Legal Marijuana Sparks Skepticism 

  Legal Marijuana Sparks Skepticism 

Posted by CN Staff on February 18, 2005 at 08:18:25 PT
By Mary Massingale, State Capitol Bureau 
Source: State Journal-Register 

Irvin Rosenfeld on Thursday expected to do his moral duty by testifying before Illinois lawmakers on the benefits of smoking marijuana for a painful bone disorder.He didn’t expect to be detained by Illinois secretary of state police for bringing in a tin containing about 150 federally approved joints. Call it “show and tell” gone bad.
The 51-year-old stockbroker from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., appeared in front of the House Human Services Committee in support of House Bill 407. Sponsored by Rep. Larry McKeon, D-Chicago, the proposal would legalize marijuana use for residents with debilitating medical conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis or AIDS.Federal law prohibits possession of the cannabis plant, but the U.S. Supreme Court will rule this year on whether federal officials can prosecute individuals who use medical marijuana. Ten states currently allow marijuana to be used for medicinal purposes.Rosenfeld is one of seven patients nationwide allowed to legally use marijuana under a now-closed federal program. Every 25 days, he picks up a tin of 300 marijuana cigarettes provided by the federal government at his local pharmacy. Smoking 10 to 12 cigarettes a day for the past 33 years - 22 1/2 years with the approval of the White House - has kept his bone tumors under control and managed the constant pain.He told committee members wanted to help give others the same relief he gets from smoking marijuana."When you have a disabling disease, it sucks," Rosenfeld said. "You want to make something good come out of something bad."It was about to get worse.After his testimony, Rosenfeld was detained by two secretary of state police officers stationed in the committee room. Extra security had been requested by the U.S. marshal's office for the earlier appearance of John Walters, the White House "drug czar."The officers walked Rosenfeld through a commonly used tunnel connecting the Capitol with the building housing the committee room, using a wheelchair when Rosenfeld complained of ankle pain. He was detained in a Capitol basement substation while officers called the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration to verify his story."He is in fact one of seven who are federally exempt," said Brad Demuzio, director of the secretary of state police.McKeon, a former Los Angeles police officer who is HIV positive, criticized the officers for taking it upon themselves to investigate Rosenfeld when they had heard his testimony about his marijuana use."I find that disgusting and offensive," McKeon said.Demuzio defended his officers, saying they were justified in the 30-minute detention."When you have a tin with 300 marijuana cigarettes and you walk into the Capitol and you tell us you have a federal exemption, you have to investigate," Demuzio said.The incident upstaged the earlier appearance of Walters, who serves as director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. He told lawmakers that marijuana use and dependency accounts for 60 percent of rehabilitation treatment sought nationwide and can often lead to methamphetamine use."This is not your father's marijuana," Walters said. "This is not your marijuana when you were in college, if you are a baby boomer. You are suffering under 'reefer madness' if you think it is."The Food and Drug Administration has not approved marijuana for medical use. A 1978 Illinois law allows participants in federally approved research projects to use medical marijuana, but that law has never been implemented.Committee members rejected HB407 on a 4-7 vote, with opponents asking how law enforcement officials could contain such a program.McKeon, however, said he would continue to push the proposal. He suggested setting up a teleconference among law enforcement officials in Illinois and the 10 states with medical-marijuana laws to further the debate."I'm going to proceed with this legislation, period," McKeon said.Note: Man detained by secretary of state police after he testifies before House committee.Source: State Journal-Register (IL)Author: Mary Massingale, State Capitol BureauPublished: Friday, February 18, 2005Copyright: 2005 The State Journal-RegisterContact: letters sj-r.comWebsite: Articles & Web Sites:Patients Out of Time Marijuana Information Links Detained After Bill Sinks in Committee Marijuana Users Look To Change Law Rejects Medical Marijuana Proposal

