The Case For Hemp
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The Case For Hemp
Posted by CN Staff on August 06, 2009 at 14:52:12 PT
By Harris Sherline, Contributing Writer
Source: Santa Ynez Valley Journal
USA -- For reasons I do not fully understand, Americans seem to have lost the common sense that has always been a hallmark of our culture. Once again, we seem to be routinely shooting ourselves in the foot by adopting public policies that run counter to our own best interests. A good example is outlawing the use of hemp — one of the most beneficial crops in the history of the world — by burdening it with unnecessary and restrictive regulation in the name of fighting the so-called War on Drugs.
Hemp is a harmless plant that is the source of an almost endless list of benefits. Wikipedia notes that it can be used in everything from food products to clothes, as well as having multiple industrial or commercial uses such as “paper, textiles, biodegradable plastics, construction, health food and fuel.” China, France and Canada are all major producers of hemp, and although more hemp is exported to the U.S. than to any other country, our government generally does not distinguish between marijuana and a type of hemp that is used only for industrial and commercial purposes. The North American Industrial Hemp Council, Inc. (NAIHC) notes, “The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) classifies all C. sativa varieties (of hemp) as ‘marijuana.’ While it is theoretically possible to get permission from the government to grow hemp, DEA would require that the field be secured by a fence, razor wire, dogs, guards and lights, making it cost-prohibitive.” The Marijuana Tax Act of 1937 “placed an extremely high tax on marijuana and made it effectively impossible to grow industrial hemp … (and) the Federal Bureau of Narcotics lumped industrial hemp with marijuana, as its successor, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, does to this day.” As Groucho Marx famously quipped, “Those are my principles. If you don’t like them I have others.”Other facts about hemp offered by NAIHC include: “Hemp has been grown for at least the last 12,000 years for fiber (textiles and paper) and food.”“Much of the bird seed sold in the U.S. has hemp seed (it’s sterilized before importation), the hulls of which contain about 25% protein.”“Rudolph Diesel designed his engine to run on hemp oil.” “Construction products such as medium density fiber board, oriented strand board and even beams, studs and posts could be made out of hemp. Because of hemp’s long fibers, the products will be stronger and/or lighter than those made from wood.”Over 25,000 products can be made from hemp. “To receive a standard psychoactive dose (of hemp) would require a person to power-smoke 10-12 hemp cigarettes over an extremely short period of time. The large volume and high temperature of vapor, gas and smoke would be almost impossible for a person to withstand.”“Hemp fibers are longer, stronger, more absorbent and more mildew-resistant than cotton.” “Fabrics made of at least one-half hemp block the sun’s UV rays more effectively than other fabrics.”“Hemp can be made into a variety of fabrics, including linen quality.”“Hemp grows well in a variety of climates and soil types. It is naturally resistant to most pests, precluding the need for pesticides. It grows tightly spaced, out-competing any weeds, so herbicides are not necessary. It also leaves a weed-free field for a following crop.”“Hemp can yield 3-8 tons of fiber per acre. This is four times what an average forest can yield.” The bottom line is that by treating hemp as a drug, the United States has effectively shut down one of the most profitable and useful crops in history and has once again essentially abandoned the market to other nations that have a more realistic attitude. We are preventing our farmers from growing a crop that has almost unlimited uses. It’s cheap and easy to plant and cultivate, and could potentially rejuvenate the small farming industry in America. While spending billions of dollars in what has been an almost fruitless effort to keep small farmers on the farm, we have also been unwilling to simply let them to do it for themselves by allowing them to cultivate perhaps the best cash crop they could grow.By stubbornly refusing to change or adapt our thinking, we are once again preventing one of our own industries from producing an important product and leaving a major market to our competition.But, that’s just my opinion.Copyright: 2009 Harris R. SherlineSource: Santa Ynez Valley Journal (CA)Author: Harris Sherline, Contributing WriterPublished: August 6, 2009Copyright: 2009 Santa Ynez Valley JournalContact: editor syvjournal.comURL: Hemp Archives 
