When science goes to pot

… that’s the title of an excellent column by Larry Gabriel in the Detroit Metro Times

Welcome to the world of science. I didn’t do well in high school science and have pretty much avoided addressing scientific subjects formally until now. That’s because I’ve been delving into the science of marijuana to try to figure out some of the hows and whys of medical marijuana’s workings. There are some 20,000 published scientific papers analyzing marijuana and its parts. So don’t let anybody tell you there is too little known about marijuana to make a call regarding its usefulness.

Most of those papers are beyond my understanding, and making sense of those I could understand came with the help of a medical dictionary. But at least I’m trying. Most public policy and attitudes about the plant have been formed without the help of science. In fact, when President Richard Nixon ramped up the drug war in the early 1970s, it was in direct contradiction of the information and recommendations of his own marijuana task force.

A breath of fresh air in the media — a journalist who actually tries to understand the science, rather than merely repeating what the government tells him.

[Thanks, Paul]
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33 Responses to When science goes to pot

  1. Nick says:

    Thanks Pete. Thanks Paul.
    Special thanks to Larry Gabriel.
    Larry, I hope you stay interested in science and research.

  2. unicorns and pots of gold says:

    No way there is a journalist left im Das Homeland! He is marooned in that third world shithole known as Detroit. Wouldn’t want anyone to stray from being a sycophant lapdog stenographer like the rest of the press.

  3. claygooding says:

    Supreme Court is thinking,,,,,,again,,,,buy some Vaselinre and bend over.

    “”Kentucky police were following a man who had just sold drugs to an undercover informant. They entered an apartment breezeway, heard a door slam and found they had two choices. Behind door No. 1 was the dealer. And, unfortunately for him, behind door No. 2 were Hollis King and friends, smoking marijuana. Smelling the drug, the officers banged loudly on King’s apartment door and identified themselves as police. The officers said they heard a noise and feared evidence was being destroyed. They kicked down the door and found King, two friends, some drugs and cash. King was sentenced to 11 years in prison, but the Kentucky Supreme Court overturned his conviction. It said that the officers had entered the apartment illegally and that the evidence they found should not have been considered in court.””

    Justice Antonin Scalia said the police did nothing wrong. When they knocked on the door, the occupants could have answered and told police that they could not come in without a warrant. “Everything done was perfectly lawful,” Scalia said. “It’s unfair to the criminal? Is that the problem? I really don’t understand the problem.” Law enforcement, he said, has many constraints, “and the one thing that it has going for it is that criminals are stupid.””

    And this guy is a Supreme Court Judge,so much for thinking they were at least intelligent.


    • Pete says:

      To clarify, Clay, for those who may not have read that article (or thought you were talking about this post on medical marijuana science — you might consider an off-topic warning sometime)…. This was a report of the oral hearing yesterday, not an actual Supreme Court decision, which won’t come for some time.

      Yes, Scalia’s comments are absurd (fitting in line with the “Scalia’s new professionalism” meme that Radley Balko started).

      Some hopeful comments from our newer Justices, though…

      “Aren’t we just simply saying they can just walk in whenever they smell marijuana, whenever they think there’s drugs on the other side?” Justice Sonia Sotomayor said, considering what a decision against the defendant would signal to the police. “Why do we even bother giving them a warrant?” […]

      A standard that looks only at the lawfulness of police behavior, Justice Kagan said, “is going to enable the police to penetrate the home, to search the home, without a warrant, without going to see a magistrate, in a very wide variety of cases.”

      All the police need say, she said, is that they smelled marijuana and then heard a noise. “Or,” she continued, “we think there was some criminal activity going on for whatever reason and we heard noise.”

      “How do you prevent,” Justice Kagan asked Joshua D. Farley, a Kentucky assistant attorney general, “your test from essentially eviscerating the warrant requirement in the context of the one place that the Fourth Amendment was most concerned about?” […]

      Justice Sotomayor was even more direct.

      “Aren’t we just doing away with ‘Johnson’?” she asked [Johnson is an earlier case which said merely the smell of marijuana isn’t enough to avoid needing a warrant].

      Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg asked why the police could not simply roam the hallways of apartment buildings, sniffing; knock whenever they smell marijuana; then break in if they hear something suspicious.

