------------------------------------------------------------------- Incredible Donations (Paul Stanford, A Chief Petitioner For The Oregon Cannabis Tax Act, Opens The Bidding On Three Cars And A Bunch Of Parts Donated To The Campaign) From: "D. Paul Stanford" firstname.lastname@example.org) To: email@example.com Subject: incredible donations Date: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 19:42:06 -0800 Organization: CRRH (PAC) These were donated to our group. We are selling them to pay petitioners for signatures. Please make an offer. 1978 Datsun 280-Z ; IMSA GT 2 Category, with like-new body and engine $2500 whole new extra unattached fiberglass race body extra new motor: 365 Horsepower engine with 3 Solex 50 mm carbs-dual 30 Gallon fuel cell Halon fire extinguisher with four nozzles, two on engine, two on driver, with emergency button Built-in NASCAR style roll cage system New sets of gauges, uninstalled Tilton pedals and starter Remote adjustable brake system with Lockheed 4 piston brake calibers Accusump oil system Lots of spare parts. More details upon request. Contact me if you're interested. This same donor has also donated two other cars and titles: 1980 Ford Fiesta and a 1970 Toyoto Corolla, both of which we have started and driven. Offers are welcome on these too. OCTA to the ballot, D. Paul Stanford email firstname.lastname@example.org office phone: 503-235-4606 fax: 503-235-0120 Campaign For The Restoration And Re-Legalization Of Hemp P.O. Box 86741 Portland, OR 97286 Web: http://www.crrh.org/
------------------------------------------------------------------- Terry Miller - 'I'm Out' (Portland NORML Director Busted For Cultivation Whose Doctor Has Recommended His Use Of Cannabis Notes He's Gotten Out Of A Four-Months' Work-Release Sentence Into An Eight-Month House Arrest Sentence) Date: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 12:00:34 EST Originator: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Arthur Livermore) To: Multiple recipients of list
Subject: Terry Miller: "I'm out" --forwarded message-- To all, I'm now back at my home after a "Modification of Probation" that places me on an electronic bracelet for the next eight months but allows me to be with my family and work on my computer when I'm not banging nails as a contractor. This is an important year for pot politics in Oregon and I am glad to be able to be a part of it. >From home exile, TD
------------------------------------------------------------------- Abdul-Jabbar Caught Carrying Marijuana At Toronto Airport ('Los Angeles Times' Version Of Jabbar Yesterday's News) Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 10:29:16 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Joel W. Johnson) Subject: MN: US: Abdul-Jabbar Caught Carrying Marijuana at Toronto Airport Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield Source: Los Angeles Times (CA) Contact: email@example.com Fax: 213-237-4712 Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Pubdate: March 21, 1998 ABDUL-JABBAR CAUGHT CARRYING MARIJUANA AT TORONTO AIRPORT Former UCLA and Laker center Kareem Abdul-Jabbar surrendered a small amount of marijuana to U.S. Customs officials at Toronto's Pearson International Airport on Sunday and paid a $500 civil fine, a Customs Service spokesman said Friday. Abdul-Jabbar, the NBA's career scoring leader, told customs officers that he has migraines and "doctors recommended him using this," said Pat Jones, a customs spokesman in Washington. The customs spokesman said the seizure was handled as an administrative rather than a criminal matter and that there was no arrest. Canadian police, however, said Abdul-Jabbar had been arrested. Regional Police Inspector David Price, contacted Friday by The Canadian Press, confirmed a Toronto Sun report that Abdul-Jabbar was arrested but not charged. The Sun said the marijuana amounted to six grams. It was found as Abdul-Jabbar was about to fly from Toronto to Los Angeles. The U.S. Customs Service has a "pre-clearance" operation at some Canadian airports. "We have these drug-sniffing dogs and one of them smelled something on Kareem," Jones said. "He talked to one of our inspectors and was very cooperative and he volunteered that he had a minuscule amount of marijuana on him." Copyright Los Angeles Times
------------------------------------------------------------------- DA Hopeful Arrested On Drug Charge ('Dallas Morning News' Says The Challenger In The Race For Denton County, Texas, District Attorney Was Arrested Friday And Charged With Delivery Of Marijuana - No Drugs Were Found In His Possession And Stephen Hale Says, 'I Don't Know What It Was About - I Wasn't Shown An Arrest Warrant') Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 10:16:03 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Joel W. Johnson) Subject: MN: US TX: DA Hopeful Arrested On Drug Charge Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: email@example.com Source: Dallas Morning News Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.dallasnews.com Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 Author: Brenda Rodriguez and Kendall Anderson / The Dallas Morning News DA HOPEFUL ARRESTED ON DRUG CHARGE Denton candidate denies wrongdoing The challenger in the race for Denton County district attorney was arrested Friday and charged with delivery of marijuana, authorities said. Stephen Hale, 45, who is to face District Attorney Bruce Isaacks in November, is charged with delivery of marijuana over 4 ounces and under 5 pounds, authorities said. The offense is a state jail felony. Bail was set at $5,000, and Mr. Hale posted bond Friday afternoon at the Denton County Jail, officials there said. "I don't know what it was about. I wasn't shown an arrest warrant," Mr. Hale said Friday night. "I haven't done anything wrong." Mr. Hale, an attorney, was arrested about 3:30 p.m. Friday in Denton County as part of an undercover investigation by the Texas Department of Public Safety, said Tela Mage, an agency spokeswoman. Drugs were not found in Mr. Hale's possession at the time of his arrest, she said. The arrest was based on a probable-cause warrant, she said. A judge typically issues such a warrant based on a peace officer's sworn affidavit outlining the reasons for believing a crime has been committed. Ms. Mage said the Denton Police Department assisted DPS narcotics officers in the arrest. She did not disclose where Mr. Hale was arrested. Mr. Isaacks said state District Judge David White granted a motion Friday to remove the district attorney's office from the case. Collin County District Attorney Tom O'Connell was appointed as special prosecutor to oversee the case, he said. Mr. Hale's arrest was unexpected, Mr. Isaacks said, but not a shock. "I can't say I was real surprised," he said. Mr. Hale served a three-year felony probation in the mid-1970s for possessing what he has called "a good-sized Baggie" of marijuana. Later, during his tenure as the Wise County Attorney, Mr. Hale's handling of marijuana cases and first-time drunken drivers drew criticism. Police groups in the county just northwest of Tarrant County calledfor his resignation in 1994 because they said he was too soft on such offenders. He served in the office for four years, beginning in January 1993. He defended his dismissal of marijuana and drunk-driving cases by saying his primary duty was "to seek justice, not just to seek convictions." More than 60 percent of DWI cases handled by Mr. Hale led to dismissals or reduction to less-serious charges of reckless conduct, according to court records. Mr. Hale said at the time, "It might be popular in other counties to make political stands and be tough on DWIs, but if I did that, my docket would come to a screeching halt." An additional 118 cases involving misdemeanor marijuana possession of less than 4 ounces were dismissed completely, most "in the interest of justice," according to notations on dockets. Mr. Hale has said his stance on marijuana cases was formed by his arrest on marijuana possession charges, which occurred while he was serving in the military in Florida. "Almost every G.I. I knew smoked marijuana, but I got caught," he said in 1994. "I came home from serving my country on felony probation for not hurting anybody, and that really hurt my feelings." After the service, Mr. Hale attended North Texas State University, now the University of North Texas, and South Texas College of Law in Houston. He learned before law school graduation that he could not receive his Texas Bar card while on probation. Recently, Mr. Isaacks tried unsuccessfully to have Mr. Hale disqualified from the Democratic primary ballot on the grounds that he has lived in the county less than three consecutive years. A state appeals court ruling in January allowed Mr. Hale to stay on the ballot. Mr. Isaacks, who will be seeking a third term in November, said it was bad enough that there was low voter turnout in the primary this month, but now Mr. Hale's arrest may disillusion some voters. "It's unfortunate for the political process," he said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Marijuana Book Sparks Debate (Biased 'MSNBC News' Article About 'Marijuana Myths, Marijuana Facts - A Review Of The Scientific Evidence,' By Lynn Zimmer, Ph.D., And John Morgan, M.D., Notes Zimmer Worked On The Book While Employed By The City University Of New York, Which Is Obliged By Law To Force-Feed Its Students Information Contradicted By Her Research) Date: Mon, 23 Mar 1998 21:32:30 -0500 To: DrugSense News Service
From: Richard Lake Subject: MN: US: MSNBC: Marijuana Book Sparks Debate Cc: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: Chris Clay Source: MSNBC Pubdate: 21 Mar 1998 Contact: World@MSNBC.com Website: http://www.msnbc.com/ MARIJUANA BOOK SPARKS DEBATE New York, March 21 - It's the exact opposite advice one would expect from a parent, doctor or teacher about smoking marijuana. However, a new book by two city university professors concludes that smoking marijuana is not harmful, and doesn't make users, including college-aged students, unmotivated. Columbia University Medical School Professor John P. Morgan, M.D. said, "Marijuana has some dangers but the dangers that young people have been told for a decade are not true." Claiming the book, Marijuana Myths, Marijuana Facts, is scientifically sound, Prof. Morgan and co-author Lynn Zimmer, Ph.D., a sociology professor at Queens College, write, "Even long-term high-dose marijuana use is not harmful to the brain. Marijuana use during pregnancy does not damage the fetus. There is nothing about marijuana that causes people to lose drive and ambition. Marijuana does not cause crime." The American Medical Association criticizes the book, saying it minimizes the real or potential dangers of marijuana. "The drug comes to the brain, binds itself to the brain, exerts its affect and leaves and probably causes no long-term damage," Prof. Zimmer said. "There's no evidence that occasional use impairs people ability to be good people, good parents, good citizens, productive workers." But on that, and the issue of marijuana and crime, the book was denounced by long time narcotics officer turned New York City Police Commissioner Howard Safir. "There's no doubt marijuana leads to trouble and I can show you 10 books that prove that for every one like the one you just showed me," he said. "The fact that these two professors are teachers leads me to wonder if they are fit to be leading a classroom." However, Prof. Zimmer maintained, "I think most people use marijuana in a responsible way." The authors said the book would not have been possible without city university's help. It was researched at taxpayers' expense. Prof. Zimmer was granted a year's sabbatical with pay and given an award from the president's office, an additional six months to work on the book. Required by law, all CUNY students are told in writing about the health risks of illicit drugs and sanctions for using them. However, some of that information directly contradicts data in this new book, which could potentially lead to confusion on the campus about marijuana and its true effects.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Petition To Make Hemp Legal Prepared (Lexington, Kentucky, 'Herald-Leader' Elaborates On Yesterday's News About The North American Industrial Hemp Council And Other Groups In The United States Preparing To Petition The Drug Enforcement Administration To Remove Hemp From The Controlled Substance List) Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 15:42:53 -0500 To: DrugSense News Service
