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posted by janrinok on Tuesday January 03 2017, @05:54AM   Printer-friendly
from the better-than-we-thought dept.

Weeks after cannabis legalization was passed by voters in California and other states, pranksters edited the famous Los Angeles Hollywood Sign to read "Hollyweed". This previously occurred in 1976 following the passage of a California law decriminalizing cannabis.

Researchers have found (DOI: 10.2105/AJPH.2016.303577) (DX) that legalization of medical cannabis led to an overall decrease in traffic fatalities among 19 states:

The happy side-effect wasn't uniform, however; only seven states saw significant reductions, while two states saw increases. Nevertheless, the authors of the new report in the American Journal of Public Health argue that the data bucks the common criticism that more pot access should increase car crashes and injuries.

Drops in traffic deaths may, in part, be explained by people swapping alcohol for pot, leading to reduced drunk driving, the study's authors speculated. To back that up, the authors note that the lives spared tended to belong to younger people, particularly 25- to 44-year-olds—an age group frequently involved in alcohol-related traffic deaths.

[Continues...]

The Washington Post is reporting on the use of high-cannabidiol (CBD) strains of cannabis to treat epilepsy, PTSD, anxiety, and other disorders "without the high":

What makes CBD especially appealing is that it doesn't get the user high. Most recreational marijuana users want this effect, of course, but many patients would rather avoid it. This has allowed CBD to sidestep many of the political, legal and medical concerns that have hindered the spread of medical marijuana. "CBD has been a game-changer for medical marijuana," says Martin Lee, the director of Project CBD, a Northern California nonprofit that promotes use of the compound. "Its safety and lack of psychoactivity undermines any argument that it should be illegal. It's really shifted the national discussion on this issue."

As more scientists recognize the compound's potential, there has been an "explosion of research," according to Pal Pacher, a pharmacologist and cardiologist at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda. He has been studying the chemical for more than a decade; his work has shown that CBD may have benefits in both heart disease and diabetes.

CBS is running what some may consider a "fake news" piece about a "mysterious illness" tied to cannabis use: cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome. According to FreeThoughtProject.com:

[CBS Evening News chief medical correspondent] Dr. LaPook writes: "He co-authored a study showing that since 2009, when medical marijuana became widely available, emergency room visits diagnoses for CHS in two Colorado hospitals nearly doubled. In 2012, the state legalized recreational marijuana." Dr. LaPook equivocates CHS with cyclic vomiting syndrome (CVS), but the two are not the same. CVS is caused by any number of things. [...] "The authors reviewed 2,574 visits and identified 36 patients diagnosed with cyclic vomiting over 128 visits. The prevalence of cyclic vomiting visits increased from 41 per 113,262 ED visits to 87 per 125,095 ED visits after marijuana liberalization..." This corresponds to an increase from 0.036 percent of visits to 0.07 percent of visits. This seems hardly significant to warrant concern, especially since the data comes from two hospitals and there is no indication of controlling for other factors, such as migraines or childhood history. In other words, this 'study' appears to be manufactured to make its point.

Finally, the United Nations is beginning a process that may lead to the alteration of the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs:

The World Health Organization (WHO) Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD) recently met and initiated the first steps in a long process that could lead to the rescheduling of medical marijuana under international law, and has committed to hold a special session to discuss medical marijuana in the next eighteen months.

[...] According to an extract from the 38th Expert Committee on Drug Dependence that convened from November 14-18 in Geneva, the committee recognized an increase in the use of cannabis and its components for medical purposes, the emergence of new cannabis-related pharmaceutical preparations for therapeutic use, and that cannabis has never been subject to a formal pre-review or critical review by the ECDD. Over the next eighteen months, the committee has requested pre-reviews for cannabis plant matter, extracts and tinctures, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabidiol (CBD), and stereoisomers of THC. This pre-review is a preliminary analysis used to determine if a more in-depth critical review will be undertaken by the ECDD, and will represent the first new scientific guidance on marijuana to the United Nations since 1935, when cannabis was first classified as a Schedule I/IV substance by the Health Committee of the League of Nations.


