The answer is ‘no’

CBS News Moneywatch brings it up: Should employers keep testing workers for pot?

According to executive outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, which favors eliminating marijuana preemployment screening, companies are finding it increasingly difficult to find qualified applicants who don’t smoke weed at a time when unemployment is at a 17-year low.

“While it is good policy to ban drugs and alcohol in the workplace, what workers do after hours — as long as it does not impair the company’s operations or productivity, or otherwise do harm — should not have any bearing on how workers are viewed by their employers,” Andrew Challenger, a vice president at the firm, said in a press release.

It’s really time to end this practice that has been more about profits for drug-testing companies than workplace safety. Finally, companies are starting to realize that their most productive workers are those who feel valued and respected, and may not be those who mindlessly turn their entire lives over to the Corporation.

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59 Responses to The answer is ‘no’

  1. Bruce says:

    A Salute to Challenger, Gray & Christmas out of respect for their stance re; This Orwellian Oligarchic Foray into Misrule.

  2. Daniel Williams says:

    Welcome back!

  3. Chris says:

    My favorite job interview included smoking a joint outside the office on the street with the team. Some drug testing is appropriate 😀

  4. Benny Malamud says:

    Yep, welcome back, Pete! While you were away, somebody jazzed up all the avatars.

  5. kaptinemo says:

    And may I add my ‘voice’ to the chorus of “Welcome back!”

    WRT employers re-thinking their stances on drug testing, this is just more evidence of changing demographics affecting economic and political policies. A point predicted from the Couch, long ago.

    Businesses are being forced to face facts regarding the changing nature of their workforce…and that workforce’s potential to engage in political activism. Political activism that is slowly eroding the degree of social control businesses enjoyed over their employees for decades, thanks to ‘drug testing’ and the implied threat of loss of employment for engaging in a ‘non-corporately-approved’ lifestyle…or thinking.

    For that is precisely what that political activism has led to; the slow dismantling of cannabis prohibition laws, State-by-State, has also been a challenge to the (traditional) corporate power structure, and its ability to lord it over their employees.

    (Any wonder why Kevvie’s donors are almost all corporations of one sort or another? Drug testing companies act like unseen Mafia enforcers for corporations, enforcers who don’t engage in physical but fiscal violence.)

    As was pointed out here long ago, the self-serving machinery of prohibition was hiding in the tall grass of an electorate that supported cannabis prohibition with their votes. With their passing from attrition, the tall grass is being mowed down by time, to reveal that self-serving machinery in all its corrupt glory.

    The machinery has nothing to hide behind now, and its attempts to propagandize the next generation of taxpayers for its continuance (i.e. DARE) have failed, to the point of relying almost completely on the courts to try to negate votes on popular plebiscites favoring re-legalization (the OK/NE lawsuit to overturn CO’s vote on re-legalizing cannabis)…which have been rightfully rejected. (And such attempts have shown that their sworn allegiance to preserve democratic institutions was only for when it suited and favored them.)

    As more States re-legalize, more corporations will have to bow to the pressure from the electorate, and by derivation, bow to their own (responsible cannabis using) employees, and end all testing save for accident-related reasons. When that happens, a large part of the war will be over.

  6. Welcome back Pete.

    “Why You Should Stop Testing Employees for Marijuana Use”

    An advocacy group claims corporate drug tests are a form of discrimination against adults using a state-legal substance during off hours.

    Employers have no right to impinge their testing that thereby interferes with an employees right to privacy in his off time.

    • DdC says:

      Court Rules Field Sobriety Tests Unreliable for Marijuana Detection

      Segregation of Stoners via Pisstasters. Doesn’t cover housing purification rules based on Feds prohibition, in legal states. Especially HUD or Section 8. No whiz quiz, just smell and the word of the property management. Most are elderly or disabled and have been on a 5 year waiting list to get into an apartment. Some property management companies control 20,000 units, and the people living in them. A way to order lifestyles. So even if you work for a sane employer, they can still legally discriminate at home if you rent. Then the roads are also another illogical place to warrant tests if suspicious due to bumper stickers, not impaired driving.