From: Richard Lake Subject: MN: US KY: Petition To Make Hemp Legal Prepared Sender: email@example.com Newshawk: Joe Hickey Source: The Lexington Herald-Leader Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 Section: Business Section (Page C1) Author: Staff, Wire Reports PETITION TO MAKE HEMP LEGAL PREPARED PLAN INCLUDES LICENSING FARMERS, TRACKING SEEDS WASHINGTON -- Industrial hemp has 25,000 uses ranging from construction material to paper to clothing, but smoking it to get stoned is not among them. Yet proponents of hemp say it could give farmers a financial high. "There's an incredible opportunity," said Jeffrey Gain, a hemp proponent and former chief of the National Corn Growers Association. "There is too much emphasis on too few crops. We need to start adding crops." But right now, the federal government bans cultivation of industrial hemp and considers it a controlled substance, no different from its hallucinogenic cousin marijuana. Several groups, including the North American Industrial Hemp Council and the Resource Conservation Alliance, want to change that. They are preparing to petition the Drug Enforcement Administration to drop hemp from the controlled-substance list. They also want the Agriculture Department to set up a system of certifying hemp seeds and licensing farmers. "We're asking them to refine the definition of marijuana," said Ned Daly, director of the Resource Conservation Alliance, yesterday. "Hemp is not a drug and cannot be used as a drug." Hemp has a long history in the United States. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson grew it. The Declaration of Independence was drafted on hemp paper. During World War II, the federal government mounted a "Hemp for Victory" growing campaign for many military uses, including ropes, tents and parachute cords. Some agricultural economists say farmers today could gross up to $500 an acre for hemp. Canada legalized it earlier this month after a 60-year ban, in part because of the income potential for farmers. Several U.S. states are also promoting hemp research. In Kentucky, hemp supporters said the petition was the beginning of a campaign to make hemp as commonplace as flax. "We want to force the DEA to come to grips with the fact that hemp is not marijuana," said Andy Graves, a tobacco grower who is president of the Fayette County Farm Bureau and a member of the board of the North American Industrial Hemp Council. Graves said the council expects a decision from the DEA within six months. If the agency refuses to declassify hemp as an illegal product, the council will take the issue to court. Canada's decision last year to legalize the crop is a major new advantage, hemp advocates said. Gale Glenn, a Clark County farmer who formerly sat on the industrial hemp council's board, predicted that U.S. officials' opposition to hemp will wilt under pressure from farm groups once Canadian growers begin shipping it to U.S. manufacturers. England finally legalized hemp after the European Union lowered trade barriers and English companies began importing hemp from France, Glenn said. "I can't imagine that American farmers will sit by and watch U.S. companies importing this crop from Canada," she said. "That's what it is going to take because I think the DEA will dig in their heels until farmers get up in arms." Hemp and marijuana are both varieties of the cannabis sativa plant. But hemp typically contains less than 1 percent of the active ingredient, THC, that makes pot smokers high. Marijuana plants contain 10 percent to 20 percent THC. "It's not psychoactive," said Paul Gordon Mahlberg, a biology professor at Indiana University. Still, the DEA and President Clinton's drug control policy director, Barry McCaffrey, say hemp's legalization could hinder efforts to stamp out marijuana. "A serious law-enforcement concern is that a potential byproduct of legalizing hemp production would be de facto legalization of marijuana cultivation," McCaffrey's office said in a statement. "The seedlings are the same and in many instances the mature plants look the same." Those who want to end the ban say that is just blowing smoke. They say hemp plants are far taller than marijuana, are grown much closer together and typically are not allowed to flower. The flowering produces the buds most sought after by marijuana growers. "The dope argument lacks any merit," said Hawaii state Rep. Cynthia Thielen, a Republican who says farmers in her state want hemp as an alternative to sugar and pineapples. "You can tell the difference. You're licensing farmers so you know where the crop is. If someone's growing that isn't licensed, bust them." Graves and Glenn pointed out that all of the seven major democracies in the world except the U.S. already allow hemp to be grown. "In England and Western Europe they have no problem distinguishing industrial hemp from marijuana," Glenn said. "Their drug enforcement people are no brighter than ours. Yet they seem to be able to see the difference." The Agriculture Department, however, questions how profitable hemp might actually be: It is labor intensive and cheaper alternatives already exist for many of its uses. For instance, hemp linen costs $15 a square yard, compared with only $7.50 for flax linen. "Hemp production in the United States has no demonstrated economic value potential as a cash crop," the McCaffrey statement said. But proponents are undeterred, noting that Canadian farmers plan to plant 5,000 acres of hemp this spring and farmers in England and Germany have turned solid profits from it for years. Graves said hemp is more expensive than current alternatives because it has to be imported. Once an infrastructure is in place, the cost of hemp products will be competitive, he said. Some of the more unusual uses for hemp include reinforcement in concrete, as a replacement for fiberglass in cars, in shoes and even as a cosmetic oil. Proponents also say hemp is good for field rotations that help sustain soil and reduce insects. CANADIAN GROWER TO SPEAK Jean Laprise, a Canadian who plans to grow 2,000 acres of hemp this year on his farm in Ontario, will be the keynote speaker at the annual meeting of the Kentucky Hemp Growers Cooperative Association. The meeting is scheduled April 4 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Fayette County extension service offices at 1145 Red Mile Place. (c) Copyright 1998 Lexington Herald-Leader.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Hemp Backers Seek To End Ban On Growing Controversial Plant ('New York Times' Version) Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 17:32:46 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Joel W. Johnson) Subject: MN: US: Hemp Backers Seek to End Ban On Growing Controversial Plant Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: "Tom O'Connell"
Source: San Fransisco Chronicle (CA) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/ Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 Author: Steven S. Woo - New York Times HEMP BACKERS SEEK TO END BAN ON GROWING CONTROVERSIAL PLANT WASHINGTON - Backers of industrial hemp say the fibrous stalk of the marijuana plant could be a major boost for U.S. agriculture - if the federal government would deregulate it. Proponents say hemp can be used to make durable clothing, carpet, tents and other items. It is legal to grow for those uses in Canada and many European countries, and hemp products are widely available there. But because the leaves and flowers of the hemp plant are marijuana, the Drug Enf orcement Agency says growing hemp in the United States would send the wrong message to youth about drug use. The North American Industrial Hemp Council - a coalition of farmers, retailers, politicians, manufacturers and environmental groups - is petitioning the federal government to lift its ban on growing the plant. On Monday, the Resource Conservation Alliance, which is part of the Hemp Council, is filing two petitions aimed at that goal. One will ask the DEA to end its classification of industrial hemp - bred to have such a low level of the psychoactive substance THC that users cannot get high - as an illegal drug. The other will ask the U.S. Department of Agriculture to create a licensing system to permit the growing of hemp by U.S. farmers. The DEA provided a statement saying that anyone seeking to grow hemp for industrial use can apply for registration as a manufacturer. However, the DEA said it has never granted such a clearance because of concern over "the threat of diversion" of marijuana as an illegal drug. '1ndustrial hemp is not marijuana," said Jeffrey Gain, a director of the Hemp Council who previously served as the chief executive officer of the National Corn Growers Association. "It's a legitimate crop with enormous economic and environmental potential. While the rest of the world is jumping on the hemp bandwagon, American agriculture is being held hostage to obsolete thinking." We do not endorse the recreational use of marijuana," said. Raymond Bernard, senior vice president of technology for Interface Corp. in Atlanta, said the company would like to use hemp in its carpeting because of the fabric's durability. "The disadvantages of importing the hemp from foreign countries include the costs and not knowing if the material was woven in an environmentally friendly manner," he said.Bernard said hemp also is biodegradable, while carpet made, with nylon and other synthetic materials is not. The council says hemp also has extensive applications as a fabric. It is widely seen as an alternative to cotton, which is maybe the most environmentally damaging of all crops because of its intensive need for pesticides, its members claim.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Drug Syndicate's Shadow Falls Across Mexican Elite ('Los Angeles Times' Says A Series Of Accusations This Week Linked Mexico's Most Notorious Drug Cartel To Money-Laundering Scams That Touch The Highest Levels Of The Nation's Political, Financial And Labor Elite) Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 18:04:36 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Joel W. Johnson) Subject: MN: Mexico: Drug Syndicate's Shadow Falls Across Mexican Elite Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family
Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/ Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 Author: James F. Smith - Los Angeles Times DRUG SYNDICATE'S SHADOW FALLS ACROSS MEXICAN ELITE MEXICO CITY -- A series of accusations this week linked Mexico's most notorious drug cartel to money-laundering scams that touch the highest levels of the nation's political, financial and labor elite. First, it emerged that the laundrymen of the Juarez cartel tried to buy a controlling share of a struggling bank. Then it was reported that they tried to go into business with President Ernesto Zedillo Ponce de Lesn's brother. And on Friday, a newspaper said the head of the largest national labor federation and a union-linked bank were being probed for suspected money-laundering ties. Prosecutors confirmed that the cartel attempted to purchase the Anahuac financial group but said they halted the sale in 1996 when they became suspicious of the funding source. And Rodolfo Zedillo, the president's brother, said his attorneys warned him in time to back off a proposed partnership with entrepreneurs who turned out to be alleged money launderers. Labor's denial The chief press officer for the labor movement said Friday's allegations against federation chief Leonardo Rodr(acu)guez Alcaine and Banco Obrero (Workers Bank) were malicious and false. Yet even jaded Mexicans have been shocked by the apparent attempts by the drug bosses to infiltrate the top tiers of business and politics. At the same time, some analysts say the reports show the system is now working against a scourge that long went undetected. They say more-vigilant Mexican investigators are armed with powerful new money-laundering laws and investigative tools, allowing them to achieve real breakthroughs. A chastened Rodolfo Zedillo said in an interview: ``It is obvious that the cartels have no respect for rank or hierarchy; they are definitely increasing their areas of influence. But our institutions are responding well.'' The national attorney general's office said Thursday night that it had identified several suspects involved in the attempted purchase of the struggling Anahuac financial group on behalf of the Juarez cartel, which was led by Amado Carrillo Fuentes until he died during plastic surgery last July. The prosecutor's office said one suspect -- Juan Alberto Zepeda Novelo, a top executive in Mexico's second-largest construction company -- was arrested Wednesday in the case. Biggest probe yet The investigation appears to be the largest since Mexico adopted stricter money-laundering laws last year. Mexico has long been suspected not only as a major transit route for drugs headed to the American market but also as a primary laundering channel for profits filtering back to the drug cartels. In this week's allegations, a common suspect is Jorge Fernando Bastida Gallardo, identified as the main money launderer for the Juarez cartel. Newspapers in Mexico City and Guadalajara said Bastida led the negotiations to invest at least $12 million in Anahuac on behalf of the cartel in 1995 and 1996. However, national banking authorities said they froze that transaction before it took effect because they were suspicious of the origin of the money. But federal prosecutors are investigating charges that Bastida laundered more than $80 million of the Juarez cartel's money through Anahuac in 1995 and 1996, El Universal newspaper in Mexico City reported Friday. Later in 1996, regulatory authorities seized control of the Anahuac group in connection with a separate fraud allegation. El Universal also said prosecutors were investigating whether Rodr(acu)guez Alcaine, the labor federation leader, and the union-linked Banco Obrero had been involved in money laundering along with Bastida.