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Comment #28 posted by Richard Paul Zuckerm on February 20, 2005 at 14:00:02 PT:
Are Cops Constitutional?,
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Comment #27 posted by FoM on February 19, 2005 at 10:30:20 PT
Paying out money will make them pay attention the next time. We can hope.
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Comment #26 posted by global_warming on February 19, 2005 at 10:21:34 PT
OT:More disease from the wod
Dallas settles with 16 in fake drug frame-ups
Two dozen sued city over bogus 2001 arrestsFriday, February 18, 2005 Posted: 5:39 PM EST (2239 GMT)DALLAS, Texas (AP) -- The city will pay about $5.7 million to settle lawsuits brought by 16 people who were jailed after paid police informants planted bogus drugs on them, two attorneys said Friday.The settlements, first reported by The Dallas Morning News, cover more than half of the 24 plaintiffs -- mostly Mexican immigrants -- who sued over the 2001 arrests.Plaintiffs' attorney Don Tittle said 12 of his 19 clients reached settlements totaling about $4.5 million. Another plaintiffs' attorney, Tony Wright, said his four clients settled for about $1.2 million. The settlements ranged from $120,000 for a client who spent one day in jail to $480,000 for a client jailed for months, he said.City Attorney Madeleine Johnson did not immediately return a call.Informants planted packages of billiard chalk and other legal substances on people to frame them.Three informants went to federal prison in the scheme. At least two former narcotics officers have been charged. They are accused of evidence tampering.
Dallas settles with 16 in fake drug frame-ups
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Comment #25 posted by FoM on February 19, 2005 at 09:29:30 PT
Thanks! It's posted now!
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Comment #24 posted by afterburner on February 19, 2005 at 08:40:11 PT
Shocking, They Wimped Out
"Apparently his usual farrago of distortions and fabrications was convincing, because two Democrats flipped -- Michelle Chavez of Cicero and, to the shock of many in her liberal district, Naomi Jakobsson of Champaign -- and the bill was voted down"4-7Because of the buffoon, John P. Walters' unscientific and totally politically-incorrect lies, exaggerations and his usual bullying tactics. Shame on them for allowing the bully to make them abandon their consciences and the health of Illinois patients!6-5Those 2 votes would have made it 6-5. At least it would have gotten out of committee. Bye-bye, Michelle and Naomi, your constituents *will* hold this disgraceful retreat against you! As we say in Canada, "Bullying is bad, bullying bites, bullying bothers me. Take the pledge to stand up against bullies."The harder the Bush administration pushes the more resistance they create and the more people begin to see the truth, and "the truth will out."
farrago -- What a great word
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Comment #23 posted by afterburner on February 19, 2005 at 08:03:00 PT

I Was So Angry When I Read This Last Night...
that I was too tired to post a coherent comment. The fact of Irvin Rosenfeld's federal exemption shows the folly of the "schedule one lie." Irvin Rosefeld is living proof that the federal government *does* recognize the medical effectiveness of cannabis, even the dreaded smoked cannabis.The fact that he "was detained by two secretary of state police officers" is part of a global pattern of refusal of law enforcement to comply with legal medical cannabis laws: in California, the State Highway Patrol continues to confiscate the legal-in-California cannabis medicine from patients, who are in compliance with California law. In Canada medical cannabis patients are routinely harassed by law enforcement officers: the current legal-in-Canada medical cannabis program was won only through the dedicated efforts of court litigants who forced the federal government to provide exemptions and later supply. (Even though the cannabis sections of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act were declared unconstitutional in R. v. Parker and R. v. Krieger), the Canadian Solicitor General continues to give misleading and illegal advice to law enforcement officers to continue to arrest and prosecute people under a dead law! Worldwide examples abound. 
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Comment #22 posted by Stick on February 19, 2005 at 07:23:45 PT

I wonder,,,,
what kind of meds will help the family of the young marine that died in boot camp? Im having flashbacks to army b.c. 7/67. I was told b.c. would be tough, but never thought they might harm a recruit. I know they "pick" on some to teach discipline, but to let that young trooper drown is just too much. That fellow couldnt have weighed 120 lb. Never mind, business as usual. I hope his C.O. will have to sigh his death cert. He really didn't belong in the marines.
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Comment #21 posted by Jose melendez on February 19, 2005 at 06:40:09 PT

Yet Another Prohibitionist Called A Liar In the Press:,1413,113~7252~2721144,00.html
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Comment #20 posted by charmed quark on February 19, 2005 at 06:25:59 PT

FDA sure is amazing
The government has spent decades and millions of dollars trying to find harm in cannabis and still won't let it be used.Meanwhile, drugs are released without follow-up monitoring and are found, after release, to have shaky cost/benefits ratios. And then they decide to allow them to continue to be marketed.Don't get me wrong. It might be worth it to take a pain drug that might kill you.But this can make a really fun comparision next time some drug warrior says cannabis just isn't safe enough to use.-CQ 
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Comment #19 posted by charmed quark on February 19, 2005 at 06:18:54 PT

