------------------------------------------------------------------- Oregon Turn-In (Dr. Rick Bayer, Chief Petitioner For The Medical Marijuana Initiative Sponsored By Oregonians For Medical Rights, Says The Group Turned In 97,721 Signatures Today, Of Which 73,261 Must Be Legitimate - State Verification Due By July 17) Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 22:57:12 -0700 (PDT) Sender: email@example.com From: Anti-Prohibition Lg (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: AAL@inetarena.com Subject: Med MJ: Oregon turn-in (fwd) -- Forwarded message -- Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 21:35:53 -0700 From: Rick Bayer (email@example.com) To: Rick Bayer (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: Oregon turn-in Hello friends We turned in the signatures today at the Secretary of State's Office in the Capitol Building in Salem. Our rough count was 97,721 and we need 73,261 legit signatures. With 75% validity, we will just make it. We turned in signatures three times today and our last signatures were turned in 5 minutes before deadline (at 4:55 PM). The official deadline for the Oregon Secretary of State to let us know whether OMMA is on the November 1998 ballot is July 17. I will let everyone know ASAP. As always, many, many thanks for your efforts and continuing support. Rick Rick Bayer 6800 SW Canyon Drive Portland, OR 97225 503-292-1035 (voice) 503-297-0754 (fax) mailto:email@example.com http://www.teleport.com/~omr
------------------------------------------------------------------- Opposing Groups Object To Ban On Drug Use In Assisted Suicides ('The Oregonian' Says That, For Different Reasons, Both The American Medical Association And The Compassion In Dying Federation Are Opposing Legislation Introduced In Congress That Would Prevent Physicians From Prescribing Drugs For Use In Assisted Suicides) The Oregonian letters to editor: firstname.lastname@example.org 1320 SW Broadway Portland, OR 97201 Web: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Opposing groups object to ban on drug use in assisted suicides * The AMA and the Compassion in Dying Federation oppose the congressional legislation for different reasons Thursday, July 2 1998 By Patrick O'Neill of The Oregonian staff Congressional legislation that would outlaw drugs for use in physician-assisted suicide is drawing opposition from the American Medical Association, a staunchly anti-suicide organization, as well as from groups that support the practice. The bill, scheduled for a hearing July 14 before the Constitution subcommittee in the U.S. House of Representatives, would ban the use of narcotics in assisted suicides. And it would establish a medical review board within the Drug Enforcement Administration to determine whether a physician had violated the ban. The bill, introduced June 5 by Rep. Henry Hyde, R-Ill., is intended to gut the Oregon law that allows physicians to prescribe life-ending medication for terminally ill patients who have less than six months to live. A Senate version of the bill was introduced June 9 by Sen. Don Nickles, R-Okla. Oregon's law has been in effect since Oct. 27, 1997. It's unusual that the AMA, which opposes assisted suicide, and the Compassion in Dying Federation, which has promoted it, should be on the same side of the issue. But each organization opposes the legislation for different reasons. AMA sees chilling effect The AMA, one of the most powerful lobbying groups in the nation, fears that it would exert a "chilling effect" on physicians who prescribe painkilling medication for dying patients. Compassion in Dying sees it as a direct threat to assisted suicide. Dr. Thomas Reardon, a Portland physician and president-elect of the American Medical Association, said Wednesday that the organization would support congressional efforts to ban assisted suicide outright. "We're unalterably opposed to physician-assisted suicide," he said. "But with this bill, you'd do much more harm than good." Reardon said the AMA has begun an educational campaign, encouraging doctors to administer pain medication aggressively for terminally ill patients. For years, physicians across the country have risked censure from state licensing boards for giving enough narcotics to ease the pain of dying patients. During the past few years, particularly in Oregon, the trend has begun to reverse itself as health-care workers and society in general have recognized the necessity for better care of the terminally ill. He advocates better care "If we do a much better job on care at the end of life, we think patients will not feel the need for physician-assisted suicide," Reardon said. "We are opposed to anything that would have a chilling or dampening or inhibiting effect on that." Reardon referred to the bill's medical review board as a tribunal that would be involved in inquisitions of doctors who prescribe painkilling medication for terminally ill patients. "We think that's wrong," Reardon said. Doctors frequently write prescriptions for medications that, if taken all at once, would be lethal, he said. "We'll write prescriptions for 100 digitalis, 100 Valium, 100 beta blockers," he said. "What do you think would happen if a patient took them all at once? Physicians don't intend them to be lethal. They intend them to be therapeutic. "We oppose physician-assisted suicide on ethical grounds, and we still stand for that," he said. "However, we also oppose using the DEA as an enforcement method." Barbara Coombs Lee, director of Compassion in Dying Federation and a chief petitioner for Oregon's physician-assisted suicide law, said she, too, opposes the bill. "My take is that it's a pretty audacious attempt (by Congress) to substitute their own moral judgment for that of Oregonians," she said. "It's an attempt to usurp a state's power and replace the local regulatory mechanism through the Board of Medical Examiners and other state authorities with federal power." Like Reardon, Lee raises the specter of the Drug Enforcement Administration looking over doctors' shoulders as they prescribe painkillers to dying patients. "It will have a chilling effect on the prescribing of controlled substances," she said. "It gives these drug police the power to inquire, prescription by prescription, and ask, 'What did you prescribe that for?' It's very intrusive." Ann G. Jackson, executive director of the Oregon Hospice Association, said the consequences of the bill could be devastating. "All of us who have been looking at these issues from across the country are concerned about the dampening effect on pain and symptom management for the terminally ill," she said. "Even though there is the caveat that dying patients won't be denied drugs, even if they hasten death, that's subject to interpretation by whoever's looking at it." Jackson said Oregon leads the nation in the medical use of morphine. But she said Oregon and other states could see the use of morphine drop sharply if the bill becomes law. "Regardless of what your position is on assisted suicide, broadening the authority of the DEA is probably harmful," she said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Double Hanging In Public Shocks Witnesses In Portland ('The Oregonian' Notes A Man And Woman Who Hung Themselves Wednesday Afternoon From The Steel Bridge Downtown Left Behind A 13-Page Suicide Note Written By The Man, Detailing His Heroin Addiction) The Oregonian letters to editor: email@example.com 1320 SW Broadway Portland, OR 97201 Web: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Double hanging in public shocks witnesses in Portland * A man and a woman apparently commit suicide together by throwing themselves off the Steel Bridge Thursday, July 2 1998 By Dionne D. Peeples of The Oregonian staff A man and woman apparently hanged themselves from the south side of Portland's Steel Bridge Wednesday afternoon during rush-hour traffic and potentially in full view of a passing Amtrak train. The pair was identified as Michael Shannon Douglas, 29, and Mora Kathleen McGowan, 25, both of Portland. Autopsies will be conducted this morning, said Terry Sparks, deputy Multnomah County medical examiner. The hangings were reported about 3 p.m. when passers-by saw the bodies dangling from a rope beside the bridge, said Detective Sgt. Cheryl Kanzler, a Portland Police Bureau spokeswoman. The bodies hung in midair for more than an hour as police conducted an investigation. The pair apparently hanged themselves with separate nooses tied together. Investigators found a handwritten 13-page suicide note in Douglas' backpack, Sparks said. In the letter, Douglas detailed his drug abuse problem and said he wanted to die, Sparks said. Investigators said they found syringes in the backpack. "I think I've decided on an old-fashioned public hanging. . . . Thirteen loops in a hangman's noose," the letter said. It continued: "The Steel Bridge shall be my gallows . . . Mora and I go together on the Steel Bridge." Douglas wrote that he had sold most of his assets to finance his heroin habit. McGowan did not have a suicide note with her, Sparks said. Witnesses had seen the pair walking on the bridge about 2:30 p.m. and said the couple seemed fine, Kanzler said. Isaac Frankel was working at his computer terminal in an office building on the west side of the Willamette River when he noticed someone suddenly jump off the bridge. "What caught my attention was someone flying over the edge," said Frankel, an assistant analyst for NW Natural. Although he was too far away to notice details about the two victims, he said the sight made a powerful impression on him. "It was a gruesome, gruesome sight," he said. "At first I thought it was a mannequin, like it wasn't real, just dangling in the wind. But when the police were there, you realized they were real humans." Police closed one eastbound lane of traffic on the bridge for about an hour. They also delayed an approaching Amtrak train for 17 minutes before it reached the bridge. Scott Hurd, an Amtrak station agent, said 411 passengers on the Seattle-bound train were warned to close their curtains before the train approached the bridge. Amtrak did not offer counseling for passengers once the train reached Union Station on the northwest side of the river, Hurd said. "When they got off the train, I didn't hear anyone talking about it," Hurd said. McGowan, her red hair tied in a ponytail, was dressed in a red plaid shirt, black shorts and black ankle boots. Douglas, with short black hair, was dressed in a black sweatshirt, olive-green shorts and black Army-style boots. He also had two tattoos on his lower left leg and a backpack slung across his chest. Members of the Portland Fire Bureau lowered the bodies about 4:10 p.m. into a boat operated by members of the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office River Patrol, Kanzler said. Jan LeFlore, 28, watched as the bodies were lowered into the boat. "Life is precious," LeFlore said. "I think about giving up sometimes, but I have a wife and a baby, and life is precious." Kanzler, who was a homicide detective for three years, said that usually it is elderly couples who commit suicide together, especially if one is terminally ill. Dr. Michael G. Conner, a clinical and medical psychologist, said people who commit suicide publicly usually are angry people determined to make a public statement. "Its intention is to inflict harm and to punish others," Conner said. "It's also a way to end a painful emotional problem." Connor said suicide pacts usually are between people who at one time encouraged each other to live. "But eventually they lose hope, and the pain and fear of living becomes worse than the fear of dying." Romel Hernandez of The Oregonian staff contributed to this report.
------------------------------------------------------------------- 250,000 Washington Signatures (Timothy W. Killian, Campaign Manager For Initiative 692, The Medical Marijuana Ballot Measure Sponsored By Washington Citizens For Medical Rights, Gives An Upbeat Campaign Update After Turning In Far More Than The 179,284 Signatures Needed To Get On The November Ballot) Subject: HT: 250,000 Washington Signatures Date: Thu, 2 Jul 98 16:35:30 -0700 From: YES on 692 (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: "Hemp Talk" (email@example.com) Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Hi Hemp Talk: I just returned from the office of the Secretary of State, where we delivered more than 250,000 signatures to place Initiative 692, the Washington State Medical Use of Marijuana act on the November 3 ballot. There has been a misconception, in my opinion, that this signature drive didn't involve local, Washington-based activists. On behalf of the campaign, I would like to thank all of those who were involved. I know many on this list were working feverishly to collect signatures right to the end. Your efforts were important. I wish I could thank each of you individually, but a big thanks needs to go to Dr. Dave Edwards. His work ethic is inspiring. In addition, I know several of you worked to donate money to various causes. I am hopeful that this had a positive impact on the organizations receiving the donations. Anyone have some input on amounts that this may have generated for local causes? Again, this is another example of how local activists became involved and helped get this issue placed before the voters. Politics is a difficult game. Many of us have worked hard in many different ways to move this issue forward for the patients who need it. I applaud the efforts that all of you have made, are making, and will continue to make as we move towards November. From the group who met to help shape and finalize the language (specific thanks to Robert Lunday and George Bakan, and many others) to those who organized and lobbied at the state Democratic convention, to the myriad of you who worked long hours gathering signatures, and the many hours that many of you will spend lobbying your friends, co-workers, families, and others to help garner support for the November ballot. This is an exciting time to be moving this issue forward. Polling tells us that we have popular support for the language and content of the initiative. Momentum seems to be building on all fronts. We have received some very positive feedback from the process of garnering endorsements, and hope to be able to publicly announce some great ones soon. Several states across the country are also going to be voting on this issue in November, and this will increase the momentum once again. Washington Citizens for Medical Rights continues to gain strength and momentum. We have hired Sue Tupper to lead our strategy. Sue is one of the most respected political consultants in Washington. She is committed to this cause, and working with us to ensure that we secure a victory in November. We can all be proud that she is on board, and confident that this campaign will be professionally administered. I want to thank those of you who have specifically called, or emailed us to express your support of our efforts. I know there is some disagreement as to campaign strategies and procedures. We have one goal in mind: victory in November. We are working hard to that end, and consulting the best minds in the state. I hope we can all put our differences aside, and remember who the real enemies are: those individuals who stand in the way of allowing the medical use of marijuana for patients who need it. It is unfortunate the disagreements of a few have painted a picture in the media that there is general disagreement with the goals of I-692 among the activist community. I know that not to be the case by the support that many of you have given, and will continue to give. Again, thanks. Your efforts have been noticed. Let's move forward together towards victory in November. Timothy W. Killian Campaign Manager Initiative 692 Washington Citizens for Medical Rights *** em: email@example.com url: http://www.eventure.com/I692 *** Postal Box 2346 Seattle, WA 98111 ph: 206.781-7716 fx: 206.324.3101