------------------------------------------------------------------- President's Brother Denies Making Cartel Deal ('Washington Post' Says Rodolfo Zedillo, The Younger Brother Of Mexican President Ernesto Zedillo, Said In A Letter Released Thursday Night That Alleged Money Launderers For Mexico's Largest Drug Mafia Offered To Finance A Hotel Construction Project With Him Two Years Ago - The First Concrete Evidence That A Cartel Had Tried To Buy A Bank And That Its Reach Had Touched President Zedillo's Family) Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 18:43:22 -0500 To: DrugSense News Service
From: Richard Lake Subject: MN: Mexico: WP: President's Brother Denies Making Cartel Deal Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: email@example.com Source: Washington Post Author: Molly Moore and John Ward Anderson, Washington Post Foreign Service Contact: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/edit/letters/letterform.htm Website: http://www.washingtonpost.com/ Pubdate: Saturday, 21 Mar 1998 PRESIDENT'S BROTHER DENIES MAKING CARTEL DEAL Powerful Drug Gang Offered to Fund Zedillo Project, Allegedly Tried to Buy Bank to Launder Cash MEXICO CITY, March 20-Alleged money launderers for Mexico's largest drug mafia offered to finance a hotel construction project two years ago for the brother of President Ernesto Zedillo, according to Rodolfo Zedillo. The president's younger brother, who is an architect and heads a Mexico City construction company, said in a letter released late last night that he never entered into business arrangements with the two men, who since have been named in a federal investigation that is revealing how deeply the Cuidad Juarez cartel penetrated Mexico's business sector. The attorney general's investigation has provided the first concrete evidence that a cartel had tried to buy a bank and that its reach had touched President Zedillo's family. The probe has found that the Juarez cartel, headed by Amado Carrillo Fuentes until his death last year, attempted to buy a stake in a struggling Mexico bank to launder proceeds from their drug-trafficking operations. Law enforcement officials have estimated that as much as $30 billion in drug proceeds are laundered annually through Mexican businesses, banks and money-exchange houses. Mexico only enacted strict money-laundering laws last year and has yet to prosecute a major money-laundering case. On Thursday, authorities arrested Juan Alberto Zepeda Novelo, a senior executive for one of Mexico's largest construction companies, on allegations that he funneled the drug money through his accounts on the cartel's behalf to make the bank-shares purchase appear legitimate. Zepeda's company, Bufete Industrial, has denied any wrongdoing. Documents published Thursday by Publico, a Guadalajara newspaper, revealed that the construction company executive's son, Juan Zepeda Mendez, and an associate, Jorge Bastida, approached Rodolfo Zedillo and offered to finance his hotel construction project in downtown Mexico City. Neither Zepeda nor Bastida, whose whereabouts are unknown, could be reached for comment. The newspaper published a copy of an agreement to build the hotel which had been signed by Bastida and Juan Carlos Fernandez Garcia, who had power of attorney to negotiate business deals on Rodolfo Zedillo's behalf. In a letter written in response to the newspaper's article, Rodolfo Zedillo said, "I want to make perfectly clear that neither I nor the company that I represent, ever carried out any type of financial operation with these people [Bastida or Zepeda]." Zedillo said that after being approached by the two men, he asked his lawyers to investigate their financial records. He said his attorneys recommended against the deal. A Zedillo administration official said Rodolfo Zedillo obtained other financing for the project. The Zedillo administration official said, "The president has told his relatives to watch what they do and to obey the law." Zedillo's predecessor, Carlos Salinas de Gortari, has become one of the most reviled figures in Mexico, based in large part on his brother Raul's use of his proximity to the president to make millions of dollars in business deals, many of which are now under investigation by U.S., Mexican and Swiss officials. Carlos Salinas is living in exile in Ireland and his brother is in prison in Mexico. Insofar as the Juarez cartel's efforts to purchase Banco Anahuac, a small Mexico City bank, prosecutors are investigating allegations that Zepeda and Bastida bought controlling shares of about $10 million in the bank in two transactions in 1995 and 1996. Three weeks after the traffickers bought the controlling interest, Mexican banking authorities refused to let the deal go through. "A portion of the capital of the Anahuac Financial Group was found to belong to Amado Carrillo Fuentes' organization," the attorney general's office said in a statement this week. It is unclear whether the banking commission knew of the drug-trafficking connection when they stopped the deal. (c) Copyright 1998 The Washington Post Company
------------------------------------------------------------------- BC Pot Boom Forces US Customs To Crack Down At Border Crossings ('Vancouver Sun' Says British Columbia's Multi-Million-Dollar Marijuana Industry Is Forcing US Customs To Crack Down At Border Crossings, Leading To Increasingly Long Delays - Pot Smugglers Busted Recently Have Included People With Young Children And Even A Couple In Their 70s) Date: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 14:43:15 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: Chris Clay
Subject: B.C. pot boom forces U.S. Customs to crack down at border crossings NEWSHAWK: Chris Clay - http://www.hempnation.com/ SOURCE: Vancouver Sun DATE: March 21, 1998 AUTHOR: Petti Fong Vancouver Sun CONTACT: email@example.com WEBSITE: http://www.vancouversun.com/ B.C. POT BOOM FORCES U.S. CUSTOMS TO CRACK DOWN AT BORDER CROSSINGS Marijuana smuggling increase means more checks, longer delays on way to the States. PHOTO, CAPTION: VAL MEREDITH AT DOUGLAS CROSSING: "Customs is being careful as they have the right to be," South Surrey Reform MP says. Ian Smith, Vancouver Sun B.C.'s multi-million-dollar marijuana industry is forcing U.S. Customs to crack down at border crossings, leading to a rise in complaints from America-bound Lower Mainland residents. Even users of the PACE lanes, normally an expressway for frequent cross-border travellers, are being made to stop as U.S. Customs agents tighten their nets in an effort to stop the flow of U.S.-bound marijuana. And a senior U.S. Customs official says his agents are forced to be suspicious of everyone - pot smugglers busted recently have included people with young children and even a couple in their 70s. "Are we seeing an increase in narcotics? Yes," said Gene Kerven, the area director for U.S. Customs from Blaine. "Are we looking more than we used to? Yes we are. Are we doing more enforcement? Yes." Reform MP Val Meredith (South Surrey-White Rock) and Washington state Congressman Jack Metcalfe have been meeting to discuss increased complaints about aggressive border questioning. Meredith's constituency assistant Donna Lucas said the MP's office has been seeing more than the usual number of complaints lately from B.C. residents about their treatment at the American border. "For a couple of years, it seemed to slack off, but recently, people have been saying they've noticed the customs officers have been more protective and maybe a bit overzealous." Lucas, who was in Blaine, this week applying for a PACE sticker for Meredith, said about one in three PACE drivers were getting stopped and questioned. The high demand for B.C.-grown marijuana and the lure of quick profits from selling the product south of the border is drawing a wide range of smugglers, Kerven said. "What's really changed is the people doing it and that's been a dramatic impact. You can't tell any longer who's doing it. We had a 73-year-old man and a 71-year-old woman with 24 pounds [about 10 kilograms] of marijuana in their truck the other day." On that same day, Kerven said a man and woman with two young children in the car were stopped at the border and eight kilograms of marijuana were found in their car. At the Peace Arch crossing Friday afternoon, U.S.-bound Argun Tekant said he's getting questioned more than he used to a year ago. "I first noticed it last September. I go down frequently and I rarely got stopped until last fall, but they checked my trunk and everything," said the computer programmer. Meredith said many B.C. residents living so close to the Washington state forget sometimes they're entering a different country, with its own laws for entry. "There's a zero tolerance at the border and customs is being careful as they have the right to be," Meredith said. "Canada is being used as a gateway. There's high-quality marijuana being grown here and it has, unfortunately, become one of our more popular exports." In December, Metcalfe asked the U.S. Attorney-General Janet Reno to investigate allegations that American inspectors are harassing people at the Washington-B.C. border. American customs officers began noticing about a year ago the increased number of people caught smuggling marijuana, Kerven said. "The demand for B.C. marijuana is just outrageous. With the drop in the Canadian dollar, you can trade that for U.S. funds and make a large profit. What you buy for $3,500 a pound, you can sell for $6,000 once you go south." Earlier this week U.S. Ambassador Gordon Giffin accused the media of blowing out proportion stories of harassment. In the past month, newspapers have reported incidents in which Canadian travellers have been bullied, threatened and banned from the U.S. by aggressive immigration and customs officers. Giffin said there is no pervasive policy or a pervasive experience of hassling at the border.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Cost Of Cleaning Up Site Said Coming Next Week ('The Record' In Ontario, Canada, Notes The City Of Cambridge, Ontario, Is Trying To Figure Out What To Do With A Former Foundry Unloaded For $1 Several Years Ago - Extent Of Toxic Contamination Will Be Known Next Week, The Owner Owes $900,000 In Back Taxes And Hydro Bills, And Shares The Property With The Church Of The Universe And Its Pot-Smoking Members - URL For Church Included) Date: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 17:33:22 -0500 To: DrugSense News Service
From: Richard Lake Subject: MN: Canada: Cost Of Cleaning Up Site Said Coming Next Week Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: "Starr" Source: The Record (Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario) Pubdate: March 21, 1998 Contact: email@example.com Author: Bob Burtt Editors note: The Church of the Universe maintains a website at: http://www.iamm.com/ COST OF CLEANING UP SITE SAID COMING NEXT WEEK Site pollution and marijuana-smoking members of the Church of the Universe. Those are the difficult issues faced by Cambridge city officials as they try to decide what to do with the Kanmet site in Preston. Officials expect to know next week the extent of contamination and the cost of cleanup at the site which was once used as a foundry. The city also wants to get the Church of the Universe and its pot-smoking members off the site, but that's no quick or easy task. John Long bought the Kanmet property for a dollar several years ago from foundry operators anxious to dump the property and expensive environmental problems associated with the site. Now, Long owes the city $900,000 in back taxes and hydro bills. He shares the property with the Church of the Universe, a group known for using pot as a sacrament. Last month council rejected a recommendation from staff that the city pay Long $12,500 to vacate the site and turn the deed over to Cambridge. In turn, the city would have sold the property to the Preston Branch of the Royal Canadian Legion. Both deals were subject to findings in an environment consultant's report. Buying Long out would have been the quickest way to get rid of him and the church members who have rankled residents. But the plan failed to get the support of the councillors who vowed not to put any money in Long's pocket. Instead, the city decided to go ahead with a process that could eventually see the city take over the property for back taxes. But that process could take a year.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Plans For Pot Club Go Ahead ('London Free Press' Says A Civilly Disobedient Group Planning To Open A Medical Marijuana Buyers Club In London, Ontario, Will Start Distributing Applications On Monday) Date: Mon, 23 Mar 1998 10:29:24 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Joel W. Johnson) Subject: MN: Canada: Plans For Pot Club Go Ahead Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: Chris Clay
Source: London Free Press (Canada) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.lfpress.com/ Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 PLANS FOR POT CLUB GO AHEAD A group planning to open a medical marijuana buyers club in London will start distributing applications on Monday, a spokesperson says. Pete Young said supporters will be delivering some applications while others can be picked up at his Organic Traveller store at 343 Richmond St. He said club membership will be restricted to people with doctors' letters confirming they have diseases alleviated by pot intake. Young said supporters have gathered up to 36 names of potential members since an announcement Feb. 13 that the club was planned. A club location is expected to open by May 1 and home deliveries could start as early as April, he said. Lynn Harichy, a multiple sclerosis sufferer, and her husband, Mike, were to organize the London outlet. They couldn't be reached for comment Friday.