Original Submission

Related Stories

Group Will Hand Out Free Cannabis in D.C. on Inauguration Day 72 comments

In Washington, D.C. to protest the results of a certain recent election? You may get the chance to light up at the same time:

Some activists in town for Inauguration Day are willing to risk arrest by planning to go "green." The DC Cannabis Coalition plans to hand out 4,200 free joints the day President-elect Donald Trump will take over the White House, in an effort to keep their hopes of federal marijuana legalization from taking a hit. The group will begin at 8 a.m. in Dupont Circle, then plans to march down to the National Mall in time for Mr. Trump's inauguration. At exactly 4 minutes and 20 seconds into Mr. Trump's inaugural address -- 420 is the commonly known code for marijuana -- thousands of protesters will light up.

[...] "The main message is it's time to legalize cannabis at the federal level," Adam Eidinger, the founder of DCMJ, a group of D.C. residents who introduced and helped get D.C.'s marijuana legalization initiative passed, told CBS affiliate WUSA.

[...] Eidinger also said the protest isn't explicitly anti-Trump; all are welcome, and organizers are happy for it to be a joint effort between supporters of different political parties. The joints themselves will be completely free. "We don't want any money exchanged whatsoever, this is really a gift for people who come to Washington, D.C.," he said.

CBSN is still running fake news segments about cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome (CHS) as of Jan. 5th.


Original Submission

FDA Cracking Down on Unsubstantiated Cannabidiol Health Claims 24 comments

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning four companies that sell products containing cannabidiol (CBD) to stop making unsubstantiated health claims, such as "combats tumor and cancer cells":

The FDA has grown increasingly concerned at the proliferation of products claiming to treat or cure serious diseases like cancer. In this case, the illegally sold products allegedly contain cannabidiol (CBD), a component of the marijuana plant that is not FDA approved in any drug product for any indication. CBD is marketed in a variety of product types, such as oil drops, capsules, syrups, teas, and topical lotions and creams. The companies receiving warning letters distributed the products with unsubstantiated claims regarding preventing, reversing or curing cancer; killing/inhibiting cancer cells or tumors; or other similar anti-cancer claims. Some of the products were also marketed as an alternative or additional treatment for Alzheimer's and other serious diseases.

The companies in question are Greenroads Health, Natural Alchemist, That's Natural! Marketing and Consulting, and Stanley Brothers Social Enterprises LLC.

Also at Bloomberg, The Cannabist, The Hill, NBC, and Newsweek.

Related: U.S. Federal Cannabis Prohibition Remains Intact
"Hollyweed" and More Cannabis Stories
According to Gallup, American Support for Cannabis Legalization is at an All-Time High
Study Finds That More Frequent Use of Cannabis is Associated With Having More Sex


Original Submission

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  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 03 2017, @05:56AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 03 2017, @05:56AM (#448794)

    How much social capital do I need to buy weed? Do I need to be in with the in crowd? Do I need to find a dealer through black market secret handshakes? Because if I can't walk into a public shop and buy with cash and no questions asked, then it's not legalized.

    • (Score: 4, Informative) by takyon on Tuesday January 03 2017, @06:23AM

      by takyon (881) <takyonNO@SPAMsoylentnews.org> on Tuesday January 03 2017, @06:23AM (#448803) Journal

      Alaska, California, Colorado, Oregon, Massachusetts, Maine, Nevada and Washington: No social capital.

      Some states: No social capital if medical card is easily obtainable. Social ability to talk to a chuckling pothead doctor for 5 minutes.

      Other states: In crowd if medical card is restricted to actual conditions (no anxiety/stress prescriptions).

      Mississippi, Nebraska, North Carolina, Alabama, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming: In crowd or black market. Not legally obtainable or extremely restricted medical use (such as deathbed disorders or non-psychoactive CBD oil only).

      --
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      • (Score: 2) by t-3 on Tuesday January 03 2017, @09:54AM

        by t-3 (4907) on Tuesday January 03 2017, @09:54AM (#448839)

        Even in states that restrict medical cards to physical conditions, getting approved is just a formality. Judges, police, and prosecutor all laughed and told me "that doesn't matter", when I said I didn't have a card because I was healthy.

        • (Score: 3, Interesting) by takyon on Tuesday January 03 2017, @12:33PM

          by takyon (881) <takyonNO@SPAMsoylentnews.org> on Tuesday January 03 2017, @12:33PM (#448872) Journal

          I sense privilege! ______ privilege!!!

          If the police decide to go after you, you'll wish you had that formality. If the feds decide to go after you, that formality won't help.

