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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

www.cannabisfreedom.com

I’ve been working feverishly getting the new and improved Cannabis Freedom blog up and running. Ta Da, here it is! I’ve converted most of my posts and services from my Blogger account. If you’re already subscribed via email, RSS or ATOM, you don’t need to make any changes, Feedburner handles my feeds. If you normally go to Blogspot to read my posts, go to Cannabis Freedom instead.

I wanted to make these drastic changes in order to control my own destiny. I found myself to be at the mercy of Blogger’s limitations. Now that I own my own domain the potential is limitless. I also wanted this blog to be about cannabis and our re-legalization movement, and not so much about me, Ganja Blue. I’m still looking for activists, writers, musicians and photographers that would like to contribute original work to our effort here.

I’ve chosen Wordpress for my blogging engine and I’m really happy with it so far. Webhosting is provided by NearlyFreeSpeech which gives me the privacy I need at a cost I can live with. If you visit Cannabis Freedom from you mobile device you’ll find that the template is much more readable already.

Great New Features:

  1. Mobile friendlier - Visit on your iPhone, PDA, or Cell phone to try
  2. New Tag Cloud
  3. Faster page loading
  4. Enhanced privacy
  5. More post options
  6. Improved spam control

I’ll be working on the site template next. I you have suggestions for any features you’d like to see implemented, please email me. As always I’m looking for other Marijuana Activists to collaborate, trade links, and guest posts.

Monday, September 15, 2008

I'm instituting some pretty big changes here this week. I'm already thrilled about being able to provide you with a steady stream of marijuana legalization, activism, and drug war news. In addition to these services I'm instituting some major changes in an effort to protect your privacy and improve readability on mobile devices. As always send your feedback to ganjablue@gmail.com or direct message me on my twitter account.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

First of all I want to make it clear that Young Avenue Glassworks sells custom glass pipes for tobacco use only.
I was at the Cooper Young Festival on Saturday when I noticed a small smoking accessories shop, Young Avenue Glassworks, at 2162 Young Avenue at Cooper. They feature their own custom glass pieces as well as Kaos glass. I can highly recommend the Kaos stuff.


The prices where very reasonable, especially for handblown custom work. Everything in he store looked to be high quality glassware. They don't carry junk or gimmick pipes. I'll be back soon to pick out what's going on my Christmas wishlist.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Bob Barr, the Libertarian Presidential nominee, has had a change of heart.

Bob Barr: Federal Drug War Rethought: "As both a U.S. Attorney and Member of Congress, I defended drug prohibition. But it has become increasingly clear to me, after much study, that our current strategy has not worked and will not work. The other candidates for president prefer not to address this issue, but ignoring the failure of existing policy exhibits both a poverty of thought and an absence of political courage. The federal government must turn the decision on drug policy back to the states and the citizens themselves."

I really don't know whether Barr is sincere or he just finds his new libertarian leanings on the drug war to be politically expedient. In any case, I think that Barr is probably our most viable, pro-legalization choice for president right now. However, I'd like to see him more contrite about his prosecution of the federal war on drugs as U.S. attorney. How many lives has he ruined in the course of his neo-con past?

On July 29th the mayor of Berwyn Heights, Maryland, Cheye Calvo was victimized twice. Mayor Calvo was the victim of a marijuana trafficking scheme where packages are dropped by delivery drivers, in this case UPS, and the package is then stolen off the porch by drug dealers. The raiding police then murdered the mayor's two Labrador retrievers in the process of serving a standard drug warrant.

The police were supposed to knock at the door and announce themselves. Instead they entered the home by force acting as if the warrant had the required "no-knock" clause. The incompetent police have been exonerated of any wrongdoing. Mayor Calvo was recently interviewed by the Cato Institute. You can listen to the interview below.



For more information on no-knock raids and the rising use of military-style tactics in the war on drugs read Overkill by Radley Balko.


I wanted to remind everyone that tomorrow, September 13, is the big Southern Heritage Classic game at the Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium. The tailgate parties have already started, and from what I hear, it's the biggest party in Memphis.



The annual Cooper-Young Festival is also tomorrow . Over 300 artisans are displaying their works and over 80,000 people are expected to pass through.

Update: Citizens To Preserve Overton Park will be at the C-Y Festival at booth D31 in the First Congregational Church parking lot. CPOP will have organic cotton Save the Old Forest t-shirts for a $10 donation.


If going out isn't your thing and you have Comcast cable, you can always stay in and watch the University of Memphis Tigers play the the Thundering Herd of Marshal on CSS tomorrow at 6 pm. The Tigers are looking for their first win this season, and if we can't do it against Marshal then God help us.

Redwood National Forest has become the latest battleground in the War on Drugs. The ancient forest is now the home to guerrilla growers who plant their clandestine farms in the dense old-growth in order to hide their crop from law enforcement and rival gangs.

Sequoia sempervirens in Redwood National ParkFive-Acre Marijuana Farm Found in Redwood National Park - FoxNewsAuthorities have discovered thousands of marijuana plants growing in Redwood National Park.
...
While marijuana has been found growing on public lands for years, officials say they're finding larger, more damaging operations — many of them connected to gangs with ties to Mexico.

I've written before on the environmental destruction caused by the drug war. Not only does this deadly war threaten the environment, but also the lives of every tourist, camper, and hiker that visit the forest every summer. If marijuana crops were legal crops could be planted in private farms and the environmental and public threat would be eliminated.

The photo above is in the public domain: Coastal Redwood

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Roane County (TN) School District is drug testing student athletes in violation of state law.

Alert - American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee: "The American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee (ACLU-TN)
today sent a letter to the Roane County school district demanding a stop to the random drug testing of student athletes which is in clear violation of state law. In addition to being illegal, random drug testing of students is proven to be ineffective in deterring drug use and is opposed by leading experts in adolescent health, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, the National Education Association, the Association of Addiction Professionals and the National Association of Social Workers.

