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April 11 2010

Alcohol vs Weed

alcohol_vs_weed.jpgIn the defense of pot, there has never been a more sound reason, for decriminalization of weed, than the justification defined in this excellent article by David Sirota from Salon. This is the best, short and sweet, summation of an indefensible denial argument.
Title: Making the case for marijuana

This article is such an important point of view, one that I share wholeheartedly ~ Our laws related to marijuana are doing more harm than good. David Sirota adds this poignant point to drive home the message:

Last week, students at 80 colleges asked their schools to reduce penalties for marijuana possession so that they are no greater than penalties for alcohol possession. It's a request with safety in mind: According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, alcohol use by college kids contributes to roughly 1,700 deaths, 600,000 injuries and 97,000 sexual assaults every year. By contrast, "The use of marijuana itself has not been found to contribute to any deaths, there has never been a single fatal marijuana overdose in history (and) all objective research on marijuana has also concluded that it does not contribute to injuries, assaults, sexual abuse, or violent or aggressive behavior," as the group Safer Alternative For Enjoyable Recreation notes.
"It's time we stop driving students to drink and let them make the rational, safer choice to use marijuana," said one student.
Please read, bookmark and social network: Making the case for marijuana

March 30 2010

Dr. Lester Grinspoon

potrecon.jpgDr. Lester Grinspoon may very well be the most influential marijuana activist of all time. If there were an award for achievement in changing the way people think about smoking marijuana Dr. Grinspoon would win hands down. During his more than 4 decades of honest intellectual contributions and recommendation for re-thinking the use of cannabis and the laws related to marijuana Dr. Grinspoon founded the Harvard Mental Health Letter, and was its editor for fifteen years, which among other qualifications, put him in a better position than any contemporary American physician to tell the truth about drugs.

Dr. Grinspoon is Associate Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and the author or co-author of over 160 journal articles, including his 1995 commentary in the Journal of the American Medical Association entitled "Marihuana as Medicine: A Plea for Reconsideration." His first book, Marihuana Reconsidered, originally published in 1971 by Harvard University Press, was recently republished as a classic. His latest book, Marihuana, the Forbidden Medicine, co-authored with James B. Bakalar, was published by Yale University Press in 1993 (revised and expanded edition, 1997) and has now been translated into ten languages. Dr. Grinspoon was also a reviewer of the 1999 Institute of Medicine report, "Marijuana and Medicine: Assessing the Science Base."

Dr. Grinspoon appeared in the Canadian documentary The Union: The Business of Behind Getting High ~ Also, he has two very good websites that I recommend, plus that you visit and join his Facebook Fan Page.

Marijuana: The Forbidden Medicine - Dr. Grinspoon's official website
Uses of Marijuana - A website about the potential of medical cannabis

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February 11 2010

Dr. Lester Grinspoon

potrecon.jpgDr. Lester Grinspoon may very well be the most influential marijuana activist of all time. If there were an award for achievement in changing the way people think about smoking marijuana Dr. Grinspoon would win hands down. During his more than 4 decades of honest intellectual contributions and recommendation for re-thinking the use of cannabis and the laws related to marijuana Dr. Grinspoon founded the Harvard Mental Health Letter, and was its editor for fifteen years, which among other qualifications, put him in a better position than any contemporary American physician to tell the truth about drugs.

Dr. Grinspoon is Associate Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and the author or co-author of over 160 journal articles, including his 1995 commentary in the Journal of the American Medical Association entitled "Marihuana as Medicine: A Plea for Reconsideration." His first book, Marihuana Reconsidered, originally published in 1971 by Harvard University Press, was recently republished as a classic. His latest book, Marihuana, the Forbidden Medicine, co-authored with James B. Bakalar, was published by Yale University Press in 1993 (revised and expanded edition, 1997) and has now been translated into ten languages. Dr. Grinspoon was also a reviewer of the 1999 Institute of Medicine report, "Marijuana and Medicine: Assessing the Science Base."

Dr. Grinspoon appeared in the Canadian documentary The Union: The Business of Behind Getting High ~ Also, he has two very good websites that I recommend, plus that you visit and join his Facebook Fan Page.