------------------------------------------------------------------- 'Zero Tolerance' At Imperial Oil - Drug-Testing Policy Riles Refinery Workers ('Canadian Press' Says Imperial Oil Is Still Forcing A Tough Drug-Testing Policy On Employees Across Canada Despite A Court Ruling That The Program Is Discriminatory)Date: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 16:21:33 -0700 Subject: Drug Policy- Imperial Oil From: "Debbie Harper3"
To: mattalk SOURCE: Calgary Herald PUB DATE: March 21, 1998 (A13) firstname.lastname@example.org 'ZERO-TOLERANCE' AT IMPERIAL OIL Drug-testing policy riles refinery workers Paula Arad The Canadian Press TORONTO Imperial Oil is still forcing a tough drug-testing policy on employees across Canada despite a court ruling that the program is discriminatory. "It's disgusting that a company of this magnitude and class is doing this." said Scott James, an operator at Imperial's refinery in Sarnia, Ont. "The policy is a crock of beans." Imperial says it can enforce the policy because the provincial court decision it's appealing was unclear in it's order to the company. The January ruling upheld a 1993 landmark decision by the Ontario Human Rights Commission that found Imperial's policy relied on stereotypes about people with drug or alcohol problems. The policy, implemented in 1991, requires its 7,000 employees to reveal any drug and alcohol problems, no matter how old. Failure to do so could lead to firing. While the zero-tolerance policy applies to all workers, those in less supervised "safety-sensitive" jobs - about 700 people - are subject to even harsher rules such as random testing for drug and alcohol use, said Barbara Hejduk, an Imperial spokeswoman. "People are upset", said David Dennis, an operator at Imperial's refinery in Sarnia, Ont., where the initial human rights complaint originated in 1992. Some 350 employees there are subject to random testing. "I find it embarrassing to urinate in a bottle. It's demeaning," said Dennis, who has been tested twice in seven weeks. "There doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to the number of times you can e tested. I don't drink alcohol of any kind and I certainly don't do drugs. I never have. This is why I find it personally offensive," said Dennis. A computer program determines how often employees are tested but it's at lest once a year, said Hejduk. It's not likely, but workers could be tested every time they work a shift, she said. Hejduk was aware employees are unhappy with the company's position, but said, it's a stand Imperial must take to ensure safety. "That is a big farce." said James. "We have more safety features built in than you could imagine. I could not blow up this place if I wanted to." Both he and Dennis agreed there's a need for a strict policy to maintain standards, but objected to being tested without reason. "As soon as you walk in the gates you have to prove you're innocent," said James, who complained the testing area in not very private. Marty Entrop, the employee who brought the initial complaint against the company in 1992, said the battle ahead is less painful than what he and his family have been through. "We're not opening up old wounds any more," said the reformed alcoholic who was forced to disclose his problem when the policy went into effect in 1991- seven years after his last drink.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Cannabis - MP Wants Research Into Medicinal Use (Britain's 'Eastern Daily Press' Notes Dr. Ian Gibson, A Labour Party Member Representing North Norfolk In Parliament, Has Questioned The Evidence On Which Home Secretary Jack Straw Continues To Rule Out Legalising Cannabis, And Has Called On The Government To Commission A Study Of The Evidence) To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (CLCIA) Subject: ART: CANNABIS : MP wants research into medicinal use Cc: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 13:49:53 +0000 Source; Eastern Daily Press, Norwich, UK Pub Date : March 21 1998-03-22 Author: David Woodthorpe Contact : EDPLetters@ecn.co.uk Comment : Dr Gibson is Labour MP for Norwich North and on the House of Lords committee. CANNABIS : MP wants research into medicinal use Gibson calls for study on drugs. A Norfolk MP has called on the Government to commission a road-based study of drugs while questioning the evidence on which Home Secretary Jack Straw continues to rule out legalising cannabis. Dr. Ian Gibson says it is important that the Home Office does not 'stick its head in the sand' but listens and responds to the debate. In calling for a fresh look at the scientific evidence, the backbench Labour MP for Norwich North is adding his voice to that of Conservative David Prior. The 43-year-old MP for North Norfolk recently called for more openness when considering the drugs question after he admitted smoking cannabis until his late 20's. But the gulf between the two camps was highlighted last night when former Home Office minister Ann Widdicome spoke to Tory Party members in the Cromer heart of Mr Prior's constituency. Miss Widdicombe accused Body Shop boss Anita Roddick of making a joke out of drug-taking when the cosmetics guru handed out cannabis seeds at the launch of a new beauty range called Hemp. She said: "The law is that cannabis is illegal and it is illegal for perfectly good reasons. It is not responsible to laugh at that in a major marketing enterprise which is aimed at young people." Mr Straw takes a firm view on illegal drugs, refusing to countenance legalising cannabis even for medicinal use, though his department has granted licences for researchers to experiment. But writing in today's EDP, Dr Gibson says: "An in-depth look at the scientific evidence demonstrates that the certainties on which Mr Straw bases his argument, and the Government's position, are difficult to support." The drugs debate, he points out, has become "polarised" and requires the rigour of a commission established by the Government to review the scientific evidence - especially in connection with cannabis's alleged health-promoting properties. Dr Gibson compares the taking of cannabis with the consumption of alcohol. And he writes: "Most people in society have learned to use a potentially-dangerous substance, which shares certain negative effects with cannabis, in measures which are both tolerable and in some ways efficacious." "There is a strong case for treating the smoking of cannabis in much the same way as we treat the consumption of alcohol." Dr Gibson says he remains four-square behind current drug laws: "I believe that the current Government's position in regard of drug is the correct one but as we learn more then our views should evolve. If, for example, evidence came out that cannabis would be clearly advantageous as a medicine then it would seem to be illogical to ignore such evidence."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Time To Unlock The Secrets Of Cannabis (Companion Piece In Britain's 'Eastern Daily Press' Does A Good Job Of Briefly Summarizing The Home Secretary's Statements Replete With Junk Science References, And Contrasting Them With What The Peer-Reviewed Science Suggests) To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (CLCIA) Subject: ART: Time to unlock the secrets of cannabis : March 21 Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 13:49:46 +0000 Source, Eastern Daily Press, Norwich, UK Pub Date : March 21 1998 ART: Time to unlock the secrets of cannabis Contact : EDPLetters@ecn.co.uk Comment : Dr. Ian Gibson is former Dean of Biology at the University of East Anglia and now Labour MP for Norwich North. Ian Gibson MP, House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA Time to unlock the secrets of cannabis Cannabis has for years been branded an illegal and harmful substance but Labour MP Ian Gibson says the Government should take a fresh look at the drug and its uses. In a recent interview on the Breakfast with Frost programme, Home Secretary Jack Straw said: "The evidence is strong about cannabis. If you look at the journals, it's all there, about the long-term (detrimental) effect of cannabis." Mr Straw's remarks demonstrate how the whole cannabis debate has become highly polarised with the public being presented with totally-opposite arguments on the health effects of cannabis. Some advocates of the decriminalisation of cannabis claim that the drug is "safer than aspirin" while others adopt Mr Straw's line and argue that the drug is a deceptively-dangerous substance. It may seem obvious that policy on the use of cannabis should be based on scientific evidence, factual information and common sense. However, an in-depth look at the scientific evidence demonstrates that the certainties on which Mr Straw bases his argument, and the Government's position, are difficult to support. The tragic death of a young Norfolk girl was linked to the drug Dianette, which is a contraceptive drug also prescribed for the treatment of acne. Up until January this year, six deaths were attributed to adverse reactions to this substance. Yet hundreds of thousands of people have benefited from taking Dianette. This is a stark illustration that there is no such thing as a totally safe drug, be it for medical or recreational use. Dianette, like so many prescribed drugs, presents a small risk of side effects and highlights the need for ongoing research and risk / benefit analysis. So what does science tell us about cannabis? A technical report, which was conducted for the United States Toxicology programme, looked at the toxic effect of 1-transdelta9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC, which is the major psychoactive component of cannabis). The study revealed no evidence of carcinogenic activity in rats and only equivocal evidence in mice. Furthermore, the report found no human epidemiological or case reports linking THC with cancer. There is little doubt that cannabis is significantly less likely to cause cancer than tobacco, a drug sold over the counter in the House of Commons. However, this and many other studies demonstrate a less favourable picture of the neuro-behavioural effects of THC, which reveal problems with mood swings, impairment of short-term memory and altered perception of visual and auditory stimuli. Other detrimental findings recorded in several different studies on chronic cannabis users included problems with reduced sperm count and a decrease in T cells and interferon levels which effect the ability of the body's immune system to ward off infection. Conversely, other studies have reported that cannabis smoking has no effect on the immunity system, or that cannabis is in fact a slight stimulant to the immune system. Cannabis has been used successfully for a number of applications. Theses include reducing pain and inflammation; lowering the intraocular pressure in glaucoma; relieving the nausea associated with chemotherapy; stimulating appetite; calming diarrhoea; and relief from muscle spasm. It is, however, debatable as to whether the medical benefits of cannabis have been replaced by more sophisticated drugs which have been developed in recent years. For example, the use of beta-adrenoceptor blockers or pilocarpine to treat glaucoma has reduced interest in the use of THC for this application. Cannabis still ahs a lot of pharmaceutical secrets for scientists to unlock and it is crucial that the stigma surrounding this substance is not allowed to prejudice further research. Given what we know about the toxicity of tobacco, I have some sympathy with Mr Straw when he said: "If we were to start from scratch we would certainly say that tobacco is a bad idea... we would, I think, have banned it." HOWEVER, it was his remarks about alcohol which I believe inadvertently point us in the direction of a sane and workable drugs policy. Mr Straw said: "Alcohol, it's a drug, yes, it is a drug but it is one we are used to dealing with." Of course the misuse of alcohol is a problem that deserves our attention, indeed the lethal cocktail of alcohol and the motor car has lead to the deaths of many thousands in road accidents, and one could argue that factor alone makes it more dangerous than cannabis. However, it is true to say that the vast majority of people who take alcohol do so without causing medical or social harm. Most people in society have learned to use a potentially-dangerous substance, which shares certain negative effects with cannabis, in measures which are both tolerable and in some ways efficacious. There is a strong case for treating the smoking of cannabis in much the same way as we treat the consumption of alcohol. The commonly-articulated goal of a "drug-free Britain" is a highly desirable one - however, it is no more achievable than a crime-free Britain" or indeed a "risk-free" drug. Of course the Government should design policies aimed at reducing the use of drugs, but these policies must be flexible, allowing all the agencies to tailor their approach to suit individual drug cases. Heavy-handed methods could lead to users avoiding seeking help through fear of Draconian penalties. President Jimmy Carter said: "Penalties against a drug should not be more dangerous to the individual than the use of the drug itself; and where they are they should be changed. Nowhere is this more clear than in the laws against the possession of marijuana." President Carter's words were in response to the Shafer Commission which in the early 70s conducted a massive survey of drug use in the USA. I believe our Government should commission a similar, but broader-based study of drugs and drug use. The conflicting scientific information on cannabis suggests that the commission should include an extensive review of the science in its remit. I hope that the House of Lord's inquiry, which is to reopen the whole question of continuing to outlaw cannabis, acts as the catalyst needed to bring about this wider debate. When Mr Straw next trawls through the journals he will find as many different research papers as there are opinions, but through the fog of debate he will find one fact stands out: pumping more and more money into law enforcement has not made the drug problem go away, and it probably never will.