“Random drug testing is not only patently illegal under state law, but demonstrably ineffective and frequently counterproductive,” said Hedy Weinberg, Executive Director of the ACLU of Tennessee. “These unsubstantiated searches make a mockery of the civics lessons taught in our classrooms, and should be roundly and readily rejected by parents and school officials alike.”"
Not only is this behavior illegal, random drug testing has been proven to be ineffective as a deterrent. It simply does not prevent students from using drugs. In fact, when children are tested for a safe and non-toxic substance like marijuana, students then have an incentive to instead use deadly drugs like inhalants. I believe the only effective and ethical way of preventing adolescent drug abuse, without violating individual rights is to foster a healthy relationship between the parent and child. School policy and the drug war instead foster mistrust, a snitch culture, and pit children against parents by creating adversarial relationships.

For more information read my post on fooling urine drug tests.

Read the full alert from the American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee.
Associated Press article here: ACLU Demands Tennessee School Stop Drug Testing Student Athletes.

Ron White asserts that he is a medical marijuana user, this comes after his arrest for simple possession of 3 grams of cannabis and a glass pipe. An anonymous tipster narced out The Tater and police sprang into action. This is freaking ridiculous and completely conflicts with Drug Czar John Walters assertion that people don't go to jail for simple possession. Ron White had 3 grams of marijuana, that's about 1/10th of an ounce or less than $100 worth of high quality, medical marijuana. He was arrested, booked and release with a $1000 bond. I guess the streets are safe now. Great police work. How many personnel hours do you think that law enforcement is wasting on the investigation, processing, prosecution, and incarceration of a non-violent medical marijuana user? Ron was flying to Florida for a sold-out show. Over 1000 people were inconvenienced when the show started an hour late.

The Memphis Flyer is giving away free tickets to see Widespread Panic in Memphis. There are 5 drawings over the next five weeks. You have to turn off any ad blocking software you have running in order to see the link. Good luck.

The Cato Institute is having a forum on so-called "No-Knock" raids. Details below. Sorry, the stream is only available in RealMedia format, gross.

Cato Institute: Should No-Knock Police Raids be Rare-or Routine? (Policy Forum): "Should No-Knock Police Raids be Rare-or Routine?

POLICY FORUM
Thursday, September 11, 2008
4:00 PM (Reception To Follow)

Featuring Cheye Calvo, Mayor, Berwyn Heights, Maryland, Radley Balko, Senior Writer, Reason and author of Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Police Raids in America, Peter Christ, Co-founder, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition. Moderated by Tim Lynch, Director, Project on Criminal Justice, Cato Institute.

The Cato Institute
1000 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001

Watch the Event Live in RealVideo
Listen to the Event in RealAudio (Audio Only)

The Prince George’s County police department is under fire for a recent drug raid on the home of Berwyn Heights mayor Cheye Calvo. Unbeknownst to Calvo, a box containing marijuana was delivered to his home. Shortly thereafter, police officers kicked in the front door and shot both of Calvo’s pet Labrador retrievers. The police have subsequently cleared Calvo of any wrongdoing but are unapologetic about their raid tactics. Are no-knock, paramilitary raids an appropriate tactic for drug investigations? Or do sudden, unannounced entries bring unnecessary violence to police investigations? Join us for a discussion of the Prince George’s incident and, more broadly, the militarization of police work in America."


*Update: I fixed the links to the media streams.

The University of Memphis is off to a rough start this season. Keep your head up Tigers. I was watching a National Geographic special entitled "Tigers of the Swamp" about tigers that live in the Bay of Bengal. Due to the flooding rivers descending from the Himalayas bodies of flood victims get washed into the swamp. As a result, some of these tigers have a taste for human blood. That's f-ing hardcore! Ok, I'm motivated again. Go Tigers! Watch the full documentary below.



*The image above is in the public domain, Panthera Tigris, Tigris.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

This story from Chicago saddens me, but is not surprising. When the passive aggressive use the force of government to exact their revenge the results can be deadly. In this fortunate instance the tables were turned.

Chicago officer charged in frame job: "Bogdan Mazur, who is in the midst of a divorce, tried to set up his estranged wife by planting cocaine, marijuana and a gun in her vehicle in April 2007 and having Grand-Central District Officer Slawomir Plewa arrest her, according to Assistant State's Atty. Lynn McCarthy.

Plewa, 30, was arrested Monday and charged with official misconduct, perjury, obstruction of justice, unlawful restraint and false reporting."
People often use drug laws to exact retribution, vengeance, and hate against others. Sometimes drug users are snitched on, not to "make the streets safer" but because someone has simply felt personally slighted. Snitching is a great way for the passive aggressive to earn some quick cash while narcing out a personal enemy and subjecting them to the terror of the courts and prisons. The article continues:

After the acquittal, the woman's attorney, Steven Messner, said he told Assistant State's Atty. Bob Milan he suspected the case was phony. Plewa had admitted he never made note of the meeting with the informant nor tried to verify the information with anyone else, Messner said.

And a fingerprint taken from the packaging around the gun and drugs did not match the estranged wife's, Messner said.

Plewa is a seven-year veteran of the department, assigned to the gang-narcotics team for much of that time, and has never before been disciplined by the department, said Dan Herbert, Plewa's attorney.


In other instances innocent people are framed by their enemies. Vindictive individuals know that police are more interested in racking up arrest numbers in order to seize assets and qualify for federal grants. Law enforcement has no incentive to filter through these bogus accusations. Instead they frequently take the snitch's word without any corroborating investigation. In extreme circumstances police knowingly use false information because the incentives to disregard it are simply to great.

Law enforcement should be about justice, righting wrongs. They should be available to protect our life, our liberty, our property. The drug war conflicts with this mission. When cops are used to enforce societal norms we all suffer.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

In a true WTF moment, Kid Rock is now making propaganda films for the government. Mrs. Blue, who's had a decade-long crush on the Early Morning Stoned Pimp [Video], will be highly disappointed.

View the music video for "Warrior", by Kid Rock featuring Dale Earnhart, Jr who drives the National Guard number 88 car.


Hat tip: JJ of FreeKeene.com

One of the most popular web searches related to marijuana is, "How to fool a drug test." While the answer remains elusive there are few tricks that can help you when your future or current employer hands you the little white cup.

