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INTERNATIONAL: "The key to success is to prevent the problem" - Drugnews

Bot - Cannabis - Wed, 02/28/2018 - 01:01
drugnews.nu (Europe) One of our major goals with the Forum was to reach out to non-governmental organizations on all continents and invite their members to a world conference where they could share experiences and talk about a vision of a drug free world. (Wed Feb 28 01:01:05 2018 PST)
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CANADA: Pot research site proposed - The Belleville Intelligencer

Drug News Bot - Wed, 02/28/2018 - 01:01
intelligencer.ca (Canada) Pot research site proposed ! The Belleville Intelligencer Pot research site proposed Intelligencer file photo The former Nortel building on Sidney Street could house a medical marijuana research and education facility. Intelligencer file photo The former Nortel building on Sidney Stre... (Wed Feb 28 02:01:47 2018 PST) [$drug_related(100%), $drugwar_propaganda(60%), $explicit_propaganda(60%), $propaganda_theme3(50%), $illegal_drugs(100%), $plants(100%), $intoxicant(100%), $medical_cannabis(100%), $cannabis(100%), $cannabis_industry(85%), $school(100%)]
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INTERNATIONAL: "The key to success is to prevent the problem" - Drugnews

Drug News Bot - Wed, 02/28/2018 - 01:01
drugnews.nu (Europe) One of our major goals with the Forum was to reach out to non-governmental organizations on all continents and invite their members to a world conference where they could share experiences and talk about a vision of a drug free world. (Wed Feb 28 01:01:05 2018 PST) [$drug_related(100%), $drugwar_propaganda(100%), $explicit_propaganda(100%), $propaganda_theme1(90%), $propaganda_theme2(70%), $propaganda_theme3(75%), $use_is_abuse(100%), $propaganda_theme4(100%), $propaganda_theme5(60%), $propaganda_theme6(60%), $propaganda_theme7(100%), $moral_imperative(100%), $illegal_drugs(100%), $drugs(95%), $drug_ngo(100%), $drug_policy(100%), $prohibitionist(80%), $prohibitionist_ngo(100%), $legalization(100%), $prohibition(85%), $plants(100%), $pharms(100%), $analgesic(100%), $anesthetic(100%), $intoxicant(100%), $opioid(100%), $narcotic(100%), $cannabis(100%), $fentanyl(100%), $various_drugs(95%), $various_illegal_drugs(100%), $incarceration(100%), $youth(60%), $aggrandizement(100%), $meeting(100%)]
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US PA: Pa. Medical Marijuana Debuts With High Prices And Lots Of

MAP Drugnews - Top Stories - Wed, 02/28/2018 - 01:00
Philadelphia Daily News, 26 Feb 2018 - Limited quantities, sticker shock, and some mislabeled product. The first week of medical marijuana sales in Pennsylvania was marked by these birthing pains. On the whole, retailers and the Department of Health said the launch of the nascent industry - expected to grow into one of the nation's largest markets - had largely gone "as hoped."
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US PA: Millennials Bear The Brunt Of Pa. Marijuana Arrests

MAP Drugnews - Top Stories - Wed, 02/28/2018 - 01:00
Philadelphia Daily News, 26 Feb 2018 - Philadelphia is evolving into a safe haven for cannabis consumers even as arrests increase across Pennsylvania. Newly-elected District Attorney Larry Krasner announced Thursday that he would drop any marijuana possession cases brought to the court by police. A 2014 decriminalization ordinance allowing tickets caused common weed arrests to decline by more than 85 percent. Still, I reported last year that hundreds of racially disparate cases were still being brought to Philly courts each year for less than 30 grams of buds.
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Where Pedestrian Deaths Are Up, Is Marijuana to Blame? - New York Times

Google - Cannabis - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 22:01

New York Times

Where Pedestrian Deaths Are Up, Is Marijuana to Blame?
New York Times
Now it has added another: marijuana. Over the first six months of 2017, pedestrian fatalities rose sharply from a year earlier in states that had legalized recreational marijuana, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association. In the rest of ...

