuana use in Washington state, where recreational use has been legal for more than three years.

Yes….

Still, the report found that in 2013, 8 percent of drivers in fatal crashes tested positive for marijuana use. In 2014, the number more than doubled to 17 percent.

Sigh…

“Of all the fatal crashes in the state, the proportion that involved a driver that had recently consumed marijuana more than doubled in one year,” Nelson said. “That doesn’t say that people who had smoked marijuana and got behind the wheel were responsible for an increase in fatal crashes. It means that recent marijuana use is a growing contributing factor in traffic crashes that kill people.”

No. It simply means that more people are testing positive for marijuana – it says nothing about contributing factors.

The good news is that the reports coming out from government officials, while still bad, are less blatantly manipulative, so that media stenographers have fewer opportunities to screw up the facts.

[Thanks, Tom]

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19 comments to Ashley Halsey III’s sources improve slightly

  • DdC

    Without Bullshit, Prohibition is nothing. I can see why the drug worriers cling to their bottom line. I don’t see why reformers have to compromise with the reefer madness just to sell pot.

    DON’T TAX OR REGULATE MARIJUANA
    ~ Steve Kubby

    Typical Russ, I think I’ll call him Radical Rush from now on.

    A Total and Complete

    REPEAL

    of all Federal, State and Local Cannabis laws

  • Mr_Alex

    It seems the prohibs are hurt once Kevin Sabet, Patrick Kennedy, Melvin Sembler being behind Project SAM and Straight Inc and other Prohibitionist groups are mentioned, for those who know of Paul Chabot, he is connected to Melvin Sembler, CALM ( Citizen’s Against Legalizing Marjuana’s ) Carla Lowe is also connected to Melvin Sembler

    • Weedeater

      CALM… What an Orwellian name. Sorta like the “The Ministry of Looooove”. I will never trust any group with a feelgood name. Call your group “Leprosy” and I might sympathize. There is nothing pretty in this disgusting world.

  • HAT in Canada

    “Health Canada is planning to change regulations to allow doctors to prescribe heroin to some opioid addicts who do not respond to treatments such as methadone.”

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/prescribe-heroin-health-canada-1.3582193

    • Frank W.

      That’s going to clash with the US’ newly rebranded Opioid Epidemic, which prohibs and LEOs are drooling over like it’s Sutter’s Mill.

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .

    A new report predicts legalizing weed could generate the equivalent of North Korea’s GDP in taxes

    /snip/
    The report, from nonpartisan research group the Tax Foundation, arrived at the $28 billion figure by combining a $23-per-pound tax — currently set on tobacco at the federal level — with a 10% sales tax on all marijuana products.

    The number also includes $7 billion in federal revenue, $5.5 billion from business taxes, and $1.5 billion from income and payroll taxes.
    /snip/

    “A billion here, a billion there and pretty soon we’re talking about real money” ~~ Everett Dirksen

  • DdC

    Any opinions on this? Is the prohibbies BS moving beyond drugs are bad mmmkay?

    High Times, (DEA) Operation Green Merchant & the Cannabis Cup

    • DdC

      Regular Marijuana Seeds
      http://regularmarijuanaseeds.com/

      GMO Cannabis Watch
      http://gmocannabiswatch.blogspot.com/

      Operation Green Merchant
      By Ray Boyd on October 15, 2005
      http://www.cannabisculture.com/content/2005/10/15/4557

      • DdC

        Operation Green Merchant
        By Ray Boyd on October 15, 2005

        “Good People Don’t Smoke Marijuana”
        Jefferson Beauregard “Jeff” Sessions III, R-Ala
        Senate Judiciary Committee

        These are the Good People?

        Store owners and employees watched in horror as gun-toting police ransacked their shops. In most cases, no charges were ever filed, but civil asset forfeitures stole millions of dollars worth of inventory from stores and individuals.