Chemical & Engineering News: Business - To Catch A Cheat: "The hundreds of products marketed to help drug users circumvent urine drug tests fall into three main categories: products that are consumed prior to the test, products that are added to the test sample, and devices for smuggling synthetic or borrowed 'clean' urine into the testing facility. Toxicologists focus on the first two because, as Sample pointed out, 'if it's someone else's urine, there is not a lab test in the world that would tell you that.'"
So the answer from this unlikely source is simply, "swap urine." Of course using a warmer like "Hot Hands" available in the outdoors section of Walmart, is necessary to keep urine within a normal range of body temperature. Detox systems simply dilute urine to undetectable levels. This trick is easily recognized by competent laboratories.

There are several problems I have with employer drug screening. Marijuana users are unfairly discriminated against because THC is stored in body fat and is detectable long after hard, dangerous drugs have left the system. Prescription drugs are oft abused, even when acquired under legitimate pretense. However many "scripts" aren't tested and if the individual can produce documentation positive results are excused. Finally, drug tests can't actually determine if an employee is or will be impaired at work. THC remains in the body long after, sometimes weeks after the high has subsided.

Here's a table from the article above you might find useful.

Apparently dogs weren't able to be trained at Mark H. Luttrell Correctional Center because of a lack of air conditioning. Apparently in Tennessee we'll cage women in boxes not suitable for animals. I wish people would wake up and understand that the war on drugs is an affront to human rights.

Tennessee Women’s Prison to again Train Dogs: "A West Tennessee women's prison that was deemed this summer to be too hot for a dog training program is scheduled to get air conditioning."

Prosecutors and judges often have to deceive jurors in order to win medical marijuana prosecutions. By omitting relevant facts and disallowing testimony of witnesses, jurors are often tricked into believing individuals running legitimate businesses are running criminal enterprises. Now two jurors in California are fighting back.

The Modesto Bee - Second thoughts and a new pot trial?: "Buyer's remorse from two of 12 jurors is not enough to toss out guilty verdicts that could send two men who ran a Modesto-based medical marijuana dispensary to prison for decades or even life.

So attorneys who want to win a new trial for Ricardo Ruiz Montes and Luke Scarmazzo are taking a different approach, arguing that jurors were unduly influenced by a San Francisco Chronicle story about pot clubs that was published during their deliberations."

Friday, September 5, 2008

PRESS RELEASE:

Fayetteville, AR: Fayetteville voters will have the choice on Election Day to vote on making adult marijuana possession the lowest police priority. Sensible Fayetteville initiative sponsors turned in just over 1000 additional signatures on August 29 to meet a shortfall of 301 valid signatures. City Clerk Sondra Smith contacted campaign coordinator Ryan Denham today to say that the petition has qualified with over the required total of 3686 signatures that were required to qualify the petition.

Denham praised the city clerk and staff for their professional conduct and courtesy during the laborious verification process. "They worked hard. We were impressed by city operations."

"Now we turn our attention to providing more in-depth information to the voters leading up to Election Day. This initiative offers residents an important opportunity to help guide Fayetteville’s future through better allocation of our resources. It also shows that Fayetteville is willing to take a leadership role among other cities across the nation in addressing failed public policy. And we believe this will benefit Fayetteville’s largest industry, the University of Arkansas, by reducing the number of students penalized with loss of financial aid for marijuana prosecutions. We respect the dedication of our police and prosecutor and believe this measure spells out the public’s full support for their use of enforcement discretion."

Sensible Fayetteville formed in 2007 as a coalition of OMNI Center for Peace, Justice, & Ecology, the Green Party of Washington County, the University of Arkansas student group NORML-SSDP, and the Alliance for Reform of Drug Policy in Arkansas, Inc.

The measure, entitled "Lowest Law Enforcement and Prosecutorial Priority Policy Ordinance," would require Fayetteville police and prosecutor to treat adult marijuana possession offenses as their lowest priority. Further, the measure requires the city clerk to send an annual letter to state and federal legislators, governor, and president stating: "The citizens of Fayetteville have passed an initiative to de-prioritize adult marijuana offenses, where the marijuana is intended for personal use, and request that the federal and Arkansas state governments take immediate steps to enact similar laws." This duty shall be carried out until state and federal laws are changed accordingly.

The full text of the proposed ordinance can be viewed at www.sensiblefayetteville.com Similar laws have been passed by communities in Missouri, Montana, Washington, California, and Colorado. In Arkansas, a similar measure in Eureka Springs passed with 62% of the vote in 2006. Sponsors state that more than one survey by Zogby International have show that over two-thirds of Arkansas voters support reforms that would reduce penalties for adult marijuana use.

Thursday, September 4, 2008


Bling Buckles 08-09-08, originally uploaded by Amie V.

I was checking out Memphis photographer, Amie Vanderford's, online slideshow when my wife noticed the Ganja leaf belt buckle in this pic. On further examination we noticed that the photog Amie's reflection is in the ganja leaf. Pretty freaking cool.

Checkout more of Amie's photography on Flickr and her own site.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Allen St. Pierre, Executive Directory of NORML has a scathing rebuttal of the ONDCP's outrageous claims on their blog. The post is on The Hill's blog which is widely read by congressional staffers and lobbyists. Hopefully staffers at the ONDCP will stop getting invited to D.C. cocktail parties and change their tune.

Congress and the Media Should be Dubious of Office of Nat’l Drug Control Policy’s Claims: ...Cannabis cases however, notably minor possession cases, still clog the criminal justice system and are at the heart of dozens of state and federal appellate cases that have largely established less—not more—liberty and economic freedom for citizens. The gravitas of the state and federal conflict on the issue of cannabis prohibition so contentious the US Supreme Court has had to twice intervene since 2001 on the specific issue of medical access to cannabis for dying, sick and sense-threatened patients (in both cases, the court strongly deferred to Congress’ prerogative to pass anti-cannabis legislation, regardless of how illogical or devoid of compassion, reason and science).

Perhaps, having more credibility with law and order crowd, Seattle's former police chief, Norm Stamper can affect the debate with his brilliant arguments in the video below, courtesy of Reason.tv.

Possession of a plant can not only cost you your right to vote, it can also disqualify you from public service.

Commercial Appeal - Felony arrest ends Pearson's bid for Bartlett post - The Shelby County Election Commission ruled that Steve Pearson III, who filed to face Young in the Nov. 4 election, did not qualify for the race. While there were questions about Pearson's residency, a guilty plea to a felony charge of possession of 46 pounds of marijuana in 1989 was enough for the commission to disqualify Pearson, 57, from the election.