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Budget 2018: Nenshi welcomes federal assurances on cannabis tax revenues - Calgary Herald

Google - Cannabis - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 19:15

Calgary Herald

Budget 2018: Nenshi welcomes federal assurances on cannabis tax revenues
Calgary Herald
Mayor Naheed Nenshi likes what he saw in Tuesday's federal budget about tax revenues from cannabis sales going to cities — and hopes the provincial government was listening. “We did hear from the minister of finance that the intent of the tax split on ...
Cannabis tax revenue will cover cost of marijuana enforcement in Calgary, says NenshiCBC.ca

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Local investors hope to grow medical cannabis in former Bowlero building - Windsor Star

Google - Cannabis - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 18:28

Windsor Star

Local investors hope to grow medical cannabis in former Bowlero building
Windsor Star
If approved, it would be the first approved medical cannabis producer in Windsor, according to Helou, a property investor who has helped run the family business — The Service Market at 480 University Ave. W. — for 40 years. He recently stepped away ...

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Cronos, a marijuana producer, starts trading on the Nasdaq - CNNMoney

Google - Cannabis - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 16:20

CNNMoney

Cronos, a marijuana producer, starts trading on the Nasdaq
CNNMoney
Cronos is only involved with countries that do not have a federal ban on marijuana, like Israel, Australia, Germany and Canada, and that probably helped them get approved for the Nasdaq, he said. Gorenstein said that Cronos exports marijuana to Germany ...
You Can Now Invest in Marijuana on the US Stock ExchangeThrillist
Move over Apple, Amazon, marijuana is coming to the NasdaqFinancial Post
Cronos Group is the first marijuana company to list in US markets ...Business Insider
KTLA -HYPEBEAST (blog) -VICE News
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High-strength cannabis now dominates illegal market, study finds - The Guardian

Google - Cannabis - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 15:30

The Guardian

High-strength cannabis now dominates illegal market, study finds
The Guardian
Almost all cannabis seized by police now comprises high-strength varieties, with outdoor-grown herbal strains and hashish barely found, according to a new analysis. In the first study of its kind for 10 years, researchers from GW Pharmaceuticals, which ...
Most UK cannabis 'super strength skunk'BBC News
Almost all cannabis on Britain's streets 'super strength' and could be driving mental health problemsTelegraph.co.uk
Nearly all cannabis seized by UK police is high-strength 'skunk'– here's why we should be worriedThe Conversation UK
Sky News -Daily Mail
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Budget 2018 outlines how cannabis will be taxed, grants money to fight opioid crisis - Globalnews.ca

Google - Cannabis - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 15:21

Globalnews.ca

Budget 2018 outlines how cannabis will be taxed, grants money to fight opioid crisis
Globalnews.ca
The budget reaffirmed plans to apply an excise duty on marijuana, but confirmed that not all marijuana products will be affected. Low-THC cannabidiol oils and other low-THC therapeutic products will generally not be taxed, according to the budget ...
Just say no to legalizing recreational marijuanaRochester Democrat and Chronicle
With Recreational Pot Coming, Cannabis Panel Sets Policy To Ensure Supply For Medical PatientsWBUR
Cannabis Regulators Delay Final Decision On Home Delivery, Marijuana Cafe Servicewgbh.org
NORML Blog (blog) -WCVB Boston -KARK
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Colorado Is Finally Getting Its First Cannabis Club - Forbes

Google - Cannabis - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 13:09

Forbes

Colorado Is Finally Getting Its First Cannabis Club
Forbes
The city of Denver granted its first license on Monday to a business that will allow marijuana use on its premises. The Coffee Joint plans to charge patrons a $5 entry fee and permit them to consume their own cannabis in edible or vapor form. Denver ...
Recreational Marijuana Revenue on Pace to Exceed ProjectionsKTVN

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Who Is Benjamin Thomas Wolf? Former FBI Agent Smokes Weed in Illinois Congressional Campaign Ad - Newsweek

Google - Cannabis - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 12:56

Newsweek

Who Is Benjamin Thomas Wolf? Former FBI Agent Smokes Weed in Illinois Congressional Campaign Ad
Newsweek
Benjamin Thomas Wolf, a former FBI agent and current adjunct professor at Chicago's Roosevelt University, is hoping to become Illinois' first “Cannabis Congressman.” The Wicker Park resident and co-owner of Logan Square's Park and Field restaurant ...

