Monday, January 31, 2011

'MK Ultra,' 'Durban Poison' Weed Trading Cards Unveiled

by David Downs
Mon, Jan 31, 2011 at 2:13 PM

In California's competitive marijuana growing industry, popular strains such as “OG Kush” and “Blue Dream” can generate big profits, and inventing a hit new strain is a lifetime goal. This week, Berkeley Patients Care Collective honors some more of Northern California's weed celebrities with the release of BPCC's medical cannabis collector cards “Series Two.”

Following the success of BPCC's first set of ten cards in 2010 , patients who buy a gram or more of the strain “MK Ultra” this week can get its collectors card while supplies last. Nine more cards will become available at a rate of one every other week, and eventually patients can purchase all ten for $10 at the collective on Telegraph Avenue. Pics after the jump:

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Friday, January 28, 2011

Obama On Ending Drug War: "Entirely legitimate topic for debate"

by David Downs
Fri, Jan 28, 2011 at 11:51 AM

What a difference a year makes. After laughing off a question about drug law reform last year, President Obama said it was an "entirely legitimate topic for debate" Thursday during a YouTube Q&A. Watch the video after the jump.

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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Chronic Wellness: A Slideshow of Colorado Medical Marijuana Company Logos

by David Downs
Wed, Jan 26, 2011 at 5:44 PM

A historic round of regulations come to Colorado's for-profit medical marijuana industry this year as the state prepares to take public comments on 99 pages of new regulations January 27 — a prelude to their adoption by summer. Proposed rules such as police-monitored, 24/7 Internet video streams of clubs; a semi-public marijuana patient database; and RFID-tagged plants will have a chilling effect on patients in the state, said rights group Americans for Safe Access. Colorado has raised $8 million in application fees from more than 2,300 pot clubs, kitchens, and farms seeking permits. Here's a slideshow of potential logos for ten colorful applicants on the list, all drawn by Conor Buckley:

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The 2011 State of the Union — on Weed

by David Downs
Tue, Jan 25, 2011 at 10:25 AM

YouTube is so high. Pot activists dominate a presidential Q&A on YouTube this morning (click on "All questions"), driving up cannabis and hemp policy to the top of the list prior to today's 2011 State of the Union Address, which will stream live on YouTube at 9 p.m. EST. The Bay Area company asked members to submit questions to the President for an exclusive YouTube Interview to take place two days later, on January 27. They said:

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Monday, January 24, 2011

Know Your Drug War: $15 Billion in 2011

by David Downs
Mon, Jan 24, 2011 at 11:47 AM

The U.S. drug war runs on money, and until reformers understand how cash flows, ending prohibition will go nowhere. Kill the funds and any war dies. The U.S. government hasn't passed its budget for 2011, which was due last October. So we're funding things as is (printing money) while House Republicans work to roll spending back to 2008 levels. That'll mean less money for drug treatment, but more of the same ongoing war on the American public. Here's a look at some highlights of how your dollars are being spent, from the Office of National Drug Control Policy's Drug Control Strategy 2011:

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Friday, January 21, 2011

Pot Club Ban In San Francisco Stems From Typo

by David Downs
Fri, Jan 21, 2011 at 2:12 PM

A typo in San Francisco’s medical cannabis code gives the city's planning department a way to impose a de facto ban on all dispensaries, officials realized Friday.

Under the current code, home daycare centers can count as schools — and there are so many home daycares in the city that most of the 25 clubs in existence could effectively be zoned out, as San Francisco requires a mandatory 1,000-foot buffer between dispensaries and schools.

The San Francisco medical cannabis task force moved to fix the typo in its first meeting of 2011, requesting the Board of Supervisors amend the city’s code by one single letter.

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Thursday, January 20, 2011

DEA: We Have Not Relaxed Our Policy on Medical Marijuana

by David Downs
Thu, Jan 20, 2011 at 12:31 PM

The US Drug Enforcement Administration's "Position on Marijuana 2010" is a hot document. Dated to July, it didn't really start circulating until this January when activist Ed Rosenthal found his name in it. Since then, the DEA link to the paper is gone, but a Google site search yields the file. Yesterday, the Marijuana Policy Project told supporters that the DEA's position paper labels the drug law reform group Enemy #1. But that's just a little bit of the 54-page collection of anecdotal Reefer Madness. Thin on actual research, the little science the DEA cites is biased. The paper almost never discloses the number of patients in a study group, and can't cite much US research — ironically, because the DEA plays a role in ensuring such studies never get approved. But the paper does relate some sad drug war stories, like the following:

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Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Coalition for a Drug-Free California: 'End Pot Chaos, Random Drug Test All Kids'

by David Downs
Tue, Jan 18, 2011 at 12:23 PM

Under a new medical marijuana law in Arizona, a legal bag of pot will be much, much harder to purchase than a Glock handgun with extended magazines. But that's not enough for one reactionary California group that wants to influence how Arizona enforces its new law.

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Monday, January 17, 2011

Medical Marijuana Dispensary Etiquette 101

by David Downs
Mon, Jan 17, 2011 at 10:16 AM

Thousands of people are thought to become qualified medical cannabis patients each month in California, joining an estimated 500,000 in the state with a doctor’s recommendation for the rehabilitated herbal remedy. Clubs say they’re seeing more women these days, and patients now range from the San Francisco financial district suit and tie crowd to the tie-dyed homeless on Telegraph. As the industry transitions from quasi-speakeasy to chain bank, there are a lot of new rules to follow. Legalization Nation polled some of the leadership at leading Bay Area dispensaries in a look at norms in the fast-changing climate.

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Friday, January 14, 2011

Weekly Roundup: Canny Bus Rolls On; Patch Piracy Gets Messy

by David Downs
Fri, Jan 14, 2011 at 9:19 AM

Here's your weekly headlines: 1) Mario Abad and The Canny Bus gets a little look from the Wall Street Journal. Little has changed since we talked to him last July. More headlines after the jump:

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