This is how they silence their political dissenters. I watched AKA Tommy Chong last night that anecdotes how they railroad non-violent pot offenders through the system, cage them, and strip them of their rights. Pot-prohibition violators are political prisoners. It's time to end this war on the American people and restore the rights of its casualties.

Due to a void I've found on the blogging scene, I'm looking for 6-10 pro-cannabis, pro-medical marijuana, pro-hemp, or anti-prohibition, however you define it, to write on this blog about once a week. If you'd like to contribute and individual piece, that's great too. If you normally write on issues other than marijuana and re-legalization on your own blog and would like to keep your pro-cannabis views separate and anonymous I can give you a forum here. If you're from Memphis, the Mid-South, or the Southeastern US, I especially want you, because there are regional issues that affect the debate here. You can email me at the address in the right-hand column or message me on my Twitter account.

I swear that any personal information you choose to divulge to me, none necessary I assure you, will never become public. The privacy of my partners will be protected by the First Amendment Freedom of the Press.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

I read this news story: Morocco destroyed a 2,736 hectare cannabis farm. That's an area almost 20 times the size of Overton Park*. That's an unreal bust, and yet supply for the United States in the coming year won't be diminished. We're the country with the greatest marijuana consumption in the world.

I saw this story later: Police make large marijuana bust, police in Louisville take in 5 suspects for possessing between 200 and 500 pounds of marijuana. Why does the news media not take note of the outrageous claims of law enforcement? Repeatedly we are told about large busts of multiple hundreds of pound of cannabis, but that's not even a comet in the universe of buds smoked in this country. According to the White House's Marijuana SourceBook [PDF] I've conservatively approximated that 60,000 Memphians use cannabis. That crowd would fill the Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium.

No one could fathom the acreage of bud you would have to produce to feed the demand of the residents of our city. We are constantly bombarded with claims that the drug warriors are winning, Blue Crush?, that they're "keeping drugs of the streets", when clearly they aren't. Instead we're crowding 201 Poplar full of the fathers of our dying babies. Watch the 20/20 preview if you haven't already. If marijuana were taxed and regulated, or simply free to grow and consume the money wouldn't be going to the thugs fueling the violence.

We're giving outrageous profits to the gangsters that rule our streets and cause one of the highest homicide rates in the country. Marijuana prohibition is causing and perpetuating our problems. You just can't keep drugs out the hands of a free people. Unless you want a totalitarian state, end the marijuana prohibition.

*2,736 hectares / 342 acres = 19.77

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Hot 107.1 which in the past I have regarded to be the best hip-hop station in the Dirty South, has censored the political message of Young Jeezy's new single, Crazy World. The lyric in question is toward the end of the first verse and repeated again in the second.

They want that young shit, That dumb shit,
That where ya from shit,
That ride around ya' hood all day, wit ya gun shit,
All I got to my name, is 2 bricks and one felony,
You going back to jail,
That's what my conscience keep on telling me,
I really ain't buying all that bullshit they selling me,
When the government throwing more curves than the letter C,
I said the letter C, I guess that's for correctional,
They tryin' to box me in, sit me still like a vegetable,
Goddamn another trap, I think Bush is tryin punish us,
Send a little message out to each and everyone of us,
Real G shit, well that's really unheard of,
When you get more time for sellin' dope than murder.
In this crazy world.
Along with the FCC-banned language, censors have removed the word "dope" from the emphasized line, thereby removing the political message from the song. For some young black men, for taking only economic opportunity they will ever have, the government will lock them in a cage. It is senseless that a man would be locked away for possessing and selling a plant, marijuana, that has never harmed or killed anyone.

I understand that due to the family audience broadcasters want to remove lyrics that glamorize drug use, but this time they've gone overboard. The song in no way reflects the glamorous life of a drug dealer. In cries out about the injustice faced by young black men in America. Empirical evidence from multiple studies shows that the drug war unfairly targets blacks and Hispanics. Cannabis is used by a higher percentage of whites than any ethnic minority group.

Flynn Broadcasting is owned by perpetual Republican candidate, inventor, and doctor, Memphian George Flynn. His son Shea Flinn sits on the City Council. I call on the Flinn family to ensure that the political messages of rappers heard on Hot 107.1 not be silenced. Don't reduce their message to a minstrel show for your own profit.

Below is the full, unedited version while it's still up on Youtube. Probably not safe for work if you're watching this from the air-conditioned comfort of your cubicle. People that really work for a living are probably OK.


I respect what Alex Jones does, but I don't subscribe to conspiracy chasing much because it's time consuming and unproductive. I'd rather be a voice of reason and liberty. However, I will agree, because it's well documented, that organizations like Skull and Bones, Bohemian Grove, and the Bilderberg Group exist and operate to conspire to rule us. Their symbolism exists in government and court logos, emblems, seals, etc. This is the first time I've recognized Death's Head, (a.k.a skull and crossbones, ☠) imagery in Drug Enforcement Administration patches.

I first saw an image like this on the below from Ian of Free Talk Live and FreeKeene.com. Apparently the emblem isn't widely used or it would be prevalent across the net. It does trouble me because law enforcement supposedly exists to "serve and protect" and "keep us safe." I can't count how many times I've been told I should be grateful to law enforcement for the protection the provide to me and my family. If this is the case why do they exert force like the Marines?

The Marines are not peace keepers or law enforcement, they are the nation's "shock troops*." Vice versa, the police shouldn't be shock troops, raining down death and destruction to our cities. Local, state and federal administrators shouldn't allow their law enforcement divisions to use imagery of death to intimidate the public. I'm sure my plea will fall on deaf ears.



* I highly recommend you watch Generation Kill for a rather accurate depiction of how the Marines operate, then compare it with how you'd like domestic law enforcement to behave.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Drug War Music Video

Saturday, August 23, 2008

I was aghast when Drug Warrior Joe Biden was selected to be Obama's Vice Presidental running mate. Here are three quick reasons not to vote for Obama/Biden in November.

  1. Both Obama and Biden are lawyers* who've never had to work for a living
  2. Joe Biden created the Office of National Drug Control Policy
  3. Biden also coined the term Drug Czar
*My disdain for lawyers is deeply seeded in the fact that they've created a system that enslaves the American public to the law.