          And I think you'll find that certain states [wikipedia.org] are very strict on this issue, because they don't want the system ending up like your state's, or at least want to resist that state of affairs:

          • Oklahoma: governor Mary Fallin signed a bill legalizing cannabis oils for children with epilepsy
          • Pennsylvania: For medical use only. Signed by Governor Wolf on April 17, 2016. Possession of 30g or less is a misdemeanor resulting in up to 30 days incarceration and a fine of up to $500. Possession of more than 30g is a misdemeanor netting up to a year in jail and a $5000 fine.
          • South Carolina: governor Nikki Haley signed into law Senate Bill 1035, "Julian's Law", following a unanimous Senate vote and a 92–5 House vote. The law allows children with severe epilepsy to be treated with CBD oil if recommended by a physician.
          • South Dakota: Personal use possession of 2 oz or less is a Class 1 misdemeanor which is punishable by a maximum sentence of 1 year imprisonment and a maximum fine of $2,000.
          • Tennessee: First-time possession offenders can complete one year of supervised probation instead of criminal penalty of one year incarceration; *Possession of 1/2 ounce or more is automatic felony charge: possession for resale. Cannabis oil possession, as of Monday, May 4, 2015, is allowed, due to newly signed legislation, if a person is suffering seizures or epilepsy and has the recommendation of their doctor.
          • Wisconsin: A first offense for possession of marijuana is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 and/or imprisonment of up to 6 months. A second offense is a Class I felony and is punishable by a fine of up to $10,000 and/or imprisonment for up to 3.5 years.

          Formality? People in those states wish!

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    • (Score: 2) by LoRdTAW on Tuesday January 03 2017, @02:24PM

      by LoRdTAW (3755) on Tuesday January 03 2017, @02:24PM (#448902) Journal

      I just call my dealer.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 03 2017, @06:37AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 03 2017, @06:37AM (#448805)

    Prop 64 went into effect on Nov 9thm the day after it passed. Same with the 1 time use plastic bag ban.

    • (Score: 2) by takyon on Tuesday January 03 2017, @06:46AM

      by takyon (881) <takyonNO@SPAMsoylentnews.org> on Tuesday January 03 2017, @06:46AM (#448806) Journal

      edited from:

      "On the day that cannabis legalization went into effect in California and several other states,"

      to:

      "Weeks after cannabis legalization was passed by voters in California and other states,"

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  • (Score: 3, Funny) by Magic Oddball on Tuesday January 03 2017, @07:03AM

    by Magic Oddball (3847) on Tuesday January 03 2017, @07:03AM (#448809) Journal

    younger people, particularly 25- to 44-year-olds

    Now 44 is considered within the broader umbrella of what qualifies as a "younger person"? What are they smok—wait, never mind, I guess we know the answer to that question.

    • (Score: 3, Touché) by bob_super on Tuesday January 03 2017, @06:15PM

      by bob_super (1357) on Tuesday January 03 2017, @06:15PM (#448998)

      That's my fault. They just want to keep me from using the "I'm an old fart" excuse for my general grumbliness.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by curunir_wolf on Tuesday January 03 2017, @02:20PM

    by curunir_wolf (4772) on Tuesday January 03 2017, @02:20PM (#448899)

    What makes CBD especially appealing is that it doesn't get the user high. Most recreational marijuana users want this effect, of course, but many patients would rather avoid it. This has allowed CBD to sidestep many of the political, legal and medical concerns that have hindered the spread of medical marijuana. "CBD has been a game-changer for medical marijuana," says Martin Lee, the director of Project CBD, a Northern California nonprofit that promotes use of the compound. "Its safety and lack of psychoactivity undermines any argument that it should be illegal. It's really shifted the national discussion on this issue."

    Well the DEA has jumped in to nip that in the bud [hypeline.org], including making sure there won't be any more "studies" of this chemical. It's made from that Evil Weed Marihuana and so it must be vigorously proscribed.

    --
    I am a crackpot
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 03 2017, @10:24PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 03 2017, @10:24PM (#449103)

      The DEA is a blue collar jobs program. Weed is their #1 seized drug and what creates jobs and forefeiture money.
      They will NOT let weed ever be legalized if they can help it. Weed has been VERY good to them.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 03 2017, @10:41PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 03 2017, @10:41PM (#449115)

        Trump is coming and he wants to eliminate the DEP.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 06 2017, @09:54PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 06 2017, @09:54PM (#450471)

          So very close, but off by one letter...