------------------------------------------------------------------- Medical Use Of Marijuana Act On Track For The November Ballot (Official Press Release From Timothy W. Killian, Campaign Manager For Initiative 692 In Washington State) Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 20:03:48 GMT To: "AMR.coordinators":@lainet1.lainet.com, ";AMR.Internal.list":@lainet1.lainet.com, ";AMR/updates.list":; From: "Timothy W. Killian" (firstname.lastname@example.org) by way of Dave Fratello Subject: I-692 Press Release Hi All: Here is the Press Release that went out this morning. Angelo from Progressive has assured me that we will have more than 240,000 signatures to turn in today. I will give you an update on how the filing went... Tim *** For Immediate Release Contact Tim Killian, 206-781-7716 Headline: Medical Use of Marijuana Act on Track for the November ballot Olympia, WA - (July 2, 1998) Washington Citizens for Medical Rights, a broad coalition of doctors, patients and state citizens, submitted more than 230,000 signatures today to place Initiative 692, the Washington State Medical Use of Marijuana act, on the November 3 ballot. "These signatures represent thousands of citizens who care about relieving the suffering of patients with terminal or debilitating illnesses such as cancer and AIDS," states Tacoma physician, Dr. Rob Killian, sponsor of the initiative. "We have worked with doctors, patients, law enforcement and legislators to bring Washington voters an initiative that is tightly drafted, narrowly focused, and protects the doctor-patient relationship," said Killian. The initiative allows patients with specific terminal or debilitating illnesses to use limited amounts of medical marijuana, and permits physicians to authorize and recommend such use. Qualifying terminal or debilitating illnesses are limited to cancer, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, glaucoma and some forms of intractable pain. Patients would be required to have valid documentation authorizing the use from a state-accredited physician. I-692 in no way impacts existing state law prohibiting the use of marijuana for non-medical purposes. Initiative 692 is modeled after senate bill 6271, which was introduced to the legislature during the 1998 session by State Senators Jeanne Kohl and Pat Thibadeau. That effort received editorial support from the Seattle Times and Post-Intelligencer. "I enthusiastically support I-692," states Senator Kohl. "My dearest friend of 23 years died recently of uterine cancer. I saw the difference just a small amount of medical marijuana made in relieving her suffering, she should not have had to die a criminal." "I-692 is about taking care of those who are in greatest need in a responsible way," concluded Killian. "Washington voters are compassionate and fair-minded. We're confident they'll agree that this narrowly focused initiative is the right thing to do." Dr. Killian will submit the signatures at 1:00 p.m. today in the Office of the Secretary of State at the Capital Building in Olympia. He will be available immediately following to answer any questions from the media. *** Timothy W. Killian eVenture Communications em: email@example.com url: http://www.eventure.com Postal Box 9765 Seattle, WA 98109 ph: 206.559.2200 fx: 206.324.3101
------------------------------------------------------------------- Marijuana Initiative On Track For Fall Ballot ('The Associated Press' Says Washington Citizens For Medical Rights Turned In 245,000 Signatures Today For Initiative 692, The Washington State Medical Marijuana Ballot Measure) Date: Fri, 03 Jul 1998 15:58:05 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service (firstname.lastname@example.org) From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US WA: Marijuana Initiative On Track For Fall Ballot Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: "W.H.E.N. - Bob Owen - Olympia" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Source: Associated Press Pubdate: 2 July 1998 Author: Hunter T. George Editors note: Another good example where internet activism helped considerably. Check out: http://www.hemp.net/ MARIJUANA INITIATIVE ON TRACK FOR FALL BALLOT OLYMPIA (AP) -- For the second year in a row, Dr. Rob Killian has collected the signatures of thousands of voters who support legalizing the medical use of marijuana. As he submitted petitions bearing 245,000 signatures to Secretary of State Ralph Munro on Thursday, the Tacoma physician expressed hope that voters will recognize this year's measure for what it isn't. It is not a carbon copy of last year's Initiative 685, a broader measure that was soundly rejected at the polls. "We found more of a challenge getting signatures this year because of last year's initiative," Killian said. "We had to reassure voters that ... This is what we said it was. It's about medical marijuana." Initiative 692, the "Medical Use of Marijuana Act," was the third and final citizens' initiative delivered to Munro by Thursday's deadline to be considered for the Nov. 3 general-election ballot. Munro's staff already has begun processing petitions filed Wednesday for initiatives that would raise the minimum wage and outlaw a controversial abortion procedure. Under state law, sponsors needed to collect the signatures of 179,248 registered voters to qualify. Using random samples, Munro's office will check the petitions for duplications, illegible signatures and those of people who are not registered voters. Results will be announced in the coming weeks. Several other initiatives filed earlier this year failed to gather enough signatures by the deadline and will not be considered for the ballot. Among them were two proposals to eliminate the motor-vehicle excise tax, which would have saved motorists $800 million a year and caused a significant headache for state budget writers. "The taxpayers of Washington state want to yank the car tax out by its roots, but 90 days just wasn't enough time for us," said Tim Eyman, chairman of the Initiative 691 campaign. "We will spend the next six months building a broader coalition of support and will file the `No Car Tax' initiative again in 1999." Eyman, who said he gathered at least 164,000 signatures, urged his supporters to oppose Referendum 49, the $2.4 billion transportation spending plan that the Legislature's Republican majority sent to the ballot to avoid a veto by Gov. Gary Locke. The GOP plan's offer of a $30-per-vehicle tax cut amounts to little more than a voter bribe, Eyman said. If the marijuana initiative qualifies for the ballot, as expected, Killian said his campaign will rely on patients and family members who can explain the medicinal value of marijuana. Advocates say marijuana can alleviate nausea and loss of appetite associated with cancer treatment and AIDS. I-692 seeks to allow people who are dying or suffering from debilitating illness to grow and smoke marijuana if it is prescribed by a doctor. The measure is modeled on legislation sponsored by state Sen. Jeanne Kohl, D-Seattle, that never came up for a vote. This year's initiative is much more limited than last year's I-685, which -- in addition to legalizing medical use of marijuana -- sought to revamp Washington's drug policies to require treatment in lieu of prison for many offenders and left open the possibility that heroin and LSD would be legalized. "Last year's initiative was as much about drug-policy reform as it was about the medical use of marijuana and other drugs," Killian said. "This is just about medical use of marijuana." Foes, including Washington Lt. Gov. Brad Owen, have said Killian is a pawn for out-of-state millionaires who want to liberalize the nation's drug policies and legalize marijuana. Killian's campaign received a total of $400,000 from George Soros of New York, Peter Lewis of Cleveland and John Sperling of Phoenix, rich businessmen who strongly support the medical use of marijuana. The men helped finance his 1997 effort as well. Voters in California and Arizona approved the medical use of marijuana in 1996. In Oregon, advocates announced Thursday they had enough signatures to put the issue on the fall ballot. Supporters in Colorado, Florida, Nevada and Maine also are trying to get the issue before voters.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Man Rethinks Guilty Plea In Drug Case ('The Spokesman-Review' Says Multiple Sclerosis Patient Samuel Dean Diana, Of Cheney, Washington, Was Arraigned In Federal Court For Growing 170 Marijuana Plants For Medicine, But Balked At Entering A Guilty Plea, Saying, 'I Don't Feel I've Committed A Crime')Subj: US ID: Man Rethinks Guilty Plea in Drug Case From: email@example.com Date: Fri, 3 Jul 1998 10:17:08 -0700 Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Source: Spokesman-Review (WA) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.spokane.net:80/ Pubdate: Thu, 02 Jul 1998 Author: Tom Sowa - The Spokesman-Review MAN RETHINKS GUILTY PLEA IN DRUG CASE Defendant who has right to legally smoke pot says he doesn't feel he committed a crime SPOKANE - A Cheney man who smokes pot to ease symptoms of multiple sclerosis changed his mind in court Wednesday and backed away from entering a guilty plea to a federal drug charge. Samuel Dean Diana, 49, faces five federal drug charges after agents raided his rural Cheney home last December. Agents say they found more than 170 marijuana plants growing in Diana's garage. Diana came to court Wednesday originally ready to plead guilty to one count of maintaining a place where drugs are manufactured and used. But midway through an afternoon hearing in U.S. District Court, he told the judge he wasn't sure about pleading guilty. ``I don't feel I've committed a crime,'' Diana told U.S. District Court Judge Robert Whaley. After a half-hour discussion with Whaley, Diana had a private conference with his attorney, Phillip ``Dutch'' Wetzel. After that recess, Wetzel told Whaley that Diana would likely enter a guilty plea, but not until July 10. ``I don't know if I have that many options,'' a dejected Diana said after leaving the courtroom. He has been released on his own recognizance pending a trial. Under the original plea deal, four drug charges would be dropped against Diana, who has smoked marijuana for more than 20 years. In exchange for the plea, Diana would avoid prison time but would have to forfeit $53,000 seized from his safe in the December raid of his Cheney home. Asked by Judge Whaley about the cash, Diana insisted he deserved it, not the government. ``That was money I'd saved, in case they decided to charge me with this kind of charge,'' Diana said during his court hearing. Diana has had MS since he was 18. He's been allowed to smoke marijuana legally since winning a breakthrough legal victory in 1981. In 1977, he was convicted in a Spokane County court of felony drug possession. Four years later, a Washington appeals court reversed that conviction, saying Diana had legal reasons for possession of marijuana. His attorneys have established that for him, marijuana is the most effective drug for reducing nausea and other symptoms of MS. Earlier in the hearing, Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Harrington told Whaley the government was prepared to show that the $53,000 came from ``income from illegal drug sales.'' Probed by Whaley about that money, Diana said he wished he could use the $53,000 to ``secure effective counsel and defend myself like I did in the earlier (state) trial.'' Four other men are facing related drug charges from the December pot seizure. Diana has said three of them were friends with medical disabilities who helped cultivate marijuana for his personal use. They are Ben Francis, Henry Joseph Chiapetta and Larry Spink. Coming out of court Wednesday, Diana said he planned to testify on behalf of those friends if they go to trial. The fourth drug defendant, Guy G. Gardener, was ``a freeloader who did nothing but come around and smoke pot,'' Diana said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Doonesbury (Garry Trudeau's Syndicated Cartoon Addresses The Medical Marijuana Issue For The Fourth Day In A Row)
------------------------------------------------------------------- Ex-Police Sergeant Depicted As A Liar ('The Fresno Bee' Gives An Update On The Trial Of Former Woodlake, California, Police Sergeant Ken Chipchase, Charged With 13 Counts Of Perjury After A Two-Month Investigation Into The Disappearance Of Marijuana, LSD, Heroin, Cocaine And Methamphetamine From The Evidence Room) Date: Sun, 05 Jul 1998 11:30:44 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service (firstname.lastname@example.org) From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: Ex-Police Sergeant Depicted As A Liar Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Pubdate: Thu, 02 Jul 1998 Source: The Fresno Bee Contact: Letters to the editor, The Fresno Bee 1626 E. Street, Fresno, CA 93786 Fax: (209) 441-6499 Email: email@example.com Website: http://www.fresnobee.com/ Author: Hanh Kim Quach, The Fresno Bee EX-POLICE SERGEANT DEPICTED AS A LIAR TULARE - Former Woodlake police Sgt. Mark Swaim testified Wednesday that he didn't like and didn't trust another former Woodlake police sergeant, now facing 13 counts of perjury. Investigators of the Tulare County District Attorney's Office arrested then-Sgt. Ken Chipchase in April after a two-month investigation into the disappearance of drugs from the evidence room. Missing items include marijuana, LSD, heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine. During Wednesday's preliminary hearing, Swaim told the court he thought Chipchase lied about serving as a military peace officer. Around 1993, Swaim testified, Chipchase told colleagues he was an officer either while in the military or the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Chipchase repeated the claim under oath in 1995, Swaim testified. But, Swaim said, those items were not noted on a report he saw of Chipchase's service record. Interim Woodlake police Chief John Zapalac also took the stand Wednesday, testifying that he assigned Chipchase to organize the department's evidence room and throw away items connected to closed cases. Zapalac testified he began to suspect Chipchase of wrongdoing after Chipchase requested that some evidence be removed in a case that was still pending. Chipchase's lawyer, Robert Carbone, tried to strike six of the 13 perjury charges against Chipchase because Swaim didn't report it within the three years required under the statute of limitations. Tulare County Municipal Court Judge Walter Gorelick did not decide Wednesday whether he would grant the request. The preliminary hearing will resume July 21. Chipchase was released from the Tulare County Jail last month after posting $200,000 bond.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Watchdogs Say Cop Acted Wrong ('The San Francisco Examiner' Rewrites And Cuts Its Story That Ran Yesterday) Date: Fri, 3 Jul 1998 10:13:33 -0700 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: Watchdogs Say Cop Acted Wrong Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Source: San Francisco Examiner (CA) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.examiner.com/ Pubdate: Thu, 02 Jul 1998 Author: Larry D. Hatfield WATCHDOGS SAY COP ACTED WRONG Panel urges charges in pepper-sprayed suspect's death A citizens police watchdog group said the captain who heads the Mission District precinct should be charged with neglect and improper conduct in the case of a Millbrae man who died two years ago after being doused with pepper spray. The recommended charges by the Office of Citizen Complaints named Capt. Gregory Suhr, who was a lieutenant at the time of the April 6, 1996 incident and was in charge of the officers involved. One other officer may also have been recommended for charges but neither the Police Department nor OCC would confirm that. Chief Fred Lau confirmed Wednesday that the OCC had notified the department's management control division of the recommendation against Suhr. The division will conduct its own investigation, which could take 30 to 60 days, then decide whether to deal with the case on the chief's level, send it to the Police Commission or return it to the OCC, which, in effect, would mean it rejected the recommendation. "It is time for the Police Commission to move forward and act in accordance with their own rules," said Bruce Kapsack, the attorney representing the family of Mark Garcia, who died 23 hours after being subdued and doused with pepper spray. Garcia, a drug counselor, was arrested when he was found standing in the middle of Cesar Chavez Street near Folsom Street, naked from the waist down and shouting incoherently at passing cars. Police under Suhr's command said they sprayed him with pepper spray after he attacked an officer with a crack pipe. The 41-year-old, 317-pound Garcia later had a heart attack while tied face down in the back of a police van. The coroner said Garcia died of acute cocaine poisoning, not pepper spray. The district attorney cleared police of criminal wrongdoing. 1998 San Francisco Examiner