It's a shame he has to smoke so much
I bet Rosenfeld could get by with far less cannabis if he was using decent Californian or Canadian medical cannabis.It's amazing he can smoke so much without problems.-CQ
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Comment #18 posted by mayan on February 19, 2005 at 06:02:38 PT

Here's another take on the hearing...Two Excessive Displays At The Medical Marijuana Hearing:
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Comment #17 posted by Patrick on February 18, 2005 at 21:20:44 PT

The GCW, it is related!
I read a similar story about the FDA voting those drugs back on the market when I awoke early this morning! I thought to myself they voted? I thought they surely would have stamped it or declared it or authorized it or waved their bureaucratic wand it.Yep. You see, they (FDA) approved one of these safety-challenged manmade “painkillers” for profit by a vote of 17-13! Imagine that. Thirteen folks thought it may give you a stroke and a heart attack quite possibly resulting in your untimely demise but, hey, another 17 said what the heck it’s worth it. Vote for it!So I started thinking to myself. What if the voter’s in an entire state were to do something drastic. Say they were to vote for Prop 215 allowing the medicinal use of cannabis as a painkiller! Wouldn’t you think that would be the end of the story? But no, our government machine somehow continues with the insanity of prohibition even while we the citizens and voters voted to end it. Are we as a democratic society not entitled to have our vote on our health weigh at least as much as some governmental bureaucracy’s vote on it? The FDA can vote for poison for profit and yet we citizens are still denied cannabis herb for relief even after voting years ago to allow it. That my friend, is the crime of our time. Sometimes, I don’t even feel like a citizen anymore. I love this website because it is the one place where I can still feel the desire for liberty in people. I think the US is still the best place to live but the more I read, write, and rant, the more it seems that individual liberty is dying and doomed to a government that is nearly out of control with overseers like Walters and Barthwell. They weren’t even voted into any kind of office right? Walters is an overweight, be speckled government employee, whose job, in my opinion would make the perfect poster child for government waste. What ever happened to our government simply insuring that the free exercise of ones rights does not violate or trespass upon the rights of others? Where did that lofty ideal disappear too? How can growing cannabis in my yard and consuming its fall harvest violate other people’s rights? Someone explain that to me in simple English language please. Especially, when you take into account ones inherent right to privacy and to not let anyone know what one is doing or growing on their castle grounds? Now on the other hand, if I were to be discovered to be violating another’s right to life liberty and happiness like killers, thieves, rapists, and the like do, then I would want my government to “raid” the place and rescue the victims from the evil hand. So inherently, I don’t have a problem with law enforcement. I do have a problem with the seeming inability to change or undue stupid laws. Worse even, is when people vote something into law by popular referendum and instead of enforcing the new law, law enforcement is ordered, encouraged, and persuaded by inept politicians and bureaucrats to ignore the vote of the people and enforce the old law acting like the new law should never have been passed in the first place? How did it come to this in America? When did stupidity take over common sense? In history I could have sworn there was a time called the age of reason? Perhaps it was in some novel I read? Anyway, I think we need an age of reason round number two really really bad. I am suggesting here that “reason has left the room” only because for some unknown reason I am seeing the glass as half empty at the moment so I’ll hurry and end this rant. Well, except for one more.Why can’t the prohibitionists, the courts, and the politicians who supposedly run this national prison complex (country) understand that as an individual I am not victimizing myself with cannabis? If they are that concerned about me violating my own rights and victimizing myself, then please, start closing fast food places down. Please make french-fries and Hershey milk chocolate bars as illegal as crack cocaine and heroin. I promise if you do that for me, I’ll never buy them again! But, that is not gonna happen of course so why is cannabis treated so differently? Seems to me that if the FDA can vote the way they did and get away with it, then all the people that admittedly consume cannabis ought to be free to hold an election and vote on if we think the benefit of cannabis use in our lives outweighs the risk of its use? Now I am sure that if you have all the cannabis consumers lined up to cast a national vote we would have ourselves a very close race. It might even be closer than the vote on Vioxx and Bextra? However, in the end I am confident that we cannabis voters would approve cannabis use. The only remaining question I would have then would be if the government would then redirect its resources to more important matters like education, our health care system and other pressing social issues and simply leave us alone to pursue our personal happiness and cannabis?

