Marijuana Legalization News. We're getting this done. California 1st, November 2nd. Tax Cannabis to save California!
Mon Jan 20

President Obama advocates for Marijuana Legalization

“It’s important for [marijuana legalization] to go forward because it’s important for society not to have a situation in which a large portion of people have at one time or another broken the law and only a select few get punished”

“We should not be locking up kids or individual users for long stretches of jail time when some of the folks who are writing those laws have probably done the same thing.” -President Barack Obama, 1/19/14

Sun Jan 19
Sat Oct 26
Wed Oct 23
Thu Oct 17
Mon Jun 10
Fri May 31
At the news conference, former Microsoft manager Jamen Shively discussed his plans to launch a new marijuana brand named for his great-great grandfather, Diego Pellicer. He says his company is joining forces with a Washington state chain of medical marijuana dispensaries run by John Davis, the Northwest Patient Resource Center, as well as dispensaries in Colorado and California.

Shively’s planned investment will total $100 million over three years, according to the Stranger.

"This historic step today is to be observed and evaluated closely by all of us, because it is a game changer," Fox said. "I applaud this group that has the courage to move ahead. They have the vision, they are clear where they’re going, and I’m sure they’re going to get there."
Fox, a former Coca-Cola executive who was Mexico’s president from 2000-06, specified that he’s not involved in the venture. He appeared at Shively’s invitation. The two first met 13 years ago, when a company Shively used to run was opening a computer center in Sinaloa and Fox appeared at the inauguration, Shively said.

Shively described grand visions for his pot brand – hundreds of millions of dollars in investments, tens of millions of customers, more than 1,000 jobs just at Diego Pellicer’s Seattle headquarters.

At the news conference, former Microsoft manager Jamen Shively discussed his plans to launch a new marijuana brand named for his great-great grandfather, Diego Pellicer. He says his company is joining forces with a Washington state chain of medical marijuana dispensaries run by John Davis, the Northwest Patient Resource Center, as well as dispensaries in Colorado and California.

Shively’s planned investment will total $100 million over three years, according to the Stranger.

"This historic step today is to be observed and evaluated closely by all of us, because it is a game changer," Fox said. "I applaud this group that has the courage to move ahead. They have the vision, they are clear where they’re going, and I’m sure they’re going to get there."
Fox, a former Coca-Cola executive who was Mexico’s president from 2000-06, specified that he’s not involved in the venture. He appeared at Shively’s invitation. The two first met 13 years ago, when a company Shively used to run was opening a computer center in Sinaloa and Fox appeared at the inauguration, Shively said.

Shively described grand visions for his pot brand – hundreds of millions of dollars in investments, tens of millions of customers, more than 1,000 jobs just at Diego Pellicer’s Seattle headquarters.

Tue Nov 6

(Source: apcalvin, via optimisto)

(via Amendment 64 Passes: Colorado Legalizes Marijuana For Recreational Use)

The Rocky Mountain High just got a whole lot higher. On Tuesday night, Amendment 64 — the measure which sought the legalization of marijuana for recreational use by adults — was passed by Colorado voters, making Colorado the first state to end marijuana prohibition in the United States.

(via Amendment 64 Passes: Colorado Legalizes Marijuana For Recreational Use)

The Rocky Mountain High just got a whole lot higher. On Tuesday night, Amendment 64 — the measure which sought the legalization of marijuana for recreational use by adults — was passed by Colorado voters, making Colorado the first state to end marijuana prohibition in the United States.

Thu Aug 30
Pot Legalization Could Save U.S. $13.7 Billion Per Year, 300 Economists Say

More than 300 economists, including three nobel laureates, have signed a petition calling attention to the findings of a paper by Harvard economist Jeffrey Miron, which suggests that if the government legalized marijuana it would save $7.7 billion annually by not having to enforce the current prohibition on the drug. The report added that legalization would save an additional $6 billion per year if the government taxed marijuana at rates similar to alcohol and tobacco.

That’s as much as $13.7 billion per year, but it’s still minimal when compared to the federal deficit, which hit $1.5 trillion last year, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

While the economists don’t directly call for pot legalization, the petition asks advocates on both sides to engage in an “open and honest debate” about the benefits of pot prohibition.

"At a minimum, this debate will force advocates of current policy to show that prohibition has benefits sufficient to justify the cost to taxpayers, foregone tax revenues, and numerous ancillary consequences that result from marijuana prohibition," the petition states.

Pot Legalization Could Save U.S. $13.7 Billion Per Year, 300 Economists Say

More than 300 economists, including three nobel laureates, have signed a petition calling attention to the findings of a paper by Harvard economist Jeffrey Miron, which suggests that if the government legalized marijuana it would save $7.7 billion annually by not having to enforce the current prohibition on the drug. The report added that legalization would save an additional $6 billion per year if the government taxed marijuana at rates similar to alcohol and tobacco.

That’s as much as $13.7 billion per year, but it’s still minimal when compared to the federal deficit, which hit $1.5 trillion last year, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

While the economists don’t directly call for pot legalization, the petition asks advocates on both sides to engage in an “open and honest debate” about the benefits of pot prohibition.