    • darkcycle says:

      Who knew retirement just meant having less free time than before? Being it’s your time, Pete, use it how you like. That means staying busy. We were going to head to Q-town this Spring to visit my Dad, was hoping to get a visit with you in as well, but alas, I have been “well” only ten days so far this year, having got a near lethal dose of the current H3 Flu virus…still battling walking pneumonia and the good Dr. Coskie has surgery in just a couple of weeks to remove two large non cancerous masses they found by looking under things for another problem. Minor surgery, luckily, but still involves two days in hospital recovery time. So the MidWest trip goes on hold until next year. Enjoy yourself some for us here at home buried under pizza boxes and crumbled Oreos.

      • NCN says:

        darkcycle, sorry to hear you’re having a rough winter. Rooting for your recovery and return to good health.

        • darkcycle says:

          Aye, I’m going to do fine. The same cannot be said for the occasional creature unlucky enough to have provoked my ire in this time of viral unhappiness.

  7. Servetus says:

    Automotive pioneer Henry Ford paid his employees top dollar, and for that dollar he expected them to submit to inspections of their homes and lifestyles by company agents to ensure employees were living up to the expectations of the company. It was a forced Americana.

    The idea that a corporation or its stakeholders should have a patriarchal control over the lives of employees is the first rule of political corporatism—Mussolini style fascism. It was no coincidence that Ford, coupled with a beleaguered grade-school level education, made political donations to a similar imbecile rising in power in Germany.

    Trotsky was correct when he said fascism was organized misery. The idea that anyone owes their soul to the company store in the same sense as some religious authority has never really caught on with workers. Cannabis and drug testing has been an authoritarian attempt to bring back a feudal relationship between the employer and employees, vassal and serfs. The choice of which recreational drug to allow has been completely arbitrary unless it conveys a political, racial, or religious advantage to a particular group or groups.

    Some municipalities and counties in California, such as the one I live in, have recognized the troubling political aspects of drug testing and refuse to allow corporate or company employees to be randomly drug tested. Testing can be legally conducted if there is reason to suspect impairment due to accidents and so forth, but otherwise the laws remove the Sword of Damocles from above an employee’s head.

  8. strayan says:

    “If drug use typically caused employees to become unsatisfactory, drug testing would be unnecessary: An incompetent worker can be disciplined or fired regardless of drug use. The purpose of workplace drug-testing is to target satisfactory employees for punishment. The purpose is to identify ordinary people who can be victimized. Urine tests fulfill the same function that the yellow star did for the Jews in Nazi Germany, identifying them for ostracism because nothing about their appearance or behavior differed from that of other ordinary people.”

  9. kaptinemo says:

    To demonstrate how desperate the forces of prohibition have become, and to illustrate the change in tactics away from a methodology that has failed them (legislation and referenda) to relying on Federal force majeure, one need only look at the recent meeting of Attorney General Jeff Sessions with the most prominent members of civilian prohib groups.

    So frightened of public reaction to their (inherently, typically dishonest) efforts, they sought to meet in secret, but were betrayed by Session’s own carelessness in failing to prevent the preface for the meeting’s agenda from being scoped by alert reporters.

    Jeff Sessions Just Met With These Anti-Marijuana Activists

    The intent of the meeting was obvious: to use the cachet of Federal power to attempt nullification of the popular votes of those States whose electorates have chosen to re-legalize cannabis.

    The prohibs have given up on trying to convince the public that their arguments are sound; the majority of the public knows better, and State by State are voting accordingly. The Feds, despite the force available to them, simply do not have enough resources to project that force…not to mention their aversion to risking a Constitutional crisis in the process.

    Were the situation represented by a battlefield map, the prohibs would be a pocket of resistance completely surrounded on all sides by an army that is moving inexorably onward. There’s no relief efforts forthcoming, and with all the latest scandals regarding possible Russian interference in the electoral process, the prohibs are far down the list of important matters requiring Federal attention. A fact which may even penetrate the current AG’s seemingly neutronium-hard thick skull.