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Comment #16 posted by Aragorn on February 18, 2005 at 20:28:36 PT

Where's the science?
 Bravo, for Sen. Durbin!! He is really distinguishing himself as the very best Senator. His consistent opposition to Bush's wars, the "Patriot" Act, Rice, Gonzales,and now his support of med/mar. at the federal level is just remarkable. Illinois residents really need to support him and let him know it.    Larry McKeon is also a very brave soul. The attached link is to a paper I wrote last Fall in support of the previous Illinois Cannabis Act. I sent it to Rep. McKeon but received no response from his office. I would be interested in what other Illinois residents who strongly support medical marijuana in Illinois think of it. It seems to me the state of the scientific evidence suggesting THC suppresses cancer is now so strong that, were it more widely known, would be enough to finally ignite a real grassroots movement demanding the immediate end of cannabis prohibition. I mean cancer has just surpassed heart disease as the number one killer of Americans!! If it was more widely appreciated that marijuana inhibits cancer - and the real science backs it up - it's the duty of people who respect legitimate science, let alone their own and family's health, to demand this new knowledge be acknowledged and enter into the public discussion. I mean as far as marijuana goes the world just isn't flat anymore and flat-earthers like Walters shouldn't be able to get away with still claiming it is.    And yet it never comes up! It is never entered into evidence against all the lies. The Angel Raich case presents the case of a woman with a brain tumor arguing before the Supreme Court that her daily marijuana use is controlling the growth of her tumor and the science backs up that claim
but other than a reference in her defense brief the Supremes hear none of it. Where are the expert witnesses? Where are the scientists doing the research being called to testify as to the meaning of their new discoveries? I really don't get it.    My hope has been that maybe here in Illinois some of this whole new understanding of the endogenous cannabinoid system could come out so it is very disappointing that once again the liars carry the day.   Last week, I sent the following excellent paper to every member of the Human Services Committee: 
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Comment #15 posted by mayan on February 18, 2005 at 18:18:57 PT

Off Topic...
Thanks for the info on the "truth in trials" bill, FoM. If medical neccessity is allowed to be raised as a defense there isn't a jury in the land that will convict! Thanks for your info also, Pete! Wish I could've been there!Since the news is slow here are some more recent links regarding the achilles heel of the Bushies. THE WAY OUT IS THE WAY IN...Penn prof says views may get him fired - In wake of Churchill controversy calls 9/11 attacks 'inside job': 9/11 Deception Dollar Action at A Store Near You:' 9/11 Tapes Willfully Destroyed:'s Towering Inferno & The 9/11 Building Collapse Cover-Up: Second Wave - New books, new groups fuel smoldering resurgence of 9/11 skeptics movement:
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Comment #14 posted by The GCW on February 18, 2005 at 17:45:34 PT

Panel Backs Keeping Pain Drugs on Market RANDOLPH E. SCHMID, Associated Press Writer WASHINGTON - "Millions of people who depend on the popular painkillers Celebrex, Bextra and Vioxx should be allowed to keep using them despite risks of heart problems and strokes, government advisers said Friday, concluding that benefits to suffering patients outweigh the dangers." CONT.420Cannabis is safer compared to this garbage, it just doesn't kill anyone... If We could get it to kill people maybe cannabis would become legal.Blowing holes in submarines; all day long.It is on it's last roll of duct tape...
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Comment #13 posted by JoeyHemp on February 18, 2005 at 14:50:51 PT:

I think this shows how the "law" is being abusive to ANY cannabis user or consumer. I am getting sick and tired of this dog & pony show. Those bastards in D.C. need to remember they are to serve the public and not themselves. I want to be able to use cannabis in all it's forms. Medicle is a start.A wee bit angry,
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Comment #12 posted by Agog on February 18, 2005 at 12:35:43 PT

HarASSment Plain and Simple
I find that one of the greatest challenges is be to behave rationally in the face of such atrocity. "When you have a tin with 300 marijuana cigarettes and you walk into the Capitol and you tell us you have a    federal exemption, you have to investigate," Demuzio said.Hmmmm he is one of SEVEN people in the program.... a high profile one at that... The secret service, The Drug Czar (what a title) are present and Mr. Demuzio says "we have to investigate" I suppose phone calls during Mr. Rosenfield's testimony were just toooooo difficult. No, instead they wait, ambush him and then make the calls... Cold, Calculating, Cowardly Bastards.I continue to wish all the Best to the entire Cnews Community....Agog
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Comment #11 posted by schmeff on February 18, 2005 at 12:12:47 PT