------------------------------------------------------------------- Seven San Francisco Cops Facing Disciplinary Action ('The San Francisco Chronicle' Version Of Yesterday's News About Police Who Allegedly Neglected Their Duty Toward Drug Counselor Mark Garcia, Who Died In Custody Two Years Ago After Being Doused With Pepper Spray) Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 16:23:48 -0700 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: 7 S.F. Cops Facing Disciplinary Action Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/ Pubdate: Thu, 02 Jul 1998 Author: Lynda Gledhill, Chronicle Staff Writer Editor's note: Towards the end of the article is news that coroner had originally recorded the cause of Garcia's death as 'cocaine overdose,' when new evidence indicates, once again, it may have been the enforcement of drug laws that actually did the real damage. 7 S.F. COPS FACING DISCIPLINARY ACTION Critical report in pepper-spray death At least seven San Francisco police officers face possible disciplinary action for neglect of duty in the case of Mark Garcia, who died in custody two years ago after police doused him with pepper spray. The Office of Citizen Complaints also found that some of the officers who subdued Garcia on April 5, 1996, did not follow Police Department policy for using pepper spray and improperly took the 41-year-old man to the hospital in a police wagon rather than in an ambulance. The OCC also found that one officer had used unnecessary force by pushing his foot into Garcia's back and that two had neglected their duties by placing him face down in the wagon after he had been sprayed. It is not clear whether the officers named for specific actions are among the seven charged with neglect of duty for not recognizing risk factors associated with Garcia's death. The lieutenant in charge at the scene, Gregory Suhr, is one of those accused of neglect of duty. Suhr has since been promoted to captain at the Mission District station. Names of the other officers in the OCC report were not released. The OCC findings will be sent to the Management Control Division of the Police Department, which recommends disciplinary actions to the police chief. The chief can suspend an officer for as long as 10 days. More severe punishment would have to be imposed by the Police Commission. The findings by the city's independent police watchdog agency were welcomed yesterday by Garcia's family, which brought the complaint before the OCC and urged officials to take immediate action. ``We have been waiting two years, and the OCC has finally said that what we have been saying all along is true,'' said Dan Garcia, Mark's brother. ``We demand a public disciplinary hearing for everyone involved in Mark's death. Each one should be fired and jailed on criminal charges.'' The executive director of Bay Area PoliceWatch, Van Jones, called for the immediate removal from active duty of all officers implicated in the OCC report. Jones also called on the Police Commission to schedule public hearings within 30 days. Mark Garcia was confronted by officers as he wandered down Cesar Chavez Street, naked from the waist down, crying, ``Help me! Help me!'' The Millbrae man struggled with officers, who then pepper-sprayed and handcuffed him and took him to San Francisco General Hospital, face down in the police van. Garcia suffered a cardiac arrest on the way was resuscitated at the hospital. He then suffered a second heart attack and died the next day. Although the coroner's report ruled his death a cocaine overdose, it left open the possibility that Garcia may have suffered an adverse reaction to pepper spray, as well as asphyxia as a result of being face down in the police van. The OCC substantiated the neglect-of-duty and other charges against some officers, but others who were at the scene were cleared of wrongdoing. The Garcia family has filed a wrongful-death lawsuit against the city of San Francisco, the Police Department and the individual officers involved. The suit is scheduled to go to trial in January. 1998 San Francisco Chronicle Page A22
------------------------------------------------------------------- Evil Weed No More - Hemp Plants Are Ideal For Creating Beauty Products ('The Houston Chronicle' Says Cannabis Sativa Is One Of The Best Moisturizers Around, Jam-Packed With Essential Fatty Acids And Amino Acids, Making It An Ideal Ingredient For Soaps, Face Creams, Shampoo, Healing Salves And Lip Balm) Subj: US TX: Evil Weed No More: Hemp Plants Are Ideal For Creating Beauty Products From: C. Wells
Date: Sat, 04 Jul 1998 15:07:34 -0400 Newshawk: C. Wells Pubdate: Thu, 02 Jul 1998 Source: Houston Chronicle (TX) Section: 3F Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.chron.com/ Author: Alev Aktar, W magazine EVIL WEED NO MORE: HEMP PLANTS ARE IDEAL FOR CREATING BEAUTY PRODUCTS Here's the dope: The hemp plant, also known as cannabis sativa or marijuana, is one of the best moisturizers around. The evil weed is, in fact, jam-packed with essential fatty acids and amino acids, making it an ideal ingredient for beauty fare ranging from soaps to face creams, shampoo, healing salves and even lip balm. Hemp seeds can be pressed to produce a protein-rich oil that is particularly well suited for dry skin. Using cannabis-based cosmetics may bring to mind substance abuse, but in fact the plant used to make beauty products -- industrial hemp -- is altogether different from the smokable kind. It's virtually drug-free. While it's true that the two plants are different varieties of the same species, industrial hemp is cultivated for its seeds and stalks, which are used to make everything from textiles and paint to margarine and paper products. That's why, in addition to being incredibly versatile, hemp saves trees, prompting such eco-correct celebrities as Peter Fonda and Woody Harrelson to sing the herb's praises. Harrelson is regularly spotted wearing hemp outfits. Last year, he even commissioned Giorgio Armani to design a deluxe hemp tux for the Golden Globe awards. "You can make anything out of this stuff," raved the actor. "And it's non-psychoactive." The only hitch is that the Controlled Substances Act, passed in 1970, made it illegal to grow marijuana in the United States, and hemp companies are forced to source the fiber overseas. Nonetheless, in recent years, a bumper crop of hemp beauty brands has sprouted around the nation. The earth-friendly products are sold in alternative fashion boutiques, environmental stores and hemp shops, such as Planet Hemp in New York's Soho district, Frankel Bros. Hemp Outfitters in San Francisco and Hemp in the Hollow in Laguna Beach, Calif. For those who want to make a meal of it, The Galaxy Global Eatery in New York stocks a cabinet of hemp cosmetics and a full menu of hemp delicacies (including hemp burgers, which actually taste better than they sound). Most hemp beauty lines have heady, aromatic fragrances -- not recommended for those who dislike perfume. The packaging often has a homemade feel, with boxes made of hemp or bamboo paper. Body Dope, a provocatively named line of shampoos, conditioners, soaps, massage oils and lip balms from the Berkeley, Calif.-based Two Star Dog, is one of the best-sellers at Planet Hemp, according to John Powell, the store's managing director. "If people are worried about the name," he says, "their resistance is overcome when they try the products." There are many excellent handmade hemp soaps, such as Hempola's hand-cut bars and All Around the World's cleansing soaps, which contain high levels of essential oils. There's also a strange dark brown soap from Virgin Body Care called Dirty Dan's that gently exfoliates skin with a blend of corn meal, pumice and crushed hemp seed. Parched hands will benefit from an application of Sun Dog's hand cake, a superstrength emollient packaged in a metal tin. In the realm of hair care, Alterna has a new line called Enzyme therapy that is sold only in salons. The products are formulated with hemp seed oil and each is packaged with a tiny packet of seeds roped to its neck. Sterilized hemp seeds, that is. Not one to miss out on a natural-ingredient trend, Body Shop is introducing a line of hemp products this summer. The company intends to make the most of the herb's rich and varied history. "The first draft of the Declaration of Independence was written on hemp paper," a spokeswoman says. "We intend to recycle that wisdom." Put that in your pipe and smoke it.
------------------------------------------------------------------- They Speak For The Fallen In War On Drugs ('The Boston Globe' Says The Case Of Kemba Smith, A Young Black Woman Sentenced To 24 Years In Prison, Even Though She Never Used, Handled, Or Benefited From Her Boyfriend's Illegal Cocaine Business, Is Galvanizing Activists, Students, Mothers, And Criminal-Justice Advocates Across The Country To Call Not Only For Her Release But For Radical Reform Of The Mandatory Drug Sentencing Laws) Date: Sun, 05 Jul 1998 11:24:32 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service (email@example.com) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US MA: They Speak For The Fallen In War On Drugs Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com (Dick Evans) Pubdate: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 Source: Boston Globe Author: Zachary R. Dowdy, Globe staff Contact: Letters@globe.com Website: http://www.boston.com/globe/ THEY SPEAK FOR THE FALLEN IN WAR ON DRUGS BLACK WOMEN'S GROUP URGES CLEMENCY FOR DEALER'S GIRLFRIEND An audience of 1,500 professional black women sat in a hotel ballroom yesterday and gasped at details of how a young woman, whose dreams of business success reminded them of their own daughters, fell in love with a smooth-talking drug dealer and ended up sentenced to prison for a quarter century. Members of The Links Inc., a national group, expressed outrage over the case of Kemba Smith, 26, who is serving a 24 1/2-year sentence under federal mandatory drug sentencing laws - even though prosecutors said she never used, handled, or benefited from her boyfriend's illegal trade. ''Every informed and educated parent should say, `But for the grace of God that could be my child,''' said Sarah Brown-Clark, a college professor from Youngstown, Ohio. ''Too often now we're seeing our children getting trapped in this situation.'' The case of Kemba Smith is galvanizing activists, students, mothers, and criminal-justice advocates across the country to call not only for her release but for radical reform of the mandatory drug sentencing laws. They maintain that laws designed to bring down crack dealers are ensnaring low-level offenders and locking up a generation of blacks. The Links, which is devoted to community service, used its national conference at the Boston Marriott Copley Place to initiate a letter-writing campaign yesterday to President Clinton, demanding clemency for Smith. She is serving time at the Federal Correctional Institution in Danbury, Conn., and is ineligible for parole. ''Kemba is everybody's child, anybody's child, and our child,'' said Patricia Russell-McCloud, national president of the 10,000-member group, which has 270 chapters in 40 US states, Nassau, the Bahamas, and Frankfurt. ''We will free Kemba.'' The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund has filed an appeal on Smith's behalf in the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in Richmond, Va., said Elaine R. Jones, president of the legal agency. ''Kemba represents the tip of the iceberg,'' Jones said, referring to the thousands of blacks who serve time under mandatory minimum sentences. ''We hope to get a new trial.'' Such state and federal laws allow judges no discretion, officials say. The laws have come under fire in Massachusetts and elsewhere, partly because of their impact on African-Americans - with penalties 100 times more severe for crack cocaine, a drug used mostly in black communities, than for powder cocaine, used often by white people. Smith, a Virginia native, was attending Hampton University when she met Peter Michael Hall, who prosecutors say ran a violent $4 million drug operation between Virginia and New York. Smith's father and mother, Gus and Odessa Smith, who spoke at the conference yesterday, said Hall had abused their daughter severely in their three-year relationship. The Smiths said their daughter had a miscarriage. She became pregnant again with Hall and gave birth to a boy, Armani, who is being raised by her parents. Hall eluded law enforcement officers and was shot dead in a Seattle apartment while on the run. Smith, on advice of counsel, later pleaded guilty to charges of money laundering, conspiracy, and lying, said Gus Smith. He said the money laundering charges were filed because his daughter signed an apartment lease and a contract for the purchase of a car for Hall. He said she also denied knowing Hall's whereabouts when a prosecutor had asked, and faced conspiracy charges since she knew about the drug operation. ''We believe even the staunchest conservative politician would agree that these laws were not designed for people like Kemba to get caught in the system,'' said Odessa Smith. The impact of the laws, drafted at the height of the nation's so-called war on drugs in the 1980s, has been vast, imprisoning thousands and sparking an exponential rise in incarceration rates for black women. From 1986 to 1991, young African-American women in state prison for drug offenses increased 828 percent, according to the Sentencing Project in Washington. A 1994 Justice Department study showed that women were overrepresented among low-level, nonviolent drug offenders with minimal or no criminal history, such as Kemba Smith. ''This punishment by far exceeds the crime,'' said Barbara Lord Watkins, a Dallas member of The Links. ''We need to develop strategies to move collectively and make sure this doesn't happen again.'' (c) Copyright 1998 Globe Newspaper Company.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Court Briefs - Marijuana Possession ('The Centre Daily Times' Says Retired Penn State Professor Julian Heicklen Will Be Arraigned July 27)Date: Sat, 04 Jul 1998 17:43:45 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service (firstname.lastname@example.org) From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US PA: Court Briefs - Marijuana Possession Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Source: Centre Daily Times (PA) Contact: email@example.com Pubdate: Thu, 02 Jul 1998 Website: http://www.centredaily.com/ Court briefs - From CDT staff reports The following actions took place in Centre County court in Bellefonte on Wednesday: MARIJUANA POSSESSION Retired Penn State professor Julian Heicklen, who allegedly smoked marijuana in public to protest marijuana laws, was bound over for trial on charges of marijuana possession. Arraignment is scheduled for July 27.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Peddling Viagra Online (According To 'The San Francisco Chronicle,' Authorities In California And Colorado Said Yesterday They Are Beginning An Investigation Of An Online Pharmacy, Performance Drugs Inc., Which Has Been Supplying Viagra And Other Medicines Over The Web Without Prescriptions - The Sensationalist Newspaper Alleges 'Viagra And The Internet Appear To Be Ushering In A New Brand Of High-Tech Drug Abuse') Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 11:40:34 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: Peddling Viagra Online Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Pubdate: Thu, 02 Jul 1998 Source: San Francisco Chronicle Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/ Author: Carl T. Hall, Chronicle Science Writer PEDDLING VIAGRA ONLINE You Can Get Hot New Drug, And Others, On The Net - Without Ever Seen A Doctor Viagra and the Internet appear to be ushering in a new brand of high-tech drug abuse. Authorities in California and Colorado said yesterday that they are beginning investigations of an online pharmacy operation, Performance Drugs Inc., which has been supplying Viagra and other medicines through the Web without traditional prescriptions. The investigations were prompted in part by inquiries from a Chronicle reporter, who had ordered 10 tablets of Viagra, the wildly popular new anti-impotence pill, and 10 doses of ``Stimula,'' a purported ``female erectile cream,'' through the Web site. Performance Drugs is just one of a growing crop of Web-based pill mills exploiting the phenomenal demand for Pfizer Inc.'s impotence remedy. A record 2.5 million Viagra prescriptions have been filled since the drug was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Pfizer has issued statements decrying loose prescribing of Viagra -- a potentially dangerous medicine linked to 174 reports of side effects and 31 deaths, although it's not clear whether the drug itself or underlying health problems were to blame. However, the New York-based pharmaceutical giant conceded that it has done nothing to stop questionable sales through the Internet. Nor has the company been systematically monitoring the Internet. A company spokeswoman said Internet sales appear to be legal in many states, ``so there's not much we can do about it.'' State regulators said anyone, including the manufacturer, could prompt an investigation simply by filing a complaint. The pills received by The Chronicle appear to be genuine -- blue-colored, oblong tablets stamped with Pfizer's logo. The newspaper is having the pills tested for authenticity. To get them, the reporter was only required to fill out a short ``medical history'' online through an