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This Texas Lawmaker Is Blocking Congress From Voting On Marijuana

Alternet - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 11:44
And he makes no sense.

Congress has not approved any marijuana-related amendments since 2013, when the medical marijuana protections known as the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment was first pushed through. In fact, federal lawmakers have not given any consideration to additional riders protecting the cannabis industry for the past few years.

Some marijuana reform advocates believe Representative Pete Sessions of Texas, who serves as the chairman of the House Rules Committee, is to blame for this shortcoming. Not only does he decide what pieces of legislation reach the floor of the lower chamber, he also hates marijuana.

Earlier this week, Sessions told those in an attendance at the US Department of Health and Human Services Region VI Opioid Summit that legal marijuana is as much to blame for addiction in America than any other substance. Perhaps even more, since it is legal in many states.

“If addiction is the problem and we have marketers of addiction that include marijuana — because all you have to do is go to any of the stores in Colorado and they can give you high to low to medium to chocolate — we ought to call for it what it is,” he said. “If it were nicotine, it would have been outlawed; well, it would have been handled differently. But this is a political issue.”

Congressman Sessions’ comments are similar to those expressed by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who said recently that the opioid crisis “Is starting with marijuana and other drugs, too.” It seems the faces of the federal government have forgotten that not even their own health agencies believe marijuana to be a gateway drug. It was the National Institute on Drug Abuse that said, “The majority of people who use marijuana do not go on to use other, ‘harder’ substances.” The agency explained that alcohol and nicotine were more likely to inspire people to use harder substances.

Nevertheless, Sessions suggests there are “better alternatives” to solving the opioid crisis than legalizing marijuana. He believes the leaf is so much stronger now, that it is impossible to escape its grips.

“I referred to marijuana as merchants, this is merchants of addiction, they are making it more powerful and more powerful and more powerful,” Sessions said. “When I went to high school … in 1973, I graduated, marijuana, on average, is 300 times more powerful. That becomes an addictive element for a child to then go to the next thing.”

It is this anti-marijuana outlook that has prevented additional marijuana amendments from getting passed, according to some cannabis advocates. Reports show that Sessions’ Rule Committee has blocked proposals regarding cannabis banking and retail pot sales in the District of Columbia since 2016. Sessions, however, is up for reelection this year.

 

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How Your Brain Is Wired to Just Say 'Yes' to Opioids

Alternet - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 11:20
About 10 percent of people prescribed the drugs will develop dependence.

The mid-1980s was the era of cocaine and marijuana, when “Just Say No” was the centerpiece of the war on drugs and the government’s efforts to stem drug use and addiction. Since then, prescription opioids have become the nation’s drug scourge. The idea that mere willpower can fight this public health emergency is not only outdated, it’s scientifically misguided.

Medical history tells us that almost as long as there have been opioids – their use dates back to the third century – there have been opioid addicts.

Thirty years ago, I was a research scientist focused on addiction when I was asked to co-author a volume on prescription narcotics for the “Encyclopedia of Psychoactive Drugs.” I wrote the same assessment of opioid abuse then that I would write today: For many people, opioids are substances their brains are wired to crave in ways that make personal resolve nearly impossible.