------------------------------------------------------------------- MP's Public Admission On Cannabis Is Welcome (Letter To Editor Of Britain's 'Evening News' In Norwich Commends North Norfolk's Conservative Member Of Parliament, David Prior, For Publicly Admitting He Smoked Cannabis In His Youth) Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 10:34:44 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Joel W. Johnson) Subject: MN: UK: PUB LTE: MP's Public Admission on Cannabis is Welcome Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: email@example.com (CLCIA) Source: Evening News (Norwich UK) Contact: EveningNewsLetters@ecn.co.uk Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 MP'S PUBLIC ADMISSION ON CANNABIS IS WELCOME I would like to congratulate North Norfolk Conservative MP, David Prior, for publicly admitting that he smoked cannabis in his youth. This comes at a time when a poll of new MPs revealed that 20 per cent of them have tried an illegal drug. Yet so far the number that have announced it publicly can be counted on one hand. To the rest I say come out, have no fear of an adverse public reaction, we are behind you and support honesty. The truth is that almost every adult in the UK has either taken an illegal drug or known someone who has and not reported them. We're all guilty of that. And those who have not are usually busy smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol, probably with the occasional Valium thrown in. For a Government to ban a remarkably safe plant like cannabis, whilst profitting from the trade in dangerous legal drugs like alcohol, is hypocritical, to say the least. To publicly support prohibition whilst concealing their own 'law-breaking' past, is downright dishonest. So let's have some more of the spirit of honesty shown by David Prior. Let's hear from our MPs - have you taken an illegal drug and do you think that taking such substances should be punished. It is punishment that is the real issue of the question: Should drugs be legalised? sincerely Alun Buffry Winter Road Norwich
------------------------------------------------------------------- Ethical Debate - Sex, Drugs, And The Invasion Of Privacy ('British Medical Journal' Discussion About The Efficacy Of Cannabis In Helping Multiple Sclerosis Patients Focuses On Whether Nurses Should Inspect A Hospitalized Patient's Baked Goods - And Concludes 'Silence May Be The Best Advocacy') Date: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 21:24:37 -0500 To: DrugSense News Service
From: Richard Lake Subject: MN: BMJ: ETHICAL DEBATE: Sex, Drugs, And The Invasion Of Privacy Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz (David Hadorn) Source: British Medical Journal - No 7135 Volume 316 Pubdate: Saturday 21 March 1998 Contact: email@example.com Website: http://18.104.22.168/bmj/ ETHICAL DEBATE SEX, DRUGS, AND THE INVASION OF PRIVACY Patients who are in hospital for long periods may want the same level of privacy they have in their own homes. A clinical team from John Radcliffe Hospital Oxford describes the case of a young man with multiple sclerosis who was suspected of taking cannabis while in hospital for respite care. An ethicist, nurse, doctor, and manager from the Multiple Sclerosis Society give their views on the issue. RESPECT FOR PRIVACY AND THE CASE OF MR K Julian Savulescu, Rachel Marsden, Tony Hope In Britain, the patient's charter specifies standards of rights and dignity for patients. Little guidance is given about what this means in practice, other than the desirability of providing separate washing and toilet facilities for men and women in hospital. Respect for privacy, however, goes far beyond this. Here we consider the case of Mr K (box). Mr K And The Cannabis Cake Mr K, a former carpenter and artist, is 35 years old. He has multiple sclerosis, which was diagnosed 10 years ago. Mr K has lived with his mother since his wife left him seven years ago. He needs full assistance with activities of daily living, and this is provided by his mother. Respite care is arranged at a rehabilitation hospital. Mr K's mother asked if her son could smoke cannabis in the rehabilitation hospital. "He has smoked since he was a teenager. I was against it for a long time, but it's one of the few things he can enjoy now. He gets very agitated if he doesn't get his dope, and his spasms are much worse." After consultation with colleagues, the ward sister told Mr K's mother that staff could not knowingly allow him to consume illegal substances on hospital premises. Mr K was admitted to hospital. Every day his mother brought him a cake, which he ate with relish. One nurse suggested that the cake might contain cannabis. The staff were in a quandary; should they investigate further? Hospitals And Privacy Privacy is often at risk in hospital. Patients may feel threatened if staff ask them unnecessarily personal questions or if parts of their bodies are exposed unnecessarily during physical examinations. Confidentiality, one aspect of privacy, can be breached when there is unwarranted access to facts about patients. Yet another side of privacy is the freedom to engage - in private - in activities that are important to us. In this paper, we wish to highlight the importance of privacy in two groups of patients - those admitted to hospital with terminal diseases and chronically ill patients who spend long periods in hospital. For these people the hospital may be home, and they may need enough privacy to engage in important personal relationships and other activities that they value highly. If hospital is home, attempts should be made to allow patients the same privacy they would enjoy at home. This includes providing space and time that are their own, so that they can do what they want, free from interference. Sexual relations between consenting adults would not necessarily be precluded. Important limitations to privacy exist, however, and special constraints apply in a hospital (box). Limitations On Patients' Privacy In Hospital Patients should not be free to pursue interests that harm or interfere with others. Private behaviour should not become public in a way that seriously offends others or incites others to break the law. Patients generally should not be free to pursue interests that cause serious harm to themselves. Provision of private space and time must be consistent with the proper delivery of health care and must not put an excessive burden on the available resources. Privacy And The Use Of Illicit Drugs Illegal behaviour raises further issues. Under section 8 of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971, it is illegal for the occupier of a premises knowingly to permit the consumption of illicit drugs. The "occupier" refers to someone with the power to exclude people from the premises, and in a hospital this probably includes doctors and senior nurses. Health professionals may be in breach of the law if they knowingly allow the consumption of illegal drugs. However, an important difference exists between shutting one's eyes to an obvious breach of the law and respecting privacy. Privacy is vitally important. The possibility that a patient may be consuming illegal drugs in hospital should not, by itself, justify invading their privacy, just as the possibility that patients might be using illicit drugs at home does not warrant unlimited access to their private lives. In the case of Mr K, it would be morally right to ensure that he and his mother are aware of the risks and benefits of using cannabis. But investigating whether the cake contains cannabis would be wrong unless staff believe that there is evidence of sufficient risk of harm to Mr K or to others that would justify intrusion into what is a private matter. Conclusion We expect privacy in our own homes and the right to behave in ways that others might disapprove of without interference. Healthcare professionals should provide such a level of privacy for patients who spend a long time or the end of their lives in hospital. For these patients privacy may be one of the few freedoms they can enjoy, and it is relevant to ask them how much privacy they would have in their own home. Good reasons are needed for accepting a lower level of privacy in hospital. Oxford Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford OX3 9DU Julian Savulescu, clinical ethicist Churchill Hospital, Oxford OX3 7LJ Rachael Marsden, unit support nurse University of Oxford Medical School, John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford 0X3 9DU Tony Hope, reader in medicine, honorary consultant psychiatrist Correspondence to: Dr Hope *** COMMENTARY: SILENCE MAY BE THE BEST ADVOCACY Ruth Carlyle Healthcare professionals and voluntary organisations supporting people with medical conditions act as advocates upholding the rights of their clients. In the case of Mr K, Savulescu et al suggest that the best advocacy can sometimes be to remain silent. Cannabis And Multiple Sclerosis The Multiple Sclerosis Society is often contacted by people who openly admit that they are breaking the law - people who are otherwise law abiding and would never have considered taking an illegal substance if they had not believed it might help them to cope with their symptoms, such as spasms, bladder control, or fatigue. Some people indicate that they have benefited from cannabis; some say that taking cannabis has had no impact on their lives with multiple sclerosis; and others report that it has made some of their symptoms, such as balance, worse. When we are contacted by people who volunteer the information that they are breaking the law, we respect their privacy as adults who have chosen to take cannabis for therapeutic benefit in their own homes. Privacy In Hospital ... And At Home Choices in life can be restricted severely by multiple sclerosis, and any additional curtailment of independence is therefore important. The greater the threat to privacy, the more it is prized. How far then should privacy extend? In a hospital, the ethical dilemma outlined by Savulescu et al is more complex. The authors suggest that the rule of thumb which we should be using is the degree of privacy that a person would experience in their own home. While Mr K was living with his mother, it is unlikely that any outsider would have noticed that Mr K was eating or smoking cannabis if he chose to hide the fact. Nevertheless, Mr K's privacy at home would be compromised by the closeness of his relationship with his mother and his need to be cared for by her. Privacy is not absolute at home or in hospital, but relationships operate at different levels according to context. Professional carers should not assume that they have the right to be as intimate as a family carer; the level of relationship should be more like that of a guest or colleague sharing a part of a person's life. Caring for people has to involve concern for them as individuals with the right to make choices; it means not asking questions which breach their privacy. In this situation, ignorance may not be bliss, and it is certainly not an easy option, but it respects the privacy of the individual as a person rather than a patient. Multiple Sclerosis Society of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, London SW6 1EE Ruth Carlyle, manager, information and education email: RCarlyle@mssociety.org.uk *** COMMENTARY: PATIENTS SHOULD HAVE PRIVACY AS LONG AS THEY DO NOT HARM THEMSELVES OR OTHERS George J Annas Medical care requires the invasion of privacy. Patients must expose their innermost thoughts, their bodies, and their sickrooms to strangers. But to protect human dignity, health providers should limit invasions to those necessary to accomplish the goals of their patients. Privacy Of Personal Space The case of Mr K centres on the privacy of personal space. The critical sentence in the case study of Savulescu et al begins "If hospital is home." The hospital is literally home if, as happens in many nursing homes in the United States, the patient is expected to live there until death. In these cases we should ensure that patients live their lives as they see fit, provided their actions do not seriously harm others. For example, sex with a consenting adult (with the door closed), reasonable amounts of alcohol, choices in food, ability to keep a locked drawer, freedom to take walks outside, guests of their own choice, telephone services, and the like remain important for many hospital patients. Yet the hospital is not usually home, and very few people would like it to be. Moreover, the contemporary trend is to transform homes into hospitals, rather than hospitals into homes. Should ethical questions be treated as legal problems? Mr K is in an intermediate position. He has a home, but is admitted periodically to hospital for respite care. Should he be deprived of the cannabis that his mother supplies him with at home? The reasoning in this case illustrates a pervasive and fundamental problem in modern medical ethics - the tendency to treat all ethical questions as legal problems.