Marijuana: The Forbidden Medicine - Dr. Grinspoon's official website
Uses of Marijuana - A website about the potential of medical cannabis

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

January 15 2010

Roll of Reefer Poker

reeferpoker iconOn February 28, 2008 (2.28.2008 = full house) Reefer Poker enjoyed the most successful launch of an online poker room in the history of the Internet. As the second year anniversary approaches the managing partners are very enthusiastic about what lies ahead for this counter culture iGaming company and are planning a series of events and promotions to celebrate the anniversary with the 50,000 registered players that made it happen, to give back cash because that's how they roll.

California has so far been the most important market for Reefer Poker and the founders believe that they've played a part in helping to dispel the age old myth started by "Reefer Madness" that marijuana was bad or evil; they've done this by supporting the pro-marijuana movement and advocates. In many ways the brand has become another loud voice for rallying cannabis activism. Also, Reefer Poker worked alongside the leading organizations and chapters to promote the reformation of marijuana laws.

Perhaps the most important roll of Reefer Poker, aside from being the best online poker dealer they can be, is to mock the hypocrisy surrounding both Poker and Marijuana and to illuminate the entertainment of the combined concepts. We now live in an age where the majority of people can distinguish between what is truly right or wrong in terms of morality. From the beginning the people who came together to develop Reefer Poker were passionate about reefer and poker, and they knew there was a mass market that shared the same passions. The counter culture consumers, known as the 420 Army, now are the moral majority in the U.S, the key characteristic of this demographic is that they can see through superficial propaganda and/or media spin, whether it be from government or corporations, this group of discerning adults live the way they decide and speak their mind if they choose, that's how they roll.

Reefer Poker are ranked as the 66th most popular English speaking Poker room online, in a field of 513 (at the time of this writing) by CasinoCity.com the world's most trusted source for objective popularity ranks of approximately 2,700 online gaming sites based on the continuous monitoring and measuring of the actual site usage of millions of online players. Considering that the top 10 Poker rooms are owned by Billion dollar corporations, some of whom are approaching 15 years in the market, all of them compete for their share of the approximate 100 million customers who generate in excess of $5 Billion U.S. dollars per year globally and the market is said to be growing by 10% per year. There's lots of room for Reefer Poker to carve out a stake in this industry by just focusing on players who enjoy marijuana.

Internet Gambling or iGaming as its commonly referred to is one of the most lucrative industries online, which is why Yahoo, Virgin and Playboy entered the fray from the U.K. where it's regulated and taxed. According to iGaming experts, within the coming few years the U.S. government will follow the suit played by the majority of G20 nations, to tax and regulate the game invented in America (Texas Hold'em for certain), and played online legally in most of the world, will have a some new dealers to try, yes the titans of the Casino industry from Las Vegas, Atlantic City, and Macau, will bring their gaming experience and nearly bottomless resources to the Internet, which is sure to change the webscape. Plus, don't be surprised if Google and Microsoft find a way to play, or I'd make a wager that MTV and ESPN won't be left standing on the outside looking in either. The future of online Poker is very exciting for the players.

The early market leader in online poker was Party Poker, it could be argued that Party was a trend setter and responsible for starting the online poker craze, however in their shadow several other poker rooms amassed large player bases and developed strong brand recognition amongst global poker players, then due to the Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act (UIGEA) which was signed into law in July of 2006, Party Poker left the U.S. market and millions of players were forced to choose a new room to play at. An interesting phenomenon occurred as players started moving from one new poker room to another, brand loyalty was no-longer a factor, just like Las Vegas a gambler may have a favorite venue to play but has no remorse to walk across the boulevard and play in another. Also, due to the departure of Party from the U.S. they lost their luster to global player, now industry insider's joke that Party may need to bring reefer to get the party started again in the U.S.

It may be said that Reefer Poker have tapped into a unique energy source, as they continue to grow at a steady rate which is the envy of the competition because it's still mostly by word of mouth, even after almost 2 years. The main reasons are the fun and the affinity. The name is very memorable so it get's the introduction but the great service is what compels people to return, as they realize it's a real serious poker operation, despite the often comical but attractive tournaments and promotions. The 420 community "niche" especially respond well to the weekly Stoners Vs Staff tournament and the weekend Wake 'n Bake and/or 4:20 Poker Tournaments. However you slice it and dice it, there remains one key factor that distinguishes Reefer Poker from all other poker rooms, the reason it's more of a community based brand than any of its competitors, it's the weed, and that's how they roll.