Your brain on opioids

Our understanding of the human brain’s mechanisms makes a compelling argument for a national research effort to develop non-opioid painkillers and new medical devices to treat chronic pain, which remains the nation’s number one cause of disability. The good, if somewhat little noticed, news is that there is meaningful action on this front led by the National Institutes of Health, which is working in conjunction with pharmaceutical companies to develop nonaddictive, non-opioid pain killers that might finally end our somewhat tortured dependence on this formidable drug.

Brain scientists have known for decades that opioids are complex and difficult substances to manage when it comes to addiction. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that more than 20 percent of the patients prescribed opioids for chronic pain misuse them, and between 8 and 12 percent of those who use prescription opioids develop a use disorder.

Given how addictive these drugs are, doctors should have foreseen the looming danger of prescription opioids long before their use was liberalized for non-cancer related pain in the 1990s. Opioid abuse has instead ballooned over the last decade. In 2014, federal officials estimated nearly 2 million people in the United States suffer from substance use disorders related to prescription opioid pain medicines. Each day, more than 1,000 people are treated in emergency rooms for misusing prescription opioids, the CDC reports.

The reason? Many people’s brains are wired to want this drug.

How opioids affect the brain

The simplified explanation of this complex brain science is this: When opioids enter the brain, they bind to receptors known as μ (mu) opioid receptors on brain cells, or neurons. These receptors stimulate the “reward center” of the brain. This occurs in a part of the brain known as the ventral tegmental area, which results in the release of the neurotransmitter chemical dopamine. Over time, those receptors become less sensitive, and more of the drug is needed to stimulate the reward center.

Overview of reward structures in the human brain. By Oscar Arias-Carrión, Maria Stamelou, Eric Murillo-Rodríguez, Manuel Menéndez-González and Ernst Pöppel./Wikimedia.orgCC BY-SA

A brain that has become dependent on opioids can produce a strong desire to avoid the very real physical pain of withdrawal. When opioids are absent in the body after the person has become dependent, another neurotransmitter called noradrenaline is produced in excess. Excessive production of NA results in withdrawal symptoms that include shaking, tremors, anxiety, muscle cramps, and other uncomfortable and painful physiological responses. Users self-correct this brain chemistry by continuing to take the drug to stimulate dopamine production in their brain.

Our learning and memory processes also become engaged in addiction to a substance. A few brain areas are involved in the continued use of opioids after the pleasure factor has subsided and the person is still using the drug in order to avoid withdrawal. These areas include the paraventricular nucleus of the thalamusbed nucleus of the stria terminalis, the amygdala and other areas. A user’s brain can literally create a strong aversion to opioid withdrawal and compel them to keep using even if they know they are nearing an overdose.

The research community responds

Brain science is only one part of an addiction problem, but, I believe an important one deserving of more consideration than we’ve shown in past drug abuse crises. NIH Director Francis S. Collins has recognized this in his leadership of the medical and scientific response to the opioid use epidemic.

The NIH is taking important steps in building a public-private partnership that will seek scientific solutions to the opioid crisis, including the development of non-opioid painkillers. Collins has committed his agency’s resources in this quest, including implementing the Fast Track and Breakthrough Therapy designations that exist to facilitate development and expedite review of products that address an unmet medical need. The agency is calling for more emphasis on non-drug alternatives for pain, such as medical devices that can deliver more localized analgesia.

Expediency and proper funding of this effort is critical to get effective alternatives to those who need it most – the people fully intending to “Just Say No” but whose brains will fight them every step of the way.

 

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Why a Federal Judge Dismissed a Lawsuit That Could Have Legalized Marijuana Nationwide - Fortune

Google - Cannabis - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 10:47

Fortune

Why a Federal Judge Dismissed a Lawsuit That Could Have Legalized Marijuana Nationwide
Fortune
The plaintiffs in the case included former NFL player Marvin Washington, along with a 12-year-old girl who uses medical marijuana to treat her chronic epilepsy and others who used the drug for medical reasons. Their lawsuit, which named Attorney ...
Judge tosses lawsuit challenging federal marijuana lawsWCAX

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