Cannabis News: February’s Cannabinoid News From Publius

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From east to west, local, state and federal officials are beginning the long policy debate to end the war on cannabis. Authors of The Cannabis Papers are adjusting to the changing political landscape, just like everyone else.

The Cannabis Papers: a citizen's guide to cannabinoids

Ideas that as recently as 10 years ago sounded outlandish – such as ‘legalization’ or ‘cannabis is good for you’ – are gaining traction politically: it’s like they’re coming of age – maturing.

Cannabis reform continues to lead the news across the country. From east to west, local, state and federal officials are beginning the long policy debate to end the war on cannabis. Authors of The Cannabis Papers are adjusting to the changing political landscape, just like everyone else.

“It’s a different world, politically, for cannabis and herbal cannabinoids,” noted Bryan W. Brickner, publisher and co-author of The Cannabis Papers (2011). “Ideas that as recently as 10 years ago sounded outlandish – such as ‘legalization’ or ‘cannabis is good for you’ – are gaining traction politically: it’s like they’re coming of age – maturing.”

Leading off February’s news is the federal response to state cannabis legalization.

The Department of Justice is wrapping up their evaluation of Washington and Colorado’s laws to regulate and tax cannabis. The Compassion Chronicles, in “Federal Decision On Legalized Marijuana Coming Soon,” noted US Attorney General Eric Holder’s recent comment to Colorado’s AG:

“We’re in the last stages of that review and we’re trying to make a determination as to what the policy ramifications are going to be, what our international obligations are — there are a whole variety of things that go into this determination — but the people of [Colorado] and Washington deserve an answer and you will have one soon.”

That will be big news – and yet it is only a beginning, as federal and state lawmakers are clearly aware of the changing times. “In Pot Legalization Goes Federal,” ABC News reported two federal bills were introduced in Congress and many more are to be expected.

There is also new tax and regulate energy appearing at the state level. In both Oregon and Pennsylvania, lawmakers are looking to cannabis for revenue and have introduced legislation. In “Marijuana Legalization Measure Introduced In Oregon,” NORML noted, how the proposed Oregon system would function:

“It would establish a regulatory system, similar to the one in place in the state for alcohol, for the cultivation, production, and sale of cannabis to adults over 21. Adults would be allowed to possess up to 24 ounces of usable marijuana and grow up to six plants in their homes, in addition to purchasing it from regulated retail outlets.

Brickner stated: “When one recalls it was taxes – not morality – that ended federal alcohol prohibition, one would again be wise to follow the money.”

Michigan had an adventurous herbal cannabinoid month: the MI Supreme Court ruled against legal wording allowing dispensaries; caring legislators responded by introducing a new bill – one empowering “Provisioning Centers.”

Lost in all the waiting and wrangling are the human stories – the patients – waiting to live legally. This month’s news video is Blazed and Confused: The War on Michigan’s Medical Marijuana Act.

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Steve Young

Bryan W. Brickner
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