by David Downs
1. The New York Post reports today CBS News chief Howard Arenstein, 60, is facing jail time and job loss for growing eleven plants in his Washington D.C. backyard. Which seems crazy, because D.C. is such an anti-pot town, loaded as it is with spooks, bureaucrats and lobbyists who don't want to lose their coveted federal clearances. Police say they acted over the weekend on a "tip". Meanwhile, D.C. gets ready to open its first medical marijuana dispensaries following years of obstruction by the federal government.
2. California Watch looks at how pot clubs might be illegal in the eyes of the federal government, but they still have to pay taxes to the Internal Revenue Service. IRS officials say they don't care what type of income it is. But they actually do. Harborside Health Center in Oakland, CA. tells Legalization Nation that the IRS won't let them write off thousands of dollars in annual business expenses like a normal business. Harborside says an obscure federal law bars "criminal" enterprises from doing so.
3. Also in D.C. the neoconservative Weekly Standard - owned by the same people who bring you The Examiner - lays out a snickering screed against "the medical marijuana charade" couched as reporting in Detroit.
4. Lastly in D.C., The Atlantic web site posts a promotional Oakland hydroponics store video as "exclusive" news. Dhar Mann's former iGrow hydroponics warehouse (now WeGrow) claims to be moving into growing pot, as well as selling farming technology and franchise rights across the country. But so far, critics note many of Mann's well-publicized plans have become as real as the laughably simple computer-generated advertisement The Atlantic posted as news. Hydroponics distributors cut the store off weeks after they opened. WeGrow don't have any farming permits from the city of Oakland, their portable grow trailers looked shoddy on inspection, and there isn't a single WeGrow franchise open yet. WeGrow is now doing a reality show, the company says.
6. On the West Coast, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom may have let the gays marry, but he's not interested in helping to end the arrest of 60,000 Californians for pot each year. The L.A. Times has him shrinking from Prop 19 creator Richard Lee like a vampire from daylight in a weekend profile. "When the pinstriped Democrat strode out, Lee sped after him and asked for an endorsement. Newsom, a candidate for lieutenant governor, reeled back in theatrical horror. "Oh, Jesus," he cried. "Oh, God. Oh, God." He swiveled. He vanished."
7. Down in San Diego, officials fearmonger against Prop 19 saying, "That means your child’s bus driver, a San Diego trolley conductor or the driver next to you on Interstate 15 can all be high while driving." the text of Prop 19 does not allow stoned drivers.
8. And a new pot club in Oakland? Peter Hecht's Sunday piece in the Sacramento Bee quotes "David King, 58, a new cannabis worker for the United Food and Commercial Workers Union. ... King was laid off as a senior design engineer in the computer industry and is thrilled to have a quality job in the pot trade. He is starting as a bud tender — pot's equivalent of a pharmacy attendant — at Old Oaksterdam, a union-shop medical dispensary soon to open in Oakland."
9. Parents, pray your kids aren't a member of the cool crowd, who scientists say are under more pressure to drink and take drugs; at least French kids anyway. "Teenagers don't consume to belong to the group or to increase their popularity level, they do it to remain well-liked," a researcher told Science Daily. "It's more about keeping their status than increasing it."
10. And Hot Tub Time Machine wins Best Comedy at Stony Awards in Hollywood over the weekend, CelebStoner reports. Rob Corddry, accepting the award, quipped, "I get really fucking scared if I get high... I got nothin'."
2010 Stony Award Winners
Best Comedy: Hot Tub Time Machine
Best Drarma: Holy Rollers
Best Documnetary: Cheech & Chong's Hey Watch This
Best TV Show: Breaking Bad
Best Animated TV Show: The Boondocks
Best Internet Video: Jamie's World
Stoner of the Year: John Cusack
Stonette of the Year: Drew Barrymore
Special Achievement: Jack Herer
Special Achievement Jesse Ventura
Special Achievement: Len Richmond