Unless and independent choice, someone like Ron Paul, emerges as a candidate, I'm going to be boycotting this election.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Every year hundreds of acres of old growth forest are defiled by evil corn farmers in order to supply energy fiends with a healthy supply of ethanol corn. No, not really, because corn farming is a legal business and corn farmers are able to manage existing privately-owned farm land to tend their crops. This is not the case with cannabis farming.

Outdoor cannabis farming is a risky profession. Not only does a grower have to protect his/her crop from like natural dangers, pests, mold, and drought, the grower must also maintain security from rivals and law enforcement. These risks force growers into old growth forest like the beautiful and pristine Sequoia National Forest where the chances of being discovered amongst the massive trees is slim. I'll concede it is true these clandestine farmers don't have the best interests of the public or forest in mind when choosing a growing patch, fertilizers, or security measures.

From my previous post you know that I support the protection of America's remaining old growth forest, especially the Old Forest at Overton Park. The DEA and other LEOs would have you to believe that deforestation for the purpose of cannabis farming is rooted in the evil intentions of growers. If the environment was really the concern of the Drug Warriors then legitimate businesses would be able to farm hemp outdoors and cultivate medicinal-quality marijuana in secure indoor greenhouses. Asset forfeiture policies make growing on private property too risky, as a result delicate ecosystems suffer.

Legalizing marijuana and hemp will move production from criminal growers on public land, to legitimate farmers on private property. Re-Legalization is a policy of environmental harm reduction.
clipped from www.cnn.com

Mexican cartels running pot farms in U.S. national forest

SEQUOIA NATIONAL FOREST, California (CNN) -- Beyond the towering trees that have stood here for thousands of years, an intense drug war is being waged.

Ten thousand marijuana plants, some 5 feet tall, dotted the mountainside's steep terrain amid thick brush, often near streams. This garden's street value is an estimated $40 million, authorities said.

"It's something that's troubling for many of us in law enforcement," he said. "You have illegal criminal activity in the mountain regions not only destroying the natural beauty of the landscape but as well as the potential for this product to reach the children of this community."

I am in full support of the efforts of the Citizens to Preserve Overton Park to protect Memphis' crown jewel, The Old Forest at Overton Park. The Memphis Flyer's cover story this week, Out of the Woods profiles the concerns of the CPOP and the Zoo's efforts to turn a 10,000 living forest into a dead exhibit. Of course, this has nothing at all to do with Cannabis Freedom, but did you ever notice that where government treads, death and destruction follow?

Today I noticed that the small CPOP flyer image on Flickr was the perfect size for my cell phone wallpaper. You can save it and email it to your phone's MMS email address. Check your service provider if you don't know it.
clipped from www.flickr.com

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Phillip Leveque, MD notes some interesting facts about FDA approved psychotropic drugs. These dangerous pills are some of the most abused substances in America. However, the government still wants to believe that cannabis, a non-toxic plant, proven to safely and effectively manage pain, is dangerous enough to warrant breaking down doors and caging human beings.
clipped from www.salem-news.com

The list included the following highly advertised Antidepressant, obviously very dangerous drugs: Prozac, Zoloff, Paxil, Effexor, Celexa, Wellbutrin (Zyban), Cymbalta, Chantex, Lexapro, Luvox, Remerom, Ritalin, Psychotropics, ADHD meds, SSRI’s, Seroquel, Strattera, Resperdal, Accutane, Steroids, Desipramine, Zoloft plus Ambien and Valium, Lexapro with Zoloft and Methadone. I only looked at the first five of the thirty-five pages. I’m almost afraid to look further.

The bizarre behavior included school shootings, murder and murder attempts, suicides, mania and psychosis, bank robbery, many deaths, self mutilation, violent behavior, anxiety, panic attacks. I could go on but I hope the reader gets the idea.

West Helena Mayor James Valley says, “The citizens deserve peace, that some infringement on constitutional rights is OK and we have not violated anything as far as the Constitution.” The mayor and the city council have put the tiny Arkansas town under a 24-hour curfew. The people of West Helena are being imprisoned, without cause, in their own homes.

Reason's Jacob Sullum tries to wade through the bullshit:
clipped from www.reason.com
So the government creates a black market that disproportionately hurts poor people, enforces its drug laws in a way that disproportionately hurts poor people, and responds to the resulting violence and disorder with police tactics that disproportionately hurt poor people. When civil libertarians object, they are dismissed as privileged pointy-heads who do not understand the problems of poor people.

The Liberty Papers has a thoughtful piece on the dichotomy between the justice system's expectations of untrained, startled, and terrified citizens and their expectations of well-armed, tactically trained law enforcement officers. Heaven forbid that a private citizen try to protect babies from masked, heavily-armed gunmen breaking down the doors of their homes in the middle of the night. We, as a society, justify the intrusion and murder of innocent people just to keep Americans from getting high.

When I was growing up I remember learning that as a society, we held police, elected officials, and other authority figures to a higher moral standard. Now we justify barbaric behavior with the "Drug War," which is really just a war on the American People. Like our imperial foreign policy, we've allowed the ends to justify the means.

Hat tip: The Agitator


A Tale of Two Drug Raids

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. For those who wore the badge, they could do no wrong. For the “badge-nots,” they could do no right.

I only wish this was a work of fiction but it is not. When it comes to drug raids (often no-knock raids), suspects (whether guilty or innocent) are treated with a different standard when a life is taken by mistake.

But what happens when the police shoot the wrong person?

 blog it

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

In this Bush economy the government continues to oppress us by limiting the types of economic stimulus we could provide ourselves. There are people starving in the world and we're converting corn to fuel. At the same time a true industrial crop isn't allowed to be grown, even in climates where it would be the most ideal crop. Hemp is forbidden, not for any rational reason. It doesn't contain the medicine found in its sister plant. The innovations stifled by these arbitrary and capricious regulations are immeasurable.


Lotus announces hemp-based Eco Elise: a new type of ‘green’ car:

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Although U.K.'s Prime Minister claims that the cannabis found on the street is of "lethal quality" and the White House is getting hysterical about the "dangers" of potent pot, the evidence refutes those claims. In fact alcohol and prescription drugs remain, by far, the deadliest substances. Cannabis, however, remains harmless.