easy-to-find, well-promoted Web site. Besides agreeing to a $99.50 charge on a credit card, he also agreed to pay a $50 ``physician review charge'' for first-time customers. The form did not ask whether the reporter was suffering from impotence -- the only condition for which the Food and Drug Administration has approved Viagra. He did not even have to reveal his age or gender. No doctor or pharmacist contacted him. Since The Chronicle submitted its order, the online form has been revised, and customers must now provide more detailed information. Calls to Performance Drugs were answered by Mike Takano, who identified himself as president of Alliance Marketing in Seattle, which he said has a partnership with Performance Drugs to handle the phone calls and other business generated by the Web site. He said the drug company was founded by a Colorado physician, Dr. Benjamin Taylor Johnson. Johnson, 31, is a 1994 graduate of Creighton University in Nebraska who practices at a clinic in Denver called the Center for Body Enhancement. Records of the Colorado medical board indicate that Johnson has a valid license to practice in that state and has no record of disciplinary action against him. Bad Practice Johnson's name appeared on the drug packaging received by The Chronicle as the prescribing doctor. He did not return repeated telephone calls this week. Physicians and regulators said it is bad practice, and possibly illegal, for a doctor to order prescription drugs for patients he has never met or examined. Nor does Johnson have a license to prescribe medicine to someone in San Francisco, according to a record check by the Medical Board of California. ``It is absolutely not legal unless there's a good-faith examination by a doctor licensed to practice medicine in California,'' said Doug Laue, deputy director of the state board. Susan Miller, program administrator of the Colorado Board of Medical Examiners, said, ``The board may have problems with what he is doing and certainly we will be investigating that.'' Regulators said the willy-nilly sale of Viagra and other prescription drugs over the Web is a growing problem. ``We have this on our radar screen,'' said Carmen Catizone, executive director of the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy, which is developing a ``seal of approval'' for Web sites that follow what are considered sound guidelines. It `Won't Pass Muster' ``It's against the law to dispense a prescription drug to someone without a legitimate prescription,'' he said, adding that filling prescriptions based only on Web questionnaires, without any semblance of a patient-physician relationship, clearly will not pass muster. One Web site in Wisconsin jumped on the Viagra bandwagon soon after the drug was approved but promptly closed under pressure from state medical authorities. Another site with a sponsor based in Arizona also has apparently come and gone. In California, however, officials said they had not looked into the matter until questioned this week by The Chronicle. State telemedicine statutes and other provisions traditionally allow physicians to conduct business over the phone or by fax, as long as they exercise sound judgment and act in good faith. Few doctors consider it good judgment to fill a telephone prescription requested by someone they have not physically examined before. Issuing Viagra prescriptions to total strangers, even if they fill out detailed forms on the Internet, ``is not a good idea,'' said Dr. Tom Lue, a nationally known urologist on the faculty of the University of California at San Francisco. Although Viagra is by far the main attraction, Web sites also are advertising baldness treatments, female ``sexual enhancement'' creams and other drugs that usually cannot be purchased legally without a prescription. `Worldwide Access' Performance Drugs, one of the more visible Viagra-peddlers on the Internet, has made no secret of the business. The company even issued a press release in May advertising ``worldwide access'' to Viagra, even though the drug has been approved only in a few countries outside the United States so far. Takano said the service is extremely popular with customers all over the country. He declined to offer details other than saying that the Web service has received no complaints. As for the legalities, Takano said the Web service employs plenty of lawyers to make sure no laws are broken. Still, he added, ``this kind of falls into the frontier; it's in uncharted waters.'' ``There are no real statutes for or against it,'' he said. ``We meet with doctors. We pay doctors quite a bit of money to review prescriptions. The doctors can reject every order if they want. We're relying on the physician's judgment.'' The Chronicle's Viagra-Stimula order was shipped by U.S. mail from Pencol-Medisave Pharmacy, which listed a Denver address. A man who answered a telephone request for an interview at the pharmacy identified himself as Marshall Tobin. He initially refused to answer any questions, and he ended the conversation shortly after a reporter declined to grant him anonymity. `The Wrong Thing To Do' ``I know I'm not in any jeopardy,'' Tobin said, claiming that he did not know all the details about the Web supply operation when the Chronicle reporter's order was filled. But he then added that he has since stopped filling such orders. ``It was the wrong thing to do,'' he said. Viagra still appears to be safe and effective when used as intended, according to the FDA. The most serious known side effects have been listed on the drug label since it was approved. One known risk is the strain that sexual activity could have on newly potent men in poor health. The drug can trigger potentially fatal drops in blood pressure in heart patients taking nitrate drugs -- an increasingly common problem in emergency rooms. It's also potentially dangerous to combine Viagra with the inhaled recreational nitrates known as ``poppers.'' But part of the demand for the drug, doctors say, is in recreational use by men who are not impotent but seek to enhance their sexual prowess, even though the drug evidently does nothing for men who have no problems achieving erections. The pill also is being tested by the manufacturer as a sexual aid for women. Health authorities said the Viagra traffic on the Internet opens the possibility that the drug will fall into the hands of children or people refused prescriptions by their doctors, presumably for fear of side effects. `Bad Medicine' ``We are very concerned about this,'' said Dr. James Winn, executive vice president of the Federation of State Medical Boards, a Texas-based organization that advises state physician-licensing agencies across the country. ``This is bad medicine.'' Winn's organization issued a memorandum last week warning state medical boards about the Performance Drugs Web site. The operation is ``technically not illegal,'' the memo stated, but ``does raise flags about the quality of medicine being practiced by physicians who have agreed to write prescriptions for the individuals placing orders.'' Ubiquitous gossip about what the medication might do for normally functioning men -- or perhaps even women -- has prompted phenomenal demand for the pills, even at $9 or more a pop. In some Bay Area neighborhoods, the pills can be had on the street with little more difficulty than copping a bag of marijuana. ``It's true,'' said one San Francisco police investigator, confirming that Viagra is being passed around in some bars for $20 or $30 a pill. Merely A Misdemeanor But local authorities noted that it's merely a misdemeanor to possess prescription medications without a prescription. A felony could be charged if large quantities are involved, but successful prosecution would require showing intent to sell the drug -- and that's not easy to do. Nor can the Food and Drug Administration step in. The agency has no authority over how pharmacies and physicians use an approved drug. Dr. Stuart Nightingale, associate FDA commissioner for health affairs, said some Web sites may be treading on dangerous legal ground, however, citing at least two past instances of a provider being shut down by state and local authorities. The FDA has joined in a global effort through the World Health Organization to reach effective cross-border agreements to monitor pharmaceutical marketing in the online era. Officials in several countries hope to reach agreements for a cooperative program that would force pill mills out of business wherever they might arise. The world health group has even adopted a resolution against unlicensed cross-border sales of prescription drugs, although the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, a Washington trade group, said WHO lacks authority to deal effectively with the problem. HOW THE CHRONICLE ORDERED VIAGRA ON THE INTERNET 1. June 15: Customer makes quick internet search for ``Viagra'' and finds Performance Drugs Inc. one of several sites that fills orders for drugs online. 2. Customer completes a short order form and agrees to pay: -- $99.50 for 10 Viagra tablets -- $20 for 10 doses of ``Stimula'' for women -- $50 ``physician review '' change 3. Form is transmitted instantly to Seattle to the company's telemarketing partner 4. Form is transmitted to Denver, where physicans and Performance Drug Inc. co-founder Dr. Ben Johnson decides soley on the information found on the form whether to prescribe the drug. 5. The presciption order is sent to Pencol-Medisave Pharmacy in Denver, where the order is filled. 6. Prescription arrives in San Francisco by regular mail. 1998 San Francisco Chronicle Page A1
------------------------------------------------------------------- For The Record ('The Washington Post' Prints The Remarks Of US Attorney General Janet Reno At The DEA's 25th Anniversary Bash Yesterday) Date: Sat, 04 Jul 1998 17:35:40 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service (firstname.lastname@example.org) From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: WP: For the Record (Reno's Remarks at DEA's 25th anniversary) Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: isenberd@DynCorp.com (Isenberg, David) Source: Washington Post Contact: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/edit/letters/letterform.htm Website: http://www.washingtonpost.com/ Pubdate: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 For The Record FROM REMARKS BY ATTORNEY GENERAL JANET RENO YESTERDAY AT THE DRUG ENFORCEMENT ADMINISTRATION'S 25TH ANNIVERSARY PROGRAM IN ARLINGTON: Being in the State Attorney's Office and state attorney in Dade County during the late '70s gave one the best perspective to view what the dedicated agents in DEA did for that community as the drug wars threatened it and violence really created havoc. . . . I never dreamed that I would have the opportunity to see DEA from the perspective that I now enjoy. . . . I have been to local communities, to small towns, where the sheriff will come in and say: "The DEA . . . team has been here. They haven't claimed credit. They did it quietly. But they came in, they've helped, they've made a difference. They've reduced violence in this community, and we are deeply grateful." I have been out West, to more rural areas, where a sheriff will say: "We have got a real problem coming up this highway, but DEA has helped. DEA has made a difference." I have been on a sailing ship of sorts, in the middle of New York Harbor, with DEA agents who were spending their Saturday morning reaching out to Explorers, to give young people something to say yes to. I have been in capitals around the world where the country attache has represented this nation with distinction and with honor. I have watched DEA and FBI agents . . . as they worked together to exchange information and to see that a drug gang was prosecuted without anybody claiming credit except credit for the final solution -- a conviction that stood up on appeal. (c) Copyright 1998 The Washington Post Company
------------------------------------------------------------------- DEA Administrator - 'Hell' For Medical Marijuana Advocates (Former NORML Director Jon Gettman Covers A Panel Discussion On CSPAN2 Yesterday Held On The 25th Anniversary Of The Drug Enforcement Administration, At Which Current DEA Chief Thomas Constantine Said, 'Because From My Era Everybody Smoked And Everybody Drank And There Was No Drug Use') Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 00:38:40 EDT Errors-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: Gettman_J@mediasoft.net Originator: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org From: Jon Gettman (Gettman_J@mediasoft.net) To: Multiple recipients of list (email@example.com) Subject: DEA Adm.: "Hell" for medical marijuana advocates DEA Adm.: "Hell" for medical marijuana advocates by Jon Gettman The Drug Enforcement Administration is commemorating its 25th anniversary this month. On July 1 they held a 90-minute panel discussion on "The Future of Drug Law Enforcement". Columnist Robert Novak moderated a discussion by John Ingersoll (Dir. of the Bur. of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs, successor agency to DEA), Myles Ambrose (head of the transition agency between BNDD and DEA), Peter Bensinger (former DEA Adm.), John Lawn (former DEA Adm), and Thomas Constantine (current DEA Adm.) The panel discussion was broadcast July 1, 1998 on CSPAN2, a US public affairs cable channel, at 10 pm EST, from which this partial transcript was derived. Some unedited comments from Thomas Constantine: "The problem that is laid out with medical use of marijuana, it was used very specifically-- we've reviewed the reports-- as a stalking horse for the legalization of drugs. "So it has been unfair to patients who see that as a benefit and do not seek out appropriate medical treatment. "It is even more unfair to the young people of the country who are the most vulnerable, who hear people talking about 'this is a medicine, not a drug that is dangerous' and thereby allowing them to rationalize behavior. "And I go back to having been a smoker -- and to go back to the argument mentioned, I'll answer that question -- legalized drugs and smoking and alcohol lead to drug use -- that argues in the face of logic. Because from my era everybody smoked and everybody drank and there was no drug use. So there was not a step progress that occurred at that point in time. "But the one thing that did happen, I'm sure, to my generation was there was any number of ads on the backs of magazines that had physicians smoking cigarettes and saying this suited you to a t . . .and when people gave you cigarettes you assumed they we're good for you. I think once you do that you rationalize dangerous behavior in the minds of impressionable kids. "So these people who are now telling these young children that these drugs can be beneficial for them, they're not dangerous -- when it occurs that it impacts even one in my opinion, but it will impact many -- there is a special place in hell, I think, for individuals who pronounce such behavior that so seriously hurts young kids as they go along." The CSPAN2 broadcast concluded with a notice to send any comments to: Drug Enforcement Administration 700 Army Navy Drive Arlington, Virginia 22202