(1) Thus, the nursing staff and the case presenters rely almost exclusively in their analysis on their personal (I take it, non-legal) interpretation of English law. We are told, for example, that it is against the law if the staff "knowingly allow the consumption of illegal substances on hospital premises," and that section 8 of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 forbids the "occupier of a premises knowingly to permit the consumption of illicit drugs." A Pragmatic Approach To Privacy Whether the law actually applies here requires an extensive legal analysis. While there is no explicit exception for medicinal use of "illicit substances," I would be very surprised if a prosecution has ever been attempted of a doctor or nurse who made a reasonable judgment that use of cannabis in circumstances such as these should be allowed. (And the "premises" in section 8 probably apply to the venues of parties and other social gatherings, not hospitals.) As in all decisions concerning medical ethics, the focus should be on the patient and his or her wellbeing. If allowing his mother to supply cannabis in cake helps medically, does not harm any other patient or staff member, and is what Mr K wants, it should be permitted.(2,3) Finally, I would revise the three proposed limitations on patients' privacy by deleting the third altogether (resource allocation is really a separate issue) and combining the first and second. Thus, patients should be free to pursue their own interests and activities so long as this pursuit does not harm others or cause serious harm to themselves. Health Law Department, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02118-2394, USA George J Annas, professor of health law email: firstname.lastname@example.org References 1 Annas G J. Standard of law: the law of American bioethics. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993. 2 Kassirer J P. Federal foolishness and marijuana. N Engl J Med 1997;336:366-7. 3 Annas G J. Reefer madness: the federal response to California's medical marijuana law. N Engl J Med 1997;337:435-9. *** COMMENTARY: NURSES SHOULD RECOGNISE PATIENTS' RIGHTS TO AUTONOMY Pippa Gough When people become dependent on others for care, their choices and actions may be affected and channelled by their carers' moral judgments and values about what is good and right. Although this extends across daily living, it is brought into sharp focus in relation to two key areas - the choice to break the law and the freedom to have sex as one wishes. Although the case of Mr K highlights the former, in this instance the desire to use illegal drugs, the issues raised are equally applicable to the second area concerning sex and sexuality. Ultimately, we are discussing the principles underpinning the patient's right to autonomy and the nurse's obligation to maintain and promote this. Patients' Autonomy Underpins Professional Practice Nursing has struggled as much as any of the professions to shake off the practices of paternalism, the creation of dependency, and coercion, however subtly or benignly these are presented. We have probably been successful in raising the debate even if we have not influenced completely the way we deliver care. The nurses' code of professional conduct, which provides the fundamental framework for professional practice, has strongly influenced these changes.(1) Recognition of a patient's autonomy underpins the code. At its most fundamental, this means respecting individuals' choices concerning their lives and, where necessary, providing an environment of privacy and confidentiality so that these choices can be pursued. Personal Privacy And Public Peril The limitations to a nurse's duty of care in this respect are tempered only by the balance between the protection of personal privacy and the threat of public peril. In other words, this duty of care extends beyond the individual to society, and nurses are accountable for their actions in terms of each. The dividing line between the two, however, is rarely clear and dilemmas abound. Moreover, the nurse's own values may colour his or her interpretation of what might infringe the public interest, especially if this involves unlawful activity. In the case of Mr K, the possible consumption of cannabis within the ward, which is after all his home during the respite period, does not seem to threaten the public interest in the slightest. Protection of Mr K's privacy therefore remains paramount. The nurses involved are not sure that cannabis is being consumed, and as this knowledge might affect their legal position, they should investigate no further unless this may present problems in respect of potentially harmful drug interactions. They should respect Mr K's right to consume cannabis if he wishes, and to do so on the ward, without further questions being asked. Promotion of autonomous action in relation to pursuing sexual relationships should be dealt with similarly. Royal College of Nursing, London W1M 0AB Pippa Gough, assistant director nursing policy email: email@example.com Reference 1 United Kingdom Central Council for Nursing, Midwifery and Health Visiting. Code of professional conduct. London: UKCC, 1992. *** COMMENTARY: HOSPITAL CAN NEVER BE HOME Michael Saunders The problem is that hospitals are not home, and never can be. The development of units for young disabled people in the 1960s and 70s raised hopes that homely environments could be created within the NHS. These aspirations were not realised; nor were they realistic. This has led to moves to create small family units in community settings and the provision of adequate facilities to maintain people in their own homes. Regrettably, facilities and resources remain limited and people are still admitted to hospital for respite care. Unless respite care involves assessment or treatment, hospitals of any sort are an inappropriate environment for most people with chronic neurological disease. Underlying the question of the nature and use of hospitals is the wider issue of the purpose of the NHS. The NHS is probably not there to provide a "home," however much we may want to transport home life into an NHS hospital. Mr K's Habit Might Distress Others Cannabis is still illegal, although many people do smoke it. Whether it is a useful drug in multiple sclerosis is a matter for debate, but it is not prescribed officially. Although the ward staff may be sympathetic to Mr K's predicament, they cannot allow him to smoke cannabis. Public servants are obliged to stay within the law and making exceptions could lead them down the "slippery slope" of acquiescing to all sorts of illegal practices. Apart from this, the environment of many rehabilitation units would mean that Mr K's smoking of cannabis would impinge on the privacy of others, who might find his habit distressing. Eating cake, however, seems harmless enough. The staff are certainly not detectives and if Mr K eats cannabis cake they should have no means of finding out. The relationship between Mr K and staff should be one of mutual trust, however, which places an obligation on Mr K and his mother not to deceive the unit once the matter has been discussed and permission refused. Sexual Relationships Are Important To Disabled People Sexual relationships in hospital are a problem because of lack of privacy. There is no reason why sexual relations should be barred in hospitals, providing the privacy and feelings of others are protected. This can be a very important part of the life of someone with a chronic disability. The failure to provide facilities for sexual relationships may be a reflection of the attitudes and perceptions of able bodied staff to people with disabilities. Anandgiri, Thorpe Underwood, York YO5 9ST Michael Saunders, consultant neurologist email: Michael.Saunders@btinternet.com
------------------------------------------------------------------- Policemen Who Sold Ecstasy Are Spared Jail (Britain's 'Times' Says The Judge In The Case Condemned A Third Officer Who Set The Other Two Up And Sold The Story To 'News Of The World' Newspaper) Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 17:45:22 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Joel W. Johnson) Subject: MN: UK: Policemen Who Sold Ecstasy are Spared Jail Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: "(Zosimos) Martin Cooke"
Source: Times The (UK) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.the-times.co.uk/ Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 Author: Michael Horsnell POLICEMEN WHO SOLD ECSTASY ARE SPARED JAIL TWO policemen escaped with community service orders yesterday for supplying Ecstasy tablets. A judge said they did not deserve to go to prison and he condemned another officer who set them up and sold the story to a newspaper. A senior lawyer in the Crown Prosecution Service criticised the sentences. "This is unthinkable," he said. "The usual sentence for supplying one or two tablets of Ecstasy on a social basis is 12 to 15 months. These two men were policemen ... They knew more than most the criminality of what they were doing." PC John Capello, 36, based at Paddington Green police station in West London, and his friend, PC Keith Roberts, 27, were each sentenced to 200 hours' community service. Judge George Bathurst Norman, who branded the drug a "killer", told them he would have considered imprisonment if they had not pleaded guilty to a crime that was engineered by PC Sean Hallewell. Tudor Owen, for the prosecution, told Southwark Crown Court that Roberts had extolled the virtues of taking Ecstasy to PC Hallewell. PC Hallewell, who declined to try it, had already known that Capello was an Ecstasy user. "PC Hallewell suspected that the officers would not only take Ecstasy but, because of their apparent knowledge of the drugs culture, would supply it if asked to do so." He added: "What Hallewell did next was totally wrong. Instead of using proper channels, he contacted the News of the World." PC Hallewell was paid an undisclosed sum for revealing the story and giving his assistance. On August 25, 1996, the News of the World published an article naming the two officers. Capello later admitted to police selling PC Hallewell four tablets for #40 while Roberts sold him two for #20. The judge told them: "You were effectively set up because there is not one shred of evidence that either of you supplied drugs to anyone before you supplied them to Hallewell." He added that the News of the World had distorted the true picture and made the officers out to be major drug dealers, which they were not.