Legal Drugs Kill Far More Than Illegal, Florida Says - NYTimes.com: "The Florida report analyzed 168,900 deaths statewide. Cocaine, heroin and all methamphetamines caused 989 deaths, it found, while legal opioids — strong painkillers in brand-name drugs like Vicodin and OxyContin — caused 2,328.

Drugs with benzodiazepine, mainly depressants like Valium and Xanax, led to 743 deaths. Alcohol was the most commonly occurring drug, appearing in the bodies of 4,179 of the dead and judged the cause of death of 466 — fewer than cocaine (843) but more than methamphetamine (25) and marijuana (0)."

A Grandfather Looks Back on 40 Years of Happy Pot Smoking:

"Father's Day 2008 My Dear Ones,

Marijuana has been proven one of the safest therapeutically active drugs known to mankind. I have used it with little or no harm for 40 years. My mind still finds cannabis fun and enlightening after decades of inter-cranial adventures, and, as an adult, should you choose to employ a drug for such purposes, marijuana is the only drug I would recommend. For me, pot is fun and is very easy to walk away from, if need be. Also, cannabis possesses healing properties I'd ever dreamed or suspected possible. And as I continue to age, and I require more healing from my sports and work-related injuries, trusty cannabis helps me maintain my quality and love of life.

Much Love,

Dad (and now Grandpa)

Friday, May 30, 2008

Here's Memphis own Frayser Boy, from the Academy Award winning group Three 6 Mafia, from his latest album Da Key with Hood Thang.


Al Kapone, featuring Three 6 Mafia and Young AJ with We on Deck from True Underdog album to be released later this year.


I was going to feature a pretty hot rapper out of Texas, I even had a cool post title already picked out, but Universal Music Group seems to have disallowed embedding their YouTube videos. Sucks to be them because it prevents me from promoting their goods. Hey, UMG, you're hurting artists punishing your customers and their fans!

I've discontinued the use of "Funky Friday" for the cannabis related alliteration "Four 20 Friday". Like always, I'll usually post it in time for 4:20 on Friday afternoon and tag it "music" so you can search later. Formerly I tried to post my music recommendations at 4:20, but that really doesn't give you any time to queue up the track and roll one. As a courtesy to the artist and my readers, I'm featuring I've now added a Amazon store link to buy the album containing my featured track, when available.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Psychwatch, the psychology watchdog blog, writes about "add on" drugs which are slightly different, to retain patent protection, but no more effective than the original drugs. By slightly changing the chemical makeup of the drug pharmaceutical companies can manipulate doctors in to prescribing the "new and improved" version instead of an old formulation which would be filled with a generic. By using technicalities written into the patent law Big Pharma is bilking the patients and insurance companies out of millions in generic drug savings.

Patent law's intent is to protect the little guy from the competition stealing his/her idea. Now the US Patent and Trade Office serves to protect the revenue streams of the largest corporate patent holders. If we're going to have patent law at all it should be written to encourage innovation, not prevent it.

I blame modern medicine, specifically pharmaceuticals, for creating superbugs like MSRA, which incidentally kills more people than AIDS. MSRA is is a form of staph bacteria that is resistant to most common antibiotics. Not only are most antibiotics ineffective at treating MSRA they are unnecessary to treat most skin infections. An MSRA skin infection and is killed within days with a Tea Tree Oil based salve available at Wild Oats/Whole Foods for about $15. That's less than my office visit copay.

Slate.com has a piece on the overuse of antibiotics, specifically pressure felt by the doctor from patients who believe antibiotics are necessary to cure common ailments. Now, a placebo is being marketed to parents to fool their children into thinking that they need a pill to feel better. Do we really want to foster drug dependency in our children? The ONDCP believes that now America's pill popping is becoming a problem, but the government's management of the pharmaceutical industry, and western medicine's disdain for anything alternative, natural, homeopathic, or herbal that exacerbates the problem. The answer is to deregulate the medical industry, both conventional and alternative medicine, and let patients and doctors, rather than legal standards, decide the best and most effective course of treatment.

Pill popping is extremely dangerous and the risks are well documented but rarely taken into consideration by doctors looking to satisfy patient demand. In comparison alternative herbal remedies like medical marijuana are extremely safe and non-toxic to the human body. Of course what makes cannabis unsafe is the threat of government breaking down your door at night.

Hat tip to the Drug Roar blog.

Friday, May 23, 2008

I've always thought that the cheesy, I ♥ My Wife, Promise Keepers' bumper sticker was a freaking lame attempt at convincing oneself that their love life doesn't suck. What changes between the time a couple is having mad, passionate, freaky dorm room college sex, and married "I look like hell because I've been at work all day and my job sucks and if I don't get laid this week I'm going to go postal" sex? Sure, circumstances change and most of the time those circumstances change us so much that we can completely lose focus of each other and our once passionate romance.This leaves a couple held together by only superficial business arrangements, like debt repayment and housing arrangements.

I don't want to live my life like that and I don't understand why anyone else would want to either. Perhaps that's why men cheat. Men are animals when it comes to sex, so the biological element of reproductive desire is a relevant motive. But, there is also a need among men to be the rock on which a woman depends, and the object of her desire. Most ordinary men don't really want to be playboys. The just have a genuine psychological need to have one woman that will swoon at their touch or hold on tight after sex.

Some women may have cliché, "white knight" fantasies about men. Male fantasies aren't much different, only more explicit, more animal. There may be more subtext apparent in romance novels than Letters to Penthouse, but I think that's because men are prone to pragmatism. Women want to know why the cowboy has the milkmaid in the woodshed. Men just want to be the cowboy. The desire is reciprocal, and if shared, mutually beneficial.

So, if our deepest desires are evident on the pages of mainstream romance novels and role-playing porn, why is it so damn hard to bring that romance into a marriage? I don't understand. At what point did we lose sight of that goal of a romantic relationship? Our fantasies don't change, so why then do they cease being a priority? Our lives have become so cluttered with selfishness and consumerism, bad habits and vices that we start to ignore the things that could bring true fulfillment to our lives.