------------------------------------------------------------------- DEA Panel - The Future Of Drug Law Enforcement (A Second, Somewhat Different Commentary By Jon Gettman About The Panel Discussion Broadcast Yesterday On CSPAN2) Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 11:16:25 EDT Errors-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: Gettman_J@mediasoft.net Originator: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org From: Jon Gettman (Gettman_J@mediasoft.net) To: Multiple recipients of list (email@example.com) Subject: DEA Panel: "The Future of Drug Law Enforcement" "The Future of Drug Law Enforcement" reviewed by Jon Gettman Note: This article does not contain verbatim transcripts. This is a description of a DEA panel discussion and with a few exceptions does not contain direct quotations. Some of the topical descriptions are very brief, most are fair descriptions of what was said. The Drug Enforcement Administration is commemorating its 25th anniversary. On July 1 they held a 90-minute panel discussion on "The Future of Drug Law Enforcement". The panel discussion was broadcast July 1, 1998 on CSPAN2, a US public affairs cable channel, at 10 pm EST.. Columnist Robert Novak moderated a discussion by John Ingersoll (Dir. of the Bur. of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs, successor agency to DEA), Myles Ambrose (head of the transition agency between BNDD and DEA), Peter Bensinger (former DEA Adm.), John Lawn (former DEA Adm), and Thomas Constantine (current DEA Adm.) John Ingersoll began by emphasizing the need for strong leadership in discouraging drug use. Myles Ambrose explained the need for one agency to be in charge of drug law enforcement. Peter Bensinger complimented agency personnel for their experience, sacrifices, and dedication to their work. Source country efforts can work. It is easier with heroin because there is more public support here and abroad. In the late 1970's [when Bensinger served at the agency] there was a major misunderstanding about the danger of marijuana. Regarding all the various anti-drug tactics and programs, the country has to do all of it. John Lawn said that a war on drugs was necessary in the early 1980s because of the "benign neglect" of the 1970's. There was no change in the number of DEA employees in the seventies, but this began to change dramatically during Lawn's service in the early 1980s. Resource support increased considerably. Drug problems are getting worse in the nineties. DAWN statistics for heroin have doubled in the nineties, so have statistics for methamphetamine. Violence is up. There was a real war on drugs in the 1980s, defined in terms of increased funding. Constantine has been able to increase manpower considerably over any time in DEA history and is able to build on the promise of the early days. We shouldn't forget the marijuana issue. The public needs to know more about marijuana's link with binge drinking on college campuses. Alcohol use among 6th - 8th graders is also increasing, and this is a serious problem. The proliferation of drug enforcement agencies has always been a problem. There are now 50 agencies doing drug law work, but only one of them [DEA] is held accountable by the public. "Benign neglect" also characterized the 1990's. Heroin and Methamphetamine are now "major problems". Marijuana is now a "significant problem." Thomas Constantine began by explaining his concern that the country just doesn't understand the trouble we're now in, despite acceptance of the status quo. In 1960 only 4 million people had ever used drugs, while in 1990 over 80 million people in the US had ever used drugs. Some of the solutions suggested in Washington are "mystifying," despite being requests from "decent" people, although a bit misguided. These mystifying suggestions include cordoning of the US with the military to keep drugs out, using US intelligence satellites and operatives to pinpoint all drug shipments, and using and directing every single police officer in the United States against the drug problem. Theoretically, addressing the proliferation of agencies, there should be just one drug law enforcement agency. The reality of the situation, Constantine has found, is that it's too big to change. Rather than waste his time, he tries to cooperate and avoid turf battles. Besides, "monopoly over service" does not necessarily provide "good service". The US has some 16,000 police agencies, and if someone proposed that there be 15,999 there would be a cry that that was one too few. The American people prefer not to concentrate police power. The DEA tries to work hard and be recognized as a leader on that basis rather than to be designated so by statute. Robert Novak: What is your response to the charge that the war on drugs is a failure and that the country should legalize drugs, that if we have legal alcohol and legal tobacco, why not narcotics? Peter Bensinger: Alcohol and drugs are different. Drugs are banned in many countries around the world whereas alcohol is accepted in most parts of the world. Legalizing drugs would increase crime and violence. It's not just getting money to buy drugs, illegal drugs cause changes in people that make them more likely to commit crimes. If legal marijuana was set at a potency of 2%, there would be a black market in 6% potency. So the illegal market would still be there. The Soros supported proposals of harm reduction were characterized by Bensinger as reducing restraints on illegal drug use. In the 1970s legalizers were largely unfunded; they were "counter-culture" types without an "aura of respectability". Today Soros funded and other organizations are misleading the public. A new threat has been creeping into the debate. Thomas Constantine: Polls show that 85% of the public is against legalization. There is a new phenomenon, though, consisting of a wealthy elitist structure favoring legalization. One aspect involves class and race. These wealthy people think it is only the poor that are affected by drugs, and this allows them to be detached and abstract about the problem and its consequences. In all his travels, no one has come up to Constantine and said the solution to the drug problem is to make more drugs available. The problem is that many of these illegal drugs provide great pleasure without any medical benefit. Considering legalization, what drugs? Marijuana? Heroin? What amount? After we provide addiction opportunities, who pays for the use of the drugs? Should we allow these drug users to be surgeons? Teachers? These addicts would be unemployable. They would eventually become too sick to work. Who will take care of them? What age limit should there be? A 21 year old age limit did not eliminate teenage drinking. What about women? Should we allow them to become addicted to drugs -- what about if they become pregnant? Richard Daley Jr. had a good suggestion, let these legalizers try this first with their own kids, in their own neighborhoods, and we'll see how it goes there for a few years before we try it in the rest of the country. John Lawn: Marijuana potency is very different today than before. Drugs are illegal because they are bad, not the other way around. Marijuana use in the 1960s is irrelevant to use today because the drug is so much stronger. Use of marijuana by children is very dangerous. The British system was an abject failure. The Dutch actually have a substantial drug problem. The Swiss are having a disaster with illicit drugs. Decriminalization doesn't work. It is not a victimless crime. There are, for example, countless thousand crack babies that will wreck havoc as a problem for our society for the next 25 years. There is no positive aspect to decriminalization. Robert Novak: What about the need to place more emphasis on the legal substances, that is, tobacco use precedes marijuana use . . . Myles Ambrose: The legalizers conduct a masterful public relations campaign. Harm Reduction is masterful advertising. It probably came from the same advertising agency that came up with the term pro-choice. It's that good. Ambrose is "appalled" by Soros, appalled to see a former Secretary of the Treasury and Secretary of State on "that damn advertisement". It was a "national disgrace." Prohibition did not work with alcohol and it won't work with tobacco. Try it with caffeine and see what happen. It is an addiction. As far as the illegal drugs go, the government can't do much else than it is. They just have to target the worse drugs, and that includes marijuana. One problem is whether or not there is some medical use of marijuana and heroin. Ambrose doesn't know the answers, but some serious research is required. Thomas Constantine: The DEA made a comprehensive study of marijuana as medicine during John Lawn's service. Every major medical organization stated that there was no therapeutic use. In those proceedings only psychiatrists claimed that there were some benefits, but they could provide no peer-reviewed studies and they refused to testify under oath. In regards to its use against nausea from chemotherapy, every doctor I've spoken to indicates that so many drugs are now available and better that it would be unprofessional to recommend it to patients. As far as wasting goes, there are steroids and other alternatives. "The problem that is laid out with medical use of marijuana, it was used very specifically-- we've reviewed the reports-- as a stalking horse for the legalization of drugs." "So it has been unfair to patients who see that as a benefit and do not seek out appropriate medical treatment." "It is even more unfair to the young people of the country who are the most vulnerable, who hear people talking about 'this is a medicine, not a drug that is dangerous' and thereby allowing them to rationalize behavior." "And I go back to having been a smoker -- and to go back to the argument mentioned, I'll answer that question -- legalized drugs and smoking and alcohol lead to drug use -- that argues in the face of logic. Because from my era everybody smoked and everybody drank and there was no drug use. So there was not a step progress that occurred at that point in time." "But the one thing that did happen, I'm sure, to my generation was there was any number of ads on the backs of magazines that had physicians smoking cigarettes and saying this suited you to a t . . .and when people gave you cigarettes you assumed they we're good for you. I think once you do that you rationalize dangerous behavior in the minds of impressionable kids." "So these people who are now telling these young children that these drugs can be beneficial for them, they're not dangerous -- when it occurs that it impacts even one in my opinion, but it will impact many -- there is a special place in hell, I think, for individuals who pronounce such behavior that so seriously hurts young kids as they go along." John Lawn: There is a threshhold problem. Illegal drug users cause much of the violence in our society. John Ingersoll: Thirty years ago heroin came from poppies grown in Turkey and processed into heroin in the south of France. There was a great effort to shut down this pipeline. Now no one hears about heroin from Turkey and France. What worked? Crop substitution and government cooperation. Why not the same in Mexico today? Corruption, high level corruption. It's been like this for more than 30 years in Mexico. Mexico has not done its part. Thomas Constantine tells me that Colombia has turned around. Myles Ambrose: One problem in Mexico is that the economy is controlled by 30 to 40 families in Monterey, and they tolerate corruption in the government and only care about their money. The Mexican government has always been corrupt. Peter Bensinger: The lack of will and corruption in source countries is a problem, but the demand problem here in the US is also important. For the most part cocaine, heroin, and marijuana are imported into this country. Since 1990 demand has gone up. So Mexico does not control the crops, we need far better enforcement of our existing laws. We should not slack off just because the prisons are full. We should also give a lot more money to support families. We need more activity like the parents groups of the 1980s. Their mobilization is as important as Mexico. John Lawn: Demand is important. Mexico is a problem. The certification process is a problem. Colombia is dedicated to this, while Mexico is not doing all they can do. Are we doing all we can? We need treatment for everyone who wants it. We need better education. Our college-bound kids are smoking too much pot. Audience Question from retired DEA agent - what about better social and health services? Myles Ambrose: Treatment providers are in the depths of despair over funding. Treatment programs do work. Overcoming heroin addiction, for example, takes a long long time. It's not a matter of a 30 day program. It is very expensive. But the successful treatment of one addict probably stops 10 others from becoming addicted. Recovered addicts have considerable contributions to make to our society. The DEA has to tell Congress how important treatment is. Thomas Constantine: There is always argument in Washington over the "strategy of the year". Actually, there has never been a drug war in this coungry, which Constantine defines as total expenditure. But we can't denigrate the police and prisons and what they do. Police protect people and make a difference in their lives. Police and prisons bring "order out of chaos" and if not for them the other programs would not work. Audience Comment and Question from career DEA employee working in Demand Reduction - The employee said she was really bothered by the NY times article, especially by Walter Cronkite's participation, and if this was the caliber of the other side it was even more important to ask who should take the lead to counter the money of George Soros? Many people in the country are not educated enough about the drug problem to understand it. If it is not appropriate for government to take the lead here, how do we reach middle America? Peter Bensinger: With private industry. Many people can't come to work today with drugs in their system thanks to urine testing. Companies can not get government contracts without drug testing programs. The answer is more work with employers. Parents also need to recognize the health consequences. We need a parent to parent movement to pressure Congress. We need parents to take on the harm reduction folks. Audience Question: Constantine is asked to comment on the money laundering sting in Mexico. Thomas Constantine: Anywhere organized crime flourishes they corrupt law enforcement. The only effective tactic to use against them is the use of honest and dedicated law enforcement personnel. The US and Mexico are in very close proximity, and crime groups from Mexico are sending large numbers of criminals into the US to sell drugs. Regarding Operation Casablanca, it was a Customs operation and they deserve the credit for it. The issue really should be the hundreds of millions of dollars made from crime, and not some manufactured and overblown diplomatic incident. Robert Novak: The DEA budget is a fraction of what we spend on individual military hardware, it is dwarfed by non-military spending. We have a massive government surplus, call it $500 billion. We have the money, but our political leadership does not have the will to get rid of this scourge. Both Clinton and the republican leadership in Congress have failed in this. Politicians changed on tobacco in just a few years. The public supports a real war, and the government should too. The CSPAN2 broadcast concluded with a notice to send any comments to: Drug Enforcement Administration 700 Army Navy Drive Arlington, Virginia 22202 CSPAN Programming Details - Broadcast Date Wednesday, July 1, 1998. 10:00pm to 11:37pm ET 07:00pm to 08:37pm PT Forum The Next 25 Years of Drug Law Enforcement Drug Enforcement Agency Arlington, VA ID : 108184 Length : 1 hr 37 min Event date : 07/01/98 Constantine, Thomas, Administrator, Drug Enforcement Administration Novak, Robert, Columnist, Chicago Sun-Times
------------------------------------------------------------------- Newly Available GAO Reports And Testimonies (A List Subscriber Posts The URLs For Two New Studies From The US General Accounting Office - 'Drug Control - An Overview Of US Counterdrug Intelligence' - And 'Law Enforcement - Information On Drug-Related Police Corruption') Date: Fri, 3 Jul 1998 08:27:41 EDT Errors-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Originator: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org To: Multiple recipients of list (email@example.com) Subject: Newly Available GAO Reports and Testimonies, July 2, 1998 ---- Begin Included Message ---- Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 08:07:43 -0400 From: firstname.lastname@example.org To: email@example.com Subject: Newly Available GAO Reports and Testimonies, July 2, 1998 Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com July 2, 1998 The following items were added to GAO's World Wide Web site in Portable Document (PDF) format. - Drug Control: An Overview of U.S. Counterdrug Intelligence Activities. NSIAD-98-142. 23 pp. plus 4 appendices (41 pp.) June 25, 1998. http://www.gao.gov/new.items/ns98142.pdf - Law Enforcement: Information on Drug-Related Police Corruption. GGD-98-111. 36 pp. plus 4 appendices (7 pp.) May 28, 1998. http://www.gao.gov/new.items/gg98111.pdf - Year 2000 Computing Crisis: Testing and Other Challenges Confronting Federal Agencies. T-AIMD-98-218. 17 pp. June 22, 1998. http://www.gao.gov/new.items/ai98218t.pdf These reports and testimonies will also be added to our WAIS database in ASCII and PDF formats within the next 24 hours. This database can be searched from the World Wide Web from the search page at: http://www.access.gpo.gov/su_docs/aces/aces160.shtml If you are using speech synthesizer equipment or lack World Wide Web access you may search this database with GPO's public swais client by telnetting to: swais.access.gpo.gov Any individual report may be retrieved directly from that archive in text and PDF formats with the following URL: http://www.gao.gov/cgi-bin/getrpt?RPTNO replacing RPTNO with the report number (e.g., GAO/OCG-98-1). To UNSUBSCRIBE from the GAO Daybook mailing list, send an e-mail message to: firstname.lastname@example.org with: unsubscribe daybook (your_email_address) in the message body. Please do not reply to this message to unsubscribe from the mailing list. Thank you. [Portland NORML notes: replace "(" with "<" and ")" with ">"]