------------------------------------------------------------------- £600 Million Needed To Fight Drug Scourge ('Irish Independent' Says Fergus McCabe Of The Inner City Community Told The Irish National Crime Forum Yesterday That Resources On The Order Of Those Allocated To Prisons Must Also Be Made Available To Communities Fighting The Ravages Of 'Drugs') Date: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 17:37:14 -0500 To: DrugSense News Service
From: Richard Lake Subject: MN: Ireland: 600 Million Pounds Needed To Fight Drug Scourge Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: Martin Cooke Source: Irish Independent Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.independent.ie/ Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 '£600M NEEDED' TO FIGHT DRUG SCOURGE RESOURCES of the order of £600m similar to that allocated to provide prisons must also be made available to communities fighting the ravages of drugs, the National Crime Forum was told yesterday. Fergus McCabe from the Inner City Organisation's network stressed that resources of £20m to £30m were completely inadequate. On top of financial resources, there also had to be a change of culture in the management of government departments coupled with an intellectual openness in addressing the problems. Mr McCabe told the forum that despite its many faults, the Combined Parents Against Drugs movement of the 80s represented a lost opportunity for the authorities to win a place in the communities. At the same time, prisons which had a huge scope to address the problem, had failed to do so. The reality for now was that methadone would have to continue to be part of the answer to the problem. He revealed that in conjunction with the authorities, the smaller drug pushers in the city centre are to be targeted in the coming weeks. Mr McCabe said that while recognising the issue of civil liberties, the authorities could move against them in the same way as they moved against city street traders. The Inner City Community leader pointed out that many of those in his area in the flats complexes had been disconnected" from the State. "Young people are divorced from the democratic system and there is ongoing disconnection from the State in many blocks of flats." Ann Quigley of the Dublin Citywide Drugs Crisis Campaign said that drug users who come before courts should be referred directly to treatment services. Their sentence would depend on the progress which would be monitored and residential places should be made available for those whose crimes were not considered suitable for community work sentences. She urged that money confiscated by the Criminal Assets Bureau from major drug dealers be immediately handed over for use by treatment centres. It could be recouped by the State when the CAB is finally given the court order to take out the money from a frozen account.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Pros And Cons For Legalising Cannabis ('Irish Times' Says A Law Professor At University College Cork Believes The War On Some Drug Users Is 'In The Final Stages Of A Failed Social Experiment - I Have Children Myself - I Would Prefer My Son To Take Cannabis Rather Than Alcohol - It Is Unethical For Us To Continue With This Policy And The Use Of The Criminal Law In This Way') Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 10:32:35 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Joel W. Johnson) Subject: MN: Ireland: Pros and Cons for Legalising Cannabis Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: "(Zosimos) Martin Cooke"
Source: Irish Times (Ireland) Contact: email@example.com Fax: ++ 353 1 671 9407 Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 PROS AND CONS FOR LEGALISING CANNABIS A man who has argued for the legalisation of cannabis said yesterday he would rather his son used cannabis than alcohol. Mr Tim Murphy of the department of law at University College Cork said the war against drugs was "in the final stages of a failed social experiment". The supply and demand for drugs had risen despite spending on anti-drug laws, he said. "I have children myself. I would prefer my son to take cannabis rather than alcohol, he said. "I find it a much more beneficial substance." It was "unethical for us to continue with this policy and the use of the criminal law in this way", he said. Anti-legalisation campaigner Dr Michael ffrench-O'Carroll said he could not accept that young people took drugs "just because it is illegal". Most patients he treated who used cannabis were regular users, he said. "Cannabis is the breadand-butter of drug abuse as far as drug users are concerned," he said. Vincent Doherty, of the South Inner City Drugs Task Force, said communities were "outraged" with suggestions that drugs like heroin should be legalised. "The dangerous subtext with decriminalisation is to say that perhaps these communities can't be saved, and perhaps they're not worth saving," he added.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Academic Calls For Moves To Legalise Cannabis (Version In 'The Irish Independent') Date: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 16:56:39 -0500 To: DrugSense News Service
From: Richard Lake Subject: MN: Ireland: Academic Calls For Moves To Legalise Cannabis Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: "(Zosimos) Martin Cooke" Source: The Irish Independent Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.independent.ie/ Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 ACADEMIC CALLS FOR MOVES TO LEGALISE CANNABIS CONFLICTING views on the decriminalisation and legalisation of cannabis and other drugs were voiced yesterday at the [National Crime] forum. Tim Murphy of the Department of Law at UCC advocated decriminalising drugs and told the forum he would prefer his young son to take cannabis than alcohol. His argument was that the criminalisation of drugs over the past 70 to 80 years had not worked. The policy of trying to move to a drug free society was an unrealistic aim, as the trend was going in the opposite direction throughout Ireland, Europe and the world. In society supply and demand had increased. Mr Murphy pointed out that all drugs could be used or abused and the policy should be one of harm reduction rather than criminalisation. He asked what purpose it served to criminalise people with drug problems. They were stigmatised and driven into a criminal realm. The reality was that people were taking drugs but they were adulterated and came from underground sources. "Society should move away from this demonisation of drugs," he said. Instead, society should take over from the criminal gangs and, in a humane way, decriminalise drugs. It was through a treatment system rather than through the judicial or prison system that society should react. It should move away from the punitive approach because "addiction is a clinical condition and criminalising addiction is not the way". He denied he was defending the trendy liberal thinking from the ivory tower of a university. The reality is that drugs are available everywhere. Dr French insisted that cannabis caused loss of memory and loss of concentration. For 14 to 16 year olds cannabis was not "the bread and butter" of drug abuse in the community. Mr Murphy's problem, he said, was that he did not accept the reality of addiction. Those addicted were getting younger and younger and anything which would legalise or decriminalise drugs was most irresponsible. It would lead to much greater problems than those which affected society in legalising alcohol, tranquilisers and tobacco. Ms Anne Quigley of the Citywide Drug Group said the legalisation of drugs were something which was hugely insensitive to bring up with families devastated by drug addiction. "Legalisation can be seen as a distraction or a search for another easy answer to a complex problem," she said. One speaker who said she was "the mother of a cannabis addict" said the drug had destroyed their home. She said he was expelled from school because he could not concentrate and had no interest in a job. She said 95pc of young people in her area had progressed into other drugs from cannabis. The issue of special courts to deal with drugs cases was given a mixed reception by community workers. Ms Quigley said there was no point in dealing with drug addicts through the courts without dealing with their habit. If they had committed a crime in order to feed a drug habit then there should be a treatment option rather than prison. She agreed with Fergus McCabe of Icon that more research was needed. He said the big difference with special drug courts in the USA was that they had extra resources and facilities linked to treatment which the ordinary courts did not.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Revamped Drugs Group Attacked ('The Scotsman' Notes The New And Improved Version Of Scotland Against Drugs Still Doesn't Have Any Steering Committee Members Who Know Anything About Drugs) Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 17:11:30 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Joel W. Johnson) Subject: MN: UK: Revamped Drugs Group Attacked Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: email@example.com Source: Scotsman (UK) Contact: Letters_ts@scotsman.com Website: http://www.scotsman.com/ Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 Author: Jenny Booth - Home Affairs Correspondent REVAMPED DRUGS GROUP ATTACKED Past controversies revived as campaign comes under fire for excluding experts from steering committee THE new look Scotland Against Drugs campaign was attacked last night for failing to include anyone with detailed knowledge of drugs work in its new steering committee. Major drugs organisations expressed "surprise" that they have not been included in the new, slimmed down group. Marilyne MacLaren, the convener of the Scottish Liberal Democrats, said that SAD, whose Scottish Office funding was slashed after its director clashed with frontline drugs agencies last summer on how to present the anti-drugs message, was in danger of reviving past controversies. Critics claimed that SAD was being deprived of up-to-date knowledge of the drugs field vital to its new job of drumming up private sector funding for drugs work. The row threatens to reopen the damaging splits between SAD and frontline anti-drugs agencies. David Liddell, the director of the Scottish Drugs Forum, said the lack of drugs agencies on the new committee was a setback after SDF had made efforts to re-establish good relations with SAD. He added: "We were surprised that we weren't included, as we are the umbrella body for drugs agencies. "We believe it is crucial for SAD to have direct links with those working in the field. We are keen to avoid a repetition of the damaging public rows about the direction of drug policy in Scotland." Ms MacLaren said: "SAD is in danger of perpetuating the same problems that bust the campaign last summer. It has been reformed on a smaller scale and with a smaller budget but is in danger of making the same mistakes." When SAD was founded by the former Tory Scottish secretary, Michael Forsyth, its committee of 40 included representatives from Scotland's community drug problem services, and from SDF. Drugs agencies ranging from Calton Athletic, which advocates total abstinence, to Crew 2000, which offer a harm reduction service to recreational drug users, were also represented. Last summer, Mr Macauley polarised the drugs debate and alienated half of the committee by condemning harm reduction groups for "peddling death". Drugs agencies retaliated by accusing SAD of wasting millions of pounds on glossy media awareness campaigns, at a time when grassroots projects helping drugs users were being starved of cash. Following the row, Labour announced it was reforming SAD's steering committee and cutting its budget and ordered SAD to concentrate on raising private sector funding. Mr Macauley was to remain in post. But drugs agencies said the only member of the new steering committee, announced by the Scottish Secretary Donald Dewar three days ago, who is connected with drugs work is the Runrig musician Peter Wishart, a director of the drugs agency Fast Forward. They conceded that SAD's deputy chairman, Sandy Cameron, is a member of the Drug Action Team Association, but added that by profession he is a director of social work, not a drugs specialist. Liz Skelton, of Crew 2000, said: "For SAD to raise money is probably the best way forward for them, but it still requires there should be an official representative from the drugs field. Fast Forward isn't really representative. Scottish Drugs Forum is the umbrella body and could have fed in what is happening on a whole range of levels. "All we are seeing at new SAD is a scaled-down version of the old SAD. That is very concerning, as it is very clear that - bearing in mind what happened last year - any strategy for SAD should include practitioners on the ground. "To raise funds they should know what is going on on the ground and have some method of consultation, and that doesn't seem to be happening." Ms MacLaren condemned SAD for hijacking the direction of anti-drugs work in Scotland, saying: "The really sad thing, if you will forgive the pun, is that SAD is such a waste of money. "There are individual groups in the communities struggling to keep going because they are not properly financed. They are doing good work with addicts and young people but they can't find a few thousand pounds to keep going. "Yet we have had slick advertising posters and television ads, whose worth one seriously questions, and hundreds of thousands of pounds have been spent on that." Mr Macauley said last night: "I didn't appoint the committee. I would direct you to the Scottish Office, who appointed them. I have no comment to make." The row erupted as SAD launched its new initiative to raise cash from the private sector for drugs education. The Scottish Office has pledged 1 million a year to SAD for three years, starting in April. The lobby group's task is to persuade private business to double the money, to train teachers to persuade children not to start taking drugs. Surveys conducted by SAD in Scotland show that more than 55 per cent of schoolchildren have tried an illegal drug by the time they are 16. Several companies including Kwik-Fit, Marks & Spencer and ScottishPower have already agreed to help and the Scottish education minister, Brian Wilson, met representatives of other companies at a business breakfast in Glasgow yesterday. He told them: "Business flourishes in thriving communities and relies on a steady workforce free of drugs. "It reaps the benefit in a drug-free community and this is an opportunity for companies to invest in the future of children. The evidence shows that those children are increasingly in danger."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Pharmrunoff - Studying Environmental Effects Of Drugs In Human Waste (Scripps Howard News Service Article In 'Minneapolis Star Tribune' Cites Weekly Magazine 'Science News' Which Reports Today That Scientists Are Looking For And Finding Leftover Pharmaceutical Drugs In Rivers, Lakes And Ground Water Supplies In Europe - A Chemist At The Municipal Water Lab In Wiesbaden, Germany, Screened Waste And Treated Water, Plus Samples From Lakes And Streams, For 60 Common Pharmaceuticals And Found 30 Of Them, Including Several Antibiotics) Date: Fri, 10 Apr 1998 10:11:35 EDT Originator: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com From: GDaurer