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Comment #3 posted by tintala on August 07, 2009 at 09:22:41 PT:
Anslinger And Mellon Connection One man who first spread myths about marijuana was Harry J. Anslinger, who was appointed director of the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs (predecessor of the Drug Enforcement Agency or DEA of today). He was a man who hated jazz music and tried to get jazz musicians herded into prison for smoking marijuana. Anslinger hated marijuana even more. At first, he declared marijuana caused users to go crazy and commit violent crime. As a result of his testimony, persons who used pot could use the insanity defense to get a lesser charge of murder. Later on, after doctors testified at a second hearing regarding marijuana, Anslinger recanted his earlier testimony, conceding that marijuana probably didn´t cause insanity or violent behavior, but added that it could lead to opi*m use. This is how the gateway myth originated.In 1931, Anslinger got his job at the Bureau of Narcotics at the recommendation of a man named Richard Mellon, who happened to be his wife's uncle. Mellon, also director of the Mellon Bank, was U.S. Secretary of the Treasury. Richard along with sister Sarah and brother R.K. inherited Mellon Financial Corporation from their father Thomas Mellon in 1902. Richard invested in major stock holdings such as Gulf Oil and Alcoa and associated with wealthy men such as William R. Hearst, Sr. and the DuPont brothers. Hearst owned a chain of newspapers across the U.S. as well as a large lumber company. The DuPont family had just patented a paper making process using wood pulp some years earlier. As well,they had a new invention, a kind of synthetic cotton called nylon.Unfortunately, the infant hemp industry seemed to threaten these rich men's monopoly in the pulp and paper industry. In fact, in 1937, Popular Science predicted that hemp would become a billion dollar industry. Dupont and Hearst (friends and business companions) feared this of course with hemp being able to accomplish much more than paper and paint. Since then, marijuana has endured a smear campaign originally instigated by Hearst's newspapers and imitated by other newspaper chains around the world. After hemp was banned in 1938, DuPont came out with nylon. It licensed out the paper making process to Hearst so that wood-pulp could be easily made into cheap paper. Meanwhile, the anti-pot propaganda demonized marijuana whilst the alcohol and tobacco companies enjoyed wide advertising in the newspapers and on TV, especially in the post-war boom that followed the war. Today, both alcohol and tobacco consumption is dropping, due to education about the dangers of their use. Marijuana consumption peaked about twelve years ago, but is now on the rise, especially among today's youth. This is in spite of anti-pot propaganda. New studies have completely overturned the gateway myth surrounding marijuana and indicate that marijuana is far less harmful than alcohol or cigarettes. A possible reason why the U.S. seeks to control international drug policy may have to do with the economic potential cannabis hemp represents. A single nation with the right tools and the land can grow hemp and supply raw material for paper making and textiles, as well as replacements and substitutes for petrochemicals. Economic sustainability is possible with hemp more so than with trees. Hemp produces 4.3 times more pulp fiber per hectare. Hemp paper products can be recycled seven times while paper made from wood-pulp can only be recycled three times. Hemp seed protein is very nutritious. Fiberboard made from hemp fiber is stronger than that made from wood-chips. Thus, a cannabis hemp industry can revitalize any country that starts one up, if the capital is there.References:The American Magazine, July 1937Statement to Narcotics Commission, 193720 years of narcotics Control under United Nations, January, 1966DuPont and Manhattan Project, 1943Randolf Hearst, Biography, 1863-1951
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Comment #2 posted by HempWorld on August 06, 2009 at 15:14:59 PT
Hemp is Great!
But if you live in the US, you will never be allowed to cultivate it, courtesy of the militairy industrial complex!
Real Reasons Here ...
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on August 06, 2009 at 14:57:02 PT Victory For Hemp!
Victory For Hemp! Oregon Legalizes Industrial Production August 6, 2009URL:
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