So what's on the horizon for the Reefer Poker in 2010 and beyond? The managing partners are all hands-on in the marketing of the brand and the products, they recognize that there's a high-bar placed in front of them by well established companies with much deeper pockets, this means that they need to be more creative to generate the buzz factor with promotions that offer cool prize packages which include the popular logo shirts, hats, and branded rolling papers, bud grinders, vaporizers and bongs. The team must leverage the counter culture contacts on the social networks and their own social portal called Reefer People to build brand awareness, while at the same time continue to give away as much money, in guaranteed prize pools, as they can possibly afford, to remain competitive in the poker niche.

The dream of Reefer Poker is to bring the brand to the street and get face to face with the members of the 420 Army by sending a road crew with Reefer gear to every major cannabis expo, Hemp Festival, 420 Day Celebrations, Cannabis Cup and co-host another "Weed Series of Poker" with High Times Magazine, as seen in the September 2008 back to school issue under the title "Toker Poker". Plus, Reefer Poker aspires to be the main buzz at the "World Series of Poker" in Las Vegas with a fully licensed bar and medical marijuana patient's hospitality suite. There are also several major bike festivals and hip-hop rock concerts across the U.S. that fit perfectly into the ground team strategy, like the Bob Marley Festival in Miami, or the Smoke Out Festival in California. The future looks sweet for Reefer Poker.

January 10 2010

Hemp Con

hempcon.jpgCheryl and Fred from Beverly Hills NORML 90210 are working with a team of canna-business marketing pros and two media companies, LA Weekly and LA Jemm, plus they've enlisted the sponsorship of the DailyBuds community to promote two major expo/conferences in California. The first annual "Hemp Con- Los Angeles" from February 19 - 21 at the LA Convention Center and then "Hemp Con San Francisco" running August 6 - 8 at the San Mateo Event Center.

3 Full Days of seminars & exhibitions by industry leaders and advocates

Marijuana Dispensaries - Marijuana Collectives - Marijuana Delivery Services - Marijuana Evaluation Doctors - Hydroponics - Equipment / Accessories - Fertilizer / Chemical - Novelty / Paraphernalia - Legal Services - Educational Institutes - Clubs / Associations - Publications - Apparel

These are exciting times for the pro-marijuana movement, get on the wave and attend Hemp Con.

January 04 2010

Beverly Hills NORML 90210

NORML_90210.jpgCheryl Shuman and Fred Rhoades the founders of Beverly Hills NORML 90210 are two crusaders for the reformation of marijuana laws who are making a big noise across the web and over the social networks. Fred has a most interesting background (see: Fred's Bio) with a wealth of knowledge and experience in Organic farming, then in 2007 he first met Cheryl, which he say's changed his life forever, and since that day they've worked together on a number of cool projects, first and foremost was treating the cancer and lung disease that Cheryl had been diagnosed with, Fred became her caregiver and they elected to apply a medicinal cannabis therapy combined with natural remedies. Today Cheryl is in remission and living an active lifestyle but the overall experience compelled her take a more active roll and lend her energy and experience to bring about change in the laws that surround marijuana, hence the formation of the Beverly Hills Chapter of NORML (www.norml90210.org)

The two cannabis crusaders made such a dynamic duo that they decided to start an organic farm in Northern California, where they hope to bring all their focus and knowledge to the business of healing. Complying with the legal guidelines of California Fred and Cheryl formed "Shaman Therapeutics" a Private Non-Profit Medical Cannabis Collective that serves seriously ill patients in both Northern and Southern California.

Fred and Cheryl also work with other collectives, activists and medical marijuana patients working to reform marijuana laws in Beverly Hills and throughout USA.

"This is a challenging time as a legal medical marijuana patient. Laws and politics are changing on a daily basis, says Fred Rhoades." "The prohibition of such a miraculous healing plant must stop. As a patient, caregiver and activist I will stand strong to fight for legalization and safe access for everyone."

December 22 2009

New Orleans as Marijuana Mecca

Fleur_de_Lys_Variante.pngLegal weed in the Big Easy? What a genius idea! One of the 12 candidates running for mayor of New Orleans is Jerry Jacobs, running on a platform of Social Change, and some say a long-shot to win but he's put forward a great plan: Legalize Marijuana, to reduce crime and increase sales tax, in an attempt to triage the city's budget crisis. During an interview with WDSU Jacobs said:

Legalizing marijuana will do for the city of New Orleans what ending Prohibition did for the country in 1933, it put the gangsters and bootleggers out of business and increased sales tax revenue.