  10. Mouthy says:

    Once I get published with my first work, regardless of how much money I make or any fear of getting pissed tested, I’m so going back to Cannabis. Because I work 14-17 hours a day with no days off, cannabis is a breath of fresh air–like a strong breeze on a hot day. Smoking two hours before bed is like having six hours dedicated to just mindless entertainment . . . a good way to reset oneself since all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. I cannot fathom how anyone could ever write about a teenage girl growing into her twenties and a made up rock band without the occasional puff from the pipe. It’s one thing to write about the Velvet Underground, The Doors, or Nirvana without weed, but how does one write about a made up band the embodies Opera, Jimi Hendrix, Patsy Cline, Dr. Dre, Aretha Franklin, Metalica, Korn, Genesis, Marshello and Nirvana in the same songs/album.

  11. WalStMonky says:


    Hold on to your hats, no liquids in your mouth and be sitting down before you read this, we’ve got a brand new ally:

    Keep local marijuana laws from going up in smoke
    Mark Holden, General Counsel and Senior Vice President, Koch Industries, shares the Koch perspective
    January 18, 2018

    When it comes to protecting the Constitution and the rights it guarantees, the Justice Department has an obligation without comparison. As citizens, we entrust it and the attorney general of the United States with enormous responsibility. This includes the fair and equal application of the law for all citizens, especially as it pertains to the 10th Amendment, which gives states the right to enact and enforce their own laws.

    That Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a Republican appointee in a Republican administration, is undoing a Democratic appointee’s work from a Democratic administration is irrelevant. Republicans and Democrats alike have criticized the decision, and for good reason: It does little to improve the lives of people in our communities.

    When it comes to protecting the Constitution and the rights it guarantees, the Justice Department has an obligation without comparison. As citizens, we entrust it and the attorney general of the United States with enormous responsibility. This includes the fair and equal application of the law for all citizens, especially as it pertains to the 10th Amendment, which gives states the right to enact and enforce their own laws.

    The year is new, and there is still time to reverse course. Rather than grow the size and scale of the federal government and encroach upon the freedom of individual states and citizens, the Justice Department can reconsider their decision. They can choose to be on the side of individual liberty and states’ rights. They can choose to be on the side of the millions of Americans who have made their voices heard loud and clear.

  12. NewWeedOrder says:

    Help us grow more Girl Scout Weed troops in your area!

    It’s a pairing as natural as milk and cookies, or beer and pretzels. The Girls Scouts of Colorado have decided it’s now cool to peddle their baked goods outside marijuana dispensaries.

    • kaptinemo says:

      The prohibs are always engaged in their pince-nez’ed Nervous Nellie cum Crazy Cat Lady finger-wagging about the ‘dangers’ of cannabis ‘normalization’. They stop just short of foaming at the mouth, speaking in tongues and rolling on the floor about it.

      Nothing is more indicative of normality than Girl Scout Cookies. Linking this to legal cannabis is absolute genius.

      Let’s see the prohibs try to take on the Girl Scouts. It would only further demonstrate how anachronistic and seriously out of touch they are with their fellow citizens.

      • WalStMonky says:


        They sell Girl Scout Cookies inside the dispensaries too. But I doubt that the GSA gets any royalties. This isn’t the first time we’ve seen this story.

        • PurpleCross says:

          This is about the Girl Scouts of Colorado, they updated their policy for 2018, last Friday.

        • WalStMonky says:


          I was referring to the first time when a Girl Scout made nationwide news after selling a boatload of GS cookies in close proximity to a state authorized cannabis vendor. That’s what inspired the creation of the Girl Scout Cookies strain. GSA is the entity which owns the trademarks for the organization. Sorry for the ambiguous wording in my post above.

      • kaptinemo says:

        (At a local 12-step meeting place, somewhere in ‘Murikah, people are seated on identical, uncomfortable fold-up chairs. On the wall is a sign bearing the likeness of a fresh-faced, wholesome-looking Girl Scout holding out a box of cookies, with a big international “No!” sign in front of her.)

        Said in a tremulous, choked voice: “Hello, I’m Nemo, and I’m a Samoas addict.” Breaks down and sobs piteously.

        The whole group responds with “Welcome, Nemo!”