        “If the people knew what we had done,
        they would chase us down the street and lynch us.”
        — George H.W. Bush to journalist Sarah McClendon,

        Then, on a day known in the hydroponics industry as Black Thursday, October 26, 1989, the DEA in conjunction with dozens of other law enforcement agencies raided hydroponics stores in 46 states, arresting 119 people, seizing several indoor gardening shops and thousands of cannabis plants.

        In 1991, DEA agents began serving subpoenas on hydro store owners, seeking customer addresses and other private information. Agents raided, questioned, and intimidated hundreds of people and organizations, including scientists and NASA’s horticultural research facilities. By the end of 1991, Green Merchant had arrested 1,262 people, dismantled 977 indoor grows, and seized $17.5 million in assets. Dozens of people served 4 to 15 year prison terms, many with mandatory minimums that did not allow for sentence reduction.

        The Green Merchant scheme backfired on the DEA. The general public and Libertarian politicians heard that innocent hydroponics store owners had been convicted of marijuana charges solely based on questionable testimony from tainted informants. People found out the DEA entrapped suspects, ruined lives and businesses, and sent harmless people to prison. The DEA came off not as heroic anti-drug crusaders, but as Nazis….

        The basis for such extreme avoidance is a federal law, specifically “21 U.S.C. 863,” which defines drug paraphernalia as “any equipment, product, or material of any kind which is primarily intended or designed for use in manufacturing, compounding, converting, concealing, producing, processing, preparing, injecting, ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing into the human body a controlled substance?”

        Because the definition of paraphernalia criminalizes innocent items, the law says that “in determining whether an item constitutes drug paraphernalia, in addition to all other logically relevant factors, the following may be considered: continued…

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .

    For perhaps as many as 20 years a not insignificant percentage of cannabis law reform advocates have argued in favor of implementing a stiff excise tax on cannabis intended for enjoyment. The logic is simple and bullet proof. A new flow of tax revenue is like crack cocaine to politicians. Especially when their perception of that revenue is that it’s generated by people who most people don’t like. I’m filing this one in the “I love it when a plan comes together” category:

    Legal marijuana sales sit on shifting ground in rural Oregon
    Grant, Klamath counties voting whether to overturn ban

    /snip/
    Deschutes County in December banned the recreational marijuana business in unincorporated areas. On Wednesday, the commissioners, after holding public meetings, decided to allow marijuana cultivation, processing and sales.

    • strayan

      Watching these idiots do a backflip because their neighbours with legal cannabis are doing it better is incredibly satisfying. If you would have told me it would be this good I wouldn’t have believed you.

    • Jean Valjean

      It’s a battle between greed on the one hand and prejudice on the other. I’m guessing the “conservatives” will head to the trough on this one.

      • Frank W.

        If the K Falls ActionNewsTeam is anything like the one in Medford, you can predict they’ll work with LEOs to alert the viewers of this troubling epidemic and Keep You Safe.

  • CJ

    I wish we could do a practical experiment here. I wish we could have the drug czar, since he cares so much, as well as all the usual suspects pat kennedy, kevin sabet etc etc etc, let them get totally totally blitzed beyond recognition and then put them behind a wheel and into the indy 500. in the name of science and “helping the people”. surely the likely result of that experiment really would be a wonderful contribution to society.

  • Windy

    FYI, Washingtonian MMJ patients.
    http://www.doh.wa.gov/YouandYourFamily/Marijuana/MedicalMarijuana/AuthorizationDatabase

    Medical Marijuana
    Authorization Database

    Starting July 1, 2016, medical marijuana patients with a valid authorization form can join the Medical Marijuana Authorization Database.

    • darkcycle

      Not a chance. Nope. No effing way, Jack. I have been a pothead long enough to know how that will turn out. Register this: *leaps off couch and pulls down pants*
      There is still a chance of obtaining an injunction, as there are (or were, not sure of their status’ at this point) at least two suits against the State over the new rules…

  • Winston Smith

    Journalism in America? Bwahaha! Thanks I needed a good laugh. Establishment status quo ballwashers are nothing more than stenographers for their corporate paymasters.
    Only favorable reporting of official talking points for both branches of the bankster war party will get through MiniTRU.