Fear, is another emotion that destroys our ability to romanticize our relationships. Fear, specifically a fear of failure, sensationalizes risk. By closing ourselves off, making ourselves less vulnerable, being dishonest with ourselves and our mates about what are true desires are, we mitigate that risk. We keep ourselves safe from the pain of rejection and humiliation that comes with being sexually shut down. I will admit, it is immensely more devastating for me to get shut down by the woman I love than it was to get rejected a stranger in public when I was single.

Some people will say that they just want to love and be loved. I want to desire and be desired. I want to romance and be romanced. I love my wife, but I know she needs more than that. We can be better together, I'm certain of it. The desire is part of us and so we shouldn't ignore it, repress it, or sabotage it. We should do things to explore our desire for one another, and in doing so become closer to each other.

I want to be her white knight. That doesn't work when I'm so caught up in my own distresses, because I'm not available to rescue (for lack of a better term) her from hers. I think the goal need to be moved from mere marriage (arrangement) survival to a goal of romance and unbridled passion and romance. This means, of course, that I'll have to stop playing it safe or being self absorbed, and start learning how to be the object of my woman's desire.

FYI: The title comes from the txt slang: I<3U

As promised, here's a fresh track out of the M-Town: Whatever I Want to Do, from MJG's independent "mixtape" Pimp Tight. Here MJG, takes liberty with one of the more eclectic hits of the 80's and/or 90's, Susanne Vega's Tom's Diner.

After checking out the history of Tom's Diner, a.k.a. Monk's from Seinfeld, I realized MJG's version is just another iteration of the life of this song. I think artists that stifle derivatives of their work with the intention of protecting their intellectual property are probably doing themselves a disservice and decreasing their mainstream longevity.

I think Andy Warhol was extremely optimistic when he predicted that in the future people would only be famous for 15 minutes. This is evident by the 10 minute limit placed on Youtube videos. But of course the longevity of moments of fame can be exponentially increased in duration and significance through derivative works.

And now for something completely different... but relevant to the conversation, I give you Weezer's Pork and Beans:

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

This insightful and comprehensive post, A guide to debunking Drug Warrior Talking Points from The Maple ThreeCanada thoroughly disarms the drug war propagandists' major arguments for cannabis prohibition. On the "gateway drug" theory:

"...it is not marijuana’s pharmacological properties that serve as a gateway, but rather marijuana’s illegal status. Specifically in the process of illegally procuring marijuana, users are introduced to the criminal elements with access to other illicit drugs and hence it is the forged blackmarket relationship between dealer and buyer that serves as gateway. Ironically the gateway drug theory has been turned on its head and used as reason for legalizing the drug."
Particularly fascinating is the debunking of the cannabis/schizophrenia "link."
Specifically, should there be a causal link between marijuana and schizophrenia, there should be a positive correlation between marijuana consumption and schizophrenia, but such a correlation is conspicuous by its absence. Despite a massive increase in the number of Australians consuming the drug since the 1960s, Wayne Hall of the University of Queensland found no increase in the number of cases of schizophrenia in Australia.
In related news Paul Armento of NORML has an opportunistic but enlightening article on Ted Kennedy's Glioma cancer and cannabanoid therapy. Armento reminds us that cannabis doesn't cause cancer, it fights cancer. Youtube video here.
...cannabinoids can halt the spread of numerous cancer cells -- including prostate cancer, breast cancer, lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, and in one human clinical trial, brain cancer.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Marijuana Moms

I keep finding more and more stories about responsible adults that find it beneficial to incorporate cannabis use into their dangerous routine. Middle-class suburban moms are no different. I could think of no better way to relax after chasing rugrats around all day than with a cup of tea and a smoke.

SheKnows Daily Dish - A survey by ChiKii.com ... found that a lot of women, mostly moms, between the ages of 30-49 smoked pot at least on occasion. I had a chance to interview several of these women. Take a look. You might be surprised. I was surprised that several of my very good friends smoke on a regular basis and all of them are accomplished and outstanding moms. You know the kind of moms that often make you feel like an inadequate mother. :) Watch Marijuana Mommies below. [A commercial will appear before the interview segment]

In related news, the season 4 premiere of Showtime's Weeds, a drama about a cannabis dealing mom, debuts on June 16. I plan on covering the premiere in depth closer to that date.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

I'm becoming more and more impressed with the story of a couple walking from Seattle to New Hampshire and chronicling it on a YouTube video blog. Right now they're headed through Oregon, over the Cascade mountain range. The scenic views and Will's witty commentary have his blog on my A list(my top 5% of 290 subscriptions).

Will and Brooke are walking to New Hampshire to generate awareness to the Free State Project, an organization of liberty loving individuals moving to New Hampshire. By pooling the political power of hundreds of libertarian they hope to shrink the government of New Hampshire. This of course means ending the state war on drugs in New Hampshire.

The latest installation, Day 27, covers waterfalls, mountain trails, and wildlife and more. Watch it to get the joke in the title.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Our first track is Young Jeezy's first single from his upcoming album "I Am Trap." Frankly the first few minutes of this song left me unimpressed. When the bridge hit at the 3:18 mark I was stunned. Rarely is today's popular hip hop so introspective and intellectually honest. Young Jeezy pours out his heart and examines the meaninglessness of fame and fortune.

Ecclesiastes 2

10 I denied myself nothing my eyes desired;
I refused my heart no pleasure.
My heart took delight in all my work,
and this was the reward for all my labor.

11 Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done
and what I had toiled to achieve,
everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind;
nothing was gained under the sun.

Young Jeezy - Put On


Rapper T.I. gives us another perspective of life as a rapper in his new track, "No Matter What." He was recently convicted and sentenced to a year in jail for weapons charges. Of course, he wasn't using the guns in a commission of a crime, rather he faced the disenfranchisement of self-defense rights because of a prior control substance conviction.

Even though his infractions have been non-violent and consensual T.I. has been singled out and harassed for the last decade by local and federal authorities. Regardless of the persecution he's faced T.I. reminds us that he's strong and he's a survivor.

T.I. - No Matter What

Next week, I'll try and return to Memphis for some hometown hip-hop. You can send your suggestions to ganjablue@gmail.com. I'd love to hear from some up-and-coming artists.