  13. Servetus says:

    Drug testing is the new racket operating within US health care. The urine testing businesses are booming thanks to the opioid industry’s marketing schemes and the subsequent ODs the marketing push created. It’s so serious a woman can’t become pregnant without being suspected of having a drug habit. Inquisitorial testing is mandated. Case in point: a woman pregnant with twins was billed $17,850 for urine tests to test for multiple drugs because her health insurance company, Blue Shaft of Texas, refuses to cover the cost:

  14. DdC says:

    Munchies, meet Thin Mints: Girl Scouts will now allow cookie sales outside Colorado pot shops

  15. WalStMonky says:

    Israel Scientific Study: Cannabis Safe and Effective for Regular Use in the Elderly; Can Decrease the Use of Other Prescription Medicines, Including Opioids
    First-of-its-Kind, Peer-Reviewed Study of Thousands of Elderly Cannabis Patients under the Care of Tikun Olamâ„¢

    The groundbreaking article, “Epidemiological characteristics, safety and efficacy of medical cannabis in the elderly” published on February 7, 2018 in the European Journal of Internal Medicine, is the first of its kind. The study surveyed patients above 65 years of age who received medical cannabis at Tikun Olam clinics in Israel from January 2015 to October 2017. All 2,736 patients, with a median age of 74.5 years, were prescribed one or more of Tikun Olam’s proprietary cannabis strains, each developed over a number of years to address specific symptoms. The main strains used in the study were Erez, (53.2%), Avidekel (33.4%), Alaska (25.7%), and Midnight (20.4%).

    The most common indications for cannabis treatment were pain (66.6%) and cancer 60.8%). After six months of treatment, 93.7% of the respondents reported improvement in their condition and the reported pain level was reduced by half — from a median of 8 on a scale of 0–10 to a median of 4. Adverse side effects were minor and rare and included dizziness (9.7%) and dry mouth (7.1%).

    Importantly, after six months, 18.1% of the patients reduced their dose of opioid analgesics — or stopped using them entirely.

  16. Medical marijuana in the workplace: Where do things stand?

    “This is a contributed piece by Dustin Carlton, an attorney at Bass, Berry & Sims PLC where he represents employers in a variety of traditional labor and employment matters.”

    … “Courts in California, Oregon and Colorado — some of the forerunners in the movement to legalize marijuana — have previously held that employers do not have a duty to accommodate medical marijuana use, even under state law. That no longer appears to be the prevailing view, particularly as newer statutes are drafted that explicitly contemplate the need to accommodate medicinal marijuana use.”

    “As such, it is important for employers to carefully review the anti-discrimination laws in the jurisdictions in which they conduct business.”

  17. PurpleCross says:

    A lesson about cannabis to a group of teens by the York Regional Police Service (Ontario) goes tits up.

    AURORA, Ont. — Police north of Toronto are trying to clear the air after officers reportedly told a group of teens that marijuana use can lead to “enhanced mammary growth in men.”

    York Regional Police Service spokeswoman Const. Laura Nicolle says the erroneous information was included in a presentation by officers for high school students last week.

    • PurpleCross says:

      It was actually even worse than just ‘doobies make boobies’:

      Cole was also asked if it was more dangerous to drive under the influence of cannabis or alcohol.

      “Studies have shown half a joint is equivalent to seven alcoholic beverages,” he was quoted as saying.

      “You will not be able to walk a straight line. You will not be able to touch your finger to your nose. It’s incredible how much marijuana — and all drugs — impact your ability to operate a motor vehicle.”


      Dr. Ian Mitchell, an emergency physician at Royal Inland Hospital and a clinical associate professor of emergency medicine at UBC, told Global News Radio’s The Shift with Drex, the statements made are not true.

      “That is completely wrong. I don’t know where he has come up with that statistic – it’s complete nonsense,” Mitchell said when asked about the claim of half of a marijuana joint is equivalent to seven alcoholic beverages.

      He said researchers found that “cannabis overall produces an impairment that is similar to someone with a blood-alcohol level of about .04 or .05.” The legal blood alcohol limit in Ontario is .08.

    • jean valjean says:

      David Cameron and Boris Johnson both have substantial moobs. Could it have been all that weed they smoked at the Bullingdon Club?