  4. Shap says:

    Your home is your castle under the 4th amendment. Not much with regard to the Supremes shredding the 4th amendment surprises me anymore but allowing cops to enter a home without a warrant simply because they smell MJ and hear noises would be unbelievably outrageous.

  5. darkcycle says:

    They’re in the process of removing the expectation of privacy from all but the wealthy.

  6. kaptinemo says:

    Scalia and his allies in the ‘Sue-Premes’ have given the lie to their much-vaunted ‘Federalist Society’ backgrounds, as just about every ruling (like Raich) they’ve published has made a mockery of federalism, and been destructive of the very individual liberties underpinning that federalism that the FS was supposed to be defending. This latest bit of authoritarian jurisprudence on his part should surprise no one…

  7. Manglur Armov says:

    Laws only apply to the little people not the anointed ones. *Gasp* I hope that wasn’t ugly talk or vitriolic rhetoric or even worse…thoughtcrime!

  8. kaptinemo says:

    Sooner or later, some homeowner or renter will ‘get some’ when a cop barges into their residence on the basis of this ruling and said homeowner or renter shoots first and asks questions later. A tragedy (like the DrugWar, itself) that’s wholly avoidable by using logic and reason …and because it’s the DrugWar, won’t be avoided.

    At some point, the rulings of the Sue-premes will result in a backlash against their infringements upon civil rights. In these increasingly violent, desperate times, with an increasingly restive and angry public, with attempted (and successful) assassinations of ideological rivals becoming more common, well, such infringements might be taken more…seriously…than they were before.

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  10. Common Science says:

    During the apex of the positive scientific marijuana studies in the early 1970’s, senator James O. Eastland (D-Miss) held hearings with a studied indifference. Evidently knowing that most people think with their hope, fears and wishes, this group of law enforcement and political professionals came to the somewhat casual conclusion that ‘the U.S. would rapidly become a nation of zombies unless the government took swift and drastic action to stamp out the menace of marijuana.’

    A note for the children: Apparently there were much fewer zombies walking around before you were born, as regular U.S. pot users were estimated to be only 12 million in 1975. Erudite marijuana studies that followed, had to fight for credibility with readers that were exposed to that level of alarm.

    One of the myths most taken to heart by concerned parents since the sixties was that casual marijuana use was presumed to cause brain damage, just as alcohol produces in excessive amounts.

    The New York Academy of Sciences compiled thirty-two international studies during bicentennial year. The conclusions were not derived from jiffy-pop studies on casual pot smokers relayed in one sentence paragraphs. Their various study subjects were long time users (from twenty to over thirty-five years usage) who drank, smoked and ate in traditional generations-old cannabis using communities.

    Dr. Rhea Dornbush of the department of psychiatry at New York Medical College was involved in one of a number of concurrent studies instrumental in putting that canard to rest. Dr. Dornbush was studying: “Acute Effects of Cannabis on Cognitive, Perceptual and Motor Performance in Chronic Hashish Users,”in Greece. Costa Rican tokers who had smoked heavily for 20 years were probed in: “Neuropsychologic, Intellectual and Personality Correlates of Chronic Marijuana Use in Native Costa Ricans – Psychologist Paul Satz , et. al. Probably the most read subject on chronic marijuana users, as the island was completely devoid of hard drug use, was the Jamaican Ganja in Jamaica: A Medical Anthropological Study of Chronic Marijuana Use -Vera Rubin and Lambros Comitas.

    The Academy’s conclusion?:

    “Separate research projects in Jamaica, Costa Rica, and Greece did not find any evidence of brain damage or impaired mental or physical functioning due to even heavy, chronic cannabis use.”


    The editor that exposed this knowledge concluded:

    ‘Finally, it is scientifically wrong to hold a substance hostage to an anachronistic law simply because it is uncomfortable to admit we were wrong in the first place. The evidence out of New York is like evidence that came out of Kingston, Jamaica, last year and from California the year before. What it boils down to is this: As far as is now known, the most serious consequence of smoking marijuana is the danger of arrest.’

    -February 13, 1976
    Washington Post Editorial

  11. Common Science says:

    The California research the above 1976 Washington Post article referred to, was a report presented by Dr. Jared Tinklenberg and associates of the Stanford School of Medicine and the Palo Alto Veterans Administration Hospital to the Conference on Chronic Cannabis Use, sponsored by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.