"At a minimum, this debate will force advocates of current policy to show that prohibition has benefits sufficient to justify the cost to taxpayers, foregone tax revenues, and numerous ancillary consequences that result from marijuana prohibition," the petition states.

Wed Jul 25
Looks like the black market will rise in L.A.


By Kate Linthicum, Los Angeles Times
July 25, 2012
In what could be a turning point in the city’s seemingly unending battle to regulate the distribution of medical marijuana, the Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to ban all pot dispensaries, while also opening the door to possibly let some remain.

Under the ban, all of the 762 dispensaries registered in the city will be sent letters ordering them to shut down immediately. Those that don’t comply may face legal action from the city.

Medical marijuana activists erupted in jeers after the decision, and police officers were called into the council chambers to quell them. Some activists threatened to sue. Others vowed to draft a ballot initiative to overturn the ban.

"We’re not going to make this easy for the city of Los Angeles," said Don Duncan, California director of Americans for Safe Access.

The new ordinance will allow patients and their caregivers to grow and share marijuana in groups of three people or fewer. But activists complain that few patients have the time or skills for that, with one dispensary owner saying it costs at least $5,000 to grow the plant at home.

Councilman Jose Huizar said the ban, which received a last-minute show of support from Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and police Chief Charlie Beck, will help bring peace to neighborhoods that he says have been tormented by problem dispensaries.

"Relief is on its way," he said, noting that the ban would allow the city to close shops without having to prove that they are violating nuisance or land-use laws, as is the case now.

But the issue was clouded when the council also voted to instruct city staff to draw up a separate ordinance that would allow dozens of pot shops to remain open. Officials said that proposal, which would grant immunity to shops that existed before a 2007 moratorium on new dispensaries, could be back to the council for consideration in three months.

Huizar voted against that motion, which he said might give the public “false hope” that the ban would not be enforced.

But Councilman Dennis Zine, who voted for both the ban and the plan to allow some dispensaries to stay open, suggested that police might not enforce the ban against the city’s original pot shops while the new ordinance is being drawn up.

"The officers will be given that information and we will concentrate on the other locations initially," Zine said.

However, Councilman Paul Koretz, who proposed the ordinance to allow some shops to stay open, called Tuesday’s prohibition “a ban until otherwise noted.”

How cities should regulate distribution of pot has been a gray area since California voters passed a 1996 initiative legalizing medical marijuana even though any sale of marijuana remains illegal under federal law. Officials are looking to an upcoming ruling by the state Supreme Court for clarity on whether cities can regulate and ban dispensaries, but that may not come for another year.

Council members said that in the meantime, something had to be done to reduce the number of dispensaries, which outnumber Starbucks coffee shops in Los Angeles two to one, according to Councilman Paul Krekorian.

Beck, who appeared before the council, said dispensaries can be hot spots for crime, citing burglaries, armed robberies and killings. In a letter to lawmakers, he said most pot shops are “for-profit businesses engaged in the sale of recreational marijuana to healthy young adults.”

But those who support dispensaries say the ban will simply drive distribution of marijuana underground.

That’s what Steven Lubell, an attorney who represents several of the city’s original dispensaries, predicted. “Is it going to go away? No,” said. “It’s going to go to a darker side.”

Looks like the black market will rise in L.A.


By Kate Linthicum, Los Angeles Times
July 25, 2012
In what could be a turning point in the city’s seemingly unending battle to regulate the distribution of medical marijuana, the Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to ban all pot dispensaries, while also opening the door to possibly let some remain.

Under the ban, all of the 762 dispensaries registered in the city will be sent letters ordering them to shut down immediately. Those that don’t comply may face legal action from the city.

Medical marijuana activists erupted in jeers after the decision, and police officers were called into the council chambers to quell them. Some activists threatened to sue. Others vowed to draft a ballot initiative to overturn the ban.

"We’re not going to make this easy for the city of Los Angeles," said Don Duncan, California director of Americans for Safe Access.

The new ordinance will allow patients and their caregivers to grow and share marijuana in groups of three people or fewer. But activists complain that few patients have the time or skills for that, with one dispensary owner saying it costs at least $5,000 to grow the plant at home.

Councilman Jose Huizar said the ban, which received a last-minute show of support from Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and police Chief Charlie Beck, will help bring peace to neighborhoods that he says have been tormented by problem dispensaries.

"Relief is on its way," he said, noting that the ban would allow the city to close shops without having to prove that they are violating nuisance or land-use laws, as is the case now.

But the issue was clouded when the council also voted to instruct city staff to draw up a separate ordinance that would allow dozens of pot shops to remain open. Officials said that proposal, which would grant immunity to shops that existed before a 2007 moratorium on new dispensaries, could be back to the council for consideration in three months.

Huizar voted against that motion, which he said might give the public “false hope” that the ban would not be enforced.

But Councilman Dennis Zine, who voted for both the ban and the plan to allow some dispensaries to stay open, suggested that police might not enforce the ban against the city’s original pot shops while the new ordinance is being drawn up.