  18. Servetus says:

    Research funded by the NIDA and NIH declares medicinal marijuana innocent of charges it leads to greater recreational consumption of the herb by teenagers.

    Separately, however, a panel of members on the editorial board of the journal Addiction say marijuana may be correlated with fewer opioid deaths over time, but it doesn’t prove marijuana is responsible for any reduction in fatalities. The editors are vague as to what they believe constitutes proof:

    22-FEB-2018 — Two papers published today in the scientific journal Addiction look at the current evidence of the effects of medical marijuana laws and conclude that there is little support for either claim [about cannabis’ effects]. […]

    Results of the meta-analysis indicate that no significant changes (increases or decreases) occurred in adolescent recreational use following enactment of medical marijuana laws. Far fewer studies examined the effects of medical marijuana laws among adults, although existing evidence suggests that adult recreational use may increase after medical marijuana laws are passed. […]

    …that legalising medical marijuana reduces opioid overdose deaths by offering a less risky method of pain management…. Here, the evidence is clear but weak, being rooted in ecological studies whose results have not been confirmed through more rigorous methods. Although those studies show a correlation over time between the passage of medical marijuana laws and opioid overdose death rates, they do not provide any evidence that the laws caused the reduction in deaths. In fact, several recent studies have shown that chronic pain patients who use cannabis do not use lower doses of opioids. There are more plausible reasons for the reduction in opioid deaths that ought to be investigated.

    AAAS Public Release: Debunking claims about medical marijuana: More teen recreational use, fewer opioid deaths

    The title of the press release is misleading. Nothing is actually “debunked” in the case of cannabis correlations involving reduced opioid deaths. The editorial board is demanding further research, but the “more plausible reasons for the reduction in opioid deaths” are not mentioned.

    • jean valjean says:

      More recreational use on the one hand, less deaths on the other. Seems like a fair trade off to me. Better to be stoned than dead.

  19. Servetus says:

    A genetic biomarker has been discovered for opioid related disorders:

    Philadelphia, Feb. 22, 2018 – A genome-wide association study has identified a new genetic alteration in European-Americans with opioid dependency. The study, published in Biological Psychiatry, included over 3,000 opioid-exposed people. The new findings provide insight into the biological origins of opioid dependence, which has become an epidemic of historical proportions in the US, driven by dangerous use of prescription painkillers and heroin.

    “It’s widely recognized that we need a better understanding of the biological influences on opioid use–it is possible that biological understanding can lead to treatments,” said senior author Joel Gelernter, M.D., of Yale University.

    In the midst of this opioid crisis, the study provides a timely identification of new genetic risk factors, said John Krystal, M.D., Editor of Biological Psychiatry. Genes responsible for opioid dependence have been difficult to identify, as the disorder stems from a complex combination of genetic alterations and environmental influences, such as drug availability. […]

    The analysis identified an alteration, or variant, near the gene RGMA associated with opioid dependence. “If you have a certain RGMA variant, you’re more likely to have opioid dependence symptoms than if you have the alternative form,” said Dr. Gelernter. RGMA also associated with several genes critical for normal brain function that have been linked to other mental disorders, including schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s disease, and autism.

    To get an idea of how the gene might be involved in opioid dependence, Dr. Gelernter and colleagues examined the effect of morphine on protein levels of Rgma in mice. Rgma increased with chronic morphine treatment. Previous studies have also found that Rgma regulates cell death and nerve growth in the brain, giving researchers a clue as to how the gene might alter the brain’s response to opioids. […]

    AAAS Public Release: GWAS identifies genetic alteration associated with opioid dependence: A genome-wide association study in Biological Psychiatry investigates the biological origins of opioid dependence in European-Americans

    Original Paper: Genome-wide association study identifies a regulatory variant of RGMA associated with opioid dependence in European Americans, by Zhongshan Cheng, Hang Zhou, Richard Sherva, Lindsay Farrer, Henry R. Kranzler, and Joel Gelernter. It appears in Biological Psychiatry, published by Elsevier.