    “Marijuana did not have the socially disruptive effects that alcohol use did in a group of adolescent delinquent boys, Stanford University researchers reported yesterday.

    Despite the fact that the two drugs were used with about the same frequency, alcohol use was greater in fights, difficulties with police and other authorities, trouble with family or friends and automobile accidents.

    To test the possibility that the marijuana use may directly contribute to assaultive behavior, the researchers investigated drug use among 248 male delinquents imprisoned during June 1973, to July 1975, in the Northern California Youth Authority facilities.

    The youths, aged 13 to 21, were representative of the most serious youthful offenders in California…

    Asked about assaultiveness, 39 per cent of 229 said the drug secobarbital was most likely to enhance assaultiveness while alcohol, close in pharmacological makeup, was second at 28 per cent. Neither marijuana nor any other drug was named by more than 5 per cent.”

  12. DdC says:

    Between the overturning of the Marhuana Tax Act in 1969 and the implementation of the CSA in 1972, while the nation focused on Watergate. As far as I can ascertain, Cannabis was legal. I was busted 4 times with various amounts. The 4th time with over a pound and never arrested. They confiscated it and made me feel as if I was lucky to be getting off. One of the times a County cop said it was too much paper work for about an ounce. When I said then split it with me he said I shouldn’t press my luck. Been toking ever since but haven’t sold a joint since 1972. Still a clean record. It’s not the Ganja thats harmful, its the Ganjawar that’s profitable. Wait till they find a way to cheaply produce bottled air. We laughed at bottled water…

    HASHISH FUDGE Soma and the Wootton Report

    “Having reviewed all the material available to us we find ourselves in agreement with the conclusion reached by the Indian Hemp Drugs Commission appointed by the Government of India (1893-94) and the New York Mayor’s Committee (1944 – LaGuardia) that the long-term consumption of cannabis in moderate doses has no harmful effects” “the long-asserted dangers of cannabis are exaggerated and that the related law is socially damaging, if not unworkable”

    Schaffer Library of Drug Policy

    Major Studies of Drugs and Drug Policy

    Politics of Pot

    The Shafer Commission’s (named after commission Chair, Gov. Raymond Shafer of Pennsylvania) 1972 report, entitled “Marihuana: A Signal of Misunderstanding,” boldly proclaimed that “neither the marihuana user nor the drug itself can be said to constitute a danger to public safety” and recommended Congress and state legislatures decriminalize the use and casual distribution of marijuana for personal use.

  13. Mike R says:

    This made me smile.

  14. Windy says:

    darkcycle, you wrote: “They’re in the process of removing the expectation of privacy from all but the wealthy.” You mean all but the wealthy AND government officials (police, politicians, bureaucrats) while on the job. All the arrests of people photographing or videographing cops being documented over at Radley’s site testify to that.

  15. vicky vampire says:

    Ahh Remember Supreme Court case Gonzales versus Raich 2005 the medical marijuana case Antonin Scalia and Anthony Kennedy ruled in favor of feds to keep cracking down on medical marijuana patients I wont’t go into full detail I’m sure you folks remember that Clarence Thomas and Sandra day Oconnor descented at least good for them any way Scalia never gives lead way. I think deep down he is a prohib guy totally.

  16. kaptinemo says:

    Vicky, Scalia isn’t only a prohib, he’s a decidedly weird prohib: Orgies are the way to ease social tensions, claims US judge.

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  18. Duncan20903 says:

    Did someone mention smoked rugs? That reminds me of the carpet merchant that I lived near when I was growing up. This guy for years and years and years was having a going out of business/lost our lease sale, and one day the store next door caught fire, and all his merchandise was smoke damaged. He had smoked rugs of every color, and smoked rugs of every size, he had smoked rugs in his basement, and smoked rugs he kept outside.

    I grew up in Virginia, so don’t even get me started on the subject of smoking hams.

  19. vicky vampire says:

    Yes Kaptinemo, we are in agreement that is weird.LMAO

  20. allan420 says:

    outstanding compilation there Common Science, muchas gracias. Highly *cough* useful, especially in the historic context… we can go back and back and it’s the same thing whether in Gov Shaffer’s study, LaGuardia’s or the Indian Hemp Commission, or, or… and then we can follow the use back thousands of years. We’re seriously grandfathered in…

  21. DdC says:

    he had smoked rugs…

    That’s just being part of Duh rug war…

    Tuna piano or tuna fish but never smoke the salmon…

    Frum sat on a stump.
    the stump thunk Frum stunk,
    Frum thunk the stump stunk.
    It was Kincaid all along…

    What do you get when Kerlikowski, Frum and Oliver North are in a room?
    Kooki Frum and Ollie!