"The officers will be given that information and we will concentrate on the other locations initially," Zine said.

However, Councilman Paul Koretz, who proposed the ordinance to allow some shops to stay open, called Tuesday’s prohibition “a ban until otherwise noted.”

How cities should regulate distribution of pot has been a gray area since California voters passed a 1996 initiative legalizing medical marijuana even though any sale of marijuana remains illegal under federal law. Officials are looking to an upcoming ruling by the state Supreme Court for clarity on whether cities can regulate and ban dispensaries, but that may not come for another year.

Council members said that in the meantime, something had to be done to reduce the number of dispensaries, which outnumber Starbucks coffee shops in Los Angeles two to one, according to Councilman Paul Krekorian.

Beck, who appeared before the council, said dispensaries can be hot spots for crime, citing burglaries, armed robberies and killings. In a letter to lawmakers, he said most pot shops are “for-profit businesses engaged in the sale of recreational marijuana to healthy young adults.”

But those who support dispensaries say the ban will simply drive distribution of marijuana underground.

That’s what Steven Lubell, an attorney who represents several of the city’s original dispensaries, predicted. “Is it going to go away? No,” said. “It’s going to go to a darker side.”

Fri Jul 13
Thu Apr 26

Conneticut Approves Legalization Of Medical Marijuana

The House of Representatives voted late Wednesday night to legalize marijuana for medical purposes for adults — despite a letter from the state’s top federal prosecutor saying that those growing marijuana would be violating federal law.

The vote was 96-51 in favor.

Wed Apr 11
Fri Feb 24

Study: suicide rates fall when states legalize medical marijuana

A University of Colorado economics professor has co-authored a study, just released by the Institute for the Study of Labor in Bonn, Germany, that concludes that suicide rates among young males decline markedly after states legalize medical marijuana. Professors at Montana State University and San Diego State University were also involved in the study. The study is titled “High on Life: Medical Marijuana Laws and Suicide.”

CU economics professor Daniel Rees is co-author of a study which concludes that passage of medical marijuana laws leads to a decrease in suicides among young men. (Image: CU Denver)

CU Denver professor Daniel Rees and his coauthors don’t say conclusively why suicide rates fall. They offer evidence that marijuana acts as an antidepressant when used moderately, but also note that using marijuana in larger amounts can actually lead to depression. They also note that the sale of alcohol to young males declines in states that legalize medical marijuana and note that alcohol is a known depressant the use of which can lead to suicidal thoughts. Rees did not return a phone call seeking comment. From the study:

Using state-level data for the period 1990 through 2007, we estimate the effect of legalizing medical marijuana on suicide rates. Our results suggest that the passage of a medical marijuana law is associated with an almost 5 percent reduction in the total suicide rate, an 11 percent reduction in the suicide rate of 20- through 29-year-old males, and a 9 percent reduction in the suicide rate of 30- through 39-year-old males. … We conclude that the legalization of medical marijuana leads to an improvement in the psychological wellbeing of young adult males, an improvement that is reflected in fewer suicides. … In an often-cited article, Hamermesh and Soss (1974) argued that negative shocks to happiness may reduce expected lifetime utility to the point where an individual will decide to take his or her own life. The negative relationship between legalization and suicides among young adult males is consistent with the argument that marijuana can be used to cope with such shocks. However, estimates provided by Anderson et al. (2011) provide an alternative explanation. These authors found that the passage of MMLs (medical marijuana laws) led to sharp decreases in alcohol-related traffic fatalities, self-reported alcohol use, and per capita beer sales. The strong association between alcohol consumption and suicide related outcomes found by previous researchers (Markowitz et al. 2003; Carpenter 2004; Sullivan et al. 2004; Rodriguez Andres 2005; Carpenter and Dobkin 2009) raises the possibility that medical marijuana laws reduce the risk of suicide by decreasing alcohol consumption. Speaking recently at the University of Denver, Amanda Reiman, Ph.D, the director of research at the Berkeley Patients Group and a lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley, said that marijuana has medical value even for people not suffering from one of the ailments that medical marijuana laws typically allow people to use marijuana for. “We deontologically believe that drug use is inherently wrong, which is why it is hard for us to believe there are responsible users. Do you really have to be sick to get benefit from cannabis?” she asked rhetorically. She said that when you ask people why they smoke marijuana, the most common answer is that it helps them relax. “The word medical is redundant when talking about cannabis. Relaxation itself is medicinal.” Reiman’s words were echoed on the DU panel by University of California law professor Marsha Cohen, who said that when asked why they smoke marijuana, people answer, “‘It makes me feel better.’ That makes it medicinal use,” she said.

Mason Tvert, executive director of SAFER (Safer Alternative for Recreational Enjoyment) and one of the organizers of a ballot initiative to regulate marijuana like alcohol, which will probably be on the Colorado ballot in November, said he was not surprised by the study’s conclusions. “We know marijuana has medicinal value, and we know that people living with pain sometimes kill themselves,” Tvert said. He added that the connection with alcohol use was intriguing. “Every credible study ever done proves that marijuana is safer than alcohol,” he said.