    The discovery of a new biomarker is a double-edged sword. While important as a clue that can lead to new medical treatments for opioid disorders, the discovery makes it possible to genetically test someone for a possible opioid dependence. Those with the gene variant are now a potential target for prohibitionists wanting to test people and persecute the culprits who possess the wrong gene.

  20. Seeking opioid crisis answers at summit, Pete Sessions waged war against marijuana

    This man makes me want say bad things using bad words like drug war whore monger, nazi, police state, racist, ignorant… Trying unsuccessfully to stay away from 4 letters … steam coming out my ears!

    Another Sessions speaking out of bigotry hatred and ignorance.

    This one patrols the narrow halls in Washington stopping everyone but his buddies from passing.

    • Servetus says:

      The Keck School of Medicine of USC strongly repudiates Congressman Pete Sessions bombast that marijuana is the gateway to addiction. Big Pharma’s allegedly safer opioid compounds are the gateway to addiction, as well as heroin use and hepatitis C:

      22-FEB-2018…As more people use opioids, many switch to heroin because it’s more potent and cheaper – a trend that complicates disease prevention as health officials crack down on opioids, said Ricky Bluthenthal, first author of the study and a professor of preventive medicine at the Keck School of Medicine.

      Stigmatizing drug use is an ineffective way to address a public health outbreak, he added.

      “The market is saturated with opiates. That cat is out of the bag,” Bluthenthal said. “At this point, we have to figure out what we’re going to do about opioid abuse because the opioid crisis is leading to downstream infectious disease epidemics such as acute hepatitis C.” […]

      “Heroin is less expensive than opioids and more potent,” Bluthenthal said. “So transitioning to heroin is reasonable. Heroin is much more efficient when injected, and that’s why we see this trend.” […]

      AAAS Public Release: Opioid abuse leads to heroin use and a hepatitis C epidemic, USC researcher says: Nearly everyone who used heroin transitioned to drug injection in about six months — a trend that contributes to the hepatitis C epidemic, USC-led study finds

      It is perhaps no surprise that Pete Session’s largest campaign donation came from “Health Professionals”–$201,100 in 2015-2016. Pete Sessions is scapegoating marijuana to protect Big Pharma’s products from being labeled a gateway to acute hepatitis C.


    • Will says:

      Pete Sessions has a business degree which he parlayed into a career in marketing at Southwestern Bell. In other words, he has zero knowledge regarding addiction or cannabis or much of anything else.

      I mean, how can he expect to be taken seriously when he cobbles together word salads such as this;

      “Avoiding death is important, hear me say that, but learning what the facts and factors are, who is a candidate for this, how do we teach them, what does DNA matter to a 14-year-old, where do they start? If it’s marijuana, we ought to stand up and be brave in the medical community to say this political direction is not right.”

      [“…what does DNA matter to a 14-year-old?” What the hell kind of question is that!?]

      -or this;

      “The drive for addiction with some of our children is insatiable.”

      [I had no idea there was such a thing as a “drive for addiction”. Oh, I know why, it’s because the suggestion is ludicrous. Go home Pete, you’re drunk (or maybe just plain old fashioned stupid)…]

      • jean valjean says:

        More on Pete Sessions:

        “Sessions’ personal influence on legislation is particularly evident when it comes to cannabis law. For at least the last two years, Sessions has enacted a vendetta against cannabis reform, blocking every piece of weed-related legislation from going to a vote in the House. To put it plainly, Congress can’t vote on cannabis anymore because of this man.”

        • WalStMonky says:


          Did you know that High Times is part of a publicly traded company? Ticker STNY. Absolutely no friggin’ liquidity in the name, trades by appointment only. E.g. on Friday a total of 480 shares changed hands.

        • Will says:

          “The Rules Committee assignment has allowed me to use my experience and personal values to influence every piece of legislation before it reaches the House floor,” his website says. [emphasis added]

          We’ve seen this attitude in action before. Lamar Smith (R-TX) as chairman of the House Committee on the Judiciary let it be known in 2011 that he would not allow a bill to end Federal prohibition of cannabis to be voted on.

          Similarly a few years ago, Debbie Wasserman-Schultz said she was not afraid to vote against her constituents wishes if her views conflicted with theirs.