  22. Common Science says:

    Allan; thanks for indulging me another microscopic look back at the 1970’s. I can attribute my obsessive-compulsive neurosis of collecting data during those days directly to the experience of my naked, freshly-showered body being the target of cocked nark handguns in the bedroom.

    “Where are the narcotics?”

    “I don’t have any nar…”

    “Okay smart-ass, where’s the fucking pot!”

    Concurrently other like-minded gents ransacked the apartment looking for ‘evidence’ their informants delivered to my common-law girlfriend two days earlier. (The bastards had the audacity to smoke a joint of connoisseur Colombian as we neophytes rolled up a sample of their stale brick weed).

    The first book on marijuana I ever read, with the explicit purpose of finding out exactly what we were doing wrong, surely was a good choice – it had the U.S. government seal on the cover. Although later, It seemed with the political castigation of the The Report of the National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse, 1972 (http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/Library/studies/nc/ncmenu.htm) would signal the end of the era when major independent marijuana studies in the U.S. were still fostered. (Even though for public exposure, they were always relegated to a diminished spot in the women’s or auto section of the newspaper).

    For the benefit of the new contributors at DrugWarRant, all those erudite compilations of scientific data Allan mentioned, from 1898 and many others inbetween were all government-sponsored. Through all the generations of scientific scrutiny that involved individual processes of fieldwork, analysis, hypothesis and synthesis to tackle specifically, the underlying assumption of cannabis harms to society – the conclusions are nearly all remarkably the same:

    Honourable age-old truths have no place in the caustic domain of dogmatic political ambition.

  23. allan420 says:

    do printed volumes of these studies still exist? Seems they’d make a great visual aid when talking to our elected officals… or they’d really make a great gift strategically and publicly presented to ol’ Droop Doggy Dogg. I do realize of course that Gil has issues w/ printed matter – like studies and dictionaries and stuff.

  24. Common Science says:

    Living in Canada before there was a chapter of NORML here, I had a brief correspondence with Keith Stroup. He arranged to keep me updated periodically with photocopies of the scientific and political developments in the U.S. (mainly as per newspaper articles). Unfortunately I lost a modest volume of that information due to a flooded basement suite years ago.

    A series of articles I particularly lament was about studies conducted in the early 70’s by the U.S. military on the effect of marijuana on the abilities of conscripts to function as competent soldiers. For years after the study was concluded the results were kept from the public as attempts to apply the Freedom of Information Act were stalled. Eventually their results mirrored the Panama Canal Zone Military Investigations of 1916-1929

    I would think that NORML would have archived everything that occurred during their existence. If not DcC may be the maven of information to oblige such ammunition.

  25. Common Science says:

    My bad! DdC didn’t come up on spell check.

  26. DdC says:

    Updated NORML Report
    Reviews Nearly 200 Studies On The Therapeutic Use Of Cannabis
    NORML has recently posted online the fourth edition of its popular and comprehensive booklet, “Emerging Clinical Applications for Cannabis & Cannabinoids: A Review of the Recent Scientific Literature.”

    I have this Oct 31, 1969 Life magazine… Marijuana: the law vs. 12 million people Newspapers are supposed to have microfilm. The internet is bringing info but info alone is nothing without humans using it. As long as 95% of the media is controlled by 5 corporations sharing an agenda to legislate competition off the free trade market. While sucking up tax dollars fighting police actions, regardless if its Iraq or the Ganjawar. Then we can all get well informed but few things will change. Good ideas using the actual visual aids. I have been making quote gifs and using them on the net to assist in the story. Good for illiterates. The game is DEAth pitting us against us cashing in on the vested ignorance. Here’s a few…

    Dr Burke, president of the American Historical Reference Society and a consultant for the Smithsonian Institute, counted seven early presidents as cannabis smokers: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, Andrew Jackson, Zachary Taylor and Franklin Pierce. ‘Early letters from our founding fathers refer to the pleasures of hemp smoking,’ said Burke. Pierce, Taylor and Jackson, all military men, smoked it with their troops. Cannabis was twice as popular among American soldiers in the Mexican War as in Vietnam: Pierce wrote to his family that it was ‘about the only good thing’ about that war.
    ~ Chris Conrad, “Hemp: Lifeline to the Future”

    How Marijuana Unavailability Leads to Use of Harder Drugs (1969)
    The following study shows how the interception of marijuana shipments into NYC in 1969, led thousands of people to use harder drugs.