Imagine the positive impact that Amsterdam type regulations could have on New Orleans? Tourism, which some predict will never come back to pre-Katrina levels, would grow faster than an indica plant in a hydroponic grow-op. New cannabis coffee-shops would spring-up all over the city to create new jobs and commerce. Industrious citizens would be able to apply for a license to grow weed at home and supply to the shops and/or medical marijuana patients. New Universities would open their doors, like Oaksterdam to teach students bud-tending and cannabusiness management. The increase of weed would even cause a greater demand for food to help the restaurants get back to where they once were. The Big Easy would become popular once again.

As for crime? Which is a problem in New Orleans and partly responsible for keeping tourists away, anyone in doubt about what a dramatic decrease would happen, need only study the reports from other cities that have decriminalized drugs, such as Portugal, or regulated cannabis cafes such as Amsterdam. Anyone who doesn't take this idea seriously should use common sense to realize that crack cocaine is much more of a problem and by isolating that one illegal substance by making the other legal, allows enforcement a much better chance of addressing the cocaine epidemic.

Pharmaceutical drugs have become the scourge of our culture and the biggest risk to our young people. Designer drugs and prescription pills are the biggest problem amongst young adults and interestingly marijuana spoils the high of all narcotics, for most people, in most cases. Crack-heads only use marijuana as a currency to buy crack by trading in enough weed to save up for a rock. A heroin junky will only smoke weed when they can't score heroin, why? It helps to keep them mellow and takes the edge of substance deprivation. Marijuana can be used in an effective treatment for the recovery of all other types and forms of addiction. New Orleans could be a destination city for substance abuse treatment.

new_orleans_bourbon_street.jpgAny police officer, anywhere in the world, will tell you that the most dangerous suspect to handle is one that is drunk on alcohol and/or stoned on chemicals drugs, more and more often of the pharmaceutical type. The very non-toxic, chemical composition of marijuana is what makes people peaceful when they use it, and therefore much easier to handle as a crowd, or individually, which is why marijuana has been allowed and accepted in European cities that host large football (soccer to us) tournaments, where they previously witnessed incidents of mass rioting, civil disobedience and destruction of public property. When the crowds of rabid football fans smoke weed no-one or nothing get's hurt.

The Big Easy is the perfect place to open the doors to legal marijuana. There's nothing to lose and everything to gain. Besides, it's the birthplace of Jazz so shares a long tradition of smoking weed and to this day it's as easy to score as a good Jambalaya, even quadruple the police force and I can promise you the herb will still be easy to find in the French Quarter. Please, just take it out of the hands of crack-heads, thieves and junkies! Stop empowering the criminals and start growing a friendly city.

November 10 2009

Cannabis Smoke in Europe

cannabis_europe.jpgSome people say that European's are more conservative than us Americans, well that may be so but they still love to smoke weed according to a recent report, which was featured in the Economist as: "Pot Luck" - Cannabis Use in Europe.

Which Europeans are most likely to have tried cannabis?

OVER a fifth of Europeans have taken cannabis at some point in their lives, according to new report on illegal drug use from the EMCDDA, the EU's drug-monitoring arm. Over 30% of Danes, French and Italians aged between 15 and 64 have puffed on a joint. But perhaps for Danes it is just a phase: the Italians, Spanish, French and Czechs are most likely to have dabbled with cannabis in the recent past. Levels of cannabis use are still high but may be declining, says the report. Recent studies suggest that the drug's popularity is waning among the younger generation.

The obvious glaring statistics in this report is that Netherlands and Portugal, the two counties that have decriminalized marijuana have less smokers than many of the countries that have not decriminalized. Another really interesting finding is that Denmark, by far, leads as the highest percentage of European people who have smoked cannabis during their lifetimes. No wonder they call them the "Great Danes".

According to WeBeHigh.com - A traveler's guide to getting high. It's really easy to score weed in Copenhagen and many of the other cities in Denmark. Travelers have written that the varieties of weed include skunk, white widow and hash, so apparently these folks know their gear, oh and the prices are decent too, at 5 to 15 Euros per gram. Interestingly, the tolerance from law enforcement is listed as quite low but check this:

Copenhagen police do not look for smokers, or as one of our reporters noted: "several times I have walked right past 5-6 police officers while smoking a blunt... most of the times they won't try anything because that will cause a sort of riot and lots of flying bricks".

Our conservative cousins in Europe are just having some fun and hypocrisy of "the dangers of marijuana" has been dispelled. The world is becoming more conscious.

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