          Fortunately, Lamar Smith is retiring. Unfortunately, Pete Sessions is fairly young and could remain in his obstructionist position for many years to come (although, ultimately, states will continue to change their laws rendering his barricade meaningless).

  21. DdC says:

    Pre-teens don’t get high from using cannabis
    Because CB1 receptors develop only gradually during childhood, children below the age of 13 generally don’t feel much of the psychoactive effects of cannabis – even while using large doses! If they feel any euphoria at all, it’s strikingly mild. There is a large body of evidence testifying to this.

  22. WalStMonky says:


    I’m flabbergasted! Apparently there aren’t any public toilets in the Las Vegas airport!!
    ‘Amnesty Boxes’ At Airport Allows Travelers To Ditch Their Weed Before A Flight

  23. DdC says:

    Surveillance-happy authoritarian “Democratic” California senator Dianne Feinstein loses California Democratic Party endorsement

    California Democratic Party declines to endorse Dianne Feinstein for re-election

    Sens. Grassley, Feinstein, Klobuchar, Kennedy & Whitehouse wrote Google & other tech companies
    Just this week, Feinstein sent letters to Google and other tech companies asking them to prevent users from even being able to search for drugs. Imagine how many more overdoses there would be if people couldn’t access basic dose & contraindication info.

    A Drug Warmongers Toll on Americans
    Diane Feinstein needs to “Just Say No” to money from big pharma and alcohol. The following campaign money she has received throughout her Congressional career:
    Beer, Wine & Liquor $405,462
    Pharmaceuticals/Health Products $381,050
    Agribusiness $1,193,686
    Lawyers & Lobbyists $3,819,136

    Feinstein says Leahy’s and Rohrabacher-Farr Amendments go too far
    in tying the federal government’s hands

    Knowledge Control

  24. Servetus says:

    Donald Trump dreams and talks about his desire to execute all bigtime drug dealers:

    Tsar Trump is unlikely to carry out his maniacal plan due to legal technicalities — good news for Trump given his vacuous lack of foresight. Retribution against Trump or members of his family would be at least one of the anticipated consequences of his becoming the Grand Executioner.

  25. jean valjean says:


    “California Democrats shocked Senator Dianne Feinstein by not endorsing her for re-election at their state convention Sunday.”

    • kaptinemo says:

      ‘Seismic’, they say. Well, yes. As in a tectonic shift. As in what happens when older, less well informed voters are replaced in the electorate with newer, better informed ones.

      Simple attrition, nothing surprising about it, and wholly predictable and predicted…right here. Once more, as usual, The Couch is light-years ahead in prognostication. And the cannabis issue was no small part of the reason for DiFi going bye-bye…AS WE SAID IT WOULD

      The new electorate wanted cannabis legal again, and she chose to act like her hearing aid batteries crapped out and pretended not to hear. Her political backside now bears the boot print of her constituents who made their displeasure with her clear…and said boot print is a warning to the other ‘party animals’ to pay attention, lest their party shudder down the coal chute of irrelevancy into History’s dust-bin.

    • Servetus says:

      Maybe the “shock” will jumpstart Feinstein’s heartbeat.

    • jean valjean says:

      When will they start a senate investigation into her husband’s potentially fraudulent acquisition of federal buildings?

      “On the day the new Congress convened this year, Sen. Dianne Feinstein introduced legislation to route $25 billion in taxpayer money to a government agency that had just awarded her husband’s real estate firm a lucrative contract to sell foreclosed properties at compensation rates higher than the industry norms.”

  26. DdC says:

    Cronos Group
    A Major U.s. Stock Exchange is Listing a Weed Company For the First Time Ever
    A major Canadian licensed weed producer has obtained approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission to begin trading on the NASDAQ — it will be the first marijuana company to be listed on a U.S. stock exchange.

  27. Servetus says:

    Researchers at the University of Cambridge have discovered the brain’s pain switch. The goal is to derive alternatives to common opioid compounds used in chronic pain relief:

    27-FEB-2018 …The team, led by the University of Cambridge, have pinpointed an area of the brain that is important for endogenous analgesia – the brain’s intrinsic pain relief system. Their results, published in the open access journal eLife, could lead to the development of pain treatments that activate the painkilling system by stimulating this area of the brain, but without the dangerous side-effects of opioids.