------------------------------------------------------------------- Guilty ('The Orange County Register' Says Former Mexican Federal Police Director Adrian Carrera Fuentes Was Found Guilty Of Having Tortured A Suspect Later Convicted For Involvement In The 1994 Murder Of A Ruling-Party Politician)Date: Sat, 04 Jul 1998 17:38:51 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service (email@example.com) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Mexico: Guilty Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: John W. Black Source: Orange County Register (CA) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.ocregister.com/ Pubdate: 2 July 1998 GUILTY A former federal police director in Mexico who admitted taking $1 million from a druglord was convicted Wednesday on unrelated charges of abuse of authority and sentenced to four years in prison. Adrian Carrera Fuentes was found guilty of having tortured a suspect later convicted for involvement in the 1994 murder of a ruling-party politician.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Cannabis Day Picnic `A Great Party, Man' ('The Halifax Daily News' Covers The Third Annual Event In Support Of Marijuana Law Reform Yesterday At Halifax Common) Date: Fri, 03 Jul 1998 18:42:09 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Canada: Cannabis Day Picnic `A Great Party, Man' Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Source: Halifax Daily News Contact: email@example.com Pubdate: Thursday, July 2, 1998 Author: RICHARD DOOLEY -- The Daily News CANNABIS DAY PICNIC `A GREAT PARTY, MAN' Not all the grass at the Halifax Common is underfoot. Some of it, during yesterday's third annual Cannabis Day Picnic to support the legalization of marijuana, was rolled into spliffs, cones, joints, and doobies or painted on hats, T-shirts and bare-breasted women. Organizers were expecting more than 2,000 people to the Commons for what has become one of the most provocative events of Canada Day. But while the crowd of people didn't approach the expected numbers - a steady crowd of about 500 attended the picnic - spirits were, well, high. "It's a great party, man," said one young picnic-goer who declined to give his name. "It's all about getting marijuana legal." The rally attracts a diverse group of aging hippies, hippie wannabes, punkers, and others who defy classification. But while the mood is upbeat and friendly, there is a serious side. "We are turning people into criminals who don't deserve to be criminals," said Antigonish pot activist Gene Purdy. Purdy, 55, is a Rastafarian preacher and antique dealer who says pot should be legalized for anyone who wants to use it. "It's not an addictive substance; it's a herb," he said. Purdy was arrested at a pot-smoking rally in Antigonish last March and charged with possession. He goes to court this fall to answer those charges and when he does, he will argue freedom of religion gives him the right to smoke dope. "It is my religious right to smoke grass and hash," he said. Purdy, and some of the other speakers at yesterday's rally, argued there are practical reasons to legalize marijuana. Purdy said society can no longer afford to put people in jail for minor offences. "We shouldn't be making criminals out of teenagers for smoking grass," said Purdy. "It effectively screws up their lives." Bruce Wark, a Coast columnist and University of King's College journalism professor, said Canada's drug laws are archaic. "Our drug laws are stupid," he told the crowd. "They are based on unnatural fear and moral panic." The police were conspicuous by their absence at the picnic, despite the open smoking of marijuana and small group of bare-breasted women with marijuana leaves painted on their bodies. That seemed to suit many people on the Common. Bob Howard, a guitarist and avid toker, said the legalization of grass is just a technicality for him. "Pot is legal in my life," he said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Pot Protester Smoked Out ('The London Free Press' Says Provincial Police Busted Ron McInnes The Night Before A 'Smoke-Out' He Had Planned Yesterday In Conjunction With Canada Day Festivities At Couchiching Beach Park In Orillia, Ontario) Date: Fri, 03 Jul 1998 18:43:43 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Canada: Pot Protester Smoked Out Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Source: London Free Press (Canada) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.canoe.ca/LondonFreePress/home.html Pubdate: July 2, 1998 Author: By Tracy McLaughlin -- Sun Media Newspapers POT PROTESTER SMOKED OUT OPP ARREST ORGANIZER ON EVE OF ORILLIA EVENT ORILLIA -- A plan for a mass pot protest at a Canada Day celebration here was almost snuffed out when the organizer was busted in a police raid. Ron McInnes, 50, of Orillia, spent weeks handing out flyers and organizing a marijuana demonstration at Couchiching Beach Park during the town's Canada Day festivities yesterday. He trumpeted the event, proclaiming hundreds of pot smokers planned to join him in the "smoke-out.'' Whisked away But on the eve of his glory he was whisked away in handcuffs before he had a chance to spark up a festive joint. McInnes was arrested at his home and business, The Pot Shop. He's in custody and is to appear for a bail hearing today on charges of possession of a controlled substance, production of a controlled substance, and two counts of promoting and selling instruments for illicit drug use. Despite the bust, several pot-smoking supporters fired up joints amidst the hoots, cheers, and applause of hundreds of bystanders as police swarmed the park yesterday. "It's time to make a statement,'' said Mike Lancaster, 35, of Orillia, the first to light. "This shouldn't be a crime.'' Two Ontario Provincial Police officers briskly cuffed his hands behind his back and took him away. "If people want to taunt us like this, we're not going to bury our heads in the sand,'' said Inspector Jim Dixon, commander of the local OPP detachment. "This is a family day and there is no way we are going to sit back and watch it be ruined.'' Tim Kors, 30, of Bracebridge, looked almost jubilant as police cuffed him and hustled him away from the throng of hooting fans. "This is a free country and all I was doing was having a smoke,'' Kors proclaimed. Just metres away, two women sat by the water and puffed away, undetected by police because of the hubbub of other arrests. "My doctor knows I'm doing this,'' said Ina Kealy, 40, of Caledon, as she deeply inhaled and rolled the weed. The former musician said she has used marijuana medicinally because she has lupus and arthritis. Her friend Freda Little, 54, a Toronto aromatherapist, smoked along with her. McInnes's 72-year-old mother, Margaret Nicholson, stood among the crowd and said she's ticked off her son couldn't be there to carry out his plan. "They came in his house last night like a swarm of bees,'' she said. "They even brought the dogs in to sniff around.'' Copyright (c) 1998 The London Free Press a division of Sun Media Corporation.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Americans Addicted To Hypocrisy (An Op-Ed In Britain's 'Daily Telegraph' Says America's Political Class Has Slipped The Bonds Of Sanity About Smoking - A Simple Question Of Choice - For Example, In Florida, The Government Is Using £130 Million To Pay For Maoist Propaganda To Persuade Children Not To Smoke, Including Little Red Books About The Evils Of Smoking.) Date: Fri, 03 Jul 1998 18:48:28 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Australia: OPED: Americans Addicted To Hypocrisy Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Misty) Source: Daily Telegraph (UK) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/ Pubdate: 2 Jul 1998 Author: Hugo Gurdon AMERICANS ADDICTED TO HYPOCRISY Hugo Gurdon in Washington reports on the pop-eyed hysteria that has gripped the chatterati on a simple question of choice - smoking "Welcome to killing Field", says a cheery billboard to motorists driving into Tampa, Florida. If you had regarded the Sunshine State as a place where the only dangers were heat-stroke and an overdose of Disney, think again. The billboard bears two death tolls side by side. The first - 43,363 Americans wiped out annually in car crashes - is dwarfed by the second - 430,700 innocents putatively extinguished by cigarette smoke. Florida takes this very seriously. Or rather, it is so outraged about smoking that it has passed clean through seriousness and emerged on the other side of pop-eyed hysteria. Having sued Joe Camel and the Marlboro Man and won £6.5 billion in damages because of smokers' extra health care burdens, the government is using £130 million to pay for propaganda to persuade children not to smoke. Among its many Maoist features, the campaign will provide children with little red books about the evils of smoking. They are to be herded to state-organised anti-tobacco rallies. Police will write smoking tickets, like parking fines, for teenagers caught surreptitiously puffing behind the bicycle sheds. Television advertisements will attack cigarette makers with the slogan "Their brand is lies. Our brand is truth", and a "Truth Train" will trundle across the state proselytising for pink-lunged purity. A Ministry of Truth will be set up in the capital, Tallahassee, to oversee it all. I made up the bit about the new ministry, actually, but you can be forgiven if you were fooled, because everything else is gospel. America's political class has slipped the bonds of sanity and declined into foam-flecked rage about smoking. Without cigarette-makers changing what they do, which is to sell a legal product to willing users, the chatterati have come to regard them as baby-killers. More people smoke than voted for Bill Clinton, but politicians are in no mood to let inconvenient facts deprive them of righteous anger. Cigarette companies are easy targets, having concealed evidence about smoking and ill health, and secretly marketing to children. But the real hypocrites are the anti-smoking crusaders. A detailed analysis has shown that, far from costing society money, smokers contribute 20p a pack to the general welfare by dying young and not collecting their pensions, and a further £200 each year in tobacco taxes. Neither Florida nor any other state has lost money because of smoking. They have all gained. The anti-smoking war is based on the falsehood that smokers were ignorant of the risks of lighting up. It is 35 years since my parents first attempted to bribe me not to start smoking. Cigarettes were known as "gaspers" before the First World War; even James I condemned the noxious "weed". No one alive today was born into a world ignorant of the risks. Rebellious youth wants to take risks. My parents' bribery did not work. Like many others on the cusp of adulthood, I started smoking because it was a relatively harmless way in the short term of doing what my parents wished me not to do. The demonisation of smoking in America has increased teenage smoking, probably, say psychologists, because children realise they can give their parents conniptions without being so silly as to take hard drugs. They smoke by choice and then, like me, they choose to give it up. This is not as hard as some people pretend; there are fewer smokers than ex-smokers. But choice is not something that Big Brother government is inclined to give the ignorant serfs of the general public. When Congress put together a whopping £400 billion tax increase on cigarettes, ostensibly to stamp out teenage smoking, it was based on the false premise that ordinary people do not have the gumption to make the decision themselves. They had to be regarded as innocent cattle led to the slaughter by big, bad, Machiavellian business. Fortunately, conservatives woke up at the last minute and voted against the legislation that they realised would not stop smoking, but would finance a giant extension of an overweening, over-funded state. Left-liberals were outraged by their defeat. "If this is a tax," frothed Senator John Kerry, "this is the one tax in America that nobody has to pay - nobody - unless you buy a pack of cigarettes." Hey, what was that, Senator? Smokers are not in the grip of a cast-iron addiction, not dupes of wily advertisers? How odd, then, that the government needs to whip up hysteria and raise hundreds of billions in taxes to stamp out a simple, pleasurable, personal choice.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Europe's Biggest Drugs Haul In Croatian Capital (The Irish 'Examiner' Says Customs Officers In Zagreb Discovered Over 16 Tons Of Top-Quality Marijuana And Arrested One Man In What Has Been Described As Europe's Biggest Drug Bust This Year) Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 22:46:42 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Croatia: Europe's Biggest Drugs Haul In Croatian Capital Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Martin Cooke (firstname.lastname@example.org) Pubdate: Thu, 02 Jul 1998 Source: The Examiner (Ireland) Contact: email@example.com EUROPE'S BIGGEST DRUGS HAUL IN CROATIAN CAPITAL CROATIAN customs officers discovered over 16 tons of top-quality marijuana hidden in two ship containers in what has been described as Europe's biggest drug bust this year. Police chief Ivan Nad said that the drugs, which were traced to the Malaysian port of Penang, were destined for the Western European markets. A 40-year-old man has been arrested. The marijuana was found hidden under piles of bed linen during a routine customs check in Zagreb.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Anger As Schools Call In Sniffer Dogs To Fight Drug Abuse ('The Age' In Australia Says At Least Six High Schools In Victoria Have Introduced Sniffer Dogs To Combat 'Drug' Use Among Students, Prompting Criticism From Parent Groups And Teachers) Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 11:40:34 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Australia: Anger As Schools Call In Sniffer Dogs To Fight Drug Abuse Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Russell.Ken.KW@bhp.com.au (Russell, Ken KW) Pubdate: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 Source: The Age ( Australia) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.theage.com.au Author: Carolyn Webb Note: This article also appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald ANGER AS SCHOOLS CALL IN SNIFFER DOGS TO FIGHT DRUG ABUSE Victorian high schools have introduced sniffer dogs to combat drug use among students, prompting criticism from parent groups and teachers. At least six schools have used dogs provided by the police drug squad to do random searches of bags and lockers, according to a principals organisation. The president of the Victorian Association of State Secondary Principals, Mr Ted Brierley, yesterday defended the move, saying it sent the message that drug dealers and abusers would get caught. ``The drug squads do favors for schools, in return for information, and also if there's any information the drug squads have about increased activity in or around schools ... then they let us know and we cooperate with them,'' Mr Brierley said. The dogs were used not necessarily where drug problems existed, but acted as a deterrent. ``Students would know about it, parents would know about it, staff would know about it. Students would be told at the start of the year there will be random sniffs, if you like, of lockers, locker areas and bags by sniffer dogs. ``The message is, don't bring drugs to schools.'' Parents' fears about drug use had been raised by the discovery last year of boys using heroin in the Glen Eira Secondary College toilets. Mr Brierley said while hidden cameras had identified the drug users in that case, cameras were generally used only for property protection. The principal of Tallangatta Secondary College, Mr Vern Hilditch, said he had organised sniffer dogs to search classrooms, locker areas and students' bags twice in the past four years. He said searches of the 330-student school, 40 kilometres south of Wodonga, had been done by police dogs and followed rumors of marijuana use. The searches had failed to find any drugs, but served to reassure parents and students that the school ``doesn't have a drug problem''. But a spokesman for the Australian Education Union, Mr Charles Smith, said using sniffer dogs to tackle drugs in schools was inappropriate and a poor alternative to stopping students using drugs. ``Schools shouldn't have cameras and sniffer dogs and all the paraphernalia of the police state,'' he said. ``Schools should welcome students, and they should have the resources to identify and help kids at a time when prevention has a chance to work.'' The president of the Victorian Council of School Organisations, Mr Richard Williams, said the drug problem needed to be prevented by looking at students' health, educational and social problems and including the wider community.