To: Multiple recipients of list Subject: Pharmrunoff Minneapolis StarTribune Published Saturday, March 21, 1998 Scripps Howard News Service Studying environmental effects of drugs in human waste The Environmental Protection Agency is in the midst of a major new campaign to curb the runoff of animal waste from farms into the nation's streams and lakes. But another type of chemical contaminant in water is starting to be noted by scientists in Europe and the U.S, if not environmental regulators. Call it pharmrunoff. It stems from a confluence of biological facts. Humans have been taking billions of doses of increasingly complex biochemical compounds over the past several decades. Eighty percent of all office visits to doctors in the United States end in at least one prescription being written, or more than 2.5 billion a year. Add to that number billions more bottles of the more than 300,000 over-the-counter remedies available in stores. Drugs are designed to dissolve quickly in water, but aren't intended to be retained in the body too long, lest the compounds accumulate and damage tissue. So, perhaps 50 to percent of every pill or capful a person takes passes through the body. Scientists are starting to find leftover pharmaceuticals in rivers, lakes and ground water supplies in Europe. The weekly magazine Science News reports today on recent research efforts in Europe that have turned up measurable quantities of drugs that are thought to have come from human waste: Swiss researchers have found clofibric acid, a widely used cholesterol-lowering drug, throughout the country's waters, from rural mountain lakes to rivers flowing through cities. Scientists in Berlin found levels of the same drug at up to 4 parts per billion in ground water, and 0.2 ppb in the city's tap water. Other researchers found other anticholesterol drugs in the city's water supply, along with ibuprofen and the anti-inflammatory drug diclofenac. A chemist at the municipal water lab in Wiesbaden, Germany, screened waste and treated water, plus samples from lakes and streams, for 60 common pharmaceuticals and found 30 of them, including several antibiotics. So far, none of the research indicates that the drugs are doing harm. Writing in the recent issue of the journal Chemosphere, researchers at the Royal Danish School of Pharmacy in Copenhagen said after reviewing more than 100 published reports on environmental drug residues that they had found "practically zero" data for gauging toxicity. But their presence is troubling to some scientists. Antibiotics, for instance, "may be present at levels of consequence to bacteria -- levels that could not only alter the ecology of the environment, but also give rise to antibiotic resistance," said Stuart Levy, director of the Center for Adaptation Genetics and Drug Resistance at Tufts University in Boston. And several U.S. researchers investigating mutations in fish and frogs in the Upper Midwest and elsewhere have questioned whether hormones from drugs such as birth control pills and estrogen replacement, as well as hormone-mimicking compounds, might be responsible. So far, aside from estrogen studies, almost no water sampling for drug residues has been conducted in the United States, Science News notes, although the issue is not completely off regulatory radar, either. Copyright 1998 Scripps Howard News Service. All rights reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------------- WHO Accused Of Slowness In Evaluating Swiss Heroin-Addiction Treatment (British Medical Journal, 'Lancet,' Says The Swiss Federal Office Of Public Health Is Irritated By WHO's Slowness In Evaluating Switzerland's Policy Of Distributing Heroin To Addicts Under Medical Supervision - Begun In 1994, The System Is Officially Acclaimed As Successful) Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 14:33:38 -0500 To: DrugSense News Service
From: Richard Lake Subject: MN: UK: The Lancet: WHO Accused Of Slowness In Evaluating Swiss Heroin-addiction Treatment Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: Martin Cooke Source: The Lancet - Volume 351, Number 9106 Author: Alan McGregor Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.thelancet.com/ Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 WHO ACCUSED OF SLOWNESS IN EVALUATING SWISS HEROIN-ADDICTION TREATMENT The Swiss Federal Office of Public Health is irritated by WHO's slowness in evaluating Switzerland's policy of distributing heroin to addicts under medical supervision. The system started in 1994 and is officially acclaimed as successful. However, the annual report last month of the United Nations International Drug Control Programme (UNDCP) in Vienna, Austria said: "The Board is not convinced that the limited positive results claimed can be attributed solely to distribution of heroin itself, as many factors, such as prescribing of other controlled drugs and intensive psychosocial counselling and support, were involved." UNDCP had, in fact, proposed in 1994 that the results of the Swiss experiment be evaluated by WHO; this was accepted shortly afterwards by both WHO and the Swiss government. WHO thereafter convened sundry meetings of experts. But a final report is not expected before the end of this year. In the meantime, the Swiss government has invited UNDCP to visit in the autumn and see for themselves the results of the drugs programme. Similar programmes are proposed in the Netherlands and Germany. The UNDCP report underlines the board's "firm belief that no further experiments should be undertaken until the Swiss project has undergone full and independent evaluation". Whenever that may be.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Tobacco Corporations Step Up Invasion Of Developing Countries (Britain's Medical Journal, 'The Lancet,' Notes Transnational Tobacco Companies Are Increasingly Marketing Their Products In Developing Countries) Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 14:43:08 -0500 To: DrugSense News Service
From: Richard Lake Subject: MN: US: The Lancet: Tobacco Corporations Step Up Invasion Of Developing Countries Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: "(Zosimos) Martin Cooke" Source: The Lancet - Volume 351, Number 9106 Author: Cesar Chelala Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.thelancet.com/ Pubdate: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 NEW YORK: TOBACCO CORPORATIONS STEP UP INVASION OF DEVELOPING COUNTRIES Facing increasing restriction in the USA and other industrialised countries, transnational tobacco companies are increasingly marketed their products in developing countries, particularly among women and adolescents. While smoking rates in some industrialised countries are decreasing at about 1% a year, those in developing countries are increasing at around 3% per year. It is estimated that, if current trends persist for the next 30 years, 7 million people from developing countries will die every year from smoking-related diseases. Judith Mackay, director of the Asian Consultancy on Tobacco Control (Hong Kong, China) says that while smoking is decreasing in the West, transnational tobacco companies are turning to softer markets, particularly in Asia, where health information is less well known. For the past several years, corporations such as Philip Morris, RJ Reynolds, and British-American Tobacco have been expanding rapidly in Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America. In the USA, Blacks, Latinos, and other minority groups are special targets of tobacco-promotional campaigns. In many Black and Latino neighbourhoods, 80-90% of billboard advertising is for tobacco and alcohol. Tobacco-provoked deaths can only add to the inequities in health of ethnic and minority populations. As Jeanette Noltenius, executive director of the Latino Council on Alcohol and Tobacco (Washington, DC, USA) remarks, "In the US, minorities such as Hispanics have been specifically targeted by the tobacco companies since the early 1960s, and have received a double dose of advertising [in Spanish and English]". A study of Hispanic eighth graders in the USA revealed that 18·3% had smoked within the past 30 days, compared with 6·6% of Blacks and 17·8% of Whites. According to data from the Bureau of Census, US Department of Commerce, Latino youth will triple in size in 2020, increasing from 9% of the national youth population to 19%. Under a deal reached last June, five major tobacco companies have reached a US$368·5 billion agreement to settle existing lawsuits by states and smokers. That deal, which is now under consideration by Congress, practically ignores the cigarette makers' overseas operations, a critical area of concern. Since the early 1980s, US trade officials, with help from the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) have led a sustained campaign to open markets in Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and Thailand among the Asian nations. In 1995, for example, the US Embassy in Thailand intervened on behalf of US tobacco companies when the government of Thailand proposed regulations that required the disclosure of ingredients of all brand-name cigarettes sold in Thailand. Senator Jesse Helms and other supporters of the tobacco industry's interests in Washington have used section 301 of the 1974 Trade Act to threaten retaliatory tariffs on those countries' exports unless they open their markets to US companies. Helms successfully used these prerogatives to pressure the Japanese government to open its markets to US tobacco products. In Taiwan, US officials' efforts to force Taiwan to open its markets to US tobacco products have resulted in increased smoking, particularly among women and children. Talking about US government support for American tobacco companies, a corporation executive remarked, "We expect such support. That's why we vote them in". These actions have prompted the Asia-Pacific Association for the Control of Tobacco to protest strongly at what they consider an invasion of their countries by US companies targeting Asian women and children. The Association has complained about the strong-arm tactics used by US government officials in their countries. A 1990 report from the US General Accounting Office established that, "US policy and programs for assisting the export of tobacco and tobacco products work at cross purposes to US health policy initiatives, both domestically and internationally". A prime target for those promoting increased tobacco use is China, where tobacco companies have been moving steadily inland, with intense promotional campaigns. It is estimated that of the world's 1·1 billion smokers, 300 million are in China. Smokers in the US consume 450 billion cigarettes a year, while those in China consume approximately 1·7 trillion during the same period. Lung cancer in China has been increasing at a rate of 4·5% a year. Lured by financial gains from growing tobacco, 1·8 million hectares in China are presently under cultivation. Gains from the sale of tobacco , however, may be just short-term, since the cost of treating lung cancer and other related diseases amply exceed the tobacco profits. According to Mackay, those excess costs are $200 billion annually on a global scale, one-third of which is incurred by developing countries. While anti-smoking efforts gather momentum in the USA, those efforts are far less effective in developing countries. Such countries' policies will not be as effective unless transnational tobacco firms are made to limit their aggressive advertisements. Countries in Asia and Latin America are conducting health-education campaigns and have passed legislation to control smoking. Up to now, 91 countries worldwide have enacted legislation to control tobacco consumption. Although in general this legislation has been passed at the national level, in the USA, Canada, and in several countries in Latin America and the Caribbean these laws are being enacted by state or local bodies. While the USA blames Colombia and other South American countries for their cocaine exports, the USA continues its indiscriminate promotional tobacco efforts in those countries, at a much higher human cost. As things stand now, only a multidisciplinary strategy including education, taxation, legislation, and regulation of trade practices of transnational corporations will be able to control this pandemic. -------------------------------------------------------------------
The articles posted here are generally copyrighted by the source publications. They are reproduced here for educational purposes under the Fair Use Doctrine (17 U.S.C., section 107). NORML is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit educational organization. The views of the authors and/or source publications are not necessarily those of NORML. The articles and information included here are not for sale or resale.
Comments, questions and suggestions.Reporters and researchers are welcome at the world's largest online library of drug-policy information, sponsored by the Drug Reform Coordination Network at: http://www.druglibrary.org/
Next day's news
Previous day's news
to 1998 Daily News index for March 19-25
to Portland NORML news archive directory
to 1998 Daily News index (long)
This URL: http://www.pdxnorml.org/980321.html