    Quotes About the War on Some Drug Users

    “It is recorded that the Chinese Taoist recommended the addition of cannabis to their incense burners in the 1st century as a means of achieving immortality.”
    ~ Ernst Abel, “Marijuana, the First Twelve Thousand Years”

    “There is no evidence… that any deleterious influence on the individual using [cannabis]”
    ~ Panama Canal Zone Report, 1925

    Hemp will prove, both for the farmer and the public, the most profitable and desirable crop that can be grown, and one that can make American mills independent of importations.
    ~ Mechanical Engineering, February 1937

    Long ago, when these Grecian temples were new, hemp was already old in the service of mankind.
    ~ “Hemp For Victory,” USDA film, 1942

    ~ The LaGardia sub-committee of New York 1944

    Prohibition is a new form of tyranny by the old over the young. You have the adult with a cocktail in one hand and a cigarette in the other saying `you cannot’ to the child. This is untenable.
    ~ Anthropologist Margaret Mead, on “The Dick Cavett Show,” 1969

    I hear you guys are interested in gardening here.
    Our security officer said a lot of you guys are growing your own grass.
    ~ Bob Hope, entertaining troops in Vietnam, 1970

    ~ The Kaiser Permanente study

    ~ US Jamaican Study 1974

    “…I.Q.’s of Zion Coptics increased after they began to use Ganja”
    ~ Schaeffer: A Neuropsychological Evaluation; A Case History

    “a-motivation [is] a cause of heavy marijuana smoking rather than the reverse”
    ~ Dr. Andrew Weil (Rubin & Comitas Ganja in Jamaica, 1975)

    In 1798 Napoleon led his troops and a contingent of academicians into Egypt. Much to their officers’ dismay, an army of several thousand Frenchmen turned on with hashish. ‘The use of the strong liquor made by some Muslims with a certain weed called hashish, as well as the smoking of the flowering tops of hemp, is forbidden in all of Egypt,’ Napoleon decreed, to no avail.
    ~ High Times Encyclopedia of Recreational Drugs, 1978

    Users in our matched-pair sample smoked marihuana in addition to as many tobacco cigarettes as did their matched non-using pairs. Yet their small airways were, if anything, a bit healthier than their matches. We must tentatively conclude either that marihuana has no harmful effect on such passages or that it actually offers some slight protection against the harmful effects of tobacco smoke. A Study of Chronic Marijuana Use; Institute of Human Issues. “No significant health consequences to chronic cannabis smokers”
    ~ Costa Rican Study, 1982

    ~ The Boston Globe reported Thursday (1-30-97)

    House Republicans Thursday unveiled a package of bills to combat drug abuse and vowed to make America virtually drug-free by 2002.
    ~ Reuters news report, May 1998

    “Most marijuana users do not go on to use other drugs.”
    ~ “Marijuana: Facts for Teens.” U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Washington, D.C. 1995, p.10.

    ~ Crancer Study, Washington Department of Motor Vehicles

    “THC’s adverse effects on driving performance appear relatively small”
    ~ U.S. Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety
    Administration (DOT HS 808 078), Final Report, November 1993

    The fact that cannabis is relatively easy to obtain in coffee shops has not resulted in a greater increase in use than in other countries.
    ~ Dutch Cannabis Policy Fact Sheet, October 2000

  27. DdC says:

    In 1971 I hitch hiked to San Fran via few side trips to meet with some Pa. friends stationed at Treasure Island, in the SF Bay. A few of them were on the cover of Stars and Stripes I think it was, or some Military mag. But they were pictured smoking and shooting dope and a study was being conducted on this “friend or foe” Everyone thought it was amusing at the time. Nam was winding down and most of the hippies cashed in and were moving out. Mid 70’s I moved to Fla and never had a problem scoring pretty decent pot. I left in the late 80’s and heard it got worse but here its like going to the grocery store. Doing hospice work in Santa Cruz has never been a real reefer mad experience. Most of the rednecks play music on K-Pig and the yuppies sip their Lattes. Old long hairs are welcomed except the tourists think we’re all homeless. That’s one of the few drags is traffic from tourists. One of a few drags usually cures it.

