Open Thread

“bullet” The Committee on Oversight and Government has issued a report critical of the Drug Czar’s office and others, for their efforts to help the Bush Administration get Republicans elected in 2006. It’s something we talked about at the time. Unfortunately, they don’t seem to be as interested in the ONDCP’s efforts to undermine state and local initiatives and legislative efforts.
“bullet” The Daily Mail just has no limit to its absurdity.

A senior police officer delivered a fierce attack on the reclassification of cannabis yesterday after a long-term user who ignored medical pleas to kick the habit was jailed for murdering his girlfriend.
Detective Superintendent Andy West said the decision to downgrade the drug from Class B to C was the ‘worst thing’ he had seen in 28 years of policing. […]
Middlebrook, the 27-year- old son of a teacher, had been a cannabis user for ten years when he stabbed Miss Barton 15 times with three knives as she lay naked in his bed. […]
‘This man is going to serve over 12 years so when people say this is a safe drug I don’t agree.’ […]
Police and paramedics reported the pungent smell of cannabis in the room and empty beer cans. […]
Middlebrook told police he acted because he feared for his life and that ‘she was in cahoots with a group of lads who are trying to kill me’.
A post-mortem examination found Miss Barton had also smoked cannabis before her death.
The case is the latest involving a cannabis user who carried out a violent crime.

I wonder if Middlebrook was a milk user, and whether they considered that aspect…
“bullet” In the “we already knew that” category:

New research finds that a national campaign‰s anti-drug TV ads failed to convince young children and teenagers to stay away from marijuana and actually might have encouraged some to try smoking pot.
In their 1999 to 2004 incarnation, the National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign‰s TV ads ‹either had no effects on kids or possibly had a boomerang effect,Š said Robert Hornik, lead author of a new study and professor of communication at the University of Pennsylvania.
The U.S. Congress created the anti-drug campaign in the late 1990s and gave almost $1 billion to it through 2004, according to the study. The taxpayer-funded campaign continues to create anti-drug advertising today.
The study appears online and in the December issue of the American Journal of Public Health.

“bullet” Senator Jim Webb is continuing his efforts to address sentencing issues with his symposium on Wednesday: Drugs in America: Trafficking, Policy and Sentencing
“bullet” R.I.P. Beth Wehrman
Beth was a leader in the field of harm reduction.

Known as the “Needle Lady of Illinois,” Wehrman is estimated to have exchanged more than 11,000 needles to help prevent the spread of HIV.

A classy lady. She will be missed.
“bullet” How dense does the media have to be to continue reporting these marijuana destroys the environment stories?

“People light up a joint,” said Cicely Muldoon, deputy regional director of the Pacific West Region of the National Park Service, “and they have no idea the amount of environmental damage associated with it.”

And why aren’t they finding clandestine tobacco fields? Hmmm…
Fortunately, the Marijuana Policy Project is publicly responding. (although if anyone has Cicely Muldoon’s email address, I wouldn’t mind getting it).
“bullet” “drcnet”

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