    Opioid drugs such as oxycodone, hydrocodone and fentanyl hijack the endogenous analgesia system, which is what makes them such effective painkillers. However, they are also highly addictive, which has led to the opioid crisis in the United States, where drug overdose is now the leading cause of death for those under 50, with opioid overdoses representing two-thirds of those deaths. […]

    “These results build a picture of why and how the brain decides to turn off pain in certain circumstances, and identify the pregenual cingulate cortex as a critical ‘decision centre’ controlling pain in the brain,” said Seymour.

    This decision centre is a key place to focus future research efforts. In particular, the researchers are now trying to understand what the inputs are to this brain region, if it is stimulated by opioid drugs, what other chemical messenger systems it uses, and how it could be turned on as a treatment for patients with chronic pain.

    AAAS Public Release: Identification of brain’s painkilling region could lead to opioid alternatives

    And more evidence that cannabis does not lead to psychosis with the discovery of 50 gene segments linked to the development of schizophrenia:

    27-FEB-2018 — …Professor Sir Mike Owen, who leads the MRC Centre at Cardiff University, said: “These findings are another important step on the long road to new treatments for schizophrenia and will be crucial for identifying potential new drugs, which will become an increasing focus of our work in the coming years.”

    Another significant and unexpected finding was that the genes linked to schizophrenia risk are mostly crucial to normal development and therefore typically do not contain harmful mutations. This discovery will help researchers narrow down their search for the mechanisms of the disorder as these genes, commonly called ‘loss-of-function intolerant’, only account for around 15% of all the genes in the human genome.

    Dr Antonio Pardiñas, first author of the study, said: “We show for the first time that genetic variants that do not severely impact gene function, but presumably have a more subtle impact on these critical genes, increase risk for developing schizophrenia.” […]

    AAAS Public Release: Genetics researchers close in on schizophrenia: 50 new gene regions that increase risk of developing schizophrenia

  28. jean valjean says:

    Did you guys see this? Our very own Duterte:
    “Trump Is Telling People He Wants to Start Executing Drug Dealers”

    Also Servetus, re the brain’s pain switch: this is something that S&M aficanados have known about for hundreds of years. Fool the body (it’s pretty dumb) into thinking it is in major shock and it will produce a massive release of endorphins, enabling tolerance and/or enjoyment of further pain and enhanced sexual pleasure. What’s not to like?

  29. Servetus says:

    An Ohio State University study offers details for what makes magic mushrooms magic:

    27-FEB-2018 — Mushrooms that contain the brain-altering compound psilocybin vary widely in terms of their biological lineage and, on the surface, don’t appear to have a whole lot in common….

    From an evolutionary biology perspective, that is intriguing and points to a phenomenon in which genetic material hops from one species to another – a process called horizontal gene transfer, Slot said. When it happens in nature, it’s typically in response to stressors or opportunities in the environment.

    He and his co-authors examined three species of psychedelic mushrooms – and related fungi that don’t cause hallucinations – and found a cluster of five genes that seem to explain what the psychedelic mushrooms have in common. […]

    “We speculate that mushrooms evolved to be hallucinogenic because it lowered the chances of the fungi getting eaten by insects,” Slot said. The study appears online in the journal Evolution Letters.

    “The psilocybin probably doesn’t just poison predators or taste bad. These mushrooms are altering the insects’ ‘mind’ – if they have minds – to meet their own needs.”

    And the reason that unrelated species have the same genetic protection probably comes down to the fact that they commonly grow in the same insect-rich mediums: animal feces and rotten wood. […]

    Psilocybin has been studied for the treatment of a variety of mental disorders, including treatment-resistant depression, addiction and end-of-life anxiety. A handful of researchers in the U.S. are looking at potential treatment applications, and much of the work is happening abroad. Strict drug laws have delayed those types of studies for decades, Slot said.

    AAAS Public Release: Why are some mushrooms ‘magic?’ — Study offers evolutionary explanation, could pave way for neurological treatments

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