Funny (kind of) Article, Seige
Full of syntactical (as well as the obvious factual) atrocities:"The whole country is in agreement that nobody should be using meth. The whole country should be in agreement about using marijuana," Law said.or how about the photo caption:"DEA agent Cinda Lutz gives a presentation on the dangers of marijuana and decreasing drug use in Minnesota Thursday at the Austin Public Library."The dangers of decreasing drug use are pink slips for DEA agents.
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Comment #10 posted by FoM on February 18, 2005 at 11:30:10 PT

News Brief: Senators Sign on to Marijuana Bill
February 18, 2005WASHINGTON — Vermont’s Sens. Patrick Leahy and James Jeffords have signed on as co-sponsors of a medical marijuana bill introduced by Illinois Democrat Richard Durban.Like the House version of the bill, the Senate Truth in Trials Act would end the federal government’s gag on medical marijuana defendants in court, according to the Marijuana Policy Project.By providing an affirmative defense to federal marijuana charges, it would not only ensure that defendants could introduce evidence about the medical aspects of their marijuana-related activities, but also keep them from being sent to federal prison if it is determined that they were acting in compliance with state medical marijuana laws.Copyright: 2005 Vermont Guardian
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Comment #9 posted by siege on February 18, 2005 at 11:15:37 PT

DEA: pot remains a problem
Lutz said attitudes about marijuana need to change so that fewer people start using the drug.

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Comment #8 posted by Pete Guither on February 18, 2005 at 10:52:36 PT:

One of the great moments of the hearing was watching the faces of the committee members when Irv talked about getting 10-12 marijuana cigarettes a day from the federal government and showed them the can with the prescription printed on the side (although it's too bad he's stuck with 1997 pot grown in the federal Mississippi farm that's been frozen).  And he is so interesting and animated when he talks, and hits all the perfect points.When he talked about the fact that the government has never once been interested in studying him, it really negates everything the drug czar said about the government doing studies on marijuana. (At the press conference, he said he hoped the Czar would stick around instead of dashing off as soon as he was done, so he could thank Walters for his regular supply of marijuana!)And he finishes up talking about how he's been taking marijuna for over 30 years, and 10-12 a day from the federal government for 22 years and how he got a physical and there were no detrimental effects from his marijuana use. He then says: "To all those who claim that marijuana is harmful, I have one thing to say: Explain me!"
Drug WarRant
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Comment #7 posted by JoeCitizen on February 18, 2005 at 10:35:57 PT

Pigs need to leave Irv alone
The first thing I thought when I read all these accounts of Irv Rosenfeld being detained is, "I hope they didn't make him walk a lot, or stand for too long." Irv has tumors all through his body, some growing right out of his bones, that cause him a LOT of pain.  I once gave up a comfy seat that I had claimed for myself at a crowded NORML event, so that Irv could get off his feet for a while. It really seemed like the least I could for him, literally. He does so much for NORML and our cause, and always fighting through that pain. I hate that these pigs hassled him.As Dick Cowan says, "Have the sick and dying liberated us yet?" I can't believe the Drug Warriors call themselves Christian. Christ was a healer, a bringer of health and peace, not of pain, fear, and slavery.I will not forgive them, Father. They know all too well what they do.JC
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Comment #6 posted by siege on February 18, 2005 at 09:50:52 PT

Drugs Raise Risk of Suicide
Adults taking popular antidepressants such as Prozac, Paxil and Zoloft are more than twice as likely to attempt suicide as patients given sugar pills, according to an analysis released yesterday of hundreds of clinical trials involving tens of thousands of patients.⊂=ARNational ID Bill Masquerading as Immigration Reform]
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Comment #5 posted by Taylor121 on February 18, 2005 at 09:41:51 PT