------------------------------------------------------------------- The Week Online With DRCNet, Issue Number 48 (The Drug Reform Coordination Network's Original News Summary For Activists, Including The Original And Fascinating Article, 'FDA Orders Books Destroyed') Date: Fri, 3 Jul 1998 00:31:29 EDT Errors-To: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Originator: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org From: DRCNet (email@example.com) To: Multiple recipients of list (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: The Week Online with DRCNet, Issue No. 48 THE WEEK ONLINE WITH DRCNet, ISSUE No. 48 -- JULY 2, 1998 -- PLEASE COPY AND DISTRIBUTE -- (To sign off this list, mailto: email@example.com with the line "signoff drc-natl" in the body of the message, or mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance. To subscribe to this list, visit http://www.drcnet.org/signup.html.) (This issue can be also be read on our web site at http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html.) *** CONTENTS 1. Join the DRCNet Thousand http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#thousand 2. Point and Click for Drug Policy Reform http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#eyegive 3. U.S., U.K. Plan Biological Warfare in Opium-Producing Nations http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#biowar 4. Canadian Doctors Call for Opiate Maintenance, but Attorney General Cites "Bad Message" http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#dosanjh 5. Treatment-Resistant AIDS Spreading, Bolstering Case for Syringe Exchange http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#newstrains 6. On Polling Numbers and Syringe Exchange in New Jersey http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#njpoll 7. FDA Orders Books Destroyed http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#bookburning 8. Crop Eradication Leaves Lebanon Peasants Hungry http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#lebanon 9. News Briefs http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#briefs 10. Orlando, Florida: Statewide Medical Marijuana Conference, 7/25 http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#camm 11. Washington State Medical Marijuana Initiative Submits Signatures http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#i692 12. Independence Day for KY Farmers: University of Kentucky to Release Hemp Research http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#ky-hemp 13. EDITORIAL: Who's a Fraud? http://www.drcnet.org/wol/48.html#editorial *** 1. JOIN THE DRCNET THOUSAND Enthusiastic response to our end-of-the-quarter appeal has propelled our paid membership beyond our goal of 960. While it's too soon for a final count, we're pretty sure that DRCNet's member database is within 10 or 15 of the 1,000 mark. (Total e-mail subscribership has passed 6,000.) Are there 15 of you out there, willing to help DRCNet break the 1,000 mark in time for the July 4th weekend? Your support leading up to Independence Day symbolizes a future when humanity will live free of our nation's immoral drug laws. Cast a vote and take a stand today against the war! To make a donation online with our encryption-secured web form, visit http://www.drcnet.org/drcreg.html, and make sure to follow the link to the encrypted version (https at the beginning of the URL). You can also use this form to prepare a printed statement with which to send in a check; this will help us process your information more quickly. Or, send your check or money order, $25 for full membership and $10 for "virtual" e-mail only membership to: DRCNet, 2000 P St., NW, Suite 615, Washington, DC 20036. Please note that contributions to DRCNet are not tax-deductible. *** 2. POINT AND CLICK FOR DRUG POLICY REFORM Since our appeal earlier this week, participation in the eyegive fundraiser has increased dramatically -- 42 new people have signed up, and daily revenues have doubled! As mentioned before, we received the first checks from eyegive, last month, totaling more than $775 -- but the next one can be much bigger than that, with your help. If you haven't signed up yet, you can select DRCNet automatically by visiting http://www.eyegive.com/html/ssi.cfm?CID=1060. Then, the easiest way to keep up with it (or to get back on track if you signed up but stopped visiting) is to set the eyegive home page, http://www.eyegive.com, as the default start-up page in your web browser -- use edit-preferences in Netscape or view-Internet options in Internet Explorer. For those of you who didn't read the bulletin, here is a brief recap: Eyegive is a web site through which people can earn money for their favorite non-profit organization, just by clicking on a page of ads that appears when you visit the site. Clicking up to five times per day earns DRCNet valuable funds, if you have selected us as your recipient non-profit. Your wrist and finger clicks can add up to earn DRCNet thousands of dollars -- money that can pay for part-time help, advertise for new members, any number of things. Please check it out, and those of you who have taken part already, keep up the good work! *** 3. U.S., U.K. Plan Biological Warfare in Opium-Producing Nations According to the Sunday Times, Britain's largest Sunday newspaper, a joint scientific effort is underway in Uzbekistan which has developed a mutant fungus which attacks opium poppies, signaling the beginning of a campaign of biological warfare next year. The project, which involves both British and American intelligence agencies, is being carried out at Uzbekistan's state genetics institute, which was formerly used to develop and manufacture germ agents for the destruction of food crops of Soviet enemies. The Times reports that some of the 30 researchers who are working on the project are veterans of secret Soviet biological weapons programs. The mutated fungus, a strain of a tomato-eating variety called Fusarium Oxysporum, is said to be advantageous over chemical herbicides because it is self-replicating, and is transferred via airborne spores from dying plants. According to the Sunday Times, the deal with the government of Uzbekistan was brokered by senior staff of the United Nations Drug Control Program (UNDCP), but some U.N. officials are concerned that use of the fungus in a country like Afghanistan (where the majority of British heroin originates) will open the West to charges from Islamic countries of waging biological warfare. Such charges could result in a strengthening of ties between fundamentalist and moderate Islamic states. Fusarium is well-known in the U.S. where farmers in Florida and Georgia have had crops destroyed by a virulent mutation called "Race 3", which has proven resistant to even the strongest fungicides. In other parts of the world, Fusarium fungi have been responsible for the destruction of watermelons, chickpeas, basil, bananas, and numerous other crops. Any of the fungi's variations is capable of lying dormant in soil for years waiting for a host plant. *** 4. Canadian Doctors Call for Opiate Maintenance, but Attorney General Cites "Bad Message" The Health Officers Council of British Columbia, a 20-doctor panel responsible for controlling outbreaks of communicable diseases in the province, called for a trial which would provide heroin to addicts in an effort to stem the spread of AIDS and Hepatitis C. The doctors also called upon the federal government to amend the Canadian Controlled Drug and Substances Act to make the drugs available. Canadian Attorney General Ujjal Dosanjh offered a second opinion in opposition to the esteemed physicians' group, saying "the only place where there have been heroin trials has been Switzerland and there have been mixed reviews of that. There is no clinical evidence that this works." Dosanjh also stated that expansion of methadone programs would be better than the doctors' proposal, adding, "it's not OK to take drugs, and we need to send that message." (Dosanjh does not appear to be accurately informed on the issue. Substantial clinical evidence favoring maintenance programs does indeed exist, from the Swiss experiment all the way back to the early maintenance clinics from 1915 in the U.S. Much more information on this topic is available on the Lindesmith Center web site, drug maintenance section, at http://www.lindesmith.org/library/subject.html.) *** 5. Treatment-Resistant AIDS Spreading, Bolstering Case for Syringe Exchange A report released this week (7/1) at the 12th International AIDS Conference in Geneva said that new strains of the AIDS virus have appeared which are resistant to protease inhibitors as well as to medications such as AZT. "We are seeing the emerging edge of a new aspect of the epidemic," proclaimed Dr. Frederick Hecht of the University of California. Ever since the development of protease inhibitor therapy, researchers have worried that patients who miss even a few doses on their strict medication regimen would face the possibility of the emergence of a mutated virus, resistant to all known treatments. Many believed, however that such viruses might not replicate or be transmitted as easily. The report issued this week indicates that this is likely not the case. Keith Cylar, founder and co-executive director of Housing Works, a New York City AIDS and harm reduction service provider, told The Week Online, "This report underscores the absolute necessity of stopping the spread of this disease through proven strategies like education and syringe exchange. It is just incomprehensible to me that in this day and age, there are cities and states where syringe exchange is still illegal. There are politicians, elected leaders like Governor Whitman in New Jersey, who talk about what message we send by allowing syringe exchange. Well, exactly what message are we sending when we fail to take adequate steps to insure the public health, the lives of citizens? Truly, truly, I don't know how some people live with themselves." Dawn Day, director of the Dogwood Center in Princeton New Jersey, and author of the "Health Emergency" AIDS Report, told The Week Online, "The human tragedy is that the findings of this report will likely be used to justify the withholding of treatment to the addicted and other drug users. There has always been a sense among the AIDS treatment community that they cannot hold to complex regimens of medication. Before this report, the fear of the development and spread of untreatable strains was hypothetical, but now that has been reinforced. This information is another reason why it is imperative to stop the spread of this disease among that population." *** 6. On Polling Numbers and Syringe Exchange in New Jersey A poll conducted this week by the Gannett News, publisher of five New Jersey daily newspapers, reached interesting, if seemingly contradictory opinions on syringe exchange in the Garden State (where it is still illegal.) When asked if they favored "supplying addicts with clean needles," 53% of the 653 respondents were opposed, while 34% were in favor. But when the same people were asked, in the same poll, if they would support "needle exchange if it would reduce the spread of AIDS," 62% replied that they would. Dawn Day, director of the Dogwood Center in Princeton, New Jersey, told The Week Online, "These numbers replicate what we have seen again and again. When couched in terms of slowing the spread of AIDS -- and there's simply no doubt that syringe exchange does so -- clear majorities, over 60% of nearly every poll, support the implementation of syringe exchange." Diana McCague, Coordinator of the New Jersey Harm reduction Coalition and director of the Chai Project Syringe Exchange told The Week Online, "I'm not the least bit surprised at these results. They clearly reflect the fact that when you give people the facts -- that syringe exchange reduces the spread of AIDS and HIV -- the majority are in favor. This is also reflective of the advocacy that we've been doing in this state for the past several years. It's time for Governor Whitman, along with New Jersey legislators, to pay attention. New Jersey has one of the highest rates of injection-related HIV and AIDS in the country. These people were elected to represent the people of this state, and when it comes to the enormous problem of injection-related AIDS in New Jersey, it's time that they started representing." *** 7. FDA Orders Books Destroyed Stevia is an herb, native to South America, which has been approved for use in the United States as a dietary supplement. In South America, however, Stevia has been used for centuries as a natural sweetener. But the FDA has not approved Stevia as a food additive and, apparently, feels that its jurisdiction extends to controlling information or destroying books which talk about Stevia's sweetening properties. Oscar Rodes owns Stevita Co., an importer and distributor of Stevia since early 1996. In mid-1996, Rodes attempted to import Stevia, both in ground and extract forms under the trade name "Stevia Sweet". The FDA, however, held his first shipment at customs and ordered him to change the labels so as not to suggest that the herb would, in fact sweeten foods or beverages to which it was added. Rodes complied. Then, in October of 1997, the FDA came to Rodes' warehouse to inspect his operation. "They took samples of the product and copied everything off of our web site," Rodes told The Week Online. In addition to the Stevia, the FDA also noticed three books that Rodes had in stock. The books, James Kirkland's "Cooking with Stevia: The Naturally Sweet and Calorie-Free Herb," David Richard's "Stevia Rebaudiana: Nature's Sweet Secret" and Linda Bonvie et al.'s "The Stevia Story: A Tale of Incredible Sweetness and Intrigue," told of Stevia's properties as a natural, calorie-free sweetener. "They took copies of each book as well" said Rodes. In February of 1998, a shipment of Stevia, bound for Rodes' warehouse, was detained by the Dallas, TX office of the FDA at customs. The Dallas office notified him that the shipment was being held up for "investigation", "even though this product, and the labels on the product, had already been approved by Washington," said Rodes. The Dallas office later told Rodes that if they released the product, it would be "contaminated" by the presence of the literature already in circulation. Then on March 6, Rodes received a warning letter from the FDA stating that the presence of the books, and the contents of his web site "rendered the product adulterated." The letter told him that he had five days to reply or to take corrective action. Rodes called his attorney, James Turner, in Washington, DC. Turner sent a letter requesting a fifteen day extension. On March 26, Turner answered the FDA letter, saying that Rodes had agreed to all of their requests, except for the books, which he wanted to continue to offer for sale. On April 27, FDA agents came back to Rodes' place of business and took inventory. They inspected the product labels and looked at his records. On May 12, with over 14,000 units of product being held up, Rodes, through his attorney, sent a letter to the FDA agreeing not to sell the books. "I felt I had no choice" he said. "We had over 250 unfilled back orders. We had already been forced to let employees go, and it was down to just my wife and I. This is my business. We have to eat." On May 19, Rodes received a fax from the FDA which said, in part, "...a current inventory must be taken by an investigator of this office, who will also be available to witness the destruction of the cookbooks, literature and other publications for the purpose of verifying compliance." Upon receipt of the above-mentioned fax, alerting him that FDA agents would be in later in the day, Rodes attempted to contact his attorney, but he was unavailable. When the agents arrived, they did yet another inspection. Rodes alerted the agents that he himself would not destroy the literature, but if they insisted upon doing so, he would videotape their actions for his records. At that point, the agents called their office and, instead of destroying the books, took a marker and signed and dated the title page of each one in stock. The agents returned to Rodes' place of business on both May 12 and May 13. Shortly after this incident, Rodes was contacted by a Dr. Julian Whitaker, who asked if he could purchase the three books. Rodes explained his situation and refused to sell them. Thereafter, Dr. Whitaker contacted Jonathan W. Emord, a Washington, DC first amendment attorney, who then contacted the FDA stating an intention to commence legal action if the books were not released for sale. On June 5, Emord received a faxed letter from Annamarie Kempic of the FDA's enforcement bureau stating that Mr. Rodes was free to sell the books to his client and that "we have contacted Rodes and advised him not to destroy the books at this time." On June 8, Mr. Emord received another fax from Ms. Kempic stating that "The FDA Dallas District informs me that it was Mr. Rodes who chose the option of destroying the books." "That's absurd," Rodes told The Week Online. "I don't want to destroy my own books! How would I ever recover the cost?" At this time, the FDA is withholding two separate shipments of Stevia from Rodes. These shipments contain legal product with labeling approved by the FDA. The only answer that Rodes has gotten is that the presence of the literature in the marketplace somehow "adulterates" the product. "They had told me that I should recall the 4,000 books that I had already sold," Rodes said. "That is impossible." At this time, the FDA is withholding two separate shipments of Stevia from Mr. Rodes. These shipments contain legal product with labeling approved by the FDA. The only answer that Mr. Rodes has gotten is that the presence of the literature in the marketplace somehow "adulterates" the product. "They had told me that I should recall the 4,000 books that I had already sold." Mr. Rodes said. "That is impossible." In the end, the FDA's Stevia crackdown may provide more protection to the artificial sweetener industry than the public. Stevia is highly regarded both in South America and in industrialized nations like Japan as a natural, calorie- free sweetener. It is legally available in the US, intended for human consumption; the only thing that the FDA doesn't want people to know is that it is sweet. The FDA did not return phone calls seeking comment on this story. *** 8. Crop Eradication Leaves Lebanon Peasants Hungry In Lebanon, the United States funded illicit drug crop eradication efforts appear to have succeeded (locally). The opium poppies and cannabis plants have been almost totally eliminated after six years of troops burning fields and helicopters spraying contaminants on crops. Clinton's administration has gone so far as to remove Lebanon from