  28. Common Science says:

    I’d like to get back to the landmark ‘Ganja in Jamaica’ study to illustrate the scientific styles that result in opposing conclusions on the brain damage theory. Dr. Louis Sutker, a University of Victoria neuropsychologist who worked on the study, offers insight to the type of intellectual integrity and credibility of the research:

    It involved the testing of 40 users who had been smoking an average of seven marijuana cigarettes a day for about 10 years and a control group of 40 non-smokers.

    They were given 16 major neuropsychological tests which measured intelligence, memory, motor skills, learning ability, personality traits and facial recognition.

    “The results showed no difference between the experimental and control groups,” said Sutker.

    He said care was taken in the selection of experimental and control groups and in the selection of tests and statistical analysis.

    “The two groups were matched in age, diet, socio-economic position, education level and alcohol and tobacco intake.

    -Excerpt from Canadian Press release, 1977

    The work of a ‘professional’ like Dr. A. M. G. Campbell though, differs in that the conclusion to his study was made to perpetuate the status quo and concieveably in notebooks, before the methodology of the assignment took place:

    One of the most persistent claims about chronic use of marihuana is that it causes brain damage. In 1971, Dr. A. M. G. Campbell published a report purporting to document such damage. [30] The report concerned air encephalogram measurements in ten marihuana smokers who had been using marihuana daily for three to eleven years. According to their report, the brains of these marihuana users had enlarged cerebral ventricles, suggestive of brain atrophy.

    Shortly after its publication, however, the report was criticized for its shortcomings. One researcher noted that “in the 10 cases reported [by Campbell] all 10 men had used LSD – many of them over 20 times – as well as cannabis, and 8 of the 10 had used amphetamines. One subject had a previous history of convulsions, four had significant head injuries, and a number had used sedatives, barbiturates, heroin, or morphine. On the basis of these facts, speculative connection between cannabis use and brain damage is highly suspect.” [31]

    30. A. M. C. Campbell, M. Evans, J. L. C. Thomason, and M. J. Williams, “Cerebral Atrophy in Young Cannabis Smokers,” Lancet 1 (1971): 1219-24.

    31. E.M. Brecher, “Marihuana: The Health Question, “ Consumers Reports, 40 (1975)

    -Excerpt: Marijuana – The First Twelve Thousand Years (Epilogue)


  29. Common Science says:

    Marijuana Research Banned

    “However, in 1976, just as multi-disciplined marijuana research should have been going into its second, third, and fourth generation studies (see Therapeutic Potential of Marijuana and NORML federal files), a “surprise” United States government policy again forbade all promising federal research into marijuana’s therapeutic effects.

    This time, the research ban was accomplished when American pharmaceutical companies successfully petitioned the federal government to be allowed to finance and judge 100% of the research.

    The previous ten years of research had indicated a tremendous promise for the therapeutic uses of natural cannabis, and this potential was quietly turned over to corporate hands – not for the benefit of the public, but to suppress the medical information.

    This plan, the drug manufacturers petitioned, would allow our private drug companies time to come up with patentable synthetics of the cannabis molecules at no cost to the federal government, and a promise of “no highs.”

    In 1976, the Ford Administration, NIDA and the DEA said in effect, no American independent (read: university) research or federal health program would be allowed to again investigate natural cannabis derivatives for medicine. This agreement was made without any safeguards guaranteeing integrity on the part of the pharmaceutical companies; they were allowed to regulate themselves.

    Private pharmaceutical corporations were allowed to do some “no high” research, but it would be only Delta-9 THC research, not any of the 400 other potentially therapeutic isomers in cannabis.”

    -Excerpt: The Emperor Wears No Clothes, Chapter 6


  30. DdC says:

    Reader Reactions to Drug Policy Enlighten
    It’s going to be hard to follow the brilliant and incisive work of Larry Gabriel ( “When science goes to pot” ) in last week’s Higher Ground, but one thing I’ve noticed over the years is that when the government commissions a study into the adverse effects of marijuana and the answer comes back “none,” the report is simply ignored and the government goes right on with its program for the harassment and eradication of recreational drug users.

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