Tax Payer Watchdog crits war on drugs
CAGW Highlights Wasteful Spending In 
War on Drugs(Washington, D.C.) - Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) today called upon the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) to shape up or ship out by significantly reducing funding and re-organizing its high-intensity drug trafficking program, which has devolved into little more than another method for members of Congress to bring tax dollars home to fund superfluous projects.“The high-intensity drug trafficking program was started to combat drugs entering our borders,” said CAGW President Tom Schatz. “But, with non-border states like Colorado and Nebraska receiving money, insufficient dollars are moving to the most at-risk states, like Arizona, California, and Texas.”The high-intensity drug trafficking area (HIDTA) program was established in 1988 to combat drug distribution, manufacturing, and importation in areas highly susceptible to such practices. The program began in 1990, concentrating its efforts on five “gateway” areas for drugs entering the U.S.: Los Angeles, Houston, New York/New Jersey, South Florida and the southwest border.There are now 26 high-intensity areas, including the Midwest (Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Nebraska) and the Appalachian Region (Kentucky, Tennessee and West Virginia.) The program’s funds were first set aside to help target high-intensity areas and bar drugs from crossing U.S. borders on land, but as a result of the overly broad distribution of funding, success in the most vital states has been negligible. For example, during the last 14 years adult drug arrests in Arizona—one of the original high-risk states—have increased by about 90 percent statewide, costing law enforcement millions of dollars that could be put to better use in homeland security. “Members of Congress are funneling these dollars away from key areas and back to their own districts,” said Schatz. “While drugs are everywhere in the U.S., this program has been abused by Congress—the dollars are spread so thinly now they do little to help anyone.”Methamphetamine labs area most commonly highlighted by members of Congress who are attempting to bring funding to their districts under the HIDTA. Although meth labs are increasing in the Midwest, California still accounts for 75 to 90 percent of the nation’s illegal meth production.CAGW has highlighted four tiers of concern regarding the U.S. government’s war on drugs: media/marketing campaigns, high-intensity trafficking programs, federal efforts to squash medicinal marijuana use and the Colombian Drug War project. The war on drugs has cost taxpayers more than $25 billion over 25 years. However, a report from the Washington Office on Latin America shows that the wholesale and retail prices of cocaine and heroin at or close to their lowest levels in 22 years; increased supply caused by the failure of the war on drugs can be blamed for the reduced cost.CAGW will release a comprehensive report on the issue next month. Citizens Against Government Waste is the nation's largest nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement in government.
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Comment #4 posted by siege on February 18, 2005 at 09:41:09 PT

Religious Ayahuasca Use
In one of his first acts as US Attorney General, Alberto Gonzales has asked the US Supreme Court to overturn a series of federal court rulings What Do Student Drug Use Surveys Really Mean?
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Comment #3 posted by mayan on February 18, 2005 at 08:57:23 PT

Reefer Madness?
"This is not your father's marijuana," Walters said. "This is not your marijuana when you were in college, if you are a baby boomer. You are suffering under 'reefer madness' if you think it is."This is not your father's propaganda.McKeon, however, said he would continue to push the proposal. He suggested setting up a teleconference among law enforcement officials in Illinois and the 10 states with medical-marijuana laws to further the debate.Ya' hear that Barthwell? Mckeon still wants to further the DEBATE!(I can almost hear her scampering away in fear!) 
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on February 18, 2005 at 08:53:27 PT

Portion of Article From The Chicago Sun Times
Drug Czar Blows In, Weeds Out Medical Marijuana Support By Neil Steinberg, Sun-Times ColumnistFebruary 18, 2005Medicine was once ruled by tradition. Doctors resisted for years the radical notion that they should wash their hands before examining patients or operating. They found the suggestion insulting; it implied they were dirty.We like to think we're more open to new ideas nowadays, and we are. But not as much as we like to think. A mass of scientific evidence and overwhelming professional approval, for instance, mean nothing when it comes to the issue of medical marijuana, not to the government, not compared to the long-held notion that pot is a drug and all drugs are bad.The Bush administration is fanatical on this subject, a passion dramatically demonstrated Thursday in Springfield when onlookers were surprised to see drug czar John Walters blow into a hearing the Illinois House of Representatives Human Services Committee was having on a bill to set up a program for legal medical marijuana in this state. Ten other states already have such a program.Walters, who is in Bush's Cabinet, came in with a large Secret Service presence, testified for an hour, and then left. Apparently his usual farrago of distortions and fabrications was convincing, because two Democrats flipped -- Michelle Chavez of Cicero and, to the shock of many in her liberal district, Naomi Jakobsson of Champaign -- and the bill was voted down.I'm not sure why I care about this -- I was never one for pot, and nobody I know is dying of cancer, not anymore. I guess, for me, the repression of medical marijuana represents the hidebound, head-in-the-sand, politicized approach the Bush administration takes to all things scientific, whether quashing stem cell research, ignoring global warming or slavering to rip up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to draw out a few months worth of oil.Copyright: 2005 The Sun-Times Co.Complete Article:
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Comment #1 posted by Hope on February 18, 2005 at 08:34:03 PT

What a man! What a man!
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