its list of major drug-producing nations. While this may seem like great news for the United States' "war on drugs", it has left tens of thousands of peasants in Lebanon impoverished. The United Nations had planned to help them build irrigation systems and to help plant cherries, apricots and potatoes as substitute crops. Farmers in the area say inadequate international aid, economic depression and broken promises have left them with little money to buy food. The $13 million in aid over the past several year covered only a fourth of the funds needed to provide adequate irrigation for the new crops. The drug eradication has been destructive to local economies and without long term alternative development programs farmers have had little choice but to return to the highly profitable farming of cannabis and poppy plants. The situation has become so grave in Central Bekaa in Lebanon that a revolt has risen up under religious leader named Sheik Sobhi Toufeili. The Hunger Revolution, as it is called, has harnessed the resentment among farmers who feel the west has betrayed them. In Beirut, western officials have conceded that international aid programs provided for by the UN have failed to meet their objectives. Phil Coffin, policy analyst for The Lindesmith Center, a drug policy think-tank in New York, told the Boston Globe, "It is part of the misguided global drug war by the U.S. and the U.N., which ignores the economics of the drug trade and the fact there will always be poor farmers who will grow as long as there is demand for drugs." Despite an apparent supply reduction in Lebanon, demand seems to have won the day in the end -- government reports show that global cultivation of opium has more than doubled since 1986. *** 9. News Briefs * The Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1998 passed the House of Representives this week. The legislation calls for grants to help small buisnesses develope a drug-free workplace programs, such as instituting drug testing and employee training. "This bill is a part of a measured federal response to... the growing problem of substance abuse in our society, and a move toward a drug-free America," stated Rep. Rob Portman (R-OH), the sponsor of the bill. * Two suspected drug dealers were shot to death by police in Homestead, Florida after a botched drug bust. Police detectives were selling a small amount of cocaine to several suspects in a crowded apartment complex. The police and suspects got in an argument and violence broke out, leaving 2 dead, 1 officer wounded and 3 others injured. Community members question why the bust was being held in such a public area. * A helicopter searching for marijuana plants in northeastern Tennessee crashed, leaving both crew members dead. It took 135 people 3 days to find the wreckage of the helicopter. * Sheriff's deputies have warned hikers in Tehama County to watch out for walking into marijuana gardens. Recently, several hikers have unknowingly walked in such farms, which are reported to be heavily guarded and dangerous. * Over 100 clandestine landing strips in rural Honduras have been detected by the DEA. Officials believe that many of the runways are being used as stopping points for traffickers shipping drugs to the United States. The DEA and the Honduras government are working together to identify planes using the strips for drug shipments, but many are located in remote mountainous regions. * The World Bank is planning to examine the need for reform of Latin American banking systems during a two-day conference in El Salvador. El Salvador's president, Armando Caderon Sol, called for a united effort to control and supervise the financial system to fight drug related crime such as money laundering. * Delegates at the World AIDS Congress urged, on July 1, that needle exchange be increased worldwide, to stem the rising global epidemic of injection-related AIDS, but noted that harsh government attitudes as well as poverty stand in the way of addressing the problem. "The law-and-order approach has not been successful in eliminating drug use," said Palani Narayan of the Thailand-based Asian Harm Reduction Network. *** 10. Orlando, Florida: Statewide Medical Marijuana Conference, 7/25 The Coalition Advocating Medical Marijuana (CAMM) is sponsoring a statewide medical marijuana conference, from 10:00am - 5:00pm, at the Downtown Orlando Library, 101 East Central Boulevard on July 25. Speakers include Attorney Norman Kent, speaking on the medical necessity defense, Attorney Dick Wilson, a 1st Amendment specialist, CAMM founder Toni Leeman, Rob Kampia of the Marijuana Policy Project, medical marijuana patients Elvy Musikka and Greg Scott, and others. A benefit concert will be help on the evening of July 24, at The Go Lounge, 25 Wall Street Plaza, Orlando. For information, contact Toni Leeman at (954) 763-1799, e- mail email@example.com, or visit the Floridians for Medical Rights web site at http://www.medicalrights.org. *** 11. Washington State Medical Marijuana Initiative Submits Signatures Washington Citizens for Medical Rights, a broad coalition of doctors, patients and state citizens, reports submitting more than 230,000 signatures today (July 2) to place Initiative 692, the Washington State Medical Use of Marijuana act, on the November 3 ballot. "These signatures represent thousands of citizens who care about relieving the suffering of patients with terminal or debilitating illnesses such as cancer and AIDS," states Tacoma physician, Dr. Rob Killian, sponsor of the initiative. "We have worked with doctors, patients, law enforcement and legislators to bring Washington voters an initiative that is tightly drafted, narrowly focused, and protects the doctor-patient relationship," said Killian. The initiative allows patients with specific terminal or debilitating illnesses to use limited amounts of medical marijuana, and permits physicians to authorize and recommend such use. Qualifying terminal or debilitating illnesses are limited to cancer, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, glaucoma and some forms of intractable pain. Patients would be required to have valid documentation authorizing the use from a state-accredited physician. Initiative 692 is modeled after senate bill 6271, which was introduced to the legislature during the 1998 session by State Senators Jeanne Kohl and Pat Thibadeau. That effort received editorial support from the Seattle Times and Post- Intelligencer. "I enthusiastically support I-692," stated Senator Kohl. "My dearest friend of 23 years died recently of uterine cancer. I saw the difference just a small amount of medical marijuana made in relieving her suffering, she should not have had to die a criminal." *** 12. Independence Day for KY Farmers: University of Kentucky to Release Hemp Research The following is a press release from the Kentucky Hemp Museum and Library: [LEXINGTON, KY] - A study of the economic impact of industrial hemp for Kentucky will be released on July 3, 1998 at 3:00pm at Ashland, the estate of the "Great Compromiser" and noted hemp farmer, Henry Clay. The University of Kentucky's Carol Martin Gatton College of Business and Economics conducted the study for the Kentucky Hemp Museum & Library. The University of Kentucky study concludes that industrial hemp production in Kentucky will have a positive impact on Kentucky's economy. To meet current demands, industrial hemp production would be more profitable to Kentucky farmers per acre than all other current agronomic crops, except tobacco. The study also indicates that developing an industrial hemp industry in Kentucky would generate employment and economic prosperity for rural communities. Andy Graves, President of the Kentucky Hemp Growers Cooperative says, "This study should go a long way to dispelling law enforcement's contention that industrial hemp is not economically viable and brings us one step closer to 'Independence Day for Kentucky Farmers'." (The study will be posted at http://www.hempgrowers.com.) *** 13. EDITORIAL: Who's A Fraud? Over the past several weeks, recriminations by the principals of the Drug War against virtually anybody who advocates changes in drug policy have gotten ugly. Drug War officials have used words like "devious", "cabal" and "fraud", when referring to reformers and their ideas. Interestingly, in their quest to frighten the public into ignoring their opposition, the drug warriors have opened themselves even further to substantiated charges that it is they who are being less than honest. In testimony on Capitol Hill last week, Barry McCaffrey characterized the ultimate goals of reformers as leading to "heroin being sold at the corner store to children with false identifications, the driver of an eighteen-wheeler high on methamphetamines traveling alongside the family mini-van, (and) skyrocketing numbers of addicts draining society of its productivity." Scare tactics such as these, mischaracterizing the aims of his ideological opposition, are so blatantly disingenuous that they threaten to destroy whatever little credibility McCaffrey has left. And little credibility it is. This week, the University of Kentucky will release a study flatly refuting McCaffrey's repeated claim that there is no economic benefit to legalizing hemp as an industrial crop. In fact, the study concludes, the current demand is such that hemp would immediately become the second most valuable legal crop in the state, behind only tobacco. This will likely make it more difficult for McCaffrey to snidely deride "the opinions of noted agronomists like (actor) Woody Harrelson" and those who would "create a false issue for the purpose of legalizing marijuana." But McCaffrey's short history as Drug Czar indicates that he will try, despite the mounting evidence against him. Syringe exchange, medical marijuana, on one issue after another, drug warriors on both sides of the aisle have been shown to be willing to lie, and lie repeatedly, in defense of their war. So what is the answer? How will reform efforts, efforts to cut the overwhelming number of young black males in the criminal justice system (one in three, nationally), efforts to slow the spread of AIDS through meaningful intervention with the addicted, efforts to secure access to adequate medication for people suffering with chronic pain, efforts to stop blatantly out-of-control seizures of property, efforts to provide access to marijuana for cancer, glaucoma and other patients who find it effective, efforts to demilitarize domestic law enforcement, efforts to restrain growing government surveillance of private citizens, efforts to rein in wholesale corruption, efforts to stop the spraying of poisons on the rain forest and its peoples, efforts to curb the astounding enrichment of organized crime organizations across the globe, efforts to take control of the drug trade and to put it into the hands of responsible, well-regulated professionals and out of the reach of children, how will these efforts succeed in the face of all of these lies? By telling the truth, and telling it repeatedly. Americans are only now beginning to take notice of drug policy. That is why the drug warriors are expanding so rapidly their strategy of deceit. It is important, even imperative to the future of the Republic, and the future of our children, that their lies are met by a constant and growing chorus of truth from those who oppose their dirty war. Talk to your friends, to your neighbors, to your parents and your colleagues. Talking about drug policy doesn't make you "pro-drug", or a hippie, or a liberal, or a libertarian, or even a rebel or a nut. What it makes you is an American, concerned for the values of your nation. And those values, far from being quaint, are as important now as they have ever been. It is no longer enough to believe that Prohibition is bad policy. The time to act is upon us. There can be no more excuses. No embarrassed silence. You must seek out whoever will listen, and especially those who you fear will never understand, and you must tell them the truth. And show them. Because Prohibition IS bad policy. Disastrous policy. And no amount of lying by those who would continue to profit from evil can change that fact. Adam J. Smith Associate Director *** DRCNet needs your support! Donations can be sent to 2000 P St., NW, Suite 615, Washington, DC 20036, or made by credit card at http://www.drcnet.org/drcreg.html on the web. Contributions to DRCNet are not tax-deductible. *** DRCNet *** JOIN/MAKE A DONATION http://www.drcnet.org/drcreg.html DRUG POLICY LIBRARY http://www.druglibrary.org/ REFORMER'S CALENDAR http://www.drcnet.org/calendar.html SUBSCRIBE TO THIS LIST http://www.drcnet.org/signup.html DRCNet HOME PAGE http://www.drcnet.org/ STOP THE DRUG WAR SITE http://www.stopthedrugwar.org/
------------------------------------------------------------------- Weekly Action Report On Drug Policies, Year 4, Number 18 (Summary Of International Drug Policy News, From CORA In Italy) Date: Tue, 7 Jul 1998 07:37:29 EDT Errors-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Originator: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org To: Multiple recipients of list (email@example.com) Subject: CORAFax 18 (EN) ANTIPROHIBITIONIST OF THE ENTIRE WORLD .... Year 4 No. 18, July 2 1998 *** Weekly Action Report on Drug Policies Edited by the CORA - Radical Antiprohibitionist Coordination, federated to - TRP-Transnational Radical Party (NGO, consultive status, I) - The Global Coalition for Alternatives to the Drug War *** director: Vincenzo Donvito All rights reserved *** http://www.agora.stm.it/coranet mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org NEWS FROM THE CORA *** PRT / RUSSIA - An appeal on the theme of fighting drugs has been presented to the deputies of the Russian Parliament after the approval of the federal law on drugs and psicho active substances . - Nikolaj Kramov, coordinator for the Transnational Padical Party, has sent an open letter to the President of the Duma Committee For Health Protection. In the letter, answering to accuses made to the TRP of "favoring the drug mafia", he invites the Committee to contact the Dutch Government and verify the official figures of the results from their politics on light drugs. *** NEWS FROM THE WORLD 000119 29/06/98 U.E. / ITALY DRUG ADDICTION EL PAIS A study shows that a heroin overdose can occur with greater chance after a period of abstinence. The heroin is transformed into morphine, and when it enters the blood stream can produce the overdose. *** 000111 02/07/98 AMERICA / USA HEALTH L'ESPRESSO The outcome of a study shows that THC is effective for limiting nausea and vomit symptoms in patients who are undergoing chemotherapy and for restoring appetite in people with AIDS. *** 000112 01/07/98 E.U. / FRANCE HEALTH LE NOUVEL OBSERVATEUR In an interview Secretary of Health Mr. B. Kouchner says that he is favourable to a regulation of cannabis (as of alcohol and tobacco) but against its actual depenalization. This is typical of French conservatism on drugs: they defend their own addictions (like hunting) and despise anyone else's. *** 000113 25/06/98 E.U. / FRANCE HEALTH LE FIGARO The Academy of Medicine, in contrast with the Roques report, says that cannabis is certainly toxic, and is favourable to a strategy of special controls on automobile drivers involved in deadly accidents. *** 000108 27/06/98 E.U. / GERMANY INITIATIVE FRANKFURTER / SUEDDEUTSCHE Z. On the occasion of the International Day Against Drugs, the SPD, Green and FDP parties have again declared themselves favourable to special health care for drug addicts and controlled distribution of heroin. The CDU party is instead against this. They say the Swedish policy should be adopted, not the Swiss one. *** 000117 30/06/98 E.U. / HOLLAND INITIATIVE EL PAIS The Dutch experimental plan of controlled distribution of heroin to about one hundred addicts will start within a week's time, late and after a long period of debate. *** 000107 27/06/98 AMERICA / BOLIVIA JURISPRUDENCE THE TIMES A twenty five year old anthropologist has been arrested for possessing 2 kilos of marijuana. 'I believe in legalizing all drugs' she declared. *** 000109 25/06/98 E.U. / CH LAWS NEUE ZUERCHER Z. The Government resolution that specifies how controlled distribution of heroin should work, on the basis of the new law on drugs (No. 2004/2005), has been approved by the State Council. *** 000110 03/07/98 AMERICA / CANADA MARKET THE ECONOMIST Export of Canadian marijuana has quadrupled in the last two years. *** 000118 30/06/98 AFRICA / NIGERIA MARKET HERALD TRIBUNE A survey on drug production, traffic and corruption in General Abacha's country shows that Nigeria, although diplomatically isolated, still produces between 40 and 60 % of the world heroin. In the streets of Lagos the price is of 15 $ per gram. Nonetheless, a Nigerian anti-drug agency still exists (the NDLEA). *** 000114 22/06/98 E.U. / SPAIN WAR ON DRUGS CAMBIO 16 Being a country through which a great deal of drug traffic passes, Spain should be glad about the outcome of the UN conference on drugs. Unfortunately, the USA style of fighting drugs that has been reproposed does not induce any kind of optimism. *** 000115 02/07/98 AMERICA / COLOMBIA WAR ON DRUGS L'ESPRESSO A quick portrait of how Leonardo Gallego, the man who is fighting the South American drug cartels by burning coca cultivations, carries out his expeditions: On his side there is a satellite, helicopters and three thousand soldiers; against him, the bosses, the peasants and the guerrilla. *** 000116 29/06/98 ASIA / UZBEKISTAN WAR ON DRUGS CORRIERE DELLA SERA / LA STAMPA 29/6 / THE TIMES 28/6 Biological warfare against opium: A special fungus will kill the poppy plants. British, American and Russian scientists are working to create an anti heroin parasite. *** CLIPPINGS ITALY- The Rifondazione Comunista party (Communist Refounding), in verifying its role in the Government majority, has advanced the request that free distribution of drugs for personal use be depenalized, that light drugs be legalized and that controlled distribution of heroin be seriously experimented. GERMANY- Ulrich Goll (FDP), Secretary of Justice of Baden-Wuttenburg, has declared: "The Swiss experience shows that a drug addict's growing 'social stability' is a phenomenon which takes place contemporarily with the diminishing of criminality". *** CORA -COORDINATION RADICALE ANTIPROHIBITIONNISTE -ANTIPROHIBITIONIST RADICAL COORDINATION -COORDINAMENTO RADICALE ANTIPROIBIZIONISTA Federated with the Transnational Radical Party NGO with category I consultative status at the UN mailto:email@example.com http://www.agora.stm.it/coranet mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org -------------------------------------------------------------------
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