As long as prisons are profitable we won't ever see a decline in their population. Even though violent crime is down drastically from the 1970's or prison population continues to skyrocket. Every year more and more draconian steps are taken to harshly punish non-violent consensual crime, like drug possession, gambling, alcohol (the most dangerous drug) and of course dirty-dirty consensual sex. The only humor in it seems to be in this satire by Steven Colbert.



I saw this show live last night. The Texas Prison Bidness blog beat me to the post.

Ganja Blue strives to bring you news, analysis, and commentary about drug war topics and other cultural issues affecting Memphis and the Mid-South. I persistently monitor the news wires for breaking stories so that you'll get them long before they get filtered out by the mainstream media. Of course commentary can frequently be dry and boring, so I intend to flavor the dialog with entertainment news, videos, and articles relevant to the cannabis culture. Subscribe now to my updates, either via email or through your favorite RSS news reader. Please, email tips to ganjablue@gmail.com. I promptly respond to all email.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Patrick Stegal of the Memphis Defense Attorney Blog, which I highly recommend, has posted some tips for avoiding a narcotics detector dog search. He reminds us that once a police officer has finished with a routine traffic stop you are under no obligation to stick around and answer any questions:

"... if a motorist has been stopped for speeding, a dog sniff could legally be performed by one officer while another is writing the ticket. Or the officer who made the stop could run a sniff while waiting for a check for warrants. This could take fifteen minutes or more. Plenty of time to get the dog out and about, or to even wait for another one to be brought in. However, if the stop is finished the officer, without additional suspicion, cannot prolong the stop to have a dog brought in. They cannot buy time, and they cannot ask additional questions not related to the stop."
Former police officer, Barry Cooper, has said in his video Never Get Busted Vol. 1 Traffic Stops, once the officer hands you ticket the Supreme Court has ruled that you are then free to leave. If the police officer continues to talk to you or ask you questions, politely ask if you are free to leave. If he/she persists, then ask if you are being detained, "Officer, am I being detained?" If he says "yes", then shut your mouth until you can call Patrick or another criminal defense attorney.

Its important that you don't try to chit-chat, what you say will be used against you. People lie to police officers all day long and they are used to it, so even if you're telling the truth there's a good chance they won't believe you. Remember to always stay calm, courteous, and respectful. Remember, you won't ever win an argument with a police officer and loosing your cool can land you in serious trouble.

For more on how to handle traffic stops watch Never Get Busted Vol. 1 Traffic Stops, and visit FlexYourRights.org.

Here's my take on the use of narcotic detector dogs.

Pillar of morality and piety, Bill O'Reilly, not only has a problem chasing skirts at the office, he also has problems treating his production staff with respect. This comes as no surprise from someone who broadcasts images of children in simulated sex acts.



O'Reilly has no moral authority to lambaste the City of Memphis or its children on national television, over the Mitchell High School "rape dance" videos. He needs to get his own house in order first.

Bill, your feigned and hypocritical indignation is revolting.

HT: The Agitator

The saga continues... O'Reilly again featured the Mitchell High School "Rape Dance" incident I blogged about yesterday. I'm outraged that people care more about the "rape dance" than a child being shot at this same school earlier this year. Where are our priorities?

If Bill O'Reilly was seriously disgusted with the kids' dancing then he wouldn't be looping the video over and over. He wants to play video of children simulating sex on his show to titillate his audience. A grown man that wants to play video of children simulating sex acts is what disgusts me.

No video here, but Mediaverse® has the full video. The O'Reilly Factor (Mitchell High continued)

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The mayor of Hailey, Idaho is throwing a crybaby fit . His constituents apparently think cannabis law is out of control, so they voted to direct the police to stop enforcing state marijuana law. What he did next defies logic.

Full Story: "The mayor, a city councilor, and the chief of police of this central Idaho city have sued the city over three pro-marijuana initiatives that were approved by voters in November.

The initiatives pose a challenge to city officials because the measures passed by voters conflict with state law.
...
The initiatives passed by voters in the Nov. 6 election would legalize industrial hemp, decriminalize medicinal marijuana, and make enforcing pot laws the city's lowest police priority. A fourth initiative, to legalize pot outright, fell just short of approval."
Mayor Rick Davis and his band of petty tyrants, City Councilman Don Keirn and Police Chief Jeff Gunter are trying to overrule the will of the people and recriminalize the plant. The bureaucrats have temporarily succeeded in delaying the implementation the measures. All four initiatives will come up for a vote again May 27, including the legalization initiative.

Turns out, not all cannabis users fit the "Stoners in the Mist" stereotype the ONDCP creates for us. It's no surprise that average middle-class individuals can enjoy cannabis and find it easy to incorporate their use into their lives. According to the press release:

A qualitative study of 41 Canadians surveyed in 2005-06 by U of A researchers showed that there is no such thing as a ‘typical’ marijuana user, but that people of all ages are selectively lighting up the drug as a way to enhance activities ranging from watching television and playing sports to having sex, painting or writing.

“For some of the participants, marijuana enhanced their ability to relax by taking their minds off daily stresses and pressures. Others found it helpful in focusing on the activity at hand,” said Geraint Osborne, a professor of sociology at the University of Alberta’s Augustana Campus in Camrose, and one of the study’s authors.

The study was published recently in the journal Substance Use and Misuse.

The focus was on adult users who were employed, ranging in age from 21 to 61, including 25 men and 16 women from Alberta, Quebec, Ontario and Newfoundland whose use of the drug ranged from daily to once or twice a year. They were predominantly middle class and worked in the retail and service industries, in communications, as white-collar employees, or as health-care and social workers. As well, 68 per cent of the users held post-secondary degrees, while another 11 survey participants had earned their high school diplomas.

The study also found that the participants considered themselves responsible users of the drug, defined by moderate use in an appropriate social setting and not allowing it to cause harm to others.
Government propagandists and the main stream media have been working tirelessly for the last 70 years to scare Americans into thinking that cannabis is a "demon weed" that corrupts people and drives them to lives of crime. This superstitious witch hunt has cost billions of dollars and ruined countless lives, while ignoring the fact that users are harmless, contributing members of society. The reason these propaganda campaigns fail to decrease cannabis consumption is because the claims are patently false and cannabis users know it.